EU's geographical centre shifts in Germany after Brexit

1 February 2020, 10:12 | Updated: 1 February 2020, 12:53

A non-descript field in Germany has been named the EU's new geographical centre, after Brexit happened last night.

The point in a village of around 80 people in Gadheim, Bavaria, has been marked with a red and white pole on a boulder accompanied by the EU and German flags.

"On the one hand, of course I am proud and happy that we are becoming the new geographical centre of Europe," local mayor Juergen Goetz said.

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"On the other hand, of course it's a sad occasion, because with Britain a country is leaving the EU for the first time."

Mr Goetz revealed he first heard about the calculation in March 2017 - months after the Brexit referendum.

"At first, I thought it was an April fool's joke, an early one. But it turned out very quickly that it was really the case," he said.

The honour of being the centre of Europe stems from calculations by France's national cartographic institute, IGN.

It places the point at 9 degrees, 54 minutes, 7 seconds east and 49 degrees, 50 minutes, 35 seconds north.

Gadheim takes over from the EU's former geographic centre, Westerngrund, which is only 35 miles (56km) away.

It has been in Germany ever since the bloc grew from 15 to 25 members in May 2004 by taking in mostly eastern European countries.

Now the EU has shrunk from 28 to 27 members, after the UK officially left at 11pm GMT on Friday 31 January 2020.