20 June 2016

EU Referendum Debate with Adam Boulton

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The school was delighted to host a discussion about the pros and cons of Britain leaving the EU between Chris Giles, Economics Editor of the Financial Times, and Gerard Lyons, chief economic adviser to Boris Johnson, hosted by Adam Boulton, Presenter of Sky News, Sunday Times columnist and one of the school’s governors. Sadly, due to the death of MP Jo Cox that afternoon, the Sevenoaks MP and Secretary of State for Defence, Michael Fallon, and UKIP MEP Diane James, withdrew from the debate, as MPs from all parties suspended campaigning.

Watch the video here 

Chris Giles started the measured, thoughtful, highly informed and wide-ranging discussion by telling a packed Pamoja Hall that he preferred the Britain of 2012, hosting the Olympics, "outward looking and welcoming to the whole world" to the Britain of the campaign, which he found "insular, mean-spirited" and concerned only with "pocket book economics". Gerard Lyons, on the other hand, said the UK was being held back by an inward looking "little Europe", as Adam Boulton dubbed it.

A healthy debate ensued, leaving the audience to vote in Adam’s mock referendum at the end, the outcome of which was a large ‘Remain’ majority. The Charity Action Group sold doughnuts after the event, giving the audience the opportunity to vote with a ‘Remain’ or ‘Leave’ flag. Again the ‘Remain’ vote won. 

Thank you to the panellists, the students and Lorna Dolan who organised such a high-profile event. 


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