Brexit: Generation gap

BBC Radio 5 Live's Afternoon Edition Generation Gap brings together different generations of the same family to see what they think about issues that are happening in the world. Brexit, unsurprisingly, has been a common topic of discussion, so here are two families' views on the referendum result and how they feel now.

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Joanne, Betty and Lucie

Lucie, 33, is a photographer and blogger who lives in London. She voted Remain. Her mother Joanne, 52, and grandmother Betty, 71, live in Warrington. They both voted Leave.

Lucie says: "We haven't fallen out"

"[Brexit] is a bit of a bone of contention. Because I moved away from home, went to university and met friends all around the world, I said ‘I’m going to vote to remain’, and nothing would have changed that. I just thought voting to leave would affect my future opportunities.

"As a young person, if you’re on a dating app, if someone else voted Leave and you voted Remain you think you’d never get on. So in a family where you’ve both voted differently, that’s quite something, but we haven’t fallen out [over it].

“I still feel like we’re going to lose out by leaving and I think it causes a lot of unnecessary stress when [MPs] could be focusing their energies on things that are far more important for our society.

“I don’t think people had all the information they needed."

Joanne says: "We’ve agreed to disagree"

"[Lucie] was quite shocked that I was voting to leave for whatever reasons and I tried to explain them to her.

She couldn’t understand my point of view"

"It got quite heated she couldn’t understand my point of view because hers was so black and white to her, and mine was so black and white to me.

"We may have got a bad deal, but I just think that our government didn’t really want to leave and they made the worst of the decision.

"The way the EU has treated us has strengthened my resolve to leave. So if there was a second referendum, which I don’t think there should be, I would still vote to leave.

"It makes me feel sad that Lucie feels the way she does, but I also think us being in the EU would have affected her anyway because we were putting so much in and getting so little out.

“We’ve agreed to disagree really. I think this is probably happening all across the country in families."

Betty says: "Time will tell what will happen"

"Me and my husband voted differently. He voted to stay in and I voted to leave. We spoke about it, I was asking him why he wanted to stay in and he said it was too expensive for the country to leave.

"He said ‘there’s no apprentices to do the jobs now, there’s a big gap’, and I said 'we should get the apprentices back to get the country going again'.

"I still feel it’s going to take a long time for the country to cope with it all. I would like it [to go back to] when there were jobs for everyone and apprenticeships.

"I think the working classes are going to suffer like they usually do, but it’s probably just the same, they always do suffer.
Whichever way we go, time will tell what will happen."

Brian and Libby

Libby, 18, is from Darlington and goes to university in Leeds. She was too young to vote in the referendum. Her grandfather Brian, 76, lives in Darlington and voted Leave.

Libby says: "Would it have been easier to have kept it like it was?"

"I was too young to vote at the time, but I was involved in family discussions on it because I was living at home at the time. I was really intrigued about what was going on.

"I think if I had the opportunity to vote, I would have voted Leave because my parents and grandad voted leave.

"Now with what has happened I would vote Remain. Given what has come out of it, and that some of the things the Leave campaign said aren’t realistic. It was so close. Would it have just been easier to have kept it like it was? Don’t fix it, if it’s not broken.

"[My family] still want to leave but I’ve obviously expressed my points and they can see where I’m coming from because, it hasn’t played out the way they thought.

"I think there should be a second referendum, which would mean I could vote."

Brian says: "[All my grandchildren] would probably want to stay in Europe"

“I feel people are entitled to their own views. I just feel we set off as seven members of a trading partnership, but it’s become something else. It’s my concern and my concern for grandchildren is they would grow up as part of federal Europe.

“I have 11 grandchildren, about half of them are in the over 18 bracket and I would guess they would all probably want to stay in Europe. I respect their views, but they don’t have age on their side and they don’t have experience on their side.

“From what I’ve seen of negotiations it makes me even more determined to abandon Brussels. I think we’ve got to be prepared to take a bit of a hit over the next few years while we get over it, but I’m in no doubt this country can build itself again."

Victoria and Jeffrey

Jeffrey, 87, is from Bingley in West Yorkshire. He voted Leave. His granddaughter Victoria, 37, didn’t vote.

Jeffrey says: "I’m as definite if not more definite”

“I voted to leave. It’s the only thing, we want to be independent, decide what we do with our lives, what our laws are, how many immigrants we can have.

“We don’t want somewhere like the EU deciding for us. Think of the waste of money, how they move the European parliament every six months, it’s unbelievable the money they must spend.

“Now I’m as definite if not more definite to when I voted.

“Once the vote was done they should have all got together and worked out the best deal with Theresa May.

“Nobody has a real idea of what’s going to happen after we leave, it doesn’t matter who is the prime minister, anybody would have had a difficult job.

“In the long term I think the country is going to be in a better position.”

Victoria says: "Change is always scary"

"I didn’t vote in the referendum. I’d just moved and had a baby so my head was full of other things. Then I was on holiday and couldn’t vote.

"The EU is a positive thing to be a part of, and I think saying that we have choices over things, I don’t think we would have that. I guess in the past it would be like that, but because we have had the EU it’s not as easy to take ourselves out of it.

"It is scary because it is different and change is always scary.

"I think people have a specific idea of what Leave means. I think a lot of people think it’s just about immigration, and they don’t realise it will have an impact on trade, the economy, housing, what jobs we have, what we’re able to do.

"It’s easy to look back and say things were different then, but to come out of it will change everything. An older person doesn’t have to think so much about years and years in the future and their children."

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