People on Teesside voted to leave the European Union because they felt "disenfranchised", a UKIP councillor has said.
The leave vote was particularly strong in Hartlepool, where seven out of 10 people voted for Brexit.
John Tennant, leader of the UKIP group on Hartlepool Council, described it as a forgotten town, which had lost a lot of its industry.
Middlesbrough, Stockton, and Redcar and Cleveland also voted leave.
'On the chin'
Mr Tennant said: "There's a lot of people who are disenfranchised.
"They feel disaffected and they look at the European institutions where people are well paid, with big expensive lives, all being paid for by us ordinary hardworking people.
"They say 'Oh that's not good enough', we want our money back, we want our country back, so let's govern ourselves."
Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland Tom Blenkinsop said he was "obviously very disappointed" but the decision to leave the EU "has to be respected".
"We have to take the result on the chin," he said.
"Those who campaigned for leave have to show us the way now because there will be people waking up, whether they voted remain or leave, who will be in a state of... shock."
UKIP North East MEP Jonathan Arnott tweeted: "Brexit has a mandate. The next challenge is to bring everyone together and work towards a better Britain. We have a duty to make this work."