‘A historic moment’: 670,000 march to demand Final Say on Brexit at second biggest demo in a century (The Independent)
‘We were the few, and now we are the many,’ activists told as huge crowds urge Theresa May to change course.
Lizzy Buchan, Political Correspondent
The crowds stretched so far back that plenty of people never even made it to the rally.
Masses overflowed through the streets of London for more than a mile, from Hyde Park Corner to Parliament Square, as an estimated 670,000 protesters took their demand for a fresh Brexit referendum right to Theresa May’s doorstep.
They came from every corner of the UK, in what is believed to be the largest demonstration since the Iraq War march in 2003, when more than a million people turned out in the capital to oppose the conflict.
Amid the swathes of EU flags and banners, there was also a growing sense that campaigners, MPs and activists were realising, perhaps for the first time, that this was a battle that could be won.
“We were the few, and now we are the many,” Tory MP Anna Soubry told the crowds crammed into Parliament Square.
“We are winning the argument and we are winning the argument most importantly against those who voted Leave.”
She said: “We will not walk away. We will take responsibility and sort out this mess with a people’s vote.”
Speaking to The Independent beforehand, she said many Tory MPs were privately supportive of a second referendum amid bitter divisions in the party.
Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran said the sheer scale of the event showed that “confidence is growing” in the fight for a fresh vote.
To huge cheers, London mayor Sadiq Khan said the march marked a “historic moment in our democracy”.
He told protestors: “We’ve heard some complain that a public vote would be undemocratic and unpatriotic. But the opposite is true.
“There’s nothing more democratic – nothing more British – than trusting the people to have the final say on our future.”