Farage rips into EU demand to fly banner on buildings ‘Let’s not fly that wretched flag!’

GB News: Nigel Farage hits back at new EU flag rules

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GB News presenter Nigel Farage slammed plans to fly the EU flag off public buildings after it was revealed the UK will receive money from the European Regional Development Fund to support the high street. However, the funds come with preconditions where the EU flag must be displayed on “every piece of signage, pavement sticker, or temporary public realm adaption” which has received funds under the scheme. Mr Farage was furious at the plans and demanded different options were explored to raise public funds.

 

Speaking on GB News, Mr Farage looked at the story and blasted the Government’s decision to back the £56million agreement. 

The EU flag decision has been imposed by Brussels but Whitehall have chosen to enforce it for government properties and schemes. 

Mr Farage said on his programme: “It’s not April Fool’s it’s true, the UK government is telling councils up and down the country to display EU flags as a condition for receiving high street Covid recovery cash.

“Guidance issued to local authorities by the communities ministry this summer, says the blue and yellow symbol of European Union unity is required to be displayed around every piece of signage, pavement, sticker, temporary or public realm, adaption funded out of this scheme.

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“So the requirement says that we’ve got to have thousands of EU flags flying over this country on official buildings this summer because the European Regional Development Fund has given £56million to the UK to help with COVID-19 reopening.

“We had Brexit, we’ve had a withdrawal agreement and yet, we’re still gonna take £56million from the EU, and put that wretched flag that I thought we’d seen the back of up on public buildings.

“I tell you what is better idea than that, just reduce the amount of money that you’re still paying them, don’t take the £56million and let’s not fly that wretched flag.

The scheme called the “Welcome Back Fund” provides councils across the UK millions of pounds to “support the return to high streets safely and to build back better from the pandemic”.

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The UK is still eligible for certain payments from the fund until the end of 2023 but is bounded by certain restrictions. 

It comes just four months after the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport announced it was repealing planning rules in a bid to make it harder to fly EU flags.

The money from the scheme can be spent on anything which will encourage people to return to the high street which can include beautifying projects and new street planning. 

Nearly all local governments will be receiving the cash with Birmingham receiving the largest share with £1million. 

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Liberal Democrat frontbencher Christine Jardine attacked the plans and said: “This shows the absurd hypocrisy of this Conservative government.

“They have spent years denouncing EU projects and pulling the UK out of funding schemes like this and now they have the gall to trumpet a fund made possible by exactly the sort of European cooperation they are turning their backs on.

“Instead of worrying about displaying the EU flag, the government should be working hard to support the thousands of struggling high street businesses – starting with extending the furlough scheme that’s due to taper off.”

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