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'I'll go back to selling fish' - What the region's MEPs will be doing after Brexit

PUBLISHED: 14:21 06 February 2020 | UPDATED: 14:33 06 February 2020

Britain left the European Union on January 31, entering a 'transition phase' that could last until 2021. PHOTO: Kirsty O'Connor

Britain left the European Union on January 31, entering a 'transition phase' that could last until 2021. PHOTO: Kirsty O'Connor

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For most of us, January 31 will have provided at least some semblance of closure when it comes to Brexit.

Former Brexit Party MEP June Mummery said she will continue to pressure Boris to deliver for the British fishing industry.  PHOTO: Stuart AndersonFormer Brexit Party MEP June Mummery said she will continue to pressure Boris to deliver for the British fishing industry. PHOTO: Stuart Anderson

But what about the MEPs who have just lost their jobs?

According to June Mummery, former Brexit Party MEP from Lowestoft, the UK's relationship with the EU will remain firmly on her radar.

She said: "I might be going back to my day job selling fish at Lowestoft market, but I will be keeping a keen eye on Boris to make sure he delivers for the country's fishing industry and stops the Dutch hammering our waters.

"Honestly, though, I'm glad I've lost my job. I couldn't wait to get out of that European Parliament.

Barbara Gibson, former Lib Dem MEP, said she was 'inspired' by the EU to get more women and girls in politics. Photo: Courtesy of Liberal Democrats.Barbara Gibson, former Lib Dem MEP, said she was 'inspired' by the EU to get more women and girls in politics. Photo: Courtesy of Liberal Democrats.

"Finding a platform will be harder now, but we knew we were elected to take us out of the EU and that's what we did.

"The Brexit Party isn't going anywhere".

Barbara Gibson, the Hertfordshire-born former Liberal Democrat MEP for East England, has a different view to her colleague.

"I'm gutted to be leaving the EU", she said. "It was an especially tough time after the December General Election when we knew that our days were numbered.

Former Green MEP Catherine Rowett said she was extremely sad to be leaving the European Parliament. PHOTO: Antony KellyFormer Green MEP Catherine Rowett said she was extremely sad to be leaving the European Parliament. PHOTO: Antony Kelly

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"But I'm not planning on leaving politics.

"As well as still being actively involved in Hertfordshre County Council, I've launched a campaign called 'Women and Girls in Politics'.

"I'm really excited about this. It's important to get more women involved in decision making because it isn't a 'man's world' anymore.

"I'm convinced think we'll be back in Europe one day, but not for a long time yet."

For former Green MEP Catherine Rowett, having to pack up her things from Brussels was also an agonising experience.

She said: "Of course I'm sad to be losing my job.

"It's a really good atmosphere in the EP - not adversarial like the House of Commons.

"The flag-waving idiots who sat at the back did that for the UK media. In reality, MEPs from all over Europe sat together and co-operated on legislation, because that's the grown-up thing to do.

"What I'll do now is probably move into a flexi-retirement role at the University of East Anglia, where I was a researcher in Ancient Philosophy.

"I'm excited to get back to my house in Norwich and my cat, who's had a sitter since I took office in June."

All seven of the region's MEPs were contacted for comment.

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