On Friday we woke up to a new era in politics, as the news broke that the British electorate had voted to leave the European Union. The result was a victory for the leave camp, some of whom had been preparing to concede defeat as late polls indicated a late swing towards remain. In the end it was not to be, and the final outcome was 52% - 48% in favour of a Brexit.

How Britain voted

England voted strongly for Brexit, by 53.4% to 46.6%, as did Wales, with 52.5% voting to leave and 47.5% to remain. Scotland and Northern Ireland both backed staying in the EU. Scotland backed remaining by 62% to 38%, while 55.8% in Northern Ireland voted to remain and 44.2% to leave. Twitter exploded with end of the world memes and David Cameron choked back tears as he tendered his resignation. As the smoke starts to clear, we look at what happens now. EU law still applies in Britain until it ceases being a member - and this process could take some time. Brexit will be implemented under an agreement called Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty.  The UK must first notify the president of the European Council of its intention to leave. Withdrawal will then proceed one of two ways - either through agreement by negotiation or automatically after two years if there is no agreement. Negotiations are likely to be long and arduous, as the government seeks to untangle a host of trading agreements, national legislation, tax treaties, accounting rules and other innumerable protocols. During the period of negotiation Britain will continue to abide by EU treaties and laws, but will not play a part in any decision making. Prime Minister David Cameron has passed the baton to his successor to invoke Article 50, having announced he “is not the right captain to steer the country to its destination”, and will step down in October. It is inevitable that Brexit will have an  impact on every aspect of life in Britain, in areas including the economy, health, education and immigration. However at this early stage the practicalities of this unprecedented divorce remain to be seen. What’s your view? Get in touch.