Theresa May last night warned Britain’s elite to learn the lessons of Brexit and Donald Trump by never again ignoring the public’s fears about immigration – but some guests appeared to drop off during her speech.
The Prime Minister used her first Lord Mayor’s Banquet speech to say voters never gave permission for immigration to change their communities.However, despite her rousing and impassioned speech that ‘change is in the air’, not everyone seemed to be hanging off her every word. Some guests – including David Davis, Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union – appeared to be taking a nap during her address.
As she spoke from a gold chair in a gilded room, Mrs May and her audience dined on a menu of Morecambe Bay Potted Shrimps, fillet of British beef, mini toffee apples and ‘The Lord Mayor’s Knickerbocker Glory’. And they washed their hearty meal down with a selection of the finest wines including a Chateau Lynch-Moussas 2003 – which can sell for more than £300 a bottle.
The Prime Minister was pictured in a stunning red gown as she arrived with her husband Philip, who donned a white tie tuxedo as they arrived at the Lord Mayor’s Banquet tonight. Mrs May told the audience of VIPs few would have predicted the political earthquakes that have shaken pundits in 2016.
She said: ‘Change is in the air. And when people demand change, it is the job of politicians to respond.’ In her speech, Mrs May made clear controlling immigration is a key demand of the electorate as people have seen ‘jobs being outsourced and wages undercut’.And she added: ‘They see their communities changing around them and don’t remember giving their permission for that to be the case.’She insisted they will ‘respond to these concerns’ and ‘make these twin forces work for everyone’.
In a TV interview yesterday, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said he understood the concerns about immigration but said intolerance was not the right solution. And she added: ‘They see their communities changing around them and don’t remember giving their permission for that to be the case.’She insisted they will ‘respond to these concerns’ and ‘make these twin forces work for everyone’. ‘Blame should be put where it belongs and that is the corporate investment decisions that have done so much damage to industry all over Europe,’ Jeremy Corbyn told the BBC’s Andrew Marr.
Mrs May also told businesses the referendum marked a new era for an ‘agile’ Britain that, rather than turning inward, and can ‘show the world that we can be the strongest global advocate for free markets and free trade because we believe they are the best way to lift people out of poverty’. But Labour campaign chief Jon Tricket said the PM had made been making such pledges since she took office in July.’Theresa May has spent the early days of her time in No 10 giving speeches about spreading opportunity and providing leadership but her actions have betrayed her,’ he said.
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