Delegation of expatriates meets at British Embassy in Madrid

Bremain in Spain
The delegation that travelled to Madrid

BREMAIN IN SPAIN, a group campaigning for the rights of British citizens in Spain, was part of a delegation to the UK Embassy in Madrid on April 19.

The purpose of the meeting, attended by representatives from a coalition of 11 UK citizens’ groups working in Europe, was to discuss the post-Brexit rights of more than one million UK citizens living in the EU where they met virtually with the Rt. Hon. David Jones – Minster of State for the Department for Exiting the EU.

The meeting was the start of an exchange of information and dialogue to illustrate the complex and intertwined nature of the rights that British citizens currently hold in the EU.

 The delegation urged the UK government to abide by the principles set forth in its recent Alternative White Paper, which asks all sides in the upcoming negotiations first to agree that “the UK’s withdrawal from the EU should not have retrospective effect on individuals” and that “UK citizens currently resident in the EU and EU citizens currently resident in the UK should be expressly treated as continuing to have the same rights as they had before Brexit”.

The delegation also called on the government to promise UK pensioners living in the EU that their pensions will continue to be updated after Brexit.

Furthermore, it is urging EU negotiators and governments to change their position so that an agreement on the rights of British citizens in Europe and the three million EU citizens in the UK can be “ring-fenced” and will stand if there is no wider agreement.

Sue Wilson, Chair of Bremain in Spain, comments: “We were encouraged by the clear indication that this was the start of an on-going dialogue. The fact that our concerns were taken seriously and our input was clearly of value was also encouraging.

“However, it was slightly disappointing that limits were placed on what we are permitted to share – such a different approach from the transparency of the recent meeting with Michel Barnier – but it was a positive start.

“We will continue to present questions and case studies and hope that the government will discuss the issues more publicly, moving forwards. As we say in Spain, poco a poco (little by little).”


  1. Incredible that these emigrant self appointed “representatives” should not prioritise a remedy for the fact that fellow British Subjects, who are similarly emigrants & who live in allied Commonwealth nations, have their State Pension entitlement frozen at the date of their leaving the UK.

    Servile, craven narcissism to the fore, why am I not surprised!

  2. Dear Drew Edgar, we sympathise greatly with those whose pensions are already frozen because they live in non-EU countries. Surely you realise though, they are perfectly capable of fighting for themselves without us being required to fight for them too!

    It’s like war. There are too many battles involved to fight on too many front-lines. If you attempt to fight on too many front-lines you lose the war. You have to concentrate on your own front-line to get the best chance of winning it.

    Expats living in the EU post-Brexit are fighting to retain certain rights they possess already (and expected to continue to possess before this spurious Brexit was forced on them by complete strangers.) Expats outside the EU knew they had already lost those rights when they moved to non-EU countries in the first place! They knowingly gave up their rights at the outset. Either you can’t tell the difference or you are just being mean towards decent people who are simply fighting for their rights.

    Everybody needs to fight for their own rights. Nobody else will do it for them. God help those expats who actually voted FOR Brexit by the way! Nobody else to blame but themselves when their pensions get frozen and they lose their reciprocal medical care.

    As for being British “Subjects”, what quaint old-fashioned notions you have Drew. I’m my own man. I’m nobody’s subject! Least of all the Queen’s! And do you understand the true meaning of “Servile, craven narcissism”? Shot yourself in the foot there.


    Mr Eagleson,

    Your reply aptly demonstrates the servile, craven narcissism to which I alluded. Indeed the use of the very word “expats” & the arrogance & divisiveness which it denotes is confirmation beyond doubt.

    “Sympathise” is of no support with your “I’m alright Jack” attitude. These are our fellow emigrant British Subjects, not criminal illegal emigrants. What a fine example of genuine British liberal, Christian charitable concern – not!

    As far as “retaining certain rights” these are frequently reciprocal concessions agreed inter alia between sovereign nations, since consolidated within EU legislation.

    They existed for example, before Spain joined EEC and there has not been any serious suggestion that they will not continue to do so, (particularly considering the ratio of 3:1 emigrants from Continental nations in England to British emigrants in those states).

    Why ever should there be a problem, the UK taxpayer bears the full expense of medical treatment of British emigrants in foreign continental states & vica versa (when the NHS can be bothered to raise a charge). Local healthcare request provisos being that the emigrant is registered legally as a resident, registered to pay local & national taxes & that the UK DSS has been properly notified & issued an S3 to enable registration with the Continental health service.


    On the subject of the UK Basic State pension, this is something which presently should first & foremost be raised with the various political parties & assurances sought, preferably in terms of their election manifestos. Allied to this is the “triple lock” and the subject of “Pension Credit”, the latter from which emigrants are excluded.

    I would put it to you that a party leader reneging on the “triple lock” & denying equivalent pension raises for British pensioners who are emigrants, after ring fencing squandered foreign aid, can well kiss re-election goodbye.

    Frankly, I am sick to the back teeth hearing the often unfounded hysteria & whingeing, which is often so transparently politically motivated or motivated by a misplaced sense of entitlement. This is both divisive and embarrassing.

    The decisive referendum has passed, it’s over, the withdrawal negotiations are afoot and the White Paper defines the salient points. Every British Subject owes a duty to support HM Government in achieving a cool, calm, mutually beneficial clean #Brexit and promoting accord in their adopted nation.

  5. Hi again Drew. I just confront nasty people with their own nastiness. That’s all. I do it with Leapy Lee in particular of course – not this week though, ‘cos he’s not quite as bad as usual – but I don’t mind holding a mirror up to others either. Think of it as making them take a good hard look at themselves in that mirror, so they see the ugly way they come across to the readers instead of just boosting their own egos at the expense of decent people. I am also often on record for praising people where praise is due. I’m very fair and impartial in those respects.

    In short, anyone who airs nasty, vindictive opinions in the EWN can expect confrontation. Anyone who airs friendly, helpful opinions can expect support. Have a read at your own comments and decide which category they fall into.

    You begin with: Quote, ‘Your reply aptly demonstrates the servile, craven narcissism to which I alluded. Indeed the use of the very word “expats” & the arrogance & divisiveness which it denotes is confirmation beyond doubt.’ Well Drew, that’s completely off the mark. “Expats” is just the normal word in most common usage to describe people like myself. If you want to read something more into it which is not actually there, well that’s your choice, not mine.

    Then you add: Quote, ‘Frankly, I am sick to the back teeth hearing the often unfounded hysteria & whingeing’. Well, since normal opposition is ‘unfounded hysteria and whingeing’ to you there’s an easy way to avoid it Drew. Don’t read it.

  6. Amusing article & perceptive comments from D Edgar, there are 544,000 UK emigrants living outside EU & I’m affronted by B Eagleson’s fatuous defence of the indefensible.

    I note no reply to B Eagleson’s second comment, understandable as this doesn’t address D Edgar’s constructive observations quoting selectively out of context – merely the vacuous wanting to hear the sound of his own voice; “narcissism” exemplified.

    Indeed he unwittingly flatters Mr Edgar in alluding to EWN’s “Leapy Lee” whose articles my colleagues in England queue to read with glee upon my return, for his keen analysis.

    D Edgar refers to “hysteria & whingeing, which is often so transparently politically motivated …….” I would say more the mailgn cunning of #bremainers seeking to impede or derail the democratic will of the majority of British people.

    It appears from today’s news that it’s Brussels seeking to use emigrant preferences as a pawn & force an un-negotiated #Brexit, cheered on unpatriotic #bremainers.


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