The EU referendum is just a few days away but it turns out a vote to leave could have a very bad effect for Brits living in other European nations.
A report in the Mirror today claims that up to two million Brits living abroad could effectively become illegal immigrants in a Brexit vote – including 14,000 who have made their home in Benidorm.
One-fifth of the Spanish town’s population is British and living within the EU means their pensions are protected, plus they receive full medical cover from the European Health Insurance card.
But these perks could vanish if we leave the EU, which would leave those Brits living in countries like Benidorm in something of a bind.
Speaking to the Mirror, Wendy Smith, originally from Warrington and now manageress of Churchill’s Pub in Benidorm, said:
It would be devastating if we had to go back to England. We’re making a new life here and the boys love it. Unless Spain kicks me out I’ll never move back.
She also, however, noted that she could understand why many Brits wanted to vote Brexit, claiming that ‘the country seems to be overrun with people coming in,’ completely failing to see the irony in that statement.
In addition to these worries, British business owners in Benidorm also fear that a Brexit vote could lead to employment quotas which would force them to hire more Spanish workers, potentially limiting work opportunities for Brits abroad.
Some of those business owners are now reportedly advising their employees to apply for residency immediately, so they’ll be protected, but many more are hoping for a remain vote in Thursday’s referendum.
We can only imagine the fury of the Daily Mail comments section when they find out about this…