Churchill’s grandson Nicholas Soames warns Brexit will change Britain “beyond all recognition”

The Tory grandee says the EU “rose like a phoenix” from the ashes of war.

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Tory MP Nicholas Soames isn’t the only one warning Brexit could threaten peace in our time, but he does have some family expertise to draw upon. 

The grandson of Winston Churchill has repeatedly rebuffed claims that the war hero would have voted to leave the EU. 

Instead, he has argued, Churchill would have looked at the global instability and taken the advice of his allies. 

Now, with the polls showing the vote on a knife edge, he is putting the family oratory skills to good use. 

A vote to leave would be a “terrible mistake”, he has warned in a series of videos, which would “alter the country beyond all recognition”. 

He said: “I think if people vote to leave, in five years time they will say: ‘What on earth did we do that for?”

Soames trots out a similar line on immigration and the economy to other Tory Remain campaigners, but his views on security are hard to brush aside. 

After recalling the millions who perished in the two world wars, he said: “I think people need to remember for a second it was only 70 years ago that the Germans surrendered.

“Europe was a smoking ruin. Tens of millions of people gazed on their family, their houses, their possessions destroyed.

“And from that awful horror has arisen like a phoenix this extraordinary coming together of 28 countries to form the EU.”

Julia Rampen is the digital news editor of the New Statesman (previously editor of The Staggers, The New Statesman's online rolling politics blog). She has also been deputy editor at Mirror Money Online and has worked as a financial journalist for several trade magazines.