I can understand why Oliver Letwin, in his column last week, offered his support for May’s proposed Brexit deal. It is a pity he did not use the opportunity to be straight with the electors of West Dorset.

What he should have said was something like this: ‘Mrs May has tried her best, but the reality is that no deal could be as good as the deal we currently have in the EU, including Mrs Thatcher’s rebate and the Euro opt out. Brexit will damage the economic future of us all – investment in the UK has already plummeted and companies are shifting their factories into mainland Europe. Brexit was the worst decision taken by this country for over 80 years  

‘We must accept that the first referendum produced a narrow majority in favour of ‘leave’ but we now know that it was won with Russian money and a campaign of lies. No one has advanced a convincing reason why we would be better off out of Europe.

'People are entitled to change their minds and the majority of people now wish to stay in the EU. This is especially true of the young, whose futures I am most concerned about. Over the past two years, the government’s handling of the Brexit negotiations has been chaotic. It is now time to put country first and reassert the rule of Parliamentary democracy I am therefore working with other MPs to find a way which can unite the country whilst remaining in the EU. This will mean putting our recommendation to the people in a second referendum. I have served West Dorset for over 20 years and I owe it to all my constituents to speak in your long-term interest.’

This is a national crisis – we need leadership from Westminster, not a shoddy compromise. I plead with Mr Letwin to have the courage to take it on.