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Anti-Big Ben Brexit bong movement will put pro-EU banner on White Cliffs of Dover

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A Big Ben Brexit bong counter-movement has been launched to — and it's already raised double its target.

Liberal Democrat MEP Anthony Hook wants to adorn the White Cliffs of Dover with a 150 sq m pro-EU banner.

Political editor Paul Francis tells KMTV about the 'battle of the banners'

The gigantic message, which will be twice the size of a squash court, was set to cost £5,500 but that target was smashed within 24 hours of the campaign being launched on Friday.

Now more than 600 supporters have pledged £11,000.

It comes amid a row over whether Big Ben should chime to mark Brexit on January 31 - which has led to pledges totalling £265,450 to cover the costs of using the famous London landmark to mark the event.

Antony Hook said: “The phenomenal success of this appeal demonstrates how passionately people in this country feel about sending a positive message to the EU.”

“In addition to the money raised, we have received over 250 messages of support, expressing sadness that we are leaving the European Union but also celebrating the close, co-operative relationship we have built with our European partners.

The White Cliffs of Dover
The White Cliffs of Dover

"This banner is much bigger than leave or remain. It is about communicating our appreciation for our nearest neighbours and our hope that we will continue to have the best possible relationship with them in the future. Although we have reached our initial target, we are going to continue to raise money and have more exciting plans to make sure that our uplifting message is heard right across the continent."

It is not the first time that campaigners have sought to exploit the White Cliffs to promote a pro-EU message.

In April, an SOS signal to the EU was projected onto the cliffs of Dover by anti-Brexit protesters.

Activist group Led By Donkeys have beamed a huge SOS message onto the White Cliffs of Dover calling for a Brexit extension and a confirmation vote.

And a huge figure of Theresa May appeared overnight at the landmark in 2017 - but it was unclear who was behind the stunt.

Head to our politics page for expert analysis and all the latest news from your politicians and councils.

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