Great Yarmouth’s diverse community ‘important’ to borough says MP Brandon Lewis

Brandon Lewis, MP for Great Yarmouth. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Brandon Lewis, MP for Great Yarmouth. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2019

Great Yarmouth’s MP, Brandon Lewis, has expressed his pride at the borough’s diverse community and has encouraged EU citizens to secure their rights to remain in the UK following Brexit.

Great Yarmouth has a high percentage of Portuguese, Lithuanian and Polish-speaking communities compared with other Norfolk town's, which Mr Lewis believes is down to the wide range of employment opportunities available in the borough.

Speaking on Friday, at an event in Great Yarmouth designed to encourage EU citizens to secure their right to live in the UK following Brexit, Mr Lewis, said: "I'm really proud of the communities here in Great Yarmouth.

"The mix of industries is really important and that's why we have that diversity."

Mr Lewis highlighted how a number of people now come from all over the world to work in the offshore industry, while professionals from a variety of backgrounds are recruited to work at the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston.

Talahady Pedro Manuel moved to Great Yarmouth six years ago from Portugal.

He said: "I'm really pleased to be able to stay in the UK.

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"I love visiting the cities like Norwich and Cambridge which are wonderful.

"There's a big Portuguese community in Great Yarmouth who have set up bars and restaurants which is great.

"At the minute Yarmouth is a good place for me and my family."

Mr Manuel works for an engineering company and lives in the town with his wife and two daughters.

He was one of a number of people to visit the Priory Centre in Great Yarmouth to find out more information about the government's EU settlement scheme.

More than 80,000 people from the East of England have applied to the scheme to ensure they maintain their right to work and live in the UK following Brexit.

The deadline to apply is at least December 2020.

With the possibility of an early general election looming, Mr Lewis also reinforced his desire to continue his work in Great Yarmouth.

He said: "At the end of the day it's up to the people of Great Yarmouth.

"But, 71.5pc of people in the borough voted to leave and that's what we need to do.

"As a government we will deliver a way to leave the EU."