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Britain leaving the European Union (Brexit)

Get ready for Brexit 

A Brexit deal has been agreed in principle with the EU.

Both the UK and the EU need to approve and sign the withdrawal agreement. They will then start to negotiate new arrangements. There would be a transition period to prepare for new rules.

The UK could still leave with no deal if the withdrawal agreement is not approved by 31 January 2020, or at the end of a transition period.

Leaving the EU means there will be a number of changes taking place that will affect businesses, citizens, EU citizens living in the UK and UK nationals living in the EU. 

To find the latest guidance and information on what these changes are, how they could affect you, and what steps you can take to prepare, please go to This includes an online checker tool

You can also sign up to receive email alerts about Brexit on GOV.UK: Brexit E-mail Alerts  

Is your business ‘border ready’? Please see our Preparing your business for Brexit page

How will leaving the EU affect you? Please see our Guidance for Individuals page

EU citizen living in the UK? Please see our EU Settlement Scheme page  

Travelling to Europe? Please see our Transport and Travel page


Banksy close small
Banksy Mural, Townwall Street, Dover

On 23rd June 2016, the United Kingdom (UK) voted to leave the European Union (EU): 

  • Nationally, the result of the referendum was that 17.4 million people (51.9% of the total) voted to leave the EU, and 16.1 million (48.1%) voted to remain.
  • In the Dover district, 40,410 people (62.2%) voted to leave and 24,606 (37.8%) voted to remain in the EU. 

The UK Government invoked Article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union in March 2017, triggering a two-year process of negotiations, culminating in the UK formally leaving the European Union on 29th March 2019 or at the end of any agreed extension or transition period.

When is the UK leaving the EU?

EU leaders accepted the UK's request to extend the Brexit deadline to 31 January 2020 - but the UK can leave earlier if a deal is agreed by Parliament. 

The default position will be that if no deal is passed by Parliament, the UK will leave the EU without one on 31 January 2020.

If the Withdrawal Agreement is ratified, there will be a “transition or implementation period”. This period begins when the UK leaves the EU and ends, by default on 31 December 2020. However the UK and EU can jointly agree, on a one-off basis, to extend that period by a further period of ‘up to two-years’. 

What challenges and opportunities will EU Exit bring? 

1.     Potential Impact and Key Messages

  • Withdrawal from the EU involves a complex set of negotiations and there are still many uncertainties.These are our key Brexit messages 

2.     What are we doing?

  • As a small district council, our role is primarily that of facilitating and influencing to help minimize the impact of any potential disruption and make a success of Brexit. 

3.     Preparing your business for Brexit

  • Signpost to information and advice to help businesses prepare for Brexit 

4.     Guidance for Individuals

  • Advice and information for individuals on preparing for EU Exit

5.     Transport and Travel

  • EU Exit has the potential to cause disruption on Kent’s road network as traffic due to possible changes to the way people and goods cross the Channel via The Port of Dover and the Channel Tunnel. 

6.     Links

  • Links to information on Brexit 



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