The New European‘s Skegness front cover has gone down like a cup of cold sick – and especially so with Remainers. Skegness MP Matt Warman – who campaigned for Remain – today slaps down the paper for its condescending targeting of his constituents:
“The idea that this front cover portrays everyone who voted to Leave the European Union as some kind of swivel-eyed lunatic who is only interested in themselves, is kind of mad, is not only fundamentally wrong but also a fundamentally daft way of trying to think this country can move forward… We are all leaving the European Union people need to get over that rather than campaign to try and stop it which is what this newspaper is trying to do.”
Meanwhile, Skegness Town Council’s clerk Steve Larner said:
“It is very sad to see the image of the Jolly Fisherman being exploited in such a negative way. Both residents and visitors will testify that Jolly welcomes everyone to Skegness and many will be hurt and offended by this use of their much loved, iconic Jolly Fisherman.”
Twitter is also not looking good:
Er… what? I am a Remainer but also a proud Northerner and this front page is so bloody patronising https://t.co/rw8kbeGibR
— Jane Merrick (@janemerrick23) 12 April 2017
I get why a small, new paper wants to create a stir & get noticed. But bizarre to think picking this fight is a + for Remainers https://t.co/nhHrUe6K9t
— Sunder Katwala (@sundersays) 12 April 2017
If The New European had any readers in Lincolnshire it’s lost them now…
Remain-cheerleading newspaper The New European has accidentally released an internal marketing note detailing its plan to “stir up controversy” and inflame community tensions across Britain’s Brexit heartlands. Guido today unveils the newspaper’s shocking front cover image which will lampoon residents of the Lincolnshire town of Skegness. The staggering picture – set to be displayed on newsstands across Britain within hours – belittles Skegness’s iconic ‘jolly fisherman’, depicting him as a two-finger saluting, evil-clown-faced Leave voter wearing a “Go Away” sweater, accompanied by the headline “Skegness is SO Brexit” and the strapline “Anthony Clavane visits the seaside to see if they still love Leave”.
The sneering front page was emailed out this afternoon accompanied by a note revealing The New European‘s ploy to sow division in order to boost sales:
“The cover story – Skegness: The seaside town that Brexit could close down; this is unlikely to go down well, locally, and there is an opportunity to stir up some controversy locally – worth sending the cover and the story to local television and newspapers (as I don’t suppose we sell many copies there).”
The image is indeed “unlikely to go down well locally” . Lincolnshire recorded the highest vote (75%) for Brexit in Boston, a town just 40 minutes drive from Skegness. Never mind Skegness, does the paper sell many copies anywhere?
UPDATE: Embarrassed New European has sent out a new email recalling its first message: