I NOTE that ardent Brexiters such as Tory MP Mark Francois and leader of the Brexit Party, Nigel Farage, are currently engaged in plans to celebrate our departure from the EU on January 31 with an event to be held in Parliament Square and a crowdfunding venture to hear Big Ben's bongs (straight from “Carry On Brexit”). Mr Farage has sought to persuade a somewhat lukewarm Prime Minister and his colleagues to hold an “ Independence Party” in Parliament Square, whilst Mr Francois has already donated £1,000 of his own money in an effort to drum up support to raise the £500,000 necessary to hear Big Ben on the day ("Johnson admits there is a small chance Britain will not secure EU trade deal", The Herald, January 15). Both men have become peripheral to the political process of Brexit and are now doubtless examining ways to appear relevant to their supporters and probably to themselves.

At the time of writing it seems that only £500 has been raised from dozens of crowdfunding pages that have been set up which speaks volumes for the common sense of the public as well as the subdued mood and apprehension that continues to surround the ongoing Brexit saga.

The idea of honouring a decision that is driven by crude jingoistic English nationalism to restrict our European identity and outlook is not only provincial but myopic and malicious. As Boris Johnson talks blandly of bringing the country together and healing wounds, he tacitly gives his consent to an event that alienates almost half of the people in the UK and will impoverish or penalise large swathes of them in the immediate and long term future whilst nurturing the growth of libertarian free enterprise at the expense of freedom and rights.

Regardless of your stance on Brexit, only a person with little or no empathy or tact and diplomacy could possibly support wasting funding, private or otherwise, on its commemoration. The mood of the Government should be contemplative and understanding with no place for pseudo triumphalism marked by passing bells. The Prime Minister is not a man who has ever inspired our confidence in his sound judgment or dignity. Now would be an apposite time to start.

Owen Kelly, Stirling.

TO witness grown men, so-called leaders of this country resorting to simplistic and puerile jingoism inside and outside the Palace of Westminster, with their catchphrase "A bong for Brexit" makes me – and surely many others at home and abroad – despair at the standard of debate and discourse on offer as the UK prepares to leave the EU in a few days time.

The sight of ERG leading light, Mark Francois raising a formal Parliamentary Point of Order, requesting the Prime Minister delivers "A Big Ben bong for Brexit at 23,00hrs GMT on 31st January 2020" as some sort of ceremonial confirmation that Boris Johnson "got Brexit done" was to reduce the debate over the UK’s most significant national decision since 1939 to the level of the music hall routines the diminutive-but-combative Member for Rayleigh & Wickford presumably hankers after, a reprise of the Good Old Days?

But surely Michel Barnier and his fellow EU Trade Deal negotiators must be slobbering at the chops in anticipation at getting their teeth into such small-minded, immature and frankly infantile Little Englanders, justifiably asking themselves "What are they on?” as the EU contemplates and negotiates matters of real, serious – some might even say, exceptional and unprecedented – substance, and at break-neck speed over the next 11 months.

Unable to demonstrate a scintilla of humility or the sort of bonhomie his French name might suggest, even in the face of Pete Wishart’s admittedly forced but seemingly authentic words of congratulations to the winners of what will, in my opinion, prove to be – and in the relatively near term too – the great British Brexit Scam, triumphalism of the kind demonstrated by Mr Francois shines a light deep into the unfortunate but real institutional disrespect and disregard endured sadly by England as a nation today.

Such mind-numbing, stupefied and mildly-hallucinogenic blather might even, in different debating establishments, lead to an investigation under the Misuse of Drugs Act, the so-called "Bong for Brexit" possibly taking on an altogether different – but understandable – interpretation.

Mike Wilson, Longniddry.