The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.

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The Bruges Group

The Bruges Group is an independent all-party think tank. Our independence is our strength allowing us to be free to follow our own policy agenda and put the national interest above party political considerations.

Set up in February 1989, its aim was to promote the idea of a less centralised European structure than that emerging in Brussels. Its inspiration was Margaret Thatcher's Bruges speech in September 1988, in which she remarked that,

"We have not successfully rolled back the frontiers of the state in Britain, only to see them reimposed at a European level, with a European super­state exercising a new dominance from Brussels."

The Bruges Group has had a major effect on public opinion, and forged links with Members of Parliament as well as with similarly minded groups in other countries.

Through its groundbreaking publications and wide-ranging discussions The Bruges Group has spearheaded the intellectual battle against the notion of ever closer union in Europe and will continue its fight against further integration and, above all, against British involvement in a single European state.

The Group also holds regular high-profile public meetings, seminars, debates and conferences. These enable influential speakers to contribute to the European debate.

A brief selection of those who have addressed our regular public meetings are:

Michael Howard MP, Iain Duncan Smith MP, Baroness Thatcher, Frank Field MP, Michael Portillo MP, John Redwood MP, Nigel Farage MEP, Lord Tebbit of Chingford, Lord Bell, Dr Cris Shore - author of Building Europe, Graeme Leach - Chief Economist at the IoD, Martin Howe QC - author of Europe and the Constitution after Maastrict, Bill Jamieson - Executive Editor of The Scotsman, Jens-Peter Bonde - Danish MEP and leader of the June Movement, Dr John Hulsman of the Heritage Foundation, Washington D.C.