Britain votes to leave EU

The UK has elected to leave the European Union, with 52 per cent of voters backing Vote Leave and 48 per cent voting Remain.

The referendum turnout was 71.8 per cent, with over 30 million voting. It is the highest turnout at a UK-wide vote since 1992.

The majority of England (53.4 per cent) and Wales (52.5 per cent) voted to Leave, while 62 per cent of Scotland voted to Remain and 55.8 per cent of Northern Ireland also voted to remain within the EU.

Following the news, Prime minister David Cameron has announced that he will step down from the role by October, insisting the country needed ‘fresh leadership’.

Cameron said: "The British people have voted to leave the European Union and their will must be respected. I want to thank everyone who took part in the campaign on my side of the argument, including all those who put aside party differences to speak in what they believe was the national interest and let me congratulate all those who took part in the Leave campaign for the spirited and passionate case that they made.

"The will of the British people is an instruction that must be delivered. It was not a decision that was taken lightly, not least because so many things were said by so many different organisations.

"I believe we've made great steps, with more people in work than ever before in our history, with reforms to welfare and education, increasing people's life chances, building a bigger and stronger society, keeping our promises to the poorest people in the world and enabling those who love each other to get married whatever their sexuality, but above all restoring Britain's economic strength.

“A negotiation with the European Union will need to begin under a new prime minister and I think it's right that this new prime minister takes the decision about when to trigger Article 50 and start the formal and legal process of leaving the EU.”