Sussex residents backed the UK leaving the EU, but only by a majority of 4,400 votes.
The county mirrored the rest of the country, which saw a victory for the leave campaign when the EU referendum results were announced this morning, with nine of 13 areas in Sussex coming out in favour of a Brexit.
However because more than twice as many Brighton and Hove residents backed remain compared to leave, across Sussex the gap was only 4,413 votes between the two sides.
The highest turnout was in Horsham at 81.65 per cent, with the lowest in Hastings at 71.6 per cent.
The majority of voters in Adur, Arun, Chichester, Crawley, Eastbourne, Hastings, Rother, Wealden, and Worthing voted to leave, while as well as Brighton and Hove, residents in Lewes, Horsham, and Mid Sussex backed the remain campaign.
Tim Loughton, MP for East Worthing and Shoreham, said: “This is above all a victory for the democratic process and the EU needs to understand and respect that as we negotiate our future relationship.”
Crawley MP Henry Smith added: “One of the principle reasons I entered public life was to free my country from the EU. Thank you British people.”
But Brighton Pavilion MP Caroline Lucas said: “People in Britain are angry – and they’ve expressed that anger by voting to leave the EU. The most important task at hand now is unifying our divided communities.
“Our party will now mobilise alongside the trade unions, environmental groups and others to defend our hard-won rights at work and environmental protections.
“If this referendum has shown one thing to be clear it is that the old political party system is not representing people’s views.
“Politics in the UK is synthetically bound to the Tories and Labour – that’s clearly failing. We’re calling on all sides to come together to fix our democracy here in Britain – starting with electoral reform for the House of Commons. The democratic deficit will not be fixed by leaving the EU – we need to look closer to home too.
“What worries us now is the fate of the many Europeans living here. The Leave campaign said they will be able to stay – and we expect them to honour that.
“But what about people who have made plans to come here to join family, or British people who have saved up for a lifetime to move to Spain? The prospect of shutting down the right to free movement is frightening, as are the consequences of a campaign that has at times pitted neighbours against one another, whipped up fear and allowed lies and myths to take the place of truth.
“Britain deserves better and I am pledging anew to fight against division on behalf of my constituents.”
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