THE LORD Mayor of Oxford has told a room full of EU nationals that Brexit will be ‘a disaster’.

City councillor Colin Cook made his grim prediction at a town hall reception on Wednesday for Oxfordshire residents from the 27 EU member states.

They had been invited to share drinks with the mayor and city council leader Susan Brown in an act of solidarity and friendship.

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However, Mr Cook and Mrs Brown both took a less-than-cheery town in welcoming their guests.

Mr Cook, a Labour councillor, began his speech: “I am of course restricted in what I can say, I have to be politically neutral during my year in office as Lord Mayor.

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“I am not allowed to be controversial in any way, take up any positions or anything like that, but suffice to say I think Brexit is going to be a disaster to this country.”

Agreeing with him, Mrs Brown said: “I suspect that everybody in this room shares a belief that this country made a very poor decision indeed when it chose to go down this particular route and I don’t think there is any great doubt about that.”

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The majority of Oxford residents, at just over 70 per cent, voted to remain in the EU back in 2016.

Ms Brown went on to explain that there was no way she could reassure them about Brexit, which if all goes to plan will happen in about a month's time.

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However she also said she wanted to do everything in her power to make sure residents felt valued in the city.

She said: “In terms of reassurance, I’m afraid this is the weak bit of the speech.

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“Sadly I have no more knowledge then the rest of you on what is going to happen in the next days, weeks, months, years, but I want to thank you: I think you contribute to our city’s life and culture and that is one of the things we particularly appreciate because we learn so much from each other.

"Thank you to all those who have come and chosen to live in our city."

She added: "I know from my experience that it is quite a big thing to do so thank you for your bravery and I hope you are not regretting it too much."