The Grassroots for Europe council is elected by supporting local pro EU groups from across the UK.
John Gaskell – Chair
I founded my local branch of the European Movement (SW Surrey) in 2017, and have been chair ever since. I have also been chair of GfE since early 2022. For me, activism is about doing something, not just talking about it. My Europeanism comes from living in Holland for over twenty years.
For me, the core values of the EU – freedom, democracy, rule of law, equality and human rights – are the core values of the UK too, and increasingly need defending.
Colin Gordon – Deputy Chair
I joined Oxford for Europe at the end of 2016 and got involved from then on in local and national anti-Brexit campaign work, co-founding GfE with Richard Wilson and others in 2018. I have been active with GfE and locally in social media work, in organising events, grassroots strategy and our letters to campaign leaders and politicians.
Brexit is a profound threat to our democracy as well as our place in Europe. I currently coordinate the team organising the highly regarded GfE Round Table initiative and work on collaborative links in the pro-European community and beyond, working with urgent pro-democracy actions and civil society initiatives in the UK and EU. GfE must be a dynamic, cooperative partner in an ambitious, capable determined and energetic campaign to rejoin the EU as soon as possible.
Having felt European for the whole my life, the result of the 2016 referendum left me feeling shocked and utterly distraught. I had to do something.
I founded Devon for Europe in September 2016 and have been chair ever since.
Devon for Europe grew to be one of the biggest regional pro EU groups in the country and successfully built a highly dedicated admin team, which has encouraged large numbers of volunteers, and even greater numbers of engaged supporters.
I was served on the council for Britain for Europe as Groups Coordinator from 2017, where I helped get new local grassroots groups off the ground, helped with guidance and support to encourage them to grow. I was involved in other national campaigns such as March for Change. I was elected to the Grassroots for Europe Council in 2021.
Our planet will face huge challenges in the future, and the only way we have any hope of tackling these is through international cooperation. The only safe and secure future for our country is to be part of the European Union once again. I am determined to do all I can to secure that outcome.
Fiona Wishlade is a Professor and a Director of The European Policies Research Centre (EPRC) at University of Strathclyde in Glasgow. Her research Is focused on national regional economic development policies, EU competition policy and state aid, EU cohesion policy, and financial instruments.
She has led research for government departments and international organizations, including the European Parliament, European Commission, European Investment Bank, and OECD. She is a member of the executive of European Movement in Scotland and hosts a long-running online interviews series on behalf of Glasgow Loves EU.
I have supported GfE since it’s start in 2017, attended meetings and Conferences in person and have been a regular participant in the Open Forum which I co-host.
I became a member of the Round Table team in 2021, producing the Campaign Asks, logging the Positive Outcomes and assisting with the upload of the Summary Reports to the GfE website.
For the last two years I was part of the Elections Committee that organised the GfE Council elections but felt that I should contribute directly and was co-opted on to the Council earlier this year.
I am also one of the West Midlands Branch representatives on the National Council of the European Movement.
I was formerly Chair of European Movement in Staffordshire and now hold the position of Vice-Chair and Membership Secretary. I live in Middleport in the north of Stoke-on-Trent.
I am a freelance translator and I have lived in Spain for 25 years, in Barcelona and, since 2019, in the Valencia region. I took the freedom of movement that allowed me to live, work and have a family here for granted. Brexit taught me how fragile our democratic and human rights are, and since 2016 I have been actively campaigning against Brexit and to raise awareness of the human and economic harm it has wrought.
Jane Morrice is a Northern Irish politician and journalist who helped architect the Good Friday Agreement. She is the former Deputy Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly, former Head of the European Commission Office in Northern Ireland and former reporter for BBC Belfast.
Jane Morrice was elected to the Northern Ireland Assembly in June 1998 and was appointed Deputy Speaker in February 2000. She has represented NI interests as an EESC Member in Brussels since 2006 and, after many decades as a Member of the European Movement Northern Ireland, she was nominated Hon. President. Jane Morrice was a prominent member of the Northern Ireland Women’s Coalition and architect of the integrated education commitment in the Good Friday Agreement. In 2021, she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Hillary Clinton, Chancellor of Queens University Belfast.
I am an Anglo-Italian, multi-lingual campaigner. European to my core! I have been associated with Grassroots for Europe since December 2019 when I joined the organising team for the January 2020 National Conference and have remained a volunteer and a GfE National Council member ever since, ending up as Hon. Treasurer from February 2023.
As a founding member of the pro-European and collaborative Round Table, I was delighted, when in March 2020, GfE decided to sponsor the initiative. It operates monthly and started 2023 with its 32nd meeting!
For me, there is no hierarchy of activism; all activity is significant, whatever its provenance. Not surprisingly, I am also involved in several national pro-European and civil society grassroots movements, all of which support each other in their breadth of activity and permit cross-campaigning collaborations and synergies.
Professor Juliet Lodge is the Senior Research Analyst at Saher (UK) Ltd and is leading their work on the ethical aspects of project ARIES (reliaAble euRopean Identity EcoSystem). An international expert in research ethics, Juliet is a member of the Biometrics Institute Privacy Expert Group and has given evidence on cross border information exchange to the European Parliament and British Parliamentary Committees.
Key areas: biometrics, ethics, data protection and privacy impact of behavioural biometric apps, EU, transparency and accountability, EU policy, European Parliament elections, EU communications
Juliet has worked as professor of European integration and EU politics in universities in New Zealand, the EU and UK. Her research spans biometrics, AI and EU affairs, on which she has given expert evidence to many parliaments and to the EU Juliet is the AI ethics lead in the EU Horizon project AI4Trust which is building a hybrid system where machines cooperate with humans to counter advanced disinformation techniques. She also worked as a freelance writer for newspapers both here and abroad and is a prolific contributor to Yorkshire Bylines. She was elected EU woman of Europe for her voluntary work with communities, and supports freedom of movement and EU reform. Juliet spoke on behalf of Women for Europe at the March for Change, in Parliament Square, London, July 2019.
I came to the U.K. from Vienna in 1970 to attend my mother’s wedding to an Englishman and then chose to make the UK my home.
I undertook several career changes until my retirement in 2016 from the then Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
I started as a teacher of Hungarian and German to diplomats and finished in the Nigeria Team which was inter alia looking at how to defeat Boko Haram. Before joining the FCO, I worked as a psychologist in hospitals and ran creative therapy workshops in prisons and clinics.
My interest in writing was first raised when I decided to research my family history and leave a record of how my mother, the daughter of a landed gentry family in Hungary fleeing Communism, first to Vienna then Germany, ended up in rural Kent.
I am an ardent Remain campaigner, a Green Party member and will proudly be forever European.
Richard Wilson is the co-founder and chair of Leeds for Europe, founding chair of Grassroots for Europe (2018-2022) and Vice-Chair of European Movement UK (2020-), and has been co-director of the National Rejoin March. Richard considers it essential for pro-European organisations in the UK to have an unambiguous and ambitious Rejoin message. He is a director of the Festival of Europe.