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Brexit win sends shocked Remain voters to the pubs

In the classic British horror-comedy Shaun of the Dead, the hero, Shaun, when faced with a zombie apocalypse, hatches a brilliant plan. Go to his local pub, the Winchester, have a nice cold pint and wait for all of this to blow over. Remain voters in London took that advice to heart today.

'I never felt more disappointed in my country ... I feel like crying'

In the British horror-comedy Shaun of the Dead, the hero, Shaun, goes to his local pub to wait out the zombie apocalypse. Many shocked Remain voters in London took the same approach Friday. (Focus Features)

In the classic British horror-comedy Shaun of the Dead, the hero, Shaun, when faced with a zombie apocalypse, hatches a brilliant plan. Go to his local pub, the Winchester, have a nice cold pint and wait for all of this to blow over.  

Remain voters in London took that advice to heart today, swarming pubs like packs of thirsty zombies to drown their sorrows and try to figure out what's next now that their country has voted to remove itself from the European Union.
Chris Martin says Remain supporters underestimated the strength of Leave sentiment outside the cities. (Tom Parry/CBC News)

"I think we all underestimated the bubble that we are in in London," said Chris Martin as he sipped a pint on the sidewalk outside the Marquis of Granby, a pub near his advertising office.

"If you look at the colour map, it was predominantly the outlying areas, the main landmass of this country (that voted Leave) rather than the metropolitan areas. And I just don't think we thought about that. I think it's come as a major surprise to everyone that's been talking in the coffee bars … that the rest of the country kind of said, 'No, we want to leave.'"
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      Like so many others, Martin isn't sure what's in store for his country in the coming weeks and months. But he says the initial shock of the referendum result is wearing off.

      "I think there's an optimism, a bizarre optimism today that I didn't expect to see. I think everyone came in this morning feeling we were all kind of suicidal. And then we all thought, 'Well, we are where we are. Let's see. Let's have a go.'"

      Britain will have to negotiate its way out of a complex network of agreements, rules and regulations that have intertwined themselves into just about every corner of people's lives. No one is really sure what leaving the EU will cost in terms of jobs and trade. And so while some may be enjoying that bizarre sense of optimism, others are feeling something closer to dread.

      "I was, seriously, 100 per cent convinced that people wouldn't be so stupid to vote out," said Leanne Lapslie, sipping wine with her friend Sarah Murphy at the Duke of York pub.

      "It's really scary," Murphy added.

      "We don't know what the future holds but we're in it now. We have to accept that situation and we have to get on with it. But I just hope that people realize the choice that they've made."
      Leanne Lapslie and Sarah Murphy talk about Brexit at the Duke of York pub in London. 'It's really scary," Murphy said. (Tom Parry/CBC News)

      Murphy learned of the referendum results when she looked at her phone early Friday morning. She, like many other London commuters, had a lot to think about on her way to work.

      "I think it's a massive error, a massive error," said an angry Rebecca Small.

      "I never felt more disappointed in my country or the people that I live with ever. I feel like crying. That's how disappointed I am."
      Rebecca Small voted Remain in Britain's EU referendum. (Marc-André Cossette/ CBC News)

      The reaction, of course, would have been much different in areas where Leave dominated in the polls. For every distraught Remain voter, there was at least one Leave supporter who was over the moon. Even in central London, where 70 per cent of voters chose to stick with the EU, Leave supporters soaked up a bright June morning and dreamed of sunny days ahead.

      "I'm really happy with the vote," Steven Begley said.
      Steven Begley is happy Britain voted to leave the EU. (Marc-André Cossette/CBC News)

      "All the people telling us to remain were the same people telling Britain to join the euro [currency] years ago. And actually they were wrong then and they were wrong in this referendum."

      Britain did choose to keep the pound and not adopt the euro all those years ago. But the pound has been taking a pounding on world markets following the referendum. Bankers in London's financial district are worried and there are fears of an economic crisis, which may or may not come to pass. Either way, the die is cast. British voters have made up their mind and there appears to be no turning back.

      For Leave supporters, it's a time of boundless promise and optimism. For Remain supporters, it might be a good time to go to the pub and enjoy a nice cold pint, even if the situation they're facing isn't about to blow over any time soon.

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