UK to change burgundy passport cover to blue design after Brexit

EU member states have the familiar burgundy red cover

The UK has confirmed it will reintroduce a blue passport cover after Brexit.

Blue was used for British 'passport books' from 1921, but was later changed to a burgundy colour to adhere to European Union standards.

The British government says bringing back the blue & gold cover will 'symbolise our national identity'.

Officials also claim the new document will introduce various new security measures.

The new passports will be issued from October 2019 - traditional burgundy passports will be issued until then - and existing passport holders will not have to do anything until their current document expires.

British immigration minister Brandon Lewis explained: "Leaving the EU gives us a unique opportunity to restore our national identity and forge a new path for ourselves in the world.

"That is why I am delighted to announce that the British passport will be returning to the iconic blue and gold design after we have left the European Union in 2019."

He added: "It will also be one of the most secure travel documents in the world, with a raft of new security measures to protect against fraud and forgery."

EU member states issue passports individually and in their own language, but most conform to a 'uniform' passport design.

The EU criteria recommends that passports should be burgundy red, and have the State's name & emblem as well as the word 'passport' on the cover.

The new passports will be introduced in phases.

After Brexit, burgundy passports will still be issued but will not say European Union at the top or make reference to the EU inside.