Operation Croissant: British commuters handed love letters from Paris ahead of Brexit vote

EU solidarity was the theme as French volunteers gave out postcards at a busy London station

Operation Croissant: British commuters handed love letters from Paris ahead of Brexit vote

One of the notes handed out this morning as part of Operation Croissant | Image: Rosa Rankin-Gee

“What would you do without the French kiss? Stay wild, stay open.”

So read one of hundreds of postcards handed out at King’s Cross station in London this morning.

The so-called “messages of love” were distributed by Parisian volunteers as a gesture of goodwill to their British neighbours ahead of tomorrow’s Brexit vote.

The group initially planned to give away freshly-baked croissants but organisers said police warned them it would be illegal. (British legislation bans the mixing of free “meat, drink, entertainment or provision” with political messages before elections.)

“While it was never our aim to buy votes with croissants, we are happy to fall on our baguettes and stick to the right side of British law,” the Operation Croissant organisers said in a statement.

Undeterred, the volunteers instead handed out messages they had collected from “people of all ages and in many different places”.

“The idea was to get messages from Parisians, but actually they started to come in from many different parts of France, as well as Wales and Finland and the Netherlands and America, and all over the world,” the group said.

People taking part in the initiative were asked to send in short, positive messages that were light-hearted in tone.

A short sign-off on the back of all the postcards says “With love, from Paris”.

The project was not designed to promote any one side of the referendum, according to organiser Rosa Rankin-Gee.

She told Newstalk.com: “The campaign has been characterised by negativity and anger. We wanted instead to do something sweet.”

Ms Rankin-Gee said the initiative was organised by a group of friends on both sides of the Channel, and not affiliated to any political party or campaign.

The croissants, baked fresh in Paris this morning, were meanwhile donated to a London homeless shelter.

With less than 24 hours to go until voting kicks off, the latest Brexit poll suggests the rival referendum campaigns are neck and neck. The result is expected to be known by Friday morning.