A PETITION demanding an answer from the British government over the right for expats to drive in Spain is nearly halfway there.

Nearly 4,500 people have signed the demand for action, supported by the Olive Press’ U-Turn campaign.

The petition needs 10,000 signatures to force the government to give an official response, with its creator, Stuart Hudd, urging a final push this month.

The Murcia-based expat is furious that he is not able to drive in Spain under new Brexit rules, despite registering correctly as a resident in September 2020.

Both he and wife got TIE residency certificates, but were wrongly told by a gestor in Mazarron they didn’t need to register to swap their driving licences.

“I was told don’t worry, there will be an agreement,” he said. “Now we are isolated in the campo and relying on friends and neighbours to take us shopping and to medical appointments.”

The poor advice mirrors hundreds of testimonies the Olive Press has heard throughout this debacle, leading to our front page U-Turn campaign launched on June1.

We are supporting the right of expats to swap their licences for Spanish ones, as has been the case in almost all other EU countries.

Hudd, from Burton on Trent, has been campaigning continually since losing his right to drive.

As well as contacting House of Lords peer Baroness Vere, he has been in touch with his MP Kate Griffiths, who said the government was ‘continuing to negotiate as a matter of priority’.

But he remains unmoved and is demanding more direct action such as revoking all Spanish driving licences in the UK and making them take a full practical test in English. 

“We need to play hardball. All us expats want is a reciprocal deal. At the moment our lives are on hold,” he said.

“Thanks for taking up the gauntlet on behalf of us expats who are really struggling here.”

Click here to sign the petition, so far signed by 4,337 people.

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