POOLE MP Sir Robert Syms says a No Deal exit from the European Union, although not ideal, could be manageable

Sir Robert, speaking at a community meeting in Canford Cliffs on Saturday, told those gathered that Government ministers had spoken to him with confidence about preparations for a No Deal Brexit.

"I think it is going to better to leave with a deal, a managed, organised planned exit is always going to be much better way to leave the EU," he said. "But do I think no deal would be a bad thing? I think it would be a little challenging, but we could do it."

The MP had been invited to the packed meeting of Branksome Park and Canford Cliffs Residents's Association, that was holding its AGM at Canford Cliffs Village Hall.

Sir Robert, a Brexiteer who was persuaded to vote for the prime minister's deal in March, said: "We live in interesting times, but the country is doing quite well.

"You might ask me, why if everything is going so well can we lose you could lose 1,300 council seats at the local elections?

"The truth of the matter is that when politicians say they are going to do something, and you have a date., if it doesn't happen people think you are either dishonest or incompetent.

"We should have left the EU at the end of March and we didn't."

Sir Robert, who took questions from the floor, reiterated the complexity involved in leaving the EU with no clear Tory majority

"The difficulties in getting this through the Commons shouldn't be underestimated," he added.

Sir Robert also reassured residents about a no deal Brexit, saying: "If you talk to the ports they are pretty much organised to let lorries go through, the NHS has stockpiled vaccines and medicines just in case they are held up, and even the EU preparations for no deal are quite reasonable. They are not going to stop lorries and ask for documents, they are going to sort that out at the point of delivery.

"What ministers are saying to me is that there would be some disruption to trade, which would require the Treasury to underwrite some businesses for a period of time."

"If some firms lost large percentage of business very quickly the Treasury would tide them over.

"My basic point is actually I think we could manage no deal, but there would still be problems"