There were chaotic scenes as a march led by Nigel Farage left Sunderland in protest against attempts to “betray” the people over Brexit.

The March to Leave set off from a sodden field on Saturday morning, to begin its way over to London over a 14-day period.

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Leading hundreds of people in the protest, surrounded by a press scrum, Nigel Farage said: "The will of the people is very clear.

"If you see what has been happening in Parliament this week, we may well not be leaving the EU.

"If politicians think they can walk all over us, then we're going to march back and tell them they can't. Simple as that."

Angry rows broke out as the march started, with several counter-protesters assembling to get their views across.

The Northern Echo:

Carrying love hearts bearing messages like "we love workers' rights" and "we love to have a say", they chanted “you can shove your Brexit up your arse”.

As Mr Farage arrived, a woman set off a flare with the EU colours, to shouts of "exit Brexit" from the counter-protesters. She was shepherded away by police, but no arrests were made.

It is understood that two two advertising vans, made by the anti-Brexit grassroots campaign Led By Donkeys, will also be following the march.

The Northern Echo:

Barry Lockey, who arrived in Sunderland carrying a flag with the message "Get Britain out: Time to leave the EU", said that the event is about supporting democracy.

He said: "The democracy in the Parliament building has been spot on. They've got their no-deal taken off the table by four votes."

Mr Lockey pointed out that this margin was much smaller than the 4% margin of victory during the EU referendum, which he said is now being discredited.

He added: "I'm sorry, but that really riles me. And they're not going to get away with it.

"They're going to get kicked out, them people, and they're an absolute damned disgrace."

In contrast, counter-protester Frank Hindle, 66, said: "It's going to be a disaster if we leave."

Frank Hindle, 66, said: "We're here to point out that not everybody agrees with this crowd, who think it's going to be wonderful if we leave."

Discussing the no-deal Brexit that many of the marchers are calling for, he said: "The impact that will have on businesses and on prices, and on the availability of things like medicines and so forth, it doesn't bear thinking about."

John Longworth, Chairman of Leave Means Leave said: “It was very encouraging to see the extent of the support for the opening day of the March To Leave.

"The March has been organised to offer Brexit voters who may not be able to travel to London a chance to voice their dissatisfaction with the appalling mishandling of Brexit.

"The events of this week have shown just how out of touch the political class is with the rest of the country and we look forward to making our way down the country over the following two weeks.”