16/12/2018 18:50 GMT | Updated 17/12/2018 14:41 GMT

Explorer And Ex-Soldier Anthony Middleton Thinks 'Suffering' Caused By No Deal Brexit Would 'Bring Back British Values'

Anti-austerity campaigner Jack Monroe leads a backlash.

Rex Features
Anthony Middleton: 'Extreme change is needed!'

An explorer and former special forces soldier has faced a backlash on social media after he hailed the benefits of a no deal Brexit - claiming it would be “a blessing” for the country because the “hardship and suffering” caused would unite the country.

Anthony Middleton, who served in the Special Boat Service and was chief instructor on the Channel 4 show ‘SAS: Who Dares Wins’, took to Twitter to declare: “A ‘no deal’ for our country would actually be a blessing in disguise.

“It would force us into hardship and suffering which would unite & bring us together, bringing back British values of loyalty and a sense of community!

“Extreme change is needed!”

His comments come after the EU refused to countenance any changes to Theresa May’s Brexit deal after she delayed a crunch vote in parliament on the withdrawal agreement, raising the prospect of the UK quitting the EU without terms agreed with the bloc. 

Twitter users pounced on the remarks, dismissing the suggestion it would be “all Dad’s Army, jolly people building Anderson shelters & good old Mrs ’arris helping out by putting kettle on for neighbour in trouble”.

Channel 4 news TV presenter Matt Frei added: ‏”Can’t remember seeing ‘suffer together’ on the side of the red bus.”

Most outspoken was cook, anti-austerity campaigner and writer Jack Monroe, who wrote: “1.5million in the UK are using food banks. 120,000 disabled people are dead. 4.2million people in poverty. Hundreds of thousands in hardship following cuts and delays to welfare payment.

“Just fuck off with this middle class poverty porn fantasy bullshit, you absolute tool.”

Buy Middleton appeared unapologetic, continuing to tweet on Sunday about how it was “time to stand alone and instill some resilience back into our country” after TV presenter Piers Morgan said he was “warming to the idea of no deal”.

Middleton courted controversy earlier this year when he said he “didn’t see any benefits” of having women in the SAS after it was announced women will be able to work in any part of the armed forces.

In prompted reigning ‘Great British Bake Off’ champion Sophie Faldo, a former British Army officer, to weigh in: “If you can’t see ANY advantages then you’re being very narrow-minded or you clearly haven’t worked with some of the women I have!”