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A photo reveals the secret ‘Operation Yellowhammer’ government no-deal Brexit papers

A secret Treasury document has raised questions about “rail access to the EU” after a no-deal Brexit.

The document – snapped as it was carried into a Whitehall meeting – also reveals that Philip Hammond’s department has codenamed its contingency planning “Operation Yellowhammer”.

It warns that government departments will have to make cuts to prepare for crashing out of the EU, saying: “Their first call should be internal reprioritisation.”

And it acknowledges the need to “maintain confidence in the event of contingency plans being triggered – particularly important for financial services”.

Operation Yellowhammer is being overseen by the Civil Contingencies Secretariat, which is usually responsible for coping with emergencies such as floods and disease outbreaks.

The document was photographed just hours after the health secretary admitted that taxpayers would have to foot the bill for stockpiling NHS medicines in a no-deal Brexit.

A Treasury spokesman refused to be drawn on the paper, saying: “We don’t comment on leaked documents.”

The yellowhammer is a bird with a bright yellow head, a brown back streaked with black and chestnut rump, often seen perched on top of a hedge or bush, singing.

Intriguingly for critics of a no-deal Brexit, its song is said to have a rhythm like “a little bit of bread and no cheese”.       Continue Reading