Critics wrong to call Chequers’ exit plan a concession to EU, writes PM, as she defends common rulebook on free trade

Theresa May has sought to calm fractious Tory grassroots activists angry with her Chequers Brexit plan, writing individual members a lengthy letter endorsed by sceptical cabinet Brexiters including Andrea Leadsom and Liam Fox.

The prime minister’s charm offensive over the past few weeks has been aimed at convincing Conservative party members of the merits of her offer to the EU, outlined in the Brexit white paper. It includes a free-trade area for goods governed by a common rulebook.

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