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  1. ITV Report

Dark blue British passport could return after Brexit in £490m revamp

The dark blue British passport could make a return in 2019. Credit: PA

The UK could ditch the EU burgundy passport cover in favour of the old dark blue design in a post-Brexit £490 million revamp.

The proposed throwback design gets the thumbs-up from Tory Eurospectic MPs who are in favour of returning to the traditional dark blue passports as part of multi-million pound contract to produce a new version of the document.

But opposition leaders said the discussion over passport designs was an unnecessary distraction from bigger issues.

The passport is routinely redesigned every five years and the current contract expires in 2019, the year the UK is set to leave the European Union.

Tory MP Andrew Rosindell said the EU burgundy passport had been a source of national "humiliation".

"The restoration of our own British passport is a clear statement to the world that Britain is back!

"Our British identity was slowly but surely being submerged into an artificial European one that most Brits felt increasingly unhappy about," he said.

Mr Rosindell continued: "National identity matters and there is no better way of demonstrating this today than by bringing back this much-loved national symbol when travelling overseas."

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: "The real source of humiliation is a government worrying about the colour of our passports while a social care and NHS crisis rages."

Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron said: "Changing the colour of the passport is just another expense on an ever increasing list of the cost of Brexit.

"This is a completely superficial expenditure which could have been spent on our hospitals and our schools. And for what? All this does is put a £490 million smile on Nigel Farage's face."