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Drastically Brexit: Why at 50 I chose to make a political statement with my first tattoo

The tattoo trend shows no sign of fading.

And how better to make a permanent Brexit statement than to enlist the help of a politicised tattoo artist.

ITV News joined retired science teacher Sarah Driver as she braved the chair for her custom Brexit-based body art.

"You get to 50 and it's a little bit of a rebellious thing," Sarah said as she joined the estimated one in five Britons who have been inked.

Her renewed interest in politics after the 2016 EU referendum ultimately led to her booking the appointment.

Tattoo artist Rachel Schwartz-Holford said she 'accidentally' developed a new style of political tattoos for her portfolio. Credit: ITV News

"I always knew I was on the Remain side but didn't know how passionately I was on the Remain side,” she said.

Tattoo artist Rachel Schwartz-Holford said she "accidentally" developed a new style of political tattoos for her portfolio.

The idea came to fellow-Remainer Rachel a year after the vote when someone she met at a pro-EU demonstration reached out with a creative request.

"She was a woman in her 60s, the first tattoo that she'd ever had," Rachel recalled.

"She decided she wanted quite a big, bold statement."

One of Rachel's clients chose a tribute with notes from the Anthem of Europe - based on Beethoven's 'Ode to Joy' - for their arm. Credit: ITV News

That first design was quite the opposite of the simple EU stars and peace dove Rachel designed for Sarah.

It became the latest in more than 1,000 tattoos the artist has completed since she left her job as a teacher and the 10th Brexit design.

Her other Brexit range designs include a colourful EU flag, while a more daring customer chose a tribute with notes from the Anthem of Europe - based on Beethoven's 'Ode to Joy' - for their arm.

One of Rachel's favourite pieces is the Catherine wheel-style design she sketched on herself, an act of defiance she said she could put the pain aside for.

"It's something I felt quite passionately about," she said.

"I don't think it's a drastic thing to do by having a pro-EU tattoo."

In her eyes, to have "Chelsea have won the FA Cup this year on this particular day" would be a far more regrettable decision.

Sarah said her new tattoo is a mark of 'solidarity'. Credit: ITV News

According to a YouGov survey in 2015, around 14% of people in Britain admitted to having doubts about their tattoos.

With her first tattoo on her shoulder, client Sarah said she doesn't plan to cover it up as she believes her new look is a mark of "solidarity" with the nation divided over Britain's exit from the EU.

She added: "It's a symbol of what I believe in and it's also a symbol of the groups of people I've met through this journey as well."

In the same 2015 survey, it was revealed UKIP and Labour supporters were the most likely to have a tattoo than any other party voter - be it political or non-political.

But as a firm EU enthusiast, tattoo artist Rachel said she would probably draw the line at sketching a design for a Leave voter.

Though she said: "I have sort of joked about it and said, yeah, maybe I'd do it.

"I'd charge them twice as much and I'd make it more painful."

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