It was a historic day yesterday.
Five Hundred MPs crammed the yes lobby to give their assent to the commencement of talks to release the UK from the chains of EU membership.
One year ago this week I addressed a rally of 3,000 people in Kettering to commence the referendum campaign.
At that time more than half of those MPs who voted along with me tonight were calling on the people of the UK to vote no in the referendum.
They lost the argument and it was pleasing to see them accepting the verdict of the people despite their previous views.
Tonight we saw democracy in action and I have been proud to play a small part in the outcome of this exercise of people power.
Despite the threats, lies, bullying, insults from the great and the good and the chattering classes, and the bias of the media especially the BBC the people held their nerve and refused to be cowed by the political, media, academic and business elite.
At times some of us despaired that the might of the governmental machine and the pro EU establishment would be able to use its superior firepower to win the referendum battle.
I want to thank all those millions of individuals who stood firm and secured this great victory.
We now have the opportunity to exercise our own choices as to the laws we want, make our own deals with expanding economies across the world, control who comes and lives in our country and retain our own taxes to spend on the priorities we set.
We face a bright future and I look forward to the role which I and my colleagues can play in securing it.
Sammy Wilson MP, East Antrim