As Britain prepares to leave the EU, Europeans leave Britain

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By Luke Hanrahan
Eshan Koregar, known as Jimmy, runs a garage in west London
Eshan Koregar, known as Jimmy, runs a garage in west London

Is Brexit Britain a less attractive place for Europeans to live? 

The figures suggest so. Last year 53,000 people from the so-called EU 8, a group of countries including Poland and Hungary and the Czech Republic which joined the EU in 2004, returned home. 

Net migration to the UK from the EU as a whole fell to its lowest level in a decade.

Eshan Karegar, known by his adopted name of Jimmy, has run a garage in west London since 1978. He says he's considering selling up as foreign customers and colleagues have left the country: "Most of them I think have gone back now," he told Euronews.

Further north in the country, the situation is similar.

"I've noticed a lot of people leaving the country looking for what is safe, looking for certainty and going back home," says Elio Alonso who runs a cleaning business in Leamington Spa. He now has to charter a minibus to bring in workers from the city of Birmingham an hour away.

However, as immigration from the EU has fallen, more people are moving to the UK from outside the bloc. Net immigration from outside the UK last year was at its highest level since 2004.