A top councillor has given assurances Southwark Council has done all it can amid concerns EU citizens were left with uncertainty and a short deadline to register to vote in the EU elections.

The deadline for EU citizens to register closed yesterday (May 7), as it is confirmed there is no possibility of Brexit legislation being passed before the May 23 EU elections.

The government had insisted there was a chance the elections may not go ahead.

And the short notice meant there was a “huge risk of disenfranchisement” for the borough’s 41,000 EU citizens, cabinet member for Brexit, Victoria Mills, explained.

Speaking at a mayor and cabinet, she said: “I want to highlight is that it is an absolute disgrace EU citizens have had a matter of weeks to fill in a UC1 form, which I am not convinced is entirely needed any way, and they usually have four months to do that.

“We have contacted all registered citizens but we will not have been able to contacts all unregistered EU citizens.”

More than 72 per cent of Southwark voters opted to stay in the EU in the Brexit vote.

Southwark is home to 41,000 non-Irish EU citizens, whose status in the UK following the departure from the EU is unclear.

Southwark Council has set aside a £2 million Brexit fund to prepare for the uncertainty. The money will also go towards helping EU council employees gain settled status to continue living in the UK after June 2021.

Cllr Mills said the Southwark’s Brexit panel would need to look at when it would spend the money in the next few months.

She said: “Something the panel will need to reflect on in June or July is that we haven’t not yet implemented the fund, the money we set aside to support vulnerable groups to get their EU settled status, and I’m nervous about us going ahead with that before we know what’s going to happen.”