There’s been much ridiculing of the People’s Vote march that took place in London on Saturday. It seems to be par for the course now for many in the media and indeed in various political quarters when discussing the opposing views of Brexit.

Objective, intelligent criticism is very much in the minority.

Take as an example an opinion piece that appeared in The Spectator’s Coffee House section, which was one of the most disparaging I’ve read of those who attended the march, questioning protesters’ intelligence and calling them “fretful types with unspecified fears”.

Mocking and scoffing appear to have replaced fact and common civility these days and it was all too evident in this piece.

I was at the march on Saturday, in what was the biggest demonstration in the UK since the 2003 march against the Iraq war (and we all know how disastrously that panned out for Tony Blair).

I felt such waves of emotion on the tube to central London, watching as more and more people tried to cram into every tube carriage whilst leaving hundreds waiting on the platform for another tube to arrive.

When I emerged from Hyde Park station and saw the throngs of people of all ages, including many families with young children, moving towards Park Lane and along the route to Parliament Square, it was clear that this was indeed a big thing.

How big, I could never have guessed, but then that’s more about me, and the fact that I’m no good at guessing crowd numbers. It was jovial and it was cathartic.

There is something so deeply moving and inspiring about people from various walks of life, coming together in solidarity to make their voice heard. And when it’s done respectfully and peacefully, it’s an even greater triumph.

Many would have us believe that those demanding a final say on Brexit, including an option to stay in Europe, are made up mainly of the metropolitan left-liberal elite, but I spoke to people who had travelled from all over the UK, including Doncaster, York and Liverpool.

What they had in common was not where they bought their groceries, but a desire to have a vote based on truth and informed choice.

I don’t claim to know what the way forward is.

In the same way that few predicted how the referendum in 2016 would pan out, I doubt that many really know what the future of the UK looks like. Regardless of what path is taken (and there are various routes available if politicians are brave enough to lead by example instead of being carried by a wave of self interest and obstinance) none is without risk of angering a large proportion of the population.

Many Brexiteers will say that Theresa May is merely working to carry out “the will of the people” that voted to leave the EU.

After all, she voted to Remain, so in one sense her dogged determination to secure a deal could be viewed as admirable as she appears to be honouring the electorate.

However, that’s not a view I share because it has become increasingly clear, notwithstanding all of the lies told during the referendum campaign, that the UK will be worse off as a result of its exit from the EU. Personally, I believe anyone who presses ahead with plans despite evidence to the contrary is being, quite simply, fatalistic.

Many of us who took to the streets on Saturday in support of a People’s Vote, are under no illusions about the march.

We know that it alone will not change the course of history. And another referendum will not heal the huge divisions in the UK that have become so obvious since the last referendum. But when 700,000 people take to the streets (which the Guardian noted is more than the sum of both the Labour and Conservative parties put together) to protest politely, it shows that there is still an appetite for healthy democracy.

And in the current climate, that is something to be celebrated.