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He and his Chancellor George Osborne

 

have insisted the veto was in part to protect the City of London from excessive intervention by Europe, but Labour and the UK Independence Party have both warned that actually no additional safeguards for it were achieved.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage said the City was “under very serious threat” of “retribution”, adding: “Every time the bond markets twitch I can see the finger being pointed at those awful Anglo Saxons in the City of London.”

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As leader of the Liberal Democrats, Mr Clegg is far more pro-European than his Conservative coalition colleagues.

He told the BBC’s Andrew Marr programme: “I’m bitterly disappointed by the outcome of last week’s summit, precisely because I think now there is a danger that the UK will be isolated and marginalised within the European Union.

“I don’t think that’s good for jobs, in the City or elsewhere, I don’t think it’s good for growth or for families up and down the country.”

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“He couldn’t come back to London empty-handed because self evidently, if he’d done so, he wouldn’t have been able to get whatever had been agreed through the House of Commons so all we would have had would have been a delayed crisis.”

On Friday, a spokesman for Mr Clegg said he had been “consulted throughout” the 10 hours of unsuccessful negotiations in Brussels – a claim backed up by Foreign Secretary William Hague.

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Asked about Labour’s allegation that Mr Cameron did not genuinely want to reach a deal in Brussels, Lord Oakeshott told the BBC’s Politics Show he believed “a walk-out quite suited him”.

Former Lib Dem leader Lord Ashdown told the Observer the veto had “tipped 38 years of British foreign policy down the drain”, but the coalition government must survive.

Mr Cameron will make a statement in the House of Commons on his decision on Monday.

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