Author: Peter Burke

Peter was born in Dublin, of Irish and German heritage. He came to England for a year in 1982, and, having decided he liked working in the NHS, never got round to going back. He has worked in Oxford as a GP for the past 30 years, latterly very part-time. He is a senior clinical lecturer at Oxford University, where he teaches communication skills to medical students, and he is a GP appraiser and examiner. He has 3 children, living in Oxford, Leipzig and Hollywood, and 3 grandchildren. He loves England and sees it as home, as it is where is where he and his wife Geraldine watched their children grow up. However he is deeply saddened by developments since 2016, in particular the simultaneous threats to democracy and to the economy. He is eager to help the cause of continuing collaboration with our EU neighbours, and is currently Chair of Oxford for Europe.

A Vacuum of Integrity

Peter Burke

It gives no pleasure to witness integrity and professionalism being treated as an optional extra by those in power. Dominic Cummings: ‘It is sad to see the PM and his office fall so far below the standards of competence and integrity the country deserves.’ Lord Kerslake, former head of civil service: ‘The level of toxicity […]

No Way To Start A trade War

Peter Burke

Despite all the screamingly obvious evidence to the contrary, most of us hoped that by some miracle Brexit would turn out well. We still live in hope, but the chances are diminishing by the day. Some of what is happening was foreseeable, and some goes even further than the worst predictions of “project fear”

LONG READ

A Touch of Frost

Peter Burke

With effect from 1 March 2021 the newly-ennobled Lord David Frost stepped into the role of UK Chair of the Partnership Council. He therefore enters the Cabinet, and becomes yet another ‘unelected bureaucrat’ at the centre of power.  He is there to preside over a difficult new round of negotiations at a time when ministers would […]

Kicking At An Open Goal And Missing

Peter Burke

At a time like this, just when the profound harm done by Brexit is becoming apparent, the government is leaving an open goal for all the opposition parties. It feels as if Labour, for one, is not even making a serious attempt to kick at this goal

Can this really be the New Normal?

Peter Burke

Both fisheries and work permits for musicians are a very small part of the horrendous unfolding Brexit drama. However, they are significant because they are good examples of how gravely a massive cross section of ordinary people have been let down by this government.

So Long, and Thanks for all the Fish

Peter Burke

As an impoverished Britain flounces away from the greatest missed opportunity in history, the words of Douglas Adams will ring in its ears: “So Long, and thanks for all the fish”

Billy No-Mates

Peter Burke

It looks as if the next 2 months will go down in history on both sides of the Atlantic

Transatlantic Tango

Peter Burke

The truth is that American voters at this moment probably have more influence over the fate of this country than we do ourselves.

Of Starship Captains, Fishing and Small Dogs

Peter Burke

“For thousands more years the mighty ships tore across the empty wastes of space and finally dived screaming on to the first planet they came across – which happened to be the Earth – where due to a terrible miscalculation of scale the entire battle fleet was accidentally swallowed by a small dog.”Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide […]

Playing Russian roulette with our nation’s future…

Peter Burke

Dear West England Bylines Recently, we at Oxford For Europe played host via Zoom to Dominic Grieve and Michael Dougan. The main focus of questioners was of course the Russia report, of which Dominic was the principal author. Though at the time he was unable to disclose the contents of the report, he was very […]