26 September

As a bath empties, the water circles the plughole in decreasing circles, slowly at first but then with ever increasing speed until it hurtles into the abyss.  The Brexit process is behaving in a similar manner.

11 September

Nye Bevan was staying at Wallington Hall and, so the story goes, was asked by the socialist owner Sir Charles Trevelyan if he’d like to join the grouse shoot.  Bevan declined, whereupon Trevelyan proceeded to put his foot in it by asking if the distinguished Labour politician would instead be wil

31 August

This week in the Agriculture Committee in the European Parliament discussed a study on "The revival of wolves and other large predators and its impact on farmers and their livelihood in rural regions of Europe", presented by Mr John D.

30 August

A recent report denying human role in climate change, written by UKIP MEP John Stuart Agnew, has sparked outrage from within the European Parliament, as well as from scientists and experts.

29 August

“Come on Lucinda!’ bellowed my Christian Aid colleague as I approached Heworth Roundabout.  Clearly one is not meant to take part in the Great North Run using a pseudonym but circumstances beyond my control that year necessitated this deviation from the race rules.  This year I’m legal and will b

14 August

My summer reading is under way and I’m deep into Jay Parini’s ‘Robert Frost, A Life’.  Frost is America’s most popular and famous poet, highly regarded for his realistic depictions of rural life in New England in the early twentieth century and his command of American colloquial speech.

03 August

When even hardline Brexiteer Nigel Farage is admitting Brexit could be ‘bad news for British farmers’, you know things are not looking pretty for the industry, says Paul Brannen, North East MEP and Labour’s EU agriculture spokesman.

17 July

‘At last!’ cried the EU27, ‘The British government has finally produced a document setting out what it would like the Brexit agreement with the EU to look like’.  Relieved, rather than pleased, our European allies shake their heads and ask exasperatedly, ‘But why has it taken two years?’

03 July

My first attempt at going to university was an unsuccessful sojourn at London University and lasted but ten weeks.  It sits in my memory as the beginning of a long series of encounters with southerners who on hearing my Tyneside accent would spontaneously burst into song with variations of:

19 June

Who decides; the government, parliament or the people?  In our UK parliamentary democracy the people elect politicians at the ballot box and the political party that commands a majority in the House of Commons forms the government.  The government can then bring forward draft legislation which is


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