Section: World

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Neat, plausible and wrong – a Brexit audit

Richard Hall

On becoming Conservative leader and prime minister in July 2016 Theresa May boldly stated “Brexit means Brexit and we’re going to make a success of it.” Twelve weeks before the UK cuts all links with the European Union (EU), it’s time to audit that statement. On 26 June 2016 it became clear that the politicians […]

Unsung hero of the NHS

David Childs

There are many unsung heroes of our National Health Service, both British and otherwise, who devote or have devoted their lives to medicine and saving lives. Do we take them for granted, especially those who come from overseas? After all that clapping with our neighbours, have we forgotten? East Midlands Bylines would like to hear […]

Can we ever agree on Brexit?

George Smid

The UK has left the EU, although the real changes are not until 1 January 2021. Has leaving brought the British people together? The politicians, public bodies and private pollsters are still trying to figure out the public sentiment about Brexit. Do we all see the bright future ahead as the prime minister does? At […]

White feathers for cowardly MPs

Anna Girolami & Garry Lawrence

Earlier this year, The Guardian and the Daily Mirror broke the story of how Dominic Cummings, eminence grise to Boris Johnson, flouted lockdown laws to suit himself. For one former Tory voter, this was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Garry Lawrence had been watching the degradation of public offices and the government’s slide […]

#No2NoDeal Rally attracts big names

Hania Orszulik

The ‘Remain’ voices at the #No2NoDeal Action Day virtual rally on 8 October said they have not been silenced and they would not stop fighting for EU and UK values. The rally last week was the European Movement’s second virtual rally on this theme. The event featured speakers from across the political spectrum, including the Conservative party, […]

Hopelessly hooked

Richard Parker

A few weeks ago I asked on Twitter, “Should we treat cars in the same way we treat cigarettes?”  It produced some interesting comments such as: “We should limit the design of cars as we do tobacco packaging: small, grey boxes with a top speed of 40mph and a giant health warning”. “Marketing is making […]

What has Nagorno Karabakh got to do with us?

Carol Weaver

Events around the small region of Nagorno Karabakh could be a ‘tinder box’ for a wider regional war involving Turkey, Russia and Syrian mercenaries, as well as the main opponents Armenia and Azerbaijan, with Iran watching events closely. But isn’t it all a long way off and yet another former Soviet Union war, though close […]

The #No2NoDeal Campaign

EM Bylines Team

When the East Midlands Bylines team heard there was to be a ‘No 2 No Deal’ action day on Thursday 8 October we decided to find out more. After all, the polls make it quite clear that only a very small minority of people, regardless of how they voted in 2016, want to leave the […]

Not united over unitary authorities

EM Bylines Team

It is alleged that a new democratic deficit could be arising in many of our local communities with already-delayed council elections (2020) possibly being put back until 2023 due to reorganisation (see letter below). There is also a feeling amongst smaller political parties and independent councillors that yet another ‘power grab’ is going on by […]

Listening and taking action

Jenny Kartupelis

CARE OF OLDER PEOPLE IN THE UK NEEDS URGENT CARE The way we care for older people, and the value society places on them and their carers, has become an ever-more urgent topic. The advent of Covid-19, prompting the discharge of older people to care homes without testing, that in turn led to tens of […]

Leicester, Xinjiang

Simon Ferrigno

forgotten lands on the frontiers of textiles As the US implements a partial ban on cotton from the Xinjiang region of China because of concerns over forced labour and even genocide, recent scandals about low wages and insecure employment in Leicester’s textiles sector seem to have dropped off the radar. But both are symptomatic of […]

I don’t want to lose my eyesight because of Brexit

Janet Boucher

These words were a comment made by a listener, Julia, in Radio 4’s In Touch programme for visually disabled viewers on August 25th. The topic was the supply security of sight-saving drugs and the risk Brexit disruption might pose to people’s health. Julia suffers from glaucoma and takes three lots of eye drops, all imported from […]

Local media matters

David Rae

Cuts to local and regional media pare away our everyday culture and identity… One of the services people most valued during the lockdown was local and regional media. The friendly voices of BBC local radio, East Midlands Today, independent local and community radio stations, local newspapers and ‘live’ web-based news services all helped people cope […]

Feeling unsettled

Carolyn Brown

All of us must know someone who is an EU citizen living in the UK whether it is a family member, friend, colleague or neighbour. The latest Home Office EU Settlement Scheme statistics reveal that 4,600 people have been refused settled status while 1,475,500 have only been granted temporary ‘Pre-Settled Status’ and 212,400 are still […]

Loving badgers

Sally Johnston

My love of badgers began when I was seven on finding a badger’s skull in a Derbyshire wood near my home. I could not have been more excited had I discovered a brontosaurus. In wonder, I stroked the large sagittal crest and carefully manipulated the non-detachable lower jaw. Immediately I felt a transcendental interconnectedness, an […]

A bucketful of challenges: lone parenting in the Leicester lockdown

Ngozi Eneh

If parenting is serious business, then single parenting in a lockdown is beyond serious… “Oh dear!” Meera lamented, staring at the wall clock and glancing quickly at the state of disarray in the living room. She had spent the entire afternoon assisting her two kids in their online lessons. Meera, a single mother and international […]

Failing farming

George Smid, Lisa Brewin, Andrew Brown

Covid-19 and Brexit have one thing in common. They can fully consume our minds and displace everything else. Worse, we are defining ourselves and our fellow citizens by how we view Covid-19 and Brexit. Consensus on the contrasting views seems impossible. But one thing the opposing groups will agree on is the importance of food […]

Shooting music festivals

Robert Male

Local music festivals have a variety of talented artists from all genres of music depending on the particular festival’s target audience. Very often artists are happy to travel from far afield to places such as Hallaton in the East Midlands to perform to their fans. It is a fantastic privilege for me to be able […]

Dogma and pragmatism in the age of Covid-19

James Lindsay

The Covid-19 pandemic has hit the country hard with the UK plunging into its deepest recession since records began. Each day, the media reports yet another, otherwise successful, business going bankrupt or announces large scale redundancies. Hopefully a vaccination will be available soon, but even so the economic impacts of Covid are being felt here […]

Leicestershire needs a ‘Green Recovery’

Rosie Lindsay

Covid-19 changed the world. What happens next will change our future and the time to act is now. At this moment, governments are drawing up investment plans on an extraordinary scale with billions of pounds expected to be pumped into reviving the economy. However, worldwide pleas of caution are being issued to governments not to […]

Time to get extradition right

Stewart Tolley

When Anne Sacoolas drove on ‘the wrong side of the road’ in sleepy, rural Northamptonshire, she was not expecting to kill anyone, but as the tragedy of Harry Dunn’s death shows, this is exactly what happened that fateful day in the summer of 2019.  Since then there has been an extensive battle to try and […]