The latest news and views from the Oxford Region

Out-of-control shopping trolley – or a laser-guided plan?

By John Walker It was so easy to believe Dominic Cummings’ description of Boris Johnson as an errant shopping trolley. The bumbling, incoherent ineptitude fits our picture of Johnson and his government. Yet we should never forget that he achieved his aims, Brexit and premiership, despite incompetence. Perhaps we should start to examine what liesContinue reading “Out-of-control shopping trolley – or a laser-guided plan?”

The Tribes of Brexit Part 2 – The Bruised Pride Chancellors

Last month, John Walker began his series looking at some of the origins of Brexit by examining those who traced their Brexit roots back to their animosity towards Europeans. In this next instalment, he considers the smallest, but maybe one of the most overlooked groups, Tory Chancellors of the Exchequer who were closely engaged withContinue reading “The Tribes of Brexit Part 2 – The Bruised Pride Chancellors”

The Conservatives’ Friends on the Council of Europe Stoop Even Lower

We have written before in this blog about the dubious company kept by the Conservatives on the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), one whose main tasks is to propagate human rights across Europe. It is also the body where Henley MP, John Howell, serves as Treasurer of the Conservatives’ grouping, the EuropeanContinue reading “The Conservatives’ Friends on the Council of Europe Stoop Even Lower”

The Tribes of Brexit

This is the first of a short series of articles, by EM Oxford Region member John Walker, that looks at the different groups of people behind Brexit. Part of the difficulties found in countering the pro-Brexit narrative has come from the diverse nature of the various groups and individuals involved. Arguments used in countering oneContinue reading “The Tribes of Brexit”

“Take Back Control?” – For our Critical National Infrastructure, we just lost it

Critical National Infrastructure is, by definition, critical. As such, there are groups tasked with protecting and defending the infrastructure against external attacks and mitigating against any failures or flaws. John Walker has been one of those people for most of his working life.  In this important article he lifts the lid on how decisions takenContinue reading ““Take Back Control?” – For our Critical National Infrastructure, we just lost it”

Did Your MP Understand the Withdrawal Agreement Bill? Why Not ASK Them?

As if mimicking an episode of Yes Minister, recent days have seen the UK and EU bickering over the future of chilled sausages being sent from the mainland to Northern Ireland. Obviously, this has presented a few problems for some Conservative MPs. Where once they were heartily backing (and voting for) the PM’s Withdrawal AgreementContinue reading “Did Your MP Understand the Withdrawal Agreement Bill? Why Not ASK Them?”

The Next Windrush?

At the end of June, the government deadline for EU nationals to apply for settled status in the UK expires. For many in one of Oxford’s biggest overseas communities, the East Timorese, this could leave them in a dangerous limbo, at risk from deportation. Eve Webster, from Somerville College, who has written about the subjectContinue reading “The Next Windrush?”


After a year of severe disruption to children’s education, the government slamming the door on eTwinning is just a further blow to broadening their horizons. At the beginning of February, the government announced its plans for the Turing Scheme, the replacement to Erasmus+. At first sight, it certainly appears to be pretty thin gruel. ButContinue reading “Link…Listen…Learn”


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