Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding.
I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... It was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.
Thinking of visiting Oxford?
Allow me to be your guide... and discover the history of Oxford with an Oxford historian.
I offer a wide range of guided walks around the city and university. These can be a general introduction to the history and architecture or looking at specific themes and subjects.
I am a Catholic and a historian based in Oxford, where I am a member of Oriel College. My research, for a long delayed D.Phil., is a study of Richard Fleming, Bishop of Lincoln in the second decade of the fifteenth century. I also work as a freelance tutor in History and as an independent tour guide.
I was received into the Church in 2005 and am a Brother of the External Oratory of St Philip Neri at the Oxford Oratory.
I was somewhat surprised to learn from my iPhone this morning that the Prime Minister has requested adissolution of Parliament and that there will be a General Election on June 8th.
Mrs May repeatedly said she would not do such a thing, and, quite correctly, did not call one to "seek a mandate" - we do not elect the Prime Minister, but rather MPs, and from whom the leader of the majority party or of a coalition is asked by The Queen to form a government. Now she has changed her mind.
I suspect people are getting sick of trooping off to the Polling Stations - certainly they must in Scotland having had the Referendum in 2014, the General Election in 2015 and their own General Election in 2016 as well as the Europe Referendum. Politicians tend to forget that real people, normal people, are not like them and obsessed with politics.
This is compounded by the nonsense of the Fixed Term Parliament Act wished upon us by the Coalition - any proper Conservative government would have got rid of that, and then moved on to repealing the enormity that is the Constitutional Reform Act of 2005 - Constitional Deform Act more like.
Well, we shall see what happend in June, but a long Election campaign is fraught with risks for all parties.