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At the heart of general practice since 1960

Dr Martin Islip

... on Gordon Brown, chocolate-covered raisins and his dog

... on Gordon Brown, chocolate-covered raisins and his dog

The best thing about my practice is that all the staff and doctors get on so well together.

And the worst is being called in to the surgery at 1am to turn off the alarm!

My greatest fear is that my wife and dog die before I do.

The trait I most dislike in myself is my impatience (contained at work and then released on my family).

The trait I most dislike in others is arrogance.

My best feature is my hands – so my wife says.

Having to treat patients who should have been treated by their dentist is the most annoying thing about being a GP.

If I wasn't a GP, I'd be a striker for Arsenal.

I think Gordon Brown will make more enemies in the medical profession than Tony Blair and Patricia Hewitt combined.

My most vivid schooldays memory is playing cricket aged nine and accidentally knocking my classmate unconscious with the ball.

'The dog ate my false teeth' is the best reason for a sicknote a patient has given me.

Admitting a single mum with appendicitis, who asked me if I could take her children to school, then seeing the odd looks at the school gates, is my funniest moment as a GP.

The vehicles I own are a Mini Cooper 'S' for work and an Audi A4 estate for holidays and the dog.

My most treasured possession is my dog Rosie (but don't tell Lucy the cat).

My least attractive habit is you really don't want to know!

My favourite word is 'really' – you can put so many different emphases on it.

The book I'm reading at the moment is The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penney.

My guiltiest pleasure is chocolate-covered raisins on Weetabix.

If I could do one thing to change the world it would be to rid the world of guns.

My greatest achievement is bringing up three children who have made me proud of them.

Gordon Brown keeps me awake at night.

The best meal I've ever eaten was salmon in a lobster thermidor sauce in the George Hotel, Inverary.

I relax by reading a good novel with a glass of wine in the warm sunshine.

The guests at my ideal dinner party would be Nelson Mandela (an example to us all), Nick Hornby (my kind of writing and an Arsenal supporter to boot), Dawn French (funny and cuddly) and Kylie Minogue (sweet and sexy).


• GP in Horsforth, Leeds

• GP trainer 1985 to 2005

• GP tutor 1991 to 2007

• Undergraduate tutor Leeds

• Author of recent open letter to Gordon Brown

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