Dr Graham Cope

Location: Birmingham
About me...

After a long career as a medical scientist I like to talk in an entertaining and accessible way about my academic interests of smoking and alcohol, along with antibiotic resistance and ‘guts’. In latter years I have been using my medical knowledge to research the history behind the methods and equipment used for surgery on the battlefield during the Napoleonic period and some characters who made this such an interesting time, including the Grand Old Duke of York, who after a few unfortunate military campaigns transformed the lives of the British soldier; one of his many mistresses Mary Anne Clarke who caused his resignation after a major political scandal and Sir John Moore who was a well respected commander but died during the retreat at Corunna.

About my talks...

For my talk I require a screen as I will bring along my own laptop and other artefacts as appropriate.


My fee is normally £80 for a 45-60 minute presentation, depending on geographical location, with travelling expenses of 20p/m if over 20 miles from my base in Birmingham.

If you are a small group, please contact me and we can usually reach a compromise.

My Contact Details:

01214767038 MOBILE:07980497079

1. Smoking, e-cigarettes and alcohol – good, bad or indifferent?

A talk by Public Speaker Dr Graham Cope - Smoking- why is it harmful

Tobacco smoking is dangerous, e-cigarettes may be safer and alcohol is fine in moderation.

This talk describes the damage caused by different types of tobacco, how e-cigarettes work and how are they better and alcohol is potentially good for health but in excess can cause a range of diseases.

2. Antibiotic Resistance – the ‘Ticking Time Bomb’.

A talk by Public Speaker Dr Graham Cole - Antibiotic Resistance. The ‘Ticking Time Bomb’

Antibiotics are the main weapon to treat infections but since the discovery of penicillin bacteria have been evolving to resist their effects. More ‘super bugs’ are emerging, with hospital acquired infections such as MRSA a major problem. Antibiotic resistance has been described as ‘the biggest threat to modern medicine’, but why does it happen and what can be done to prevent the spread of these deadly bugs?


3. You’ve got to have guts!

human gut image

Around 40% of people have at least one digestive problem. This talk describes the causes of a range of diseases that affect the guts and how treatment works. The talk will explain new findings about how the gut functions and how diets and fast foods can be dangerous and cause problems with sleep patterns, mood and energy levels and may hold the key to a range of other diseases such as Parkinson’s.

4. Post-polio Syndrome – a hidden menace.

A talk by Dr Graham Cope -  Post-polio Syndrome – a hidden menace.


Post-polio syndrome is a poorly understood condition that can affect people who have had polio in the past. The viral infection was common in the UK in the 40’s and 50’s and called ‘Infantile paralysis’. Many people born in these years are now witnessing paralysis, muscle weakness and shrinking of the muscles. This may be due to infection that they didn’t know about. What can be done to diagnose this syndrome and what can be done to combat the effects?

Fees for this talk will be donated to the British Polio Fellowship

6. Military surgery during the Napoleonic era

Military Surgery - talkby Graham Cope

The doctors of Britain’s Napoleonic army played a crucial role in the war against France.  Their surgical skills were honed under difficult conditions and without anaesthetics and antibiotics yet the survival rate after amputation was surprisingly good. Their knowledge of disease was rudimentary and consequently the fatality rate was much higher than from injuries. This talk describes the conditions of working, the methods and equipment used and the precautions taken to improve healing.



7. The Grand Old Duke of York – The Soldier’s Friend

4. Duke of York

Prince Frederick, second son of George III was a soldier from an early age. He trained in Germany and at the outbreak of war with France in 1793 was the Commander of the British army in Flanders and Holland from the age of 26 years. Although in the field he was thought by many as a failure he returned to London and over the next thirty years transformed the British soldier into a major force which was good enough to defeat Napoleon at Waterloo.

8. Mary Anne Clarke – A right royal scandal

Mary Anne Clarke

The Duke of York had many mistresses but one, Mary Anne Clarke was the focus of a major scandal when she and the Duke were accused of selling promotions within the army. The background is one of treachery, deceit, political shenanigans and a major enquiry in Parliament which rocked the country for seven weeks and resulted in the resignation of the Duke.



9. William Wilberforce and the abolition of the Slave Trade

by Sir Thomas Lawrence, oil on canvas, 1828

William Wilberforce was an MP for Yorkshire who campaigned throughout his career for the abolition of the slave trade. He fought against strong opposition from other politicians, plantation owners and the navy, all of whom had financial interests in the trade. Born in Hull and married into a wealthy Birmingham family he followed his strong Christian conviction and worked with other colleagues to lobby parliament in support of a number of philanthropic projects.

Dr Graham Cope Contact Details:

01214767038 MOBILE:07980497079