RETIRED surgeon Peter Sykes lifts the lid on hospital practice with the publication of his novel ‘Behind the Screens’.

it is a collection of stories set in a ‘fictitious’ hospital in the north west of England. The novel is a sequel to ‘The First Cut’ which was published a couple of years ago. Peter, trained in Manchester and then worked as a consultant surgeon for 25 years in Trafford operating on patients at Trafford General (then Park Hospital), Altrincham General and Sale and Brooklands War Memorial Hospital.

He has now swapped his scalpel for a pen and has reflected on some of the more memorable aspects of a life spent practising surgery.

He insists that the stories are fictional but acknowledges that they are based to a large degree on his own experience working in Trafford.

The hero of the 250-page novel is Paul Lambert - and Peter, from Bramhall, acknowledges there are similarities between Paul and himself.

Throughout the 250 page novel the emphasis is on patients and their various ailments and many ‘clinical incidents’ are described.

The book also offers insight into some of the problems within the hospital services and issues such as whistle blowing and concerns about standards of care are addressed.

Peter said: “At one stage I was a junior doctor training as a surgeon and Paul Lambert observes many of the aspects of hospital life as it was 40 years ago that I observed. But the book actually describes a mixture of things - some things that did happen, some things that might have happened and also includes some apocryphal stories that didn't happen.

“Then the different 'happenings' are linked in a romantic story line to give the novel a beginning, middle and end.”

Author royalties are being donated to St Ann’s Hospice.

The First Cut is available from local shops or from Amazon as a paperback or Kindle eBook.