The MTAS fiasco has upset everyone but especially the surgical community. In March when the West Midlands general surgical appointments committee met at 0800 on a Monday morning and refused to proceed with the day of planned interviews, the cat was finally let out of the bag. The ‘Birmingham Ten’ did us all a huge favour by just saying ‘no’. Other groups found their voice including the London ENT selection committee. In the interim many of the nearly 15,000 junior doctors who were offered no interviews at all were becoming vocal and their families were mobilising the press (notably the Daily Telegraph). On the 21st March the RCS held an emergency meeting of elected members and voted unanimously not to support the existing process. All this led to panic in Whitehall as civil servants suddenly realised that the ship was sinking.