I’ve deliberately avoided talking about Brexit because the subject is not good for my blood pressure and my doctor has advised me to avoid stress.

But I just can’t dodge it any longer.

From the outset, let me nail my colours to the mast. I don’t think leaving the EU is a good idea.

In fact, I will go so far as to say I think it is a really, really bad idea.

Now I am not blinkered about this. I concede the EU isn’t perfect and needs significant reform but as we hurtle towards 11pm UK time on Friday, March 29 next year, I have a feeling of nothing but impending doom.

To understand the mess we now find ourselves in, we have to look at recent political history.

In his first conference speech as leader, David Cameron urged the Conservative Party to stop ‘banging on’ about Europe. So why then did a Prime Minister who identified the political dangers of talking about Europe call a referendum that ultimately led to his resignation?

Basically it was a high-stakes gamble that went horribly wrong and ultimately cost him his job.

The offer of a referendum in 2013 was intended to stop Conservative voters defecting to Ukip and to blunt the aspirations of the Euro-sceptic wing of his own party.

So we had the unedifying outcome of a Conservative leader trying to deal with internal party politics by gambling with the country’s future.

It has to be said Labour has to take its fair share of blame, especially Tony Blair.

According to the Financial Times, Blair’s decision to give the immediate right to work to migrants from eight former communist countries that joined the EU in 2004 was a major factor in the referendum.

Official estimates that those countries would provide a net inflow of 13,000 people a year proved way off the mark. In the 2004-12 period the cumulative net total was actually 423,000.

The scale of the influx prompted widespread resentment in some communities, fuelling the rise of Ukip. According to a 2015 survey by YouGov, 75 per cent of people in the UK thought there had been too much immigration over the previous 10 years with the EU held responsible.

And then we come to the actual referendum itself. How can a staggeringly complex socio-political, financial and technical problem be answered by a yes-no vote?

The truth is it couldn’t then and it can’t now.

So what did we get? We got lied to.

We got Project Fear and we got the staggeringly inaccurate Leave campaign battlebus lie that the UK paid £350 million per week to the European Union and that money would go straight to the NHS.

What we didn’t get, still haven’t got and are unlikely to get any time soon are real answers to serious questions.

For example: What is going to happen with the Irish border?

Are we going to have a Trump-style wall complete with checkpoints and border guards or will Northern Ireland be a special case, effectively moving the border between the EU and the UK to the middle of the Irish Sea.

Or how about what happens when we stop the free movement of people from the EU to the UK?

My dentist is Polish. Are we going to throw her out of the country?

Who is going to pick our vegetables, work in Sports Direct warehouses, clean hotel rooms and prop up the care system?

Because I don’t think that those flag-waving little Englanders will be forming a queue at the Job Centre to pick cabbages in a frosty field in Lincolnshire or clean up after an elderly care home resident.

EU migrants came to this country to do the jobs we don’t want to.

And 62,000 NHS staff in England are EU nationals. The NHS is already under strain so what happens to our health care system if and when our European friends head off back to the Continent?

What I’m not going to do is criticise all those who voted leave. I’m sure they had valid reasons for making their choice.

But as I said earlier, we were presented with a simplistic yes-no vote on a extremely complex question based on dodgy information from both sides.

And nothing the current government (or opposition for that matter) has done in the interim has convinced me they are on top of sorting it out.

Now it may well be that the EU mandarins will cave in at the last minute and offer us a great deal but as arch-Brexiteer David Davis said in a 2012 speech on the European Union: “If a democracy cannot change its mind, it ceases to be a democracy.”

Well said Mr Davis. The least we, as a mature democracy, deserve is the opportunity to vote on the final deal.

(Please don’t write in saying the majority of people in the country voted for Brexit – it was 51.89 per cent of those who voted.) By The Fly in the Ointment