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Archive for May, 2018

Chelsea put stadium plans on hold after Roman Abramovich visa delay

May 31, 2018

Chelsea’s Russian billionaire owner Roman Abramovich has put the club’s stadium plans on hold after delays to the renewal of his UK visa. The estimated cost for a new 60,000 seat Stamford Bridge has increased to £1bn after delays, which included a dispute with a local family. Abramovich is unwilling to invest in a major project […]


Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said rail operator Northern is in “freefall” after cancellations increased to almost 300 in one day. Mr Burnham said at least 147 trains were cancelled or part-cancelled on 22 May and this had almost doubled to at least 281 on 29 May. He said services are “actually getting worse” and “Northern’s freefall shown no signs of slowing down”. Northern said it is urgently working on “comprehensive plans”. Calls for Northern to lose franchise Train firm’s service ‘unacceptably poor’ Rail boss sorry for ‘rude’ customer tweets Mr Burnham said the fact services have “continued to decline” is “nothing short of a scandal”. “Ministers seems oblivious to the scale of this chaos and the impact this is having on people’s jobs and social lives on a daily basis,” he said. Mr Burnham and Liverpool City Region Mayor Steve Rotheram have called for Northern to lose the franchise if things do not improve. Image copyrightSUSAN RAMSDALE Image caption There were major delays on “Meltdown Monday” at Manchester Piccadilly Mr Burnham has also accused Transport Secretary Chris Grayling of being “asleep at the wheel”. He said: “I believe he now must take personal responsibility for sorting this situation out.” Mr Grayling previously said improving Northern’s train services is the Department for Transport’s “number one performance priority”. Mayor demands Northern trains inquiry Struggling to work in the north of England Reality Check: Does the North get a raw deal on rail? Northern said it has agreed actions with the DfT and is working on a plan to “stabilise” services. Managing director David Brown said that “such a plan is likely to take a number of weeks to deliver lasting improvements”. ‘Worse disruption’ Mr Burnham spoke to Mr Grayling on a call with other political leaders in northern England. He said they were previously told it was a Network Rail issue but have now been told it is more of a shared issue between Network Rail and Northern. “The problem with that is we’ve had an action plan that’s been based on the wrong analysis for a week and here we are a week later with worse disruption,” said Mr Burnham. “I take away from this that the pain of northern commuters, I’m afraid, is not worth the same as the pain of commuters in London.” Abuse from passengers The Rail, Maritime and Tran

Two troubled rail operators were responsible for almost 1,000 late or cancelled trains on Wednesday. The disruption to passengers using Northern and Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) routes was described as a “complete shambles” by an MP. Meanwhile, Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said Northern’s “freefall” had shown “no signs of slowing down”. Northern and GTR […]


Northern: Rail network is in ‘freefall’ says mayor

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said rail operator Northern is in “freefall” after cancellations increased to almost 300 in one day. Mr Burnham said at least 147 trains were cancelled or part-cancelled on 22 May and this had almost doubled to at least 281 on 29 May. He said services are “actually getting worse” and […]


Row over ‘staggering’ failure to pick woman for Bank of England MPC

The Treasury’s failure to appoint a woman to the Bank of England’s rate-setting committee is “truly staggering”, according to the chair of the Business Committee. Rachel Reeves’ comments came in response to the announcement that Prof Jonathan Haskel is to join the Monetary Policy Committee. The Treasury said four women and one man were shortlisted […]


US tariffs: Steel and aluminium levies slapped on key allies

The US is to impose tariffs on steel and aluminium imports from the European Union, Mexico and Canada. The 25% tariffs on steel and 10% on aluminium will begin at midnight. The move, revealed by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, will affect several key US allies – and Nato members – in Europe. The UK was […]


Have we reached peak prosecco?

May 29, 2018

The UK’s thirst for prosecco may seem unquenchable, but one firm has warned slowing sales mean it could be nearing its peak. Last year, sales of sparkling wine in the UK rose by 5%, the smallest increase in six years, according to accountancy group UHY Hacker Young. The weakness of the pound against the euro […]


Dixons Carphone to close 92 stores as profits slide

Shares in Dixons Carphone have sunk by nearly 20% after it warned of a sharp fall in profits this year. The mobile phone and electrical goods retailer also said it would close 92 of its more than 700 Carphone Warehouse stores this year. It expects pre-tax profits for 2017-18 to be £382m, but it predicts profits will […]


Homes evacuated after sinkhole appears on A26 in Kent

Ten homes have been evacuated after a large sinkhole opened up in a main road. Witnesses described a police car overtaking vehicles and blocking the A26, in Kent, just before part of the road collapsed into a void. Motorists told the BBC they heard a “crunching sound” before the 2m-wide sinkhole appeared on Monday evening. […]


Italy political crisis hits European stock markets

European financial markets have been hit by political upheaval in Italy. The prospect of elections as early as September, along with the possibility of eurosceptic parties strengthening their position, has hit markets. Italy’s benchmark FTSE MIB sank 2.7%. The UK’s FTSE was down 1.2%, Germany’s Dax down 1.3%, and France’s Cac down 2%. And the […]


Plastic pollution: Images of a global problem

May 25, 2018

In its June issue, National Geographic magazine has published a selection of startling photos highlighting the vast amounts of discarded plastic choking the world’s oceans, shorelines and rivers. Wildlife, particularly marine animals, are at risk when they become entangled in plastic waste, or ingest it Trapped in a plastic bag at a landfill in Spain, this stork […]


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