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Portrait of the weekrss

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4 May 2013

Home In the run-up to local elections, Kenneth Clarke, the Minister without Portfolio, described the UK Independence Party candidates as ‘clowns’. RAF Waddington, Lincolnshire, assumed control of ten Reaper drone… Read more

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27 April 2013

Home George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, visited Glasgow to cast doubt on the probability of an independent Scotland being allowed to continue to use the pound: ‘Why would… Read more

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20 April 2013

Home With the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, the 2,300 invited to attend Lady Thatcher’s funeral in St Paul’s cathedral included the three surviving former prime ministers, members of… Read more

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13 April 2013

Home Margaret Thatcher, the prime minister from 1979 to 1990, died aged 87. She had suffered a stroke while reading in her room at the Ritz hotel, where she had… Read more

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6 April 2013

Home Housing benefit for council and housing association tenants was reduced by 14 per cent for those deemed to have one spare bedroom and by 25 per cent for those… Read more

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30 March 2013

Home David Cameron, the Prime Minister, in a speech designed to show that Britain was no longer to be a ‘soft touch’ for immigrants, said that people from the European… Read more

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23 March 2013

Home In what he called a ‘fiscally neutral’ Budget, George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, confronted a reduced forecast of gross domestic product for 2013 from 1.2 per cent… Read more

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16 March 2013

Home Chris Huhne, the energy secretary until last year, and his former wife Vicky Pryce were each sentenced to eight months in jail for perverting the course of justice. Huhne’s… Read more

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9 March 2013

Home George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer failed to dissuade EU finance minsters in Brussels from endorsing a plan to cap bankers’ pay bonuses. City banks contemplated taking the… Read more

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2 March 2013

Home Moody’s reduced Britain’s credit rating from AAA to AA1. George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, said: ‘Far from weakening our resolve to deliver our economic recovery plan, this… Read more

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23 February 2013

Home Unemployment fell by 14,000 between August and November to 2.5 million, with the number in work rising by 154,000 to 29.7 million, meaning that 580,000 more people were in… Read more

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16 February 2013

Home Findus frozen beef lasagne was found to be 100 per cent horsemeat, and Tesco frozen ‘Everyday Value’ spaghetti bolognese 60 per cent horse. French suppliers blamed a Romanian abattoir.… Read more

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9 February 2013

Home  The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill was given its second reading in the Commons by 400 votes to 175. Of Conservative MPs, 127 voted for it, and 136 against.… Read more

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2 February 2013

Home Britain decided to send 40 ‘military advisers’ to Mali, 70 more with an RAF Sentinel surveillance aircraft and 20 with a C17 transport plane, and 200 to neighbouring states… Read more

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26 January 2013

Home David Cameron, the Prime Minister, at last delivered his speech on Europe, postponed during the Algerian hostage crisis. He wanted to ‘negotiate a new settlement with our European partners’,… Read more

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19 January 2013

Home David Cameron, the Prime Minister, brought forward his speech on new relations with the European Union from 22 January when it was realised that it was the 50th anniversary… Read more

‘We never speak any more… When did we last go out?… All you ever talk 
about is gay marriage or Europe… What about me?’

12 January 2013

Home David Cameron, the Prime Minister, said that, for the ‘coalition government with a full tank of gas, it’s full steam ahead’. He announced a ‘mid-term review’, but an audit… Read more

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5 January 2013

Home On the eve of a speech by David Cameron, the Prime Minister, on the EU, Andrew Duff MEP, the leader of the Union of European Federalists, suggested that Britain… Read more

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29 December 2012

Home Banks should erect a protective ring-fence round their high-street operations, the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards recommended, and moreover it should be ‘electrified’. The metaphor meant that regulators should… Read more

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15 December 2012

January Britain’s public debt rose above £1,000 billion for the first time. Fred Goodwin, the former chief executive of the Royal Bank of Scotland, was stripped of his knighthood. The… Read more

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8 December 2012

Home In his Autumn Statement, held nearer the winter solstice, George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, confronted the need to extend austerity measures for reducing the deficit to 2018.… Read more

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1 December 2012

Home Rotherham Borough Council took away three children from foster parents because they belonged to the UK Independence Party. ‘If the party mantra is, for example, ending the active promotion… Read more

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24 November 2012

Home The General Synod of the Church of England voted against the ordination of women bishops. The measure required a two thirds majority in each house of the Synod, but… Read more

‘No, I don’t want a coffee — I was wondering if you could do my tax return.’

17 November 2012

Home Abu Qatada, detained in Britain for seven years although not charged here, but wanted on terrorist charges in Jordan, could not be deported, the Special Immigration Appeals Commission ruled,… Read more

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10 November 2012

Home David Cameron, the Prime Minister, flew to the Gulf to sell Typhoon jets to Dubai and Saudi Arabia. On the border of Jordan with Syria he said he shared… Read more