Portrait of the weekrss


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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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

Portrait of the week

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


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


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


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


3 November 2012

Home Hitachi bought Horizon Nuclear Power for £700 million, giving it rights to build nuclear power stations in Anglesey and Gloucestershire. John Hayes, the energy minister, said that Britain was… Read more


27 October 2012

Home Andrew Mitchell, the Conservative chief whip, resigned, still denying that he referred to police as ‘plebs’ for refusing to allow him to cycle through the main gate to Downing… Read more


20 October 2012

Home Theresa May, the Home Secretary, blocked the extradition of Gary McKinnon to the United States, where he is suspected of having hacked into government computers. She told the Commons… Read more


13 October 2012

Home ‘Unless we take difficult, painful decisions,’ David Cameron, the Prime Minister, told the Conservative party conference, ‘Britain may not be in the future what it has been in the… Read more

A smash hit! An overnight chart-buster! The Ed Miliband!

6 October 2012

Home In a well-received 65-minute speech without notes to the party conference, Ed Miliband, the Labour leader, presented himself as a human being and concluded: ‘This is who I am.… Read more