The Spectator

Portrait of the week | 12 November 2011


Theresa May, the Home Secretary, blamed Brodie Clark, the head of the UK Border and Immigration Agency’s ‘border force’, for ‘relaxation of border controls without ministerial sanction’. Mr Clark left the agency, declaring that what Mrs May had said in parliament was wrong. An online petition urging ministers to reduce immigration gained more than 100,000 signatures, making it eligible for a Commons debate. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are to live in the apartment at Kensington palace once occupied by Princess Margaret. A road-cleaning crew found a pot of gold jewellery in a drain in Slough.


The News of the World was found to have hired private investigators last year to follow lawyers representing people whose telephones it had hacked, and a string of celebrities. James Murdoch, who was executive chairman of News International at the time, faced further questioning from the Commons Culture, Media and Sport select committee. Salman Butt, the former Pakistan cricket captain, was jailed for 30 months for conspiracy to bowl no-balls at a test match last year at Lord’s; Mohammad Asif was sentenced to a year in jail, Mohammad Amir to six months and Mazhar Majeed, the cricket agent, to 32 months. Government departments were found to have spent £743,100 on tickets for the Olympic Games next year. Network Rail said that thefts of cables had cost it £43 million in the past two years.


Seven were killed in a multiple crash and vehicle fire on the M5 near Taunton, Somerset; smoke from a firework display at Taunton Rugby Club was said to have been a factor. A heavy lorry fell off a bridge on to the M56 motorway near Warrington in Cheshire, killing the driver. Lord Gould — Philip Gould, the architect of New Labour — died, aged 61.

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