The Spectator

Portrait of the week | 27 August 2011


David Cameron, the Prime Minister, stood outside 10 Downing Street and commented on events in Libya. ‘This has not been our revolution,’ he said, ‘but we can be proud that we have played our part.’ He had broken off his holiday in Cornwall for a meeting of the National Security Council. He had only just resumed his holiday after having previously flown home from Tuscany for the riots in England. Of the 1,400 people to have appeared in court in connection with the riots, 157 were convicted, 327 bailed and almost 800 remanded in custody. Birmingham police released footage of some of the 11 shots fired at them during the riots. ‘The big cause’ of the riots, according to Tony Blair, the former Prime Minister, in an article in the Observer, was ‘the group of alienated, disaffected youth who are outside the social mainstream and who live in a culture at odds with any canons of proper behaviour.’ England beat India by an innings and eight runs at the Oval, winning the Test series 4-0 and securing ICC rankings as first in the world.


The FTSE rallied by more than 1 percentage point on news from Libya, the 12th biggest oil-producing country. More than 10 per cent of town and city-centre shops were vacant at the end of May, according to the British Retail Consortium. Greg Clark, the planning minister, conducted a public argument with the National Trust and the Campaign to Protect Rural England about proposed changes to the planning system. The government hatched a scheme whereby councils would be able to charge utility companies money if they dug up roads during peak hours.


The RAF is to receive 14 new Chinook helicopters from 2013 in a £1 billion contract with the American company Boeing, bringing its total force of Chinooks to 60.

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