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26 апреля, 10:40

Cash-strapped schools could switch energy suppliers, says minister

Nick Gibb said in letter to Labour MP that schools facing budget shortfalls could also buy cheaper photocopiersLabour MPs have criticised a Department for Education letter that suggests schools could make up their budget shortfalls by purchasing cheaper photocopiers or switching energy suppliers.In a letter to the Labour MP John Cryer who wrote to raise concerns about the funding shortfall for schools in his constituency, the schools minister Nick Gibb said the government recognised schools “are facing increasing cost pressures” and was providing advice to schools about how to save money. Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 10:27

United Airlines in new PR disaster after giant rabbit dies on UK flight

Airline launches investigation after rabbit set to be the world’s biggest found dead after travelling from London to Chicago United Airlines is facing another PR disaster after a potentially record-breaking giant rabbit perished onboard one of its transatlantic flights.The three-foot (90cm) continental giant rabbit named Simon, which was 10 months old, died while travelling from London Heathrow to O’Hare airport in Chicago, the Sun reported. Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 10:08

Will London survive as a financial centre after Brexit?

EU rivals including Paris and Frankfurt are circling in the hope they can claw back business from the UKBrexit has set a hungry cat among the financial pigeons of the City of London. No one yet knows what kind of access to the European Union’s single financial market UK-based firms will have, and Theresa May’s call for a general election to be held on 8 June has further clouded the picture, at least in the short term. But there is a nagging assumption that things cannot remain the same, and that there will be a price to be paid for leaving the EU.So UK-based financial services firms, especially those that have chosen London as their European headquarters precisely in order to secure access to the whole EU market from one location, are reviewing their options. Indeed, regulators are obliging them to do so, by asking how they will maintain continuity of service to their clients in the event of a “hard” Brexit. (May’s government prefers to talk of a “clean” Brexit, but that is semantics.) Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 10:00

App analyses texts to see if people like you. So I tried it on my husband

Crushh claims it can objectively scan for signs of affection in texts from a friend, family member or first date. But does it work? Husband: Morning. How’s my Livvy? Missed you last night. How are the girls?Me: Having a lovely time. Was Beez [our dog] OK? Did he sleep? Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 09:52

Don't buy the lie. To oppose the government is not sabotage – video

Paul Mason says the Daily Mail headline, calling those who oppose the government ‘saboteurs’, is sinister. He argues that this tactic is commonplace in dictatorships and autocracies, but to see it in a democracy is alarming. He says meaningful opposition to the Tories is necessary for the country and for democracy Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 09:30

Into the Water by Paula Hawkins review – how to follow Girl on the Train?

Her debut thriller was a phenomenon, but here an embarrassment of narrators and the clunky withholding of information is death to suspenseMore accidents happen in the home than anywhere else, a fact to lend some much-needed plausibility to the overworked genre of domestic suspense, or grip-lit as it’s sometimes known. About 60 debut novels cross my desk every year (I chair the New Blood panel at the Theakston Old Peculier crime writing festival), and for the last three or four years, the proportion of this subgenre has been rising.Not a problem in itself: if the books were original, well written or thought-provoking, nobody would be happier than I. But sadly that’s not generally been the case. There have been notable exceptions, of course: clever, suspenseful reads such as Renée Knight’s Disclaimer or Ben McPherson’s A Line of Blood. Then there are the mega-sellers such as Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl, SJ Watson’s Before I Go to Sleep and Paula Hawkins’s The Girl on the Train, which all gave us interesting twists on the idea of the unreliable narrator. Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 09:00

Sands of time: Saharan Africa in the 1930s – in pictures

Czech photographer Ludwig Jindra was sent on a world tour by his government – and opened up understanding about Tuareg culture and beyond Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 09:00

NatWest closed my child’s savings account without telling me

My daughter’s Young Savers account with more than £3,000 in it just disappearedI recently noticed that my daughter’s Young Savers account, which was attached to my NatWest accounts, had disappeared from my online banking page. On calling the bank, I was told the account didn’t exist. Luckily, I managed to dig out an old statement, at which point NatWest agreed that it had existed but had been closed due to inactivity. The £3,161.66 that was in it had been withheld by the bank. I received no notification of this and the bank was unable to provide even basic information as to why the account was closed, or why the funds were not repaid. If I’d not been on the ball, I suspect the lost funds would have simply gone unnoticed! Is the Royal Bank of Scotland so desperate that it needs to take money from a seven-year-old? PL, Hounslow, Middlesex Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 09:00

Facebook urged to step up fake news fight before UK election

Select committee chairman Damian Collins says site does not act quickly enough and fake news could pose threat to ‘the integrity of democracy’Facebook must improve its response to fake news before the UK general election and start blocking or issuing warnings about material that contains falsehoods, the chairman of the Commons culture, media and sport select committee has said.Damian Collins said fake news could pose a threat to “the integrity of democracy” because large numbers of voters who relied on Facebook for their news could be misled. Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 09:00

From animal-print to denim: why hotels are upping their bathrobe game

A comfy bed and a travel kettle is no longer enough – high-end hotels are investing in luxurious, Instagram-friendly bathrobes in an effort to appeal to the selfie generationNext time you want your eyes to hurt, try searching the hashtag #Instagrammable on Twitter. It’s a good indication of how a growing need to stand out has led to social-media feeds becoming a mishmash of tasteful angles and colours so bright they make Super Mario Kart’s Rainbow Road level look understated. In order for hotels to be #Instagrammable, it isn’t enough to provide a comfy bed, a travel kettle and some non-UHT milk. Every detail must be both perfect and “aspirational”, right down to the bathrobes.Many hotels are reportedly trying to capture a younger market by investing in new bathrobe designs. The Kimpton chain of boutique hotels has selfie-friendly animal-print dressing gowns in its rooms. Other, less conventional, designs include the denim bathrobes of New York’s Hotel Americano (though how absorbent is denim?) and a special pair of Diane von Furstenberg robes at Claridge’s, but only if you stay in the exclusive Grand Piano suite. Continue reading...

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26 апреля, 09:00

Airport duty-free prices not always cheapest, says Which?

Consumer group finds products such as gin, Toblerone and Lego cheaper in supermarkets or onlineBargain airport prices for favourites such as gin and Toblerone are now likely to be cheaper at the supermarket, Which? has found.A 360g bar of Toblerone cost £4 at Bristol World Duty Free but £3 at Asda, while a 70cl bottle of Tanqueray gin cost £18 at Heathrow Terminal 2 and £15 at Morrisons, the consumer group found. Continue reading...