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Carillion liquidation latest: Theresa May prepares to face Cabinet after emergency talks over collapse of building giant

Added: 16.01.2018 2:30 | 0 views | 0 comments

Theresa May's Cabinet will today meet as backlash from the collapse of building and public services giant Carillion shakes parliament.

From: www.standard.co.uk

Theresa May warned be 'slow and careful' over faith school admissions changes

Added: 15.01.2018 7:21 | 0 views | 0 comments

Senior Tory MPs today warned Theresa May to go "slow and careful" before allowing faith schools to take fewer pupils from other religions.

From: www.standard.co.uk

US ambassador to London defends embassy move after Donald Trump criticism

Added: 14.01.2018 11:02 | 0 views | 0 comments


America’s ambassador to Britain has publicly defended the country’s new London embassy after Donald Trump blamed its cost for controversially cancelling a visit. Woody Johnson said America’s new embassy did not cost US taxpayers "a cent" and insisted the move was needed because of the terrorist threat after 9/11.  Mr Trump had earlier tweeted he would not visit London next month as planned because the original embassy was sold for “peanuts” and it was a “bad deal”.  However Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary, blamed leading Labour figures for putting off Mr Trump with their criticism and placing the special relationship “at risk”.  The fallout came after Mr Trump once again postponed a “working visit” to Britain, which was originally pencilled in for January but had since slipped to February.  It further pushes back the time when Mr Trump is expected to visit the UK for the first time. He has already visited France, China, Japan, South Korea and the Middle East.  Woody Johnson, owner of the New York Jets and U.S. ambassador to the U.K Credit: Jason Alden/Bloomberg There are questions now about whether the US president will be invited to the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on May 19.  Mr Trump tweeted: Reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for “peanuts,” only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars. Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2018 The US embassy has moved from Grosvenor Square in the heart of Mayfair to Nine Elms near Battersea, south London. The decision was actually taken by George W Bush, not Mr Obama.  Mr Trump had been expected to do an event marking the opening of the new embassy in a visit pencilled in for February 26 and 27.  In a piece published in the Evening Standard, Mr Johnson, who was made US ambassador last year, pushes back on the president’s criticism.  “I agree with President Trump that Grosvenor Square, in the heart of London, was a perfect location for our embassy,” he said.  But he added: “Security concerns after September 11 meant we had to move to a location that could better protect American citizens and our British neighbours.” Mr Johnson went on to say the embassy was “bigger” and “better” than its predecessor and came at no cost to Americans.  “It is the most secure, hi-tech and environmentally friendly embassy that the United States has ever built,” he wrote.  “Purchased and built from the sale of our London properties, the new embassy did not cost the US taxpayer a cent. Yet is one of the most advanced embassies we have ever built.” Sadiq Khan, the London mayor who has clashed with Mr Trump, praised the announcement: "It appears that President Trump got the message from the many Londoners who love and admire America and Americans but find his policies and actions the polar opposite of our city's values of inclusion, diversity and tolerance. Donald Trump, the US president Credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File "His visit next month would without doubt have been met by mass peaceful protests. This just reinforces what a mistake it was for Theresa May to rush and extend an invitation of a state visit in the first place. "Let's hope that Donald Trump also revisits the pursuit of his divisive agenda." However Mr Johnson, the Foreign Secretary, hit back: “The US is the biggest single investor in the UK - yet Khan & [Jeremy] Corbyn seem determined to put this crucial relationship at risk. “We will not allow US-UK relations to be endangered by some puffed up pompous popinjay in City Hall.” Theresa May backed Mr Johnson, with a Downing Street source saying: “Boris expresses himself in his own inimitable way. We agree that any risk to the crucial US-UK relationship is not in our country’s best interests.” Nigel Farage said the prospect of mass protests may well have been a factor in Mr Trump’s decision to cancel his visit. He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “Maybe, just maybe, Sadiq Khan, Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party planning mass protests, maybe those optics he didn’t like the look of.” Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary Credit: Victoria Jones/PA Wire Mr Trump is still expected to make a formal state visit to Britain at some time during his first term after accepting an offer delivered by Mrs May last year.  It later emerged that the old US embassy was sold for £315m, well below £500m that experts claimed it should have cost – appearing to back up Mr Trump’s criticism.  The US embassy later issued a statement saying the decision was made in 2007 - appearing to contradict Mr Trump's claim that it was made by Mr Obama.  The statement noted that the total project cost around $1 billion, but added that “no tax payer dollars” were spent on the move. 

Labour accuses Theresa May of 'humiliating' Queen with Donald Trump state visit

Added: 14.01.2018 7:10 | 0 views | 0 comments

Labour has accused Theresa May of "humiliating" the Queen by inviting Donald Trump on a state visit, branding the President a "danger".

From: www.standard.co.uk

Grosvenor Square vs Nine Elms: The $1bn US embassy saga behind Donald Trump’s ‘bad deal’ outburst 

Added: 14.01.2018 5:18 | 0 views | 0 comments


Donald Trump abruptly pulled the plug on his mooted visit to the UK by firing a broadside at the “bad deal” the US had got over its new $1 billion embassy. The property mogul lambasted his predecessor Barack Obama for having “sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for ‘peanuts’” - referencing the outgoing embassy in Mayfair's Grosvenor Square. The president had been scheduled to officially open the imposing new Nine Elms embassy on the south bank of the Thames as the start of a working visit to the UK later this year. But the new embassy has become embroiled in the contentious diplomatic saga over Mr Trump’s proposed visit to the UK. Theresa May initially offered the president the prospect of a full state visit, including an audience with the Queen, during her trip to Washington as the first foreign leader to visit the new administration in January. Donald Trump and Theresa May during the Prime Minister's visit to the White House in January 2017 Credit: PA/Stefan Rousseau The offer provoked a backlash in Parliament, with speaker John Bercow threatening to block Mr Trump from addressing the Commons, and also raised the spectre of mass protests greeting the president. In October the proposed state visit was quietly downgraded to a working visit due to take place after Mr Trump had cut the ribbon on the new embassy. Tweeting Friday, the president used the new embassy's hefty price tag as a pretext to nix a potentially bruising visit while pinning the blame onto the Obama administration.  Reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for “peanuts,” only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars. Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2018 However genesis of the decision to move the London embassy goes back to 9/11, the Bush Administration's fears it could become a terror target and the growing size of the US's UK diplomatic staff.   Grosvenor Square America has a longstanding and historic association with Grosvenor Square. The second US president, John Adams, lived on the square while he was the nascent republic’s ambassador to the UK between 1785 and 1788. The US moved its embassy to 1 Grosvenor Square in 1938 and the area became known as “little America” during the war as it also hosted the headquarters of General Eisenhower. The current US Embassy in Grosvenor Square Credit: Heathcliff O'Malley It was after the war that US efforts to buy the freehold for a building on the square for their embassy (the country owns almost all of its overseas diplomatic buildings outright) was allegedly stymied by the Duke of Westminster. The Duke reportedly refused the sell the freehold unless the US government restored the lands his family lost in the American Revolution, which would have equated to most of New York and Maine. In 1960 the embassy moved into is current residence at 24 Grosvenor Road, which was designed by the Finnish-American neo-futuristic architect Eero Saarinen. Topped with an imposing gold eagle on its facade, the conspicuous embassy became a focal point for violent anti-Vietnam demonstrations in the 1960s. The Navy Annex  of the U.S Embassy London's Grosvenor Square Credit: Heathcliff O'Malley The death knell for the site came after 9/11 when security concerns over its vulnerability to a potential terror attack and the building’s inability to accommodate the swelling ranks of US diplomatic staff, the numbers of which had quadrupled since 1960. In the wake of the Twin Towers attack the Grosvenor Square building received an £8 million security upgrade including erecting six-foot blast walls, the installation of raised concrete flower bed and movable bollards. The decision was made by the Bush Administration that the embassy would ultimately have to relocate to ensure its security. In 2008 the then US ambassador, Robert Tuttle, said: “We looked at all our options, including renovation of our current building. US embassy new location “In the end, we realised that the goal of a modern, secure and environmentally sustainable embassy could best be met by constructing a new facility.” In 2009 24 Grosvenor Square was sold for an undisclosed fee to the property arm of the Qatari royal family, Qatari Diar, which is planning to turn it into a luxury hotel . At the time the property was valued at £500,000 ($680,000) but its designation as a Grade II listed building would have lowered the price. Other US government properties in the UK were then sold to fund the cost of the $1 billion (£730 million) of the Nine Elms development. Nine Elms The new embassy is thought to be the most expensive in the world, although the current US Ambassador, Woody Johnson, who owns the NFL’s New York Jets, has described its price tag as a “bargain” compared to the $1.6 billion stadium built for his team in New Jersey. The Nine Elms embassy is surrounded by a concrete moat Credit: Anadolu Agency The new embassy sits at the heart of the Nine Elms development, the largest regeneration project in Europe which is transforming old industrial land on the south bank of the Thames into 25,000 luxury homes. The site was chosen as it had enough space to contain all the security measures necessary, including being at least 100ft from all buildings.   The new embassy has a modern minimalist interior  Credit: PA/Stefan Rousseau The building is surrounded by an 8ft-deep, crescent-shaped pond as well as bollards and has been constructed with blast-proof glass. The new embassy has been furnished with a clean, modern interior, with glass stairs and stone walls. It also has a series of internal gardens that reflect different areas of the United States. The embassy's Canyonlands Garden, which represents the Grand Canyon and the south west desert landscapes  Credit: PA/Stefan Rousseau One themed as the canyon lands of Arizona is filled with cacti, while the Pacific forest has steel girders cut to resemble redwood trees. The building has also been designed to be almost completely energy self-sufficient, eschewing the usual helipad for solar panels on its roof.

Pro-Trump supporters crash Fabian conference in protest of Sadiq Khan

Added: 14.01.2018 2:18 | 0 views | 0 comments


Pro-Trump supporters disrupted a conference being held in London where Mayor, Sadiq Khan was set to make a speech.  The Fabian society, a socialist organisation, had their conference interrupted after demonstrators, from a group called White Pendragons, shouted their support for the US President.  The protest was apparently against comments made by the Mayor of London about Mr Trump's plans to cancel his trip to the UK.  On Friday, Mr Khan said: "It appears that President Trump got the message from the many Londoners who love and admire America and Americans but find his policies and actions the polar opposite of our city’s values of inclusion, diversity and tolerance. “His visit next month would without doubt have been met by mass peaceful protests. Demonstrators arrived at the Fabian conference to interrupt a speech by the Mayor of London Credit:  SIMON DAWSON/ REUTERS “This just reinforces what a mistake it was for Theresa May to rush and extend an invitation of a state visit in the first place. “Let’s hope that Donald Trump also revisits the pursuit of his divisive agenda.” The demonstrators were removed from the conference to the sound of cheers Credit:  SIMON DAWSON/REUTERS The group entered the conference moments before Mr Khan was due to make his keynote speech.  Protestors were escorted out by police Credit:  SIMON DAWSON/ REUTERS The Mayor appeared to read a newspaper as the group were led out of the hall to cheers from attendees of the Fabian Society. Mr Khan announced: "It is a pleasure to be [joined] by what some would call very stable geniuses."

How green are the Tories?

Added: 13.01.2018 19:36 | 0 views | 0 comments

Theresa May's environment policy pledge is the latest step in the party's journey on the issue.

From: www.bbc.co.uk

Theresa May forced to reassure Londoners over school funding concerns during walkabout in Sutton

Added: 13.01.2018 10:57 | 1 views | 0 comments

Theresa May was forced to reassure Londoner about educational funding after he told her his daughter, a teacher, had to use her own money to pay for school supplies.

From: www.standard.co.uk

Dick LeBeau vs. Bill Belichick: Legends talk friendship, lessons, chess match

Added: 13.01.2018 8:42 | 0 views | 0 comments

There may not be another game this year with as much coaching wisdom on opposite sidelines as when Bill Belichick squares off against Dick LeBeau.

From: www.espn.com

As persecuted gays flee, UK gives Uganda £100m

Added: 13.01.2018 2:36 | 0 views | 0 comments

Last year £96.3million of British money was spent in the country. Penny Mordaunt, the International Development Secretary and Prime Minister Theresa May are under growing pressure to address the scandal of Britain's bloated foreign aid commitments totalling £13.4billion.

From: feedproxy.google.com

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