Latest News Headlines UK

The old British tactic of divide and rule in Europe will not work for Brexit negotiations

As usual, Yes Minister put it best. For 500 years Britain had pursued a single policy towards its Continental neighbours, Sir Humphrey noted to his baffled minister in an episode from 1980. The aim? “To create a disunited Europe.” Britain’s fondness for playing off one European ...

yesterday 12:17 open_in_new
Return of the pea-souper

Just five days into the new year, a street in Lambeth exceeded its annual legal limit for toxic air. Why is London’s pollution so bad? Alex Rankine reports.

Many areas of London routinely exceed EU pollution limits. Last month a street in Lambeth broke its annual legal limit for toxic ...

yesterday 11:15 open_in_new
Let's talk about Daniel Hannan, Donald Trump and Adolf Hitler

One of the enduring mysteries about Daniel Hannan is why he deletes so many of his tweets. The other is why, when he deletes so many, he leaves so many other absolutely clunkingly braindead observations on the internet for all to see. It's like he isn't ashamed of them. It's like he doesn't ...

yesterday 10:03 open_in_new
The unbearable whiteness of Washington DC

You need to be new to a place to be struck by the obvious. The first thing I noticed about Washington, DC, wandering around the city as a wide-eyed neophyte last autumn, was its astonishing, almost blinding whiteness. The White House really is white, from its balustrades to its basement – at ...

yesterday 08:57 open_in_new
Place your bets on Europe’s turmoil

Europe’s election season is about to kick off, and investors are feeling nervous. The Netherlands goes to the polls on 15 March, with the Freedom Party led by Geert Wilders likely to make big gains on a platform of leaving the EU and the euro. A month later, France will vote in its two-round ...

2017-02-25 19:37 open_in_new
How to choose the best active funds for your Isa

Yesterday I told you all about the merits of passive investing.

Passive funds – funds that track the market – are predictable and cheap. Active funds – where a fund manager tries to beat the market – usually fail in their task, and they are expensive.

So why would you ever ...

2017-02-25 13:01 open_in_new
The Handmaid's Tale has already come true - just not for white western women

When anti-choice Republican Justin Humphrey referred to pregnant women as “hosts”, I found myself wondering, not for the first time, whether everything had got “a bit Handmaid’s Tale.”

I’m not alone in having had this thought. Since Donald Trump won the US election, sales ...

2017-02-25 11:49 open_in_new
Martin Schulz: could this man bring an end to the reign of Angela Merkel?

At first sight, Martin Schulz looks like an unlikely political saviour. Thin of hair and thick of waist, the 61-year-old was a member of the European Parliament for 23 years and its president for five. In an anti-establishment age, it was predicted that Schulz would struggle when he became the ...

2017-02-25 10:43 open_in_new
To the Commonwealth, "Global Britain" sounds like nostalgia for something else

Earlier this month, Boris Johnson became the first British foreign secretary to visit the Gambia since independence. His visit came a few days before the inauguration of the Gambia's new President, Adama Barrow, who has signalled his intention to re-join the Commonwealth - an institution that ...

2017-02-25 02:59 open_in_new
Air pollution: 5 steps to vanquishing an invisible killer

110, 150, 520... These chilling statistics are the number of deaths attributable to particulate air pollution for the cities of Southampton, Nottingham and Birmingham in 2010 respectively. Or how about 40,000 - that is the total number of UK deaths per year that are attributable the combined ...

2017-02-24 19:17 open_in_new
Is defeat in Stoke the beginning of the end for Paul Nuttall?

In a speech to Ukip’s spring conference in Bolton on February 17, the party’s once and probably future leader Nigel Farage laid down the gauntlet for his successor, Paul Nuttall. Stoke’s by-election was “fundamental” to the future of the party – and Nuttall had to win.   One ...

2017-02-24 19:17 open_in_new
Labour is condemned to watch helplessly as Theresa May consolidates power

Labour’s defeat to the Tories in the Copeland by-election in Cumbria, which the party had held for more than 80 years, is a humiliation for Jeremy Corbyn and his moribund party. This is the first time a governing party had gained a seat in a by-election since Margaret Thatcher’s ...

2017-02-24 17:05 open_in_new
As I get older, my taste in music is leaning towards jangly new psychedelic guitar bands

A message arrives via a social medium from a young, LA-based beat combo, called Cosmonauts. They are playing a gig in London on Friday and have invited me, and two guests, to see them. This is incredibly exciting. Well, it is for me.

“Who they?” you may well ask. I discovered this ...

2017-02-24 17:05 open_in_new
In praise of Keanu Reeves, the nicest of meatheads

The Rolling Stone journalist Chris Heath once asked Keanu Reeves a simple question: why do you act? The star of The Matrix, Speed, Point Break and My Own Private Idaho paused the conversation to consider the matter. And he paused it for a long time. “Forty-two seconds, he says nothing. Not a ...

2017-02-24 15:59 open_in_new
Why the Liberal Democrats by-election surge is not all it seems

By the now conventional post-Brexit logic, Stoke and Copeland ought to have been uniquely inhospitable for the Lib Dems. 

The party lost its deposit in both seats in 2015, and has no representation on either council. So too were the referendum odds stacked against it: in Stoke, the ...

2017-02-24 15:59 open_in_new
How Native American culture fought back against the colonisers

In the Great Court of the British Museum stand two enormous cedar totem poles, acquired in the early years of the 20th century from the north-west coast of North America. One was made by the Haida peoples and the other by the Nisga’a, two of the nations that make up the many-layered society ...

2017-02-24 14:53 open_in_new
Jeremy Corbyn's confidence shows he knows he's safe

A week after Tony Blair’s pro-Remain cry, Jeremy Corbyn rose to deliver a speech on “the road to Brexit”.  But it is the road to ruin that Labour MPs believe he is leading them along. The party last night became the first opposition to lose a by-election to the government since 1982. ...

2017-02-24 14:53 open_in_new
Let's turn RBS into a bank for the public interest

The Royal Bank of Scotland has now been losing money for nine consecutive years. Today’s announcement of a further £7bn yearly loss at the publicly-owned bank is just the latest evidence that RBS is essentially unsellable. The difference this time is that the Government seems finally to ...

2017-02-24 14:53 open_in_new
Copeland must be Labour's final warning

No one objective could argue that last night’s by-election results were good for Labour.

Whilst it was undoubtedly pleasing to see serial fibber Paul Nuttall and his Trumpian politics put in their place in Stoke, this was never a seat where the result should have been in ...

2017-02-24 14:53 open_in_new
What you can learn from Nick Train’s nightmare with Pearson

Nick Train is a highly respected fund manager in the City. A lot of you probably hold money in one of his investment trusts. He’s one of the few active managers that has beaten the market comfortably over a long period of time.

But he’s had a bit of a nightmare with one particular ...

2017-02-24 13:53 open_in_new
Why you should stuff your Isa with these cheap funds

Opening an Isa for your savings and investments makes a lot of sense.

It’ll shield your savings from tax, and even the most affluent savers will find there’s plenty of room to build up a decent nest egg over the long term.

But of course, opening an Isa is just the ...

2017-02-24 13:53 open_in_new