Mr Deputy Speaker I report today on an economy that continues to grow, continues to create more jobs than ever before and continues to confound those who seek to talk it down. An economy set on a path to a new relationship with our European neighbours and a new future outside the European Union. A future that will be full of change; full of new challenges and above all full of new opportunities. And in this Budget, we express our resolve to look forwards not backwards. To embrace that change, to meet those challenges head on and to seize those opportunities for Britain. The negotiations on our future relationship with the EU are in a critical phase. My Right Honourable Friend the Prime Minister has been clear that we seek a deep and special partnership, based on free and frictionless trade in goods and services, close collaboration on security and strong mutual respect and friendship. And as Chancellor, I am clear that one of the biggest boosts we can provide to businesses and … [Read more...] about Budget 2017 speech in full: Text and video of Philip Hammond’s fiscal announcements on tax, the NHS and housing as it happened
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SHE was thrust into the limelight after capturing Prince Harry’s heart.But now it seems Meghan Markle is tipped for world domination as she’s hailed as one of the world’s next “future leaders”.The 35-year-old Suits actress appears in the April issue of Vanity Fair alongside fellow ‘global leaders’ who attended the One Young World Summit in Ottawa in October 2016.In her first official photoshoot since the announcement of her royal romance, Meghan appears alongside Emma Watson, Justin Trudeau and Cher, all of whom spoke at last year's event.Meghan poses alongside former President of Ireland Mary Robinson, poet Fatima Bhutto, and women's rights activist Loujain al-Hathloul.The four women stand against the dramatic backdrop of Ottawa – but Meghan is set apart from the other three and stands nearer the water’s edge.Meghan looks chic but smart in a high-necked sleeveless dress that is cut just above her knee and a pair of nude pointed … [Read more...] about Meghan Markle takes centre stage as she joins Justin Trudeau and Emma Watson in Vanity Fair shoot celebrating ‘future leaders’
SOPHIE Raworth is a BBC reporter who has worked with the BBC for the past 25 years.But what we we know about the news presenter and what did she witness in the Parsons Green terror attack?Sophie Raworth is a 48-year-old television presenter who is best known for her work on BBC News and Crimewatch.She has a degree in French and German from Manchester University.The languages graduate joined the BBC as a news reporter for Greater Manchester radio in 1992, and has remained with the broadcasting corporation ever since.Sophie has become one of the BBC's most well-known and loved faces.The star has worked on a string of news shows, including BBC Breakfast, News at Six, Crimewatch Roadshow and Chelsea Flower Show.Sophie has also been a presenter on Watchdog since 2015, and has anchored the BBC News at One for the past eleven years.She continues to present the show on Tuesday, Wednesdays and Fridays.The presenter has also had a brush with Hollywood, cameoing as … [Read more...] about Who is Sophie Raworth? BBC News journalist and Crimewatch host who witnessed Parsons Green terror attack
THE devastating fire which ripped through the Grenfell Tower block in West London left hundreds of people homeless and at least 80 people dead.Investigations and recovery operations are still ongoing following the blaze which broke out in the early hours of June 14. Here's what we know...Police have revealed at least 80 people are now feared dead, but the final death toll will not be known this year.Cops fear the number killed in the tragedy could rise and have renewed pleas for any tenants illegally subletting their flats to come forward – promising they will not face action.The first victims were named as Syrian refugee Mohammed Al Haj Ali, 23, and artist Khadija Saye, 24.Forty people have been confirmed dead. Scotland Yard named 18 of the dead and withheld the identities of 22 more at the requests of their families.Aside from those named by cops, 15 people were identified when inquests were opened and adjourned at Westminster Coroner's Court.A public … [Read more...] about Grenfell Tower fire death toll – how many victims died and what happened to the survivors?
THE first clue that you’ve arrived in Centralia is the graffiti that covers every road sign.If the wind is blowing in the right direction, there’s a distinct smell of burning coal.Plumes of smoke spout amid the weeds and what remains of buckled old roads and giant sinkholes open up without warning.Centralia is America’s most famous ghost town and it’s been on fire for 55 years with all but six of the area’s 1,400 residents fleeing.The blaze began in the town’s rubbish tip, circled a cemetery, then quickly spread below the surface, making its way into the coal seams deep below the old mining town.Experts estimate there is enough coal underground for the fire to keep burning for another 250 years.Ironically, one of the few buildings left in Centralia is the fire station. But it is only manned by volunteers in emergencies.When the Sun Online visited, the lights were on but nobody was there.The adjoining police station was abandoned long ago – the … [Read more...] about Inside Centralia, the American ghost town which has been on fire for 55 YEARS and is now covered in burning sinkholes and mobbed by gun-toting gangs
A BANKER who enjoyed sex parties and luxury holidays as kickbacks for his role in a £1billion fraud was facing a lengthy jail term yesterday — along with five associates.Senior HBOS worker Lynden Scourfield, 54, forced struggling clients to use a pal’s firm.In return he was treated to hookers and X-rated bashes with girls including porn star Suzie Best.Suzie, 31, romped with fellow escorts at a string of X-rated bashes for the fraudsters which involved wads of cash and stashes of Viagra.Scourfield, 54, who she likened to diminutive Hollywood star Danny DeVito, was last night facing a lengthy jail term along with five associates for a £1billion loan scam.He had targeted 200 failing businesses — and forced them to use a consultancy company run by his pal David Mills, 60.High-risk loans of £245million were agreed which would never be repaid.In return Mills rewarded Scourfield and his workmates with luxury holidays — and the services of ¬several … [Read more...] about Porn star performed at sex parties for disgraced HBOS worker and his pals while firms they fleeced in £1billion fraud were going bust
AN office described as a “sexual harassment playground” and likened to the Wolf of Wall Street has been hit with an explosive lawsuit by three former female employees.Nicole Orlando, Evelyn Grondski and Donna Simone claim they were fired by New Jersey debt relief company American Funding Group for refusing to play along with the x-rated antics in the “morally repulsive” work environment.Seven bosses at the firm ran their office like a frat house on steroids, rewarding female workers who played along with bonuses, gifts and access to the corporate credit card, according to the suit filed Thursday.The papers said the workplace was “so sexually aggressive, morally repulsive, and unlawfully hostile that it is rivalled only by the businesses portrayed in the films Boiler Room and The Wolf of Wall Street.”In one example of the alleged debauchery, owner Mark Mancino and manager Michael Hamill were said to regularly summon a female sales representative by … [Read more...] about Inside debauched firm being sued for ‘hiring dwarf strippers and motorboating employee’s breasts’
THE Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, is gearing up to present his first Autumn Statement to Parliament today, November 23.The annual update will reveal the government's plans for the economy, including how tax will be used and plans for spending.This year's Statement is more important than most as it will reveal the state of the UK economy after Britain voted for Brexit.So what has been predicted so far and what should we expect?This year's event kicks off on Wednesday 23 November. It usually starts at 12:30pm after Prime Minister's Questions.The previous Chancellor, George Osborne, spoke for less than an hour but it could go on for much longer as there is no time limit.It's a smaller version of the Budget and is a speech from the Chancellor of Exchequer, who tells Parliament what is happening with the economy and what will be done to manage it over the next few months.We can expect Mr Hammond to deliver the Office for Budget Responsibility's annual update on the … [Read more...] about What time is the Autumn Statement 2016? Date, predictions and what to expect from Philip Hammond’s announcement
DRAGON’S Den is back, as budding entrepreneurs attempt to win investment from the business moguls.Fans of the show were shocked to learn that Sarah Willingham and Nick Jenkins were axed for “failing to connect with the audience”. We’ve got the lowdown on who replaced them…Tej Lalvani is the CEO of Vitabiotics – the largest vitamin company in the UK by value sales with a current group turnover of over £300 million a year.Working with the company for 20 years, he has worked his way through the company including as a forklift driver before getting the CEO position.He inherited the company from his father, Kartar Lalvani – who founded Vitabiotics in 1971 and still remains as chairman.Tej replaced Steve Parish on the show for the newest series.Speaking of his new role, he said: “I’m very excited to be joining the Dragons’ Den line-up. I’m a shrewd investor and I’m looking forward to finding hard … [Read more...] about Who are new Dragons’ Den investors Jenny Campbell and Tej Lalvani and who have they replaced on the show?
AstraZeneca's board said Friday it had rejected an improved $106-billion (76.5-billion-euro) takeover offer from US drugmaker Pfizer, saying the bid announced just hours earlier undervalued the firm. Pfizer had raised its takeover bid earlier on Friday, after seeing its first proposal rejected . The US pharmaceutical company, best known for the production of Viagra , had said it was now offering 50 pounds per share, an increase of 7 percent over its first bid. A merger of heavyweights A successful merger would have marked the largest acquisition in the pharmaceutical sector in many years. Pfizer and AstraZeneca would have had a combined workforce of 120,000. In a letter to British Prime Minister David Cameron, Pfizer executives had promised to keep the country's corporate and tax residence in the UK, adding the "golden triangle of Oxford, Cambridge and London would represent a vital component" of the deal. The US company indicated it would build AstraZeneca's planned research … [Read more...] about AstraZeneca rejects Pfizer’s sweetened bid