The Birmingham Post (England)

The Birmingham Post is the daily newspaper of Birmingham, England. The Birmingham Post covers local and national news, sports, business, and weather.

Articles from August 5, 2003

Alstom Shares Are Suspended
Byline: John Cranage Dealings in the shares of Alstom, the struggling French heavy engineering group, were suspended in Paris, London and New York yesterday pending an announcement of a refinancing deal. There was speculation that Alstom, which...
ATHLETICS: Edwards to Make Up for Lost Time
Byline: David Martin World triple jump champion Jonathan Edwards believes he is still on schedule to perform well at the World Championships in Paris later this month, despite making a late start to his season. Edwards goes up against his chief...
BADMINTON: Chinese Army Marches On
Byline: Dave Thompson Denmark's Camilla Martin, in the autumn of her badminton years, is gloomy about the future of the sport, predicting Chinese dominance in the women's singles for up to a decade. Martin, aged 29, is retiring after next year's...
BA Gives over Half Flights to Rival Duo
British Airways has axed almost half its flights out of Birmingham. Independent rival Duo Airways is taking over services that have been operated under franchise from BA for ten years. Duo -the result of a management buy-out of Maersk Air earlier...
Blow for Police as 50,000-Volt Stun Gun Fails to Work
The controversial Taser stun gun was fired for the first time by police in Britain but did not work. Tasers, which deliver a 50,000-volt electric shock, have been on trial in five police forces across England and Wales since April as a so-called...
Bold Words: Into Light Linking Up: New Ways of Thinking about Hospitality
If your impression of the usual railway hotel and pub is of a grotty place with a slightly dubious clientele, prepare yourself for a shock. Because The Forest Hotel in Dorridge is the exact opposite. Gone are the old time drinkers and old-fashioned...
BOXING: Champion Lewis Weighing Up Future
Lennox Lewis' boxing future remains uncertain after Vitali Klitschko's promoter cast doubt on whether a rematch between the pair would take place this year. WBC heavyweight champion Lewis stopped the Ukrainian in the sixth round of their Los Angeles...
Bullring Counts Hours to Opening
Byline: Emma Pinch The countdown to the opening of the new Bullring started yesterday -with 2,800 staff working frantically round the clock for its September opening. Project director Jon Emery said he experienced a 'butterfly feeling in his...
Bus Firm Hit Hard by 16pc Profit Fall
Byline: James O'Brien Engineering group Mayflower yesterday said increased competition and costs faced by its bus-making business had caused a 16 per cent drop in underlying profits. The High Wycombe group, which has a panel pressings operation...
Capital of Culture Campaign Created Publicity Worth Pounds 4m
Byline: Paul Dale Birmingham's campaign to become European Capital of Culture generated positive publicity worth pounds 4 million for the city, it was claimed last night. Even though the attempt failed, with Liverpool winning the coveted title,...
City View: Why GKN's Rise to Power Will Pale into Insignificance
Byline: Cheryl Cole Almost without anyone noticing, GKN recently became the world leader in making windscreens for aeroplanes through the pounds 42 million acquisition of Pilkington's aerospace business. It is likely the event will pale into...
Costume Conman Posed as Rock Star
Costume companies were only too happy to be of service when they received an SOS call from the heavy metal rock band Deep Purple who needed Santa suits for their Christmas tour. A man claiming to be their keyboard player Jon Lord said the group...
Cricket: England Hopefuls Told Crunch Time Arrives for Squad; PROTEAS HAPPY TO HELP NEW ROAD CAUSE/WELCOME BACKING FOR UNDER-FIRE MEN IN THE MIDDLE
Byline: Duncan Bech Coach Clive Woodward says there is no hiding place as his England squad prepares for Rugby World Cup warm-up matches against Wales and France. England, fancied to win the World Cup for the first time, play Wales in Cardiff...
CRICKET: Flintoff Finds Consistent Line
Byline: Myles Hodgson A ndrew Flintoff will link up with Lancashire again this week, with confidence growing among England's hierarchy that he is finally set to fulfil his vast potential and become a world-class all-rounder. Flintoff makes a...
Cricket: Hall Free for Worcester Semi-Final Encounter
Worcestershire director of cricket Tom Moody has thanked South Africa for allowing allrounder Andrew Hall to play in their Cheltenham & Gloucester Trophy semi-final with Lancashire. Hall has been given the green light to face the Red Rose county...
CRICKET: Hooper Show Lifts Lancashire
Lancashire moved six points clear in Division Two with a seventh consecutive National League win, with 9.4 overs and eight wickets spare over Derbyshire, before a crowd of 8,500 at Old Trafford last night. Carl Hooper took three for 30 in his nine...
CRICKET: Legend Gavaskar Heartens Threatened Umpires on Sledging Curse; COMMENT the Times, They Could Be A-Changing, Says Bill Jones of the Midland Counties Umpires and Scorers' Association
Byline: Bill Jones How wonderfully refreshing and encouraging to read the recent reported remarks of one of the world's greatest batsmen condemning the behaviour of some modern players, very few of whom would qualify to fasten his pads. Sunil...
Cricket: Vaughan's Voice Is Rising
Byline: Myles Hodgson New captain Michael Vaughan has been given an influential voice towards deciding what direction England take as they attempt to bounce back from their comprehensive second Test defeat by South Africa. The selectors will...
Culture: Pop Will Eat Itself as Music Show Fails; Culture Top of the Pops Is No Longer Relevant to Young Audiences and a Former Children's Television Presenter Has Been Appointed to Usher in Unprecedented Changes. Lisa Salmon Looks at the Show's 39-Year History and Asks Music Pundits Whether TOTP Has a Future
Byline: Lisa Salmon It is the longest-running music show on television, but Top of the Pops could be facing an overhaul as the BBC faces up to the slump in singles sales. Now former children's television presenter Andi Peters has been appointed...
Culture: Ross Set to Rock
The usual quiet of picturesque Ross on Wye will be shattered on Thursday evening when the town's International Festival kicks off. The opening night festivities include the UK premiere of dance, music and mime show L'Oratorio d'Aurelia, an 'Aquatic...
Ebookers Warning as Demand Tails Off
Byline: Cheryl Cole Ebookers yesterday warned that it was currently experiencing lower than expected demand for some of its long and mid-haul destinations, a knock-on effect from the Sars virus and the Iraq war. The tail-off in business, however,...
E-Business: Enterprising Graduates with Ideas
Three young entrepreneurs have set up their own business to deliver software solutions for what is set to be a technological revolution. Sadam Iqbal, Zahid Younis and Ansar Mehmood, all aged 22, have just graduated from Staffordshire University,...
E-Business: GMB Union Secures New Rights
Byline: Richard Warburton The GMB union has struck an historic recognition agreement with a Midland firm that is part of one of the UK's largest companies. The 200 members of Britain's 'general union' at Linpac Materials Handling (formerly Paxtons),...
E-Business: Growth in Defence Budgets Boosts Ultra Electronics
Byline: Richard Warburton British defence and aerospace electronics firm Ultra Electronics Holdings yesterday said growing global defence budgets boosted first-half profits and it expected its year results to be in line with estimates. Ultra...
E-Business: Household Buy Adds to HSBC Profits Rise
Byline: John Duckers Europe's biggest bank HSBC yesterday shrugged off the impact of the Iraq war and Sars and unveiled a 26 per cent rise in first half pre-tax profits thanks to a major US acquisition. Following its pounds 8.3 billion purchase...
E-Business: How to Get a Holiday from Your Business
Recent research shows that nearly one in three small business owners will not be taking a holiday this summer, confirming that they are among the hardest working people in the UK. But there are ways to combine taking a well-deserved break to a beach...
E-Business: Inchcape Launches Acquisition Offensive
Byline: James O'Brien British car dealer Inchcape reported higher first-half profits yesterday and announced an acquisition drive to take advantage of new European laws which are intended to relax the grip of car manufacturers on distributors. ...
E-Business: Investors Are Hoping Sun Will Rise Again
Byline: Duncan Martell The question has been asked before, but can Sun Microsystems rise again, a question that has new urgency for investors who have seen their stock tread water over the past year even as other big-name tech stocks roared higher....
E-Business: Laptops Now Even Used in Bedroom
Computer manufacturer Packard Bell has discovered that laptops are finding their way into users' bedrooms and even into their toilets. The company's poll of 1,000 users showed that 25 per cent admitted to using their laptop in bed. Some laptop...
E-Business: Logistics Group TPG Intensifies Restructure
Byline: James O'Brien Dutch mail and parcels firm TPG, the world's second-largest logistics group, delivered second-quarter results yesterday that were better than expected and stepped up efforts to restructure its logistics operations. The group,...
E-Business: Low Growth Forces Re-Think
Byline: David Armfield The UK economy expanded by just 0.3 per cent during the second quarter, according to preliminary estimates. That was an improvement from the 0.1 per cent rate recorded in the first quarter, yet below forecasts and also...
E-Business: Proactive Punch Is Pulling in Investors; Shareleague Focus Jonathan Lander, Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, Takes a Closer Look at One of the Success Stories in This Month's Shareleague Tables
Byline: Jonathan Lander Punch Taverns continues to perform strongly, retaining second place in the Shareleague Super table for a fourth consecutive month. Punch is a leading leased and tenanted pub company. It is a large business created from...
E-Business: Split Personality? That's Not My Computer, Surely
Byline: Giles Turnbull Computers can't have split personalities, can they? No, but there can be times when one computer thinks it's an entirely different computer. The good thing about computers getting twice as powerful (and half as expensive)...
E-Business: Why Losing Your E-Mail Is as Traumatic as Getting Divorced
Byline: Chris Tomlinson Iwas re-acquainting myself with an old friend, 'a recent survey', last week when my e-mail stopped working. Ironically the survey was titled 'Losing e-mail is worse than divorce' and I started to wonder if my mail server...
Failure to Deliver; Postal Workers Are Threatening Their First National Strike for Seven Years, Tens of Thousands More Jobs Are under Threat and Royal Mail Is Still Losing Pounds 750,000 a Day. Chief Feature Writer Paul Groves Asks What Went Wrong with Our Postal Services?
Byline: Paul Groves The mail train is derailed for good. One in ten letters still arrive late. Second deliveries are scrapped. Further restructuring could lead to another 300,000 job losses. Even the Lakeland post office that inspired the hugely...
Farm Gangmaster to Oppose Exploitation
Byline: Sarah Probert A Birmingham gangmaster has vowed to drive out bullying and exploitation which is blighting the reputation of an industry supplying labour to farms and packing firms. Zad Padda, who organises labour for companies across...
Fears over Religious Group Influence on Public Policy
Byline: Joe Churcher Moves to increase the influence of religious groups on Government policy will alienate almost a third of the population, secular campaigners warned yesterday. Evangelical Christians are among church leaders working with senior...
Footballer's Drink-Drive Lesson
Byline: Elizabeth Clark Convicted drink-driver Lee Hendrie yesterday threw his weight behind a new campaign to stop others making the same mistake he did. The Aston Villa player's endorsement for the 'Face the Consequences' campaign comes two...
Football: Gee Plans More Late Additions to Tamworth Squad
Byline: Colin Stoner Darron Gee expects to hear within 24 hours whether Ashley Woolliscroft and Matt Taylor will join Tamworth for their historic first Conference season. Gee confirmed four pieces of the Lambs jigsaw had slotted into place after...
Football: Hard Work Vital for Baggies' Hopes
Byline: Hyder Jawad James O'Connor has relished the severity of West Bromwich Albion's pre-season campaign --even though it has stopped him from looking to buy a house in the West Midlands. The midfield player, who was signed from Stoke City...
Football: Purse to Exploit Upson's Absence
Byline: James Nursey Birmingham City defender Darren Purse says he hopes to take advantage of Matthew Upson's misfortune to force his way back into Steve Bruce's starting XI this season. England international Upson is suspended for Blues' first...
Football: Wales Recall Delaney as Villa Aim to Iron out Flaws
Byline: Hyder Jawad Mark Delaney's return to full fitness was emphasised last night when the Aston Villa defender was called up to the Wales squad for the crucial European Championship qualifying match away to Serbia and Montenegro on August 20....
Football: Wolves' Move for Kameni Revived
Carlos Kameni has re-opened negotiations with a view to moving to Wolverhampton Wander-ers, writes Hyder Jawad. The club has confirmed that talks are back on with the Cameroon international goalkeeper who has played in the World Cup and won an Olympic...
FORMULA ONE: Williams Pondering Team Orders Question
Williams-BMW are at loggerheads over whether team orders should be used to boost Juan Pablo Montoya's bid to snatch the World Championship from Michael Schumacher. Montoya's crushing victory in Sunday's German Grand Prix left just three men with...
Gay Bishop Vote Delay after New Sex Claims
Byline: John Ashbourne US Episcopal leaders delayed a vote last night on whether to confirm the church's first openly gay elected bishop after allegations emerged that he inappropriately touched a man and posted a pornography link on a youth website,...
Get Moving: Ignored -Now It's Time We Took Matters in Hand
Byline: Jerry Blackett Business leaders in Birmingham have become so incensed by the Government's lack of investment in the region's transport systems that they have pledged to take matters into their own hands. Birmingham Chamber of Commerce...
Get Moving: Our Pounds 20bn Achilles' Heel; as Part of the Birmingham Post's Get Moving Campaign, the City's Business Leaders Have Their Say on the State of Transport in the West Midlands
Byline: Digby Jones Three years ago the Government announced its TenYear Transport Plan and at the time I was delighted and optimistic. At last Ministers would be redressing the neglect in investment that is so damaging to the country in general...
Get Moving: The Right Track for Prosperity; the West Midlands Is at the Heart of the Country's Transport Network but Congestion across the Region Demands Change. Transport Reporter Campbell Docherty Looks at the Main Options, from New Street Station to the Possibility of a London-Style Underground System
Byline: Campbell Docherty Public transport in Birmingham and the West Midlands needs massive investment to destroy a reputation for gridlocked roads and late, overcrowded trains. But what, exactly, should be done? Beginning today, a major Birmingham...
Get Moving: The Transport View from ... the Metro Platform at Snow Hill Station in Birmingham City Centre; All This Week the Post Is Asking Commuters: If You Could Wave a Magic Wand, What Is the One Thing You Would Do to Improve Transport in Birmingham and the West Midlands?
Des Robins, aged 76, retired from Brierley Hill, Dudley: 'There are too many cars on the roads, especially where I live, so it would be nice to see more people encouraged on to public transport. 'The problem is that many men love cars more than their...
Golf: Father's Death Has Woosnam Backing Down from USPGA
Byline: Norman Dabell Ian Woosnam has withdrawn from next week's United States PGA Championship at Rochester, New York, due to the death of his father Harold, the player's management company said yesterday. The Shropshire golfer, who ends a run...
Just Look at What Co-Operation Has Achieved So Far; Sir Albert Bore Leader of Birmingham City Council, Responds to Recent Criticism of the City's Approach to Marketing Itself
Byline: Sir Albert Bore In a recent press article, a spokesman for Central Trains, commenting on a story on Birmingham's Capital of Culture bid, said 'I sometimes think that people in Birmingham run themselves down too much'. The latest comments...
Letter: Don't Feel Sorry for Motorists
Byline: MATTHEW STONE Kings Heath, Birmingham. Sir, -I see that the Conservatives have relaunched themselves as the party of the motorist in a bid to capture some votes (Post, Jul 23). Tim Collins, shadow transport spokesman, bleats on about...
Letter: Roads Must Be Government's Top Priority
Byline: CHRIS D KELLY Tettenhall, Wolverhampton Sir, -The Conservatives recently unveiled excellent new transport proposals to get Britain moving again as part of the party's 'Fair Deal for Transport' package. A key policy is for a higher 80...
Letter: Statistics Prove Speed Bumps Save Lives
Byline: COUN JOHN TYRRELL Cabinet Member, Transportation and Street. Sir, -I wish to raise my concerns about traffic calming and in particular about the way some drivers behave on traffic calmed roads (Post, Jul 17). Traffic calming in general,...
Liberian Joy as Peace Troops Land at Airport
Byline: David Henry The vanguard of a West African force aiming at stopping Liberia's brutal civil war landed yesterday at an airport on the outskirts of the capital Monrovia, which has been under rebel siege for two months. Ecstatic locals poured...
Libraries' New Image to Make Minority Groups Feel Comfortable
Byline: Paul Dale Birmingham's libraries are to be given a new image as places where people from the ethnic minorities, the gay and lesbian community, asylum seekers and refugees can feel comfortable. A position statement by the city council...
Life for 'Bully' Revenge Killing
Byline: Tom Wells For more than three decades, Craig Lawlor harboured a grudge against the man who shot him in the arm with an airgun when he was just eight years old. A chance encounter in a Warwickshire pub 34 years later provided Lawlor with...
Market Report: HSBC Gains Fail to Lift Lacklustre Footsie
London's FTSE 100 Index closed near to its opening mark yesterday, just 1.7 higher at 4100.1, after giving back gains secured in the wake of strong results from banking giant HSBC. The lacklustre close to the session in London meant banking stocks...
New Look Founder Bewilders Traders; Bold Words: Into Light Bid Hopes: Singh Wants to Take Young Fashion Chain Private
Tom Singh, founder and biggest shareholder in New Look, bewildered City traders yesterday by telling them he wants to bid for the young fashion chain and take it private. Following an announcement last month that he was conducting a review of his...
No 10 Denies Creating Kelly Smear
Byline: John Deane and Andrew Woodcock Downing Street last night strove to distance itself from a suggestion that weapons expert David Kelly was a Walter Mitty-style fantasist. No 10 spent the day on the back foot after press allegations that...
Perspective: Debt Wreaks Havoc on the Nation's Balance Sheet
Byline: Richard McComb We are led to believe the latest threat to society will come from a new, dimly defined enemy. The method of attack is uncertain and has engendered paranoia. Is that jet flying a bit low over Birmingham? Why is a crop-spraying...
Policy Makers' Leap of Faith; Jo Ind Applauds Tony Blair's Initiative to Include Different Faith Perspectives in Government Policy
Byline: Jo Ind I t is said that religion and politics do not mix. Well, it is said by some people anyway. Few religious people would agree with that sentiment. They would say religion permeates every area of life, from the pace at which we walk...
Powell and Deputy 'Won't Serve Again with Bush'
US Secretary of State Colin Powell and his top deputy have told the White House they will not serve a second term if George Bush is re-elected, The Washington Post has reported yesterday. Citing 'sources familiar with the conversation', the paper said...
Powell Dismisses Reports He Will Quit Bush's Team
US Secretary of State Colin Powell dismissed as gossip and nonsense a published report that he had sent word to the White House he would not serve in a second Bush administration. 'I don't know what they are talking about,' Powell said of the front-page...
RACING: Millman Has Bath Hopes as Jockey Is Nailed
Byline: Stable Boy La Vie Est Belle can build on a promising run last time to claim the Sky Bet Maiden Auction Fillies' Stakes at Bath today. Rod Millman's filly was a creditable seventh in the Weatherbys Super Sprint on her last run, only four...
Rail Journey Hopes Buckle in Heatwave
Byline: Emma Brady Midland rail passengers are facing longer journeys on fewer trains after rising temperatures forced Network Rail to impose speed restrictions on some of the country's busiest commuter routes. As temperatures across the country...
Student Loan Timebomb to Hit Property
Byline: John Duckers Student loans are a timebomb waiting to hit the first-time property buyer market, the head of financial services at law firm Morton Fisher is warning. Mark Thomson, an independent financial adviser, said the Government seemed...
TENNIS: Henman Prepared for Gonzalez Riposte
Tim Henman will be bracing himself for a revenge mission from Fernando Gonzalez tonight when the two meet in Montreal. It will be their second encounter in three days after the British No 1 beat the Chilean 6-3, 6-4 in the final of the Legg Mason...
The Birmingham Post Comment: Vital Bid Questions Yet to Be Answered
Birmingham entered the Capital of Culture contest with high hopes. The intention was never to come an honourable second. The city aimed to win, and was capable of doing so. No other competitor could boast the range of high quality cultural institutions...
Warning over Euro Referendum Vote
A Labour opponent of British membership of the euro yesterday warned the Government not to attempt to 'rig' a referendum by giving a vote to EU citizens who live in the UK. The Department for Constitutional Affairs confirmed that proposals to allow...
Weaver Enjoys Pounds 17.3m Second-Half Orders
Byline: John Duckers Bromsgrove-based construction group Weaver has notched a good second half year with orders totalling over pounds 17.3 million. The latest figures bring the total turnover for the year ended March 31 to pounds 30 million,...