Magazine article The Spectator

Portrait of the Week

Magazine article The Spectator

Portrait of the Week

Article excerpt


David Cameron, the Prime Minister, told the Conservative party conference in Manchester: 'We need a national crusade to get homes built.' George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced that councils would be allowed to set their own business rates and keep all the money they raise. Lord Adonis, the Labour peer, moved to the crossbenches on being appointed by Mr Osborne to head the new National Infrastructure Commission, to assess needs and 'hold any government's feet to the fire if it fails to deliver'.

In a speech to the Tory conference that the Institute of Directors called 'irresponsible rhetoric' and Migration Watch UK called 'thoroughly courageous', Theresa May, the Home Secretary, said that migrants 'who claim asylum after abusing the visa system or having travelled to get here through safe countries' would only be granted a minimum stay of protection. Hundreds of left-wing protesters spat on people waiting to get into the conference. Charlotte Church, the singer turned political activist, said that she was going to write an open letter apologising for their behaviour. Lord Healey, who as Denis Healey served as Defence Secretary, 1964-70, and Chancellor of the Exchequer 1974-79, died, aged 98.

Investors seeking less than a £1,000 holding will be offered priority and a 5 per cent discount in a £2 billion government sale of Lloyds Banking Group shares. Zac Goldsmith was adopted as the Conservative candidate to run for Mayor of London. Tesco's underlying profits for the first half of the year were £354 million, compared with £779 a year earlier. A seven-year-old girl and a woman in her seventies were killed when a bus, driven by a 77-year-old former mayor, crashed into a branch of Sainsbury's in Coventry. Two men were arrested on suspicion of murder after a policeman was struck by a stolen vehicle and killed on a dual carriageway in Wallasey. Liverpool football club sought to engage Jürgen Klopp, formerly of Borussia Dortmund, as its manager. England became the first host nation to fail to make the knockout stages in Rugby World Cup history.


Russia carried out airstrikes in Syria on what it called 'terrorists'; the United States noted that strikes took place where the Islamic State group is not present and that one group hit were CIA-trained opponents of Bashar al-Assad's regime. …

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