UK Sunday Times round-up (28 Dec 08 )
By: Alexa Williamson
Found this edition more exciting than most (recently) although I was disappointed that they didn’t do proper Culture or Home magazines.
Articles I found good this week…
House price slides expected in the new year
Nutshell: an interesting article summarising the house price falls of 15% last year, plus estimates over the next year of drops in prices… many bodies estimate the drops to be about 10%.
Pay cuts and freezes loom for millions in private sector
Nutshell: Companies are expected to cut employees’ wages to avoid mass redundancies. British Chamber of Commerce also calling for minimum wage to be kept at £5.73 due to recession.
Tories plan to unveil tax cuts
Nutshell: the Tories plan to reduce taxes in the following ways… reduce National Insurance, reduce income tax on savings, reduce tax burden on over-65s. In rebuttal, Labour thinks that this will mean cuts in public spending.
Ministers urged to lift cap off university fees
Nutshell: a report urges that universities should be able to set whatever fees they like to improve the quality of teaching.
Comment: hopefully this won’t happen – who would be able to afford to go then?
Virtual West End for Cyber Shoppers
Nutshell: a computer company hopes to create a virtual Oxford Street where people can ‘virtually’ browse many retailers. This comes after online sales are up 16% since last November. It would include links to Facebook and MySpace, plus the weather would change with what really happens on Oxford Street.
Not an interesting article, but noteworthy…
Turandot - on till 23 January at the Royal Opera House
Also, the advert for Demons, a TV series that starts of Saturday 3 January, looks cool. Kind of like a new Buffy the Vampire Slayer series on the up ; )
Mrs Mills was good as always, the rest was a bit blasé.
From the Money section…
Mortgage rates are finally falling, best fixed deals are now under 5% for those who have a 40% deposit … eg Cheltenham and Gloucester are offering 4.29% (again, a 40% deposit needed) for a two-year fixed deal.
News review tidbits…
- Doctors to set up memory clinics across the UK to help those with the disease as over 700,000 in the UK have it.
- Amusing… California’s public health department is investigating a plastic surgeon in Beverly Hills who used the fat from liposuction operations as fuel in his car. Authorities also closed down the site http://www.lipodiesel.com. Made me chuckle that the owner, Bittner, had written – “Not only do they [patients] get to lose their love handles or chubby belly, but they get to take part in saving the Earth.” – on the site.
- British playwright Harold Pinter, sadly, has died from cancer.
The Times obituary, reprinted in ST.
- Also, a fantastic obit done for Earth Kitt. What they wrote about her completely intrigued me. She had an interesting life and made me wish I had seen her sing – and know her quite frankly. Definitely worth reading.