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Lord Bates’s resignation over lateness rejected by PM
The prime minister has refused to accept the resignation of a lord who offered to leave his post after being late to the chamber. Lord Bates stunned colleagues in the House of Lords by stating his intention to resign after the “discourtesy” of arriving late to a session. A spokesman for Number 10 said the resignation was “unnecessary” and he had decided to continue in his role. Lord Bates could not immediately be contacted for comment.
Brexit: Theresa May to fight EU transition residency plan
Theresa May has indicated she will fight a proposal to give residency rights to EU citizens during the transition period after Brexit. She said there had to be a difference between those arriving after the UK leaves and those who came before. She also sought to reassure Tory MPs worried about the length of transition. The European Parliament’s Brexit lead, Guy Verhofstadt, responded by telling The Guardian: “Citizens’ rights during the transition is not negotiable.” He said that “for the transition to work” there could not be “two sets of rights for EU citizens”.
MPs vote to leave Houses of Parliament during refit
MPs have voted to leave the Palace of Westminster while a proposed multi-billion pound refurbishment of the historic building takes place. The Commons approved a motion calling for a “full and timely decant”, designed to allow essential repairs, by 236 votes to 220. The planned move, part of a proposed £5.6bn modernisation, will not take effect until 2025 at the earliest. Commons leader Andrea Leadsom said the era of “patch and mend” had to end. The Lords will debate and vote on their views on the future of the building next week.
Vauxhall hits another big bump in the road
The woes at Vauxhall deepened yesterday when it emerged that output from its Luton van plant is crashing as fast as it is at its car plant in Ellesmere Port. Vauxhall said that the number of vans it produced in Luton — home of the Vivaro — had dived by nearly 20 per cent to 59,795 in 2017, fewer than 5,000 a month. Before the global financial crisis, the Luton operation was producing nearly 100,000 units a year. At Ellesmere Port in Cheshire, which produces the Vauxhall Astra, output slumped by 22 per cent in 2017 to 92,000, a shift has been cut and the company has moved to make 650 workers, more than a third of its workforce, redundant.
Monkey tests showed new VW diesel Beetle worse than ageing Ford pick-up
Unpublished results of diesel exhaust tests on monkeys show that a new Volkswagen caused them more suffering than a far older vehicle. Ten macaques were exposed to fumes from a Beetle in an experiment disclosed in US court documents that have triggered international outcry. A leaked copy of the findings showed that the monkeys were also exposed to gases from a Ford pick-up truck 16 years older than the Beetle for comparison. An expert who studied the findings concluded: “The animals made to inhale the new diesel showed more signs of inflammation than the monkeys that inhaled the old diesel.”
£130 fine for driving any diesel or petrol car in Hackney and Islington at peak times
Petrol and diesel cars face being banned from parts of two London boroughs under Britain’s toughest action against polluting vehicles. The councils want to restrict all vehicles other than electric, hydrogen and the cleanest hybrid cars at peak times. Drivers of even the newest petrol and diesel models face fines of £130 if they use the nine streets within Hackney or Islington during three-hour periods in the morning or the evening. They will be monitored by automatic number-plate recognition cameras. The plans go beyond the approach of Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, who has introduced a £10-a-day “toxicity charge” for older petrol and diesel cars. Feryal Demirci, Hackney’s cabinet member for transport, said that the streets in Shoreditch and Hoxton being targeted “suffer from…
The weirdest names owners give to their cars from Ford Fiasco to Scarlett O’Cara – what’s yours called?
The most ridiculous pet names for cars have been revealed with “Scarlett O’Cara”, “Ford Fiasco” and “Matt CAR-dle” topping the bizarre list. And one in eight men have a name for their motor including the “Purple People-Eater”, “Sexy Bob the 4th” and “The Beast”. It also emerged around one in five bestowed an endearing alias upon a vehicle they owned in the past. Other standout names included ‘Falcor’, ‘The Phantom Flyer’ and ‘Super-Charged Fire Pony’. Of those who have given a name to their car, two in five chose a female name and 30 per cent thought their car suited a more masculine moniker. Seventeen per cent chose a nonsense word or phrase which couldn’t be considered male or female.