Liverpool has been stripped of its coveted world heritage status after Unesco blamed years of development for an “irreversible loss” to the historic value of its Victorian docks. The UN’s heritage body concluded at a meeting in China on Wednesday that the “outstanding universal value” of Liverpool’s waterfront had been destroyed by new buildings, including Everton football club’s new £500m stadium.
Boris Johnson’s plan to lift virtually all of England’s pandemic restrictions on Monday is a threat to the world and provides fertile ground for the emergence of vaccine-resistant variants, international experts say. Britain’s position as a global transport hub would mean any new variant here would rapidly spread around the world, scientists and physicians warned at an emergency summit.
A British police officer on Friday admitted murdering Sarah Everard, whose killing sparked anger, protests and soul-searching across the country about what the authorities and society could do to stop male violence against women. Wayne Couzens, 48, a serving London officer who guarded diplomatic premises, had previously admitted rape and kidnap. Everard’s murder provoked outpourings of anger from women, prompting Prime Minister Boris Johnson to promise action including money for better street lighting.
A UK government minister said Thursday that Britain was prepared to sail naval vessels through disputed waters near Crimea again, a day after confrontation between a British warship and Russian forces in the Black Sea. Environment Secretary George Eustice disputed claims from Moscow that Russian warplanes dropped bombs and a patrol boat fired warning shots at a British destroyer it claims entered into its territorial waters in the Black Sea.
The annual rate of inflation in the UK more than doubled in April to 1.5 percent on the back of higher petrol prices and gas and electricity bills, its highest level since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. Rising from 0.7 percent in March, the increase in the consumer price index matched expectations from economists and the Bank of England.
Britain has relaxed restrictions on its economy and social contact further on Monday, but the spread of the Covid variant that first emerged in India is threatening a full lifting of measures. Lockdown measures have been eased in England, Wales and most parts of Scotland on Monday, meaning that pubs, bars and restaurants are now allowed to serve customers inside; museums, cinemas and theaters can reopen; and exercise classes and indoor sports can resume.
Boris Johnson’s government has unveiled plans for the coming parliament in a Queen’s speech that combined interventionist economics with openly populist moves in areas such as free speech, policing and voter ID. Announcing the list of planned new bills in a relatively minimalist ceremony with only 74 people in the Lords chamber and much of the usual pomp pared back, the Queen began by saying the overall aim was to “level up opportunities” across the UK.
Prince Philip, Queen Elizabeth II’s husband and the longest-serving consort of any British monarch, has died at age 99. Philip spent 65 years supporting the queen, retiring from his public role in 2017 and staying largely out of the view since. In his active years, he helped set a new course for the monarchy under a young queen, championing Britain itself, as well as environmental causes, science and technology.
Rare cases of blood clots in people who have been given the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine could raise questions over whether young people should receive it, a leading epidemiologist has said, amid reports the UK’s watchdog was considering new restrictions on the jab. It noted that 30 people out of the 18.1 million who had received the Oxford vaccine in the UK had developed blood clots, and seven of those had died, as of 24 March.
The US is threatening to impose tariffs of up to 25 percent on some UK exports as it retaliates over Britain’s new ‘unreasonable’ and ‘discriminatory’ tax on big tech firms. The UK introduced a digital services tax last April in a bid to ensure search engines, social media platforms and online marketplaces pay their fair share. Washington believes the tax unfairly targets US firms.