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January 4 - 10 2012
μWorld News PAGES 14-17
μComment PAGES 18-21
μObituaries PAGES 22-23
Britain goes balmy Spring-like weather confuses wildlife and warms festive bathers
Murder on Oxford Street London shops turned into killing zone as gang violence strikes
WORLD NEWS P14
Going up in the world The Colombian slum that has got its own 28-storey escalator
Darker side of ‘The Mousetrap’ There’s more to Agatha Christie’s mystery play than people think
11 8 13 17 48 49 7 11 37 38 42 44
Bonus Ball 19
Bonus Ball 2
There were three winners of Saturday’s £4.0m jackpot and one winner of Wednesday’s £2.1m prize
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By Rowena Mason and Robert Winnett DAVID CAMERON is facing a backlash after a millionaire businessman jailed for fraud, a former drugs dealer and a controversial Conservative Party donor appeared on the New Year Honours list.
honour Mr Ruddock – and said that the Conservative Party had not nominated him. One aide said that the awards were “broadly decided” by the Cabinet Office, pointing out that a major Labour backer had also been knighted.
The Prime Minister was accused of rewarding his party’s “friends in the City” after a knighthood was given to Paul Ruddock for services to the arts and Gerald Ronson was appointed CBE for his charity donations.
Mr Ruddock, a hedge fund manager, profited from the collapse of Northern Rock and donated £500,000 to the Conservatives. His company used a practice known as “short selling” to bet on shares in the bank falling. Northern Rock subsequently failed and had to be rescued by the taxpayer.
Mr Ronson, a millionaire property developer, was convicted of theft, conspiracy and accounting fraud following the Guinness scandal in 1990. He served six months of a one-year sentence and has always denied any wrongdoing.
The business tycoon, whose company built the tallest skyscraper in the City of London, has since given much of his fortune to charity. His wife also recently received an honour.
Last Saturday night, the Cabinet Office refused to confirm whether the honour was the first senior award to be given to someone who has been convicted of a crime.
Another contentious award was given to Christopher Preddie, a cousin of the two brothers found guilty of killing the schoolboy Damilola Taylor in 2000.
The father of the murdered 10-year old criticised the Government for appointing
Honours within the world of showbusiness included CBE appointments for Ronnie Corbett, 81, the comedian, Helena Bonham Carter, the actress, and Clive James, the Australian-born entertainer and critic for The Daily Telegraph.
One unexpected award went to Alex Crawford, a Sky News journalist, who reported from war-torn Libya and rode into Tripoli, the capital, with the rebels. She said she was “staggered and honoured” to be appointed OBE.
Listed (clockwise from top left): Dickie Bird, Clive James, Ronnie Corbett and Penelope Lively were among those honoured
Mr Preddie, who himself used to be involved with drugs and gangs, OBE for his campaign to tackle youth crime.
The awards appeared to undermine Mr Cameron’s pledge to use the honours system to reward those who play a role in the “Big Society”, and were seized upon by Labour to highlight his alleged closeness to the City.
Michael Dugher, the shadow Cabinet Office minister, said: “David Cameron promised to clean up politics, but in office he has shown he is utterly out of touch with decent British people.
“He’s giving a knighthood to Paul Ruddock, who made millions from the collapse of Northern Rock and has given over half a million pounds to the Tories.
“This tells you everything you need to know about the Tories’ priorities. At a time when millions of families are struggling to get by, it’s the Tories’ friends in the City who get the rewards.”
The row threatened to overshadow the announcement of the New Year honours. A Cabinet Office spokesman insisted that the awards were made purely on merit.
“If someone has served their time and gone on to do wonderful works, I don’t think that prevents someone from receiving an honour,” he said.
Senior Downing Street aides stressed that Mr Cameron had not been involved in the decision to
Another surprising choice from the world of media was a knighthood for Peter Bazalgette, the businessman who brought Big Brother, the “reality” television show, to Britain.
More than a third of knighthoods will this year go to bankers and businessmen, compared with just a handful before the Coalition came to power.
Another businessman to receive a knighthood was Rod Aldridge, who rose to the top of the outsourcing company Capita. Mr Aldridge resigned from his job in 2006 over a secret £1million loan to the Labour party in the “cash for peerages” scandal before the 2005 election.
Mr Ruddock declined to comment on his honour last Saturday since he was “in Asia and at a dinner party”, and for his part, Mr Ronson did not return calls for comment.
The majority of the honours did, however, go to unsung heroes from the fields of education, local government, science and charity work.
By Robert Winnett and James Kirkup CALLS for an “austerity Olympics” will be ignored by the Government as the 2012 Games could help keep Britain out of recession, the Culture Secretary has said.
Jeremy Hunt believes that hosting the Games is an “incredible stroke of luck” during the global economic crisis as it will provide a “huge plus sign” for the struggling British economy. He also said that demonstrators will be tolerated as long as their protests are legitimate and lawful. Ministers have faced calls to pare back expenditure on the Games at a time when thousands of people are losing their jobs, public services are being cut and taxes are rising. But in an interview in last Saturday’s Daily Telegraph, Mr Hunt said voters will never forgive the Government if it does not “make the most” of an unprecedented opportunity.
“You can take two attitudes to the Olympics,” he says. “You can say: these are times of austerity and therefore we should pare them down as much as possible.
“Or, you can say: because these are times of austerity we need to do everything we possibly can to harness the opportunity. We’re going to be the centre of global attention and it will be the first time that we’ve had a major sporting event that’s watched live by half the world’s population. People would not forgive us if we didn’t make the absolute most of this moment.”
The Government has provided more than £9 billion for the London Games and there is still more than £500 million unallocated in “contingency” funds.
Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, last week praised the 1948 austerity post-war Olympics in London, when athletes travelled by bus and other countries donated items. However, Mr Hunt said the Olympics are vital for the economy. The Treasury is analysing the economic impact of the Games.
He expects the Olympics to be targeted by protesters but, unlike at the 2008 Beijing Games, they will be treated with “dignity”. “We are proud to be a democratic country and protest is part of that tradition,” he said. ÞAn extra 1.3 million tickets to the Olympics, held back while seating plans were completed and venues tested, will be released in the spring, it was announced last week.
Matthew d’Ancona: Page 20 Boris Johnson: Page 21 telegraph.co.uk/expat
T The Windsors For all the latest updates,
January 4 - 10 2012
By Richard Alleyne THE Duke of Edinburgh spent Christmas in hospital after heart surgery – but no sooner had he been released, than he was back in the thick of the action.
The 90 year-old, recovering from heart surgery, defiantly headed straight off for a shooting party at the Sandringham Estate in Norfolk.
The Duke did not actually attempt to bag any pheasants himself but joined the group,
The Duke of Edinburgh smiled and waved at well-wishers which included members of his family, for lunch.
His determination to return to normality underlines the robustness of the Duke, who, despite his recent heart trouble, is said to be remarkably fit for his age.
His actions also helped dispel any fears that the health scare would slow him down just as he and the Queen embark on her Diamond Jubilee year.
The Duke was released from the Papworth Hospital near Cambridge at 9.25am last Tuesday after spending four nights recovering from surgery to unblock an artery.
Waving and smiling at wellwishers as he left, he thanked medical staff for their
“excellent care” and was driven straight to Sandringham to rejoin the Queen and his family. Dressed smartly in a blue shirt with a green patterned tie and grey jacket, he sat in the passenger seat of a blue Range Rover for the 60-mile journey that took a little over an hour.
He joined the Queen at the main house before heading for lunch at Wood Farm in Wolferton which is part of the 20,000-acre estate. The meal lasted for more than an hour and he was then driven back to the main house.
The Duke was seen sitting in the front seat of a Land Rover as he was driven away from the farmhouse at about 1.45pm. The shooting party set off separately from a side exit of the farmhouse so they could carry on shooting without being seen from a public road.
A villager said: “Some people had expected him to grab his gun and race off to start shooting again as soon as he got back to Sandringham – but he is being sensible.
“While he does not appear to have been shooting birds himself, it looks like he still wanted to get involved by joining everyone for lunch.
“I am sure it would have raised his spirits to see the rest of the family having fun and they would have been delighted to see him.”
A spokesman for the Royal family said the Duke was in a “cheerful” mood. “Like anyone after a health scare he was delighted to rejoin his family,” he said.
Britons of the Year: Page 18
The Duchess of Cambridge greets the Christmas crowd at Sandringham
Duchess effect Label profits up
REISS, the high-street clothing chain favoured by the Duchess of Cambridge, has posted a near doubling in profits and claimed that it has managed to reposition itself as “cooler and sexier”.
The family-owned retailer has defied the downturn, helped in part by its royal endorsement. Sales increased from £77.7million to £87.6million, while operating profits rose from £4.3million to £8.5million in the year to Jan 31, 2011. A pretax loss of £2.1million was converted into a profit of £3.64million.
The popularity of the high-street chain, which specialises in tailored clothes, is in part due to the Duchess of Cambridge. She often wore its shirts and skirts as Kate Middleton, but the brand was given the official stamp of approval when she wore a white £159 Reiss dress for her engagement photograph in January 2011. Wearing Reiss in Quebec in July, left, and at the Derby in June
THE Queen’s historic visit to the Republic of Ireland last year was a “game-changer” heralding a new era in Anglo-Irish relations, David Cameron has said.
The Prime Minister praised the tour, the first by a British monarch in 100 years, for bolstering the strong relationship between London and Dublin forged during the peace process. Mr Cameron said he had found the visit a “very emotional” occasion, adding that the Queen had “warmed the hearts of people” during her time in Ireland. The four-day state visit in May represented the first time a British monarch had travelled to Ireland since King George V’s visit in 1911, when the country was still part of the British Empire.
It led to an unprecedented security operation that cost £26.2 million and resulted in traffic being banned from the centre of the Irish capital.
Sinn Fein’s Gerry Adams criticised the timing of the tour as “premature”, but the Queen’s visit was met with only minor protests.
Its success has led to speculation that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge may also travel to Ireland.
By Martin Evans WITH two weddings in 2011 the Royal family’s traditional Christmas gathering at Sandringham was swelled to its largest ever number.
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh invited 27 members of their family to join them at the estate near King’s Lynn, Norfolk – though the Duke missed the event because he was in hospital.
At the annual church service the chief attraction was undoubtedly the Duchess of Cambridge, though there were a number of other rivals in the style stakes.
Zara Phillips, the daughter of the Princess Royal stood out in a black fascinator which had crossed sticks inserted into the front.
Peter Phillips’s wife Autumn
Church: Prince Charles (front), Prince William and Kate opted for a tartan swing coat and fur hat, while Lady Louise, daughter of the Earl and Countess of Wessex, chose to wear a tartan doublebreasted coat and matching beret.
Also at the gathering were: the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall; Princes William and Harry; the Princess Royal; Vice-Admiral Tim Laurence, Peter Phillips, his wife and daughter Savannah; the Duke of York and his daughters, princesses Beatrice and Eugenie; the Earl and Countess of Wessex; Viscount Severn, Viscount Linley and the Viscountess; the Hon Charles Armstrong-Jones; Lady Sarah Chatto; Master Samuel Chatto and Master Arthur Chatto.
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asked Prof Sir Bruce Keogh, the NHS Medical Director, to review all data relating to PIP breast implants and any possible danger they pose.
The Health Secretary said last Saturday: “We have received data from an organisation that was not previously acknowledged or communicated to the MHRA. The validity of this data still requires full assessment and evaluation, so I have asked [Prof Keogh] to lead an urgent investigation so that we can establish exactly what has happened and whether we need to improve the regulatory regime.”
Mr Lansley is “very concerned about the content and quality of the data that cosmetic-surgery providers are sharing with the regulator”, his spokesman said.
The review is expected to report its initial findings this week, with a decision on how to proceed – including whether to give women free implant-removal operations – likely to be made at a later date.
The regulatory system will also come under scrutiny. Dr Susanne Ludgate, the MHRA clinical director, said: “It’s clear there is conflicting data coming from the cosmeticsurgery sector. It raises doubts about the surveillance and reporting of incidents by these companies. We will urgently work to identify where problems may be.”
British surgeons warned about the PIP implants five years ago.
Brook Berry, who led an NHS plastic-surgery unit in the North East, was so alarmed by the damage a PIP implant caused to a woman recovering from breast cancer that he wrote to the British Journal of Plastic Surgery in 2007 that “the reliability of PIP implants must be questioned and, for myself, I intend to discontinue their use in favour of implants from other manufacturers”.
Mark Harvey, a lawyer who is planning to bring a case against up to 20 clinics on behalf of at least 350
women later this month, said: “There has been significant underreporting of problems with these implants. There does not appear to be any follow-up regime to check on whether cosmetic-surgery companies have been reporting incidents fully.”
His clients are seeking damages of between £15,000 and £20,000.
Andrew Hay, managing director of Cloverleaf Products Ltd, the British supplier of the implants, told The Telegraph that his firm had supplied between 6,000 and 7,000 implants to the NHS, which were mainly used for women recovering from cancer surgery. While some women will have had two implants, others may have had only one – meaning that the number of women receiving the PIP implants on the NHS is likely to be greater than 3,000.
Mr Hay expressed his shock that the PIP implants had turned out to be made from industrial silicone.
The PIP implants were taken off the market in March 2010. Jean-Claude Mas, the company’s founder, is facing fraud charges and a manslaughter charge brought by the family of a woman who died of cancer in France.
Studies so far have found no link between the implants and cancer.