Growth: At last, the economy has recovered the ground lost in the recession…

growth flag‘Britain’s six-year Great Recession will be declared over today when one of the country’s leading economic bodies says that the ground lost in the financial crisis has been recovered. The monthly estimate of growth from the National Institute of Economic and Social Research will show that GDP is back at, or just fractionally short of, its March 2008 record.’ – The Times (£)

  • Britain is getting happier, too – Daily Mail
  • MPs support single savings tax – FT
  • Record visits from tourists – FT
  • The Bank votes to hold rates – FT
  • Thousands of Barclays jobs go – The Sun (£)
  • The hidden time bomb of household debt – Jeremy Warner, Daily Telegraph

Housing: Pickles plans to give Brits first choice when buying new homes…

‘New homes will have to be offered to Britons first rather than marketed abroad, under plans to ease the dire shortage of housing. Eric Pickles, the communities secretary, will next week invite bids for a £525 million fund to kick-start hundreds of stalled developments. However, successful bidders will have to sign legally binding contracts to guarantee they will advertise to UK buyers before or at the same time as to foreign investors.’ – The Times (£)

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: As three former Chancellors warn of a house price bubble, Tories must show they know how to spread ownership

Taxes: HMRC gains power to raid your bank account…

money‘Innocent people face having money taken straight out of their bank accounts under draconian powers to be used by the taxman, MPs warn on Friday. A Treasury plan to allow HM Revenue and Customs to remove cash from bank accounts without a court order is “very concerning” because of its history of mistakes, a Commons committee said.’ – Daily Telegraph

  • Electoral roll data illegally sold to spammers – Daily Mail

…but Labour is only interested in class war

‘Its latest party political broadcast…is puerile, humourless and cynically designed to stoke the politics  of envy. Ed Miliband is obviously not content with disinterring failed Socialist policies of the past, from rent controls and energy price freezes to seizing private land. He also wants to re-run the socially-harmful class war battles of the Seventies and Eighties.’ – Daily Mail Leader


>Yesterday: WATCH: Nick Clegg’s LBC phone in

Is Cameron warming up the DUP for coalition?

CAMERON flag‘David Cameron hosted a lavish reception in the Downing Street garden for Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionists last week, prompting senior party figures to say the prime minister is wooing its MPs ahead of a possible hung parliament where their support could be crucial to his survival. In a move that may prompt claims that he is prepared to play the “Orange card” if he fails to win an overall majority in next year’s general election, the prime minister paid court to the party’s eight MPs, who could hold the balance of power in a hung parliament.’ – The Guardian

>Today: ToryDiary: A second Coalition. A minority Conservative Government. Or…

Met Commissioner pitches into knife dispute with Clegg

‘Britain’s top police officer today criticised Nick Clegg for blocking Tory proposals for mandatory jail terms for repeat knife offenders. Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, the Metropolitan Police commissioner, said it was “vital” that knife crime was tackled and that a mandatory sentence would send a clear message to criminals.’ – The Times (£)

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Grayling is right to show what a Conservative Government would mean

Farage predicts UKIP will outperform Tories among ethnic minorities

FARAGE eating‘Ethnic minority voters will flock to Ukip in the next five years, Nigel Farage predicts today as he says that his party “means what it says” when it declares that it is not racist. In a bold claim, the Ukip leader says that his party will be twice as popular as the Conservatives among non-white voters by 2019.’ – The Times (£)

  • UKIP is a threat to the economy, the Prime Minister warns – Daily Telegraph
  • Number of EU migrants set to outstrip those from the rest of the world – The Sun (£)
  • Clegg mocks Cameron’s ‘minor’ clawback from Brussels – Daily Telegraph
  • Britain is a special case, says Barroso – FT
  • The politics behind Eurovision – Daily Telegraph
  • Armoured cars offered for Nigel’s visit to Scotland – The Scotsman

Growing Pfizer row

‘David Cameron was pulled in opposite directions by Tory MPs yesterday as he waited anxiously for Pfizer’s next move in its bid for AstraZeneca. The prime minister was forced to insist he wanted more assurances from Pfizer after Labour accused him of acting as a cheerleader for the US firm in its battle against the British company. David Davis became the first senior Tory to call for the bid to be referred for a public interest test.’ – The Times (£)

The MoD considers allowing women on the front line

Army‘Britain moved closer to allowing women to fight on the front line on Thursday when Philip Hammond, the defence secretary, said he had asked military chiefs to look into ending the ban. General Sir Peter Wall, chief of the general staff, is due to report before the end of the year.’ – FT

Gove warns all schools of radicalisation threat

‘Michael Gove has written to all schools and colleges in England urging them to watch out for signs of radicalisation in the wake of the so-called Trojan Horse plot. In a letter to headteachers, the Education Secretary said schools and colleges must be aware of any type of child abuse. He said this included radicalisation as well as cyberbullying, sexual exploitation and female genital mutilation.’ – Daily Mail

  • Attempt to give Ofsted power over independent schools – Daily Mail
  • Allegations of financial mismanagement at Free Schools – FT
  • Hundreds of schools have banned pork and moved to halal meat – Daily Mail
  • MPs seek to change the law to get clearer labelling – Daily Mail
  • Cameron is scared of offending anyone – The Sun Says (£)
  • Supermarkets must identify halal meat – Daily Telegraph Leader

Russian carrier group in the Channel

Vladimir Putin‘A Russian aircraft carrier and and a nuclear-powered battle cruiser have passed through the English Channel – escorted by a British warship. The seven-strong naval task group led by the Admiral Kuznetsov, Russia’s largest warship, entered the Channel last night, a Royal Navy spokesman said.’ – Daily Mail

Hopes rise for shale well in Blackpool

‘A top fracking firm is launching a big push to open Britain’s first operational well, its boss announced last night. But Cuadrilla could still face an 18-month wait to extract shale gas from sites near Blackpool, chief executive Francis Egan told The Sun.’  – The Sun (£)

>Yesterday: MPsETC: The Environment Agency has not approved a single fracking permit

News in brief

  • Man who praised teacher’s murder jailed for two months – WalesOnline
  • Dinenage claimed for sympathy cards on expenses – The Sun (£)
  • Cameron goes to Nando’s – Twitter 
  • Dating show contestant confesses on air that he murdered his ex-wife – Daily Mail
  • Nigerian girls may be gone for good, says Brown – The Sun (£)
  • Jamie Oliver’s dirty little secret – The Times (£)
  • Fury of family who found their mother dead in her hospital bed – Daily Mail
  • Prof Colin Pillinger dies – Daily Express

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