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Christmas Trees are coming! Be Prepared this December

Types of Christmas Trees

There are various types of Christmas trees available, and you must choose the one that is perfect for your home during the holiday season. There are various types, as you will see below:

Nordman Fir

The Norman Fir Christmas Tree barely drops its needles, making it the most popular choice in Modern times, due to the safety issues related to children and pets, and the sharp Christmas tree needles. They come in a range of shapes and sizes, and their needles are a lot fleshier.

Norway Spruce

The Norway Spruce Christmas tree, brings the classic smell of childhood to your home. Its needles do drop a lot more than other varieties, but it more than makes up for that with its beautiful smell, and really traditional tall and narrow shape.

Potted Christmas Trees

The Potted Christmas tree is a great choice if you would prefer your tree to last longer than just a few weeks, as potted trees are more likely to live on through the year, and be fine to use again a year later. The come in both varieties, the Nordman or Norway Spruce, and are often a little cheaper.

Where to buy a Christmas Tree

You can normally buy Christmas trees at your local garden centre, or check online for your nearest Christmas tree farm. Sapcote Garden Centre, Leicester, LE94LG, 01455 274049, (http://www.sapcotegc.co.uk/christmas/christmas-trees) has a range of Nordman Fir, and Norway Spruce Christmas trees for sale, and the price is the same as 2012.

Couples who indulge in extra nights of sex end up more miserable

  • Researchers say extra nights of passion may leave people feeling tired out
  • Scientists from U.S. studied intimate habits of around 80 married couples
  • Half asked to have sex twice as often and others told to stick to routine
  • Those who had more sex had reduced sexual happiness and enjoyment 

By

Roger Dobson

and
Fiona Macrae, Science Editor For The Daily Mail


Published:
18:12 EST, 21 August 2015

|
Updated:
03:23 EST, 22 August 2015

It seems you really can have too much of a good thing.

Having more sex didn’t make couples happier, it made them more miserable, a study found.

The researchers said the extra nights of passion may have left participants tired out.

Couple who indulge in extra nights of passion end up feeling more miserable, researchers have found

Couple who indulge in extra nights of passion end up feeling more miserable, researchers have found

Alternatively, the couples may have come to view sex as a chore. The finding comes from US researchers who studied the intimate habits of around 80 married couples.

Half were asked to try to have sex twice as often as usual for three months and the others seemingly drew the short straw by being told to stick to their normal routine.

The men and women, who were aged between 35 and 65, filled in psychological surveys at the start and end of the study, as well as daily assessments of their mood.

Those prescribed to have more sex didn’t quite manage to double their efforts but they did increase the number of sessions by more than 40 per cent. This meant they averaged nearly nine sessions a month, rather than six.

However, the effects were unexpected. Lead researcher George Loewenstein, said: ‘This is the first study to assess whether increased frequency really does lead to greater happiness.

‘Our main finding is surprising and shows that people who increased frequency had reduced happiness and sexual enjoyment.’

Researchers believe that being ordered to have more sex turned it from a pleasure into a duty. In other words, spontaneity may be key

Researchers believe that being ordered to have more sex turned it from a pleasure into a duty. In other words, spontaneity may be key

Libido also fell, the Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization reports. Professor Loewenstein, of Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania, said the extra activity may have proved exhausting.

However, he thinks a more likely explanation is that being ordered to have more sex turned it from a pleasure into a duty. In other words, spontaneity may be key.

The professor, a psychologist and economist, said: ‘Luring couples into having more sex – through travelling to new places or staying in hotels, or perhaps even counselling – rather than directives, might be a better way of improving relationship quality and happiness.’

Professor Mike Wyllie of the team of scientists that invented Viagra, described the results as an example of interesting statistics that do not reflect real life. He added: ‘A survey of any physician’s office would undoubtedly show many more patients there to discuss too little sex and few, if any, too much.’

 

Xmas Holidays

The charities using YOUR money to sabotage all efforts to rein back migration

  • Charities are increasingly mounting attacks on Government policies
  • Some have even threatened to take the Government to court 
  • But the charities receive millions in taxpayer funding every year 
  • A Mail investigation has now discovered how the Left use these organisations to undermine the elected Government and its policies

By

Guy Adams for the Daily Mail


Published:
18:47 EST, 21 August 2015

|
Updated:
03:19 EST, 22 August 2015

A time-honoured ritual is being played out amid the chaos gripping Calais this summer holiday season. It goes something like this.

First, a senior Tory politician, from David Cameron downwards, will outline a new measure to stop illegal immigration — such as building a tall fence — and deal with the unfolding crisis.

Next, they will tour TV and radio studios, hoping to convince voters that something is indeed ‘being done’ about the endless queue of men, women and children hoping to use the French port to sneak into Britain.

Scroll down for video 

Views: Pro-immigration charities have been increasingly vocal on Government policies around migration

Views: Pro-immigration charities have been increasingly vocal on Government policies around migration

Finally, in order to achieve what is regarded as ‘balance’, news outlets will give airtime and column inches to Left-wing opponents of the same new measure. They generally offer a vigorous critique of Tory immigration policy.

So it goes in the knockabout world of party politics, where our tradition of open democracy rightly dictates that every new Government policy proposal should be vigorously discussed (and, if necessary, criticised).

Yet something strange, and perhaps worrying, has lately come to characterise the nature of the immigration debate. For, in recent weeks, it has seemed as if opposition to Government immigration policy is being led not by MPs but by a hostile cabal of combative charities.

A succession of spokesmen from these organisations — whose political activities are governed by strict rules — have mounted a series of public attacks on the Government.

Often, their comments have been most pugnacious. Occasionally, they single out the Prime Minister for direct criticism. Sometimes, they could be legitimately described as propaganda.

For example, the head of one of the charities, Refugee Action’s Stephen Hale, contended recently that the Government was ‘seeking to create a climate of fear and misinformation’ about asylum-seekers.

Meanwhile, a PR officer for another, Asylum Aid, told the BBC that the crisis was ‘horrible to watch’ and ‘absolutely disgraceful’.

Another charity, the Refugee Council, joined the fray and argued that Mr Cameron was using ‘awful, irresponsible, dehumanising language’ about Calais immigrants, in a way which was ‘extremely inflammatory’.

Criticism: Refugee Action’s Stephen Hale (left) contended recently that the Government was ‘seeking to create a climate of fear and misinformation’ about asylum-seekers. Sir David Bell, a one-time SDP and Labour activist who is chairman of Common Purpose, is a trustee of the Esme Fairbairn Society

That allegation was a response to an aside by the Prime Minister, during a TV interview, in which he’d said that the root cause of the Calais situation is a ‘swarm of people coming across the Mediterranean, seeking a better life’.

A fourth charity, the Joint Council For The Welfare of Immigrants, also waded into the row, issuing a statement that accused Cameron of fomenting racism. It argued that ‘to refer to human beings as a “swarm” is demeaning, and ignites the flames of xenophobia.’

So far, so apocalyptic. But the charities which appear to be so upset by Tory immigration policy haven’t just been fighting a PR battle against the Government. They’ve also been taking the battle to them through the courts — funded by taxpayers.

To this end, a fifth charitable organisation, called Detention Action, recently managed to force the suspension of the Government’s ‘detained fast-track’ asylum process, on the grounds that it was ‘systematically unfair and unjust’.

More than 320 asylum-seekers have duly been released.

Funding: Labour MP Ruth Cadbury is a trustee of the Barrow Cadbury Trust, which gives millions to pro-immigration charities

Funding: Labour MP Ruth Cadbury is a trustee of the Barrow Cadbury Trust, which gives millions to pro-immigration charities

All of which highlights the fact that this small group of pro-immigration charities, rather than Her Majesty’s Opposition, the Labour Party, has led the attacks on government policy.

But perhaps this is a subtle ploy by a rudderless Labour Party, still paralysed by its leadership battle.

For a cynic might wonder if frontline Labour politicians have concluded that they don’t need to challenge Government immigration policy when the charity sector — which is riddled with Labour figures — is so apparently willing and able to go on the offensive.

Indeed, this story offers a fascinating insight into the methods by which the Left successfully infiltrates the Establishment, using charities and other public bodies to act as what conspiracy theorists often call ‘fifth columnists’, and quietly undermine the elected Government.

Take, for example, the aforementioned Refugee Action, which exists to ‘enable refugees and asylum-seekers to build new lives’. Stephen Hale, its chief executive, is a lifelong Labour activist who worked as a special advisor to Margaret Beckett and Michael Meacher when the pair were ministers in the Blair cabinet.

The governing body of trustees includes Stefanie Pfeil, a former employee of War On Want, and Andy Gregg, a Left-wing political activist from Islington who is friends on Facebook with Far-Left Labour leadership favourite Jeremy Corbyn.

Together, this group of people control an annual budget of more than £20 million. And intriguingly, given how vigorously Refugee Action seeks to criticise the Government, almost all of that money comes not from private donors, but from taxpayers.

Refugee Action’s most recent accounts reveal that £19.6 million of its £20.3 million annual budget comes from the Home Office — much of it as grants to help illegal immigrants and failed asylum-seekers return home and set up a new life. Almost all of the balance comes from public sources, including Liverpool and Bristol councils, and the Big Lottery Fund.

A mere £5,000 (or 0.025 per cent of its income) came from ‘sundry donations’ — or the pockets of members of the public.

Hidden: A Mail investigation has shown how the Left use the charities to undermine Government policy

Hidden: A Mail investigation has shown how the Left use the charities to undermine Government policy

Is this budget properly spent? We must assume so, although the recent scandal regarding the now-defunct Kids Company has revealed just how cavalier Governments can sometimes be when handing out cash to charities which like to criticise them.

Another organisation that relies on taxpayer funding, even as it devotes itself to seeking to undermine Government policy, is the Refugee Council, which was so quick to describe Mr Cameron as ‘awful’ and ‘irresponsible’. Citing its raison d’etre as ‘working directly with refugees and supporting them to rebuild their lives’, its celebrity ‘patrons’ are Labour-supporting actress Emma Thompson, left-wing author Hari Kunzru, and Lord (Bill) Morris, the former trade union leader.

Trustees include Vaughan Jones, a minister in the United Reformed Church and a longstanding Labour activist in Tower Hamlets who has been using his Twitter feed to endorse Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign for the Labour leadership.

Immediately following the general election campaign, Mr Jones used the same feed to call Tories ‘unpatriotic’ and describe Mr Cameron as ‘sick’ and a ‘bully’.

The morning after polling day he tweeted: ‘Tragic night. End of UK, EU, NHS, Labour Party and Welfare State.’ Mr Jones is entitled to that view, of course. Just as he and his fellow leftists within the Refugee Council appear to feel entitled to attack and undermine the elected Government whilst at the same time accepting millions of pounds of funding from them.

Accounts show that roughly £5,565,000 of the organisation’s £8 million annual budget comes from public money, including £4.1 million in grants from the Home Office, £516,000 from Sheffield Council, and £219,000 from the NHS.

Income from ‘donations’ is £1.5 million, or roughly 18 per cent of its budget.

Then there is Asylum Aid, which was officially set up to provide ‘free legal advice’ to asylum-seekers.

Left: Many of the people associated with these charities have strong links to the Labour party

Left: Many of the people associated with these charities have strong links to the Labour party

It has apparently decided to expand its activities into mounting a PR campaign against what a spokesman in a BBC interview called the ‘absolutely disgraceful’ Calais situation.

That spokesman is called Zoe Gardner. Her politics are patently clear. On election night, she used her Twitter feed to declare: ‘This exit poll [suggesting a Conservative victory] is not making me think I’ll have a happy night.’ Later, she offered another insight into her politics, when Ukip leader Nigel Farage suffered defeat in Thanet. ‘YESSS! Farage fail!’ she tweeted.

Asylum Aid’s chair of trustees is Cate Briddick, a Labour-supporting barrister who was active in Camberwell and Peckham Labour Party and is now an energetic supporter of Yvette Cooper’s campaign for the party leadership.

Another trustee, Tim Finch, works for the Left-wing IPPR (Institute for Public Policy Research) think-tank and spent the general election campaign knocking on doors for Labour candidate Polly Billington in Thurrock.

Surprisingly enough, the organisation run by this motley group has proved remarkably successful in gaining access to Government funds. Asylum Aid, which raised £423,000 last year (and spent £789,000), got £201,000 of that money from the Legal Aid Agency. It also enjoyed five-figure grants from Comic Relief, Children In Need, the UN, and the European Council On Refugees And Exiles.

Just £56,673 came from ‘membership and supporters’, representing 13 per cent of its income.

The Joint Council For The Welfare Of Immigrants, which would like the public to believe that the Prime Minister has been ‘igniting the flames of xenophobia’, is also cut from a similar cloth.

It has a Unison officer called Susan Cueva as a trustee, and gets £22,000 each year from the trade union. Its most recent annual report describes Unison and Unite as ‘partner organisations’.

Active members: For example, Asylum Aid’s chair of trustees is Cate Briddick, a Labour-supporting barrister who was active in Camberwell and Peckham Labour Party

Active members: For example, Asylum Aid’s chair of trustees is Cate Briddick, a Labour-supporting barrister who was active in Camberwell and Peckham Labour Party

Accounts show that the Joint Council, which ‘exists to promote justice and fairness in immigration’, has an annual budget of £320,000, of which £62,000 comes from Legal Aid, and another £128,000 in income from ‘training and conferences’.

Despite its high profile, it has only 270 members, and records income of just £983 a year from donations — 0.3 per cent of its budget.

Completing the set is Detention Action. It raises a mere £12,739 of its £260,808 income from donations.

Described as a charity which ‘supports and advises migrants held in detention’, it also acts as a vigorous purveyor of pro-immigration propaganda.

Reading its annual report, you might never imagine that a terrorist has ever exploited the asylum system in order to enter the UK, that no asylum-seeker has ever committed a criminal offence in Britain, or tried to abscond.

Instead, all asylum-seekers are presented as innocents who are being poorly treated at the hands of an authoritarian Home Office.

‘Visiting a detained person, you are plunged into a completely self-contained, high-security institution,’ according to Detention Action’s literature. ‘You see the tiredness in their eyes and greyness in their face.’

In fact, very few asylum-seekers are ever detained. At the end of 2014, there were 22,926 asylum applications in the process of being decided, involving 31,493 people. Yet official figures show that only 1,698 were behind bars.

But we digress. For in addition to the public money they have accessed, almost every high-profile immigration charity also enjoys financial support from a handful of less well-known but hugely wealthy grant-giving organisations.

Everywhere: The charities get money from the Government, but also from other grant-giving organisations which are riddled with Labour supporters

Everywhere: The charities get money from the Government, but also from other grant-giving organisations which are riddled with Labour supporters

And — surprise, surprise! — they also turn out to be quietly riddled with Labour supporters.

Perhaps the most intriguing is the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation. Founded by an Old Etonian City financier called Ian Fairbairn in 1961 in memory of his late wife, its funds have helped the Refugee Council, the Joint Council For The Welfare Of Immigrants, and Detention Action.

Created with a loose remit, ‘to further such charitable purpose or purposes as the Trustees in their absolute discretion shall think fit’, the Foundation boasts assets of £869 million and gives out more than £40 million a year in around 300 separate grants, making it one of the most powerful non-profit organisations in Britain.

Handing out this money is an 11-person board, which, over the years, has slowly, and surely, become a stronghold of the Left. Members include Tom Chandos, a New Labour peer and former think-tank chairman, Joe Docherty, a quangocrat who in 2012 tried (unsuccessfully) to become a Labour parliamentary candidate, William Sieghart, publisher husband of film-maker Molly Dineen, who made Tony Blair’s 1997 election broadcast, and Eleanor Updale, the author married to BBC presenter Jim Naughtie.

Trustees include Sir David Bell, a one-time SDP and Labour activist who is chairman of Common Purpose, a ‘leadership training’ charity that has been variously described as ‘pseudo masonic’ and ‘the Left’s equivalent of the old boys’ network’.

He also helped found the Media Standards Trust, a lobby group which spawned the organisation Hacked Off, which seeks to push for State involvement in the regulation of the print media.

Perhaps it is unsurprising, given this selection of power-brokers, that recent years have duly seen the Foundation dole out cash to a number of leftish causes, including the IPPR, once described as ‘Tony Blair’s favourite think-tank’, the Fabians, a think-tank formally affiliated to Labour, and Sir David’s own Media Standards Trust, which has benefited to the tune of more than £400,000.

Donations: The Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust has given generously to a selection of Left-wing organisations, including such pro-immigration groups as Detention Action

Donations: The Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust has given generously to a selection of Left-wing organisations, including such pro-immigration groups as Detention Action

On a still more nakedly political note, Esmee Fairbairn last year funded Green & Black Cross, a group who provide ‘legal support for protests against the government’s wave of massive spending cuts’ and the Child Poverty Action Group, which recently proclaimed that ‘children are at the bottom of the government’s list of priorities’.

Another wealthy charitable trust, which gives to Refugee Action, Asylum Aid, and Detention Action, is the Barrow Cadbury Trust, set up by the eponymous grandson of the chocolate company’s founder.

It has £85 million in assets, and hands out just under £5 million a year in grants, and boasts the Labour MP and Cadbury descendant Ruth Cadbury as a trustee.

A third is the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, set up by the late publishing mogul, Labour donor and Blairite peer. It has around £600 million in assets, spends around £25 million a year, and has given to a variety of refugee and asylum groups including Detention Action. Trustees include Estelle Morris, the former Labour education secretary.

Finally, there’s the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, set up by the Victorian confectionery magnate to ‘promote peace’.

It has £200 million in assets, spends around £6.7 million each year, and has given generously to a selection of Left-wing organisations, including such pro-immigration groups as Detention Action.

Not long ago, the Joseph Rowntree Trust found itself in the news after deciding to fund, until January 2014, the Muslim ‘human rights’ group Cage. A year after the funding was stopped, Cage described Jihadi John, the masked ISIS executioner who featured in the notorious filmed beheadings of hostages, as ‘kind and gentle’.

Despite being rapped on the knuckles by the Charities Commission, CAGE won a landmark High Court ruling that the commission must face a judicial review of its decision to pressure charities not to fund the controversial group linked to ISIS executioners.

And so it seems these insidious fifth columnists — funded by taxpayers, of course, and hijacked by the Left — are able to continue to give succour to Britain’s enemies and undermine all attempts to control illegal immigration.

 

Xmas Holidays

West Yorkshire Police fine drivers more than $436k illegally

  • Blunder by West Yorkshire Police saw 16,000 illegal parking tickets issued
  • In 2006, force mistakenly granted PCSOs powers they shouldn’t have had
  • Motorists were fined more than £435,000 but could now be set for a refund
  • Error continued for nearly a decade before it came to the force’s attention 

By

Sam Tonkin For Mailonline


Published:
05:55 EST, 21 August 2015

|
Updated:
08:00 EST, 21 August 2015

Around 16,000 motorists were hit with illegal parking fines amounting to almost half a million pounds after a police force mistakenly granted PCSOs powers they shouldn’t have had.

The blunder by West Yorkshire Police means the force could be looking at a sizable payout to refund drivers who were wrongly punished over a period of almost a decade.

Members of the public have paid more than £435,000 to the courts after being fined for illegally parking by the community officers from 2006 onwards.

Error: An estimated 16,000 motorists are believed to have been handed illegal parking fines after West Yorkshire Police force mistakenly granted PCSOs (not pictured, file photo) powers they shouldn't have had

Error: An estimated 16,000 motorists are believed to have been handed illegal parking fines after West Yorkshire Police force mistakenly granted PCSOs (not pictured, file photo) powers they shouldn’t have had

Other tickets may have been issued in similar circumstances for up to three years earlier, the force said. 

Assistant Chief Constable Andy Battle said it was only when the force reviewed PCSO powers five months ago that the error came to light.

He said: ‘West Yorkshire Police carried out a review of PCSO powers in March 2015, at which time we discovered that PCSOs had not been correctly granted powers to issue non-endorsable Police Fixed Penalty Notices for parking offences.

‘This was due to an anomaly in the way that powers can be allocated and meant in effect that PCSOs were not empowered to give tickets issued to vehicles illegally parked.

‘We would like to emphasise that no PCSOs knowingly acted beyond their powers and they believed, as did the force at that time, that they were acting correctly.’

He said the force had appointed PCSOs and then granted them traffic warden powers to issue tickets to illegally parked vehicles.

Mistake: More than £435,000 worth of illegal parking fines were handed out by West Yorkshire PCSOs from 2006 onwards
Only traffic wardens (file photo) have powers to issue tickets to illegally parked vehicles

Mistake: More than £435,000 worth of illegal parking fines were handed out by West Yorkshire PCSOs from 2006 onwards. Only traffic wardens (pictured right) have powers to issue tickets to illegally parked vehicles

POWERS OF ‘BLUNKETT’S BOBBIES’ 

Police Community Support Officers were launched in England and Wales in 2002 to tackle the fear of crime and provide back up to forces. 

Nicknamed Blunkett’s Bobbies after the Home Secretary who created them, their job is to deal with minor offences and support frontline policing with house-to-house enquiries, providing crime prevention advice, and guarding crime scenes.

Their powers extend to seizing vehicles, carrying out road checks and controlling traffic. PCSOs can also seize alcohol, tobacco and drugs.

They can issue fixed penalty notices to people who cycle on a footpath, litter or commit offences under dog control orders, but these powers do not extend to handing out parking tickets.

Penalties may also be issued for disorder or truancy, dog fouling or graffiti.

PCSOs can detain people but they cannot arrest anyone, interview prisoners or carry out the high risk tasks of police officers.

Their aim is to reassure and advise the public, and deter crime and anti-social behaviour with visible officers on foot patrol.

When West Yorkshire Police reviewed the powers, it realised road traffic legislation meant the force should instead have appointed traffic wardens and granted them PCSO powers, so they could give the fines.

The force was unable to say at this stage how members of the public could find out if they had been given an illegal parking ticket and whether they had grounds for a refund.

A process for establishing a way for this to be done is likely to take several weeks, a spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said, adding that the ‘technicalities’ were being worked out.

Illegal parking tickets were issued right across West Yorkshire, the force confirmed, including towns and cities such as Leeds, Halifax, Huddersfield and Bradford.

The spokesman added: ‘We are currently assessing the scale of this issue, and what it means to motorists. 

‘Clearly this is a very complex issue and we are working through a process with HM Courts & Tribunals Service to establish how to resolve matters regarding affected motorists. 

‘This will include whether drivers issued tickets by PCSOs who did not have appropriate powers will be entitled to refunds for tickets issued, and, if so, how to set up a process for that to take place.’ 

Assistant Chief Constable Battle said: ‘We want to reassure the public that this issue was addressed as soon as it came to light.’

He said the force would publish further details on guidance about possible refunds on its website www.westyorkshire.police.uk as soon as possible. 

It comes less than a year after a West Yorkshire council was forced to repay thousands of parking fines it handed out over six years after a legal blunder saw around 7,000 tickets declared null and void.

Serious errors were uncovered in Calderdale Council’s legal paperwork, meaning it hadn’t had the right to enforce fines for on-street parking breaches in Halifax town centre since 2008.

The blunder was uncovered after a parking ticket was successfully challenged by a member of the public. 

Thousands of motorists were able to claim refunds and the error is believed to have cost the council around half a million pounds.

Xmas Holidays

Global markets ‘panic’ as Greek PM Alexis Tsipras resigns and China suffers

  • London stock market falls for ninth day running with 1.5% slide
  • Asian stock plunge overnight after China factory output slumps 
  • Greek PM Tsipras resigns amid bailout wrangle 
  • Oil crashes to lowest level since March 2009, hitting $46.32 a barrel
  • Footsie has lost £195billion since record high on April 27

By

Adrian Lowery for Thisismoney.co.uk

and
Hugo Duncan for the Daily Mail


Published:
15:57 EST, 20 August 2015

|
Updated:
09:43 EST, 21 August 2015

Global stock markets are in ‘panic mode’ traders warned today as stocks in Europe and Asia plunged again amid further bad news on China’s economy and the resignation of the Greek prime minister.

An overnight survey showed factory production in China contracting at its fastest pace since 2009, which sent Shanghai stocks sliding nearly 5 per cent – and the ramifications were felt in Europe today.

Along with the resignation of Alexander Tsipras – which left Greece facing a snap election and further political uncertainty – that compounded a dismal day on the London stock market yesterday and sent the FTSE 100 index down another 99.3 points to 6,268.6, a fall of 1.5 per cent.

‘Global markets are in panic mode as the full scale of China’s slowdown becomes clearer,’ Angus Nicholson, market analyst at IG, said in a note.

‘The word on everyone’s lips is deflation – poison for equity markets. The phenomenal six-year bull market may finally meet its match in China-induced global deflation.’ 

China’s factory sector shrank at its fastest pace in almost six and a half years in August as domestic and export demand dwindled. Coming on the heels of weaker-than-expected data in July, it stoked fears of a major slowdown in the world’s second-biggest economy.

The French and German stock markets were also down 0.6-0.7 per cent today, un-nerved more by the gloom in Asia than by the expected exit of Mr Tsipras, which paves the way for a re-election of his Syriza party, purged of radical leftists who object to his deal with eurozone and IMF creditors.

The falls across European stock markets mirrored Wall Street last night where the Dow Jones closed 2 per cent down.

Oil has also crashed to its lowest level since March 2009, during the depths of the Great Recession, hitting $46.32 a barrel before recovering. The world oil prices is on track for its longest losing streak since 1986, when OPEC ramped up production and sent it as low as $10 a barrel.

The FTSE 100 index is now at eight-month lows, with losses since its record high four months ago standing at nearly £200billion, or 11 per cent. That means it has entered a ‘technical correction’ – when a market falls 10 per cent or more from its recent peak. A ‘bear market’ is called when an index is down 20 per cent.

Maike Currie at Fidelity Personal Investing said that while this would spook some investors, ‘It is important to remember that the FTSE 100 is not a reflection of the domestic economy, but rather a reflection of a handful of sectors like mining, oil and gas which account for about a quarter of the value of the index and they have performed poorly as commodity prices have plummeted.

‘We have enjoyed a bull market for a number of years now, and as bull markets mature, volatility tends to rise. With the world’s largest economy, the US, moving towards an interest rate rise, choppier market conditions were always on the cards as investor angst mounts and many choose to cash in.’ 

Economic output in China rose 7.4 per cent last year – its slowest pace in 24 years – and Beijing looks set to miss its full-year growth target of ‘around 7 per cent’ this year. 

The Chinese government is also struggling to restore calm to Chinese stock markets with the main index in Shanghai down nearly 30 per cent since June.  

Analysts said there have been winners and losers on the UK stock market this year, with housing and construction stocks among the best performers.

The slump in the oil price – from around $115 a barrel last summer – has hit operators in the North Sea while the meltdown on the commodity markets has seen the price of metals plunge, hurting mining stocks.

‘Copper is being crushed under the weight of the depressing manufacturing numbers from China,’ said David Madden, market analyst at IG, ‘and Beijing must go back to the drawing board and come up with an even more vigorous plan to keep the economy growing at a high rate.’ 

European stock markets tumbled yesterday with Milan down 2.6 per cent, Frankfurt 2.3 per cent, Paris 2.1 per cent and Madrid 1.8 per cent. 

 

Xmas Holidays

Cilla Black’s funeral hears tributes by Cliff Richard in Liverpool as thousands turn out

  • The funeral of Cilla Black took place today at St Mary’s Church, Woolton in her home city of Liverpool
  • Thousands of fans lined the streets and well-wishers threw flowers on the hearse carrying the star’s coffin
  • Sir Cliff Richard performed a gospel song as he paid tribute to ‘the greatest TV presenter in the world’
  • Other celebrity friends including Christopher Biggins and Jimmy Tarbuck – who called Cilla ‘Liverpool’s Cinderella’ – also gave readings at the service
  • Stars such as Tom Jones, Carol Vorderman and Andrew Lloyd Webber were in attendance at the funeral
  • The beloved star died earlier this month after falling and hitting her head at her villa on the Costa del Sol, Spain

By

Hugo Gye for MailOnline


Published:
05:09 EST, 20 August 2015

|
Updated:
09:52 EST, 20 August 2015

Sir Cliff Richard today called Cilla Black ‘the greatest TV presenter in the world’ as he performed a moving musical tribute at her funeral, held in the same church where she married her beloved husband Bobby.

Celebrity friends including Tom Jones, Carol Vorderman, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Les Dennis and Lorraine Chase were in attendance to pay their final respects to Cilla at St Mary’s, Woolnoth in her home city of Liverpool.

Jimmy Tarbuck called the star ‘Liverpool’s Cinderella’ during the moving service – which featured music by The Beatles as well as Cilla’s own Anyone Who Had A Heart – while Paul O’Grady gave a humorous speech which concluded: ‘Ta-ra girl, I’ll see you on life’s highway.’

Thousands of fans lined the two-mile route of funeral cortege, which was forced to slow down to allow well-wishers to throw roses on top of the hearse in a symbol of their love for the late star.

Cilla's last goodbye: A well-wisher throws a rose at Cilla Black's hearse carrying her coffin outside St Mary's church in Liverpool

Cilla’s last goodbye: A well-wisher throws a rose at Cilla Black’s hearse carrying her coffin outside St Mary’s church in Liverpool

Crowds: Fans have lined the street near the church to pay their respects to the beloved singer and TV presenter

Waiting: The crowds were confined behind barriers because there were so many well-wishers in attendance

Ceremony: Cilla Black's coffin in St Mary's church, Woolnoth during her funeral service as her three sons look on in the background

Ceremony: Cilla Black’s coffin in St Mary’s church, Woolnoth during her funeral service as her three sons look on in the background

Casket: Pallbearers carrying Cilla Black's coffin into the church where her funeral was being held in Liverpool

Casket: Pallbearers carrying Cilla Black’s coffin into the church where her funeral was being held in Liverpool

Funeral: The first car in Cilla Black's funeral cortege, covered in flowers as it arrives for the ceremony at St Mary's church, Woolton

Funeral: The first car in Cilla Black’s funeral cortege, covered in flowers as it arrives for the ceremony at St Mary’s church, Woolton

Cilla’s coffin was carried into the church to the sound of Debussy’s Clair de Lune and placed carefully at the front of the aisle. The congregation then sang the opening hymn All Things Bright and Beautiful. 

Sir Cliff Richard – who has largely avoided Britain since his home was raided by police investigating sex abuse allegations a year ago – then paid a musical tribute to his dear friend, performing a gospel song, Faithful One, at the service.

He described Cilla as ‘the greatest TV presenter of all time’ and praised ‘all the fabulous things about her’, adding: ‘I’m not sure what to say because I can’t think of Cilla in a past tense.’

There was laughter as Sir Cliff told an anecdote about her ‘lovely legs’ and added that he has ‘many fond memories of her’.

The singer told the congregation: ‘I cannot think of Cilla in the past tense. It just seems outrageous. There are certain people that you believe will always be there.

‘Of course she has been taken from us but I think that the way to get past all this is to think positive and all the things that were fabulous about her.

‘Just being driven here was a fantastic experience really – you forget how much people loved her. It wasn’t just that she was a fabulous pop singer. She took the country by storm and many other countries in the world too because she became our greatest TV presenter probably of all time.’ 

Tribute: Sir Cliff Richard gave a warm and witty speech describing his memories of his dear friend Cilla before singing Faithful One

'Liverpool's Cinderella': Jimmy Tarbuck, a childhood friend of Cilla's, led the Prayers of the Faithful

‘Liverpool’s Cinderella': Jimmy Tarbuck, a childhood friend of Cilla’s, led the Prayers of the Faithful, while Paul O’Grady wished Cilla ‘Ta-ra, girl’ in a poignant series of recollections

Eulogies: Christopher Biggins, left, and Cilla’s son Robert Willis, right, gave readings at the service today

In the pews: Cilla's sons Robert and Ben Willis along with their family during the service this afternoon

In the pews: Cilla’s sons Robert and Ben Willis along with their family during the service this afternoon

Congregation: A view of St Mary's church packed with mourners during the funeral service today

Congregation: A view of St Mary’s church packed with mourners during the funeral service today

Teary: Carol Vorderman and Jimmy Tarbuck both looked emotional as they walked out of the church after the service

Addressing the late star in a poignant message, Sir Cliff said: ‘Cilla, this is just a hiccup in our relationship, and we will see you again.’

He held up a photograph of Cilla from the order of service before singing Faithful One in tribute to his friend, looking obviously moved during the musical performance. 

Her son Robert Willis said Cilla was a ‘wonderful lady who had touched all our lives and brought joy and laughter’ to those she knew.

‘Her pure enthusiasm, self belief and wonderful sense of humour made being with her a joy and a pleasure,’ he added.

He said she was a ‘trailblazer in the fields of music and television’ and ‘set the bar high and it’s still there’.

‘Those who knew her saw her vulnerability but we loved her all the more for it,’ Mr Willis continued. ‘She treated everyone just as she saw them, no matter their background.’

Stars: Carol Vorderman and Tom Jones were both dressed in mourner’s black as they arrived for the funeral; Sir Tom greeted Paul O’Grady with a hug inside the church

Tributes: Cilla’s celebrity friends Paul O’Grady, left, and Sir Cliff Richard, right, arriving at the church where they were set to perform

Congregation: Pattie Boyd and Andrew Lloyd were among the many famous names sitting together in the church

Congregation: Pattie Boyd and Andrew Lloyd were among the many famous names sitting together in the church

‘TA-RA GIRL, SEE YOU ON LIFE’S HIGHWAY': PAUL O’GRADY DELIVERS AN EMOTIONAL TRIBUTE TO CILLA

Comedian Paul O’Grady delivered a warm tribute which was filled with laughter as he recalled his ‘great friend’.

He said: ‘She taught me lots of things – mainly never to turn right on the plane. She was a great friend. She was full of fun. She was a wonderful woman.

‘She was talented. She was so witty. She adored family. She loved her sons. She loved her grandchildren. She was so proud that she came from Scottie Road.’

There were chuckles as he said in church: ‘I am just so grateful that she allowed me into her whirlwind of a life and we spend nearly two decades together hellraising – if you pardon the expression.

‘I loved her dearly. She was just such a great friend. I do not know what I am going to do really – the light went off a couple of weeks ago and it has not gone back on yet. I am just going to miss her so much.

‘Cilla, I would just like to say – thanks for all the fun, thanks for all the laughs. Ta-ra girl, I will see you on life’s highway’.’

As O’Grady left the lectern to applause and laughter from the congregation, he kissed his fingers and gently pressed them on the coffin as he went back to his seat.

There was laughter and applause after the bishop quipped ‘now say three Hail Marys’ to O’Grady in the wake of his unorthodox homage to Cilla.

Mr Willis said his parents were ‘two working class kids’ and added that Cilla – whom he called ‘a daughter of Liverpool’ – never fully recovered after the death of her beloved husband Bobby.

He continued: ‘My father Bob always said, “We don’t work for the business, we make the business work for us.” The life and love they shared made her complete.

‘They were two working class kids who grew up together and made the impossible possible. When he died she was never complete again, Bob was her soul-mate and they are together again.’ 

Close friend Jimmy Tarbuck stepped up to the front of the church to deliver the Prayers of the Faithful.

He told the congregation: ‘I usually start by saying how nice and good it is to be here – today that is not the case. It is a sad day and I am sorry to be here for obvious reasons.’

Tarbuck’s voice cracked and he appeared close to tears as he described Cilla as ‘a treasured friend’ and ‘Liverpool’s Cinderella’.

‘She was the first lady of showbusiness, to be born a lady is an accident, to die one is an achievement,’ he said.

Son Ben Willis, who red a poem by Rabindranath Tagore, said Cilla was ‘always young at heart’ and added: ‘I think this was one of the reasons why so many people loved her dearly.’

He continued that his father ‘really was her world’ and that she was ‘forced to grow up for the first time’ when he died.

There was laughter as he added that she ‘only really grew up a little’.

‘She loved being a star, she lived to entertain and make people happy,’ he said. ‘Even though mum was a star for over 50 years she was always happy to laugh at herself.’

He added that he took solace that Cilla was ‘in one of her most favourite places in the world’ when she died.

‘She was doing one of the things she loved most – sunbathing and listening to music which was, after all, her first love.’

Cilla’s hit Anyone Who Had A Heart was played as the congregation received communion.

Comedian Paul O’Grady gave a warm tribute which drew extended laughter from the crowd – concluding, ‘Ta-ra girl, I will see you on life’s highway.’

He said: ‘I am just so grateful that she allowed me into her whirlwind of a life and we spend nearly two decades together hellraising – if you pardon the expression.

As O’Grady left the lectern to applause from the congregation, he kissed his fingers and gently pressed them on the coffin as he went back to his seat.

Arriving: Actress Lorraine Chase and Conservative MP Nigel Evans outside the church

Embrace: Les Dennis, left, and Carol Vorderman, right, greeting other mourners outside the church before the ceremony

Guest: Comedian Bob Carolgees, famous for appearing with puppet Spit the Dog, arrived with his partner Tricia Liedi

Guest: Comedian Bob Carolgees, famous for appearing with puppet Spit the Dog, arrived with his partner Tricia Liedi

Paying their respects: Businessman John Madejski, left, and Christopher Biggins, right, outside the church

Legend: Cilla, pictured right with husband Bobby in the 1960s, died earlier this month at the 72

Cilla’s coffin was carried out as The Beatles hit The Long and Winding Road played to the congregation.

The mourners erupted into spontaneous applause as the pall-bearers carried her out of the church and into a waiting hearse.

A cascade of white lilies was placed over the coffin before the vehicle pulled away.

Moving tribute: A fan throws a red rose on top of the hearse carrying Cilla's coffin to church

Moving tribute: A fan throws a red rose on top of the hearse carrying Cilla’s coffin to church

On the way to church: The car, with her photograph in the front, covered in roses during its journey

On the way to church: The car, with her photograph in the front, covered in roses during its journey

Flowers spelling out Cilla's name were placed in the window of the hearse carrying her body to the church

Flowers spelling out Cilla’s name were placed in the window of the hearse carrying her body to the church

Poster: This banner was put up along the cortege route showing Liverpool residents' affection for the star

Poster: This banner was put up along the cortege route showing Liverpool residents’ affection for the star

Balloons: Flower shop workers spell out Cilla's name along the funeral route

Balloons: Flower shop workers spell out Cilla’s name along the funeral route

Outside the church earlier, Tarbuck – who knew Black since he was 15 – said: ‘She was Liverpool’s Cinderella, if you wrote that story, that’s Cilla Black’s life.

‘Unfortunately she’s left us too early, it’s dreadful. If you met Cilla you liked her, that’s nice to know, she was a delightful girl.’

The 75-year-old said Black would be remembered as ‘the girl next door, somebody’s favourite auntie, just a nice, nice person’.

Singer Sir Tom Jones said Cilla had the ‘common touch’ and never forgot her working class roots.

‘She was always happy and she always had the common touch which I feel I’ve got as well,’ he said outside the church in an interview with Sky News. ‘We come from working class people and she never forgot it, she was always the same. Showbusiness never affected her and I like that.’

Others guests include Gerry and the Pacemakers singer Gerry Marsden, former BBC director-general Lord Birt, television producer Nigel Lythgoe, actress Lorraine Chase, comedian Ted Robbins and former newsreader Gordon Burns. 

Family: Cilla's son Robert Willis, centre, with other relatives outside the funeral home in the run-up to the ceremony

Family: Cilla’s son Robert Willis, centre, with other relatives outside the funeral home in the run-up to the ceremony

In mourning: Cilla’s other sons Ben, left, and Jack, right, on their way to the funeral ceremony

Overcome with emotion: A mourner weeps as she arrives for the funeral at the church where Cilla was married

Overcome with emotion: A mourner weeps as she arrives for the funeral at the church where Cilla was married

Messages: Joan Collins was one of many people to send flowers which were assembled outside the church

STARS PAY TRIBUTE TO ‘NATION’S BIG SISTER’ IN THEIR OWN WORDS 

‘The greatest TV presenter of all time’ – Cliff Richard

‘Ta-ra girl, I’ll see you on life’s highway’ – Paul O’Grady

‘She was Liverpool’s Cinderella, if you wrote a story – that’s her life’ – Jimmy Tarbuck

‘The most professional woman presenter certainly we’ve ever had’ – Carol Vorderman

‘She was more than a national treasure, she was the nation’s favourite big sister’ – Les Dennis

‘You are irreplaceable’ – Bruce Forsyth and his wife Melania

‘All our love to our darlin’ Cilla’ – Paul McCartney

‘Always bubbly – as bubbly as the champagne she liked’ – Andrew Lloyd Webber

Biggins said the family had a little party in a hotel last night to remember her, and that her sons Robert and Ben, who are speaking at the funeral, are doing ‘amazingly well’.

He said: ‘You think she’s going to ring and say, “Shall we go to the Ivy?” or you’re going to turn up somewhere and she’s going to be there. The reality is that she’s not but we’re going to give her a good send off today, a really good send off.’

And Biggins said he thought Black would love the way in which her life is being celebrated, saying: ‘I think she’s up there with a glass of champagne and Bobby having a laugh and looking to see who’s coming, who’s not here, why aren’t they here, and just having a good time.’

Margaret Heaton, 66, from Manchester said she was the first to arrive at barrier gates outside St Mary’s this morning – at 5.45am, eight hours before the funeral was set to begin.

She said: ‘I brought her favourite flowers, cream roses. I have got very fond memories of Cilla and the 60’s, me and my friend, who I have lost, singing and dancing. Just fantastic memories.’

Another of the first people to arrive at the church was Robert Ross, one of Cilla’s neighbours from her childhood home in Scotland Road.

‘She was my next door neighbour,’ he said. ‘She was a very bright girl, very down-to-earth. I remember her growing up, singing and dancing, going to different parties, going down to the Cavern Club.

‘She was the Queen of Liverpool, she was. She will be sadly missed.’

Spectators: The crowds were several rows deep because so many fans had gathered for the service

Spectators: The crowds were several rows deep because so many fans had gathered for the service

Anticipation: Fans gathered outside St Mary's Church in Liverpool ready for Cilla Black's funeral taking place today

Anticipation: Fans gathered outside St Mary’s Church in Liverpool ready for Cilla Black’s funeral taking place today

Interest: Fans reading the order of service for the funeral as they wait for the start of the ceremony

Interest: Fans reading the order of service for the funeral as they wait for the start of the ceremony

Preparation: A floral tribute spelling out 'Cilla' is carried into St Mary's Church by an official ahead of the star's funeral

Preparation: A floral tribute spelling out ‘Cilla’ is carried into St Mary’s Church by an official ahead of the star’s funeral

 

Hazel Cowell, 70, said: ‘I remember her getting the wedding blessing at this church 47 years ago. We were able to see right into the church.’

Linda Milne, 63, came down from Dundee to be at today’s memorial, and said: ‘I just came to pay my respects really. I grew up in the 60’s and loved her music.’

A former Blind Date contest, Mark Finch, also travelled from Scotland for the funeral. He said: ‘What a lovely woman, an absolute pleasure to meet. Such a down-to-earth woman, you couldn’t wish to meet someone so down to earth.’

Some bystanders fainted outside the church as the cortege arrived at the church.

One onlooker said: ‘There was a few people who fainted but I think it was because it got too hot. One woman fell and fainted a few times.

‘She was quite elderly but was okay and had her family around her. The St John Ambulance have been busy.’

Flowers: A floral tribute in the shape of the treble clef was one of many gifts sent by well-wishers

Flowers: A floral tribute in the shape of the treble clef was one of many gifts sent by well-wishers

Entrance: A huge bouquet of flowers being carried into the church during the run-up to the funeral

Entrance: A huge bouquet of flowers being carried into the church during the run-up to the funeral

Devotion: Fans hold up Cilla's records and newspaper front pages as they wait for the start of the ceremony

Devotion: Fans hold up Cilla’s records and newspaper front pages as they wait for the start of the ceremony

Much-missed: The number of fans lining the routs is testimony to the love many Liverpool residents have for Cilla

Much-missed: The number of fans lining the routs is testimony to the love many Liverpool residents have for Cilla

The headstone of her parents John and Pricilla White. Cilla will be buried alongside them at a private service in Allerton Cemetery today

The headstone of her parents John and Pricilla White. Cilla will be buried alongside them at a private service in Allerton Cemetery today

Miss Black’s coffin entered the church, which has been decorated with large bouquets of white lilies and roses, to Debussy’s Clair de Lune, before the congregation sang All Things Bright And Beautiful

Miss Black’s coffin entered the church, which has been decorated with large bouquets of white lilies and roses, to Debussy’s Clair de Lune, before the congregation sang All Things Bright And Beautiful

Grief: Mourners left flowers on the Cavern Club's 'Wall of Fame' where Cilla's name is near The Who and The Beatles

Grief: Mourners left flowers on the Cavern Club’s ‘Wall of Fame’ where Cilla’s name is near The Who and The Beatles

‘OUR MUM, OUR NAN, OUR SISTER, OUR INSPIRATION, OUR FRIEND': MOVING PRAYER READ OUT BY JIMMY TARBUCK

For Cilla who, when she was baptised, was given the pledge of eternal life, that she may now be admitted to the company of the saints with Bobby, and their daughter Ellen. Lord, hear us.

Lord, graciously hear us.

For Robert, Ben and Jack her beloved sons, and John and Allan, her beloved brothers and their families and friends, that they will continue to be inspired by her memory. Lord, hear us.

Lord, graciously hear us.

For those whose lives ‘our’ Cilla has touched. That they will continue to remember her in their prayers. Lord, hear us.

Lord, graciously hear us.

For the people of Liverpool, young and old, who took her to their hearts. Lord, hear us.

Lord, graciously hear us.

For her many fans and admirers, who appreciated her many gifts, as entertainer and singer. May they fill the gap she has left in their lives, as with family and friends, with bouquets of treasured memories. Lord, hear us.

Lord, graciously hear us.

For each and everyone in St Mary’s Church today. She was our mum, our nan, our sister, our inspiration, our treasured friend. May she find eternal peace. Lord, hear us.

Lord, graciously hear us.

 

Xmas Holidays

Tom Jones attends Cilla Black’s funeral after The Voice UK departure

By

Sharnaz Shahid for MailOnline


Published:
08:07 EST, 20 August 2015

|
Updated:
09:52 EST, 20 August 2015

Sir Tom Jones was among one of the many famous faces attending Cilla Black’s funeral on Thursday.

The 75-year-old singer was seen for the first time since the shock announcement of his unceremonious departure from The Voice UK.

He joined the likes of Carol Vorderman, Cliff Richard and Paul O’Grady to pay his final respects to the late media personality, who is set to buried at St Mary’s, Woolnoth in her home city of Liverpool.

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Paying his respects: Sir Tom Jones was among one of the many famous faces attending Cilla Black’s funeral on Thursday

Paying his respects: Sir Tom Jones was among one of the many famous faces attending Cilla Black’s funeral on Thursday

Cilla, who was a long-time friend of the Welsh crooner, died on August 1 after a fall at her holiday villa in Spain.

Looking slightly downcast, Tom was seen giving TV presenter Paul a warm embrace inside the church.

Other celebrities who attended the service included actor Christopher Biggins, music composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, Coronation Street star Les Dennis and British actress Lorraine Chase.

Sombre: The 75-year-old singer was seen for the first time since the shock announcement of his unceremonious departure from The Voice UK

Sombre: The 75-year-old singer was seen for the first time since the shock announcement of his unceremonious departure from The Voice UK

Saying goodbye: The singing sensation was dressed in mourner's black as he arrived for the funeral

Saying goodbye: The singing sensation was dressed in mourner’s black as he arrived for the funeral

It was only last week that Tom was sensationally dropped from The Voice after serving as a coach for four years – and according to latest reports, BBC bosses believed the star was ‘disengaged’ and decided to sack him before the last series ended.

The musical legend, who appeared on the BBC 1 show since the first series in 2012, revealed he and his team were ‘unaware’ of any issues and that the main objection was how he was told about his exit.

‘It’s not that I was let go, it is how it was handled,’ he said on Monday evening, reports The Mirror newspaper. ‘If indeed the producers were planning a cast change back in March/April, after the most successful year of the series in terms of viewer numbers, a warm and civilised conversation was in order at that time.’

In mourning: The Welsh crooner joined the joined the likes of Carol Vorderman and Mike McCartney to pay his final respects

In mourning: The Welsh crooner joined the joined the likes of Carol Vorderman and Mike McCartney to pay his final respects

Special place: The stars arrived for the funeral at the church where Cilla was married

Special place: The stars arrived for the funeral at the church where Cilla was married

Doing their thing: Both Carol and Tom happily stopped for photographs before the service

Doing their thing: Both Carol and Tom happily stopped for photographs before the service

Tributes: (L-R) Tom and Mike were seen walking towards the church with Ted Robbins and Les Dennis

Tributes: (L-R) Tom and Mike were seen walking towards the church with Ted Robbins and Les Dennis

He added: ‘The executives in charge couldn’t be ladies and gentlemen about it, that they were filled with paranoia about a “leak” above all, is deeply insulting to our professionalism.’

His replacement is Boy George, while Rita Ora’s space on the panel will be taken by Paloma Faith.

Upon the announcement, Sir Tom took to social media himself to slam bosses’ behaviour, revealing the decision had been made ‘with no consultation or conversation of any kind’.

He posted on Facebook: ‘About The Voice UK: In good faith, as part of the team, I’d put the time in my schedule to be involved in series five, as I’ve done for the last four years.

Taking his place: Looking slightly downcast, the fan favourite was seen passing along a pew to take a seat 

Taking his place: Looking slightly downcast, the fan favourite was seen passing along a pew to take a seat 

Supportive:  Tom was seen giving TV presenter Paul O'Grady a warm embrace inside the church

Supportive: Tom was seen giving TV presenter Paul O’Grady a warm embrace inside the church

Good friends: The two stars stopped to have a quick chat ahead of the ceremony

Good friends: The two stars stopped to have a quick chat ahead of the ceremony

Familiar face: Nigel Lythgoe headed over to Tom to say a quick hello

Familiar face: Nigel Lythgoe headed over to Tom to say a quick hello

Forlorn: The Welsh star watched Cilla's loved ones give service readings during the ceremony

Forlorn: The Welsh star watched Cilla’s loved ones give service readings during the ceremony

‘I’ve supported the show and the BBC since the beginning. I was told yesterday, with no consultation or conversation of any kind, that I would not be returning. Having been through plenty of transformations throughout the years, I support and admire creative change.

‘But being informed, as a matter of duty and respect, is an important part of creative relationships. This sub-standard behaviour from the executives is very disappointing.

‘I will always admire the courage of the performers who participate in the show, as well as all the production staff who worked tirelessly to make a great family viewing experience for the audience at home. I wish the show well.’

Meanwhile, BBC bosses have released a statement in a bid to defend the move, insisting Tom was only told about the decision to drop him at the last minute in a bid to keep the new coaches a secret.

Long-time friends: Tom and Steptoe's Harry H Corbett joined Cilla on stage during an appearance on her TV show in February 1968

Long-time friends: Tom and Steptoe’s Harry H Corbett joined Cilla on stage during an appearance on her TV show in February 1968

A spokesperson said: ‘The final decision on the coaches’ line-up for series 5 of The Voice was only taken on Wednesday and Tom’s team was informed early yesterday morning.

‘We then announced it to the press so that it didn’t leak. This has been the same every year and no role was ever promised.’

Sir Tom, who just last month said he was looking forward to being back on the show, is the oldest judge to have worked on the programme and was popular with many contestants who valued his experience.

He mentored Leanne Mitchell to victory in the first series. He has sold more than 100million records and topped the charts around the globe with hits such as Green, Green Grass of Home, Delilah and Sex Bomb.

 'How it was handled was insulting': Sir Tom recently hit out at BBC bosses following his unceremonious exit from The Voice UK, after serving as a coach for four years

 ‘How it was handled was insulting': Sir Tom recently hit out at BBC bosses following his unceremonious exit from The Voice UK, after serving as a coach for four years

Switch up: Ricky Wilson (left) and Will.i.am (right) are expected to return, while Rita Ora (second from right) has left to join rival competition The X Factor

Switch up: Ricky Wilson (left) and Will.i.am (right) are expected to return, while Rita Ora (second from right) has left to join rival competition The X Factor

Xmas Holidays

Mary Berry reveals who’s leaving Great British Bake Off in Chris Evans interview

  • TV judge Mary Berry was talking about what viewers can expect on show
  • She then let slip that three people have left the programme
  • Berry, 80, then revealed name of contestant – much to listeners’ annoyance

By

Anucyia Victor for MailOnline


Published:
04:16 EST, 19 August 2015

|
Updated:
08:40 EST, 19 August 2015

Mary Berry has inadvertently revealed the name of the third contestant leaving Great British Bake Off tonight.

Speaking on Chris Evans’ breakfast radio show this morning, the BBC judge let slip that Dorret Conway failed to make it through to the four episode during a live phone interview. 

Discussing tonight’s Bread Week challenge, Mary who was speaking from her kitchen, revealed that three people were no longer in the show – but fans of the programme only know of two.

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Mary Berry presents the Great British Bake Off with Paul Hollywood

Mary Berry presents the Great British Bake Off with Paul Hollywood

Speaking on the BBC Breakfast show, Chris Evans said: ‘Well we’ve already lost two. You don’t hang around do you, Mary?’

To which Mary replied: ‘Wait a minute, we’ve lost three.’

Chris said: ‘Have we lost three?’

Mary: ‘Yes we have. We lost Mary last week, Dorret and on the first week it was our lovely chap with his little hat on.’ 

Dorret Conway will be leaving GBBO tonight 

Dorret Conway will be leaving GBBO tonight 

Chris then tried his best to cover up the slip, saying: ‘But you’ve only lost two so far. There’s another one tonight, you know that but we don’t.

Mary, sounding as though she is trying to cover up her mistake, says: ‘Oh yeah… then if we lose another one tonight…’

Chris laughs and adds: ‘Ah but you are right, what is mad about baking is that everyone is given the same recipe but everything turns out different… it’s that precise as a science.’

On the telephone interview the duo start chatting about defrosting freezers before moving on to the Bread Week Challenge.

‘Paul’s in his absolute prime,’ she said, referring to co-judge and master baker Paul Hollywood.

‘The real great thing is the showstopper – it is absolutely amazing, one of the best results we’ve ever had’

She then went on to describe it as ‘quite extraordinary.’

The technical challenge, which was to make baguettes, saw many different results although contestants were provided with the same recipe. 

Twitter users were shocked at the slip-up with many slamming the 80-year-old BBC judge for slipping up.

User Amy Lewis tweeted: ‘Can’t believe Mary Barry let slip on the radio who goes on #GBBO tonight! YOU HAD ONE JOB MARY!!!’ 

Karen T posted sarcastically: ‘Well done #MaryBerry for revealing who leaves #GBBO tonight on @BBCRadio 2. Bless her… I’ll still watch it though.’ 

User Amy Lewis tweeted: 'Can't believe Mary Barry let slip on the radio who goes on #GBBO tonight!

User Amy Lewis tweeted: ‘Can’t believe Mary Barry let slip on the radio who goes on #GBBO tonight!

Karen T's post said: Well done #MaryBerry for revealing who leaves #GBBO tonight on @BBCRadio 2

Karen T’s post said: Well done #MaryBerry for revealing who leaves #GBBO tonight on @BBCRadio 2

Philippa echoed the sentiments of many of the show’s fans. She wrote: ‘Can’t believe Mary Berry just told us all who leaves tonight on the radio! WTF Mary?!!’

Lucy Oates tweeted: ‘Mary Berry just announced who’s [sic] leaving on the Bake Off tonight live on radio. Someone’s had a few too many brandy snaps…’

Fans also took to online forums to vent their anger and express sympathy for show’s star for revealing the name.

Listener JamieHT wrote: ‘Poor Mary. Did it sound like she thought the episode had already been aired?

Philippa wrote: 'Can't believe Mary Berry just told us all who leaves tonight on the radio! WTF Mary?!!'

Philippa wrote: ‘Can’t believe Mary Berry just told us all who leaves tonight on the radio! WTF Mary?!!’

Lucy Oates suspected Mary Berry of having a 'few too many brandy snaps'

Lucy Oates suspected Mary Berry of having a ‘few too many brandy snaps’

Another user WelshLad posted: ‘Poor Mary . She’ll reproach herself for that. It is difficult to keep a lid on something like that especially when being questioned about it. The climax of the show is star baker and the going-home moment.’

Scottish grandmother Marie Campbell became the second contestant to leave The Great British Bake Off on last week when she forgot to turn her oven on properly.

Mary Berry has revealed that Dorett, pictured left, is the contestant leaving tonight's show

Mary Berry has revealed that Dorett, pictured left, is the contestant leaving tonight’s show

Mary with Paul and GBBO presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins

Mary with Paul and GBBO presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins

Marie – who was given Star Baker title by judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood in the first week- was eliminated from the BBC show after presenting the judges with non-uniform Biscotti Italiano and a disappointing biscuit box, as well as failing to complete the Technical Challenge.

She follows 2015’s first casualty of the Bake Off tent, Stuart Henshall, with the judges deciding that she had stuck to classics and failed to raise the bar. 

FEMAIL has contacted the BBC for comment. 

Xmas Holidays

Ashley Madison customers may have been exposed by hackers

  • Ashley Madison has 37m members around the world including 1.2m Brits 
  • A 9.7 gigabyte data file of their details has today been posted to dark web 
  • Has private data including name, address, phone number and credit card
  • Data dump also has their sexual fantasies, ideal partner and profile photo  
  • Owners describe hack as ‘act of criminality’ and have called in the FBI

By

Martin Robinson

and
Ellie Zolfagharifard for MailOnline


Published:
18:05 EST, 18 August 2015

|
Updated:
08:33 EST, 19 August 2015

Hackers today outed millions of cheating spouses using the Ashley Madison infidelity website by publishing all their personal details and sexual fantasies online.

The names, ages, addresses, phone numbers and credit card details of up to 37million users including 1.2million in the UK were revealed in a 9.7 gigabyte file called ‘Time’s Up!’ posted on the dark web.

Bankers, civil servants, UN peacekeepers and even Vatican employees have been outed by hackers from the Impact Team because they are considered ‘cheating dirtbags’.

The Ashley Madison website, which is known as the ‘Google of cheating’, has called the data breach ‘an act of criminality’ and the FBI is now investigating.

The site promises its members worldwide complete ‘anonymity’ and has the motto: ‘Life is short. Have an affair’ but hackers say they have exposed its members because they want it shut down.

Security experts said today the data breach will not only end marriages but could also leave people open to blackmail.

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New scandal: The Ashley Madison website promises its 37 million members worldwide complete 'anonymity' and has the motto: 'Life is short. Have an affair' - but all its users had their details leaked today

New scandal: The Ashley Madison website promises its 37 million members worldwide complete ‘anonymity’ and has the motto: ‘Life is short. Have an affair’ – but all its users had their details leaked today

Warning: Impact Team say Ashley Madison members should not have anonymity because they are 'cheating dirtbags and deserve no such discretion' as they published the data in full

Warning: Impact Team say Ashley Madison members should not have anonymity because they are ‘cheating dirtbags and deserve no such discretion’ as they published the data in full

Set up: A 9.7 gigabyte data file has today been posted to the dark web claiming to have account details and log-ins and even credit card details of people who use the social networking site  to have affairs

Set up: A 9.7 gigabyte data file has today been posted to the dark web claiming to have account details and log-ins and even credit card details of people who use the social networking site to have affairs

The dark web files released today shows the profile of every user, including their name, date of birth, home address, phone number, username and email address.

HACKING VICTIMS EXPRESS SHOCK AT THEIR DETAILS BEING RELEASED

A married senior servant says she is the victim of a malicious enemy (posed by model)

A married senior servant says she is the victim of a malicious enemy (posed by model)

A British civil servant told MailOnline today she was ‘heartbroken’ after being named by hackers as an Ashley Madison user.

The married woman said she must be the victim of a malicious enemy.

The woman is among 130 British government workers named by hackers today. 

She said: ‘I’m absolutely heartbroken. I’m married and would never do something like this. It must be malicious. I never knew I had enemies’.

Another senior council worker from northern England said his ex-girlfriend broke up with him over an Ashley Madison account but maintains he never set it up.

He said: ‘I’m pretty certain I haven’t ever registered for that site although one ex-girlfriend after we split up did start telling me she was annoyed I was on, I think, this site. I had no idea what she was going on about until now’. 

One Irish member said he is married but was ‘inquisitive’ about meeting other women.

He said: ‘I did sign up but never used the account. 

‘I’m a bit annoyed to be honest – I set it up with the intention of using it but was unable to access it due to work restrictions. 

‘Now my details are all over the internet’. 

A local politician told MailOnline an unhappy resident may have set up an account in his name.

He said: ‘I’m divorced and single so I’m not sure this site would be for me even if I’d joined, which I haven’t.

‘If you Googled me you would find all my personal details, including email address, and that’s clearly what someone has done.

‘It just shows how unsecure the internet is’.  

The hackers have previously claimed to have all profile pictures including naked shots.

Their sexual fantasies are also listed and also a description of the type of sexual partner they are looking to have an affair with. 

A separate file also details credit card transactions. 

The majority of the 37million users are married men. 

Among the email addresses are ones from the British and US governments and armed forces, major companies including IBM and BAE Systems as well as institutions such as the Catholic church and universities including Harvard and Yale.

There are around 15,000 .mil addresses – the official US Military address – or .gov addresses, which is used by the US government.

The data released today appears to be genuine and exposes the infidelity of millions of people around the world.

But it appears that some profiles may have been set up maliciously. 

A British civil servant told MailOnline today she was ‘heartbroken’ after being named by hackers as an Ashley Madison user.

The married woman said she must be the victim of a malicious enemy.

The woman is among 130 British government workers named by hackers today. 

She said: ‘I’m absolutely heartbroken. I’m married and would never do something like this. It must be malicious. I never knew I had enemies’. 

One Irish member working in local government, named today said he had set up an account.

He told MailOnline is married but was ‘inquisitive’ about meeting other women.

He said: ‘I did sign up but never used the account. 

‘I’m a bit annoyed to be honest – I set it up with the intention of using it but was unable to access it due to work restrictions. 

‘Now my details are all over the internet’. 

One banker, who is named as working for Bank of America and outed on the site today, describes himself as having a ‘sex drive too high to handle’.

Setting out his sexual fantasies and explaining why he is cheating on his wife, he says: ‘I need someone who is more sexual. I need someone who is willing to try anything’.  

One file on a member named as Rickie from Ontario admitted he was married but says he is looking for sex with a woman who is ‘good with her hands’ and likes ‘kinky fun, erotic movies and dressing up’.

Errata Security CEO Rob Graham, said he had counted more than 36 million accounts in the leak, although he believes that many appeared to be bogus.

WHAT DID THE HACKERS STEAL AND WHAT DATA HAVE THEY REVEALED?

Profile: This is a genuine profile of an American user of Ashley Madison, including her sexual  preferences, although it has been put in this form by MailOnline for clarity

Profile: This is a genuine profile of an American user of Ashley Madison, including her sexual  preferences, although it has been put in this form by MailOnline for clarity

The hacking of Ashley Madison represents one of the biggest data breaches in online history, with the personal and most intimate details of users now published online.

Hackers have simply stolen all raw data about users and published them exactly as they appear on the website’s database.

For example, the profile above purports to be for a woman from Arizona, in her twenties.

The leaked file on he reveals her account nickname, full name, date of birth address, zip code, phone numbers, email addresses, ethinicity, weight, height and even longitude and latitude of their home.

Users are also asked to set out what they are looking for, what kind of sexual partner they want and their sexual fantasies. 

These are all numbered between 1 and 60, and an index explaining what these all mean have also been released by hackers.

The passwords of the users appear to be the only piece of information that was encrypted. 

Security experts fear that this information could be abused by criminals willing to blackmail individuals or sell on their details. 

James Maude, senior security engineer at Avecto said: ‘A hidden danger here is the amount of data now out there and the impact this could have on areas such as national security, government policy and law enforcement. 

‘At first glance, it may look like the Ashley Madison data leak will cause nothing more than embarrassment. But this type of sensitive personal information can be used by criminals to generate serious leverage against an individual, when combined with details released from other attacks.

‘It seems like Ashley Madisson was cheating on its clients with a number of bad security and data storage practices. The breach shows employees using ‘Password1234′ and contains seven years of credit card transaction details. Researchers have verified that some of the credit cards are not only valid but still in daily use.

‘Although the password for the accounts were stored in a way which makes wholesale decryption unlikely, it is entirely possible that a targeted attack on an individual account could crack the password. This could lead to the compromise of other accounts such as online banking or emails if a shared password was used.’

 CEO Noel Biderman, the self-styled 'King of Infidelity' who set up the website with his wife Amanda, believes that a hacker with ties to the site's technical services is the culprit behind the privacy breac

 CEO Noel Biderman, the self-styled ‘King of Infidelity’ who set up the website with his wife Amanda, believes that a hacker with ties to the site’s technical services is the culprit behind the privacy breac

Last month hacking group the ‘Impact Team’ said the site wrecks marriages and stole their details before threatening to publish everything unless the ‘Google of cheating’ is shut down.

Today they acted on their threat and in a dark web post entitled ‘Time’s Up!’ they dumped with email addresses, usernames, passwords and credit card transactions of users.  

ASHLEY MADISON: HOW DOES THE CHEATING WEBSITE WORK?

Ashley Madison is astonishingly easy to use. 

Free to join, new members are asked to provide a user name and blurred photograph – – the site will pixelate it for you or you can add a ‘disguise’, such as a mask.

Users then select what they’re looking for, ranging from ‘cyber affair/ erotic chat’ to ‘anything goes’. 

It’s open to single and attached users, though those who sign up are predominantly married. The majority are men.

Men then pay in ‘credits’. The introductory package is £39 for 100 credits or £179 for an ‘affair guarantee’ membership of 1,000 credits. Five credits buys a message to another member and 30 gets you 30 minutes of live chat.

Women don’t have to pay — a sensible incentive, given that 70 per cent of the site’s profiles are male.

They can then send private messages, ‘winks’ to notify another user that you have viewed their profile or virtual gifts, normally sexual images, and chat via instant messenger when both members are online.

Many then meet for sex. 

Impact Team say Ashley Madison members should not have anonymity because they are ‘cheating dirtbags and deserve no such discretion’ and now millions appear to have been exposed.  

They asked for Established Men to be taken offline, along with Ashley Madison, all owned by Avid Media.

Hackers did not make the same request of Cougar Life, also owned by Avid, suggesting they are more interested in exposing unfaithful men.

Explaining the hack Impact Team said in a statement: ‘Avid Life Media has failed to take down Ashley Madison and Established Men.

‘We have explained the fraud, deceit, and stupidity of ALM and their members. Now everyone gets to see their data…. Keep in mind the site is a scam with thousands of fake female profiles. 

‘See Ashley Madison fake profile lawsuit; 90-95 per cent of actual users are male.

‘Chances are your man signed up on the world’s biggest affair site, but never had one. He just tried to. If that distinction matters.’

The hackers said the consequences for victims of the breach was not their responsibility. 

‘Find yourself in here? It was ALM that failed you and lied to you. Prosecute them and claim damages. 

‘Then move on with your life. Learn your lesson and make amends. Embarrassing now, but you’ll get over it,’ they wrote.

In a statement last night Canada-based Avid Life Media, the company behind Ashley Madison said it had ‘now learned that the individual or individuals responsible for this attack claim to have released more of the stolen data’.

Describing the hack as ‘an act of criminality’, the company said it was fully cooperating with law enforcement to find the hackers.

‘The criminal, or criminals, involved in this act have appointed themselves as the moral judge, juror, and executioner, seeing fit to impose a personal notion of virtue on all of society. 

‘We will not sit idly by and allow these thieves to force their personal ideology on citizens around the world,’ the statement said.

The FBI is now investigating the cyber attack.

Warning: Last month the Impact Team posted this demand as it pledged to out adulterous members cheating on their spouses using the site

Warning: Last month the Impact Team posted this demand as it pledged to out adulterous members cheating on their spouses using the site

Popular: On its website, the company bills itself as 'the most famous name in infidelity and married dating

Popular: On its website, the company bills itself as ‘the most famous name in infidelity and married dating

Ashley Madison’s sign-up process does not require verification of an email address to set up an account.

This means addresses might have been used by others, and doesn’t prove that person used the site themselves. 

One British Ashley Madison user, called Natalie, is one of the 1.2 million in the UK scared her husband will discover her infidelity.

WHO ARE ‘MORAL’ HACKERS CALLED THE IMPACT TEAM?

The so-called Impact Team have billed themselves as ‘moral’ hackers who want to expose infidelity and corruption.

Unlike other high profile hacking groups like Lizard Squad and Anonymous, Impact Team have had much less publicity. 

The group claims that its aims are not to make money, only to reveal alleged corruption and unmask ‘dirtbag cheaters’. 

In their statement threatening Ashley Madison’s owners and members they said: ‘We are not opportunistic skids. We are dedicated, focused, skilled, and we’re never going away. If you profit off the pain of others, whatever it takes, we will completely own you’.

Impact Team appears to have gained a lot of supporters online, with some calling them ‘moral crusaders’. 

Avid Life Media, the firm behind Ashley Madison, believe the group may have an insider and say they are on the ‘doorstep’ of a culprit. 

They have also called it a criminal act and will be working with the police to catch them and regain the data. 

One theory is that the hackers were helped by an insider at Ashley Madison who helped them access members’ details. 

Before today’s leak some experts said that their hack was about selling the data rather than a moral crusade, but today it appears that the theft was not about the money and a genuine threat.

She says that she started using the site during a ‘rocky patch’ in her marriage, but has not logged since 2011.

She told The Sun last month: ‘Things with my husband improved and I haven’t logged in to the website in years. Now I feel sick to my stomach that my past could come back to haunt me’. 

Avid Life Media believe a company insider may have helped hackers grab the information.

CEO Noel Biderman, the self-styled ‘King of Infidelity’ who set up the website with his wife Amanda, believes that a hacker with ties to the site’s technical services is the culprit behind the privacy breach.

‘I’ve got their profile right in front of me, all their work credentials. It was definitely a person here that was not an employee but certainly had touched our technical services,’ Biderman told Krebs On Security. 

Last month, experts warned the stolen data could be sold on to criminal gangs or used to blackmail members.

One hacking insider, named only as Vinnie, told Sky News the valuable data will likely be sold on the ‘Dark Web’ to ‘the highest bidder’. 

The cyber criminals had previously only published a small amount of the information online.

The hackers have claimed that even cheaters who have paid Ashley Madison to delete their information from its files are at risk – making the site millions, but claim these details were never fully deleted.

The website charges members £15 for what it says is a ‘full delete’ of information that should leave no footprint. However, the hackers claim this service was a ‘complete lie’.

‘Users almost always pay with credit card; their purchase details are not removed as promised, and include real name and address, which is of course the most important information the users want removed,’ they said.

The security breach is bad news for Ashley Madison, which has been battling to gain respectability after it was dubbed the ‘Google of cheating’. 

It even hoped to float on the London Stock Exchange later this year.

The Canadian company said in April it thought British investors would be more likely to buy into the business because Europeans have a more ‘laissez-faire’ attitude to cheating.

However, even open-minded Europeans found Ashley Madison’ attempts to make money from adultery a step too far. 

Many of the brokers it would have relied on to sell shares in Britain refused to deal with the company, amid concerns that it leads to family breakdowns.

STATEMENT FROM COMPANY BEHIND CHEATING SITE ASHLEY MADISON

Noel Biderman, CEO of Avid Life Media with his wife Amanda (pictured together)

Noel Biderman, CEO of Avid Life Media with his wife Amanda (pictured together)

‘Last month we were made aware of an attack to our systems. We immediately launched a full investigation utilizing independent forensic experts and other security professionals to assist with determining the origin, nature, and scope of this attack. 

‘Our investigation is still ongoing and we are simultaneously cooperating fully with law enforcement investigations, including by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Ontario Provincial Police, the Toronto Police Services and the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation.

‘We have now learned that the individual or individuals responsible for this attack claim to have released more of the stolen data. 

‘We are actively monitoring and investigating this situation to determine the validity of any information posted online and will continue to devote significant resources to this effort. 

‘Furthermore, we will continue to put forth substantial efforts into removing any information unlawfully released to the public, as well as continuing to operate our business.

‘This event is not an act of hacktivism, it is an act of criminality. It is an illegal action against the individual members of AshleyMadison.com, as well as any freethinking people who choose to engage in fully lawful online activities. 

‘The criminal, or criminals, involved in this act have appointed themselves as the moral judge, juror, and executioner, seeing fit to impose a personal notion of virtue on all of society. We will not sit idly by and allow these thieves to force their personal ideology on citizens around the world. We are continuing to fully cooperate with law enforcement to seek to hold the guilty parties accountable to the strictest measures of the law.

‘Every week sees new hacks disclosed by companies large and small, and though this may now be a new societal reality, it should not lessen our outrage. 

‘These are illegitimate acts that have real consequences for innocent citizens who are simply going about their daily lives. 

‘Regardless, if it is your private pictures or your personal thoughts that have slipped into public distribution, no one has the right to pilfer and reveal that information to audiences in search of the lurid, the titillating, and the embarrassing.

‘We know that there are people out there who know one or more of these individuals, and we invite them to come forward. 

‘While we are confident that the authorities will identify and prosecute each of them to the fullest extent of the law, we also know there are individuals out there who can help to make this happen faster. 

‘Anyone with information that can lead to the identification, arrest and conviction of these criminals, can contact information@avidlifemedia.com’

Revealed: Ashley Madison founder has made $1bn from the infidelity of others and admits: ‘I’d cheat on my wife so fast’

He is the founder of the world’s largest cheating network serving 37million people in 50 countries.

Noel Biderman says he has made $1billion from those desperate to have affairs and admits he would cheat on his own wife if his marriage was sexless.

In fact Biderman says his site Ashley Madison has the power to save marriages rather than destroy them. 

Admission: Noel Biderman, CEO of Avid Life Media, who owns the dating web site, admits he would cheat on his wife if heir sex life dried up

Admission: Noel Biderman, CEO of Avid Life Media, who owns the dating web site, admits he would cheat on his wife if heir sex life dried up

He boasts that ‘life is short, have an affair’ and the multi-millionaire father-of-two admits being happily married for more than 10 years would not necessarily keep him monogamous.

He formed Ashley Madison with his wife Amanda, but should their sex life dry up he would try to find a new partner. 

In fact Biderman believes his website’s aim – helping people have affairs – saves marriages. 

Speaking to the Evening Standard about his own marriage last year, he said: ‘We’re incredibly communicative about our sexual needs.

‘But if I woke up beside my wife and it was the 200th day we hadn’t been intimate with one another and it looked like nothing would change, I would cheat so fast.

‘I would cheat long before I would get a divorce. If you have children that you love and a home that you built together and a future that you planned — why would you give that up just for sex?’

Mr Biderman came up with the idea for the extra-marital dating site in the 1990s, after a career as a sports attorney apparently made him realise how much time and money his clients spent on mistresses while they were away on tour.

I would cheat long before I would get a divorce. If you have children that you love and a home that you built together and a future that you planned — why would you give that up just for sex?
Ashley Madison founder Noel Biderman 

The site has made him a self-made multi-millionaire and he claims it is worth at least £669million ($1 billion).

Despite its risqué nature, Mr Biderman’s wife doesn’t appear to mind because she agrees it is a ‘sound business idea’.

The pair insist the social network is just a tool and no one can force anyone to betray a spouse and even believe the dating website can actually help save marriages.

M Biderman said previously: ‘The reason people have affairs is that they want to stay married.

‘What I get is a lot of people who come back to me and say: ‘Listen, this has made me a better partner.’

‘They were angry and taking things out on their family. The sexual frustration they were feeling, they start having the affair and all of a sudden, that stress is removed. It’s very cathartic for those people.

‘If you come home and you’ve had an affair earlier in the day, it might be easier not to be frustrated with your partner. The conversation could take a different directional tone and that can lead to intimacy.

He also has previously said: ‘My belief is that people use affairs to preserve their marriage.’ 

Xmas Holidays

Bristol vandals show their love of fancy South American ‘superfood’ quinoa

  • Scrawling has appeared on three Bristol walls which simply reads ‘Quinoa’
  • Not known if the tag is new ‘artist’s’ name or just a dedication to the food
  • Quinoa has become huge favourite of foodies for its high nutritional value
  • Along with the likes of sweet potatoes, avocado and kale, it’s one of the new superfoods flying off the shelves in Waitrose and M&S

By

Euan McLelland For MailOnline


Published:
06:35 EST, 18 August 2015

|
Updated:
08:00 EST, 18 August 2015

They are two of the staples of the modern middle class – a faux passion for street art and a dietary reliance on the latest fad in superfoods.

Well, yet another ‘new Banksy’ is sure to delight all and sundry, as the health-concious vandal has taken to the walls of Bristol with his unique new tag: ‘Quinoa’.

Naming himself after the South American grain, the ‘artist’ has left no fewer than three signatures dotted around the city’s walls as, presumably, a sign of his adoration for the relatively tasteless edible seeds.

Broadchurch actor Joe Sims snapped a photo of this new graffiti tag he found in Bristol, a dedication to the South American superfood that nutritionists swear by

Broadchurch actor Joe Sims snapped a photo of this new graffiti tag he found in Bristol, a dedication to the South American superfood that nutritionists swear by

Labelled as a superfood because of its high nutritional value, quinoa – once only available on the most hidden shelves of whole foods stores – is feted by food lovers as a novel addition to the familiar ranks of couscous and rice, with nutritionists raving about its high protein and gluten-free status.

It is now a top seller in the likes of Waitrose and Marks and Spencer, with its adaptability to the likes of curries and salads almost just as celebrated as its health benefits.

A worldwide boom in consumption of quinoa has sparked a growing demand in the high-protein cereal

A worldwide boom in consumption of quinoa has sparked a growing demand in the high-protein cereal

Labelled as a superfood because of its high nutritional value, quinoa - once only available on the most hidden shelves of whole foods stores - is feted by food lovers as a novel addition to the familiar ranks of couscous and rice, with nutritionists jumping for joy because of its high protein and gluten-free status 

Labelled as a superfood because of its high nutritional value, quinoa – once only available on the most hidden shelves of whole foods stores – is feted by food lovers as a novel addition to the familiar ranks of couscous and rice, with nutritionists jumping for joy because of its high protein and gluten-free status 

But now the goosefoot genus – sourced from Peru and Bolivia – has been heralded in a whole new way.

Broadchurch actor Joe Sims snapped a photo of the graffiti in his home city.

He told the Bristol Post: ‘It is perfectly Bristolian and in keeping with the urban gentrification of the area.’

Broadchurch actor Joe Sims snapped a photo of the graffiti in his home city, using the hashtag #middleclassgraffiti

Broadchurch actor Joe Sims snapped a photo of the graffiti in his home city, using the hashtag #middleclassgraffiti

‘I’m not sure if he will be the next Banksy. He might have another super food to battle with – possibly avocado? Maybe it will take over postcode rivalry.’ 

The spray-painted ‘Quinoa’ tag has been spotted in Glenfrome Road and Mina Road in the St Werburgh’s area of Bristol.

It has also been scrawled on a bridge.  

Mr Sims added: ‘A lot of exciting things are happening in the area – be it with restaurants, creativity or graffiti.’

THE ONE TIME INCA SOLDIER FEED WHICH IS NOW BIG BUSINESS 

Pronounced ‘keen-wah’, the high majority of Britain’s quinoa comes from South America.

The small grain, from Peru and Bolivia, is loved for its fluffy texture and slightly nutty flavour, as much as its health benefits.

Protein-rich, it is packed with dietary fibre, phosphorus, magnesium and iron. It is gluten-free and contains all nine essential amino acids.

Farmers now produce the crop for mass export, but it was historically grown by the Incas to feed their soldiers.

The high-altitude plant grows at 3,600 metres above sea level and higher, where oxygen is thin, water is scarce and the soil is so saline that virtually nothing else grows

Its sale in Britain – for decades limited to specialist whole food shops – took off in the late noughties, with upmarket Waitrose and health specialists Holland and Barrett both bringing it to the high street first.

By 2011, the grain cost £1,930 per tonne – triple its 2006 price – as demand, spurred on by supermarkets including Tesco, who labelled packs as ‘essential for the body’s growth and repair’ – boomed.

Celebrity chefs Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Jamie Oliver also began fawning over it, and demand hasn’t slowed since.

  • Have you seen any other #middleclassgraffiti? If so, please email photographs to euan.mclelland@mailonline.co.uk 

Xmas Holidays

Birmingham Women’s Hospital staff ‘leave miscarried foetus in plastic bag’

  • Sarah Howard, 33, lost her baby eight weeks after becoming pregnant
  • She had foetus surgically removed at Birmingham Women’s Hospital
  • But after barmaid got up to get a blanket she saw head of foetus in bag
  • Nurse ‘snatched’ it and took it away – and hospital has since apologised 

By

Mark Duell for MailOnline


Published:
01:05 EST, 18 August 2015

|
Updated:
07:33 EST, 18 August 2015

A mother-to-be who suffered a miscarriage was left ‘hysterical’ after hospital staff allegedly left the foetus in a plastic bag at the end of her bed following surgery.

Sarah Howard was told she had lost her baby eight weeks after becoming pregnant – and opted for the foetus to be surgically removed at Birmingham Women’s Hospital.

But after the operation the 33-year-old barmaid claimed she got up to get a blanket and saw the head of the foetus in the bag – before a nurse ‘snatched’ it off her and quickly took it away.

Sarah Howard suffered a miscarriage and was left ‘hysterical’ after hospital staff allegedly left the foetus in a plastic bag at the end of her bed following surgery

Miss Howard, of Woodgate Valley, Birmingham, told the Birmingham Mail: ‘I wanted it to be something else, but I knew what it was. I was hysterical. I couldn’t believe what I was looking at.

‘I was crying and took it to a nurse. It’s an image I’ll never forget. I can’t forgive the hospital for leaving the remains there like that.’

At eight weeks, the foetus measures about two centimetres in length and the fingers and toes will have formed. Its skin is thin and appears transparent.

Miss Howard, who lives with her partner Brett Wilkinson, 43, was told she was expecting last month, but was later informed that she had miscarried after suffering bleeding.

Horrifying: Miss Howard was told she had lost her baby eight weeks after becoming pregnant - and opted for the foetus to be removed surgically at Birmingham Women’s Hospital (pictured)

Horrifying: Miss Howard was told she had lost her baby eight weeks after becoming pregnant – and opted for the foetus to be removed surgically at Birmingham Women’s Hospital (pictured)

Hospital apology: Senior staff and a director of Birmingham Women’s NHS Foundation Trust have since met Miss Howard, and officials insisted they are trying to support her and her family

Hospital apology: Senior staff and a director of Birmingham Women’s NHS Foundation Trust have since met Miss Howard, and officials insisted they are trying to support her and her family

Miss Howard chose surgery over two alternative options of having the foetus come out naturally or having tablets inserted, because she did not want to have to see it.

Senior staff and a director of Birmingham Women’s NHS Foundation Trust – which has apologised – have since met Miss Howard, and officials insisted they are trying to support her.

A trust spokesman said: ‘We are incredibly sorry for what happened and the distress it caused.

‘We are doing all we can to support her and her family. Senior staff and a director have met the patient and we have launched an investigation to ensure it never happens again.’

The trust, which looks after 50,000 patients each year and carries out 3,000 operations, says on its website that it employs more than 1,500 staff and has delivered 8,000 babies in the last year.

FOETAL DEVELOPMENT AT EIGHT WEEKS

At eight weeks, a baby is about two centimetres long and growing by a millimetre a day. 

It is officially called a foetus, which means ‘offspring’, and is still getting nutrition from the yolk sack, rather than placenta.

Fingers and toes will have developed but will still be webbed in appearance for several more weeks.

Its heart will beat at about 160 beats a minute.

Lungs are developing with the baby’s breathing extending from the throat to the lungs, while the brain nerve cells are branching out.

The baby’s skin is still transparent and has a transparent look. The colour pigment in its eyes will begin to form but they won’t open them until about 26 weeks. 

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