Press play to listen to this article By JACK BLANCHARD Send tips here | Subscribe for free | Listen to Playbook and view in your browser Good Tuesday morning. Brexit Day is 17 days away. DRIVING THE DAY COMMONS IN CONTROL: Theresa May will convene another crisis meeting of her Cabinet this morning after watching MPs strip her government of control over the Brexit process. Thirty Tory rebels — including three serving ministers — voted against the government last night to condemn her to an historic 27-vote Commons defeat. Parliament’s decision to back the radical amendment put forward by former Cabinet Minister Oliver Letwin means backbench MPs will now seize control of the Commons order paper for the first time in living memory. They will initially use this new power to stage non-binding votes testing support for different Brexit outcomes tomorrow. But the fear and expectation in Downing Street is this is just the start — and MPs will next start passing … [Read more...] about POLITICO London Playbook: Commons in control — The Grand Wizards of Brexit — Big lobby reshuffle
Big 10 academic rankings
On 4 March, the French president Emmanuel Macron launched his career as an opinion writer. In an article published in 28 languages and newspapers across Europe, including the Guardian, Germany’s Die Welt, Italy’s Corriere della Sera, and Spain’s El Pais, Macron called for a “European renaissance” and detailed his project for the EU, beyond Brexit and this May’s European elections. Ambitious as ever, the French president addressed the citizens of Europe directly, proposing a series of reforms grouped around three themes: freedom, protection, and progress. Macron wants to “rethink the Schengen area”, create a “common border force”, a “European asylum office” and a “European Council for Internal Security”; negotiate a “EU minimum wage”; launch a “European Climate Bank to finance the ecological transition” and a “European food safety force to improve our food … [Read more...] about Emmanuel Macron may have big ideas but he’s still a one-man band
It turns out 1990s German popsters Snap! were wrong when they proclaimed “I got the power.” But who does have it? Plymouth Live has had a long hard think and come up with a list of 50 city figures that we think wield the most power. The list includes politicians, business bosses – and, in this social media driven age, influencers. Power has, after all, been defined as the ability to direct or influence others. So that is why you will find Instagram and Facebook powerbrokers on the list. But, of course, real might, whether political or economic, still remains in the hands of the traditional political institutions and big businesses, and their leaders, those crown wearers whose heads lie uneasy, dominate here. We have counted them down from 50 to 1, purely on the heft we think each possesses. But what do you think? Let us know if there is someone we have missed, or someone who should be higher up the list. But though power may sometimes stem, as Mao famously put it, … [Read more...] about Ranked: the 50 most powerful people in Plymouth
The stroke unit at Lynn's Queen Elizabeth Hospital has been ranked as one of the country's top 10.Clinical staff from the QEH are celebrating the news, after West Raynham Ward was named the sixth best performing stroke unit in the country for its treatment and performance rates.The unit has once again received an A rating from the Royal College of Physicians as part of its Sentinel Stroke National Audit Programme which is an assessment of several key treatment areas.Hospital officials say patients who are suspected of having a stroke are seen within two minutes of arriving at the QEH and receive vital thrombolysis treatment within 40 minutes, which helps patients to regain independence and mobility after a stroke if it is given early enough.Stroke consultant and acting medical director Dr Raj Shekhar and ward manager Tania Martins Henriques Afonso have put the success down to the unit's dedicated team of doctors, nurses, therapists and support staff.Dr Shekhar said: "We are delighted … [Read more...] about King’s Lynn hospital’s stroke unit ranked in country’s top 10
It’s been a hard year for universities. 2018 started with the biggest industrial action ever to hit UK higher education as staff walked out in a row over pensions at more than 60 institutions, including four in Wales. The year has ended with a Vice Chancellor and senior staff being suspended and two universities announcing job losses as funding cuts bite. This follows job losses last year and the prospect of further job losses next year. On top of this applications have fallen again and the uncertainty of Brexit threatens research and collaboration. We look at some of the pressures facing our universities in Wales and ask what is causing them. Falling numbers of applications Applications to universities in Wales fell 6.3% this year. That's the second year in a row of declining total applicant numbers after a 6.2 per cent fall from 2016 to 2017. Wales was the worst-hit UK nation. The number of Welsh students getting a place was down 3.5%. The number from the rest of the UK was … [Read more...] about What’s going wrong at Wales’ universities?