Brexit rebellion – Boris Johnson is facing mounting opposition from his own backbenchers over his plans to break international law with legislation that could override parts of the Brexit withdrawal agreement. Dozens of Tory MPs are expected to support an amendment to the internal market bill that would give parliament a veto of any changes to the agreement. MPs will have a chance to air their opposition during a second reading and debate of the bill later today, when it will also be put to a vote before passing to committee stage. Geoffrey Cox, the former attorney general, said last night he could not support the bill, describing the government’s plan as “unconscionable”. Our columnist Nesrine Malik argues that for the Tories, breaking the law is seen as a sign of strength while enemies face zero tolerance for similar transgressions. … [Read more...] about Monday briefing: ‘Abide by rule of six,’ police plead
It’s time, Mr Dowden, you faced up to a simple truth: artists know much more about the arts than politicians. So far the most practical plan for the theatre has come from Sam Mendes, who has made numerous recommendations: increasing the theatre’s tax-relief scheme from 20% to 50%, inviting the government to become theatrical “angels” by investing in productions, challenging the streaming services to put money into an industry from which they directly benefit. Have you spoken to Sir Sam about his ideas? Have you co-opted him onto the cultural renewal taskforce you have set up? Or are you simply fiddle-faddling while Rome burns? … [Read more...] about Dear Oliver Dowden, have you even begun to grasp the scale of our arts crisis?
It is vital that this helps fund the freelancers who form 70% of theatre’s workforce, a third of whom do not qualify for the Treasury’s income-support schemes. Many will have no option but to leave the theatre entirely and I can’t overstate that without their crucial talents all efforts to save our venues will be in vain. Without core creators like writers, actors, directors, designers, set builders, stage managers and technicians working alongside our brilliant in-house teams there will be no theatre productions on our stages. … [Read more...] about The government’s plan for UK theatre is vague and demoralising – here’s what we need
The pandemic has been devastating, but it could be an opportunity to build a better economy, one in which more of the wealth generated in cities is more fairly distributed and owned by us. This would require a serious national industrial and spatial plan, with a full-blooded regional and urban devolution policy. Rather than ignoring the structural changes in our midst and clinging to a model of wealth extraction and property appreciation, we should be seizing this opportunity to build an urban economy that works for ordinary people rather than global shareholders. … [Read more...] about UK cities should work for the people who live in them, not for distant shareholders
8.30pm - 10pm - The Nation's TributeA special service, The Nation's Tribute, will be led by the Duke of Cambridge, will be held at Horse Guards Parade and will be broadcast on BBC One. There will be special performances of key moments from the conflicts and veterans will read tributes. There will also be musical performances from the military. … [Read more...] about VJ Day 2020 meaning – what is Victory over Japan Day and how is it being marked?