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Labour ‘to shift power and investment north’
Labour is pledging an “irreversible shift” of power and investment away from south east England should it win the election. Treasury staff would be moved to a new northern unit to ensure regions got a fair share of £150bn promised for schools, hospitals and housing, shadow chancellor John McDonnell will say. Labour says it could fund the plans – and another £250bn for “green” investments – because a more productive, faster-growing economy would enable it to borrow more. However, Conservative chancellor Sajid Javid warns of “serious consequences to these fantasy economics”. In setting out plans to “unleash Britain’s potential” through investment in education, technology, and infrastructure, he will argue the most important thing for the economy is to deliver Brexit.
Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats, Plaid Cymru and the Green Party have formed a pact not to stand against each other in dozens of seats. The agreement, aimed at giving the anti-Brexit candidate the best chance of winning, is thought to cover between 60 and 70 constituencies, including 11 of the 40 in Wales.
In other election news:
- Labour deputy leader Tom Watson steps down and will not stand for Parliament
- BBC Wales’ Felicity Evans assesses the fallout for the Tories from Alun Cairns’ resignation as Welsh secretary
- Polling analyst Prof Sir John Curtice examines whether Brexit really is the big issue on the doorstep
- Your Questions Answered: Our new series endeavours to give readers the election information they need. This one fields queries from students
- Missed what happened on Wednesday? Here’s a quick recap
Several injured in West End theatre incident
Theatregoers are recovering this morning after a ceiling partially collapsed as they enjoyed a performance of Arthur Miller play Death of a Salesman. Five audience members were treated for minor injuries following the incident at the Piccadilly Theatre in London’s West End, which caused the evacuation of more than 1,000 people, Ambassador Theatre Group says.
The 2019 ‘word of the year’ is…
… “climate strike”. That is according to Collins Dictionary, which chose the term after finding it being used on average 100 times more this year than in 2018. It was first recorded four years ago when pupils skipped school to protest over global warming. The term “non-binary” – indicated a person’s preference not to be identified as male or female – has been recognised by the dictionary, along with “double down”, “influencer”, “hopepunk” (a TV genre) and “deepfake” (a digital imaging technique).
‘Landlords treat us students like we’re dumb kids’
By Catherine Wyatt and John Owen, Victoria Derbyshire programme
According to the National Union of Students’ 2019 Homes Fit For Study report, just 61% of surveyed students who paid a deposit said they had received it back in full at the end of their tenancy. “What we’re seeing more and more is unfair contracts,” says the organisation’s vice-president, Eva Crossan Jory, “landlords charging for things that are the result of wear and tear or where students have complained about something not working.”
In Lincoln, graduate Natasha Hopewell is creating a forum for students to warn others about bad practice. “It’s all anonymous but it means students can warn one another of difficult letting agents,” the founder of CribAdviser says. Meera Chindoory from the National Landlords Association told the BBC: “It’s important that students understand their responsibilities in looking after the property.”
What the papers say
Several papers lead on Tom Watson’s resignation as Labour’s deputy leader. The Guardian says it raises “new questions” about the party’s direction, while the Daily Telegraph calls him the most “high-profile casualty” of Labour’s civil war over Brexit and anti-Semitism claims. Other papers use a photograph of Boris Johnson making a V-for-victory gesture in the manner of Winston Churchill, with the Metro interpreting it as an attempt to rally Conservatives after a “tricky 24 hours”.
Grace Millane Backpacker and murder accused ‘on CCTV’
Lorry arrest Man held after 15 people found in the back of truck
British Steel Chinese group emerges as frontrunner to buy company
Sense of smell Scientists sniff out left-handed women anomaly
If you see one thing today
If you listen to one thing today
If you read one thing today
12:00 Aidan James, a British man who fought with a Kurdish militia against the Islamic State group, is due to be sentenced for attending a place used for terrorist training.
12:00 The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee announces its latest interest rate decision.
On this day
1867 Polish-French physicist Marie Curie – who would become the first woman to win a Nobel Prize – was born in Warsaw.