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The King’s Speech

I absolutely loved The King’s Speech, which has been nominated for a host of screen awards. It made me realise how fortunate we are today to have supportive public speaking organisations like Toastmasters, which I belong to in Cambridge. Although none of our members have a stammer, a couple are deaf with a speech impediment. Speech therapy is vital, of course, but being able to speak in...
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The greed of London Underground drivers

How greedy can you get. London Underground train drivers are on strike today because they want triple pay and a day off in lieu for working on Boxing Day. Aslef members chose to strike today to deliberately disrupt Boxing Day outings in the city, to maximise misery for commuters and devastate our crippling economy even more knowing it will keep shoppers away from the sales. A restricted service...
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Should web links be free?

I’ve been following the latest  saga regarding paying The Newspaper Licensing Agency for sharing web links. Francis Ingham, Chief Executive of the Public Relations Consultants Association, explains via a video interview why they are appealing to the Court of Appeal against a ruling which decided that media monitoring agencies should pay for using web links. Mr Ingham describes it as a...
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Cambridge student protests from the 60s and 70s

With student protests in the headlines over rising tuition fees, I thought I would delve back and see which issues fired up Cambridge students in the past, particularly the 1960s and 70s. Since then, student life in Cambridge seems to have been much quieter, barring the incident when a student threw a shoe at the Chinese prime minister last year. Ian Kitching has recorded past student actions on...
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Andrew Parsons and David Cameron

I can understand why the appointment of Andrew Parsons, David Cameron’s personal photographer, as a Civil Service cameraman is controversial at a time when it is axing 500,000 staff. And I do wonder why Andrew is no longer employed by the Conservative Party, but as a civil servant whose job is to take pictures of the Prime Minister. Perhaps it is so he can also work closely with Liberal...
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The Big Society begins

For anyone who still doesn’t know what David Cameron’s Big Society means, then watch closely what is happening in Windsor and Maidenhead as the council may launch a scheme where its citizens can earn Big Society reward points redeemable in supermarkets, shops or restaurants, in exchange for volunteering time. Some of the tasks it would reward could include fishing out trolleys from...
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Blood donors and ME update

This is a guest post by Christine Douglas who is updating us on the important issue of blood donors who have ME which she first highlighted in this post three months ago, and it attracted many comments and widespread interest. Christine is actively campaigning for urgent improvements to be made for the screening of blood donors in the UK and has called for an international collaboration of blood...
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If you need a helping hand, try a First Direct Buddy

First Direct demonstrates its close customer service both inside and outside its bank with the launch of an exciting new Buddy app. You can learn about it in this fun viral video where their specially trained staff are keen to show  they will go the extra mile for anyone who needs a helping hand, that their bank delivers a very personal service in today’s technological era. You first saw...
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Some questions for Lord Browne over soaring university tuition fees

The radical review of university tuition fees by Lord Browne will allow universities to charge unlimited fees. It proposes a free market in fees, though universities charging more than £6,000 a year would lose a proportion of the fee to help cover the cost of student borrowing. Not only does this sound complicated, it will also deter many poorer students from applying, and even “middle...
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Did you meet the underground strike buddies in Covent Garden?

Who brightened up the day for frustrated London commuters when they faced more chaos and severe disruption caused by the latest underground strike action? Were you one of the commuters in Covent Garden cheered up by a random act of kindness from a mystery team of buddies? Just check these videos to see if you can identify which company sprang into action to live up to its name – from...
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The complexities of international adoption

International adoptions should not just be accessible for celebrities like Angelina Jolie and Madonna. I’ve heard of two stories about about these adoptions recently – one is inspiring, and the other is tragic, denying a young boy left disfigured after being thrown face down on a fire, the chance of a loving home. I’ll tell you about 10year-old Kevin Wafula first who was flown...
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Did Onassis have Bobby Kennedy killed?

I’ve booked  tickets to see the new West End play Onassis starring Robert Lindsay. But I am perturbed that the storyline is based on a book which essentially claims that the Greek shipping magnate arranged the murder of  Bobby Kennedy which has never been proven. But then neither has the writer Peter Evans been gagged from making these astonishing allegations in his book Nemesis, published...
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Congratulations to Nobel Prize winner Prof Robert Edwards

Congratulations to scientist Prof Robert Edwards on being awarded the Nobel Prize for medicine. But why has it taken so long for him to achieve this worldwide recognition? The pioneering IVF treatment he developed with  Dr Patrick Steptoe at Bourn Hall Clinic, near Cambridge (he died in 1988) – resulted in test tube babies as we know them – and more than 4 million babies have been...
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Why Ed Miliband is the loser

If Ed Miliband can find the time to conceive a child – or two – then surely he can find the time to register his name on his first born son’s birth certificate. It might not have been a priority for him, but it’s a ritual, and one usually accomplished with pride and love by new dads. How is his son going to feel when he learns about this? He could feel devastated.And if...
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Which Labour leadership contender has the best online presence?

Three years ago I wrote a post asking if Harriet Harman blogged her way to victory as the Labour’s deputy leader as my analysis of campaign websites used by candidates back then was that her online presence was the most interactive, and this could have contributed to her success as it demonstrated she was the best communicator out of the bunch. Social media has played a key role in this...
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