Chief Correspondent, Britain, London, UK
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May 21, 2014

Tale of two towns as Scottish independence shows social divide

KILMARNOCK Scotland (Reuters) – With Edinburgh’s old town abuzz with tourists and its trendy restaurants full, the Scottish capital has an air of prosperity that explains why so many of its residents are happy with their lot and unwilling to risk the changes independence may bring.

But in Kilmarnock, 50 miles (80 kms) west, it is a different story. The once proud industrial town has been named the worst place to live in Scotland, battling high unemployment and with pawnbrokers and discount stores dominating its shopping center.

May 20, 2014

U.S. resumes search for missing British sailors after public appeal

LONDON (Reuters) – U.S. authorities resumed a hunt on Tuesday for four British yachtsmen missing in the Atlantic Ocean after a public appeal backed by UK politicians and British billionaire Richard Branson not to give up on finding them just yet.

The sailors on board the yacht Cheeki Rafiki went missing on Friday as they were returning to Britain from a sailing event in Antigua in the Caribbean and reported that the vessel was taking on water, forcing them to change course to head to the Azores.

May 14, 2014

Scottish independence bid flags questions about Union Jack

LONDON (Reuters) – For centuries the Union Jack has been the symbol of British power across the globe but a bid by secessionists in Scotland to break the union with England has thrust the future of the red-white-and-blue flag into question.

Gracing gunboats, guitars and even iPhones, the Union Flag has by turns served as a banner of imperial might and of British identity for everyone from monarchs to the Sex Pistols.

May 13, 2014

Vandalized Rothko painting rehung in London after pioneering restoration

LONDON (Reuters) – A Mark Rothko painting vandalized at London’s Tate Modern gallery 18 months ago went back on public view on Tuesday after the first-ever effort to strip graffiti ink off a major artwork without damaging the layers of paintwork.

Rothko’s “Black on Maroon” was attacked in October 2012 by an aspiring artist who scrawled “Vladimir Umanets ’12, A Potential Piece of Yellowism” in a lower corner. One of the Seagram Murals commissioned for the Four Seasons restaurant in 1958, the painting was valued at five million to nine million pounds by Sotheby’s. Rothko donated it to the Tate in 1970.

May 12, 2014

Leaders call for unity as independence debate divides Scotland

LONDON (Reuters) – Political leaders locked in a bitter fight over Scottish independence have urged all Scots to reunite whatever the outcome of a referendum in September as the national church voiced concerns over rifts in society.

Both sides in the campaign have called for an end to rising levels of abuse and personal attacks and stressed the need to work together after the vote over the 307-year tie to England.

May 8, 2014

Biggest funders of Scottish independence call for end to abuse

LONDON (Reuters) – The two biggest backers of Scottish independence, lottery winners Colin and Chris Weir, appealed on Thursday to both sides in an increasingly bitter debate to stop smears and personal attacks, reversing a decision not to go public with their views.

The Weirs, who have donated 3 million pounds ($5 million)from a 2011 Euromillions lottery prize of 161 million pounds to the independence campaign, said they had decided to speak out as they feared the referendum could leave Scotland “fragmented”.

Apr 28, 2014

London commuters battle Tube strike as businesses lament losses

LONDON, April 29 (Reuters) – London Underground train
workers were staging their second 48-hour strike this year on
Tuesday in protest at job cuts and office closures in a dispute
that is expected to cost businesses millions of pounds as
commuters struggle to reach their work.

The walk-out that started at 2030 GMT Monday, and a planned
three-day strike next week, is over plans to close about 250
ticket offices and 950 jobs in a restructuring that Transport
for London (TfL) says could save 50 million pounds a year.

Apr 28, 2014

Denmark’s Noma regains crown as world’s best restaurant

LONDON, April 28 (Reuters) – Danish restaurant Noma was
crowned the world’s best restaurant on Monday, pipping last
year’s Spanish winner to reclaim the increasingly influential
title it held for three straight years that guarantees a waiting
list for diners.

Noma’s chef-owner Rene Redzepi, 36, with his new Nordic
cuisine, knocked Spain’s El Celler De Can Roca into second place
at an award ceremony at London’s Guildhall attended by
influential chefs and food writers from around the globe.

Apr 26, 2014

Scottish leader says energy and fisheries make Scotland key to Europe

LONDON (Reuters) – Scotland’s energy reserves and fishing grounds will make it a crucial member of the European Union (EU) if it votes to leave the United Kingdom in an independence referendum, Scottish leader Alex Salmond will say on Monday.

Salmond wants Scotland to stay in the EU if there is a “Yes” vote on September 18, hoping to agree a “smooth transition” to a renewal of membership before the country declares independence in March 2016.

Apr 24, 2014

BBC withdraws from UK business group over Scottish independence

LONDON (Reuters) – The BBC is to suspend its membership of Britain’s leading business lobby group after deciding on Thursday to join a number of organizations protesting over the CBI’s move to officially campaign against Scottish independence.

The BBC and the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) both issued statements saying the publicly-funded broadcaster would suspend its membership from the start of the official campaign period on May 30 until the independence referendum on September 18.

    • About Belinda

      "As Chief Correspondent, Britain, at Reuters I cover a wide range of stories ranging from how politics and the economy impact day-to-day life to the royal family and the BBC. During my 20 years at Reuters, I have also worked in Australia, the United States and Sweden, covering politics, companies, commodities and investment banking. I was also Global Editor of Entertainment and Lifestyle based in New York and I ran inhouse training for Reuters' 2,500 journalists."
      Joined Reuters:
      1994
      Languages:
      Swedish, Spanish, French
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