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The aftermath of Sue Gray’s report for the PM

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Following the publication of Sue Gray’s report, Boris Johnson faced a gruelling appearance in the House of Commons on Monday.

The Prime Minister was heavily criticised by opposition as well as MPs from his own party expressing their outrage.

In his statement, Johnson apologised “for all the things we simply did not get right and sorry for the way that this matter has been handled.”

The initial inquiry revealed there was a “serious failure to observe not just the high standards expected of those at the heart of Government but also of the standards expected of the entire British population at the time.”

Kier Starmer kicked off the criticsm speaking of “rage and even guilt” felt by the public for abiding by the rules in light of the incidents.

The Labour leader said: “A collective trauma endured by all, enjoyed by none. Funerals have been missed, dying relatives unvisited.

“Every family has been marked by what we have been through and revelations about the Prime Minister’s behaviour have forced us all to rethink and relive those darkest moments.”

Sir Ed Davey called for the PM to resign, because he has caused “enormous hurt.”

The Lib-Dem Leader described “a loss that is literally beyond words,” as he spoke of parents who had lost children during the pandemic.

He said: “Many had to bury their children alone, many couldn’t be there with them at the end. Meanwhile, No 10 partied.”

A heated outburst by Ian Blackford forced him to leave the Commons.

After he repeatedly refused to change his statement accusing the PM of lying to the House of Commons to that he “unintentionally mislead,” Sir Lindsay Hoyle kicked him out.

Theresa May asked if the PM didn’t read the rule, didn’t understand the rules, or whether he didn’t think they applied to him, demanding to know: “Which is it?”

Boris Johnson acknowledged on Monday there are changes that need to be made.

Click here to see Sue Gray’s report.

The PM said Sue Gray’s report found, “there is significant learning to be drawn from these events, which must be addressed immediately across government. This does not need to wait for the police investigations to be concluded.

“That is why we are making changes now to the way Downing Street and the Cabinet Office run, so that we can get on with the job that I was elected to do Mr Speaker and the job this government was elected to do.”

Johnson explained an Office of the Prime Minister with a Permanent Secretary will be created to lead No 10 and that the Civil Service and Special Advisor codes of contact will not only be reviewed but enforced.

The PM also said steps will be taken to improve No 10 operations and the work of the Cabinet Office to strengthen Cabinet Government and to improve the vital connection between No 10 and parliament.

He said: “I get it and I will fix it.”

Click here to read the PMs full statement.

However, Johnson accused Starmer of “political opportunism.”

Throughout the session, the PM reiterated that people need to wait until the police investigation has been complete.

On Monday evening, Johnson met with his entire Conservative party in a bid to save his premiership.

This comes as there are growing signs that his own party is losing faith in him.

Angela Richardson, Conservative MP for Guildford, resigned as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Michael Grove, following the report’s findings.

The incident has led Tory MP Andrew Mitchel to change from “full-throated support” to announcing the PM “no longer enjoys my support.”

Conservative MP Aaron Bell spoke of his grandmother’s funeral, describing how he was unable to hug his relatives.

Bell asked: “Does the prime minister think I am a fool?”

Although the session in House of Commons on Monday was dominated by criticism, a select few Conservative MPs remained in support of the PM.

Starmer voiced his opinion on what Conservatives should do now: “The eyes of this country are upon them. They will be judged by the decisions they take now.”

Prior to it’s release, MPs warned Johnson would lose their support if the report wasn’t published in full.

Although the PM was true to his word, Sue Gray revealed she was “extremely limited” in what she could say due the ongoing police investigation with only “minimal reference” allowed to be made to the events.

 

The top civil servant said it prevented a “meaningful” inquiry from being published.

Downing Street have said that an updated version will be released once their investigation is complete.

No 10 confirmed that the PM “will ask Sue Gray to update her work in light of what is found.”

One of the incidents in question is a gathering held at the PMs Downing Street flat on 13 November 2020.

A vote of no confidence will be triggered if 15% of Conservative MPs write to the 1922 Committee.

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Saudi Arabia wants its investors to own Manchester United

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North East Updates - Breaking News

Sports minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal revealed the country’s latest sporting ambitions in an interview with Sky News – with the sovereign wealth fund already owning Newcastle and now funding a breakaway golf series.

 

Sports minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal revealed the country’s latest sporting ambitions in an interview with Sky News – with the sovereign wealth fund already owning Newcastle and now funding a breakaway golf series.

 

It follows the Manchester United board announcing that they are open to a sale of the club.

Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisalstated he would be keen on Ronaldo signing for a Saudi Pro League after the World Cup, with the 37-year-old a free agent following a controversial interview and exit to Manchester United earlier this week..

 

“Who wouldn’t want him to play in their league?” “He’s a role model to a lot of young players – him and Messi.”

 

Sky news are reporting – It is the availability of United – after the Glazers announced plans for a potential sale – and Ronaldo that is interesting Prince Abdulaziz.

 

What are your thoughts on this – join the conversation on our Facebook page.

 

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Sunday for Sammy Concert Cancelled For 2023 Due To Cost of Living

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A popular charity concert will not be held in 2023 due to the cost of living crisis.

Sunday for Sammy, which is held in memory of North East actor Sammy Johnson, is a biennial event aimed at benefitting young performers.

The long-running event has featured the likes of Joe McElderry, Johnny Vegas, Brenda Blethyn, Denise Welch, AC/DC’s Brian Johnson and Mark Knopfler, Jill Halfpenny and Ant and Dec.

Tim Healy, who hosts Sunday for Sammy, said: “We’ve had lots of enquiries over the recent months asking when the next Sunday for Sammy will take place.

“We are very much aware at the moment that people are struggling with day-to-day living costs and are watching their pennies. Everything is becoming more and more expensive and that includes the cost of putting on a show the size of ours.”

He added: “We can’t in good conscious put on a show that we aren’t sure people can afford to be tickets for. It would be wrong to risk your money you have generously given us.

“So sadly we have decided that there won’t be a show in 2023. We’re going to wait until the time is right.”

Often dubbed The Geordie Command Performance, the shows, which have been running for more than 20 years, are held in memory of Geordie actor Sammy Johnson, who died in 1999.

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STACK Newcastle Bosses Scrap Plans For Christmas Pop-Up Venue

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The owners of STACK have confirmed that there won’t be a pop-up version in Newcastle this Christmas, as plans have been shelved.

At the end of September it was reported that STACK’s owner, Danieli Group, were hoping to bring the brand back to the heart of Newcastle after its Pilgrim Street site was demolished earlier this year, after becoming a firm favourite with locals and visitors since 2018. The pop-up, close to the Crowne Plaza hotel in the Stephenson Quarter, looked set to be a massive draw before STACK makes its permanent return to the city next year, was planned to feature a number of shipping container bars, a new take on its famous Hadrian’s Tipi, street food vans, a stage and large screen, all on one level.

But, it has now been announced that the proposed STACK festive pop-up won’t be happening anymore. Confirming the decision, Neill Winch, CEO of Danieli Group said that while it was sad news that the pop-up would no longer take place, it meant the company can forge ahead with the Worswick Chambers plan.

He commented: “We know how much people miss not having a STACK in Newcastle so we are concentrating our efforts on creating what will become a flagship site back where STACK first began,” he said.

“Work is well underway on the scheme with a view to being open in winter 2023.”

In recent weeks it has announced new developments in Lincoln, Durham, Bishop Auckland and Carlisle.

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