Weekly Digest – 10 May 2023

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King and Queen say thanks for ‘glorious occasion’

King Charles and Queen Camilla were “deeply touched” by the coronation and “profoundly grateful” to the people who made it a special occasion. On Saturday, King Charles III was crowned at a ceremony at Westminster Abbey, with more than 2,000 guests looking on and an additional 18 million viewers watching in the UK. It was the first coronation in 70 years.

The coronation’s global guests – in pictures

The coronation of King Charles III was attended by former prime ministers and international dignitaries. Here are many of them arriving at the ceremony.

Anti-monarchists criticise arrests at King Charles’ coronation

Anti-monarchists say policing of the coronation of King Charles was heavy-handed and violated their rights, as dozens of protesters were arrested and detained. Protesters were released, with a UK minister saying the police operation struck the right balance between respecting rights and preventing disruption.

How much money does the royal family bring in tourism?

Millions of people visit the UK annually to visit historical royal landmarks, with Windsor Castle, Frogmore House, Buckingham Palace and other sites generating significant revenue from ticket sales and souvenir sales. In all, the monarchy contributes around £2.5bn to the British economy annually.

Bank of England may have to raise rates to 5% this summer, says Goldman Sachs

The Bank of England could be forced to raise interest rates to 5% in the coming months, as Britain grapples with the highest inflation rates among the G7 group. High inflation is expected to maintain financial pressure on households.

Scores of local pharmacies closing across England

In the last two years, the number of pharmacies in England has dropped by 160, with only 11,026 community chemists. Increases in operational costs, reduced government financial support, and staff shortages have all been cited as reasons for the drop, despite an increase in patient demand.

Horizon scandal: Post Office boss to pay back part of bonus

The chief executive of the Post Office, Nick Read, will return part of a £450,000 bonus from 2022, after a rebuke from Sir Wyn Williams, who is chairing the inquiry into the HOrizon computer scandal. While the Post Office said it had met all its obligations to support the inquiry, that inquiry is still taking place. Some sub-postmasters were blamed for issues with their post office’s finances and faced jail time, when the issue was linked to a glitch-prone IT system.

Labour to clamp down on foreign buyers of UK properties

Labour party leader Sir Keir Starmer said the party would increase the stamp duty paid by foreign buyers of UK property and restrict the sale of new-build properties to overseas investors. Additional policies would make it easier for younger workers to buy their own homes, the party says. The party’s full platform is expected in the coming months, ahead of an anticipated general election next year.

AI market faces investigation by UK competition regulator

The Competition and Markets Authority said it would be conducting a review of the artificial intelligence market to ensure the new, rapidly scaling technology develops in ways that ensures competitive markets and consumer protection. An interim report on findings is due in September.

UK public ‘deeply conflicted’ about air travel

Speaking at the Institute of Travel Management’s annual conference, Kelly Beaver, chief executive UK & Ireland of Ipsos said the UK public is conflicted about travel due to its environmental impact, but is also reluctant to support any government intervention that affects them. While 40 per cent of those surveyed believe aviation is a main cause of global warming, only 30 per cent believe the sector is taking action to reduce emissions.

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