The Daily: July 17
We scour the news so you don't have to.
Australian and American Olympians lost in London
Members of the Australian Olympic team found themselves on a ‘monopoly tour’ around London upon arrival on Monday evening. Their journey from London Heathrow to the Olympic park managed to become a 3½-hour marathon, taking them past landmarks such as Buckingham Palace and Tower Bridge before getting lost in West Ham. The Australians were among the first wave of the 16,500 Olympians destined to compete in the games. The bus driver claimed that he had not been shown the route before and struggled to operate the GPS navigation, so much so that one of the doctors on board got out his iPhone to give directions to the driver via the map on his phone. However, it was not just the Australians who struggled to get to the Olympic Park in spite of the new Olympic lanes. A separate bus carrying rather weary and bewildered American athletes took 4 hours to reach their accommodation. The transport commissioner Peter Hendy believes that the delays may have been slightly exaggerated and London Mayor Boris Johnson joked: “They had the scenic view. They had the chance to see more of our beautiful scenery than bargained for.”
The Population boom
The 2011 census reveals that there has been a 12% rise in population since the last census was carried out in 2001. In contrast to the last census, where the population in the north-east and north-west of England declined, each region in England and Wales has managed to grow considerably in size throughout the past decade. London in particular showed a huge amount of growth - gaining more than 850,000 residents and consequently raising its population to 8 million. Additionally, the population of England and Wales has increased by 3.7 million during the past 10 years, which is the biggest rise since national records began in 1801.
Tate Modern reveals Tanks – the new extension project
On the 18 July the first phase of the Tate Modern’s new 90 million extension exhibition opens to the public. The Tate’s director, Nicolas Serota, hopes that it will not only be an impressive architectural gesture, but also a new and innovative way to capture contemporary art as never before. The Tanks’ purpose is to showcase live work and performance art as well as providing space in its underground gallery for large, complex film and video instalments, which were previously difficult to show. Serota described the Tanks as: “a new instrument in the orchestra that is Tate Modern.” The Tanks are the first significant step in the Tate Modern’s extension project, estimated to cost a total of £215million by its completion 2016.
‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ sparks steamy makeovers for Classics
The global success of EL James’ novel ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ has influenced some of the greatest work in English Literature to be controversially modified for the 21st Century readership. An enterprising publisher has given classics such as ‘Pride and Prejudice’, ‘Jane Eyre’ and ‘Wuthering Heights’ a rather sensual makeover after the announcement that ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ became the fastest selling book of the year, making the author more than £6.5million in book sales and film rights. The new versions will be available to buy as ebooks, priced from £2.49 to £3.49, but could be made into printed copies later if they find success.
Pensioner protects his prize plants from thieves with a trowel
When two thieves had their eyes set on pensioner Harry Cook’s prize-winning petunias, he was not going to let them go without a fight. When Mr Cook, 67, spotted two thieves raiding his front garden in the middle of the afternoon he stood defiantly in front of the getaway van, threatened them with a trowel and ordered them to “put the blooming things back.” One of the thieves had been loading the grey Vauxhall van with his award-winning petunias and conifers while the other, the getaway driver, was sitting behind the wheel. Mr Cook’s garden has won the Britain in Bloom competition three years in a row and he was determined not to have his efforts ruined only days before the judges for the East Midland in Bloom competition were arriving to inspect his display. The pensioner’s fight paid off as incredibly the thieves obeyed his demands and sped off empty handed.
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