All posts filed under: NEWS

Queen’s Birthday Honours 2015: Redmayne & Lampard Made OBEs

Eddie Redmayne, best actor Oscar winner and former Chelsea and England international Frank Lampard have been recognised in the Queen’s 2015 Birthday Honours List. Lampard was awarded an OBE in recognition of his sterling football career at Chelsea where he netted 150 goals making him the club’s most prolific goalscorer from midfield. He described it as an extremely proud moment for him and his family. Redmayne was awarded an OBE for a career-defining role playing scientist Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything. He lives in Chelsea with his wife Hannah Bagshawe. Paddington Bear author Michael Bond, 89, was made a CBE for his most famous chronicles of the adventures of a Peruvian Bear which has been translated into many languages and was made into a film last year. The marmalade-loving and duffle coat wearing bear who became lost at west London’s Paddington train station has become one of  London’s most recognised faces.

Gourd of the Apes: Meet the Champagne Chimps

They are our closest cousins and it has now been proven they also share our propensity for a good bottle of red. Scientists who conducted the research study at Bossou in Guinea West Africa found wild chimpanzees had adapted their behaviour to consume palm wine, a local tipple fermented at the top of palm trees inside improvised plastic gourds. The study – published in the journal Royal Society Open Science –  also showed African apes and humans share a genetic mutation that enables them to digest alcohol. It had been once thought only humans engaged in the voluntary and social consumption of alcohol until this discovery. The scientists found evidence of the long-term and recurrent consumption of fermented alcohol from the raffia palm (Raphia hookeri, Arecaceae) by primates from 1995 to 2012. Chimpanzees at Bossou also consumed this alcoholic beverage, often in large quantities, despite an average presence of alcohol of 3.1% alcohol by volume rising to 6.9%. Raffia palms, which occur naturally in seasonally flooded areas are traditionally tapped by locals close to the crown of mature palms, …

JK Rowling Battles Twitter Bullies

Harry Potter author JK Rowling has revealed a torrent of Twitter abuse aimed at her after results of the general election saw the Scottish National Party sweep to a landslide victory in Scotland. She wrote: “It isn’t always fun being a famous woman on Twitter and I believe in standing up to bullies.” The millionairess was born in London and has a £4.5m Georgian home in Kensington but has attracted a lot of vitriol since she donated £1m to the ‘No’ campaign during the Scottish independence referendum. Reacting to the abuse the author said her “personal line had been crossed”. @UFOria_ the image of any political party. It isn't always fun being a famous woman on Twitter and I believe in standing up to bullies. — J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) May 9, 2015 She had also donated £1m to the Labour Party who suffered a wipe-out in Scotland as the SNP won 56 out of 59 seats under the leadership of Nicola Sturgeon. She revealed she had been called a ‘traitor’ for her political views and …

#GE2015: Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail

Would the soaring rhetoric of a Winston Churchill have been suited to the political campaign slugfest of the 21st century? For them, no battle-buses, digital and social media gurus or American campaign strategists. Just a trusted open-top wagon with all the passion and oratorical skills they could muster. Fast-forward to 2015 and the UK general elections is shaping up to be the most-covered elections in modern times, thanks to a plethora of media platforms, social media, streaming apps and do-it-yourself broadcasting tools. But perhaps devoid of the human affection and interaction with which a Churchill would have been more familiar. Apart from the traditional voter, modern-day politicians also have to appeal to the millennials who inhabit a digital world exclusively. In the mix are also an array of hyperlocal news sites and irreverent forums where locals vent their spleen. Politicians indeed have their work cut out as they try to spread their message and canvass for votes. And yes, there is no hiding place from the media glare and public scrutiny. Photo opportunities that go awry …

Kate Effect: Royal Baby Boost for UK

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have continued to receive messages of congratulations and close family visitors to their Kensington Palace home in west London after the birth of their second child at the Lindo Wing of St Mary’s Hospital. Read more: Royal Baby: It’s a Princess Royal Baby: Will it be Alice, Diana or Elizabeth The Prince of Wales and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, were early visitors to Kensington Palace to see his second grandchild. The duchess’ parents, Michael and Carole and her sister Pippa Middleton have also been to see the new baby. Kensington Palace said the Cambridges were “hugely grateful for the messages of congratulations they have received from people from all over the world”. A spokesperson announced on Twitter: “It means a great deal to them that so many people have celebrated the arrival of their new daughter.” Prince Harry who is on military duties in Australia said he couldn’t wait to meet his beautiful niece. Prince Harry has said about his new niece: "She is absolutely beautiful. I …

Becks Appeal: Goldenballs at 40

David Beckham decided to join us for breakfast this morning ☕️⚽️ #pastthepond #davidbeckham A post shared by Ashley Lomelin ❣️ (@ashleeyy__nicole) on Apr 25, 2015 at 7:57am PDT Local delicacy: David Beckham blends in at the Montparnasse cafe in Kensington David Beckham has indeed settled effortlessly into life in west London as the instagram snap shared above shows on a recent visit to his local cafe in Kensington. The man who gave us the sarong and cornrow has a lot to celebrate as he hits forty. Friend and sportswriter Matthew Syed paid a glowing tribute to one of Britain’s sporting and cultural icons in The Times. In fact he can count him as a friend, having penned his biography. He paints an endearing picture of a likeable personality and caring father. His red line?  Not even a commercial opportunity will stand between brand Beckham and the school run. “I can’t complain because there are so many aspects of being famous that are a privilege.” He regards the constant adulation as a small price to pay …

General Elections 2015: Spitting Image to the Rescue

Just when you thought the general election campaign needed a spark, an unseen hand to shake the main players out of their lethargy, up comes some very entertaining ghosts from the past. Those latex puppets that got 15m viewers glued to the television sets in the 80s and 90s are back again for a cameo role in a lacklustre election campaign devoid of characters, candour and colour.