This week's UK news: 11 July 2014
11 July 2014

French cycle race wins UK hearts

The Tour de France is one of the biggest sporting events in the world. It is a three week cycle race which covers around 3,500km over three weeks. It mostly takes place in France, but this year the first three days were raced in the UK.

The Tour spent two days in Yorkshire, watched by at least 2.5m people and perhaps many more. It then travelled further south, from Cambridge to London. The Tour's director said it was "astonishing" and was delighted with the reaction of UK people.

Cycling is now a big sport in the UK. We have done well in Olympic races and also the Tour de France. Unfortunately two leading members of the UK team, Team Sky, have dropped out of the Tour because of injuries but the team is still racing well.


Harry Potter returns

Harry Potter has just made his first appearance in seven years in a short story by JK Rowling. She is writing a series of very short stories on her website, Pottermore. Harry appears as a 34 year old with grey hair, watching the 2014 Quidditch World Cup final with his old friends Ron and Hermione.

Harry is now working as a specialist officer to catch "Dark Wizards" according to the story. Hermione is deputy head of a Magic department, and Ron is managing his family joke shop.


Queen names new ship

The UK's biggest warship was named by the Queen this week, although it will not be launched until the end of the decade. HMS Queen Elizabeth is an aircraft carrier. It is higher than the Niagara Falls and will be able to hold a crew of 680 people and up to 40 jets and helicopters. It weights 65,000 tons, and each of its propellers gives enough power to run 50 high speed trains.

The ship is being built in Scotland and was launched with a bottle of Scottish whisky.


British Museum builds secret extension

The British Museum has been in the heart of London for 260 years, displaying the best of the world's treasures. Now one of its biggest building projects ever has been finished. But nobody really knows the new building is there.

The new rooms include laboratories for looking after the museum's treasures and enough storage space to fit inside 14 Olympic-size swimming pools. But the new World Conservation and Exhibitions Centre is tucked between two part of the building and dug 20 metres below the ground.

The building includes a huge new exhibition hall which is big enough to display huge items. It will make it easy to borrow items from other museums and lend them out.

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