This week's UK news: 25 July 2015
25 July 2015

Stephen Hawking wants us to find life in the Universe

Scientist Professor Stephen Hawking says it is time to find out whether there is intelligent life beyond Earth. He and other scientists have launched a GPB 75m project to do this.

During the next ten years, the project will survey the million closest stars to Earth, and listen for messages from the 100 closest galaxies. The scientists say that if a civilisation in one of the thousand closest stars to us transmits using only the power of an aircraft radar, we could detect these signals.

However, the scientists will not attempt to communicate with other civilisations if it finds signals that they exist. 


Famous Scottish food wins battle

You've heard of Mars Bars. You've heard of UK fish-and-chip shops, where fish and sausages get fried in a flour paste called batter. But have you ever heard of a deep-fried Mars Bar?

In case you haven't, it is probably one of the most unhealthy foods on the planet. It is a Mars Bar (a filled chocolate bar) put in batter and deep fried until the outside is crispy and the inside melting. The first time a Mars Bar was put into a chip shop fryer was near Aberdeen in Scotland, in the Carron fish bar. A schoolboy asked the chip shop to deep fry a Mars Bar for him in 1992, and how they are popular all over Scotland. The Carron itself attracts tourists from all over the world to eat a Mars Bar and have their photographs taken in front of the shop.

The Carron advertises that it is the home of the deep fried Mars Bar with a banner across the front of the shop. It has been in the news this week because local officials wanted the banner to be taken down. After lots of news stories about this, the council has said it will not insist that the shop takes the sign down.


Smoking may be banned on Brighton beach

In the UK, smoking is banned in public buildings like offices, restaurants and bars. Now Brighton Council is asking local people whether they would like smoking banned in parks and on beaches as well. 


Oldest pieces of Koran found in UK university

The University of Birmingham has found what may be some of the oldest pieces of the Koran in its library. Tests have shown that the pages are at least 1,370 years old. The university had not expected the pages to be so old, and an expert said Muslims would "rejoice".

Experts think the pages were written very close to the founding of Islam and that it was possible that the writer might have known the Prophet Muhammad.

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