This week's UK news: 5 July 2013
5 July 2013

Learn English, says German politician

Ursula von der Leyen is Germany's labour minister. Many people think she may follow Angela Merkel as the country's Chancellor. She was interviewed in an English newspaper this week. The reporter asked her what was the best way to solve the unemployment crisis among young people in Europe (23.5 per cent of under-25s do not have a job).

Mrs von der Leyen advised them to learn English as a second language. "The labour market is global and whoever wants an enduring career must have facility in English," she said. She argues that English should be adopted as the "second language" of Europe so young people can move more easily around the continent looking for work.

Royal dresses go on show

The dresses of three Royal women have gone on show at Kensington Palace in London. Fashion Rules shows selected formal dresses worn by the Queen in the 1950s, by her sister Princess Margaret in the 1960s and 1970s, and by Princess Diana in the 1980s. These were the times when the three women were wearing the most fashionable clothes. 

The Queen's five dresses are in pale colours, because royal clothes have to stand out in a crowd. At the time, the dresses also needed to photograph well in black-and-white film.

Princess Diana's clothes were very different, complete with sparkles and shoulder pads. These now look very old-fashioned. Princess Margaret's dresses are sometimes the most spectacular, including a fur coat, and an Indian-style dress with matching turban.

Royal baby about to arrive

The Royal family has approved lots of souvenirs which will be produced to celebrate the arrival of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's baby this month.

The baby will inherit the throne, no matter whether it is a boy or a girl, and film crews are already starting to arrive outside the London hospital where it will be born.

Special mugs, plates and T-towels (for drying kitchenware) are usually produced to mark Royal events. This time, there will also be dolls, baby clothes, mobile phone covers -- and doughnuts. Krispy Kreme is selling doughnuts with pink or blue creamy centres, so people can guess whether the baby is a boy or a girl.

Wimbledon, Glastonbury... and summer finally arrives

It's been a cheerful week in the UK as lots of people have enjoyed the Glastonbury Festival, either by joining more than 100,000 others at the event or by watching the TV coverage. The Rolling Stones set was the most popular item on the public broadcaster's website this week.

Wimbledon has also been a happy event for British sports fans as the Scottish player Andy Murray has made it through to the quarter finals with few problems. Another British player, Laura Robson, became the first UK woman to get to the second week of the tournament since 1981. Robson is only 19 so there are hopes that she will do even better this year.

And finally, weather forecasters are promising that summer has finally arrived. The UK will be enjoying a heatwave this weekend and next week, with lots of sunshine and very hot weather. We have just had two awful summers so this is very popular.


previous entry << >> next entry