This week's UK news: 4 November 2011
4 November 2011

Problems at the Cathedral

St Paul's Cathedral is one of the most famous buildings in London. It is even more famous at the moment because of its problems with a protest camp close to its entrance.
When the Occupy protesters arrived the Cathedral allowed them to put their tents close to the building. But several days later Cathedral staff said they had to close the church to visitors and worshippers because of fears about safety from the camp.
The protesters refused to move, and the City of London and the cathedral started discussing legal action. Since then three senior members of the Cathedral's staff have resigned and the Church has reopened. The protesters have now been told they can stay until after Christmas.

Summer babies born to struggle

Researchers have found that UK children born in the summer are less likely to attend the best universities than those born in the autumn.
The school year in England and Wales starts on September 1, so any children born in August are up to a year younger than their oldest classmates. They often start behind and struggle to catch up.
The research found that the August-born children are likely to achieve lower scores in national tests, are more likely to take a non-academic course after 16, and are more likely to say they were unhappy at school at the age of 7.

Harry Potter author's confession

JK Rowling has revealed that she almost killed off Harry Potter's friend Ron Weasley half way through the series of novels.
She says that she had intended to keep the main three characters alive throughout the Harry Potter books. But when she was writing the middle books she started to think how she might kill one of them.
"Although I did seriously consider killing Ron, I wouldn't have done it," she said. She was being interviewed by Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter, in a special interview for the DVD of the Deathly Hallows: Part 2.

Jigsaw puzzle horror

Doing jigsaws -- a puzzle where a picture has been cut into lots of pieces -- is a popular hobby with older people in the UK.
Most people think a 1,000 piece puzzle is big enough to keep them occupied. John Dyson, who lives in Devon, is so keen on puzzles that he had got the world's largest jigsaw. It is very difficult because it is a modern art picture by Keith Haring and also has 32,000 pieces.
After 340 hours, Mr Dyson was about to put the last pieces in the puzzle. He decided to prop up the board with the puzzle on it to take a photograph, and disaster struck. Around 10,000 pieces slid off the board.
"One it started I couldn't stop it," said Mr Dyson.


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