Financial Regulation

Tom Hodgkinson Tom Hodgkinson: In the face of no-phone situation my rage turned into

hen our phone went down in early February, we emailed our provider, the Phone Co-op, to ask them to fix it pronto. We live in a remote corner of Exmoor with no mobile reception, work from home and use the phone quite a lot. Now, the Phone Co-op is a lovely, friendly, ethical family company. There is some sort of co-operative element to it which I don't fully understand but which gives it an aura of non-exploitation. And you can communicate with them directly. Which is all great. But of course they don't fix the phones. That is down to another company: BT Openreach.

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Premier cru? No, just a vintage curse

Doomsayers in the Bordeaux region of France seeking to drink themselves into a stupor before the world ends on Friday must now contend with another supposed curse. Chateau d'Yquem, a posh vineyard mostly owned by the LVMH group, has announced it will not produce a 2012 vintage because weather has limited the sugar levels in the grapes used to make its renowned Sauternes sweet wine.