Arts and Entertainment

You might assume that the participants in the BBC4 documentary God's Cadets: Joining the Salvation Army would all be classic "lark" types, but there was a greater variety of personality than expected in this 90-minute film. It followed the pious, but not pompous "cadets" who had given up their lives to enter into two years of intensive officer training at the William Booth College in south London.

True Gripes: Tunnels of fear: Who really cares about Tube safety?

It's Friday, midnight, on the last train to Wembley Park. In the last carriage two lads furtively light their roll-ups. One with a bad perm, tattoos and scabs on his face, the other pale, pink and spotty. 'Can't you wait until you get home? How many people had to die at King's Cross to make you not smoke on the Tube?', I offer.

Fatal shooting

A man died in hospital after being shot in the head outside a pub in King's Cross, north London, at about 10.30pm last night. A gun was recovered, but the suspect escaped on foot.

Open all hours - for crack and sex

Police and councils in north London fear proposed deregulation of cafe opening hours will harm the fight against drug dealers and prostitutes.

Faster Luton link

The summer train timetable has speeded up services from central London,making the Bedfordshire airport a more attractive gateway in terms of timesaving, if not aesthetics. Non-stop Thameslink trains now take 28 minutes from King's Cross to Luton station, connecting with a special bus service (8 minutes).

Silence over Fitch's future: Design firm reviews financial and management structures

FITCH RS, the design company, said yesterday it was reviewing financial and management structures but refused to discuss the future of its founder, Rodney Fitch.

Police forge ties with left to fight the crack trade: Clampdown puts squeeze on drug dealing and prostitution at King's Cross. Ian MacKinnon reports

A GROUND-BREAKING alliance between the police and local authorities appears to be winning the war against the drug dealers in one of Europe's most notorious areas.

Architecture Update: End of the line

WHAT is to become of the 132-acre King's Cross railway lands, following the announcement by John MacGregor, Secretary of State for Transport, that Channel tunnel trains will run into St Pancras? A masterplan drawn up for the site by Sir Norman Foster and Partners for the London Regeneration Consortium was based on a new station at King's Cross alongside the existing Victorian building. Now it is likely that a completely different scheme will be designed, taking into account the likely new track alignment which will cut off the top north-east corner of the site - where the developers had planned two skyscrapers.

Letter: Vote Tory, get a council house

Sir: Revelations about the designated sales policy of Westminster Council (report, 14 January) not only raise issues about abuse of power in local government, they also show that thousands of homeless families have been sacrificed for the sake of a handful of marginal votes.

Lone parents giving up Income Support: High number of lone parents quit benefit

MORE than 11,000 lone parents have stopped claiming Income Support to avoid involvement with the Government's Child Support Agency since it was set up in April.

Unscheduled departure of tube train leaves driver standing

AN INQUIRY began yesterday into how a driverless rush- hour Tube train carried 150 passengers for more than a mile before stopping.

Rugby Union: Hookers opening for real business

HAPPY hookers? In Geoff Cooke's book, they simply should not exist. Not that the England manager has been conducting a personal survey around the back streets of King's Cross - unless he took the train back north last Monday after delivering a warning to the hookers in his life, the three named in England's 24-man squad for the Twickenham Test against the All Blacks in a fortnight's time.

Confusion fear on BR franchise line: Government hails range of fares on Gatwick route as passengers' gain. Martin Whitfield reports

NEW FARES on the first British Rail franchise route to Gatwick airport were hailed by the Government yesterday as the first 'tangible benefits of privatisation' but left many consumers confused and suspicious.

Porters return to railways

BRITISH RAIL yesterday reintroduced platform porters to carry passengers' luggage. Porters disappeared on the railways in the 1970s and passengers had to make do with trolleys. But now they are being brought back on trial on InterCity platforms at King's Cross station in London.

Letter: How many radical bookshops are there

HOW MANY radical bookshops in London? Alex Renton answers one. Here are five more: Compendium (Chalk Farm), Index Books (Charlotte Street and Brixton), Bookmarks (Seven Sisters Road, and The Edge (King's Cross).

Fire pay-out

John Wood, 60, who won the Queen's Award for Bravery for his heroism in the King's Cross fire in November 1987, has been paid pounds 90,000 by London Underground to compensate him for the injuries he suffered.
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