Lobbyist eases his way into the corridors of power

Commons access: Row over prized passes shows how advisers hope to gain influence for clients

LETTER: Railway success stories

SEVERAL of the anecdotes in your "Great Railway Disaster" series date back far longer than any preparations for privatisation, such as the restriction on breaking the outward journey of a Saver ticket and the omission from local timetables of certain long-distance trains stopping at Watford, etc.

Mayfair, mortgaged for £200 - and go to jail!

Well, it is a game. But how does Waddington's evergreen fantasy London square with reality? Rosie Millard throws the dice

Flight from firm reluctant to change

BEING merely average is no longer good enough. That is the sobering lesson Henderson Administration has had to absorb at its modern headquarters in the Broadgate Centre near London's Liverpool Street station.

Ritblat homes in on Stanhope

John Ritblat came a step closer to his goal of acquiring the City's most prestigious office complex yesterday as he announced a recommended bid for Stanhope, the struggling property developer whose banking facilities ran out a month ago.

Centrefold: Suits on the piste: Mountain lust aroused in the city

As summer tans fade, thoughts turn to restoring a ruddy-cheeked glow by whizzing down distant slopes on skis. City workers may not be able to feel that invigorating Alpine air within the Square Mile, but for the next two days they can experience the buzz of skiing down a 3m-high mountain . . . in pinstripes.

Gardening: Cuttings: Spitalfields show

THE second annual Horticultural Show of flowers, fruit, vegetables, home produce and honey is in the old covered Victorian market at Spitalfields, near Liverpool Street station, London, tomorrow (12 noon-5pm). Admission free.

Newsbrief: Property looking for rightful owners

Stolen goods worth more than pounds 4m go on show today at the Broadgate Institute, opposite Liverpool Street Station, to try to track down their owners. Scotland Yard said: 'The show includes 6,000 items of stolen property.

Where shall we meet?: Corney & Barrow Bar, the Broadgate Centre

The Broadgate Centre, as the patina of newness rubs off, is emerging as one of the pleasanter of the City's glass-and-hubris developments. This representative of the Corney and Barrow chain of wine bars hangs in a Babylonian garden above the main thoroughfare from Moorgate to Liverpool Street station and accompanies the copious bottles of fizz and plonk it sells with generous-sized bowls of salted things that make you want to drink more.

Newsbrief: Safety first for children

Free safety tests on pushchairs will be carried out by Southwark trading standards officers at Surrey Quays shopping centre today to coincide with National Child Safety Week.

Pembroke: Boredom struggles to keep heart beating

I understand the boredom of marathon training is beginning to gnaw away at Jonathan Paddison, partner at accountants BDO Binder Hamlyn. Mr Paddison, who describes himself as 'more a jogger than a runner', is limbering up for his first 26 miler at the London Marathon next month.

Power & Influence in the Arts / Architect: The reconstructed developer: As whole areas of London attest, from Broadgate to Victoria, Stuart Lipton is the patron saint of property development. By Jonathan Glancey

Until the arrival of the superstore with its inane architecture and voracious appetite for beauty spots, only the road-builder and property developer had so changed the face of modern Britain.

Spitalfields Trust

THE Spitalfields Trust, a charity dedicated to restoring Georgian houses, was looking for premises nine years ago when it found a grubby but symbolically located former peanut warehouse. The building overlooked Nicholas Hawksmoor's Christ Church and the threatened Spitalfields market in east London, which had prompted the trust into existence.

Seven hurt in City gas explosion

FIREMEN clearing debris outside the McDonald's fast food restaurant close to Liverpool Street Station in the City yesterday, after a gas explosion, in the basement of the seven-storey office block next door, in which seven people were injured.

CrossRail finance plan runs into opposition

THE Department of the Environment is threatening to block a radical proposal from the Corporation of London to provide up to pounds 800m towards the building of the long-delayed CrossRail project.
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