A Paean for a Pianist: Dame Fanny is 95

Baroness Deech

Today Dame Fanny Waterman celebrates her 95th birthday.  I was privileged to host a reception for her at the House of Lords a few days ago to mark her birthday, and to celebrate the Golden Anniversary of the Leeds International Piano Competition, which she founded, and which will be held again in September of this…

The truth about jobs in the European rail industry – don’t follow incumbents if you want Europe’s railways to prosper!

Lord Berkeley

Two recent reports demonstrate the risks to the European rail industry of being required to follow the policy of SNCF, made even worse by the recent restructuring of the railway there to re-integrated SNCF and RFF.   According to a study commissioned by UTP, SNCF and ARAF1, SNCF already employs up to 43% more people to…

Triggering an early election…

Lord Norton

The Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 has important implications for British politics.  What is remarkable is how few politicians and commentators appear to know its provisions, particularly in respect of when an early election can take place.  Some still seem to think that the Prime Minister can ask the Queen to dissolve Parliament and call an election.  The…

Human Fertilization Regulations

Lord Hylton

This was a short speech, prepared but not delivered.  Both Houses of Parliament have now approved the Regulations.  It remains to be see how they will work out in practice and whether the Human Fertility and Embryology Authority will be an effective and safe regulator: “I have received well over two dozen letters and emails…