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Offensive Weapons Act

Offensive Weapons Act 2019 received Royal Assent on 16 May 2019. It makes it illegal to own certain weapons in private and makes it an offence to send bladed products without first checking that the buyer is over 18. Other measures include: a ban on the possession, manufacture and sale of rapid firing rifles and bump stocks, which increase a rifle’s rate of fire. The ban on the manufact...
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T-level support

On 19 May 2019, the government announced a package of measures to help promote T-levels, the new practical qualification. Part of the T-level is a requirement that the student completes at least 315 hours (about 45 days) in an industrial placement. About 200 companies have agreed to take part. The new measures include new guidance, a £7 million pilot scheme and bespoke guides. In 2018/...
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ePassport gates for more countries

From 20 May 2019, visitors from seven more countries may use ePassport gates at UK ports. The seven countries are Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and USA. These gates have been available to British and EU nationals since 2008. It is intended that EU nationals will continue to use them after Brexit. [19.05]
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Kilogram redefined

From 20 May 2019, the kilogram is defined by Planck constant and not by a block of platinum and iridium alloy kept in a vault in Paris. This has been the definition since 1875. The current block was made in 1889. The kilogram is one of four of the seven basic SI units to be redefined. The other three are the ampere, kelvin and mole. [19.05]
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Obituary: Doris Day

Doris Day, the American singer and actress, died on 13 May 2019, aged 97. In 1968, she discovered that money from recordings had not been put in tax shelters by her manager and third husband Marty Melcher as he claimed. Instead he had embezzled it. [19.05]
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Uncompleted work not covered by delay provision

A clause for liquidated damages for delay did not apply where the contractor had failed to complete the contracted work. It only applied to completed sections of work. Damages were recoverable for uncompleted work on ordinary principles. The Court of Appeal so decided on 5 March 2019. The case related to payments for software development which fell behind schedule. Triple Point Technology In...
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Obituary: Brian Walden

Brian Walden, Labour MP and later television interviewer, died on 9 May 2019, aged 86. His only government post was in 1964 when he was made parliamentary private secretary to Jack Diamond, chief secretary to the Treasury. [19.05]
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Error on Australian banknote

The new A$50 polymer note in Australia, worth about £27, has a spelling mistake. The note depicts Edith Cowan (1861-1932) and quotes her 1921 speech "I stand here today in the unique position of being the first woman in an Australian parliament. It is a great responsibility". The word "responsibility" has the third I missing. The mistake was spotted in May 2019, seven months after 400 millio...
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Obituary: Betty Lockwood

Betty Lockwood, a baroness and former head of the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) dies on 29 April 2019, aged 95. She was the first chairman of the EOC formed in 1975 when sex discrimination became illegal. It operated from an office in Manchester; the Post Office soon got the joke of mail addressed to "Personchester". [19.05]
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