Garden Bridge 'saved' by last-minute cash deal

Reports that a deal has been reached to break an impasse over the funding package for the proposed Garden Bridge across the Thames in central London feature in today's newspaper round-up.

The Evening Standard reports that London’s proposed Garden Bridge "has been saved in an 11th hour deal that slashed £20 million from the cost to the capital’s taxpayers". According to the newspaper, talks between Labour mayoral candidate Sadiq Khan, Lambeth Council leader Lib Peck, mayoral agency Transport for London and the Garden Bridge Trust "reached a dramatic breakthrough that will allow work to start on schedule next year".

The Times (subscription required) reports that the UK's rising population will continue to push up house prices over the next five years, "with large cities expected to grow by the biggest amount". According to the newspaper, Moody’s, one of the three big credit agencies, said that the UK would experience population growth of 3.2 per cent until 2020, "creating further demand for homes across the country, especially from first-time buyers".

Writing in the Telegraph, William Cash argues that planing laws are increasingly threatening the surroundings of some of Britain’s most beautiful properties. "Our country houses - one of our great social and cultural exports - are being destroyed because the government fails to understand the importance of ‘historic setting’," he writes. "George Osborne and the metropolitan political class are not especially interested in preserving or promoting Britain’s built heritage. They are far more interested in trying to win votes with infrastructure projects, and see the grounds of country houses as a stumbling block to the cheap execution of HS2 and the like."

The Guardian reports that, while the British government sees nuclear energy as a safe and reliable form of power, Germany is going in a different direction. According to the newspaper, "after Fukushima, Angela Merkel pledged to switch off all nuclear power by 2022 and fill the gap with renewables". "No other country of Germany’s size has attempted such a radical shift in its power supply in such a short space of time," the newspaper reports.

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