Newspaper headlines: Referendum swings & panic, and 'arise Sir Rod'

Sir Rod Stewart Image copyright PA
Image caption Sir Rod Stewart was knighted for services to music and charity

The latest in the EU referendum campaign and the Queen's Birthday Honours list are on the front pages.

Among a variety of referendum stories, the Times leads with a warning by Germany's Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble that the UK would not be allowed access the single market - as non-EU members Norway and Switzerland can - if it votes to quit the European Union.

The paper says he cautioned that the rest of the EU would interpret a vote for Brexit as a "decision against the single market".

The Times continues: "The minister said the idea that Britain could negotiate a deal that allowed the benefits of the single market without being an EU member would be unworkable.

"His interview appears in today's edition of Der Spiegel, the German news magazine. The front cover is emblazoned with the Union flag and carries the headline in English: 'Please don't go! Why Germany needs the British'."

Image copyright EPA
Image caption Wolfgang Schaeuble: "Out is out"

The Financial Times describes it as an unusual attempt to influence public opinion in the UK ahead of a referendum that could change the face of Europe.

"Spiegel brazenly tries to flatter its Anglo-Saxon readers with a paean almost unprecedented for the normally buttoned-up German media," says the FT.

The Daily Telegraph claims Downing Street is "panicked" about the way the campaign is going, while the Guardian says senior Labour figures have called for increased efforts to get the party's message across.


Eye-catching headlines

  • A hip-hop gamble on the West End: A hip-hop musical about an American founding father that has become the hottest ticket on Broadway is being brought to the West End by Britain's top impresario in a £30m gamble Times
  • How to keep a picnic free of wasps: take the first one hostage: Picnickers who spot a lone "scout" wasp should attempt to trap it under a glass or mug thereby preventing it from returning to its nest where it can recruit others to come and raid the food Telegraph
  • Cocoa by candlelight: time to get cosy with the Danish art of happiness: The Danish concept of hygge, about a feeling of wellbeing, about enjoying life, will hit the UK with a flurry of books out this autumn Guardian
  • Eating celery DOES burn more calories than it contains: An investigation by scientists has proven that celery really is what nutrition experts call "calorie negative" Mail

Tonight's the knight

There is acclaim for Rod Stewart after the rocker was knighted in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.

"Birthday honours makes tonight the knight for Sir Rod," is the headline in the Guardian.

"After almost 50 years as rock royalty, Rod Stewart has been honoured by the real thing, receiving a knighthood from the Queen in her birthday honours.

"Stewart, 71, was recognised not only for a 45-year career in which he has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide, but also for his long commitment to several charities."

The Telegraph says that with a pun on one of his most famous songs he thanked the Queen and promised to "wear it well".

The Mail says: "He's had 62 hit singles and six number ones - not to mention eight children by five women.

"But today rocker Rod Stewart will cap his decades-long career with perhaps the greatest honour of all, receiving a knighthood in the Queen's Birthday Honours."

The Express says Sir Rod was celebrating the biggest hit of his glittering career.

Also honoured is astronaut Tim Peake who receives the Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George - the first time it has been awarded to someone in space.

As the Times puts it: "Awarding honours usually involves nothing more exciting than sending a letter in a brown envelope asking someone if they will accept a gong. This year it involved making a call into space."


Overwhelming affection

As for the Queen herself, she was at a service at St Paul's Cathedral to mark her 90th birthday.

Telegraph chief reporter Gordon Rayner writes: "Yesterday's Service of Thanksgiving for the Queen's 90 years was laden with ceremony, yet no amount of formality could constrain the overwhelming affection shown to Her Majesty on the first of three days of official birthday celebrations.

"Her arrival at St Paul's was supposed to be announced by a trumpet fanfare, but instead it was the cheers of the crowds outside that first told the congregation of her presence."

Robert Hardman in the Mail says organisers chose to downplay the Queen's record-breaking status as the longest-reigning, longest-lived monarch in British history.

Image copyright EPA
Image caption The Queen's 90th birthday will be marked over three days this weekend

"Rather," he continues, "this was a happy celebration of nonagenarian talent, a reminder that 90 is the new 70."

The Times explains why the Queen was slightly late for the event.

"In a long lifetime of official engagements, she has made it her duty to never to be late if she can help it," it says. "If punctuality is the politeness of kings, the Queen is the most courteous of sovereigns.

"Yesterday, however, at least 12 minutes passed - anxious minutes, during which the Queen's communications chief waiting in St Paul's had to field calls from the BBC asking what on earth was wrong - after the allotted time before she finally turned up.

"It was, of course, not her fault: there had been an accident on the Embankment and the Queen's car was forced to make a diversion south of the river. Not even the Queen is immune to the vagaries of London traffic."


The Greatest goodbye

In other news, Times US reporter Will Pavia describes the scene at the funeral of Muhammad Ali in Louisville.

"His body travelled at the head of a convoy of black cars, down a broad street where the shops once barred black Americans and would not even serve his mother a glass of water," he writes.

"Now it is called Muhammad Ali Boulevard and the pavements were crowded with people chanting his name."

The Guardian says helicopters, police cars and dozens of stretch limousines filled with Ali's famous friends accompanied the cherry-red coffin, which was draped in an Islamic shroud.

Image copyright AP
Image caption People lined the streets for Muhammad Ali's funeral in Louisville

"Thousands of mourners lined the streets of Louisville, Kentucky, as Muhammad Ali made his final journey through his home town yesterday, in a funeral procession that passed the boyhood home of the late heavyweight champion, the gym where he learned to box and the museum that was named after him.

"On 9th Street, crowds burst into full-throated shouts of 'Ali! Ali!' as the hearse carrying the man known as The Greatest slowly passed."

The Telegraph's Mick Brown says Ali brought the world to a standstill for one last time.

"The superlatives had been exhausted," Brown says. "A legend. An inspiration. The fastest. The prettiest. And as he tirelessly, and playfully, pronounced until the bitter end, The Greatest.

"All that remained was for Muhammad Ali to be laid to rest."