Northern Ireland

What the papers say


Journalist Fionola Meredith takes a look at what is making the headlines in Tuesday's newspapers.

Sammy Wilson's levy on big shops is the top story in the Belfast Telegraph.

The finance minister is talking tough - he's warned that giant retailers like Tesco will feel the full force of the controversial levy.

The scheme is aimed at giving rate relief to smaller businesses. The paper believes that the new tax could cost the 77 big companies - places like Tesco, B&Q, and Sainsbury's - up to £85,000 a year.

Inside, the paper's editorial speaks out against using the past for "petty point scoring", following the row over a Belfast City Hall reception honouring bus drivers during the Troubles.

The past is also the focus for Fionnuala O'Connor in the Irish News. She says that history trips up politicians from both sides, but it's easier to sympathise with those trying to move forward, while shaking its legacy off their shoulders.

There is reaction to the killing of GAA player James Hughes in the Irish News.

The partner of the Crossmaglen Rangers player has been describing her sense of loss.

Genevieve McMullen, who had two children with James Hughes, posted a message on Facebook as she waited to hear when Mr Hughes's body would be brought home.

It's back with the past on the front page of the News Letter . The families of 10 Protestant workmen killed in the IRA massacre at Kingsmills hope to meet Prime Minister David Cameron.

They are calling for a police investigation into the atrocity, rather than another public inquiry.

'The incredible sulk'

Deputy Prime Minister, and Liberal Democrat leader, Nick Clegg features on several front pages.

The Independent describes it as "Clegg's day of rage".

He did not attend David Cameron's statement on Europe in the House of Commons on Monday, as the two men clashed over Britain's bitter dispute with the rest of the EU.

As the Independent notes, the prime minister and his deputy are at odds on whether the government should move quickly to rebuild bridges with the 26 other EU countries, after Britain was left isolated at last week's Brussels summit.

Not much sympathy for Mr Clegg's position in some of the papers - the Daily Mail calls him "the incredible sulk", while the Express says he "did a runner".

The Sun weighs in with its headline, "Strop it Nick", accusing him of behaving like a petulant schoolboy.

Elsewhere, the Daily Telegraph reports that Britain's high streets have reached crisis point after decades of neglect and mismanagement, and they'll disappear without urgent regeneration.

This comes from an official review by Mary Portas, the retail expert and television presenter.

She says that if high streets aren't saved, something fundamental to society will be irretrievably lost.

And finally, the mail reports on what men really think about Christmas.

A study suggests that a third of men think women make too much fuss about it all. Men reckon that the festive season would be less rushed, cheaper and less stressful if they were in charge.

So how would they do things differently?

According to the Express, half wouldn't bother sending Christmas cards, and a quarter would ditch turkey for a different meat, with many going for steak and chips or even a takeaway.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites