Newspaper review: Cuts in spending scrutinised


The £11.5bn cuts package unveiled by Chancellor George Osborne is the lead story for most of Thursday's newspapers.

The Times describes the chancellor's Spending Review statement as an assault on welfare. "Osborne turns his guns on benefits," is the paper's headline.

The Daily Mail has the headline: "George declares war on welfare Britain."

The Guardian says he "conjured up a populist crackdown on welfare and public sector pay".

For the Daily Mirror, he "stuck the knife into ordinary families" - once again making the low-paid, the jobless and single mothers pay the price of his failed economic policies, it says.

The Daily Telelgraph says Mr Osborne has sharpened the focus of the general election campaign, which is now well under way.


The Sun's front page is taken up by a picture the chancellor posted on his Twitter page, showing him eating a burger and chips while putting the final touches to his speech.

But the paper suggests the picture dented his image as a "man of the people" because he was in fact eating a "posh" hamburger "costing nearly a tenner".

It says the gourmet meal was ordered from a trendy diner more than a mile away from Downing Street - even though there were 10 branches of McDonald's that were closer, where burgers start at 99p.

Wobbles at Wimbledon

Tennis player Roger Federer appears on several of Thursday's front pages after his shock defeat at Wimbledon - his picture dominating the Telegraph's page one. The paper describes his, and the other high profile departures, as a day of upsets at SW19.

For the Mirror, it was the wobbles of Wimbledon. Or, as the Sun put it, Wobbledon.

The Mail's front page picture has the headline: "Wimbledon carnage as giants fall."

Alongside a picture of a cheerful Andy Murray, it adds: "But one man is still smiling." The Times says the withdrawals blow open the Scotsman's route to the final.

Removal men

The Mail and the Sun have pictures said to be of removal men carrying celebrity chef Nigella Lawson's belongings from her marital home in Chelsea.

The Sun says their arrival came less than two weeks after her husband, art collector Charles Saatchi, was pictured with his hand around her throat.

The papers says that Miss Lawson left the house when the pictures were published.

For the Mail, the removal team was the clearest sign yet that her marriage split may be permanent.

Hold my cat?

According to the Telegraph, the number of animals abandoned in summer has reached record levels, as some owners choose to get rid of them rather than pay for them to be looked after while they are away.

A report by animal welfare charity the RSPCA says pets abandoned in the past month include a dog in a duffel bag and chinchillas found in a cage in a cemetery.

One man even walked into a Tesco store and asked a woman to hold his cat while he called the RSPCA, but failed to return.

'Virtual walls'

Finally, a study has concluded that open-plan offices - once seen as free-flowing highways of egalitarianism and creativity - are destroying workers' ability to concentrate.

The Independent reports that researchers in the United States found that tasks requiring peace and quiet are more difficult to accomplish when in close proximity to colleagues.

The survey of 2,000 office workers found many were battling to cope with interruptions by colleagues, or the sight, sound and even smell of those nearby.

Many simply chose to put on headphones to shut out the external world, creating "virtual walls" between colleagues.

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