George Michael’s art collection unveiled

By his mid-20s, Michael was in a position to buy art extensively and at the highest levels. Cristian Albu of auctioneers Christie’s says Michael became a truly serious collector from 2004 onwards. “And it stretched all the way to 2009 – that was the most intense period,” he tells BBC News. “I think his finesse as an artist in music made it very easy for George Michael to make the journey into visual art. And it all started with Tracey …

Brexit: What would it mean for UK pensioners in Europe?

Which European countries have the most UK pension claimants? In later years, it will only uprate pensions if it has a reciprocal arrangement either with the whole of the EU or with each of the individual countries so that their state pensioners living in the UK also receive annual upratings. The Department for Work and Pensions told Reality Check: “Insisting on reciprocal arrangements has been government policy for over 70 years and will continue to be so.” Image copyright Getty …

What trade deals has the UK done so far?

Six out of 40 The UK has (so far) only agreed six deals. These include relaxing certain rules, reducing taxes (tariffs) on imports and exports, or granting easier market access. The government estimates that about 11% of UK trade relies on the EU’s agreements with 70 countries. The “continuity” agreements the UK has struck are: Israel (18 February) Palestinian Authority (18 February) Switzerland (signed 11 February) The Faroe Islands (1 February) Eastern and Southern Africa (31 January) Chile (30 January) …

‘Lying in doesn’t mean we’re lazy’

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionLater school start ‘helps us study’, say college students As MPs prepare to debate a petition for schools to start at 10:00, teenagers tell the BBC about their own experiences with early school starts. It takes 100,000 signatures to trigger a Parliamentary debate and this one, saying early school starts make pupils “so tired”, has gained 180,000. “I remember how miserable I was from waking up early,” says sixth form student Leah. …

Which countries eat the most meat?

Rising incomes What we do know is that global meat consumption has increased rapidly over the past 50 years. Meat production today is nearly five times higher than in the early 1960s – from 70 million tonnes to more than 330 tonnes in 2017. The average Ethiopian consumes just 7kg, Rwandans 8kg and Nigerians 9kg. This is 10 times less than the average European. For those in low-income countries, meat is still very much a luxury. These figures represent the …

Scots’ life expectancy rise grinds to halt

What is the life expectancy of people in Scotland? Scotland has the worst life expectancy for all UK countries. Life expectancy is an estimate of the average number of years a new born baby would live based on that area’s age specific mortality rates. How long are you going to live? Girls born in Scotland between 2015 and 2017 can expect to live until they are 81.1, according to the National Records for Scotland (NRR). Life expectancy for boys born …

Do money apps make us better or worse with our finances?

But although her childhood experiences gave her a constant, gnawing fear of slipping back into poverty, Kerry found managing her finances difficult. She says she was “perpetually running out” of money before payday, “because I wasn’t keeping track, which is obviously OK when there is a payday but you can’t do that when you’re freelance.” So she sought help in the form of a money app from Revolut, the financial technology start-up currently under fire for an insensitive marketing campaign. …

Yorkshire woman wins global garden photo prize

British photographer Jill Welham has been announced as the overall winner of this year’s International Garden Photographer of the Year Competition. The North Yorkshire photographer beat 19,000 entrants from more than 50 countries to scoop the top prize of £7,500 with her photogram print entitled Fireworks, below. The image shows Allium flower heads from her garden. Welham used a photogram printing process called wet cyanotype, where ammonium citrate and potassium ferricyanide are mixed to create a photosensitive solution which is …

Search team recover body from Sala plane

Dorset Police said: “The arrival of the body into Dorset has been reported to the coroner for Dorset. “The coroner will investigate the circumstances of this death supported by Dorset Police. A post-mortem examination will be held in due course.” No formal identification has taken place, but the force said both families had been updated. Who is David Mearns? Nantes demand Sala fee from Cardiff Cardiff City ‘must move mountains’ – manager Warnock Image copyright Getty Images Image caption A …

Government housing delivery plan ‘flawed’

The Local Government Association (LGA) said the current formula did not take into account the needs of local communities. ‘Free-for-all’ Local authorities – by law – need to have an up-to-date plan for building new homes. If they are unable to prove that they have a five-year supply of land for housing, developers have greater freedoms to build where they want. The NAO points out that this risks ill-suited developments, while the LGA says it risks a “free-for-all”. The NAO …

Briton held in UAE in football shirt row

The Foreign Office said it is providing assistance to a British man and is in touch with the UAE authorities. United Arab Emirates profile The UAE and four other countries in the region are currently engaged in a political and diplomatic stand-off with Qatar after they accused the state of supporting radical and Islamist groups. On its website, the Foreign Office warns travellers to the UAE of a June 2017 announcement “that showing sympathy for Qatar on social media or …

‘The day I went to prison, I got my life back’

Lilly was born in 1971 and grew up on the Wirral in Merseyside. She was the youngest of three sisters by seven years, the baby of the family. Her dad was Ghanaian and her mum was white, and she was the only mixed-race girl at her primary school. All through her childhood she felt keenly aware that she was different. At school she didn’t have many friends. One morning, when she was seven years old, Lilly ran into the school …

Radio 4 comedy star Jeremy Hardy dies

Image Copyright @BBCRadio4 @BBCRadio4 “He retained to the end the principles that guided his life; trying to make the world more humane, and to be wonderfully funny,” Ms Emery continued. “He will be enormously missed by so many, who were inspired by him and who laughed with him. “A fitting memorial will take place, details to be announced soon.” Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was among those to mark his passing, saying Hardy had “made us all smile” and “made us …

It’s deadline day – can you handle the pressure?

Image copyright HMRC Image caption HMRC has been running an awareness campaign HMRC said it would provide help for those who had a genuine excuse for not submitting their return on time. Those could include the death of a partner or family member, serious illness, fire, flood or theft, computer failure or issues with HMRC online services. Report End of Twitter post by @CraigPaton Others admit procrastination is to blame. Skip Twitter post by @EloiseDaleActor When u have 1 day …

Girl, 12, was ‘hooked’ on self-harm images

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionLibby used to post images of her self-harm injuries on Instagram At the age of 12, Libby, became “hooked” on posting and viewing self-harm images on Instagram – including pictures of cutting, burning and overdosing. Her father, Ian, says his family reported such images to Instagram, but the social media company did nothing. Speaking to the BBC, Libby, now 16, recalls sharing pictures of her fresh cuts with 8,000 followers. She described …