Barometer

Which countries have the most expensive train tickets?

23 April 2022

9:00 AM

23 April 2022

9:00 AM

Park the issue

Gladstone Park in Brent may be renamed as a result of the former PM’s connections with slavery. Local children have suggested Multi-Faith Park or Diversity Fields.

– Gladstone often used to stay as a guest of Lord Aberdeen at Dollis Hill House, which is in the park. Lord Rosebery was also a regular guest, as was Lord Randolph Churchill, father of Winston. Mark Twain also stayed. The park was named after Gladstone because when it was purchased for public use in 1899 he had recently died.

Against the current

How successful was Australia’s policy of processing asylum applications offshore for any migrant who arrives by boat? The figures are for migrants arriving by boat:

1998 200

1999 3,721

2000 2,939

2001 5,561

Offshore processing starts under John Howard

2002 1

2003 53

2004 15

2005 11


2006 60

2007 148

2008 161

Kevin Rudd’s government scraps policy

2009 2,726

2010 6,555

2011 4,565

2012 17,204

2013 20,587

Tony Abbott’s government re-introduces policy

2014 160

2015 0

2016 0

Source: Parliament of Australia

Fare’s unfair

The government announced a ‘rail sale’. UK train tickets for a 150-mile journey as compared with France, Italy and Germany:

London-Sheffield: £12.50 (if booked one month ahead); £22 (for travel tomorrow); £69.50 (for immediate off-peak travel); £104 (for immediate peak-hours travel)

Paris-Dijon corresponding prices: £25, £70, £41, £41

Rome-Florence: £25, £36, £36, £36

Nuremburg-Kassel: £29, £61, £61, £61

Source: www.seat61.com

Fine line

How do fines for Downing Street parties in lockdown compare with speeding fines?

— In 2017, 176,441 speeding fines were given in England. But according to DfT figures, 46% of cars on the motorway were found to be breaking the speed limit, along with 52% of vehicles on 30mph roads.

– From Mar 20-Oct 21, police issued 106,451 fixed penalty notices for breaking lockdown rules. But according to leaked government documents in June 2020, 50% of people admitted to breaking the rules. In March 2021, the ONS found that 43% of over-eighties admitted breaking the rules.

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