Newspaper headlines: Lord Sewel claims, Froome victory, weather warnings and shed equality

Two people dominate press coverage for very different reasons - the now former House of Lords Deputy Speaker Lord Sewel and British cyclist Chris Froome.

Lord Sewel is facing allegations that he took cocaine with prostitutes after a video was published by the Sun on Sunday.

The Daily Telegraph reports that Lord Sewel also serves on a Nato committee on behalf of the UK and his actions will prompt a security review as he is regarded as a blackmail risk.

The Telegraph tells us a bit more about the background to the story, saying: "The former minister, who was made a life peer by Tony Blair, was paid £84,525 a year to uphold standards of behaviour and conduct among his fellow politicians.

"He could now face expulsion from the Lords, or a long suspension, under measures put in place by a new Act of Parliament which he helped to finalise only last month."

Image copyright PA
Image caption Lord Sewel joined the House of Lords in 1996

The Telegraph says Lord Sewel was one of Tony Blair's most trusted lieutenants in the New Labour era. Given a life peerage in 1996, he was made a Scotland Office minister after Labour won the 1997 general election to oversee the key policy of Scottish devolution.

In the opinion of the Mail, Lord Sewel has rightly resigned from his roles in the Lords but should now be stripped of his peerage and the criminal allegations against him investigated by the police.

The Sun says: "Yes, he's done the right thing by resigning. Not that he had any real alternative. But new rules mean peers can now resign from the Lords altogether. It's difficult to think of a more obvious case."

The Mirror says Lord Sewel must disprove the allegations against him - or quit or be booted out of the Lords.


'Pantheon of greats'

A yellow jersey-clad Chris Froome is pictured on most of the front pages after his superb Tour de France victory, making him the first Briton to win cycling's most famous race twice.

The Guardian's Barry Glendenning says Froome successfully negotiated the formality of what was ostensibly a procession from Sevres into Paris.

He writes: "Inclement weather meant it rained on the Team Sky rider's parade during the easiest of 21 often gruelling stages in which he had to overcome not just 197 fellow riders and numerous gigantic Pyrenean and Alpine peaks, but also constant questions about doping and attacks from supporters in which the rider was verbally abused, spat at and had urine thrown in his face.

"Viewed with remarkable disdain by many cycling fans as over-moneyed Johnny-come-latelies who have bought success, Team Sky's often staggering lack of popularity on the continent ensured Froome's race was run and won in a haze of suspicion and innuendo regarding the probity of his success in a contest from which just one rider was forced out for failing a drugs test."

Froome has repeatedly said that he is clean of doping.

An analysis piece in the Times says Froome's win may in time prove to be one of the cleanest ever, but he is unlikely to heal the scars of a cynical three weeks.

Image copyright AP
Image caption The spotlight has been on Chris Froome throughout the Tour de France

The Mail's chief sports writer Matt Lawton says it speaks volumes for the nastiness Froome encountered that during a rest day he seemed happier discussing the forthcoming birth of his first child than the agonies and ecstasies of this year's Tour de France.

The Express says Froome's wife Michelle fought back the tears as she described how she has struggled, while heavily pregnant, to cope with claims he is a drugs cheat.

The Sun says Froome had the best response of all to being spat at - winning: "In an era when true heroes are few and far between, he is the real deal."

The Mirror agrees, saying: "The best man on two wheels, Chris Froome, had the last laugh on his spitting abusers by winning the Tour de France."

The Guardian comments: "Chris Froome has become the 20th person in the history of the Tour de France to win for a second time what is arguably the world's toughest sporting event.

"It is an extraordinary achievement that gives him an unassailable claim to a place in the pantheon of British greats.

"This quiet, polite Briton has an unmerited popularity problem. Part of it is because he is not Sir Bradley Wiggins, and partly it is because he was born in Kenya and now lives in Monaco.

"Yet the real problem is not him, but his sport. Cycling is so mistrusted that nothing is taken at face value."


Stormy relationship

If you thought we'd seen the last of the torrential downpours in some parts of the country at the weekend, then think again.

For the papers predict that more bad weather is on its way - and the story makes it onto the front pages of the Star and the Mirror.

The Times says the outlook is grim for the thousands of families persuaded by this month's heatwave to book holidays in Britain.

"Three weeks after the hottest July day on record, the country has experienced a return to normal summer service, with events cancelled by heavy rain and an unsettled forecast until at least the middle of August," it says.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Brace yourselves... there's more of this on the way

The Mail says the forecast comes after a miserable weekend saw torrential downpours sweep much of the country as millions of families set off on their summer holidays, many enduring a weekend of chaos on the roads.

The Express looks on the bright side - quite literally. It says cloud and rain will put summer on hold for another week although forecasters say the next heatwave is less than a fortnight away.

In an editorial comment, the Telegraph says: "This is the British condition - to be supremely concerned with the weather, while the weather shows no concern at all for us. It is a mismatched love affair.

"Many were predicting the hottest summer ever, but now July looks likely to become the wettest on record. We might try to harden our hearts, and affect no affection for the vagaries of our weather.

"But it's useless to pretend that we can blow hot and cold. When it comes to matters meteorological, our passion is permanent."


Shed image

The Telegraph says the shed has long been the last refuge of the male, but gender equality has finally reached the bottom of the garden.

For a DIY chain has reported a boom in sales to women in the first six months of the year, up 50% on the same period in 2014.

But rather than using sheds as a place to store tools, tinker with a rusty lawnmower or enjoy a crafty drink while avoiding the family, says the Telegraph, women are treating them as a space to work or indulge in a creative hobby.

Alexei Cowan, head of trends for Homebase, tells the paper: "Women love having a space to call their own. More and more women are working from home and running their own businesses and the 'she-shed' is an ideal space to create a pop-up office."


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Media captionTom Bergin from Reuters, and Evening Standard columnist Rosamund Urwin, join the BBC News Channel to review Monday's front pages.

Finally, the Times says it is not a job that anyone is likely to want, but reading the terms and conditions of Britain's most popular websites would be almost a full-time occupation.

The paper has been doing a bit of research and discovered that if the average Briton wanted to read the small print of every website they visit in a typical year, it would take 124 working days. This is equivalent to about six months of full-time employment.

The Times says the T&Cs of the country's 10 most-visited websites amount to more words than Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, Hamlet and The Tempest put together.


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  • Oxford Street rickshaw cyclist who charged £206 for one mile says: It was fair - I had to go uphill: A shameless rickshaw driver who charged tourists £206 for a one-mile journey has insisted it was fair because he was pedalling "uphill" - and claimed it should have cost twice as much Mail
  • Feed the pigeons and you'll do bird: Brit holidaymakers have been warned of a host of bizarre laws that could get them banged up abroad Star

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