Newspaper headlines: Palace makeover, Autumn statement and Clarkson back on TV

Contrasting tones are on display in different papers as they contemplate the building works to be carried out at Buckingham Palace.

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The Daily Express describes the £369m renovation as a "makeover", while the Daily Mirror talks of "fury" at the cost and asks: "Who pays the bill when one of the world's richest women needs her house fixing up? - You, of course."

The Sun considers the need to install "hundreds of new loos", describing the project as a "repair to the throne".

Its headline is "changing the bogs at Buckingham Palace".


Making a mark

Clothing and shoes worn by Theresa May have, according to the Times, been "flying off the shelves".

The prime minister, it says, has "become something of a fashion icon for a swathe of Middle England".

But the Guardian believes the real opportunity for her to make her mark will come when the Autumn Statement is delivered on Wednesday.

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And what the paper wants to see from a politician it regards as "unshowy" is "a fiscal stimulus". The paper believes austerity has run its course and the problems ahead will result from "too little income coming in".

The Daily Telegraph thinks there's a "revolution sweeping the West", a new ethic of "national sovereignty and economic populism". It thinks Mrs May is the only leader who comes close to articulating it and the paper urges her to help the UK as a trading nation to attract investment and compete.

Her Chancellor, Philip Hammond, needs to strike an upbeat note, not reinforce his reputation as a "minstrel of gloom", says the Daily Express.

In practical terms, the Sun predicts the chancellor will cancel the planned rise of 2p a litre in duty on fuel.

Meanwhile, it is an indicator of recent upheavals, perhaps, that the Financial Times reports on its front page that a Conservative prime minister is to give a speech declaring that she is not anti-business.

The paper comments that "until now" her rhetoric "has often grated" and she's keen "to reject concern that she is ambivalent."


Suicide fears

The Times leads on an apparently "punitive" crackdown on "hundreds of bankers, celebrities and businessmen".

It reports that financial advisers fear the tax demands being sent to investors in a scheme that was deemed to have been an avoidance project are so steep that some may go bankrupt or commit suicide.

It says HMRC wants up to £4m in tax from people who put just £200,000 into film investment schemes.

But the paper says an application for a judicial review of the decision is expected to be made.


Old gang back

There is mostly excited applause for the first Grand Tour - the return to TV of Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond following their departure from the BBC's Top Gear.

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The i thought it was "a treat" oozing "swaggering confidence" and "middle-aged-man sense".

"This is rock'n'roll TV at its very best," says the Daily Mail, "electrifying, life-affirming, liberating.... Mad, bad and totally brilliant."

The old gang was back, says the Daily Telegraph and "the petrol-head prima-donnas had indeed retained their grumpy-bloke charm."

Only the Times is sniffy, seeing their resurrection on the Amazon Prime streaming service as "a boring, unholy mess" with an "idea tank" that's "running dangerously low".


Winter thunderland

A new term has entered the language of weather - "thundersnow."

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It is used by the Daily Mirror to describe the "freak blizzards" that caused havoc on roads in the north-west of England. The paper sums up the result as "a winter thunderland."

Photos capture some of the more picturesque effects. In the Daily Telegraph there's a pheasant on a snow-covered wall in Cumbria, while the Guardian has a scene of snow-covered hills around a Scottish highland loch.

The Daily Express forecasts a "polar blast" of snow and storms lasting into next week.


Brain drain

How do dogs know when their owners will be home? By their smell, according to the Times.

Relying on the work of a leading dog scientist at Columbia University in New York, the paper explains a dog can smell a single sweaty sock in an auditorium the size of the Royal Albert Hall.

It says animals interpret the fading smells of their owners and may work out from that when they can expect them home.

Finally, according to the Daily Mail, brain research carried out in Russia has shown that the old excuse may be right: men "can't multi-task".

The paper says the study suggests that men's brains were shaped in pre-history by their duties as hunter-gatherers. It says women's brains "had to evolve to cope with managing the family at home".

Or, as the Sun puts it, "blokes" are drained by multi-tasking because they "have to switch on more parts of the brain to cope".