Newspaper headlines: Brexit vote, and Downing Street 'grope'

By BBC News

Image source, PA
Image caption,
Brexit Secretary David Davis announced the vote in the House of Commons

The government's offer to MPs of another vote on Brexit is described by the Financial Times as Theresa May bowing to pressure from pro-European Conservatives.

"Sustained pressure," says Buzzfeed UK, whilst the Daily Express calls it a "climbdown" and the Sun terms it a "bribe".

According to the Labour List website, it provoked "joy" on the opposition benches, where Labour MPs saw it as a "massive victory" that humbled the prime minister.

Not everyone agrees, however. George Eaton in the New Statesman says the government is "putting a gun to MPs' heads."

Iain Dale, writing for the Reaction website, says the "small group" of Tories who oppose Brexit must now decide whether they are prepared to bring down the government and split the party in order to achieve their goal.

The Huffington Post adds that "nothing has changed" except this - Parliament has "left itself hostage to the fact that it is now either May's deal, or no deal."

Church divided

The new attempt by the Church of England to protect children who experiment with their gender from bullying has sharply divided opinion.

The Guardian says it is "quite right" for the Church to fight back against what it sees as hostility to "gay, bi and trans people", which, it thinks, has accompanied the greater awareness of their existence.

Grace Dent in the i shouts "hooray for the C of E", saying the Church seems to have learnt to "let it slide; don't sweat the small stuff".

Melanie Phillips, writing in the Times, disagrees profoundly. She argues that Anglicans are promoting a new relationship between secularism and Christianity - one which she compares to a "spiritual auto-immune disease" that weakens its protection against destructive forces.

Far from such high flown arguments, Vanessa Feltz, in the Daily Express, wishes children would develop their creativity by making their own costumes to dress up in, rather than wearing shop-bought tutus and superhero garb.

Image caption,
Pothole problems for cyclists feature in the Times

Many people take to their bikes for exercise and the Times thinks they have a right to be protected from the dangers posed by potholes in the road.

A coroner has warned that councils are "endangering lives" by failing to repair them fast enough.

"Cycling is a public good", says the newspaper - cutting pollution and improving the health of both the "herd" and the individual.

Central government should step in, if it has to, as "infrastructure starts on the road outside the bike shed".

Exercise your cat

"Fat cat" may be a term of abuse, but according to the Daily Mail, actual obese felines need help.

A vet tells the paper that one in 10 cats never leave their owners' homes and the kind thing to do is design a daily exercise routine for those pets.

Suggestions include playing hunting games, and letting the animals bat toys around.

The newspaper's headline even go so far as to suggest "let it try a hamster wheel!"

Image source, Starz Entertainment, LLC
Image caption,
The latest adaptation of Howard's End drew criticism from the Daily Telegraph

And it appears that the BBC is in trouble again for letting music drown out the actors' words in the latest adaptation of Howard's End.

The Daily Telegraph offers a tart comment, saying: "Unlike the piano that follows the cast around, inaudible dialogue is perhaps like real life. For drama, it is, though, disadvantageous."