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In the papers today: 08.02.08. Church funds are boosted and spring arrives early

The Guardian reports the grateful receipt of £2 million in rescue grants, from English Heritage and the Wolfson Foundation, awarded to Lichfield Cathedral, the sole surviving original example of a three-spired cathedral in this country, and 27 others.

However, the Daily Telegraph highlights the problem of empty coffers: senior Church figures say there’s not enough money to go round, even describing the government’s grant to EH as ‘miserly’. This in the view of HRH The Queen’s successful bid for an extra £1 million for repairs to the royal pad at Buckingham, as reported in the Evening Standard.

You have been warmed: the Telegraph carries plenty on the early spring phenomenon this year, while more cautiously DEFRA has set out proposals aimed at curbing water usage and promoting efficiency, specifically planning to restrict asphalting over domestic gardens. The Guardian outlines this and other measures, including the ‘near-universal’ metering of water use by 2030.

The Times reports on the commercial property slump in the City of London, following British Land’s £1.39 billion write-down of assets. Could this mean all those glittering new office structures will lie empty, à la '90s recession? Perhaps we should heed bastion of Classicism Quinlan Terry, who rails in a letter to the Daily Telegraph against architectural vanity and a misguided faith in progress; deeming the City’s new portfolio of high rises an ‘environmental nightmare’, he suggests that the capital impose an outright ban on any commercial building higher than eight stories.

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