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Temperature drop

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The froideur between deputy prime minister John Prescott and culture secretary Tessa Jowell increased this week over the issue of home demolition in Liverpool. Prescott's plan, part of the Northern Way initiative to give renewed economic impetus to a belt of town stretching from Liverpool to Hull, involves demolishing thousands of homes which are excess to requirements and are killing any reasonable market conditions in their area.

This strategy has infuriated conservationists, who view it as akin to what happened in the 1960s.

They are particularly annoyed at what they see as a policy of destruction when it comes to the 2008 City of Culture. In a none-toosubtle dig at Our John, the Culture Department issued a statement his week which said it had not been consulted over demolition plans in Liverpool, and that the deputy PM did not have to carry out any such consultation. Up to a point, Lord Copper. He would if listed buildings were involved. Having clashed over casinos and the planning system, will the two ministers make up before election day?

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