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UK reluctant’ to grant overseas business visas

31 October 2017

The number of overseas business visas granted by the UK government to representatives of foreign businesses has dropped by 11 per cent in the year since the vote to leave the European Union, according to a new survey. Home office reducing visas as part of reducing net migration

Anglo-Swiss law firm Collyer Bristow found that 125 visas were granted in the year ending in March this year, down from the 140 that were granted over the previous 12 months – and this happened despite the fact that, between 2016-17, applications for the visas increased by a third.

The reason for the reluctance to...

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China is now the largest market for many serviced apartments in the UK

25 October 2017

China is now largest overseas market for many serviced apartment operators in the UK. Serviced apartment sector is booming right across the UK; +74% increase in future pipeline: 15,728 NEW serviced apartments by 2020.

‘China Daily’, leading English-language newspaper in China (daily circulation 500,000 in 150 countries/regions) ran a special report about the phenomenal growth in Chinese visitors to the UK using serviced apartments as their accommodation of choice.

The serviced apartment product – a self-contained apartment with living and sleeping areas along with a fitted kitchen and bathroom (sizes vary from studio to 3 or 4 bedroom apartments) meets the needs...

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Home office says EU nationals will be allowed into Britain if they have a job

23 October 2017

EU migrants would be able to come to Britain after Brexit as long as they have a job under Home Office plans.

The new regime is being pushed by Home Secretary Amber Rudd, who wants to keep migration rules as simple as possible after the UK leaves the EU.

It could result in European nationals facing removal if they cannot find work – but her proposals would mean no overall cap on the numbers arriving.

Miss Rudd wants to permit any EU national who can find a job the right to live and work in Britain.

She also wants very tight restrictions on criminals...

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UK house prices are soaring

20 October 2017

HOUSE prices have been soaring in certain areas of the country, but for those hoping not to stray far when moving, looking at new homes in neighbouring areas could save thousands of pounds.

Last week the latest data from the ONS highlighted a house price per square metre deficit of over £18,000 between the most expensive in England and Wales (Kensington and Chelsea) and the most affordable (Blaenau Gwent).

With many homeowners opting not to move too far away from where they already live, the latest research by eMoov.co.uk has looked at where homeowners can save with some of the biggest...

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May promises EU expats ‘streamlined’ registration system

19 October 2017

Prime Minister Theresa May has posted an open message to the three million-plus EU expats in Britain, saying London and Brussels are “in touching distance” of an agreement to secure their futures.

Theresa May directly addresses EU expats via social media

The message, posted on Facebook and mailed to 100,000 EU nationals living in the UK, Mrs May promised to introduce a simple system to enable them to remain in the UK with a “streamlined” digital process for registering their right to stay.

Mrs May, who arrived in Brussels for a EU summit on Thursday, reiterated her message that “EU citizens living lawfully...

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Uncertainty over Brexit transition 'could put 75,000 City jobs at risk'

17 October 2017

Urgent progress is needed on a Brexit transition period to prevent City firms implementing contingency plans that could put up to 75,000 UK financial services sector jobs at risk, a leading industry lobby group has warned.

In a plea to negotiators ahead of a key negotiating meeting later this week, TheCityUK also said that the stakes are high for the remaining 27 EU nations, where jobs and inward investment will be at risk if a two-year transition period cannot be agreed quickly.

The intervention comes as City firms start to lease office space in Frankfurt, Paris, Dublin and other EU financial centres...

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London renters are moving out of London

16 October 2017

While some London renters are moving north, they are largely staying in the commuter belt in areas such as Slough, where 46pc of homes are let to tenants who have moved there from the capital. The average rent across the UK rose 1.1pc in the last 12 months, driven by growth in the south of the country; in the South West, rents rose by 3.3pc in the year to September, while in London they were flat.

The places where homes are most likely to be let to a tenant moving from London, according to Countrywide:

Slough Thurrock Broxbourne St Albans Canterbury Elmbridge Oxford Basildon South Oxfordshire Luton

Johnny Morris, research director at...

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Europeans are still house hunting in London

12 October 2017

Amidst all the fury surrounding Brexit, talk of no deals and backroom agreements, it seems that European real estate investors are still keen on London. A report by home rental website Spotahome showed that traffic on their website was dominated by French visitors representing more than 20% of the traffic with British investors making up just 12%. There was also significant interest from Spanish, German and Italian real estate investors which would suggest that the future of the UK may not be wholly linked to Brexit.

LONDON PROPERTY PRICES

We know that London property prices have shown a significant slowdown in growth...

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The UK spa towns are among the happiest places to live

11 October 2017

The Warwickshire town of Royal Leamington Spa has been ranked the happiest place to live in Britain, in a survey which saw several spa towns make the list.

Harrogate, Royal Tunbridge Wells and Epsom also featured in the top 10 “happy at home” index compiled by property website, Rightmove. Meanwhile Llandrindod Wells was deemed the happiest place to live in Wales. Spa towns have natural springs with waters thought to have health benefits.

There are spa towns all across England and Wales - including Cheltenham and Bath which came in 29th and 38th place in terms of happiness rating.

Dumfries was identified as the happiest...

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Diwali - the celebration of lights and where to celebrate it in the UK

09 October 2017

Celebrating its 16th anniversary Diwali Festival, which celebrates the Hindu, Sikh and Jain festival of lights, attracts over 35,000 with its lively music and dance stage line up alongside an authentic street food market, craft and community stalls plus dance, yoga, comedy, henna art and much more.

Watch here…

Find your nearest Diwali event, click here

Marked with firework displays and family feasts, Diwali, is a five-day festival celebrated by millions of people across the world every Autumn.

The festival is observed by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains, with its main theme the triumph of light over darkness and...

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What £500,000 buys you in the UK's top northern cities compared to London

04 October 2017

House prices are rising in all parts of the country except London, and buy-to-let investors are increasingly shunning the traditionally profitable capital city for northern hotspots where property is cheap and returns are high.

According to recent data from Nationwide Building Society, property prices in London fell by 0.6 per cent in the year to September, compared to the national average growth of two per cent.

Separate data from Hometrack, also published last week, pointed to Manchester, Birmingham and Edinburgh specifically as cities where house prices have soared ahead of other UK regions, with growth up 7.3 per cent, 6.7 per cent...

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School Open Days: make sure you ask the right questions

03 October 2017

How should you approach school open days in order to make the best decision for your child’s education? Adrian Kearney from the International Baccalaureate offers advice on making the most of the day.

School open day season is upon us and it is easy to feel overwhelmed by such a monumental decision as choosing a school for your child. Your choice will shape their future, so it’s important to find out as much as you can and approach the decision from an informed perspective. Visiting a school and meeting the staff, students and other parents will be helpful – go armed with...

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ACS Hillingdon opens £10 million school science centre

02 October 2017

On 14 September, ACS Hillingdon International School welcomed students, staff, families and guests to the official opening of its £10 million science centre.

The importance of practical experiments in science education

BBC’s Stargazing Live’s Mark Thompson opened the new centre, giving a fascinating introduction to the beauty of the Universe and highlighting the importance of the practical aspects of science education in inspiring the next generation of scientists. During the evening, guests also took part in practical experiments exploring human spaceflight run by the National Space Academy. The school’s new science centre includes seven new laboratories and features a specialist binocular microscope and...

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