londonbuses2No doubt about it. They are beauties. But the new Thomas Heatherwick-designed buses cost a fortune and will now be discontinued. The first 600 vehicles purchased in 2012 by (former mayor) Boris Johnson cost £354,000 each, while the next 200 in 2014 cost £325,000 each.  London’s new mayor Sadiq Khan first suggested his plan to discontinue the buses during his own election campaign, as a cost-saving measure to help pay for a four-year freeze on fares.


QUEEN&TRUDEAU7      Her Majesty greeted Prime Minister Trudeau today by saying it’s “nice to see you again… but under different circumstances.” . . . . .  “I will say, you were much taller than me the last time we met,” Trudeau told the Queen, 40 years after being introduced by his father, Pierre Elliot Trudeau, as a 3 year-old.
“Well, this is extraordinary to think of, isn’t it,” the Queen replied with a laugh.


QUEEN&TRUDEAU3In 1978, the Queen was leaving Canada and a military band was playing, so 3-year-old Sacha and 5-year-old Justin (on the right below) marched back and forth while their father, Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, walked to his plane.  <PHOTO – Toronto Star>


Today’s Prime Minister Trudeau, a former teacher, loving husband and father, international heart throb, is now on Vogue Magazine’s ‘2015 list of the Sexiest Men Alive’.

QUEEN&TRUDEAU1Says VOGUE – “sexy, feminist, and capable of balancing a baby on one hand: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau gets our vote.” <PHOTO – Justin Trudeau in the Library of Parliament, Ottawa, Jonathan Becker/VOGUE Magazine>

LIVERPOOL puts 20 derelict houses up for sale @ $1.55 CAD each!

LIVERPOOL1<PHOTO – Mercury Press and Media>  LIVERPOOL, an admirable city in every respect, plans to sell off 20 derelict houses, in a bid to regenerate a downtrodden inner city neighbourhood.  Buyers must demonstrate that they’re willing and able to renovate the properties.  Demolition is a no-go.  “Coronation Street” anybody?

MANCHESTER – a ‘tamed and gentrified’ industrial giant & a fun place to visit

MANCHESTER’s boom was brought on by textile manufacturing during the Industrial Revolution.  It earned the nickname ‘Cottonopolis’ and became the world’s first industrialized city, and the Empire’s principal factory town.  In the city centre, Victorian-era office buildings still dominate many streets.

MANCHESTER2MANCHESTER4Laurence S. Lowry painted the industrial districts of Manchester and Lancashire.  A gallery and theatre in the Salford Quays area celebrates his urban landscape paintings, inhabited by “matchstick men” in smoking environments.

MANCHESTER6Salford was a principal dockyard of the Manchester Ship Canal (which is just as important as it sounds).  A major factory town and inland port, the City of Salford is now part of Greater Manchester.  The Quays have been redeveloped with bridges, the northern branch of the Imperial War Museum, BBC Sport Headquarters, the Lowry Theatre and Gallery Complex, and condominium apartment buildings.  Salford Quays is reachable by electric tram from Central Manchester

MANCHESTER is probably best-known in Canada for the television series ‘Coronation Street’.  It’s been on the air for multiple decades and is still going strong to this day.  <PICTURED ABOVE – Ena Sharples, Martha Longhurst & Minnie Caldwell at the Rover’s Return Pub>