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German neo-Nazi trial starts in Munich protests + people take to the streets

German neo-Nazi trial starts in Munich protests + people take to the streets

A handout police picture taken from the website of the German Federal Police, showing a picture of Beate Zschaepe, asks for information to the public

Thousands of people have taken to the streets of Munich in memory of 10 alleged murder victims of a neo-Nazi cell, the National Socialist Underground (NSU). A trial begins this week.

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Saturday’s demonstrations were called for by an alliance of leftist groups in memory of the NSU’s alleged victims.

The right-wing extremist group is accused of killing 10 people – eight with Turkish heritage, one from Greece and a German policewoman – between 2000 and 2007. The group was only uncovered in 2011. The sole surviving alleged core member, a 38-year-old woman, and four alleged accomplices are facing trial. The case is scheduled to begin next Wednesday.

Organizers of the protest march and rally through Munich said there were up to 10,000 attendees, while a police spokesman put the figure at around 5,500. Both said the gathering had been peaceful.

The march went for about 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) past a number of former Nazi buildings and a memorial to Munich’s Oktoberfest bombing of 1980. On September 26, 1980, a bomb exploded at the festival gates leaving 211 injured and 13 dead, including the bomber himself. The perpetrator was 21-year-old geology student Gundolf Wilfried Koehler, a member of a right-wing extremist group called the Wehrsportgruppe Hoffmann. The group had been banned shortly before the attack.

“We must have zero tolerance for neo-Nazis in this city,” said a survivor of Auschwitz, Esther Bejarano, in a message to the demonstration.

Foreign journalists granted access

On Friday, the German Constitutional Court ruled that Turkish journalists must be granted accreditation for the upcoming trial.

The court ordered the upper regional court (OLG) in Munich to reserve “a suitable number of seats for representatives of foreign media with particular consideration to the victims of the alleged crimes.”

Up until then, the OLG had resisted pressure to allow Turkish or Greek media into the court. There were 50 available places for reporters, and these were allocated on a “first come, first served” basis. No Turkish or Greek media outlets were among the first 50 to apply.

Several politicians, most recently Turkish President Abdullah Gül, had called for this situation to change – given a majority of the victims were of Turkish origin – along with Turkish and German news organizations, journalists’ unions like the DJV and other groups.

The federal government had voiced its “hopes” for a “sensitive” solution to the situation, albeit simultaneously stressing that the decision must lie with the independent German judiciary.

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By Damien McElroy and agencies

Police erected security barriers in anticipation of possible protests by far-right extremist groups, while hundreds of reporters queued outside the Munich courthouse in the hope of gaining one of the few available seats in the packed courtroom for the start of a trial scheduled to last for more than a year.

The chance discovery of the gang, the National Socialist Underground (NSU), which had gone undetected for more than a decade, has forced Germany to acknowledge it has a more militant and dangerous neo-Nazi fringe than previously thought.

The main defendant is Beate Zschaepe, 38, accused by prosecutor of complicity in the murder of eight Turks, a Greek and a policewoman between 2000 and 2007. If convicted she faces life imprisonment.

Zschaepe is also accused of involvement in at least two bombings and 15 bank robberies carried out by her accomplices Uwe Mundlos and Uwe Boenhardt, who died in an apparent murder-suicide in November 2011. In a break with standard practice the court allowed Zschaepe’s face to be filmed as she entered the court in a dark suit, her arms folded, before turning her back to the cameras.

Four male defendants are accused of assisting the self-styled National Socialist Underground in various ways:

– Ralf Wohlleben, 38, and Carsten Schultze, 33, are accused of being accessories to murder in the killing of the nine men. Prosecutors allege that they supplied the trio with the weapons and silencers used in the killings.

– Andre Eminger, 33, is accused of being an accessory in two of the bank robberies and in the 2004 nail bombing in Cologne’s old town that injured 22 people, four of them seriously. He is also accused of two counts of supporting a terrorist organization.

– Holger Gerlach, 39, is accused of three counts of supporting a terrorist organization.

Like Zschaepe, the co-defendants were known to German authorities before the existence of the self-styled National Socialist Underground came to light. Many in Germany have asked how the country’s well-funded security services, with their network of informants in the far-right scene, could have overlooked the group’s existence for so long. For years, police suspected the immigrant victims of being involved with foreign gangs linked to gambling and drugs.

Families of those killed and survivors of the bomb attacks in particular have said they are hoping not just for justice, but answers to questions such as how the group chose its victims, none of whom were high-profile targets.

One of Zschaepe’s three lawyers has claimed that his client faces “execution by media.”

Wolfgang Stahl told public broadcaster SWR last week that Zschaepe was being portrayed as “evil incarnate, a murderer, a member of a murder gang, a Nazi bride or a Nazi killer” in a way that could prejudice the trial judges.

Her lawyers have said she will remain silent during the lengthy trial. Under German law Zschaepe won’t have to make a plea until the end, though her lawyers have said they will contest the prosecution charges.

‘Ethnic majority’ areas growing, says report

‘Ethnic majority’ areas growing, says report

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David Barrett

By , Home Affairs Correspondent

The number of areas where black and Asian people make up the bulk of the population has grown significantly in the last decade, according to new research.

Demos, the Left-wing think-tank, said its analysis of Census data for England and Wales showed ethnic minorities are concentrating in particular areas and white people are moving out.

The findings echo a phenomenon first seen in the mid-20th century United States – where it was dubbed “white flight” – which saw racially-mixed urban areas become predominantly black as affluent whites moved to the suburbs.

The research is significant because Demos, which was once closely linked with the previous Labour government which increased immigration to record levels, suggested ethnic minorities are becoming more isolated in British life rather than becoming more integrated in a “multi-cultural” Britain.

It found 4.6 million ethnic minority Britons – about 45 per cent of the country’s black and Asian population – are now living in areas where whites are in a minority.

Ten years ago just one million black and Asian people, or 25 per cent of the country’s then total ethnic minority population, lived in such communities, said Demos.

In the 2001 Census, 282 of the 8,850 council wards in England and Wales were classed as “high non-white” or “highest non-white” by Demos, but in the 2011 Census that figure had risen to 414.

David Goodhart, director of Demos said: “This has uncovered a really quite shocking level of concentration of the ethnic minority population, which means there is less opportunity for interaction with the white mainstream.”

Demos’s research said in minority-dominated areas new waves of immigrants such as Somalis take up housing vacated by established minorities, such as Afro-Caribbeans.

“This means a dissipation of ethnic concentrations, but also an increase in the number of people who have limited contact with white British people,” it said.

The paper attributed the changes to white British people choosing not to move to minority-dominated areas.

Trevor Phillips, a former chairman of the Commission for Racial Equality and its successor, described it as “majority retreat”.

Mr Phillips, who is now a Demos associate, said: “This very interesting piece of research reveals a number of vital findings about how people in England and Wales are living together.

“What ought to make us a little anxious is the ‘majority retreat’ it has unearthed – white people leaving minority-led areas and not returning – which isn’t good news for the cause of integration.”

The research by Eric Kaufmann, professor of politics at Birkbeck College, London, also showed some ethnic minorities are spreading out more into white-dominated parts of the country.

Black and Asian people are becoming less rare in provincial England because there are now fewer than 800 council wards that are more than 98 per cent white compared with more than 5,000 in 2001.

Sir Andrew Green, Chairman of Migration Watch said the findings were a sign that Britain is becoming more segregated.

He said: “This is extremely serious. It is undeniable evidence that we have indeed been sleepwalking into segregation as Trevor Phillips warned seven years ago and it is the clear result of Labour’s mass immigration policy.

“Public dismay at the pace of change in our communities largely explains why so many voted as they did in last week’s local elections.

“The case for a sharp reduction in immigration is now overwhelming; we cannot possibly integrate new arrivals on anything like the present scale.”

New 2013 Porsche 911 Turbo unveiled

New 2013 Porsche 911 Turbo unveiled

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New 2013 Porsche 911 Turbo unveiled

Leo Wilkinson

By  @ The Daily Telegraph

The new Porsche 911 Turbo has been revealed; it gets a twin-turbocharged engine, four-wheel drive and rear-wheel steering, and costs from £118,349.

Technical highlights of the new 911 Turbo include a new 3.8-litre flat-six petrol engine with two turbochargers that’s more powerful, yet more fuel-efficient, than its predecessor’s. In standard form it develops 514bhp, while the Turbo S version gets 552bhp.

Drive is via a seven-speed dual-clutch PDK transmission, and there’s a newly-developed four-wheel-drive system that features an electronically controlled and activated multi-plate clutch.

A start/stop system is standard. EU Combined fuel consumption for both models is 29.1mpg, an improvement of up to 16 per cent. Porsche quotes a 0-62mph time of 3.2 seconds for the 911 Turbo with optional Sport Chrono Package Plus, and 3.1 seconds for the Turbo S. Top speed is 197mph.

At speeds up to 31mph the rear wheels steer in the opposite direction to improve responsiveness and aid parking. Above 50mph the rear wheels turn parallel to the front wheels to improve high-speed stability.

As with its predecessors, the new 911 Turbo has wider rear bodywork than lesser 911 models – in this case its overall width is 28mm wider than that of the Carrera 4. Other distinguishing features are two-tone 20in alloy wheels and bespoke bumpers.

An “active aerodynamic system” makes its debut on the 911 Turbo. It consists of retractable three-stage spoilers at the front and rear of the car, allowing the aerodynamics to be biased towards either efficiency or downforce.

The new Porsche 911 Turbo is available to order now. It costs £118,349 for the standard model and £140,852 for the Turbo S. First customer deliveries will be in September.

London Mayor announces £25m small business fund

London Mayor announces £25m small business fund

Regent+Street

London Mayor announces £25m small business fund

Tim DonovanBy Tim DonovanPolitical Editor, BBC London

Mayor of London Boris Johnson makes a Gu chocolate souffle with head chef Boris Johnson visited a Gu pudding maker’s factory in east London
London Mayor Boris Johnson plans to use £25m of government money to help small businesses access loans.

It forms part of proposals to invest the second tranche of a total £111m provided by the government to try to revive London’s economy.

Government ministers recently criticised the mayor’s slow progress in creating a “jobs and growth strategy”.

The mayor has so far spent only £2m of £70m available to his London Enterprise Panel in the first tranche.

Continue reading the main story

“Start Quote

It is vital that the scheme announced today is attached to the soon to be created Business Bank which will house a myriad of similar funds”

Steve WarwickFederation of Small Businesses

Mr Johnson was not clear on the details of how the £25m would be spent but said would be used to help small businesses.

“Today’s fund, which will enable significant support for small and medium businesses, is just one way we are working to unlock potential and provide jobs for our growing city,” Mr Johnson said Mr Johnson at a Gu pudding factory in Walthamstow.

‘Turned down’

His officials said the idea was to get a private financial institution to match the amount, creating a £50m fund to help provide loans and equity for small and medium-sized businesses.

Steve Warwick from the Federation of Small Businesses said it would be welcomed.

“The credit crunch has meant that many businesses have struggled to get the finance that they need to operate their business effectively,” he said.

“Our research shows that five in ten businesses in London were turned down for a loan or overdraft in the first quarter of 2013.

“This needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency which is why it is vital that the scheme announced today is attached to the soon to be created Business Bank which will house a myriad of similar funds.”

A further £15m is being made available for companies and research institutions in the science and technology sector who must apply for funding.

It has also emerged the mayor plans to spend £25m on widening the Western Anglia rail route, saying this will help the economy of east London by improving transport links.

Mr Johnson said it was “coincidental” the West Anglia rail franchise is one of the two he wants to take over next year.

Kris Kross Rapper Chris ‘Mac Daddy’ Kelly Dies

Kris Kross Rapper Chris ‘Mac Daddy’ Kelly Dies

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Chris Kelly, known as one half of the 1990s US rap duo Kris Kross, has died at the age of 34 in what police say may have been a drug overdose.

Police were called to Kelly’s home in south Atlanta at around 4:30pm (local time) on Wednesday.

He was taken to the south campus of the Atlanta Medical Centre and pronounced dead around 5pm.

Corporal Kay Lester of the Fulton County police said “it appears it may have been a possible drug overdose”.

A post-mortem examination is due to be carried out to establish an official cause of death.

Kelly, known as “Mac Daddy,” and Chris Smith, known as “Daddy Mac”, were introduced to the music world in 1992 by music producer and rapper Jermaine Dupri.

Chris Kelly, Kriss Kross
Police say Kelly may have died from a drug overdose

He had discovered the pair in an Atlanta shopping centre.

Their most famous song was the frenetic Jump, taken from their multi-platinum debut album Totally Krossed Out.

And they were also known for their fashion style, wearing their clothes backwards.

Jump reached number one in the US and Australia and two in the UK.

Their musical achievements led to instant fame. They toured with Michael Jackson, appeared on TV shows, and even had their own video game.

The duo was never able to match the success of their first song, though they had other hits like Warm It Up and Tonite’s Tha Night.

Earlier this year, the pair performed together to celebrate the anniversary of Durpri’s label, So So Def.

Beyonce’s demands for London’s 02 event

Beyonce’s demands for London’s 02 event

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A list of demands from Beyonce‘s London O2 Arena residency have reportedly been revealed.

The singer is allegedly demanding £600 drinking straws and hand-carved ice balls on her rider and she is insisting that her crew wear only 100 per cent pure cotton clothes, to save her from allergic reactions, according to The Daily Star. It also claims she demands her dressing room has freshly painted white walls and a new toilet seat, and will only use red toilet paper.

Junk food is banned and snacks must include glass platters of almonds and oatcakes – and there’s a strict green-only policy when it comes to salad bar nibbles. Other reported demands include special alkaline water that is served at exactly 21 degrees. “She’s extremely regimented and is taking everything extremely seriously, so she expects her list of demands to be adhered to. Working so hard and with the toll the travel takes on her body in addition to the intense shows, she feels that her requests aren’t too much to ask for as she wants to ensure everything goes to plan,” a source said.

During her six-night residency, Beyonce has snubbed brand new dressing rooms at the venue in favour of much larger quarters normally reserved for sports teams. “The new dressing rooms are superb – it’s like you’ve stepped into a luxury apartment. But she surprised everyone by turning them down, going for the larger ones that are used by sports teams when they play at the O2,” an insider told the Evening Standard, before adding: “They are much bigger though, and she was given free rein to refurbish them to her own taste. They’re also in a quieter part of the backstage area, which gives her a better atmosphere to get focused for her shows.”

Beyonce last night (April 30) played the second night of her O2 residency, performing for another packed house and – as happened previously – covering part of The Verve’s ‘Bitter Sweet Symphony’. Her song ‘If I Were A Boy’ replicated the Verve hit’s string sample, and the lyrics were changed to include the ‘Bitter Sweet Symphony’ line “I’m a million different people from one day to the next“.

Source: NME

Do you know your social media rights?

Do you know your social media rights?

UK.Gov passes Instagram Act: All your pics belong to everyone now

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Have you ever uploaded a photo to Facebook, Instagram or Flickr?

If so, you’ll probably want to read this, because the rules on who can exploit your work have now changed radically, overnight.

 Amateur and professional illustrators and photographers alike will find themselves ensnared by the changes, the result of lobbying by Silicon Valley and radical bureaucrats and academics. The changes are enacted in the sprawling Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act which received Royal Assent last week, and it marks a huge shift in power away from citizens and towards large US corporations.

How so? Previously, and in most of the world today, ownership of your creation is automatic, and legally considered to be an individual’s property. That’s enshrined in the Berne Convention and other international treaties, where it’s considered to be a basic human right. What this means in practice is that you can go after somebody who exploits it without your permission – even if pursuing them is cumbersome and expensive.

The UK coalition government’s new law reverses this human right. When last year Instagram attempted to do something similar, it met a furious backlash. But the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act has sailed through without most amateurs or semi-professionals even realising the consequences.

The Act contains changes to UK copyright law which permit the commercial exploitation of images where information identifying the owner is missing, so-called “orphan works”, by placing the work into what’s known as “extended collective licensing” schemes. Since most digital images on the internet today are orphans – the metadata is missing or has been stripped by a large organisation – millions of photographs and illustrations are swept into such schemes.

For the first time anywhere in the world, the Act will permit the widespread commercial exploitation of unidentified work – the user only needs to perform a “diligent search”. But since this is likely to come up with a blank, they can proceed with impunity. The Act states that a user of a work can act as if they are the owner of the work (which should be you) if they’re given permission to do so by the Secretary of State.

The Act also fails to prohibit sub-licensing, meaning that once somebody has your work, they can wholesale it. This gives the green light to a new content-scraping industry, an industry that doesn’t have to pay the originator a penny. Such is the consequence of “rebalancing copyright”, in reality.

What now?

Quite what happens next is not clear, because the Act is merely enabling legislation – the nitty gritty will come in the form of statutory instruments, to be tabled later in the year. Parliament has not voted down a statutory instrument since 1979, so the political process is probably now a formality.

In practice, you’ll have two stark choices to prevent being ripped off: remove your work from the internet entirely, or opt-out by registering it. And registration will be on a work-by-work basis.

“People can now use stuff without your permission,” explained photo rights campaigner Paul Ellis. “To stop that you have to register your work in a registry – but registering stuff is an activity that costs you time and money. So what was your property by default will only remain yours if you take active steps, and absorb the costs, if it is formally registered to you as the owner.”

And right now, Ellis says, there’s only one registry, PLUS. Photographers, including David Bailey, condemned the government for rushing through the legislation before other registries – such as the Copyright Hub – could sort themselves out.

“The mass of the public will never realise they’ve been robbed,” thinks Ellis. The radical free-our-information bureaucrats at the Intellectual Property Office had already attempted to smuggle orphan works rules through via the Digital Economy Act in 2010, but were rebuffed. Thanks to a Google-friendly Conservative-led administration, they’ve now triumphed.

Three other consequences appear possible.

One is a barrage of litigation from UK creators – and overseas owners who find their work Hoovered into extended collective licensing programs. International treaties allow a country to be ostracised and punished. The threat has already been made clear from US writers and photographers, who’ve promised “a firestorm“. Reciprocal royalty arrangements can also be suspended, on the basis of “if you steal our stuff, UK, we won’t pay you”. In addition, a judicial review, based on the premise that the Act gives Minister unconstitutional power over the disposal of private property, is not out of the question.

Secondly, the disappearance of useful material from the internet is likely to accelerate – the exact opposite of what supporters wish for. We recently highlighted the case of an aerial photographer who’s moving work outside the UK, and we’ve heard of several who are taking their photos away from the web, and into lockers. The internet is poorer without a diverse creative economy – because creators need legal certainty of property rights.

And finally, there’s the macroeconomic consequences for the UK economy.

The notorious ‘Google Review’ chaired by Ian Hargreaves failed to undertake adequate impact assessments, a giveaway that even the most rabid “copyright reformers” recognise there isn’t an economic case to be made for taking everyone’s stuff and giving it away.

“There’s value in works, and if anybody can exploit them except the person who creates them, then value is transferred to the exploiter,” explains Ellis. “This is a massive value transfer out of the UK economy to US tech companies.”

Where it will remain, he thinks, because UK tech/media companies – should they appear – almost invariably become US-owned.

Copyright “reformers” of course rarely like to talk about such unpleasant matters – and will steer the conversation away from economic consequences as rapidly as possible. Indeed, the they generally talk using Orwellian euphemisms – like “liberalising” or “rebalancing” copyright. It’s rarely presented as an individual’s ability to go to market being removed. This is what “copyright reform” looks like in practice.

“It’s corporate capitalism,” says Ellis. “Ideally you want to empower individuals to trade, and keep the proceeds of their trade. The UK has just lost that.”

So while the Twitterati and intelligentsia were ranting away about “Big Content”, we’ve just lost the ability to sell our own content. In other words, you’ve just been royally fucked.

Source : The Register

Will.i.am, Sub Focus and Misha B added to Wireless Festival line-up

Will.i.am, Sub Focus and Misha B added to Wireless Festival line-up

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Will.i.am has been confirmed as a special guest for Legends of The Summer featuring Justin Timberlake and Jay Z at Wireless Festival.

The Scream & Shout singer was announced along with a raft of other artists that include Sub Focus (Live), Zane Lowe (DJ Set), Bluey Robinson, Drop City Yacht Club, Devlin, Taboo and Misha B.

Fazer, Mikky Ekko, Giggs, Watsky, A*M*E and Taboo will perform on the Yahoo! Stage meanwhile.

The festival’s main draw will be the already-announced Timberlake and Jay Z, who will co-headline the third and final date on July 14.

The pair will play individual dates on the two days beforehand, with Timberlake showing off tracks from his new album The 20/20 Experience, joined by Snoop Dogg, Miguel, Frank Ocean and more.

The London festival moves from Hyde Park to Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park this year, and will also see performances from A Tribe Called Quest, NAS, A$AP Rocky, Jessie Ware, Katy B, Magnetic Man, Rizzle Kicks and 2 Chainz.

Source : Metro London

Beyonce dazzles at London’s O2

Beyonce dazzles at London’s O2

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Beyonce dazzles at London’s O2

To her fans she is Beyonce and according to her tour title she is Mrs Carter, but whatever name she uses the former Destiny’s Child star never fails to dazzle.

By Rosa Silverman

Monday night’s show at London’s O2 arena was no exception, with the Crazy in Love singer mesmerizing the crowds with her showstopping outfits and polished choreography.

Performing her Mrs Carter show in the capital for the first night, she took to the stage in a series of racy costumes that made no attempt to hide her famous curves.

Pictures of the gig were quick to appear on Twitter, despite the photo ban that the singer has imposed on audience members at her concerts.

The Mrs Carter Show World Tour began in the Serbian capital, Belgrade, on April 15.

Its title is a reference to Beyoncé’s marriage to Jay-Z, the rapper, whose real name is Shawn Carter.

 

She is performing a total of 11 concerts in the UK this month and next, before returning for one more show at Twickenham Stadium on June 1.

She announced the tour, her fourth solo one, after performing at the Super Bowl half-time show earlier this year in the US.

Her UK dates come two years after her performance at the Glastonbury music festival, which Jay Z has also played.

The show was the first of four dates in London and she plays the same venue tonight, Wednesday and Friday.

Following her Superbowl performance in February, Beyonce’s publicist asked news websites to remove photos of her on stage that were deemed “unflattering”.

House prices in London are rising by £90 a day but flat or falling in EVERY OTHER major UK city

House prices in London are rising by £90 a day but flat or falling in EVERY OTHER major UK city

London Living 

  • The report from the Land Registry highlights the gulf between London and the rest of the UK
  • In the capital, the average house price has increased by 9.6 per cent
  • Of properties sold over £1m in England and Wales, two-thirds are in London
  • In regional cities such as Birmingham and Liverpool prices have fallen

By BECKY BARROW @ The Daily Mail UK

House prices in London are rising by £90 a day but flat or falling in every other major city in the UK, a report from the Land Registry revealed today.

The report highlights the gulf between the capital’s property market, where prices have reached an all-time high, and the rest of the UK, where they are falling by up to 16.5 per cent a year.

In London, the average home now costs £374,568, having soared by 9.6 per cent over the last year, according to the Land Registry.

House prices in London are rising by £90 a day - where prices have reached an all-time high - but are flat or falling in every other major city in the UKAll-time high: House prices in London are rising by £90 a day but are flat or falling in every other major city in the UK

This is equal to around £90 every single day, including weekends.

In the most exclusive corner of London – the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea – the average property costs £1.1million, up by an eye-watering £120,000 over the last year.

 

Of all the properties sold for more than £1million in England and Wales, around two-thirds are in London.

Around 13 homes every day change hands for more than £1million in the capital, according to the Land Registry, which excludes Scotland.

The Royal Borough of Kensington (pictured) and Chelsea have the average property costs £1.1million, up £120,000 over the last yearCostly corner: The Royal Borough of Kensington (pictured) and Chelsea have an average property price of £1.1million, up £120,000 over the last year

But the rest of the country tells a very different story, fuelling an unprecedented property apartheid between the capital and the rest of the country.

The Land Registry figures show prices have dropped over the last year in the vast majority of urban areas.

Birmingham, Bolton, Bradford, Bury, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Oldham, Salford, Stockport, Wakefield, Wigan and Wolverhampton are all on the casualty list.

For example, house prices in Liverpool have fallen four per cent since last March.

The average home used to be worth £93,514 but it has dropped to just £89,974, a fall of £3,720 or £10 a day.

Overall, the Land Registry said the average house price in England and Wales is £161,793, up 0.1 per cent in March and up 0.9 per cent over the last year.

Outside London, prices are rising in some of the more expensive areas such as Surrey and Windsor and Maidenhead, but falling 16.5 per cent in Middlesbrough.

Peter Rollings, chief executive of the estate agency Marsh & Parsons, said: ‘House price growth in London continues to surge ahead of the rest of the country with the capital continuing to operate in another realm.’

Giles Hannah, managing director of the upmarket estate agency VanHan, said: ‘There is no getting away from the fact that national average indices conceal significant regional differences.

‘London is undoubtedly the big success story and is doing a good job of pulling up the national average.

Casualty list: House prices in Liverpool (pictured) have fallen by four per cent since last March, a fall of £10 a dayCasualty list: House prices in Liverpool (pictured) have fallen by four per cent since last March, a fall of £10 a day while in Manchester housing prices fell by £9.05 a day

‘Its residential sales market remains robust with prices continuing to rise. International buyers, particularly from Asia, are fuelling demand for best in-class properties and are snapping up properties at 10 to 14 per cent discounts as a result of the weakness of sterling compared with their own currencies.’

The majority of people who bought ‘super-prime’ homes in the countryside last year were foreigners, the first time that British buyers have become a minority.

The research, by Knight Frank, looked at the nationality of people who bought country homes for £5million or more last year from the upmarket estate agency In 2010 and 2011, foreigners accounted for around 40 per cent of buyers.

Last year, it tipped over the 50 per cent mark for the first time to reach 55 per cent.

Around one in four buyers came from Russia and its former republics, such as Armenia, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.

HOW THE GULF WIDENS BETWEEN THE CAPITAL’S PROPERTY MARKET AND THE REST OF THE UK

 

March 2012 March 2013 Daily equivalent
London £341,759 £374,568 +£89.89
Birmingham £112,832 £111,035 -£4.90
Leeds £126,205 £123,658 -£6.97
Liverpool £93,514 £89,974 -£10.19
Manchester £95,341 £92,036 -£9.05
Sheffield £114,531 £114,121 -£1.12

Source: Land Registry

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