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Brown 'absolutely sure' on devolution timetable

Gordon Brown has said he is "absolutely sure" that the timetable he has set out for devolution will be honoured.

He said that a resolution signed by all three main Westminster party leaders has been issued today and will be placed in the House of Commons on Monday.

It sets out a timetable for reform as follows:

  • a Command Paper to published by the end of October
  • the 'heads of agreement' to be published by November
  • Draft legislation that will form a new Scotland Act ready by the end of January

Brown: Salmond a 'fierce and formidable' opponent

Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown has thanked 'fierce and formidable' opponent Alex Salmond for his contribution to politics.

I would like to thank Alex Salmond for his years of service as both First Minister of Scotland and as a member of the Scottish Parliament and the Parliament in Westminster.

And though he has been a fierce and formidable opponent I think we owe him a debt of gratitude for all that he has tried to do on behalf of Scotland, and I want to wish him and his wife, and I hope everybody here will join in applauding him and his wife, and wish them a happy retirement.

– Gordon Brown

Mr Brown added that he would not be returning to frontline politics: "I am not making a comeback to frontline politics. I am too old to be the come back kid, and I am too young to be an elder statesman."


Brown: The eyes of the world are on party leaders

Gordon Brown speaking in Fife.

Gordon Brown has said "the eyes of the world" are on the leaders of the main Westminster parties to make sure they keep their promises on Scottish devolution.

Speaking in Fife today, the former Prime Minister said: "These are men who have been promise-makers and they will not be promise breakers and I will ensure that as a promise-keeper that these promises that have been made are upheld."

Mr Brown said the civil service had already begun working on proposals for further devolution to Scotland, and that new laws on the country's future would be ready in time for Burns' Night in January.

Missing British couple in Mexico named

The British couple missing in Mexico have been named as Paul Whitehouse and Simone Wood.

The BBC reports friends of the couple saying they were on a yacht which capsized off the coastal town of La Paz on the Baja peninsula.

Mr Whitehouse, from Wolverhampton, is reported to have been working as a scuba diving instructor in the resort for about a year.

The Foreign Office has said it is providing consular assistance to the families "at this difficult time".

45,000 Syrian Kurds 'enter Turkey after IS advance'

About 45,000 Syrian Kurds have crossed the border into Turkey after an advance by Islamic State militants, the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister has said.

"Around 45,000 Syrian Kurds have crossed the border as of now from eight entrance points along a 30 km distance from Akcakale to Mursitpinar since we opened the border yesterday," Numan Kurtulmus told CNN Turk television.

Isolated thundery showers across England for a time

There will be some thundery showers, which are then confined to eastern areas.

Isolated thundery showers will continue across England for a time, before becoming confined to the east by the end of the morning.

Elsewhere, across England and Wales it will be a rather cloudy day with occasional rain or drizzle.

Northern Ireland and Scotland will be largely dry with some brighter spells, especially this afternoon and it will feel fresher here.

The top temperature will be 21C.


Met Office warns of flooding amid thunderstorms

The Met Office has warned of further heavy showers and thunderstorms through to Saturday evening, with the main risk becoming confined to southern parts from late afternoon.

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning. Credit: Met Office

It also warned of potential for isolated disruption due to surface water flooding and lightning strikes.

Drivers report flooding on roads through Essex

Images of flooding on roads through Essex have begun to emerge on Twitter with one driver posting a photograpg of water covering the A12.

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