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Co-op chief: £400m to 'reset starting point'

Co-op's Chief executive Niall Booker said the proposed £400m capital needed for its banking arm would enable to "reset this starting point" and continue with the "execution of our original business plan."

  • The bank said continuing "root and branch" reviews of processes, procedures and documentation had produced further conduct and legal issues.
  • One-off costs associated with the separation of the bank from the Co-operative Group have proved more costly, time-consuming and more complex than anticipated.
  • Its capital ratio - a measure of its financial strength - is now expected to be around 7.2%, compared with previous guidance of near 9% and against the regulatory minimum requirement of 7%.

Read: Co-op bank admits it needs another £400 million

Anti HS2 campaigners not happy with new report

Lord Deighton has said there shouldn't be an 'if you build it, they will come' attitude to HS2, but that is how they have been operating for the last four years.

"While the case for HS2 only exists in a vested interest 'Field of Dreams', the reality of the project is a waking nightmare for the taxpayer."

– Stop HS2 campaign manager Joe Rukin

High Speed 2 will "transform our region"

Supporters say HS2 will drive urban regeneration

Cities in the North West and Midlands could become global leaders thanks to HS2 according to supporters of the project. But a special task force for High Speed 2 says more must be done if the region is to get the full economic and social benefits.

Sir Howard Bernstein, CEO Manchester City Council and Deputy Chair of the Taskforce, said:

"HS2 is not just a railway. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to take a huge step towards re-balancing Britain's economy, taking regeneration in cities across the North and Midlands to a new level."

Taskforce calls for HS2 minister

The Government should appoint a special HS2 minister, says a report from the growth taskforce for the £50 billion high-speed rail project.

The new minister would ensure growth and regeneration around HS2 remained a priority, the taskforce said.

Led by Lord Deighton, the taskforce said the scale of HS2 was "without precedent" and "could catalyse far-reaching economic and social benefits, particularly to the cities of the Midlands and the North".

Lord Deighton, who like HS2 Ltd chairman Sir David Higgins played a key role in delivering the London 2012 Olympics, made a reference in the report's foreword to a line from the cult film Field of Dreams.

This report makes clear that we must not take a 'build it and they will come' attitude to HS2. It is up to all of us to make the most of this unique opportunity."

– Lord Deighton

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Conference to urge businesses to employ disabled people

The first conference of its kind to encourage North West businesses to employ more people with disabilities has taken place today.

Some of the region's biggest firms were at the event in Manchester, led by the Falklands veteran Simon Weston.

The government estimates half a million disabled people of working age in the region currently do not have a job.

Mel Barham reports.

North West firms urged to employ more people with disabilities

A conference has taken place in Manchester aimed at getting more disabled people into the workplace.

There are currently half a million people with disabilities in the North West who are unemployed.

The event was about encouraging more employers to hire disabled people - and showcasing their huge value to the regional economy.

It was hosted by the Falklands veteran Simon Weston.

Parents of Warrington bomb victim welcome charity lifeline

The future of a North West charity set up following the bombing in Warrington has been given a year's funding in the budget.

'Survivors For Peace' run by the Tim Parry and Jonathan Ball Foundation, had faced an uncertain future after a grant had run out.

Colin and Wendy Parry, the parents of Tim Parry who was killed in the IRA bomb have welcomed the Chancellor's announcement.

It comes on the eve of the 21st anniversary of the terrorist attack.

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