PARKING fees and fines are providing big bucks for councils in England.

The BBC tells that the local authorities generated £819m from parking fees and fines in 2016-17, an increase of 10 per cent on the previous year. This figure takes into account running costs deducted.

The Local Government Association said surpluses were spent on “essential transport projects”

The figures were gained by the RAC Foundation which suggested motorists should ask how their council spends the cash..

RAC Foundation director Steve Gooding said the rise in profits reflects the “record number of cars and volume of traffic”.

Martin Tett, the Local Government Association's transport spokesman, said parking charges keep the roads clear, help keep pedestrians, motorists and cyclists safe and enable people to park near their homes.

 

 

The lead singer with the group Pulp, Jarvis Cocker, is to narrate an exhibition on Abba, says The Guardian.

A new show opens later this month at London’s Southbank Centre exploring the legacy of the Swedish group from their rise to stardom on Eurovision to their domination of the charts in the 1970s and early 1980s.

Cocker’s narration will take viewers round the exhibition, titled Abba: Super Troupers, with the script written by the journalist and documentary maker Jude Rogers.

 

 

There was quite a surprise in store for Lisa Marie Camps when she moved into her new home in Mitcheldean, Gloucestershire, reports the Daily Express.

She was intrigued by an unmarked manhole cover in her garden and it turned out to be a Second World War bomb bunker.

The garden backs onto the former site of British Acoustic Films, a company that left London in 1941 to avoid the Blitz.

BAF made aircraft plotting tables, searchlights and and anti-aircraft technology and local historians suspect the subterranean shelter was for the factory's workers - and think it stretches much further underground than previously thought.

Another theory is that it was used by the Home Guard and was once populated with volunteers prepared to serve as Britain's last line of defence.

 

 

Apparently fresh evidence has been discovered by archaeologists which suggests that Julius Caesar's invasion of Britain was launched from Pegwell Bay in Kent.

An article in The Guardian says that it is believed that the shallow bay is the most likely landing spot for the Roman fleet after excavators found the remains of a defensive base dating to the first century BC in the nearby hamlet of Ebbsfleet, near Ramsgate.

The base covered more than 20 hectares and would have been ideally placed to protect the 800 ships the Roman army had to haul ashore when they were battered by a storm soon after they arrived from France in 54BC.

“This is the first archaeological evidence we have for Julius Caesar’s invasion of Britain,” said Andrew Fitzpatrick, a researcher at the University of Leicester. “It’s a large defended site that dates to the first century BC.”

 

 

Back home...the Daily Mail tells us that a giant Bible is returning to Britain after more than 1,300 years in Florence.

Codex Amiatinus was made in a monastery in Wearmouth-Jarrow in Northumbria, in the early eighth century and is the earliest complete surviving manuscript of a Bible in Latin.

The British Library's chief executive Roly Keating as “one of the great acts of creative book production of the entire millennium”.

He added: “It was gifted to the Pope in the year 716 and has been in Italy ever since.”

Now the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana in Florence has 'agreed to lend it back to the UK for the first time in 1,302 years'.

Reference list:

The Express (www.express.co.uk)

The Guardian (www.guardian.co.uk)

Daily Mail (www.dailymail.co.uk)

BBC (www.bbc.co.uk)