Wednesday evening UK news briefing: Dominic Raab demoted amid flurry of sackings in Cabinet reshuffle

Evening briefing: Today’s essential headlines

M25 protests | Climate protesters have blocked parts of the M25 for the second time in three days and a crash on the motorway has been blamed on activists. Insulate Britain, which is demanding Government action on home insulation, stopped traffic at two sections of Britain’s busiest motorway. Read how a crash led to a woman being airlifted to hospital.

The big story: Raab demoted amid flurry of sackings

After weeks of speculation, the Prime Minister has carried out a decisive and sweeping reshuffle that has featured a flurry of ministerial sackings. 

Here is a guide to who is in and who is out of the Cabinet so far. 

The most high profile change is for Dominic Raab, who has been demoted from Foreign Secretary following widespread criticism of his handling of the Afghanistan crisis. 

Despite attempting to cling on to one of the four great offices of state, Mr Raab has been moved to Justice Secretary but has been given a new job title of Deputy Prime Minister. 

The decision to upgrade Mr Raab from First Secretary of State to his new title will be seen as an attempt to lessen the blow of his demotion.

Newly appointed Deputy Prime Minister and Justice Secretary Dominic Raab leaves from 10 Downing Street


Newly appointed Deputy Prime Minister and Justice Secretary Dominic Raab leaves from 10 Downing Street


Credit: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP

Liz Truss is to replace Mr Raab as Foreign Secretary, while Michael Gove has been made Housing and Communities Secretary, with additional responsibilities for levelling up. 

He retains his brief for the Union and elections. Four ministers have been sacked from the Government. 

Keep up to date with the fast-paced reshuffle in our politics liveblog.

PM’s patience ‘has limits’

Gavin Williamson was the first to leave Mr Johnson’s Cabinet from his post as Education Secretary. 

He said it “has been a privilege to serve” in the role and that he “looks forward to continuing to support the Prime Minister and the Government”. 

Mr Williamson’s performance in the education brief had left him vulnerable after widespread criticism over his handling of his departmental responsibilities during the Covid-19 crisis, particularly due to the GCSE and A-level results fiasco amid cancelled exams. 

Elliot Wilson analyses how, by ousting the Education Secretary, Mr Johnson has proved that his patience has its limits.

Masks only ‘with strangers’

One person who was deemed at no risk from this reshuffle was Sajid Javid. 

The Health Secretary has only been in post since June following the sacking of Matt Hancock, which is perhaps why he was given this morning’s round on broadcast media. 

Yet he has still caused controversy in Westminster, after saying Conservative MPs do not have to wear masks in the House of Commons, despite pleas from the Speaker, because they know each other. 

Read on for his comments as he spoke about the Government’s Covid winter plan. 

Here we answer your questions about the blueprint for living with Covid-19 this winter.

Comment and analysis

Around the world: New York crime family arrests

Members of a New York crime family threatened violence, pressured workers and pocketed phony “pension” payments in a two-decade plot to seize control of a city construction union and its lucrative staff health insurance program, prosecutors alleged in an indictment unsealed on Tuesday. Ten members of the Colombo crime family, including 87-year-old boss Andrew “Mush” Russo, were charged in connection with the scheme, which prosecutors said had all the major trappings of Mafia-type shakedowns seen in TV shows like ‘The Sopranos’. Read more.

Wednesday interview

Akram Khan: ‘We have lost the art of listening to one another’

Akram Khan is about to embark upon another full-length production for the English National Ballet


Akram Khan is about to embark upon another full-length production for the English National Ballet


Credit: John Nguyen/JNVisuals

Acclaimed choreographer Akram Khan talks to Mark Monahan about the power of dance and his provocative new show

Read the full interview

Sport briefing: Raducanu final overshadows Djokovic

Emma Raducanu’s US Open triumph drew more viewers in America than the men’s final, figures show, as the British sensation rounded off her New York adventure by visiting the city’s famous Stock Exchange. Read how the women’s final is becoming a consistently bigger draw while Ben Bloom analyses how Raducanu and the new wave are showing why women’s tennis is better than the men’s. Meanwhile, Liverpool and Man City are in action in the Champions League tonight. Follow them here.

Editor’s choice

  1. Scams | Fraudsters have unlocked a new way to steal from your bank account
  2. Understated presence | How Brooke Shields is setting out to become the new Gwyneth at 56
  3. Migraine sufferers | Why are so many like me left waiting for a diagnosis?

Business briefing: More inflationary pain ahead

Inflation jumped to 3.2pc in August, the fastest annual increase in prices since 2012 as the cost of meals in pubs and restaurants rebounded compared with last year’s Eat Out To Help Out discounts. That is up from 2pc in July, marking the sharpest month-on-month increase in the rate since the Office for National Statistics started measuring the consumer price index in 1997. Read how to protect your investments, property, savings and pension from rising inflation. Ben Wright looks at how spooked businesses are already on the brink of an inflationary spiral.

Tonight starts now

Look Away, review | The title of this film on Sky Documentaries is taken from a song by Iggy Pop. It begins: “I slept with Sable when she was 13/Her parents were too rich to do anything/She rocked her way around LA/’Til a New York Doll carried her away.” It appeared on the 1996 album Naughty Little Doggie, and none of the reviews remarked upon the lyrics. Sable Starr was a real person, a notorious “groupie” in the 1970s. Read how this documentary has ugly things to say about how the music industry turned a blind eye to rock stars and teenage girls.

Three things for you

And finally… for this evening’s downtime

Sorry Jamie, it’s books | The entire British publishing industry must be sighing in despair. Jamie Oliver, begetter of more than 30 cookbook titles, has just announced that when he is looking for culinary inspiration he turns to YouTube videos. Rowan Pelling stews over why books hold the recipe for perfect home cooking.

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