Leicester mayor ‘was warned that clothing factories had no social distancing but failed to act’


The Mayor of Leicester had been warned that some manufacturing companies were  breaching Covid-19 social distancing guidelines three months ago, a former minister has claimed. 

Sir Peter Soulsby, 71, and his Labour councillors received a letter from politicians in the Conservative Party warning them of the ‘shuttered premises’ in which textile workers were operating in amid the coronavirus lockdown.   

Baroness Verma went on to claim that it was an ‘open secret’ that factories were open and were risking the health of their workers and the local population in Leicester. 

The claims come just days after it came to light that clothes workers in Leicester were being paid as little as £3.50 an hour to produce items for some of the UK’s biggest fashion brands including Boohoo and Nasty Gal. 

Following the revelations, Home Secretary Priti Patel called the allegations ‘truly appalling’ and vowed to clamp down on modern slavery. 

Mayor of Leicester Sir Peter Soulsby, 71, and his Labour councillors received a letter from politicians in the Conservative Party warning them of textile factories breaching Covid-19 guidelines

Pictured: Workers at the Faiza Fashion factory in Leicester continue to work despite the newly reimposed lockdown

Pictured: Workers at the Faiza Fashion factory in Leicester continue to work despite the newly reimposed lockdown

Ruched Waist Floral Tea Dress available on Boohoo

Button Through Polka Dot Skater Dress on sale at Boohoo

Earlier this week it was revealed that clothes workers in Leicester were being paid as little as £3.50 an hour to produce items for some of the UK’s biggest fashion brands including Boohoo. Pictured: Boohoo models (left and right)

Today Baroness Verma, who served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for International Development from 2015 until 2016, told The Sunday Telegraph: ‘It was an open secret that the factories were open. The concerns were about the conditions in which some of them were operating.’

In an email sent to Labour councillors in Leicester on April 18, Conservative politicians questioned if the party was ensuring that the activities inside factories were being reported to the police and trading standards.

The letter, seen by The Sunday Telegraph, read: ‘We have had a number of people contacting us in fear that factory owners are flouting the law by appearing closed but with employees still working behind shuttered premises. 

‘This is not only dangerous to the workers in the factories but also to the families and wider communities at large.’ 

MailOnline has contacted Leicester City Council for comment.    

Earlier today, Matt Hancock said Leicester had seen ‘outbreaks in food factories and in clothing factories’ and there were ‘quite some significant concerns’.

He told Sky’s Sophy Ridge: ‘Well we’ve seen outbreaks in food factories and in clothing factories. There is some quite significant concerns about some of the employment practices in some of the clothing factories in Leicester.

‘They are important problems to deal with, but the number one problem that we’ve got to deal with is getting this virus under control.’

The Health Secretary, who today refused to commit to giving NHS workers a pay rise but insisted they must be ‘rewarded’, went on to say: ‘We also have the authority to be able to shut down a business if it doesn’t follow that guidance. So there is significant enforcement.’  

The claims come after an investigation uncovered that clothes workers in Leicester are being paid as little as £3.50 an hour to produce items for some of the UK’s biggest fashion brands.          

Factory workers at Faiza Fashion in Leicester operate their sewing machines despite the risk of contracting Covid-19

Factory workers at Faiza Fashion in Leicester operate their sewing machines despite the risk of contracting Covid-19 

Baroness Verma, who served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for International said it was an 'open secret' that factories were open

Baroness Verma, who served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for International said it was an ‘open secret’ that factories were open

Asim Ali, 34, manager of Fazia Fashion, said his company had not received any guidance from local authorities

Mohmed Talati, 55, also complained about the lack of official guidance

Asim Ali (left), 34, who is manager of Faiza Fashion in Leicester, said he had not received any guidance from the government while Mohmed Talati (right), 55, who runs 21 F.C. Ltd, a cloth cutting company, also complained about the lack of official guidance 

At a factory named as Jaswal Fashions, where clothes at bound for online giant Boohoo and Nasty Gal, employees are said to work for less than half the national minimum wage.

The undercover report by The Sunday Times also found that no additional hygiene or social distancing measures were in place, despite the city being in a localised lockdown due to an outbreak of the virus.  

In covert footage, the undercover reporter records himself packing garments clearly labelled as ‘Nasty Gal’.

He is also approached by the factory foreman, who warns: ‘These motherf***ers know how to exploit people like us. They make profits like hell and pay us in peanuts.

‘Take me for instance, I’ve been working for so many years in this industry, I’ve been here for five years but never could I take a proper pay packet. I’m still only on just over £5 an hour.’ 

This week manager of Faiza Fashion in Leicester, Asim Ali, told MailOnline that all garments they manufacture are for Boohoo and Pretty Little Thing (PLT), two of the country’s leading online clothing brands.

He said: ‘All our work is for these two companies and it is the same for all the other garment manufacturers in Leicester. We do not deal directly with them but are given the orders by middle companies who liaise with them.

‘We opened earlier than expected during the first lockdown because there was such an increase in online clothes shopping. Since then, work has not stopped. We are inundated with orders because so many people are buying online.’

Mr Ali added: ‘In the old days we used to get orders for high street shops but all of that has now stopped. The fashion industry has now changed, there are constant demands for new lines which means we have to work even harder to make clothes.’ 

Dot On Our Watch Satin Crop Top. Sale price: £4 (down from £35)

Lace Celebrate Bandeau Midi Dress. Sale price: £8 (down from £35)

Nasty Gal and Boohoo.com are renowned for affordable fashion, with crop top (left, example) going for as little as £4 in a sale, and dresses (right, example) as low as £8

At a factory named as Jaswal Fashions, where clothes at bound for online giant Boohoo and Nasty Gal, employees are said to work for less than half the national minimum wage without health and safety protections against coronavirus

At a factory named as Jaswal Fashions, where clothes at bound for online giant Boohoo and Nasty Gal, employees are said to work for less than half the national minimum wage without health and safety protections against coronavirus

Mohamed Talati, 55, who runs 21 F.C. Ltd, a cloth cutting company that provides cloth to the factories told MailOnline: ‘The whole industry is very busy at the moment because there are so many orders to complete. 

‘Most of them need to do be done within a week and since the coronavirus pandemic, online clothes shopping has increased, which is good for us.

‘Factories around here simply cannot afford to close. Many did during the first lockdown but reopened early because there was such a huge demand for clothing.

‘There are only two companies keeping the Leicester garment industry going and that is Boohoo and PLT. Without them there would not be any business. ‘  

Boohoo, whose CEO Mahmud Kamani is reported to be worth £1 billion, has already come under fire for allegedly risking the spread of coronavirus in Leicester after claims that factories supplying the online retailer told staff to come into work during lockdown despite being sick.

North West Leicestershire MP Andrew Bridgen raised the alarm about clothes factories in Leicester in January after being approached by whistleblowers about the illegal practices allegedly employed in some of the city’s clothing factories.  

Last week Priti Patel, the home secretary, asked the National Crime Agency (NCA) to investigate modern slavery in Leicester’s clothing factories.

Responding to the investigation, Home Secretary Priti Patel said: ‘These allegations are truly appalling and I commend the Sunday Times and local MP Andrew Bridgen for their roles in uncovering such abhorrent practices.

‘I will not tolerate sick criminals forcing innocent people into slave labour and a life of exploitation. 

Responding to the investigation, Home Secretary Priti Patel said: 'These allegations are truly appalling and I commend the Sunday Times and local MP Andrew Bridgen for their roles in uncovering such abhorrent practices'

Responding to the investigation, Home Secretary Priti Patel said: ‘These allegations are truly appalling and I commend the Sunday Times and local MP Andrew Bridgen for their roles in uncovering such abhorrent practices’

‘Let this be a warning to those who are exploiting people in sweatshops like these for their own commercial gain.

‘This is just the start. What you are doing is illegal, it will not be tolerated and we are coming after you.’

A statement from Nasty Gal seen by the Times said the company would investigate the claims, but insisted that Jaswal Fashions was not a ‘direct supplier’.

‘Nasty Gal does not allow any of its suppliers to pay less than the minimum wage and has a zero-tolerance approach to incidences of modern slavery,’ it said.

‘We have terminated relationships with suppliers where evidence of non-compliance with our strict code of conduct is found.’

MailOnline have contacted Boohoo.com for comment. 

Boohoo previously told the BBC that it was maintaining closer ties with its suppliers and would be investigating the allegations.

In a statement to the BBC the UK manufacturer said: ‘The Boohoo group will not tolerate any incidence of non-compliance especially in relation to the treatment of workers within our supply chain.

‘We have terminated relationships with suppliers where evidence of this is found.’

The shocking claims come in the same week the Leicester mayor flouted the lockdown to go and see his partner Lesley Summerland, 64, and carry out maintenance on her home throughout April and May.

Neighbours filmed the Labour Mayor at Ms Summerland’s home on several occasions as he arrived ‘carrying overnight bags and shirts.’   

Leicester’s fast fashion to die for: Cramped ragtrade workshops in the pariah city where staff on as little as £4 an hour reveal they dare not go home if they have Covid symptoms… is this the REAL reason it’s been quarantined?

ByPaul Bracchi for the Daily Mail 

How do you turn a profit on a £5 party dress, a £6 miniskirt or £3 bikini top if you’re a fashion house or online retailer? 

You have them made in Leicester – in the vicinity of St Saviours Road to be precise – where there are around 1,000 clothes factories.

Some are concealed in terraced homes and garages but other companies proudly display the name of their business in bright letters outside.

Among the 35 staff at one particular factory – which supplies the online brand Boohoo – is Imtiaz, who is employed as a packer. 

Factories near St Saviours Road in Leicester pay staff as little as £4 an hour in order to turn a profit on cheap clothing supplied to online retailers including Boohoo. Pictured: A £5 party dress sold by Boohoo, advertised as ‘perfect for transitioning from day to play’

Factories near St Saviours Road in Leicester pay staff as little as £4 an hour in order to turn a profit on cheap clothing supplied to online retailers including Boohoo. Pictured: A £5 party dress sold by Boohoo, advertised as ‘perfect for transitioning from day to play’

Working from 8am to 9pm, Imtiaz, 39, tells me he is paid only £4 an hour despite the minimum wage in Britain for those aged 25 and over being £8.72.

Hence the reason, perhaps, why this corner of the Midlands – locked down again this week due to a spike in cases – has become a manufacturing hub for certain cut-price popular brands.

Is there a place outside the sweatshops of the Far East where garments can be produced more cheaply? Doubtful.

Imtiaz arrived from Gujarat, India, on a tourist visa more than 20 years ago and he has not left the UK since.

He said: ‘Some workers have been feeling unwell but are too scared not to come to work as they might lose their jobs. I had some of the symptoms but didn’t want to tell the boss because they don’t like it if we don’t show up for work.’

Imtiaz is not alone. A female machinist at another factory, Faiza Fashion, spoke to the Mail this week and gave a chilling picture of life at these establishments.

The mother of three in her 50s, who we have decided not to name, said: ‘Three weeks ago, I wasn’t feeling well and there were others who also had flu-like symptoms. But what can you do? We are not rich people and need money to survive.’

She also said they are not provided with face masks or gloves from the factory.

Many will be surprised to learn that Faiza Fashion is still open like most of the clothes factories in Leicester despite the local lockdown. 

The company also supplies Boohoo, Britain’s fastest-growing online fashion retailer, which incidentally during the lockdown advertises its £5 dress as ‘perfect for transitioning from day to play’.

Government guidelines might require non-essential shops to shut but factories are not subject to the same measures as long as they observe social distancing rules and follow protocols, including wearing face masks and the provision of sanitisers.

Our inquiries suggest a number of such establishments are not observing these rules. But, still, they remain open.

Imtiaz, who did not give his surname, epitomises the demographic that according to Andrew Bridgen, MP for North West Leicestershire, has created the ‘perfect storm’ for the virus.

The lockdown boundary map surrounding Leicester which has been enforced after spike in coronavirus cases

The lockdown boundary map surrounding Leicester which has been enforced after spike in coronavirus cases

In an interview with LBC this week, the MP said: ‘We’ve got a much bigger Indian subcontinent population in Leicester, it tends to be multi-generational households. 

‘So you’ve got young people going out, perhaps coming home with no symptoms and grandma and grandad go into hospital.

‘We also have a garment industry in Leicester which should have locked down but has worked for internet retailers throughout.’

Can it be a coincidence that the area at the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak is in the eastern side of the city where most of the garment factories are situated?

Such clothing businesses have become known locally as ‘dark factories’ echoing the ‘dark Satanic mills’ of William Blake’s famous verse describing the exploitative working practices after the Industrial Revolution. 

The conditions are an open secret, or rather, Leicester’s ‘dirty secret’ and were investigated by Channel 4’s Dispatches in 2017.

They found factories making clothes for River Island, New Look, Boohoo and Missguided were paying workers as little as £3 an hour in conditions that fell short of health and safety standards.

And an inquiry by Parliament’s Human Rights Commission three years ago found that between a third and three quarters working in these factories were paid below minimum wage and were working in unsafe environments.

Most are from minority ethnic groups, with around 33.6 per cent born outside the UK. 

Yet not so long ago, Leicester had a regulated textile industry which was a source of pride as well as prosperity – enjoying the boast of being the ‘city that clothes the world’.

By the early 2000s orders ended up going to the other side of the world. The demand for ‘fast fashion’ – low wages and low prices – reversed this trend. Speed was the USP, which meant sourcing close to home.

Faiza Fashion is just one of the businesses which supplies Boohoo and sister brand PrettyLittleThing, said manager Asim Ali. But it does not deal directly with Boohoo or PLT as the work is sub-contracted to them. 

The charity Labour Behind the Label has accused Boohoo of failing to do enough to monitor conditions at factories in Leicester.

The retailer said it would look into the claims but insisted it had ‘followed and adhered to all aspects of [Government] guidance’.

Boohoo was founded in 2006 by Mahmud Kamani and Carol Kane and the company is now worth more than £3billion.

Some retailers have severed ties with suppliers in the area for fear of being accused to making fat profits on the backs of workers like Imtiaz. A few blocks away from Faiza Fashion is Glory Fashion. 

The owner Sajid Patel is in the process of renting the premises out and he believes ‘about 80 or 90 per cent’ of clothing factories are open at the moment and that not all of them were complying with lockdown requirements.

We also tried Cute Girl, which specialises in making clothes for young women. 

The boss Richu Uppal, who lives in a £500,000 detached house on the outskirts of Leicester and drives a £20,000 Mercedes A Class, was not available to be interviewed.

Quiet streets in the centre of Leicester after the introduction of a local lockdown on Monday following a spike in the number of coronavirus cases

Quiet streets in the centre of Leicester after the introduction of a local lockdown on Monday following a spike in the number of coronavirus cases

While the rest of Britain prepares to reopen, the city of Leicester has become a ghost town as authorities imposed a local lockdown after a spike in the number of cornavirus cases

While the rest of Britain prepares to reopen, the city of Leicester has become a ghost town as authorities imposed a local lockdown after a spike in the number of cornavirus cases

But a family spokesman said: ‘We are open because everyone else is open. We closed for four weeks after the first lockdown in March but nobody has said factories need to close now.’ He added: ‘There is no clear guidance.’

It’s not just members of the Asian community that work in these factories. Bulgarians also make up a large proportion of the workforce.

Take Donka, 29, who earns £4 an hour as a packer in a number of garment factories. She too asks us not to reveal her surname as she tells a familiar story.

She said: ‘This is the busiest I’ve ever known it to be. The work is very hard and there is hardly any ventilation inside. Even when people are unwell they still go to work because they need the money.’

Mick Cheema, who owns an ethical clothing brand in the city called Basic Premier, said: ‘There is a history of unethical factories in the city. It has been widely reported but there has been no action from central or local government and it has become the norm.’

His views chime with the findings from a report published this week by Labour Behind the Label.

It said a worker told his employer that he tested positive for Covid-19 but was told to come in anyway and not to tell his colleagues of the test result.

So is it any wonder that the virus is soaring in this once proud city?

It is truly impossible to believe how this – and other abuses highlighted today – could be happening in 21st century Britain.

  • Additional reporting: Vivek Chaudhary and Richard Marsden

Pregnant Vogue Williams is the picture of summer in a floral yellow sundress


She is only weeks away from the due date of her second child.

But Vogue Williams proved she is not ready to step back from her work commitments just yet as she left Heart FM following her breakfast show on Sunday morning.

The presenter, 34, looked radiant as she showed off her chic maternity style as she returned home. 

Stepping out: Vogue Williams was the picture of summer in a yellow sundress as she left the Heart studios on Sunday

The star was the picture of summer in a flowing knee-length yellow dress as she revelled in her pregnant glow.

The beauty looked radiant in the patterned v-neck midi sundress which was adorned with a floral print.

Vogue completed the ensemble with a pair of oversized sunglasses, sandals and statement necklaces.  

Radiant: The beauty looked radiant in the patterned v-neck midi sundress which was adorned with a floral print

Radiant: The beauty looked radiant in the patterned v-neck midi sundress which was adorned with a floral print

Stylish: The radio presenter showed off her chic maternity style as she continues her work duties in the final month of her pregnancy

Expecting: The mother of one is awaiting the birth of her second child

Stylish: The radio presenter showed off her chic maternity style as she continues her work duties in the final month of her pregnancy

Fashionista: Vogue accessorised with a fringed boho bag as she soaked in the sun on Sunday morning

Fashionista: Vogue accessorised with a fringed boho bag as she soaked in the sun on Sunday morning

The radio host is expecting a daughter this month with her husband Spencer Matthews – their second child.

But it won’t stop her presenting her show on Heart Radio on Sunday mornings, she told The Sun.

‘I love working at Heart and I really want to just carry on. If I was in an office working nine to five I would probably want to take some time off, but I’m lucky in the way I work — I leave my house at 4.50AM and I’m back by 9.20AM so Spenny will be on baby duty while I go out to work.

Maternity chic: Vogue completed the ensemble with a pair of oversized sunglasses, sandals and statement necklaces

Fashionista: The dress was adorned with a floral pattern

Maternity chic: Vogue completed the ensemble with a pair of oversized sunglasses, sandals and statement necklaces

No rest for the wicked: The Heart presenter has insisted she will carry on working despite expecting her daughter this month

No rest for the wicked: The Heart presenter has insisted she will carry on working despite expecting her daughter this month

On her way: Vogue stepped into a black cab as she made her journey home after her breakfast show

On her way: Vogue stepped into a black cab as she made her journey home after her breakfast show

‘I can come back home to my babies having only missed one feed. I could bring the baby with me to do the show — they’re really good like that at [work] and if I wanted to they would support me doing it. But I don’t think I’ll need to.

‘Obviously, it depends on the birth I have but I can’t imagine I’ll need to take too much time off.’

Vogue is due at the end of the month, and told her Instagram followers on Wednesday ‘the countdown is on’ as she revealed how soon her due date is.

The Irish presenter looked gorgeous in a white summer maxi dress which sheathed over her baby bump.  

New addition: The radio host, 34, is expecting a daughter with her husband Spencer Matthews - their second child

New addition: The radio host, 34, is expecting a daughter with her husband Spencer Matthews – their second child

Expecting: Vogue told her Instagram followers recently 'the countdown is on' as she revealed it was less than a month until her due date

Expecting: Vogue told her Instagram followers recently ‘the countdown is on’ as she revealed it was less than a month until her due date

Vogue complemented the look with a white fedora hat with a pale blue ribbon trim and brown sandals.   

The television personality captioned the shot: ‘I can’t believe our baby girl will be here in less than a month. I have really enjoyed dressing my bump but WOW it’s getting hot. The countdown is on!’.

Earlier in the day, Vogue, who was clad in a striped bikini, took to Instagram to share a sweet snap of her son Theodore, 21 months, eating a chocolate bunny. 

Doting mum: Earlier in the day, Vogue, who was clad in a striped bikini, took to Instagram to share a sweet snap of her son Theodore, 21 months, eating a chocolate bunny

Doting mum: Earlier in the day, Vogue, who was clad in a striped bikini, took to Instagram to share a sweet snap of her son Theodore, 21 months, eating a chocolate bunny

Heatwave: Vogue wrote: '31 degrees, she's a scorcher!!!' as she sunbathed in her garden

Heatwave: Vogue wrote: ’31 degrees, she’s a scorcher!!!’ as she sunbathed in her garden

Vogue recently admitted she’s struggling to walk and battling non-stop morning sickness in the final stages of pregnancy. 

The blonde shared a candid post about her pregnancy and said the journey ‘was not easy’ as she prepares to welcome her second child – a baby girl. 

She said: ‘I hate complaining about anything to do with pregnancy because I feel so very lucky to be having a baby.

‘I have had a lot of mails from people saying I make it look easy and they feel bad not doing things I’m doing. 

‘Please don’t, I find it really hard some days, my back and pelvis are making it difficult to walk at times and I have full on morning sickness again for the last six weeks. Don’t feel like you have to do anything, being pregnant is not easy.’ 

Honest: Vogue recently admitted she's struggling to walk and battling non-stop morning sickness in the final stages of pregnancy

Honest: Vogue recently admitted she’s struggling to walk and battling non-stop morning sickness in the final stages of pregnancy

Prince Harry is ‘tormented by his fractured family ties’ and Meghan Markle is ‘struggling to cope’


Prince Harry is feeling ‘tormented by his fractured family ties’ while Meghan Markle is ‘struggling to cope’ after the couple’s move to Los Angeles, a source has claimed.

The Duke, 35, and Duchess of Sussex, 38, are currently living in Tyler Perry’s $18 million mansion with their son Archie, one, having officially stepped back from royal duty at the end of March. 

But speaking to the Sunday Mirror, an insider said the royal couple are facing extreme tension with their new life, revealing: ‘[Meghan] has gone very quiet. I think she is likely to be feeling extremely low and probably struggling.’

They added that Prince Harry felt ‘particularly down on William’s birthday on June 21.’

Prince Harry, 35, and Meghan Markle, 38, are ‘struggling to cope’ amid their move to Los Angels, a source has claimed (The couple are pictured in London in March at the Commonwealth Day service, they stepped down as senior royals three weeks later) 

Meghan and Harry spectacularly announced they were stepping down from their role as senior royals in January, and officially finished their duties in March.

The couple have since moved to Meghan’s native LA, after spending some time in Vancouver Island, Canada.   

The source explained that Meghan had become ‘more distant’ and ‘introverted’ in the last few weeks, leaving her family ‘worried’.

‘Prince Harry must be tormented by his fractured family ties’ they added.

The source claimed that the Duke of Sussex felt 'particularly down on Prince William's birthday' last month (The couple are pictured with William and Kate in July 2018 watching the RAF Flypast from the Buckingham Palace balcony)

The source claimed that the Duke of Sussex felt ‘particularly down on Prince William’s birthday’ last month (The couple are pictured with William and Kate in July 2018 watching the RAF Flypast from the Buckingham Palace balcony) 

It comes as the Duchess cut ties with her best friend and former stylist, Jessica Mulroney, after she became embroiled in a race row last month, which the sources claim has been ‘really hard’ on the royal. 

The former Canadian Prime Minister’s daughter-in-law threatened the livelihood of blogger Sasha Exeter after the pair had a private argument over racism.

The controversy led to the mother-of-three being fired from her presenting role with CTV and her job with Good Morning America, while last month husband Ben, announced he would be stepping down from his CTV entertainment show etalk.     

The source added the former Suits star has been ‘hit really hard’ and is no longer speaking to some of her closest friends.

It comes as the Duchess cut ties with her best friend and former stylist, Jessica Mulroney, after she became embroiled in a race row last month, which the sources claimed has been 'really hard' on the royal (Meghan is pictured with Jessica and her husband Ben in 2016)

It comes as the Duchess cut ties with her best friend and former stylist, Jessica Mulroney, after she became embroiled in a race row last month, which the sources claimed has been ‘really hard’ on the royal (Meghan is pictured with Jessica and her husband Ben in 2016)

The source added Meghan has shut down and no longer knows who to trust. 

It comes as news emerged that the couple have officially shut down their Sussex Royal charity. 

Reports suggested yesterday that Prince Harry and Meghan have filed official paperwork with Companies House to dissolve the royal foundation as they shift their focus to the Prince’s eco-tourism scheme ‘Travalyst’.

The company – which has been set up independently – hopes to help the hard-hit tourism industry survive the coronavirus crisis.

The news comes as reports suggest that Meghan and Prince Harry have officially shut down their Sussex Royal charity

The news comes as reports suggest that Meghan and Prince Harry have officially shut down their Sussex Royal charity 

Meghan and Harry moved to disband their charitable organisation follows the Queen’s decision that Harry and Meghan can no longer use the word ‘royal’ in their ‘branding’. 

An insider told Newsweek: ‘Following previous announcements that The Duke and Duchess will not be using the name ‘Sussex Royal’ and will not continue with a foundation in its name, paperwork has been filed with Companies House and the Charity Commission to formally close the charity down.

‘This will appear on the online public record in the coming days. The charity formally enters a period of “solvent liquidation”.’

It is claimed the couple, who quit the royal family earlier this year, want to concentrate on new ventures going forward. 

This includes Travalyst, led by The Duke of Sussex, which brought together some of the biggest operators in the travel industry – including Visa, Booking.com and Skyscanner – to help travellers pick low carbon options more easily and chose destinations that will have more benefit to local communities. 

Prince Harry is ‘tormented by his fractured family ties’ and Meghan Markle is ‘struggling to cope’


Prince Harry is feeling ‘tormented by his fractured family ties’ while Meghan Markle is ‘struggling to cope’ after the couple’s move to Los Angeles, a source has claimed.

The Duke, 35, and Duchess of Sussex, 38, are currently living in Tyler Perry’s $18 million mansion with their son Archie, one, having officially stepped back from royal duty at the end of March. 

But speaking to the Sunday Mirror, an insider said the royal couple are facing extreme tension with their new life, revealing: ‘[Meghan] She has gone very quiet. I think she is likely to be feeling extremely low and probably struggling.’

Meanwhile they added that Prince Harry felt ‘particularly down on William’s birthday on June 21.’

Prince Harry, 35, and Meghan Markle, 38, are ‘struggling to cope’ amid their move to Los Angels, a source has claimed (The couple are pictured in London in March at the Commonwealth Day service, they stepped down as senior royals three weeks later) 

Meghan and Harry spectacularly announced they were stepping down from their role as senior royals in January, and officially finished their duties in March.

The couple have since moved to Meghan’s native LA, after spending some time in Vancouver Island, Canada.   

The source explained that Meghan had become ‘more distant’ and ‘introverted’ in the last few weeks, leaving her family ‘worried’.

Meanwhile they added: ‘Prince Harry must be tormented by his fractured family ties.’

The source claimed that the Duke of Sussex felt 'particularly down on Prince William's birthday' last month (The couple are pictured with William and Kate in July 2018 watching the RAF Flypast from the Buckingham Palace balcony)

The source claimed that the Duke of Sussex felt ‘particularly down on Prince William’s birthday’ last month (The couple are pictured with William and Kate in July 2018 watching the RAF Flypast from the Buckingham Palace balcony) 

It comes as the Duchess cut ties with her best friend and former stylist, Jessica Mulroney, after she became embroiled in a race row last month, which the sources claim has been ‘really hard’ on the royal. 

The former Canadian Prime Minister’s daughter-in-law threatened the livelihood of blogger Sasha Exeter after the pair had a private argument over racism.

The controversy led to the mother-of-three being fired from her presenting role with CTV and her job with Good Morning America, while last month husband Ben, announced he would be stepping down from his CTV entertainment show etalk.     

The source added the former Suits star has been ‘hit really hard’ and is no longer speaking to some of her closest friends.

It comes as the Duchess cut ties with her best friend and former stylist, Jessica Mulroney, after she became embroiled in a race row last month, which the sources claimed has been 'really hard' on the royal (Meghan is pictured with Jessica and her husband Ben in 2016)

It comes as the Duchess cut ties with her best friend and former stylist, Jessica Mulroney, after she became embroiled in a race row last month, which the sources claimed has been ‘really hard’ on the royal (Meghan is pictured with Jessica and her husband Ben in 2016)

They also revealed the mother-of-one is shut down and no longer knows who to trust. 

It comes as news emerged that the couple have officially shut down their Sussex Royal charity. 

Reports suggested yesterday that Prince Harry and Meghan have filed official paperwork with Companies House to dissolve the royal foundation as they shift their focus to the Prince’s eco-tourism scheme ‘Travalyst’.

The company – which has been set up independently – hopes to help the hard-hit tourism industry survive the coronavirus crisis.

The news comes as reports suggest that Meghan and Prince Harry have officially shut down their Sussex Royal charity

The news comes as reports suggest that Meghan and Prince Harry have officially shut down their Sussex Royal charity 

The couple’s move to disband their charitable organisation follows the Queen’s decision that Harry and Meghan can no longer use the word ‘royal’ in their ‘branding’. 

An insider told Newsweek: ‘Following previous announcements that The Duke and Duchess will not be using the name ‘Sussex Royal’ and will not continue with a foundation in its name, paperwork has been filed with Companies House and the Charity Commission to formally close the charity down.

‘This will appear on the online public record in the coming days. The charity formally enters a period of “solvent liquidation”.’

It is claimed the couple, who quit the royal family earlier this year, want to concentrate on new ventures going forward. 

This includes Travalyst, led by The Duke of Sussex, which brought together some of the biggest operators in the travel industry – including Visa, Booking.com and Skyscanner – to help travellers pick low carbon options more easily and chose destinations that will have more benefit to local communities. 

Leicester mayor ‘was warned that clothing factories had no social distancing but failed to act’


The Mayor of Leicester had been warned that some manufacturing companies were  breaching Covid-19 social distancing guidelines three months ago, a former minister has claimed. 

Sir Peter Soulsby, 71, and his Labour councillors received a letter from politicians in the Conservative Party warning them of the ‘shuttered premises’ in which textile workers were operating in amid the coronavirus lockdown.   

Baroness Verma went on to claim that it was an ‘open secret’ that factories were open and were risking the health of their workers and the local population in Leicester. 

The claims come just days after it came to light that clothes workers in Leicester were being paid as little as £3.50 an hour to produce items for some of the UK’s biggest fashion brands including Boohoo and Nasty Gal. 

Following the revelations, Home Secretary Priti Patel called the allegations ‘truly appalling’ and vowed to clamp down on modern slavery. 

Mayor of Leicester Sir Peter Soulsby, 71, and his Labour councillors received a letter from politicians in the Conservative Party warning them of textile factories breaching Covid-19 guidelines

Pictured: Workers at the Faiza Fashion factory in Leicester continue to work despite the newly reimposed lockdown

Pictured: Workers at the Faiza Fashion factory in Leicester continue to work despite the newly reimposed lockdown

Ruched Waist Floral Tea Dress available on Boohoo

Button Through Polka Dot Skater Dress on sale at Boohoo

Earlier this week it came to light that clothes workers in Leicester were being paid as little as £3.50 an hour to produce items for some of the UK’s biggest fashion brands including Boohoo. Pictured: Boohoo models (left and right)

Today Baroness Verma, who served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for International Development from 2015 until 2016, told The Sunday Telegraph: ‘It was an open secret that the factories were open. The concerns were about the conditions in which some of them were operating.’

In an email sent to Labour councillors in Leicester on April 18, Conservative politicians questioned if the party was ensuring that the activities inside factories were being reported to the police and trading standards.

The letter, seen by The Sunday Telegraph, read: ‘We have had a number of people contacting us in fear that factory owners are flouting the law by appearing closed but with employees still working behind shuttered premises. 

‘This is not only dangerous to the workers in the factories but also to the families and wider communities at large.’ 

MailOnline has contacted Leicester City Council for comment.    

Earlier today Matt Hancock said Leicester had seen ‘outbreaks in food factories and in clothing factories’ and there were ‘quite some significant concerns’.

He told Sky’s Sophy Ridge: ‘Well we’ve seen outbreaks in food factories and in clothing factories. There is some quite significant concerns about some of the employment practices in some of the clothing factories in Leicester.

‘They are important problems to deal with, but the number one problem that we’ve got to deal with is getting this virus under control.’

The Health Secretary, who today refused to commit to giving NHS workers a pay rise but insisted they must be ‘rewarded’, went on to say: ‘We also have the authority to be able to shut down a business if it doesn’t follow that guidance. So there is significant enforcement.’  

The claims come an investigation uncovered that clothes workers in Leicester are being paid as little as £3.50 an hour to produce items for some of the UK’s biggest fashion brands.          

Baroness Verma, who served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for International said it was an 'open secret' that factories were open

Baroness Verma, who served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for International said it was an ‘open secret’ that factories were open

At a factory named as Jaswal Fashions, where clothes at bound for online giant Boohoo and Nasty Gal, employees are said to work for less than half the national minimum wage.

The undercover report by The Sunday Times also found that no additional hygiene or social distancing measures were in place, despite the city being in a localised lockdown due to an outbreak of the virus.  

In covert footage, the undercover reporter records himself packing garments clearly labelled as ‘Nasty Gal’.

He is also approached by the factory foreman, who warns: ‘These motherf***ers know how to exploit people like us. They make profits like hell and pay us in peanuts.’

‘Take me for instance, I’ve been working for so many years in this industry, I’ve been here for five years but never could I take a proper pay packet. I’m still only on just over £5 an hour.’

Mahmud Kamani, the CEO of Boohoo and its subsidiaries Nasty Gal and PrettyLittleThing, is reported to be worth £1 billion and is set to be awarded a £50m bonus this year.

This week manager of Faiza Fashion in Leicester, Asim Ali, told MailOnline that all garments they manufacture are for Boohoo and Pretty Little Thing (PLT), two of the country’s leading online clothing brands.

He said: ‘All our work is for these two companies and it is the same for all the other garment manufacturers in Leicester. We do not deal directly with them but are given the orders by middle companies who liaise with them.

‘We opened earlier than expected during the first lockdown because there was such an increase in online clothes shopping. Since then, work has not stopped. We are inundated with orders because so many people are buying online.’

Mr Ali added: ‘In the old days we used to get orders for high street shops but all of that has now stopped. The fashion industry has now changed, there are constant demands for new lines which means we have to work even harder to make clothes.’ 

Dot On Our Watch Satin Crop Top. Sale price: £4 (down from £35)

Lace Celebrate Bandeau Midi Dress. Sale price: £8 (down from £35)

Nasty Gal and Boohoo.com are renowned for affordable fashion, with crop top (left, example) going for as little as £4 in a sale, and dresses (right, example) as low as £8

At a factory named as Jaswal Fashions, where clothes at bound for online giant Boohoo and Nasty Gal, employees are said to work for less than half the national minimum wage without health and safety protections against coronavirus

At a factory named as Jaswal Fashions, where clothes at bound for online giant Boohoo and Nasty Gal, employees are said to work for less than half the national minimum wage without health and safety protections against coronavirus

Mohamed Talati, 55, who runs 21 F.C. Ltd, a cloth cutting company that provides cloth to the factories told MailOnline: ‘The whole industry is very busy at the moment because there are so many orders to complete. 

‘Most of them need to do be done within a week and since the coronavirus pandemic, online clothes shopping has increased, which is good for us.

‘Factories around here simply cannot afford to close. Many did during the first lockdown but reopened early because there was such a huge demand for clothing.

‘There are only two companies keeping the Leicester garment industry going and that is Boohoo and PLT. Without them there would not be any business. ‘   

Boohoo has already come under fire for allegedly risking the spread of coronavirus in Leicester after claims that factories supplying the online retailer told staff to come into work during lockdown despite being sick.

North West Leicestershire MP Andrew Bridgen raised the alarm about clothes factories in Leicester in January after being approached by whistleblowers about the illegal practices allegedly employed in some of the city’s clothing factories.  

Last week Priti Patel, the home secretary, asked the National Crime Agency (NCA) to investigate modern slavery in Leicester’s clothing factories.

Responding to the investigation, Home Secretary Priti Patel said: ‘These allegations are truly appalling and I commend the Sunday Times and local MP Andrew Bridgen for their roles in uncovering such abhorrent practices.

Responding to the investigation, Home Secretary Priti Patel said: 'These allegations are truly appalling and I commend the Sunday Times and local MP Andrew Bridgen for their roles in uncovering such abhorrent practices'

Responding to the investigation, Home Secretary Priti Patel said: ‘These allegations are truly appalling and I commend the Sunday Times and local MP Andrew Bridgen for their roles in uncovering such abhorrent practices’

‘I will not tolerate sick criminals forcing innocent people into slave labour and a life of exploitation.

‘Let this be a warning to those who are exploiting people in sweatshops like these for their own commercial gain.

‘This is just the start. What you are doing is illegal, it will not be tolerated and we are coming after you.’

A statement from Nasty Gal seen by the Times said the company would investigate the claims, but insisted that Jaswal Fashions was not a ‘direct supplier’.

‘Nasty Gal does not allow any of its suppliers to pay less than the minimum wage and has a zero-tolerance approach to incidences of modern slavery,’ it said.

‘We have terminated relationships with suppliers where evidence of non-compliance with our strict code of conduct is found.’

MailOnline have contacted Boohoo.com for comment. 

The shocking claims come in the same week the Leicester mayor flouted the lockdown to go and see his partner Lesley Summerland, 64, and carry out maintenance on her home throughout April and May.

Neighbours filmed the Labour Mayor at Ms Summerland’s home on several occasions as he arrived ‘carrying overnight bags and shirts.’   

Leicester’s fast fashion to die for: Cramped ragtrade workshops in the pariah city where staff on as little as £4 an hour reveal they dare not go home if they have Covid symptoms… is this the REAL reason it’s been quarantined?

ByPaul Bracchi for the Daily Mail 

How do you turn a profit on a £5 party dress, a £6 miniskirt or £3 bikini top if you’re a fashion house or online retailer? 

You have them made in Leicester – in the vicinity of St Saviours Road to be precise – where there are around 1,000 clothes factories.

Some are concealed in terraced homes and garages but other companies proudly display the name of their business in bright letters outside.

Among the 35 staff at one particular factory – which supplies the online brand Boohoo – is Imtiaz, who is employed as a packer. 

Factories near St Saviours Road in Leicester pay staff as little as £4 an hour in order to turn a profit on cheap clothing supplied to online retailers including Boohoo. Pictured: A £5 party dress sold by Boohoo, advertised as ‘perfect for transitioning from day to play’

Factories near St Saviours Road in Leicester pay staff as little as £4 an hour in order to turn a profit on cheap clothing supplied to online retailers including Boohoo. Pictured: A £5 party dress sold by Boohoo, advertised as ‘perfect for transitioning from day to play’

Working from 8am to 9pm, Imtiaz, 39, tells me he is paid only £4 an hour despite the minimum wage in Britain for those aged 25 and over being £8.72.

Hence the reason, perhaps, why this corner of the Midlands – locked down again this week due to a spike in cases – has become a manufacturing hub for certain cut-price popular brands.

Is there a place outside the sweatshops of the Far East where garments can be produced more cheaply? Doubtful.

Imtiaz arrived from Gujarat, India, on a tourist visa more than 20 years ago and he has not left the UK since.

He said: ‘Some workers have been feeling unwell but are too scared not to come to work as they might lose their jobs. I had some of the symptoms but didn’t want to tell the boss because they don’t like it if we don’t show up for work.’

Imtiaz is not alone. A female machinist at another factory, Faiza Fashion, spoke to the Mail this week and gave a chilling picture of life at these establishments.

The mother of three in her 50s, who we have decided not to name, said: ‘Three weeks ago, I wasn’t feeling well and there were others who also had flu-like symptoms. But what can you do? We are not rich people and need money to survive.’

She also said they are not provided with face masks or gloves from the factory.

Many will be surprised to learn that Faiza Fashion is still open like most of the clothes factories in Leicester despite the local lockdown. 

The company also supplies Boohoo, Britain’s fastest-growing online fashion retailer, which incidentally during the lockdown advertises its £5 dress as ‘perfect for transitioning from day to play’.

A female machinist at another factory, Faiza Fashion, spoke to the Mail this week and gave a chilling picture of life at these establishments

A female machinist at another factory, Faiza Fashion, spoke to the Mail this week and gave a chilling picture of life at these establishments

Government guidelines might require non-essential shops to shut but factories are not subject to the same measures as long as they observe social distancing rules and follow protocols, including wearing face masks and the provision of sanitisers.

Our inquiries suggest a number of such establishments are not observing these rules. But, still, they remain open.

Imtiaz, who did not give his surname, epitomises the demographic that according to Andrew Bridgen, MP for North West Leicestershire, has created the ‘perfect storm’ for the virus.

In an interview with LBC this week, the MP said: ‘We’ve got a much bigger Indian subcontinent population in Leicester, it tends to be multi-generational households. 

‘So you’ve got young people going out, perhaps coming home with no symptoms and grandma and grandad go into hospital.

‘We also have a garment industry in Leicester which should have locked down but has worked for internet retailers throughout.’

The lockdown boundary map surrounding Leicester which has been enforced after spike in coronavirus cases

The lockdown boundary map surrounding Leicester which has been enforced after spike in coronavirus cases

Can it be a coincidence that the area at the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak is in the eastern side of the city where most of the garment factories are situated?

Such clothing businesses have become known locally as ‘dark factories’ echoing the ‘dark Satanic mills’ of William Blake’s famous verse describing the exploitative working practices after the Industrial Revolution. 

The conditions are an open secret, or rather, Leicester’s ‘dirty secret’ and were investigated by Channel 4’s Dispatches in 2017.

They found factories making clothes for River Island, New Look, Boohoo and Missguided were paying workers as little as £3 an hour in conditions that fell short of health and safety standards.

And an inquiry by Parliament’s Human Rights Commission three years ago found that between a third and three quarters working in these factories were paid below minimum wage and were working in unsafe environments.

Asim Ali, 34, manager of Faiza Fashion which is located in lockdown area said: 'We haven't had any guidance from the Government or local authority on if we should close or remain open. But to be honest, we lost so much money during the first lockdown that we cannot afford to close'

Asim Ali, 34, manager of Faiza Fashion which is located in lockdown area said: ‘We haven’t had any guidance from the Government or local authority on if we should close or remain open. But to be honest, we lost so much money during the first lockdown that we cannot afford to close’

Most are from minority ethnic groups, with around 33.6 per cent born outside the UK. 

Yet not so long ago, Leicester had a regulated textile industry which was a source of pride as well as prosperity – enjoying the boast of being the ‘city that clothes the world’.

By the early 2000s orders ended up going to the other side of the world. The demand for ‘fast fashion’ – low wages and low prices – reversed this trend. Speed was the USP, which meant sourcing close to home.

Faiza Fashion is just one of the businesses which supplies Boohoo and sister brand PrettyLittleThing, said manager Asim Ali. But it does not deal directly with Boohoo or PLT as the work is sub-contracted to them. 

The charity Labour Behind the Label has accused Boohoo of failing to do enough to monitor conditions at factories in Leicester.

The retailer said it would look into the claims but insisted it had ‘followed and adhered to all aspects of [Government] guidance’.

Boohoo was founded in 2006 by Mahmud Kamani and Carol Kane and the company is now worth more than £3billion.

Some retailers have severed ties with suppliers in the area for fear of being accused to making fat profits on the backs of workers like Imtiaz. A few blocks away from Faiza Fashion is Glory Fashion. 

The owner Sajid Patel is in the process of renting the premises out and he believes ‘about 80 or 90 per cent’ of clothing factories are open at the moment and that not all of them were complying with lockdown requirements.

We also tried Cute Girl, which specialises in making clothes for young women. 

The boss Richu Uppal, who lives in a £500,000 detached house on the outskirts of Leicester and drives a £20,000 Mercedes A Class, was not available to be interviewed.

Quiet streets in the centre of Leicester after the introduction of a local lockdown on Monday following a spike in the number of coronavirus cases

Quiet streets in the centre of Leicester after the introduction of a local lockdown on Monday following a spike in the number of coronavirus cases

While the rest of Britain prepares to reopen, the city of Leicester has become a ghost town as authorities imposed a local lockdown after a spike in the number of cornavirus cases

While the rest of Britain prepares to reopen, the city of Leicester has become a ghost town as authorities imposed a local lockdown after a spike in the number of cornavirus cases

But a family spokesman said: ‘We are open because everyone else is open. We closed for four weeks after the first lockdown in March but nobody has said factories need to close now.’ He added: ‘There is no clear guidance.’

It’s not just members of the Asian community that work in these factories. Bulgarians also make up a large proportion of the workforce.

Take Donka, 29, who earns £4 an hour as a packer in a number of garment factories. She too asks us not to reveal her surname as she tells a familiar story.

She said: ‘This is the busiest I’ve ever known it to be. The work is very hard and there is hardly any ventilation inside. Even when people are unwell they still go to work because they need the money.’

Mick Cheema, who owns an ethical clothing brand in the city called Basic Premier, said: ‘There is a history of unethical factories in the city. It has been widely reported but there has been no action from central or local government and it has become the norm.’

His views chime with the findings from a report published this week by Labour Behind the Label.

It said a worker told his employer that he tested positive for Covid-19 but was told to come in anyway and not to tell his colleagues of the test result.

So is it any wonder that the virus is soaring in this once proud city?

It is truly impossible to believe how this – and other abuses highlighted today – could be happening in 21st century Britain.

  • Additional reporting: Vivek Chaudhary and Richard Marsden

The Voice’s Guy Sebastian calls out Kelly Rowland after cheating scandal


Kelly Rowland accused Guy Sebastian of cheating during an episode of The Voice last month, with things becoming so heated a producer was forced to step in. 

And on Sunday, the pair’s bitter feud continued with Guy calling out the Destiny’s Child star, who was back home in Los Angeles amid the coronavirus lockdown.

Kelly, 39, who appeared on screen, said it was okay for Boy George to choose the exact same song for his singers during the playoffs, causing Guy, 38, to weigh in.

Scroll down for video 

‘She says that now!’ The Voice’s Guy Sebastian (pictured), 38, called out Kelly Rowland for encouraging Boy George to ‘break the rules’ on Sunday, after THAT cheating scandal 

On Sunday’s episode, Boy George chose Whitney Houston’s iconic hit I Have Nothing for both Masha Mnjoyan and Elyse Sene-Lefao to sing in the playoffs. 

After the performance, Guy wasted no time in saying: ‘That’s the same song.’ 

‘George has had a lot of time, there’s billions of songs in the world but he could only come up with one. And I guess it was sort of like a battle, but George, it wasn’t really a playoff,’ he continued.

Coach: On Sunday's episode, Boy George (pictured) chose Whitney Houston's iconic hit I Have Nothing for both Masha Mnjoyan and Elyse Sene-Lefao to sing in the playoffs

Coach: On Sunday’s episode, Boy George (pictured) chose Whitney Houston’s iconic hit I Have Nothing for both Masha Mnjoyan and Elyse Sene-Lefao to sing in the playoffs 

Weighing in: After the performance, Guy wasted no time in saying: 'That's the same song.' Boy George and Kelly Rowland appeared on screen due to the coronavirus lockdown

Weighing in: After the performance, Guy wasted no time in saying: ‘That’s the same song.’ Boy George and Kelly Rowland appeared on screen due to the coronavirus lockdown 

Kelly, who appeared on screen from Los Angeles, encouraged Boy George to break the rules: ‘The rules must be broken then. Break it.’

Guy responded in jest: ‘Oh you say that now! She says that now!’

Kelly playfully attempted to quieten Guy, saying: ‘I’m not there. Shh Guy!’   

Opinion: Kelly (pictured), 39, encouraged Boy George to break the rules: 'The rules must be broken then. Break it'

Opinion: Kelly (pictured), 39, encouraged Boy George to break the rules: ‘The rules must be broken then. Break it’ 

Having a laugh: Guy responded in jest, alluding to THAT cheating scandal: 'Oh you say that now! She says that now!'

Having a laugh: Guy responded in jest, alluding to THAT cheating scandal: ‘Oh you say that now! She says that now!’

It comes after Guy found himself at the centre of a cheating scandal on an episode last month.

The mentor turned his chair for contestant Wolf Winters, who performed a dark rendition of Simon & Garfunkel’s The Sound of Silence.

This decision led to a showdown between Guy and Kelly, who still had a slot available on her team, and things became so heated a producer had to step in.

Drama! Guy was at the centre of a cheating scandal on an episode of The Voice last month. Pictured with Kelly and Boy George (right)

Drama! Guy was at the centre of a cheating scandal on an episode of The Voice last month. Pictured with Kelly and Boy George (right)

‘Wait, you can’t do that!’ Kelly cried out. Boy George then said: ‘You’re full. You can’t have this man anyway.’

Guy then tried to encourage Kelly to recruit Wolf, to which she replied: ‘I’m looking for something specific. How’re you going to tell me what to look for my team?’

She then complained: ‘You’re cheating. You are cheating!’ At that moment, a producer arrived on set to break up the fracas.

Talent: Guy turned his chair for contestant Wolf Winters (pictured), who performed a dark rendition of Simon & Garfunkel's The Sound of Silence

Talent: Guy turned his chair for contestant Wolf Winters (pictured), who performed a dark rendition of Simon & Garfunkel’s The Sound of Silence

No can do! After being told his team was full, Guy then encouraged Kelly to recruit Wolf, to which she replied: 'How're you going to tell me what to look for my team?'

No can do! After being told his team was full, Guy then encouraged Kelly to recruit Wolf, to which she replied: ‘How’re you going to tell me what to look for my team?’ 

Fracas: 'You are cheating!' yelled Kelly, as a producer stepped in to handle the situation

Fracas: ‘You are cheating!’ yelled Kelly, as a producer stepped in to handle the situation

‘The problem we have is that unless we get Kelly to take him, we potentially have to tell him that he’s not through anymore,’ the producer explained.

It was eventually decided that Guy could have Wolf despite already having a full team, but would lose two of his singers in the battle rounds.

Fans at home found the whole thing distasteful, with one tweeting: ‘How did Guy’s chair turn? I thought they can’t turn it your team is full.’

Not impressed: Fans at home found the whole thing distasteful, with one tweeting: 'How did Guy's chair turn? I thought they can't turn it your team is full'

Not impressed: Fans at home found the whole thing distasteful, with one tweeting: ‘How did Guy’s chair turn? I thought they can’t turn it your team is full’ 

Another wrote: ‘Honestly, Guy knew the rules just because Kelly didn’t turn. Now you’re putting her in that situation… why is it on Kelly to take him just because Guy presses his button. It ain’t fair.’ 

A third viewer added:  ‘Okay, so that was unfair on everyone involved, Guy. Not very good sportsmanship.’ 

Others were sympathetic, however, with one person tweeting: ‘Kelly broke the rules last year, so who is she talking to Guy about how he is not following the rules when she changed the rules herself last year?’ 

The Voice continues Monday at 7.30pm on Channel Nine. 

New rules: It was eventually decided that Guy could have Wolf, despite already having a full team, but would lose two of his singers in the battle rounds

New rules: It was eventually decided that Guy could have Wolf, despite already having a full team, but would lose two of his singers in the battle rounds

TALK OF THE TOWN: Raise a glass to the Royal ravers who went to the pub after weeks of lockdown!


They’ve been dubbed the king and queen of Royal ravers, so it was no surprise to see Lady Amelia Windsor and Cassius Taylor among the first to take advantage of pubs serving al fresco booze after weeks of lockdown. 

The blue-blooded pair, who are 39th and 45th in line to the throne, were spotted enjoying a tipple in plastic glasses outside a pub in trendy Notting Hill. 

Lady Amelia, 24, and Cassius, 23, who are both grandchildren of the Duke of Kent, have become firm party pals and seemed happy and relaxed as they chatted away together. 

They’ve been dubbed the king and queen of Royal ravers, so it was no surprise to see Lady Amelia Windsor and Cassius Taylor taking advantage of pubs serving al fresco booze 

The blue-blooded pair, who are 39th and 45th in line to the throne, were spotted enjoying a tipple in plastic glasses outside a pub in trendy Notting Hill

The blue-blooded pair, who are 39th and 45th in line to the throne, were spotted enjoying a tipple in plastic glasses outside a pub in trendy Notting Hill

The pair returned to the Capital after the glamorous royal abandoned her London base amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Lady Amelia Windsor had been showcasing her idyllic countryside life online – despite government advice to stay at home – sharing pictures of her walks through fields and lunches in a lush, large garden.

She is regularly snapped out and about in her local neighbourhood of Notting Hill, where she enjoys a vast-array of hobbies including pottery and ballet classes.

She also has a blossoming following of 81,000 followers on Instagram, where she regularly posts snaps from glamorous fashion events, as well as her adventures exploring trendy parts of London.

The pair returned to the Capital after the glamorous royal abandoned her London base amid the coronavirus pandemic

The pair returned to the Capital after the glamorous royal abandoned her London base amid the coronavirus pandemic

Lady Amelia Windsor, 24, appears to have abandoned her London home amid the coronavirus lockdown despite government advice

Lady Amelia Windsor, 24, appears to have abandoned her London home amid the coronavirus lockdown despite government advice 

The royal, who is 39th in line to the throne, has been sharing a selection of photographs showcasing an idyllic countryside life on her Instagram

The royal, who is 39th in line to the throne, has been sharing a selection of photographs showcasing an idyllic countryside life on her Instagram 

However since her last post of London on 24 March, the royal has been sharing photographs of a more idllyic life, including walking through blooming fields of flowers and cooking at an Arga.

In another snap shared to her Instagram account, she can be seen enjoying a sweet potato for lunch in a large garden, with a sun lounger strewn in the background.

Meanwhile in a photograph posted over the Easter weekend, she could be seen carrying a rabbit ornament in a large garden setting.

In another photograph, she can be seen posing in front of a glass panelled door, holding a sign reading: ‘Thank you NHS.’ 

In one snap shared to her Instagram account, the royal can be seen posing in a field full of bloom flowers

In one snap shared to her Instagram account, the royal can be seen posing in a field full of bloom flowers 

Meanwhile other photographs shared on her account also appeared to show a more idllyic countryside existence than her usual base of North London

Meanwhile other photographs shared on her account also appeared to show a more idllyic countryside existence than her usual base of North London

Lady Amelia, who graduated with a degree in Italian and French from the University of Edinburgh earlier this year, is the granddaughter of the Duke of Kent. 

Since leaving university Amelia, who was once dubbed ‘the most beautiful royal’ by Tatler and is now signed to Kate Moss’s former agency Storm, has juggled modelling work, fashion collaborations and writing.  

She has previously spoken about trying to live as sustainably as possible and often borrows clothes from brands for events.  

Among the snaps which appear to have been taken at a different location than her usual London home is one of Amelia cooking over an Arga stove

Among the snaps which appear to have been taken at a different location than her usual London home is one of Amelia cooking over an Arga stove 

Londoners have faced strong backlash as they flee from the city to self-isolate in the countryside, with many criticising them of behaving ‘selfishly’ amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

Aristocrats, heiresses and society models are avoiding busy cities like London by staying at their gorgeous countryside homes – including the likes of Hum Fleming, Princess Eugenie’s friend and relative of James Bond creator Ian Fleming. 

It led to a number of signs going up around the countryside telling people from the city to ‘stay away’ to prevent the spread of the disease. 

In another photograph, Lady Amelia appeared to be enjoying a sweet potato lunch while relaxing in a large and lush garden setting

In another photograph, Lady Amelia appeared to be enjoying a sweet potato lunch while relaxing in a large and lush garden setting 

Lady Amelia shared another snap earlier this week as she enjoyed some 'rainbow chard' from a kitchen unlike her usual London home

Lady Amelia shared another snap earlier this week as she enjoyed some ‘rainbow chard’ from a kitchen unlike her usual London home

Strictly Come Dancing is known for glamour, sequins and… packed lunches. 

Former pro dancer AJ Pritchard, who quit the BBC show in March, has complained that the food laid on during filming was so bad that he often brought in his own. 

‘The food is sometimes suspicious. I would prefer to cook myself,’ reveals the dancer. 

‘The first year I was on Strictly, we used to have chicken that was rock solid.’ 

Sounds enough to give anyone the foxtrots!

Edward Enninful says ‘moments of recognition’ at PPA awards are ‘bittersweet’


Edward Enninful has revealed how his ‘moments of recognition’ at the PPA awards have been ‘bittersweet’ after he became the first black person to win Editor of The Year in 40 years.

The Editor-in-chief of British Vogue, 48, won both Editor of The Year and Diversity Initiative of the Year at the Professional Publishers Association (PPA) Awards for the ‘Forces for Change’ edition which was guest-edited by Meghan Markle, 38.

Edward and the Duchess collaborated on September’s special ‘Forces for Change’ edition, which featured a grid of 15 ‘incredible’ women on the cover with articles commissioned by the royal inside.

The fashion guru, who started his career at iD magazine at the age of 18, explained on Instagram that while he’s happy to have received these awards, there is still ‘a lot of work to be done’ to create diversity in the fashion industry. 

British Vogue’s Editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful, 48, from London, has revealed how winning the Editor of the Year award at the PPAs was ‘bittersweet’

Edward and the Duchess of Sussex, 38, collaborated on September's special 'Forces for Change' edition, which featured a grid of 15 women on the cover (pictured) with articles commissioned by the royal inside

Edward and the Duchess of Sussex, 38, collaborated on September’s special ‘Forces for Change’ edition, which featured a grid of 15 women on the cover (pictured) with articles commissioned by the royal inside

He penned: ‘Having worked in the magazine industry since I was 18 at iD all those years ago, I cannot tell you how much it meant to be names this year’s PPA Consumer Editor of the Year, and for last September’s Issue Forces for Change that I co-edited with Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, to be awarded diversity initiative of the year. 

‘2020 has been a challenging time for everyone in our industry and I feel truly honoured and thankful to my whole team who made it possible.’

He continued: ‘But, like so many of my black colleagues working in media and fashion, there is often something bittersweet about these moments of recognition.

‘It would be disingenuous of me to point out that I am the first black person to ever win this award – the first black person in 40 years.’

The fashion guru, who started his career at iD magazine at the age of 18, explained on Instagram that while he was happy to have received these awards, there is still 'a lot of work to be done'

The fashion guru, who started his career at iD magazine at the age of 18, explained on Instagram that while he was happy to have received these awards, there is still ‘a lot of work to be done’

Edward urged fashion employers to change the way their workplaces are structured

Edward penned a heartfelt Instagram post

In a lengthy Instagram post, the editor went on to urge media and fashion employers to change the way their workplaces are structured to allow for more diversity

He added: ‘It says an awful lot about where publishing is still at. ‘ 

The editor went on to urge media and fashion employers to change the way their workplaces are structured to allow for more diversity. 

He wrote: ‘The media is good at pivoting on the surface. Diversity is making its way into our commissioning and onto our pages.’

‘But what about inside our work places? Who are we hiring? Who are we nurturing? Who are we promoting? How do our office environments treat people? Who is allowed to get to the top?

The Duchess, pictured in London last year, has said she wanted the issue of Vogue that she guest edited to 'reflect the world as we see it - beautiful and strong in its diversity'

The Duchess, pictured in London last year, has said she wanted the issue of Vogue that she guest edited to ‘reflect the world as we see it – beautiful and strong in its diversity’

‘No one wants to wait another 40 years for the next black person to be able to win editor of the year. There is a lot of work to be done.’ 

The magazine’s September edition – which featured women including model Adwoa Aboah, New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern, actresses Gemma Chan, Laverne Cox, Jane Fonda, Salma Hayek Pinault and Yara Shahidi, activist Greta Thunberg and author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie on the cover – was the fastest selling issue in the magazine’s 104-year history, selling out in less then 10 days.

Meghan Markle, who is currently living in Tyler Perry’s $18 million mansion in LA, responded to the magazine’s award last week.

She revealed she had wanted the issue of Vogue that she guest edited to ‘reflect the world as we see it – beautiful and strong in its diversity’. 

Meghan's role as guest editor was one of the most radical in Vogue's 100 year history, with the September issue the most important edition of the year (pictured, the Duchess at her last official royal engagement in March)

Meghan’s role as guest editor was one of the most radical in Vogue’s 100 year history, with the September issue the most important edition of the year (pictured, the Duchess at her last official royal engagement in March) 

She said: ‘I’m honoured to have this very special issue recognised.

‘Creating Forces for Change with Edward was an opportunity to have the September issue of Vogue reflect the world as we see it – beautiful and strong in its diversity.

‘Huge congratulations to Edward who helped bring this to light, and for his additional honour of being awarded best editor by PPA.’ 



Edward Enninful says ‘moments of recognition’ at PPA awards are ‘bittersweet’


Edward Enninful has revealed how his ‘moments of recognition’ at the PPA awards have been ‘bittersweet’ after he became the first black person to win Editor of The Year in 40 years.

The Editor-in-chief of British Vogue, 48, won both Editor of The Year and Diversity Initiative of the Year at the Professional Publishers Association (PPA) Awards for the ‘Forces for Change’ edition which was guest-edited by Meghan Markle, 38.

Edward and the Duchess collaborated on September’s special ‘Forces for Change’ edition, which featured a grid of 15 ‘incredible’ women on the cover with articles commissioned by the royal inside.

The fashion guru, who started his career at iD magazine at the age of 18, explained on Instagram that while he’s happy to have received these awards, there is still ‘a lot of work to be done’ to create diversity in the fashion industry. 

British Vogue’s Editor-in-Chief Edward Enninful, 48, from London, has revealed how winning the Editor of the Year award at the PPAs was ‘bittersweet’

Edward and the Duchess of Sussex, 38, collaborated on September's special 'Forces for Change' edition, which featured a grid of 15 women on the cover (pictured) with articles commissioned by the royal inside

Edward and the Duchess of Sussex, 38, collaborated on September’s special ‘Forces for Change’ edition, which featured a grid of 15 women on the cover (pictured) with articles commissioned by the royal inside

He penned: ‘Having worked in the magazine industry since I was 18 at iD all those years ago, I cannot tell you how much it meant to be names this year’s PPA Consumer Editor of the Year, and for last September’s Issue Forces for Change that I co-edited with Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, to be awarded diversity initiative of the year. 

‘2020 has been a challenging time for everyone in our industry and I feel truly honoured and thankful to my whole team who made it possible.’

He continued: ‘But, like so many of my black colleagues working in media and fashion, there is often something bittersweet about these moments of recognition.

‘It would be disingenuous of me to point out that I am the first black person to ever win this award – the first black person in 40 years.’

The fashion guru, who started his career at iD magazine at the age of 18, explained on Instagram that while he was happy to have received these awards, there is still 'a lot of work to be done'

The fashion guru, who started his career at iD magazine at the age of 18, explained on Instagram that while he was happy to have received these awards, there is still ‘a lot of work to be done’

Edward urged fashion employers to change the way their workplaces are structured

Edward penned a heartfelt Instagram post

In a lengthy Instagram post, the editor went on to urge media and fashion employers to change the way their workplaces are structured to allow for more diversity

He added: ‘It says an awful lot about where publishing is still at. ‘ 

The editor went on to urge media and fashion employers to change the way their workplaces are structured to allow for more diversity. 

He wrote: ‘The media is good at pivoting on the surface. Diversity is making its way into our commissioning and onto our pages.’

‘But what about inside our work places? Who are we hiring? Who are we nurturing? Who are we promoting? How do our office environments treat people? Who is allowed to get to the top?

The Duchess, pictured in London last year, has said she wanted the issue of Vogue that she guest edited to 'reflect the world as we see it - beautiful and strong in its diversity'

The Duchess, pictured in London last year, has said she wanted the issue of Vogue that she guest edited to ‘reflect the world as we see it – beautiful and strong in its diversity’

‘No one wants to wait another 40 years for the next black person to be able to win editor of the year. There is a lot of work to be done.’ 

The magazine’s September edition – which featured women including model Adwoa Aboah, New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern, actresses Gemma Chan, Laverne Cox, Jane Fonda, Salma Hayek Pinault and Yara Shahidi, activist Greta Thunberg and author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie on the cover – was the fastest selling issue in the magazine’s 104-year history, selling out in less then 10 days.

Meghan Markle, who is currently living in Tyler Perry’s $18 million mansion in LA, responded to the magazine’s award last week.

She revealed she had wanted the issue of Vogue that she guest edited to ‘reflect the world as we see it – beautiful and strong in its diversity’. 

Meghan's role as guest editor was one of the most radical in Vogue's 100 year history, with the September issue the most important edition of the year (pictured, the Duchess at her last official royal engagement in March)

Meghan’s role as guest editor was one of the most radical in Vogue’s 100 year history, with the September issue the most important edition of the year (pictured, the Duchess at her last official royal engagement in March) 

She said: ‘I’m honoured to have this very special issue recognised.

‘Creating Forces for Change with Edward was an opportunity to have the September issue of Vogue reflect the world as we see it – beautiful and strong in its diversity.

‘Huge congratulations to Edward who helped bring this to light, and for his additional honour of being awarded best editor by PPA.’ 



Jade Thirlwall puts on an eye-popping display as she goes braless in semi-sheer diamante catsuit


Jade Thirlwall puts on an eye-popping display as she goes braless in semi-sheer diamante catsuit for sizzling social media snap

She is the Little Mix songstress who is in a new romance with Rizzle Kicks star Jordan Stephens.

And Jade Thirlwall looked incredible as she slipped into a semi-sheer diamante catsuit for a sizzling social media snap on Saturday.

The Black Magic hitmaker, 28, showcased her braless decolletage and underwear as she posed up a storm in the glittering garment.

Wow: Jade Thirlwall looked incredible as she slipped into a semi-sheer diamante catsuit for a sizzling social media snap on Saturday

The outfit displayed her cleavage and slender waist, while also flashing her black underwear.

The star added height to her ensemble with monochrome heeled sandals and accessorised with futuristic shades.

Her caramel tresses were styled in soft waves while a radiant palette of make-up enhanced her pretty features.

The snap comes amid Jade’s new romance with musician Jordan.    

They were said to have their first socially distanced date in May.

They went public with their relationship at the Black Trans Lives Matter march in London at the weekend. 

Jordan, 28, was pictured wrapping his arm around Jade as they watched a demonstration take place.  

Love: The snap comes amid Jade's new romance with musician Jordan Stephens

Love: The snap comes amid Jade’s new romance with musician Jordan Stephens

Tongues have been wagging for weeks that a fledgling relationship was blossoming between the two, as they frequently attended BLM protests together. 

In one photo, Jade was pictured at the start of June holding up a quote Jordan had previously tweeted, saying: ‘Black Lives Matter Jail Racist Cops’.

The songstress was also pictured in a group photo with Jordan from another march.  

Speaking up: Jade was pictured holding up a makeshift sign as she joined thousands of protesters in the march

Speaking up: Jade was pictured holding up a makeshift sign as she joined thousands of protesters in the march

Romance: Tongues have been wagging for weeks that a fledgling relationship was blossoming between the two, as they frequently attended BLM protests together

Romance: Tongues have been wagging for weeks that a fledgling relationship was blossoming between the two, as they frequently attended BLM protests together

At the end of May, Jade and Jordan supposedly went on their first date but made sure to maintain social distancing while going for a stroll together.

A source told The Sun at the time: ‘Jade has been open to dating for a while now but it can be hard to find the time to meet people usually.

‘While stuck at home she started messaging Jordan and they have been getting on but it’s still really early days.

New love: Jade has managed to find romance during Britain's ongoing lockdown with the Rizzle Kicks singer

New love: Jade has managed to find romance during Britain’s ongoing lockdown with the Rizzle Kicks singer 

‘They met up for a walk on Tuesday afternoon to chat and get to know each other which was nice but nothing has happened between them yet.’ 

The source added with lockdown in place, Jade and Jordan are going to have to take things slow since they are not even allowed to kiss.

A representative for Jade declined to comment when contacted by MailOnline while Jordan’s representatives have also been contacted.

The date marks the first hint of a new romance for the Little Mix singer since she split from her ex Jed Elliott after three years together last July.

The Struts frontman is now living in the US with his new girlfriend Ginny Gardner while Jade is self-isolating with her friends in London.

Jordan was previously dating Paolo Nutini’s ex girlfriend Amber Anderson although they are believed to have gone their separate ways earlier this year.

Date: The pair had their first date back in May but made sure to maintain social distancing while going for a stroll together (Jordan pictured in February 2020)

Date: The pair had their first date back in May but made sure to maintain social distancing while going for a stroll together (Jordan pictured in February 2020)