Page last updated at 07:17 GMT, Wednesday, 3 March 2010

BBC cuts plan divides newspapers


News of the planned cuts at the BBC splits opinion in the morning's papers.

Jonathan Freedland, in the Guardian, says "the BBC is caving in to a Tory media policy dictated by Rupert Murdoch".

But Libby Purves, of the Times, argues the only universally popular cut BBC head Mark Thompson could make would be to "decimate his own salary".

The Daily Mail, too, believes the BBC has swung "a very small axe". It asks how some "baffling jobs" advertised on the BBC website live on.

Taxing times

The Times reports that senior Tories have expressed growing unease over the tax status of party vice-chairman and benefactor Lord Ashcroft.

The paper concludes that "continued Conservative complacency" over his tax status will add to voter fears that the party is "over-privileged and aloof".

For the Daily Mirror, the peer made "false promises" to gain his title.

Columnist Kevin Maguire says that the billionaire embodies "a party with an innate sense of entitlement".

Love, actually

The Daily Telegraph reveals a formula for finding the ideal husband or wife.

After studying more than 1,000 couples, academics from the Geneva School of Business concluded that a bride should be five years younger than her groom.

She should from the same cultural background and be 27% more intelligent than her husband.

In the Daily Express, another study claims married couples are at their happiest two years, 11 months and eight days after walking down the aisle.

Fowl play

The Daily Mirror reports on the "hero chickens" who plucked to death a fox which had entered their coop in Basildon, Essex.

"Chicken Coup" is how the Sun describes the "plucky poultry".

The paper says that three hens and rooster - known as Dude - knocked the fox out with a table before pecking the unfortunate creature to death.

According to the Sun, the redoubtable Dude "refused to accept that he and his egg-layers were certain goners" and ended the day as "cock of the walk".

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