Virgin hints at casino banking with an arcade

BRITAIN is on course for the wettest July ever, keeping miserable workers trapped in the office at lunchtime with nothing to do but eat sandwiches at their desks and worry about how the Olympics might affect travel arrangements.

But Virgin Money has taken radical action in an effort to raise morale, installing a games arcade in its newly-acquired Newcastle headquarters.

Alongside its in-house staff gym, the Gosforth office now boasts a pool table, pinball machine and motor racing arcade games.

“This gives staff a place to relax and unwind during their break time,” said a spokesman for the firm, explaining why the room was opened this week.

The installation has prompted a wave of good feeling among staff – “I love you @VirginMoney” tweeted one gushing member of staff.

But another thought occurred to The Capitalist. Is this really what people mean when they talk about casino banking?

Naturally Lord Mayor David Wootton brought along his own daughter Sophie to the Fathers, Daughters, Mothers & Sons dinner, at the Mansion House, in aid of his new appeal: Fit for the Future.

The black tie function, attended by 224 guests, was supported by Northern Trust, HSBC and London Metal Exchange with the aim to “engage” the next generation with the philanthropic side to the city.

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation has donated $20m (£12.8m) to Motion Picture & Television Funding (MPTF), the non-profit organisation charged with providing support to members of the creative community who fall on hard times. In presenting the gift, Murdoch, whose reputation has been knocked by the phone-hacking scandal affecting his UK newspaper operations, stood alongside actor Michael Douglas, an MPTF committee member, whose family is a long time supporter of the fund.