first_imgThe attack killed 117 people and left mental and physical scars on those who, like Mr Worrall and Mr Hutchinson, were lucky enough to survive.Following the death of Mr Hutchinson, who had gone on to become a church minister, his son Rob – aware of Mr Worrall’s poignant gesture years earlier – decided to return the watch to the SS Athenia’s home town and donated it to the Riverside Museum.In response to the appeal by museum curator Emily Malcolm, family members revealed that Mr Worrall had not only survived the attack on the SS Athenia but, after being pensioned out of the Merchant Navy due to his injuries, volunteered to return to sea as part of the war effort.At the conflict’s end he worked as a hospital porter at Law Hospital, Lanarkshire, married and went on to have a daughter – but he never told his family about the watch he had left in the hands of a stranger. Sidney Worrall, who was feared by his fellow passenger Gerry Hutchinson to have died of his wounds after the sinking of the SS Athenia,Credit:Craig Foy/SNS Group A day or so after the sinking, my grandmother’s neighbour saw on the Pathe newsreel that night my uncle being landed as a survivor in Galway.Ernie Worrall, Sidney’s nephew The SS Athenia in Montreal Harbour , 1933 Credit:National Archives of Canada/Wikipedia The SS Athenia, a Glasgow-built transatlantic passenger liner sailing between the UK and Canada, was sunk off the coast of Galway, Ireland, by a torpedo from a German submarine on the day that war was declared on September 3, 1939. Among those to come forward in response to the museum’s appeal were his granddaughter Cath Muir, who said:”I remember him as a child. He was very badly burned when the Athenia was attacked and had many skin grafts on his face and legs. He told us that they were his maps of the world.”Mrs Muir, Newarthill, North Lanarkshire, added: “After returning from Galway he was pensioned out of the Merchant Navy due to the injuries he sustained, but he returned to sea to serve in the war, he felt it was his duty to do so, but that meant he had to forgo part of his pension.” Gerry Hutchinson, a Canadian passenger who had helped Mr Worrall into the lifeboat, fulfilled his dying wish, holding on to the watch and keeping it in immaculate condition until his own death last year.But only now has it emerged that, despite his wounds, Mr Worrall in fact survived the sinking of the SS Athenia.The discovery was made following an appeal by Glasgow’s Riverside Museum for more information about the watch’s original owner.The appeal was seen by members of Mr Worrall’s family, who have now came forward to reveal that, far from being killed at sea, he had gone on to live a full and active life before dying in 1973. In a further happy twist several members of Mr Worrall’s extended family came to know each other for the first time as a result of answering the museum’s appeal, including Dr Ernie Worrall, a nephew.He told how his father had told him how Mr Worrall’s mother had not known whether the cook was alive or dead until she saw newsreel reports of his survival and rescue.Dr Worrall, 74, said: “A day or so after the sinking, my grandmother’s neighbour saw on the Pathe newsreel that night my uncle being landed as a survivor in Galway. At the end of the picture show she told my grandmother, who at that point would have been unaware whether her son had been killed or had been rescued. Fearing the end was near Sidney Worrall knew there was one last thing he had to do.His ship the SS Athenia had just been fatally damaged by the enemy – becoming the first British vessel to be sunk by the German at the outbreak of World War Two – and Mr Worrall had suffered horrendous burns when oil exploded in the galleys.With what he thought was his last breath the Scottish ship’s cook handed over his most prized possession – his watch – to a fellow lifeboat passenger, urging him to look after it as long as he lived. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Sidney Worrall, who was feared by his fellow passenger Gerry Hutchinson to have died of his wounds after the sinking of the SS Athenia, “My grandmother hot-footed it down to the cinema, just as the manager was closing up for the night, and he kindly opened up and re-ran the newsreel for her while she sat in this empty cinema and was able to be reassured that he was indeed alive.”The watch will go on display as part of an updated SS Athenia exhibition at the Riverside this summer.Gerry Hutchinson’s son Rob said: “I am delighted that the museum has been able to draw together the two ends of this very long story.“I look forward to one day seeing the museum’s display and possibly meeting Sid’s family. My father would have been so pleased.” The SS Athenia in Montreal Harbour , 1933last_img read more

first_imgEvlyn had to be connected to a ventilator as soon as she was bornCredit:Mercury Press and Media Ltd And despite battling against the odds for four weeks, the child passed away in her parents’ arms on January 10 at Martin House Hospice in Wetherby, Yorks.Paint technician Charlotte and engineer Attila stayed at the hospice for 12 days while Evlyn was kept in a refrigerated CuddleCot and were allowed to take her out for family walks – before the first-time parents took Evlyn home for four days before her funeral on January 26.Charlotte, from York, said: “So many people have never heard of parents being able to spend that time with their babies and other mothers reached out to me saying they think it would have helped so I really want to raise awareness. Evlyn was born on December 13 at Leeds General Infirmary weighing 5lbs 5oz Evlyn had to be connected to a ventilator as soon as she was born Charlotte had to have scans every two weeks throughout her pregnancy and at 37 weeks, Evlyn was delivered by caesarean as the blood flow to her mum’s placenta had started to fail.The newborn was rushed to a ventilator as soon as she was born and mum Charlotte did not get to see her for seven hours – and could not hold her for three days.Evlyn’s narrowed airways meant she could not breathe on her own and so could not have the heart surgery she needed to survive.But even if the little girl had pulled through, doctors told her parents she would have faced a life with hearing, sight and speech problems and severe mental and physical disabilities.While Charlotte would give anything to have her daughter with her, the mum said she knows that Evlyn is in a better place.After sharing her experience of having those 16 days with Evlyn, Charlotte realised a lot of people were unaware that the option was there for grieving parents and she now wants to raise awareness.Charlotte said: “When we got the news after the 20 week scan, Attila and I completely broke down. I think we broke down more then than when we lost her because at that point we just had no idea what it all meant. “A cold cot allowed Evlyn’s parents to spend extra time with their daughter after she had died, and some parents tell us that spending time with their babies at home or in hospital can help them with the grieving process.”I would urge anyone who has been affected by the death of a baby to contact us.”A spokeswoman for Martin House hospice said: “At Martin House we support families in a place of their choosing, either at home, within the hospice or in hospital setting.”Our emphasis is always on the family’s wishes. We work hard to balance their hopes, expectations and the need they feel to be parents with the specialist palliative care offered by our team.”Whatever life-limiting condition a baby may have, the involvement of children’s hospices like Martin House allows families to make informed choices about their care and make the most of the precious, and often limited, time they have with their baby.” “I think having the time with her made such a difference. Being able to do so many of the things you imagine like taking her out in her pram, it really helped emotionally.”I was really nervous about bringing her home because I didn’t know if it would feel right but it was so nice to have her there. And it wasn’t just for us but for Evlyn so she got to come home.”After she was born the doctors told us we should think about moving her to a hospice but I wasn’t ready and I didn’t want to believe what they were saying.”But over the next week she got worse and worse and we knew we could either watch our little girl die in a hospital, on a ventilator, surrounded by doctors and beeping machines or let her go peacefully in a lovely hospice.”It was the hardest decision you could ever make as parents but I knew keeping her at the hospital would just be selfish. When we got the news after the 20 week scan, Attila and I completely broke down. I think we broke down more then than when we lost her because at that point we just had no idea what it all meantCharlotte Szakacs “I know it might not be the best option for everyone but for us it was so important to be able to have that family time – and just properly cuddle our little girl. “Evlyn was moved to the hospice on January 10 and I have never seen her so calm. We got to hold her and cuddle her properly for the first time for an hour before they turned off the ventilator.”She passed away just a couple of minutes after they took out her breathing tube. She was so weak she didn’t take a single breath.center_img A mother who spent 16 days with her dead baby girl has shared heartbreaking photos from the experience – which saw her take her daughter’s body home and even for walks in a pram.Charlotte Szakacs, 21, and her husband Attila Szakacs, 28, were given the devastating news their baby girl Evlyn had a debilitating chromosome abnormality after a 20-week scan in September 2016.When Evlyn was born on December 13 at Leeds General Infirmary weighing 5lbs 5oz she had an underdeveloped brain which was completely smooth, narrow airways in her nose and lungs and a narrow aorta. Charlotte and Attila had been trying for a baby for more than a year Evlyn was born on December 13 at Leeds General Infirmary weighing 5lbs 5ozCredit:Mercury Press and Media Ltd Doctors investigated and amniotic fluid tests which revealed Evlyn had unbalanced chromosome translocation – a genetic condition that can go unnoticed in parents but in the baby’s development causes two chromosome to switch places, resulting in missing and extra genes. Charlotte and Attila had been trying for a baby for more than a yearCredit:Mercury Press and Media Ltd “The last thing you want as a parent is for your child to be sick and even after we were told she would probably never breathe on her own, we still clung onto this tiny bit of hope that she would.”Not being able to hold her for so long was really difficult and even when we could hold her, the nurses had to pick her up and place her on us so you don’t really feel like you’re being a mum.”I’ve never really felt like a mum. I feel like when I was pregnant and I had all the stuff ready for Evlyn but now I’m just not pregnant. It’s hard to explain, it doesn’t feel real – I’m just empty.”The funeral was really difficult because then reality really started to kick in. Even though we’re in so much pain now, it is a relief to know that Evlyn is in a better place.”I would love to have her here, I would give so much to have that, but we have no idea what her life would have been like. At least now she isn’t suffering.”Dr Clea Harmer, chief executive at stillbirth and neonatal death charity Sands, said: “We were very sorry to hear about the death of baby Evlyn and send our condolences to her parents. “I was holding her in my arms as she went and her dad had his arms around us both.”We stayed at the hospice for 12 days and would take Evlyn out of her cuddle cot for five to 10 minutes for cuddles or to go for walks around the garden with her.”And then we were allowed to take Evlyn and her cuddle cot home for the last four days. Her last night she slept in her actual cot we had got for her in our room.”Charlotte and Attila, who married in 2015, had been trying for a baby for more than a year when they found out they were expecting the day before Charlotte’s 21st birthday on April 29.The first-time mum had a completely normal pregnancy until a 20 week scan revealed Evlyn’s brain was not developing properly and she had a hypoplastic aortic arch. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

first_imgHe added: ”When myself and John Major warned this would be a threat to the UK we meant it, and it was true, and you can see that by the referendum coming back on the agenda.”The First Minister tweeted in response that she was “not his biggest fan”, but added: “There’s a quality of analysis & argument in Blair’s speech today that has been totally lacking from Labour to date.”She said later he was “just stating the obvious”, adding: “The argument is now very different than it was in 2014 and is even more compelling than it was in 2014. “Because what Brexit has shown is that within the UK Scotland’s voice isn’t listened to and doesn’t appear to count for much, so the argument for taking control, taking charge of our own society and our place in the world becomes ever more strong.”Ms Sturgeon has warned another independence referendum is “almost inevitable” in the event of a hard Brexit and has hinted she could name the date for a new vote next month.Labour and the Tories criticised Mr Blair, with Ian Murray, the Scottish Labour Westminster spokesman, claiming that while the “Tory Brexit chaos” had given the SNP the excuse it was looking for to stoke up more grievance, the economic case for separation was “even worse now” than in 2014. Nicola Sturgeon Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Nicola Sturgeon has praised the “quality of analysis and argument” in a speech by Tony Blair after he claimed the case for Scottish independence had become “much more credible” since the Brexit vote.The former Labour prime minister warned the break-up of the UK was “back on the table”, while adding that he did not want Scotland to become independent.In a speech for Open Britain, which is campaigning against a hard Brexit outside the single market,  he called on pro-Europeans to “rise up” and persuade the British people to change their minds.Mr Blair, an unlikely ally for the SNP, whose members have previously called him to be tried for war crimes over the 2003 invasion of Iraq, added: “There is the possibility of the break-up of the UK, narrowly avoided by the result of the Scottish referendum, but now back on the table, but this time with a context much more credible for the independence case.”Speaking afterwards he said he was in favour of Scotland remaining in the UK, pointing out that its single market with England was “of far greater importance” than its interaction with the rest of Europe.center_img He said: ”On jobs, public finances, currency, trade, investment in schools and hospitals, and much more, Scotland benefits from remaining part of the UK.”John Lamont, the Scottish Conservative chief whip, said Mr Blair may not be aware of the fact that “only around a quarter of people in Scotland want another referendum on independence now”.He said the SNP’s attempts to use Brexit to muster support for another Scottish independence referendum had “failed”.Willie Rennie, the Scottish Liberal Democrat leader, said Mr Blair was right about Europe but wrong about independence, adding: “The case for independence is weaker, not stronger, now, especially with the pounds15 billion black hole in the Scottish public finances that would hit our NHS and schools.”Stephen Gethins, the SNP’s Europe spokesman, told BBC Scotland the case for independence was more compelling than ever and would become even more so when the impact of a hard Brexit started to become clear.”Tony Blair’s comments simply reflect the reality that the independence debate now is fundamentally different to the one in 2014 – and the Tories’ threat of a hard Brexit at any cost to Scotland is only going to see support for an independent Scotland rise further still,” he said. Nicola Sturgeon says Tony Blair is stating the obviousCredit:PAlast_img read more

first_imgFielding, 43, was picked after The Last Leg co-presenter Josh Widdicombe, 33, turned down the role at the last minute.The surprise signing of the unorthodox comic is thought to have been the brainchild of Channel 4 chief creative officer Jay Hunt, who secured the £75 million deal to poach Bake Off from the BBC. Several high-profile celebrities turned down the opportunity to present the new series of Great British Bake Off, it was claimed on Saturday.Stars including Dawn French, Jennifer Saunders and Jamie Oliver are said to have rejected the presenting job because they consider it “toxic” now the show has moved from the BBC to Channel 4.The claims came after Channel 4 last week unveiled the comic Noel Fielding as co-presenter alongside broadcaster and campaigner Sandi Toksvig.A Bake Off source told The Sun: “A lot of people at Love Productions are worried about what Channel 4 is going to do with their show.“Noel is going to turn off a lot of the family viewing that made Bake Off such a favourite.“But this is the risk of selling off a national treasure to the highest bidder.” Fielding and Toksvig, 58, have been hired alongside food writer Prue Leith, 77, who replaces Mary Berry, 81.Paul Hollywood, 51, is the only member of the BBC team who went to Channel 4.A Love Productions spokesman said: “Love Productions chose Noel and Sandi as hosts of GBBO in full collaboration with Channel 4 and we are all thrilled to have secured such a terrific team. The notion of any dispute between Love and Channel 4 is nonsense and totally untrue, we enjoy a great creative relationship.” Fielding, the star of The Mighty Boosh, and Toksvig will replace Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins.It is claimed that Davina McCall and Kate Quilton, the Food Unwrapped presenter, also turned down the opportunity to present the show.The Bake Off source said: “Noel and Sandi are an odd combination and they certainly weren’t top of the list — or even tenth on the list.“Channel 4’s most loyal presenters were not interested. There was talk that replacing Mel and Sue was a toxic proposition.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

first_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A second man has been held on suspicion of terrorism offences amid fears a man seized at Buckingham Palace with a sword was not a ‘lone wolf’, but part of a network.An unnamed 30-year-old was held at a West London address “on suspicion of being involved in the commission, preparation or instigation of terrorism”.The arrested man is believed to have been in recent contact with a 26-year-old man arrested outside Buckingham Palace late on Friday. Second arrest in west London following Constitution Hill terror incident https://t.co/x3etPfp2kr pic.twitter.com/dTQ7XZ8V6t— Metropolitan Police (@metpoliceuk) August 27, 2017 That man from Luton was seized after he drove at police before lunging for a 4ft sword and repeatedly shouting “Allahu Akbar”.The man was wrestled to the ground by unarmed police who had to use CS gas to incapacitate him.During the struggle three officers were injured, two of whom suffered minor cuts to their hands and required treatment in hospital before being discharged.The attacker is also being held under terrorism legislation and a warrant for his further detention was granted on Sunday.Scotland Yard initially said they were not seeking anyone else in connection with the attack, but then announced they had held another suspect on Sunday morning.Sources said police and counterterrorism officials had worked round the clock to see if the man had accomplices, or if anyone had known of his intentions before the alleged attack. Commander Dean Haydon, of the Met’s counter-terrorism branch, said the attack near Buckingham Palace had seen a blue Toyota Prius deliberately drive at a marked police vehicle.The car stopped in front of the police car and when police confronted the driver, he reached into the passenger footwell for a four-foot sword.Police used CS gas to subdue the man, who repeatedly shouted “Allahu Akbar!” during the struggle.Theresa May has praised the bravery of the officers, saying they “acted quickly and bravely to protect the public”.last_img read more

Over the same period, 48 councils saw the closure of providers of home care services over the period, the survey of all council social services directors shows.Council chiefs said the sector was becoming “increasingly fragile,” with cuts to social care in recent years fuelling pressures on the NHS, and adding to the burden on families.Overall, three quarters of those polled said health services were under increased pressure as a result of attempts to cut spending on social care. Care home evictions as a result of closures have risen by almost 40 per cent in a year amid a growing crisis in social care, a new report warnsThe audit by the Association of Directors of Social Services reveals that at least two thirds of councils, and thousands of elderly residents, have experienced recent closures.It follows warnings that such moves can threaten the health of the frail, with higher death rates found among those forced to undergo unplanned changes in accommodation.The figures show 58 councils have seen residential and nursing homes go out of business within a six-month period, forcing the vulnerable into new accommodation.In total, 2,492 people had to be re-housed after their provider closed down, the figures show – a 39 per cent rise from 1,793 the previous year.   “How we help people live the life they want, how we care and support people in our families and communities, and how we ensure carers get the support they need is at stake – it’s time for us to deliver the secure future that so very many people in need of social care urgently need,” Mr Garrod said.The annual survey found adult social care is now taking up almost 38 per cent of councils’ budgets – a rise from 30 per cent in 2010.Richard Murray, Director of Policy at think tank The King’s Fund said: “This latest evidence, from every council in England, lays bare once again the need for, as the Prime Minister put it herself, a proper plan to pay for and provide social care. Older and disabled people and their families and carers continue to be let down by a system that is on its knees.” It is of serious concern that we have such a fragile social care market. We cannot go on like thisGlen Garrod, ADASS president She said: “With around 1 in 5 adult social care services currently rated as either requires improvement or inadequate, the reality is people cannot always rely on safe, effective and high quality care being available when they need it. That is no way to treat our older citizens and people living with disabilities or in vulnerable circumstances. “Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK said:  “When council social care bosses – who tend to issue very measured responses – say the situation with social care is bad you know it’s really bad.”“Despite the best efforts of councils to protect care for older people the latest ADASS survey highlights the desperate and growing gap between the care needs of pensioners and the help available for them.“Unless policy makers are willing to invest in care, hundreds of thousands of older people face a bleak future, living without their needs being met. It is a disgrace that there are already 1.2 million older people who need support with daily essentials like getting dressed, going to the toilet, taking their medication or preparing their food, who are missing out. “A Government spokesman said: “We know the social care system is under pressure — that’s why we’ve provided an extra £9.4 billion over three years. We will shortly set out our plans to reform the system, which will include the workforce and a sustainable funding model supported by a diverse, vibrant and stable market.” Glen Garrod, ADASS president, said the findings were “worrying”, calling on ministers to urgently increase funding for social care, and to make major reforms of the service in a green paper, expected later this summer.“It is of serious concern that we have such a fragile social care market,” he said. “We cannot go on like this.” Andrea Sutcliffe,  Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care, said the watchdog had repeatedly raised concerns “that the adult social care sector is precarious with mounting pressures continuing to push the sector towards a tipping point. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

A woman has died and two people injured in a house fire in south-east London after it tore through three floors of the property.Around 60 firefighters tackled the fire at a property in Centurion Square, Woolwich, at around 1.20am on Thursday.Eight engines attended the scene, including crews from East Greenwich, Eltham and Plumstead.The London Fire Brigade (LFB) said the ground, first and second floors of the property were damaged and 23 calls were made to the emergency services about the fire. The cause of the blaze was not yet known, LFB added.The Metropolitan Police said a woman was found deceased inside the property and two others taken to hospital. Their condition was unknown, officers added.It took about two hours for the brigade to bring the blaze under control.  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

It could see Britain’s allies provide technology or financial support to the estimated £5 billion project in exchange for access to the system’s most accurate military-grade signal.  Britain is seeking an alliance with its “Five Eyes” security partners to help launch its own satellite positioning system after being frozen out of the EU’s Galileo project due to Brexit. The Government has given up on accessing Galileo’s secure “PRS” signal, which was seen as a critical technology by the armed forces, after British… Space Agency officials have held discussions with representatives from the US, Australia, Canada and New Zealand, the nations that make up the security pact, The Telegraph understands. read more

A mother of three is in a serious condition at the Georgetown Public Hospital after she was brutally chopped on Sunday evening by the father of her children at Quamina Road, Beterverwagting, East Coast Demerara. One of the hands of the woman whose name was only given as Alana was severed while her body also sustained several chops wounds.Based on reports, the woman and the suspect, Warren Dennis, a cane cutter were separated for quite sometime but although she is living home with someone else, she would normally visit his home.One of such regular visits was on Sunday evening. During the visit, the couple were engaged in a heated argument during which screams were heard emanating from the man’s house.As persons in the area rushed to the house, Dennis made good his escape in a nearby cane field carrying a cutlass in his hands. The woman was found lying in a pool of blood with one of her hands close by.She was picked up and rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital where she was admitted in a serious state. Persons in the area were heard murmuring that the suspect had threatened to kill the woman on several occasions. At one time, he had already tied a rope in his house and attempted to hang her.The situation got worst when she moved out of the house to live with someone else but although she is aware of the man’s temperament, she would visit his house and assist with his chores.It is not clear what started the argument on Sunday evening but the two were seen very cozy prior to the chopping incident.The police have launched a manhunt for the suspect. Earlier in the year, a Beterverwagting man had set his house on fire killing his reputed wife and his 3-year-old daughter. He also perished in that fire. (Bhisham Mohamed) Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedSuspect who allegedly chopped baby likely for court today…as child remains in critical conditionFebruary 16, 2016In “latest news”Woman chopped, arm almost severed by jilted ex-husbandAugust 1, 2016In “latest news”Essequibo mechanic chops wife, then attempts suicideApril 19, 2017In “Crime” read more

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedExxon begins drilling at Payara locationNovember 11, 2016In “latest news”ExxonMobil’s top brass says Guyana’s oil prospects justify continued explorationOctober 20, 2016In “latest news”ExxonMobil strikes more oil offshore GuyanaOctober 27, 2016In “Local News” US-based oil exploration – Hess Corp – one of the ExxonMobil partners developing the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana has this past year sold off a large portion of its asset base in order to focus on its long-term development of its Guyana assets.John Barnett Hess, CEO of Hess CorporationThe company has executed some $2.7 billion in oilfield sales this past week as part of its strategy of giving up steady production to help fund what could be one of the world’s biggest discoveries into the next decade.The oil explorer with operations on five continents said Tuesday that it’s selling North Sea assets off of Norway for $2 billion and seeking a buyer for wells off Denmark.The news came a day after Hess sold drilling rights in offshore Equatorial Guinea for $650 million. Counting a June deal to sell properties in Texas, the New York-based company has sold off almost $3.3 billion in assets this year.ExxonMobil Corp, the major partner in the Guyana venture, has said the initial building phase may cost $4.4 billion and take until 2020 to deliver its first oil.The divestments “all make strategic sense” and “will help bridge the sizable funding gap that Hess faces over the next few years,” Capital One Securities analyst Phillips Johnston said in a note to clients Tuesday.“These assets have not been competing for capital, so by monetising them, Hess will prefund part of the development of its major Guyana discoveries.”Hess through its transactions has essentially given up operations that produced 16 per cent of its total oil volumes and almost a quarter of its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation, he said.Hess is due to announce its third-quarter earnings on Wednesday. After opening the day up, the shares fell 2.4 per cent to US$44.14 at 00:34h in New York trading. Before Tuesday, the shares had fallen 27 per cent for the year, putting them among the10 worst performances on the S&P 500 Energy Index.The total sales proceeds are also more than the explorer’s projected share of the Guyana project and some analysts have questioned whether the company was selling too much. Hess has estimated that its share of the project’s initial phase will be about $1 billion.Hess in a statement said there would be other benefits – $500 million of the proceeds will be used to retire debt next year and the company also gets to cancel $3.2 billion in liabilities for closing and cleaning up the operations it’s selling.Hess also announced a goal of cutting $150 million in annual expenses, a plan that will lower its per-barrel production costs 30 per cent by 2020, it said.“We are focusing our portfolio on higher return assets and reducing our break-even oil price,” according to Chief Executive Officer John Hess. read more