World Briefs: Tickets to Queen's birthday sell out

Tickets to Queen's birthday sell out

LONDON • Tickets to Britain's Queen Elizabeth II's 90th birthday celebrations have sold out within hours as Buckingham Palace promised four days of pageantry "fit for the Queen" including dancing and horse shows. Britain's longest-ever reigning monarch turns 90 on April 21 next year and the palace has organised a public celebration at Windsor Castle, one of her residences outside London.

The 25,000 tickets for the events between May 12 to 15 cost up to £165 (S$350). The Queen will attend the finale on Sunday and proceeds from the sale will go to charity, Buckingham Palace said.

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First launch, landing of reusable rocket

WASHINGTON • The private space firm founded by Internet entrepreneur Jeff Bezos claimed a breakthrough for its space travel efforts on Tuesday with the launch of a reusable rocket.

Mr Bezos announced the milestone with his first Twitter message following the launch and return of the rocket by his firm, Blue Origin. "The rarest of beasts - a used rocket. Controlled landing not easy, but done right, can look easy. Check out video," said the tweet, with a link to a YouTube video.

The unmanned New Shepard rocket blasted off from its west Texas launch site and then returned and landed safely, representing a coup for spaceflight.

"Rockets have always been expendable. Not anymore," Mr Bezos said in a blog post on the Blue Origin website.

He also told CBS This Morning that the successful launch and return is a major step towards enabling space travel.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 26, 2015, with the headline 'World Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe