Lorry drivers who continually flout weight restrictions on roads and bridges are being warned by Derbyshire County Council’s trading standards that they will be prosecuted after nearly 40 successful cases were brought by officers in just six months. The county council’s trading standards team successfully prosecuted 38 cases between October 2019 and March 2020. Drivers […]
Double yellow lines are to be painted by Derbyshire County Council at several locations in the county that, over the past few months, have seen issues caused by dangerous parking. The lines are to be painted on roads around Carsington Reservoir in the Derbyshire Dales, Foremark Reservoir in South Derbyshire, and on two roads in […]
£1.57bn support package ‘shows important role arts will play in recovery’
The Government’s £1.57 billion support package for the arts is an acknowledgement that they have an “important” role to play in the nation’s recovery, a theatre boss has said. Kwame Kwei-Armah, artistic director of the Young Vic, told Times Radio that he and his colleagues are “relieved”.
The move has also been welcomed by the Tate, the Science Museum Group, the National Gallery and the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Kwei-Armah added: “When we heard last night, we slept for the first time since March.
“It is a real vindication that we have been listened to and that the Government understand that we were dying on our knees and also that we are an important part of our country’s recovery.
“So we are very pleased for this intervention that will hopefully get us from here to April.”
Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee chairman Julian Knight said the support package will take some cultural institutions out of the “danger zone”.
However, he said more is needed to secure the sector’s future, including possible tax breaks.
Shadow DCMS secretary Jo Stevens told BBC Radio 4’s Westminster Hour that, although the funding is a much-needed relief for the industry, for some it is “already too late”.
“I do wonder what took the Government so long,” she said.
“They have known the problems in the sector for weeks and weeks and weeks, and for some areas and some organisations and theatres across the country from north to south, it’s already too late, jobs have gone.
“So the big things will be how quickly it’s going to get to people, (and) how is it going to be spread around the country in towns and small cities, (where) arts and culture venues are so valuable to local economies.”
The funding was well-received by composer Lord Lloyd-Webber, who said the news is “truly welcome at a time when so many theatres, orchestras, entertainment venues and other arts organisations face such a bleak future”.
ITV chairman Sir Peter Bazalgette said the move “is a very welcome first step in tackling the crisis arts and culture is facing”.
“The blend of grants and loans will help many critical institutions keep going until they can open again,” he said.
“Then we’ll need to sort the long term.”
Caroline Norbury, who is chief executive of the Creative Industries Federation and Creative England, said the “unprecedented” package is “a seismic step forward”.
“Our creative industries are teetering on the brink of cultural collapse – and this could be the game-changer we need,” she said, adding that the support for freelancers in the sector is “particularly heartening”.
Christine Payne, general secretary of actors’ union Equity, said the plans provide “meaningful investment” that will protect arts venues and infrastructure, but added it is important that funds reach workers in the industry.
“These workers have campaigned for this deal; they can’t be left behind,” she said.
Former EastEnders actor Tracy-Ann Oberman tweeted her gratitude to the Chancellor.
She wrote: “Thankyou @RishiSunak and to all theatre audiences who wrote to MPs and went out of their way to say that all arts were important to them. It will repay multi times over. #saveourarts”
Armando Iannucci, writer and director of The Personal History Of David Copperfield, hailed the funding on Twitter as “good news”.
“Won’t solve everything but it’s a very positive development,” he said.
10:206 Jul 2020
Theatre performances without social distancing some way off – Culture Secretary
The Culture Secretary has warned that the return of theatre performances without social distancing remains “some way off” following the Government’s announcement of a £1.57 billion support
Published: 06/07/2020 by Radio NewsHub
Woman dies after suffering ‘medical episode’ in police custody
A woman has died in hospital after suffering a medical episode in police custody.
The woman, from Plymouth, Devon, was arrested and taken into custody at Charles Cross police station in the city on Friday afternoon.
Devon and Cornwall Police said she suffered a “medical episode” later that afternoon.
A force spokesman said custody staff and the health care practitioner “immediately attended and administered emergency treatment”.
“An ambulance attended and the woman was taken to the Derriford Hospital in a serious but stable condition; her next of kin were informed of this development,” he said.
“Police have since been informed by Derriford that the woman was pronounced deceased late am on Saturday July 4.
“A family liaison officer has been appointed.
“The force have informed the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) as is mandatory in any case such as this and inquiries led by Devon and Cornwall Police continue.”
Published: 05/07/2020 by Radio NewsHub
Union leaders urge action to avert mass unemployment
Union leaders have warned of a return to 1980s levels of mass unemployment if urgent action is not taken to support workers and businesses.
In a statement ahead of the Chancellor’s financial statement this week they warned there is only a “very short window” to prevent hundreds of thousands of workers from losing their jobs.
Leaders of the TUC, Unite, Unison, GMB and Usdaw warned that the UK was staring at the biggest economic crisis for generations.
“Without bold action from the Government we face the very real prospect of mass unemployment on a scale not seen since the 1980s.
“Our message to the Chancellor is simple and stark, we have a very short window to save hundreds of thousands of jobs.”
Unions said the job retention scheme has shown what active government can do during a crisis, adding it had rescued companies and saved millions from the dole queue.
“Now is the time to build on that spirit, not shrink away from the challenges ahead.”
The statement said previous recessions had shown the consequences of leaving young people without any support beyond a “threadbare safety net”.
“A new offer of a guaranteed job for every young person facing long-term unemployment, paid at a real living wage, must be the cornerstone of the Chancellor’s plans.”
Published: 05/07/2020 by Radio NewsHub
Hancock: Most did the right thing on Super Saturday
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the vast majority of people who went out on so-called Super Saturday in England did the right thing, but he stopped short of endorsing a pay rise for NHS staff dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic.
Ahead of the easing of lockdown restrictions in England on Saturday, Mr Hancock had warned that people could end up “behind bars” if they got too carried away.
Speaking on Sky’s Ridge On Sunday, Mr Hancock said: “Well I think that from what I’ve seen, although there’s some pictures to the contrary, very, very largely people have acted responsibly.
“The large proportion of people, the vast majority of people are, I think, doing the right thing”.
However, he added: “But of course we’ll take action when we need to when… if the minority break the rules.”
On those who did not social distance, Mr Hancock said: “Well we’ll of course keep this very closely under review, and you’ve seen for instance in Leicester but also in other places that we don’t shirk from bringing in more drastic measures if that is what’s needed to control the virus.”
Asked about a pay rise for NHS workers, Mr Hancock side-stepped the question, saying: “We absolutely want to reward NHS staff for what they have done.”
Pressed on reports that NHS England has asked for an extra £10 billion to cover costs of coronavirus, Mr Hancock said: “I just don’t recognise that story.
“We have been working very closely with the Treasury on making sure we have the funding that we need.”
Mr Hancock said the Government’s message to the public is “enjoy the new freedoms, but do so safely”.
A further 27,000 excess deaths are “likely” between now and next April under the current approach to coronavirus, a former Government chief scientific adviser has claimed.
Speaking on Sky News, Sir David King said it looked as though the current Government policy was to “maintain” the current level of about 3,000 new infections per day across England.
He said: “What we are saying is 27,000 excess deaths are likely between now and next April if the expectation by the chief medical officer is that he would be surprised and delighted if the UK is in the same place next spring.
“If he’s correct we would still have about 2,000 to 3,000 new infections in England per day and that is the number of deaths that would follow from that.
He added: “It looks as if the policy is to maintain the current level of about 3,000 new infections per day across England, while Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland are heading towards net zero.”
The comments came as Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said selected international sporting events and major movie and television productions will get the green light despite the coronavirus outbreak.
The Culture Secretary spoke to Hollywood superstar Tom Cruise this week about how the exemption will allow production to resume on Mission Impossible 7 and 8.
Also, significant darts, horse racing and other sporting events are expected to follow, ministers said.
The easing of rules will see some sports stars and their support teams, as well as international film and TV stars, directors and producers, exempt from quarantine, if they are essential to the event or production.
Under the new rules, sporting authorities, event organisers and the screen industry will need to follow Government Covid-19 secure guidance and put in place “stringent protocols” to ensure that they have a minimal impact on public healt
Published: 05/07/2020 by Radio NewsHub
Britain to review Chinese role in 5G scheme
The National Security Council will look at the conditions of Chinese tech giant Huawei being involved in the UK’s 5G rollout, a Cabinet minister has confirmed.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the National Security Council will “look at those conditions and make the right decision”, after it was reported that the UK is poised to end the use of Huawei technology in its 5G network as soon as this year amid security concerns.
Mr Hancock did not deny that the Government is set to do a U-turn on Huawei’s involvement, adding that he “wouldn’t comment on leaks of that kind”.
His comments come as Sunday’s newspapers suggested that Boris Johnson is set to strike a major policy change after GCHQ is believed to have reassessed the risks posed by the Chinese tech company.
A study set to be presented to Mr Johnson this week will declare that US sanctions on Huawei will force the company to use technology that is “untrusted”, reports said.
A report by GCHQ’s National Cyber Security Centre has decided the US sanctions barring Huawei from using technology relying on American intellectual property has had a “severe” impact on the firm, the Sunday Telegraph reported.
The newspaper stated that officials are crafting proposals to prevent new Huawei equipment being installed in the 5G network in as little as six months.
Speaking on Sky’s Ridge on Sunday, Mr Hancock said: “I wouldn’t comment on leaks of that kind.
“What I can say though, is that when we came out with an interim report on this earlier in the year, there were a number of conditions that needed to be met.
“So I’m sure that the National Security Council will look at those conditions and make the right decision on this to make sure that we have both a very strong telecoms infrastructure… but also that it is secure.
“We have been looking very closely at this.”
The Prime Minister’s decision to allow Huawei a limited roll in Britain’s 5G network is believed to have caused tension between London and Washington DC in recent months.
The involvement of the Chinese tech firm in Britain’s 5G network also caused concern among a number of prominent figures on the Conservative backbenches.
The Mail on Sunday reported that the National Cyber Security Centre was instructed to carry out a review on the situation.
It also reported the organisation found that US sanctions had a major impact on the firm’s viability, the newspaper said.
Published: 05/07/2020 by Radio NewsHub
Zero positive tests as Formula One resumes
Formula One organisers have announced zero positive tests for coronavirus ahead of the sport’s return this weekend.
After a long delay due to the global pandemic, the first grand prix of the year will take place in Austria at Spielberg’s Red Bull Ring on Sunday and the restart has been boosted by news of a full round of negative tests.
“The FIA and Formula 1 can today confirm that between Friday 26th June and Thursday 2nd July, 4,032 drivers, teams and personnel were tested for Covid-19,” said a joint statement.
“Of these, zero people have tested positive.”
Strict protocols have been implemented for the restart of racing, with teams being tested prior to flying out from their respective countries and personnel attending the circuit undergoing a test every five days, while there are daily temperature checks prior to entering the facility.
In the build-up, team personnel have also been kept in bubbles, away from other teams and even away from colleagues in different departments.
Published: 04/07/2020 by Radio NewsHub
Trump takes aim at cancel culture in Rushmore rally
US President Donald Trump took aim at so-called “cancel culture” during a impassioned speech at Mount Rushmore.
His comments at the South Dakota landmark came amid wider discussion on race issues in the US and overseas, with statues and monuments taken down either by vote or by force.
Mr Trump accused protesters pushing for racial justice of engaging in a “merciless campaign to wipe out our history”.
He said: “This movement is openly attacking the legacies of every person on Mount Rushmore.
“We will not be terrorised, we will not be demeaned, and we will not be intimidated by bad, evil people. It will not happen.”
The speech and fireworks at Mount Rushmore came against the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic that has killed over 125,000 Americans.
The president flew across the nation to gather a big crowd of supporters, most of them maskless and all of them flouting public health guidelines that recommend not gathering in large groups.
Meanwhile, the Trump campaign confirmed during the president’s speech that Kimberly Guilfoyle, a top fundraiser for the campaign and the girlfriend of Mr Trump’s eldest son Donald Trump Jr, had tested positive for the coronavirus while in South Dakota.
Both Ms Guilfoyle and Mr Trump Jr, who serves as top surrogate for the president, are isolating themselves and have cancelled public events, according to Sergio Gor, chief of staff to the Trump campaign’s finance committee.
During the speech, the president announced he was signing an executive order to establish the National Garden of American Heroes, a vast outdoor park that will feature the statues of the “greatest Americans to ever live”.
Amid the campaign headwinds, the president has sharpened his focus on his most ardent base of supporters as concern grows inside his campaign that his poll numbers in the battleground states that will decide the 2020 election are slipping.
In recent weeks, Mr Trump has increasingly lashed out at “left-wing mobs”, used a racist term to refer to the coronavirus and visited the nation’s southern border to spotlight progress on his 2016 campaign promise to build a US-Mexico border wall.
The event, while not a campaign rally, had the feel of one as the friendly crowd greeted Mr Trump with chants of “Four more years!” and cheered enthusiastically as he and first lady Melania Trump took the stage.
“They think the American people are weak and soft and submissive,” Mr Trump said.
“But no, the American people are strong and proud, and they will not allow our country and all of its values, history and culture to be taken from them.”
Leaders of several Native American tribes in the region raised concerns that the event could lead to virus outbreaks among their members, who they say are particularly vulnerable to Covid-19 because of an underfunded health care system and chronic health conditions.
“The president is putting our tribal members at risk to stage a photo op at one of our most sacred sites,” said Harold Frazier, chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe.
Some Native American groups used Mr Trump’s visit to protest the Mount Rushmore memorial itself, pointing out that the Black Hills were taken from the Lakota people.
Published: 04/07/2020 by Radio NewsHub
Dozen feared dead in Japan landslide
Heavy rain in southern Japan has triggered flooding and landslides, leaving more than a dozen people presumed dead, about 10 missing and dozens stranded on rooftops waiting to be rescued.
More than 75,000 residents in the prefectures of Kumamoto and Kagoshima were urged to evacuate following torrential rain overnight.
The evacuation was not mandatory and it was not known how many actually fled.
“I smelled mud, and the whole area was vibrating with river water. I’ve never experienced anything like this,” a man in a shelter in Yatsushiro city, in western Kumamoto, told NHK TV. He said he fled early fearing a disaster.
NHK footage showed large areas of Hitoyoshi town in Kumamoto inundated in muddy water that gushed out from the Kuma River. Many cars were submerged up to their windows.
Mudslides smashed into houses and floodwaters carried trunks from uprooted trees. Several people were standing on a convenience store as they waited for rescuers.
Kumamoto governor Ikuo Kabashima later told reporters that 14 residents at a flooded elderly care home in Kuma village were presumed dead after being found during rescue operations.
In Tsunagimachi district, two of three people buried underneath mudslides were feared dead, Kumamoto prefectural crisis management official Takafumi Kobori said. Rescuers were still searching for the third person.
In another badly flooded town, Ashikita, six people were unaccounted for and a seventh was seriously injured, Kumamoto officials said.
In the mountainous village of Kuma, residents stranded at their homes were being airlifted by a rescue helicopter. In Hitoyoshi city, rescuers transported some residents in a boat.
Flooding also cut off power and communication lines. About 8,000 homes in Kumamoto and neighbouring Kagoshima were without electricity, according to the Kyushu Electric Power Company.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe set up a task force, vowing to do his utmost to rescue the missing. He said up to 10,000 defence troops were being mobilised for rescue operations.
The Japan Meteorological Agency earlier issued warnings of extraordinary rain in parts of Kumamoto, about 600 miles south west of Tokyo, but later downgraded them as the rainfall — estimated at 4ins per hour — subsided.
Published: 04/07/2020 by Radio NewsHub