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Missing cat reunited with owner after 13 years
Charity shop worker Gemma Barbieri, of Thetford in Norfolk, said she was “stunned” when she received a call saying that 14-year-old Rose had been found.
A cat which went missing 13 years ago has been found and reunited with her owner.

The pet, named after Billie Piper’s character in Doctor Who, had been an eighth birthday present for Ms Barbieri’s daughter, Alicia, but went missing in 2008.

The family lived in King’s Lynn at the time and Ms Barbieri said she felt “guilty” when they moved house 10 years later in 2018 “in case she came home and we weren’t there for her”.

Rose, who was microchipped, was reported as a stray in the King’s Lynn area and was taken in by Cats Protection’s Downham Market Adoption Centre this year.

Her whereabouts for the last 13 years remain a mystery, but she was a healthy weight and in good condition.

Ms Barbieri said she initially rejected the charity’s phone call as she did not recognise the phone number.

“But it rang again almost immediately so I thought it might be important and should answer,” she said.

“I’ll always be grateful I did!

“I couldn’t believe it when they asked if my cat had gone missing in 2008.

“I just blurted out ‘Have you found Rose?’

“They said a black cat brought in as a stray had been scanned and the microchip showed that she was missing.

“It was Rose.

“I was so stunned, I was shaking.”

Ms Barbieri said that as soon as she finished work she went to collect her beloved pet.

“As soon I got Rose in the car, she was talking all the way home,” she said.

“She settled almost immediately when we arrived home.

“It was amazing.

“Within an hour she’d eaten, used the litter tray, explored the whole house and was laying purring on her back while I stroked her belly.

“She’s pretty much been purring ever since and has settled in completely.”

She has already been reunited by video call with Alicia, who is now 21 and a student at the University of Derby.

Rose and her brother Tyler were adopted as kittens in 2007, but Tyler was hit by a car and died in June 2008 and Rose went missing a few months later.

Ms Barbieri said they put up posters and knocked on doors, and logged Rose as missing on the microchip database as they always hoped she would return home eventually.

She said she would “absolutely recommend microchipping to anyone getting a cat, because it works”.

– To support Cats Protection’s Downham Market Adoption Centre, see https://www.justgiving.com/team/TeamCPDownham30

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

Barclays notches up £2.4bn profit in just three months
Barclays enjoyed a record quarter at the start of 2021, hitting pre-tax profits not seen in 13 years, the bank has revealed.
Bosses said the £2.4 billion pre-tax profit for the first three months of the year came through strong growth in its corporate and investment banking division and an improved mortgage book.

The bank’s high street division had a mixed period as the recent lockdowns reduced consumer spending, but the stamp duty holiday continued to help the housing market and its mortgage division.

Impairment charges – money put aside in case of defaulting loans – were also significantly reduced as the economy improved and the post-pandemic outlook appeared more stable compared with a year ago.

The charges for the quarter were just £55 million compared with £2.1 billion a year ago, although, unlike rivals NatWest and Lloyds, Barclays said it will not release the provisions just yet.

Chief executive Jes Staley said: “Since the early days of the pandemic last year, our diversified business has demonstrated the resilience critical to ensuring Barclays’ financial integrity.”

He added that the bank had high hopes for the economy to bounce back, with predictions of a recovery not seen for more than 70 years.

The boss said: “Our economic forecast for the UK economy is to grow year on year by some 6.5%, which would be the strongest growth rate in the British economy since 1948.

“There’s tremendous pent-up demand both with the consumer and small businesses, and we see that as the vaccination programme, which has been an extraordinary success in the UK, continues.

“The spend data we’re already starting to see is very encouraging. In the first two weeks of April our spend numbers was 70% over the first two weeks of April last year.

“We’re starting to see a quite robust economic recovery in 2021 and we think that will carry through into 2022.”

He pointed out that the corporate and investment bank (CIB) had a particularly strong quarter, with income of £3.6 billion, and return on tangible equity (RoTE) – the bank’s preferred measure – was 17.9%.

Mr Staley added that the CIB growth “partially offset challenges in our consumer businesses that have been impacted by lower spend and activity levels as a result of the pandemic”.

Barclays UK saw income of £1.6 billion – down 8% – as savings and spending during the lockdown slowed, although its mortgages grew by £3.6 billion to £151.9 billion.

Mr Staley added: “As we enter the next phase of this pandemic, we remain resolute in our commitment to support the economic recovery.

“From our spend data, which captures UK economic activity across our cards and acquiring businesses, we are already seeing encouraging early signs of recovery in some sectors, including those hit hardest by the crisis.”

A finance partnership with Amazon, first launched in Germany, will also be extended to the UK.

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

AstraZeneca hits sales of nearly £200m from Covid-19 jabs
AstraZeneca has revealed it banked revenues of 275 million US dollars in the first three months of the year from sales of its Covid-19 vaccine, delivering 68 million doses worldwide.
The pharmaceutical, which is not making a profit from the vaccine, added that, of those sales, 224 million dollars (£160.6 million) worth were in Europe, 43 million dollars (£30.8 million) in emerging markets and 8 million dollars (£5.7 million) in the rest of the world.

Bosses said sales of some of the company’s other drugs had been affected by the global pandemic, as other medical conditions went untreated, but overall sales remained strong.

Revenues in the first three months of the year hit 7.32 billion dollars (£5.26 billion) – up 15% on the same period a year earlier – with strong growth in its oncology division.

Its cancer treatments saw an increase of 20% in sales to 3 billion dollars (2.2 billion), primarily due to its lung cancer drug Tagrisso, which rose 17% in the quarter to 1.15 billion dollars (£830 million).

The company pointed out that this came “despite the decrease in lung cancer diagnoses observed due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic”.

AstraZeneca’s Farxiga diabetes drug enjoyed a 54% boost in sales, in part due to receiving regulatory approval in the US to use the treatment for heart failure.

Its Brilinta drug to reduce the risk of future heart attacks dropped 8% as global demand fell due to the pandemic reducing the number of heart attack admissions to hospitals, alongside lower demand for the drug in China, the company said.

Covid-19 also hit sales of respiratory drugs as diagnosis of those conditions was also down during the pandemic.

But its asthma medicine, Fasenra, did see a boost in sales, making it the leading product for severe asthmas globally, the company said.

Chief executive Pascal Soriot said: “We delivered solid progress in the first quarter of 2021 and continued to advance our portfolio of life-changing medicines.

“New medicines contributed over half of revenue and all regions delivered encouraging growth.”

He added: “We expect the impact of Covid to reduce and anticipate a performance acceleration in the second half of 2021.”

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

Murdered PCSO ‘died from significant head injuries’
A police community support officer murdered in a quiet hamlet in Kent died from “significant head injuries”.
Police said they are “working very hard” to identify a motive for the killing of Julia James, whose body was found in Akholt Wood earlier this week.

The 53-year-old was off-duty at the time and was reportedly last seen while out walking her dog.

Kent Police Deputy Chief Constable Tim Smith said there are hundreds of officers on the investigation into her death but that there are currently no “clear suspects”.

He told BBC Radio Kent: “We’ve got hundreds of officers working on that investigation while we try to establish exactly what happened to Julia, and more importantly who did this to Julia and why.

“I’m afraid I can’t go into a lot of detail for perhaps very obvious reasons, but it is fair to say there are a number of different lines of inquiry.

“We’re working very hard to identify a motive and we are working very hard to identify who may have committed this.

“It is right to say we don’t have any clear suspects at this time.”

He said he is “not able to say either way” if the attack was sexually motivated, adding that they are “keeping a very open mind about the motive”.

He added: “Julia died from significant head injuries.”

The death was originally viewed as “suspicious” but Kent Police confirmed on Wednesday afternoon that it is being treated as murder.

Ms James’s nephew Karl James previously told 5 News his aunt was “just a lovely person” and said her death has been “a real shock”.

Floral tributes have been left for Ms James in nearby Aylesham.

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

PM’s mobile number being online may have put him at ‘increased risk’ of snooping
The Prime Minister could have put himself at an “increased risk” of snooping and criminal activity
Lord Ricketts said the revelation that, until this year, Boris Johnson’s contact number was still listed on the bottom of a 2006 press release on the internet meant “thousands” of people could have his details, possibly placing him at risk of hostile state action.

It follows a row in recent weeks over so-called Government-by-text after it emerged that lobbyists and others from the business world had personally messaged the Prime Minister in a bid to get him to intervene in issues.

Downing Street did not deny reports earlier this month that Cabinet Secretary Simon Case advised Mr Johnson to change his long-held phone number because of concerns over how many people had his direct contact details.

Lord Ricketts, who served as the first UK national security adviser under David Cameron, said it is in Mr Johnson’s “own interest to be much more digitally secure than seems to be the case now” following the reports that a press release dating back to when he was shadow higher education minister could be accessed on the internet in 2021.

Asked if there could be security concerns, the peer told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I know that modern systems like WhatsApp are end-to-end encrypted; nonetheless, I think one would be worried if a hostile state who had sophisticated capabilities had the mobile phone number itself.

“That must increase the risk that they’re able to eavesdrop on some at least of the communications that are going on, and possibly other non-state actors as well, like sophisticated criminal gangs.

“So, there is no way of knowing whether that’s true, but there must at least be an increased risk if the number is widely available.”

Attempts to call the number on Thursday night were met with an automated message saying the phone was “switched off” and an invitation to “please try later or send a text”.

The Conservative Party leader’s use of his mobile phone has been in the spotlight after text message exchanges with entrepreneur Sir James Dyson and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman were leaked.

Home Office minister Victoria Atkins insisted that, despite the fresh embarrassment for Mr Johnson over his mobile number being in the public domain, the No 10 incumbent “more than anyone, knows his responsibilities when it comes to national security”.

Ms Atkins added that she believes the public are not “particularly interested” in the issue.

It follows calls for further investigation into how the lavish renovations to Mr Johnson’s flat in 11 Downing Street were funded.

The Prime Minister looked to shift attention away from the controversy as he insisted he was “laser-focused” on delivering people’s priorities as the parliamentary session came to an end on Thursday.

But Labour sought to pile more pressure on, as senior Opposition MP Dame Margaret Hodge asked the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards to investigate his conduct over the flat revamp.

In Dame Margaret’s letter to commissioner Kathryn Stone, the former chairwoman of spending watchdog the Public Accounts Committee said it had been suggested that as much as £200,000 was spent on the redecoration, with some funds originating from the Conservative Party and Tory donors.

“It is therefore unacceptable that the Prime Minister refuses to publicly declare exactly where the upfront costs for this redecoration came from, exactly how much these costs amounted to, and who the Prime Minister is repaying or has repaid to cover these costs,” said Dame Margaret.

A Commons rule change means Ms Stone is once again allowed to publish the names of MPs she is probing for breaches of the code of conduct.

But the commissioner said she will not reveal the names of any MPs under investigation until after May’s elections.

Inquiries into how the redecoration work was funded are already being carried out by head of the Civil Service Mr Case, independent adviser on ministers’ interests Lord Geidt and the Electoral Commission.

The Prime Minister has insisted the row over lavish refurbishments to the flat where he lives with fiancee Carrie Symonds is a “farrago of nonsense” and “I don’t think there’s anything to see here”.

He has said he “personally” paid for the renovations but has refused to say whether he received an initial donation from the Conservative Party to cover the costs.

Lord Lilley, a former deputy Tory leader, said people are getting “worked up over nothing” over the upgrade.

He told Times Radio: “The Labour Party is naturally trying to exploit this, but my point is nothing bad has happened, no public money has been siphoned off to private benefit.”

Any loan, he added, was “clearly temporary because the Prime Minister has ended up paying out of his pocket”.

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

More than 40 people killed in stampede at religious festival in Israel
The disaster happened at Mount Meron at the main celebrations of Lag BaOmer
More than 40 people have been killed in a stampede at a Jewish religious gathering in northern Israel, local authorities said.

Motti Bukchin, spokesman for the Zaka ambulance service, told Channel 12 TV on Friday that 44 people were killed in the incident.

The disaster occurred at Mount Meron at the main celebrations of Lag BaOmer, a holiday when tens of thousands of people, mostly ultra-Orthodox Jews, gather to honour Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, a 2nd century sage and mystic who is buried there.

Zaki Heller, spokesman for Israeli rescue service Magen David Adom, added about 150 people were hospitalised in the stampede.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called it a “great tragedy” and said everyone was praying for the victims.

The incident happened after midnight on Friday, and the cause of the stampede was not immediately clear. Videos circulating on social media showed large numbers of people packed together in tight spaces.

A 24-year-old witness, identified only by his first name Dvir, told the Army Radio station that “masses of people were pushed into the same corner and a vortex was created”.

He said a first row of people fell down, and then a second row, where he was standing, also began to fall down from the pressure of the stampede.

“I felt like I was about to die,” he said.

Magen David Adom tweeted that it was treating 103 people, including 38 in critical condition. Israeli media had earlier reported that a grandstand collapsed, but the rescue service said all the injuries happened in a stampede.

The Israeli military said it had dispatched medics and search and rescue teams along with helicopters to assist with a “mass casualty incident” in the area.

It was the first huge religious gathering to be held legally since Israel lifted nearly all restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic.

Large crowds traditionally light bonfires as part of the celebrations.

The country has seen cases plummet since launching one of the world’s most successful vaccination campaigns late last year.

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

Manchester United hammer Roma after second-half onslaught
Manchester United ran amok against Roma once again as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s comeback kings triumphed 6-2 and took a giant stride towards the Europa League final.
Having fallen short in four semi-finals in the last two seasons, the Red Devils were looking to underline their progress by reaching their first final under the 1999 treble hero.

Solskjaer was part of the side that thrashed Roma 7-1 in 2007 and oversaw another famous victory against the Giallorossi on Thursday as United took charge of the semi-final.

Bruno Fernandes got the first leg off to a dream start at Old Trafford, only for Lorenzo Pellegrini to swiftly level and ex-Manchester City striker Edin Dzeko to give Paulo Fonseca’s side a shock half-time lead.

But United have dug deep to bounce back time and time again this season, with Cavani inspiring the latest comeback when smashing home a superb leveller just minutes into the second half.

The veteran put Solskjaer’s men ahead after an error by substitute Antonio Mirante, before Fernandes added a penalty and Paul Pogba headed home.

Mason Greenwood came off the bench to add gloss on a night when Roma’s three first-half injuries took their toll in a dramatic first leg.

The Serie A side will be hugely disappointed with the way things unravelled, especially after responding so well to Jordan Veretout’s early injury and Fernandes’ fine ninth-minute opener.

Pogba impressively spun and wriggled into space before passing to Cavani, whose first-time ball put the Portuguese playmaker through to coolly clip over onrushing goalkeeper Pau Lopez.

Roma rallied impressively and broke from a poor Aaron Wan-Bissaka throw-in, with Rick Karsdorp eventually getting in a cross from the right that Pogba handled as he attempted to block.

Furious Roma players surrounded Carlos del Cerro Grande as he hesitated about awarding a penalty, before pointing to the spot and then running over to the assistant referee to discuss the decision. The VAR confirmed handball and Roma captain Pellegrini kept his cool to beat the recalled David De Gea from the spot.

United initially responded well to the 15th-minute setback as Fernandes looked to add to his opener, before Pogba got away a shot that Lopez stopped.

Roma’s goalkeeper got got hurt in the process and Mirante came on, with their injury misfortune hitting again as Leonardo Spinazzola became their third enforced change.

But by that point, the Italians were in dreamland as they had scored minutes earlier. Poor defending was followed by ex-United man Henrikh Mkhitaryan playing a superb disguised pass through to Pellegrini, who crossed for Dzeko to score scrappily from close range.

United were rocked on their heels but Roger Ibanez would have gifted them a stoppage-time equaliser had Mirante and then ex-United defender Chris Smalling not prevented Cavani from capitalising on that brainless pass.

The 34-year-old made no mistake when he next got a sniff three minutes into the second half. Cavani peeled off the shoulder of Smalling and met a return pass from Fernandes with an excellent strike into the top right-hand corner.

Pogba was booked for catching Mirante as United looked to regain their early lead, with a Scott McTominay cross-shot just taken away from Cavani.

The Scotland midfielder’s next contribution was mishitting an attempted clearance just wide of his own goal before Smalling fired over as Roma wasted a fine chance.

It was a let-off for Solskjaer’s side, who went ahead in the 64th minute and never looked back. Fernandes just managed to prod the ball over to Wan-Bissaka, whose low shot was poorly parried by Mirante into the path of Cavani to sweep into an empty goal.

Dzeko forced De Gea into a save, only for the visitors to fall further behind as Smalling was harshly adjudged to have caught Cavani with the follow-through of his challenge. Roma fumed at the decision to award a penalty and Fernandes kept his cool to score.

Goalscorer soon became provider as the Portuguese clipped a fine cross over for Pogba to power home a header.

Roma looked punch-drunk and United took full advantage, with substitute Greenwood striking low past Mirante having been found by a fine Cavani pass in the 86th minute.

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

Line Of Duty will not return ‘just for sake of it’, says star Martin Compston
Martin Compston has said he does not know if Line Of Duty will return after the current series, but that it will not return “just for the sake of it”.
The Scottish actor, who plays DI Steve Arnott in the hit BBC show, said it would lie in the hands of show creator Jed Mercurio.

He told The Jonathan Ross Show: “That’s nothing different for us. Jed always takes months after … there’s stuff above our pay grade, analytics, figures and all that kind of thing that comes in.

“He always takes time off. But I think it is important to say, I think this natural story arc that we’ve been on for the last six years (is coming to an end).

“We won’t come back just for the sake of it. That’s for sure.

“We’ll come back if there’s a story to tell. But, so as well, if it ends well maybe sometimes it is best to leave it. But, so, genuinely we don’t know.”

Compston, who is from Greenock in Scotland, plays an English police officer in the hit series and said he finds it a challenge to maintain his accent.

He said: “It can be hard, that dialogue on its own would be hard anyway, throw the accent in there … the scene we did the other night, 30-pager, trying to juggle the accent at the same time.

“When we’re away from it for a long time, when I do that voice I can hear him, it’s like a costume.”

Compston added that someone records his lines for him to listen to, continuing: “I walk about all day with him in my ears. It’s just graft.

“I’m not naturally good at accents. I need to work harder, which then makes me better because I’m not complacent with it.

“If you’re in these scenes with these amazing actors, amazing guest stars, it’s intimidating enough without worrying about the accent. Speaking to the wife and stuff I’ll drop it, I very much stay in it (on set).”

He described DI Arnott as “the overdressed wanker in the call centre”, adding: “He’s the guy who is having all the office affairs and no-one knows how. He’s sort of unlikeable but he’s obsessed with his job and doing the right thing.”

The current series of the crime drama, which features Kelly Macdonald as Acting Detective Superintendent Joanne Davidson, will come to an end on Sunday night.

The penultimate episode earned an average of 11 million viewers and 51.7% of the audience share, according to the broadcaster.

The final episode on Sunday will see the search for “H” – the corrupt officer responsible for a mass conspiracy – come to an end.

The Jonathan Ross Show is on May 1 at 9.35pm on ITV.

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

Captain Tom’s birthday fundraiser begins with thousands to take part
Thousands of people up and down the country are getting involved in charity challenges to celebrate what would be Captain Sir Tom Moore’s 101st birthday.
As part of the Captain Tom 100 campaign, people are being encouraged to create their own charity challenge themed around the number 100.

Sir Tom’s daughter Hannah Ingram-Moore and grandchildren Benjie, 17, and Georgia, 12, will be at Lord’s Cricket Ground on Friday – which would have been the Second World War veteran’s 101st birthday – to mark the start of the Captain Tom 100 weekend by ringing the ground’s famous five-minute bell.

The family will be following in Sir Tom’s footsteps by walking 100 laps of their garden in Marston Moretaine in Bedfordshire as part of the campaign which will run until Bank Holiday Monday.

Ms Ingram-Moore said: “The whole Captain Tom 100 challenge was something that my father was firmly round the table talking with us about.

“It has his imprint in it.

“There was only one thing we could do and that was carry on what my father started by walking 100 laps of the runway, the driveway that became so famous.

“It’s tinged with a little sadness but mostly absolutely about hope for the future and ensuring that his lasting legacy of hope lives on.”

She added that her father would be “so impressed by some of the incredible challenges people are coming up with”.

London Marathon Events, which has been working with the Captain Tom Foundation to organise the event, said thousands of people will take part across the country.

This includes six-year-old Betty-Leigh Allison, who will be baking 100 cakes to raise money for Garden House Hospice Care in north Hertfordshire.

Drawing inspiration from Sir Tom, she had previously cycled for one mile a day for 100 days during the first lockdown last year to raise funds for the same charity.

Five-year-old Lewis Whele, from Essex, who has cerebral palsy and featured on the Captain Tom 100 promotional video, will be aiming to walk 100 steps without using his sticks to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital in London.

Meanwhile, schoolchildren across the UK will take part in the challenge through a YouTube assembly which will feature Ms Ingram-Moore and a special message from fitness guru Joe Wicks.

Elsewhere, pupils at Bacton Primary School, in Bacton, Suffolk, will create 100 postcards to give to elderly neighbours and donate 100 items to their local foodbank.

A host of celebrities have pledged to take part, with David Beckham to do 100 keepy-uppies, Dame Mary Berry baking 100 cakes and Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill set to complete 100 pogo jumps.

Dame Judi Dench plans to eat 100 chocolates, while Joe Root is to hit a cricket ball 100 times and Amanda Holden is taking on hula-hooping.

Dame Judi said: “Captain Tom made such a positive impact through his record-breaking fundraising last year.

“The Captain Tom 100 is a wonderful way to continue his legacy, inspiring hope for generations to come.”

Joining a number of businesses in the event is Great Western Railway (GWR), which will send the “Captain Tom Centennial”, an intercity express train, on an epic journey across its network as it stops at 100 stations in just over 40 hours, covering nearly 1,500 miles.

F1 team Williams Racing is aiming to complete 100 pitstops over the course of the Portuguese Grand Prix weekend to raise money for its official charity the Spinal Injuries Association.

A bronze statue of Sir Tom, created by sculptor Andrian Melka and close to completion, will be donated to Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.

Sir Tom raised more than £32 million for the NHS by walking 100 laps of his garden before his 100th birthday on April 30 last year.

He died at Bedford Hospital on February 2 after testing positive for Covid-19.

Organisers are encouraging people to use the hashtag #CaptainTom100 on social media to share their charity challenges.

For details, see www.captaintom100.com

Published: 30/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub

Covid-19 rates drop below 50 per 100,000 in 19 out of 20 local areas
Covid-19 case rates have dropped below 50 cases per 100,000 people in more than 95% of local areas of the UK, new analysis shows.
It is the first time since the start of September that as many as 19 in 20 areas have seen their rates plunge below such a symbolic level.

Around one in 10 areas are even recording rates in single figures.

It is almost a complete turnaround from how the data looked three months ago, when the second wave of coronavirus had just peaked.

In the week to January 24, only three of the 380 local areas in the UK, 1%, had Covid-19 rates below 50 cases per 100,000 people.

The latest figures, for the week to April 24, show the number is now 364 out of 380, or 96%.

The analysis, which has been compiled by the PA news agency from health agency data, is fresh evidence of the combined impact of lockdowns and Covid-19 vaccines in driving down the spread of coronavirus within the community.

In Wales every local area is now recording fewer than 50 cases per 100,000 people, while in Scotland all but one local area, North Lanarkshire, has dropped below 50.

Northern Ireland has three of its 11 local areas above 50: Derry City & Strabane, Fermanagh & Omagh and Mid Ulster.

And in England only a dozen areas are still above 50, ranging from Selby on 109.2, the highest rate anywhere in the UK, to Slough on 53.5.

Three local areas, Maldon in Essex, Shetland and the Western Isles, are currently recording case rates of zero.

The proportion of areas with case rates below 50 per 100,000 people first hit 95% in the week to April 19.

Prior to this, the last time so many areas had rates below 50 per 100,000 was in the seven days to September 3, nearly eight months ago.

The sharp decline in Covid-19 case rates since January reflects the success of the lockdowns imposed across the UK just after Christmas, which helped limit the circulation of the virus as well as drive down levels of infection within the community.

Restrictions are now being eased in various parts of the country, though it is too soon to see any impact of this on case rates.

More recently, the roll-out of Covid-19 vaccines has also played a role in reducing the number of new reported cases of coronavirus.

Research published last week by the Office for National Statistics and Oxford University found that Covid-19 infections “fell significantly” by 65% after a first dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca or Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines, while two doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine offered similar levels of protection as a previous Covid-19 infection.

Vaccination was also found to be just as effective in individuals over 75 years or with underlying health conditions, as it was in those under 75 years or without health conditions

Nearly two-thirds of adults in the UK have now had a first dose of vaccine, while a quarter of adults have received both doses and are therefore fully vaccinated.

Published: 29/04/2021 by Radio NewsHub


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