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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 31, 2021 1:00pm-1:31pm GMT

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the number of nhs staff off work in england because of covid went up by more than 40% during christmas week. one in 30 people in the uk were estimated to have tested positive for covid heading into christmas, a new record high for infections. the staff that are at work will be caring for more patients, trying to do more to cover for their missing colleagues, working extra hours, starting early, finishing late. the pressure will be immense. the prime minister, borisjohnson, has urged people in the uk to take a covid test before celebrating new year's eve tonight. the number of teenagers killed in stabbings in london this year reaches the highest in more than a decade after two further attacks in the capital. mourners in south africa have been paying their respects to the late
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archbishop desmond tutu. tackling the cladding crisis in australia — what can the uk learn from down under? and right now in australia, they're celebrating the arrival of 2022 amid heightened covid restrictions. welcome to the bbc news at one. new figures show that covid—related absences in acute nhs trusts in england went up by more than 40% during christmas week. an average of more than 25,000 health workers were off sick or isolating each day. london was again the worst—hit with about 4% of staff in acute trusts absent, up by nearly 60% on the week before.
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it comes after latest estimates from the 0ns survey suggest one in 30 people in the uk tested positive for covid heading into christmas, a new record high for infections. hospitals in northampton, sheffield and rotherham have temporarily suspended visiting due to the high number of omicron cases. 0ur health correspondent anna collinson has more. while most of us are looking forward to celebrating this new year's eve, it's a different story for nhs workers. with winter pressures intensifying, made worse by staff sickness. , . ' intensifying, made worse by staff sickness. , . , ., intensifying, made worse by staff sickness. , . ' ., ., ., intensifying, made worse by staff sickness. , ., ., ., ., ~ sickness. the staff that are at work will be caring _ sickness. the staff that are at work will be caring for— sickness. the staff that are at work will be caring for more _ sickness. the staff that are at work will be caring for more patient, - will be caring for more patient, trying to do more to cover for their missing colleagues, working extra hours, starting early, finishing late, the pressure will be immense. that absences are already leading to cancelled appointments and longer waiting times. now, new data shows more than 25,000 hospital staff in england were absent each day due to covid during the christmas week, a
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42% increase on the previous seven days. at this time of year, we would normally expect around 5% of staff to be off sick, but this winter it is nearly double that and it is mainly down to covid. london has been the worst—hit, with some of the highest absences, seen here at great 0rmond street hospital. in the week leading up to christmas, new data by the office for national statistics suggests an estimated one in the 15 people in london had covid, the highest in england. uk also saw a new record high. scientists are warning there is real uncertainty about what new year will bring. people currently who are very sadly dying of covid were probably infected on average something like 35 days ago, so, this was really before only because started to transmit. it's there for too early to say what the impact of the mcron is going to be on more severe disease, and it has mostly been
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circulating in children, people in contract with children, and it is now going to spread into older adults at much higher risk of severe disease. ., ., u, , adults at much higher risk of severe disease. ., ., , ., ,, disease. there are now calls for nhs workers to be _ disease. there are now calls for nhs workers to be prioritised _ disease. there are now calls for nhs workers to be prioritised for - workers to be prioritised for lateral flow tests to ease winter pressures. the government says the number of kits will triple by early next year after supply was recently described as patchy.— described as patchy. some pharmacists _ described as patchy. some pharmacists for _ described as patchy. some pharmacists for example l described as patchy. some - pharmacists for example didn't receive — pharmacists for example didn't receive anything yesterday so i have been asking around in terms of, like, _ been asking around in terms of, like. give — been asking around in terms of, like, give us a proper supply. some pharmacies— like, give us a proper supply. some pharmacies are receiving one box, some _ pharmacies are receiving one box, some are — pharmacies are receiving one box, some are receiving two, some receiving — some are receiving two, some receiving none. so, it's very patchy _ receiving none. so, it's very patchy. if_ receiving none. so, it's very patchy. if we are to meet the demand and follow _ patchy. if we are to meet the demand and follow the government guidelines, there has got to be better— guidelines, there has got to be better organisation around this. the key weapon around omicron is the booster_ key weapon around omicron is the boosteriab— key weapon around omicron is the boosterjab and governance in england. _ boosterjab and governance in england, scotland, wales and northern ireland say all eligible adults_ northern ireland say all eligible adults have now been offered one. whether_ adults have now been offered one. whether this will be enough to
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protect the nhs, its staff and patients in the new year is still unsure. anna collinson, bbc news. no new restrictions have been introduced in england for new year's eve celebrations this evening, but in scotland, wales and northern ireland, tighter rules are now in place for hospitality venues and indoor gatherings. the prime minister has urged people to take a covid test before going to any parties. so, how will people be bringing in the new year tonight? charlotte gallagher reports. how london rang in 2020. when we hadn't even heard of coronavirus. but for a second year running, big events like this are being cancelled right across the uk. and how you can celebrate depends on where you live in britain, or where you travel to. in england, there aren't any new restrictions but people are being urged to take a lateral flow test and celebrate outside if possible. these people in salford are feeling
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cautious. , ., , ., , cautious. there is a plan in place that some _ cautious. there is a plan in place that some friends _ cautious. there is a plan in place that some friends might - cautious. there is a plan in place that some friends might be - cautious. there is a plan in place . that some friends might be meeting up that some friends might be meeting up in a local pub, i am a little dubious as to whether i want to, so i am more likely to end up spending it at home. ,, , ., it at home. spending it with a coule it at home. spending it with a ample of _ it at home. spending it with a couple of friends, _ it at home. spending it with a couple of friends, probably i it at home. spending it with a couple of friends, probably a | couple of friends, probably a takeaway, certainly not going into town _ takeaway, certainly not going into town. we — takeaway, certainly not going into town. ~ ., ., ., ., town. we would love to get together with one more _ town. we would love to get together with one more family, _ town. we would love to get together with one more family, my _ town. we would love to get together with one more family, my sister's i with one more family, my sister's family— with one more family, my sister's family but— with one more family, my sister's family but we _ with one more family, my sister's family but we are _ with one more family, my sister's family but we are just _ with one more family, my sister's family but we are just waiting - with one more family, my sister's family but we are just waiting to i family but we are just waiting to see if— family but we are just waiting to see if anybody— family but we are just waiting to see if anybody is _ family but we are just waiting to see if anybody is ill. _ family but we are just waiting to see if anybody is ill. it’s - family but we are just waiting to see if anybody is ill.— see if anybody is ill. it's 'ust covid, covid is i see if anybody is ill. it's 'ust covid, covid is the i see if anybody is ill. it's 'ust covid, covid is the one h see if anybody is ill. it'sjust covid, covid is the one that l see if anybody is ill. it's just l covid, covid is the one that is stopping us. in covid, covid is the one that is stepping ne— covid, covid is the one that is stopping us. covid, covid is the one that is sto -|n~ us. ., ., ., , ., stopping us. in london, others are read to stopping us. in london, others are ready to celebrate. _ stopping us. in london, others are ready to celebrate. we _ stopping us. in london, others are ready to celebrate. we are - stopping us. in london, others are ready to celebrate. we are not - stopping us. in london, others are ready to celebrate. we are not as. ready to celebrate. we are not as stressed about _ ready to celebrate. we are not as stressed about it _ ready to celebrate. we are not as stressed about it as _ ready to celebrate. we are not as stressed about it as we _ ready to celebrate. we are not as stressed about it as we used - ready to celebrate. we are not as stressed about it as we used to i stressed about it as we used to be, and also the club where we're going, you have to have a covid pass so i feel pretty safe. you have to have a covid pass so i feel pretty safe-— feel pretty safe. mixing is limited to three households _ feel pretty safe. mixing is limited to three households in _ feel pretty safe. mixing is limited to three households in scotland l feel pretty safe. mixing is limited i to three households in scotland and there is social distancing in pubs and bars. edinburgh's famous hogmanay party has been cancelled for another year. it’s hogmanay party has been cancelled for another year.— for another year. it's looking ok, it's not looking _ for another year. it's looking ok, it's not looking anything - for another year. it's looking ok, it's not looking anything like - for another year. it's looking ok, it's not looking anything like we | it's not looking anything like we would be hoping to have at this time of year. this is when we hope as
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well as the bells ringing, the tills are ringing. and that isn't happening this year. in northern ireland, happening this year. in northern ireland. only _ happening this year. in northern ireland, only three _ happening this year. in northern ireland, only three households l happening this year. in northern l ireland, only three households are allowed to mix. nightclubs are shut and there will be no dancing in other venues. while in wales, groups of no more than six can meet in pubs and indoor gatherings are limited to 30 people. with tight restrictions in parts of the uk, some people are choosing to travel to england. i wouldn't be surprised if a fair few people from wales come over the border tonight, people from wales come over the bordertonight, i people from wales come over the border tonight, i wouldn't be surprised if people came down from scotland as well. previous times during covid when we have been able to open but there has been restrictions in wales and scotland, we've seen people coming over. we’re we've seen people coming over. we've come u- we've seen people coming over. we've come up from — we've seen people coming over. we've come up from bridgend _ we've seen people coming over. we've come up from bridgend to _ we've seen people coming over. we've come up from bridgend to spend new years— come up from bridgend to spend new year's eve _ come up from bridgend to spend new year's eve in london and we're hoping — year's eve in london and we're hoping to— year's eve in london and we're hoping to come down here and see some _ hoping to come down here and see some fireworks. it's all banned in wales, _ some fireworks. it's all banned in wales, so— some fireworks. it's all banned in wales, so come up here and enjoy it. there _ wales, so come up here and enjoy it. there are _ wales, so come up here and enjoy it. there are no — wales, so come up here and enjoy it. there are no restrictions about crossing borders, but the scottish
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government is asking people not to, although many are still heading south to places like carlisle. for the first time since 2017, all four of big ben's dials will be on display to ring in 2022. more than 1000 pieces have been replaced or cleaned. 0ne 1000 pieces have been replaced or cleaned. one part of new year's eve thatis cleaned. one part of new year's eve that is making a welcome return. as we've just been hearing, restrictions are different across the uk and some party—goers from scotland and wales may be crossing into england to celebrate. 0livia richwald is in carlisle for us. maxine, from here in carlisle it takes just 20 minutes to get to gretna on the scottish border. this city has a really vibrant nightlife so it is already a big draw for people who live over the border in dumfries and galloway. let's go into one of carlisle's many hospitality
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establishments. this one actually cancelled their new year's eve party here before christmas and the manager told me they did that because they were worried about many of their young staff who have just had one vaccine so far. so, when they cancelled their party they also lost a lot of room bookings but since then many of those rooms have been rebooked, many of them by people who are travelling from scotland and are due to arrive in the next few hours. nicola sturgeon and the scottish government have urged scots not to cross the border into england to party. i asked staff here whether they were upset that many were coming here and they said no, they're not, they totally understand and in fact if it was the other way round, they would be doing executive same thing.— executive same thing. thank you very much, executive same thing. thank you very much. olivia — executive same thing. thank you very much, olivia richwald, _ executive same thing. thank you very much, olivia richwald, in _ executive same thing. thank you very much, olivia richwald, in carlisle. - and our political correspondent iain watsonjoins me now. as we've been hearing, borisjohnson says he's reached the target of offering all adults in england a boosterjab, but there are challenges ahead in the new year? that's right, martin, certainly people have been offered the booster jab in england by 31st december, nhs
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leaders are saying as many as as fourin leaders are saying as many as as four in ten people are not keeping their appointments, and downing street acknowledges part of that is because so many people are actually catching covid and having to put their boosters off. —— martine. as their boosters off. —— martine. as the pandemic persists, so do the political challenges. borisjohnson clearly doesn't like to follow scotland, wales and northern ireland down the road of further restrictions, which is why i think he is using part of his new year message to want people to getjabbed otherwise they could end up in intensive care. but chris hopson, in charge of nhs trusts, says, they will have to be prepared to increase restrictions as the number of older people seriously ill in hospital begins to spiral. if he does do that, then borisjohnson could be on a collision course with many of his own mps when parliament resumes next week. but there are also challenges for labour. in his new year message, keir starmer is saying he will set out in detail labours plans for the country next year. the challenge is
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to get him to vote positively for his party, notjust as a protest vote against the prime minister for the handling of the pandemic. my prediction for 2022, for what it's worth, is that the pressure on both main party leaders at westminster will intensify. iain main party leaders at westminster will intensify-— will intensify. iain watson, thank ou ve will intensify. iain watson, thank you very much- _ a murder investigation has been launched following the death of a 16—year—old boy in hillingdon in west london. the stabbing on thursday evening happened shortly after a 15—year—old boy was also found fatally wounded in ashburton park in croydon. there have now been 30 teenage homicides in the capital this year, surpassing a peak of 29 in 2008. our home affairs correspondent tom symonds is in west london now. what's the latest, tom? well, this is the scene of that murder in hillingdon. it happened just on the other side of where those detectives and search team officers are standing. they've been here this morning looking in bins and rubbish piles the murder weapon. violent crime is down generally in
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the uk but in london, there have been 128 murders in the last year, of which 81 were things, 50 involved young people under the age of 25, and 30 involved children under the age of 18. and that figure is bucking the national trend. why is it happening? well, police this morning have pointed to rows on social media breaking out into the real world. they've talked about the way in which drugs are being sold and young people are being sucked into that process. the mayor of london has talked about the increasing ferocity of this sort of attack on young people, perhaps pushing up the number of murders. but i think there is probably another factor, but i think there is probably anotherfactor, though many agencies are looking at this currently, and thatis are looking at this currently, and that is covid. covid has disrupted society and it has added to the disruption of the lives of young people who already have quite disrupted lives. when youth clubs are closed, when schools are put, when children are not allowed into
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schools, that reduces the connection between young people and the rest of society, and many people believe that might be fuelling and adding to the level of violence that we're seeing. we had this murder potentially here in hillingdon, another one in croydon, the year is ending on a very poor note for the metropolitan police in this area. victims of ghislaine maxwell have been speaking of their relief at the guilty verdicts in her sex trafficking trial in new york. she now faces a lengthy prison sentence after being convicted for grooming underage girls to be abused by the disgraced financierjeffrey epstein. her family are backing an appeal against her conviction. sanchia berg has the latest. they were painted in court as partners in crime. maxwell groomed the teenage girls, epstein abused them. he died in prison, now she faces decades behind bars. to the relief of their victims. we faces decades behind bars. to the relief of their victims.— relief of their victims. we have a lot of work _
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relief of their victims. we have a lot of work to _ relief of their victims. we have a lot of work to do _ relief of their victims. we have a lot of work to do in _ relief of their victims. we have a lot of work to do in this - relief of their victims. we have a lot of work to do in this country. relief of their victims. we have a l lot of work to do in this country in terms of holding people accountable and educating about things like grooming. i didn't know when i was 16 i had no idea, i had never heard that term and i didn't understand what was happening to me, this combination of being given gifts and being given positive attention and then also having this abuse and these boundary violations. ghislaine maxwell was — these boundary violations. ghislaine maxwell was found _ these boundary violations. ghislaine maxwell was found guilty _ these boundary violations. ghislaine maxwell was found guilty on - these boundary violations. ghislaine maxwell was found guilty on five - these boundary violations. ghislaine maxwell was found guilty on five of| maxwell was found guilty on five of the six charges. it was a tightly focused case, thejury deliberated for a0 hours, some legal experts doubt an appeal will succeed, but thatis doubt an appeal will succeed, but that is the plan, her brother said the family challenged the victim's version of events. i’m the family challenged the victim's version of events.— version of events. i'm not saying that they are _ version of events. i'm not saying that they are lying, _ version of events. i'm not saying that they are lying, i _ version of events. i'm not saying that they are lying, i mean, - version of events. i'm not saying that they are lying, i mean, it i version of events. i'm not saying i that they are lying, i mean, it may well be that they were victims of jeffrey epstein, but i do not accept that they were victims of ghislaine, that they were victims of ghislaine, thatis that they were victims of ghislaine, that is my position and that is also her position. the that is my position and that is also her position-— her position. the “ury believed the victims. lawyers — her position. the jury believed the victims. lawyers who _ her position. the jury believed the victims. lawyers who represent i her position. the jury believed the i victims. lawyers who represent them and others who've been abused say
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the verdict will encourage people to come forward. i the verdict will encourage people to come forward-— come forward. i think one of the real fears _ come forward. i think one of the real fears that _ come forward. i think one of the real fears that any _ come forward. i think one of the real fears that any victim - come forward. i think one of the real fears that any victim in i come forward. i think one of the. real fears that any victim in these high-profile — real fears that any victim in these high—profile cases— real fears that any victim in these high—profile cases has— real fears that any victim in these high—profile cases has is- real fears that any victim in these high—profile cases has is that i real fears that any victim in these high—profile cases has is that the| high—profile cases has is that the actual_ high—profile cases has is that the actual perpetrator— high—profile cases has is that the actual perpetrator is _ high—profile cases has is that the actual perpetrator is going - high—profile cases has is that the actual perpetrator is going to i high—profile cases has is that the actual perpetrator is going to be i actual perpetrator is going to be found _ actual perpetrator is going to be found not— actual perpetrator is going to be found not guilty. _ actual perpetrator is going to be found not guilty. and _ actual perpetrator is going to be found not guilty. and what - actual perpetrator is going to be found not guilty. and what we i actual perpetrator is going to be i found not guilty. and what we will find i_ found not guilty. and what we will find i suspect— found not guilty. and what we will find i suspect is— found not guilty. and what we will find i suspect is that _ found not guilty. and what we will find i suspect is that now- found not guilty. and what we will find i suspect is that now she i found not guilty. and what we will find i suspect is that now she hasl find i suspect is that now she has been _ find i suspect is that now she has been found — find i suspect is that now she has been found guilty, _ find i suspect is that now she has been found guilty, you _ find i suspect is that now she has been found guilty, you may- find i suspect is that now she has been found guilty, you may well. find i suspect is that now she has i been found guilty, you may well find more _ been found guilty, you may well find more people — been found guilty, you may well find more people reporting _ been found guilty, you may well find more people reporting matters- been found guilty, you may well find more people reporting matters to i been found guilty, you may well find. more people reporting matters to the police _ more people reporting matters to the police and _ more people reporting matters to the police and now— more people reporting matters to the police. and now that _ more people reporting matters to the police. and now that will _ more people reporting matters to the police. and now that will be - more people reporting matters to the police. and now that will be a - police. and now that will be a matter— police. and now that will be a matter for— police. and now that will be a matter for the _ police. and now that will be a matter for the met— police. and now that will be a matter for the met police. i police. and now that will be a i matter for the met police. the sotli . ht matter for the met police. the spotlight falls _ matter for the met police. spotlight falls now on others connected with maxwell and epstein. virginia says they made her have sex with prince andrew. he says he doesn't even remember meeting her. but she is suing him in a new york court. the latest hearing is expected next week. he sanchia berg, bbc news. mourners in south africa have been paying their respects to the late archbishop desmond tutu, who is lying in state for a second day ahead of his funeral tomorrow. the anti—apartheid campaigner died on sunday at the age of 90. 0ur south africa correspondent nomsa maseko is in cape town. what is happening today, nomsa?
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thousands of people have been flocking to the st george's cathedral to file past the body of archbishop desmond tutu. his remains arrived earlier today, this morning, accompanied by two of his daughters. what we know so far is that just over 2000 people have now filed past the archbishop's body to pay their last respects. we know as well that the government and the family are now finalising the programme for the funeral tomorrow. now finalising the programme for the funeraltomorrow. it now finalising the programme for the funeral tomorrow. it is going to be a state funeral, it is expected to start at ten o'clock local time with guests possibly arriving from eight o'clock. people have been speaking fondly about archbishop desmond tutu, even making reference to the fact that the coffin chosen is a very simple pine wood coffin, in exactly the accordance of the archbishop, who said he does not
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want any ostentatious or lavish spending for his funeral, also saying that he does not want a military parade, and also does not want any pomp and ceremony. he just wants one bouquet of carnations on top of the coffin as the funeral continues tomorrow.— top of the coffin as the funeral continues tomorrow. nomsa maseko, thank ou continues tomorrow. nomsa maseko, thank you very _ continues tomorrow. nomsa maseko, thank you very much. _ in the aftermath of the grenfell tower fire in 2017, dangerous cladding was found on thousands of high—rise buildings around the world. some countries, like australia, took rapid action. in the state of victoria, a taskforce was set up three weeks after grenfell to find out how many buildings were unsafe and a tax on construction firms has helped to pay for the work needed. here in the uk, there are no official figures on how many residential blocks are wrapped in dangerous materials and the government's cladding fund only covers buildings above a certain height. sarah corker has been finding out what british politicians can learn from their australian counterparts in tackling the cladding crisis. australia had an early
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warning about cladding. this is 201a in melbourne, an apartment block catches fire. the flames spread quickly. it's wrapped in the same type of cladding as grenfell tower. thankfully, everyone got out in time. the government acted quickly and started inspecting buildings. after the grenfell tragedy, that ramped up. they decided they needed to look at every building that was built since 1997 that was three storeys or more. and i think this was one of the real successes of the cladding story here, was that they were able to identify all those different buildings, do thousands of inspections, and they now know which buildings have combustible cladding. in contrast, in the uk, there are still no official figures on the number of blocks with unsafe cladding. labour and cladding campaigners have repeatedly called for ministers to follow the australian approach. thangam debbonaire. the government could have done as victoria in australia did — set up a task force to assess the extent of dangerous cladding, prioritised by risk. this is cladding being
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removed in melbourne. a building levy has forced construction firms to help pay for the work. it is an international problem... politicians in victoria told me they've treated this as a public safety emergency. $300 million being raised through a building permit levy, because people understood, understand absolutely, the nexus between the levy and getting buildings fixed, because ultimately, this is about community safety. and we are the only state in australia that is doing this cladding rectification work. the other really important point, of course, is that we also moved to ban flammable cladding, and this is in fact similar to the product that was on the grenfell building. you cannot put this product on any building here in victoria, finished. the british government has introduced similar bans, and on both continents, those living in cladded buildings share similar frustrations. all that cladding, all those trimmings... government funding doesn't cover everything. it's going to cost us all some
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thousands of dollars each, as owners, to get it removed. yeah, it's been stressful, and even more than that, frustrating. - this cladding shouldn't have been there in the first place. _ consumer protection in this space is very little or none. and really, it needs to improve, because at the moment, we're barely meeting minimum standards. we're trying to hit minimum standards, and as cladding shows, we don't always. the australian approach isn't perfect but it is held up as an example of how to deal with this complex and costly problems. sarah corker, bbc news. manchester city says its player joao cancelo has been assaulted during a burglary at his home. the portuguese defender posted an image of his injuries on social media. the player described his attackers as cowards but said he was thankful his family were unhurt. wildfires in the the us state of colorado have
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destroyed at least 300 homes, and are being described as the worst in the modern history of the state. tens of thousands of people have been evacuated from the suburbs outside the city of denver as well as patients and staff at one hospital. weather experts spoke of their disbelief that such a large fire could have taken hold in december. train passengers are being advised to alter their new year's eve plans because of planned strike action. the operator cross country has cancelled services across england, scotland and wales and will be operating a "very limited timetable" on other routes. and southern has also announced none of its trains will run to or from london victoria until the 10th of january because of staff shortages caused by covid. new rules come in tomorrow meaning that people who stick with their home or car insurance provider won't get a worse deal than new customers. the new rules brought in by the financial regulator are designed to make the system fairer. ben thompson reports.
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charging customers different prices for the same product or service isn't anything new, but the financial regulator found that insurance customers who stayed with the same provider for years on end could be paying hundreds of pounds more than new customers, who are encouraged to sign up with cheaper deals. and that's true for sean's mum, who's been with the same car insurance provider for ten years. i came over to see my mother and we were chatting about her car insurance, which was due for renewal. when she told me how much she was paying i was amazed, especially in comparison with what i was paying. we talked about comparison websites. she'd never used one, never been on one, so i said to her, get the laptop out, let's have a look. when she actually saw the quotes and saw how much smaller the amounts were compared to what she was playing, she was absolutely gobsmacked. and if, like sean's mum, you just click on renew when you're sent a new quote from your insurer, you could find you're paying far too much. and the numbers really do start to add up. if you look at car insurance,
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the regulator found that on average new customers were being charged £285 per year. but existing ones were paying much more. in fact they were charged £85 extra every year. and when it comes to home insurance, the numbers were pretty similar. on average, new customers were paying £165 per year, £120 less than those who had been with the same insurer for many years. the regulator says it now wants to ban that practice and that will come into force tomorrow. they think it could save customers £a.2 billion over the next ten years. but it may mean that some customers see their prices actually go up. it's hard to know exactly what's going to happen, but it's expected that the overall cost of insurance will increase, because even if you've been a loyal customer and you see some price reductions, and if you're a new customer you might see some price increases, the overall cost is actually going to go up.
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there's a couple of other factors that are going on here as well, and that's the fact that the number of claims that are happening in car insurance, for example, and the cost of claims in both the car insurance and home insurance are going up. the best advice, though, as always, is to shop around, to find the company that has overall cheaper prices, or insurance that is better suited to what you need. and it's also worth giving them a call and haggling. if your deal is about to renew, ask them if there's any flexibility to the cost. flexibility to reduce the cost. and have a think about how you buy your insurance. maybe use an insurance broker that has different offers, or call the firm directly themselves. and if not, use a price comparison website to check what you're paying and how it compares to their rivals. ben thompson. 2022 has arrived in a number of countries including new zealand — one of the first places to mark the new year with big celebrations.
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the government recently eased coronavirus restrictions, meaning crowds were able to gather in auckland for the first time since august to see fireworks. the city's harbour bridge and skytower were also lit up. tonight, it's a case of happy new years & years. 0lly alexander is following in the 31st of december footsteps of robbie williams, craig david and alicia keys by playing the big bbc one concert either side of midnight. 0lly�*s had a remarkable 2021, starring in one of the hit tv shows of the year — it's a sin. tonight he'll bejoined by the pet shop boys, who in 1987 had a huge number one single with the song that the show is named after. kylie minogue will also be making an appearance. 0lly alexander spoke to our entertainment correspondent colin paterson during rehearsals. # sanctify the love that you crave.# 0lly alexander, when you got the call saying do you want to do the bbc new year's eve show,
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how did you react? i said yes! oh, my gosh, i can't believe... i feel very lucky to be doing it. i can't tell you. it's such an honour to be bringing in the new year's with everyone watching. quite a responsibility, because there will be a lot of people at home this year. that's true, actually, yeah. i am actually quite nervous, so thanks for making me more nervous. so what are you planning, then? well, obviously, i'll be doing my own hits. but also some really exciting collaborations with kylie minogue and the pet shop boys. because this is the thing, it is going to be a very wide audience that is watching this, so you need to play songs that people can sing and dance along to. 0h, don't worry, you can sing and dance along to every single song. # i'm chasing after midnight. # show me the way to your heart. kylie minogue, you have worked with her a couple of times. the kylie minogue, global icon, superstar, legend, yes. i first met her in 2015, actually. we supported her, supported her show. over the years, i wheedled my way in there, so now i'm like actually her friend. what's the secret to doing that? just don't give up. if you dream big!
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the pet shop boys. # everywhere i'm going to. # it's a sin.# neil tennant and chris lowe. oh, my gosh, two legends. the stories they have and people they've worked with over the years, and just being able to call myself one of those people is very, very cool. do they give you advice, do they try and look after you in the industry? yeah, well, i really value the conversations i've had with the pet shop boys, with kylie, so much because i still get so nervous and feel like my confidence takes a knock. like i have those days. and they do, as well. kylie's telling me about how she feels that, sometimes. and neil, so, you know, it's encouraging to know that they are still like that. they are human beings! with the pet shop boys, will it be it's a sin you do? yeah, well... yes, it will. i was like, maybe you will have to wait and see, but i've spoilt it. yes, we're going to do it. you get all these stories and all these rumours and all these nightmares, because that's what they want you to think — that lot. it's almost hard to believe
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that was this year. because it was january. what kind of impact has it had on you, that show? being able to play that character was incredible, because i'm a gay man, i got to get a link to my past, in a way, by playing something that was set in the �*80s, but that has... the aids crisis directly impacts me today and so many of us, so learning all of that has been hugely profound for me. # then you're telling me you can't breathe. # well, you should set me free. # baby, if you're over me.# 2022 is almost upon us. new year's resolutions, what are you going for? my new year's resolution last year was not to search my name on the internet. and i have managed a whole year, so i'm just going to keep that one going, as well. well, congratulations, 0lly alexander. thank you very much for speaking to us right at the end of 2021. thank you for speaking to me. # only got a second to midnight.# the big new years & years eve party
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starts tonight on bbc one at 11:25pm in england, wales and northern ireland. time for a look at the weather. here's ben rich. and a picture that sums up how mild it is at the moment. it's really bizarre. i would say mild but we are pretty much in the warm category. it doesn't feel anything like it should for the final day of december. some of us getting to enjoy some sunshine which we have not seen much of lately. this was lincolnshire, one of the many places where temperatures are already up around 15. it is the warmest new year's eve on record. look at the temperatures at midnight, they do not drop very far. in some places the temperatures will creep up a little bit by the time we are ringing in the start of 2022. exceptionally mild, even warm, you could call it. windy but dry for many. not quite for all, a little bit of rain around this afternoon, parts of northern ireland see patchy
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rain returning and patchy rain continuing across scotland. england and wales, particularly further east, seeing spells of sunshine. the wind will be an increasing feature, increasingly windy especially up west. as we head through the evening many places will be dry but we see a band of rain working across northern ireland, into south—west scotland and north—west england by midnight, some could be quite heavy. confirmation of the extraordinarily high temperatures as we get to midnight. the wind continuing to pick up as well. gusts of up to a0 or 50 mph, pick up as well. gusts of up to a0 or50 mph, may be pick up as well. gusts of up to a0 or 50 mph, may be even strongerfor some exposed western coasts. as we start january the 1st, low pressure is in charge, moving to the north—west of the uk. lots of white lines and isobars are squeezing together showing we will still have brisk wind to take us through new year's day. one weatherfront, a band of cloud and rain working east out of wales into england, not necessarily widespread rain but it could be heavy

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