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Welcome to BBC London News with me, Alice Bhandukravi.
We start tonight with more on those concerns about the state of the NHS.
BBC London has been given exclusive behind-the-scenes access at one
of the capital's busiest hospitals, on the day that the health service
warned that care is becoming unsustainable due to
Earlier, the head of the NHS here in London said hospitals
are busier than ever, and that things are set to get worse.
Our political correspondent Karl Mercer has been to the Chelsea
and Westminster Hospital to see how they're coping.
Like every other emergency department in London,
They're seeing around 450 people a day here.
The number they have to admit to hospital is up 13%
We are seeing unprecedented numbers at the moment,
And more and more people coming through the door.
The hospital - again, like most across the capital - is full.
The problem a common one, of not being able to move
I mean, every single bed in both our sites
And it's almost a case of one in, one out, as soon as we can discharge
someone, we can move someone through the system.
So what is the NHS doing to tackle the issues?
Can I check who we've got on from the surge hub, please?
Five times a day, every day, this team at NHS London gather
to take the temperature of hospitals across the capital.
Staffing, the usual few gaps of registered nurses due
to short-term sickness and no-shows from the agency.
From an infection control perspective, they have seven
We're just wondering what level of escalation they are at?
They check on things like staffing levels,
how many patients are waiting to be discharged, how long patients
are waiting to be seen and how many beds are available.
And they too have cancelled any nonclinical activities for nurses
today and brought everybody back out onto the floor.
So the focus is often on emergency departments but what we see
is the full picture, the flow through the hospital
and that's often what we are able to contribute to.
So that it is not just an Emergency Department problem.
No, OK, Emma, do you want to move on?
Today, as we filmed, the NHS boss in London joined the call,
at a time when the service is being stretched as never before.
It is the busiest we have ever seen it.
We are about 10% up on where we were in terms of hospital
activity year on year, this time last year.
111 during the Christmas period and the first few
weeks into the New Year, about 40% up.
But things are expected to get even tougher in the coming weeks,
with cold weather and flu outbreaks on the way.
What used to be a busy winter surge is not expected to end until May.
We heard there that things are going to get worse. Why is that? The NHS
is hearing from GPs, services like 111 and A that more children are
presenting with flu. Traditionally, if you see more children presenting
in flu, about two weeks later, you see a spike in the number of adults
getting it. As we heard in the report, there is also normally a
spike in the last week in January and as we know, there are reports of
cold weather on the way which will add to the problem. Many would think
that just throwing money at the problem will help and I'm sure many
NHS hospital directors would not refuse it. But the regional director
of the NHS in London actually said it would be better to put money into
social care which is all about unblocking the system, getting
people out who are not clinically ill any more but still in hospital,
out of the bed and freeing up beds. Thank you for joining us.
London's controversial Garden Bridge is on the verge of collapse
after accounts published today show a significant funding shortfall.
If it isn't built, around ?40 million pounds of public
If it isn't built, around ?40 million of public
The trust behind the project says it still expects to start
Our transport correspondent Tom Edwards reports.
This is where the Garden Bridge is meant to span the Thames.
The idea is it'll be a haven for wildlife and plants,
but there is now considerable doubt around the project.
The trustees say they are ?56 million short and the project is no
Campaigners say the bridge would destroy protected views
There remain issues about land and whether the mayor
They are admitting the costs are rising inexorably,
What maniac is going to put money into this project?
If there are delays to the project, the trustees said the initial
estimate of ?185 million could rise substantially.
The mayor is now carrying out a review of this project.
The trustees say that is hindering their attempts to raise more funds
The project will use ?60 million of public money.
The rest is meant to come from private donors.
I think it's nearly dead and it's about time we put
I think the current mayor needs to break with the previous one
and make sure he doesn't sign the guarantee for the running costs
of the bridge in order to fulfil the pledge he made of no more public
If the mayor doesn't underwrite the maintenance costs and the issues
around the land aren't sorted out, the trustees admit the project may
The mayor has already said that could cost the taxpayer ?40 million.
We have had to disclose the risks that remain for us to overcome
before we begin construction and none of them are new.
We need to secure the land and the funding.
We are confident that we will be able to do that but as far
as the accounts go, we had to disclose those risks.
The trust says constructions will start this year.
Critics say the Garden Bridge is on the brink of collapse.
Uncertainty around the project means time is running out.
A BBC London investigation has discovered that unlicensed barbers
in London could be putting customers at risk.
At the moment, anyone can set up a shop offering haiircuts
At the moment, anyone can set up a shop offering haircuts
and shaves without proper regulation.
For millions of men, visiting a barber is fairly routine.
Usually, they leave looking and feeling better.
Walking down London's high streets, you will see more barber
They are top spots for trendy haircuts and popular meeting places.
But the UK barbering industry is difficult to regulate and barbers
here don't even need a license to practise.
For some in the capital, this is causing huge problems.
They were here and here... Meet Jacob.
He got a fungal infection after his barber used dirty
In the summer of 2015, I started to get some pretty bad
bumps on my head and there would be pus coming out.
Every time I would wake up, I would look down and there would be
So I was put on antibiotics for about four weeks.
But nothing, really, it would subside but come back
I wasn't able to shave without opening up the wounds again.
Dirty clippers or razors at barber shops can put customers at risk
of bacterial and viral infections, like folliculitis, herpes
If the barber isn't trained, then in fact what can happen
is there is an entry of bacteria into the scalp, the hair
bulb becomes infected and they have an infection.
If you are trained, you would know it's very important
Take a look at these pictures we took inside an east
We showed them to one of the industry's leading figures.
The councils, I think, need to get involved with health
and safety and check - not shut down people, help people,
tell them what the legislation is and people will get
a qualification, they understand everything else.
At the London School of Barbering, hygiene is high up on the priority
list for the students, who must complete three months
of training before they can practise professionally.
In the USA and Australia, you have to gain X amount
I think that's something that is essential to the health
You wouldn't go to a mechanic that wasn't qualified, would you?
We contacted all of London's 32 councils but none could tell us how
many barber shops operated in the area and only one
So while it doesn't look like anything will be changing soon,
it's vital that customers are aware of the risks and always
That's it for now from me, but let's find out what the weathers
It is cold weather on the way. Cold indeed. I have not had a
picture like this so far this season and noticed the pavement. No more
clues. Travel disruption is distinctly possible and part of the
equation is that the day starts cold and dry. Don't be full by the dry
element because not long into the day, I thought you said it was going
to be snow, weatherman, well, rain for many of us to start off with so
a bit of patience but that'll be a thoroughly miserable day in its own
right and none too warm. That is the problem because as the cold air
tucks into the back of the rain area, yes, the Met office have a
warning out for snow, just in time for the evening commute. It is not
just a high ground feature. If it gets quite intense, it could drag
down to quite low levels and as it clears the way, too late for
commuters, it turns quite icy, just in time, we suspect, for another
belt also to work its way through for the morning commuters on Friday.
We have got a double whammy potentially leading us into a chilly
start to the weekend. Time for the national weather prospects if you
are on the move. Good evening, a lot going on with
the weather in the next few days, numerous weather warnings in for so
buried in mind if you have travel plans. Lots of isobars on the chart
overnight which means it will be windy for all. The strongest winds
in Scotland, lots of wintry showers with snow getting down to
increasingly low levels and some wintry showers in Northern Ireland
and northern England. A cold night for Northern England, particularly
in more rural spots, frosty and I see for some and some of the snow
really blowing around over higher ground in Scotland. Strong wind and
further snow to take us into tomorrow. It may well make for some
tricky travelling conditions. The forecast for tomorrow in the
southern half of the UK's quite tricky. We have got mild air bumping
into colder air. The boundary between the two, it will be an ugly
mix of rain, sleet and snow developing. Mild air comes in behind
the weather front but the rain ahead of that will be mixing with the cold
air. Details are a bit