14/02/2017 The Papers


14/02/2017

No need to wait until tomorrow morning to see what's in the papers - tune in for a lively and informed conversation about the next day's headlines.


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Transcript


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Hello and welcome to our look ahead to what the the papers will be

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With me are Ruth Lea, Economic Adviser at Arbuthnot

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Banking Group, and John Rentoul, political columnist

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Tomorrow's front pages, starting with...

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The Metro leads with the assassination of the North Korean

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leader's half brother at Kuala Lumpur airport,

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The Daily Telegraph reports on how an expected rise in business

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rates might hit the NHS, saying health trusts

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The NHS is on the front of the 'i' too, they have an exclusive

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investigation into the future of emergency care -

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claiming dozens of A E units could close.

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House prices are soaring, according to the Daily Express.

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The paper says investing in property is the best way to save.

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Ukip leader Paul Nuttall has questions to answer,

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says the Guardian, after he admitted he did not lose 'close

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personal friends' in the Hillsborough disaster -

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The Daily Mail is angry with ministers who they say

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are betraying their campaign to crack down on plastic

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Hopefully we will get to that later, but we will start with the "i". 24

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A units face closure. It is claiming that dozens of casualty

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departments are marked for closure or downgrading despite record

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overcrowding. I like the way it said that bosses were doing this to

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concentrate specialist services, and they thought it might save lives. It

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is a wonderful rationalisation. They are under more pressure on probably

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need more funding, but this brings in the whole question of how you get

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extra funding into the NHS. It already has ?120 billion. It is time

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to think about other forms of finance, whether it is a social

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insurance system or people spending more on their own health. I think it

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is now time to actually start thinking, how do we get more money

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into the NHS? Of raising taxes was mac that will come up in the budget

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next month, I suspect, because there is this terrifying figure that

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spending per head in the NHS will fall next year. I can't believe the

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Government will allow that to happen, so I suspect Philip Hammond

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will announce more emergency money for the NHS next year in the budget.

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But I think Ruth is right. You can we liked all the metaphors. That

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will only be a sticking plaster, not a permanent solution. The demands on

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the NHS just get greater and greater, not least because

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treatments get more expensive. There is more that you can do. 50 years

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ago, we didn't have the treatment we have today, and we have an ageing

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population. There is the other problem of social care. There, I

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really would bring in an insurance system. I think we have to think

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about this quite hard. Something has to be done. The Telegraph has: A

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crippling rates rise in the NHS, adding fuel to the fire that the NHS

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is in crisis. This is a technical story about the way that business

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rates fall on public bodies, just as they fall on private sector bodies.

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Buried in there is the story that Amazon is going to see its business

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rates fall next year, which is odd. I don't pretend to understand it,

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but it is obvious that the NHS is under extreme pressure, and this is

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an additional pressure on it. You know about business - how can that

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be? The NHS, having financial problems, is being hit with business

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rates. Amazon, which has more money in the world than any other company

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apart from Apple is seeing falling rates. I do think the Treasury needs

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to have a look at this. Small businesses, particularly in the

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south-east, have got whacking great rate rises as well. The trouble is,

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the rates are meant to be upgraded or changed every five years, but

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they haven't been for ten years, so the whole valuation has got horribly

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out of kilter. It amused me, it said here in the Telegraph that there is

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rolling concerning Whitehall about the impact of rate rises, continued

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on page two. And we don't have page two. Perhaps the Treasury is looking

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at this will stop it seems bonkers. Although, I have to say, we have

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page four of the Express. Some papers get preferential treatment

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because we get the inside pages but others don't send them. Putin live

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forces up top adviser after just 24 days. Michael Flynn, national

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security adviser to President Trump, has had to resign because he

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apparently had a meeting with a Russian envoy and talked about

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something he shouldn't have done. It is a confusing story. I think what

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he did wrong was that he wasn't completely straight with the vice

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president about what he has said. So he lied about what he had said? It

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is always the cover-up that gets you. I think it is surprising,

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because for the first time, President Trump has only been in

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office for a few weeks, but already he is suddenly behaving like a

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normal politician, instead of doing what he normally does - double down

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and say that nothing is wrong, nothing to see here, and start

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attacking other people. He has done what a normal politician does, which

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is to sack someone from getting into trouble. Ruth, he did double down

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for three weeks. He knew about this conversation. Three weeks that they

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knew about this, and they desperately try to save him, or one

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faction in the White House did. It gets more and more muddy, as far as

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I can see. The story now is that he misled Mike Pence, the vice

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president, who went on television and the night that Michael Flynn had

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discussed sanctions with the Russian ambassador on the phone. Did nobody

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listened to the conversation? That is the amazing thing - he is the

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national security adviser and he is talking to the Russians. It is going

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to be taped, you would have thought! For the person who is taking me at

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the moment, this is Michael Flynn. Mitt-mac absolutely bizarre, and

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slightly worrying that the national Security adviser would not know

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that. Absolutely bizarre rant slightly worrying that the national

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security adviser would not know that. A suggestion that Donald Trump

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has ties that are too close to Russia, and the whole Trump

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situation and his White House, of course, has been in the news here,

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because he will be coming to the UK pretty soon, Ruth. And the Daily

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Mail has the story of Theresa May saying she has assured Mr Trump that

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she is looking forward to the state visit, despite this petition having

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well over 1 million signatures. I signed the other one. Saying he

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should be coming? Yes, I did. 300,000 people signed it. Why should

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he come? I have concerns about Mr Trump, like anybody, but he is the

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president of the United States of America and a very important ally to

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us, and after Theresa May's visit to the White House, I think that a

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build-up links with the youth to make US, particularly with Brexit

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coming. I am allowed on the BBC. I try to stop it happening, Ruth. I

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said no, no! The US is strategically so important now that to stop the

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state visit or give him a half kilter state visit I think would be

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deeply unwise. A contest of petitions is not the way to decide

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these things. Certainly, 1.8 million people feel very strongly about

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Donald Trump and not having in here, but we had an opinion poll in the

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Independent at the weekend, and more people, when you look at the

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population as a whole, think that Donald Trump should come and meet

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the Queen then think the opposite, so 1.8 million people versus 300,000

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- it's not the way you decide these things. It is quality, not quantity.

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Talking about quality and quantity, the Financial Times - nuclear policy

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hit by Toshiba, John. I thought they made video recorders, but apparently

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they also put a lot of money into nuclear power plants, and this

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Cumbria plant is a very important possible new nuclear power station,

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if we are going to have nuclear power in this country, as most

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people, I think, want to. It is also complicated because it has become an

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issue in a by-election, which the Conservatives think they can win

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because Theresa May is going up there to campaign, which is unusual

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for a Prime Minister. When is she going? Soon, I think. She obviously

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things they can win it, and if they can exploit people's fears up there

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about Labour's hesitations of a nuclear power, then... It is a big

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employer up there. This will throw a spanner in the box it top Sheba

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Polak anyway, but Ruth knows more about that than I do. The FT had an

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interesting leader today on exactly this issue. It is a classic case of

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market failure where you can rely on the market to get the funding. These

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problems with Toshiba just show that completely, that the Government

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really does have to intervene. They will have to put their money where

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their mouth is with this one. If the private sector won't pay for it,

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does that not mean it is not economically viable? Our whole

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economic policy is skewed, and there are all sorts of subsidies, not

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least in renewables. The thing about nuclear power is that it is solid

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and reliable power, and I suspect it is the sort of power we should go

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for. It is expensive to bring online, that's the problem. If you

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are trying to get rid of carbon, that is an issue as well. Let's go

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to the metro story - assassinated at the airport. We only have about four

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minutes. Kim Jong Un's playboy brother murdered. A great front page

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- is it true? Presumably so if it is in the paper. If this is what a

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North Korean playboy looks like, I think it is time we all moved on. It

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does seem as though he has been helped into another world. According

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to the metro, there was a woman with a cloth who came up behind him and

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put this cloth on his face and burnt his eyes, but that was disputed in

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the other papers, wasn't it? Other papers talk about needles.

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Obviously, something happened, because he's dead. It is an

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extraordinary story. Spy thriller material. We're not totally clear

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about what exactly happened. This happened in Malaysia, by all

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accounts. In Kuala Lumpur. Killing stokes tension over missile test,

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John according to the paper. Kim Jong Un fired off a missile, the

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first launched during President Trump's time in the White House.

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Last weekend, I think it was. That's right. North Korea is a pretty

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worrying place as far as the world is concerned. Donald Trump has not

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responded in any sort of irresponsible way, which some people

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might have feared he would have done, but this kind of shenanigans,

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I mean, maybe it is not related and it is just a factional fight within

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the ruling family. Who knows? We have a minute left. We can go on of

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the day. -- we can go on to the story of the day. They had to find

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someone with the same stature as Mary Berry. I am hoping Prue Leith

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is that kind of person. She is a clock, but does she baked? -- does

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she bake? Is she a baker? She is a restaurateur, so she does more than

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just baking. I am questioning this. Mary Berry does more than baking.

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She does cakes. Cakes is baking! I am being told I have to shut up,

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which means you two have to. Ruth, John, it has been great having you.

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Many thanks for that. You can see the front pages of the papers

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online. It is all there for you. If you miss the programme any evening,

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you can watch it later on BBC iPlayer with your favourite glass of

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wine. Just relax and watch. We have been relaxed here, Ruth, John and I.

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That's all for now. Goodbye. A bit of rain in the forecast over

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the next few days, but nothing too severe. There will be lengthy dry

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spells as we head towards the weekend and it will be mild. The

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rain coming from

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