31/08/2012 BBC News at One

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The latest national and international news stories from the BBC News team, followed by weather.

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Thousands of people, including hundreds of Britons, are ordered to


leave their homes as forest fires rage in southern Spain. Hundreds of


firefighters are battling the flames to stop them reaching the


tourist centre of Marbella. could literally hear the crackling.


That's how close it was. And the heat picked up. And the wind and


the ash was everywhere. Battle of the billionaires. The


Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich wins his court fight against a former


business partner who had accused him of blackmail.


On day two of the Paralympics, it's a silver for cyclists Aileen


McGlynn and Helen Scott in the visually impaired tandem time trial.


And as the athletics gets under way, Aled Davies wins Paralympics GB's


first medal in the Olympic stadium. It's bronze in the shotput.


Questions over the grading of some English GSCE papers. The exams


regulator will provide some answers In the sport on the BBC News


Channel, is the transfer deadline day with Liverpool agreeing to sell


Good afternoon and welcome to the BBC News at One. Wildfires in


southern Spain have forced thousands of people to flee their


homes and hotels on the Costa del Sol. Hundreds of Britons, ex-


patriots and tourists, have also been moved as firefighters battle


the flames which are being driven by strong winds towards the town of


Marbella. The Foreign Office is warning holidaymakers to check with


their airlines and travel companies for the latest advice. Parts of


Spain have had an especially dry summer, with Catalonia and the


Canary Islands also suffering wildfires this year. Our world


affairs correspondent Mike The wild fire burned out of control


throughout the night. Across a seven mile front. Roaring through a


large swathe of Forest pushed on by a hot, dry wind. Spain is


experiencing its worst wild fires in a decade after an unusually dry


winter. This one, though, just inland from of the country's most


popular holiday regions, and in an area where many experts have homes.


As firefighters battled to bring it under control, people rushed to get


themselves, and in this case, a threatened donkey, too, out of


harm's way. For these people, refuge in a restaurant, but the


shock and uncertainty about the fate of their homes. I know nothing,


I don't know if my house is still there or not, this woman says. I


knew there was a fire but we were not aware of the magnitude, says


this woman. If we did not expect it. At least 300 British people were


among those moved to public facilities. British consular staff


are helping those who have been affected. Kimberley has a holiday


home in Marbella. It was terrifying at the time it because you could


hear the crackling. That's how close it was. The wind and the ash


was everywhere. The exit we were taking, as well, when we went down


the mountain, there was massive Amber's coming across the road. It


was something I have never seen before. Today, helicopters had been


dropping water on the wild by to support the firefighters on the


ground. At least now, they have improved weather conditions on the


side. Sara Hesketh from Wigan is on the


last day of her holiday in a resort near Marbella. She is among those


who have had to leave their hotels. She joins me on the line now. The


footage looks very dramatic indeed. What sort of the night did you


have? We were evacuated and put up in a church. We didn't know what


was happening. We didn't know whether the apartment was still


standing. There were flames everywhere, people sleeping on the


floor in the church, with children under blankets. The sky was just


read and everywhere you looked there were flames everywhere. The


smell and the stench, smouldering, everywhere is just black and grey.


It was quite a frightening thought, last night, but we didn't know


whether what was happening. We were stood in our own clothes and do


know what was going to happen today. What help and support are you


getting in terms of travel? But the moment, because we have done a


privately, we just need to try to get in touch with our airline and


find out whether these flights are still booked for today. Apparently,


my friend spoke to somebody who said the traffic is bad getting


into the city, but we don't know whether the flights are cancelled.


The helicopters have stopped going over now with water and the sky


seems to be clearing up now, and we have got coughs with the smoke. And


we are exhausted because none of us have had any sleep. We're just


waiting now to go home, really. wish you all the best and thank you


very much for joining us. The billionaire owner of Chelsea


football club, Roman Abramovich, has won his long running legal


battle with his fellow Russian, the business tycoon Boris Berezovsky. A


judge ruled this morning that Mr Abramovich is not liable to pay


billions of dollars in compensation in a dispute over the sale of


shares in a Russian oil company. Our diplomatic correspondent


Bridget Kendall reports. Arriving for the ruling today, the


claimant, Boris Berezovsky,. Do you think you will win this case?


believe in the system. political power-broker is now in


London, an outspoken Kremlin critic. His claim is he'd been cheated out


billions of pounds in a deal with another Russian oligarch, the


Chelsea football club owner, Roman Abramovich. Who gave evidence


during the trial which ended in January, but he was not there this


morning for his victory. The judge was scathing in her criticism of


Boris Berezovsky and said it was up to him to prove his claims and yet,


she found his evidence inconsistent, exaggerated and, at times,


incredible. In court, Boris Berezovsky listened stony-faced,


his chin on his hands, but when she dismissed his claim, he looked


around and laughed, as though, incredulous, she did not believe


him. They used to be friends but when that repeating came to power,


they parted company. Roman Abramovich, worth �7.6 billion, now


owns Chelsea, and is close to Vladimir Putin. Boris Berezovsky,


worth rather less, it's thought, at �500 million, fell out with


Vladimir Putin and one political so asylum in it Britain. Boris


Berezovsky's accusation is that Roman Abramovich forced him to sell


of oil shares cheap. Roman Abramovich said was a fabrication.


Boris Berezovsky, he said, had been his political godfather for a time


but that arrangement had ended. Outside the court this morning,


Boris Berezovsky, once so confident in the British courts system,


admitted he was flabbergasted. I'm absolutely amazed what happened


today. Particularly because Lady Gloucester took up responsibility


to be right Russian history. But despite the ruling against him,


Boris Berezovsky said he did not regret bringing the case. Whether


he will try to appeal, he said, was a matter for his lawyers.


Paralympics GB have continued their success on day two of the Games,


with a silver for the cyclist, Aileen McGlynn. She and her pilot


rider Helen Scott were just beaten by Australia in the women's blind


and visually impaired one kilometre time-trial at the velodrome. James


Pearce reports. Aileen McGlynn has been partially


sighted since birth. For this event, cyclists ride tandem, with a pilot


at the front. This was a one, to tiled trial, a race against the


clock. Aileen McGlynn won this event in Athens and Beijing and the


time it was close to the world record. No celebrations yet. They


have taken the lead but the Australian world champions were


still to go. There is a D Johnson timed his run perfectly. Here were


the new power would be champion. -- Felicity Johnson. Over at the


Aquatics Centre, has a good rivalry growing. We have the Hind brothers.


Samuel has a degenerative condition in his legs but the world champion.


The 400 metres freestyle and he won his heat in this evening's final. A


race, we will see a familiar face, his younger brother, has also


qualified. The athletics are under way with


high hopes for Paralympics GB. Aled Davies has won the team's first


medal in the Olympic stadium with bronze in the shotput, going one


better than his fourth place in Beijing. Our sports correspondent


Andy Swiss reports. Blue skies and bumper crowds at the


Olympic Stadium. 80,000 fans basking in the sunshine. Perfect


conditions for the first morning of the athletics. So, will the home


supporters have plenty to cheer? One of the first in action was


Shelly Woods, bronze medallist four years ago, a need to qualify for


the final of the 5,000 metres. By finishing third, she did precisely


that. Job done. There were other impressive performances. Eighteen-


year-old Rees-Jones said a personal best in the heats of his 200 metres


event. But there were disappointments, too. Stephen


Miller, with cerebral palsy, was aiming for a 4th Paralympic gold in


the club throwing but finished out of the medals. There was better


news, though, for Hanna Cockroft, who became the first athlete to set


a world record inside the Olympic Stadium and she charged into


tonight's final of the 100 metres in stunning style. And, best of all,


a British medal, 21-year-old Aled Davies taking bronze in the shot


put. Britain's athletes already flying the flag.


Well, let's have a look at the medals table so far. China are top.


Their team collected six golds on the opening day. -- seven gold.


Australia are in second place having added gold this morning in


the velodrome. Ukraine have replaced Great Britain in third.


Russia, with three golds, now go fourth, leaving Great Britain in


fifth with two more medals so far today. Silver from Aileen McGlynn


and Helen Scott in the cycling and bronze from Aled Davies in the


shotput. Well, we can speak to our correspondent James Pearce now.


What's your assessment of day two? Well, the weather, of course, is


bringing out bumper crowds. There are some exciting action still to


come and plenty more British medals balls that we should mention in


particular, Mark cauldron. Three years ago, he broke his back in a


paragliding accident and before that he used to play volleyball for


Wales. Yesterday, he became the first medallist of his games with a


silver. He has qualified for this afternoon's final of the individual


pursuit, over three quarters, and his seven seconds inside his own


world record so, by doing that, having such a commanding


performance in qualifying, he looks set for a gold medal this afternoon.


What we can look forward to later today? The Velodrome is a place to


be. Jody Cundy has won five Paralympic gold medals in the past.


Three as a slimmer, two as a cyclist, and is going for his third


cycling gold medal in the one that, to time-trial. He is the defending


champion and will be the favourite for that. Also look out for


Stefanie Milbourne. She has beaten the Paralympic swimming legend. She


has been beaten in the qualifying for this evening's 100 metres


backstroke final. James, thank you. England's exams watchdog, Ofqual,


is due to publish the results of an initial investigation into this


year's GCSE results this afternoon. Thousands of students didn't get


the grades they had expected. Head teachers urged the exams regulator


to investigate when it was revealed that grade boundaries for the exams


were changed part way through the year. Our correspondent Chris


Buckler reports. One week ago there were scenes of


celebration but it was a day of despair for others. With claims


that the results of GCSE English simply were not fair. The


suggestion was the grade boundaries had been moved halfway through the


school year. Meaning pupils who would have got a C grade in January


ended up with a D grade. Head teachers have been leading the


campaign to get the grades changed. We need is resolving as quickly as


possible because we have students have lost out on vocational


programmes, A-level programmes and, of course, apprenticeships as well.


The exams regulator in England warned exam board is against grade


inflation and this year for the first time in history of GCSEs, the


percentage of top grades fell. But Ofqual is having to investigate if


how that was achieved was fair. Sheridan is a student affected. He


was expected to get a grade C but a great deal means he's in danger of


losing his apprenticeship he fought hard to get. I was hoping to start


on Monday, but that's not going to happen now. This week is one of the


worst in my life, honestly. I feel sick. And there's no answers to it.


How can they impact on somebody's life this majorly? For more than


two decades, year on year GCSE results had been improving. Help,


in part, by the introduction of the modular system which allows pupils


to resit different parts of their examination at different times.


That system is being phased out in England although modules will


remain in Northern Ireland while, in Wales, the whole GCSE


examination it is currently under review. After a row which has


overshadowed this year's results, the regulator knows its performance,


not just the pupils, will be under Our top story this lunch time:


Thousands of people including hundreds of Britons have been


ordered to believe their homes as forest fires rage in southern Spain.


Firefighters are battling the flames to stop them reaching the


tourist centre of Marbella. Coming up: Mitt Romney promises


Americans he'll revive the economy and create millions of jobs. But,


is it enough to put him in the White House?


Later on BBC London: How Surrey's feeling the aftereffects of Olympic


cycling success. And turning over a new leaf. Gavin Henson talks about


leaving reality TV behind him and focusing on new team, London Welsh.


Squatting in residential properties will become a criminal offence in


England and Wales from tomorrow. Those convicted could face six


months in prison, a fine of up to �5,000 or both.


Campaigners for the homeless fear the new law could be abused by


unscrupulous landlords. The Government says the change will


give more protection to homeowners. John Maguire reports.


I came home from hospital where I'd been treated and was put up by my


partner. Hugh Whittle regularly checked his house in London was


secure but one day returned to find it occupied by squatters.


It was horrifying. Just going through three or four months it


took to get them out was costing me in stress and cost in money as well,


of course, lost rent and the property did actually become worse


in its condition which meant that we had to pay builders more.


The police were called but officers said it was a civil matter. But no


longer. The law is now changing. We want to make it absolutely clear


that squatting is illegal, you are criminally liable and response


wribl for anything that happens in someone's home whilst you take it


over -- responsible. It shouldn't be a grave area of a civil or


criminal offence, it will now be a clear criminal offence.


An offence which some charities believe may criminalise certain


homeless people and will do nothing to tackle the underlying shortage


of housing. At this property in Birmingham,


squatters say they're making good use of an otherwise empty council-


opened house and campaign groups argue it will mean more people


sleeping rough on the streets -- council-owned. It's a waste of


council tax payers' money. We should tackle the housing crisis


and not criminalise vulnerable people in the society. The law will


apply in England and Wales and so far concerns just residential


property. The Government's aim, an tend to the squatting problem. But


those opposed argue it will just make matters worse.


An inquest has opened into the deaths of Roger and tilly Lamb who


died in spralt incidents whale on holiday in Morocco last year. --


separate incidents. Remind us of the background to this, Louise


Hubball? Tilly and Roger died within days of


each other while own holiday in Morocco with their children. The


inquest heard from Tilly's sister who described the marriage as


turbulent. Mr Lamb had been offered a job at New Zealand. He had been


prescribed antidepressants and aired concerns about his marriage


and finances. On holiday, the family seemed relaxed and happy.


One night at their apartment, there was banging on the front door. It


was Ramadan. Tilly Lamb described as adventurous by the court put one


foot on the sofa and one on the bannister to tell the people to


keep quiet. She lost her balance and fell 60 feet on to the street


below. Within 24 hours the or nor was told, her husband jumped into


the sea with a rucksack full of rocks but was rescueded and then


after the family moved to a nearby hotel, Roger Lamb fell down a


staircase and litter died in hospital. We are expecting a


verdict here this afternoon. Thank you. Ulster Bank which is


part of the RBS Group has announced compensation for customers who


couldn't access their money because of computer problems earlier


thisier. Many customers received �20 this morning while others will


receive more in out-of-pocket expenses. It's thought the maximum


compensation will be around �100. Our correspondent, Andy Martin,


sent this report. It was supposed to be a simple


software update but caused weeks of frustration. Every day, customers


like these turned up at the bank to try to find out where their money


was. I feel disgusted for the fact they have not got a clue what's


gone on. The money's going left, right and centre, God knows where.


Banks within the RBS Group quickly cleared the problem in Scotland,


England and Wales, but many of its Ulster Bank customers in Northern


Ireland and the Irish Republic couldn't get at their own money,


pay bills or honour direct debits. Today, ten weeks after the


breakdown, Ulster Bank tried to put it right. We are waives fees for up


to three months for customers. We are also paying an extra quarter of


a% on deposits. We are making a payment of �20 to customer who is


had to come to the branch more often than normal during the


incident. On top of that, for customers who've had out-of-pocket


expenses we are paying an additional 20%, up to �100. It's


nowhere near enough for many. Donagh McGovern's convenience store


has been particularly invoonsed. He's raised issues with the bank


consistently over the past two months and is no happier today --


inconvenienced. Shambles - one word. No customer service approach from


the bank at all. It's very, very, very poor. If I treated my


customers that way, I would be out of business tomorrow. There are


people who say accounts are still not back to normal. This


compensation scheme will cost Ulster Bank tens of millions of


pounds, but countless more in terms of the customer who is say they are


now determined to take their business elsewhere.


Mitt Romney's pledged to restore the promise of America and to unite


the country if he's elected President.


He's told the Republican National Convention it's time to put the


disappointments of the past four years aside, accepting his


nomination at the party's convention in Florida he vowed to


resue the country's economy and create 12 million jobs -- rescue.


Our correspondent Steve Kingston is in Tampa with more for us.


Mitt Romney was seen by a TV audience last night that ran into


the tens of millions, including people tuning in for the first time


to the election campaign. His challenge was to define himself, to


tell America who he is. Show time. For a businessman turned


politician promising to turn this country around. With millions


watching Mitt Romney at home, he called ford the sales pitch of his


life. Mr Americans have given up on this President, but they have never


thought about giving up. Not in themselves, not on each other and


not on America. What is needed in our country today is not


complicated or profound. It doesn't take a special Government


commission to tell us what America needs.


What America needs is jobs. Lots of jobs.


As ever, he looked the part. This was really about a challenger


finding his voice. Articulating why he believes America needs a change


of direction. I wish President Obama succeeded because I want


America to succeed. But his promises gave way to kiss


appointment and division -- disappointment. Now is the moment


when we can stand up and say, I'm an American, I make my destiny, we


deserve better, my children and family and country deserves better.


At times it got deeply personal as this normally reserved man opened


up about faith and family. Every day dad gave mom a rose which he


put on her bedside table that.'s how she found out what happened on


the day my father died. She went looking for him because that


morning there was no rose. My mom and dad were true partners.


Then the closing arguments, that Barack Obama's bowed to America's


foes, added trillions to the debt and failed the middle class.


promise is to help you and your family.


CHEERING AND APPLAUSE That future is our destiny, that


future is out there, it is waiting for us, our children deserve it.


Our nation depends on it. The peace and freedom of the world require it


and with your help we will deliver it. Let us begin that future for


America tonight. Mitt Romney there. The consensus


this morning peoples to be good speech, perhaps not a great speech,


he was a little nervous at the beginning and was heckled. As you


saw there, he certainly found his stride. In the the hall they loved


it. What matters is Americans back home thought. Mitt Romney came here


looking for what they call the convention bounce in the polls and


there is some evidence that he's getting that. One opinion poll


published in the last 24 hours gives him a 4% percentage lead over


Barack Obama. That's to be expected and it could change next week when


we have the democratic convention. The President will have his moment


in the spotlight then. No doubt we'll speak to you then.


Thank you very much. It's not necessarily a subject we


might like to spend too much time thinking about. The place where we


or our loved ones will be buried. But, new research shows that


instead of crematoriums or grave yards, more people are opting for


woodland burials. For some it's because of environmental concerns


and also to reduce costs. There are 300 natural burial sites in Britain


and our correspondent Danny Savage has been to visit one which is


about to open in Durham. A small woodland on the outskirts


of Durham. The latest location to be changed into a natural burial


site. Research suggests being buried in a natural site in a


biodegradable coffin is more popular than ever in Britain. In


years to come, Helen Rutland wants to be laid to rest here. A decision


made already after considering other options.


It's such a lovely place to be to end your days really. My family can


come and visit me. They live away, so they wouldn't be able to come


and tend a grave, so I would be in this beautiful place and they would


be able to visit me whef they could really.


Unlike more formal grave yards or cemeteries, there'll be no


headstones or markings to indicate where people are buried.


Individuals will simply be laid to rest in a glade and relatives will


be able to visit to watch the seasons change.


The British like nature, they like gardens and garden ser ters and


they think of themselves when they are dead as wanting to be in a


beautiful place -- centres. They don't want to be in a dry dusty


cemetery with rows of reg stones, it's the noise, the plants, the


wind, the animals and the trees in the background. It's that dynamic


place to go, not a static negative place to go.


So a modern trend of rejecting this type of grave and memorial is


growing. There are now more than 260 natural


burial sites across UK with studies showing that this option appeals to


both religious and non-religious people.


Certainly gives pause for thought. We'll take you to a pause though


with the weather now. Laura is here. with the weather now. Laura is here.


That looks very positive. Yes. We should all see some of it


this weekend fingers crossed. Many of us saw it this morning. We


had clear skies. Boy or boy was it chilly. Temperatures fell so low


that we broke some records. As we head into the weekend, things look


set to warm up. The satellite picture shows this stream of cloud


stretching across the Atlantic. It will bring weather to some of us


throughout the weekend. At the moment it's confine to the north-


west of Scotland and Northern Ireland. Elsewhere, a good deal of


sunshine through the rest of the day. The far north-west of England


could see some patchy rain later, but for much of Yorkshire, through


Lincolnshire, into the Midlands and south-east England, dry and bright


and temperatures responding after that chilly start up to 17 or 18


degrees. The winds light as we head towards the south-west of England.


Again, largely fine, sunny conditions here as we head through


the afternoon. For the south-east of Wales, sticking with the


sunshine for longest. For the north-west, clouding over, some


patchy rain and drizzle arising through the coming hours. Things


improving in Northern Ireland, particularly from the west.


Glimmers of brightness and damp in the east. Scotland, cloudy,


outbreaks of rain and drizzle. Cool where we have no sunshine and


heavier rain potentially across the Northern Isles. Tonight, we'll see


the weather front sinking south- eastwards. It tends to ease so it's


damp and drizzly with a fair bit of hill fog. Temperatures 12-13, much


milder than last night. It will be a cloudy start tomorrow for the


Paralympic events. Soon warming up with the sunshine for the sailing,


a gentle breeze. It's worth pointing out that the UV levels


will be moderate for many when the sun comes out into the weekend. For


Saturday, we start with the cloud, damp drizzly conditions through the


east but then things improve, particularly through England and


Wales. Yet again looking largely dry and bright and with more


sunshine tomorrow temperatures up to 22, feeling very nice. For the


north-west, cloudy again with patchy outbreaks of rain. That's


the weather front we saw across the satellite picture sinking its way


south-eastwards. It's a reversal of fortunes as we head through the


weekend. England and Wales likely to be cloudier by Sunday with some


outbreaks of rain and drizzle. Further north, more sunshine around


and temperatures again into the low 20s. If you have plans this weekend,


you can find the latest online. We have the latest on the forecast for


the F 1 and more information about how wet it's been so far this


summer. Thank you very much indeed.


A reminder of our top story: Thousands of people including