19/02/2018 London News


19/02/2018

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LineFromTo

winds, perhaps bringing snow showers

as we head towards the weekend.

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Tonight on BBC London News:

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Revelations from

inside our worst jails.

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One serving officer tells us -

anonymously -

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she's works in a state of fear.

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What if you're the one that gets

attacked that day and you can't get

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a whistle to your mouth?

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You better hope those

prisoners like you,

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because they will be

the ones saving your life.

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We'll investigate just why

prisons in the capital

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are struggling to retain staff.

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Also ahead:

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Following claims of

sexual harrassment at

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The Presidents Club dinner.

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Great Ormond Street Hospital

reconsiders it's position

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on returning thousands in donations.

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Plus exactly three months until

Harry and Meghan tie the knot -

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how some Windsor residents

are cashing in on the Royal

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wedding by moving out.

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And:

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What is it? I need to go away for a

while.

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From acting to activist...

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Jennifer Lawrence tells us why she's

preparing for a career break.

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Good evening and welcome

to the programme with me Riz Lateef.

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We start tonight with the state of

some of London's worst prisons.

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A serving officer has told this

programme that she regularly fears

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for her life whilst at work.

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And a campaigner says

the situation is as bad as she's

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seen in thirty years.

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The claims come amid concerns

about a recruitment crisis

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across London's prisons.

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As Caroline Davies reports

the service is failing

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to recruit new officers.

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Caroline Davies reports.

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Violence, drugs, drones, self harm,

suicide and even murders. This is

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the state of London's prisons, and

according to some critics, the lack

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of staff is making it worse.

I've

been working at prisons more than 30

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years and I have never seen them in

such a terrible state. It is very

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bad for prisoners and the public

because it means the prisoners are

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locked up all day and dumped back on

the street angry and bitter and more

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likely to commit another crime.

At

the end of 2016, the government said

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it would recruit an extra 2500

prison officers across England and

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Wales. So how many new officers have

been recruited across London's eight

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prisons? There has been a net gain

of only 22.

I really enjoyed it when

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I first started, I loved the bars

that then it rapidly changed.

This

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woman is an officer in London

prison. We have concealed her

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identity and dumped her voice to

protect her.

There are no staff any

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more, they come in but as quickly as

they do, people are leaving. There

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are people who have been there 15

years and remember when there were

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four officers on a landing and now

there is only one.

What is it like

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when you're just the one person?

You

get worried because what if you the

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one that had attacked that day and

you can't get a whistle to your

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mouth. You better hope those

prisoners like you because they will

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be the ones saving your life.

People

will be shocked to hear you rely on

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the prisoners to keep you safe?

It

is the truth, because there is no

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one with you on the landing you have

to rely on prisoners.

What did the

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Ministry of Justice's figures say

about the figures in London? There

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might be 22 more officers across

London overall but some prisons have

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even fewer staff than before the

government started this recruitment

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drive. Garmash prison has 22 fewer

officers, Pentonville 20 and

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Wormwood Scrubs 15. The prison

service recruited just over 4500 new

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officers across England and Wales

last year but they also lost nearly

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2000. And almost 500 of those were

in their first year in a prison.

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Rachel used to be a prison officer

in London but after less than 18

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months, she quipped. She said there

was little time for rehabilitation.

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Quite a lot of them are only young

and they are coming in and being

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thrown into prison, rightfully so,

but they are being put into a cell

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and locked away for three days

straight. I was the one giving them

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the phone calls and letting them out

to have a phone call and letting

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them out to have a shower. That to

me is basic humanity, and they can't

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even get that because of a lack of

staff.

So what would make a

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difference to those still working in

London's prisons?

Staff, to begin

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with anyway. I think I would feel

more secure if there was more staff.

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Both sides are clear what's needed

but while staff are leaving because

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of staff shortages, the prison

system in London seems stuck in a

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vicious circle.

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Caroline's here -

what is the Ministry

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of Justice saying about this?

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They say they are on track to

recruit those extra 2500 we heard

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about in the report and the Justice

Secretary David Gauke says he's

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determined to tackle the issue

imprisons head on. He calls staffing

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golden thread that links solutions

we need to put in place. Clearly he

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understands is a very important

issue. That doesn't seem to be the

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issue. The issue is how do you keep

those people in the chops want to

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have recruited them? We understand

the government are launching a

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retention programme, to try and help

prison governors to keep their

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experienced staff in the prisons,

alongside new recruits.

We know new

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people are being recruited. How

significant is it that people are

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leaving?

The issue really is about

experience. At the moment according

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to those figures, in December 2000

36% of those prison officers had

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been in the prison job for under

five years. So losing a lot of

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people with a lot of experience. The

concern there is if you lose that

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experience, you won't get it back,

it takes awhile to regain it.

OK

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Caroline, thank you much.

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Plenty more ahead this

evening including:

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Why commuters might not

be rushing for a seat,

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as passengers complain about comfort

on a new fleet of trains.

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Great Ormond Street Hospital

Children's Charity has indicated

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that it may change its mind

about returning donations

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to the controversial

Presidents Club trust.

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The Charity said it would hand back

money previously given

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following allegations of sexual

harassment at an exclusive

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men-only dinner.

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Let's get more from Alpa Patel,

who's at the hospital.

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The amount of money we are talking

about here is £530,000. It is a

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substantial amount for an

organisation like Great Ormond

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Street Hospital's children's Charity

no the reason why they are

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considering handing the money back.

The money is from the Presidents

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Club and was thrust into the

spotlight of course last month when

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two undercover financial Times

journalist went to a male only gala

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dinner at the Dorchester Hotel and

there they said they saw women who

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were working at this event were

being groped and sexually harassed.

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A day after those revelations in the

Financial Times, Great Ormond Street

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Hospital was handing back every

single penny. It said it was because

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it was due to the wholly

unacceptable nature of the event.

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But today, almost a month on from

that decision, it appears to have

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had this change of heart. It says

"Guiding all our thinking is our

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aim, to maximise the support of the

hospital on the families it cares

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for. We can confirm that we are in

discussions with the Charity

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commission and our schedule to meet

them later this week." The

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Presidents Club has closed down, so

if the hospital did decide to hand

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this money back, who it would hand

it back to it up in the air. A final

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decision will be made next month.

With the latest from Greg Norman to

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it, thank you.

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A judge has banned

protestors from campaigning

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in a west London woodland

in opposition to HS2.

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Today an injunction was imposed

at the High Court preventing

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unlawful protest in and around

a construction site in Hillingdon.

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The case was brought by the

Tranpsort Secretary Chris Grayling.

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Next this evening...

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While some rush hour commuters can

only dream of ever getting a seat -

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the ones that do are complaining

about levels of comfort

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on some new trains.

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Calling the seats 'ironing boards'

or being made of concrete.

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Thameslink, one of the companies

singled out for criticism,

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says the new design complies

with strict fire safety regulations.

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But one Osteopath says there may

be cause for concern.

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Here's our Transport

Correspondent Tom Edwards.

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These new Class 700 trains

are spacious and airy,

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but as well as having fewer seats,

some commuters think

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the cushioning is like concrete.

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On this service this

morning to St Albans,

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mainly uncomfortable agreement.

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It's really uncomfortable,

it's ridiculous.

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I can't believe this is a new train.

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There's not much legroom.

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Yeah.

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And the backs are a bit

narrow for my liking.

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If you're sitting next

to a stranger especially.

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Then you're practically

on top of them, yeah.

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Do you find them hard, the seats?

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Very hard.

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As you can see.

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Soft seats, in my country the seats

is really different,

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we don't have like these things,

the blue ones, so for me

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it's great, I like it.

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Complaints about train

seats aren't new.

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The latest trains on Great Western

have also drawn criticism.

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These trains on the Thameslink

Bedford to Brighton route

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are now being rolled out

on the Great Northern

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to Peterborough.

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Then I'd like you to lift your

buttocks upwards, just slowly.

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At this clinic in Maidenhead,

they're used to treating

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commuters' aches and pains.

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They say, over time, new harder

seats could make matters worse.

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The thing is, people's bodies

don't adapt that easily.

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I mean they're actually,

if you think about it,

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often sitting in an office,

at an office desk all day.

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They may be using

a computer all day.

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They may try and take exercise

breaks, but fundamentally,

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if their commute is uncomfortable

on a hard seat as well,

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it's just adding more insult

to injury, in a sense.

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The train companies say these seats

have to meet the strict criteria set

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by the Department for Transport,

and that means they have to meet

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strict fire regulations

and be graffiti proof.

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But others say what this is really

about is cost-cutting.

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We will shortly be

arriving at Three Bridges.

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Passengers have also complained

about a lack of legroom,

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and with no plans to change

the cushioning, commuters will have

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to get used to seats that one

compared to an ironing board.

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Tom Edwards, BBC London News.

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News that the Jamie Oliver

is selling his two London

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steakhouses has shone a light

on the challenges facing

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restaurateurs more

widely in the capital.

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The TV chef is not alone

in having to cut costs,

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with others in London claiming that

high rents and business rates

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are forcing them to take drastic

measures or also face closure.

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Chris Rogers reports.

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Business has been good for the

owners of this restaurant in Hackney

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but they are closing the restaurant

next week. Despite all the hard work

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and awards, the rising costs of rent

and rates mean they need to start

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again, with a new name and the

cheaper location of Shoreditch but

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it comes at the cost of their

Michelin star.

Frankly, the rents in

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Shoreditch are cheaper for us, so

straightaway that is the reality of

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what we are doing. As much as I love

this neighbourhood, I think it's a

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business and we've got to do what's

right.

They used to be a saying...

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One restaurant opens, and one closes

every 24 hours. That is not the case

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now. This is the latest London

restaurant to shut just in the last

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few days, yet it isn't won a host of

awards, look at this. So what is

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going on? One of the main issues is

there are simply too many

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restaurants. Dozens are closing and

opening all the time. Add to that

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the rising cost of food, the higher

minimum wage, week pound and Brexit

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and you have the perfect storm

according to this restaurant owner

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and consultant.

There is a shrinking

labour market because of issues with

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Brexit and people not coming to the

UK, it is harder to employ. A lot of

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the key positions, more senior

positions, having to pay way over

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the odds to get people. It is just a

real struggle.

The bite of rising

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costs is also felt by some of the

big chains, among them chef Jamie

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Oliver. He is closing some of his

restaurants. His steakhouse in

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Piccadilly was closed today. While

burger chain by Ronnie is to close

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up to 20 restaurants. Announcements

like that are bound to shake the

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confidence of the smaller London

Independents.

I'm not going to tell

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anyone not to open a restaurant,

but, you know, there is only so much

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business out there and only so much

money to be had. I think this will

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be a bloodbath, frankly, this year.

And that's always a necessary part

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of the cycle of life.

Some analysts

say the winners will be bit cheaper

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home delivery companies. A little

far-fetched perhaps, but as rising

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rents cause restaurants to raise

their menu Costil close, the likes

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of delivery route may be onto

something. -- the likes of Deliveroo

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might be onto something.

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Get rid of the NO Ball game signs,

give young people a say

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in housing developments...

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And offer them all 100

hours of work experience.

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Those are just a few

of the suggestions from a new report

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for Islington Council launched this

morning in its bid to put children

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at the heart of decision

making in the borough.

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Here's our Political

Correspondent Karl Mercer.

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# Sometimes, I get a feeling...#

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At 14, Keji can hold a tune.

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Performing for political

leaders today, but should

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she also be telling them

what she wants her local

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area to look like?

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Her local council thinks people

like Keji should be more involved.

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A report it commission recommended

all under 18s should get 100

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hours of work experience,

that things like no ball games signs

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should be taken down and that young

people should be consulted on big

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building projects in their area.

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How are you going to get

it so we get the 100

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hours work experience?

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Will we be given it in school or do

will we have to go out and find it?

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Will you put pressure on schools

in order for them to teach

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during lessons and during school

time on how to manage

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their money and understanding

the political system?

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What actions do you expect the local

organisations to take

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so that the Islington guarantee

for young people is put into place?

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I'd like to know how you plan

to make use of the spaces around

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the Islington community?

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The report author, The Voice winner

and former pupil here,

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Jermain Jackman, says he hopes

there will be action

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and not just words.

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It's happened time and again,

where people come to the community

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and want to do something

and then they go.

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I said, you know what,

this is not a PR ploy,

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we're not going to use this

to try to win votes or anything,

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we want to really make

change in our community,

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we want to involve children

and young people in the process,

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and everyone knows how difficult

I am.

0:15:270:15:31

I told the council, I told people,

I made a promise to people that

0:15:310:15:34

I'm serious about this.

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I think there will be a bit of a row

when we suggest taking down the no

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ball signs but it's a row worth

having, because we need to say

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to young people that this borough,

this city belongs to them and it's

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about their future and we need to

put ourselves firmly on their side.

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The words are done, the song has

been sung, the hardest part -

0:15:490:15:52

delivering on those promises -

that is yet to come.

0:15:520:15:55

Karl Mercer, BBC London News.

0:15:550:15:58

The moment of Tom Parsons' sporting

career.

Great Britain's first

0:16:060:16:11

medal...

0:16:110:16:13

Super Saturday for some

and a miserable Monday for others...

0:16:130:16:15

The highs and lows of the capital's

athletes at the Winter Games.

0:16:150:16:18

Now, in exactly three months' time,

there's the small matter...

0:16:220:16:25

Of a rather big wedding

taking place in Windsor.

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While thousands will descend

on the town as Prince Harry

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and Meghan Markle tie the knot,

some residents are moving out,

0:16:300:16:34

not least to make way for the

magnitude of the media moving in.

0:16:340:16:38

Sarah Harris has more.

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Harry and Meghan have been coming

here since they started dating.

0:16:410:16:45

This romantic little getaway

outside of London...

0:16:450:16:47

The countdown is on in the USA

to the royal wedding

0:16:470:16:50

featuring their girl,

Meghan Markle.

0:16:500:16:53

With the modern couple already

living and carrying out

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engagements together,

interest in the May nuptials

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is already at fever pitch

across the Atlantic.

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Kate Wickers lives on Kings Road

in Windsor, where the wedding

0:17:060:17:10

carriage will process

after the ceremony.

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With unparalleled views and some

neighbours being offered six-figure

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sums for their properties to move

out during the week of the wedding,

0:17:160:17:19

she is negotiating

big bucks for hers.

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Well, it's a little bit strange.

0:17:220:17:26

We got back from a few days away,

and there was a letter

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from NBC waiting for us,

saying, we'd be interested

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in renting your house,

and particularly the garden outside,

0:17:320:17:37

and so I called them

straightaway, and they were

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here within 30 minutes.

0:17:410:17:44

I felt like they were probably in

the hotel opposite waiting for us.

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And crawled up on the roof,

took pictures from various windows,

0:17:470:17:53

and said that they would be talking

to New York.

0:17:530:17:55

Just a quick look online

at the home rental site,

0:17:550:17:58

you can see there's an awful lot

of people living in and around

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Windsor who are prepared to move out

during that wedding week so that

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royal American fans can move in.

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And you can see why this is such

a big deal to Americans.

0:18:080:18:11

Not only have you got the history

of Windsor and the castle

0:18:110:18:16

and the Royal Family,

but also you've got Meghan Markle.

0:18:160:18:19

She is not only American,

but she's already a big TV

0:18:190:18:22

star in her own right.

0:18:220:18:24

The small rooms above

the Horse and Groom pub

0:18:240:18:26

overlook the castle gates.

0:18:260:18:27

American TV giants have already

signed them up for the wedding week.

0:18:270:18:30

It's understood the asking price

was around £100,000.

0:18:300:18:36

This is really popular

with Americans because

0:18:360:18:38

of the vantage point,

and all of the history

0:18:380:18:41

there is with this old pub,

and it's a great vantage point,

0:18:410:18:43

because you'll be able to see

the royal wedding coming down.

0:18:430:18:46

For Windsor, the town

itself, the interest

0:18:460:18:48

from across the pond is welcome.

0:18:480:18:51

It's hoped it will encourage US

tourists to keep coming back.

0:18:510:18:53

The Americans have not been

coming in their numbers

0:18:530:18:58

for a number of years,

and of course, that

0:18:580:19:00

will reverse that trend.

0:19:010:19:04

There will be, I expect,

a lot of Americans coming to town.

0:19:040:19:07

I understand that all of the hotel

rooms are booked now.

0:19:070:19:10

And that you can't

get a room in town.

0:19:100:19:13

You can still get places out

of town, but it's going to be a huge

0:19:130:19:17

increase in footfall.

0:19:180:19:21

Negotiations are far from complete

with three months to go,

0:19:210:19:24

but vantage points for the Royal

wave are selling out fast,

0:19:240:19:27

with the Americans, it appears,

prepared to pay the most

0:19:270:19:30

for the best views in town.

0:19:300:19:32

Sarah Harris,

BBC London News, Windsor.

0:19:320:19:38

To the drama now of

the Winter Olympics -

0:19:380:19:40

and how a Londoner clinched

the first medal for

0:19:400:19:43

Britain in South Korea.

0:19:430:19:44

There have been mixed

fortunes on the snow and ice

0:19:440:19:47

for the capital's athletes,

as Ena Miller can tell us from

0:19:470:19:49

the Snow Centre Hemel Hempstead.

0:19:490:19:56

The weekend has been a mix of highs

and lows for Team GB in South Korea,

0:19:560:20:01

but it's great news for the

Londoners Tom Parsons -- Tom

0:20:010:20:07

Parsons, who won a bronze medal in

the skeleton event. A British man

0:20:070:20:14

hasn't won a medal in that event for

many years. And there is the drawing

0:20:140:20:23

of Penny Coomes, whose career

everyone thought was over when she

0:20:230:20:27

shattered kneecap 15 months ago.

This weekend, she and her partner

0:20:270:20:31

Nick Butland have made it through to

the ice dance final, which is

0:20:310:20:36

tomorrow. Then Aimee Fuller, a

26-year-old snowboarder who grew up

0:20:360:20:42

near Bromley. There was hope she

would play is far higher in the big

0:20:420:20:47

air event, but she did not manage to

do a clear jump on her first

0:20:470:20:51

attempt, and in her second she

crashed out. She said she is gutted,

0:20:510:20:56

and tweeted pictures of the bruises

on her face. The UK isn't known for

0:20:560:21:02

its Alpine resort facilities. How do

youngsters learning and practising

0:21:020:21:06

here get inspired to eventually aim

for something like the Winter

0:21:060:21:12

Olympics? I have the managing

director of the centre. How do you

0:21:120:21:15

encourage these kids?

We have kids

coming from all over London to hear

0:21:150:21:19

and other facilities around the

area. Whether you come with the

0:21:190:21:23

School or your parents, there's all

number of facilities. Whether you

0:21:230:21:29

are skiing or snowboarding, whether

you wish to go into freestyle or

0:21:290:21:33

race, there's opportunities for

everyone. There's a sponsored

0:21:330:21:37

programmes where kids can move up to

more elite level.

You make it sound

0:21:370:21:42

quite easy. Is it as easy as that,

because everything isn't close to

0:21:420:21:49

hand?

Like any sport, if you learn

the basics and have instructors that

0:21:490:21:55

can inspire them and engage them...

Like any sport, once you get into

0:21:550:22:01

it, it takes dedication and time to

get up to the next level.

Thank you

0:22:010:22:06

very much. I'm going to stay here

and see what other people are

0:22:060:22:10

getting up to. There's a lot more

events happening over the next few

0:22:100:22:14

weeks at the Olympics.

0:22:140:22:23

The stars were out for the Baftas

last night. Most of the guests

0:22:230:22:31

attending the event wore black in

support of the time is up and me to

0:22:310:22:35

campaign against sexual harassment.

Black dresses on the red carpet, all

0:22:350:22:44

part of the ongoing times up

campaign, aimed at fair treatment

0:22:440:22:48

for women. Two of the original

Dagenham girls, whose 1968 strike

0:22:480:22:55

action at Ford led to the equal pay

act, were there to.

We thought

0:22:550:23:00

everybody would have got their

rights by now, but unfortunately it

0:23:000:23:04

hasn't been like that.

The night's

big winner, three billboards, and

0:23:040:23:18

its star won best actress, Francis

McDormand.

I stand in full

0:23:180:23:26

solidarity with my sisters tonight

in the black. Power to the people.

0:23:260:23:31

The movie, which won a total of five

Baftas, including best film, has

0:23:310:23:36

struck a chord with audiences around

the world.

Hey, there, Mildred. Did

0:23:360:23:42

you pay a visit to the dentist

today?

No.

Best actor went to Gary

0:23:420:23:49

Oldman, who played Winston Churchill

in the World War II drama, Darkest

0:23:490:23:57

Hour. He paid tribute to his female

co-stars.

I love you. You have a

0:23:570:24:03

single vision and a full heart. They

were on display here. It best

0:24:030:24:11

director was won for the shape of

water, starring Sally Hawkins as a

0:24:110:24:15

woman in love with a mysterious

water creature. And the winner of

0:24:150:24:20

the rising star award was from

Britain. He paid tribute to one

0:24:200:24:25

particular woman.

I would like to

thank my mum. Mum, you're the reason

0:24:250:24:31

why I started, the reason why I'm

here, and the reason why I keep

0:24:310:24:35

going.

For the past three years, the

Baftas and the Oscars haven't agreed

0:24:350:24:40

on Best picture, but this 2018 Oscar

race is the most open in years, and

0:24:400:24:47

with voting starting on the other

side of the Atlantic on Tuesday,

0:24:470:24:51

many will be saying that three

billboards' performance tonight

0:24:510:24:56

might give it the edge at the

Academy Awards in March.

0:24:560:25:04

Before we go to the weather, we were

hoping to speak to Jennifer Lawrence

0:25:040:25:10

on the red carpet, but she hasn't

turned up yet. But what we have got

0:25:100:25:13

for you, is the weather. After a

mild and sunny weekend, I'm not sure

0:25:130:25:20

what has happened!

0:25:200:25:22

We had a lot of cloud and rain on

and off through the afternoon.

0:25:260:25:31

Unfortunately, it looks as though

tomorrow is going to be the same.

0:25:310:25:35

But beyond that, from Wednesday

onwards, it looks like the weather

0:25:350:25:39

is going to improve a little bit.

Whether from pretty much installed

0:25:390:25:45

across eastern parts of the UK. This

is where it is right now. It will be

0:25:450:25:51

so slow to clear away from our part

of the world. It is clear parts of

0:25:510:25:56

this evening and overnight. A pretty

gloomy, drizzly, rainy night on the

0:25:560:26:02

way. Very mild out there. If you are

an early shift start, temperatures

0:26:020:26:07

first thing will be around 8

degrees. Tomorrow's weather, a few

0:26:070:26:14

glimmers of brightness towards the

north-west, perhaps in High Wycombe,

0:26:140:26:17

but spells of rain through the day.

Tomorrow is not going to be

0:26:170:26:24

uniformly grey and cloudy, as there

will be glimmers of brightness every

0:26:240:26:28

now and again. Wednesday looking a

lot better, a lot brighter, with

0:26:280:26:33

some hazy skies. The winds are

starting to shift direction, which

0:26:330:26:37

is a hint of things to come over the

next few days. Temperatures are

0:26:370:26:42

still around seven to 9 degrees on

Wednesday, but because of this area

0:26:420:26:49

of high pressure, we will start to

see this high-pressure extending.

0:26:490:26:57

Looks like we could get some

Siberian air coming our way. Those

0:26:570:27:03

temperatures dropping through the

rest of the week, the weekend and

0:27:030:27:08

into next week. By the time we get

into Wednesday, it could be barely

0:27:080:27:13

above freezing, so cold weather

rather than spring on the way. Back

0:27:130:27:17

to you.

0:27:170:27:21

Thank you very much. A Cambridge

graduate, said to be one of

0:27:210:27:29

Britain's most prolific paedophiles,

has been sentenced to 32 years in

0:27:290:27:38

prison. Get in touch via our

Facebook page and on Twitter. Have a

0:27:380:27:46

lovely evening.

0:27:460:27:48

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