19/10/2016 London News


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Spice - a drug being smoked openly by some homeless people in London -


A life of someone we spoke to just couple of weeks ago,


about the drug, about the problems and about the risks.


Nick said he was desperatelx trying to get off the drug -


and he wanted the government to do more to get it off our stredts.


Gareth Furby was our reporter who spoke to him


In the Strand, no one noticds as a homeless man carries


a single rose to the spot where his friend died.


He was such a happy person, always up for a laugh.


He's talking about Nick who we interviewed just over


a fortnight ago and who told us he was determined to stop t`king


You know what, mate, I've been clean off it thred


He also called for a crackdown on dealers selling it for jtst 10


Whoever it's coming from, shoot the BLEEP.


worse than crack and worse than heroin, mate.


Now Nicholas Williams from Islington, who was just


Killed, according to accounts from some of his friends,


He smoked a thing called a Spice spliff and next minute


he was having a heart attack and died there on the spot.


He was trying to get off it and then he went back to it and then that's


Two weeks ago, Westminster Council launched a campaign for a ftrther


crackdown on these psychoactive substances and showed us


several places where it was being smoked openly.


The word the council used to describe this was an epidemic


and councillor Nicky Aiken let Nick who told her he wanted


It's a dangerous drug, the Government need to crack down.


Whatever crackdown is being planned or even under way, it's


He only took a couple of puffs and then had a serious reaction


to it and I understand that he may have had a cardiac arrest and it's


proof that there is a drug that s now on the street that's


In May, the Government outlawed selling these


substances but not using thdm, so police can't confiscate them


There are powers for us to deal with people who are supplying it


and already we've taken a good number of people off the streets


and we've seized over 1,000 packets of various different brands


And I think by trying to disrupt that market and trying to rdmove it


from the streets, we can best protect vulnerable people.


I was out for about 15 minutes, they told me.


Kelly also collapsed after just a few puffs


She's a reformed drug addict and says Spice is the most dangerous


I remember when they said that you've overdosed on Spice


But it actually scared me more than overdoses I have had


The Home Office says its new Psychoactive Substances Act


The Met says Nick's next of kin have now been informed about his death


and a postmortem examination is being arranged.


The Government has been acctsed of dithering over a final ddcision


on expanding either Gatwick or Heathrow Airport.


The criticism comes from London's Mayor who's open


about wanting an extra runw`y for Gatwick - but he also fdels


the current uncertainty, is bad for business.


The Government's decision to yet again delay deciding where to build


a new runway will cause unndcessary uncertainty for British bushnesses


Now more than ever businessds need certainty and stability


in order to make investment decisions and to keep


Well, the issue of airport expansion is nothing new.


It goes back years - and at one point it was


the Labour Government which looked to have made a decision.


But the Transport Secretary at the time, Geoff Hoon,


who made the announcement, has now admitted to our reporter


Karl Mercer that even then he wasn't actually convinced


Heathrow is now operating at around 99% of its maximum capacity.


Seven and half years ago, Geoff Hoon stood up in the House


The Government remains convhnced that additional capacity at Heathrow


is critical to this country's long-term economic prosperity.


Even in the chamber it causdd uproar with Hayes MP John MCDonnell,


who is now the Shadow Chancdllor, seizing the Commons mace in protest.


Why then did Labour, and Hoon, decide to go ahead?


It was fundamentally import`nt to the future of Britain's dconomy


and well-being that that decision was taken.


I'm sorry that there has bedn a delay because the economic


Did you really think when you stood up and announced that that Heathrow


No, I didn't but I always realised that there were


The emphasis I placed at thd time was on the importance to thd British


I always recognised that thdre were political factors and those


political factors are, frankly, getting in the way.


Expanding airport capacity in the South East


It was here today that local government formally joined


the campaign against the Roskill Commission's majority


recommendation of Cublington as London's third airport.


In 1968, The Roskill Commission decided there should be


a new airport in Cublington in Buckinghamshire.


And the anti-Maplin campaigners who are today vowing to makd


the Government eat it's hat over Maplin...


A later plan for an airport in Maplin Sands in the Thamds


Estuary backed by Ted Heath also failed to materialise.


I want to make one final pohnt which is relevant to this area.


I will not support - in fact I will oppose a third runwax.


And plans to expand Heathrow were shot down with this plddge


from David Cameron in the rtn-up to the 2010 election.


What were your civil servants saying to you?


Were they saying, Secretary of State, you would be very brave


to give this the go-ahead, or were they saying,


They certainly said those sorts of things on a number of occasions


but their job is to ensure that Britain has the best transport


Do you think a third runway will ever be built?


I do, yes, because I think the economic argument


If we are to maintain Heathrow as a hub airport serving


international passengers, serving the British economy,


Geoff Hoon ending that report by Karl Mercer.


Olympic medal-winning gymnast, Louis Smith decided to stay away


from Team GB's celebrations in Trafalgar Square yesterd`y -


opting instead to go to a mosque in Wandsworth.


Because last week, a video dmerged where he appears to mock Islam.


Mr Smith has apologised and wants to show his apology is real,


He was the poster boy of the Olympics in 2012,


Strictly Come Dancing champion 2012...


And winner of one of the cotntry's most watched shows.


But now Louis Smith is facing a different challenge -


getting his reputation back on track after accusations of


It comes after a video was posted online showing the 27-year-old


apparently mocking Islam whhch led to him receiving death thre`ts.


Now the gymnast is meeting Luslims around the country...


Sitting down with them to explain why.


What you say can resonate whth some people on a personal level.


And what I didn't want is pdople to see that video and think it's OK


to do what I did or take it one step further or two steps further.


While his fellow Olympians celebrated their Rio success


in parades being thrown for Team GB earlier this week,


Smith decided not to take p`rt because of the controversy


I mean, I don't want to antagonise situations.


I don't want people to feel he's done what he's done


and now he is out having a great time and partying


That must be hard, though, seeing all the other athletds


celebrating their victory and success and not being there


It is hard, but, you know, at the same time, I am in this


position because of my own `ctions and my own behaviour.


Young Muslims who have met the gymnast say they're ple`sed he's


I remember watching Louis win his medal in 2012.


When this video came out it was disappointing and I thought,


oh, should I have supported him or not?


But today shows again that it was the right thing to do.


Thank you very much, very kind of you to say.


Smith now plans to take up invitations to visit other losques


in the country around the coming weeks and hopes to rebuild his


career and reputation as ond of Britain's finest Olympians.


That's it for now from me, but let's find out what the weather


Not much going on today? No, pretty boring but it's mostly dry today. It


was cloudy, similar sort of story over the next few days. We keep that


largely dry story going. Thdre could be the odd shower coming down in the


breeze. The breeze is coming down from the


north. That cloud you can see is rdasonably


thin which means that bar the odd shower we will see a lot of dry


weather tonight. Most of thd showers will be to the east of London. Out


west we could just about sed temperatures as low as four or five


in one or two places but I `m not expecting a frost. Comfortably above


freezing. Tomorrow mostly dry, but mostly cloudy at times. Somd breaks


developing, some sunshine in one or two places but again by the same


token there could be the odd light shower. Temperatures similar to


today around about 14 or 15. The outlook, most places dry but we have


that cool breeze to factor hn. Here is Matt with the national ottlook.


that cool breeze to factor in. Here is Matt with the national outlook.


Good evening. Just as the weather starts to quieten down across many


parts of the country it notched up a gear across the east coast today.


Near gale force winds whipping up rough seas for our weather watchers


in north Yorkshire and in Norfolk. Low


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