07/03/2018 London News


07/03/2018

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LineFromTo

Natalie many thanks once again.

Natalie Perks there for us

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Good evening.

I'm Riz Lateef.

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The Mayor is demanding

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answers from Thames Water,

accusing the company of decades

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of under-investment.

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It's after thousands of Londoners

were left without water for days

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and then this morning a burst pipe

in Tooting flooded the streets

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forcing businesses to close.

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Marc Ashdown reports.

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Tooting Broadway underwater.

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The early hours of this morning,

the road resembles a river,

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the latest burst water pipe to bring

chaos to south London.

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It left commuters with a precarious

journey to work and many

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businesses closed, and trying -

some more successfully than others -

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to deal with flooded shops.

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Never seen anything like it before,

to actually come into the shops.

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Just yards from the burst pipe,

staff at this charity shop said

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there was waist-high water gushing

past, but miraculously

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the doors held firm.

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We thought that everything would be

flooded, but luckily someone

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was looking after us,

and, yeah, back to business.

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You're going to carry

on, you're open?

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Yeah, of course.

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We don't let nothing stop us!

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Thames Water said this incident

is unrelated to the recent

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disruption caused by pipes cracking

in the severe weather.

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This 30-inch pipe is one

of the oldest in London,

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dating back to the 1830s.

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Thames say they had a team on site

here within 15 minutes to shut off

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this pipe and reduce the flow,

and as you can see, pretty much now

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it has receded altogether.

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The local MP says "sorry"

isn't good enough.

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She's calling for tough action.

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I think fundamentally the time has

come to legislate for this.

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We need to make sure that

Ofwat have the powers

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that they need in order

to make sure that things

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up regulated properly.

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Look, they said they

couldn't see this coming.

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It's a 200-year-old pipe.

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It was always going to be coming.

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This is happening all across London

and enough is enough.

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Local residents have been

without water for four

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days, some of them.

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Schools have been closed

and now local businesses

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are going to be suffering,

due to a loss of local revenue.

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It has been a difficult

few days for Thames.

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Thousands of people cut off

and accusations of a slow,

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poorly communicated response plan.

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And today, a huge stockpile

of water has sprung up to hand out

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with just a slow trickle

of residents still in need.

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How long have you been without?

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Erm, five days.

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Five days?!

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How many kids have you got,

have you got kids?

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Four.

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The Mayor of London has

written to Thames blaming

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decades of underinvestment

for the recent problems.

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Sadiq Khan wants pipe upgrade work

intensified and said Londoners need

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assurances things will be

markedly different when -

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not if - this happens again.

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Marc Ashdown, BBC London News.

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Tolu Adayoye has got more on this.

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And the letter the mayor sent

to Thames Water - strongly worded?

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Yes, this has been a week when

thousands of Londoners have really

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been beyond inconvenienced. The

Mayor clearly thinks that Thames

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Water should have been better

prepared. In the letter, he lists a

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number of concerns, including that

the bottled water distribution

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centres that were set up were

limited to a handful of locations,

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which were not suitable for many of

the people affected, particularly

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vulnerable people. He says

throughout the whole affair that has

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been poor communication. For

example, even though Thames Water

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anticipated supply issues last week,

based on the weather, they still

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didn't tell all agencies, including

the Fire Brigade. Lastly, he talks

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about compensation. The advice group

says that water companies should

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automatically give companies £20 for

12 hours without water, that should

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be £10 for every 24 hours. The Mayor

does not think that is enough, he

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wants more generous compensation and

fast.

Any response from Thames

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Water?

Yes, very brief. They say

they have agreed to look at

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compensation issues. For now, their

priority is to get every single

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customer back with a water supply.

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More than 500 Syrian

refugees have been resettled

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across the capital since 2015.

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But as campaigners demand even

more to be taken in -

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some councils say they're already

struggling with the housing crisis.

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So now one London borough

is appealing for more private

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landlords to offer homes.

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Chris Rogers reports from Islington.

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These two women have formed the most

unlikely of close friendships.

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Yvette is a London landlady

and Layla is her tenant.

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A refugee from war-torn Syria.

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She was a miracle for me, angel.

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Comes to help us.

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The home changed our life

for 100%, to better.

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Leila, her husband and three

children are among ten

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Syrian refugee families

to settle in Islington.

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Under a government scheme London

councils are funded to pay the rent,

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and support parents into work,

and children into school.

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Although there is obviously a small

hit because you don't get market

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rent, we get secure rent,

it's regular, there's no

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gaps between tenancies,

and it's an amazing way

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of being able to offer

help to families that are just

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like ours, and have found themselves

in a difficult time in their lives.

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Islington Council says it is mindful

of the housing crisis,

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but there's the issue.

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They now need to appeal for more

compassionate private

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landlords to help refugees.

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We aren't able to give any council

housing to our Syrian

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resettlement scheme,

because frankly there isn't enough.

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We have 19,000 people

on the waiting list,

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so we just don't have any council

properties to offer,

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and that's why this partnership

with the private landlords

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is so important to us.

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But could the demand to house

Syrian refugees increase?

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10,000 have been given refuge

by the UK from a devastating war,

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with strong support

from London local authorities.

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The UN Refugee Agency UNHCR warn

the Government's quota of 20,000

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is simply not enough.

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The success of the scheme has

fuelled calls from campaigners

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and politicians for the Government

to do more, and take in perhaps

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another 10,000 refugees,

particularly children -

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and not just from Syria,

but other war-torn countries.

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The Home Office tell us it has no

planned to increase its quota.

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For now, Layla's family are among

the minority to escape war

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for a new start in London.

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Chris Rogers, BBC London News.

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As the capital joins

celebrations to mark

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International Women's Day tomorrow,

this week we're getting

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an insight into the some

of the women who run London.

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Tonight we hear from

Fire Commissioner Dany Cotton.

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I spoke to her at a fire station

in south east London -

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where she was meeting teenagers

interested in learning some

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of the skills needed for the job.

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Get yourself rigged

and ready for roll call.

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Dany, does it remind

you of your teenage self?

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Oh, definitely, just

looking at them doing this,

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the first time you put your fire

gear on, it's so exciting,

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but a bit scary too.

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That's it, well done.

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The beginning was tough, you know.

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I was one of about 30 women out

of 6000 firefighters.

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I think we were probably tested

more than the guys were,

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because there was some questions

around can women really do it?

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Are women still being put off

a career in the Fire Service

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because it's still seen

as a job for men?

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I think they are, and I think it's

really important that we role model

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women and that we talk

about the fact women

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can be firefighters.

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Most importantly,

we explain the role.

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I think people do still think it's

just about heroic macho stuff

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and you have to be six foot

tall and strong.

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Two women running London's

major services, it's not

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that long ago that that

would have been unthinkable.

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Completely, and even now

sometimes people are quite

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surprised that it's happened,

and in the same year, which has just

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been a great coincidence,

but a really fantastic one,

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because it has just given us

the sort of support and shown,

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for me, young girls and young women

that there are fantastic career

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opportunities out there in non sort

of traditional roles.

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Your first year, of course,

the tragic events of Grenfell.

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Do you remember the moment

you got the call?

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Vividly, because I was at home.

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It was in the middle of the night.

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I remember thinking at the very

start, this is going to be something

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very different and it's going to be

something we've never

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experienced before.

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You've said you never get rid

of the guilt and responsibility.

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What did you mean?

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I was responsible for every single

firefighter on the fire ground that

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day, and it felt like the biggest

weight of responsibility

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I have ever had.

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I have never honestly experienced

that feeling of anxiety,

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responsibility and care.

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If you were looking at that

building, you couldn't help

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but look at that and just

have an overwhelming

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feeling of concern.

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How do you cope with the images

that you saw that night?

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I think a lot of it for me has been

about having counselling,

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and I've been really

honest about that.

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I don't think I could have

processed it on my own.

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I think it's a very difficult...

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For me, walking round the fire

ground, talking to my firefighters,

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having them physically break down

in front of me is something that

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I've never experienced before.

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Do you think admitting that

vulnerability is a touch

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from your leadership,

because you are a woman?

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Do you think that would have

happened under a male commissioner?

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I'm not so sure it would have done.

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I can't judge what people

would have thought,

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because it was such a different

night, but I felt it's OK for me

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to be really honest about that.

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Do you feel like a role model?

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I do absolutely feel

like a role model.

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And when I see groups of young girls

like these amazing girls here,

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it just makes me feel proud that

I can show them there

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is a way forward.

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They don't have to do

traditional jobs.

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They can challenge themselves.

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That's it from me -

but let's get a check

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on the weather with Nick Miller.

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After the tally, wet start to the

day, things cleared up with some

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sunshine and tomorrow we will get to

see a bit of sunshine. It will be a

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windy day as well, particularly in

the morning. Between now and the

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morning we are going to see some

rain. Let's look at the radar

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picture, and find out what is going

on. A few showers popping up towards

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the south-west of the UK into Wales.

They are moving east quite quickly.

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By the end of the night not just

showers, a spot of rain coming our

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way. Increasing cloud overnight. The

odd shower, then here comes the

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rain, a quick moving spell at the

end of the night. Quite heavy as it

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moves through, overnight

temperatures of four 5 degrees. Not

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just wet, gusty wind. Look out

quickly it is out of the way in the

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morning. Then broken cloud,

sunshine, maybe a stray shower if we

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catch one tomorrow. It will move

through quite quickly on the wind,

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which will be very gusty,

particularly during the first part

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of the day. The wind easing as we go

to the afternoon. 12 degrees, more

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like ten at best tomorrow. It is

going to feel colder, but looking

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ahead to the weekend, temperatures

on the up again. But there will be

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some outbreaks of rain at the

weekend. Thankfully not all weekend

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long. Rain for us. Elsewhere in the

UK there is some

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