tv BBC News at Six BBC News May 4, 2017 6:00pm-6:30pm BST
tonight at 6pm... prince philip has decided to step down from public duties this autumn. but it was business as usual today for the 95—year—old prince. his decision is not health related and, as ever, his trademark wit. he's been at the queen's side for nearly 70 years. they've carried out thousands of engagements together. if we regard the queen's rain so far asa if we regard the queen's rain so far as a success if we regard the queen's rain so far as a success and i think we do, the joint author of that success is the duke of edinburgh. his achievement is unparalleled. we'll be looking at prince philip's contribution to public life. also tonight... twins, but with such different prospects. a special report on the hospital that caused olivia's disabilities during birth. the far—right marine le pen finds herself in the thick of an ill—tempered french election. voters go the polls on sunday.
i was pretty certain i was going to die. and we speak to the surfer who's now safe in hospital after a dramatic rescue — he'd been stranded at sea for 30 hours. in the end, they saved my life. i can't thank them enough. and coming up in the sport on bbc news... why european success is now the priority for manchester united over their league form as they plot a route into the champions league. good evening and welcome to the bbc news at six. after nearly 70 years in the public eye, prince philip has decided it's time to call it a day.
he'll retire from royal duties in the autumn. his decision, which has the support of the queen, is not related to any health issues. there have been tributes from public and politicians alike, with theresa may praising what she called his steadfast support for the queen. in a moment we'll look at the prince's contribution to national life but first our royal correspondent nick witchell on what's prompted this decision. it is an image to which the nation has become accustomed over a good many decades. the queen and the duke of edinburgh side—by—side on official business. today they were at a reception at st james‘ palace. the duke a few steps behind and there in support. inside, meeting members of the order of merit, swapping stories about hearing aids. and joking about retirement. i hear you're standing down.
i hear you're standing downlj i hear you're standing down. i can't stand up much! never mind standing down, i have trouble standing up, he said. but, come the autumn, his attendance at events like this will be the exception. after nearly 70 years of public service, the duke has decided, a few weeks short of his 96th birthday, that it's finally time to step back from public duties. the palace says the decision has not been prompted by any particular concerns about his health, and the evidence would support that. yesterday he was at lord's cricket ground, opening a new stand and sharing a familiarjoke. the world's most experienced plaque unveiler! laughter. alongside all those plaques he has unveiled are the serious achievements. things like the duke of edinburgh award scheme. but his most important contribution has been the support he has given to his wife, the queen, as she has become the longest reigning monarch in british history. he has become the longest—running consort. they have done it together. the duke taking second place to his wife in public, but her most constant and sometimes
forthright supporter in private. he has supported her by being a very strong husband. and he has put herfirst, and he has not tried to interfere in her work, her work as queen is her work. soon though, the duke's public role will come largely to an end. the palace statement said: political leaders paid their tributes. from his steadfast support for her majesty the queen, to his inspirational duke of edinburgh awards, and his patronage of hundreds of charities and good causes, his contribution to our united kingdom, the commonwealth and the wider world,
will be of huge benefit to us all for years to come. i wish him well in his retirement. i wish him well spending time doing the things he wants to do, as opposed to being required to attend lots of events, some of which he may find very exciting, some less so. so all the best, good luck. he has dedicated his life to public service and to supporting the queen. i think he has more than earned his retirement. prince philip, as well as the support he has given the queen and his own public service, has done an amazing amount of charity work as well. the duke's retirement from public duties will mean that other members of the royal family will step up to support the queen. it is likely she will be seen more frequently at major occasions with the prince of wales or princess anne. but those who know the couple say it won't be quite the same for the queen. the queen will undoubtedly miss him on public occasions.
there is no doubt that when they go out for a day together, they are a mutual support system. having been on tours with them, having followed in the car behind them, at the end of the day they get together into the car and he entertains her hugely, telling funny stories about what has happened during the day. so she will definitely miss all of that. and occasionally she will strike us as a lonely figure. but she will be going back to buckingham palace, windsor castle, balmoral, and he will be there. slowly but surely, there is a generational shift taking place at the palace. officials have made it clear the queen will continue with public engagements. but at the age of 91 now, her load is being lightened. as monarch, she is still the centralfigure. but as today has underlined, there is starting be tangible evidence of transition. nicholas witchell, bbc news. prince philip has accompanied the queen on countless state visits around the world and carried out thousands of solo engagements. he's supported numerous
charities and organisations. the duke of edinburgh's award for young people, which he established, now covers more than a hundred countries. prince philip is also known for his sharp wit and plain speaking while on royal duty. here's our royal correspondent, peter hunt. prince philip has been an unstoppable prince philip has been an u nstoppa ble royal force for prince philip has been an unstoppable royal force for seven decades. while he is finally taking it easy, the organisations he champions will continue. millions have benefited from the duke of edinburgh's award scheme. when i spoke to a decade ago it was modest about what he had achieved. i know you hate the capital l word but do you hate the capital l word but do you see it as an important part of your legacy? legacy?! no, i don't, it is nothing to do with me, it is therefore people to use, i. enjoyed a meal here would he really enjoyed and made good comments about the food. another of his quarters, the environment and conservation.
princely passions philip embraced long before they were mainstream popular issues. probably the biggest thing he has done is help us reach lots of people globally in different parts of the world and bring together really influential people together really influential people to support conservation. he brings people together. travelling the world, here he was with british troops in rack went in his 80s and that is also at an end. the former naval opposite does not do bland cover his blood has additionally got him into trouble will stop —— his bluntness. for his critics he is a gaffe prone prince, the most notorious in a state visit to china when her husband told stu d e nts to china when her husband told students that if you stay here much longer you will all be slitty eyed. such public encounters with the potters buttrey as the prince putting people at ease will not diminish, allowing him more time to
enjoy the sport of carriage driving. it isa enjoy the sport of carriage driving. it is a friendship, there is no holds barred, i have had plenty of disagreements with him, i don't mean nasty ones. along eventful life on public display is coming to an end. this princely pensioner can now enjoy himself. peter hunt, bbc news. nick witchelljoins me now. 0ut out of the public eye but he does still have a role? yes, he certainly does and we should remember that the husband of a queen had no constitutional role, he has never had that. his principal role has a lwa ys had that. his principal role has always been, as the queen wanted describes it, be mike rentable strength and —— to be my principal strength and —— to be my principal strength and —— to be my principal strength and stay. and he will continue doing that in private to the queen and she values is advice greatly. neither should we forget
that sentence today that he may still choose to attend certain public events from time to time. it will be decided on an ad hoc basis. this is a man with still a considerable intellectual curiosity. the idea he will step back and put his feet up after a lifetime of duty and attending engagements is a false one. nonetheless he has, as i understand it, been thinking about this for some months and he wanted to be by the side of the queen for her 90th birthday last year but now, close to 96, he is putting into practice what he said at his 90th birthday, to wind down and step back a bit. as he does so, the younger members of the royal family will have to step up, more so than at the present, to accompany the queen as she continues with the public engagements. thank you very much. the bbc has learned that an nhs trust has paid out millions of pounds in compensation after errors in monitoring babies' heart rates during birth led to brain injuries. at least five babies have died
at shrewsbury and telford hospital nhs trust as a result of similar errors. last month we revealed that the health secretary had ordered a review of maternity services at the hospital. now the bbc understands one law firm has 27 open investigations into allegations that mistakes in labour at the trust led to brain injuries in babies. the trust said the sums paid out offer little insight into its maternity services. 0ur correspondent michael buchanan reports. beth and olivia are identical twins. they are now 11 and the older they get, the less similar their lives become. beth is fit and healthy but 0livia was born with a brain injury. problems with monitoring her heart rate and delays in delivering her means she has cerebral palsy. she struggles to walk, can't talk and has carers 2a hours a day. our family life is not the same as it should be.
we've all had to make drastic changes to our life. i wasn't able to go back to work, i had to become a full—time... well, i say a full—time mum, a full—time carer, i think. and a mum second. and obviously i have two children to look after. 0livia can't swallow so is fed through a tube. all problems the shrewsbury and telford hospital trust has admitted causing. similar errors have also left other children with brain injuries. in 2015 we have learned a consultant at the trust told a meeting that one compensation claim for £41! million related to ctg, or foetal heartrate interpretation. two other claims, he said, worth £144,000, were also due to failures to properly interpret the babies' heart rates. medical negligence lawyer beth harrison says her firm has 27 open investigations into allegations that the trust's maternity errors
have caused brain injuries. we are repeatedly seeing the same mistakes again and again. there is generally a delay in acting upon foetal distress. i also think there is a culture of trying to push for a vaginal delivery in some circumstances. these women need a caesarean section and they aren't getting that. the trust has been under intense scrutiny since we revealed last month the health secretary has ordered an investigation following the avoidable deaths of at least seven babies. over the past decade we have learned they have paid out nearly £25 million in compensation following maternity errors — among the highest figures for similar units. the trust told us they would not comment in detail in case they prejudiced the ongoing review but did say claims can be and frequently are brought and resolved many years after incidents occur. and that the sums paid out in recent years offer little insight into the maternity services provided by the trust. beth and olivia will be lifelong
friends but basic maternity errors mean only one of them will fully flourish. beth is going to do all the things that most other children do, or adults — university, work, a family of her own. 0livia will never do any of those, she will always live at home with us for the rest of her life. michael buchanan, bbc news, shropshire. our top story this evening. prince philip retires from public life at the age of 95. his decision isn't health—related. still to come... a bird's eye view of the albatross as seen from space. coming up on sportsday on bbc news... an exclusive with usain bolt as he prepares to hang up those sprinting spikes this summer. he tells the bbc what he hopes his legacy will be. a surfer who survived for more
than 30 hours clinging to his board in the irish sea has been telling the bbc what it was like to be stranded, convinced he wouldn't be found alive. eight rescue teams from these areas were mobilised as part of the search for matthew bryce. he was eventually spotted by helicopter after drifting 13 miles from shore. from his hospital bed, matthew has been speaking to our correspondent, chris buckler, describing the last desperate hours before the rescue. by the night—time, it wasn'tjust my shoulder, all my limbs were cramping. matthew bryce is exhausted, sunburnt and still recovering. but he's just thankful to have survived after drifting alone in the irish sea for more than 30 hours. i would say that's probably a yellow surfboard so that's the right colour. this picture, taken on sunday, shows him surfing off the west coast
of scotland before he was pulled out to sea by strong winds and tides. the current changes and i can't do anything. all this time the wind is pushing me further and further and further out. and then at night, well... sorry... he ended up clinging to his surfboard in the middle of the irish sea for a day and a half. he was eventually found halfway between northern ireland and scotland just as the sun was setting and a second night was approaching. i was pretty certain that i was going to die. with the sunset. so as i was watching the sun set, i had pretty much made peace with all. and then a helicopter. and the helicopter flew right over. so ijumped off the board and i lifted the board up
and i started waving the board. and it flew over and i thought they had missed me. they turned. they turned round. and they saved my life. this is the moment he was rescued from the water. and his family could finally be told that he was alive. you have this elation and then, 20 minutes later, you crash back down. you don't know what state he is in. you don't know how unwell he is, until we got that phone call from matthew, just to hear his voice. the search teams even managed to recover his surfboard. are you looking forward to being reunited with your surfboard 7 is that the right question? i think we'll find
a good use for it. maybe as starter fuel! but, yeah... that's it, you're done with surfing? i think so. i couldn't do that again. and that pledge to keep away from the surf is one his family seem determined to make him keep. chris buckler, bbc news, at the ulster hospital in belfast. the two candidates vying to become the next french president were back on the campaign trail today, after clashing in a tv debate last night. the centrist politician, emmanuel macron, and his far—right rival, marine le pen, traded insults for two hours. he accused her of being a liar and she accused him of being soft on terror. 0ur correspondent james reynold is in northern france where marine le pen is campaigning. james. marine le pen find yourself targeted
by both accusations and the eggs of protesters, the eggs might have been easier to dodge. critics accuse her of failing to discuss programme during last night's debate, a charge she denies. translation: the french people know my programme pretty well, that is because it is very clear and i have been presenting it to them for several years. i wanted to them for several years. i wanted to lift the veil and i believe i did that successfully on who mr macron is. here, her message goes down well. 76—year—old claude tells me life needs to change. translation: there is no work any more, there is no money, i have grandchildren who do not havejobs, i have a kid who doesn't have a job, we're in a real mess and it has to stop. this is post—industrial france, the heartland of the front nationale. this is emmanuel macron's —— marine le pen's last gasp to close the gap. she has been making the case for
months, even years, but most of this country still doesn't want anything to do with her. and that is why emmanuel macron is a frontrunner. this morning he repeated a warning. translation: marine le pen has shown she does not love liberty, she has shown that and how she deals with journalists, in a position on same—sex couples, on women and on the freedom of the press. and emmanuel macron has won the support of one fellow liberal who knows what it is like to face right—wing populists. i know that you face many challenges and i want all of my friends in france to know how much i'm rooting for your success. because of how important this election is, i also wanted to know that i am supporting emmanuel macron to lead you forward. one march, the villa france. emmanuel macron, here visiting the factory in southern france, goes into the final days in
the lead. his supporters may be tempted to hold early celebrations but the country has yet to vote. voters have been arriving at polling stations for local and mayoral elections in england, wales and scotland. seats will be contested in all councils in wales and scotland. voters in england will select new members of 32 councils and in six english regions metro mayors will be elected for the first time. the results are expected from early tomorrow. to the united states now, where a vote in congress is attempting, for the second time, to repeal obamacare. the republicans say they are confident that they have enough to pass the reforms, after donald trump canvassed for support. repealing obamaca re was repealing obamacare was all of the key campaign pledges from donald trump. our correspondent gary o'donoghue is in washington. is this a done deal? it looks like
it will be third time lucky for donald trump, twice this year he has marched his soldiers to the top of the hill and had to march them down but they seem to have got the votes this time as the final speeches are unveiled in the chamber. they have done some arm—twisting and spend some money and giving concessions to individual states and the right of the party is on board and the moderates seem to be also. in a final pep talk this morning, leadership and then in the basement in the capital and they played the theme from the rocky films. only in america, you might think. if donald trump gets this vote through, it will be a victory but that is not the end of the war because it has to go through the senate and the senate isa go through the senate and the senate is a much tighter proposition, the republicans only have a majority of four and some of those republicans are planning to change this bill. thank you very much. it's a species under threat — the northern royal albatross. but anyone who wants to count how many are left
has a real challenge on their hands. the giant birds nest on a group of rocks east of new zealand and you've got to be a climber to get anywhere near them. until now, because scientists have come up with a new way of assessing them — from space. our science correspondent, rebecca morelle, has the story. a little ungainly on land, the albatross is a giant of the bird world. with its formidable wingspan, it's easy to spot. but counting these birds is tricky. most albatrosses nest on islands that are extremely remote. now, though, there is a new way to get a tally of the birds. from space. scientists are using a powerful us satellite to zoom in on places like the chatham islands in the south pacific. ultra high—res images can map areas down to just 30 centimetres, which means each albatross appears as a white dot. and researchers simply tot them up. and this is the bird that lives there. the northern royal albatross.
the satellite count has come in at about 3600 nests. it's half the number scientists expected. albatrosses face a number of problems and if we zoom out from the chatham islands, we can see one of them. ocean currents are circulating plastic waste, which can prove deadly for the birds. along with plastics, fishing lines are also a major danger and so are pests like rats, that prey on young chicks. out of 22 species of albatross, 15 are under threat. the simple solution is to reduce the number being killed at sea and there are ways to restore their breeding sites as well, so what i am hoping in the future is that these satellite images will actually be able to show us that we are moving in the right direction for saving the albatross as a whole. this isn't the first time that satellites have helped conservationists. we can now track the wildebeest‘s migration from space. southern right whales have been monitored remotely, too, and the technology has even helped scientists to establish the size of penguin colonies.
for the albatross, researchers now want to extend their territory to other nesting sites. knowing how many birds there are now will help us to track how they fare in the future. rebecca morelle, bbc news. time for a look at the weather. here's jay wynne. it was a lovely day for a large swathes of the uk, this is the view from the moray firth. it was not sunny for all, southern counties we re sunny for all, southern counties were cloudy but essentially dry and here is the view from space, a lovely day for the midlands and northwards. this is a thick cloud and is potential for odd northwards. this is a thick cloud and is potentialfor odd spots northwards. this is a thick cloud and is potential for odd spots of rain in the south—east over the next few hours. lighter winds and clearer skies further north, a good recipe for a chilly night. no problems in
towns and cities, it is rural parts, with rural scotland dipping below freezing. a bad start for most of scotland, may be low cloud on the north coast but inland it is fine with light winds and a beautiful start for northern ireland and across start for northern ireland and a cross m ost start for northern ireland and across most of northern lincolnshire is to still light breeze from the north sea and it is breezy across southernmost counties. this is the cloud for the morning, not as much as cloud for the morning, not as much as today but still some sunshine across south wales and the south midlands. many places are in for a dry day and evening, the cloud will come and go and will stay dry everywhere and there are good spells of sunshine from the midlands northwards and more sunshine in wales. cool on the north sea coast but further west, 18 degrees. through the even there might be some rain developing in the midlands but also towards the far south—west but most also towards the far south—west but m ost pla ces also towards the far south—west but most places will be financed right and the weekend looks like it will be trying, breezy on saturday with a
cool field do things on the north sea coast. one in western scotland and another dry day on sunday. lighter winds, cool on the north sea coast but with those winds it will feel pretty good. thank you. our main story... prince philip retires from public life at the age of 95. this decision is not health—related. that's all from the bbc news at six. it's goodbye from me, and on bbc one we nowjoin the bbc‘s news teams where you are. hello, this is bbc news with martine croxall. the us house of representatives set to hold a vote on a revised healthca re bill that republicans hope will replace obamacare. the duke of edinburgh announces he's to retire from all public duties in autumn, a decision supported by the queen. adrift for 32 hours
in the irish sea. in an exclusive interview, rescued surfer matthew bryce tells the bbc that he had ‘prepared for death'. emmanuel macron and marine le pen are back on the campaign trail in france after their bad—tempered to debate. in a moment it will be time for sportsday but first a look at what else is coming up this evening on bbc news. we'll be live in washington as the us house of representatives hold a vote on a revised healthcare bill that republicans hope will replace obamacare. rallies in france as polling day approaches in the french presidential election. we'll have the latest from the both camps, as centrist emmanuel macron takes on the far right marine le pen.