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tv   Afternoon Live  BBC News  February 8, 2018 2:00pm-4:59pm GMT

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hello, you're watching afternoon live. i'm simon mccoy. today at 2:00: interest rates on hold, but a warning from the bank of england that rises are coming, and they will happen sooner rather than later and be larger than previously expected. it will be a gradual process, but § let's e somewhat more than what we had thought in november. higher council tax bills on the way in most of england, as local authorities struggle to make ends meet. calls for a new code is of conduct for mps, peers 55?” 5151; our l.-- and parliamentary staff, as one in five people working there say they experienced, or witnessed, sexual harassment last year. calls for a new code of conduct for new code of conduct for mps, peers and parliamentary staff. the action is under way ahead of the opening ceremony tomorrow, and good news for the defending skeleton champion, lizzy yarnold, she has been named as
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tea m lizzy yarnold, she has been named as team gb's flag bearer. more from her later. louise has the weather.‘ that is 1; our l.-- that isee-eizz- they '--- that is -; they are they are glorious start, cold and frosty, —6 vii; fiifc in southern england. unfortunately, the cloud has arrived and we have a weather front. it is the cloud has arrived and we have a weatherfront. it is bringing rain, if we look at the lake district, we %*’¥ w: 7:12: ;: ii: can see rain pushing east overnight. more coming up. thanks, louise. also coming up: we'll be giving a warm handshake — and not in any way a dodgy one — to the head of the freemasons in england and wales. he'll tell us why he thinks they're getting an unfair press. we always seem to talk in a negative way when we discuss seen on the ie interest rate rises, have seen on the banknotes, is the seeing eye, but for millions of savers
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éfi ourselves z z — ~ — of course they are good news. they, at least, will take cheer from bank of england chief mark carney‘s suggestion that rates would need to rise earlier — and more quickly — if the economy remains on its current track. the bank voted unanimously to keep interest rates on hold at 0.5% at their latest meeting.. but some economists think the next rate rise could come as soon as may. if you've got a mortgage — or loan — of course, that does not come in the ‘good news‘ category. a surrounded our economics correspondent andy verity reports. if the whole economy performed like this manchester maker of branded clothing, its biggest problems would be almost solved. it's growing fast, exporting to europe and boosting productivity through investment. and while inflation caused by the weak pound boosted its costs, it's been able to absorb out and carry on winning new orders. the last 12 months, we've grown in a strange environment, surrounded by scary things, we know giving them that teddy bear makes them feel more by 20% in the uk but europe has been co mforta ble, that teddy bear makes them feel more comfortable, makes them feel safer much stronger than that, in that environment. that is who we are, what we do. i'm looking at you
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so we have more than doubled because there's something still the growth rate in the uk. about that word freemasonry that makes people feel uneasy. its men i'm cautiously optimistic about the future. we are making major investments over the next 12 months in technology, which will allow us to increase only, that causes some suspicion. productivity and efficiency, and improve quality it's not men only. i am here to bust and service to our customers. the key to this company's myths today. we're not men only. competitiveness is speed. coming up with branded products much faster than you if you ordered them from china. there are two women's grand lodges the speed of growth in the wider economy had been slowing in the united kingdom ‘s, thousands but recently it's growing faster of women freemasons. we'vejust than expected and today celebrated the hundredth anniversary the bank of england said of the suffragettes, two leading it is probably growing as fast as it can without overheating. suffragettes 100 years of the suffragettes, two leading suffragettes100 years ago where lady freemasons and if you look at gdp growth is expected to average around one and three quarters percent over the forecast period, our twitter feed you can see who they were. we are showing pictures a little stronger than projected in november. to back—up your point. one myth com pletely to back—up your point. one myth completely busted. in terms of the while modest by historic standards, secrecy, completely busted. in terms of the this demand growth is still expected secrecy, why do you have the secret to exceed the diminished rate of supply growth over words and rituals? if you say, this the forecast period. is us, nothing to hide, why hide anything? i don't think we're a the key judgment for the bank of england is when the next rise secret organisation, i work in in interest rates comes. headquarters in covent garden, a massive great building, for years today, its monetary policy committee we've had public tours going around covent garden every single day. we held the official rate at 0.5%.
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but following the bank's warning, bring the public in, show them, we've got a museum, library, they in the city they're saying the next are welcome to see what we do. up rise is likely in may. and down the country we are opening prices are still rising our masonic centres for the same faster than wages meaning on average your real income will thing. question and answer sessions. buy less and less. but the bank of england's big we wa nt thing. question and answer sessions. we want to be known for who we are, judgment call is we will get bigger pay rises in the years to come. not through this tired lens of what people think we do. do you still if they're right about that, the squeeze on living standards should start to ease. wear blindfolds? it's part of our ceremony as well, yes, if you look the weaker pound has raised the cost of imported goods, including raw materials for firm's at any of the things 300 years old, like this one, but because an interest rate rise the stuff that has evolved around the stuff that has evolved around the church, around the house of is now expected soon, lords, there are things that if you take them out of context and don't investors expect to make more money holding pounds. understand why they are there, that that has pushed up the value is strange. it's not unique to of the pound by a cent this afternoon, if it stays stronger, freemasonry. sate you are having one that should help to of your ceremonies and a member of contain inflation. the public wandered in and was andy verity, bbc news. watching from the balcony above, and andy verityjoins me now. would they think this is rather old we do always seem to have a negative and quaint or would they think this feel about higher interest rates, isa and quaint or would they think this is a bit edgy. this looks very but they are good news for some. strange. i came in as a shy they go up for a good reason. what 18—year—old, i'd never heard of the
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the banks make a judgment on is if freemasons before ijoined, ijoined ona whim, the banks make a judgment on is if the economy is growing within its freemasons before ijoined, ijoined capacity. if it goes too fast, it on a whim, friend of mine asked if i wa nted on a whim, friend of mine asked if i wanted to go along and it seems like good idea. of course the ceremony overheats, that's inflation. if it you go through, the initiation, seem goes at its speed limit where a car strange at the time. when you've can manage, you won't get beenin information, you will get a nice strange at the time. when you've been ina strange at the time. when you've been in a couple of months, years, speed of the economy as you want. it starts to make sense. they are the bank has to work out whether the sweet morality plays which teach us to consider ourselves, reflect on economy is likely to grow faster our behaviour, to think of our thanit economy is likely to grow faster than it can produce the goods. if people demand more goods, the position within society, of those economy can produce, and you get less fortu nate. position within society, of those less fortunate. and how we can help them. £33 million we race last year inflation. it wants to head that. the economy is growing faster, which out of our own membership to help those less fortunate than ourselves. is good news, to prevent it out you are a doctor in hospital, growing, growing too fast, it has to someone you are a doctor in hospital, someone walks in, needs an headit growing, growing too fast, it has to head it off within interest rise. operation, there is a list, a continuing your analogy, they are weight. if you were sitting next to driving in the rear—view mirror, them the week before in a lodge working on the basis of what has happened. no one can forecast what meeting, did you help them in a way is happening next. it is a foggy you wouldn't have helped others? no, view ahead. the bank can only because we are based on integrity and morality and the oldest we take predict to some extent. it is honest in our ceremony say we must uphold about that. they say the economy is the law of the land that we live in strong enough for us to remove
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and the spirit and the moral aspects support. nice plain in this on the of the law as well. that sort of bank of england website. it means, when you have interest rates low, it thing isn't tolerated, it's a myth, supports the economy by making it it doesn't happen. i'll tell you something, i represent 200,000 easy to borrow money. there is nothing in the way of generating members in the uk. are there are a few bad apples? absolutely. if we economic activity if they want to. the support of having super cheap find out about them we expel them, credit is no longer as necessary, we don't tolerate that. it's they think. they have removed some outrageous the other 198,000 people support. we rarely talk about arejudged by the savers, but they have a different ta ke savers, but they have a different take on this. back in 2009 when outrageous the other 198,000 people are judged by the same token. think of sherlock holmes, there are interest rates were cut to an portrayals of freemasonry and these historic low of 0.5%, the then governor said they would go back up. rituals, very dark, very unpleasant. a decade later, they are at 0.5% and does it strike you potty? haven't got any higher. the city absolutely, look at a mosque at midsummer murders, all of these thinks a rise is likely in may, and things, it makes great drama. for 20 yea rs or things, it makes great drama. for 20 there could be another one early years or so things, it makes great drama. for 20 years or so it has made great drama. next. it could end up higher than enough is enough, it's time for us was previously thought. you are to come out and say this is who we are, talk to us, look at our talking about affordable loans compared to 20 years ago. andy, website, see what we do, who we thank you very much. really are. very good of you to talk don't forget — you can let us know what you think tweet about it. doctor david staples, good
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us using the hashtag, #afternoonlive. to talk to you, thanks for coming low pay and overwhelming pressures all the ways to contact us on screen right now. of work mean that adult care staying with the theme... services in england can no longer fill key posts — according to the national audit office. it claims a lack of government planning and funding has undermined the sector, almost all council tax payers in england face higher bills and charges from april, at a time when demand because local authorities for it is increasing. say they're struggling to make ends meet. here's our social affairs correspondent, alison holt. a survey suggests around three—quarters of councils it's a busy lunchtime at northfields are planning an increase of at least 2.5%. nursing home in sheffield. that would mean more than demanding work for the care staff who are looking after residents £40 on the average bill. with a high level of need. duncan kennedy reports and today's report outlines just how difficult it has become to find from guildford in surrey, the people needed to provide where the county council is facing this vital care. a budget shortfall of more than a £100 million. joyce ? adult social care, children's services, transport subsidies and infrastructure projects. these are all the cornerstone good afternoon. services of our lives it's only me. sorry to bother you, darling. tammy ardron is the nursing lead here. and council spending. finding care staff generally is a problem but she says attracting but today's report says, in england, nurses has become a real issue for them. i don't think it is as attractive they're all under pressure. as maybe the nhs, where you've got your salary packages, our reseach shows councils are enhanced rates of pay right on the edge financially. and sociable hours. and i think it's hard work. they are keeping services it's busy, its constant. together but only doing that you got to be on the
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by whacking up council tax, ball 2a hours a day. charging for everything they can the report also says, with councils and draining their reserves. today's research by the local struggling with budget cuts, government information unit heard from a third of english councils and found nearly all of them plan to the money they pay for care doesn't cover costs. increase council tax. with 95% of authorities saying and, according to the boss of this they expect taxes to rise. home, some providers have had no choice but to close or risk 93% of councils say they expect the quality of care falling. to increase the price the only way that these operators can continue is to cut the standard of services they charge for, because fundamentally the funding and those figures come as eight in ten councils say they fear issue is impacting on the resources, the workers and the delivery of care. the national audit office says, for their long—term financial sustainability. whilst working in care take surrey‘s pothole bill, the council reckons it can be rewarding, many staff feel undervalued. would take £300 million in 2016—17 more than half of the workforce was paid to fix all of its roads. £7.50 an hour or less. and it's got 1300 miles of roads in the same year, staff turnover was nearly 28%. and 6.6% ofjobs were vacant. that need repairing. but it says there is no government strategy for tackling the problems. only the department of health can it says it can't do everything. but when you tell people hear their council tax is about to go up, 6%, produce a work for strategy that the largest anywhere in england, well... there's not always much support. the county council has voted
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to put up your council tax by 6%, what do you think? speaks to the national picture i think all of the councils are doing it, no one is pleased about the problems that we found because we don't have of low pay, low prestige and high enough money to go around turnover rates which is reducing the quality of service for people who are actually receiving care. and pay the other bills. in response, the department what do you think about the fact surrey council is putting up of health and social care says extra the council tax by 6%? money is being put into social care and that it will soon publish it's a liberty, a strategy for the health and care workforce. you don't agree? alison holt, bbc news. ina i don't agree at all. nobody welcomes a tax rise but if it goes towards increased payment to carers, people will be ok with that. in a moment we'll have the business last week, northamptonshire county use, but first a look at the council banned all new spending headlines. the bank of england has and said its financial signalled interest rates could rise future was grave. soon and earlier vaniteux at three months ago but for now the key lending rate remained unchanged. but the government says its financial settlement high council tax bills on the way as for local authorities is balanced between pressures on councils local authorities struggle to ends and strains on taxpayers. meet. new figures from the nhs in it's for individual councils to decide what's the right balance england say a thousand people have to strike between raising money to wait more than 12 hours for for services people want to see, funding things like adult social treatment in accident and emergency departments last month. hello — i'm ben bland — care, but making the tax rises
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are not excessive for constituents. here to give you the business some have said councils are perilously close to financial collapse. headlines on afternoon live. resources, how to create them, how to spend them is as always at the heart of this debate. as you've just heard the bank of england gave its interest rate decision — but it also upgraded its forecast duncan kennedy, bbc news. for the uk‘s economic growth this year, to 1.7%. that's up from the previous january was one of the worst months forecast of 1.5%. the bank says it may start to raise on record for hospital waiting times interst rates earlier than thought. it noted that the country's economy in a&e departments in england, was benefitting from a pickup according to the latest figures. in growth across the world. more than a thousand patients had to wait over 12 hours to be seen. nhs england says the four—hour it also thinks that uk wage growth will start to pick—up, waiting time target was missed giving the economy a further boost. for the 13th month in a row. debenhams is planning to cut 320 let's speak to our health correspondent nick triggle. in store management roles as part every hour that you wait, talk talk slashed its dividend and particularly if you are in considerable pain, of course, makes things difficult. these figures are devastating for them. yes, what seems to have been particularly bad injanuary seems to have been particularly bad in january were trolley waiting. this is when a doctor decides they said it would sell £200 million of need to be admitted into hospital on shares on the stock exchange. debenhams is planning to cut 320 in store management roles as part
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a ward, seriously ill but they can't of a programme to reduce costs find them a bed. it shows there were by £10 million. the high street retailer, record numbers waiting overfour which issued a profit warning injanuary, said it aimed hours for a bed, and record numbers to redeploy staff where possible. the move could hit 25% waiting over 12 hours. overall, a&e of store management roles across the organisation, with a new structure expected to be rolled out by the end of next month. performance improved slightly in tesla have sent a car to space, on terms of the overall number of people waiting. and that has pleased health bosses that say it could have been much worse. underlined by the fa ct been much worse. underlined by the fact this is the 13th month in a row this has happened. we are getting its way to mars. one earth things used to this. doctors and note is aren't going so well. they've won't be shocked at all. —— doctors notched up their biggest ever quarterly loss. let me tell you how. and nurses. at the weekend, it was in the three months to the end of said that it could be a year before december it made a loss of the a&e target is met. so they are $601-$5000000, december it made a loss of $601—$5000000, more than £1180 million loss. five times more than it lost in the same period in 2016. stillaiming to the a&e target is met. so they are still aiming to meet these targets? there is a call from some to say what has gone wrong? it's the model scrap the targets because you will never reach them. there is. the three, their mass—market car, they have bottlenecks l the production government are adamant it will stay. the risk is, if you remove all have bottlenecks in the production line holding up production. it went on sale in the us priced at $35,000,
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relaxed targets, performance... the most affordable car in the range performance slips. they see the four and it hopes it'll help it break our target as incredibly important. into the mass market. the future of the firm hangs on its success. the again, doctors and nurses hearing company only made 260 those cars in that would perhaps justifiably feel aggrieved at the fact that they the third quarter rather than the one and a half thousand it had would take the pressure up, because planned. that is where the problem the targets have been taken away. there is tremendous pressure on the lies. tesla says it has learned many system, and this is anotherfigure lessons from the bottlenecks, and to illustrate that. absolutely. cast john mind back to the turn of the seems confident despite the hitch. let's find out if investors share year, the start of january. there that confidence as we join north we re america business correspondent you year, the start of january. there were real pressures, hospitals were declaring major incidents, ambulance geeta lemire. what is the reaction queueing outside hospitals. the nhs to all of this on wall street? —— is still under the most pressure it yogita limaye. people here are has been the 10—15 years. upbeat about what tesla has been is still under the most pressure it has been the 10-15 years. nick, thanks very much. one in five people working saying. elon musk spoked analyst in parliament has experienced yesterday explaining to some extent what those bottlenecks were on the or witnessed sexual harassment in the past year, according to a report released today. production front. one of the things he said was interesting, that one of a cross—party working group has recommended a new code of conduct and grievance procedure for mps, the modules they had problems with peers and parliamentary staff. was the module that makes batteries. our political correspondent leila nathoo reports from westminster. he said it was almost ironic because
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the corridors of power, a workplace this is something we should have been good at doing but perhaps got for thousands of people, and complacent. he was quite upbeat though, because he said things seem after a series of sexual harassment to be settling down. his forecast claims last year, the subject of a cross—party review for march said by the end of march into how such complaints they would be producing 2500 of are made and handled. in the commons this morning, those model three cars every week and in the next quarter they will be the promise of a new system producing as many as 5000 every to protect staff and wanting week. as simon mentioned we saw his a change in culture. it is a right, not a privilege, to be treated with dignity and respect at work. other firm, week. as simon mentioned we saw his otherfirm, space x, launch and this ambitious report is a major week. as simon mentioned we saw his other firm, space x, launch a rocket. this is a man who is a step towards a safer and more professional environment. serial entrepreneur. i wonder how the report found nearly 1500 much investors put store by his parliamentary workers confidence and optimism. not all who responded to a survey, almost one in five said they had witnessed or experienced sexual harassment last year investors have the patience, they do and the proposes is a new behaviour wa nt investors have the patience, they do want to see results. quite quickly. now he is said by the end of march for people in parliament. you're going to see us producing a new process and new sanctions 2500 cars every week... if they are for mps found to have behaved able to stick to that production inappropriately with a possibility of suspension and deselection target, investors for now we'll give
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in the most serious cases. him that opportunity, give him the benefit of the doubt. those results, people wanting to complain about harassment and bullying that comes three months from now, in westminster have so far had will be crucial. thanks very much, to rely on their own bosses or political parties yogita limaye for as other stock exchange in new york. there was a to take up their case. time when i said let's look at the but having an independent markets, and it would be lively. confidential grievance very exciting this week. the key procedure is designed to encourage more people to come forward if they have concerns. thing affecting markets and it's an attempt to shift the power currencies today, it begins with dynamic here and it has been broadly welcomed by some of those interest and ends in rate. that is who have spoken out in the past. what is causing that. the ftse100 i think it's really important that there is down, feeling the pressure from is an independent process there. the strong pound. though the bank of i do have concerns about england kept interest rates on hold, anonymity but i think it's a really good report. it hinted rates will go up fast and a really good way forward. there are tougher sanctions sooner it hinted rates will go up fast and sooner than expected possibly in the such as recall, that mps coming months. the pound is up. 1% will ultimately face, and i think they do have to have that deterrent, but also having a code of conduct is part against the dollar. up 1% against of a culture change needed in westminster. the euro. it means the firms that mps will debate the proposals later this month. trade internationally, listed on the in a place where loyalty of highly ftse100, when they convert foreign valued, parliament hopes it can earnings into pounds, their profits
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break through the culture of silence are worth less, that is why the ftse tends to take a dip when the pound that has endured here for so long. is stronger. talk talk is one of the leila nathoo, bbc news, westminster. big fall is today. revised down, our chief political correspondent vicki young is in westminster. calls for a new code of conduct, but forecast profits. investors not taking too much heart from the latest update. you'll want to listen there are lots of issues, first of to this, theresa may has been all, anonymity, wendy you name the meeting japanese business leaders, person being accused 7 all, anonymity, wendy you name the hearing their concerns about brexit, person being accused? it is she's been talking. let's hearfrom her. she came out from downing controversial, a lot of this has stemmed from the fact that it is street short time ago. can i first unusual workplace. mps employ staff. if you have a complaint against of all say how very pleased i am to welcome such a group of them, it is difficult because they are effectively your line manager as representatives from a range of well. mps will be concerned that japanese investors and businesses in downing street today. as we look to reputational damage, if they were to be named in something like this, of the relationship between the uk and course, that has huge ramifications, japan we see already that because they are in the public eye. year—on—year trade and investment between our two countries continues the leader of the columns, andrea to increase with japanese investment leadsom said this would be a game to increase with japanese investment to the uk reaching 46.5 billion in changeable parliament —— leader of the commons. valerie vaz is with me 2016. and our modern industrial
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now. do you agree that it is that strategy will make the uk and even significant a move? it will only be a game changer when we have seen the more attractive destination for process of up and running and once japanese and international investment. just today we've seen the work has been done to make sure the bank of england raised its it is as robust as possible, and we forecast for uk growth compared with cb bull come forward or they feel they have somewhere to go to. the key thing for sexual harassment advisers is that we felt that there estimates three months ago. as we look ahead directly denies that the wasn't anyone that the person could come forward to complain to, and uk's forthcoming exit from the thatis european union is no small come forward to complain to, and that is why we put that into undertaking, but importantly it does training. the fact it has to be present the opportunity to strike independent of political parties, free trade deals around the world was that important as well? many people work worried that a political and build on our already very strong party, by its nature, would hush relationship that we have with this up. in the labour party, i japan. i look forward to updating can't speak for other parties, we business representatives and hearing have robust procedures in terms of grievance procedures within the views on our eu exit negotiations, party in the house, and those were our ambition for a new deep and tightened up in 2012—13. there was special partnership with the european union, and our opportunity always a process to go to. it is a to forge a new path as a global trading nation. once again thank you different process, some people may not feel comfortable going to their for coming and! trading nation. once again thank you for coming and i look forward to
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parties, so it is a different and what i'm sure are going to be very additional process, but we also ask constructive discussions. thank you. people to become embers of trade and upbeat assessment. £46 billion unions so they have someone to go to asa memberof unions so they have someone to go to as a member of a trade union. what business. we're talking a lot of about sanctions against mps? many money but we want to know what they people will say, ultimately, if think. indeed, the prime minister someone people will say, ultimately, if someone is guilty of sexual saying she looks forward to updating harassment business is on the transition plans. i'm sure they look forward to it even more. particularly japanese i'm sure they look forward to it even more. particularlyjapanese car manufacturers who over the decades have been encouraged to invest in the uk to make it their european ina in a normal workplace, they would be base on the understanding that the sacked. that is not the case with mps, uk will be a business friendly place sacked. that is not the case with mp5, is it, willthe new sacked. that is not the case with mp5, is it, will the new system be robust enough? guilty of sexual from which they can trade. there is harassment sounds like a criminal offe nce, harassment sounds like a criminal offence, we are not looking at criminal offences at all, that is a matter for the police. it will supposedly a letter saying they will always be a matter for the police. be all right from last year. there if there is a point of reference we re be all right from last year. there were no concerns about the where someone if there is a point of reference where someone can if there is a point of reference where someone can ask what it is sunderland plant for nissan. it's about, why am i feeling uncomfortable, what is going on, and there could be a low—level not just car resolution, it could be an apology sunderland plant for nissan. it's notjust car manufacturers, there or lots of different things but are japanese banks, drug companies, hookbait themselves here in the hope people need to recognise what it is. that is the first step. lots of they could trade quite easily across people work here and sometimes it is europe. their big fear is if the uk staff against staff, sometimes it is leaves without a deal they could face terrorist, 10%, on what they contractors or other people. we need
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to make sure there is an overarching export. —— they could face tariffs. policy for everyone. the staff side they want something more than an assurance, they want a concrete deal have also got to be looked at and or agreement. it's worth remembering that will go out to consultation. what they are still talking about is valerie vaz, thank you very much the transition agreement that they needin the transition agreement that they need in place by the end of march indeed. many mps today during that next year. this doesn't even get on debate in the house of commons to the longer term trade deal which saying that it was time to change they will have greater interest in the whole culture of the workplace here in parliament. hearing about. you'll be back in the you're watching afternoon live, these are our headlines: interest rates on hold but a warning next hour. it'll be a pleasure, see you later. louise lear has the weather. good afternoon everybody. from the bag of england that rises are coming and they will happen sooner are coming and they will happen this is what we started off with sooner rather than later. higher council tax bills on the way this morning in suffolk: minus six in most of england — as local authorities struggle degrees with clear blue skies and to make ends meet. stranded in hospital corridors — sunshine. that is not how we'll new figures from nhs england say close the day. cloud and rain moving a thousand people had to wait more than 12 hours for treatment last month. in. if we look at the lake district, coming up, we'll be giving a warm handshake, and not in any way a dodgy one, you can see a beautiful scene. some to the head of the freemasons in england and wales and he'll tell rain around, umbrella is necessary. us why he thinks they're getting some of the rain will pep up as we an unfair press. go through the evening. the frontal
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system moving in from the atlantic in sport, lizzy yarnold says she is as we speak, here it is, straddled delighted to carry the flag for team across the country, bringing outbreaks of rain behind it. notice gb at the opening ceremony of the winter olympics, and that the cold how the isobars squeeze from the in south korea won't stop her. north—west. these are snow showers. former captain greig laidlaw is some of the rain heavy across among six changes to the scotland south—west england, wales, the line—up for sunday's six nations midlands, it'll push into the far game against france at murrayfield. he would mark cavendish sprints to victoria south—east. behind it, wintry showers following behind could cause issues as temperatures fall away. scotland, northern ireland and on stage three of the torah dubai. northern england, likely to see temperatures below freezing, hence that with more on those stories just blue tones, as low as 4 degrees. after half past. coupled with the wintry mix of theresa may is meeting showers moving through north—west business leaders from japan at downing street this afternoon. england and the midlands with this frontal system pushing through. the bosses include representatives of major carmakers who employ first thing on friday morning will thousands of people in britain, and they'll want to know what to expect when the uk look somewhat like this. icy leaves the eu next year. stretches first thing for scotland. the motor industry has expressed looks as though we'll continue to fears it could face export tariffs and customs delays after brexit. stay snow showers bushmen from the north—east. he is the wintry mix of our business editor simon jack is in downing street. rain, sleet and snow across wales, how worried are foreign investors about brexit?
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the japanese investors are very the midlands, pushing into lincolnshire, maybe north of london as well. by the middle of the morning. that will have an eye kept worried. you have nissan, toyota, on it. it's not going to be pleasant out there. behind, brighterskies, a honda, hitachi, mitsubishi, big japanese banks, and they set out few showers to the north—west, but not very warm. 4—7d is the high. their stall almost directly after their stall almost directly after the referendum vote when they sent a this nose of high pressure will stay detailed 15 page document to the uk with us but at the same time another and eu leaders, saying what they deep low will push in. on the we re and eu leaders, saying what they were concerned about. if i looked down their list, their wish list, leading edge of the bring snow for a time across scotland. looks as saying they needed to keep up that though it's likely to turn to rain investment. they have maintenance of as it pushes into england and wales, customs clea ra nce investment. they have maintenance of customs clearance procedures, which some quite heavy as well. saturday is farfrom looks like a pretty dismal day if customs clearance procedures, which is far from clear. customs clearance procedures, which is farfrom clear. things customs clearance procedures, which is far from clear. things like the caught under the cloud and rain. single passport to export financial brightening up for northern ireland, services into the rest of europe from here in london, and the other a better afternoon into scotland. once we move out of saturday, it one, consistency of regulation and standards between the uk and the eu. looks likely that weather front will push through. the winds to the ifi standards between the uk and the eu. if i looked down the list, i can't see a single one that is either not north—westerly direction. for sunday we are likely to see some snow showers, even at lower levels, agreed between the uk and eu, but has not been agreed by the uk falling across the far north and
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cabinet, and that is why we have west. to summarise coming to the to this council of war this morning, stay cold. some rain and snow the subcommittee thrashing out a showers around at times. gales as unified position. i don't expect us well. hello. to get a document like that. this you're watching afternoon live. today at 3... interest rates on hold but a warning meeting was set up six months ago, from the bank of england that rise are coming. it arrived at an inopportune time, but how fast? in a gradual process but somewhat and we would like to hear the subcommittee is issued. on the impact, potentially, the civil serva nts impact, potentially, the civil servants numbers, their best home work is that the car industry, for earlier and somewhat to a greater extent then we had thought in november. example, could see cuts to growth higher council tax bills on the way in most of england, and impact between 5—13% over the as local authorities struggle to make ends meet. stranded in hospital corridors. next decade or so. when it comes to new figures from nhs england say regions of the uk, if you look at a thousand people had to wait more than 12 hours for treatment last month. the north—east, home to nissan and calls for a new code of conduct for mps, peers hitachi, it has a surplus in the and parliamentary staff, as one in five working ze ballos hitachi, it has a surplus in the zeballos goods to the eu. they say there say they experienced, the damage could be 16%. big or witnessed, sexual harassment last year. coming up on afternoon live, all the sport. numbers, because, interesting to see what is coming up? what will we be the prime minister, and the international trade secretary had to say to them. wouldn't itjust, because what ever they do have to
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say would tell us exactly where brexit is headed. i think that this talking about? we will be talking about the winter olympics. lizzie will be, liam fox said today, he set out the ambitious... ambitions to yarnold, a great day for her for that she has been named as the flag have great trading relations with bearer. more on that at half—past. japan, low tax environment, a he who laughs last. louise has the skilled workforce, and all that may be true, but when it comes to weather. it was a glorious start. getting clarity, let me read you one little thing from the wish list. cold and frosty but minus six degrees in southern england. the "what japanese businesses most wish clouds arrived and we have a weather to avoid if they and can only front which is bringing some rain. in the lake district we can see it in more detail. more details coming grasp the whole picture at the last up. also coming up... minute. that was sent 18 months ago. we'll be giving a warm handshake — and not in any way a dodgy one — iam not minute. that was sent 18 months ago. i am not sure there has been to the head of the freemasons. progress on that and it will concerned these important japanese investors in the uk economy. simon one of them from cheshire. jack outside number 10. there is shocking new evidence today of plastic rubbish contaminating the pristine wilderness of the arctic.
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animals are becoming ensnared in plastic waste, while scientists say there are far more plastic particles in one litre of sea ice than in open water. he'll tell us why he thinks they're getting an unfair press. hello, everyone. they say they've found plastic pollution almost everywhere they've looked in the arctic ocean. our environment analyst this is afternoon live we always seem to talk roger harrabin has been to tromso in a negative way when we discuss in the norwegian arctic — interest rate rises. a warning that you may find some of the images but, for millions of savers, of course, they are good news. in his report disturbing. they, at least, will take cheer plastic pollution is drifting to from bank of england chief mark carney‘s suggestion that rates would need to rise sooner — the furthest corners of the planet. and by a bit more — if the economy remains on its current track. the arctic sea ice is created when sea freezes. the bank voted unanimously to keep interest rates on hold at 0.5% at their latest meeting. it looks pristine but scientists are finding that it definitely is not. but some economists think the next rate rise could come as soon as may. if you've got a mortgage — or loan — in fact, ice cores show sea ice of course, that does not come contains more fragments of plastic in the "good news" category. per square metre than anywhere else our economics correspondent, in the ocean, it is because sea ice andy verity, reports. if the whole economy performed freezes from the top like this manchester maker of branded clothing, its biggest problems and that's exactly where would be almost solved. it's growing fast, exporting the plastic bits are floating. to europe and boosting one litre of melted sea ice contained 234 plastic fragments like these. productivity through investment. the numbers are way higher and while inflation caused
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than i think most people expected, by the weak pound boosted its costs, it's been able to absorb out and definitely than what i expected. and carry on winning new orders. the last 12 months, we've grown by 20% in the uk but europe has been much stronger than that, so we have more than doubled the growth rate in the uk. it shows that it's a serious problem and you have a situation i'm cautiously optimistic about the future. we are making major investments over in the world now that there the next 12 months in technology, which will allow us to increase is nowhere that is so far productivity and efficiency, away that it is not and improve quality affected by plastic waste. and service to our customers. there's plastic on the beaches too, the key to this company's this local conservationist is trying competitiveness is speed. coming up with branded forlornly to clear them up. products much faster here's what the plastic does macro. than you if you ordered them from china. this reindeer‘s antlers the speed of growth in the wider economy had been slowing but recently it's growing faster than expected and today the bank of england said it is probably growing as fast were trapped by a discarded as it can without overheating. gdp growth is expected to average around one and three quarters fishing net, it died. percent over the forecast period, this arctic turn met its death by starvation. a little stronger than and see the plastic strapping around projected in november. the belly of this bearded seal. i have collected this waste in just a few seconds. while modest by historic standards, some of the fragments may come from norway, this demand growth is still expected some clearly don't like this elaborate bottle or this to exceed the diminished rate butter tub from spain. of supply growth over and the plastic is here the forecast period.
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with a vengeance. several years ago, it was predicted the key judgment for the bank plastic pollution would enter of england is when the next rise in interest rates comes. the arctic, and indeed, we are finding plastic today, its monetary policy committee held the official rate at 0.5%. but following the bank's warning, along the coastlines from urban areas to remote areas in the city they're saying the next and the more we look for the plastics, rise is likely in may. the more we are finding. prices are still rising arctic scientists don't know yet whether the plastic tide will affect local fish stocks, but it is another faster than wages meaning pay rises in the years to come. human threats to a fragile environment, already being transformed by man—made climate change. at least eight people have died if they're right about that, the squeeze on living standards should start to ease. and three are still missing the weaker pound has raised the cost of imported goods, after a major road collapsed including raw materials for firm's in southern china creating a huge like this one, but because hole in the freeway. an interest rate rise is now expected soon, a water leak inside an underground construction site flooded, investors expect to make more and led to the multi—lane road money holding pounds. collapsing in foshan city that has pushed up the value in guangdong province on wednesday night. of the pound by a cent this nine construction workers rescued afternoon, if it stays stronger, from the site are being treated that should help to for injuries in hospital, contain inflation. but are said to be in a stable condition. andy verity, bbc news. earlier, andy explained that the reason the bank of england
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louise lear is in thisjudy, the is removing extra support. the economy is like a calf or if it only tweet i have had is saying a friend of mine tells me to wear a goes too fast it starts to overheat wig. how do you prove otherwise? the and that is inflation. if it goes at truth is out! thanks for your the limit that the car can manage, support. lovely! he doesn't! that thatis the limit that the car can manage, that is nice. what the bank have to do is work out whether the economy looks to me likejohn chiang. is likely to grow faster than it can support. lovely! he doesn't! that looks to me like john chiangm produce the goods. if people are support. lovely! he doesn't! that looks to me like john chiang. it is. what an incredible picture. —— peon demanding more goods than the chiang. the opening ceremony opens tomorrow economy can produce, you get inflation. it wants to head that off. it is saying the economy is and we have talked about how cold it growing fast and that is good news. is good to be. it is close to the in order to prevent it growing too coast, not up high. temperature is fast than it has to headed off with not going to be too bad, minus two. a rise in interest rates. the if you are standing around sitting difficulty is they are driving in for any length of time, it's not the rear—view mirror. nobody really great, but it will get colder on the can forecast what is happening next. tops of the mountains. good news when we are looking for it is always of bog eve muirhead. snow and ice. the bank can only really predict to it is, but the wind chill is the some extent. it is honest about
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concern for some participants. —14 that. —— a foggy view. nice planing by sunday. 32 mph wind, so the wind dish on the bank of england website. chill on top of that will make it when you have interest rates that feel more like minus 30. i can give are when you have interest rates that a re really low, when you have interest rates that are really low, it is trying to support the economy by making it you an insight to that. i worked on super cheap for households to borrow the winter olympics in lily hammer money. nothing wrong with generating in1992, and it economic activity if they want. that the winter olympics in lily hammer in 1992, and it was minus 30. i can tell you, it is freezing. within support by having super cheap credit half an hour, you can't feel your is no long as necessary and they plan to remove some of that support feet on the floor, it is so cold. half an hour, you can't feel your feet on the floor, it is so coldm is good to have you back. as early as may. we rarely talk feet on the floor, it is so coldm is good to have you backlj survived. this is yourfirst about savers but they have a totally is good to have you backlj survived. this is your first go with different take on all of this. in the new graphics. i have broken them already! there with me! shall we move on? 2009 when interest rates were cut to a historic low, the then governor said they would be back in a few months. a decade later they are good luck! i wonder what the still at that point was that they have not got higher. the city now forecast is muller ways. think the rise is likely in may and the engineers are waiting in the there could be a —— another one wings to fix what ever it is i have done, but i can tell you at the early next year. you are talking moment, things are working, fingers crossed. cloudy in the lake district about very affordable loans compared with 20 years ago.
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with outbreaks of rain around. that don't forget, you can let us know what you think. is because this weather front that tweet us using the straddled across the uk at the hashtag afternoonlive. all the ways to contact us on screen right now. moment introducing more cloud and almost all council tax payers rain. it means for some, it is not in england face higher bills and charges from april, as cold as it has been, but as you because local authorities say they're struggling to make ends meet. a survey suggests around can see, a grey afternoon. the rain three—quarters of councils are planning an increase will pep up this evening and of at least 2.5%. that would mean more than £40 overnight across south—west england, on the average bill. wales, and drift south and east. i adult social care, children's did, cold conditions arrived. we services, transport subsidies will see a few winter be showers. and infrastructure projects. the coldest air through the night, these are all the cornerstone scotland, northern ireland, northern services of our lives england. temperatures as low as “i! and council spending. in scotland. also, because it is but today's report says, in england, cold, a wintry mix of rain, sleet they're all under pressure. our reseach shows councils are and snow, particularly from this right on the edge financially. little fella here, moving through wales and the midlands through the they are keeping services course of the early hours of friday. together but only doing that by whacking up council tax, let's put that detail on it for you. charging for everything they can and draining their reserves. because of the cold, icy start, wintry showers coming in, there could be tricky driving conditions today's research by the local government information unit heard from a third in scotland, northern ireland and of english councils and found nearly northern england for a time. a all of them plan to
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mixture of rain, sleet and snow increase council tax. moving into the midlands, and with 95% of authorities saying eventually moving towards the london they expect taxes to rise. area around mid—morning. we are not 93% of councils say they expect expecting it to be an issue, but to increase the price worth bearing in mind if you are on of services they charge for, the road on friday. behind it, a and those figures come as eight in ten councils say they fear quiet story, colder, li—7d, and the for their long—term financial sustainability. wind direction coming north westerly. it was they with us for a take surrey‘s pothole bill, time during riding into saturday. a the council reckons it ridge of high pressure. a cold and would take £300 million to fix all of its roads. frosty start, but in the north—west, and it's got 1300 miles of roads low pressure will move, isobars that need repairing. being squeezed together. the leading it says it can't do everything. edge will have snow, rain behind it. on saturday, not a very nice day but when you tell people across england and wales, cloudy and wet. the best weather in scotland by hear their council tax the end of the day, maybe to is about to go up, 6%, the largest anywhere northern ireland. brightness as in england, well... well. not as cold, whether you feel there's not always much support. the county council has voted the benefit with the cloud and rain to put up your council tax around is another point. so for the weekend, the emphasis is it is by 6%, what do you think? i think all of the councils
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staying cold, with some rain, and are doing it, no one is pleased because we don't have wa nt staying cold, with some rain, and want it clears, snow around, and the enough money to go around and pay the other bills. wind will be a feature as well, gales at times. i am relieved i what do you think about the fact didn't break the graphics, let's surrey council is putting up hope we carry on and on that note. i the council tax by 6%? will be back in half an hour. it's a liberty, you don't agree? applause i don't agree at all. thank you, simon. nobody welcomes a tax rise but if it this is bbc news — goes towards increased our latest headlines. payment to carers, the bank of england holds people will be ok with that. interest rates at 0.5% — last week, northamptonshire county but governor mark has warned rates could climb earlier council banned all new spending and faster than predicted due to strong growth forecasts. and said its financial future was grave. but the government —— mark carney. councils across england are planning council tax increases in april — a report suggests more says its financial settlement than three—quarters of local authorities are concerned about financial stability. for local authorities is balanced between pressures on councils january was one of the worst months and strains on taxpayers. on record for hospital waiting times it's for individual councils in accident and emergency departments in england, to decide what's the right balance according to official figures. mps have called for a new code to strike between raising money for services people want to see, funding things like adult social of conduct to tackle bullying and sexual harassment care, but making the tax rises at westminster. are not excessive for constituents. and the freemasons in england some have said councils and wales say ‘enough is enough‘ when it comes to unfair are perilously close treatment of members — to financial collapse. we'll be hearing from the head of the united grand lodge resources, how to create them, in a few moments.
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sport now on afternoon how to spend them is as always at the heart of this debate. live with hugh. duncan kennedy, bbc news. the action is under way joining me now from the district in pyeongchang and there's another accolade for lizzie yarnold to accept... councils network conference another great moment in the career in warwick is lord porter, of lizzie yarnold mbe — chairman of the local government association. a gold medal at sochi four years ago thank you forjoining us. how much — the defending skeleton champion — is looking for another piece pressure our local councils under? of british sporting history on the course — off it councils are coming under greater though she is guarateed more sporting history — after being named as team gb's and greater pressure. the money we flagbearer for the opening get will not be going far enough. in ceremony tomorrow. and she says it will mark fairness to the government they did find some extra money for the settle m e nt find some extra money for the settlement yesterday, which was well the beginning of the biggest 2 received by the sector. that will help to keep the wolf away from the door this year. we need a weeks if her life. let's here her reaction sustainable health service and the to the news, speaking to bbc sport a little earlier. green paper will need to come out quickly and they will have to consult with us to make sure it it's an honour that i never really fixes the problem. we are £2.5 thought about but actually means so much because the flag represents the billion short to make sure that whole team and we as a team everyone aduu billion short to make sure that adult social care is sustainable
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in great britain who has watched us, going forward. with children's care supported us. for our parents to we are picking up another 90 day. watch us on the tv screen, probably 500 a day cases referred to grandparents watching at home, that councils to deal with. there are is the moment when they say, great problems in society. they are britain, your skin tingles and the creating more and more problems. the emotions begin. we love an opening taxpayers will have to pay for it if ceremony. you can see lizzie's we create the problems. some of it will be local tax and some are special moment tomorrow from around 1030. it hasn't gone as well for all team national problems. peralter close to the financial edge are your words. how will we know when the edge has members. for freestyle skier katie ormerod, preparation has been hit with two injuries in as many days. been crossed? —— perilously close. when will someone know their local she fractured her wrist council has run out of money? we are in training yesterday — and she's had a scan on her leg after another crash today. the slopestyle qualifying not allowed to set deficit budgets. runs aren't until sunday the note is that was served in the but it isn't yet known how serious her latest injury is. there's better news for paralympic case of northampton last week, that is what we will see more of a mess there is sufficient funding everywhere. that is not to say loads of councils are in that position. probably nine are in that position skiing champion kelly gallagher — will be over the next two years. most have a more sustainable,
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long—term plan. we need the government to deliver on its commitment. at the moment councils collect £26 billion a year in she and her guide gary smith have business rates. 13 is taken by the secured a place in pyeongchang. gallagher became the first british athlete to win a gold medal on snow treasury. at some point treasury when she won the super—g in sochi will have to stop drilling machine four years ago. control of that money. isn't the she was initially left out of the squad but she nowjoins whole system in need of some sort of mille knight and menna fitzpatrick in paralympicsgb. overhaul, given that some people are after their heavy defeat paying council tax on a rating value going back 20 years? personally i'm to wales on the opening not in favour of revaluation. that generally means lots of people will weekend of the six nations, lose lots of people will be angry. i scotland have made six changes to their line—up for sunday's game against france at murrayfield. don't think the country needs to principal amongs them is the return have losers and more angry people of former captain greig laidlaw. he's recalled at scrum—half than in it currently. the reason in place of ali price.. they would be angry if perhaps the experienced sean maitland and ryan wilson also return. because they are paying too little arsenal manager arsene wenger says and their houses are worth more than english footballers may now be they thought. it does not matter how "the masters of diving." that sum of money is collected. it tottenham head coach mauricio still has to be collected. whether pochettino said this week that on the valuable property or 20 years
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‘tricking' an opponent was now part of the game. ago, it does not make any odds. when ahead of the gunners' premier league you look at council tax, compared match at spurs on saturday, wenger said that he didn't necessarily believe pochettino with your electricity bill or your was talking about cheating. road tax or any other bills, council to foot ball tax is still very, very good value and care tricking your opponent is for money when you look at over 900 services your councils deliver for you. looking at what has pushed the build—up, police and quine commissioners. we have fire authorities and new bodies that are paid for it eventually by the person living in the street. are you in favour of some of these things being cancelled? there is an argument to say you have to be clever, you know. how far was it an apology for about whether police and crime commissioners should have been brought in. all they did was to diving, i'm not sure at all. in my replace police and crime panel. personal case, no. overalll commissioners are not expensive. £12 diving, i'm not sure at all. in my personal case, no. overall i must say you have to get to the diving across a year, for the hope of out of the game. remember there was having more police to be able to tremendous cases when it was foreign protect you and your families can surely that is good value for money. players who did it. i must say the the problem is that is always the
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english players have learned very council tax planning and hugh picks quickly and may be the masters now. laughter britain's mark cavendish has won up council tax planning and hugh picks stage 3 of the tour of dubai. up the bill. —— payer that picks up the dimension data rider held off attacks from nacer bouhanni and marcel kittel. the bill. that is true. a local he's third overall with two stages to go, behind leader dylan grerner—vaygen . britain's adam blythe finished fourth for aqua blue sport. i'll have more sport in the next council only has our money, as tax payers we need people to spend that money as widely as possible. there hour. thank you very much. isa money as widely as possible. there is a question about how do we the freemasons have placed full—page provide services for vulnerable advertisements in several national people in the future question if we newspapers demanding an end to what they call ca re the "discrimination" people in the future question if we care about our elderly residents are against their members. the united grand lodge of england says it welcomes individuals we ca re care about our elderly residents are from all walks of life — we care about young, vulnerable and masons are "undeservedly children, as a country, we are going stigmatised" for their membership. to have to be prepared to pay for joining me now is dr david staples, it. people complained about the who's chief executive officer winter health crisis. without a of the united grand lodge of england sustainable system that can only ever get worse. we're not getting — that's the governing body for the majority of freemasons within england and wales. welcome to you. thank you, nice to people in hospital as quickly as they should. that is certainly where be with you. even a few years ago
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the thought of freemasons placing i want my relatives were safe, and not in hospital. that is the wrong end of the problem. you have to make social care sustainable. by mark we we re social care sustainable. by mark we were reporting last week on the liberal democrat proposal that f— national insurance should be placed with a specific tax whether money is ring fenced and should go to the national health service and social careful if you introduce something similar, do you think people would be prepared to pay more, especially if money was going on those very things you highlighted? if money was going on those very things you highlighted ?|j if money was going on those very things you highlighted? i don't know what the public would be prepared to pay for. there is no way for us to be able to gauge accurately how much people will be prepared to pay for services. if you ask anyone in the street would they pay more to make sure a child was not abused by pa rents, sure a child was not abused by parents, or that some elderly person who has spent three weeks in hospital, fallen over and broken their hip because they were not
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living in appropriate accommodation, i'm sure everyone at that point would say they would like to pay more tax. we already pay to —— too much tax. it is very good of you to join us. you're watching afternoon live. these are our headlines... the key lending rate remains unchanged, as announced by the bank of england. higher council tax bills are on the way in most of england — as local authorities struggle to make ends meet. and new figures from the nhs in england say a thousand people had to wait more than 12 hours for treatment in accident and emergency departments last month. in the sport, lizzie yarnold says she is delighted to be carrying the flag for team gb at the opening ceremony of the winter olympics and that the cold will not stop her. former captain greg laidlaw is among six changes to the scotland line—up
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for sunday's six nations game against france in murrayfield. mark cavendish sprints to victory for his first win of the season on stage three of the tour of dubai. i'll be back with more on those stories just after half past. january was one of the worst months on record for hospital waiting times in a&e departments in england, according to the latest figures. more than a thousand patients had to wait over 12 hours to be seen. nhs england says the four—hour waiting time target was missed for the 30th month in a row. our health correspondent says they may not be to meet targets for months to come. the trolley waits are where patients have to wait because the doctor decides they need to be admitted on to award because they are seriously ill but there is no bed. there were record numbers waiting over four hours for a bed
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and record numbers waiting over 12 hours. overall, a&e performance did improve slightly in terms of the overall number of people waiting. that has pleased health bosses who say it could have been much worse. underlined by the fact this is the 30th month in a row it has happened. i dare say doctors and nurses, it will not come as any shop at all. in fact, nhs england, the body that runs the health service in england, said at the weekend it will probably be at least another year before the a&e target is met. they are still aiming to meet these targets. there is a call from sun asking for the targets to be scrapped. -- from some. the risk and concern is if you remove the targets and relax the targets performance just slips. they see the
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four our target as incredibly important. doctors and nurses hearing that would perhaps justifiably feel quite aggrieved at the thought would take pressure off because the targets have been taken away. there is tremendous pressure on the system and this is another figure to illustrate that. cast your mind back to the turn of the year, the start of january. hospitals were declaring major incidents they were hearing about ambulances queueing outside hospitals. whilst some other pressures have eased, the nhs is still under the most pressure it has been for ten, 15 years. one in five people working in parliament has experienced or witnessed sexual harassment in the past year, according to a report released today. a cross—party working group has recommended a new code of conduct and grievance procedure for mps, peers and parliamentary staff. our political correspondent, leila nathoo, reports from westminster. the corridors of power, a workplace for thousands of people, and after a series of sexual harassment claims last year, the subject of a cross—party review into how such complaints
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are made and handled. in the commons this morning, the promise of a new system to protect staff and wanting a change in culture. it is a right, not a privilege, to be treated with dignity and respect at work. and this ambitious report is a major step towards a safer and more professional environment. the report found nearly 1500 parliamentary workers who responded to a survey, almost one in five said they had witnessed or experienced sexual harassment last year and it proposes bringing a new behaviourfor people in parliament. a new process and new sanctions for mps found to have behaved
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inappropriately with a possibility of suspension and deselection in the most serious cases. people wanting to complain about harassment and bullying in westminster have so far had to rely on their own bosses or political parties to take up their case. but having an independent confidential grievance procedure is designed to encourage more people to come forward if they have concerns. it's an attempt to shift the power dynamic here and it has been broadly welcomed by some of those who have spoken out in the past. i think it's really important that there is an independent process there. i do have concerns about anonymity but i think it's a really good report. a really good way forward. there are tougher sanctions such as recall, that mps will ultimately face, and i think they do have to have that deterrent, but also having a code of conduct is part of a culture change needed in westminster. mps will debate the proposals later this month. in a place where loyalty of highly valued, parliament hopes it can break through the culture of silence that has endured here for so long. leila nathoo, bbc news, westminster. our chief political correspondent
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vicki young is in the central lobby at westminster for us. earlier today the leader of the house, andrea leadsom, said she thought this new package of measures would actually be a game changer for parliament for the betsy of everyone agrees. i'm joined by parliament for the betsy of everyone agrees. i'mjoined by an parliament for the betsy of everyone agrees. i'm joined by an snp mp. parliament for the betsy of everyone agrees. i'mjoined by an snp mp. —— for parliament. i think this will go a long way to addressing some of the most pervasive, patriarchy or culture that exists in this place was a the existence of power relationships that determine outcomes. i hope there will be an independent procedure to give necessary support to staff which will be a culture shift and a change in attitudes. mps employ staff. if he were to have a grievance against an mp, it is incredibly difficult where you would go. what it does is
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allow an offline support service for staff. it will be treated very seriously and confidentially. we have designed a route map where these concerns will be tackled and approach. there could be serious allegations and charges. it is right this is properly researched and looked up. we have designed a means where we can do that and boost confidence in the house. some mps could be concerned thereby to be malicious complaints against them. they are in the public domain. —— there might be malicious complaints. these complaints will be very much wheedled alt and the real complaints that need pursuing will be tackled. there are a series of sanctions in place which could be easily resolved. more serious complaints
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are being addressed by the parliamentary standards commissioner. this includes recall and members losing jobs as punishment. that would happen, would it, if they were suspended from the house? simon we have ensured that is beefed up to accurately reflect some of the concerns. —— beefed up to accurately reflect some of the concerns. -- we have ensured. that will allow her to effectively tackle and produce a range of options she could relate to fall sanctions. do you think mps will back this? we heard overwhelming enthusiasm by members of parliament. people will see it as a welcome contribution and addition to this. this is the start of ending a terrible culture that has existed. some of the horrible things that have come through. here is a real way forward. thank you very much
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indeed. many people here are saying this is the moment when the whole culture of this place should change. our correspondent aleem maqbool joins me now from washington a bit odd to have a select committee taking evidence in washington, dc. it is the first select committee to occur outside the uk at all be streamed live as well. it is happening in the room over there. it is called an inquiry into fake news later in the day will be hearing from editors and journalists about how to fake news, as we traditionally think of it, getting
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out there. this morning has all been about questioning officials from youtube, facebook and twitter, and google about whether they are doing enough to stop the dissemination of false news but also news that may be harmful. with google they mainly focus on the auto fill feature which, in some cases, has been found to direct people towards anti—semitic posts and sites. with youtube, there was a lot of focus on the up next feature. it was found a lot of far right videos, the content was, people were directed to that content through the what's next feature. there was talk, as you mentioned in the introduction, about whether these sites helped russia, for example, interfere with elections. it has been a big topic here. damian collins asked that of
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juniper downs. with you tube be prepared to conduct the same analysis for the uk looking at potential russian interference at around the referendum? we are happy to cooperate as to whether there was any interference in elections in the uk. we have conducted a thorough investigation around the brexit referendum and found no evidence of interference. we have looked at all advertisements and any connection to russia and we found no evidence of our service is being used to interfere in the brexit referendum we are happy to cooperate. as i say, i have just stepped we are happy to cooperate. as i say, i havejust stepped outside we are happy to cooperate. as i say, i have just stepped outside the i havejust stepped outside the room andi i havejust stepped outside the room and i know facebook executives are being asked exactly the same question about russia and the influence of the brexit referendum. twitter officials will be asked the same things. thank you very much.
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headlines coming up. first, have the look at the weather. sunshine for many others but not all. bitterly cold as sitting across the country with the weather fronts slicing the uk in two at the moment. that will bring cloud and rain as we move south and east overnight. some of it will be heavy across wales. we will push into the midlands and the south east corner. the wind will swing round to north westerly and there will be a rash of showers. they'll be a mixture of rain, sleet and snow full stop cold in the north—west. as. as low as —4—macro. —— temperatures could be as low as minus four. behind this front, somewhat quieter conditions with sunshine following. the scattering
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showers across sunshine following. the scattering s howe rs a cross west sunshine following. the scattering showers across west facing coasts. feeling cold for all of us. —— a scattering of showers. this is bbc news — our latest headlines. the bank of england holds interest rates at 0.5% — but governor mark carney has warned rates could climb earlier and faster than predicted due to strong growth forecasts. councils across england are planning council tax increases in april — a report suggests more than three—quarters of local authorities are concerned about financial stability. january was one of the worst months on record for hospital waiting times in accident and emergency departments in england, according to official figures. mps have called for a new code of conduct to tackle bullying and sexual harassment at westminster. and we'll hear more about why the freemasons in england and wales is calling forfairer treatment for members. sport now on afternoon live with hugh.
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it's the winter olympics tomorrow. some competition already under way. we know who will be waving our flag. yes, we do. lizzy yarnold. at the opening ceremony tomorrow her accolades will grow. she carries the flag for team gb at the winter olympics opening ceremony and andy swiss has more on that from pyeongchang. to date lizzy yarnold said she was hugely honoured to carry the flag at tomorrow night's opening ceremony chosen by her team— mates opening ceremony chosen by her team—mates for that opening ceremony chosen by her team— mates for that honour. opening ceremony chosen by her team—mates for that honour. the she struggled for form. reports she is back to something like her best, she says she's hopeful she can still retain her olympic title. it's been
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an up and down world cup season this year, a lesson i think i needed to respect to sport and the day of competition, that anything could happen. mainly to understand that i do know what i'm doing and need to trust myself a lot more when i'm going down the track, slide more intuitively. i've learnt a lot and think i'm in a good place. the other big talking point is still the weather. it's getting milder, a sweltering monastery here today. fans will be given blankets and warm cushions as they make their way into the stadium. officials have said spectators need to wrap up and prepare properly. meanwhile british snowboarder katie ormerod's preparations haven't gone to plan. she's had a scan on her leg after crashing in training just a day afterfracturing her wrist during slopestyle practice on wednesday. after their heavy defeat
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to wales on the opening weekend of the six nations, scotland have made six changes to their line—up for sunday's game against france at murrayfield. principal amongs them is the return of former captain greig laidlaw. he's recalled at scrum—half in place of ali price. the experienced sean maitland and ryan wilson also return. jonathan joseph will start for england in their game against wales at twickenham. he comes in at outside centre, with ben te'o dropping to the bench. and danny care will become england's most capped scrum—half — he replaces the injured ben youngs. arsenal manager arsene wenger says english footballers may now be "the masters of diving." tottenham head coach mauricio pochettino said this week that ‘tricking' an opponent was now part of the game. ahead of the gunners' premier league match at spurs on saturday, wenger said that he didn't necessarily believe pochettino was talking about cheating. tricking your opponent is to say you have to be clever, you know. how far was it an apology
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for diving, i'm not sure at all. in my personal case, no. overall i must say you have to get to the diving out of the game. remember there was tremendous cases when it was foreign players who did it. i must say the english players have learned very quickly and may be the masters now. laughter mark hunter chaz won stage three of the tour of dubai. mark hunter chaz won stage three of the tou from jbai. i kittle. —— mark attacks from marcel kittle. —— mark cavendish. adam lyth finished fourth. that is all the sport. olly foster is here with more in the next hour. are they really advising people going to the winter olympics to
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dress warmly? there is a clue in the name. they have, yeah, essentially, covering their bases. they'll be giving out loads of things, they've brought massive heaters, want cushions. plenty of stuff in a stadium to keep people warm. it begins with wearing your long johns. those words you weren't expecting to use today. thank you very much. the freemasons have placed full—page advertisements in several national newspapers demanding an end to what they call the "discrimination" against their members. the united grand lodge of england says it welcomes individuals from all walks of life — and masons are "undeservedly stigmatised" for their membership. stephen blank joins me from manchester, he is the provincial grand master of the cheshire freemasons. the piece of paper with your name, i said of course it is, stephen blank. these days of secrecy have gone have they? that is my real name, honestly. it is my masonic name.
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i've had so many tweets on this issue. people are quite angry. i knew one of them? that's the way freemasons have been portrayed. yes iam,i freemasons have been portrayed. yes i am, i think we're an organisation that does an awful lot of good and tries to do but good. we're being stigmatised. i think it's quite unfair. the difficulty is it seen as secret. let's talk about that, how secret. let's talk about that, how secret is it? i don't think it's at all secret to be quite honest. we don't encourage people to keep membership secret, mine is on my linkedin profile, i've never made a secret of the fact i am a freemason. you can read all our rituals and so on on the internet if you wish to do so. on on the internet if you wish to do so. i've had a tweet from kerry baconit so. i've had a tweet from kerry bacon it says it's about as secret as bwi but with pretty aprons. laughter i'll take that as a compliment. laughter i'll take that as a complimentlj i'll take that as a compliment.” think you should. there is
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nevertheless suspicion, i suspect what is behind the advert today. there is suspicion that if you are a mason and there is another mason you can help one way or another, either professionally, financially, or in other ways. one thinks of police, people they may be asked to help, other lodge members, does that happen? i would be foolish to say it doesn't happen. what i can say is we are forbidden to do that sort of thing, we are expressly told not to. we ta ke thing, we are expressly told not to. we take obligations that we will not do so. i'm not going to say to you there aren't people who break those rules, i'm not so naive. the organisation would add for that and if we found out such behaviour was taking place we would take disciplinary action. so there is the possibility that someone driving too fast, stopped by a policeman, they
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have a slightly dodgy handshake, then things may go differently, is that what you are saying? that's what people are saying. it's never happened to me in 41 years of freemasonry i've never been let off a parking ticket, nor has anyone offered. i have never experienced it, seen it all heard about it, but if you ask me over 200,000 members, have one or two misused the membership, i couldn't possibly say it has not happened. the image of sinister body... i was talking to the grandmaster earlier, talking about morse, sherlock holmes programmes, portraying freemasons in a certain way. it's the image you are trying to put an end to is absolutely, there was a documentary on another channel, we had 51—hour sessions on that over april and may,
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showing what goes on and what we're about. it's an attempt to dispel that impression that unquestionably some people do have. there will be no talk of religion, politics business at dinners. are you a rather bunch? laughter no, we have a really good time, because we do our ceremonies, rituals, by memory, we try to do a good job. at the dinners after we laugh about the mistakes people made, we laugh about otherjokes that happen, you know, we have a drink or two but not too many. and we have an extremely good time, that's why people stay members of the organisation, they wouldn't stay otherwise. if you felt the handshakes, the words used in rituals, that aren't used anywhere else, were part of the problem, why not just get else, were part of the problem, why notjust get rid of them? because they mean something to the people that go through them. we believe that go through them. we believe that generally speaking people
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become better people as a result of going through those rituals and that's why we keep them private rather than secret. we don't disclose them. the reason we don't is because they make more impact on the individual when he takes part in them if he doesn't know what's going to happen, they make more impact. we hope, therefore, it has more of an effect to make people generally better, more moral and trustworthy. the use of blindfolds, things like that, raises eyebrows. it may. but i've been through the ceremonies and all of our members have been through them. i think they would all say to you that the effect of whatever ta kes pla ce you that the effect of whatever takes place is to make more of an impact, to make it... not something you forget, the ceremonies you go through. you do not forget them. therefore they make an impact on
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you, which is perhaps far and above what it might be ifjust read to you from a book. the reason we don't broadcast them is, firstly, we've taken an obligation not to do so, therefore, to break the obligation beats the whole point. it also makes more of an impact. my example i used, its like a detective story, ifi used, its like a detective story, if i said, go and read this detective story, by the way, the butler did it, it wouldn't make much impact. it's exactly the same with our ceremonies. if somebody said to be 20 years ago i would be interviewing somebody on television about freemasonry who would be as open as you have been eyed sake don't be so silly, things have changed. that is your message, enough is enough? the message is more about what we see as a tax on our members. and people wishing us to disclose membership of our organisation as distinct from other
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organisations who are not being asked to disclose membership. we are being singled out. saying enough saying enough is enough about that. we are as open as we are and don't deserve the discrimination frankly thatis deserve the discrimination frankly that is being threatened.” appreciate you talking about it. thank you for your time. my pleasure. there is shocking new evidence today of plastic rubbish contaminating the pristine wilderness of the arctic. animals are becoming ensnared in plastic waste, while scientists say there are far more plastic particles in one litre of sea ice than in open water. they say they've found plastic pollution almost everywhere they've looked in the arctic ocean. our environment analyst roger harrabin has been to tromso in the norwegian arctic — a warning that you may find some of the images in his report disturbing. plastic pollution is drifting to the furthest corners of the planet. the arctic sea ice is created when sea freezes. it looks pristine but scientists are finding that it definitely is not. in fact, ice cores show sea ice contains more fragments of plastic
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per square metre than anywhere else in the ocean, it's because sea ice freezes from the top and that's exactly where the plastic bits are floating. one litre of melted sea ice contained 234 plastic fragments like these. the numbers are way higher than i think most people expected, and definitely than what i expected. it shows that it's a serious problem and you have a situation in the world now that there is nowhere that is so far away that it is not affected by plastic waste. there's plastic on the beaches too, this local conservationist is trying forlornly to clear them up. here's what the plastic does. this reindeer‘s antlers
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were trapped by a discarded fishing net, it died. this arctic turn met its death by starvation. and see the plastic strapping around the belly of this bearded seal. i have collected this waste in just a few seconds. some of the fragments may come from norway, some clearly don't like this elaborate bottle or this butter tub from spain. and the plastic is here with a vengeance. several years ago, it was predicted plastic pollution would enter the arctic, and indeed, we are finding plastic along the coastlines from urban areas to remote areas and the more we look for the plastics, the more we are finding. arctic scientists don't know yet whether the plastic tide will affect local fish stocks, but it is another human threats to a fragile environment, already being transformed by man—made climate change. roger harrabin with that report. ben
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gladwin the business news in a moment. first, a look at our headlines. the bank of england has signalled that interest rates could rise earlier and faster than it thought three months ago — but for now the key lending rate remains unchanged. higher council tax bills are on the way in most of england — as local authorities struggle to make ends meet. and new figures from the nhs in england say a thousand people had to wait more than 12 hours for treatment in accident and emergency departments last month. i'm ben bland with the business headlines an afternoon live. as you've just heard the bank of england gave its interest rate decision — but it also upgraded its forecast for the uk‘s economic growth this year, to 1.7%. that's up from the previous forecast of 1.5%. the bank says it may start to raise interst rates earlier than thought. it noted that the country's economy was benefitting from a pickup in growth across the world. it also thinks that uk wage growth
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will start to pick—up, giving the economy a further boost. shares in talktalk have slumped more than 10% after the firm warned profits would be significantly lower this year than it previously thought. the telecoms group expects a key measure of profits to be between £230 million and £245 million, much lower than its forecast. the firm slashed its dividend and said it will sell £200 million pounds of shares on the stock exchange. talktalk is raising the money to invest in a network of fibre cables to boost broadband speeds. the electric car maker tesla has posted its worst ever quarterly loss — around £480 million in the three months to december. the firm which has yet to make a profit warned that spending will increase this year. but it says the outlook is positive and that it's said it "learned many lessons" from its crucial model 3 production plans. who would be a retail store manager?
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none of them having an easy time, debenhams particularly. this all goes back to the end of last year, simon, debenhams christmas marketing campaign based around fairy tales sadly its sales were not quite so magical. like for like, if you strip out things like new store openings, its sales in that period were down 2.6%. when it announced that in january, its shares fell, its forecast for profits this year also fell. it simply has to cut costs and pa rt fell. it simply has to cut costs and part of the way it's doing that is to reduce its store management headcount by 320, about a quarter of store manager roles debenhams has. they are not the only ones facing these problems. far from it. to be fair marks these problems. far from it. to be fairmarks & these problems. far from it. to be fair marks & spencer, house of fraser, and motherca re, fair marks & spencer, house of fraser, and mothercare, were among other retailers reporting sales were disappointing in the run—up to christmas. on the other hand, online retail specialists like a source bridge macro like yogita limaye
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sought an increase in revenues. —— like asos. they were working out how to take the best of online retail and introduce it in stores, such is their desperation to keep up and compete. there are some who say this year is shaping up to be a bit of a disastrous one for retail, one of thoseis disastrous one for retail, one of those is the chief executive at retail economics. joining us now to talk about this is richard lim, chief executive at retail economics. he said a year of distress. a year of distress sums that up for retailers, debenhams is a good example of a traditional retailer burdened with too many stores, early re nt burdened with too many stores, early rent reviews, inflexible releases. we are seeing seismic shift in consumer behaviour, the trend towards online spending and the rise of the experience economy. we think it'll be a difficult year for retailers. what can they do? cutting costs, cutting jobs, seems to be one
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way of reacting. is it the right way in your view? our own research shows operating costs rose by about 3% in 2017. this is outstripping sales growth. labour costs alone constitute 46% of operation costs, a lever they can pull to keep control on costs. of course online is a significant growth area, so looking at different ways of cutting back on costs but also into using that on the channel proposition to really resonate with the core customer group and really drive sales, not just online, notjust group and really drive sales, not just online, not just to stores, but through lots of different channels. is there any point nowadays having a bricks and mortar store on the high street when everyone seems to want to buy stuff online? absolutely there is a need for physical presence. look at some of the pure online retailers, they are looking
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to take physical stores. it's not just about online, about stores, it's about the omni channel experience for customers. even online as a channel on its own, click and collect is one of the most popular choices for retailers, for consumers, where they want to shop online, to pick up in—store, return to the local corner store. it's about providing that omni channel experience for retailers and consumers. thank you richard, i prefer click and collect because delivery tends to happen when i'm out, invariably. richard from retail economics. you can fill in a little box to tell them what to do with it. that's what i've been doing wrong. we get a move on. we have the rate decision from the bank of england midday, it colours what we're seeing here. very much so, we're seeing the ftse down through the day, more so since the decision. by the strength of the pound. interest rates didn't go up, the bank of england held
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them. it integrates will probably go up, could go up soon and faster than previously. the pound has gone up strongly. against the dollar. around 196 strongly. against the dollar. around 1% it's gone up against the euro. the reason it weighs the ftse down is the firms that trade internationally are listed on the ftse100. their profits are worth less when they convert them, the profits they are earning dollars for example. it makes their products and services less competitive to foreign buyers because it costs foreign buyers because it costs foreign buyers more to trade. debenhams and the news we've been discussing. down just over 1.4% after the update, not as steep a fall. we saw the biggest reaction when they announced their sales figures in january. thank you very much. see you in an hour. north korea has confirmed that the sister of its leader, kim jong—un, will attend the opening ceremony of the winter olympic games tomorrow.
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she'll be in the same stadium as the us vice president mike pence, and also the father of the american citizen, otto warmbier, who died last year, after he was released from a north korean prison. steve mcdonnell reports from the south korean capital seoul. along with its athletes, north korea has sent teams of musicians, performers and cheerleaders to the winter olympics. this is being seen as a significant diplomatic push from the north to coincide with the games. but the united states government has its own propaganda goals here. vice president mike pence has vowed to challenge every move north korea makes, reminding the world of its human rights abuses and nuclear weapons programme. yet, with locals getting excited about hosting this global sporting festival, some have questioned how appropriate it is for the trump administration to potentially spoil the party. here in south korea, opinions are divided as to whether having so much engagement with their northern
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neighbours at these games is such a good idea. either way, it is happening, and some are now starting to wonder whether or not the olympics might even provide a genuine shift in relations between these two nations. the fact the two sides are talking at an intergovernmental level is encouraging, so we're hoping the spirit that's been generated there will lead to maybe more talks, and from our point of view if it lead to military talks or reopening of the transport corridors, that would be fantastic. with just one day to go until the opening ceremony, north korea held an enormous military parade to mark the 70th anniversary of its armed forces. but it wasn't carried live on local television, and foreign journalists were not invited for fear it might upstage the olympics. right now, koreans from both sides of the border are showing off their cultural prowess.
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however, once the sport starts in earnest, the athletes will take centre stage. steven mcdonnell, bbc news, at the pyongyang olympics. a special plane operated by the european space agency took a group of djs and their fans european space agency took a group of djs and theirfans up into european space agency took a group of djs and their fans up into the sky for a set in zero gravity. tim orman takes up the story. studio 54 and the ministry of sound have nothing on this. and airbus a 310 called zero g. dozens of people from around the world given the chance to get high, very high, and notan illegal substance in the site. taking off for a whole new experience. usually, the testing ground for
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astronauts, zero g instead became the most exclusive and unusual nightclub in the world. a heavy beat, but the lightest of partygoers. for 90 minutes they danced, or at least they tried to do. they spun. what goes up must come down. this was one high altitude that blue people's minds. it was insane, so crazy, floating upside down. doing flips... it was insane, it was insane. it was like all your emotions at maximum level.
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it was hilarious. i'm super thankful. i want to do it again and again and again. for everyone involved this was a unique gig, unlikely to be repeated. they say music can lift the soul. this went a lot further than that. tim orman, bbc news. what a good use of money. let's go to florida. new pictures show the moment a florida couple discovered a two—and—a—half—metre alligator , in their swimming pool. the man and wife woke on tuesday to find a reptile bathing in their pool. he came up and said hello. that wasn't enough, they had to get rid of him. they called the local police who came along and eventually managed to get the alligator out. there you go. apparently it had come from a local canal but i have been paid to say this... that apparently is just paid to say this... that apparently isjust an paid to say this... that apparently is just an allegation. let's have a look at the weather.
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louise lear has that. two choices today, cold and sunny or cloudy and wet, i know which i would prefer, look at this picture sent in from southwark earlier today. you have the sunshine to compensate. some rain around at the moment, a weather front moving in from the north west. it will slice the country in two as we close out thursday afternoon. some of the rain quite heavy. it would continue to be an issue through the overnight period. into the midlands, towards the north—east of england, behind it, wind swinging to a north—westerly, driving in wintry showers. the showers will fall away. northern ireland, scotland, england, below freezing, as low as —4 in places. once we've got the rain out of the way we're going to see a line
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of the way we're going to see a line of enhanced showers making their way across the country, of a wintry mix. cold, icy start will be an issue. with those showers falling, temperatures below freezing, could bea temperatures below freezing, could be a problem through scotland and northern ireland and north—west england. a wintry mix of rain, sleet and snow moving through wales, the midlands, towards the south—east by nine o'clock on friday morning. the early morning rush hour could be tricky. not too concerned about it. certainly worth bearing in mind if you're up early enough. through the afternoon, a quiet story, still not particularly warm. still a scattering of showers along north and west facing coasts. moving out of friday, a ridge of high pressure building. a cold start to saturday morning before another area of low pressure m oves morning before another area of low pressure moves in. the isobars squeezing together, wind is picking up, dales unexposed coasts, bringing snow on the leading edge. it should turn to rain across north—west england, wales on south—west
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england. the best of the weather on saturday into the afternoon in scotla nd saturday into the afternoon in scotland as the rain clears, we should see sunny spells. not quite as cold, 7—10d, but i'm sure under the rain and wind it's not going to feel great. the rain clears again, toa feel great. the rain clears again, to a north—westerly, driving further snow showers for the second half of the weekend. some of these could settle at lower levels. it really does look as though we're heading for quite a wintry flavour to the weekend. the cold theme continues with rain and snow and gales at times. hello. you're watching afternoon live. today at 4... interest rates on hold but a warning from the bank of england that rise are coming. but how fast? in a gradual process but somewhat earlier and somewhat to a greater extent then we had thought in november. higher council tax bills on the way in most of england, as local authorities struggle to make ends meet. stranded in hospital corridors. new figures from nhs england say a thousand people had to wait more than 12 hours
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for treatment last month. calls for a new code of conduct for mps, peers and parliamentary staff, as one in five working there say they experienced, or witnessed, sexual harassment last year. coming up on afternoon live, all the sport. disappointing news for one of team gb's fleet tomorrow. a great british medal hope, katie ormerod. on the eve of the games she is out because she has fractured wrist and then her heel in training, all in the space of 24 hours. louise has the weather. this is the setup at the moment. the rain is moving south and east. once it clears, and north—westerly wind will drive in wintry showers. a mixture of rain, sleet and snow all the details coming up tomorrow. also coming up... blackpool bids farewell to one of
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its own, former captain jimmy armfield. hallows. —— hello, everyone. this is afternoon live we always seem to talk in a negative way when we discuss interest rate rises. but, for millions of savers, of course, they are good news. they, at least, will take cheer from bank of england chief mark carney‘s suggestion that rates would need to rise sooner — and by a bit more — if the economy remains on its current track. the bank voted unanimously to keep interest rates on hold at 0.5% at their latest meeting. but some economists think the next rate rise could come as soon as may. if you've got a mortgage — or loan — of course, that does not come in the "good news" category. our economics correspondent, andy verity, reports. if the whole economy performed like this manchester maker of branded clothing, its biggest problems
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would be almost solved. it's growing fast, exporting to europe and boosting productivity through investment. and while inflation caused by the weak pound boosted its costs, it's been able to absorb out and carry on winning new orders. the last 12 months, we've grown by 20% in the uk but europe has been much stronger than that, so we have more than doubled the growth rate in the uk. i'm cautiously optimistic about the future. we are making major investments over the next 12 months in technology, which will allow us to increase productivity and efficiency, and improve quality and service to our customers. the key to this company's competitiveness is speed. coming up with branded products much faster than you if you ordered them from china. the speed of growth in the wider economy had been slowing but recently it's growing faster than expected and today the bank of england said it is probably growing as fast as it can without overheating. gdp growth is expected to average around one and three quarters percent over the forecast period, a little stronger than projected in november.
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while modest by historic standards, this demand growth is still expected to exceed the diminished rate of supply growth over the forecast period. the key judgment for the bank of england is when the next rise in interest rates comes. today, its monetary policy committee held the official rate at 0.5%. but following the bank's warning, in the city they're saying the next rise is likely in may. prices are still rising faster than wages meaning on average your real income will buy less and less. but the bank of england's big judgment call is we will get bigger pay rises in the years to come. if they're right about that, the squeeze on living standards should start to ease. the weaker pound has raised the cost of imported goods, including raw materials for firm's like this one, but because an interest rate rise is now expected soon, investors expect to make more money holding pounds. that has pushed up the value of the pound by a cent this afternoon, if it stays stronger,
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that should help to contain inflation. andy verity, bbc news. earlier, andy explained the rationale behind the bank's policy. the economy is like a car. if it goes too fast it starts to overheat and that is inflation. if it goes at the limit that the car can manage, that is nice. what the bank has to do is work out whether the economy is likely to grow faster than it can produce the goods. if people are demanding more goods than the economy can produce, you get inflation. it wants to head that off. it is saying the economy is growing faster and that is good news. in order to prevent it growing too fast than it has to headed off with a rise in interest rates. —— head it off. the difficulty is they are driving in the rear—view mirror.
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nobody really can forecast what is happening next. it is always a foggy view ahead. the bank can only really predict to some extent. it is honest about that. nice plain english on the bank of england website. when you have interest rates that are really low, it is trying to support the economy by making it super cheap for households to borrow money. nothing wrong with generating economic activity if they want. that support by having super cheap credit is no long as necessary and they plan to remove some of that support as early as may. we rarely talk about savers but they have a totally different take on all of this. in 2009 when interest rates were cut to a historic low, the then governor said they would be back in a few months. a decade later they are still at that point was that they have not got higher. the city now thinks a rise is likely in may and there could be another
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one early next year. you are talking about very affordable loans compared with 20 years ago. almost all council tax payers in england face higher bills and charges from april, because local authorities say they're struggling to make ends meet. a survey suggests around three—quarters of councils are planning an increase of at least 2.5%. that would mean more than £40 on the average bill. duncan kennedy reports from guildford in surrey, where the county council is facing a budget shortfall of more than £100 million. adult social care, children's services, transport subsidies and infrastructure projects. these are all the cornerstone services of our lives and council spending. but today's report says, in england, they're all under pressure. our reseach shows councils are right on the edge financially. they are keeping services together but only doing that by whacking up council tax, charging for everything they can and draining their reserves. today's research by the local
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government information unit heard from a third of english councils and found nearly all of them plan to increase council tax. with 95% of authorities saying they expect taxes to rise. 93% of councils say they expect to increase the price of services they charge for, and those figures come as eight in ten councils say they fear for their long—term financial sustainability. take surrey‘s pothole bill, the council reckons it would take £300 million to fix all of its roads. and it's got 1300 miles of roads that need repairing. it says it can't do everything. but when you tell people hear their council tax is about to go up, 6%, the largest anywhere in england, well... there's not always much support. the county council has voted
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to put up your council tax by 6%, what do you think? i think all of the councils are doing it, no one is pleased because we don't have enough money to go around and pay the other bills. what do you think about the fact surrey council is putting up the council tax by 6%? it's a liberty, you don't agree? i don't agree at all. nobody welcomes a tax rise but if it goes towards increased payment to carers, people will be ok with that. last week, northamptonshire county council banned all new spending and said its financial future was grave. but the government says its financial settlement for local authorities is balanced between pressures on councils and strains on taxpayers. it's for individual councils to decide what's the right balance to strike between raising money for services people want to see, funding things like adult social care, but making the tax rises are not excessive for constituents.
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some have said councils are perilously close to financial collapse. resources, how to create them, how to spend them is as always at the heart of this debate. duncan kennedy, bbc news. earlier i spoke to lord porter who said that councils funding is coming under increasing strain. it is not to say loads of councils are in that position but they're all one or two, maybe nine he will be in that position over the next two yea rs. that position over the next two years. most that position over the next two yea rs. most have that position over the next two years. most have a longer term, sustainable plan. we need the government to deliver on its commitment for 100% business rate retention. councils collect £56
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billion at the moment and we just ta ke billion at the moment and we just take 13. treasury will have to start reading caching control of that money. isn't the whole system in need of an overhaul? people are paying council tax on a rating value going back some 20 years. personally, i'm not in favour of revaluation. revaluation generally ends up making lots of people lose. lots of people will be very angry andi lots of people will be very angry and i don't wink the country needs more angry people than are in it at the moment. the reason they would be angry as they have perhaps been paying too little and houses are worth more than they thought. paying too little and houses are worth more than they thoughtm does not matter how that sum of money is collected is it still has to be collected for the weather on the value of a property now or 20 yea rs the value of a property now or 20 years ago, it does not make any odds. if you look at council tax, compared with your electricity bill
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or road tax, or any other bills, council tax is still very good value for money when you look at over 900 services your councils deliver for you. looking at what has pushed the build—up, police and crime commissioners, fire authorities and new bodies that are paid for eventually by the person living in the street, are you in favour of perhaps some of these things being cancelled? there is argument about whether police and crime commissioners should have been brought in all they did was to replace the police and crime panel. commissioners themselves on an expensive body but they have been given power to put up council tax by £12. £12 across a year, with the hope of having more police to protect you and your families, surely that is good value for money. if the prospect of a bigger council tax bill is making you angry, let us know. all the ways to contact us are on the screen right now.
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january was one of the worst months on record for hospital waiting times in a&e departments in england, according to the latest figures. more than a thousand patients had to wait over 12 hours to be seen. nhs england says the four—hour waiting time target was missed for the 30th month in a row. our health correspondent says they may not be to meet targets for months to come. what seems to have been particularly bad during january are the trolley waits where patients have to wait because the doctor decides they need to be admitted on to award because they are seriously ill but there is no bed. there were record numbers waiting over four hours for a bed and record numbers waiting over 12 hours. overall, a&e performance did improve slightly in terms of the overall number of people waiting. that has pleased health bosses who say it could have been much worse. underlined by the fact this is the 30th month in a row it has happened. i dare say doctors and nurses, it will not come
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as any shop at all. —— any shock. no, it doesn't. in fact, nhs england, the body that runs the health service in england, said at the weekend it will probably be at least another year before the a&e target is met. they are still aiming to meet these targets. there is a call from some asking for the targets to be scrapped. the risk and concern is if you remove the targets or relax the targets performance just slips. they see the four hour target as incredibly important. doctors and nurses hearing that would perhaps justifiably feel quite aggrieved at the thought it would take pressure off because the targets have been taken away. there is tremendous pressure on the system and this is another figure to illustrate that.
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cast your mind back to the turn of the year, the start of january. hospitals were declaring major incidents, we were hearing about ambulances queueing outside hospitals. whilst some of the pressures have eased, the nhs is still under the most pressure it has been for ten, 15 years. you're watching afternoon live. these are our headlines... the key lending rate remains unchanged, as announced by the bank of england. higher council tax bills are on the way in most of england — as local authorities struggle to make ends meet. and new figures from the nhs in england say a thousand people had to wait more than 12 hours for treatment in accident and emergency departments last month. in sport, katie ormerod is out of the winter olympics. the snowboarder fractured wrist yesterday in practice. a broken heel in the training session today has forced the snowboarder to pull out of the
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team. after the six nations dashing in wales last weekend, scotland have made six changes to their team facing france at murrayfield. greg laidlaw will start at scrum—half. after apologising to team—mates for failing to win yesterday, mark cavendish has his first win of the year. he has taken stage three of the sprint finish. i will be back in 15 minutes with a full update. see you then. one in five people working in parliament has experienced or witnessed sexual harassment in the past year, according to a report released today. a cross—party working group has recommended a new code of conduct and grievance procedure for mps, peers and parliamentary staff. our political correspondent, leila nathoo, reports from westminster. the corridors of power, a workplace for thousands of people, and after a series of sexual harassment claims last year, the subject of a cross—party review into how such complaints are made and handled. in the commons this morning, the promise of a new system
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to protect staff and wanting a change in culture. —— prompting a change. it is a right, not a privilege, to be treated with dignity and respect at work. and this ambitious report is a major step towards a safer and more professional environment. the report found nearly 1500 parliamentary workers who responded to a survey, almost one in five said they had witnessed or experienced sexual harassment last year and it proposes bringing a new behaviourfor people in parliament. a new process and new sanctions for mps found to have behaved inappropriately with a possibility of suspension and deselection in the most serious cases. people wanting to complain about harassment and bullying in westminster have so far had to rely on their own bosses or political parties to take up their case. but having an independent confidential grievance procedure is designed
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to encourage more people to come forward if they have concerns. it's an attempt to shift the power dynamic here and it has been broadly welcomed by some of those who have spoken out in the past. i think it's really important that there is an independent process there. i do have concerns about anonymity but i think it's a really good report. a really good way forward. there are tougher sanctions such as recall, that mps will ultimately face, and i think they do have to have that deterrent, but also having a code of conduct is part of a culture change needed in westminster. mps will debate the proposals later this month. in a place where loyalty of highly valued, parliament hopes it can break through the culture of silence that has endured here for so long. leila nathoo, bbc news, westminster. richard handley died in such
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hospital in november 2012 following an operation to remove matterfrom his abdomen. the coroner said there was gross failure in spotting he was ina was gross failure in spotting he was in a critical state with convocations after the operation. the hospital trust has apologised to the family and said lessons have been learned. social media platform youtube say they found no evidence of russian interference in the brexit referendum. a senior executive from the company has been giving evidence, in washington, to a committee of mps who are leading an inquiry into fake news. our north american correspondent aleem maqbool has been following the hearing in washington. it is the first select committee hearing to happen outside the uk tour and be live as well. it is happening in the room over there. it is called an inquiry into fake news amd later in the day we'll be
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hearing from editors about how to prevent fake news, as we traditionally think of it, getting out there. this morning has all been about questioning officials from youtube, facebook and twitter, and google about whether they are doing enough to stop the dissemination of false news but also news that may be harmful. with google they mainly focus on the auto fill feature which, in some cases, has been found to direct people towards anti—semitic posts and sites. with youtube, there was a lot of focus on the up next feature. it was found a lot of far right videos, the content was, people were directed to that content through the what's next feature. there was talk, as you mentioned in the introduction, about whether these sites helped russia, for example, interfere with elections. it has been a big topic here.
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damian collins asked that ofjuniper downs. would youtube be prepared to conduct the same analysis for the uk looking at potential russian interference at around the brexit referendum? we are happy to cooperate as to whether there was any interference in elections in the uk. we have conducted a thorough investigation around the brexit referendum and found no evidence of interference. we have looked at all advertisements and any connection to russia and we found no evidence of our service is being used to interfere in the brexit referendum and we are happy to cooperate. as i say, i havejust stepped outside the room and i know facebook executives are being asked exactly the same question about russia and the influence of the brexit referendum. after that, twitter officials
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will be asked the same things. low pay and pressures of work means aduu low pay and pressures of work means adult care cannot fill key posts. lack of government funding has undermined the sector at a time when demand is increasing. here is our social affairs correspondent. it is a busy lunchtime at northfield's nursing home in sheffield. demanding work for care staff looking after residents with a high level of need. the report today outlined how difficult it has become to find the people needed to provide this vital care. it is only me. sorry to bother you. tammy is the nursing lead. she says attracting nurses has become a real issue. it is not as attractive as maybe the nhs. the salary
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packages, enhanced rates and unsociable hours for that it is hard work. it is busy in constant full study have to be on the ball 24 hours a day. —— busy and constant and you have to be on the ball. according to the boss of this home, some providers have had no choice but to close or risk the quality of ca re but to close or risk the quality of care falling. the only way these operators can continue is to cut the standard. fundamentally, the funding issueis standard. fundamentally, the funding issue is impacting on the resources, the workers, and the delivery of care. the national audit office says whilst working in care can be rewarding, many staff feel undervalued. in 2016/17, more than half the workforce was paid £7.50 an hour or less. staff turnover was
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nearly 28%. 6.6% ofjobs were vacant. it says there is no government strategy for tackling the problems. only the department of health can produce a workforce strategies speaking of the national picture about the problems of low pay, low prestige and high turnover which is reducing the quality of service for people receiving the care. in response, the department for health and social care says extra money is being put into social ca re extra money is being put into social care and it will publish a strategy for the health and social care workforce. shocking new evidence of plastic rubbish polluting the arctic. there are far more plastic particles in one litre of sea ice than in open water. scientists say they have
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found plastic pollution almost everywhere they have looked in the arctic ocean. you may find some of these images disturbing. plastic pollution is drifting to the furthest corners of the planet. the arctic sea ice is created when sea freezes. it looks pristine but scientists are finding that it definitely is not. in fact, ice cores show sea ice contains more fragments of plastic per square metre than anywhere else in the ocean, it's because sea ice freezes from the top and that's exactly where the plastic bits are floating. one litre of melted sea ice contained 234 plastic fragments like these. the numbers are way higher than i think most people expected, and definitely than what i expected. it shows that it's a serious problem and you have a situation in the world now that there is nowhere that is so far away that it is not
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affected by plastic waste. there's plastic on the beaches too, this local conservationist is trying forlornly to clear them up. here's what the plastic does. this reindeer‘s antlers were trapped by a discarded fishing net, it died. this arctic turn met its death by starvation. —— tern. and see the plastic strapping around the belly of this bearded seal. i have collected this waste in just a few seconds. some of the fragments may come from norway, some clearly don't like this elaborate bottle or this butter tub from spain. and the plastic is here with a vengeance. several years ago, it was predicted plastic pollution would enter the arctic, and indeed, we are finding plastic along the coastlines from urban areas to remote areas and the more we look for the plastics,
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the more we are finding. arctic scientists don't know yet whether the plastic tide will affect local fish stocks, but it is another human threats to a fragile environment, already being transformed by man—made climate change. let's have a look at the weather. we have been talking about the field over the last few days for the has been bitterly cold. causing problems for the snowboarders. the ice is soap compact. the opening ceremony is not looking too bad. it is the winter olympics. they are putting out warnings and telling people to dress warmly. thank you. it is not
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actually necessarily the temperature, it is the wind—chill they are concerned about. the opening ceremony is close to the coast, so not quite as cold. head up into the mountains where any events are taking place and this is the seven day forecast. on sunday we are looking at minus 14. add in the 30 mile an hour wind—chill factor and it will probably feel more like minus 30. it will have an impact on not only spectators but athletes as well. a couple of extra layers may be. and now we don't have to worry quite much here. no, we could see a wintry mix actually. here we go. hold on. i am driving the graphics. across the lake district, this afternoon we have had rain. it has been cloudy with outbreaks of light rain. this frontal system is slicing the country in two. that is slipping
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south and east and will pep up, bringing heavy pulses through south—west england, wales and the north west of england and pushing in towards the london area. behind it the wind will change direction and some of the showers could turn wintry. the mix of rain, sleet and snow. the coldest of the weather is likely to be further north. the blue showing where temperatures are below freezing. we could see this wintry mix. that means rain, sleet and snow, from this front moving into the midlands. by morning icy stretches will be an issue across scotla nd stretches will be an issue across scotland with snow showers as well which will make tricky driving conditions. similarwith which will make tricky driving conditions. similar with north—west island and north west of england. moving towards the midlands and by mid—morning it will be to the north of london. we will need to keep an eye on it were not too concerned
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about it causing issues. it will add about it causing issues. it will add a bit of extra time to yourjourney perhaps. the cold appeal tomorrow generally. the clear skies will stay with us through friday night into the early hours of saturday morning across england and wales. into the north west, deep area of low pressure will bring windy conditions. gales unexposed coasts. we will see some snow on the coasts of scotland. saturday looks like a dismal day for most of us across england and wales. wet, windy with struggling temperatures. the best of the weather in scotland and northern ireland where it will be that bit brighter. colderfor the ireland where it will be that bit brighter. colder for the second ireland where it will be that bit brighter. colderfor the second half of the weekend. the weekend summary of the weekend. the weekend summary of the weekend. the weekend summary of the cold beam will stay with us. there will be rain around and we will have further snow showers. it will have further snow showers. it will be windy at times as well. not a great weekend to be out and about. take care. this is bbc news,
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our latest headlines. the bank of england holds interest rates at half a per cent, but governor mark carney has warned rates could climb earlier and faster than predicted due to strong growth forecasts. councils across england are planning council tax increases in april a report suggests more than three—quarters of local authorities are concerned about financial stability. january was one of the worst months on record for hospital waiting times in accident and emergency departments in england, according to official figures. mps have called for a new code of conduct to tackle bullying and sexual harassment at westminster. disappointing news for one of the big hopes at the winter olympics. the medal target has just got that much tougher, katie ormerod was in
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with a shout for one if not two medals, snowboarder, going in the big air vent, making medals, snowboarder, going in the big airvent, making his medals, snowboarder, going in the big air vent, making his debut, and slopestyle, that picture she posted on social media, yesterday she fractured her wrist in training. —— big air event. she said that would not stop her but she went out onto the slopes, in her practice session today she broke her heel, really badly, scans reveal the extent of that damage, she won gold in a world cup that damage, she won gold in a world cu p eve nt that damage, she won gold in a world cup event last year, also winning a medal in the and x—games that is why she was talked up for at least one medal. she snapped her anterior cruciate knee ligament, damaged both needs, fractured her shoulder, both arms, as well as her back, she fractured a vertebrae in thatjust 11 months ago. —— the x—games. now she has done her wrist and her heel, which has ruled her out of what would be her first which has ruled her out of what would be herfirst games, the chef de mission says they are deeply sorry, and fellow snowboarders as well, who have lost a valued member
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of what is a very close—knit team. —— snapped her anterior cruciate knee ligament, damaged the meniscus in both knees, fractured her shoulder and both arms, as well as her back. she is out. better news for lizzie yarnold, such a gold medallist. she will be the flag bearer, pretty easy choice. -- suchy games gold medallist. —— sochi games. aiming to become the first briton to successfully defend a winter olympic title, i could not believe that, but i have been through the archives, that is an hour of my life will get back. nobody has successfully defended a winter title, she is looking for gold after the skeleton success, her form has not been great. it has certainly been an up—and—down world cup season, it is a lesson that i needed, to respect sport and respect the day of competition, that anything can happen. mainly to understand that i know what i'm doing and! understand that i know what i'm doing and i need to trust myself
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more, and slide more intuitively. i have learned and i think i am in a good place. after their heavy defeat to wales on the opening weekend of the six nations, scotland have made six changes to their line—up for sunday's game against france at murrayfield. principal amongs them is the return of former captain greig laidlaw. he's recalled at scrum—half in place of ali price. the experienced sean maitland and ryan wilson also return. jonathan joseph will start for england in their game against wales at twickenham. he comes in at outside centre, with ben te'o dropping to the bench. and danny care replaces the injured ben youngs at scrum half. the tottenham head coach mauricio pochettino has called on the football association to asess the the state of rochdale's pitch ahead of their tie their in the 5th round of the fa cup later this month. it certainly is a state, one half of it appears to be completely devoid of grass and more
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like a sand—pit. rochdale's 4th round replay against millwall two night's ago was allowed to go ahead despite their previous two home games being postponed, while last weekend's rochdale hornets match against batley bulldogs in rugby league's championship was also called off. spurs are due to play the league one side there a week on sunday. i think you have seen in the picture, we cannot play football. not because we are tottenham, it is not like that, i am saying that we can't play football there, rochdale cannot play football there, honestly, this is the fa cup, we need to make a good decision for foot ball need to make a good decision for football and hold high standards for this match. britain's mark cavendish
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apologised to hsi teamates after failing to make an impact in yesterdays srpint finish but he won stage three at the tour of dubai. the dimension data rider held off attacks from nacer bouhanni and marcel kittel. it's his first stage win of the year. he's third overall with two stages to go, behind leader dylan grerner—vaygen. britain's adam blythe finished fourth for aqua blue sport. that's all the sport for now. i'll have more for you in the next hour. now on afternoon live, let's go nationwide, and see what's happening around the country, in our daily visit to the bbc newsrooms around the uk. peter levy is in hull, many people say peter levy is hull(!)
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and two years since a deal was announced to save scunthorpe steelworks, unions are meeting in redcar to discuss the future of the uk steel industry. and in a moment i'll be talking to annabel tiffin who's in salford, and can tell me about the blackpool community coming together today for the funeral of former england football captain jimmy armfield. 2015, 900 job losses in scunthorpe, then owned by tata, you will member then owned by tata, you will member the story, two years ago, 2016, grable capital bought the steelworks for a pound with a rescue package, that was 2016. grable bought it, they changed the name back to the famous british steel, you remember the pictures. you will have seen them, the flag being hoisted. the new company, the owners, grabill, turned things around, improving product range, starting to control costs. —— grabill. and on its first anniversary, in operation, 2017 last year, they announced pre—tax profits
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of £47 million. which is extraordinary, and owner shares of the workers. —— for the workers. if you think that is only three years, what a turnaround. plenty for them to talk about when union bosses are meeting business minister, richard harrington. the minister has said, when humans happens, the impact on the social and economy of a community must be taken into consideration. this was welcomed by one of the unions at scunthorpe, the community union, and i sense that the unions know at the moment that things are going well, they have a spring in their step, they think the future looks good, talking about a golden future for steel—making in this country, and this is a representative of the community union. procurement is one of the main thing is, all we want the government to say, we don't even have the order yet, the high speed
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two, we make the best rail in the world and we still have not yet had confirmation of that order. the challenges, the union wants assurances that after brexit, there will not be the dumping of cheap chinese products, and also, that scunthorpe steel is used. you will remember all thosejob scunthorpe steel is used. you will remember all those job losses announced in 2015, you remember covering the story, 900 in scunthorpe alone, here we are, three yea rs scunthorpe alone, here we are, three years later, and things looking so much more rosy, it is amazing what a difference a couple of years can make. iam i am marriage to a scunthorpe lass and her father was a i am marriage to a scunthorpe lass and herfather was a manager in british steel, so we are watching that closely. let's cross now to salford and speak to annabel tiffin, as former england captainjimmy to annabel tiffin, as former england captain jimmy armfield's funeral was held today in blackpool. paying tribute to one of their own. we often speak about footballing
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legends but no exaggeration to say thatjimmy armfield was one, particularly, in his blood at blackpool. the town did come out to him, lovely, the funeral could charge passed through blackpool's ground, bloomfield road stadium, where he had played all his career, 17 years, many fans in the south stand named after him, and alongside the pitch, members of the current first—team, the youth team, and some of the former players for the club. fans gathered outside the ground and laid where was at his statue. the funeral corsage went on to a private church service at st petersburg on which was his family church, he even played the organ there. the service was private, friends and family, but was private, friends and family, but was relayed by audio link to bloomfield road. —— funeral cortege. among the mourners was current manager, gary bowie, gordon taylor, and norman hunter, and bobby
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charlton and jack charlton and trevor brooking. genuine down—to—earth fellow, you hear talking about different people and saying that but jim was special, you could not see him for a few days, weeks, and then you would meet him and you would pick up the conversation as if it was yesterday. he was fantastic and the service did him proud. —— gary bowyer. he was fantastic and the service did him proud. -- gary bowyer. great footballer, but for many, it was his life after his football career that will be remembered, he worked for the bbc. many viewers will know him from being a pundit, commentator, on radio five live, his foot bowling career was fabulous as well, still holds the club record of 627 appearances for blackpool, capped for england 43 times, 15 of them as captain. he did not make the final
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in 1966 for england because of injury but he was part of the squad, new managed at bolton wanderers and leeds. in later years, new managed at bolton wanderers and leeds. in lateryears, he new managed at bolton wanderers and leeds. in later years, he was known for his radio commentary. what fantastic work he did, everyone up here, brought us something special to it, a lot of people have been commenting on that. he was truly loved in blackpool, he loved the club, the club loved him, and i was speaking to his close friend, gordon taylor, a couple of weeks ago, after jimmy had died, and these —— they said he had two great loves, his family, but also, football and blackpool. he was a true proper gentleman, and had a fantastic attitude and temperament, which some of today's players could probably learn from. definitely, definitely. plenty more tonight, and on bbc one. thank you very much, thank you both.
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if you would like to see more on any of those stories, you can access them through the bbc iplayer. we are nationwide every weekday afternoon, 4:30pm. theresa may has met business leaders from japan at downing street this afternoon including representatives of major car—makers who employ thousands of people in britain. they've been discussing their operations after brexit. the motor industry has expressed fears it could face export tariffs and customs delays after britain leaves the eu. but the prime minister told the meeting that brexit is an opportunity to build on existing partnerships. —— speaking after the meeting, the japanese ambassador to london said business leaders who invested in the uk needed clarity on what would happen after march next year. there is an importance of having clarity in the short—term, as well the
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longer term. and today, we have been told, that the internet asian period, —— that the implementation period, —— that the implementation period will be discussed. it is very positive, and that is the first step that we would appreciate and welcome as you may remember, we have all along been saying that you cannot immediately implement drastic change, that there is a need for a period in between, that allows companies to adopt. that i think is one. and then, what happens, what may happen to the negotiation and that factor, investors will tell them how they should continue to
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operate. if there is no profitability of a continuing operation in uk, notjapanese only, no private company can continue operations. it is as simple as that. this is high stakes that all of us need to keep in mind. ben westwood all of the business news in a moment, but first the headlines —— ben will have all of the business news in a moment. the bank of england has signalled that interest rates could rise earlier and faster than it thought three months ago — but for now the key lending rate remains unchanged. higher council tax bills are on the way in most of england — as local authorities struggle to make ends meet. and new figures from the nhs in england say a thousand people had to wait more than 12 hours for treatment in accident and emergency departments last month. if you want to know what's
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happening in business, what a happy coincidence, i'm here to tell you. i'm ben bland, these are the business headlines. as you've just heard the bank of england gave its interest rate decision — but it also upgraded its forecast for the uk‘s economic growth this year, to 1.7%. that's up from the previous forecast of 1.5%. the bank says it may start to raise interst rates earlier than thought. it noted that the country's economy was benefitting from a pick—up in growth across the world. it also thinks that uk wage growth will start to pick—up, giving the economy a further boost. shares in talktalk have slumped more than 10% after the firm warned profits would be significantly lower this year than it previously thought. the telecoms group expects a key measure of profits to be between £230 million and £245 million, much lower than its forecast. the firm slashed its dividend and said it will sell £200 million
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of shares on the stock exchange. the electric car maker tesla has posted its worst ever quarterly loss — around 480 million pounds in the three months to december. the firm which has yet to make a profit warned that spending will increase this year. but it says the outlook is positive and that it's said it "learned many lessons" from its crucial model three production plans. " if "if you want to know what is happening in business, he is a happy coincidence...", did you write that? whatever was wrong with here is the business news. . .! whatever was wrong with here is the business news... ! debenhams, whatever was wrong with here is the business news...! debenhams, like a lot of retailers, still suffering after christmas. not a good time to be a retail store manager perhaps, with news that debenhams will cut 320 of its management roles. its sales in the run up to christmas were less than magical. its profit forecasts for the year fell last month. so it now has to cut costs. it's looking to cut a quarter
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of its store manager roles, though it says it will try to redeploy those affected. twitter is finally making a profit. yes, a little birdie tells me its shares soared more than 18% this afternoon. it brought in more money than expected in the last 3 months of last year. i'm doing my best, simon, i'm doing my best. yes, that is what is concerning me... laughter that gave it a net profit of $91. that's compared with a loss of $167m for the same period the year before. and interestingly, that's despite not adding any new users. we must mention as well, the bank of england interest rate decision. but there is a clear indication that
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it is going up soon. of course, what sort of a business presenter would i be if i didn't?! don't answer that. yes, interest rates on hold. but a hint that they could rise sooner and faster than previously expected. partly because it's forecasting slightly better economic growth this year, now predicting 1.7% instead of 1.5%. let's find out how all of this is going down with traders and the city. joining me now is james hughes, chief market analyst at axitrader. good to see you, interest rates, no change today, yet we are till seeing the pound jumping 1% against the dollar and the euro, and predictions of a possible rate rise in may, what is your take on all of this? that is the big point markets have grabbed onto, mark carney said
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within some of his comments today, these rates could be going up slightly quicker and slightly larger moves than what we would have expected previously and this comes in line with the fact that the economy is still performing slightly better and the key point around the world at the moment is he sees inflation moving slightly below that 396 inflation moving slightly below that 3% level where it is at the moment, slightly closer to 2% target. one of the key points is that the bank will no longer tolerate inflation above 396, no longer tolerate inflation above 3%, which means that what they could do to bring that down is to increase interest rates and really move that inflation rate, inflation is a really important point, notjust for the uk but in the eurozone as well, that would be a key battle ground. the fact we saw the indication that rates could go higher, and could go highera rates could go higher, and could go higher a lot quicker than expected, thatis higher a lot quicker than expected, that is a point which pushes the pound higher. the way it is supposed
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to work, news that point to higher interest rates usually drives our currency and brings down the stock market, from a currency point of view, we have definitely seen that today. looking at the debenhams story, third to say it is not the only high street retailer facing challenges. do you think it is symptomatically wider problems within the retail sector? really we have been talking about problems within the retail sector for a numberof years, within the retail sector for a number of years, sometimes we see these numbers getting better—than—expected, and then profit warnings. no, debenhams sales have been performing particularly badly, bad christmas period as well. the fact they are looking to cut jobsis the fact they are looking to cut jobs is not necessarily too much of a surprise. the fact the area where they are looking to cut jobs, a surprise. the fact the area where they are looking to cutjobs, this store manager area, we have seen this announcement from a number of different retailers, bringing out the middle management, the store manager type of role, and that has
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been quite evident across the retail sector, but what we are looking at isa sector, but what we are looking at is a retail company that has been struggling, struggling to post good numbers. important for these retailers to do well, debenhams did not do that. in the new year, looking at the same kind of issues. what is going on with twitter, finally making a profit. they are making money, that is one of the key things we have been asking them to do for quite a long time, it shows this disparity, always see a lot of headlines, talking about facebook and twitter and all of these, social media, big tech firms, all about users, that is what we tend to talk about, how many users do they have. but for once we have seen twitter,
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users have not increased but they have started making money. this is all on the back of advertising, they have upped the amount of advertising on twitter, they have taken out a numberof number of different streams and lines to be able to post more adverts on twitter. the fact they are doing that, a lot of the fact that people are paying for tweets to be more prominent than others, that is where they are making the money. they do not necessarily need to continue to increase the amount of people using twitter, it is the amount of people paying for their tweets to be seen, that is the big thing and that is what we are doing finally, that has started to put money in their pockets. thanks very much. paying to have your tweets promoted, would never catch you doing that. no, not at all, my money stays exactly where it is, in the safe. north korea has confirmed that kim
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jong—un's vista will attend the opening ceremony of the winter olympic games, she will be in the same stadium as mike pence, and the father of the american citizen, otto warmbier, who died last year after being released from a north korean prison. we report from the capital, seoul. along with this athletes, north korea has sent teams of musicians, performers and cheerleaders to the winter olympics. this is being seen asa winter olympics. this is being seen as a significant diplomatic push from the north, to coincide with the games. but the united states government has its own propaganda goals, mike pence, vice president, will challenge every move made by north korea, reminding the world of its human rights abuses and nuclear weapons programme. it was locals getting excited about hosting this global sporting festival... some have questioned how appropriate it is for the trump administration to potentially spoil the party. here in south korea,
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opinions are divided as to whether having so much engagement with their northern neighbours at these games is such a good idea. either way, it is happening, and some are now starting to wonder whether or not the olympics might even provide a genuine shift in relations between these two nations. the fact the two sides are talking at an intergovernmental level is encouraging, so we're hoping the spirit that's been generated there will lead to maybe more talks, and from our point of view if it lead to military talks or reopening of the transport corridors, that would be fantastic. with just one day to go until the opening ceremony, north korea held an enormous military parade to mark the 70th anniversary of its armed forces. but it wasn't carried live on local television, and foreign journalists were not invited for fear it might upstage the olympics. right now, koreans from both sides of the border are showing off their cultural prowess.
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however, once the sport starts in earnest, the athletes will take centre stage. steven mcdonnell, bbc news, at the pyongyang olympics. that is it from the afternoon live team, a live look at the weather now, due to is up with us in a few minutes at 5pm. we have a weather front at the moment, making its way in from the atlantic, bringing outbreaks of rain. behind it, bitterly cold air, showers turning wintry as we go through the night. really does look as though the rain will pep up over the next few hours across the south—west of england, wales and into northern england, drifting towards the london area, cleared by dawn, leave a trail of showers, turning quite cold, particularly in the far north, empties in the
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sheltered glen of scotland. below freezing, at least minus four. some ice, to encounter, particularly with showers coming in. wintry mix of rain, sleet and snow through the midlands, into lincolnshire, across east anglia, to the north of london, during the early morning, behind it, brighter skies, sunny spells, cold afternoon for all of us. scattering of showers over northern and western areas, highs of four to 7 degrees. that is it from me, more coming up in halfan that is it from me, more coming up in half an hour on the news channel. today at 5: interest rates are set to rise sooner than expected, though they remain on hold for now. the bank of england says growth will be faster, but the next rate rise could come as soon as may. it will be necessary to raise interest rates somewhat earlier and somewhat to a greater extent than we had thought in november. we'll have more on the bank's
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announcement and what it could mean for business and households. the other main stories on bbc news at 5: council tax is to go up almost everywhere in england as local authorities say they're struggle to make ends meet. one in five people working in parliament have experienced sexual harassment in the past year — a new code of conduct aims to tackle the issue. plastic pollution has reached the arctic and scientists say the contamination threatens wildlife in the pristine wilderness.
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