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Holocaust Memorial Day: ‘Unprecedented rise’ in antisemitic incidents, charity finds | UK News

Antisemitic incidents referencing the Holocaust have increased by 104% across the UK in 2023, new figures obtained by Sky News show.

The Community Security Trust (CST), a charity that protects British Jews from antisemitism, last year received 955 reports of Holocaust-related antisemitism, defined as incidents containing some kind of reference to the Holocaust, Nazis, Hitler or swastikas.

That number is more than double the 469 incidents reported in 2022.

Of these instances, more than half occurred after the 7 October attacks, when Hamas killed around 1,200 Israelis and abducted more than 200 others.

More than 26,000 people in Gaza have been killed in Israel’s retaliation, according to the health ministry in the Hamas-ruled strip, and more than 64,400 wounded.

The CST charity said incidents involving Holocaust denial also rose significantly in 2023 – increasing by 268% on the year before.

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Survivors recall the horrors of the Holocaust almost eight decades on.

The figures were released as the UK marks Holocaust Memorial Day, commemorating 79 years since the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated.

‘I can’t believe this is England’

Holocaust Memorial Day commemorates the victims of the Holocaust, and of more recent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia, and Darfur.

Six million Jews were killed in the Holocaust at the hands of the Nazis.

Credit - KURT MARX BEM_AJR

Holocaust survivor Kurt Marx BEM as a child, and a 98-year-old
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Holocaust survivor Kurt Marx as a child, and a 98-year-old. Pic: Association of Jewish Refugees/Kurt Marx

People across the UK are being urged to light a candle in their memory, while London landmarks including the London Eye will be lit up in purple to mark the occasion.

Lady Milena Grenfell-Baines was one of hundreds of Jewish refugees rescued in 1939 by Sir Nicholas Winton, who rescued 669 children from Czechoslovakia, bringing them to the UK and sparing them from Nazi persecution.

Credit - Lady Grenfell-Baines_AJR
Sir Nicholas Winton with Lady Milena Grenfell-Baines
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Sir Nicholas Winton with Lady Milena Grenfell-Baines. Pic: Association of Jewish Refugees/Lady Grenfell-Baines

More than 80 years later, Lady Milena, who now lives in Preston, thinks it’s vital that survivors like her are educating others.

She told Sky News: “I think a lot of it [antisemitism] is based on ignorance.

“Whilst we’re still here, we can prove it [the Holocaust] was really true.”

Credit - Lady Grenfell-Baines_AJR

Stills of Holocaust survivor Lady Milena Grenfell-Baines aged 94, and as a child.
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Holocaust survivor Lady Milena Grenfell-Baines aged 94, and as a child. Pic: Lady Grenfell-Baines/Association of Jewish Refugees

CST data shows UK incidents that glorified or called for another Holocaust increased by 130% last year, with the 96-year-old saying this rise was deeply concerning.

“To me, as a refugee, I can’t believe this is England – and one didn’t expect that sort of thing in England,” she said.

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‘Nowhere is a safe place to be Jewish’

‘They marched through the streets, singing blood-curdling songs’

Another survivor who fled Nazi Germany is Albert Lester.

He was only 11 years old when in 1938 his school was raided by Nazis as part of Kristallnacht – “The Night of Broken Glass” – when Jewish homes, businesses and synagogues in Germany and Austria were attacked, and up to 30,000 Jewish men were taken to concentration camps.

Mr Lester told Sky News: “They marched through the street singing these blood-curdling songs – we were told we shouldn’t wear yarmulkes [Jewish skullcaps] because the children would throw stones at us.”

Credit - ALBERT LESTER_AJR
Albert Lester as a child, and as a 96-year-old.
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Albert Lester as a child, and as a 96-year-old. Pic: Association of Jewish Refugees/Albert Lester

Kurt Marx was also living in Germany during Kristallnacht, and recalls the devastation he witnessed that night.

“My uncle’s shop was completely destroyed, and there was smoke coming out of my school because they had set the synagogue inside on fire,” he said.

The 98-year-old added: “There’s an undercurrent of antisemitism everywhere – it’s been there all along.”

Read more:
Who is the Holocaust survivor among ICJ judges in South Africa vs Israel case?
Minister dismisses world court after it says Israel must take measures to prevent genocide in Gaza

‘Shocking and offensive’

Dr Dave Rich, director of policy at the CST, said the recent rise in Holocaust-related antisemitism has become more regular since the 7 October attacks.

“Where there is antisemitism, it quite often comes with offensive and shocking references to the Holocaust,” he said.

“This is an unprecedented rise, and I think educating about the true horrors of the Holocaust is a really important part to try and reduce it.”

Camila Batmanghelidjh: Kids Company charity founder dies aged 61 | UK News

Camila Batmanghelidjh, who founded the high-profile Kids Company charity, and was a well-known campaigner for disadvantaged youngsters, has died aged 61.

Born in Iran, Batmanghelidjh rose to prominence in the UK after setting up Kids Company in south London in the 1990s to provide support for children in poverty.

The charity collapsed in 2015 amid allegations of financial mismanagement and sexual abuse. It had already received a substantial grant for the year and was handed another £3m despite it being deemed not value for money.

Police later investigated the allegations, and found no evidence of wrongdoing.

Despite the charity’s closure, Batmanghelidjh continued to work with vulnerable families and collaborated with other charities including Oasis Community Learning, now one of the largest multi-academy trusts in England.

Batmanghelidjh had many accolades and was named one of the 100 most powerful women in the UK in a list including JK Rowling and Theresa May by BBC Radio 4.

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Captain Tom’s daughter says he wanted her to keep book profits – despite readers being told they were going to charity | UK News

Captain Sir Tom Moore’s daughter has admitted keeping £800,000 from the three books he wrote before he died – despite the prologue of one of them saying the money would go to the charity in his name.

Hannah Ingram-Moore has also told TalkTV her father had wanted the family to keep the profits from the books in Club Nook Ltd – a firm separate to the Captain Tom Foundation charity.

In extracts of the interview with Piers Morgan published in The Sun, Ms Ingram-Moore is reported to have said: “These were father’s books, and it was honestly such a joy for him to write them, but they were his books.

“He had an agent and they worked on that deal, and his wishes were that that money would sit in Club Nook, and in the end . . . ”

Morgan interjects with: “For you to keep?”

She replies: “Yes… specifically.”

Sir Tom, who died in February 2021, became a national figure after raising £38.9m for the NHS, including gift aid, by walking 100 laps of his garden before his 100th birthday at the height of the country’s first national COVID lockdown in April 2020.

Thousands of buyers of his three books, including the autobiography Tomorrow Will Be A Good Day, were reportedly unaware that the profits were going to the family.

Ms Ingram-Moore was joined by her husband Colin and their children Benji, 19, and Georgia, 14 during the interview – with the family insisting there was no suggestion anyone who bought the books thought the money was going to charity.

However, the prologue of the autobiography reads: “Astonishingly at my age, with the offer to write this memoir I have also been given the chance to raise even more money for the charitable foundation now established in my name.”

Handout photo of Second World War veteran Captain Tom Moore with his daughter Hannah, as they wave to a Battle of Britain Memorial Flight flypast of a Spitfire and a Hurricane passing over his home as he celebrates his 100th birthday.

Ms Ingram-Moore was also asked by Morgan about when she was paid £18,000 for attending the Virgin Media O2 Captain Tom Foundation Connector Awards in 2021.

This was despite the fact she was already paid as the chief executive of the charity.

The money was paid to her family firm the Maytrix Group, with Ms Ingram-Moore keeping £16,000 and donating £2,000 to the Captain Tom Foundation.

Holding back tears, she told TalkTV: “I think it’s all very easy to look back and think I should have made different ­decisions, but I hadn’t planned on being the CEO.”

The family also spoke of their “regret” over the spa and pool complex at their £1.2million home.

Ms Ingram-Moore reportedly told planners they wanted an office for the charity set up in Sir Tom’s name but built the complex instead.

Plans for the site said it would be used partly “in connection with The Captain Tom Foundation and its charitable objectives”.

However, a subsequent retrospective application a year ago for a larger building containing a spa pool was refused by the planning authority.

A view of the home of Hannah Ingram-Moore, the daughter of the late Captain Sir Tom Moore, at Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire. The Captain Tom Foundation has stopped taking money from donors after planning chiefs ordered that an unauthorised building in the home of the daughter of the late charity fundraiser be demolished. Picture date: Wednesday July 5, 2023. PA Photo. Central Bedfordshire Council said a retrospective planning application had been refused and an enforcement notice issued requiring the demolition of the "now-unauthorised building" containing a spa pool. On Tuesday, the foundation put out a statement saying it would not seek donations, and was closing all payment channels, while the Charity Commission carried out an inquiry. See PA story SOCIAL CaptainTom. Photo credit should read: Joe Giddens/PA Wire
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Ms Ingram-Moore’s home where she built the unauthorised spa

The Captain Tom Foundation stopped taking donations when the planning dispute came to light.

Ms Ingram-Moore said: “We have to accept that we made a decision, and it was probably the wrong one.”

In the interview, which airs at 8pm on Thursday night, Morgan also asked Ms Ingram-Moore about the annual salary of £85,000 pro-rata on a rolling three month basis that she received to head the foundation.

She replied: “Yes, and look, absolutely in hindsight, the two things should have been separated, but that’s not how it landed, and it was done with love and with trying to ensure that the community and the Captain Tom Foundation benefited, and yes I got paid.”

The Maytrix Group is also reported to have accepted up to £100,000 in furlough money and £47,500 in COVID loans despite making huge profits in the pandemic.

Iain Hughes: Body found of firefighter attempting cross Channel charity swim | UK News

The body of a firefighter who disappeared more than a month ago as he attempted to swim the English Channel for charity has been found.

Iain Hughes, crew manager at Wednesbury fire station, West Midlands, set off from the Kent coast on the morning of 20 June accompanied by a support boat but went missing later that day in French waters.

The disappearance of the 42-year-old father-of-two triggered an extensive search by French and Belgian authorities which was later called off.

Iain Hughes. Pic: Iain Hughes
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Colleagues have described the 42-year-old’s death as ‘devastating’. Pic: Iain Hughes

West Midlands Fire Service said on Friday the body of a swimmer found in waters off Belgium has been formally identified as Mr Hughes.

In a statement released through the fire service, Mr Hughes’ family said they “miss him more than words can ever say”.

They said: “Our lives were shattered when Iain went missing. He was our world. The news that his body had been found was unbearable. It still is. We miss him more than words can ever say.

“We are proud of Iain for so many reasons.

“He put his heart and soul into training for the swim, but that was Iain – determined to help and support others.”

Mr Hughes had been attempting to raise £21,000 – £1,000 for every mile of his swim – for the British Heart Foundation, The Fire Fighters Charity and the Midlands Air Ambulance.

To date his fundraiser had far exceeded this target by raising more than £56,000.

Iain Hughes. Pic: Iain Hughes
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Mr Hughes was ‘determined to help and support others’. Pic: Iain Hughes

‘Heartbreaking’

Mr Hughes’ family added: “It is lovely to see how much money has been raised for his three charities, but also heartbreaking that he will never know the total.

“Thank you to everyone who has donated and who is still raising money.

“We also want to send our thanks and love to everyone who has been there for us these past few weeks.

“The photo we are releasing sums up the Iain we loved.”

Flags to fly at half-mast

West Midlands Fire Service chief fire officer Wayne Brown said it is “devastating news” and that “Iain’s family are foremost in our thoughts at this distressing time”.

He added: “I know that many people have been affected by Iain’s disappearance.

“We, in turn, have been touched by the hundreds of kind messages we have received, and the overwhelming response to Iain’s fundraising page. Thank you.”

West Midlands Fire Service said flags at its sites will fly at half-mast until sunset on Friday as a mark of respect to Mr Hughes.

He joined West Midlands Fire Service in 1999, at the age of 19.

Kidney disease ‘could become public health emergency’ without more funding, charity warns | UK News

Kidney disease could become a public health emergency without more government funding, a charity has warned.

The illness already costs the UK economy £7bn a year, according to a new report by Kidney Research UK, and that could rise to £13.9bn in the next decade if no action is taken.

That covers the direct cost of treatment to the NHS, as well as money lost by those left unable to work.

The main factor which could drive up costs is an increase in demand for dialysis – a crucial treatment for patients who suffer kidney failure.

More than seven million people live with chronic kidney disease across the country, the charity estimates.

But that figure could rise, with people with diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and those who are obese most at risk.

The charity wants the government to commit £50m a year into kidney disease research – way up from the £17.7m its report says was provided in 2021-22.

NHS ‘risks being overwhelmed’

Kidney Research UK said the greater funding could be put towards developing better prevention strategies and treatment options, as well as earlier diagnosis.

Chief executive Sandra Currie said without it, the NHS “risks being overwhelmed with demand”.

“There is no cure for kidney disease, a transplant does not last a lifetime and dialysis patients face hours of gruelling treatment every week, taking them away from loved ones and making it harder to work,” she added.

“We know the only hope for stopping the growth of kidney disease and the increasing burden to the health system, the economy and to patients is better prevention strategies, earlier diagnosis and better treatment options, and yet kidney disease isn’t even included in NHS long-term strategic plans.”

A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said the government is “committed” to improving services for patients living with kidney disease.

“We fund research for all aspects of health, including research into kidney disease, through the National Institute for Health and Care Research,” they added.

Phillip Schofield dropped as ambassador for The Prince’s Trust charity | Ents & Arts News

Phillip Schofield has been dropped as an ambassador for The Prince’s Trust after his admission of an affair with a younger male colleague.

The charity, founded by the King, said it was “no longer appropriate” for it to work with the presenter.

Schofield left ITV’s This Morning last week after two decades as host.

A spokesperson for The Prince’s Trust said: “In light of Phillip’s recent admissions, we have agreed with him that it is no longer appropriate to work together.”

The announcement comes after Schofield admitted to having an “unwise, but not illegal” affair with a younger male colleague on the show.

His admission saw him quit all his duties for ITV and be dropped by his talent agency, YMU.

It comes as ITV bosses will soon be quizzed by MPs over their handling of the situation at This Morning.

More on Phillip Schofield

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Former presenter of This Morning claims there was ‘total cover-up’ over Phillip Schofield’s affair with younger man

The network’s executives are due to appear before the Commons Culture, Media and Sports Committee next Tuesday.

They had been scheduled to appear before the committee anyway, to discuss the draft Media Bill.

However, it is understood the committee has informed them they will also face questions over public concern regarding the revelations the axed presenter had an affair with a much younger male colleague.

Schofield quit This Morning on 20 May after more than 20 years.

The 61-year-old originally said he was stepping down from the show because he had “become the story”, following reports of a feud between him and co-host Holly Willoughby.

It came after his brother was recently jailed for 12 years over child sex offences.

Willoughby, 41, is due to return next Monday (5 June), having gone on an early half-term holiday on 22 May.

Since his departure several people who have been involved in the show have criticised the way it was run.

Holly Willoughby (left) and Phillip Schofield in 2019
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Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield in 2019

Read more:
A timeline of the This Morning controversy

ITV responds to rumours around show’s future
Why Schofield’s admission could kill off his career

Eamonn Holmes, who has regularly presented This Morning over the years, claimed that there was a “total cover-up” in relation to Schofield’s affair with a younger man while he was still married.

The veteran TV presenter told GB News: “Those in authority had to know what was going on and they thought they would dodge a bullet with this which they do and they do constantly.”

Separately This Morning’s ex-resident doctor Ranj Singh branded the show’s culture “toxic” claiming he raised concerns about “bullying and discrimination”.

ITV said that there had been an investigation “rumours of a relationship between Phillip Schofield and an employee” in early 2020, but said it didn’t find any evidence.

A statement from the broadcaster released on 27 May said: “Both parties were questioned and both categorically and repeatedly denied the rumours as did Phillip’s then agency YMU.

“In addition, ITV spoke to a number of people who worked on This Morning and were not provided with, and did not find, any evidence of a relationship beyond hearsay and rumour… He lied to people at ITV, from senior management to fellow presenters, to YMU, to the media and to others over this relationship.”

‘Tired and confused’ Sudan evacuees left stranded in London after being evicted from hotel, charity says | UK News

Families evacuated from Sudan have been “left stranded” after being evicted from government allocated hotels, according to the charity Goodwill Caravan. 

It says dozens of families have been told they are not eligible for housing due to members holding British passports.

Noura Fadel fled Sudan with her parents and two brothers on April 30.

“On arrival to the UK my father had a stroke and has been in a hospital near Stansted Airport, while the rest of us stayed at a nearby hotel,” she said.

Speaking through an interpreter, she told Sky News the hotel evicted them on Thursday afternoon. Noura said they stayed on the streets until 2am before a local council gave them a room, only to be evicted from there by the morning. She says they then sat in a KFC restaurant in south London with nowhere to go.

“We are so tired and confused. My family are in disbelief, how has this happened to us? We had money and a house and a life then the banks closed and we couldn’t get any money out to escape,” she said.

“The only reason why we came to this country is because my father is British.”

“We’re hours away from my father now,” Noura said. “I am scared that if anything happens to my dad then how will we get to him?”

Read more:
Inside war-torn Sudan where people are trapped in prison of urban warfare
Evacuation mission from Sudan ends with more than 2,000 brought to safety
Husband reunited with pregnant wife in UK after fleeing Sudan

Goodwill Caravan says more than 20 families are in need of help in the London area but that unlike those fleeing Ukraine, the Sudanese evacuees are not categorised as refugees because they have British passports, and so a “loophole” in the system has left them stranded.

“These people have fled violence and seen unspeakable trauma in Sudan. They don’t want to be here, they have their own homes in Sudan, but between night and day there were bodies on the streets so they had to flee. Now they are being evicted,” Hanan Ashegh, the charity’s founder, told Sky News.

“Some people are lucky because they have family members who can temporarily take them in, but many have nowhere to go.

“They’ve paid all their savings to get to safety and have nothing left and no access to their bank accounts in Sudan.”

Smoke rises above buildings after an aerial bombardment, during clashes between the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces and the army in Khartoum North, Sudan, May 1, 2023. REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah
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Hundreds of people have been killed in the recent wave of violence in Sudan

Fatima Elabgari provides translation services and helps those arriving from Sudan. She told Sky News one local council gave a family an unfurnished home.

“The kitchen doesn’t have a single item. Not even a spoon.”

“I’m taking calls in the middle of the night to help people who fled with just a few basic essentials. I’ve worked with 62 families up until now.”

A government spokesperson said: “We have been working intensively to evacuate British nationals and their dependents since the outbreak of violence in Sudan, in a complex and highly volatile environment.

“Councils have a duty to ensure families are not left without a roof over their heads. When arrivals do not have immediate access to accommodation, councils may provide emergency overnight accommodation and support for people to move into longer term housing.”

UK nationals returning from Sudan can access benefits, social housing, and homelessness assistance even if they are not habitually resident in the UK.

Further to guidance issued by DWP on April 27, Sky News understands the government now intends to change the rules so that the Habitual Residence Test is disapplied to UK nationals returning from Sudan, subject to parliamentary approval. In the meantime, local authorities are advised to seek to apply maximum flexibility.

Around 2,450 people were evacuated via Wadi Saeedna airfield and Port Sudan since evacuation flights started on April 25.

The UK government concluded its evacuation operation on May 4 and announced that it will provide £5million of lifesaving aid to people fleeing Sudan.

Government’s migrant plan could cost £9bn in first three years, refugee charity claims | UK News

The cost of the government’s plan to clamp down on Channel migrant crossings could amount to more than £9billion in the first three years, according to a refugee charity.

The estimates, from the Refugee Council, are based on up to 250,000 people having their asylum claims deemed inadmissible in the first three years under the Illegal Migration Bill.

The charity, which has publicly opposed the legislation, also estimates 10,000 people per year being sent to Rwanda.

“In total, between £8.7 billion and £9.6 billion will have been spent on detaining and accommodating people impacted by the Bill in the first three years of its operation,” the charity said.

However, the government says it “does not recognise” the figures used in the Refugee Council’s report.

The Home Office also says the current asylum system costs £3billion a year, including around £6million a day on hotel accommodation.

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‘We are being forced’ into Rwanda plan

The Refugee Council’s policy experts came up with the estimates as part of an impact assessment of the consequences of the first three years of the Illegal Migration Bill.

“In the first three years of the legislation coming into effect, between 225,347 and 257,101 people will have their asylum claims deemed inadmissible. This includes between 39,500 and 45,066 children,” it said in its assessment.

“At the end of the third year, between 161,147 and 192,670 people will have had their asylum claims deemed inadmissible but not have been removed.

“They will be unable to have their asylum claims processed, unable to work and will be reliant on Home Office support and accommodation indefinitely.”

‘We do not recognise these figures’

The charity estimates the Home Office being able to remove 10,000 people to Rwanda in each of the three years, detaining people for an average of 28 days and accommodating those who are not detained.

The charity said it used available data and some assumptions to come up with the cost figure.

Among the assumptions are that 88% of people who cross the Channel in a small boat each year will subsequently apply for asylum and it costs £120.42 to detain someone each day.

However, it said its cost estimates are likely to still be conservative “based on our experience at the Refugee Council of working with people who arrive in the UK”.

Responding to the Refugee Council’s analysis, a Home Office spokesman said: “We do not recognise the figures used in this report.

“The aim of the Illegal Migration Bill is to act as a deterrent and significantly reduce illegal migration when it comes into force.”

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Why do migrants cross the Channel?

The Home Office currently has a backlog of more than 160,000 immigration cases and only a small number of countries available to which the government can send failed asylum seekers.

The Illegal Migration Bill grants the government the power to deny asylum applications from those who have entered the UK illegally, most notably by arriving in small boats.

The home secretary’s outline of the bill states that if you arrive illegally in the UK “you will be detained with no recourse to immigration bail or judicial review within the first 28 days”.

It adds: “We can maintain detention thereafter so long as we have a reasonable prospect of removal.”

Read more:
Asylum seekers are going ‘underground’ in fear of being deported to Rwanda
Is the government’s new Illegal Migration Bill legal?

People in immigration detention in the UK are housed at immigration removal centres, residential short-term holding facilities or holding rooms at ports and airports.

The government also routinely houses refugees in hotels and hostels but the prime minister said in December this will stop and “disused holiday parks, surplus military sites and university halls” will be used instead.

Rwanda flights ‘by the summer’

It comes after a government source told Sky News that it hoped to start getting deportation flights to Rwanda “by the summer”.

The home secretary signed an update to the government’s migrants agreement with the central African country last weekend, expanding its scope to “all categories of people who pass through safe countries and make illegal and dangerous journeys to the UK”.

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A Home Office statement said it would allow the government to deliver on its new Illegal Migration Bill as it would mean those coming to the UK illegally, who “cannot be returned to their home country”, will be “in scope to be relocated to Rwanda”.

No one has made the journey yet.

A flight was stopped at the eleventh hour in June last year after an appeal to the European Court of Human Rights.

Earlier this month, the prime minister announced a package that will see a new detention centre established in France as well as the deployment of more French personnel and enhanced technology to patrol beaches in a shared effort to drive down illegal migration.

Throughout 2022, some 45,728 people crossed to the UK via the Channel – up 60% on the previous year.

Tens of thousands of elderly people have died without getting the care they need, charity says | UK News

Tens of thousands of elderly people have died without getting the care they need, according to a charity which is calling for more social care resources.

Age UK cited NHS Digital figures for England which show there were 28,890 support requests for people aged 65 and over in 2021/22 where the person died without any of those services being provided.

The charity said that equates to more than 500 deaths a week – more than 70 a day.

Age UK director Caroline Abrahams said: “There isn’t enough social care to go round and so some older people are waiting endlessly for help they badly need.

“It is heartbreaking that on the latest figures, more than 500 older people a week are going to their graves without ever receiving the care and support to which they were entitled.

“Nor can the blame for this parlous situation be placed on the pandemic, for while it certainly didn’t help, social care services were struggling to secure enough staff and funding in the years preceding it.

“Since then, all the evidence is that the position has not got any better and, on most measures, has continued to get worse.”

Ms Abrahams said long waits for social care cause “huge distress to older people” and place “intolerable pressure on their families”.

Read more:
Weak link of social care is taking UK’s health sector to breaking point
Care home capacity in UK shrinks for first time in three years

The charity has written to Chancellor Jeremy Hunt saying: “When you were chair of the health and social care committee, you expressed deep regret at being unable to fix the problems faced by social care during your time as secretary of state.

“Now, as chancellor, the Spring Budget is your opportunity to help the millions of older people, often unheard and feeling ignored, who are waiting for good, reliable care and support to live with dignity.”

A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said: “Everyone should have access to good quality social care when they need it, and our thoughts are with all those who have lost elderly relatives and loved ones.

“We are providing up to £7.5m in funding available over the next two years to support adult social care.

“This will put the adult social care system on a stronger financial footing and help local authorities address waiting lists, low fee rates, and workforce pressures in the sector.

“We are also tackling workforce pressures by promoting careers in adult social care through our annual domestic recruitment campaign and by investing £15m to increase international recruitment of care workers.”

‘Dreadful consequences’, charity warns, as UK’s cold snap worsens | UK News

People are facing “dreadful consequences”, a charity has warned, as parts of the UK face plummeting temperatures.

The Met Office has issued several yellow weather warnings for snow and ice over the next few days, and the UK Health Security Agency has also issued a level three cold weather alert covering England.

National Energy Action said more government support is needed for “those at greatest peril” in the below-freezing conditions.

Adam Scorer, the charity’s chief executive, said: “Impossibly high prices and now cold weather will leave millions struggling to stay warm and safe at home.

“Our figures show that 6.7 million UK households are fuel poor after energy prices have almost doubled in a year.

“We hear daily from people who are forced to turn their heating off when they need it the most.

“The vicious choice is either huge debt or an unheated home, with dreadful consequences either way.

“We will now start to see just how bleak this winter is going to be.”

Read more:
Winter payments triggered as UK hit by Arctic blast
Families face stark choices after a year of the cost of living crisis
Get the five-day forecast where you live

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for ice on Friday covering northern England, England’s western and eastern coasts, the Welsh coast, and the northern part of Northern Ireland.

There is a yellow warning for ice and snow in most of Scotland, which continues on Saturday and Sunday.

Met office's yellow warnings
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Met Office’s warnings across the UK

Also on Saturday, there is a yellow warning for ice for the north of Northern Ireland and the western side of the UK, including the Welsh coast and Cornwall.

Temperatures were expected to fall as low as -10C overnight into Friday, and roads, cycle paths and pavements could be icy, the Met Office said.

A light dusting of snow covers the tops of the Brecon Beacons. 7 December. Pic: AP
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A light dusting of snow on the Brecon Beacons on Wednesday. Pic: AP
People walk across Millennium Bridge as temperatures in London fall below zero degrees Celsius, in London, Britain, December 8, 2022. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls
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Dressing up warm in London on Thursday

The low temperatures triggered cold winter weather payments for some postcodes in England and Wales.

This means that people on low incomes receive a £25 payment if the average temperature in their area has been (or is forecast to be) 0C or below over seven consecutive days.

Get the 5-day forecast where you live here

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Millions can’t heat their homes

The Department for Work and Pensions said these payments could be triggered through to the end of March.

A spokesman added: “We’re committed to protecting the most vulnerable in our society and this additional help comes on top of wider Government support including £1,200 in direct payments already issued to millions of low-income households this year.

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Arctic blast brings snow to Scotland

Rosslyn Chapel in Edinburgh
Image:
Rosslyn Chapel in Edinburgh on Thursday

“Alongside this, we’re providing households with £400 towards their energy bills this winter, with our energy price guarantee saving the typical household another £900 on top of this.”

Meanwhile, The Daily Telegraph has reported a warning from the National Grid that electricity supplies will be tight on Friday and Sunday due to the cold weather.

The grid said it might need to use “enhanced actions”, which the Telegraph said include a new scheme where households are paid to use less electricity to ease pressure on supply.