tv BBC News at One BBC News December 17, 2020 1:00pm-1:31pm GMT
38 million people will be living under the tightest coronavirus restrictions in england by this weekend. the health secretary says many parts of the east and south of england are to be moved into tier 3 because of a big rise in the number of cases. i regret having to take the action that we have to take. i deem it necessary and there's a strong view right across government that these actions are necessary, but i also plead that personal responsibility is absolutely central to how we as a society should respond to this pandemic. only two areas are being moved down a tier. we'll be live in some of the affected regions. also this lunchtime... thousands of school children across england
will have their return to school staggered after the christmas break. great western rail changes its timetable and stops selling advance tickets after a covid outbreak among staff. the level of new coronavirus infections in wales could be twice what was previously thought after a delay in reporting thousands of positive tests. sometimes we didn't even have a loaf of bread in the house. it's embarrassing to say, but we didn't. and in the wake of her son's food poverty campaigning, marcus rashford's mum tells us why his childhood inspired his work. and coming up in sport on bbc news, more former international rugby union players join legal action brought against the sport's governing bodies over head injuries suffered in their careers.
good afternoon and welcome to the bbc news at one. 38 million people in england will be living under the tightest coronavirus restrictions by this weekend. the health secretary matt hancock told the commons that cases have risen by 46%, meaning large parts of the south east will move up from tier 2 to tier 3 at one minute past midnight on saturday. only two areas, where cases are falling, will be move into a lower tier. helen catt reports. not so long ago, hastings in east sussex had one of the lowest rates of coronavirus in england. now a surge in cases has pushed the town into tier 3 along with a huge swathe of the south east. it is therefore necessary to apply to your three
measures across a much wider area of the east and south—east of england, including bedfordshire, buckinghamshire, berkshire, peterborough, the whole of hertfordshire, surrey, with the exception of waverley, hastings and rather on the kent border of east sussex, and portsmouth, gosport and haven't in hampshire. these changes will take effect from one minute past midnight on saturday morning. millions of people across northern england and midlands will stay in tier 3. i regret having to take the action we have to take. i deem it necessary and there is a strong view right across government that these actions are necessary. greater manchester has been under the toughest restrictions for months and the rate of infection has come down, below the average. despite that the government has decided not to move it to tier 2 yet. the problem with tier 3 as it is devastating from an
economic point of view and that is what we said to the government. if they will keep places in tier 3 today, then there has to be much more financial support. some areas will move down a tier. bristol and north somerset to tier 2, herefordshire to the very rare tier 1. herefordshire to the very rare tier i. the latest hearing decision comes less tha n i. the latest hearing decision comes less than 2a hours when the prime minister urged us to be cautious over christmas. have yourselves a merry little christmas. i'm afraid this year i do mean little. merry little christmas. i'm afraid this yeari do mean little. the rules allowing three households to gather are not changing in england, scotla nd gather are not changing in england, scotland or northern ireland but the message is, to persuade people not to get together. labour says that isn't enough. this isn't about cancelling christmas. santa will still deliver his presence. but is he really telling us that allowing — allowing — indoor mixing of three households across regions and generations for five days is sensible, given the virus is raging
with such ferocity at the moment? the tier changes come into force on saturday meaning hospitality venues in new tier 3 venues will have to shut to diners over christmas. the next formal review is due in a fortnight. let's talk to helen now. an awful lot of people now not happy at all. i don't think this will have come as a surprise to anyone, certainly not that expansion of tier 3 across quite a lot of the south—east given what we've been hearing from the government about the rise in rates particularly in that part of the country and that backdrop. i don't think there will be much surprised that we haven't seen much of a loosening in other areas of the country, with christmas coming up so fast with fears what will happen if there is too much mixing around then, the fact they haven't loosened restrictions isn't going to come as a surprise. it will be a disappointment for some areas, particularly in the north—west to have been under these restrictions
for so long now. there were some areas particularly around greater manchester, who thought they'd met the criteria for being moved down to tier 2. the fact they haven't been will be a disappointment. matt hancock said he would make available assessments for each area to explain why they've been put where they were and they will be studied very hard by those particularly in the north—west. so, not much surprise. definite disappointment. i think we'll have to see what the next review brings in in the next couple of weeks. helen catt, thank you. as was reflecting... many parts of the country will be disappointed they have been kept in the highest level of restrictions. danny savage is in otley in west yorkshire. what are people saying to you? jane, i think the mood music over the last few days from civic leaders from north—east england down here to yorkshire and into greater manchester is that they'd done everything they'd been asked to do
to bring the infection rate down in their areas to get them out of tier 3 into tier 2 but as we've heard this morning it wasn't to be. so they are very disappointed. i think many people are not surprised. i was talking to some publicans yesterday who were expecting perhaps to be left in tier 3 and some of them wa nted left in tier 3 and some of them wanted to be left in tier 3 because they thought any move to tier 2 would be short lived. they can foresee that further restrictions coming along in january, foresee that further restrictions coming along injanuary, early in the new year, which could close them down again. they say opening up for a couple of weeks wasn't really financially viable. this is otley in west yorkshire. it has 20 public houses, all of them closed up at the moment, all of the staff and landlords fed up, as are the locals who probably like going to the pub on occasion but what makes it particularly difficult here as we are on the border with north yorkshire and if you go half a mile up yorkshire and if you go half a mile up the road the pubs are open and you can go in there for a meal with
people you live with. overall, there is some disappointment and the question has been asked today what do these areas have to do if they've technically met the criteria? what do they have to do to get tier 3 to tier 2, do they have to do to get tier 3 to tier2, and do they have to do to get tier 3 to tier 2, and that is the answer they want. phil mackie is in birmingham. you cover a wide area but they will be mixed feelings among some people. yes, i think a lot of disappointment andi yes, i think a lot of disappointment and i don't think realistically be expected birmingham would drop to tier 2 or the black country although the numbers have fallen they have plateaued and they are beginning to go plateaued and they are beginning to 9° up plateaued and they are beginning to go up here and there. it has had a devastating impact to a city like birmingham are so many people come to visit this time of year. normally, we would be surrounded by crowds who would be visiting the german market. along this street, these pubs and restaurants would be bustling, people having christmas
parties. they'd set up these outside seating areas ready for reopening but it won't happen. coventry, warwickshire and solihull expected to go down with infection rates lower there. warwickshire saying they are bitterly disappointed they haven't been able to drop a tier but i looked at some of the hospital figures yesterday, more than 100 people died in hospital across the midlands alone yesterday which means the pressure on the nhs is very high at the moment. there is some good news. in herefordshire, much more sparsely populated, remote and rural, has had consistently low figures throughout the pandemic, a rate of 50 or lower. that has dropped to tier1 celebrations there but elsewhere in the midlands everything staying pretty much the same. thank you, phil in birmingham. our health editor hugh pym is with me now. one of the factors under
consideration is pressure on hospitals, so what is the picture that has resulted in what matt hancock said today? it is a mixed picture. certainly, the big problem is in the south—east of england and if you look at the figures for hospital admissions each day for covid patients, they are going up quite rapidly in the south—east, back to daily levels not seen since april and the same in the east of england. it isn't quite as pronounced in london but it is going up. london was in the first wave and had a very big hit to its hospitals, not as bad now but it is going up. even in the north—west where we have been hearing there is frustration they are not coming down a tier in certain areas, and cases have fallen a lot but the number of hospital admissions has come down a bit from where it was in november but not a great deal and it appears to be in a plateau. that is a worry amongst health officials that if you allow cases to continue going up, and we
have seen a bigger daily rise yesterday across the uk than the day before, you will get some people going to hospital putting more pressure on the nhs, and more mixing over christmas generates more cases and more pressure on the nhs into january. that is the background to this. in all four nations of the uk there are concerns about pressure on there are concerns about pressure on the nhs because of the covid virus spreading. however difficult that will be for many people in the weeks ahead and over christmas. but the idea of allowing people to mix a little bit over christmas is for their well—being and issues of loneliness and mental health as well, that has been taken into consideration. all right, hugh pym, thank you. thousands of school children acrosss england will have their return to school delayed following the christmas break. let's speak to our education editor bra nwen jeffreys. i think we are expecting more details a little bit later but what do we think is happening here? well, i understand that secondary pupils
are going to have a gradual return with years 11 and 13 going back from the first day of school because they are the ones facing exams next summer. other secondary pupils will have a gradual return, staggered over the following days. primary schoolchildren should expect to go back on the first day of term into their classrooms. so, why this sudden change of heart from the government? just a couple of days ago, ministers announced there would be rapid testing introduced in two schools from january. schools have pushed back saying that is a huge task. the national education union said they'd have to get consent from all the parents for these tests, train up an army of volunteers and it wasn't possible to get it all in place in time for the beginning of term. but, jane, this comesjust a few days after the government threatened legal action against local councils that had suggested
delay and a return to classroom teaching. branwen jeffreys, thank you. great western rail has stopped selling advance tickets and has been forced to change its timetable, after a covid outbreak among staff. our transport correspondent caroline davies is with me. this sounds very worrying for travellers, what should people make of this? so far we are only hearing this on great western railway. about 50 people are currently isolating either because they have a confirmed case of coronavirus or they have beenin case of coronavirus or they have been in touch with somebody who does. the company has said they anticipate the number of train services cancelled or changed will be relatively small and that they are in touch with the affected customers but of course the big question is will it happen across the christmas period across the rest of the country? speaking to train operators today they have said they've got plans in place if an outbreak were to happen on their services quite similar to how
they've been operating for the rest of the year. there has been demand for christmas travel and each train will not be able to take as many people as it normally would because of social distancing measures but the operators say the amount of demand is much lower this year than it was previously and they even have availability on some of their busiest services still, they are not anticipating chaos at the moment. as it looks like the case with gwr trains, if yourtrain it looks like the case with gwr trains, if your train doesn't run or if you turn up without a reservation and it looks full, there are plans in place to have coaches instead. the big message from the operator is if you're planning to travel book ahead because it helps them plan. all right, thank you. the true level of new coronavirus infections in wales could be twice the figure previously thought. planned computer maintenance has led to a delay in reporting an extra 11,000 positive covid tests. our correspondent is in cardiff so explain what's happened here.
ifi if i rewind, only yesterday we were reporting people in wales were learning they'd face tougher coronavirus restriction starting on christmas eve with a full lockdown from december 28, and that was explained by mark drakeford the first minister. but the situation is extremely concerning with a record number of welsh patients treated in hospitalfor number of welsh patients treated in hospital for coronavirus. today people are having to take on board this news that a delay in reporting more than 11,000 extra positive covid tests means cases are twice as high as was thought for the previous week. public health wales have explained this, they say that a planned it maintenance meant there was significant underreporting but that anyone who received a positive covid test was informed and contacted in the usual way. on friday it had warned this planned it
maintenance would lead to changes and affect its daily reporting of coronavirus figures. and the first minister, mark drakeford, has said he was aware of the underreporting. it wasn't a computer problem, this was a planned upgrading of the computer system. none of the data is missing. everybody who had a positive test was told that in wales last week. everything was uploaded onto our ttp system but the figures do indeed demonstrate just how serious the position here in wales has become. and i can just and i canjust tell you and i can just tell you that figures from the office for national statistics just released show that covid—19 was the biggest cause of death in wales in novemberfor the first time in six months. sian lloyd, thank you. marcus rashford's campaign to tackle food poverty has been widely talked about, and he's been open about how his childhood experiences inspired him to help others. now his mother mel has spoken
for the first time about her son's work during the pandemic. sally nugent reports. do you want a cup of tea, marcus? no, thanks. as a young single parent, mel worked around the clock in a bid to keep food on the table for the future star. i had threejobs. and if i didn't do that, we wouldn't have been able to have food. it was just a bit difficult, so marcus is only telling the story from how he sees it, and the words he's been saying, they've come from the bottom of his heart. sometimes, it was really bad. i'd rather give the food to the kids than give it to myself. sometimes, i didn't get anything to eat, and they'd ask me, "have you had yours?" and i'd say yes. but i didn't. sometimes we didn't even have a loaf of bread in the house, it's embarrassing to say but we didn't. all them little struggles and... sacrifices you made, it helps you appreciate everything ten times more. so i don't see it as a weakness because i think in sport you have to have something behind
you that's pushing you. when you come from a place of struggle and a place of pain, a lot the time, it switches and it becomes your drive, your motivation. over the last few months, marcus has been campaigning to help vulnerable families growing up in similar situations. have you got food going out all throughout the day? yes, every day, monday to friday, mainly. last year, we gave out 95 tonnes of food. this september, its 339 tonnes. but it's notjust about marcus. this new building is being named after mel for everything they've done together to help families in need. marcus says his mum is the inspiration behind his campaign. starting your own trophy cabinet. what is it like to be in this building that is named after you, after all that you and marcus have achieved over the last several months? i'm overwhelmed. and i don't know what to say.
but all i can say is thank you. think i'm going to cry. for us and my mum especially, we were concentrating so much on, like, the people we was trying to help. so, the reaction and the response to things, a lot of itjust simply goes over our heads because we are still focused on helping people. can ijust do one with marcus? definitely! you need to grow a little bit. i won't grow any taller now, i wouldn't have thought! marcus rashford and his mother, speaking to sally nugent. it's 1:20pm. our top story this lunchtime. 38 million people will be living under the tightest coronavirus restrictions in england by this weekend. # snow is falling # all around me # children playing and coming up, the west end
performers staging virtual christmas concerts in care homes. coming up on bbc news, the australian open is pushed back to february as the coronavirus pandemic delays the start of the first grand slam in the tennis calendar. drug regulators in the us are due to meet later today, to discuss whether they should authorise a second coronavirus vaccine, made by moderna, following the approval of the pfizer vaccine which began its roll—out earlier this week. yesterday, the country saw the highest number of new infections since the start of the pandemic — almost 250,000 — and the highest number of deaths yet. but, as aleem maqbool reports from washington, surveys show there is wide mistrust of vaccines, particularly among african—americans. a black doctor inoculating a black nurse.
the first us coronavirus vaccination in front of the cameras is also clearly a message to african—americans that the vaccine is safe. the vaccine that you're going to be taking was developed by an african—american woman. some feel this need to make an effort to convince black people in the us to get immunised, and for good reason. surveys show nearly 60% of african—americans say they're unlikely to get the vaccine, even though black people have died from the coronavirus at a rate almost three times that of white people in the us. radio personality kymone freeman lost a cousin to covid, but still says he won't take the vaccine. i don't think it has reached the level of confidence for me to overlook the history and apprehensiveness of my community's concerns with vaccines. what does that mean?
that means that america doesn't have a great track record in the black community of being concerned about our health and well—being. the massive disparity in coronavirus deaths has exacerbated mistrust, but it's mistrust that is deep—rooted. one of the most shameful chapters in american medical history was a syphilis study, carried out over a0 years on hundreds of poor black men, without their knowledge, in tuskegee, alabama. it came to an end in the 19705, but still has reverberations today and is the reason many give for why they don't want the vaccine. so we've got to think first, is this a trick on us? is this a trick on population control? do you think a lot of people feel that way? yeah, man! population control, all kinds of things. there are those working hard to dispel these myths. dr lisa fitzpatrick does it, taking to the streets each day. you don't have to go all the way back to tuskegee, so many years ago, to understand why people are distrustful of
the healthca re system. you can go sit in an emergency room or a doctor's office today, and see how someone who's poor, someone who's black, might be treated differently than someone who's not. the consequences of not being able to turn around that mistrust now are grave. low uptake of a vaccine by african—americans will inevitably mean many more deaths in some of america's most vulnerable communities. aleem maqbool, bbc news, in washington. the french president emmanuel macron has tested positive for covid—19 and says he is self—isolating for the next week. portugal's prime minister antonio costa, who met monsieur macron yesterday, is now self—isolating, as is the prime minister of spain, pedro sanchez, following a lunch with the french president on monday. authorities in the united states are believed to be close to filing charges against a former libyan intelligence officer
in connection with the bombing of panam flight 103 over lockerbie in 1988. it's understood abu agila mohammad masud is suspected of making the bomb that brought down the plane, killing 270 people. our security correspondent frank gardner reports. the lockerbie bombing was the worst terrorist attack in british history. 259 people were killed when a bomb exploded on board pan am flight 103 as it flew over the scottish town of lockerbie in 1988. a further 11 people died when it crashed to the ground. the bombing was blamed on colonel gaddafi's regime in libya and after a subsequent trial only one person has ever been convicted, abdelbaset al—megrahi. he was eventually released back to libya and died protesting his innocence. now, further investigations by a victim's brother has focused attention on a new suspect.
he's abu agila masud, seen here in a libyanjail, serving time for other offences. a former intelligence officer, he is believed to be the bomb maker who fitted the timer to the device. the us wants him extradited for trial. but not everyone believes lockerbie was the work of libya. jim swire lost his daughter flora in the bombing and has campaigned for answers ever since. i don't feel confident that the material that was provided to indicate that the bomb had come from the hand of a libyan in malta was correct. i cannot bring myself to feel that the evidence we've heard so far does in fact point us towards the truth. libya's late ruler colonel gaddafi was certainly desperate to get sanctions lifted 20 years ago. to do that he reluctantly accepted the charges and paid compensation to the victims‘ families.
today, 32 years after the tragedy of lockerbie, it appears some details are still being uncovered and the mysterious case of the new suspect may yet pose more unanswered questions. frank gardner, bbc news. millions of people in the uk missed out on potentially life—saving scans when the nhs cancelled non—essential hospital appointments in the first few months of the pandemic. analysis by the bbc shows that in england alone, at least 4.4 million fewer scans were carried out between april and september, compared with the same period in 2019. our health correspondent dominic hughes has more. sherwin hall is one of those caught up in the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. the 27—year—old first went to hospital with leg pains in march, just as the crisis was growing, but it took 13 more visits until a scan at the end of may revealed cancer.
his death was announced earlier this week, and his wife, latroya, says more should have been done. everything was overrun and tired. nobody was paying attention to him, and it's literally cost him his life, and no one can... it's not right you should be able to turn around and just be, like, i'm sorry now. the government needs to take accountability for what's happened. it's cost my husband his life, it's caused my eight—month—old child not to have a father any more. and it's caused me not to have my husband. as the pandemic grew in the early spring and the health service was at risk of being overwhelmed, hospitals across the uk were told cancel non—essential appointments. that included some diagnostic scans used to detect cancer. the impact has been dramatic. in england, at least 4.4 million fewer scans were carried out between april and september this year, compared to the same period last year. the backlog created means one in seven people are now waiting more than three months for a scan. but doctors say the crisis has only highlighted existing shortages in staff and equipment.
because of our capacity issues, because of our workforce issues, we can't get through the work as fast as we'd like. the covid pandemic has exacerbated that problem, and i think it's probably true there are people with cancers, and one has to remember other serious conditions, which might present a bit later than we would want. nhs england says some services are now back to the levels seen before the pandemic, and the message to patients is come forward and seek care if you're worried. dominic hughes, bbc news. theatres across the country would normally be bursting with life at this time of year, but the pandemic has forced many to close. so, a group of out—of—work west end performers have found a new use for their skills. they're staging virtual christmas concerts for care homes. fittingly, the premiere has been held in a home for retired singers and actors.
fiona lamdin reports. # snow is falling # all around me # children playing... # these actors would normally be centre stage in the west end. steph parry has starred in 42nd street, billy elliot and mamma mia, but lockdown has changed everything. so, i left the theatre in march. i left my dressing room, kind of ready to come back a few days later and carry on the show, and that was eight months ago. it's the last eight months have been different! they've been barren. it's been the hardest year of my life. i've seen my whole industry decimated. i've been on the phone, from actors to producers to lighting designers, who simply cannot pay their mortgage, people worrying about their families. # time for parties and celebrations # people dancing all night long. #
and these stars are now using their talents to create a christmas concert for every care home across the country. # time forsinging christmas songs. # this is particularly close to my heart, because we lost my nan this year. she was in a care home. obviously towards the end we weren't able to go and see her. # rudolph the red nosed reindeer had a very shiny nose. # i've seen what impact music can have on people living in homes with alzheimer's and dementia. and where better to preview it than at brinsworth house, a nursing home for those who've served in the entertainment industry. she sings rosario and josephine were both performers. and now i sing in my dressing room or my bedroom, along the corridor, and in the loo.