tv BBC News at Ten BBC News December 9, 2021 10:00pm-10:31pm GMT
tonight at ten — the prime minister faces yet more accusations over christmas parties, covid rule confusion and the downing street flat renovations. new claims about a christmas party at number ten — it's now understood borisjohnson�*s director of communications was involved. and fresh scrutiny over the downing street flat refurbishment — did borisjohnson mislead an investigation into how it was paid for? the prime minister is facing pressure on many different fronts after a torrid few days there is no sign of his political storm abating. also on the programme tonight... more than 800 cases of the omicron covid variant in the uk now, as public health scotland urges people to cancel their christmas parties. thejockey robbie dunne is banned for 18 months after a disciplinary
panel found he'd bullied his fellow rider bryony frost. scotland's last coal fired power station comes crashing down, as the snp and the greens lay out plans in the budget to tackle climate change. and heading into day three of the ashes — england are desperately looking for inspiration with the hosts firmly in control. and coming up in the sport on the bbc news channel, leicester city falter at the final hurdle and fail to qualify for the next round of the europa league, beaten by napoli. good evening. the prime minister is facing yet more scrutiny tonight, over claims about christmas parties and fresh questions over whether he misled an investigation into how refurbishments to his downing street flat were paid for. the conservative party has been fined nearly £18,000 for failing to keep accurate records of a large
donation which helped cover the cost. meanwhile, more details have emerged about a christmas party at number ten last year. it's understood downing street's head of communications was handing out awards to his team that night. meanwhile the investigation by the cabinet secretary into what went on is now being widened to look at two other gatherings. labour has called for the prime minister to resign if he is found to have misled mps. here's our political editor, laura kuenssberg. nightmares on downing street. behind every window a different dilemma. what's the truth about last year's christmas party? who paid for the expensive interior design upstairs? how can they control another surge in the pandemic and can they keep their own party under control? when their own party under control? when the johnsons moved their own party under control? when thejohnsons moved in upstairs they had thousands of pounds of renovations. when the lavish expenses emerged this was the prime
minister's claim. who expenses emerged this was the prime minister's claim.— minister's claim. who initially paid for the redecoration _ minister's claim. who initially paid for the redecoration of _ minister's claim. who initially paid for the redecoration of his - for the redecoration of his downing street flat? he for the redecoration of his downing street flat? , ., ~ ., ., street flat? he should know that i aid for street flat? he should know that i paid for downing _ paid for downing street refurbishment personally, mr speaken _ refurbishment personally, mr s - eaker. refurbishment personally, mr seaker. ., , ., , speaker. yet the tories have been fined thousands _ speaker. yet the tories have been fined thousands for _ speaker. yet the tories have been fined thousands for breaking - fined thousands for breaking spending rules, after a wealthy businessman tried to set up a special trust to pay for doing up the flat. the real tangle is whether borisjohnson has been straight about what happened. he told a previous investigation he hadn't known exactly where the cash came from until february this year, but today's reports that shows he sent a wealthy donor whatsapp about the cash several months before. downing street's defence? it's suggested he knew this wealthy donor was overseeing the money but not that he was directly providing the cash himself. �* ., , was directly providing the cash himself. 1, _ ., ,., was directly providing the cash himself. _ ., , was directly providing the cash himself. , himself. boris johnson is taking the british public for _ himself. boris johnson is taking the british public for falls. he _ himself. boris johnson is taking the british public for falls. he is not - british public forfalls. he is not only broken the law but made a mockery of the standards we expect. and even though there has been tears
and a resignation, numberten and even though there has been tears and a resignation, number ten has hardly recovered from denials and non—denials about parties under its roof. non-denials about parties under its roof. �* , , and non-denials about parties under its roof._ and tonight| roof. i'm truly sorry... and tonight confirmation _ roof. i'm truly sorry... and tonight confirmation that _ roof. i'm truly sorry... and tonight confirmation that the _ roof. i'm truly sorry... and tonight confirmation that the director - roof. i'm truly sorry... and tonight confirmation that the director of i confirmation that the director of communications in downing street, jack doyle, attended and made a speech at the gathering on the 18th of december, to thank as many as 30 staff who were present. he is the man who has been in charge of denying there was a party. now we know he was at the event, just one of three under investigation. a formal investigation catch up with what really happened? not one, not two, but three. what the government is still calling gatherings. ﬁre is still calling gatherings. are catherinu is still calling gatherings. are gathering at _ is still calling gatherings. ﬁfe: gathering at number is still calling gatherings. ﬁfe gathering at number ten downing street on the 27th of november 2020, a gathering at the department for education on the 10th of december, 2020. and allegations made of a gathering at number ten downing street on the 18th of december,
2020. �* �* , , , ., 2020. but it's the emptying of offices next — 2020. but it's the emptying of offices next week, _ 2020. but it's the emptying of offices next week, the - 2020. but it's the emptying of offices next week, the return l 2020. but it's the emptying of. offices next week, the return of tighter covid restrictions, vaccine passports to get into venues, that's steering strong feelings. dozens of tory mps have already vowed to vote against the plans next week and this is all promoting private questions about the prime minister's future, with a warning from the past was yellow is a mood of the conservative party is sulphurous and what we need now is a bit of grip from number ten. �* , ., now is a bit of grip from number ten. �*, ., ., , ten. it's no good having these stories dragged _ ten. it's no good having these stories dragged out _ ten. it's no good having these stories dragged out by - ten. it's no good having these stories dragged out by the - stories dragged out by the media. the government needs to make a clean breast of it. the conservative party history is littered with ruthlessness on these occasions but i'm confident that boris will get a grip. i'm confident that boris will get a uri -. i'm confident that boris will get a . ri . _ , i'm confident that boris will get a a-ri. , ., ., grip. there is exasperation in the to -a grip. there is exasperation in the tory party about _ grip. there is exasperation in the tory party about what's _ grip. there is exasperation in the tory party about what's been - tory party about what's been happening and near universal agreement that someone somehow has to take control of what's happening here. but a universal belief that that will certainly happen? that's a different matter. downing street will soon be home for a new baby
girl, born happy and healthy to the johnsons this morning. but what many conservatives also want to see is rigour and clear logic in residence behind that famous door. more details about what happened on the 18th of december in downing street and yet more pressure on the prime minister? . ~ minister? yeah, i think downing street is in _ minister? yeah, i think downing street is in a _ minister? yeah, i think downing street is in a pretty _ minister? yeah, i think downing street is in a pretty sticky - street is in a pretty sticky situation. after many days now off storm after storm, revelation after revelation, in particular you might wonder tonight why does it matter so much if the prime minister's communications chief was at this gathering on the 18th of december. remember, one of the problems for the last week or so has been that the last week or so has been that the message that's been coming out from downing street and from ministers has not been quite clear. they have been plenty of accusations that number ten hasn't been quite straight with the facts over what happened and of course the boss of the communications department is also in charge of how that message is relayed. at the centre of
government there isn't a sense that there's going to be another person walking out of downing street over this. the official enquiry is of course and it's due to report soon. but there is i have to say talking to other sources in westminster tonight a suggestion that it may not be possible forjack doyle to last in his job for that be possible forjack doyle to last in hisjob for that much be possible forjack doyle to last in his job for that much longer. be possible forjack doyle to last in hisjob for that much longer. but on a much wider and more important scale, it's really hard to understate the anger of conservative mps now on a long list of reasons, whether that is over the party or parties, whether that's over the prime minister's tightening up of the covid rules, or whether it is i think much more generally the real problem, how come a week after week, day after day, conservative mps have been looking at the operation in downing street and just wondering what is going on behind that famous black door. there really is pressure on borisjohnson to sharpen up how things work in government. i think
it's far—fetched to suggest there would be immediate pressure on anyone to try to get the prime minister out, but there is no question that there is an increasing number of mps every day who are more seriously contemplating what the conservative party might look like in life after borisjohnson as its leader. in life after boris johnson as its leader. ,., .., in life after boris johnson as its leader. ,., .. ., ., ., leader. our political editor laura kuenssberg. _ leader. our political editor laura kuenssberg, thank _ leader. our political editor laura kuenssberg, thank you. - some of england's new covid restrictions begin tomorrow, but hospitality businesses say they are now facing a collapse in demand at their busiest time of the year, calling it a "body blow" to pubs, restaurants and entertainment venues which are already struggling. from tomorrow, face coverings will be required again in most indoor public venues, including theatres and cinemas, but not pubs or restaurants. from monday, you should work from home if you can. from next wednesday, an nhs covid pass will be needed in england to get into large venues like nightclubs, though a negative lateral flow test will also be accepted. and daily testing will replace self—isolation for people who come
into contact with someone infected. our business correspondent emma simpson reports from birmingham. a city with a festive feel. busy, too — many in good spirits, despite the latest restrictions. i think if it's going to help, its fine. i'll do whatever, as long as people are safe. i think they are really confusing, but i think actually people are ahead of the government, so people will be the ones who make the responsible choices. if boris can party, so can we! this cafe relies on office staff — back to working from home again next week. it's going to be tough, to be honest. it's been, what almost two years, probably more than two years, isn't it? just being sat lonely, and wanting to get back to normal life, and it all gets shut down again. it is very uncertain, you don't know what's going to happen, you don't know if it is going to get better or worse. do you feel like we're going backwards?
i feel like we're going backwards, absolutely. the timing couldn't be worse for this business. it was starting to gain momentum, and we were really excited, and now to have this, we're back into that worrying, not knowing what's going to happen territory. and here's another big change — the covid pass. to get one, you'll have to be fully vaccinated for at least a fortnight or show a negative test in the last 48 hours. you can download the nhs covid pass on your phone, and it's going to be mandatory for all nightclubs and large events. this nightclub owner says it's another big blow for the industry. i've got to sort extra staff, put policies, procedures, logistical arrangements in place, and we really don't know what to expect when we open our doors next week. for the economy, things aren't nearly as bad as another lockdown, but one retail veteran says city centres are vulnerable if restrictions go on for too long. once we get beyond christmas, you're going to find that city centres go back
to where they were right at the beginning of the covid problem, and so the infrastructure which supports the whole of the office life will not be there to support the people when they eventually go back to work. it's not the news business wanted for christmas. how this story ends depends on whether consumers will continue to go out and spend. emma simpson, bbc news, birmingham. the number of new 0micron cases in uk has almost doubled in a day — with 249 recorded in the past 2a hours. it means more than 800 have now been identified. there are more than 100 cases now in scotland and because of that public health scotland has urged people to call off their christmas parties because of the rising numbers. 0ur scotland correspondent james shaw is in glasgow. this is coming from senior public health officials, not from the
scottish government itself? that's ri . ht and scottish government itself? that's right and it's _ scottish government itself? that's right and it's certainly _ scottish government itself? that's right and it's certainly true - scottish government itself? that's right and it's certainly true that. right and it's certainly true that there has been a little bit of confusion, just before this announcement was made by public health scotland jason leitch, who is the national clinical director here, and authoritative voice on covid, was on the radio saying people could go to parties as long as they were careful, as long as there were precautions. but maybe that confusion should not distract from the importance of this message. public health scotland saying there is evidence that events like christmas parties can promote the spread of 0micron. this is only advice, it doesn't have the force of law, but potentially devastating for the hospitality sector here in scotland. what we don't know is whether this might spread to other events, like family gatherings around christmas. hopefully there will be some clarity on that tomorrow. we expect the first minister nicola sturgeon to give a briefing and at that stage we would
hope that all parts of the scottish government will be delivering the same message about the 0micron variant. same message about the omicron variant. , ., , same message about the omicron variant. , . , ,, ., same message about the omicron variant. , ,, ., ., variant. james shaw in glasgow, thank yom _ the latest coronavirus figures for the uk show there were nearly 51,000 new infections recorded in the latest 24—hour period, bringing the average number of cases reported per day in the past seven days to over 118,000. the number of people in hospital with covid remains steady. yesterday there were 7,347. 148 deaths were recorded. that's of people who died within 28 days of a positive covid—19 test. on average in the past week, 122 covid—related deaths were recorded every day. the number of people who had a booster, or third dose, is now nearly 22 million. 0ur medical editor, fergus walsh, looks at the impact the 0micron variant could have in the next few weeks. last christmas, the alpha variant put huge pressure on the nhs
as it swept through a largely unvaccinated population. so what will 0micron do? within a couple of weeks, suspected 0micron cases from pcr swabs have gone from zero to more than 6% of those tested. the doubling time for 0micron is every 2—3 days, suggesting it is highly transmissible. if that trend continues, then it could become the dominant variant within a couple of weeks and cases soar. even if most people have a mild infection, in part due to vaccine protection, it could still cause problems for the nhs. the government advisory group sage say that, without intervention, it is highly likely to lead to more than 1—2,000 daily hospital admissions, compared to around 700 now with delta. back injanuary, the alpha wave was causing around 4,000 daily hospital admissions.
most people will get mild illness, but some people will be seriously ill, some people will be hospitalised. if the case numbers rise substantially above where they are at the moment, then that small proportion being hospitalised could still put substantial pressure on the health service. sage scientists say working from home will have the biggest impact within plan b on limiting viral spread. but there are still huge uncertainties about 0micron. how it will transmit in the uk, in the presence of a lot of delta, and second, how serious the disease is, particularly in a well vaccinated population. we have to wait until those people with infection have gone through the whole course of disease before we can really work that one out. there is some positive news. 10,000 patients at high risk from covid are to test a life—saving
antiviral pill to take at home after testing positive. molnupiravir cuts the risk of hospitalisation or death by around a third. fergus walsh, bbc news. the number of people waiting for nonurgent medical treatment in england has hit its highest level since records began. almost six million people were waiting to start treatment at the end of october and more than 10,500 people had to wait more than 12 hours in a&e before a bed was found last month. but ambulance response times have improved slightly. 0ur health editor, hugh pym, reports from newcastle's royal victoria infirmary. is she quite sick? does she need any respiratory support? the pressure rarely eases. it's all the running around we do. record numbers of patients are coming through the doors. here, they believe there's been a fundamental change in people's health needs. i think it's the pent—up demand in health care that has exploded, and our system isjust being overwhelmed at every point.
yeah, it was a bit concerning, sitting waiting. tricia had to wait two hours for an ambulance. she's had heart attacks before and feared she was having another one, but doctors reassured her. i've come in and been sorted. i can't complain, honestly. no waiting around or anything. yeah — the aim is to ensure that patients like tricia are seen quickly, unless urgent cases are directed to other parts of the hospital. those arriving at a&e are expected to answer questions about their condition on touchscreens. some could be asked to see a gp. it's made the system more efficient, but the pressure is still intense. this hospital has a policy of not allowing ambulances to stack up outside, by making it easy for them to hand over patients and get off on other calls. but it does mean some patients will be on trolleys inside the emergency department. and all of this is before any impact
from the new variant. the message is that hospitals are at full stretch now, and any marked rise in covid patients could create significant strain. it must have been very frustrating... lorraine and other patients like her have had long waits for operations postponed last year because of the pandemic. the pain, itjust gets worse and worse. i have no feeling in my legs or my feet, so i'm tripping up. but now she's been called in to have her spinal surgery. i'll be pleased today, anyway, get this done now, and i could be dancing in a couple of weeks' time! she said, hopefully! this hospital is trying to get through the backlog, but surgeons say that'll be a mammoth task. you can put as much money as you want, but we need infrastructure. so to do more surgery, we need more theatres. to staff more theatres, we need more staff. that's a huge number of staff across all the specialities, and staff don't grow on trees.
finding beds is a problem for most hospitals. nhs england says one in ten patients who are fit to leave can't do so because of problems with social care. winter hasn't fully set in, the covid picture's highly uncertain, but already alarm bells are ringing. hugh pym, bbc news, newcastle. and the bbc has launched an nhs tracker to allow you to find out how your local services are coping in england, wales and scotland. it'll run through the winter. you can find out more at bbc.co.uk/nhstracker. thejockey robbie dunne has been banned from racing for a total of 18 months after being found guilty of bullying and harassing the female jockey bryony frost. an independent disciplinary panel heard evidence about the coercive nature of horse racing's so—called "weighing—room" culture. here's our sports correspondent laura scott. bryony frost making
winning look easy. but for one of the leading jockeys of this generation, the last 15 months have been anything but. a victory at warwick earlier today coincided almost exactly with an independentjudicial panel ruling that she had been subjected to a prolonged campaign of deliberate bullying and harassment by fellow jockey robbie dunne, who was banned for 18 months for bringing the sport into disrepute. the british horseracing authority's case was that dunne had pursued a vendetta against frost, including threats to cause her serious physical harm and using sexually abusive and misogynistic language. frost even accused him of deliberately exposing himself in front of her in the men's changing room. he denied these allegations. but today the panel said he'd shown little remorse and found him guilty of distasteful targeting, deliberate harassment, both on and off the course, and dangerous bullying. the bha welcomed the decision but said the case needed to act as a catalyst for change. is racing stuck in the past?
i think what today's judgment has shown us is that we still have a way to go, that we need to continue to respond to societal changes, to accept, to embrace them, and to ensure that we are a sport that is welcoming to everybody, and reflective of the modern society that we all live in. bryony frost said she wouldn't wish the isolation she's felt since speaking out on anyone. but despite all that's been going on inside the hearing at high holborn, she's had to put that to one side and has successfully retained her focus on the dayjob. since making her complaint, frost has won some of the most prestigious races in the calendar, cementing her position as the most successful british female jump jockey of all time. but she's now challenged the status quo in other ways. the panel said her testimony, and the evidence of others, highlighted a weighing—room culture that was deep—rooted and coercive. the professionaljockeys association said that representation was
wholly unfair and said dunne had not had a remotely fair hearing. tonight, his legal team said an appeal was high on the agenda. in a sport where men and women compete as equals on the track, there are concerns this case has exposed damaging inequalities off it. laura scott, bbc news. the actress sienna miller is the latest celebrity to win damages, following claims of phone hacking by a tabloid newspaper. she's accepted a substantial settlement from rupert murdoch's news group newspapers after accusing the sun of illegally obtaining her medical records, which revealed that she was pregnant. the scottish government has set out its spending plans in the first budget since the scottish national party and the greens entered a co—operation agreement following elections earlier this year. there are pledges on health and social care, child poverty, and green investment. 0ur scotland correspondent james cook's report does contain some flashing images. three, two, one, fire.
as budget day dawned, an era ended. this was scotland's last coal—fired power station, the largest in europe. the plant in fife crashed to the ground as the snp and the greens outlined how they would bring down both emissions and poverty. today's budget is a budget of choices, and we have chosen to tackle child poverty, to invest in the transition to net zero, and to boost economic prosperity. it delivers on our manifesto promises — more teachers, more funding for our police, and record investment in our health and social care service, as we stand united against the impact of covid—19. health and social care does swallow a record chunk of this budget, £18 billion, but doctors' leaders are worried. the bma says the nhs is close to breaking point and scottish ministers
must admit it's not currently capable of delivering all they're asking of it. as for the economy, business rates, suspended during the pandemic, will be phased back in. at this sock firm, which took off in lockdown, they're weathering challenges with labour, inflation and the supply chain. the major thing the scottish government can do is to create an environment where people feel confident in investing. scotland's full of really talented people and really talented, beautiful products are produced, so i think it's supporting the people on the ground, supporting the businesses as they grow. elsewhere, a council tax freeze is over. but for most people in scotland, income tax rates, partially controlled by holyrood, remain unchanged. the tories say the finance secretary should say thank you to them for the funding. i am absolutely astonished that, for this budget, she's not been able to at least acknowledge that she has at her disposal record block—grant funding from rishi sunak and the uk government. up by 10.6% and proving the benefits
of scotland being part of a strong united kingdom. even before the pandemic, the snp was facing criticism of its record on health, education and drugs deaths, and this budget underlines that covid has sharpened all of those challenges, with a deadly virus now looming over every decision. james cook, bbc news. day three of the first ashes test gets under way shortly in brisbane, with england's captain already desperately searching for inspiration. the hosts are firmly in control, as our sport correspondent joe wilson reports. various scenarios are still possible in brisbane, but they all basically look the same. classic australia — ashes takeover. for a moment, ben stokes had dismissed david warner cheaply. the replay showed he'd overstepped — a no—ball, not out, a big deal — because warner was free to leap onjack leach�*s bowling,
to build australia's lead, to ride his luck. england dropped this gift. rory burns the guilty fielder, sadly. rory burns! marnus labuschagne, who made 74, batted with warner, and through much of the second day's play, they demoralised england. but david warner's fortune finally ran out on 94, caught by stokes, and ollie robinson struck again with his next ball. bowled him, first ball! cameron green, golden duck. but by the close, england's bowlers seemed exhausted, injured orjust incapable of stopping travis head. look at that for a cricket shot — bang! while ben stokes nursed a painful knee, head overwhelmed an england side which had been unable to prepare adequately for the series. travis head's first ashes hundred, he'd seized the second day. australia have a 196—run lead and as much time as they need. joe wilson, bbc news.
that's it. now on bbc one, time for the news where you are. have a very good night. hello again. we have a big change to our weather pattern with much milder weather pushing over the next couple of days. before we get there, overnight tonight with a band of rain pushing across the country. it will be followed by plenty of showers across northwestern areas it is colder air begins to spread bacon, and will see a bit of sleet in hill snow along with temperatures getting down to around zero. a risk of some icy stretches for some as we start on friday. that rain gets a way to the east coast very quickly on friday morning it will be left for the day of sunshine and showers those showers was frequent across the west and some of them will be of sleet and a little bit of hills snow. gusty winds will push showers into the northwest of england. north
this is bbc news, the headlines. pressure is growing on borisjohnson as an investigation into covid rule breaking is expanded to cover three parties said to have taken place at downing street last christmas. the prime minister has repeatedly said no covid rules were broken. an unofficial tribunal in london, investigating china's treatment of the uyghur minority, has found evidence of crimes against humanity and genocide. the findings detail systematic human rights abuses — including forced labour and torture. the world health organisation has expressed concern that wealthy countries will hoard covid vaccines, in response to the rapid spread of 0micron. rich nations have accelerated the roll out of booster shots. new research has found that india's capital delhi has alarmingly high levels of indoor air pollution. levels of pm2.5, the lung—damaging tiny particles in the air — were substantially higher indoors than on monitors outdoors.