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5 news stories you need to know about today, Tuesday 28 February 2023

1 year ago

5 news stories you need to know about today, Tuesday 28 February 2023

Here are five things the UK has been talking about today.

There’s a huge search on for a newborn baby as mother arrested with partner on suspicion of manslaughter

Mark Gordon and Constance Marten seen on CCTV in London (Metropolitan Police/PA)

Detectives attempting to find Constance Marten’s baby have said the risk to the infant’s welfare is “as high as it’s been in the investigation” as they search the Sussex undergrowth.

The aristocrat and her partner Mark Gordon were arrested in Brighton on Monday on suspicion of manslaughter after several weeks avoiding the police, but the child was not seen with them.

The couple were detained after a 999 call by a member of the public who had seen media reports about the pair.

Since Marten and Gordon were arrested, more than 200 police officers have been engaged in the search for the two-month-old baby, using sticks to wade through bushes in woodland near Stanmer Villas and Golf Drive.

The infant was born in early January and has had no medical attention since then, with his parents sleeping rough in freezing temperatures much of the time.

The senior investigating officer, Detective Superintendent Lewis Basford, said police were making assessments on the baby’s welfare “on the hour, by the hour”.

He said nothing significant has been found, including items such as a tent bought at Argos on January 7, adding: “We would still say we are actively looking for those.”

There were lots of sightings of the Northern Lights again and even a proposal on board an easyJet flight

Mr Groves, who booked a flight to Iceland for a surprise engagement weekend for his girlfriend, returned with a ‘great surprise’ to see the northern lights (Adam Groves)

A man whose planned proposal under the northern lights in Iceland was foiled by cloudy weather got to watch the phenomenon alongside his new fiancee on their flight home after their pilot performed a 360-degree turn.

Adam Groves, a 27-year-old recruitment company owner from Lymm, Cheshire, booked a flight to Reykjavik to surprise his partner Jasmine Mapp, a fellow 27-year-old working in digital marketing, and propose to her under the northern lights.

Due to cloud cover, the couple were unable to catch a glimpse of the aurora on their holiday.

However, after Mr Groves’ successful proposal on a cliff on the Icelandic coast, he said seeing the spectacle on their flight home on Monday evening was “special”.

“It was special – I went (to Iceland) with the intention of proposing to my girlfriend under the northern lights, so seeing it on our flight home was a great surprise,” Mr Groves told the PA news agency.

Liverpool MP Ian Byrne has urged sports minister to give Champions League Final fans greater say in experience following Paris chaos

Fans waiting outside the gates to enter the stadium in May last year (Nick Potts/PA)

Fans should have a greater say over the 2024 Champions League final at Wembley to avoid a repeat of the Paris chaos, according to MPs.

Sports minister Stuart Andrew pledged to examine what input supporters could have for the showpiece event when it takes place in London on June 1 next year given the failures which affected Liverpool supporters at the 2021/22 final.

A highly-critical independent report concluded Uefa, European football’s governing body, bore “primary responsibility” for what almost led to a “mass fatality catastrophe” at the Paris final last May.

Liverpool fans found themselves penned against stadium perimeter fences ahead of the match against Real Madrid due to the organisational failings, and were then tear-gassed by French police.

Several fans who attended the Stade de France were survivors, or relatives of victims, of the 1989 Hillsborough disaster in which 97 people were killed.

Labour MP Ian Byrne, a survivor of the 1989 tragedy and who attended the Paris final, told Mr Andrew: “Can I impress the importance that whoever ends up in that final – and hopefully it’s Liverpool – can they make sure that the fans have got a voice around the shape of what that final will look like, proper engagement because they’re the ones that go to matches, they’re the ones that have got the experience.

Teachers went on strike in Liverpool and across the UK

Picture – PA

Tens of thousands of teachers across England and Wales will strike over three days this week in the long-running dispute over pay.

Teachers walked out across the north of England on Tuesday with the majority of schools expected to either restrict access to some pupils or fully close, the National Education Union (NEU) has said.

Education Secretary Gillian Keegan has called strike action “unforgivable”, adding that children deserve to be in class, especially after the pandemic.

Teacher members of the NEU are set to strike in the Midlands and eastern regions in England on Wednesday, and further walkouts will take place across Wales and the south of England on Thursday.

Kevin Courtney, joint general secretary of the NEU, told the PA news agency: “I think across the three days we will have 200,000 members taking strike action.”

The country’s largest education union has had 50,000 new sign-ups since the strikes were announced six weeks ago, he added.

The number of people sleeping rough in the UK has risen for the first time since 2017

The number of people estimated to be sleeping rough in England has risen for the first time since 2017, new figures show.

A snapshot of a single night in autumn last year found 3,069 people sleeping rough, up 626 (26%) on the equivalent total for 2021 and nearly three-quarters (74%) above the level in 2010 when the figures began.

The increase has been branded a “massive, collective failure” by a charity, and comes after the Government published its Ending Rough Sleeping For Good strategy in September, which restated its manifesto commitment to end rough sleeping by the end of this Parliament.

The Government acknowledged that while rough sleeping “remains well below pre-pandemic levels” there is “more to do to help families at risk of losing their homes and to end rough sleeping for good”.

Rick Henderson, chief executive at Homeless Link, which is the national membership charity for frontline homelessness organisations, said the rise of more than a quarter year-on-year since 2021 “is evidence of how the cost-of-living crisis has exacerbated long-standing drivers of homelessness”.



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