Bulgarian midwife Margarita Avramova faces 17 allegations of mistakes in NHS hospital after she was recruited to fill staff shortage

Bulgarian midwife faces 17 allegations of mistakes in NHS hospital after she was recruited to fill staff shortage
She intended to administer an injection to a baby with a syringe containing an air bubble, it's claimedRequested hearing be adjourned because she was 'tired from a night shift'

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UPDATED:

20:20 GMT, 26 November 2012

A Bulgarian midwife made a series of blunders after foreign staff were hired at a short staffed hospital, a hearing was told.

Margarita Avramova was one of four Bulgarian midwives recruited to fill positions at the Royal Surrey County Hospital, Guildford, Surrey, in June 2009.

Within months, she was placed on a supervision programme because of concerns about her skills, the Nursing and Midwifery Council heard.

Margarita Avramova was one of four Bulgarian midwives recruited to fill positions at Royal Surrey County Hospital, pictured

Margarita Avramova was one of four Bulgarian midwives recruited to fill positions at Royal Surrey County Hospital, pictured

Greg Unwin for the NMC said: ‘Concerns were raised in relation to gaps in the registrant’s knowledge, difficulties in relation to her communication skills, failing to react appropriately and her record keeping skills.

‘She was placed on a supervisory protectorship programme and an investigation was launched.’

Avramova faces 17 allegations relating to mistakes made on the programme.

One states she intended to administer an injection to a baby with a syringe containing an air bubble while under the supervision of a mentor on 27 November 2009.

She is also charged with failing to properly check a mother’s blood pressure, failing to take the proper steps to treat a new born with a slow heart rate, and pulling a baby’s head when not instructed to do so.

Avramova was eventually sacked in June 2010 after she failed to show the necessary improvement.

Mr Unwin added: ‘The NMC’s case is that the errors go beyond simple incompetence and are appropriately charged as misconduct.’

Main entrance to The Royal Surrey County Hospital

The Royal Surrey County Hospital where Avramova was employed

Avramova, who claims to still be
working as a full time midwife at a hospital she did not name in Oxted,
requested an adjournment to the hearing because she was tired from a
night shift.

This was declined by the panel, who will proceed in her absence.

Avramova denies the majority of the charges, claiming she could not remember making the errors she is accused of.

She
admits failing to record the size of a baby’s head, claiming this was
‘just a small error’, and failing to check patients’ name bracelets.

Avramova further denies her fitness to practise is impaired, and the hearing continues.

Baby boy, four, bled to death "after botched home circumcision by nurse using scissors, forceps, olive oil and no anaesthetic"

Four-week-old baby boy bled to death 'after botched home circumcision by nurse using scissors, forceps, olive oil and no anaesthetic'

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UPDATED:

20:10 GMT, 26 November 2012

Grace Adeleye, pictured arriving for the trial, carried out the procedure using only a pair of scissors, forceps and olive oil

Grace Adeleye, pictured arriving for the trial, carried out the procedure using only a pair of scissors, forceps and olive oil

A four-week-old baby bled to death after a botched home circumcision by a nurse, a court heard today.

Goodluck Caubergs died the day after nurse Grace Adeleye carried out the procedure without anaesthetic and using only a pair of scissors, forceps and olive oil, Manchester Crown Court heard.

The 66-year-old medic is originally from Nigeria, as are the youngster’s parents, where the circumcision of newborns is the tradition for Christian families, the jury heard.

Adeleye, also a midwife, was paid 100 to do the operation as Goodluck’s parents were not aware the procedure was available on the NHS.

The Royal Oldham Hospital was just a mile and a half from the family home in Chadderton, near Oldham, but by the time an ambulance was called the child could not be saved.

Adeleye, of Sarnia Court, Salford, Greater Manchester, denies manslaughter by gross negligence of the baby boy.

It is alleged she botched the procedure by leaving a 'ragged' wound that bled, and her post-op care was also woefully inadequate.

Adrian Darbishire QC, opening the case for the prosecution, told the jury: 'The allegation essentially here is that the care she provided in the course of that procedure was so bad that not only did it cause the death of that young baby wholly unnecessarily, but it amounted to gross negligence and a crime.'

Mr Darbishire said circumcisions were routinely carried out among Christian families in Nigeria who brought the tradition with them to the UK, and the procedure was an 'ancient, well established and widespread' practice across the world.

But the court heard that up to three children a month are admitted to the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital due to bleeding after home-based circumcisions – a danger the nurse should have been aware of.

Goodluck was born on March 22, 2010, in Rochdale and died on April 17, the day after the circumcision, aged 27 days.

The Royal Oldham Hospital was just a mile and a half from the family home in Chadderton, near Oldham, but by the time an ambulance was called the child could not be saved

The Royal Oldham Hospital was just a mile and a half from the family home in Chadderton, near Oldham, but by the time an ambulance was called the child could not be saved

Adeleye was introduced to the family through a friend as she had performed many circumcisions over the years and offered her 'experience and skill'.

Around 5pm on April 16, Goodluck’s father, Olajunti Fatunla, brought Adeleye by car to the family home — and the nurse sent him immediately to get some Calpol while she and the mother, Sylvia Attiko, got on with the op.

Once inside, Adeleye told the boy’s mother to fetch some olive oil and a bowl of warm water and the child was stripped to just his vest.

Adeleye then brought her 'instruments' out of her handbag and dipped a pair of scissors into the water in a kidney dish.

'At that point Sylvia closed her eyes,' Mr Darbishire said.

'Goodluck had had no anaesthetic or local pain relief at this point and that is not how this should be done.

'/11/26/article-2238779-16379AAA000005DC-862_306x626.jpg” width=”306″ height=”626″ alt=”Adeleye was introduced to Goodluck's family through a friend as she had performed many circumcisions” class=”blkBorder” />

Adeleye was introduced to Goodluck's family through a friend as she had performed many circumcisions

Adeleye then cleaned the wound with cotton wool and applied a bandage.

The boy was 'crying throughout' and the wound was bleeding, but Adeleye told the mother this was normal, the court heard.

The defendant left the house between 30 and 40 minutes after surgery and the 100 had been handed over, without any proper checks on the patient after the procedure, it is alleged.

Later the parents found the bandage had come off the wound, which dripped with blood and there was blood in the child's nappy.

Mr Darbishire said even a small amount of blood loss is dangerous and the loss of just one sixth of a pint of blood can be fatal for a newborn.

The concerned parents, who had no medical training, called the defendant around two and a half hours later.

Adeleye told them the bleeding was normal and 'not a problem' and advised a change of nappy and bandage and to apply olive oil.

In fact Adeleye should have advised immediate medical attention.

'To delay and reassure was simply not appropriate,' the prosecutor told the jury.

'His parents remained concerned but they had been reassured by the defendant.'

However, the following morning it was clear something was wrong and at 7.20am an ambulance was called.

Mr Darbishire added: 'I have no doubt there will be much criticism of the parents by their inaction.

'But can I invite you to consider this. One of the hardest things as a parent, especially parents of a young child, is knowing when to be worried and how worried to be.

'But on the other hand no one wants to make a fuss about nothing.'

A post-mortem examination found Goodluck died from blood loss after the op.

Mr Darbishire said: 'His death was wholly unnecessary. He bled to death over a period of many hours when medical assistance, which could have saved his life, was minutes away.'

The trial, scheduled to last two weeks, was adjourned until tomorrow morning.

Jean Alexis Luton: Serial sex attacker who preyed on lone women at train stations jailed for five years

Serial sex attacker who preyed on lone women at train stations and raped teenager in a carriage toilet jailed for five years
Jean Alexis, 26, raped a 18-year-old woman in a train toiletHe also targeted two other women between October and FebruaryHe was given an indeterminate jail sentence at Luton Crown Court and must serve at least five years

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UPDATED:

20:36 GMT, 26 November 2012


Predator: Jean Alexis was given an indeterminate sentence after he preyed on three women on the rail network

Predator: Jean Alexis was given an indeterminate sentence after he preyed on three women on the rail network

A rapist who preyed on women on the rail network in a series of random attacks has been jailed for an indeterminate period.

Jean Alexis, 26, denied six different charges, including rape, sexual assault and theft in relation to the offences involving three women.

Following a trial earlier this year, he was convicted by a jury on Friday and handed an indeterminate jail sentence at Luton Crown Court.

He will spend a minimum of five years in prison, British Transport Police (BTP) said.

Alexis carried out three attacks in Harlington,
Leagrave and Luton, Bedfordshire, in October and December last year and
February this year.

The court heard how Alexis, of The Ridings, Luton, dragged an 18-year-old woman into a train toilet and raped her.

Alexis had met the woman near Luton station before boarding the train with her and attacking her on December 15.

He also followed an off-duty police officer from a train to her car at Leagrave station where he made threats towards her.

He also made sexual advances and inappropriately touched a 19-year-old woman on a St Pancras-bound train.

An investigation was launched by BTP’s Major Investigation Unit and, after hours of CCTV was viewed and forensic DNA examinations carried out, Alexis was identified.

He was arrested a week later by BTP and Bedfordshire Police officers at his home address.

As part of his sentence he has also been placed on the sex offenders’ register for ten years and was recommended for deportation following his jail term, a BTP spokesman said.

Speaking after sentencing, Detective Inspector Ian Trantum, BTP’s senior investigating officer, praised the victims for their courage and bravery in coming forward to police.

He added: 'Alexis preyed on lone women travelling on the rail network in the early hours and his behaviour and actions were something no one should be subjected to.

Attack: Alexis met a 18-year-old woman near Luton station before boarding the train and dragging her into the onboard toilets where he raped her (file picture)

Attack: Alexis met a 18-year-old woman near Luton station before boarding the train and dragging her into the onboard toilets where he raped her (file picture)

'What each victim had to endure is unthinkable and Alexis is now where he belongs for this despicable act – behind bars.

'Despite pleading not guilty, the overwhelming evidence helped the jury in their unanimous decision.

'This sentence highlights the severity with which crimes like this are treated. BTP takes all allegations of sexual offences extremely seriously and will always seek to catch and prosecute those responsible.'

Baljit Ubhey, chief Crown prosecutor for Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service, branded Alexis a 'predatory and dangerous individual'.

Jailed: Alexis was given an indeterminate jail sentence at Luton Crown Court on Friday after being found guilty of rape, sexual assault and theft (file picture)

Jailed: Alexis was given an indeterminate jail sentence at Luton Crown Court on Friday after being found guilty of rape, sexual assault and theft (file picture)

He said: 'This case involved the
serious sexual abuse of women. We have worked closely with the British
Transport Police since this investigation was launched.

'None
of the victims knew Alexis; these were random attacks on people on
trains or at stations between Luton and Flitwick. Alexis is clearly a
predatory and dangerous individual.

'Alexis
was found guilty of all the offences in August following a trial at
Luton Crown Court. We would like to thank the victims for their courage
in coming forward and preventing further despicable offences by him.

'The public should feel safe on public transport.

'The prosecution, conviction and sentence imposed today recognises the seriousness of the offences.

'I
hope that today’s sentence gives some sense of closure to the victims
involved, so that they can now put this unpleasant episode behind them
and move on with their lives. Our thoughts are very much with them at
this time.'

Glide show: Aerial images taken from a kite provide a new perspective on India"s striking landscapes and colourful culture

Eye in the sky over India: Camera on a kite snaps fabulous photographs of the sub-continent

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UPDATED:

21:31 GMT, 26 November 2012

Taken from skies high above India these startling images provide a new perspective on the country's rich culture and vibrant landscapes.

Incredibly they were snapped not from the inside of an aeroplane but from camera hanging from a simple kite.

For the last nine years French photographer Nicolas Chorier has been attaching one of his four specialist cameras to a simple Japanese-style kite in order to take thousands of pictures of places from above.

The iconic white stonework of the Taj Mahal with the city of Agra behind - 47-year-old Nicolas developed his passion for photography after growing up in France with weekly slide shows around the fireplace

The
iconic white stonework of the Taj Mahal with the city of Agra behind –
47-year-old Nicolas developed his passion for photography after growing
up in France with weekly slide shows around the fireplace

Lengths of of fishing net looks like strings of spaghetti as fishermen walk among the scattered debris of their trade on this beach in Kovalam, Kerala at the southern tip

Lengths of of fishing net looks like strings of spaghetti as fishermen walk among the scattered debris of their trade on this beach in Kovalam, Kerala at the southern tip of India

The stunning images provide a bird's eye view of everyday scenes such as two people partaking in a martial art on a beach in Karala and iconic buildings such as the Taj Mahal.

'From above it's a completely new vision, new perspectives, new ways to understand the landscape and heritage,' said Nicolas.

'Every place has something interesting to show from above. The results are full of discovery, showing new perspectives, new shadows.

'Getting so close to subjects is magical, exquisite and thrilling.'

Hampi: A village in northern Karnataka state, India, located within the ruins of Vijayanagara, which dates back to the 1st century BC

Hampi is a village in northern Karnataka state, India, located within the ruins of Vijayanagara, which dates back to the 1st century BC

Part of the beauty of Chorier's style is it allows him to shoot buildings such as Udaipur Lake Palace in Rajasthan, from the air in an ecological way - without resorting to helicopter or plane

Part of the beauty of Chorier's style is it allows him to shoot buildings such as Udaipur Lake Palace in Rajasthan, from the air in an ecological way – without resorting to helicopter or plane

Photography has always been a part of Nicolas's life.

The 47-year-old grew up in France with weekly slide shows around the fireplace.

He was given his first camera when he was 12-years-old and quickly became a photography enthusiast.

As a teenager he also loved flying kites and one day decided to combine his two passions.

Nicolas, who lives in Pondicherry, India, makes his own kites using siliconised nylon and carbon sticks.

The photographic equipment is mounted in a small cradle hanging on a line under the kite.

Only when his kite is in position and flying smoothly does he send the camera up.

His stunning pictures cast new light on iconic buildings and give a bird's eye view of landscapes in India, Uzbekistan and Laos.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1304458/Pictured-The-stunning-aerial-photos-taken-just-camera-kite.html#ixzz2DLTMczzs

Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

His stunning pictures cast new light on iconic buildings and give a bird's eye view of landscapes in India, Uzbekistan and Laos.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1304458/Pictured-The-stunning-aerial-photos-taken-just-camera-kite.html#ixzz2DLTMczzs

Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Men participating in the Indian martial art of Kalaripayattu in the southern state of Kerala. It is one of the oldest fighting systems in existence, practiced in the state and contiguous parts of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka

Men participating in the Indian martial art of Kalaripayattu in the southern state of Kerala. It is one of the oldest fighting systems in existence, practiced in the state and contiguous parts of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka

Camel riders and their animals cast long shadows as they take a rest in the sun in Pushkar - in the Indian state of Rajasthan

Camel riders and their animals cast long shadows as they take a rest in the sun in Pushkar – in the Indian state of Rajasthan

A gaggle of fisherman drag in a boat full with their bounty from the sea. Nicolas was given his first camera when he was 12-years-old and quickly became a photography enthusiast

A gaggle of fisherman drag in a boat full with their bounty from the sea. Nicolas was given his first camera when he was 12-years-old and quickly became a photography enthusiast

An air-to-ground video link beams live images back to a portable TV screen strapped around the photographer's neck.

Nicolas then uses a remote control to move the cradle and camera into the best position to take the picture.

'Each site has its own challenges,' he said.

'I
have to consider the atmosphere temperature, the crowds, winds,
electrical wires and obstacles. It can become very touchy at times.'

It's not just getting close to his subjects Nicolas enjoys about kite photography, it's the ecological benefits of what he does.

'I'm very concerned about ecology and saving our natural resources,' he said.

'I
love the idea of using only the wind to do such activity, compared to
burning kerosene with a helicopter, or wasting helium with a balloon.'

To capture the moment the Frenchman holds his kite reel under one arm with the remote control over one shoulder and a video monitor around his neck. He can point the camera in any direction and zoom in or out by sending it up or down the kite's string in a special harness.

Waiting to ID

Women put their colourful freshly washed sheets out to dry in the sweltering sun while a child comes to assist

Waiting to ID

Chorier says he loves the idea of using only the wind
to take photos as compared with burning kerosene with a helicopter, or
wasting helium with a balloon'

Nicolas then uses a remote control to move the cradle and camera into the best position to take the picture. He says each site brings its own challenges

Nicolas uses a remote control to move the cradle and camera into the best position to take a picture. He says each site brings its own challenges

Waiting to ID

The photographer says: 'I have to consider the atmosphere
temperature, the crowds, winds, electrical wires and obstacles. It can
become very touchy at times'

Nicolas it is not just getting close to his subjects that he enjoys, but also the ecological benefits of not using an aeroplane or other mechanical device
Nicolas it is not just getting close to his subjects that he enjoys, but also the ecological benefits of not using an aeroplane or other mechanical device

Robber dubbed Murder Mike who accidentally shot dead his accomplice as they tried to steal fake Rolexes jailed for 30 years

Robber dubbed ‘Murder Mike’ who accidentally shot dead his accomplice as they tried to steal fake Rolexes jailed for 30 years

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UPDATED:

20:46 GMT, 26 November 2012

Daniel Tesfay, 27, blasted Jonathan Barnes, 20, pictured, in the head as they attempted to escape with timepieces they believed were worth 8,000

Daniel Tesfay, 27, blasted Jonathan Barnes, 20, pictured, in the head as they attempted to escape with timepieces they believed were worth 8,000

A bungling robber dubbed ‘Murder Mike’ was jailed for 30 years today for accidentally shooting his accomplice as they tried to steal a cache of fake Rolex watches.

Daniel Tesfay, 27, blasted Jonathan Barnes, 20, in the head as they attempted to escape with timepieces they believed were worth 8,000.

In fact, the three Submariner watches had been bought over the internet for 118 each by intended victim Jordaan Williams to dupe unsuspecting buyers.

After setting up a meeting, Tesfay boasted he was known as ‘Murder Mike’ before trying to snatch the Rolexes.

In the ensuing scuffle, he tried to shoot Mr Williams but pulled the trigger just as Barnes stepped into the path of the bullet.

Tesfay, a hip-hop artist under the stage name ‘Wolfie’, then ran from the scene leaving his friend fatally wounded.

He denied murder, claiming he and Barnes had themselves been victims of a violent robbery, but was convicted of murder after an Old Bailey trial.

Jailing him for life with a minimum term of 30 years, Judge Paul Worsley said there was no mitigation for Tesfay’s crime.

‘You discharged your loaded handgun at one of these young men and by mistake shot him through the head,’ he added.

‘This is an offence with a higher seriousness than most and you have shown no remorse.’

In a statement read to the court, Mr Barnes’ mother and father, Judith and Douglas, said: ‘The senseless killing of our son has been like a bad nightmare.’

‘He is sorely missed,’ they added.

Mr Williams bought the three watches from the RolexReplica website and offered them for sale to friends via BlackBerry Messenger in August last year.

One of them passed the advert to Barnes, who responded with a message reading: ‘Can I rob them’

He later insisted he would pay for them and went to Mr William’s home in Morland Road, Croydon, south London, with Tesfay at around 8pm on August 23.

The pair inspected the watches before leaving and returning later that evening.

Barnes agreed to buy the watches for 6,500 but the mood suddenly changed and he said to Tesfay: ‘Let’s do it.’

‘At that point Daniel Tesfay looked at Jordaan Williams and produced a loaded semi-automatic pistol from behind a brown manbag he was carrying,’ said prosecutor Roger Smart.

‘He pressed this against Jordaan Williams chest and said: “Do you know who I am, I’m Murder Mike, I’ll blow your chest off, I’ll shoot you.”'

The pair believed the timepieces were expensive Rolex watches, like the one pictured

The pair believed the timepieces were expensive Rolex watches, like the one pictured

After taking a Blackberry mobile phone
belonging to Mr Williams’ friend Emmanuel Akokhia, they tried to run out
through the front door.

Mr Williams grabbed Barnes and Tesfay brandished the gun at him, the court heard.

‘Daniel Tesfay threatened him with the firearm before again turning to leave the premises.’

As the pair tried to make their escape, Mr Williams, whose mother was upstairs on the phone to her cousin, grabbed hold of Barnes in an attempt to stop him from leaving.

Tesfay then tried to shoot the seller, but missed – hitting his partner in crime in the head.

The murder weapon was never recovered.

Barnes was rushed to hospital but was pronounced dead two days later.

In the days that followed, Tesfay booked a room at the Kensington Townhouse Hotel in Earl’s Court, southwest London, where he checked in under the name Yusuf Ibrahim.

But police tracked him down and armed officers swooped on September 1 as he returned from a nearby pharmacy where he had gone to buy toiletries.

A search of his single room later revealed 400 of cash in 100 bundles.

During his trial, the killer claimed Barnes was shot by a mystery gunman after Mr Williams tried to steal the 6,500 cash he said they had brought to buy the watches with.

Tesfay, of Tollgate Gardens, Kilburn, northwest London, denied murder and possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life.

BBC scandal: Married BBC stars Tim Willcox and Sophie Long break news of their affair

Husband of married BBC star Sophie Long 'devastated' after she dumps him for newsreader Tim Willcox (who's a married father of four)
Top newsreaders 'fall in love' and confess relationship to their partnersBBC bans couple from reading news together after scandal emerges
Father-of-four Tim Willcox played trumpet at Sophie's wedding in 2010

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UPDATED:

21:52 GMT, 26 November 2012

The cuckolded husband of BBC newsreader Sophie Long was last night said to be devastated after she dumped him for her co-presenter.

Miss Long, 35, is having an affair with colleague Tim Willcox, who is also married.

Both broadcasters work for the BBC News 24 channel, and a source yesterday suggested they had now been banned from appearing together on screen.

Scroll down for video

Tim Willcox, 49, British journalist

Lovebirds: Tim Willcox and Sophie Long have allegedly told their partners about the affair and are said to be smitten

Lovebirds: Tim Willcox and Sophie Long have allegedly told their partners about the affair and are smitten

Philandering 49-year-old Willcox has
been married for 17 years and has four school-age children with his wife
Sarah, also 49. Miss Long’s betrayed husband, Will Green, 35, was her
childhood sweetheart and they wed only two summers ago in a waterfront
ceremony in Cornwall.

Last night he was returning from a business trip in Central America, according to a colleague.

A friend said he was devastated by the collapse of his marriage.

‘Will is the nicest bloke in the
world, really into his sport and fun to be with,’ said the friend. ‘His
whole family are such a close-knit and lovely bunch of people. He is a
very stable and reliable guy. He will maintain his dignity in all this.’

It is understood Miss Long and Willcox informed their respective partners ‘a couple of months ago’ the marriages were over.

Close: Tim Willcox, 49, and Sophie Long, 35, have found themselves smitten with each other despite both being married to other people

Close: Tim Willcox, 49, and Sophie Long, 35, have found themselves smitten with each other despite both being married to other people

As revealed by the Daily Mail’s
Richard Kay column yesterday, Willcox told his wife he had fallen
hopelessly in love with his younger colleague.

Yesterday Mrs Willcox
looked tired and devastated as she answered the door of the family’s
700,000 riverside home in an Oxfordshire village.

Mrs Willcox, who is clerk of the
parish council and also a director of his company Tim Willcox Limited,
politely declined to comment.

Her mother, Jacqueline Harding, asked
about her son-in-law’s conduct, said: ‘I wouldn’t say anything about
Tim’s behaviour.’ The foursome will be deciding in the next few weeks
who will be living where.

Childhood sweetheart: Will Green (pictured) married Sophie Long

Newsreader: Sophie Long is married to childhood sweetheart Will Green

Childhood sweethearts: Sophie Long, pictured right, is married to Will Green, left

So happy: Sophie Long and Will Green on their wedding day in Cornwall in June 2010

So happy: Sophie Long and Will Green on their wedding day in Cornwall in June 2010

Wedding by the sea: BBC presenter Sophie Long and her yacht salesman husband Will Green on their wedding day

Wedding by the sea: BBC presenter Sophie Long and her yacht salesman husband Will Green on their wedding day

Miss Long and Mr Green have put their stunning end-of-terrace Georgian cottage in Plymouth on the market for 335,000.

Mr Green works in Plymouth as sales director for a luxury yacht brokerage firm, Princess Yachts International.

At their wedding in June 2010, Willcox was one of the guests – having become close to Miss Long as they worked together.

The silver-haired newsreader, a former
member of the British Youth Orchestra, even serenaded the happy couple
on his trumpet. BBC presenter Jon Sopel was another guest.

Miss Long is believed to keep a
one-bed flat in West London within walking distance of BBC Television
Centre.

There was no answer at the flat yesterday and the blinds were
drawn.

Born in Torquay in 1977 and raised in
Weston-super-Mare, Miss Long graduated from King’s College, London, with
a degree in war studies.

After working as an election monitor in
Cambodia, she returned to the UK where she worked for Reuters news
agency and ITN.

In 2000, she won the first Jill Dando
BBC bursary which enabled her to study broadcast journalism, and she
went on to work for BBC Radio Cornwall and then Midlands Today.

Country home: The family home of Sarah and Tim Willcox inWootton by Woodstock, Oxfordshire

Country home: The family home of Sarah and Tim Willcox inWootton by Woodstock, Oxfordshire

Closed gates: Sarah and Tim Willcox live with their four children in the Oxfordshire countryside. Mrs Willcox is the clerk to the parish council

Closed gates: Sarah and Tim Willcox live with their four children in the Oxfordshire countryside. Mrs Willcox is the clerk to the parish council

City crash pad: The West London flat belonging to BBC presenter Sophie Long. The family home she was sharing with her husband is in Plymouth

City crash pad: The West London flat belonging to BBC presenter Sophie Long. The family home she was sharing with her husband is in Plymouth

She
moved to the BBC News channel as a presenter and correspondent.

This
included touring with Nick Clegg in the run-up to the 2010 general
election.

Willcox presents on the BBC News 24
and BBC World channels.

A friend said: ‘He is very charming and has lots
of female fans but he is also very honourable so all this will have
been very difficult for him.’

A Durham university Spanish graduate,
Willcox started his career on a Sunday newspaper. He worked as a
presenter for ITN before moving to the BBC.

In September 2010, not long after he
attended Miss Long’s wedding, he was sent to Chile to report on the
rescue of 33 trapped miners.

He was praised for his live coverage and became a pin-up for the miners’ wives.

In 2011, he reported from Japan on the country’s earthquake and subsequent tsunami.

Last night the BBC said the situation with Miss Long and Mr Willcox was a ‘personal matter’.

A spokesman added: ‘They haven’t been banned from appearing together because they aren’t paired to be on screen.’

Affair: Tim Willcox, seen here with fellow presenter Emily Maitlis, has fallen head over heels for BBC journalist Sophie Long

Affair: Tim Willcox, seen here with fellow presenter Emily Maitlis, has fallen head over heels for BBC journalist Sophie Long

TIM WILLCOX

Born in 1963, Tim was educated at Taunton School in Somerset and St Chad's College, Durham University, where he read Spanish.

He began his career in newspapers with stints at both Mirror Group Newspapers and Fleet Street News Agency.

He worked for ITN News as a presenter and correspondent, first as Art and Media Correspondent.

After joining ITN's news team, Tim presented the network's live reports from New York City during the city's terror attacks on 9/11

Tim then joined the BBC as an anchor with the BBC News Channel.

Career highlights at the BBC have included his reports from the collapsed Chilean mine in 2010, and reports from the 2011 Japanese earthquake and tsunami.

SOPHIE LONG

Born in Torquay in 1977 and raised in Weston-super-Mare, Sophie graduated from Kings College, London, with a degree in war studies.

After working as an election monitor in Cambodia, she returned to the UK where she worked for Reuters news agency and ITN.

In 2000 Sophie won the first Jill Dando BBC bursary which enabled her to study broadcast journalism at University College, Falmouth.

After graduating from there, she worked for BBC Radio Cornwall and on the local BBC regional news progamme Spotlight, and then Midlands Today.

Sophie presented the South West issue of The Politics Show before moving to the BBC News Channel as stand-in presenter and correspondent.

Memorable moments include touring with Nick Clegg in the run-up to the 2010 general election.

VIDEO: Tim and Sophie appear on BBC News together in 2008

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Doorway to despair: Glimpse inside Spanish industrial ghost town that produced seven million doors a year which has been decimated by housing crash

Doorway to despair: Glimpse inside Spanish industrial ghost town that produced seven million doors a year which has been decimated by housing crash
During the construction boom, most of the doors for the 800,000 new houses a year were built in VillacanasSince the housing bubble burst, the town has been left desolate and is struggling with unemployment problems

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UPDATED:

21:48 GMT, 26 November 2012

At its peak, it was a bustling town manufacturing millions of wooden doors to cater for the housing boom in Spain.

But all that’s left now is a ghost town with an abandoned factory that is a stark reminder of more prosperous times.

Villacanas is one of the many former buoyant industrial Spanish towns that is now struggling with huge unemployment problems.

Stark: The sun rises over Villacanas, 55 miles from Madrid. At its peak, it was a buoyant manufacturing town making millions of wooden doors

Stark: The sun rises over Villacanas, 55 miles from Madrid. At its peak, it was a buoyant manufacturing town making millions of wooden doors

Abandoned: The terrain of the Mavisa door factory is strewn with rubbish. During the boom years, the factory employed 5,700 people and produced seven million wooden doors a year

Abandoned: The terrain of the Mavisa door factory is strewn with rubbish. During the boom years, the factory employed 5,700 people and produced seven million wooden doors a year

Destroyed: Material is scattered around an old working bench inside the abandoned Mavisa door factory. Since its closure, the town of Villacanas has been struggling with huge unemployment problems

Destroyed: Material is scattered around an old working bench inside the abandoned Mavisa door factory. Since its closure, the town of Villacanas has been struggling with huge unemployment problems

Between 2001 and 2007, Spain was leading the property boom in Europe with prices increasing annually at an average of around 13 per cent.

Around 800,000 houses were being built a year and the people of Villacas were part of Spain’s middle class enjoying high wages and permanent jobs.

During the construction boom, the majority of doors used with the new developments were made in this small industrial town.

Approximately seven million doors a year were once assembled at the Mavisa factory which employed a workforce of almost 5,700 people.

Desolate: The state of the Mavisa door factory is a stark reminder of more prosperous times when the population of Villacanas was part of Spain's middle class enjoying high wages and permanent jobs

Desolate: The state of the Mavisa door factory is a stark reminder of more prosperous times when the population of Villacanas was part of Spain's middle class enjoying high wages and permanent jobs

Bleak outlook: A man crosses an old bridge leading to the other side of the railroad track in Villacanas. Times now are different from the boom years when Spain was building some 800,000 houses a year

Bleak outlook: A man crosses an old bridge leading to the other side of the railroad track in Villacanas. Times now are different from the boom years when Spain was building some 800,000 houses a year

Shutting up shop: A market salesman packs up his unsold vegetables after a day on the local market

Shutting up shop: A market salesman packs up his unsold vegetables after a day on the local market

Empty: A neon sign illuminates on a bar in Calle Mayor. The town has been left desolate with the Villacanas industrial park now empty and redundant

Empty: A neon sign illuminates on a bar in Calle Mayor. The town has been left desolate with the Villacanas industrial park now empty and redundant

Quiet: A pedestrian crosses the street devoid of traffic. With Spain in the grip of recession and the housing bubble burst, Villacanas is typical of many former buoyant industrial Spanish towns now struggling with huge problems

Quiet: A pedestrian crosses the street devoid of traffic. With Spain in the grip of recession and the housing bubble burst, Villacanas is typical of many former buoyant industrial Spanish towns now struggling with huge problems

Then the economic downturn hit in 2008.

The Spanish government estimates that over 780,000 houses built since 2005 have not been sold.

The housing bubble has burst and the country is in the grip of recession.

Meanwhile, the town has been left almost desolate with the Villacanas industrial park now empty and redundant.

The town is reminiscent of the country’s situation as a whole.

The unemployment rate in Spain stands at 25 per cent with more than half of young people out of work

Between July and September 2012, 85,000 more people joined the ranks of the unemployed raising the total to 5.78 million, according to the National Statistics Institute.

Scraps: Two men drag unfinished doors behind them, to be used as burning wood for their stoves at home, on the terrain of the abandoned Mavisa door factory

Scraps: Two men drag unfinished doors behind them, to be used as burning wood for their stoves at home, on the terrain of the abandoned Mavisa door factory

A helping hand: A Red Cross worker arranges boxes with biscuits while unemployed Spaniards (right) wait in line for a food hand out inside a Red Cross post

A helping hand: A Red Cross worker arranges boxes with biscuits while unemployed Spaniards (right) wait in line for a food hand out inside a Red Cross post

Deserted: The Mavisa door factory is pictured it its derelict state with materials scattered everywhere.

Deserted: The Mavisa door factory is pictured it its derelict state with materials scattered everywhere. Since the economic downturn hit in 2008, the housing bubble has burst and the government estimates that over 780,000 houses built since 2005 have not been sold

Forlorn: A couple strolls along Calle Mayor in Villacanas. Across Spain, some 800,000 people have lost their jobs over the past year

Forlorn: A couple strolls along Calle Mayor in Villacanas. Across Spain, some 800,000 people have lost their jobs over the past year

For those under 25, the unemployment rate is at 52 per cent.

Over the past 12 months some 800,000 people have lost their jobs, proving that the economic crisis is tightening its grip on the country.

Spain is under pressure to ask for outside aid to help deal with its debts. The country is in its second recession in three years.

It has already been granted a 100 billion Euro bailout for its troubled banks while many of its regional governments are also in bad financial shape.

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's government, which pledged to reduce unemployment in its electoral campaign last year, has introduced austerity measures and financial and labour reforms to convince investors it has a grip on its accounts but they have yet to show any positive effect on the economy.

Distraught: Laid off workers who used to work at the Artevi door factory stand around a fire to stay warm during a picket to prevent machinery leaving the factory

Distraught: Laid off workers who used to work at the Artevi door factory stand around a fire to stay warm during a picket to prevent machinery leaving the factory

Forty-eight year old former door factory worker Angel Perez Fernandez (centre) eats paella together with his family

Forty-eight year old former door factory worker Angel Perez Fernandez (centre) eats paella together with his family. His 40-year-old wife, Maria Regine Bueno Villar (right) used to work as a cleaning lady at door factories, and his 20-year-old daughter is unemployed

Cutting a lonely figure: A man plays his guitar trying to make money on an empty Plaza Mayor

Cutting a lonely figure: A man plays his guitar trying to make money on an empty Plaza Mayor

Eerie: Villacanas is reminiscent of Spain's current situation. The unemployment rate stands at 25 per cent and more than half of young people are out of work

Eerie: Villacanas is reminiscent of Spain's current situation. The unemployment rate stands at 25 per cent and more than half of young people are out of work

Organisations such as the Spanish Red Cross and the Catholic Church charity organisation Caritas say unemployment and the austerity measures are leaving tens of thousands of people in need of food and financial help.

There are now 1.8million households in Spain in which no one has work.

And, it is the once-booming construction sector that has been the worst hit, with 56,100 fewer jobs.

Why a breakfast of grapefruit and marmalade on toast could be lethal for people taking medication

Why a breakfast of grapefruit and marmalade on toast could be lethal for people taking medication
Both grapefruit and Seville oranges contain chemicals that can interact with certain drugs such as statins and antidepressants Adverse effects can include acute kidney failure, respiratory failure, internal bleeding and sudden death

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UPDATED:

21:55 GMT, 26 November 2012


Grapefruit contains chemicals that can interact with certain drugs, making them more potent

Grapefruit contains chemicals that can interact with certain drugs, making them more potent

Doctors are warning about serious health problems caused by mixing medicines and grapefruit.

Although it was already known that some drugs are affected by grapefruit, the number has doubled in the last four years.

There are now some 85 such drugs, including statins, antibiotics, antidepressants, drugs to treat cancer and heart disease, plus others used by patients who have had organ transplants.

Grapefruit can either increase the potency of drugs, potentially leading to an overdose, or render them less effective which puts patients at risk of receiving too little medication.

This has led to sudden death, acute kidney failure, respiratory failure and gastrointestinal bleeding, Canadian experts say.

Dr David Bailey, of the Lawson Health Research Institute, in London, Ontario, said there had been a ‘marked increase’ in prescription drugs that interact with grapefruit. But many doctors and patients remain unaware of the problem.

The list of danger medicines includes treatments for anxiety, depression, allergy, HIV infection, seizures, heart rhythm abnormalities and high cholesterol

The list of danger medicines includes treatments for anxiety, depression, allergy, HIV infection, seizures, heart rhythm abnormalities and high cholesterol

He added: ‘Many of the drugs that
interact with grapefruit are highly prescribed and are essential for
the treatment of common medical conditions.

‘Recently, however, a disturbing trend
has been seen. Between 2008 and 2012, the number of medications with
the potential to interact with grapefruit and cause serious adverse
effects has increased from 17 to 43 – an average rate of increase
exceeding six drugs per year.

‘This increase is a result of the introduction of new chemical entities and formulations.’

Of more than 85 drugs that may
interact with grapefruit, 43 can have serious side-effects, says a
report in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

Grapefruit contains a compound,
furanocoumarin, that prevents the enzymes in the intestine, responsible
for keeping foreign substances out of the body, from working properly.

This leads to more medication being absorbed, effectively doubling or even tripling the dose in some cases.

Just days after ceasefire and Palestinians are already rebuilding bombed network of secret tunnels which bring food and weapons into Gaza

Just days after ceasefire and Palestinians are already rebuilding bombed network of secret tunnels which bring food and weapons into Gaza
Hundreds of tunnels linking Gaza to Egypt are thought to have been destroyed or damaged during the eight-day offensiveWorkers were pictured today using planks, sandbags and excavators to repair the tunnelsComes as Egyptian mediators try to help negotiate new border arrangements

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UPDATED:

22:40 GMT, 26 November 2012

Palestinians are working to rebuild a network of smuggling tunnels that were targeted during eight days of violence in Gaza.

Just days after a ceasefire was called between Palestine and Israel, workers were today trying to repair the network that is used to bring in food and arms from Egypt.

Experts estimate that as of yesterday about half of the network of hundreds of tunnels was still in use.

Secret tunnel: A worker repairs a smuggling tunnel dug beneath the Egyptian-Gaza border in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip today

Secret tunnel: A worker repairs a smuggling tunnel dug beneath the Egyptian-Gaza border in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip today

Targeted: About half of the network of hundreds of tunnels are believed to still be in operation following eight days of violence. Workers, pictured, drag crates of sand as they try to repair the damaged tunnel

Targeted: About half of the network of hundreds of tunnels are believed to still be in operation following eight days of violence. Workers, pictured, drag crates of sand as they try to repair the damaged tunnel

Repairs: Residents along the Egypt-Gaza borders have today seen inspectors checking for damage in the tunnel network

Repairs: Residents along the Egypt-Gaza borders have today seen inspectors checking for damage in the tunnel network

The Associated Press said people living along the Egypt-Gaza border today spoke of workers inspecting the damage but that many of the tunnels are still in operation.

While the tunnels are considered a lifeline to bring in vital goods such as fuel and construction materials into Gaza, they are also used by Hamas to illegally import weapons.

A report by the International Crisis Group estimated that between $500 and $700 million worth of goods are passed through the Egypt-Gaza tunnels each year.

They have been used to get goods into the Gaza strip since 2007 when the Israelis stepped up a blockade.

Benedetta Berti, a research fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv, told USA Today: 'You can smuggle weapons, have people going in and out. Security on the border and monitoring tunnels … has to be done.'

Photographs taken today show workers using sand, wooden planks and excavators to make urgent repairs to the damaged network, as international aid agencies also raced to replenish supplies to Gaza's 1.6 million residents.

Resting: Palestinians smoke cigarettes as they work inside a smuggling tunnel. It is estimated between $500 and $700 million worth of goods are passed through the network

Resting: Palestinians smoke cigarettes as they work inside a smuggling tunnel. It is estimated between $500 and $700 million worth of goods are passed through the network

Life line: A Palestinian smuggler waits for a cart containing gravel inside a tunnel dug beneath the Egyptian-Gaza border in Rafah

Life line: A Palestinian smuggler waits for a cart containing gravel inside a tunnel dug beneath the Egyptian-Gaza border in Rafah

Network: A Palestinian is pictured working at the entrance of a smuggling tunnel - one of hundreds connecting Gaza and Egypt

Network: A Palestinian is pictured working at the entrance of a smuggling tunnel – one of hundreds connecting Gaza and Egypt

Secret: A man emerges from a smuggling tunnel along the Gaza-Egypt border

Secret: A man emerges from a smuggling tunnel along the Gaza-Egypt border

Costly: Workers try to repair some of the tunnels. A Hamas spokesman said Israel's eight-day bombardment of the Gaza Strip has caused more than $1.2 billion in direct and indirect damages

Costly: Workers try to repair some of the tunnels. A Hamas spokesman said Israel's eight-day bombardment of the Gaza Strip has caused more than $1.2 billion in direct and indirect damages

Today, Egyptian mediators began
discussions with both sides to negotiate new border arrangements for the
impoverished coastal strip.

It follows the ceasefire on Wednesday which called a halt to eight days of violence that left 160 Palestinians, at least half of them civilians, and six Israelis, including four civilians, dead.

The deal called for the ‘opening of crossings and facilitating the movement of people of goods’.

Israel agreed to end hostilities and Hamas agreed to stop its attacks.

Todays's indirect talks between Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip and Israel were the first since the end of the violence.

The militants want Israel to lift what remains of its blockade of Gaza, imposed five years ago after Hamas seized control of the territory from its Western-backed rival Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

While Israel has eased the blockade in recent years, key restrictions remain in place on exports out of Gaza and the entry of badly needed building materials into the territory.

The Palestinians are hopeful that Egypt's new Islamist government will ease its own restrictions on movement in and out of the territory.

Egypt still limits foot traffic through the Rafah border crossing. The militants also hope to turn the Rafah terminal into a major cargo crossing.

In return, Israel wants an end to arms smuggling into Gaza. Iranian-made weapons have made their way into Gaza through a circuitous route that ends with underground tunnels along the Egyptian border.

Damaged: An excavator operates at the site of a destroyed smuggling tunnel. The network of tunnels was targeted during the eight-day Israeli offensive - although about half are believed to be still in use

Damaged: An excavator operates at the site of a destroyed smuggling tunnel. The network of tunnels was targeted during the eight-day Israeli offensive – although about half are believed to be still in use

Target: Smoke and fire rises from an explosion by a high rise housing media organisation in Gaza City during a strike on November 19

Target: Smoke and fire rises from an explosion by a high rise housing media organisation in Gaza City during a strike on November 19

Strike: Palestinians flee their homes after an Israeli forces strike on nearby a sports field in Gaza City last week

Strike: Palestinians flee their homes after an Israeli forces strike on nearby a sports field in Gaza City last week

Armed: Israeli soldiers prepare weapons in a deployment area on November 19

Armed: Israeli soldiers prepare weapons in a deployment area on November 19

People who eat doughnuts for breakfast should be charged for prescriptions, says Tory MP

People who eat doughnuts for breakfast should be charged for prescriptions, says Tory MP
GP Philip Lee warns the soaring cost of 'lifestyle' diseases like obesity could bankrupt the NHS

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UPDATED:

22:46 GMT, 26 November 2012

People who eat doughnuts for breakfast should pay for prescriptions if they develop diabetes, a Tory MP said yesterday.

Phillip Lee, who is also a practising GP, warned the soaring cost of obesity and other lifestyle diseases will bankrupt the NHS unless people take more responsibility for their own health.

Calling for charges to be brought in, the MP for Bracknell said: ‘If you want to have doughnuts for breakfast, fine, but there is a cost implication. We need to match actions to consequences – at the moment that does not happen.’

Tory MP Philip Lee, a practising GP, said people who eat doughnuits for breakfast should be charged for their prescriptions if they later develop diabetes (file image)

Tory MP Philip Lee, a practising GP, said people who eat doughnuits for breakfast should be charged for their prescriptions if they later develop diabetes (file image)

Tory MP and GP Philip Lee said most patients these days were suffering from lifestyle-related illnesses that could bankrupt the NHS

Tory MP and GP Philip Lee said most patients these days were suffering from lifestyle-related illnesses that could bankrupt the NHS

Dr Lee also warned that members of the ‘baby boomer’ generation were less ‘stoical’ than their parents – with potentially disastrous consequences for the finances of the NHS. He said there a ‘stark difference’ between the way in which those in their eighties dealt with pain, compared to those in their late sixties and early seventies.

Dr Lee said the majority of patients he saw were now suffering from illnesses caused by their lifestyles, or complaining of conditions that their forebears would have suffered in silence.

He suggested ministers should study the system used in Denmark where individuals are allocated a ‘modest’ annual drugs budget, after which they are expected to pay for their own prescriptions.

And he said charging people for the cost of their prescriptions would encourage them to take more responsibility for their own health.

‘If you want to have doughnuts for breakfast, fine, but there is a cost implication down the line,’ he said.

‘We need to match actions to consequences – at the moment that does not happen in this country.’

Dr Lee said people had to take more responsibility for their own health

Dr Lee said people had to take more responsibility for their own health

Politicians have traditionally fought shy of telling people to take responsibility for their own health, because of fears of a public backlash.

But, speaking at an event organised by the Institute for Economic Affairs think tank, Dr Lee warned that without major changes the NHS could face financial collapse.

He warned that only socialist Cuba attempted to maintain a healthcare system on the same line as the UK’s.

He went on: ‘We have got to be bold here, we have got to be decided that the National Health Service in its current form is not sustainable.

‘It probably can limp on for the rest of this decade but the reality is the pressures coming from the baby boomer generation and their expectations of health care, their perceptions of pain and suffering is profoundly different to their stoic parents who survived the war.”

‘It's time we actually got quite realistic about this because if we don't we are going to lose what most people would want in this country which is access to care when you need it irrespective of your means.

‘In which case, if we don't start reforming now and actually accepting that the way Nye Bevan designed it in post-war stoic Britain has got to change then we are going to end up with collapse and the free for all and the pretty disgraceful situation you find in the US.’

Dr Lee said 400 million could be saved from the drugs budget by allowing GP surgeries to dispense medicines. There would be no need for pharmacists to be involved because ‘it's like counting Smarties’, he said.