Trying to Measure the LeBron Effect on Game Attendance

LeBron James may not show up for the Miami Heat next year, but whichever team he ends up with is likely to see a huge economic bump. James puts people in the seats.After reports leaked Tuesday that James would exercise his early-termination option in his contract with the Heat, some speculated that he’ll actually stay in South Beach next season. But teams are itching to clear cap space in the hopes of signing the NBA forward.We know plenty about James’s value on the court, but to get some sense of his economic value, we looked at how attendance changed before and while he was on the Cavaliers and Heat. As a baseline, the average NBA team’s attendance is about 90 percent capacity over the course of the season, but that varies wildly depending on a team’s winning percentage. (It also presumably fluctuates throughout a season.) I looked at NBA teams’ winning percentage and home-game attendance from the 2001-02 season through the 2013-14 season, and found that a team that wins 80 percent of its games — roughly 66 games in a season, probably the best record in the league — should average 100 percent capacity. Comparatively, a team that wins only 20 percent of its games will, on average, sell 80 percent of its tickets.It’s easy to see why winning fills arenas. Wins excite fans, give them hope for a potential championship, and (hopefully) are a display of entertaining basketball. James helps do that better than nearly anybody. Even controlling for success, a “LeBron Effect” materialized in the data. The teams he’s played for — the 2004 through 2010 Cavs and the 2011 though 2014 Heat — have home-attendance averages of 98.0 percent capacity, well above what their records would predict. Nearly all of James’s teams have sold tickets at higher rates than we’d expect for how well they performed. Note how for every season but one, his teams are above the line in the chart below.(Attendance here is measured by capacity, or the percentage of available seats sold. Sometimes capacity percentages rise above 100 percent because of imperfect stadium data, whether standing-room-only tickets are counted, etc.)Interestingly, James sells out even more so on the road, perhaps because he’s more of a novelty when traveling. Over the past six seasons — his last two with the Cavs and all four with the Heat — James’s teams away capacity has averaged 99.5 percent. (Because of imperfect data on away game attendance capacity, only the past six seasons were analyzed.) It’s no surprise that the relationship between a team’s winning percentage and its draw while traveling is much weaker — that is, the curve is flatter. But adjusting for how good the Cavs or Heat were in a given season, those teams with James on them sold out the house. Look how far above the line James teams are now:This analysis does not account for ticket prices, merchandise sales or any of the other revenue channels for James’s teams, so it’s just the beginning of the conversation about his economic worth. But wherever he ends up, two things are likely to continue: His team will sell out the home stadium, and his opponents’ box offices will be sad to see him go. read more

Read More →

Former LSU Tigers Tyrann Mathieu Arrested

Former LSU Tigers cornerback Tyrann Mathieu has all but sure eliminated the possible return to the team after being arrested Thursday on drug-related charges along with three former Tigers.In a statement from the Baton Rouge Police Department, former LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson and Mathieu were charged with simple possession of marijuana. Former Tigers linebacker Karnell Hatcher was also arrested and charged with simple possession, while former defensive back Derrick Bryant is facing the heaviest charge of possession with intent to distribute and possession of drug paraphernalia.Police reported receiving a phone call to the apartment complex in which Mathieu occupied, after an unknown male forced his way through the security gate,  later to be  identified as Jefferson by BRPD.The police went to 20-year-old Mathieu’s apartment and when he answered the door officers could smell a high presence of marijuana. Mathieu gave consent for authorities to search the apartment and they discovered a marijuana grinder, a digital scale and 10 bags of high-grade marijuana, seven of which were found in Bryant’s backpack.Mathieu, who is better known as the “Honey Badger,” was kicked off the team by head coach Les Miles for failing multiple drug tests. The 2011 Heisman Trophy finalist entered a drug rehabilitation center and enrolled back into LSU as a regular student with hopes of returning to the field in 2013.Even if Mathieu had not been arrested Thursday, his return could have been more complicated than thought.  In a recent feature on Mathieu in Sports Illustrated, the article alleges he engaged in impermissible promotional activities – mainly involving a group called New Era of which Mathieu was a member – among other things.The article describes Mathieu using his notoriety to advertise parties for Era Nation and The Palace, a club in the Baton Rouge area.  They added that Mathieu knew pictures taken of him would be used for promotional purposes since he received access to the club’s VIP area.With the release of this article putting Mathieu’s eligibility on the line with a possible return to football, the Mathieu family took issue with the claims by the magazine.“The twisted things and cobbled together details from past articles because we wouldn’t sit down with them,” Sheila Mathieu told Fox 8 Sports. “We have always believed in being a tight-knit family. God first, family second, work and school third. That’s what Tyrann is doing now, and he’s on an avenue to success, make good grades and putting his life in order.”One thing is evident for the former LSU punt returner and game changer, his ‘avenue to success’ has taken another major hit.  This latest arrest has possibly ended his career as a college football player and any aspirations of reaching the NFL. read more

Read More →

Royce White NBA Must Address Flying Other Mental Health

Royce White has a severe fear of flying, which has prevented the talented rookie forward of the Houston Rockets from getting his NBA career off the ground. More significantly, White said his playing career will stay grounded until the NBA creates a protocol for teams to treat players with mental defects.Because the Rockets have no formal game plan on how to work with White’s anxiety disorder, he said the chances are “very high” he will never play in the league. He and the team are at a stalemate on how to handle his delicate situation, leaving White on the sideline.“The reality is that it is not Houston’s fault,” White said on SiriusXM’s “Off the Dribble” show. “As much as we always want to try and blame one side or the other, they’ve been thrown into a position now where they’re forced to make things up as they go, because a protocol has not been put in place for mental health up until this point.”The Rockets are trying to accommodate the No. 16 pick in June’s NBA draft. They and White have consulted mental health experts for a plan that would allow White to travel to road games via bus or car.In the meantime, the Rockets have asked White to play for their D-League team, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, but the player has refused. His frustrations with the situation mounts, but he insists he would like to be a Rocket.“I don’t really think going to another team is something that would be better,” White, 21, said on the SiriusXM show. “And it’s not something that I want to do. I want to play for Houston. I love the city of Houston. Since I’ve been here, the fans have been nothing but supportive — that I’ve met in person. Twitter has been different. The fans that I’ve met in person have been supportive.“The community here is great. I have a lot of friends that work in the organization, in the building, that aren’t even related to practice or the game, so to speak. So I have no intention or desire to play for another team.”Besides, his concerns would exist with any other team.“There’s no mental health protocol here, for not only the Rockets but the entire league, really,” he said. “I expressed that that’s really unsafe if you think about it. So, basically, I’m fighting to have that rectified. I just don’t think it is OK or responsible or even logical to have GMs or any front office personnel have executive authority in medical situations.” read more

Read More →

Top recruit Amir Williams commits to Mattas class of 2015

A 93-75 win wasn’t the only victory the Ohio State men’s basketball team achieved over Florida this week. The Buckeyes also beat out the Gators for one of the top center prospects in the country. Amir Williams, a 6-foot-10-inch center from Country Day High School in Detroit, announced Wednesday his decision to play college basketball for coach Thad Matta and the Buckeyes. Williams, who Rivals.com ranks as the seventh-best center in the country, waited until near the end of the signing period to choose OSU over  Florida, Duke and Pittsburgh. “He felt that it was closer to home,” said Kurt Keener, Williams’ high school coach. “Though more than anything else, he felt that the style of play at Ohio State, and the success they’ve had with preparing guys with going from college to the pro ranks, was what ultimately had him decide on the Buckeyes.” Country Day has produced some high-caliber basketball players, including Chris Webber and Shane Battier. Keener said Williams is solid defensively and has a nice mid-range game but still needs to work on his overall offensive game. “There’s things that you can’t coach in a player. You can’t coach somebody to be 6-foot-10 or 6-foot-11. You can’t coach their passion for the game or their intensity. He has those things,” Keener said. “The things he has to work on, whether it be the footwork or the pump fakes, all of those things are very much teachable things. If he’s healthy and he listens and learns, I could see him being an All-Big Ten player with a chance to play in the NBA someday.” read more

Read More →

Students impress in qualifiers for race against Ohio States Dontre Wilson Devin

Runners relax post-race while Fernando Lovo, football operations coordinator, speaks of the next step in the process, the semifinals to be held April 5. Fastest Student Race took place March 26 at the Woody Hayes Center as part of the preliminary rounds to race against OSU football players at the Spring Game. Credit: Kathleen Martini / Oller reporterThey’ve long been called some of the best fans in the land, but Ohio State students might also have earned the title of some of the fastest in the land.With many current and formers Buckeyes looking on, 41 Ohio State students showed up to the Woody Hayes Athletic Center Wednesday, looking to compete for a chance to race against sophomore running back Dontre Wilson and senior wide receiver Devin Smith at halftime of OSU’s Spring Game April 12.Once the competitors toed the line and went back in their stances, the onlookers were more than impressed.“Believe it or not, some of the times that we have here are even faster than we had when we did this at (the University of) Florida. It’s pretty impressive,” Fernando Lovo, OSU’s football operations coordinator, said following the event. “These kids were unbelievable. It was really impressive.”While Lovo would not reveal the names of the competitors who advanced to the next round — which is set to take place at OSU’s Student Appreciation Day April 5  — he did reveal some of the 40-yard dash times that impressed him.“We had a 4.4 (seconds) — that was our fastest time,” Lovo said. “We also had a 4.51, 4.53, 4.52 and a 4.6, so there were some great times.”After hearing whispers in the locker room, Wilson made his way to the field size up his future competition. While he was also impressed with what he saw on the turf, the sophomore couldn’t find anyone who would beat him.“It’s possible,” Wilson said, who has been clocked at 4.33 seconds in a 40-yard dash since joining the Buckeyes. “But I’m not going to let that happen.”Despite being noticed as one of the faster runners in the competition, Colwyn Headley, a fourth-year in microbiology, agreed with Wilson in his prediction.“Dontre is probably like a world-class sprinter,” Headley said, with a big smile on his face. “I’m just a poser if anything.”John Findley, a second-year in sports management, however, thought he had a real shot at the speedy sophomore.“I’m going to give 110 percent,” Findley said. “Dontre is a really nice guy, but I really want to try to beat him.”Marcus Perry, a second-year in aerospace engineering, echoed Findley’s confidence, saying he too had a legitimate chance beating Wilson in Ohio Stadium.“I was a sprinter in high school, so I have a decent chance,” Perry said. “I just hope I get a decent start. I’m a little bit out of shape, but I’m hoping for the best.”While he was focused on the task at hand, Findley wanted to take the time to appreciate the opportunity coach Urban Meyer had afforded them.“Coach Meyer is an awesome coach,” Findley said. “Every day you don’t get to meet the fastest running back or wide receiver on the Buckeyes or even get to watch a practice on this field. It’s pretty awesome.”The students who are set to run in the next round of races April 5 at OSU’s Student Appreciation Day will be notified privately in the coming days, Lovo said. He did not say whether or not their names would be made public before the next set of races. read more

Read More →

Mens Basketball No 17 Ohio State bounces back with 7156 win against

“I thought defensively, they were very very tough. I know around the basket especially around the paint things were hard. That made it for a difficult night for us.”Redshirt junior forward Keita Bates-Diop, who entered the game leading Ohio State with 19.9 points per game, struggled in the first half, shooting only 3-for-7 from the field and missing both 3-point attempts. But a layup by Bates-Diop ended a 2:36 scoring drought for the Buckeyes with just over two minutes remaining in the first half. He finished the game with his ninth double-double of the season, scoring 13 points and led all players with 13 rebounds. Bates-Diop also led the game with a career-high five assists.Though he got off to a slow start, Bates-Diop was able to impact in other ways, demonstrating effective passes while also adding four blocks to his line score.“People continue to be really physical with him and he struggled with that at times. I think people are being extremely physical with him and he’s just got to handle it better,” head coach Chris Holtmann said. “But he still had a major impact on the game with his ability to as you mentioned, five assists, four blocks, 13 rebounds. That’s what good players do is they find other ways to impact the game and he did that.”The Buckeyes started the game hot, making 17-of-27 shots from the field in the first half.Ohio State was hitting shots from all over the court. The Buckeyes went on another 10-0 run over 3:17 with 8:35 remaining in the first half, starting with a 3-pointer from sophomore forward Andre Wesson and capped off by a shot-clock-beating jumper by senior forward Jae’Sean Tate. Tate finished the game with a team-leading 16 points and six rebounds. The Buckeyes held a commanding 38-23 lead heading into halftime. At the half, the Buckeyes totaled 16 defensive rebounds and three offensive rebounds. Ohio State finished the game with a 39-26 rebound advantage. With a made layup 47 seconds into the second half that put the Buckeyes up 42-25, Tate reached 1,400 points in his collegiate career. Tate tipped in a miss from junior guard C.J. Jackson that gave the Buckeyes a 56-37 lead and Tate his 700th career rebound. Freshman center Kaleb Wesson led the Scarlet and Gray with 10 points at halftime. He finished the game 7-for-7 from the floor and totaled 14 points and five rebounds. “It’s all great, but I just want to win. None of those really mean anything if you’re not winning games,” Tate said. “I think that’s just been my mindset all along. I’m a winner. Milestones are cool but I really want to get a ring this year.”Indiana sophomore guard Devonte Green finished the game pacing all players with 20 points off 6-for-10 shooting, including 4-of-5 from 3-point range. Ohio State freshman forward Kaleb Wesson (34) looks to make a move into the lane in the first half against Indiana on Jan. 30 in the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorOhio State (19-5, 10-1) got back on track with a 71-56 win against Indiana (12-11, 5-6) to improve to 10-1 in conference play Tuesday night.The Buckeyes shot 56 percent from the field, compared to 36 percent from the Hoosiers. Though both teams struggled from beyond the arc with neither shooting above 33 percent from 3-point range, Ohio State dominated inside, outscoring the Hoosiers 40-26 in points in the paint.The Buckeyes went on a 10-0 run with 14:39 remaining in the first half, taking a 14-5 lead and never looking back. During that run, Indiana missed all of their five field goal tries and were scoreless for 3:22 until junior forward Juwan Morgan’s shot rolled around the rim and into the basket.For Indiana head coach Archie Miller, the physicality of the Buckeyes made it difficult for the Hoosiers to stay competitive in the game. read more

Read More →

Mens Volleyball No 11 Ohio State returns to winning ways with straightset

Redshirt sophomore Jake Hanes (16) anticipates making contact with the ball at the game against George Mason on Jan. 18 at St. John Arena in Columbus. Credit: Ethan Clewell | Senior Reporter.A frustrating stretch of three straight losses hung over the No. 11 Ohio State men’s volleyball team (3-3) prior to Saturday’s match against Erskine, the longest winless stretch it has experienced since the 2013-14 season.Yet, the Buckeyes quickly found themselves back to their winning ways as they broke their three-game losing streak with a dominant, straight-set victory over Erskine (1-5), 25-12, 25-22 and 25-17.Ohio State men’s volleyball head coach Pete Hanson called a team meeting Saturday morning to discuss what happened in the home loss to George Mason on Friday.“I kind of asked the guys, hey, what did they think about as they reflected back on the match,” Hanson said.He noticed that a lot of the same things were mentioned.“They didn’t play with a lot of energy,” Hanson said. “They weren’t really committed to what we needed to do to beat a good team, and consequently a good team beat us.” The Buckeyes proved their commitment early on Saturday when they tallied 16 of the final 21 points in the first set, cruising to 25-12 victory.Despite 19 service errors in the match, Ohio State used six aces and 9.5 blocks to finish Erskine in straight sets.Two of those aces came from sophomore opposite hitter Jake Hanes, also adding 12 kills, eight digs and contributing on five blocks for the Buckeyes.But Hanes was outpaced in the kill category for the first time this season, as sophomore outside hitter Martin Lallemand tallied 13 kills, adding two aces and contributing on two blocks.Looking to build on the one-sided first set, Ohio State jumped out to an early second set lead, but eight service errors kept the Buckeyes from pulling away. But a kill by redshirt senior middle blocker Blake Leeson began a 3-0 scoring run, pushing the Buckeye lead to 21-17.Leeson also helped jumpstart a 7-1 run by the Buckeyes to start the third set with a two kills and an ace, leading to 25-17 victory.Though Leeson was productive, hitting 11 kills on 13 attacks for an .846 hitting percentage, he recognized the team still has room for improvement.“There are a lot of things we have to do mentally to fix some issues that we have,” Leeson said. “I think that with each game, with the young group that we do have playing on the court right now, I think that [experience] will help that.”Ohio State also had a significant contribution from the bench.Freshman middle blocker Ethan Talley made the most of his time on the court, adding three kills and contributing on a team-high seven blocks.Ohio State will return to action against conference foe Ball State at 7 p.m. on Saturday in Muncie, Indiana. read more

Read More →

Boy 13 dies after Ferrari F50 supercar he is travelling in crashes

first_imgFerrari F50 Ferrari F50s now sell for as much as £1.5million. Library imageCredit:Tom Wood/Alamy  Floral tributes at the scene of the Ferrari crash Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A 13-year-old boy has died after the £1.2million Ferrari he was travelling in ploughed through a wooden fence.A 37-year-old man was also seriously injured when the Ferrari F50 lost control on a quiet road in Hook, Hamphire, around 8.35pm on Monday. Police confirmed on Tuesday night it was the older passenger who was driving. The pair are not related. The classic vehicle, one of only 349 ever made, has a top speed of more than 200mph. Hampshire Constabulary did not confirm whether they were wearing seatbelts. The teenager, from the Winchester area, suffered fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. The older passenger, from Surrey, is being treated at the North Hampshire Hospital where his condition is described as stable.Locals living in nearby North Warnborough said they heard sirens, saw flashing lights and watched as a helicopter circled overhead.One said: “I could see the lights from the window at the top of the stairs and there was a helicopter circling for a while. It landed on the field just next to that road.”A man working on the nearby industrial estate said he had seen the classic red Ferrari parked earlier in the day.He said: “It stands out, doesn’t it, it’s not a car you see every day. It was parked up here.“I saw the fence broken in when I got in his morning because I get in quite early but at that time I had no idea. I didn’t look that bad but I heard that a little boy died which is terrible.” Floral tributes at the scene of the Ferrari crashCredit:Solent Regulars in the nearby Derby Inn said that the pub was busy at the time of the crash, with witnesses saying they saw sirens and emergency vehicles.The access road where the crash took place leads to Toy Stor-Age, a bespoke luxury car storage facility.Toy Stor-Age is owned by Matt Cobden, 37. Nobody was present at the site on Tuesday to comment.A Hampshire police spokesman confirmed details of the crash: “There were two people inside the vehicle, which was a red Ferrari F50, a 37-year-old man from Surrey and a 13-year-old boy from the Winchester area,” they said.  “Sadly, the teenager suffered life-threatening injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene.“The 37-year-old suffered serious injuries and is being treated at the North Hampshire Hospital where his condition is described as stable.”Officers are continuing to investigate the exact circumstances of this collision are appealing for any witnesses who may have been in the area to come forward.A South Central Ambulance Service spokeswoman confirmed they attended the scene.“We treated two patients – a young teenager, who was unfortunately pronounced dead at the scene, and a man in his thirties who was assessed and taken to North Hampshire hospital in Basingstoke by road,” she said.last_img read more

Read More →

Woman who worked on Highgrove estate died after drowning in undiscovered well

first_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Her body was only discovered when her daughter, Madelaine, looked out of an upstairs window and noticed a hole in the courtyard that had not been there before. On going out to the garden, she found her mother face down and submerged in water. An inquest in Gloucester yesterday heard Ms Nadiotis is believed to have fallen down the well two hours before she was discovered. A post-mortem revealed that other than minor bruising on the back of the head, Ms Nadiotis had not suffered any other internal or external injuries but she was showing all the features of having drowned. The report said her hands and feet were waterlogged and she had a “washer women look”. Her head and neck were congested, and her lungs were over-inflated, which are all characteristics of drowning. A woman who worked on the royal Highgrove estate died after falling down a well in her garden that had lain undiscovered for many years, an inquest heard. Irena Nadiotis, 58, was gardening at the back of a Grade II listed property in Tetbury, Gloucestershire, when the ground underneath her collapsed and she plunged 50ft down the well.  It seems the ground gave way underneath her and she fell into the well, rendering her unconscious and becoming submergedSenior Coroner Katie Skerrett Sergeant Adam Williams, who attended the scene, said he spoke to Ms Nadiotis’ daughter who said she had no idea the well, which was located under the flagstones of the 17th century property’s rear courtyard, existed.A guest staying in the property, which had been being used as a B&B, had taken a photograph which “made it apparent there was no well earlier that day”, Sgt Williams said.  Senior Coroner Katie Skerrett called it a “tragic accident”. “It seems the ground gave way underneath her and she fell into the well, rendering her unconscious and becoming submerged,” she said. “I agree with the post-mortem report that all the features consist with drowning and therefore record this as an accidental death”, she concluded.At the time of her death, Ms Nadiotis was described by Highgrove staff as being a “cherished” member of the team. last_img read more

Read More →

Selfish partygoers getting blotto are putting intolerable strain on NHS says its

first_img“At a time of year when hospitals are always under pressure caring for a spike in winter emergencies, it’s really selfish to get so blotto that you end up in an ambulance or an A&E,” he said.“More than a third of A&E attendances at peak times are caused by drunkenness – casualty nurses and doctors are understandably frustrated about the NHS being used as a national hangover service,” he added. The OECD figures show UK has the highest of all cocaine use among those aged between 15 and 34.In total, 4.2 per cent of such adults have taken the drug in the UK – more than twice the 1.9 per cent average.The number of Britons taking the drug has increased since the last time the international research was done in 2013, when Britain was second worst in the league tables for cocaine, with 3.3 per cent of young adults now using it.Britain has the third highest rates of Ecstasy use, with 3.5 per cent of those aged between 15 and 34 taking the drug in the previous year, compared with an OECD average of 1.7 per cent.The UK figure is a sharp rise from the 2.4 per cent recorded in 2013. Taj Hassan, president of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine welcomed the intervention by Mr Stevens, and urged those enjoying a night out to take more responsibility. “Emergency departments in this country are facing enormous pressures with the workload that we have, so the fact that we end up end up with unfortunate patients who have decided to become intoxicated to extremes and burden the NHS with even more work is very regrettable,” he said. “We all want people to enjoy themselves but they do have to take responsibility.”Joanna Simons, Chief Executive of Alcohol Concern, called for stronger measures to tackle problem drinking.“Underage drinking is not only bad for the health of young people but it can leave them vulnerable and at risk from all sorts of harm.“To get to grips with these issues we need the Government to get tough on alcohol sponsorship and introduce a minimum unit price, a targeted measure designed to protect the youngest and most vulnerable drinkers,” she said. Simon Stevens  Underage drinking is not only bad for the health of young people but it can leave them vulnerable and at risk from all sorts of harm.Joanna Simons, chief executive of Alcohol Concern Simon Stevens said the NHS was being used as a national hangover service Credit:PA  He issued the warning as casualty staff and ambulance crews were braced for New Year’s carnage, with drink-related admissions to hospitals expected to double tomorrow.Figures comparing 26 countries show British girls are among the most likely to have been repeatedly drunk by the age of 15, with only Denmark and Hungary faring worse. Show more And Britain’s STD rates are among the worst in the western world. The UK has the highest rates of gonorrhoea – 59.7 cases per 100,000 people compared with an OECD average of 20 per 100,000, and is in the worst six for chlamydia and syphilis.Experts are particularly concerned about the rates of chlamydia – 367 cases per 100,000 people, compared with OECD average of 187 per 100,000 – as the disease can threaten future fertility.Meanwhile, rates of syphilis at 7.2 per 100,000 compared with an OECD average of 5.1 per 100,000.Mr Stevens said too many young people were ignoring such risks.”In your 20s you feel immortal, but that doesn’t mean you’re invincible. Young free and single is great, but infections are on the rise, so the NHS advice is ‘open your eyes to STIs,” he said.center_img Show more The NHS chief executive said the behaviour of binge-drinkers during the festive season was placing strain on health service resources.”In our towns and cities this Christmas and New Year, the paramedic called to a drunk partygoer passed out on the pavement is an ambulance crew obviously not then available for a genuine medical emergency,” he said.The figures from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development paint a picture of party lifestyles, hedonism and promiscuity.British girls had one of the worst records for drunkenness, with significantly more binge drinking than boys of the same age.In total, 33 per cent of British girls aged 15 have been drunk at least twice, compared with an OECD average of 24 per cent. Among boys the figure was 28 per cent, one percentage point higher than the average.Separate analysis of NHS data by healthcare analysts Dr Foster shows that drink-related admissions for acute intoxication peak on New Year’s Day – with 2.6 times as many cases as on the average day. The NHS is being put under intolerable strain by “selfish” partygoers getting “blotto”, the head of the health service has warned.Simon Stevens said the NHS was being treated as the “National Hangover Service” as international research found Britain has one of the worst records for binge drinking, drug taking and sexually transmitted diseases.The NHS chief executive said services already under heavy pressure were being compromised by those hell bent on hard living. The UK is also the worst country in the West for cocaine usage, with the highest levels of some sexually transmitted infections (STIs) the figures from the OECD show.Last night Mr Stevens said the self-centred antics of party goers were diverting healthcare staff from those in need of urgent attention. Show more At a time of year when hospitals are always under pressure, it’s really selfish to get so blotto that you end up in an ambulance or an A&ESimon Stevens, NHS chief executive Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Read More →

Jeremy the loveless snail still wont mate with his suitor because he

first_img“So we are going to switch them to a summer light cycle which I would hope would encourage them to get it together.”Despite the chances of Jeremy finding a snail he was compatible with thought to be one-in-a-million, Dr Davison hasn’t given up hope.”It’s the long game because they live for several years, so it is not a problem, it is only a problem in the sense that everybody wants to know what’s happening next,” he said.  We got them together but unfortunately they haven’t mated yetDr Angus Davison Following the appeal, three appropriate suitors were found with one even being flown in from Mallorca. But now Dr Angus Davison, a biologist at the University of Nottingham, has revealed that despite the efforts Jeremy still hasn’t mated. “We got them together but unfortunately they haven’t mated yet. They are just not interested at the moment,” he told Radio 4’s Today programme. Dr Davison said he thought part of the problem may be that it is winter. “I am going to try some light therapy with them because the problem is they think it is winter at the moment and they are right, it is winter,” he said. Jeremy, with a darker shell, next to Lefty, eating a leaf Jeremy our “lefty” snail isn’t quite feeling the love tonight… He’s not mating with his fellow molluscs https://t.co/JrQRMd4s1J #r4today pic.twitter.com/QXDYol76h8— BBC Radio 4 Today (@BBCr4today) January 17, 2017 Jeremy, with a darker shell, next to Lefty, eating a leaf Last year, in research published in the journal Current Biology, Dr Davison and colleagues from other universities in Europe and America revealed they had discovered a gene that determines whether a snail’s shell twists in a clockwise or anti-clockwise direction.The same gene also affects body asymmetry in other animals – including humans.Research using these snails could offer the chance to develop our understanding of how organs are placed in the body and why this process can sometimes go wrong when some or all of the major internal organs are reversed from their normal placement. Jeremy the loveless snail still hasn’t mated with a suitor as he is “just not interested at the moment”, scientists have revealed. A global appeal for a mate was made after it emerged “left-handed” Jeremy was born with a rare genetic mutation that means his shell spirals anti-clockwise and his sex organ is on the wrong side.  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Read More →

Storm Doris Travel chaos as commuters warned not to travel from several

first_imgPort of Liverpool shut due to 100mph gustsWoman dies after being struck by debrisScotland warned of blizzard-like conditionsFlybe plane from Edinburgh evacuated after landing gear failedGame of Thrones scene damagedPlane wobbles at Leeds Bradford AirportNaming storms ‘has made Britain safer’Met Office issues ice warning for FridayStorm Doris: How the internet reacted​The country is experiencing travel chaos as Storm Doris batters Britain and commuters struggle to make their way home this evening.Aircraft were grounded and trains delayed as gusts of almost 60mph hit the south east of England.Commuters were left stranded after speed restrictions were imposed on the nation’s railways and some services disrupted or suspended with passengers urged not to travel.Services from London Euston were suspended due to the storm, while King’s Cross and St Pancras were also at a complete standstill for a period.  West Midlands Police said officers were called to a “serious incident” at around 11.50am.Rebecca Davis, a 40-year-old teacher, walked past shortly after the incident at around midday and saw a woman receiving CPR. “That storm tracked across the north of Scotland, but the centre of Doris is passing over the north of England, bringing its core of strong winds further south to affect the Midlands across to the Wash.”These areas are under an amber (be prepared) warning from the Met Office with gales of 50-60 mph widely and gusts of 80mph+ possible. “These wind speeds bring the risk of structural damage to property, falling trees and branches, interruptions to power supplies and dangerous driving conditions with restrictions on bridges to high-sided vehicles likely. Met Office meteorologist Mark Wilson said: “Winds are really starting to pick up now, mainly across western parts of the country.”Flight chaosAer Lingus cancelled 12 flights between the UK and the Republic of Ireland in anticipation of the winds while 36 flights out of London Heathrow were cancelled and another five at London City with other delays possible.  Blizzard-like conditionsMeanwhile, up to 15cm of snow could fall across parts of Scotland and north-east England in treacherous, blizzard-like conditions.Weather warnings have been upgraded to amber across Scotland’s central belt, the Borders, Dumfries and Galloway, Tayside and Fife. Traffic Scotland of cars on the M80 near Banknock during early morning snowfall The scene in Wolverhampton city center after a woman died when she was hit by a piece of roof Credit:Matthew Cooper/PA Wire Birmingham New Street was in chaos when fire services rushed to put out an escalator that had caught fire.Storm Doris has also claimed its first victim after a woman died in Wolverhampton when she was hit by a piece of roof the “size of a coffee table”, while a school pupil is in a serious condition after gymnasium ceiling collapses on 40 children.She was confirmed dead at the scene outside a branch of Starbucks after suffering from “very serious head injuries”, West Midlands Ambulance Service said. A Heathrow spokesman said: “Strong winds and poor weather across the UK have resulted in approximately a 10 per cent reduction to Heathrow’s flight schedule.”With Heathrow operating at more than 99 per cent capacity, there are no gaps in the schedule that can be used for delayed flights and as a result, some passengers may experience disruption to their journeys today.” AA spokesman John Snowling said: “The unpleasant combination of torrential rain, severe gales and heavy snow will create some very poor driving conditions, with the potential for roads to be affected by black ice, debris or standing water.”Wind can also bring down tree branches, blow you off course or blow other vehicles into your path.”Expect travel disruption as some roads will be treacherous.” IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Port of Liverpool is closed. pic.twitter.com/DiPA6n2u3c— Peel Ports (@PeelPorts) February 23, 2017 Meanwhile, there has been flooding, power cuts and trees felled by the high winds. Parts of Scotland have been warned to expect blizzard-like conditions. People struggle in strong winds and rain as Storm Doris arrives in London Waves crash over Newhaven LighthouseCredit: AFP/Getty Images People struggle with wet and windy weather in Manchester caused by Storm DorisCredit:MCPIX/REX/Shutterstock A spokeswoman added: “Roads in the area are closed and motorists and pedestrians are being advised to avoid the city centre. The incident is believed to be related to Storm Doris,” she said.The Met Office has declared Storm Doris is now a “weather bomb” after an intense drop in pressure saw the Port of Liverpool report winds reaching 100mph, on Thursday. Storm Doris is expected to move on quickly, with the worst of the weather gone by Thursday evening.While further Atlantic gusts will bring more rain and wind through the weekend and into next week, they are not expected to reach the heights of Doris. ‘Don’t risk your life for photos’People are being warned not to risk their lives for photos of Storm Doris, as footage showed two would-be photographers being chased by waves on the Dorset coast.In the footage posted to Twitter, one of the pair is seen taking a photo moments before a wave slams into the coast at Durdle Door on the famous Jurassic Coast. commuters waiting at King’s Cross inCredit:PA Sheep try to find some shelter alongside some trees on the Lomond Hills in Fife during a snow blizzard brought on by Storm Doris Bumpy landing for passengers at Birmingham Airport #stormdoris @bhx_official https://t.co/1YcLXPqtnE pic.twitter.com/pqMuqMZ9cv— ITV News Central (@ITVCentral) February 23, 2017 Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Winter comes to Game Of Thrones sceneIn Co Antrim, landmark tree-lined avenue made famous by fantasy drama Game Of Thrones has been damaged in the storm.One of the beech trees that make up the spectacular Dark Hedges, featured in Season Two of the award-winning TV drama, has fallen victim to high winds that have battered Northern Ireland. There were power cuts to more than 150 homes on Anglesey in North Wales after cables were blown down, and isolated flooding in some areas of Wales. The scene in Wolverhampton city center after a woman died when she was hit by a piece of roof  Women attempt to take a 'selfie' on Westminster Bridge, London So the #m11 holdup was due to a sleeping lorry apparently #crash #lorry #stormdoris pic.twitter.com/slZancyqFF— Jamie Knox (@JamieCKnox) February 23, 2017 Strong winds forecast today are expected to cause some delays and cancellations. Please check your flight status: https://t.co/zOqJyQR48T— Heathrow Airport (@HeathrowAirport) February 23, 2017 Commuters waiting at King’s Cross inCredit:PA Workmen clear a fallen tree from the Dark Hedges in County AntrimCredit:Steven McAuley/PA Wire The Met Office has also issued a yellow severe weather warning for ice, meaning it has the potential to cause danger to life or widespread disruption.It covers Scotland, Northern Ireland and the north-east and north-west of England tomorrow. Storm Doris weather affecting a flight coming into Leeds Bradford AirportCredit:Charlotte Graham/Guzelian Flights at Heathrow Airport were also cancelled and commuters across the country left facing major disruption. Monarch Airlines flight ZB1242 leaves Leeds Bradford Airport for Faro during stormy conditions in West Yorkshire The avenue is one the region’s top tourist attractions, with Game of Thrones fans from all over the world travelling to the isolated location to get a picture in front of the haunting backdrop.The Met Office said storm, upgraded to an Explosive Cyclogenisis, or weather bomb, is likely to damage buildings and send debris flying on Thursday. Traffic Scotland of cars on the M80 near Banknock during early morning snowfallCredit:Traffic Scotland/PA CANCELLED: Due to poor weather conditions 09:32 #LiverpoolLimeStreet to #WiganNorthWestern due 10:22 will be cancelled.— Northern (@northernassist) February 23, 2017 She said the woman – who looked to be aged “between 20 and 30” – appeared to have been hit by something resembling a piece of roof which had fallen off a building nearby. The area’s countryside ranger team, which posted the video online, urged people to “respect the water”, adding that “no photo is worth risking your life for”.Storm Doris: The expert analysisDr Steven Godby, an expert on natural hazards at Nottingham Trent University, said: “The last storm comparable to Doris caused widespread disruption across the country on January 3, 2012, with the worst affected area being the central belt of Scotland where winds gusted at well over 80mph. Take care in the snow today. #StormDoris pic.twitter.com/zj7kMjV7MR— Clarence House (@ClarenceHouse) February 23, 2017 “We have got a fairly active area of low pressure coming in from the Atlantic,” said Met Office forecaster Emma Sharples.”It is strengthening as it moves eastwards to the UK.”The Met Office’s amber weather warning alerts people that “whilst the strongest winds look to be only short-lived, damage to structures, interruptions to power supplies and widespread disruption to travel networks are likely, with a danger of injury from flying debris”. People struggle with wet and windy weather in Manchester caused by Storm Doris High winds blow commuters hair as they cross London Bridge, in view of The Shard Waves crash over Newhaven Lighthouse Trains cancelledTrains already being affected on Merseyside by Storm Doris while Network Rail has imposed speed restrictions on several lines around the country.Network Rail warned of delays and cancellations after imposing speed restrictions for safety reasons. The port said it had to shut along with the city’s waterfront as high winds hit the north-west after Doris made landfall in the UK this morning.The company said: “All operations are stood down for the safety of our employees, contractors and customers of the port.” On the M11, a high-sided lorry was blown over, causing long tailbacks. Several Thameslink services into St Pancras have been disrupted due to overhead wires being blown down in St Albans.Limits of 50mph would be observed on some services run by Southeastern, Arriva Trains Wales, Chiltern Railways, Grand Central, TransPennine Express and Virgin Trains East Coast.Southern bosses, Govia Thameslink Railway, warned customers that this could lead to delays and cancellations on Southern services and the Gatwick Express. Commuters waiting at King's Cross in Particularly at risk are high-sided vehicles, caravans and motorbikes and drivers are “strongly advised” to avoid travelling on some stretches of road in Yorkshire, the Midlands, and the East and North West.Richard Leonard, head of road safety at Highways England, said: “We’re expecting Storm Doris to have a significant impact on the roads throughout the day so are urging drivers to consider changing their plans if necessary and to slow down in stormy weather. Anyone affected by power cuts during the storm is encouraged to dial 105 for further information.Storm Doris’s appearance contrasts with Monday’s temperatures, where visitors to Kew Gardens, west London, enjoyed the warmest day of the winter so far, at 18.3C (64.9F).Parts of London and the South had temperatures warmer than Ibiza, southern Spain and Menorca. A Scottish Power spokesman said: “We’re starting to see some faults in small pockets of Gwynedd and north Wales.”Several bridges have been closed causing travel nightmares for commuters today, including the busy QEII crossing in Kent and the Britannia Bridge which links Anglesey to mainland Wales. “I don’t think anyone else was hurt. It was a big piece about the size of a coffee table but I think it just hit her,” Mrs Davis said. Women attempt to take a ‘selfie’ on Westminster Bridge, LondonCredit:Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire Storm Doris weather affecting a flight coming into Leeds Bradford Airport commuters waiting at King's Cross in Workmen clear a fallen tree from the Dark Hedges in County Antrim People struggle in strong winds and rain as Storm Doris arrives in LondonCredit:Dinendra Haria/REX/Shutterstock Show more As Doris made its way east, a 94mph gust recorded at Capel Curig in Conwy, north-west Wales, this morning before the Port of Liverpool said 100mph was recorded in Liverpool.It followed an 87mph gust recorded in the early hours at Mace Head on the Galway coast in the Republic of Ireland.In Kent, parts of the scaffolding encasing Ashford Police Station has been dislodged by high winds. The main entrance to the station has been temporarily closed by safety fears. “Drivers should look out for warnings on the electronic message signs and listen for updates in radio travel bulletins.”Amber warnings predict strong winds and heavy rain in parts of north Wales, the Midlands, and the East and North West, while winds as fast as 60mph are also expected to batter southern England. Explosive deepening of #stormdoris over Ireland ongoing right now. pic.twitter.com/z1y115xHWK— Anthony Sagliani (@anthonywx) February 23, 2017 What is a ‘weather bomb’?An Explosive Cyclogenisis is when a storm quickly intensifies and pressure rapidly drops in the centre.The measure is by 24millibars in a 24-hour period, and it causes very severe weather. Danger on the roadsHighways England has also issued a weather alert on major roads. Sheep try to find some shelter alongside some trees on the Lomond Hills in Fife during a snow blizzard brought on by Storm DorisCredit:Ben Dolphin / SWNS.com Monarch Airlines flight ZB1242 leaves Leeds Bradford Airport for Faro during stormy conditions in West YorkshireCredit:Charlotte Graham/Guzelian In Manchester, outdoor filming for the soap Coronation Street was brought to a halt on the cobbled set.A spokeswoman for the ITV soap said filming would be rescheduled. “Heavy snow will also be a hazard in southern Scotland and parts of northern England for a time as well.”People should listen to the latest forecast and follow the advice being issued by the authorities, particularly before they travel – the reason these types of storms are now named by the Met Office is to help make warnings more effective.” High winds blow commuters hair as they cross London Bridge, in view of The ShardCredit:Luke MacGregor/Bloomberg Virgin Trains said services on both the east coast and west coast were severely disrupted, in part due to an electricity failure between Crewe and Warrington Bank Quay stations. Several other lines suffering major disruption. A spokesman said Virgin was advising customers not to travel this evening but are aiming to return to a full service on Friday on both routes. Meanwhile at Victoria, trains were also heavily affected and a man was also taken to hospital after reportedly being hit by a newly-built entrance to the Underground station. Chaos on the M80 which is one of Scotland’s busiest motorways. Completely closed just now with commuters stranded. #snow #StormDoris pic.twitter.com/blATqj7bHZ— Connor Gillies (@ConnorGillies) February 23, 2017last_img read more

Read More →

Vulnerable father was forced to eat own testicle and then tortured to

first_img“Furthermore, those assaults involved the infliction of terrible injuries and were often associated with humiliation.”Awfully, on one occasion, Jimmy Prout’s scrotum was sliced open and his testicle was removed; he was then forced to eat it.”On another occasion, his teeth were removed with a hammer and chisel.”In effect, over a period of time, Jimmy Prout was not just mistreated, he was tortured.”The prosecution case is that the four defendants took part in that violence against Jimmy Prout, either inflicting injuries directly or assisting or encouraging the other members of the group to do so.”In the end, this conduct was to cause the death of Jimmy Prout.”Several witnesses describe a deterioration in the condition of Jimmy Prout in the period between late 2015 and February 2016.”This is hardly surprising given what was being done to him.” Ann Corbett, who was Jimmy Prout's girlfriend denies murder Kay Rayworth denies her part in the murder of Jimmy Prout He explained that tensions mounted when wheelchair-bound car crash victim Zaman became obsessed with his belief that Miss Corbett’s brother Ivan had stolen belongings from him and he felt his friend Mr Prout had not done enough to help him recover the missing items, which included an iPad.Mr Greaney said: “Probably because of these events and, no doubt, because he was perceived as being vulnerable, the other members of the group started to abuse Jimmy. “During this period of six or so weeks, Jimmy Prout’s body was decomposing and was, to some extent, eaten by animals. Therefore, the experienced forensic pathologist who carried out the post mortem examination, Dr. Nigel Cooper, was unable to ascertain the cause of death with scientific certainty.”However, even what was left of the body revealed evidence of serious trauma on at least four occasions and Dr. Cooper considers that it is at least very likely that Jimmy Prout died as the result of some form of trauma.”The four defendants all deny murder and causing or allowing the death of a vulnerable adult and the trial continues. Ann Corbett, who was Jimmy Prout’s girlfriend denies murderCredit:Simon Greener Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Mr Prout eventually died through the trauma of his injuries and his body was wrapped in a sleeping bag by the gang and dumped in bushes to make it look as though he had died sleeping rough.They then went on to plunder his bank account while pretending to help search for him, the court heard.Prosecutor Paul Greaney, QC, told the jury that the group had treated Mr Prout like a “skivvy”. Mr Prout's body was found on scrubland close to the Tyne Tunnel Zahid Zaman, who is wheelchair bound, denies murderCredit:Emily Carey Myra Wood has denied killing Jimmy ProutCredit:Simon Greener “They also fleeced Jimmy, even in death, taking money from his bank account. Myra Wood has denied killing Jimmy Prout CCTV footage of Mr Prout shown to the court saw him in “a dreadful state” said Mr Greaney.Shortly after the footage was taken, the court was told, he was dead.Mr Greaney went on: “The evidence indicates that Jimmy Prout died on 9th February 2016. Following Jimmy’s death, the defendants took his body to nearby wasteland and dumped it.”In the six weeks that followed, they took steps to cover up what they had done, asking anyone who would listen where Jimmy was and thereby pretending that they were looking for him, when they knew full well he was dead. Kay Rayworth denies her part in the murder of Jimmy ProutCredit:Simon Greener Zahid Zaman, who is wheelchair bound, denies murder Mr Prout’s body was found on scrubland close to the Tyne TunnelCredit:Lewis Arnold A vulnerable father of two was tortured to death by his girlfriend and three of her associates who even forced him to eat his own testicle, a court has heard.Jimmy Prout, 45, was in a relationship with 26-year-old Ann Corbett, but last year there was a fall-out with her and their friends who were like a clan or cult, the jury was told.Mr Prout was then targeted by Miss Corbett and her friends Myra Wood, 49, Kay Rayworth, 55, and Zahid Zaman, 43, in a protracted torture ordeal that prosecutors said “belongs in the Dark Ages.”His testicle was cut off and he was forced to eat it before his teeth were knocked out with a hammer and chisel, Newcastle Crown Court was told. “He was assaulted on several occasions, including in the days just before his death.last_img read more

Read More →

Cycling must be made more attractive to BME audience commissioner announces as

Cycling must be made more attractive to a BME audience, according to the capital’s first walking and cycling commissioner. Will Norman has voiced concerns over the lack of diversity among cyclists, arguing that many schemes which are encouraging people to take up the hobby are being perceived as a way to get “middle-aged men cycling faster around the city”.Mr Norman, whose job it is to deliver on London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s pledge to make walking and cycling safer in the capital, said he was now considering setting diversity targets for London’s cycling population to ensure a greater level of diversity. Speaking to The Independent Mr Norman said: “There is a problem with cycling and the way it is perceived of getting middle-aged men cycling faster around the city, which is not the objective at all.“It touches on something which is a real challenge for London cycling, which is diversity.” Despite efforts to make cycling safer in the capital, the mayor was recently criticised after the latest death of a cyclist who was hit by a lorry on a busy roundabout in Greenwich, southeast London.The London Cycling Campaign have since called on Mr Khan and Mr Norman to “hurry up” fixing the most dangerous cycling routes.Mr Norman responded saying: “As outlined in our Strategic Cycle Analysis we have ambitions to make this route safer for cyclists. “We’ll continue to work with the council – who are responsible for the road – to make this a reality.”So far Mr Khan has promised an average of £169m annually for cycling schemes over the next five years. That compares with an average yearly spend of £91m promised during the previous Conservative mayoralty. Cycling in London Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. So far the mayor’s office has unveiled a number of projects it says will begin to address a lack of diversity. These include cycle training courses, grants for community groups who do not typically cycle and promoting electric bikes and expanding existing cycle routes.Mr Norman explained that despite growing numbers of cyclists, increased diversity had not been seen, adding: “Even when we have seen the growth in the number of cyclists, we haven’t seen that diversity. Cycling in London Discussing the efforts being made to encourage more people to cycle, Duncan Dollimore, road safety and legal campaigns officer at Cycling UK, backed the move, saying authorities should be “focusing on the barriers that deter people from cycling rather than existing cyclists”. “There are a number of reasons for that. One is that safety is paramount for getting different people from different walks of life cycling: older people, younger people, those from different backgrounds.”The number of cyclists in London has continued to rise and now accounts for 2 percent of all journeys, however the city falls well short of others on the continent, with cycling accounting for 3 percent of travel in Paris and 13 percent in Berlin. read more

Read More →

Wiltshire Police probe potential Skripal link as Amesbury victim of unknown substance is

Footage emerged on Wednesday night that showed a man who appeared to be Mr Rowley being wheeled from a house in Amesbury on a stretcher by paramedics…. A major incident was declared in the city yesterday with several locations sealed off, after a man and woman in their 40s became unwell with similar symptoms to the Skripals. A Salisbury couple taken critically ill at the weekend may have been poisoned by the same nerve agent used against former Russian spy, Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia, police fear. Charles Rowley, 45, and girlfriend, Dawn Sturgess, 44, remained critically ill in Salisbury District Hospital last night, after being exposed to what police described as an “unknown substance”. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Read More →

How the terror threat we face has diversified since the 1970s

Last year was the worst in a decade for terror attacks on UK soil, with the highest number of terror-related deaths since 2005 saw the London bombings kill 52. A man in his 20s is being held by police on suspicion of terrorist offences after driving at speed into a security barrier outside parliament. It is the second terror-related incident to occur at the location in the space of 18 months after Khalid Masood killed five people in his attack on the Houses of Parliament last March. The terrorism threat level currently stands at severe – the second highest level – meaning that an attack is “highly likely”. On 22 May 2017, 22 people were killed by a bomb at a music concert in Manchester, less… read more

Read More →

British pharmacist suspected of fighting for Islamic State detained by Kurdish forces in

He appeared to have been struck off in early 2014 for falsifying records at his practice, shortly before he is said to have travelled from the UK to Syria.The General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) found Miah and a business partner had also invented staff members in a bid to hide a lack of workers at pharmacies they ran in Birmingham and Walsall. Around 1 month ago a #YPG #SDF patrol arrested this ISIS terrorist from the city of #Birmingham #UK in #DeirEzzor near #Hajin. He claim he’s only a doctor (Yeah right lol) and that he worked in #ISIS territory for the last 4 years.#TwitterKurds pic.twitter.com/BA9Myxpc4q— International Volunteers Report (@VolunteerReport) September 22, 2018 Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Since his capture last month, Miah has been held in a prison in northern Syrian guarded by US special forces.His arrest brings to four the number of British citizens held by the SDF in northern Syria.Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh, suspected of being members of a notoriously brutal four-man cell of British fighters dubbed The Beatles, were arrested trying to escape over the Syrian border with Turkey earlier this year.Their fate has yet to be decided as the SDF refuses to try foreign suspects in Syria and the UK has stripped both men of their citizenship.“This underscores, once again, how Islamic State fighters, and many foreigners with them, remain operational despite the group’s loss of territory,” said Shiraz Maher, director at the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence (ICSR) at King’s College London.“One of the big questions and dilemmas for security agencies, after Islamic State lost Raqqa and Mosul, is: who died? Who survived? How many got away and where are they now?” he tweeted.As the SDF closes in on the last-remaining remnants of Isil territory, a number of foreign fighters have been captured, including an Italian, in recent weeks. Experts believe most of those still left in Isil’s shrinking territory are among the most hardened of the jihadists, having decided to fight to end rather than flee.As many as a dozen Britons are thought to still be inside Syria, most of whom fighting for jihadist groups in Idlib, the rebels’ final stronghold. A British suspected Islamic State fighter has been caught by the UK’s partner forces in Syria.Mohammed Anwar Miah, 40, from Sparkhill, Birmingham, was filmed by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) being detained near the town of Hajin in Deir Ezzor province, eastern Syria.Appearing blindfolded and handcuffed in the footage, which was released on Saturday, he tells his captors that he left the UK for Syria in 2014 and had been living in the so-called caliphate for the last four years.He claims to be a trained pharmacist who has been working in a hospital.“I’m a doctor,” he said when asked when he joined the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil). “The area was controlled by Daesh – I can’t do anything about that. But I came to work with the people,” he said, using the derogatory Arabic acronym for the group. read more

Read More →

Who is Jack Brooksbank the wine merchant fiancé of Princess Eugenie

Jack Brooksbank, who married Princess Eugenie today in the year’s second Royal wedding, was working as a waiter in a cocktail bar when he first met her. But it was no rags to riches story for the newest member of the Royal family. Son of George Brooksbank, 68, a chartered accountant and company director, and his wife Nicola, 64, Jack has a… Educated at Stowe School in Buckingham, where boarding fees are currently almost £12,000 per term, Brooksbank, 31, is a descendant of the Brooksbank baronets and reportedly a distant cousin of Eugenie’s. (Her mother, the Duchess of York, is the great-great-granddaughter of Lady Julia Coke, who is the daughter of Jack’s great-great-grandfather, Thomas Coke.) read more

Read More →

Father tells deplorable food businesses to stop playing Russian roulette as takeaway

The Royal Spice Indian take away, which has since re-opened under new managementCredit:Chris Neill/Maverick Photography “Our lives will never be the same. The loss of our beautiful daughter has completely devastated us. Megan’s positive presence and infectious smile will forever be missed.”It breaks our hearts that Megan didn’t get the chance to sit her GCSE exams, something she had worked so incredibly hard for, to celebrate her 16th birthday or go to the school prom with her friends.”Megan didn’t get the opportunity to fulfil her ambition of working in musical theatre, to explore the world, fall in love or have children of her own.”It’s these thoughts that cause great sadness, because nobody deserved it more than Megan.” Peter Wright QC, prosecuting, told the court her death was a “disaster waiting to happen”.It was alleged there was a “litany of failings” in the kitchen including poor hygiene and no records of ingredients kept.The takeaway has since reopened under new ownership.The two men were released on bail to be sentenced on November 7. Family members of Megan were in tears in the public gallery as the two men, who are both Bangladeshi nationals, were found guilty.The court heard Megan’s friend ordered the meal through the Just Eat website and wrote “prawns, nuts” in the comments and notes section.But the meal, which included an onion bhaji, a seekh kebab and a Peshwari naan, was later found to have the “widespread presence” of peanut protein.Megan had an immediate reaction to the kebab and died two days later after suffering irreversible brain damage from a later asthma attack.Following her death a police inquiry was launched and later on January 6 the restaurant was immediately closed down by Trading Standards and environmental hygiene officers. The Royal Spice Indian take away, which has since re-opened under new management The eight men and four women took about six hours of deliberations to reach their verdicts.Rashid, of Rudd Street, Haslingden, who had claimed he was merely a delivery driver at the restaurant at the time, was also found guilty of failing to discharge a general duty of employers, contrary to the Health and Safety at Work Act, and another count of failing to put in place, implement and maintain a permanent procedure or procedures in contravention of European Union food safety regulations.Kuddus, of Belper Street, Blackburn, had already pleaded guilty to those two charges on behalf of himself and on behalf of Royal Spice Takeaway Ltd. Mohammed Abdul Kuddus (left) and Harun Rashid (right), arriving at Manchester Crown Court The family of a teenager who died of an allergic reaction after eating a takeaway have urged “deplorable” food businesses to “stop playing Russian roulette” as two bosses were found guilty of her manslaughter. Nut allergy sufferer Megan Lee, 15, died after eating food from the Royal Spice Takeaway in Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire, on December 30, 2016.On Friday, a jury at Manchester Crown Court found takeaway owner Mohammed Abdul Kuddus, 40, and Harun Rashid, 38, who was alleged to be the manager, guilty of manslaughter by gross negligence.In a statement read outside court, Megan’s parents Adam and Gemma Lee said: “Megan’s legacy is to be kind, considerate, to be helpful to others. We will continue to work with the Anaphylaxis Campaign to raise awareness of the dangers of allergies.”Whilst we may have received some justice with today’s verdicts, we live in hope that today’s result is a warning to other food businesses operating in such a “deplorable and ignorant” manner to learn from this and improve their standards with immediate effect.”We urge all food businesses to improve their standards in food safety and take allergies seriously.”Mr Lee added: “Do not guess, do not play ignorant, do not play Russian roulette with precious lives. Mohammed Abdul Kuddus (left) and Harun Rashid (right), arriving at Manchester Crown CourtCredit:Ricky Champagne/Cavendish Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Read More →