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Coronavirus complicates journeys home from Antarctica

Coronavirus complicates journeys home from Antarctica

Science
The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) says it can now bring home all of its staff that need to leave the White Continent. At the end of the Southern Hemisphere summer, everyone except a core team is extracted - but that procedure has been complicated this year by Covid-19.Some of the usual routes - such as through Chile via ship or aeroplane - have been closed because of lockdowns.BAS people are being ferried to the Falkland Islands with the intention of flying them on to the UK with the RAF.This will take some time, however, so the research agency is also now chartering a cruise ship in Port Stanley to act as temporary accommodation. The vessel, Hebridean Sky, will additionally act as somewhere to isolate the scientists and other s...
Coronavirus: Staying home this weekend ‘not a request’, UK told

Coronavirus: Staying home this weekend ‘not a request’, UK told

Health
Staying at home this weekend is an instruction and "not a request", Health Secretary Matt Hancock has said, as he updated the country on the coronavirus.Speaking at the No 10 briefing, Mr Hancock said that while warm weather was forecast in some areas this weekend "the disease is still spreading".England's chief nursing officer Ruth May also paid tribute to two nurses who have died from the disease."Please stay at home for them," she urged people.Areema Nasreen, 36, had spent weeks in intensive care with coronavirus, while Aimee O'Rourke, 39, died at the hospital where she worked."They were one of us, they were one of my profession, of the NHS family," said Ms May. "I worry that there's going to be more and I want to honour them ...
‘My dream home hangs in the balance’

‘My dream home hangs in the balance’

Business
The UK housing market has almost ground to a halt after people were advised to stay at home to limit the spread of coronavirus.The advice from the government is to postpone a move if at all possible.However, some people are so close to moving they would still like to go ahead with it.Rachel Pattinson, 32, and her husband Paul, 37, were due to exchange and complete their purchase of a house in County Durham on Tuesday 24 March.But the night before they were due to move, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced wide-ranging restrictions on movement."It was very upsetting," says Rachel. "My dream home now hangs in the balance."Banks let people defer mortgage billRenters to be protected from eviction, PM saysCoronavirus: People urged n...
Inside Bergamo – Father in epicentre of pandemic orders his girls in UK back home as ‘it’s safer’

Inside Bergamo – Father in epicentre of pandemic orders his girls in UK back home as ‘it’s safer’

World
The bridge takes you across the Po river and into Lombardy, another hour or so through the now deserted streets of the fashion and industry power house of Milan, and on to the medieval city of Bergamo.It is an easy drive on deserted roads. Just one thing niggles on your brain and makes you twitch as you touch your face or sanitise your hands - you are driving in to the epicentre of the worst coronavirus outbreak in the world at the moment where more people have died than anywhere else, even in China.The initial outbreak here wasn't understood and wasn't controlled. ...
Next boss: ‘People do not buy a new outfit to stay at home’

Next boss: ‘People do not buy a new outfit to stay at home’

Business
The boss of Next has warned that the retailer faces a "very significant drop in sales" as a result of the effect of coronavirus on the business.Lord Wolfson said online sales were "likely to fare better" than the shops, but would also suffer "significant losses"."People do not buy a new outfit to stay at home," he added. The risk to demand is by far the greatest challenge posed by coronavirus, said Lord Wolfson."We need to prepare for a significant downturn in sales for the duration of the pandemic," he said.When coronavirus first appeared in China, Lord Wolfson said Next assumed that the threat was to its supply chain.The warnings were contained in Next's annual results statement, which showed that in the year to January 2020 total group sales rose by 3....