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Fully vaccinated travellers from the US and EU can now arrive in the UK without having to isolate.

The new rules came into effect at 4am on Monday but they have not yet been met by a reciprocal easing of restrictions for travellers from the UK.

The new rule applies to England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “We’re helping reunite people living in the US and European countries with their family and friends in the UK.”

Previously, only travellers who received both coronavirus vaccine doses in the UK were able to enter from an amber country – the US and most of the EU – without isolating for the required 10 days.

But the isolation exemption will now cover those people vaccinated in the US and the EU.

Arrivals from France are the exception, with isolation still required regardless of vaccination status.

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US citizens must have a vaccine card, while EU citizens need the bloc’s “green pass” showing their vaccination status.

Paul Charles, chief executive of travel consultancy The PC Agency, told the PA news agency: “The significance of this decision can’t be overestimated.

“It will pump vital cash into the travel economy, and help salvage the rest of the summer.

“Inbound visitors deliver billions of pounds to the economy and they can be welcomed safely.

“It’s especially good news for our airlines who need to fill their seats across the Atlantic.”

Also on Monday, international cruises from England are allowed to resume, after a 16-month enforced break.

Most firms will not take passengers straight away due to logistical reasons, however.

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Meanwhile, there are fears that the government is considering creating an amber watchlist, which would include countries at risk of moving to the red list at short notice.

Arrivals from red list countries must spend 10 days in hotel quarantine at a cost of £1,750.

There is already a green watchlist, which includes countries on the green list that are at risk of being moved down to amber.

According to The Daily Telegraph, Mr Shapps is against the idea and is instead pushing for travel to be opened up further.

Ministers will meet on Thursday to decide on the travel rules that will be in place for most of August.

The Department for Transport said it would not comment on “speculation” when asked about a possible amber watchlist.

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‘Invincible’ all-girl football team goes whole season unbeaten – in boys’ league




'Invincible' all-girl football team goes whole season unbeaten - in boys' league

An all-girl team has become football’s latest “invincibles” by going unbeaten all season – while playing in a boys’ league.

Queens Park Ladies under-12s finished top of division three of the Bournemouth Youth Football League, with 18 wins, four draws and no defeats.

They dominated the 11 boys’ teams in the league, scoring 61 goals and conceding only 11.

By the time they had played all their matches, they had amassed 58 points, 16 more than the second-placed team, which had two games still to play.

To make their triumph all the sweeter, they had to overcome initial resistance from county FA bosses, who initially told them they would have to play in a girls’ competition.

Pic: Queens Park Ladies
The under-12s team celebrates winning the league. Pic: Queens Park Ladies

Manager Toby Green was convinced his team was good enough to play against boys every week and the players, who train twice a week, have proved him right on the pitch.

Next season, the girls will be promoted to the under-13s second division.

They topped the league away against Moordown & Southbourne several weeks ago but clinched the “invincibles” title last weekend with a 3-0 win against Lymington Town.

Speaking to Sky News, Mr Green said: “The girls have done really, really well. They’ve worked so hard all season, not just in the games, but in their training as well.

“They have been really disciplined… they deserve it.”

Pic: Queens Park Ladies
Pic: Queens Park Ladies

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Mr Green said securing the league title with a 3-0 away win against a team that had won six games in a row was one of the highlights of the season.

“We’ve really had to dig in, particularly away from home,” he said.

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Four of the girls in the 14-strong squad have been playing together since they were five years old.

Mr Green started the team when his daughter Olivia told him she wanted to play football. He had already coached his older daughter as the only girl in a boys’ team and decided this time he would put together a girls’ team, but wanted them to play in the boys’ league.

The team hopes to inspire more young girls to get involved in football.

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‘Give us a future’: Anger as residents still not back in homes six months after Storm Babet




'Give us a future': Anger as residents still not back in homes six months after Storm Babet

It’s been six months since Storm Babet battered the UK but many communities are still picking up the pieces.

The storm, which hit last October, caused devastating flooding, widespread power cuts and left seven people dead.

In Catcliffe, a village near Rotherham, South Yorkshire, more than 200 homes were evacuated when water levels reached over six feet high.

And while the water has gone, its impact is still being felt.

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October 2023: Storm Babet submerged hundreds of homes

The residents of Sheffield Lane were among those forced to flee – and most of them still aren’t back in their homes.

Instead, they’re still staying with family or living in hotels while they wait for their properties to be repaired.

Chris Lloyd was led to safety in a raft by firefighters when his home became submerged by fast-rising waters. His property was so badly damaged that he won’t be back in it until June.

He says flood-hit communities feel totally forgotten.

Catcliffe resident Chris Lloyd
Catcliffe resident Chris Lloyd

“Do something, tell us something,” he says in a message to authorities.

“Give us something to reduce the amount of water that could potentially come in. I’ve said it a million times, but try and give the people of Catcliffe a future.”

Across the road at Jack’s Theatre School, the Saturday morning toddler group is oblivious to the stress and strain caused by the storm.

It took weeks for the historic building to dry out and the school relied on the help of dozens of volunteers to clean up the dirt and debris before they could return to the premises in February.

Flood damage in Catcliffe last October . Pic: Danny Lawson/PA Wire
Flood damage in Catcliffe last October. Pic: PA

For staff and students, the show must go on, but there’s always the worry this could happen again.

Teacher Mia Mottram says: “Every time there’s heavy rain, I’m sat at home thinking I hope it’s not raining in Catcliffe because if it’s heavy again… it’s awful having to think like that.

“We know a lot of the children on this road and it was heartbreaking to think it was their homes that had been destroyed.”

There are concerns the UK is lagging behind when it comes to proactive steps to protect people and homes from extreme rainfall.

Baroness Brown, deputy chair of the UK Committee on Climate Change, says: “I don’t know how much more of a wakeup call we need from the climate.”

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Flooding minister Robbie Moore has called for local authorities to be careful when considering housing applications and make sure homes aren’t being built on floodplains.

“From my point of view, I want to be making sure the government… is putting as much money as possible into flood alleviation measures,” he says.

Meanwhile, communities such as the one in Catcliffe are trying to rebuild their homes and lives – all while fearing they won’t be properly protected when the next storm arrives.

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Former model almost died trying to cure cancer with juice diet




Former model almost died trying to cure cancer with juice diet

A former model who almost died trying to cure her cancer with a juice diet has warned others against “cutting out” traditional medical advice and trying to source alternative information online.

Irena Stoynova forked out £2,000 on juicers and would spend up to three hours a day preparing liquid meals for the next day, believing it would clear her of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

The 39-year-old was diagnosed in June 2021 when medics recommended that she receive conventional treatment, but she “shut them out” after watching people “talk about the success rate of alternative therapies online”.

Ms Stoynova was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma  in June 2021. Pic: PA
Ms Stoynova was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma in June 2021. Pic: PA

Ms Stoynova, from Crondall in Hampshire, said she took to a juice diet for two-and-a-half years, but also tried a raw-food diet, intermittent fasting, boiling herbs and special teas.

She said that she was advised to start chemotherapy, but she turned to the internet to find alternative advice and “everything started from there”.

She said she listened to one man with hundreds of thousands of followers on social media who claimed the body could “heal itself” through a radical lifestyle and diet change.

Ms Stoynova lost 20kg as a result of her holistic approach to cancer. Pic: PA
Ms Stoynova said she lost 20 kilograms as a result of her holistic approach to cancer. Pic: PA

Ms Stoynova said she became a “fanatic” of the various diets and holistic therapies she followed, adding: “It was like tunnel vision.

“I didn’t stop, I was just so weak, I had sleep deprivation and hallucinations. I didn’t even have the strength to open the door for the delivery man.

“I couldn’t breathe because there was fluid on my lungs, I lost about 20 kilograms because of the dieting.”

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Doctors said Ms Stoynova was on the verge of death when she was taken to Frimley Park Hospital by ambulance in May last year.

She was told by doctors she would likely die without treatment for her cancer – which was stage three – but Ms Stoynova continued to refuse for a number of days before finally agreeing to receive chemotherapy.

Medics described “frustrating” conversations with her but eventually, after 10 days in hospital, she agreed to start chemotherapy.

The 39-year-old did a juice diet for two-and-a-half years, but also tried a raw diet, intermittent fasting, boiling herbs and special teas. Pic: PA
Ms Stoynova is now in remission after having chemotherapy. Pic: PA

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Ms Stoynova, who is now in remission, added: “I now say to people that the side effects from chemotherapy are a piece of cake compared to the side effects that I got from trying the holistic treatment.”

She added: “What I would say is it’s great to have beliefs, it’s great if they’re backed by science, and please don’t cut off your consultants.

“I cut off consultants and everything connected with standard medicine and I almost lost my life.”

Dr Clare Rees, consultant haematologist at Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust, said: “This is an extreme scenario and genuinely in the first 24 hours of Irena’s admission, I was unclear whether she would survive this or not.

“But the problem is that misinformation often spreads faster than the truth and obviously, if someone’s given the option of juice versus tablets or chemotherapy and injecting drugs into their bodies, you can see why they would prefer to do some of it if it will give them the same outcome – but the problem is that is not evidence-based practice.

“We always encourage people to go to Lymphoma Action or Macmillan Cancer Support for genuine information.”

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