UK newspaper review: Focus on plight of typhoon children

Journalists Neil Midgley and James Rampton review the papers for the BBC News Channel

Efforts to help the survivors of Typhoon Haiyan, which wreaked devastation across the Philippines, continue to feature heavily on the UK's front pages.

The Sun's use of photographs of children affected by the storm is particularly effective. Likewise, the Mail focuses on the plight of the young, via an inside spread headlined: "Suffering of the storm children."

Meanwhile, the Times reports from the scene of one of the worst-hit areas - the city of Tacloban - where Richard Lloyd Parry describes the "mortal decay" on the streets, four days after the typhoon hit. "The most awful thing about the typhoon is not the fact of death, but the hundred thousand living tragedies unfolding invisibly, and without prospect of any immediate improvement," he writes.

Other papers focus on the aid effort, with the Daily Express reporting how musician Myleene Klass, whose mother is Filipina, led calls for Britons to donate. The Disasters Emergency Committee appeal yielded a "staggering" £1.5m in the first 15 hours, it notes.

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'God particle'
Prof Peter Higgs in front of a photograph of the Large Hadron Collider at London's Science Museum

The Independent makes effective use of an image of Nobel prize winning physicist Prof Peter Higgs at London's Science Museum.

From the tabloids...

Chris Evans

The Daily Star claims an exclusive concerning radio host Chris Evans who, it says, pulled out of buying a mansion after an estate agent mistook him for a "time-wasting chav".

He's pictured standing in front of a photograph of the Large Hadron Collider, which is said to have proven his prediction of the existence of the "God particle" that gives all other particles mass, the Higgs boson.

"I was quite worried at one time that the importance of the discovery of this particular particle was being overplayed," he's quoted as saying.

It seems cosmologist Stephen Hawking was another well-known scientist to have reservations about the boson. The Guardian quotes him as saying: "The discovery of the new particle came at a personal cost. I had a bet with Gordon Kane of Michigan University that the Higgs particle wouldn't be found. The Nobel prize cost me $100."

And Hawking went further, the Daily Mail notes, complaining that physics "would be far more interesting if it had not been found".

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Casualty changes
Generic image of an accident and emergency entrance notice

For a second day, the future of the NHS features heavily in reports. This time it's proposals to shake up hospital casualty departments, with the Telegraph leading on the idea of creating a "two-tier" system, with specialist treatment concentrated in fewer locations.

The Guardian says the suggestions of NHS England medical director Sir Bruce Keogh would result in about 40 to 70 becoming "major emergency centres" with hi-tech treatment for heart attacks, stroke and trauma, and the remainder designated as ordinary emergency centres for less specialised care. "The proposals will... be controversial because some A&Es will be seen to be downgraded," it says.

King's Fund think-tank senior fellow Nigel Edwards, writing in the Independent, agrees. However, he says the logic in this "very sensible report" is sound.

James Rampton, reviewing the papers for the BBC News Channel, said people would have to acknowledge there was no "bottomless pit" of NHS resources.

However, his co-panellist Neil Midgley foresaw problems for ministers if things went wrong. "The problem comes three or five years down the track when people start dying in ambulances on the way to specialist care centres. There will be headlines about postcode lotteries," he said.

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Tattoo taste

Broadcaster David Dimbleby's scorpion tattoo continues to cause much debate - and mirth - in the press.

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Glasgow's Duke of Wellington monument, adorned with traffic cones

It's funny and cheers people up on their way to work”

End Quote Campaigner Michael Gray on the 'tradition' of placing cones on Glasgow's Duke of Wellington monument

Daily Telegraph cartoonist Adams presents Dimbleby among a line-up of public figures - David Cameron, Ed Miliband, Nigel Farage - and invites readers to "match the tattoos". Their choices include a hammer and sickle, a pint wrapped in a Union Jack and the phrase "Number 10".

Meanwhile, the Times repeats claims that the scorpion is used by the gay community as a warning that the wearer is HIV positive.

In the Daily Mirror, Paul Routledge - "who incidentally had the white rose of Yorkshire tattooed on his arm at the age of 40 while slightly inebriated" - wonders what all the fuss is about, saying "oldies" can't get enough excitement. It's a far cry, he says, from his childhood when pensioners were supposed to "sit in the ante-room of death and not make any fuss until it was your turn".

On the same page, however, Countdown host Nick Hewer disagrees: "Once the body ages... the whole thing sags and it looks horrible. Presumably David is working on the basis that his body is already as saggy as it's ever going to get."

But Grace Dent, in the Independent, says Dimbleby's inking "marked the tipping point where anyone deciding to daub something on their skin permanently... can claim it to be in the least shocking or anarchic".

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Milking the state?

Dent is one of a number of commentators attacking a trial that encourages new mothers in low-income areas to breastfeed by offering them up to £200 in store vouchers.

From the tabloids...

Lady Gaga

Miranda Sawyer writes in the Daily Mirror that before interviewing Lady Gaga she thought the eccentric pop star "would be normal". She writes: "Not normal, as in 'yes, it's me, just whizzing round the supermarket before going home to watch Strictly' normal. But normal, as in 'a person able to have an everyday ­conversation'. I was wrong. Silly me."

She uses her Independent column to describe the breastfeeding lobby as "a bunch of stay-at-home mums who spend their time disseminating guilt and shame to the poor".

Social commentator Debbi Marco, writing in the Express, brands the scheme a "bribe" and a waste of taxpayers' money.

"This trial misses the fundamental problem with breastfeeding which is that it is incredibly difficult, so much so many women struggle to breastfeed beyond the first few weeks regardless of how many shopping vouchers are waved under their noses."

The Sun's agony aunt Deidre Sanders describes herself as a "believer" in breastfeeding.

But she says: "I hate all the anxiety and the pressure that has grown up around the subject." Mothers who find they cannot breastfeed "are not failures, their babies can still thrive", she adds.

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Farming matters

An animal welfare professor is quoted in the Times suggesting that since battery farms were outlawed in the European Union, life for free-range laying hens may not be as good as that for their counterparts in cages.

Prince Charles, right, holding an umbrella in the jungle

Christine Nicol's research contradicts the advice of welfare charities by suggesting birds kept in barns have a higher rate of poor plumage, old fractures, emaciation and signs of stress than those in "enriched cages" with space, a perch and things they can scratch on, the report says.

Meanwhile, the Daily Mail is among those papers recording how Prince Charles speaks out about supermarkets' treatment of Britain's farmers, in an editorial as guest editor of Country Life magazine.

"It cannot be right that a typical hill farmer earns just £12,600, with some surviving on as little as £8,000 a year, whilst the big retailers do so much better out of the deal, having taken none of the risk," the prince writes.

The Mail also reports how Charles had an unfortunate day in the jungle in India, where he had to tramp through mud in his white suede shoes. And, as the Mirror notes, he fared little better when trying to spot elephants - blaming the presence of hundreds of security personnel providing his security for ruining his chances of seeing the wild animals.

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Hairdresser or husband?

Hairdressers are in the news, with the Daily Mail reporting the results of a study by an internet voucher firm that the average British woman "keeps" her stylist for longer than she stays married to her husband.

David Bowie

And the Express rounds up the views of various well-coiffured celebrities and columnists on the issue, with novelist Kathy Lette declaring: "Your hairdresser is all the things a husband isn't: continually pleasant, constantly available, full of flattery and a devoted confidant." TV presenter Richard Madeley, meanwhile, says that if his hairdresser - Susan - was unavailable when he needed her, he "would be thrown", adding: "I wouldn't know what to do."

Meanwhile, the Mirror uses stylist Nicky Clarke's BBC Four programme Bouffants, Beehives and Bobs: The Hairstyles That Shaped Britain to run through its favourite "dos" from down the years.

It picks 19, taking in Twiggy's Eton Crop, Dusty Springfield's Beehive, David Bowie's Mullet and Jennifer Aniston's Rachel.

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Chelsea transfer news
Composite image of John Terry and Alan Titchmarsh

On the back pages, Sun Sport claims an exclusive with a report that former Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini wants to sign Chelsea stalwart John Terry for Turkish side Galatasaray.

But the Telegraph is more interested in another transfer of a long-serving star away from Chelsea, to the extent it makes the front page. Presenter Alan Titchmarsh will be absent from the BBC's Chelsea Flower Show coverage for the first time in 30 years, it says.

But while the Times suggests he may have been "pruned", the Telegraph quotes a corporation spokesman as saying it was "entirely his decision" to leave.

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