Newspaper headlines: Health tax idea and ministers on the spot over Brexit

Theresa May with her cabinet Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Theresa May with her cabinet

A number of the Sunday papers look forward to a cabinet "awayday" on 31 August when Theresa May is expected to ask each of her ministers how they plan to make Brexit work for Britain.

The Mail on Sunday calls it a "Chequers showdown to 'bang heads over Brexit'".

According to the Sunday Times the prime minister will "umpire" a clash between Chancellor Philip Hammond and other ministers over whether Britain should leave the EU single market as well as the EU itself.

"A Whitehall turf war has broken out, with the Treasury muscling in on Brexit negotiations - to the irritation of David Davis and Liam Fox, the ministers appointed to lead the planning," says the paper.

The Sunday Telegraph returns several times to "concerns that civil servants are trying to frustrate Britain's departure from the European Union".

It carries a Yes Prime Minister-themed cartoon by Bob, in which Sir Humphrey Appleby advises PM Jim Hacker that "the last thing we want to do is rush" - while a vast crowd outside the window waves banners saying "Leave Now" and "Get On With It".

Image copyright PA


  • The collapse of a footbridge on the M20 causing huge jams makes a handy starting point of several reports on bank holiday weekend travel, some with headlines such as "car-nage" and "carmageddon"
  • The Mail quotes driver Lucy Fennings as saying "We were careering across the road trying to avoid hitting the other cars which were also desperately trying to get out of the way. It was mayhem."
  • Chris Alchin is quoted in the Sun: "It looked like a normal crash, but as we passed and saw the bridge the horror of what had happened set in."
  • Motorists caught in the tailbacks spent hours waiting to move before being diverted from the scene, says the Sunday Telegraph. Some spent their time sunbathing in deckchairs or hula-hooping, says the Mail.
  • An RAC spokesman says in the Sunday Times: "Questions need to be asked" - particularly about whether the heavy vehicle that hit the bridge was being escorted.

The paper also discounts the view of former civil service chief Lord O'Donnell that, if we take our time, the referendum result will encourage the EU to reform. "Everything EU leaders have done since the referendum contradicts this hope," it says.

"May demands no Brexcuses," says the Sun on Sunday's headline. The paper says her plan "signals that all departments, not just the Three Brexiteers of Boris Johnson, David Davis and Liam Fox, will play a role in leaving."

Writing in the Mail, Migration Watch chairman Lord Green calls for strong curbs on immigration, saying that retaking control of immigration by the Brexit vote will be "worthless" unless migrant numbers are cut.

Eye-catching headlines

  • Don't miss your drill! Soldiers told they face a week in jail if they don't turn up to dental appointments. (Mail on Sunday)
  • Snoring? It's the traffic's fault Heavy snoring at night and intense sleepiness during the day are strongly linked to traffic pollution, scientists have found. (Sunday Times)
  • Secretary who saved The Third Man from the bin What may be the greatest British film ever might not have been made without secretary Joyce Hedger's summary of Graham Green's book for director Carol Reed (Sunday Telegraph)
  • Poké in the chokey Inmates in a cushy nick are playing Pokémon Go on smuggled mobile phones (Daily Star)

One aspect of the migration picture is described in the Sun, whose reporters have visited the "Jungle" migrant shanty-town in Calais. It reports that in the past year the Jungle "has transformed into a city within a city, complete with its own shops, cafes, even nightclubs".

Often several papers compete in covering the worst facets of the plight of the NHS - but today the Observer takes pride of place with its coverage.

It quotes Conservative ex-minister Dr Dan Poulter who says a plan for a properly-funded and sustainable health and social care system is urgently required - and suggests a health and care tax "perhaps introduced through raising national insurance".

Many people who are fit to go home are forced to stay in hospital because of difficulties arranging their social care, he says.

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionBroadcaster Rachel Shabi and journalist Eva Simpson joined the BBC News Channel to review Sunday's papers.

Following the deaths of a dozen people on beaches around Britain some papers say spending cuts are to blame. The Sunday Express cites fears that there will be more deaths "because cuts have left the coastguard service at breaking point",

The Mail is among papers which say a council rejected calls to put in permanent lifeguards at Camber Sands, where five men drowned last week, despite being advised to by three official reports.

It quotes a council spokesman who says the lifeguard service has been kept under constant review.

The Observer says the beach has been given priority in a national scheme aimed at making high-risk stretches of coastline safer.

Image copyright ITV
Image caption Victoria stars Jenna Coleman and Rufus Sewell

Victorian values

  • Pictures of Jenna Coleman playing the young Queen Victoria in a new ITV drama feature in much of the papers' coverage of the autumn TV schedules.
  • ITV's director of television says in the Telegraph: "It was important for us to get in before Poldark".
  • Aidan Turner, the star of the BBC's Cornish drama which will follow shortly after, says in the Daily Star the serial has reached "a tempestuous, tormented phase" in the lives of Poldark and Demelza.
  • Meanwhile, several of the papers report than an export ban has kept a coronet of Queen Victoria's in the country.
  • The crown, designed by Prince Albert, "is one of the most iconic jewels from a pivotal period," says Culture Minister Matt Hancock in the Express and several other papers.

There is still much coverage of the tragic aftermath of the earthquake which devastated parts of central Italy.

For a Sunday Telegraph writer "perhaps the most poignant image" was that of the small coffin, of an eight-year-old girl who died after she threw herself on top of her little sister to save her when their bedroom ceiling came down.

A note on her coffin from a fireman read: "Ciao, little one, I gave a hand trying to pull you out of that prison of rubble. Sorry we didn't make it in time."

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Max Whitlock

An unpleasant side of the story is highlighted by the Sun, which says looters dressed as firefighters and police are stealing from abandoned homes in the disaster area.

Pictured in various papers is Olympic gold medallist Max Whitlock. The gymnast is shown helping to launch a drive encouraging members of the public to take part is sports and exercise.

In the Sunday Mirror he is "Max Wedlock" with "another golden moment in sight" as he and his fiancee Leah Hickton plan their wedding.

But in the Sunday People he is "Max Whitclock" because he is so much in demand that Ms Hickton claims she had to book time with him through his agent.

Making people click

Love bite horror as teen dies Blood clot 'travelled to brain causing stroke' (Sunday Mirror)

'Longest living human' says he is ready for death at 145 (Sunday Telegraph)

Fight for 'ill' Rolf Harris prison move (Daily Star)

British crimewave hits America as edgy dramas make cult TV (Observer)