Newspaper headlines: £500 Covid payment and flood devastation

By BBC News
Staff

Published
image copyrightGetty Images

"Covid Cashpoint" is how the Daily Mail describes the plan to give everyone in England who tests positive for coronavirus £500 so they can afford to self-isolate.

Government sources tell the paper that it's a "long way" from being agreed and has "not been within a million miles" of the prime minister.

But the Guardian - which broke the story - says the proposal is the Department of Health's preferred way of improving compliance.

It adds that Cabinet Office polling shows just 17% people with symptoms of the virus actually get a test, fearing a positive result could stop them working.

Meanwhile, plans to stop all foreign travellers entering the UK are reportedly back on the table as the government tries to prevent more variants of coronavirus entering the country.

The Daily Telegraph says several ministers are in favour of the idea, including the home secretary, Priti Patel - who it emerged this week had called for such a ban at the start of the pandemic.

Writing on the Spectator website, James Forsyth says "there's a growing sense in Westminster" that closing the borders might be a "price worth paying", even though it would be "devastating" for tourism.

The paper says Rishi Sunak has warned backbenchers that demands for extra public spending could force cuts elsewhere, or tax rises. The FT suggests that his comments are aimed at Tory backbenchers who want a temporary uplift in universal credit payments to be extended.

Several of the front pages show the damage caused by Storm Christoph.

image copyrightPA Media

The Metro pictures residents and staff leaving their flood-hit care home in the Cheshire town of Northwich by dinghy, while the Daily Mirror shows roads and gardens in nearby Warrington submerged under murky water.

"To lose a home to flooding in the midst of a pandemic", it says, "must feel like one of the cruellest twists of fate".

According to the Times, the Japanese government has privately concluded that the delayed Tokyo Olympics will have to be cancelled.

image copyrightPA Media

A senior member of the country's ruling coalition believes it's "too difficult" to stage the Games when Covid-19 cases are surging again around the world - although "no-one wants to be the first to say so".

The report contradicts comments made on Thursday by the head of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, who said there was "no reason whatsoever" to believe the Olympics would not start as planned in July. A Japanese government spokesman has also denied the story.

The research, led by Newcastle University, found that molecular changes in people with eczema and psoriasis meant immune cells in their skin became overactive, causing inflammation and irritation. It is hoped the discovery could lead to treatments for both diseases in as little as five years.

The 20ft long bay in Knightsbridge, central London, comes with a gate to deter vandals, a garage porter and CCTV - and has gone on the market for £350,000 the price of a four-bedroom house in Halifax.