News Daily: Petrol car ban 'should be sooner', and bank closures

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Speed up petrol and diesel car ban, say MPs

The government wants to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2040, in an effort to reduce pollution. But MPs say the plan isn't ambitious enough, and that the change must come eight years earlier.

The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy committee argues that current policy is "vague and unambitious". Its report also criticises reductions to subsidies for electric cars (which the industry has condemned) and calls for more charging points to be set up.

Some European countries, including Denmark, Germany and the Irish Republic, are planning to end sales of new petrol and diesel cars from 2030, 10 years ahead of the UK. But the government says it's aiming to make the UK "the best place in the world" to own an electric vehicle. The AA looks at which countries have the most.

Have you still got a local bank?

Almost 6,000 bank and building society branches have closed since 2010, according to the Office for National Statistics. And analysis by the BBC finds that about 13 million adults in the UK now live in areas where at least half of the branches have gone. "Bank closures have just ripped the heart out of the town," says Karen Doyle, who runs a bakery in Sowerby Bridge, West Yorkshire, where there are none left. Separate figures show that the number of free-to-use cash machines is falling too.

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Big C podcast host wins posthumous award

The BBC podcast You, Me and The Big C has won a major award from the Radio Academy. The announcement comes less than two months after co-presenter Rachael Bland died from breast cancer, aged 40. Co-host Deborah James wrote on Instagram: "I'm beyond proud and I know Rach is too."

Harry and Meghan go barefoot on Bondi Beach

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's first official overseas trip together continues. The couple went barefoot and donned garlands as they met surfers on Sydney's Bondi Beach and discussed mental health issues with community workers. The Invictus Games for injured, wounded and sick service personnel, which Prince Harry founded, starts on Saturday in Sydney.

I travelled 4,000 miles to find my dad

By Mim Shaikh

I always had a nagging feeling that something in my life was unresolved. Nobody had seen my dad for 26 years. All I had were three decades-old photos, the year of his marriage to my mum, and his name from my birth certificate. The idea of trying to find a man I knew so little about seemed almost inconceivable.

I was afraid of the emotional impact of discovering he was dead, or that he didn't want to see me, or of simply not finding him. And I was angry with him.

Read the full article

What the papers say

There's plenty of reaction to the possibility of the Brexit transition period being extended. The Daily Telegraph says the suggestion leaves Theresa May isolated from Conservative MPs and some of her cabinet, but the Financial Times says the PM's "gambit" created a more conciliatory atmosphere at the EU summit in Brussels this week. However, the i reports that a "no-deal" scenario with the EU "looms". Elsewhere, the Daily Express says an "NHS lottery" has denied a World War Two veteran access to a diabetes monitor. And the Daily Star decries the decision by Kleenex to change the name of its "mansize" tissues to something more gender-neutral.

Daily digest

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Jo Brand's pearls of wisdom

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16:30 Theresa May gives a Brexit briefing in a phone call to 150 chief executives.

17:30 The UK premiere of Can You Ever Forgive Me?, starring Melissa McCarthy and Richard E Grant, takes place at Leicester Square, London.

On this day

1987 The world's stock markets, including the UK's, suffer huge losses after shares on Wall Street fall in a wave of panic selling.

From elsewhere

Sophie is 16 in America. Here's what scares her (Washington Post)

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Painted wolves, struggling to survive, find a new food (National Geographic)

Oxford interview questions explained (Oxford University)

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