Can you crack the corona conundrums? 21 familiar lockdown activities

Can you crack the corona conundrums? This puzzle of pictures reveals 21 activities that are all too familiar under lockdown

  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

Test your whits against the Daily Mail’s coronavirus conundrums. How many of these 21 picture puzzles can you crack?


1. Try to cut one’s own hair (Try 2 cut ones own hare)

2. Praise the Queen’s Speech (Prays the queens peach)

3. Ring an isolated neighbour (Ring an eye sole A ted neigh bear)

4. Learn to play the accordion (Learn 2 play the A core D hen)

5. Wait for the pubs to open (Weight 4 the pubs 2 O pen)

6. Pump iron for exercise (Pump iron 4 X R size)

7. Meet parents on a laptop (Meat pear ants honour lap top)

8. Keep six feet away from anyone (Keep six feet A weigh from N E 1)

9. Open a bottle of St Emilion (O pen a bottle o Santa million)

10. Paint over cracks in the ceiling (Paint over quacks in the seal ing)

11. Sewing PPE for the NHS (Sew wing pea pea E 4 hen A chess)

12. Paint rainbows (Paint rain bows)

13. Train kids in the kitchen (Train kids in the kit chin)

14. Spring clean the whole house (Spring clean the hole house)

15. Birdwatch from a window (Bird watch from a wind O)

16. Play Monopoly all night (Play Mon O polly all knight)

17. Try to be a paperback writer (Try to bee a paper back right hare)

18. Walk a dog in the afternoon (Wall car dog in the after noon)

19. Love a glass of Chianti (Love a glass of key ant tea)

20. Look for the jigsaw’s last piece (Look 4 the jig saws last peace)

21. Dream up a new cocktail (Dream up a gnu cock tail) 

Source: Read Full Article

Tui customers can now apply for cash refunds for cancelled holidays as airline apologies for delays

HUNDREDS of thousands of Tui customers can now apply for cash refunds for cancelled holidays.

The airline apologised to customers for not processing refunds quick enough after it was forced to cancel 900,000 holidays due to coronavirus.

Frustrated customers have been unable to contact Tui's customer service staff in order to get a refund or make amendments to their holiday plans, with many being offered vouchers instead.

While thousands of customers were also asked to keep paying for holidays that may be cancelled or face losing hundreds of pounds worth of deposits.

But Tui has now created a page on its website for customers who have cancelled holidays booked before June 11 to claim a cash refund automatically.

They can also choose to rebook with a 20 per cent discount or take a "credit" option to book at a later date.

While those who have holidays booked until August 31 are able to make changes free of charge until June 30.

Tui boss Andrew Flintham said: “We know we haven’t got it right; we’re doing everything we can to make things better and we’re sorry for the frustration felt by our customers.

"Taking people on incredible holidays is what we do best, but we’ve struggled to get the right systems in place to support our customers now that we can’t take them on holiday, especially at the speed of change we’ve faced in recent weeks."

Travel: What are your rights to a refund?

MILLIONS of Brits have had holiday plans cancelled.

Firstly, speak to your airline or holiday firm about a refund or rearranging your plans.

You are entitled to a refund if they've cancelled your holiday but many have large delays or may offer vouchers instead.

As the FCO is advising against all but essential international travel, you may also be covered by your travel insurance if TUI is not helping you.

Keep in mind the travel insurance must have been taken out before the FCO advice changed, otherwise you won't be covered.

If you don't have travel insurance, you may be able to claim your money back through your credit or debit card provider.

Credit card payments between £100 and £30,000 are covered under Section 75 of the Consumer Rights Act.

To start a claim, you need to contact your credit card provider directly – Which? has a free tool that can help you do this.

“We recognise the situation around travel this summer remains unclear and there’s still a lot of uncertainty around when we will all be able to travel again, and some customers may not wish to pay a final balance with so many unknowns."

“We’d like to sincerely apologise to our customers impacted by delays to refunds and the length of time it’s taken.

"We really look forward to taking people on holiday again as soon as we’re able to do."

Tui has cancelled holidays up until June 11, with cruises put on hold until at least July.

Although, the travel firm hopes to restart this summer – despite MPs claiming a trip abroad is unlikely.

The boss of Visit Britain today claimed that Brits should be given cash to spend their holidays in the UK this summer.

Travellers face 14 day quarantine checks and £1,000 fines when they return from abroad.

Source: Read Full Article

Where can I buy a ‘Thank You NHS’ rainbow t-shirt loved by celebs including Cheryl and Laura Whitmore?

STARS have been sharing their support for those on the health service's frontline by wearing special T-Shirts.

One of the most popular among celebrities has been the 'Thank You NHS' rainbow top – but where can you get your hands on your own?

  • Adult Thank You NHS T-Shirt, £20, Kindred – buy here

Famous faces, including Cheryl, Laura Whitmore and Claudia Winkleman, have been slipping on the charity garment, and showing off on Instagram how they're proudly wearing it around the house in lockdown.

The white organic unisex T-Shirt can be bought from website Kindred – and costs £20.

It is produced in collaboration with the #ClapForOurCarers movement, and features a colourful rainbow, plus the words 'Thank You'.

However, not only does the piece show sartorial support for doctors, nurses and other support staff, but it raises money to directly help them too.


Fancy yourself as a beauty junkie? Or longing for some time in the sun? If the answer to either of those is a yes, vote in our beauty awards now!

We’re giving away £14,000 worth of amazing prizes – including a once in a lifetime adventure holiday to Peru, 4 Dyson Supersonic Hairdryers, the entire Fabulous Beauty Awards shortlist worth over £3,800 and a Champney’s overnight spa break for two.

You can vote for your fave beauty products and enter the prize draws as many times as you like before 11.59pm on June 7, 2020. 

Every single penny of the tops go to NHS Charities Together – the same organisation given a boost by Captain Tom Moore's fundraising efforts.

The T-Shirt comes in multiple adult sizes – from XS right up to 5XL.

What's more, there are also £15 options for kids, aged between three and 12 years old.

They have also recently launched a tweak on the original, a 'Thank You NHS Heart' T-Shirt, for the same price.

This design comes in a baby onesie, costing £15 – so the whole family really can get involved.

Revealing the story behind the inspirational tee, they explained: "Kindred was created with one aim: to raise the maximum amount of money for global charities through everyday purchases.

"The UK has seen amazing unity through the Clap For Our Carers campaign, and we wanted to do our bit to support our incredible NHS at a time when it is easy to feel a little helpless.

"Order this organic cotton charity T-Shirt and do your bit for our wonderful NHS staff while staying safe at home.

"All Kindred's proceeds from the sale of this T-Shirt go directly to NHS Charities Together."

In other fashion news, we told you how to choose summer shorts for your body type.

We also revealed the most lavish celebrity wardrobes – from Mariah Carey to Khloe Kardashian.

And Kate Ferdinand has launched a new collection at Very beginning at £18.

Source: Read Full Article

Trial of swabs than can tell if you have Covid-19 in 20 minutes

Government will trial antigen swabs than can tell if someone has coronavirus in 20-minutes as Matt Hancock says he has ordered over 10million antibody tests but can’t guarantee ‘they will show if people are immune’

  • The Covid-19 LAMP test is made in the UK and can give results in 20 minutes
  • A pilot study in Hampshire of 4,000 people will test its effectiveness 
  • Antigen test looks for current signs of the virus when someone has symptoms 
  • Meanwhile Matt Hancock revealed 10million antibody tests have been secured 
  • Frontline NHS and care workers to be offered the tests first from next week
  • Tests scour the blood for antibodies, produced by body in response to COVID-19
  • Presumed that presence of antibodies provides degree of immunity to the virus
  • But experts say positive tests should not be seen as a ‘green light’ to reduce PPE
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

Testing efforts have been ramped up as the Government has announced it will trial antigen swabs than can tell if someone has coronavirus ‘on the spot’, and 10million antibody tests have been ordered.  

Around 4,000 patients in a pilot study in Hampshire will be the first to try the new antigen test, which looks for signs of current coronavirus infection.

The Covid-19 LAMP assay test, developed by UK-based manufacturer Optigene, can turn around results within 20 minutes.

It means people don’t have to wait days to find out if they can go back to work or self isolate.

Current PCR tests take 48-72 hours to produce a result because they need to be sent to a laboratory. But the LAMP test can be processed in a GP surgery, care home or hospital.  

Health Secretary Matt Hancock revealed the trial while also confirming 10million antibody tests had been ordered at the daily Downing Street briefing.    

NHS and care home staff will be the first to get the free COVID-19 antibody test, which detect if someone has ever been infected with the disease, from next week. 

Number 10 agreed a deal to buy kits from Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche and US-based healthcare company Abbott.  

With most viral infections, the presence of antibodies reduces or removes the risk of reinfection.

But this has not yet been proven with coronavirus and there is no guarantee they will show people are immune.

Experts say positive tests should not simply be seen as a ‘green light’ to reduce PPE or other protections for staff.

The Roche test, called Elecsys (pictured), produces results in a laboratory and is said to be 100 per cent accurate


Unlike tests to diagnose diseases, antibody tests show who has been infected and recovered.

The body makes antibodies in response to many illnesses and infections, including other coronaviruses. New blood tests are being developed to identify antibodies unique to SARS-CoV-2, the official name of the new coronavirus.

The tests look for two kinds of antibodies: immunoglobulin M (IgM) and G (IgG). The body quickly produces IgM antibodies for its initial attack against infections. It makes IgG antibodies more slowly and retains them longer; IgG antibodies suggest possible immunity. 


Antibody tests can help calculate what portion of the population has already been infected, as well as whether infections were mild or severe.

Governments and companies could use antibody tests to determine who would most likely be safe to return to work and public interactions, and whether it is safe to lift stay-at-home orders all at once in some regions or in stages based on infection risk.

People with negative antibody tests or very low antibody levels would likely have higher risk of infection than people with high antibody levels.


While antibodies to many infectious diseases typically confer some level of immunity, whether that is the case with this unique coronavirus is not yet known.

And how strong immunity might be, or how long it might last in people previously infected, is not clear. With some diseases like measles the immunity can be lifelong. With others, immunity can wane over time.

Scientists cannot know with certainty that reinfection is not possible until further research.

Antibody tests could inform not just lockdown exits, but the best approach to treatments and vaccines.

The Department of Health today announced the study of a new, quicker antigen test that boasts results in just 20-minutes.

The trial of the LAMP (loop-mediated isothermal amplification) test began in Hampshire today after being proven effective in clinical settings.    

In contrast to the widely used PCR tests, which need be processed at different temperatures, the LAMP swab test does not require a change in temperature to detect results.

It means it can be processed on site – and will be first trialled at a number of A&E departments, GP coronavirus testing hubs and care homes across Hampshire.

Receiving results quickly and on site will mean people with symptoms will be given immediate certainty as to whether or not they have the virus. 

Up to 4,000 people of all ages and backgrounds will participate in the pilot, which will run for up to six weeks. It will be led by Hampshire Hospitals NHS Trust. 

Following a successful clinical trial, the rapid test will then be rolled out more widely if the pilot in Hampshire proves effective. 

Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust chief executive Alex Whitfield said: ‘We are tremendously excited to be able to support the government’s efforts for ever more accessible, faster coronavirus testing.’ 

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: ‘This new test could provide accurate results almost on the spot. 

‘This will enable health and care workers to carry on with their shift or immediately isolate on the same day, and could eventually offer the same benefit to the whole country. 

‘This could change the way that we control COVID-19 across the country, getting those with negative results back into society as quickly as possible.’   

Mr Hancock also revealed today at the daily briefing that antibody testing will soon be underway.

He said: ‘We’ve signed contracts to supply in the coming months over 10 million tests from Roche and Abbott. 

‘From next week we will begin rolling these out in a phased way, at first to health and care staff, patients and residents. 

‘This is an important milestone and it represents further progress in our national testing programme.’ 

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said earlier today: ‘The tests will be free for people who need them, as you would expect. NHS and care workers will be prioritised for the tests.’ 

Hundreds of thousands of frontline health workers will be offered the tests, which detect if someone has ever been infected with the disease.

Priority will be given to frontline hospital staff in coronavirus specific wards, as well as ICU and A&E departments.

These staff members will be monitored by scientists to see whether they fall ill again and paint a clearer picture of the protection antibodies provide.

But it is not clear how they will reach NHS workers or the public in the future. 

Known as the ‘have you had it’ tests, antibody tests reveal whether someone has been infected with COVID-19 in the past and recovered from it.

But it’s still not clear whether this means a person is protected from catching the virus again, therefore some scientists say antibody tests have limited value. 

Dr Claudia Paoloni, president of the Hospital Consultants and Specialists Association, urged caution to those who test positive for antibodies.

She told The Guardian: ‘As we learn more about the role of antibodies, this could open the door to different ways of working and reduce the level of risk to NHS staff by allocating those who have had the virus to care for Covid-19 patients. 

‘But we must be clear that huge uncertainties remain while we do not know the level and length of any immunity which antibodies will offer.

‘The new test’s arrival should not simply be seen as a green light to reduce PPE and other protections for NHS staff who test positive.’

The Roche test, which is called Elecsys, was given the seal of approval by Public Health England on 14 May after scientists at its Porton Down facility evaluated how reliable it was.  

Abbott’s test also looks for antibodies, substances produced by the immune system in response to COVID-19.  

It is believed deals are also being worked up with Welsh company Ortho Clinical Diagnostics which also makes an antibody test given the green light by PHE.

The Welsh firm’s test is the only UK-validated device which is manufactured in Britain. Roche and Abbott both produce their devices overseas, which can cause delays in the supply chain.  

The Roche test, which is called Elecsys, was given the seal of approval by Public Health England on 14 May after scientists at its Porton Down facility evaluated how reliable it was

Roche said the amount of tests it would be able to make each month for the US and countries accepting the CE mark would be in the ‘high double-digit millions’. Pictured: Prime Minister of Bavaria holding the Elecsys test on May 4

According to Roche, their COVID-19 antibody test has ‘a specificity greater than 99.8 per cent and a sensitivity of 100 per cent’ – as long as it is used at least 14 days after someone has developed symptoms. 

The Roche test has a ‘specificity’ of 99.8 per cent, meaning it generates very few ‘false positives’ – when it indicates someone has been infected when they have not.

For every thousand people who take the test only two will be given a false positive result, according to its claim.

Sensitivity is the rate of all positive samples that are truly positive. A rate of 100 per cent suggests very few, potentially zero, will get an inaccurate result – known as a false negative result.

Sensitivity is considered the area authorities can afford to compromise on – not specificity. 

False positives, caused by poor specificity, may lead people to believe they are immune when they’re not, causing their behaviour to become riskier, or to receive treatment that they don’t need. 

The FDA gave the Roche test the green light on May 3, allowing laboratories across the US to use it even though it has yet to be formally approved. 

German officials already signed a deal at the beginning of May to buy five million of the Roche kits every month.

Roche said the amount of tests it would be able to make each month for the US and countries accepting the CE mark would be in the ‘high double-digit millions’.

But neither Roche nor the Government has revealed how much the antibody test will cost to purchase in bulk at this stage. 

It is not designed to give people a result in the comfort of their own home – referred to as the ‘pregnancy test’ style kits.

The test requires blood samples to be taken by trained health professionals, and then it will be processed by machines already used in NHS labs across the country. Medics can get results in just 18 minutes. 

Experts say the fact the test needs to be sent off to a laboratory is a limitation of the test because it could lead to delays in results. 

‘It will be important to understand how widespread this equipment is and how testing could be organised regionally and locally to provide a rapid and high throughput system,’ said Dr Colin Butter, an associate professor and programme leader in bioveterinary science, University of Lincoln. 

The Government’s track record for testing has been abysmal so far. The UK tests fewer people per capita than most European countries.

Experts blame this on PHE’s ‘control freakery’ in reluctance to involve private labs that offered to help process tests. The agency has denied this. 

The three new antibody tests are the first to be ratified as accurate by PHE. The body does not ‘approve’ tests, just evaluate how good they are.    

As well as detecting which healthcare staff have previously been infected, antibody tests are considered key to easing lockdown.

They are able to paint the clearest picture about how widespread COVID-19 is in the community by seeing how many individuals have already had the disease. 

The true size of Britain’s outbreak is a mystery because health chiefs abandoned a mass antigen-testing regime early on in the crisis. 

PHE is conducting a surveillance programme to understand how many of the population have had the virus using their own, high accuracy antibody test operated at their Porton Down science campus. 

Results have not been published yet but suggest that less than 10 per cent of people in the UK have antibodies, with more in London than rural areas.

All three antibody tests approved by ministers are laboratory-based and can take up to a day to produce results. 

No home ‘pregnancy-test’ kits that can be done in the comfort of someone’s own home and without processing by a lab, have yet been approved.

That’s despite promises in March that one would be available and ministers buying millions of pounds worth of commercial tests from overseas.

None of them have met the high accuracy standards set out by PHE after an Oxford University trial found they returned inaccurate results. 

The failure was a significant setback because it had been hoped the antibody tests would be the route out of lockdown. 

However, versions of Abbott’s test have been launched on various websites for a fee of £69 – £100.

Superdrug were the first high-street retailer to launch Abbott’s antibody test for £69, which sold out within hours with Brits eager to find out if they have any kind of immunity.

It is not a ‘home testing’ kit because the blood sample, which a person collects in their home, has to be sent to a laboratory.

But medical giant Abbott, which makes Superdrug’s tests, has insisted that its tests were not intended to be used by people taking their own blood samples. 

Instead, the Illinois-based firm says its tests have only been evaluated to be accurate on blood samples taken by trained healthcare providers directly from patients’ veins.

Commenting on the launch, scientists said they would not buy the tests themselves because the results are meaningless.

Even if the results return as positive, they may be inaccurate and there is no proof the person has immunity and therefore return to work.

The idea of ‘immunity certificates’ has been shelved for now because of this, although No 10 said it was still exploring the idea.       

How accurate is Roche’s newly-approved antibody test and will it show you if you are immune?

Here, MailOnline reveals everything you need to know about Roche’s antibody test, from how accurate it is to how it will be used in the UK.  


The kits are lab-based tests and require blood samples to be taken by trained health professionals. 

The blood sample kit can be processed by machines already used in NHS labs across the country. Medics can get results in just 18 minutes.

Health minister Edward Argar said the tests would mainly be given to NHS and social care workers to start with.

Insiders say it is also likely to play a role in the government’s ‘surveillance’ schemes, which will help track how far the virus has spread in Britain.

Ministers are currently clueless about the true size of Britain’s outbreak because health chiefs abandoned a mass-testing regime early on in the crisis.

One of the current antibody schemes already underway has seen nurses take blood samples from a thousand households.

Early results – not yet published by officials – suggested up to four per cent of Britain has developed antibodies to the coronavirus.  


The Roche test, which is called Elecsys, is simply not designed to give people a result in the comfort of their own home.

Ministers have promised ‘pregnancy-test’ style kits, which would see Brits take their own blood sample and get a result in as little as 10 minutes.

But no DIY test – scientifically called an immunoassay – has yet to be approved by officials despite promises one would be available back in March.

One firm – awarded millions of pounds by the government to produce home-testing kits – hopes to have its product ready by the start of June.

Mologic’s serology test will be available for Britons to purchase online, from retailers such as Boots and Amazon, according to reports. 

It has not yet been approved by the Bedfordshire-based company is in ‘urgent talks’ with ministers to fast-track approval, The Telegraph says.


Roche – which plans to produce millions of the kits each month – has not revealed how much the antibody test will cost to purchase in bulk.  

Britain did, however, pay two Chinese firms around £16million for 2million antibody tests that failed strict accuracy tests – suggesting each kit cost around £8. 

No details of any deals struck between Roche – based in Basel – and other countries have been made public.

This means it is not known whether Britain will pay more or less than other nations desperately seeking the antibody tests as draconian lockdowns are eased. 

Roche – which operates two offices in Britain – has not revealed if it will manufacture the tests in the UK. The firm says it has ‘extensive global manufacturing capabilities’ to meet demand.

Following the announcement today, shares for Roche rose slightly to 44.95, the highest in several weeks, according to Yahoo! Finance


March 25: Professor Sharon Peacock, the director of the national infection service at PHE, told MPs antibody kits would be ready within days.  

But confusion was sparked when chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty told revealed the tests would not be ready to buy online within days.  

March 26: Professor Yvonne Doyle, medical director at PHE, told MPs she expected home antibody tests to be available within a ‘couple of weeks’.

April 1: In the Downing Street press conference, Professor Doyle disputed the claim that PHE was ‘dragging its feet’ in approving antibody tests. 

She said: ‘The important thing about theses antibody tests, this is not a matter of dragging our feet, it’s important that the test is valid, that it does what it says it does.’

April 6: Sir John Bell, one of the Oxford University team evaluating antibody tests for the government, revealed none of them performed well.

April 17: The New York Times reported that Britain was seeking a £16million refund after two antibody tests it had bought from Chinese companies were not accurate enough to be rolled out.

April 21: University of Oxford experts published anonymised results of the nine tests the government had bought – they showed all were deemed too weak to use. 

Their sensitivity – ability to correctly spot people who had had the disease – ranged from 70 per cent to just 55 per cent.

May 3: US regulators gave the ‘game-changing’ antibody test made by Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche the green light.

May 4: German health bosses announce a deal with Roche to buy 3million of its kits in May, as well as 5million per month from June. 

May 13: Public Health England follows suit, approving the test to be used. It was revealed that health chiefs were planning to buy millions.


Officials have yet to come forward with a concrete plan about how the tests will be used, or whether private firms will be able to buy them.

Many companies keen to restart operations want to use antibody testing kits to work out how much of their staff may be immune to the virus. 

Insiders say it is unlikely the Roche tests will be available to purchase privately, at least initially.

This is because officials wouldn’t be able to access the data they desperately need to plot the spread of the virus.

It remains unclear exactly how much the lab-based tests could cost, if and when they can be purchased. 


Roche first announced it was developing the antibody on April 17, revealing it had plans to put it on the market in early May.

At the time, it announced it was working the US health regulator the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for an ’emergency use authorisation’.

The FDA gave it the green light on May 3, allowing laboratories across the US to use it even though it has yet to be formally approved.

Roche also announced that the blood sample kit was also granted the vital ‘CE mark’ that shows it is safe to use within the EU. 

German officials already signed a deal at the beginning of May to buy five million of the Roche kits every month.

Roche said the amount of tests it would be able to make each month for the US and countries accepting the CE mark would be in the ‘high double-digit millions’. 


Sir John Bell, an immunologist at Oxford University involved in evaluating antibody kits for the government, admitted approving tests takes ‘longer than it should’.

He suggested officials wanted to be completely sure that the tests were accurate, telling BBC Radio 4 Today’s programme: ‘I think you have to be a bit cautious.’

Sir John accepted it has ‘taken a week or two longer than it might have’, while other experts have said ‘every day counts’ amid a pandemic.

But he pointed out the failure of DIY antibody tests, which were described as ‘terrific’ and offered hopes of a way out of lockdown – but none turned out to work.  

Professor Paul Hunter, an infectious disease expert at the University of East Anglia, told MailOnline: ‘In the grand scheme of things, 11 days would be nothing.’

But he added that ‘when you are in a situation like this when every day counts, it is indeed concerning’. 


As long as it is used at least 14 days after someone has developed symptoms, it has a 100 per cent sensitivity rate, Roche claims.

Sensitivity is the rate of all positive samples that are truly positive. For example, if a test has an accuracy rate of 99 per cent, it means 99 out of every 100 people who test positive have actually been infected. 

The other one person, however, would have been given an inaccurate result – known as a false negative result.

The Roche test also has a ‘specificity’ of 99.8 per cent, meaning it generates very few ‘false positives’ – when it indicates someone has been infected when they have not. 

For every thousand people who take the test only two will be given a false positive result, according to its claim.

Sensitivity is considered the area authorities can afford to compromise on because testing errors in that area lead to false negatives – people being told they haven’t had the disease when they actually have – which would lead to relatively few consequences for most.

False positives, however, caused by poor specificity, may lead people to believe they are immune when they’re not, causing their behaviour to become riskier, or to receive treatment that they don’t need. 


Roche scientists have managed to develop a test that only picks up the virus that causes COVID-19, scientifically known as SARS-CoV-2.

Previous tests assessed struggled to differentiate COVID-19 antibodies from four other types of human coronaviruses which cause the common cold.

The body makes antibodies in response to many illnesses and infections, including other coronaviruses.  

But independent experts  have also called for transparency over the results, which haven’t been made publicly available. 

Professor Carl Heneghan, from Oxford University, said: ‘Without seeing the study methods and the data it’s impossible to verify these claims of accuracy.’

Professor Sheila Bird, a bio-statistician at Cambridge University, also called on the government to reveal the study design to allow scientists to scrutinise the work.  

Source: Read Full Article

‘World’s strongest baby’ can stand on her own at EIGHT WEEKS – and was holding up her head before she even left hospital

A DAD has been left amazed after his baby daughter learned to stand at eight-weeks-old and she was holding up her head before she even left hospital. 

Tezra Finn-Johnston, 31, and girlfriend Emily Derrick, 23, first noticed their daughter's extraordinary strength when they left hospital five days after birth. 

Lula was born on January 31 and weighed just 5lbs 9oz and was on the 5th percentile – weighing less than five per cent of other babies her age.

But her surprised parents say at that early stage she was able to support her own head. 

Now at 15-weeks-old, Lula is also able to stand unassisted, supporting her own weight.

Tezra and his baby daughter have been watching strongman clips on Youtube and he joked that she was inspired by the videos. 

The first-time dad, from Bristol, said: "When she was about a month old, she was having a tantrum and I tried to sit her on my knee to calm her.

"Instead of sitting down, she just stood on my knee and wouldn't bend her legs.

"She did it a few more times later on in the weeks – eventually I thought well if she can do it while she's annoyed, maybe she can do it when she's happy.

"I tried to hold her and supported her, and she managed to take her own weight.

"Everyone seems to think that it's unusual that she can hold herself up, even just sitting, let alone standing.”

Tezra said he asked his mum how he was like as a baby, and she told neither he nor his three siblings could hold their weight at that age. 

He added: "From everything I'm reading, it should be about nine months to a year that they should be able to support their own weight.

"Pretty much from the day we left hospital she was able to support her head a little bit more than we thought she should be able to.

"She was holding it up for a few seconds and that shouldn't be for a few weeks, but pretty much straight away she was able to do that.”

He said how they watched the Babies documentary on Netflix and on there they said babies are inherently programmed to crawl from birth.

Tezra continued: "So I put her down on the mat and she was trying to crawl a bit.

"Then I put my arm behind her and she was able to push herself up the mat – propelling herself from my hand with her legs.

"She can also do it lying on her front as well.

"We noticed that and she was able to do that first time, so that was impressive.

"I'm just assisting her in doing what she likes doing – the first time we did it, she smiled at me.

"It's like she's showing off – she looks at you and smiles, it's like she's trying to be a big girl!"

Tezra is a big fan of strongman competitions, regularly watching videos from the likes of Eddie Hall – the World’s Strongest Man 2017 –  on Youtube.

Tezra thinks another reason for her strength might be a good muscle-to-weight ratio, based on the fact she was a small baby at birth.

He also said he's always been able to build muscle quickly.

Tezra said: "When I was about 13, I started doing weight training and arm-wrestling – I was able to beat adults.

"Since then I just took up the weights. I just really enjoy being strong – not so much fit, but more the strength side of it.

"I've always been interested in lifting as heavy as I can.

When do babies typically start to stand up and walk?

According to Baby Centre, babies typically start to stand up while holding on to something for a few moments between seven months and a year old.

They may find it challenging and fall back down during this time.

Most babies walk on their own sometime between about 12 months and 17 months, but don't worry if you child takes a little longer, as each baby is different.

"Only recently, since they've had Youtube, I've started watching some of the strong men on their private channels.

"Lula sits on my knee and we both watch that, so I like to think she is training herself.”

Baby Lula isn't able to walk yet, but the parents are fearing her first step might be closer than they think.

Postwoman Emily said: "When I give her rattles and stuff to play with, she doesn't seem young enough to want them.

"She just seems a lot older than she actually is. I'm just like, 'oh don't grow up yet!'"

We shared how an adorable baby girl was born so hairy it even showed up on her ULTRASOUND.

We also reported on little Junior Cox-Noon – whose bulging barnet led to his mum saying it now takes her two-hours to do the weekly shop because people stop to say hello.

Source: Read Full Article

Summer holidays to Europe CAN happen if they are 'done safely' says top EU politician

A SUMMER holiday in Europe can go ahead this year as long as it is "done safely", a top European politician has advised.

European Commission vice president Margrethe Vestager said she hoped Britons could travel abroad for a break in July and August, despite previous fears that holidays may not happen.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

Asked about the prospect of Britons travelling to Europe for a vacation, Ms Vestager told BBC Radio 4's World At One programme: "I would hope so.

"I think that there's discussion over it at every dinner table in Europe and probably also in the UK.

"We really need a break from this. Can we go as we planned, or will we have to stay within the borders of our home country?

"We think that it can be done safely."

She also said that she is positive it can be done following the opening of other borders, adding: "And I think it's a very good sign that Germany said yesterday (Wednesday) that they will open their borders towards France and Austria."

Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania hope to open their borders to one another by the end of the week as well.

Her comments follow a number of proposals put forward by the European Commission in an attempt to restart the tourism industry in time for the summer holidays, including targeted restrictions replacing a general ban on travel, and internal border checks slowly lifted as the health situation improves.

However, whether this will include the UK too is still to be decided – with the country having the highest coronavirus death rates in Europe.

Not only that, but the UK is also enforcing 14-day quarantines on any incoming arrivals, including Brits returning from a holiday abroad.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock warned on Tuesday that people were unlikely to be able to go on foreign holidays this summer.

On Tuesday, asked whether "summer was cancelled", Mr Hancock told ITV's This Morning: "I think that's likely to be the case."

He added: "It is unlikely that big, lavish international holidays are going to be possible for this summer.

"I just think that's a reality of life."

This is in spite of airlines resuming their schedules in the upcoming months – Wizz Air has already launched limited flights to Europe, and Ryanair plans to restore 40 per cent of its flights from July.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said yesterday that Brits could technically book a holiday but they were gambling on the travel advice changing in the coming months.

He told the BBC: "If you are booking it then you are clearly, by the very nature, taking a chance on where the direction of this virus goes and therefore where the travel advice is in the future."

The Costa del Sol has practically given up on the idea of attracting British tourists this year, with Andalucia's Regional Tourism Minister Juan Marin admitting the international market was “effectively dead” this summer.


Don't miss the latest news and figures – and essential advice for you and your family.

To receive The Sun’s Coronavirus newsletter in your inbox every tea time, sign up here.

To follow us on Facebook, simply ‘Like’ our Coronavirus page.

Get Britain’s best-selling newspaper delivered to your smartphone or tablet each day – find out more.

Source: Read Full Article

Best friends can play together thanks to mum adding a Perspex window to fence

A trio of toddler friends have been able to play together once again thanks to their mum’s genius idea to add a Perspex window to their shared garden fence.

Siblings Arlo, three, and Arabella Devonport, two, were missing their friend Leo, three, who lives next door, since lockdown came into place.

Mum Amy Vickers, 27, came up with the idea of adding a window to the fence between their gardens in Wakefield, Yorkshire.

Thankfully Leo’s mum Becca was on board and the parents set to work.

After measuring the fence and ordering a Perspex panel on Ebay, Amy and Becca cut into the fence with a circular saw, drilled some holes, and screwed in the window so it would remain safely in place.

The kids are now able to play together and wave hello without coming into close contact.

They can even draw pictures for each other on the glass and play noughts and crosses with wipe-away pens.

Amy, a support worker, who lives with partner Danny, said: ‘Arlo and Arabella have been finding it hard not seeing anyone during lockdown.

‘It got to the point where they were climbing on top of the rabbit cage that we have next to the fence so they could see over it into the neighbour’s garden which is clearly dangerous.

‘Instead of them climbing up, we decided to make them a little window so they would be able to stand there and see their friend next door.

‘At least now the children can see each other and chat through the window.

‘We also bought wipe board markers so they now draw pictures on it and we’ve been teaching them to play naughts and crosses on it as well.

‘The kids are at the window all day every day when we are at home so I guess they love it!’

Have you got crafty with a DIY project in lockdown? Get in touch to share it by emailing [email protected]

Oh, and share your stories of lockdown in the comments section below. We’d love to hear from you.

Source: Read Full Article

Can I report abuse during coronavirus shutdown?

Fox Business Flash top headlines for May 5

Fox Business Flash top headlines are here. Check out what’s clicking on

Get all the latest news on coronavirus and more delivered daily to your inbox. Sign up here.

Continue Reading Below

The novel coronavirus pandemic has upended most aspects of everyday life for people nationwide. It has caused limitations on what people can do, and, in some cases, where they can go.

But COVID-19 should not stop any person experiencing abuse from going to the authorities.

“An abuser will use anything in their toolbox to exert their power and control, and COVID-19 is one of those tools,” said Crystal Justice, who oversees development at the National Domestic Violence Hotline, a 24/7 national hotline in the United States.


The National Domestic Violence Hotline warns that abusers can tailor circumstances surrounding the virus to their advantage, such as threatening to withhold hand sanitizer, insurance cards or other equipment and sharing false information to cause fear.

The hotline encourages victims to take care of themselves, create safety plans and ask for help.



Anyone who is the victim of domestic abuse can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline 24/7 at 1-800-799-7233. Those unable to safely speak can text LOVEIS to 22522 or visit

Meanwhile, the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline has reported “a significant spike in the need for our services” in an April 1 blog post announcing the beginning of Child Abuse Prevention Month.


“Anyone can reach our trained counselors round the clock,” said founder and CEO Sara O’Meara. “Sharing our number helps save lives. We are only a call, text or online chat away — all simply by reaching out to Childhelp’s 1‑800­‑4­‑A‑CHILD hotline.”


Anyone looking to report this can also send a text message to 1-800-422-4453 or visit the Childhelp Hotline here.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Read Full Article

When and where you can watch Million Dollar Listing LA Season 12

Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles is arguably the swankiest edition of the entire Million Dollar Listing franchise. Taking place, as it does, amidst the inimitably drool-worthy real estate of the greater Los Angeles area the show, the show has dominated the airwaves for over a decade, having premiered all the way back in 2006, and is utterly irresistible to anyone with even a passing interest in property.

Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles is due back for a 12th season any day now. But, with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic affecting everything slated for release in the next few months (even the Kardashians had to film while social distancing and wearing masks), it’s difficult to know exactly when to expect our favourite real estate agents back on our screens.

Million Dollar Listing LA's 12th season will bring the drama

An official report by Bravo’s Daily Dish notes there’s plenty of drama to look forward to when Josh Flagg, Josh Altman, Tracy Tutor, James Harris, and David Parnes return for another go-round. Aside from the usual trials and tribulations associated with the cut-throat L.A. property market, they’ll be contending with the aftermath of the California wildfires, as well as their own fiery personality clashes.

It won’t just be the usual L.A. group this time either, as Million Dollar Listing New York‘s own Fredrik Eklund is scheduled to make an appearance (the exact nature of his involvement remains tantalizingly unclear). Expect some tension between Eklund and some of the west coast agents, although the two Joshes have apparently settled their differences, so things may be calmer within the group itself. Originally, Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles was scheduled to return on May 5th, but the date has, obviously, been pushed back.

Million Dollar Listing LA is returning very shortly to Bravo

Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles‘ popularity is rooted in both the high-stakes property market in which most of its drama unfolds, as well as the eccentric and likeable agents the series follows within it, from energetic Altman to suave Englishman Harris. The series gives a glimpse into one of the most expensive property markets in the world, providing an insight into how the rich and famous find the most luxurious places to live. It also indicates the level of skill required to sell to high-end clients, a process just as addictive as purchasing properties itself.

As noted by The Cinemaholic, the previous season premiered in January 2019, ending in March, so Season 12 is coming to us a bit later than it typically would. However, Bravo has confirmed Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles will return to our screens on June 16, 2020, so there isn’t too much longer to wait.

Source: Read Full Article

Here Is Exactly When You Can Watch Hollywood on Netflix

If you’re scouring the Internet to find your next binge-worthy obsession, look no further. Hollywood, a new limited series about the power dynamics at play during the Golden Age, premieres Friday, May 1, at 3 p.m. EST, on Netflix.

The brains behind the seven-episode series are Ian Brennan and Ryan Murphy (Murphy also gave us television gems like Glee, American Horror Story, and Scream Queens). The cast is also unsurprisingly star-studded, featuring David Corenswet, Darren Criss, Jeremy Pope, Laura Harrier, Patti LuPone, and more.

Hollywood follows the lives of aspiring actors and filmmakers in the post-World War II era as they try to stamp out a name for themselves in Tinseltown, unearthing and analyzing the intersections between power, race, gender, and sexuality.

Partially inspired by real people, the series also portrays Old Hollywood in newly imagined ways. “What we’re dealing with here is a complete look at an idea of buried history in Hollywood. The idea of people not being able to be who they were, and to show their best side of who they were,” Murphy told Vanity Fair. “What if we went back and sort of did a revisionist look, and created an alternative universe?”

View this post on Instagram

The one’s for the dreamers. HOLLYWOOD. This Friday.

A post shared by HOLLYWOOD (@hollywoodnetflix) on

Janet Mock, an executive producer and director of Hollywood, further elaborates on the show’s “aspirational tale of what ifs.”

“What if a band of outsiders were given a chance to tell their own story?” she said in a statement. “What if the person with greenlight power was a woman? The screenwriter a black man? What if the heroine was a woman of color? The matinee idol openly gay? And what if they were all invited into the room where the decisions are made, entering fully and unapologetically themselves to leave victorious and vaunted, their place in history cemented? Hollywood is a love letter to our little industry town where dreamers dwell, stars are born and magic transcends reality.”

If you don’t already have a Netflix subscription, sign up here. Rates vary from $9 a month for the basic plan to $16 for the premium plan.

Source: Read Full Article