Form Time News

Current BBC News stories to read and discuss with your tutor group.

Thursday
9th December 2021

Around the world

Ghislaine Maxwell: Ex-boyfriend of Maxwell accuser backs up statement

The accuser, known in court as Carolyn, alleged she had sex with Jeffrey Epstein from age 14 to 18.

Hong Kong: Jimmy Lai convicted for taking part in Tiananmen vigil

Jimmy Lai and other prominent activists were convicted for taking part in the unauthorised event.

In the UK

Covid: England braces for Plan B rule changes amid Omicron fears

The new measures, some of which start from Friday, include Covid passes and tougher mask rules.

Downing Street party: Police will not investigate due to 'lack of evidence'

The prime minister has come under pressure over a No 10 event that took place amid Covid restrictions.

Politics

Downing Street party: Police will not investigate due to 'lack of evidence'

The prime minister has come under pressure over a No 10 event that took place amid Covid restrictions.

Covid: England braces for Plan B rule changes amid Omicron fears

The new measures, some of which start from Friday, include Covid passes and tougher mask rules.

Education

Big rise in students asking for hardship cash

Requests for hardship funds doubled in 25% of English universities in the second and third lockdowns.

Education department chief admits December staff party

Civil servant confirms there was a party at Department for Education offices last December amid lockdown.

Health

Covid: England braces for Plan B rule changes amid Omicron fears

The new measures, some of which start from Friday, include Covid passes and tougher mask rules.

Covid: Omicron hospital admissions could reach 1,000 a day - scientific advisers

The BBC has seen minutes of a meeting of scientific advisers which warn of NHS pressure from Omicron.

Business

Omicron: How will Plan B affect the economy?

Nightclubs, restaurants and shops could be hit by new Covid curbs, but many firms are well placed to cope.

Covid passports 'devastating' for nightclubs

An industry body says nightclubs and bars should not be "thrown under the bus" by the government.

Science

UK chief vet warns avian flu at 'phenomenal level' in UK

The risk to humans is low but diseased birds should not be touched, officials say.

Fish ‘whoops and growls’ recorded on restored reef

Recordings of fish 'whooping, croaking and growling' reveal reef coming back to life, scientists say.

Technology

'Euros' is most googled term of 2021 in UK

The three most searched for terms on Google UK this year were football-related.

UK to phase out 2G and 3G by 2033

The UK's five largest mobile networks have agreed to the timeframe, with some aiming to phase out before.

Entertainment

Robbie Shakespeare, influential Sly and Robbie bassist, dies aged 68

The acclaimed Sly and Robbie bassist is credited with revolutionising the sound of reggae and dancehall.

Robin Robin: How Gillian Anderson found her inner feline

The actress on the challenges of voicing a menacing cat in the Aardman short Robin Robin.