Tuesday morning UK news briefing: Misleading isolation advice


Meanwhile, it has emerged that Boris Johnson was one of more than 100 people invited to a “bring your own booze” staff party in the Downing Street garden at the height of the 2020 lockdown.

An email sent by the civil servant who runs the Prime Minister’s private office was leaked, placing Mr Johnson under renewed pressure. 

The Metropolitan Police confirmed it was “in touch with the Cabinet Office” over the gathering, prompting speculation it could open a formal investigation into an alleged breach of lockdown rules. View the email. In other news:

Buy socks or do star jumps, energy firm suggests

One of the UK’s largest energy companies has told customers facing price increases to eat porridge or buy socks made of merino wool so they can keep costs down while staying warm. SSE Energy Services, a division of Ovo, also suggested customers do a “few star jumps” and “have a cuddle with pets or loved one” to keep cosy during the winter months. The advice is part of a long-list of energy saving tips the company has emailed to customers and published on its website amid a gas price crisis gripping the UK and Europe, which is expected to send average household bills climbing 56pc to £2,000 or more in April. Campaigners said some of the advice struck the wrong tone given the crisis.

What 10 days of healthy living does to your body

January is when millions of us set health goals, but making a resolution is not the same as keeping it. And just 10 days into the new year (Jan 1 does not count), your resolve might be waning. But before you abandon your health kick, take a look at the benefits achieved by foregoing alcohol, sugar, meat and empty carbs. Boudicca Fox-Leonard asked the experts what measurable effects might be seen in just 10 days.

Daily dose of Matt

View Matt‘s latest cartoon as he finds humour in the Novak Djokovic visa saga.

Also in the news: Today’s other headlines

Tennis becomes gripping soap opera | A day that began with a dry procedural debate in a Melbourne courtroom culminated in anarchy on the stately city’s streets, as hundreds of Novak Djokovic’s Serbian supporters exploded in anger at the Australian government’s continued efforts to throw their hero out. Chief Sports Writer Oliver Brown says never did anyone in the genteel world of tennis imagine their sport could spark such toxicity, with Victoria police firing pepper spray at protesters. And Mark Higge – Australia’s ex-ambassador to the EU – writes that the affair exposes the country’s Covid policy as hysterical and paranoid.

Around the world: Berlusconi’s move for presidency

He may be infamous for his “bunga bunga” showgirl shenanigans and still engulfed in legal battles, but Silvio Berlusconi is launching a concerted effort this week to become Italy’s next president – promising Italians political stability if he is picked. Mr Berlusconi is today expected to kick-start his campaign to become Italy’s next head of state, pledging to Italians that if they put him in the top job, then the highly respected Mario Draghi can remain as prime minister. Reporting from Rome, Nick Squires explains why that scenario would appeal to many Italians.


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