30/06/2010

Other UK News In Brief

Service Heroes Honoured

The families of seven servicemen killed in Afghanistan joined thousands of well-wishers yesterday evening as their coffins were driven through Wootton Bassett in Wiltshire last night in the largest single repatriation since the bodies of eight soldiers were returned to RAF Lyneham last July. Among the men whose bodies were returned yesterday were three members of 40 Commando Royal Marines, Sergeant Steven Darbyshire, Lance Corporal Michael Taylor and Marine Paul Warren. Also honoured were the bodies of Lance Corporal David Ramsden, Colour Sergeant Martyn Horton, Private Alex Isaac and Private Douglas Halliday, all of 1st Battalion the Mercian Regiment (Cheshire) - killed when their vehicle rolled into a canal near Gereshk in Helmand.

London Workplace Death Toll
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Eleven workers were killed at work in London between 1 April 2009 and 31 March 2010, according to new figures released by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) today. This is compared to an average of 21 work-related deaths in the past five years in the region, and 19 fatal injures in 2008/09. Across Britain, the number of people killed at work has fallen to a new record low with 151 workers dying at work in 2009/10 – down 15% on the previous lowest total of 178 in the year before. London's top health and safety official, Stephen Williams, Divisional Director of HSE London, said: "While it's heartening to see a reduction in the number of work-related deaths in London, it's simply not good enough that 11 people failed to come home from work to their families last year. Many of these unnecessary deaths could have been avoided if simple and sensible precautions had been in place, and if workers had been involved in dealing with the risks they face."

Consultation On Migrants Opens

The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) has today launched a consultation on the annual limit of the number of non-EU migrants admitted to work in the UK through Tiers 1 and 2 of the Points Based System. The Government has asked the MAC, as an independent expert body on migration, to provide advice on the level of the permanent economic migration limit for its first full year of operation. The permanent limit is intended to be implemented from April 2011. As well as the economic impacts, the MAC will take into account the social and public service impacts of immigration on the UK. The consultation will be open for submissions until 7 September, and the MAC advice will be presented to the Government by the end of that month.

Church Buildings In Focus

The first ever sample survey of the England's 2,254 listed places of worship published today by English Heritage suggests that approximately 86% are in good or fair condition, but 14% are potentially at risk of needing urgent major repairs. The survey, which is part of English Heritage's 'Heritage at Risk' initiative, was carried out to assess the state of repair of places of worship. English Heritage has also researched how congregations are coping with the responsibility of looking after these precious buildings, especially in today's difficult economic climate, and revealed new evidence on the importance of the country's two main grant schemes for places of worship.

(BMcC/GK)

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