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UK stories

Below is a selection of exclusives I have written for UK outlets.

Penny Lancaster: It is the biggest honour to serve at the Queen’s funeral

Special Constable Lancaster, who joined City of London Police in April 2021, manned the barriers near Queen Victoria’s Memorial.

Penny Lancaster has described working as a special police constable during the Queen’s funeral as “the biggest honour.”

The TV presenter and former model, who is married to Sir Rod Stewart, was one of the 15,000 police officers working the funeral procession in London on Monday.

Special Constable Lancaster, who joined City of London Police in April 2021, manned the

King says ‘encouraging’ policing plans for Operation London Bridge are working

Charles was given a tour of the Metropolitan Police Service Special Operations Room on Saturday, where he met and thanked emergency service workers for their efforts ahead of the funeral of the Queen and over the last nine days.

The Prince of Wales also briefly visited the Lambeth HQ, where he spoke to two police officers and thanked them for their service before departing in the same car as the King.

During the visit, the King met and spoke with several police officers involved in the plannin

Retired naval officer puts on uniform ‘one last time’ for the Queen

John Elliott, who was a chief radio supervisor and served for 35 years, travelled from his home in Dundee to Edinburgh to watch the procession from the Palace of Holyroodhouse to St Giles’ Cathedral.

Mr Elliott, 83, was at the back of a queue to see the procession on the Royal Mile, and a member of the public encouraged police to let him through to watch it.

It’s a special occasion. She was my boss, it’s what we used to call her affectionately in the Navy

He told the PA news agency: “I was a

Woman who held ‘abolish monarchy’ sign outside King’s proclamation charged

A woman who was arrested after holding an ‘abolish monarchy’ sign during the Accession Proclamation for the new King in Edinburgh has been charged.

Moments before the proclamation of Charles III as new king on Sunday afternoon, a demonstrator appeared in the crowd opposite the Mercat Cross.

Officers appeared behind her and took her away, prompting the crowd to applaud.

The woman was taken away by police

One man shouted: ‘Let her go, it’s free speech,’ while others yelled: ‘Have some respect.

Woman arrested after protester holds anti-monarchy sign in Edinburgh

Helen Smith, 48, from Livingston, told the PA news agency: “I believe everyone does have a right to protest, but I thought it was the wrong place at the wrong time.

“We saw the police keeping an eye on things behind us, and we thought something was going to kick off, and it did,” she said.

“It’s a massive moment in history. We’ve had the death of the longest-serving monarch we’ve ever had, we’ve got the new King being proclaimed, and then we have the heckling at the back and the shouting.”


Key quotes from Sue Gray report into Downing Street parties

The investigation analysed events which took place between May 20 2020 and April 16 2021 in Whitehall.

The long-anticipated report into Downing Street parties held during coronavirus lockdowns has been published in full.

The investigation, carried out by senior civil servant Sue Gray, analysed events which took place between May 20 2020 and April 16 2021 in Whitehall while strict social distancing rules were in place.

Here is a list of key quotes from the report.

Cheese and wine pictured in

Campaigner hopes to close legal ‘loophole’ after being impersonated on Instagram

While Ms Klingler was not subjected to a deep fake – where a person’s face is superimposed on to another person’s body and is often used in pornography – the commissioner is making enquiries with the Met on whether deep fake pornography is a legislative gap and whether this, or other issues, led to her case being closed.

“It also wasn’t malicious communications because they broadcast the content – they didn’t direct message to anybody. So these loopholes aren’t protecting women. The fact that s

Man who emailed Angela Rayner felt she was 'partially responsible' for death of Sir David Amess

Benjamin Iliffe, 36, sent a threatening email from his personal account on October 16 and was arrested on Wednesday, Huntingdon Magistrates' Court heard.

The defendant, who appeared by video-link from Thorpe Wood police station in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, warned Ms Rayner to "watch your back and your kids" in the email.

He admitted sending a threatening email, and also pleaded guilty to possessing a quantity of cannabis on Wednesday when he was arrested.

During his sentencing hearing on

Coronavirus: One in five blind people have rationed food during pandemic

One in five people who are blind or partially sighted have rationed food during the coronavirus outbreak, new research shows.

Figures from the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) suggest three quarters of people with sight loss are concerned about getting access to food while two thirds feel less independent now compared to before lockdown.

It comes after charities urged the government to include blind and deaf on the list of vulnerable people so they can receive the support they n

Downton stars: Lord Grantham would 'chase Jacob Rees-Mogg with a whip'

Hugh Bonneville, who plays the character, told Standard Online the aristocrat would not approve of the Conservative MP for “slouching” while Parliament was in session as “a gentleman of class wouldn’t do that.”

His comments come after the Leader of the House of Commons was criticised for "lounging languidly" on the front bench during a debate ahead of a crunch vote on Tuesday evening.

Speaking ahead of the film’s release, Carter, 71, said: “Mr Carson would stick his head in the sand and moan.

Hatton Garden jeweller tied to chair and gagged in £74k knife raid

One of the men, who is bearded and wearing a cap and glasses, is seen showing a ring to the victim before a second runs inside and pulls an “eight-inch” knife from his jacket.

The woman said: “One man arrived with a ring and asked for my dad as he is a polisher. I was explaining dad wasn’t in and he should come back tomorrow, in a few seconds I had a knife at my throat.”

The victim, who asked not to be named, added: “When the second man entered I just froze for a few seconds. I was quiet and t

Oscar-nominated artist had ‘terrific’ time disfiguring Margot Robbie

She said transforming Robbie from beauty icon to 16th-century monarch was a “terrific experience” for both of them. “Margot wanted it to be correct, she wanted it right,” she said. “She feels the part of Elizabeth and she went with me all the way to get the look right.

“As an actress, it’s horrific, it’s ugly and it’s disfiguring, and she totally acknowledged and accepted that, but you go with it because she is now living and portraying [the character]… She and I together have to get her there.

London stabbing victim Jayden Moodie, 14, 'wasn't in a gang,' says sister

Jayden Moodie, 14, was deliberately knocked off his moped, chased and stabbed at least seven times by three men in a “targeted attack” on Tuesday night. Police are now investigating amid claims the aspiring boxer was the victim of a “postcode war” between gangs in an area of Leyton notorious for drug dealing. The image was one of a series of Jayden — including others of him smartly-dressed in school uniform — posted on Facebook by his uncle Josh Grant in a tribute today.

She told the Standard:

Hero security guard died fighting off gatecrashers outside Mayfair party

Mr Simionov’s girlfriend revealed today that they moved to London “for a better life” and had planned to marry. Madalina Anghel told the Evening Standard: “Right now I can’t think about him in the past. He was my future husband and we came to London from Romania for a better life. I can’t explain in words how much pain I am in.

Mr Simionov died at the scene after police were called to reports of trouble in the street at 80 Park Lane at about 5.30am yesterday. Two other security staff, both men

Alfred Molina has started creating his own mini-Rothkos

After the opening night of the revival of John Logan’s Red at Wyndham’s Theatre, Molina, 64, told the Standard: “Although I’ve never painted properly, I’ve started doing what I call Frothkos — Fred Rothkos.

“They’re similes of Rothko’s early work in crayon on small pieces of paper – roughly the size of an iPhone. Whenever I see a spare piece of paper, I’ll do it with a crayon or a pencil. It’s pretty terrible but I find it amazing.”

Asked if he thought the pieces would be hung anywhere, he jok