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Envelopes full of money are being given away in Manchester today

Keep your eyes peeled…

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Clint Mann / Geograph

In case you didn’t already know, today is Blue Monday, the most depressing day of the year.

That’s right, apparently Monday January 20th is the gloomiest day of the year, thanks to a combination of the weather, debt level, time since Christmas, failing New Year’s resolutions and overall low motivation.

If you are feeling a bit down today, then one company has a little something to cheer you up, as they’re giving away £10,000 to random people.

Quidco is visiting 10 towns and cities across the country to dish out the £10k, in cash, to passers-by.

They’ll be standing on some as yet undisclosed UK streets handing out envelopes full of notes, and they’re in Manchester for an hour at midday.

Some envelopes contain £5, some £10, some £20, and some £50. There’s also a couple of scratch cards thrown in there too, so you could win even bigger.

Here’s where they’ll be:

Sheffield train station – 8-9am

Manchester city centre – 12-1pm

Cambridge city centre – 12-1pm

Peterborough train station – 5-6pm

Colchester town centre – 12-1pm

Chelmsford train station – 5-6pm

Bournemouth town centre – 12-1pm

Basingstoke town train station – 5-6pm

York city centre – 12-1pm

Leeds train station – 5-6pm

So if you’re about in town today keep your eyes peeled, as there could be some money in it for you – the envelopes are limited to one per person and you’ve got to be aged 18 and over.

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Three UK supermarkets to continue enforcing face mask policies in-store

All Plan B restrictions have been eased as of today

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Morrisons & Nickolas Romensky / Flickr

Three of the UK’s leading supermarkets will continue to enforce their face mask policies despite all Plan B restrictions coming to an end today.

Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Waitrose – which also operates retailer John Lewis – will ask their customers to continue wearing masks in their stores, even though they are no longer mandatory.

Sainsbury’s said in a statement: “Safety remains our highest priority. We’re asking our customers and colleagues in England to continue to wear a face covering in our stores if they are able to.”

Geograph

A spokeswoman for John Lewis and Partners said: “We’ll be suggesting people wear masks in our stores, although it will be down to individuals to make a personal choice.”

According to The Mirror, Paddy Lillis, the head of shop workers’ union Usdaw, voiced his support for the supermarkets’ decision, saying it was ‘deeply disappointing that the government has ploughed on with ending mandatory face coverings in shops’ and that many retailers would ‘keep Covid safety measures in stores’.

Manchester City Council has also asked people to continue wearing masks in public spaces and on public transport in what they have described as a ‘pragmatic approach’.

Students at schools and universities are also been asked to continue wearing face coverings in corridors until the February half term.

@maximeutopix / Unsplash

From today, Thursday January 27th, all Plan B Covid restrictions have been lifted. This means that mandatory Covid passes will no longer be needed and people will not be asked to work from home where possible.

Face masks are also no longer mandatory, though various shops and public spaces have encouraged people to continue wearing them.

Boris Johnson said that the government will continue to ‘suggest’ the use of face coverings in cramped or crowded spaces, saying: “We will trust the judgment of the British people.”

However, self-isolation will remain a legal requirement for those who have tested positive for Covid.

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Some Covid restrictions to stay in place in Manchester, council says

All Plan B Covid restrictions have been lifted today

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Mika Baumeister / Unsplash

As the majority of Plan B Covid restrictions are lifted, Manchester’s public health director has said some will be staying in place across the city.

In what has been described as a ‘pragmatic approach’, Manchester City Council is asking people to continue wearing masks in crowded spaces and on public transport.

Students at schools and universities are also been asked to continue wearing masks in corridors until the February half term.

David Regan, Manchester’s public health director, said keeping some measures in place should ‘limit the onward transmission’ of Covid.

@circlz / Unsplash

He said there had been a ‘good dialogue’ with the city’s universities and that schools had been ‘really receptive’ to the advice. 

Regan explained: “If our primary school children are affected and it goes back into the household, that affects our health and social care workforce.

Deputy council leader Joanna Midgley supported Regan’s stance on the matter, saying the pandemic ‘was not over’ and said there were vulnerable people who ‘needed to be looked after’.

She said: “As the restrictions end, as a city we want to try and encourage people to continue wearing masks in crowded spaces on public transport and to get that message across about looking out for each other, caring about each other.”

@maximeutopix / Unsplash

From today, Thursday January 27th, all Plan B Covid restrictions have been lifted. This means that mandatory Covid passes will no longer be needed and people will not be asked to work from home where possible.

Face masks are also no longer mandatory, though various shops and public spaces have encouraged people to continue wearing them.

Boris Johnson said that the government will continue to ‘suggest’ the use of face coverings in cramped or crowded spaces, saying: “We will trust the judgment of the British people.”

However, self-isolation will remain a legal requirement for those who have tested positive for Covid.

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GMP confiscates and burns 173kg of cannabis following raid on weed farm

The cannabis farm contained drugs with an estimated value of £750k

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GMP Manchester North / Facebook

Greater Manchester Police officers have burned huge bags of cannabis after plants growing the Class B drug were discovered at a weed farm in Manchester.

Officers raided the property in Cheetham Hill earlier this week on January 24th, where they discovered a cannabis farm containing drugs worth an estimated £750k. 

Yesterday, 173kg of the plants – the equivalent of five German Shepherds, according to the force – were bagged up and burned through an incinerator.

GMP shared images of the farm onto the GMP Manchester North Facebook page, writing: “Tonight we have executed a warrant in #Cheetham and found a large cannabis farm with an estimated £750k worth of drugs.

“If anyone has any information please pass it to us so we can continue taking drugs from the streets.”

The force then shared an update yesterday regarding the burning of the plants, showing photos of police vans overflowing with bags of cannabis plants alongside the caption: “We have now dismantled the cannabis farm in #Cheetham and 173kg of cannabis has been burnt at the incinerator!

“That’s the equivalent of 5 German Shepherds! Our van was filled!”

This comes just weeks after North West Motorway Police seized £300k worth of laundered money during a routine stop check.

During the search, Regional Commercial Vehicle Unit and MO24 officers found a bag containing the cash in the boot, something that the driver ‘couldn’t account for’. 

The cash was subsequently seized and the driver was arrested. 

Reports involving drugs or other anti-social behaviour can be made to police online or by calling 101.

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