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Andy Burnham calls for first class to be scrapped on northern trains ‘when people can’t get a seat’

‘Until we get back to the expanded timetable we were promised… trains should be declassified’

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Department for Transport / Flickr

The Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham has called for first class on northern train services to be scrapped until the network is good enough to give passengers a ‘decent service’. 

According to the Manchester Evening News, the mayor said that until the north gets the expanded timetable it was promised back in 2014, he can’t see a justification for first class carriages when people still can’t get a seat while ‘paying ticket prices at the level that they are’. 

Speaking to northern leaders this morning, Burnham added that ongoing disruptions are a part of the ‘managed decline in the railways of northern England, with no end in sight’, noting it will include cuts to weekend services and standing room only on key lines for five to ten years.

RussellHarryLee / Flickr

Refusing to endorse the timetable until the government provided a firm infrastructure plan for the Castlefield corridor, Burnham said: “If we sign this off, we all know what the reality will be for at least five years, more like ten years, on rail services across the north, particularly between Manchester and Leeds.

“It will mean people unable to find a seat because we’ve got a reduced number of services. It will mean standing up all the way back to Manchester and that will just be the reality for people for years and years and years to come.

“Until we get back to the expanded timetable we were promised… trains should be declassified.

“I can’t see a justification for first class compartments when people can’t get a seat, when they are paying ticket prices at the level that they are.”

George Osborne had first promised expansions at Piccadilly Station via new platforms 15 and 16 and Oxford Road Station back in 2014 in order to relieve the Castlefield corridor. However, this expansion is yet to be signed off.

Instead, a new timetable ‘high-performing’ rail timetable aimed at cutting delays and ‘unclogging’ the Castlefield corridor was approved back in October, and is expected to come into force in December 2022. 

The consultation document reads: “Passengers have been experiencing poor performance to, from and through central Manchester for too long.

“The key objective of this work has been to find timetable-based solutions for making performance much better. Better performance in the Manchester area will have far reaching beneficial impacts across the north of England rail network.”

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Greggs worker fired after exposing the ‘mountains of food that gets wasted every day’

The worker filmed several bin bags of food being thrown away at the end of her shift

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Lord.nicc / TikTok

A Greggs worker was fired after she exposed the ‘mountain’ of food the bakery chain allegedly wastes on a daily basis. 

Nicole Iwalowo had been working in a Romford branch in London for a month when she became aware of the massive amount of food going to waste at the end of each day.

Feeling guilty at seeing food go in the bin every day, Nicole decided to expose the bakery by filming the leftover produce, which included freshly made sandwiches and sealed packages of bakery goods like doughnuts and yum yums, and posting it onto TikTok.

Her video, shared back in November, shows six bin bags full of food being loaded up on a metal cage, which Nicole claims was later collected by bin men.

@greggs_official / Instagram

Nicole pointed out in the video that ‘there’s people starving around the world and all of this is going to waste’, noting that ‘this happens everyday around the world with the billions of food stores’.

Her TikTok post was quick to garner thousands of views and comments, with many slamming Greggs for the blatant hypocrisy surrounding its official policy, which states that it ‘hates food waste’ and that ‘donating unsold food to those in need is our priority’.

Greggs also claims that ‘all unsold food is 100% diverted from landfill’.

One viewer commented: “What’s frustrating is there are actual Apps around now exactly for this, to take end of day food for ppl [sic] in need. Its infuriating and why we should boycott these businesses until they change. Thank you for putting your job on the line to show this.”

@lord.nicc566

Watch me get fired for this 😵‍💫😂 #foryourpage #foodwaste

♬ masquerade x mtr – jovynn

Another person who claims to have also worked for the bakery chain wrote: “I used to work at Greggs too and can back this up. and we aren’t allowed to give it to the homeless either.”

A spokesperson for Greggs has since addressed the video, saying in a statement: “We have a number of initiatives in place to help reduce food waste across our shops including the redistribution of unsold food to community groups and charities.

“We are continually working to increase the amount of unsold food given away to those most in need and remain committed to putting an end to food waste.”

In the days following the posting of the video, Nicole confirmed that she had been fired and was left looking for work in the run up to Christmas.

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Safety alert issued over car seats as parents told to stop using them ‘immediately’

Batches of carseats reportedly have a buckle defect

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Cosatto

A safety alert has been issued over a batch of children’s car seats containing ‘potentially defective’ parts.

Cosatto, a Bolton-born retailer specialising in pushchairs, highchairs and car seats for children, has issued the safety alert for the buckles on its ‘All in All+’ and ‘All in All Rotate’ car seats, of which there are eleven different models.

The notice from Cosatto reads: “We have identified a potential safety concern relating to the buckle used in the production of a small batch of car seats manufactured between September 2019 and June 2020.

“Unfortunately, the manufacture of some of the buckles did not reach the exacting standards set by our quality and safety protocol and contain components that can potentially become defective.

Cosatto

“We are truly sorry that this has happened. We are a values-driven, family business who want to do the right thing and have taken this action to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the children of valued customers like you.”

It has also been revealed that any customer with one of the multi-group car seats (Groups 0+/1/2/3) for children from birth up to 36kg (approximately twelve years old) should stop using them immediately and contact Cosatto.

The company added that only those with batch numbers between 37/2019 and 24/2020 are affected, noting that all other car seats from later batches are safe to use.

Parents have been encouraged to immediately check the batch numbers on their car seats – all of which can be found on a sticker on the right-hand side at the rear.

Cosatto

If their seat is one of the affected, Cosatto is offering a free replacement buckle, which will be dispatched on a next day delivery service.

Here’s the Which? full list of faulty models:

All in All+ car seats

  • Dragon Kingdom (model number CT4262)
  • Unicorn Land (model number CT4238)
  • Harewood (model number CT4239)
  • Mister Fox (model number CT4241)

All in All Rotate car seats

  • Sea Monsters (model number CT4263)
  • Fairy Garden (model number CT4242)
  • Fika Forest (model number CT4243)
  • Hedgerow (model number CT4486)
  • Hear Us Roar (model number CT4418)
  • On The Prowl (model number CT4451)
  • One World (model number CT4449)

You can fill out Cosatto’s online form here to check your model and order a replacement buckle, or alternatively call 08000 149252.

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Snorers can get paid £300 to test ‘anti-snore’ sleep products

We all know someone who’d be perfect for this…

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@silentnightbeds / Instagram

If you’re a serial snorer, this could be your big moment.

For years, we’ve been batting away so-called ‘cures’ for snoring, and have simply been making do with a pair of good quality ear plugs instead.

But with 35% of the adult population being serial snorers, you’d think there would have been a solid solution by now.

Well, the answer may just be on the horizon.

@silentnightbeds / Instagram

UK sleep brand Silentnight is on the hunt for five serious snorers to test their new range of sleep products with a handsome cash reward of £300.

The successful applicants will be given £700 worth of sleep products, all of which claim to prevent snoring in some way or another.

This generous bundle will include a king-size rolled mattress from the award-winning Studio by Silentnight collection, a pair of innovative Anti-Snore pillows designed to encourage improved breathing, and a ‘So Snug’ 13.5 tog winter duvet.

Kat Collins, senior brand manager for Silentnight, said: “As the UK’s most trusted sleep brand, we think it’s important to celebrate all types of sleepers and so are giving back to snorers across the country with an exciting new role this year.

@silentnightbeds / Instagram

“But, this is official business and we’re looking for applicants who take their sleep seriously. As part of our mission to change how people sleep for the better, we know that customers’ feedback on our products is fundamental to our future launches so can’t wait to hear our new ‘employees’ thoughts.”

If you think you’re up to the job, all you’ll need to do is complete the entry form on the Silentnight website and sign up to Silentnight’s newsletter, and follow them on Instagram and Facebook.

If your application is successful, Silentnight will contact you via email, as well as remove and recycle your old mattress, if needed, for free.

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