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Cressida Dick resigns as Metropolitan Police commissioner

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Credit: Metropolitan Police Service Facebook

Dame Cressida Dick stepped down from her position as commissioner on Thursday evening after London mayor lost “confidence” in her.

She said she had “no choice” but to resign, after only hours before saying she had “absolutely no intention of going.”

It has been reported that the commissioner was called for a meeting at 4.30pm Thursday to discuss her future, which she chose not to attend and to instead resign.

Dick has expressed “deep sadness and regret” over leaving the role.

Announcing her resignation, she said: “Undertaking this role, a crown appointment as a servant of the people of London and the United Kingdom has been the greatest honour and privilege of my life.”

At Sadiq Khan’s request, Dick has agreed to continue as commissioner “for a short period, a number of weeks, to ensure the stability of the met and its leadership.”

The Mayor of London said: “It’s clear that the only way to start to deliver the scale of the change required is to have new leadership right at the top of the Metropolitan Police.”

Khan believes change is “urgently required” to rebuild the trust and confidence of Londoners and root out the racism, sexism, homophobia, bullying, discrimination and misogyny that exists today.

He said Dick’s response to this has not been satisfactory.

However, he did thank her for 40 years of “dedicated” public service and recent work in helping bring down violent crime in London.

Khan and Home Secretary Priti Patel are now working to appoint a new commissioner.

It has been reported that the Home Office and London City Hall have clashed over the departure of Dick from the Metropolitan Police.

It is understood that Khan didn’t inform Patel of his intention to request a meeting with the commissioner.

The Home Secretary praised Dick for her “steadfast dedication” despite “challenging times.”

Boris Johnson also commended her for her “great dedication and distinction.”

Speaking on BBC London Thursday daytime, Dick said she was leading a “real transformation of the Met” and had been for the past five years.

Since taking on the role, Dick has been involved in a number of scandals.

Most recently she faced severe criticism after watchdog revealed sexist, racist and homophobic messages between officers.

The officers, mainly based at Charing Cross, shared hateful and offensive messages.

Dick said she was “seething anger” over these findings.

In the wake of the damning Watchdog report, Khan put the commissioner “on notice.”

He warned she had only days or weeks to respond to the failing of the Met police.

Deeming her response unsatisfactory, Khan withdrew support which subsequently led to the commissioner’s resignation.

The Met Police have assured that it will not impact the investigation into the Partygate scandal.

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Biggest Rail Strikes in 30 years to go ahead as talks fail

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Britain is braced for the biggest rail strikes in 30 years after last-ditch talks failed to resolve a row over pay and conditions.

Thousands of staff affiliated to the Rail, Maritime and Transport union at Network Rail and 13 other train operators will walk out tomorrow, Thursday and Saturday.

The RMT says plans by Network Rail – the body which owns stations, track and signals – to cut 2,500 jobs, will put safety at risk. But the industry says it has to modernise and safety will not be compromised.

The Rail Delivery Group – which represents train firms – says the Covid pandemic has led to a decline in passenger numbers and while it wants to offer a pay rise to staff, the way the network operates has to change. But the RMT says it is prepared to take industrial action “for as long as it takes to get a settlement” and warned strikes could take place for the next six months.

It says train operators have now made an offer, but there is no further offer from Network Rail, after one was rejected last Friday. General secretary Mick Lynch said: “The RMT National Executive Committee has now found both sets of proposals to be unacceptable and it is now confirmed that the strike action scheduled this week will go ahead.”

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, whose department oversees the operation of the network, described calls by the RMT for ministers to intervene as a “stunt” and accused the union of “gunning” for industrial action. He said the strike was orchestrated by “union barons” and will cause misery and chaos to millions of commuters.

Services have begun to be affected this evening, and are likely to be disrupted throughout this week as the impact of the staggered stops cause an impact even on non-strike days.  Talks had continued this afternoon, but the two sides could not reach a deal.

Sources close to the negotiations said Network Rail was prepared to offer striking unions a five per cent pay rise to settle the dispute.

Use this tool to see if trains will run from your station.

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Aldi launches dog ice cream just in time for the Heatwave

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Aldi will be the first UK supermarket to sell Beechdean Doggy Ice Cream, which comes in two tasty flavours; pea & vanilla and apple & carrot.

Priced at £2.99 per tub, the ice creams will make for the perfect healthy snack for your pooches, with them being 100% plant-based and made with real fruit and vegetables.

And as part of the exciting rollout, Aldi has partnered with local ice cream vendors across the country so pups far and wide can enjoy the tasty treat.

The supermarket has also enlisted volunteer dogs to take part in an adorable ‘dog-livery’ service to help dish out the cooling treat to their furry friends.

Julie Ashfield, Managing Director of Buying at Aldi UK, said: “With more of our customers now owning dogs, we’re delighted to launch a nutritious and tasty treat that will help keep dogs cool in the heat.

“Being the first UK supermarket to launch a dog-friendly ice cream comes just in time for summer as we look forward to the warm weather.

“Teaming up with ice cream vans across the country gives us the chance to get the product straight into owner’s hands, so they can share a special moment alongside a tasty treat outside with their furry friend – we’re confident they won’t be able to keep their paws off it.”

Aldi’s Beechdean Doggy Ice Cream will be available in the Freezer aisle – next to Aldi’s full ice cream range – nationwide from Thursday June 16th.

Will your pampered pooch be getting some?

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Man Dies In Download Festival Arena Following Medical Incident Before Iron Maiden Set

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A man tragically died at Download Festival after being taken from the crowd by medical staff just before Iron Maiden started their headline set.

Emergency services saw to the man, who hasn’t been named, after he fell ill in the main arena just before 9pm on Saturday (11 June).

A spokesperson for Leicestershire Police confirmed the news, stating: “We can confirm the death of a man who had been attending the Download Festival in Castle Donington at the weekend.

“The man became unwell at the festival on Saturday evening (11 June) and was taken to the Derby Royal Infirmary where he sadly died.

“The death is currently being treated as unexplained and enquiries remain ongoing.”

More to follow.

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