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Newspaper headlines: ‘The end of smear tests’ and new Speaker Hoyle

Newspaper headlines: ‘The end of smear tests’ and new Speaker Hoyle


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The Daily Mail reports on a possible new alternative to traditional smear tests for women. A new type of cervical cancer test has been developed at Queen Mary University of London. Involving a urine sample or swab, it could be used at home rather than going to the doctor. The scientists behind it hope the DIY test could become routine within five years, the paper adds.

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“The end of smear testing,” heralds the Daily Mirror, also reporting on the new at-home urine check, which it says could “revolutionise” cervical cancer screening. Scientists hope it will lead to more women getting screened, the paper adds, after numbers fell to their lowest level since 1997.

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The report on the alternative cervical cancer testing kits also features on the front of the Times. But the paper’s lead story is on think-tank the Centre for Policy Studies, which analysed Labour’s pledge to cut the average UK working week to 32 hours, or four days, within 10 years of a Labour government. According to the analysis, reducing hours in this way would cost taxpayers £17bn, because of the projected rise in the public sector wage bill.

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The i newspaper also leads with a health story, reporting that scientists have been brought “fresh hope of finding a cure” to Alzheimer’s disease. The paper tells the story of a woman from Colombia who has a rare genetic mutation which causes early onset Alzheimer’s disease – but her symptoms were kept at bay for three decades. Researchers think it could be due to another rare gene found in her body and, if that is true, it has the potential to be used in the development of a treatment.

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A photo of Labour MP Sir Lindsay Hoyle, who was elected the next House of Commons Speaker on Monday night, makes the front of several papers, including the Financial Times. But the paper’s main story is on the Japanese tech conglomerate SoftBank. The group is expected to announce “tougher governance standards” as part of a bid to “restore confidence” in its investments, the paper reports.

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A picture of Sir Lindsay Hoyle being dragged to the Speaker’s chair, as per parliamentary tradition, features on the front page of the Guardian. But the paper leads on another parliamentary story – a report from the Commons intelligence and security committee examining the threat posed by Russia meddling to UK politics. The report, finished in March 2019, has not yet been published. The Guardian says No 10 has indicated it will not allow it to be published before the election, a decision that committee chairman Dominic Grieve has called “jaw-dropping”.

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The Daily Telegraph reports on how the ongoing dispute between postal workers and the Royal Mail could impact the election. The Communication Workers Union has said the planned strike action over job security and employment terms and conditions “would, of course, mean refusing to deliver postal votes and campaign leaflets”. According to the paper, Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom suggests the industrial action was timed to boost Labour’s chances but the CWU denies this.

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Meanwhile, the Daily Express leads on comments by Boris Johnson who has asked Jeremy Corbyn to clarify Labour’s position on Brexit. The PM has written a letter to Mr Corbyn, saying voters “deserve to have a clear picture” of each party’s Brexit plan. Labour has previously said its plan is to renegotiate Mr Johnson’s Brexit deal and put it to another referendum.

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The Metro leads with the news that the boss of McDonald’s, Steve Easterbrook, has been fired after having a relationship with an employee. The paper reports that shares in the fast food giant fell to a six-month low after the Briton was sacked. Later the same day, the company’s HR chief, David Fairhurst, also announced he was leaving after 15 years, the paper adds.

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The Sun’s front page story focuses on comments from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents which has urged people not to play with fireworks. It comes after a 25-second video posted on Twitter showed someone – whom the paper dubs a “bonfire idiot” – launching a firework from his bottom. “The bum powder clot,” the paper adds in a sub-headline.

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The Daily Star reports that TV producers in Germany “drafted in a crack team” of 50 British comedy writers and actors to help create a prime-time show because they were unable to come up with a “funny formula” themselves. Now the German TV bosses say they hope they will be able to sell the finished product, filmed in the English language, around the world – including in the UK.

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