A survivors’ group has welcomed a report on the Grenfell Tower fire, calling for the government to treat its response as “a national emergency”.
The report, published on Wednesday, followed the first phase of an inquiry, looking at what happened on the night of 14 June 2017, when 72 people died.
It was critical of the London Fire Brigade’s response and said the tower did not meet building regulations.
The LFB said it was “disappointed” by some of the criticism of individuals.
Campaign group Grenfell United said the report showed “the immediate and real dangers” of “highly combustible cladding and insulation”.
“Lives are at risk and the government need to treat this as a national emergency,” the group said.
The report made 46 recommendations, including improvements in training for fire brigade staff and the development of national guidelines for evacuating high-rise buildings.
Grenfell United called for the recommendations to be implemented in full, saying they would save lives.
The report condemned the LFB for “serious shortcomings” and systemic failures in its response to the fire.
Inquiry chairman Sir Martin Moore-Bick said the absence of a plan to evacuate the tower was a “major omission” by the LFB and more lives could have been saved had the “stay-put” policy been abandoned sooner.
Grenfell United responded: “It is heartbreaking to read that more of our loved ones could have been saved that night if the building was evacuated earlier.”
At an emotional press conference, relatives of 20 victims of the fire called for an overhaul of the LFB, saying its leadership should resign and even face prosecution.
Nazanin Aghlani, who lost two family members in the fire, said some firefighters displayed a “serious lack of common sense” and failed to see “what was so vivid in front of them”.
“If a fire happened tonight the same thing would happen again,” she said.
‘Too little too late’
The report said evidence from London Fire Brigade Commissioner Dany Cotton that she would not have changed anything about the brigade’s response was “insensitive”.
Ms Cotton said many of the recommendations were welcome and would be “carefully considered”.
She expressed her “deepest sorrow at not being able to save all those who died in the Grenfell Tower fire”.
She added: “We welcome the chairman’s recognition of the courage, commitment and bravery of firefighters on the night, but we are disappointed at some of the criticism of individual staff members who were placed in completely unprecedented circumstances and faced the most unimaginable conditions while trying to save the lives of others.”
However, Natasha Elcock, chairwoman of Grenfell United who was rescued with her six-year-old daughter from the 11th floor, said Dany Cotton’s statement was “too little too late”.
“She stood up in the inquiry, in a room full of bereaved and survivors and said there’s nothing she would do to change that night,” she told the BBC.
“If she’d expressed that sorrow that day in that room, that potentially would have washed with us today.”
Grenfell United expressed concern at the report’s finding that the LFB were “at risk of not learning the lessons from Grenfell”, adding that firefighters were “let down by their training, procedures, equipment and leadership”.
Other issues highlighted in the report included:
- A lack of training in how to “recognise the need for an evacuation or how to organise one”
- Incident commanders “of relatively junior rank” being unable to change strategy
- Control room officers lacking training on when to advise callers to evacuate
- An assumption that crews would reach callers, resulting in “assurances which were not well founded”
- Communication between the control room and those on the ground being “improvised, uncertain and prone to error”
- A lack of an organised way to share information within the control room, meaning officers had “no overall picture of the speed or pattern of fire spread”
In the House of Commons, MPs held a minutes’ silence to remember victims of the fire, before a debate on the inquiry.
Boris Johnson told MPs that survivors and the bereaved had been “overlooked and ignored” before the fire and “shamefully failed” afterwards.
The second phase of the inquiry will focus on wider circumstances of the fire, including the design of the building.
While this was not the focus of the first phase, the report found there was “compelling evidence” external walls of the building failed to comply with building regulations and “actively promoted” the spread of fire.
It said the principal reason the flames shot up the building so fiercely was the combustible aluminium composite material (ACM) cladding with polyethylene cores which acted as a “source of fuel”.
Grenfell United said the second phase of the inquiry “must now focus on where responsibility for the devastating refurbishment [of the building] lies”, with the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, the tenant management organisation and the companies involved facing “serious questions”.
League One side AFC Wimbledon have appointed caretaker boss Glyn Hodges as their new permanent manager.
The ex-Wales midfielder, 56, has been in charge since Wally Downes was suspended by the club last month, after being charged by the Football Association over bets placed on games.
Downes left Wimbledon on Sunday, two days after being given a four-week FA suspension for admitting the charge.
Former Wimbledon player Hodges had been assistant to Downes at Kingsmeadow.
“To have been at Wimbledon as a young apprentice at 16 years of age, then to return and actually get the job, and now to have an opportunity to take the club back to Plough Lane, is what dreams are made of,” he said.
“I’m absolutely delighted and I can’t wait to get started. I’ve enjoyed the last month, it’s been fantastic. I will be giving it my all.”
Hodges won four of his six matches in temporary charge, with Wimbledon 21st in League One, one point from safety.
Until joining the club in December Hodges had worked under Mark Hughes at Wales, Blackburn Rovers, Manchester City, Fulham, Queens Park Rangers and Stoke City.
His only previous managerial stint came in an interim spell in charge of Barnsley, during the 2002-03 campaign.
“It feels fantastic, but I’ve got to pay tribute to Wally, as we go back a long way,” he added. “I’ve got to thank him for bringing me here to take this opportunity.”
|Womens Champions League|
|Venues: Prague/Manchester Date: Wednesday 16 October Kick-off times: Slavia Prague v Arsenal (17:30 BST), Manchester City v Atletico Madrid (19:00 BST).|
|Coverage: Live text/reports on BBC Sport website|
Skipper Steph Houghton says the key to Manchester City Women maintaining their 100 per cent start to the 2019-20 season is keeping clean sheets.
City have edged above of Arsenal at the top of Women’s Super League, ahead of the two clubs’ Champions League last-16 ties on Wednesday.
And England defender Houghton is proud of City’s defensive efforts, in not having conceded a league goal so far.
“We’re in a good place. We couldn’t ask for a better start,” she said.
“To have had the clean sheets and wins we’ve had, we should be very proud of ourselves. But we still feel we have a lot more to give.
“We pride ourselves on making sure there’s a zero against the opponents’ name. That’s the basis of who we are as a team.
“We have very good attacking players but ultimately, for us defenders and the way we’re structured, we have to make sure we keep as many clean sheets as we can.”
“I don’t think it’s a case of getting revenge against Atletico,” said Houghton, ahead of the first leg at the Academy Stadium.
“It’s more for us as a team – we want to progress our season. But we know that our performance over the two legs against Atletico last season was not good enough.
“We fully respect them – they’re a very good team – and we have to make sure that come Wednesday, we’re defensively organised and that when chances come, we take them.”
To add to the sub-plot, Houghton will this time be up against her England team-mate Toni Duggan.
This will be Duggan’s first meeting with her former club since leaving City in 2017 for Barcelona, where she spent two years, winning a Champions League runners-up medal last season, before moving to Madrid this summer.
England defender Demi Stokes is back in the City squad, but striker Ellen White is still out injured, and midfielder Laura Coombs and goalkeeper Karen Bardsley are not ready to return to action.
Although Georgia Stanway trained on Tuesday, she will miss the Atletico game, but should be back for Sunday’s WSL Cup derby with Man United.
The return leg in Madrid will be on Wednesday 30 October.
Arsenal fully focused on Prague
City and Arsenal, who are playing in the Champions League for the first time since 2013, are united in their ambition to end the four-year long domination of the competition by six-times winners Lyon.
The closest City have come to silverware was successive semi-final defeats by Lyon in 2017 and 2018, but Arsenal have at least lifted the trophy.
The Gunners now take on Slavia Prague in the Czech Republic capital, but do so on a bit of a down following Sunday’s 2-1 loss at Chelsea.
It was only their second defeat in their last 14 competitive games, but it cost them their leadership of the WSL to City, who now have the only remaining 100 per cent record.
“Obviously we’re a bit deflated. We need to turn it around quick in the Champions League. That’s where our full focus goes to now.
“There’s nothing better than having a game so soon after a game like Sunday’s,” defender Lisa Evans told Arsenal.com.
“Obviously, recovering players is going to be a big one,” added Arsenal boss Joe Montemurro. “We’ve only had a three-day turnaround to work with.
“Most of our players played two games with their national teams so some of them haven’t had much recovery, but that’s football. That’s the way it is. There’s no excuses. We want to be in the professional game.”
Their return leg will be at Meadow Park on Thursday 31 October.
BBC Sport has launched #ChangeTheGame to showcase female athletes in a way they never have been before. Through more live women’s sport available to watch across the BBC in 2019, complemented by our journalism, we are aiming to turn up the volume on women’s sport and alter perceptions. Find out more here.
Extinction Rebellion activists have glued themselves to one government department and to the underside of a lorry outside another on a second day of protests in central London.
Police have made more than 400 arrests, and those camped out in Westminster have been ordered to move on.
The prime minister has described the activists as “unco-operative crusties”.
But campaigner and TV presenter Chris Packham said they are “the concerned people of the world.”
Extinction Rebellion activists are protesting in cities around the world, including Berlin, Amsterdam and Sydney, and are calling for urgent action on global climate and wildlife emergencies.
Protesters say they are occupying 11 sites in central London and people have travelled from across the UK to take part in the demonstrations.
The Metropolitan Police said at 13:00 BST on Tuesday there have been 404 arrests in relation to them.
Activists have attached themselves to the underside of a lorry, which is blocking the road outside the Home Office.
The vehicle is parked on Marsham Street, where hundreds of protesters set up camp overnight. One activist climbed on top of the lorry and set up a tent.
There was a large police presence in the area on Tuesday, with pictures showing officers removing activists from the lorry.
Protesters have also glued themselves to the Department for Transport building – a tactic used in similar protests in April.
Two activists have attached themselves to the doors of the building, while others demonstrate outside.
Meanwhile, a group have placed 800 potted trees outside Parliament, in Old Palace Yard, as they call on the government to plant billions of trees across the UK.
Trees have been dedicated to MPs, and protesters hope they will use them to reforest the country.
Sean Clay, 36, from Newcastle, told the BBC: “Planting trees would go a long way to restore the habitats we have lost as well as absorbing carbon emissions.”
Asked about Boris Johnson’s description of demonstrators, Packham told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme: “I was there yesterday. I met farmers, I met teachers, I met scientists, I met lawyers, I met grandparents, I met mothers and fathers, and I met children.
“These are the concerned people of the world.”
Mr Johnson had suggested while attending a book launch on Monday that the demonstrators should abandon their “hemp-smelling bivouacs” and stop blocking roads.
Protester Claudia Fisher, 57, from Brighton said campaigners would like to discuss their views with the prime minister.
Responding to his description of activists as “unco-operative crusties”, Ms Fisher said: “We are a little bit crusty, I’ll put my hands up to it, after a night sleeping out on the grounds of Whitehall, but we’re not uncooperative.
“We’re actually very cooperative. We… would really like to hear what he has to say, and we’d really like him to… hear what we have to say.”
John Curran, a 49-year-old former detective sergeant for the Metropolitan Police, was one of the protesters who camped overnight.
Mr Curran, who has a three-year-old daughter, says he was arrested while protesting with Extinction Rebellion in April, and is willing to be arrested again.
He said: “Clearly there is some frustration (for the police) that they probably have better things to be doing, and I agree, but the responsibility for that must lie with the government.
“Take action, and we won’t have to be here.”
Protesters who camped in Horseferry Road and Marsham Street, in Westminster, throughout the night were warned that they will be arrested unless they move to nearby Trafalgar Square. Police handed out section 14 notices to tents at around 07:30 BST.
Activists also camped at Smithfield Market overnight, but they say they allowed traders to operate.
‘A last resort’
By Becky Morton, BBC News
The only rush hour traffic around Parliament this morning came from cyclists, who were cheered as they passed encampments of protesters dotted around Westminster.
Roads have been blocked by tents and gazebos, with protesters from all over the country camping overnight.
Bowls of porridge were served from food trucks, while volunteers said some local businesses had donated pastries.
One of those who spent the night here is Mikaela Loach, 21, who travelled down by bus from Edinburgh with a friend.
She said taking part in this week’s action was a “last resort”.
“I’ve spoken to my local MP, I’ve taken part in protests, I just feel like I haven’t been listened to,” she said.
“I have been changing things in my lifestyle for a long time to try and be more eco-friendly, but I had a realisation a few months ago that it doesn’t matter if I go vegan or zero waste if the government doesn’t do anything.
“There need to be big structural changes.”
Further road closures are expected on Tuesday, with Parliament Street, Great Smith Street and Westminster and Lambeth bridges predicted to be heavily affected.
Extinction Rebellion claims protests in the capital will be five times bigger than similar events in April, which saw more than 1,100 people were arrested.
What is Extinction Rebellion?
2025year when the group aims for zero carbon emissions
298,000followers on Facebook
1,130people arrested over April’s London protests
2018year the group was founded
Source: BBC Research
Extinction Rebellion (XR for short) wants governments to declare a “climate and ecological emergency” and take immediate action to address climate change.
It describes itself as an international “non-violent civil disobedience activist movement”.
Extinction Rebellion was launched in 2018 and organisers say it now has groups willing to take action in dozens of countries.
In April, the group held a large demonstration in London that brought major routes in the city to a standstill.
Drug poisoning has contributed to the biggest rise in deaths of homeless people in England and Wales since records began.
About 726 homeless people died in 2018, a rise of 22% in one year, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
Deaths from drugs have more than doubled in the six years the ONS has been recording the data.
Housing minister Luke Hall said the figure was “heartbreaking” and funding to help rough sleepers was increasing.
Shadow housing secretary John Healey said the number of deaths “shames us all in a nation as decent and well-off as Britain today”.
Ben Humberstone from the ONS said the rise was mainly due to an increase in “drug poisoning”.
‘I’ve lost someone that I love’
Alexandra Davis lost her brother Kane Walker, who died after taking a fatal dose of heroin in Birmingham city centre in February.
She said it was important for people to know how difficult homeless people found it to get help.
At Mr Walker’s inquest senior coroner for Birmingham and Solihull Louise Hunt said help was offered to him, but he had not fully engaged with services.
“I’ve lost someone that I love,” Ms Davis said. “I think the positive thing about talking out about it to be able to help other people that are on the street struggling with drug addiction, there just wasn’t enough help out there for him.”
‘Numbs the pain’
Kenneth Lowry, 46, volunteers with the Birmingham section of the charity CERT UK that serves hot meals to people on the streets.
He said the group often feeds more than 140 people and he had served Kane Walker in the past.
Mr Lowry said many of the homeless people he had spoken to had “hit rock bottom” after falling out with their families.
“The drugs and alcohol numb the pain to the reasons why they are homeless,” he said.
Mr Lowry, who spent a year homeless himself after leaving the army in 2001, said currently there “wasn’t enough support” available from local authorities and the government.
“They need accommodation,” he said, adding: “They’re just left on the street to fend for themselves.”
Peter Caine, 33, volunteers with the charity, Helping the Homeless in Birmingham.He said over the past four and a half years speaking with people on the streets he found one of the reasons for drug use was sleep.”When you’re cold, you can’t sleep, your body won’t let you,” he said.”Then somebody says to you, ‘use this, it’ll help you sleep’ and they sleep like a baby. It’s a very hard thing to resist without the right support,” he added.Mr Caine also said with “fewer police on the streets” drugs were “easier to get hold of” for the homeless.He also said it was difficult to quantify the extent of homeless deaths of people from a particular area, as many tended to move around using public transport, partly to stay warm. “I think only about 20% of the people we serve are from Birmingham, we may never have seen them before,” he added.
Deaths related to drug poisoning among the homeless increased 55% between 2017 and 2018, compared to a rise of 16% among the population as a whole, the ONS said.
Of the 294 estimated deaths from drug poisoning in 2018, the substance detected the most was heroin or morphine, which was identified in 99 cases. This was followed by alcohol, which appeared in 75 cases.
The number of deaths where heroin or morphine was detected in 2018 was more than double the number recorded in 2013, while cases where cocaine was identified tripled over the same period.
The government said it had brought forward “new training” this year for frontline staff in the dangerous effects of new psychoactive substances, such as spice, to help “engage with and support rough sleepers” under the influence.
The statistics include people sleeping rough or using emergency accommodation such as homeless shelters and hostels at or around the time of death.
Government figures suggest there were 4,677 people sleeping rough in England in autumn 2018. This was a slight fall on the year before, down 74, but still more than double the number recorded in 2010.
The figures are collected by local councils, some of which count people they see sleeping rough on a given night and others provide estimates.
In Wales local authorities counted 158 people sleeping rough in 2018, down 16% on 2017.
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‘Unacceptable and avoidable’
Dr Peter English, from the British Medical Association (BMA), said: “For too long, the needs of this population have gone shamefully unaddressed.
“As well as seeing a radical overhaul of social housing provision, we need to ensure that our health services are adequately resourced to provide innovative and integrated models of care for the homeless population.”
He described the deaths as “unacceptable and completely avoidable”.
Polly Neate, from the housing charity Shelter, called for all political parties to commit to building the social homes we need to form the bedrock of a more humane housing system.”
A spokesman for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) said the figures were a “sombre reminder” there was “still much more to do to tackle homelessness and end rough sleeping for good”.
“Drugs can devastate lives, ruin families and damage communities, which is why we are undertaking a comprehensive review which will help protect the most vulnerable – including homeless individuals – from the harms that drugs cause and give them a chance to recover and turn their lives around,” he said.
“We are also investing £1.2bn to tackle all forms of homelessness and have made the most ambitious change to legislation in a decade,” the spokesman added.
Heavy rain is causing travel problems and flash flooding across England.
Twelve flood warnings and 39 flood alerts have been put in place by the Environment Agency.
The Met Office has a yellow rain warning covering most of the country in force until 23:00 BST.
Floods have been reported on roads in Southampton, Birmingham and Liverpool, while Transport for London (TfL) said a number of roads across the capital were also affected by flooding.
A flood warning is in place in Crawley for the Ifield Brook and River Mole at Ifield and the River Mole at Lowfield Heath.
Flooding is also expected on the upper Frome, between Maiden Newton and Dorchester, in Dorset and on the Grace Dieu Brook, between Whitwick and Thringstone, in Leicestershire.
Edwinstone and Ollerton in Nottinghamshire are also at risk of flooding from the River Maun, as are areas around the Whinney Brook at Maghull in Sefton, Merseyside, and Wash Dike in Pontefract, West Yorkshire.
Warnings are also in place for the River Tame at Hams Hall, Water Orton, Whitacre and Nether Whitacre in Warwickshire, and the Blackburn and Charlton Brooks, between Chapeltown and North Ecclesfield, near Sheffield.
National Rail warned of major disruption between Birmingham Snow Hill and Stourbridge earlier due to a tree blocking the line.
Southampton City Centre has seen problems with several cars having broken down in water on Millbrook Road West.
Motorists have also been advised to avoid the road between Waterhouse Lane and Paynes Road.
Roads have flooded in the Longbridge area of Birmingham, while Mersey Fire and Rescue Service reported vehicles trapped in floodwater in the Queens Drive and West Derby areas of Liverpool.
A service spokesman urged drivers to “please take extra care”, adding: “Slow down, increase your distances, switch your lights on and please don’t drive into floodwater.”
About 2in (49.6mm) of rain fell in the six hours before 09:00 at Boscombe Down in Wiltshire, according to the Met Office.
Spokesman Grahame Madge said it was a “significant” amount of rain.
He said the band of rain was “transient” and, having started in the South West, has moved to the Midlands before hitting the North later in the day.
He said some other areas could expect to see the same amount of rain as Boscombe Down.
In Harrogate, the fan zone for the UCI Road World Championships has been closed due to the “heavy rain”.
The cycling action can still be seen on West Park and Parliament Street, organisers said.
MOTD COMMENTATOR’S NOTES
@TonyHusband: Europe is dominating the news headlines at the moment and it will be a subject of much debate if you’re a Wolves fan too. Thursday’s opening Europa League group stage match was their 12th game of what is feeling like a long season already at Molineux.
Europe has been both a blessing and a curse so far for Nuno Espirito Santo’s team. They’ve won six games in the early rounds, including an impressive victory at Serie A side Torino, which somewhat masks their failure to win in the top flight.
At Crystal Palace they’ll find a home team who will be eager to erase memories of their walloping last week. Goals have been in short supply at Selhurst Park this season and I expect it may only take the odd goal to decide this one.
VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT
Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson: “They (Wolves) have had a few disappointing results, and they will be upset about the cruelty of fate. I watched their Europa League game and if a team was going to win, I thought it would be them, so to lose will be a bitter blow.
“I think they have been a bit unlucky. I would base my judgement more on the football they play, rather than the results.”
Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: “We face the reality and the reality says we not performing well, so we have to analyse it and find solutions in the team to improve. This is what we have to do, we have to come strong on Sunday, we must react immediately.“
Crystal Palace got taken apart at Tottenham last time out but I am expecting to see a reaction from them here. Wolves will just have to ride this rough patch out.
- Crystal Palace have won three of their past four league matches against Wolves.
- Wolves have scored in each of their last 14 away league games at Palace.
- The away side has won six of the last eight league meetings.
- Victory would ensure Palace equal their highest Premier League tally of 10 points after six matches.
- The Eagles are unbeaten in their last four home league games, keeping three clean sheets.
- They are in danger of losing successive league fixtures for the first time since January.
- Only one goal has been scored at Selhurst Park so far this season.
- Luka Milivojevic has been booked a league-high four times.
- Wolves are winless in six Premier League matches (D3, L3).
- This is the sixth time they have failed to win any of their opening five top-flight fixtures – they were relegated on the five previous occasions.
- They have conceded eight goals in their past two league fixtures.
- Wolves have won only one of their last nine away league matches (D3, L5).
- Based solely on second-half performances, Wolves would be fourth in the table with nine points (W2, D3).
- Raul Jimenez has scored six goals in Wolves’ most recent five away fixtures in all competitions.
Sead Kolasinac was substituted in Thursday’s Europa League win because of a minor problem but Arsenal are hopeful he will be fit.
Rob Holding may be in contention and academy graduates Joe Willock and Bukayo Saka will hope to feature after both scored versus Eintracht Frankfurt.
Aston Villa winger Trezeguet returns after a one-game ban and Matt Targett has overcome a hamstring injury.
Jonathan Kodjia and James Chester remain sidelined.
MOTD COMMENTATOR’S NOTES
Martin Fisher: One team can’t stop conceding, the other have stopped scoring… something has to give at the Emirates.
Arsenal’s sloppy second-half display at Watford was alarming and unless they cut out basic errors they have little chance of finishing in the top four.
After successive blanks, Villa will be hoping Gunners generosity will last a little longer. Dean Smith’s net spend was greater than any other Premier League manager over the summer and overall he’ll be encouraged by the way his new side is gelling, with lack of goals the only cause for concern.
I expect Villa’s drought to end but I think Arsenal will outscore them.
VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT
Arsenal head coach Unai Emery: “I think every player can be important for us.
“Sometimes we are going to have one plan and we’ll need to change that to use different players in each match.
“We have some new players and players who we need to work with for their adaptation in the next matches. Progressively, they’re getting better.”
Aston Villa manager Dean Smith: “Any team is beatable, we saw that with Norwich’s result against Manchester City.
“When you go head-to-head against anybody you’ve got to have that belief but we know how tough it is at the Emirates.
“We’ve got great belief in what our players are about and we saw with that trip to Tottenham that we can go toe-to-toe with these teams.”
It was a case of ‘same old Arsenal’ with their defensive collapse against Watford on Sunday.
The Gunners still have a weakness at the back but, from what I’ve seen of them so far this season, I don’t think Aston Villa have got the attacking power to take advantage.
- Arsenal have won six consecutive league and cup games against Aston Villa, keeping a clean sheet in each of the last five.
- Villa have won three Premier League away games at Arsenal, a tally exceeded only by Manchester United and Chelsea (both have four victories).
- Arsenal have lost just one of their last 20 Premier League home games (W15, D4), with the solitary defeat coming against Crystal Palace in April.
- They have recorded one clean sheet in their last 10 league matches, conceding two goals or more in six of those games.
- The Gunners have made 14 errors leading directly to Premier League goals since August 2018, more than any other side.
- They have also conceded a joint-league high 10 penalties since the start of last season, including three in the current campaign.
- Since Unai Emery took charge, Arsenal have faced an unrivalled 47 Premier League shots after losing possession within 40m of their own goal.
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored in the last seven league games he has started at the Emirates Stadium.
- Villa have lost nine straight away matches in the top flight, one shy of their club record, set from 1924 to 1925.
- They are also winless in 20 Premier League away games (D3, L17), with their most recent victory coming at Bournemouth on the opening day of the 2015-16 season.
- The Villans have lost 13 of their previous 14 league fixtures against sides from the established top six, earning their only point in a goalless draw with Manchester City in November 2015.
- Jack Grealish has been fouled 179 times in league football (including play-offs) since the start of last season, more than any other player in the top four tiers.
The prime minister was visiting the maternity ward at Whipps Cross Hospital when he was approached by a father.
The man, who is also a Labour activist, told Boris Johnson that the ward was understaffed and the NHS was being destroyed.
A spokesman for the prime minister later said Mr Johnson was visiting public services to see for himself the reality of the situation.
They added the prime minister was “not going to hide away from those circumstances when he goes on these visits, and so obviously is keen to talk to people and empathise and see what he can do to help.
“It’s also a reminder of why exactly he is so keen to make the NHS a priority.”
Sadiq Khan’s former policing adviser has joined the Liberal Democrats, saying his children were no longer safe in London due to rising violence.
Leroy Logan, a former police superintendent, said he quit the Labour Party over the London mayor’s failure to “grasp” knife crime.
Mr Logan will now become policing adviser to the Lib Dem mayoral candidate Siobhan Benita.
Mr Khan said he was wished Mr Logan “all the best of luck in the Lib Dems”.
“I think lots of parents, me included, are concerned about safety in London and across the country,” the mayor added.
“One of the things I’ve been keen to do since I became mayor is to persuade the government to realise that their cuts over the last nine years have consequences.”
Speaking at the Lib Dem’s conference, Mr Logan said: “I’ve seen my children and their generation grow up in fear.
“It’s so tangible. It’s been normalised to such an extent it can happen anywhere, not just small pockets of deprived areas.”
Mr Logan said the mayor “doesn’t really understand” knife crime, and had “isolated himself” on the issue.
“He’s surrounded himself with people who think they are problem solvers, but are creating more problems on the street because they’ve lost touch with what is going on.”
Mr Logan previously criticised the choice of Lib Peck to run London’s Violence Reduction Unit – a role he had also applied for.
Ms Benita, who is running in London’s 2020 Mayoral election, said: “Sadiq has wasted his mayoral term in not addressing this issue with the urgency it needs.
“While he continues to blame other people, our young children in London continue to be traumatised, petrified and at risk. There is so, so much more we can do.”