Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Saturday 12 Jan 2013
The Week’s super-quick catch-up on the main news talking points, available from 8am daily
1. TAXPAYER COULD FOOT SAVILE BILL
The taxpayer could foot much of the bill for compensation claims made by victims of Jimmy Savile, reports The Times. Hundreds of claims are expected against Savile's £4.3m estate and the BBC, as well as schools and hospitals where he is alleged to have struck. If institutions are ruled to have been negligent, the public purse could be charged.
2. HESELTINE SLAMS CAMERON 'GAMBLE'
Lord Heseltine has attacked David Cameron's European strategy, declaring that an "ill-advised" referendum on EU membership could damage UK business. Cameron is expected to announce within weeks that his party will offer a referendum after the general election. Speaking to the Financial Times, Heseltine said this would be an "unnecessary gamble".
3. FRANCE LAUNCHES MALI AIR STRIKES
The Malian government says it has reclaimed territory from Islamist militants after France launched air strikes to support the army. The government has recaptured the key central town of Konna, which militants had taken as they swept southwards. Announcing France's intervention, president Francois Hollande said Islamists want to turn Mali into a "terrorist" state.
4. WINTRY BRITAIN FACES BIG FREEZE
Britain faces a wintry weekend with some regions expecting four inches of snow and temperatures of minus 6. The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning for southern England on Saturday, and the conditions are tipped to head north on Sunday. Two inches of snow are forecast for most of Britain on Monday.
5. TELEVISION VETERAN ROBERT KEE DIES AT 93
The author and broadcaster Robert Kee has died at 93. His books included A Crowd Is Not Company, based on his experience as a WWII prisoner of war. His distinguished TV career included the BBC series Ireland - A Television History. In 1983 he became one of the original presenters of the mould-breaking breakfast station, TV-am.
6. EXPERTS TO GATHER AT HEADACHE SUMMITS
More than 200 medical and public health experts will convene in a series of conferences to agree the best way to tackle headaches. Around 83,000 people miss work or class each day due to headaches, costing the British economy £2billion a year. Experts attending the first conference next week say GPs and the public need further education on headaches.
7. DOUBT OVER PARALYMPIC LEGACY
Nearly 90% of the UK's sports clubs have seen no change in the number of disabled people applying to join in the months after the Paralympic Games. Andy Reed, of the Sport and Recreation Alliance, said he had been "confident" the Games would spark an increase in applications from disabled people, "so these figures are very disappointing".
8. BRIAN COX MAKES PHYSICS FASHIONABLE
A 'Brian Cox' effect has caused a surge of interest in physics among university applicants, reports the Daily Telegraph. In response, Manchester University has raised entry requirements for its physics degree to two A* and one A. It credits the popularity of Cox's television shows Stargazing Live and Wonders of the Universe, and coverage of the Large Hadron Collider at Cern.
9. FREE TRAVEL FOR AWAY FANS MULLED
Premier League clubs are considering offering free coach travel to visiting supporters as anger grows over the price of away tickets. A group set up by the Premier League to consider ticketing reforms will report next month. The cost of away travel has taken centre stage after Manchester City returned almost a third of its allocation of £62 tickets for the trip to Arsenal on Sunday.
10. PRODUCER DEFENDS WILDLIFE SERIES
The makers of the BBC's new wildlife documentary series, Africa, have denied that it manipulates viewers' emotions. Viewers have been reduced to tears by heart-rending scenes of animals deaths set to a powerful musical soundtrack. Producer James Honeyborne said: “I don’t think we do tell you what to feel, but we do lay open the broad pallet of what is happening in nature."