Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Saturday 14 Feb 2015

1. OBSESE COULD LOSE BENEFITS RIGHT

Obese people could lose their right to welfare benefits if they refuse to diet. As part of a £500m crackdown on disability hand outs ordered by David Cameron, alcoholics and drug users could also lose benefits if they refuse treatment that would help them get work. An estimated 100,000 people with these conditions are claiming sickness benefits.

2. DRESDEN: WORSE THAN NAZIS?

The Archbishop of Canterbury has come under fire over his apology for the Dresden raids. Justin Welby described his “profound feeling of regret and deep sorrow” over the attack. RAF veterans and MPs have described the BBC’s coverage of 70th anniversary of the bombing of Dresden in which Britain was described as “worse than the Nazis”.

3. WEATHERMAN GUILTY OF SEXUAL ABUSE

Former TV weatherman Fred Talbot has been convicted of sexually abusing two schoolboys when he was a teacher between the 1960s and 1980s. The 65-year-old, who found fame on the ITV show This Morning, was cleared of eight other charges. His diary from his teaching days included such entries as: "What is more interesting than a smoking, swearing and copulating 15-year-old."

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4. STUDY: 48% OF TRAINS RUN LATE

Almost 50% of trains on Britain’s busiest lines run late despite official figures which claim that nine out of 10 are on time. Rail firms stand accused of subjecting passengers to an “almost daily grind” of cancellations and delays after a study found that only 52% of services reach stations within a minute of their scheduled arrival time.

5. CUMBERBATCH TO WED SOPHIE HUNTER

Benedict Cumberbatch is to marry fiancee Sophie Hunter this weekend, it has been revealed. Although the location of the private ceremony has not been disclosed, it is widely speculated that it will take place on the Isle of Wight. The ubiquitous Hollywood star, 38, met Hunter, 36, when they appeared in 2009 film Burlesque Fairytales.

6. STRAW: ‘I GET CALLED A WAR CRIMINAL’

Jack Straw has revealed that he is still abused in public over the Iraq War. As the 68-year-old prepares to stand down at the general election, he tells the Daily Telegraph: “People will shout at me on the Tube sometimes, with less frequency these days, and say I’m a war criminal. It’s much less pleasant for my family, particularly given the fact that my wife and both children opposed the war.”

7. MUM CHOMPS NOSE IN BUTLINS TABLE ROW

A mother who headbutted and bit off part of a woman’s nose during a children’s pantomime at Butlins has been jailed. Tina Love, 29, attacked Julie McDonald, 50, pinning her down and chewing her nose in a row over a table at a performance of Jack and the Beanstalk. She was sentenced to six years in prison for wounding with intent.

8. ENGLAND STRUGGLE AT WORLD CUP

England suffered a tricky start to their World Cup tie with Australia, with the Aussies setting them 343 to win. This was the highest ever total against England in a World Cup. Finch was run out for 135, while Bailey fell for 55 and Maxwell hit a 30-ball half-century. Earlier, New Zealand recorded a 98-run victory over Sri Lanka in the opening match of the World Cup in Christchurch.

9. BOMBARDED SYRIANS APPEAL FOR HELP

Scores have been killed as a rebel-held Damascus suburb came under heavy bombardment by the Assad regime. Syrian opposition are appealing for help, and asking why the American-led coalition has intervened to save Kobani from an ISIS advance but sat on its hands as Douma’s civilians came under intense airstrikes and barrel bombing by the Assad regime.

10. GERRARD TO MISS FA CUP TIE

Liverpool are at Crystal Palace in the FA Cup today. The Reds will be without captain Steven Gerrard, who is out for up to three weeks with a hamstring problem. Elsewhere, West Ham are at West Brom and Blackburn host stoke. Tomorrow, holders Arsenal take on Middlesbrough, with new Gunners defender Gabriel a contender for his first start.

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