Im A Celebrity: Mo Farah, Shane Richie and Victoria Derbyshire sign up

Sir Mo Farah, Shane Richie and Victoria Derbyshire are among the stars heading to a Welsh castle to take part in I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!

The pandemic means they aren’t going to the Australian jungle as usual – this year’s series has been relocated to the ruined Gwrych Castle in Conwy.

They will be joined by actress Beverley Callard, presenter Vernon Kay and former Strictly dancer AJ Pritchard.

The series will begin on ITV next Sunday, 15 November.

EastEnders actress Jessica Plummer, BBC Radio 1 DJ Jordan North, Paralympic champion Hollie Arnold, and author and podcaster Giovanna Fletcher will also be hoping to be crowned the first king or queen of the castle.

While they won’t face the usual bush tucker trials, ITV has promised that the contestants can still look forward to “a basic diet of rice and beans and plenty of thrills and surprises”.

Preparations at the 19th Century castle have gone ahead despite the “firewall” lockdown in Wales, which ends on Monday.

The 2019 launch show was ITV’s most-watched programme of the year, seen by more than 13 million people.

Hollie Arnold

She won her fourth consecutive javelin world title at the 2019 World Para-Athletics Championships a year ago, and won a gold medal at the Rio Paralympic Games in 2016. She was appointed an MBE in 2017, and was nominated for BBC Cymru Wales Sports Personality of the Year 2019.

Beverley Callard

Best known as Coronation Street’s Liz McDonald, she began playing the ITV soap’s leopard skin-loving landlady in 1989. In 2019, she announced that she was leaving the cobbles.

Victoria Derbyshire

The BBC journalist won a Bafta for best TV news coverage in 2017, and won the Royal Television Society’s network presenter of the year and interview of the year awards in 2018. But her self-titled BBC Two show was axed as part of BBC cuts earlier this year.

Sir Mo Farah

With four Olympic gold medals, he is Britain’s most successful Olympic track and field athlete. But his participation in I’m A Celebrity… has raised questions about how the show will affect his preparation for the 10,000m at the rescheduled Tokyo Games next year.

Giovanna Fletcher

Giovanna Fletcher is an author, presenter and parenting guru, and the wife of McFly star Tom Fletcher. Her books include Happy Mum, Happy Baby: My Adventures in Motherhood, and she also presents The Baby Club at Home on CBeebies.

Vernon Kay

Kay is a former BBC Radio 1 and T4 presenter, as well as the ex-host of ITV shows including All Star Family Fortunes, Beat the Star and Splash! He is married to Tess Daly, co-presenter of I’m A Celebrity’s ratings rival Strictly Come Dancing on BBC One.

Jordan North

North hosts Radio 1’s lunchtime show from Fridays to Sundays, as well as the podcast Help I Sexted My Boss, and previously presented 4Music’s Trending Live. He started his broadcasting career as a researcher for fellow campmate Victoria Derbyshire on BBC Radio 5 Live.

Jessica Plummer

Plummer has just left EastEnders after starring as Chantelle Atkins, who was murdered by her abusive husband. Before that, Plummer was a member of girl group Neon Jungle, who had two UK top 10 hits in 2014.

AJ Pritchard

The dancer joined Strictly in 2016 and was in the show’s professional ranks for four years. But in March he announced he was leaving to “follow his dreams to explore opportunities in the presenting world alongside his brother Curtis”.

Shane Richie

He’s been a game show host, West End actor and singer, but Richie is best known for playing the lovable and long-suffering Alfie Moon in EastEnders on and off between 2002 and 2019.

Alex Trebek: Jeopardy! game show host dies with cancer aged 80

Alex Trebek, the long-time host of American television quiz show Jeopardy!, has died at the age of 80.

Mr Trebek announced he had been diagnosed with stage-four pancreatic cancer in March 2019.

The Jeopardy! Twitter account said on Sunday he had “passed away peacefully at home” surrounded by family and friends.

Mr Trebek had hosted Jeopardy! since 1984, and had received numerous awards and honours for his work.

Producer of Jeopardy!, Sony Pictures, led tributes to the “legend”, writing in a statement: “For 37 amazing years, Alex Trebek was that comforting voice, that moment of escape and entertainment at the end of a long, hard day for millions of people around the world.”

Known for his sharp wit and charisma, the Canadian-American presenter became the face of Jeopardy! during his three decades on the show, turning it into a ratings smash hit.

He fronted more than 8,200 episodes of the popular quiz show, making him among the most well-known people on television in the US and Canada.

In 2014 he set a Guinness World Record for “most game show episodes hosted by the same presenter”.

Mr Trebek had vowed to continue presenting Jeopardy! while receiving treatment including chemotherapy. He was contracted to host the show until 2022.

In a typically light-hearted tone, the presenter said in a video statement he had no choice but to beat the cancer because of his contractual obligations.

He was candid about his medical treatment, regularly updating fans on his condition.

“I am optimistic about my current plan, and thank them for their concerns,” Mr Trebek said in a statement released by Jeopardy! In July.

Mr Trebek is survived by his second wife, Jean, and his children Matthew, Emily and Nicky.

Former Jeopardy! contestant Buzzy Cohen was among the first to pay tribute to the presenter.

“Absolutely heartbreaking to lose someone who meant so much to so many. Even if this show hadn’t changed my life in so many ways, this loss would be immeasurable,” Mr Cohen tweeted.

In another tweeted tribute, Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings said Mr Trebek was a “deeply decent man” as well as being “the best ever at what he did”.

“I’m grateful for every minute I got to spend with him,” Mr Jennings tweeted. “Thinking today about his family and his Jeopardy! family — which, in a way, included millions of us.”

Obituary: Geoffrey Palmer

With his hangdog expression and lugubrious delivery, Geoffrey Palmer was one of the best-known actors of his generation.

He cut his teeth on the stage before launching a career as a character actor in a variety of roles in film and TV.

He was perhaps most famous for a series of TV sitcoms including Butterflies, The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin and As Time Goes By.

A reserved man, he usually remained out of the public gaze when not appearing on stage or screen, and rarely gave interviews.

Geoffrey Dyson Palmer was born in London on 4 June 1927, the son of a chartered accountant.

After attending Highgate School he did his National Service in the Royal Marines, where he became an instructor, taking recruits through field training and the intricacies of using small arms.

He qualified as an accountant, but he’d always had a hankering for the stage and his girlfriend persuaded him to sign up with a local dramatic society.

There was a job as assistant stage manager at the Grand Theatre in Croydon, before he set out on the traditional actor’s apprenticeship, touring in rep.

In 1958 he moved into television with roles in the ITV series The Army Game, a sitcom based on the lives of National Service soldiers that launched the careers of a number of famous actors and led to the first Carry On film.

There followed a variety of TV character parts in episodes of The Avengers, The Saint, Gideon’s Way and The Baron.

He also appeared as a property agent in Ken Loach’s hard-hitting BBC play, Cathy Come Home.

His world-weary demeanour made him instantly recognisable although it did not reflect his real character. “I’m not grumpy,” he once said. “I just look this way.”

Despite an increasing amount of TV and film work he continued to perform in the theatre, where he received critical acclaim for his role in John Osborne’s play, West of Suez, appearing alongside Ralph Richardson.

He went on to work with Paul Scofield and Laurence Olivier before being directed by John Gielgud in a production of Noel Coward’s Private Lives.

In 1970 he played Masters in Doctor Who and the Silurians. It was the first of three appearances he would make in the franchise, returning in 1972 in Mutants and in 2007 in Voyage of the Damned.

He came to the attention of a wider audience as Jimmy Anderson, the clueless brother-in law of Leonard Rossiter in the sitcom The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin, which first aired on the BBC in 1976.

He followed this up with the part of the reserved and conservative dentist Ben in Carla Lane’s bittersweet comedy, Butterflies.

Palmer’s character sat gloomily at the end of the dinner table, unable to comprehend his adolescent sons or his wife’s midlife crisis. His world-weary take on events acted as his defence against the mayhem happening around him.

He was still much in demand as a character actor. His film appearances included A Fish Called Wanda, The Madness of King George and Clockwise.

On the small screen he played Dr Price in the Fawlty Towers episode The Kipper and the Corpse, and appeared in The Professionals, The Goodies and Whoops Apocalypse.

He also made a memorable appearance as Field Marshal Haig in Blackadder Goes Forth, casually sweeping model soldiers off a plan of the battlefield with a dustpan and brush.

In 1992 he began a role in the sitcom As Time Goes By, alongside his great friend, Judi Dench.

It followed the progress of former lovers who rekindled their relationship after a 38-year gap. It became one of the BBC’s most popular comedies and was still being shown to appreciative audiences 25 years later.

Palmer also shared the billing with Dench in the Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies and as Sir Henry Ponsonby in Mrs Brown, the story of the relationship between Queen Victoria and her servant.

With a voice as distinctive as his appearance, Palmer was much in demand as a narrator. He was heard on the BBC series Grumpy Old Men and he recorded a number of audio books including a version of A Christmas Carol for Penguin.

He also voiced some notable adverts, urging people to “slam in the lamb”, in a commercial for the Meat & Livestock Commission and he introduced a British audience to “Vorsprung durch Technik” in adverts for Audi cars.

Away from stage and screen he was a keen fly fisherman, once appearing in a DVD series, The Compleat Angler, in which he retraced Izaak Walton’s classic 17th-Century book.

In 2011 he joined the campaign to try to halt plans for the HS2 railway line, the proposed route of which ran close to his home in Buckinghamshire.

He married Sally Green in 1963 and the couple had two children.

In 2000 the British Film Institute polled industry professionals to compile a list of what they felt were the greatest British TV programmes ever screened.

Palmer was the only actor to have appeared in all of the top three – Fawlty Towers, Cathy Come Home and Doctor Who.

Geoffrey Palmer had no formal training as an actor but his innate skills kept him in almost continuous work for more than six decades.

His policy was never to turn down a part. “I love working,” he once said, “and, if I’m not working, I’m not earning.”

Jordan North: Remembrance Sunday is so important

“Remembrance Day has always been very important to us,” says Jordan North.

“There have been nine close family members who’ve served, including my dad and brother.”

The Radio 1 presenter spoke to his family about the importance of Remembrance Sunday for Newsbeat and shared their stories.

Ryan: I served in Iraq and Afghanistan and lost friends and colleagues. You never forget them but Remembrance Day gives you the chance for a bit of reflection.

But it’s not just for people I’ve lost. It’s for people that have fought through all conflicts, from World War One and Two, all the way through to the more recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

As a country, it brings people together.

It’s always good to think about them and what the nation is and what the country is because of the people that have fought for it.

Jordan: What will you be thinking about during the two-minute silence?

Ryan: The sacrifice that people made.

It’s quite a proud moment to realise what you’re willing to put yourself through as a solider and how proud you are to be a soldier and how proud you are of the people you serve with.

Graham: It’s such an important day. We’ve got so many family members who served or are still serving. Whether it’s my mum or dad, my son or nephews and nieces.

Now I’ve left the Army, I still like to get together with old veterans to toast our former colleagues who’ve been killed in operations.

Jordan: What will you be thinking about during the silence?

Graham: It’s always a chance for me to remember a couple of lads who I served with who lost their lives in Northern Ireland, back in 1987.

Private Joe Leach and Private Iain O’Connor both died during Operation Banner. We were only 20 or 21 years old.

Also my old boss, Major Tony Hornby, who also died.

It’s a day everyone should reflect on, to remember the older generation – because they’re the people who made the world a better place to live in today.

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Listen to Newsbeat live at 12:45 and 17:45 weekdays – or listen back here

Alex Trebek: Jeopardy! gameshow host dies after cancer battle aged 80

Alex Trebek, the long-time host of American television quiz show Jeopardy!, has died at the age of 80.

Mr Trebek announced he had been diagnosed with stage-four pancreatic cancer in March 2019.

The Jeopardy! Twitter account said on Sunday he had “passed away peacefully at home” surrounded by family and friends.

Mr Trebek had hosted Jeopardy! since 1984, and had received numerous awards and honours for his work.

Known for his sharp wit and charisma, the Canadian-American presenter became the face of Jeopardy! during his three decades on the show, turning it into a ratings smash hit.

He fronted thousands of episodes of the popular quiz show, making him among the most well-known people on television in the US and Canada.

In 2014 he set a Guinness World Record for “most game show episodes hosted by the same presenter”.

Mr Trebek had vowed to fight cancer and continue to present Jeopardy! while receiving treatment including chemotherapy. He was contracted to host the show until 2022.

Former Jeopardy! contestant Buzzy Cohen was among the first to pay tribute to Mr Trebek.

“Absolutely heartbreaking to lose someone who meant so much to so many. Even if this show hadn’t changed my life in so many ways, this loss would be immeasurable,” Mr Cohen tweeted.

US election: Johnson vows to defend common values with Joe Biden

Boris Johnson has said there is “more that unites than divides” him and Joe Biden as he pledged to work together to defend “common values and interests”.

The UK prime minister told broadcasters he and the US president-elect shared a belief in democracy, human rights, free speech and free trade.

He also welcomed the “real prospect” of the US now showing “global leadership” on climate change.

Mr Biden’s allies have meanwhile sought to smooth over Brexit differences.

Senator Chris Coons, who is tipped to become secretary of state in the Biden administration, said the election was an opportunity “to jump start a new chapter” in transatlantic relations.

Asked about Mr Biden’s opposition to Brexit when he was Barack Obama’s vice-president and his subsequent criticism of Mr Johnson, he said he expected there to be some “reconsideration of whatever comments may have been made about the moment of Brexit” in the coming weeks and months.

Following Mr Biden’s victory, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the UK would “listen carefully” to US concerns about the impact of the UK’s departure from the EU on stability on the island of Ireland and the Good Friday Agreement.

Mr Biden has vowed to unify the US after he was declared the winner of the presidential election on Saturday.

The Republican incumbent, President Donald Trump, who is a strong supporter of Brexit, has yet to concede defeat and is taking legal action in a number of states, alleging voting irregularities.

Mr Raab told the BBC’s Andrew Marr that the UK had always had faith in the integrity of the US electoral system to produce a “clear” outcome, which he said it had now done.

“We want to avoid getting sucked into domestic American politics but it is very clear now, in our view, that there is a definitive result,” he said.

He said the British embassy in Washington had been in touch with the Biden campaign and he believed the president-elect and Mr Johnson, who have never met before, would speak in “due course”.

Mr Johnson used his interview to reaffirm the importance of the relationship between the two countries, saying he and the new president had “crucial stuff” to get on with.

“The United States is our closest and most important ally, and that has been the case president after president, prime minister after prime minister – it won’t change,” he said.

“I think there is far more that unites the government of this country and governments in Washington at any time and any stage than divides us.

“We have common values, we have common interests, we have common global perspective. There is a huge amount of work we need to do together to protect those values.”

Mr Johnson signalled that he hoped Mr Biden’s victory would mark a big shift in US policy on climate change, Mr Trump having taken the country out of the Paris Climate Accord.

“I think now with President Biden in the White House in Washington we have the real prospect of American global leadership in tackling climate change,” he said.

The UK and US are currently seeking to negotiate a bilateral trade agreement, against a backdrop of historic tensions with senior Democrats in Congress over Brexit and its impact on Northern Ireland.

Mr Biden has warned that the 1998 Good Friday Agreement must “not be a casualty” of Brexit and expressed concerns about the UK government’s attempt to pass legislation that would give it the power to override aspects of the EU Withdrawal Agreement with regard to Northern Ireland.

The election of Joe Biden leaves Boris Johnson facing a substantial diplomatic repair job. The two men have never met.

Last December the president-elect described the prime minister as a “physical and emotional clone” of Donald Trump.

There are people around Mr Biden who remember bitterly how Mr Johnson once suggested President Obama harboured anti-British sentiment because of his part-Kenyan ancestry.

Mr Biden and his team think Brexit is an historic mistake. They would not want Britain to leave the EU without a trade deal, particularly if it involved breaking commitments made in the Northern Ireland protocol.

Mr Johnson has expressed his belief that the UK will be able to secure mutually beneficial trade agreements with both the US and the EU, its two largest partners.

But he has also signalled that he will now bow to pressure from the EU to re-write the Internal Market Bill, which is due to be voted on in the Lords on Monday, to take out controversial clauses

“The whole point of the Internal Market Bill… is to protect and uphold the Good Friday Agreement and the peace process in Northern Ireland,” he said.

“That is one of the things that we’re united on with our friends in the White House.”

Asked about Mr Trump’s continued claims that he had won the election, the foreign secretary said the UK and other foreign countries must be careful not to be seen to be seeking to interfere in the election or its aftermath.

He added: “I am sure Donald Trump and his team will reflect on where they lie.”

Climate change: A tale of frequent fliers and weird electricity

A 10-point plan aimed at putting the UK on track for a zero emissions economy is due to be unveiled by the prime minister in the coming weeks.

Boris Johnson’s previous speeches on climate change have given the impression the problem can largely be solved by technology – a flash of nuclear, a gust of hydrogen, a blast of offshore wind, a dollop of carbon capture and storage.

But a government spokesperson told BBC News we’ll all need to “work together and play our part”.

And experts warn the issue’s phenomenally complicated – presenting challenges never seen before.

Tackling climate change, they say, will need action right across society and the economy – with a host of new incentives, laws, rules, bans, appliance standards, taxes and institutional innovations.

Let’s examine a few of the issues…

Few of the UK’s challenges are as complex or weirdly wonderful as the future electricity system, in which millions of generators and users of power will trade with each other via the internet.

Already hundreds of thousands of sites are generating energy – from householders with a single rooftop solar panel to mighty Drax power station, in North Yorkshire, with its controversial wood-burners, to giant wind farms floating at sea.

It’s a far cry from the 1990s when power was delivered on a simple grid dominated by a few dozen coal-fired plants

In the coming years, millions of people will want to sell the power they’re generating on their roofs.

We’ll need extra electricity because cars will run on batteries, and homes will be heated by heat pumps (which run like fridges in reverse to suck out warmth from the soil or the air). They don’t pollute, unlike gas boilers.

But that’s not the end of the story.

Yes, electric cars will increase demand – but they’ll also increase energy storage. Smart car batteries will be programmed to charge themselves when electricity’s cheapest, in the middle of the night.

The cars can then store the power and sell it back to the grid at a profit when it’s needed, at tea time. In other words, owning a car might actually make you money.

And here’s another chunk of weirdness. Smart washing machines can already turn themselves on to take advantage of cheap, off-peak electricity.

You’ll save even more money by allowing an invisible hand to briefly switch off your well-insulated smart freezer to save power at a time of peak demand.

That’ll help save your energy firm generating more electricity, so you’ll get paid a little for it. It’s called Demand Management.

But how will these millions of generators, users, avoiders and storers of power manage to trade with each other? How will electricity systems cope with this level of brain-shredding complexity?

Guy Newey from the think tank Energy Systems Catapult, warns: “There are immense opportunities in our energy future.

“But thinking through the unbelievable complexity is a really tough challenge – and it’s not clear that anyone or any organisation in the UK has the responsibility of doing that.”

One thing that’s crystal clear is that the UK’s carbon-free future will need rules.

EU standards on appliances like fridges and vacuum cleaners are an unsung energy success story. They oblige manufacturers to make goods that do a task with less energy.

It means that although the price of electricity has gone up, consumer bills have fallen, because they’re using less.

Libby Peake, from the think-tank Green Alliance, said: “Product standards have slashed the UK’s carbon footprint, and saved the average household at least £100 a year on their energy bills.”

But she warns that shoddy products are slipping on to the market because there aren’t enough trading standards officers to enforce the rules.

She says things will get worse for people shopping online during lockdown because the majority of relevant products online are labelled poorly – or not at all.

Stricter standards are also needed for new homes. The previous Labour government mandated that all new houses should be zero carbon from 2016.

The Conservatives pushed back the date to 2025, but they’re under pressure to advance it again – a decision may be announced soon.

Many architects also want the UK to follow France and stipulate that 50% of the fabric of new government buildings should be timber – to lock up carbon emissions in the wood.

And cars will face new rules too: the proposed ban on the sale of petrol and diesel cars will be brought forward to the start of the 2030s – eventually heralding the end of the internal combustion engine.

Finance is another area requiring attention. According to Vivid Economics, the government Export Credit Agency – which underwrites British-funded projects abroad – is investing £2bn in oil and gas ventures.

The Climate Coalition of green groups says this doesn’t fit UK priorities.

Meanwhile, the UK private finance sector is one of the world’s biggest funders of fossil fuels. The former Bank of England head Mark Carney has urged financiers to disclose their assets in dirty industries because they present a business risk in a low-carbon world.

The Climate Coalition wants bankers to take a further step to actively shed polluting firms from their portfolios.

Kate Levick from the think tank e3g told me: “There’s a real urgency about this. Finance firms are financing projects today that will be contributing to emissions in 30 years’ time.”

She’s calling on the government to legislate to make the transition happen.

The coalition also wants the Treasury to set out a climate finance plan to show how ministers will finance the net-zero transition in the UK.

While we’re talking about money, the government is being urged to reconsider its priorities for expensive infrastructure projects.

Some environmentalists argue that given all the concrete needed for the track and tunnels, HS2 won’t be carbon neutral by 2050. They want it scrapped.

HS2 says it’ll save emissions in the long term, but environmentalists say it’s diverting £100bn from more effective causes.

There’s a similar dispute about the government’s £27bn road-building programme.

One study – hotly contested by the Department of Transport – estimates that 80% of CO2 savings from electric cars will be negated by the planned roads.

The government says it’s carrying out England’s largest ever boost for cyclists and pedestrians, but greens say ministers shouldn’t be doing anything that undermines the battle against climate heating.

They say when it comes to infrastructure, home insulation offers by far the best value for money, with the greatest number of jobs.

Our government spokesperson says it “wholeheartedly” agrees with the spirit of greater citizen involvement around climate change recommended by the recent UK Citizens’ Assembly – a group brought together to consider how to make changes with least pain.

It suggested households will need to insulate their homes, and eventually get rid of polluting gas boilers.

That we should gradually eat less meat and dairy produce.

It agreed that some journeys now taken by car should be done on foot or by bike – and that the sale of new petrol and diesel cars should be ended soon.

And it wanted frequent fliers to have their wings clipped.

But how far will the prime minister’s 10-point plan spell out that people – as well as technologies – will have to change if we want to stop damaging the climate?

Follow Roger on Twitter @rharrabin

Swimmer dies after Studland sea rescue

A swimmer has died after being pulled out of the sea by rescue teams off the Dorset coast.

Emergency services were called to reports of two people getting into difficulty in the water off Ferry Road in Studland on Friday evening.

Swanage Coastguard Rescue Team rescued a man in his 60s but he died a the scene. A second man who made it ashore has been taken to hospital.

The death is not being treated as suspicious.

The coastguard said both men “were given urgent medical treatment on the beach”.

It added: “Sadly despite the efforts of all those attending one male sadly passed away… our thoughts are with the family and friends.”

Thornton Heath: Boy arrested after girls stabbed on way to school

A boy has been arrested after two 15-year-old girls were stabbed as they made their way to their schools in south London.

One girl was knifed in the leg by a stranger as she walked along Moffat Road in Thornton Heath on Wednesday.

On Friday morning, another girl was approached by a stranger in St Paul’s Road who stabbed her in the arm.

The Met said a 15-year-old boy had been held on suspicion of two counts of GBH and was in custody.

The two attacks happened about 10 minutes walk from one another but the force said the girls attended different schools and are not thought to have known each other.

They were both taken to hospital following the attacks where their injuries were not found to be life-threatening.

Migrant crossings: Eight migrants brought ashore by Border Force

Eight migrants have been brought ashore by immigration officials after almost 100 made the journey in just two days.

Seven men and one woman were seen huddled in a dinghy before they were picked up and taken to Dover by Border Force on Saturday.

The Home Office said 56 people made the crossing on Thursday, while a further 40 arrived on Friday.

These are thought to be the first crossings in small boats since a family died attempting the journey.

The Kurdish-Iranian family died when their overcrowded boat sank off the coast of France on 27 October.

Rasoul Iran-Nejad, his wife Shiva Mohammad Panahi, both 35, died along with their children Anita, nine, and Armin, six.

Their baby son Artin, just 15 months old, is missing, presumed dead.

Clandestine Channel Threat Commander Dan O’Mahoney said 60 people had been stopped from making the “incredibly dangerous crossing in the last two days”.

“We are going after the criminals who are responsible for these crossings and last week put four people who risked dozens of lives behind bars,” he added.