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London schools close as housing costs push families further out


Chris and Roberta Hodder recently moved from Forest Hill in Lewisham to Eastbourne in Sussex with their children, aged six and 11.

They told BBC London that for them it was the prospect of never being able to own a house that drove them out of London.

Their former three-bed rented property has now sold for £600,000 as they settle by the seaside in a house the same size they bought for £200,000.

“As we were planning to leave, we noticed quite a few kids disappear off the books at our local primary. While visiting a house in another coastal town, there was a couple next to us who were also planning to move out of the city; it definitely seemed like the trend around us,” Mr Hodder, a lobbyist, explained.

“Long term, we need security for our family. I don’t think it’s healthy that London is becoming a city without children – it’s becoming a necropolis.”

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Town's missing sign found in bush 150 miles away


A sign which went missing from Somerset a year ago is found during a litter pick in Cornwall.

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Dars: BBC education show in Afghanistan helps children banned from school


The BBC show is tailored to children aged between 11 and 16 and makes the most of the BBC’s existing teaching content, adapting maths, history, science, and Information and Communications Technology modules from BBC Bitesize, the BBC’s free online resource for pupils in the UK.

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Cheltenham man travelling across UK in Formula 1 wheelchair


A Cheltenham man is taking on the John O’Groats to Land’s End challenge in what is believed to be the world’s first Formula 1 modified wheelchair.

Adam Stanton-Wharmby uses a powered wheelchair as he has cerebral palsy.

He is raising money for the charity Whizz-Kidz, which works with wheelchair users across the country.

The current world record holder is Mary Laver, who completed the challenge in 2009 in 24 days and nine hours.

Video Journalist: Dan Ayers

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Week in pictures: 25-31 March 2023


A selection of striking images from around the world, taken in the past seven days.

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Allan McGregor: Rangers goalkeeper joins 500 club at Ibrox


“There are too many big saves to name.”

Allan McGregor is set to make his 500th Rangers appearance on Saturday when Dundee United visit Ibrox in the Scottish Premiership.

At the youthful age of 41, the veteran goalkeeper is in the fifth season of his second spell with Rangers and if speculation is to be believed, he may not be finished just yet.

With 27 more games, McGregor would climb into the top 10 of Rangers’ all-time appearance makers. No mean feat.

“Allan McGregor’s contribution to Rangers over two spells has been absolutely huge,” added Rangers manager Michael Beale. “If he plays tomorrow he gets 500 appearances, all the trophies he’s won and the performances he’s put in over the years have been fantastic.”

BBC Scotland takes a look…

From academy to club great

A native of Edinburgh, McGregor came through the ranks at Hutchison Vale and Rangers before becoming first choice in the top team during Paul le Guen’s ill-fated reign at Ibrox.

After Walter Smith returned to the club in 2007, McGregor excelled, helping the club win the League Cup in 2008 with a penalty shootout win over Dundee United. However, injury prevented him from featuring in the Uefa Cup final against Zenit St Petersburg.

A year later, McGregor was dropped by club and country after disciplinary issues on international duty but was back in the Rangers first team at the start of the 2009-10 season, ending that campaign and the next as a league champion.

Allan McGregor and some of his career stats

After leaving Ibrox in 2012 for a year with Besiktas, McGregor made his mark in England with Hull City and turned out for Cardiff City during a loan spell in 2017.

With Steven Gerrard’s appointment as Rangers boss came wholesale changes to a team that had struggled to third-placed finishes in the Scottish Premiership two years running. McGregor was the man Gerrard wanted to back up a new defence.

Domestic success was not instantaneous as Celtic continued to dominate in Scotland. However, McGregor was a key part of Rangers’ progress in Europe as the club established themselves as Europa League regulars.

And it was McGregor who secured 18 clean sheets as Rangers finally wrested the title from Celtic in 2021.

Allan McGregor and some of his career stats

Rangers found themselves in another European final in 2022 and this time McGregor was fit and available to take part. Eintracht Frankfurt triumphed on penalties but McGregor would be part of a Scottish Cup-winning Rangers side days later, making a cameo appearance off the bench in what many believed would be his last game.

But a year-long extension was agreed to his Rangers stay and though starting the 2022-23 season as back-up to Jon McLaughlin, McGregor soon became first choice once again.

McGregor amassed 42 Scotland caps before retiring from international duty in 2018, his final appearance culminating in a stunning save that preserved a 3-2 lead against Israel in a crucial Nations League match. The Scots would go on to reach Euro 2020 via the Nations League play-offs.

How does McGregor compare?

Allan McGregor and Craig Gordon in 2018
Allan McGregor and Craig Gordon in 2018

McGregor has long surpassed Stefan Klos’ appearance record at Rangers and has won three more medals with Rangers than the German.

The late Andy Goram also did not feature as much for Rangers than McGregor has and also has 10 medals to McGregor’s 13. However, Goram did win one more league title and one more Scotland cap.

Compared to his Scotland contemporaries, Craig Gordon and David Marshall, Gordon is way out in front with 74 caps – a tally he may well add to after he recovers from injury – while Marshall played 47 times for his country before retiring from international duty.

All three have been playing in the Scottish Premiership this season, with Gordon picking up just one clean sheet on league duty with Hearts before being ruled out for the rest of the season. Marshall has eight shut-outs in the league, one more than McGregor.

What the fans say

We asked Rangers supporters who the club’s greatest goalkeeper was…

Lee: By far the greatest keeper we have had – McGregor is number one, with Stefan Klos a very close second.

Zeke: I believe Andy Goram is still Rangers’ best ever keeper but Allan McGregor definitely has a fighting argument for the top spot. Especially considering McGregor’s pivotal role in both the 2007/08 Europa League and 21/22 Europa League runs, but still all things considered Andy Goram tops it for me.Alex: McGregor is my favourite for longevity and saves out of this world. Andy Goram was special and could walk into any team. Klos was a German machine. All Rangers legends.

Moray: One of the hardest calls in picking the greatest Rangers goalie – both Goram and McGregor were outstanding in Old Firm games and won trophies galore. McGregor just edges it for performances in Europe, longevity and of course, saving penalties in three different decades against Celtic!Frazer: Klos and Goram are no doubt Rangers greats. However, with the increase in pace and athleticism in the game, I think I’d go with McGregor. The argument could then be whether Goram, with today’s fitness levels and facilities, would be even better than he was back then.

Can McGregor keep going?

Rangers manager Michael Beale

He plays a lot of golf though so maybe he sees himself joining a different type of schedule. All those things are open and actively being discussed behind the scenes.

Me and Allan have got a fantastic relationship. I think you can’t force coaching on any player regardless of how big their career is. If it’s an avenue he wants to go down… like a lot of our senior players we would want them to do that and help them whether that’s in the academy or top end of the club. So every avenue is open to Allan.

But at the moment he’s concentrating on playing – I think he’d say that himself.

Former Rangers defender Richard Foster

Goalkeeper’s a position where if you can still jump around and still catch the ball, you don’t need to run that far. He’s still producing the goods. He could possibly go for another few years yet.

He’s the kind of player that Rangers need in the dressing room because he drives the standards. He doesn’t allow people to slacken off even in train. He hates losing a goal in training.

McGregor’s a special goalkeeper because he makes the saves when you need him to.


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'Boy in the Tent' Max Woosey prepares for last night under canvas


Max Woosey has spent every night for more than three years under canvas, raising more than £750k.

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Cwis Ffŵl Ebrill


Ffŵl Ebrill yw testun ein cwis ar Ebrill y cyntaf. Profwch nad ydych chi’n Ffŵl Ebrill.

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Irish Cup: Ballymena beat Larne 2-0 at Seaview to make decider


Ballymena United produced an Irish Cup upset with a 2-0 victory over Premiership leaders Larne in the Seaview semi-final.

It was a deserved win for the Sky Blues with Larne stopper Rohan Ferguson denying Sean Graham in the first half.

Craig Farquhar headed United in front on 69 minutes from a Ross Redman corner.

Dougie Wilson sealed the win seven minutes from time with a wonderful free-kick into the top corner.

United may be struggling in the league but they impressed in north Belfast and advanced to their third final in four years as they ended Larne’s unbeaten run of 16 games.

Things could have been even easier for Ballymena after missing out with the two biggest chances of an otherwise uneventful first half.

Larne keeper Rohan Ferguson produces a superb save to deny Sean Graham at Seaview
Larne keeper Rohan Ferguson produces a superb save to deny Sean Graham at Seaview

The first fell to Graham, whose point-blank header from a Redman cross drew the save of the game from Ferguson.

Larne where let off the hook once again when former Inver hero Davy McDaid had time and space on the edge of the penalty area but drilled just wide.

Ballymena had a penalty appeal turned down in the 62nd minute after Graham’s shot struck Shaun Want’s hand at close range but referee Jamie Robinson waved away the United protests.

Ballymena youth graduate Farquhar opened the scoring in the 69th minute after rising highest to power home from Redman’s delivery.

Wilson doubled the Sky Blues lead with a delightful free-kick, bending the ball around the ball from 20 yards and into the top corner.

It was a lacklustre display from Larne although they created two decent chances in the second half – Joe Thomson volleyed straight at Sean O’Neill while Andy Ryan headed off-target.

Their wait for a first Irish Cup triumph goes on while Ballymena will prepare for the 7 May decider against the winners of Saturday’s other semi-final between holders Crusaders and Dungannon Swifts.

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Anthony Joshua v Jermaine Franklin: Predictions from pros and pundits for heavyweight fight


Venue: O2 Arena, London Date: Saturday, 1 April
Coverage: Radio commentary on BBC Radio 5 Live from 22:00 BST; live text coverage on the BBC Sport website & app.

Anthony Joshua will be under pressure to deliver when he takes on Jermaine Franklin at the O2 Arena in London on Saturday.

The two-time heavyweight champion has fought in 12 consecutive world-title fights but faces Franklin with no belts on the line.

After three defeats in his past five fights, 33-year-old Joshua is keen to return to winning ways – but his American opponent is determined to cause an upset on what has traditionally been happy territory for the Briton.

Joshua has never lost at the O2 Arena, and won his first world title there in 2016.

Can Joshua get a big win or can Franklin cast further doubt over AJ’s future in the sport?

The fight will be broadcast on BBC Radio 5 Live from 22:00 BST, while the BBC Sport website will have a live text commentary page from 21:00 BST, featuring all the build-up and undercard action.

We have asked big names from the world of boxing for their opinions on the big fight.

Tyson Fury’s coach SugarHill Steward: “In Jermaine Franklin’s last fight, his biggest fight to date, he surprised everyone. He’s right there in the mix. Very, very possibly a big upset. Just a good fight, I hope. I want to be entertained. I know Franklin – he’s from my home town. I know his trainer, we go way back. I’m expecting a good fight from that side. I’m also expecting a good fight from Anthony Joshua, who is being trained and handled by Derrick James. I know what Derrick brings to the table.”

Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn: “I’d say Joshua wins by stoppage inside seven rounds. I’m going for rounds four to six. It’s been a while since we’ve seen an early AJ stoppage but I think you’ll see one.”

Unified light-middleweight champion Natasha Jonas: “AJ wins for me. I think he stops him in the middle rounds.”

5 Live analyst Richie Woodhall: “I think this is brilliant match-making. Franklin is only 6ft 2in. He’s fairly slow on his feet. I think this is the fight where Anthony Joshua can really shine. And really get in people’s thinking again about being the best heavyweight in the world.”

Olympic champion Lauren Price: “I’m going for an AJ stoppage. An explosive knockout would be good but he needs to win in style. It will be good for his confidence and in front of a home crowd.”

Former featherweight champion Kid Galahad: “AJ knocks him out inside five rounds. He’ll look sharp and devastating. I expect more focused work to the body under the stewardship of Derrick James.”

Heavyweight Frazer Clarke: “I’ve done many rounds with AJ. I’ve seen the vicious side of him. Let me tell people this, when Anthony Joshua unloads on you with combinations in them 10oz gloves, I don’t care who you are, you’re gone. Usyk never give him the chance to do it, but I think Jermaine Franklin will give him plenty of opportunities. Therefore I can’t see it going near the distance.”

Super-featherweight Jordan Flynn, who will fight on the undercard: “It’s not going to be a pushover. Franklin is a good fighter, he’s going to come to win. But Joshua will be too much for him and will win within six. I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets him out even earlier. He’s just too sharp, too big, too strong and too clever.”

WBO cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie: “I see it being an AJ win. I think it could be a mid-round stoppage just for accumulation of heavy shots.”

Featherweight Karriss Artingstall: “I’m predicting an AJ win. Not sure how he will do it, but he will just get the job done.”

Coach and former fighter Jamie Moore: “The first few rounds might be cagey. AJ will want to find his rhythm and settle down a bit. Let those nerves settle down. But once he finds his range, probably from round four, five or six, he’ll land the big shots and get him out of there.”

Former two-weight champion Carl Frampton: “I think AJ will stop him inside the first half of the fight. I’d love to see him stop him in the first quarter. Dominate him from the centre. Be a brute. If he has his confidence, he is a couple of levels above Franklin. He needs to go out and show that to the people.”

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