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Second air ambulance to reach 'further 400 patients'

This is fantastic news for the people of London, £1 million will give us the opportunity to acquire a second helicopter to give London 100% air cover during summer daylight hours and maintenance periods.

We estimate we'll now be able to reach a further 400 patients each year by helicopter.

The money will cover the cost of running a second aircraft and extended flying hours for one year so we'll also be stepping up our efforts to raise the #6 million a year needed to keep the helicopter trauma service running in the capital.

– Graham Hodgkin, London Air Ambulance Service

Second air ambulance after 'huge, heartfelt' demand

  • The Chancellor announced plans for a new London air ambulance because of what he called "huge and heartfelt" public demand
  • London Air Ambulance Service has been awarded £1 million to operate a second helicopter covering the capital
  • A new aircraft will mean that an additional 400 patients in need to critical care will be reached

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National

Autumn Statement headline announcements

  • Growth forecasts are "significantly up" in the largest improvement at any Budget or Autumn Statement for 14 years, with UK growing faster than any other major economy.
  • The state pension will rise by £2.95 a week from next April. People now in their 40s will receive a state pension at 68. Those in their 30s will be 69.
  • Financial resources will be provided to fund expansion of free school meals to all school children in reception, year one and year two.
  • The fuel duty rise for next year has been cancelled.
  • Plans to increase train fares by 1% above inflation has been cancelled.

Chancellor disagrees with Boris's IQ comments

Mayor of London, Boris Johnson. Credit: Dave Thompson/PA Wire

George Osborne has moved to distance himself from Boris Johnson after the London Mayor suggested society is unequal because many people have low IQs.

Speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show this morning, the Chancellor said he did not agree with everything Mr Johnson said and stressed the importance of education to spread opportunity.

Delivering the Margaret Thatcher lecture last week, the Tory mayor appeared to mock the 16% of "our species" with an IQ below 85 and urged more action to help the 2% with an IQ above 130.

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Holborn struggles with 100,000 passengers a day

Holborn struggles to cope with its 100,000 passengers a day Credit: ITN

Following the announcement that seven government departments have provisionally agreed to reduce their budgets by up to 10%, underground and business leaders are urging the Chancellor not cut funding for major tube projects.

They say schemes like the planned £250 million makeover of Holborn station are vital.

Holborn serves the 'midtown' business district but is closed several times during rush hour because it can't cope with its 100,000 passengers a day.

National

Mum to Clegg: 'You probably think I do a worthless job'

An angry stay-at-home mother attacked the Deputy Prime Minister during his weekly radio phone-in on LBC 97.3, accusing him of thinking what she did was a "worthless job".

The caller, named as Laura from East Dulwich, said to Nick Clegg: "I'm just wondering why the coalition is discriminating against mothers like me who care for their children at home, with the latest announcements?"

Read: The full story on the £1,200 childcare cost pledge

Her scathing attack came after it was announced in the Budget that a tax-free childcare scheme worth £1,200 a child for parents earning up to £150,000 would come into effect from 2015.

Read: Full details on the Budget 2013

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