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Christmas wishes come true in Lapland

Christmas has come early for a group of children, who've been taken to Lapland with their families.

The trip was organised by a charity which grants wishes to children with life-threatening illnesses.

They've been having lots of festive fun - playing in the snow, enjoying sleigh rides and meeting the man himself… yes, Father Christmas. Lauren Hall reports.

The secret behind Christmas kisses

This month, most of us will be giving out Christmas presents… but we're not the only ones. Mother Nature also brings us a few gifts at this time of year - and, this week, we'll be looking at them in a special series all about Christmas crops.

Tonight we start with mistletoe - to find out why it's so popular and why it's associated with Christmas kisses. Lauren Hall reports.

Dinosaur skeleton fails to sell at auction

The skeleton could raise £500,000 Credit: Silke Lohmann

An "exceptionally rare" almost-complete skeleton of a young dinosaur failed to sell at auction today.

The remains of the Allosaurus, one of the largest dinosaurs of the late Jurassic period, are believed to be the most complete juvenile of the species discovered so far.

The skeleton, known as Little Al and estimated to be up to 155 million years old, went under the hammer at Summers Place Auctions in Billingshurst, West Sussex.

Relatively complete dinosaur skeletons are "extremely rare", the auctioneers said, with those of young dinosaurs even more so.

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350 athletes to take part in watersports comp at Hurley

Kayakers get in some practice the night before the Hurley Classic begins Credit: Sue Walters

The final preparations have taken place for a celebration of freestyle watersports taking place at the Hurley Weir near Maidenhead this weekend.

More than 350 competitors from across the globe are expected to take part in the freestyle challenges. Amateur paddlers and professionals will take to the water in a number of events at the annual International Paddlesport Festival on the River Thames in Berkshire.

“We have some great water conditions now, the rain last week came just in time for the lock keepers to be able to open two of the weir gates to create a wave where many tricks can be performed.

"It is a great opportunity for members of the public to see some of the best freestyle kayakers in the world up close, as the walkway over the weir is opened up especially for the event.

"There will be young paddlers workshops, races in white water kayaks, and Stand Up Paddleboards across the white water. New this year will be a team event, where several boaters will surf the wave together and try to do some tricks, which should provide great entertainment, as well as the ever popular flood lit final."

– Andrew Jackson, Organiser
Finishing touches being put to marquee for this weekend's competition
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