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Friday morning news briefing: Brexit deal on line over fishing

Comment and analysis

Editor's choice: Features and arts

  1. How Covid has changed the way we eat | From 'tornado omelettes' to snack attacks
  2. Christmas lights | The best ways to light up your home, from church candles to icicles
  3. 'All he wanted was to see his grandparents' | How Covid changed children's Christmas lists

Business and money briefing

Tax reform pledge | Boris Johnson has pledged an overhaul of red tape and business taxes to turbocharge Britain's recovery next year as the coronavirus outbreak ends. The Prime Minister said the Government would be looking at the "tax and regulatory environment", in a move that could set him on a collision course with fiscal hawks in the Treasury. 

Sport briefing

Bail-out backlash | Football is braced for fundamental reform after the Premier League's landmark £250m rescue package sparked division. England's top tier ended months of wrangling by agreeing it would match the sum requested by the cash-strapped Football League over the summer. But the deal to keep clubs alive comes with strings attached.  

Tonight's dinner

Butter beans with saffron and spicy sausages | These beans by Eleanor Steafel feel luxurious enough to work for a Friday night. View the recipe. For more ideas, try our Cookbook newsletter.

And finally... for this morning's downtime

Strange tale of Flight 19 | Tomorrow is 75 years since the mystery that sparked the Bermuda Triangle myth. Chris Leadbeater examines how it has clung to the popular imagination as sinister.

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Fears Macron may torpedo agreement at last moment

It is crunch time. Brexit talks are heading for a showdown between Boris Johnson and Emmanuel Macron this weekend, with the prospect of an EU deal dependent on French access to fish in British waters. Senior Downing Street sources are unsure as to whether the French president might "torpedo" the proposed deal at the last moment. There were hopes yesterday that a deal was about to be agreed, but Brussels Correspondent James Crisp says the British delegation was taken aback after the EU made a series of "destabilising" last-minute demands. These are the sticking points. Camilla Tominey predicts there will be no vaccine against the ire of Red Wall Tories if they sense a "sell-out" to Brussels.

NHS staff lose vaccine priority as supply fears hit

NHS front-line staff will no longer be prioritised for the Covid vaccine, amid confusion over the number of doses that will arrive by the end of the year. Chris Hopson, the chief executive of NHS Providers, said that an initial 800,000 doses "could be the only batch we receive for some time". Last night, the first Pfizer vaccines arrived in Britain. They were delivered to a secure Public Health England depot where they will undergo further checks before being delivered to 50 designated hospital hubs across the four nations. It came as it emerged that people who get the jab will not be exempted from self-isolation if they are contacted by Test and Trace. Although the vaccine gives recipients immunity, scientists do not know if it stops them being carriers. Science Editor Sarah Knapton answers your questions. Meanwhile, America's most senior medical adviser rowed back on claims that the UK moved too fast to authorise the vaccine. Dr Anthony Fauci insisted he was not implying sloppiness on the part of British authorities, in whom he had "great faith".

A vaccine might be imminent, but Covid's seismic change to our behaviour means we might not flock back to sports stadiums and theatres even when we have had the jab. If we will all be wearing masks for years to come, Harry de Quetteville asks: Will we ever return to the "old normal"? And Matt is inspired by the vaccine for today's cartoon.

More snow expected as temperatures drop to -10C

Parts of Britain will continue to see "significant snow" over the next 24 hours and could experience the lowest overnight temperatures of the year. The Met Office warned that icy conditions could cause showery rain to fall as sleet or snow in parts of southern England today. In parts of Scotland, overnight temperatures could drop to an icy minus 10C (14F). View the latest UK weather forecast for today and the weekend.

At a glance: More coronavirus headlines

Also in the news: Today's other headlines

Royals | The Queen is mourning the loss of one of her dorgis, which died at Windsor Castle - leaving her with just one remaining dog. The death of Vulcan, a Pembroke Welsh Corgi and dachshund mix, means the Queen has one pet, Candy, also a dorgi. Two years ago, the monarch appeared on the cover of Vanity Fair with the four dogs she had at the time.  

Around the world: Safe at last in Indonesia

Kukar, a five-year-old male orang-utan, clings to one of its liberators as it is taken to safety after being found in Indonesia by members of the charity International Animal Rescue. It was being held in captivity as a pet with a rope round its neck. View a gallery of more world pictures.

Football news:

Torino sacked Giampaolo as head coach
Gary Neville: Manchester United will not become champions unless Pogba gives a couple of months of brilliant play
Mohamed Salah: I want to stay in Liverpool as long as possible, but everything is in the hands of the club
The Eintracht captain ended his career in the middle of the season for his son. He said goodbye to football by exchanging T-shirts with the referee
Frank Lampard: Leicester are in the RPL championship race. I don't want to say whether Chelsea are involved or not
Mancini on Pirlo: Difficulties at first - it's normal, even if you played at the top level
Phil Neville took over Inter Beckham