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Newspaper headlines: Britons ‘upbeat’ as hospitals face flu crisis

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    The Times
    Image caption Most Britons believe their job will be safe and house prices will rise in 2018, according to the Times. The paper’s first front page story of 2018 says a poll suggests voters have “stayed resolute despite the political turmoil of the past 12 months”.
    Daily Star
    Image caption “Appy new year” is the headline on the front page of the Daily Star. It says millions of Britons will see in the new year by looking for love and signing up for dating sites.
    The Daily Telegraph
    Image caption The Daily Telegraph’s front page features a photo of New Year fireworks above the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Its front page story says hospitals are running out of space after a sudden rise in flu cases amid fears of an “overload” on ambulances.
    The i
    Image caption Nurses and GPs in north-east England have been told to respond to 999 calls according to the i newspaper. The move – to deploy them to domestic falls involving the elderly and vulnerable – will take the pressure off paramedics, the paper says.
    Daily Mirror
    Image caption All hospitals patients and visitors should get free parking, Lord Robert Winston has told the Daily Mirror. The TV doctor has supported the paper’s campaign against “unfair” parking charges, it says.
    Daily Express
    Image caption Drugs to treat diabetes could help prevent dementia and help fight memory loss, according to the Daily Express. It says it offers fresh hope of a game-changing development in treatment.
    Daily Mail
    Image caption “Fat cat” rail bosses are in line to receive multi-million pound pay packages, according to the Daily Mail. It says it comes despite “inflation-busting fare hikes, delays and strikes”.
    The Sun
    Image caption The Sun focuses on the deaths of six people after a seaplane crashed into a river in Australia. It says the victims included four Britons who had paid for a “dream flight”.
    The Guardian
    Image caption The Guardian focuses on the situation in Iran, where it says protesters have defied the “iron fist” of authorities there. It says officials have threatened a crackdown and have blocked social media apps.

    The newspapers begin 2018 with some familiar stories – about political upheaval.

    There’s continuing speculation as to whether Prime Minister Theresa May will usher in the new year by carrying out a major reshuffle.

    The Daily Telegraph reports that allies of Brexit Secretary David Davis fear he could be marginalised, with Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson in line for a new “super-charged” Brexit role.

    It thinks a reshuffle would inject a burst of energy into the government, but it reports Mr Johnson wouldn’t accept anything which looked like a demotion.

    Image copyright Getty Images
    Image caption Exit for David Davis?

    Whatever political turbulence lies ahead, the Times believes that voters are upbeat about their prospects in 2018.

    Its front page lead draws on a YouGov poll of more than 1,600 people, which suggests that more than half think their personal financial situation will stay the same or improve this year.

    Some 40% also believe their jobs will be secure.

    Meanwhile, Ruth Davidson – who heads the Scottish Conservatives and is tipped by some to be a future national party leader – seems to be trying to tap into that sense of optimism in an article in the Telegraph.

    She says she’s lost count of the number of columns bemoaning 2017 and argues life is measurably richer and healthier than at any time since she was born.

    Online deals

    Several papers warn about one worrying trend though – the rising numbers of children using social media to buy illegal drugs.

    They quote youth workers who say Instagram and Snapchat are increasingly being used for this purpose, making substances more easily available to younger teenagers.

    Both sites say they’re taking steps to clamp down on the trade.

    Image copyright Getty Images
    Image caption Prince Philip questioned a man’s beard

    There are also photos of the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, on his way to church in Sandringham on many front pages.

    That’s because during the short walk he apparently spotted a man with a long ginger beard – prompting him to say to his bodyguard: “Is that a terrorist?”

    The Sun reports the man found the comment hilarious, but it also quotes Mohammed Shafiq of the Ramadan Foundation who warns it is offensive to insinuate that anybody with a long beard is a terrorist, when the vast majority of Muslims reject terrorism.

    Storm images

    Several of the papers also have dramatic images of the storms which battered parts of the country on New Year’s Eve.

    The Daily Star shows big waves rolling into Blackpool with its famous tower in the background.

    The Guardian has an image of an angry sea smashing into a wall in Androssan in North Ayrshire.

    Image copyright AFP
    Image caption A protester raises her fist amid the smoke of tear gas

    Away from the UK, the Guardian says Iranian demonstrators have defied a threat by authorities to clampdown on protests with an “iron fist”.

    They have posted video depicting acts of resistance rarely seen since the Islamic revolution of 1979.

    The Times believes President Rouhani’s intervention on Sunday is a sign of how deeply the regime has been rattled.

    It argues the country’s powerful Revolutionary Guard was happy as long complaints about stagnant living conditions were directed at the president.

    However, it says they are becoming increasingly alarmed now the demands are threatening the foundations of the Islamic republic.

    Iran’s state media has also begun trying to discredit the protests with an article in the Tehran Times.

    It contains a claim that 80% of those arrested during the disturbances had admitted receiving money and orders from outside the country.

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