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Your morning briefing: What you should know for Tuesday, October 20



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Greater Manchester given midday deadline to accept Tier 3 restrictions

The Government has given Greater Manchester a matter of hours to reach an agreement over the introduction of tougher coronavirus restrictions.

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said he has written to local leaders in the region giving them until midday today to reach a deal on the issue.

Ministers have clashed with northern leaders over the terms under which people in Manchester will face the highest Tier 3 measures.

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said that he wanted to reach a deal on a financial support package before agreeing to go into the restrictions.

PM warns businesses to prepare for major change amid Brexit talks stalemate

Boris Johnson is to tell business leaders to step up preparations for the end of the Brexit transition period after Downing Street refused to resume talks with the EU.

The Prime Minister and senior Cabinet minister Michael Gove will use a conference call later to warn firms they should be ready for major change whether or not there is a deal with Brussels.

With just 10 weeks until the transition finishes, the warning comes after the Government rebuffed a fresh attempt by the EU to restart the negotiations on a post-Brexit free trade deal agreement after they were abruptly halted by Mr Johnson.

Biden and Trump’s final debate will feature ‘mute’ button

The final debate between Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden will feature a mute button to allow each candidate to speak uninterrupted, organisers have said.

President Trump’s campaign voiced objections to the change, which was made after the president repeatedly talked over both Mr Biden and the moderator at last month’s debate.

But the Republicans said he would still take part in the Thursday night event, one of his last chances to reach a large prime-time audience before voting ends on November 3.

One-hour coronavirus tests at airport to help keep passengers on the move

A pre-departure rapid Covid-19 testing facility has been launched at a London airport in a bid to help keep passengers on the move.

The facilities in Terminals 2 and 5 at Heathrow will initially offer tests to passengers travelling to Hong Kong and Italy before they fly.

The private test costs £80 and aims to provide results in around one hour. Those interested in using the facility required to book a test online before making their way to the airport.

Boy, 11, lands record deal after uploading videos of himself singing to his grandma

An young boy has landed a record deal after uploading videos of himself singing to his grandma during lockdown.

Eleven-year-old Cormac Thomson desperately wanted to chat to his grandma, but when she could not get on a video call he decided to record himself singing to her.

His version of Danny Boy was noticed by the Decca record company, who signed a deal with him for an album.

His grandma, Colleen Morrison who lives in Northern Ireland said she was very proud of her grandson.

On this day…

1632: Sir Christopher Wren, architect whose work includes St Paul’s Cathedral and Chelsea Hospital, was born in East Knoyle, Wiltshire.

1818: The 49th parallel was established by USA and Britain as the boundary between Canada and USA.

1822: Thomas Hughes, author of Tom Brown’s Schooldays, was born at Uffington, Berkshire.

1890: Explorer Sir Richard Burton died. Not only did he write 43 travel books and two volumes of poetry but he also translated 16 volumes of the Arabian Nights, two volumes of Latin poetry and six volumes of Portuguese literature, as well as books in Hindustani, Arabic and Sanskrit. An accomplished swordsman, he spoke 20 languages.

1944: General MacArthur returned to the Philippines as their liberator, fulfilling a promise he made when his forces retreated from the Japanese. On the same day the Allies captured Aachen, the first German city in their drive to Berlin.

1960: DH Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover put Penguin Books in the dock at the Old Bailey, accused under the Obscene Publications Act. It was found not guilty.

1973: The Sydney Opera House was opened by the Queen.

2011: Muammar Gaddafi, who ruled Libya for 42 years, was captured and killed as rebel troops overran the last pockets of loyalist resistance in his hometown of Sirte.

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