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News in brief: May as well stay indoors as April is off to a chilly start

A COLD start to April is forecast. Following a peak of 19.4C last Wednesday — 8C above normal for the time of year — today will struggle to reach 12C. Snow is predicted tomorrow on higher ground in Scotland as it gets windier in northern areas. Despite the chill, Friday will be dry and settled with highs of 10C in the south and 8C in the north. Luke Miall, of the Met Office, said: ‘It will mainly be feeling cold because of how warm it was last week.’

Millions of us get a kick from doing a bit of life admin

TWO in three adults get a sense of achievement, fulfilment and calm by doing basic admin. One in ten said ticking off a to-do list made them less anxious. But forgetfulness or a lack of time meant a third never got around to carrying out personal banking, accounting or paying the bills, the study by TV platform Freeview found. The tasks we were most likely to avoid were housework and changing service providers or looking for a better deal.


■ THE DVLA in Swansea has banned dozens of ‘rude and offensive’ 2020 vehicle number plates. They include M20 RON (moron), HO20 KER (hooker) and UG20 HEL (you go to hell).

■ PAYING farmers to look after their soil could help curb flooding, says a report. The Royal Society said badly managed, compacted soil reduces crop yields and makes it harder for the ground to absorb rainwater.

■ A COUPLE who won £1million on the lottery have spent some of their jackpot on rescuing dogs. Peter and Ruth Doyle, from Wiltshire, drove 1,500 miles from Romania with 13 strays which were all rehomed.

■ THE wings of nightingales are shrinking due to climate change. The birds are adapting to survive summer droughts but this comes at the expense of traits that help them cope with long migrations, say researchers in Madrid, Spain.

■ A NOVEL about Dracula author Bram Stoker is up for the Walter Scott Prize for historical fiction. Shadowplay by Joseph O’Connor is on a shortlist of six that also includes The Narrow Land by Christine Dwyer Hickey.

■ A BABY yak born at Whipsnade Zoo, Bedfordshire, last week is to be named after a Harry Potter character — once vets work out what sex it is. The calf’s mother is Hermione. Its father is Voldemort.