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Brits handed Black Friday and Christmas warning as Royal Mail announces 19 strike days
The Royal Mail has said it plans to strike across Black Friday and in the run-up to Christmas as it schedules 19 days of industrial action.The strikes are a follow-up to action in August and September which focused on working conditions and pay rates. READ MORE: 'Superhero' bloke's Pizza Express loyalty hack hands out £70 of discounts to strangers The walkouts will take place over a number of different days, The Communication Workers Union (CWU) said, with the first expected to kick off from 4am on Thursday, October 13, and will last 24 hours.There will be more action expected on October 20 and 25, and November 28.Black Friday will take place on November 25.Big stores are expected to offer big discounts, drawing big crowds and putting big demands on postal services – potentially causing a really big problem in light of the strikes.Cyber Monday – the online wing of the retail therapy weekend – follows two days later.Amazon has also launched Prime Day, adding a second date – which will now fall over October 11 and 12.The Royal Mail meanwhile, said it needed to make changes to its business as it is losing £1million a day.Further strike action is expected this week, on September 30 and October 1.“Significant disruption” has been warned by the service, which has apologised for any inconvenience caused.It is expected it will prioritise prescriptions and Covid testing kits – no letters will be delivered.Workers collecting, delivering and sorting will be striking on September 30, October 1, 13, 20 and 25 and November 28.Collections, admin, international operations, and processing will be striking on November, 3, 9, 15 and 24 and December 1.Deliveries will be striking on November 4, 10, 16 and 25 and December 2, and Network
Asian Hornets spotted in UK as government issues grim warning for British bees
Asian hornets have been sighted in the UK, with beekeepers and members of the public asked to remain vigilant over the sightings, the government has warned.The National Bee Unit confirmed the Asian hornet sightings in the Rayleigh area of Essex, with monitoring underway to detect further Asian hornets in the vicinity.It marks the first confirmed sighting of the Asian hornet in the UK since April 2022, and it could be bad news for British bees working hard to make honey.READ MORE: Dog groomer left with serious scars after 'out of control' pooch called Biscuit bit faceAlthough the Asian hornet is smaller than native hornets and pose no greater risk to human health than native wasps and bees, they do pose a major threat to worker bees.Defra's Chief Plant and Bee Health Officer Nicola Spence said: "By ensuring we are alerted to possible sightings as early as possible, we can take swift and effective action to stamp out the threat posed by Asian hornets."That’s why we are working at speed to locate and investigate any nests in the area following this confirmed sighting."While the Asian hornet poses no greater risk to human health than other wasps or hornets, we recognise the damage they can cause to honey bee colonies and other beneficial insects."Please continue to look out for any Asian hornets and if you think you’ve spotted one, report your sighting through the Asian hornet app or online."One Asian hornet was spotted in April 2022, and a swift response to its sighting soon followed. Asian hornets are not generally aggressive toward people but it has been noted that members of the public should take care not to disturb it or a nest of Asian hornets.
Thirsty football fans facing beer drought during World Cup amid strike fears
football fans could face a beer drought during the World Cup.Delivery workers are threatening to strike over a pay row in the UK.It could coincide with the tournament in Qatar – and hit supplies to pubs and venues from breweries including Heineken, Admiral Taverns and Shep-herd Neame.READ MORE: Desperate bloke paid cash into ex's Monzo with 's**g' and 'unblock me' as referencesAround 1,000 GXO draymen are being balloted for industrial action over a 5% pay offer.Union bosses branded it a “pay cut” which is “far below the 12.3 RPI rate of inflation”.Unite’s Joe Clarke added: “Any disruption to pub-goers and GXO’s clients will be entirely the fault of the company for refusing to offer a pay deal that reflects soaring prices.” The draymen are responsible for around 40% of the beer deliveries to UK boozers.Any walkouts at the 22 GXO sites are expected to take place over the World Cup and Christmas periods.The tournament will run from November 20 to December 18, with England kicking off their bid for glory against Iran on November 21.Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Unite will support our GXO members every step of the way in their fight for a fair pay rise.”A GXO spokesman said: “We believe our proposal is very fair and follows an above-inflation annual pay raise last year.”Strikes have taken the nation by storm in recent weeks as transport companies, postal services and barristers stopped their regularly-scheduled work in protest against their rates of pay.Last week it was reported that upcoming rail strikes could bring the country 'to an effective standstill' this weekend with companies including GWR, LNER, Transpennine Express, Avanti, and others take action on October 1.Meanwhile Royal Mail workers today