Your morning news briefing, Wednesday 20th November

20 November 2019, 05:56

The main story of the day was the leader debate
The main story of the day was the leader debate. Picture: PA
EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Good morning, here's a roundup of all the news you're waking up to on this chilly Wednesday morning.

Well it was a busy night for my colleagues in the LBC News office, with a huge election debate a £105m lottery winner and a heartbreaking letter to Santa. It's EJ here with all the news you need to get you through the start of hump day.

General Election - The Debates

Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn went head-to-head in a televised leaders debate, snap polls suggested the two came out neck-and-neck with opinion split over which party leader 'won' the night.

YouGov polling found that the leaders drew in the eyes of the public. Some 51 per cent of Britons believe Mr Johnson won the debate, while 49 per cent percent believe Mr Corbyn won.

If the same result was to happen in the election then we would be looking at a hung Parliament.

Both leaders trotted out the same attack lines we've seen used in the run-up to the debate, with Boris Johnson attacking Jeremy Corbyn on Brexit, claiming Labour's position is unclear.

Jeremy Corbyn hit back on the NHS, claiming the Prime Minister was secretly working to sell off the service to private companies in the US.

My colleague Sylvia De Lucia has written an in-depth article on the highs and lows of the night, here.


In a story which feels like it should be in the 'And Finally' section of this morning news briefing, the Tory Party press office renamed their official Twitter account to 'factcheckUK' for the duration of the debate.

The account Tweeted commentary on Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn's statements and retweeted messages of support for Boris Johnson.

The move was blasted by the other parties, including the Liberal Democrats, who were excluded from the debate. The party's Shadow Brexit Secretary Tom Brake said: "This is straight out of Donald Trump or Putin’s playbook. Not content with excluding the voice of Remain from this debate, the Tories are now resorting to deliberately misleading the public."

Read more on this story here.

The altered Twitter account
The altered Twitter account. Picture: PA

'Dear Santa'

A seven-year-old girl from Liverpool has posted a heartbreaking letter to Santa asking for "a home and some food" for Christmas.

With the festive season fast approaching, the letter, posted at a grotto in Everton, serves as a reality check that many families will struggle during what is supposed to be the most magical time of the year.

The little girl wrote in her letter: "Dear Santa, can you help?

"Can we have a home for Christmas. Mum wants us all to be together. Can you give us some food?"

"And can I have just one doll for Christmas? Thank you."

Read the full story, written by Chris Chambers, our News Editor in Liverpool.

27 Days Of Strikes

Fresh talks were held yesterday to try to avoid 27 days of train strikes next month.

Members of the RMT Union on South Western Railway are due to walk out between the 2nd of December and New Year's Day, in a long running dispute over guards on trains.

The two sides meet on Tuesday with industry mediators Acas.


Dutch police have discovered 25 stowaways in a container on a UK bound ferry.

Authorities reported they discovered the migrants hidden in a refrigerated container aboard a boat from the Netherlands.

The incident comes just weeks after the bodies of 39 people, believed to be Vietnamese, were found in a refrigerated lorry container in Essex.

The ship was forced to return to the port of Vlaardingen near Rotterdam following the discovery.

The Danish-registered Britannia Seaways ferry, operated by DFDS Seaways, had left Vulcaanhaven in Rotterdam-Vlaardingen and was heading to Felixstowe in England.

Emergency organisation Rijnmond Veilig said upon arrival at the port two of the stowaways were taken to hospital, while a further 23 were transferred to a police station, following a medical check.

And Finally...

Potentially one of you reading this is £105 million richer this morning. Last night's Euromillions jackpot.

If you have a ticket please check it. The winning numbers were 08, 10, 15, 30 and 42 and the Lucky Star numbers were 04 and 06.

If you have those numbers feel free to email me and I will include you in tomorrow's morning briefing.

Well, that's it for Wednesday, I'll be back at the same time tomorrow. Have an amazing day, EJ