Greater Manchester Police has announced the launch of a dedicated investigationunit as part a mission to protect local children and bring abusers to justice.
The unit has been unveiled on National CSE Day – an annual date that highlights the issues surrounding exploitation in young people; encouraging everyone to ‘think, spot and speak out against abuse’.
£2.3 million has been invested in the GMP Force CSE Unit – which will consist of 54 police officers and staff and will commit dedicated specialist skills and resources to investigating large, complex CSE investigations.
A multi-agency approach will see officers and staff work closely with dedicated representatives from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), Child & Adult Social Services, mental health services and Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVA).
Deputy Chief Constable of GMP Mabs Hussain said the unit was a “significant step” to tackle the sexual exploitation of children in Greater Manchester.
He added: “With this significant dedicated resource we will be able to progress complex investigations in a more focussed and timely manner; allowing us to disrupt, investigate and convict those responsible for this abhorrent crime swifter than we ever have before.
“Actions speak louder than words, and I believe that the establishment of this new dedicated unit clearly demonstrates our ongoing commitment to protecting children and bringing those responsible for abusing them to justice.”
On the eve of National CSE Day this year, results of an independent review into child abuse in sport came to light – revealing that the Football Association (FA) did not do enough to protect young athletes.
In a statement, FA chief executive Mark Bullingham offered “a heartfelt apology”.
The report also pointed to the ‘wholly inadequate response’ of Manchester City, with senior club officials failing to investigate rumours and concerns about ex-City coach and serial offender Barry Bennell.
A statement from Manchester City reads: “The Club’s Board of Directors wishes to apologise publicly and unreservedly for the unimaginable suffering experienced by those who were abused as a result of the Club’s association with these men.
“The Club also extends its heartfelt regret and sympathy to the multiple family members and friends affected by these traumatic events, the ramifications of which are felt by so many to the present day and will continue to be felt for a long time to come.
“No one can remove the suffering of those who have experienced sexual abuse as children as a result of their involvement with football. They were all entitled to expect full protection from the kind of harm they endured.”
Sir David Jason set for TV return in Only Fools and Horses documentary Christmas special
In a surprise bit of festive news, the only and only Sir David Jason is returning for an Only Fools and Horses Christmas special this December. Lovely jubbly!
The best-loved and most-watched British comedy of all time will be back on our screens in documentary form this festive season, with Del Boy himself David Jason revisiting the iconic comedy character after 20 years he last played him on screen.
While the legendary sitcom was broadcast on BBC back in the day, the highly-anticipated Only Fools doc will be airing on Channel 5 right before Christmas as a special one-off programme.
Looking back on the show’s incredible run on UK screens over seven series and the several ‘Christmas Cracker’ specials, specifically, the latest Only Fools and Horses documentary will see Jason and a number of other guests appearing to chat about the legendary show.
While it’s still unclear how many of the original cast will be appearing, Jason’s on-screen wife Tessa Peake-Jones (Raquel) is confirmed to be appearing along with other special guests including newscaster Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Bendiorm‘s Sherrie Hewson.
Sadly, a full theatrical reunion just isn’t on the cards following the deaths of Roger Lloyd Pack (Trigger), Kenneth MacDonald (Mike the Landlord) and Buster Merryfield (Uncle Albert) in the 30 years since the show ended its run.
Only Fools writer John Sullivan also sadly passed away aged 64 in 2011 and fellow co-star Nicholas Lyndhurst, a.k.a. Rodney Trotter, told Metro: “We can’t. John is no longer with us. John was the driving force of the show and we have also lost quite a few cast members now.
“I don’t think I could do it without them and I certainly couldn’t do it without John. At the risk of depressing everyone, I think the last two times I’ve seen David has been at funerals.”
Simply entitled, ‘The Story Of Only Fools And Horses At Christmas’, the 90-minute special is yet to have its broadcast date fully confirmed but you best keep your eyes peeled on the TV guide — we’ll let you know as soon we do.
Jason, 81, has only just recovered from hip surgery earlier this year, so it’ll be nice to see his familiar grin back on our screens.
Right, we’re off to binge a whole series on UK Gold.
Habas restaurant in Manchester announces shock closure – with huge closing-down discount
Habas, the Middle Eastern restaurant launched by the team behind El Gato Negro, has announced its shock closure.
The subterranean restaurant will be going out with a bang though, promising one last knees-up with a big discount.
Habas will be doing 25% off its entire food and drink menu this New Year’s Eve so that fans of the eatery can raise a glass to the Manchester restaurant.
They’re also hoping that Mancs will raise a glass to new beginnings, teasing a brand new concept.
Habas is located at Brown Street in Manchester city centre and has been serving up its Middle Eastern menu since 2021.
It comes from Mills Hill Developments Limited, the company also responsible for El Gato Negro and Canto, fronted by celebrated chef Simon Shaw.
Habas has stressed that its closure ‘is not forever’ as it announces details of its New Year’s Eve closing down party.
You can ring in the new year with a selection of mezze dishes, sharing platters and small plates, feasting on chicken tagine and traditional tzatziki, all 25% off on Sunday 31 December.
Drinks, too, like the cranberry elderflower martini, blackberry ginger smash and clementine daquiri will be with 25% off.
Simon Shaw, Chef Parton at Mills Hill Developments Limited, said: “As of January 2024, we have made the decision to close the doors of Habas Bar & Restaurant, however we are thrilled to announce that our Brown Street venue has an exciting new concept on the way.
“Throughout December, Habas, will continue serving up the city’s best middle-eastern cuisine, so make sure you pop in and see us. AND on New Year’s Eve, Habas, will be hosting an unforgettable celebration with 25% off food and drinks. We want to rejoice with all of our customers, with one final hurrah!
“We would like to thank all of our guests and reassure Habas fans that this is not the end of Habas Bar & Restaurant forever, simply a farewell from Brown Street for now.
“We look forward to welcoming you to our new exciting concept in Q1 of 2024.”