This week's UK news: 20 April 2016
20 April 2016

Loch Ness Monster found (but not the right one)

Have you heard of the Loch Ness Monster? There are stories that there is a huge creature living in Loch Ness, a huge lake in Scotland. Some photographs show marks on the water which people claim is "Nessie" but nobody has ever proved that the monster exists. However, Scotland gets GBP 60m of tourism from people keen to see the lake for themselves.

This week, something exciting was found on the bottom of the lake, and it looked just like the pictures of "Nessie". It turned out to be a model of the "monster" which was made for a 1970s film, which accidentally sank during filming.


Why whale vomit is a good thing

A UK couple are talking to perfume makers in France and New Zealand about the "whale vomit" they found on the beach. "Whale vomit" - which is also called ambergris - comes from the insides of sperm whales. It is used to make perfumes last longer and is very expensive because it is so rare.

Gary and Angela Williams, who found the whale vomit while walking, could sell it for GBP 50,000. They say it is grey, smells like rotting fish and is about the size of a rugby ball. They plan to put the money towards buying a caravan. 


Stephen Hawking's plans to find aliens

Physicist Stephen Hawking is working with a Russian billionaire to create technology which could send a tiny spaceship on a 20-year journey outside our star system.

The spaceship (called a nanocraft because it is so small) would look for signs of life around Alpha Centauri, which is 25 trillion light years away. It would take 30,000 years to reach with current spaceship technology. The craft would weigh less than a gram, and would be blasted away from earth with the light from a huge group of laser beams.


Olympic stars campaign for local runners

Parkrun is a big thing in the UK. It is organised, 3 mile runs in local parks on a Saturday morning. Anyone can take part, for free. So far there have been almost 60,000 Parkruns in the UK, with almost a million runners.

Now one local council wants to charge Parkrun for the wear it causes to the paths in the park. Thousands of people have signed a petition asking the council to change its mind, and Olympic athletes including marathon runner Paula Radcliffe, heptathlete Dame Kelly Holmes and rower James Cracknell have joined the campaign against the fees.

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