This week's UK news: 31 January 2014
31 January 2014

Wet, wet, wet

Everyone knows the UK is famous for being rainy, but the last month has been amazingly wet. New figures show that parts of England have had their wettest January since records began more than 100 years ago.

It hasn't just been a bit wetter than usual. Much of the south of England and parts of the Midlands have had twice the average rainfall for January -- and the month hasn't ended yet. There was 175.2mm (6.9in) of rainfall in January - beating the previous record of 158.2mm for the same parts of England set in 1988. In Wales and South West England there was even more rain: 222.6mm (8.8), making it the fifth-wettest January ever.

Worse still, weather forecasters say more rain and some snow is on its way, with a risk of flooding along the South coast this weekend.

One area has been flooded for a month and the army has now been called in to help people living there.

Want to work with the Royal Family?

A job advert has gone up on the official Royal website looking for someone to work at Buckingham Palace. The job is for a Housekeeping Assistant, and pays GBP 276 per week.

The person who gets the job will have lots of things they have to do. They have to dust and vacuum, and clean some of the Queen's valuable things.

But they may also have to get her baths ready (which could be a lot of work as there are 78 bathrooms in Buckingham Palace) and help visitors who are staying. This might mean unpacking and ironing clothes, helping them to dress, looking after jewellery, and getting morning tea and breakfast on trays in guests' rooms.

Whoever gets the job will also have to travel to other Royal homes for three months of the year.

Crime falls to lowest level in 32 years

Crime in England and Wales fell by 10 per cent last year and is now at the lowest level since the the national crime survey began in 1981. Violent crime fell by 13 per cent, and there were fewer murders than the year before. Crimes have fallen by 58 per cent since a peak in 1995.

Some types of crime have increased. These include stealing from shops, called shoplifting.  A rise in two other types of crime are thought to be because more people are reporting the crimes, and because the system for reporting them has improved.

Beatles get major music award

Next week, it will be 50 years since British band The Beatles arrived in America. They were  hugely popular from the start, with 40 per cent of the population watching them perform on TV two days later.

Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, the two surviving members of the band, were given lifetime achievement awards for the Beatles at the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles at the weekend. This weekend, the CBS TV channel will show a two-hour programme about them, and all of the band's American albums will be re-released.


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