This week's UK news: 4 January 2015
4 January 2015

UK artists top our album chart for first time

The top ten best selling albums in the UK in 2014 were by British artists. This is the first time this has happened. It was also the year where the number of songs heard on streaming services like Spotify doubled to 14.8bn.

Ed Sheeran, the singer-songwriter, was at the top of both the album chart and the streamed music chart for 2014, followed by Sam Smith and then George Ezra. The only woman in the album top ten was Paloma Faith. 


Liverpool FC lose captain

Steven Gerrard, the captain of Liverpool FC, has announced that he will leave the club after 25 years at the end of this season.

Gerrard, who is 34, has been playing fewer full matches recently. In the past he has scored to help his team win most major competitions including the Champions League, the FA Cup and the Uefa Cup. Football journalists think the player is likely to spend some time now with an European or American club.


747 in landing drama at London airport

A plane on its way to Las Vegas had to make an emergency landing at London Gatwick airport after the pilot found there was a problem with the wheels. The Virgin Atlantic plane had to turn back to Gatwick after the problem was found, but had too much fuel to land safely. So the plane had to spend hours circling round the South of England to reduce its fuel load, and the airport was closed for several hours.

The pilot also tried to shake the wheels back into position, and flew low over the control tower so that people could see exactly what the problem was.

The plane eventually landed safely at Gatwick.


New Year celebrations

New Year is celebrated with parties and outdoor celebrations in the UK, and most of all in Scotland where this time of year is called Hogmanay.  There were major outdoor celebrations in Edinburgh, Glasgow and London, and a firework display in Manchester was delayed by a tram in the wrong place.

The other thing that happens at New Year is that the "Honours List" is announced. This is when the Government releases a long list of people who have performed some public service. They get the right to use a title such as Lord or Lady or put letters after their name, such as OBE. 

There are many different sorts of honours and they are usually awarded for different types of service. Many of the highest honours are often given to government employees, while people who help children in schools or Scouts tend to get lower ones.

Everyone who gets an honour will be invited to Buckingham Palace for a ceremony where they will get the honour from the Queen or another member of the Royal Family.

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