Seventy patients have surgery on wrong body part, data on NHS blunders reveal
Seventy people had surgery on the wrong part of their body while 161 foreign objects were left inside patients after an operation, government data shows. The Government has published new data showing the number of NHS ‘never events’ reported over the last two years with the vast majority of them being surgical.
The 2011/12 data shows that there were 326 never events, which are described as serious patient safety incidents that by definition should never happen.
The most common mishaps reported to strategic health authorities included 161 patients retaining foreign objects post-operation, 70 people having surgery on the wrong part of the body, 41 incidents involving the wrong implant or prosthesis and 23 incidents of misplaced nasogastric tubes.
Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said transparency saves lives and improves care. ‘The NHS treats a million people every 36 hours, and we know that the vast majority of these patients have excellent care. But the NHS needs to do more to really tackle these events,’ Mr Hunt said. ‘The NHS Commissioning Board is now setting up a taskforce to eradicate these never events from NHS surgery.’
NHS Medical Director Sir Bruce Keogh said these incidents were preventable. ‘NHS leaders should examine these figures and the guidance that sits alongside them and really focus on driving them out of the NHS,’ Sir Bruce said.
‘There are simple ways to prevent them occurring, like the surgical safety checklist, and everyone working in the NHS should ensure that the checklist is being followed.’
The Government says is not possible to compare these figures with previous data because the number of incidents defined as never events has increased from eight to 25.
NHS lost track of 1.8m patient records in a year with sensitive information found in public bin and for sale on the internet
The NHS lost track of 1.8million confidential patient records in a single year, the Daily Mail can reveal. In worrying lapses in data security, sensitive paper records have been dumped in public bins and electronic records found for sale on an internet auction site.
The worst cases include details of terminally ill patients being faxed to the wrong number, and patient records being stolen and posted on to the internet.
The total is the equivalent of nearly 5,000 records going missing every day. But the real figure is likely to be much higher because in some incidents it was not known exactly how many records were lost.
In addition, at present the data protection watchdog relies on hospitals declaring when data has gone missing.
Such is the scale of the problem that the watchdog, the Information Commissioner’s Office, is asking for powers to conduct compulsory audits on hospitals and NHS trusts.
The Information Commissioner, Christopher Graham, has levied fines totalling nearly £1million on NHS bodies in the last six months.
And last night his office warned that more would follow if data protection rules continue to be breached.
The figures were compiled from reports of Data Protection Act breaches filed by the Information Commissioner’s Office in the 12 months from July 2011 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Over the year a total of 1,779,597 records were reported lost in 16 major incidents involving NHS bodies.
In May this year, Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Foundation was fined £325,000 after an incident involving more than 69,000 patient records found on hard disk drives offered for sale on an internet auction site.
The drives contained an easily readable database with the names, dates of births, occupations, sexual preferences, sexually transmitted disease test results and diagnoses for more than 67,000 patients. Another database contained the names and dates of birth of more than 1,500 HIV positive patients.
It later emerged that 232 hard drives that should have been destroyed had been sold on the auction site.
They also contained highly sensitive personal data of tens of thousands more patients and staff including test results, medical conditions and children’s reports. Belfast Health and Social Care Trust was fined £225,000 in June after 100,000 confidential paper records were dumped at a disused hospital site.
Trespassers gained access to the site and copies of records – which dated from the 1950s – were posted on the internet.
Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust was fined £90,000 in April for faxing 59 patient records containing ‘confidential and sensitive’ data to the wrong number so they ended up with a member of the public.
The records belonged to terminally ill patients receiving palliative care and included medical diagnoses, information about patients’ home lives and their resuscitation instructions.
A midwife in Poole was warned after her car was broken into and thieves stole patient diaries which contained sensitive personal data about 240 pregnant women in her care.
Hospitals have also been found sending mental health patient records to the wrong patient because he had a similar name.
The worst breach involved a CD containing 1.6million patient records, including personal details, belonging to Eastern and Coastal Kent PCT. The CD was lost when a filing cabinet went missing during an office move. The trust was not fined, but signed an undertaking with the ICO not to repeat the error.
Other cases around the country have involved unsecured laptops stolen from the home of a staff member.
Nick Pickles, director of privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch, said: ‘These figures may be shocking, but they will come as no surprise to anyone familiar with the NHS’s track record for dealing with patient data.
‘Across the NHS there are some excellent organisations who are addressing this problem well but some of the poor performers are terrifying.
‘There is a real risk that if the NHS doesn’t sort out how it looks after patients’ details people will stop sharing information with their doctor and that could be extremely dangerous for care.’
The Information Commissioner’s Office said: ‘The Health Service holds some of the most sensitive personal information available, so it’s vitally important that patients’ information is being kept secure.’
Drama teachers fired for allowing British junior High School students to perform play in front of parents depicting rape, oral sex and child abuse
Two drama teachers were sacked for allowing GCSE students perform in a play involving depictions of rape, oral sex and child abuse within a family in front of their parents and classmates.
The play – which even featured a pupil acting out the role of a father sexually abusing his daughter – shocked teachers, upset parents and left children sobbing and vomiting in distress.
Complaints were made and the two unnamed teachers, who were supervising the 15 and 16-year-olds who wrote and acted in the play, were sacked by the school for gross misconduct.
They are now pursuing unfair dismissal claims – but the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) ruled this week that a previous decision in their favour was ‘perverse’ and that their cases must be re-heard.
The teachers taught drama at an unidentified school. One was head of the department – and they were responsible for supervising GCSE students in writing, rehearsal, production and performance.
The ‘age-inappropriate’ material included graphic descriptions of sex, rape, oral sex between father and daughter, child abuse between parents and children, and group sex within a family, EAT judge Lady Smith said.
A showcase of the work was held in front of friends and relatives, but the department head failed to warn those invited of the potentially disturbing nature of the production.
Even the headteacher of the school was not told about the content and was unaware of what the students had been involved in until after the showcase, Lady Smith said.
‘The principal complaint came from a parent who described not only her own distress, but the distress of others, including a girl who was sobbing after the performance and a boy and one of the actors who were vomiting as a result of their distress,’ she said.
The local county council’s safeguarding manager for education was called in to view a DVD of the performance and said he was shocked and concerned that the students had been allowed to engage in such sexualised behaviour.
Some of the children were acting out roles of abusers or victims and he said he found the material ‘offensive, disturbing and potentially abusive’ of the young people involved.
He described it as a ‘crude portrayal of abusive acts’ and said it might not be known for some time what effect being involved in such a production might have had on the students.
In disciplinary proceedings, the teachers both put forward statements from others who had watched or been involved in the production and who described their experiences as positive.
Following their dismissal, both teachers took their case to an employment tribunal and succeeded in claims for unfair dismissal. It said that there was ‘no cogent evidence’ of a risk of, or actual, harm to the children involved.
‘Matters need to be looked at afresh with the correct questions being addressed under reference to all relevant facts and circumstances’
The school’s governing body and county council had failed to interview a representative sample of those who took part or watched the showcase to compare and contrast with the opinions of the safeguarding manager, who had ‘no experience of drama’, the tribunal said.
But, overturning the decision as ‘perverse’, Lady Smith said the tribunal was wrong because the safeguarding manager had shown he had professional experience of role play in abuse scenarios and had spoken of the potential effects on participants.
Lady Smith said the fact that participants and viewers of the performance were not interviewed was an ‘irrelevant factor’ for the tribunal to have taken into consideration.
The tribunal members had also failed to take account of some relevant matters and failed to apply the proper test in coming to their decision on the teachers’ claims.
Sending the cases back for a new employment tribunal hearing, she continued: ‘Matters need to be looked at afresh with the correct questions being addressed under reference to all relevant facts and circumstances.’
What the devil? Plastic Halloween tridents and broomsticks banned from British school party ‘for safety reasons’
Halloween party organisers banned children from bringing sharp plastic props, including toy broomsticks and scythes, to a fancy dress celebration amid fears that they could hurt themselves.
Youngsters aged five and under were banned from bringing pointed objects to the ‘spooky disco’ at a primary school in Treuddyn, North Wales.
The ban was in spite of posters publicising the event telling parents that under fours could not attend without an adult.
Community leaders put the ban in place in fear that the youngsters might injure themselves if they brought pointed costume accessories along.
Local mother Jo Turley told The Sun: ‘Please leave our kids alone and let them be kids. So long as they are supervised, where is the harm?’
The party, which was held yesterday afternoon (Wednesday) was held at the Treuddyn Schools Campus which is home to both Ysgol Parc y Llan Primary School and Ysgol Terrig Primary School, but organised by a local playgroup.
Flintshire councillor Carolyn Thomas who helped organise the event said: ‘The children are very young and we just didn’t want them running around with any pointy things. ‘It was to save them hurting themselves or getting upset if they lose the articles.’
But a spokesman for the Health and Safety Executive said that the ban was unnecessary. He said: ‘The ban on Halloween toys seems over the top, especially as the organisers of the party have also made arrangements for supervision of the children. The key thing for the children is to enjoy themselves. It’s not going to be much of a party otherwise.’
News of the ban comes as it was revealed that a staggering two thirds of British children do not understand why they celebrate Halloween.
More than ten per cent of youngsters also believe the annual horror-fest is a day to mark the last witch being burned in the London.
But Halloween is becoming as popular a date to celebrate among UK children as their American counterparts with 45 per cent of those surveyed by Snazaroo face paints due to attend themed parties this year.
It seems our youngsters are also particularly persistent when it comes to trick or treating with nearly one in five knocking on as many as 30 doors in their neighbourhood.
Why traffic light labels on food will make us all fatter AND ruin our farmers
The great British breakfast is about to get a whole lot more complicated, thanks to a new Government-backed ‘traffic light’ food labelling scheme due to come into effect next year.
If you want to pour whole milk on your cereal — as millions of us still do — you’re likely to have to ignore a red label prominently displayed on the carton. That’s red for stop. Milk, we are told, has too much fat.
It will be the same when we scrape a layer of butter onto our toast. Another red light: too much fat again. Fancy a rasher or two of bacon instead? Sorry, but you’ll have to ignore more red lights: one for too much salt, another for too much fat.
Or maybe you like to wake yourself up with a bowl of creamy yoghurt with some nuts or maybe some prunes. Well, tough. You could be looking at another three red lights — one each for the fat in the yoghurt and nuts, and a further red for the sugar in the prunes.
That’s before you’ve even left the house, and all for a meal that’s been getting people off to work — happy and well fed — for decades.
As my granny used to say, a proper breakfast, by which she meant porridge (eaten with whole milk and sometimes even cream) or something else substantial such as bacon and/or eggs ‘kept you going’, and she was right.
So will we really be able to trust the traffic lights, which will label foods according to the amount of fat, saturated fat, salt, sugar and calories they contain.
Though the actual amounts of those elements per 100g will be shown on the pack, it will be the eye-catching and easy-to-read traffic light graphics most shoppers turn to for guidance.
Red, of course, the traditional colour for danger, means you should probably avoid it, or at least think again because the food has too much of something that the Government considers unhealthy.
Amber means go-ahead, but in moderation, while green is so obvious it will surely become visual shorthand for healthy eating.
It all sounds simple: surely this is the breakthrough so-called health campaigners have sought for more than two decades, which will allow us all to eat more healthily as a result?
Many food and health campaigners — people I often find myself in agreement with — certainly think so. But I don’t. Why? Because I can’t have faith in a system that sees a can of Diet Coke and a carton of popcorn scoring green lights, the former because it contains little more than colourings and artificial sweeteners and the latter, of course, because it’s mainly air.
And I’m not alone — the nation’s livestock farmers feel similarly aggrieved. To see so many of these products, together with the ham, bacon and pork from British pigs, being unceremoniously labelled with ‘unhealthy’ red traffic lights must be infuriating.
We ought to be encouraging shoppers to buy British farm produce, not to avoid it.
So the problem with this new system is that it isn’t so much simple as simplistic, and therefore, potentially, highly misleading.
Logically, most naturally produced fruits, for instance, would merit amber or red lights because they have a high sugar content.
Tellingly, the scheme’s proponents accept this and say we should ignore the red light for sugars on fruit. But what sense does this make? If it’s acceptable to ignore one red light, how long will it be before we’re ignoring all of them, like reckless motorists crashing through a junction?
Equally, if it’s safe to ignore some red lights, how much faith can we place in those green lights: should we ignore the suggestion that they mean something is healthy?
But even more depressing is the fact that the new scheme, despite not yet having come into effect, is already lagging badly behind the latest dietary research.
The idea that fats, and saturated fats in particular, are bad for you is melting away faster than a pat of anchovy butter (red lights for salt in the anchovy and for fat in the butter) on a sizzling slab of rib-eye steak (red light for the fat in that, too).
The truth is our bodies need fat. Saturated fat is a key component of our cells, needed for hormone production and other biological processes. It also acts as a carrier for important vitamins and helps us absorb minerals.
Yet anything with fat in it, including omega-3-rich oily fish we are constantly encouraged to eat for our health, could be branded ‘unhealthy’ by the new traffic light scheme.
So anyone following the traffic light scheme too assiduously, avoiding red meat and other red and amber light foods, could easily end up short not only of essential fats, but protein, iron and key vitamins such as vitamin B12.
Teenage girls, a group that pays close attention to what they eat, and the elderly could easily develop serious dietary deficiencies such as anaemia, fatigue and even brain function problems if they follow the traffic light labels too closely.
Health campaigners have been hammering home their anti-fat message for decades, yet it cannot have escaped anyone’s notice that over exactly the same period, Western nations — with Britain at the fore — have been getting fatter than ever before, with rates of obesity and diseases related to poor diet, such as Type 2 diabetes, rocketing.
The reasons behind this are complex, but there is a growing body of evidence that the changes are linked to official dietary advice which, for decades, has steered people away from foods containing fats and towards foods containing carbohydrates — processed and refined carbs in particular.
While this has been good news for the food processing industry — and, by strange coincidence, so much of what happens with food labelling turns out to be good for the food processing industry — it has been disastrous for our weight and wellbeing.
As any GCSE biology student will tell you, carbohydrates are metabolised by our bodies into sugars, and it is the excess of dietary sugar that is thought to be doing us so much long-term damage.
There’s another problem with these carbohydrate-rich diets. All this cereal, all this pasta, all this easy-cook rice (all likely to be green light foods) doesn’t fill you up for very long or deliver what dietitians would describe as ‘satiety’.
As a result, there are probably two generations who have grown up always feeling slightly hungry and unsatisfied, making them the perfect customers for all those tempting, snacks between meals.
Once again, the food-processing, junk-food companies win out, while trusting shoppers, trying to eat healthily, will be the losers. Because all those refined carbohydrates have to go somewhere, and normally they head straight to our straining waistbands.
The truth is that food processing companies love food labels, because they can safely own up to whatever is in their processed foods, knowing that the vast majority of us will simply never look at them.
And who can blame us? Even a qualified dietitian, armed with a calculator and magnifying glass, would struggle to make sense of the bewildering complexities of modern food labelling. So will the new, supposedly simpler labelling finally catch them out?
Not a bit. The food processors can endlessly fine-tune their nutritionally impoverished recipes — cutting here, replacing there, tossing in another additive when the end result doesn’t look or taste very nice — to ensure they get lots of green and amber lights.
But that is something that farmers — the producers of natural foods — really can’t do. Yes, they can selectively breed animals to reduce the fat content of beef or pork (removing flavour as they do so), but there’s a limit to how far that can go.
As for low-fat cheese and yoghurt, they’re the work of food processors (using skimmed and semi-skimmed milk), not farmers.
Our European counterparts seem to realise the importance of this more than we do. One of the reasons the new scheme will be voluntary in Britain (that said, under pressure from the Government, all but one of the major supermarkets are committed to it) is that to make it compulsory would have required legislation across the European Union.
French farmers wouldn’t have stood for red lights on their meat or their beloved full fat cheese for a moment, and nor, I suspect, would the French public, who have been enjoying their rich but well- balanced diet for centuries, and — apart from a recent jump in junk-food related obesity — seem no worse for it.
I refuse to believe Mother Nature is some sort of dietary psychopath, and foods we’ve been eating happily for hundreds, indeed thousands of years, are suddenly to be considered unhealthy or even dangerous.
The recipe for healthy eating is very simple — avoid processed food and base your diet on fresh, raw, unprocessed ingredients that you cook yourself.
That’s why I’m so concerned about the new labelling scheme. Those red lights will unfairly stigmatise perfectly healthy, natural foods, while the green lights will offer false reassurance to consumers, rewarding the food- processing companies that make us fatter and sicker every day.
The whole idea should be stopped permanently at its own red light, before it’s too late
Bureaucratic hatred of Branson again
He’s too successful for the bureaucrats so they will do anything to take him down a peg or two. They tried to take his trains away but he routed them with legal threats
Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson has lost out to his arch-rivals in a battle over air routes to Russia. But watchdogs say passengers will benefit through cheaper and more ‘dynamic’ fares and that British Airways and easyJet’s plans were ‘likely to deliver the greatest benefit to consumers’.
The tycoon learned tonight that his airline Virgin Atlantic had been rejected by aviation regulators in a fight to operate UK to Moscow flights.
With more flights now available between the UK and Russia, British Airways, easyJet and Virgin had been vying for the right to fly on the London-Moscow route.
The Civil Aviation Authority ruled that BA, which already operates to Moscow, and easyJet should be allowed to take up the Moscow flights – meaning that Virgin had missed out.
The decision follows the Department for Transport ruling in August that FirstGroup rather than Virgin Rail should take up a new 13-year franchise on the West Coast Main Line.
Sir Richard launched a legal challengers against the ruling and the DfT has now scrapped the West Coast bidding process, suspended three civil servants and asked Virgin to carry on for the time being.
The CAA’s two-from-three decision came after what is known as a scarce capacity hearing at which a panel of CAA board members considered the arguments put forward by each of the applicant airlines.
The panel decided to allow BA to continue to operate the services it currently operates from London Heathrow to Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport and to grant easyJet permission to operate between London Gatwick and Moscow Domodedovo.
Iain Osborne, the CAA’s director of regulatory policy, and chairman of the panel, said: ‘On balance, allocating scarce capacity to BA and easyJet is likely to deliver the greatest benefit to consumers.
‘EasyJet’s proposal will introduce an innovative product into the market and has the potential to deliver the greatest dynamic fare benefits for consumers.’ He added: ‘We concluded that easyJet’s proposal would introduce a distinctly different product into the market and would stimulate innovation on the route as a whole, as well as satisfying and stimulating consumer demand that is currently under-served, in particular, people who prefer or are content to use Gatwick.’
The CAA said easyJet was expected to begin operating services to Moscow from early 2013. The CAA understands that BA will continue with its current schedule.
EasyJet said it would operate an Airbus A320 on two services a day between Gatwick and Moscow. Each aircraft will have 180 seats and the airline expects to fly more than 230,000 passengers in its first year of operations.
EasyJet chief executive Carolyn McCall said: ‘We are delighted to have been awarded the rights to fly between Gatwick and Moscow. ‘We believe this is the right decision for consumers both in the UK and Russia.’
A Virgin Atlantic spokeswoman said: ‘We are very disappointed with the result of the CAA hearing which we believe flies in the face of what the consumer wants and our economy demands.
‘Data shows that passengers travelling between Moscow and London want to use Heathrow airport and not Gatwick, long haul connectivity is far greater via Heathrow and this decision will also reduce capacity between the two capitals.’
‘We are perplexed by what we consider a very short-sighted decision. We will review the CAA’s report in full before considering all of our options.’
British council plans to remove Mr and Mrs titles from all documents to protect city’s transgender community from offence
A city is proposing to ban titles such as Mr, Mrs, Miss and Ms in case they offend the transgender community.
Councillors in Brighton will vote on the proposal to remove the words from official forms and paperwork after complaints that they forced people to ‘choose between genders’.
The proposal is backed by Brighton and Hove City Council deputy leader Phelim MacCafferty, who has called the titles ‘useless’.
But the new proposal has been branded ‘political correctness gone too far’ by an opposition councillor who says the idea is ‘ludicrous’.
Brighton is known for its diverse community, and the council plans seek to scrap ‘useless’ titles after a study into the transgender community
A scrutiny panel will put forward a number of recommendations, including the scrapping of Mr and Mrs, to the council for approval in December.
Green Party deputy leader Coun. MacCafferty said: ‘Trans people aren’t necessarily male or female and sometimes they don’t want to be defined by their gender.
‘Putting Mr and Mrs on a form is completely useless. ‘This is an issue that concerns most institutions from banks to mobile phone companies. ‘Why is Mr on my debit card, for instance? ‘I don’t understand why it is there. ‘We should at least examine the issue and we will have the recommendations early next month.’
Coun. MacCafferty said the change would be ‘done sensitively’ and with the backing of the public.
Brighton is recognised nationally for its its diversity, with the city’s Primary Care Trust estimating that one in six people is estimated to be from the lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender community.
LGBT activist Steph Scott said: ‘Being called Mr or Mrs forces me to choose between genders. ‘It’s assuming people live in a binary world where you’re either one thing or another and it pigeonholes people.
‘I think it’s a good idea to expand across the city because it’s about getting people to be aware that gender isn’t just male or female.’
Dawn Barrett, Conservative councillor for Hangleton and Knoll, said: ‘It’s completely ludicrous and shows a complete lack of respect. ‘How are they going to address letters properly? This is just political correctness gone too far.’
The Trans Equality Scrutiny Panel was set up to examine issues affecting transgendered people’s safety, welfare and job opportunities.
It includes chair Coun MacCafferty, Conservative councillor Denise Cobb and Labour councillor Warren Morgan.
The panel visited support groups across the city in July to hear about the issues facing the trans community and will present a set of recommendations to the council in December.
One in four British criminals go straight back to crime and 1,000 are on the run from jail
One in four criminals went straight back to crime, according to new figures which the government admitted are ‘shameful’.
And almost 1,000 offenders have been recalled to prison but are still on the loose.
The figures are particularly embarrassing for ministers coming just days after David Cameron’s crime and justice speech in which he promised a ‘rehabilitation revolution’.
Almost 50,000 offences were committed by offenders who had spent time in jail last year. Labour claimed the government’s justice policy is ‘in tatters’.
In 2010, a total of 497,969 offences were committed by 173,274 offenders.
More than half (55.3 per cent) of the offences were committed by 78,149 offenders with 11 or more previous offences.
More than 50,123 of these involved 10,000 offenders who had previously been jailed more than 10 times.
For criminals leaving jail, the reoffending rate was 47.5 per cent, up from 46.8 per cent in 2009.
Among adults jailed for less than 12 months, 57.6% went on to commit another crime.
Meanwhile, separate figures showed more than 150 violent criminals and sex offenders are at large in the community despite breaching the terms of their release or committing another offence.
A total of 988 criminals had been recalled to prison but not put back behind bars by the end of June.
These include 17 killers – 16 of them murderers – 11 rapists and at least four paedophiles.
Some 379 have been on the run for more than five years, the figures showed.
A MoJ spokesman said: ‘We are tackling the shamefully high reoffending rates in this country by introducing a rehabilitation revolution – offenders must be punished, but we must also deal with the root causes of offenders’ behaviour so they don’t return to crime.’
The Prime Minister used a major speech to declare he wanted to break the cycle of reoffending by the end of 2015.
All but a small number of high-risk prisoners would receive help to turn their lives around.
But Labour’s shadow justice secretary Sadiq Khan said: ‘This Government’s justice policy is in tatters. David Cameron’s latest re-launch 29 months after first becoming Prime Minister won’t change these appalling figures.
‘He should be aggressively addressing the scandalous rates of reoffending rather than stunts. Cutting police and probation, reducing Judges’ powers and reducing help to victims shows how out of touch he is.’
Science Or Propaganda from Britain’s official meteorologists?
The UK Met Office display the above graph prominently on their website. It is the temperature plot, based on the long running CET (Central England Temperature series).
The message is clear. Temperatures suddenly started climbing rapidly around 1980, a classic hockey stick.
If you look closely, you will notice that the graph begins just before 1780. Yet the CET series actually began in 1659, so why did not the Met show the full graph?
I have used exactly the same data, which is available on the Met Office website here, to produce the graph below for the full period.
I have used the same temperature scale , with a six degree range. Even with this scale, there is very little sign of any hockey stick. Certainly there was a bunch of warm years around the turn of the century, but they were only slightly warmer than earlier periods, notably the 1730’s. And in recent years there has been a decline in temperature, which the running five year averages illustrate on the graph below. Indeed the average temperature over the last five years is no higher than several years during the 1730’s.
By the way, so far this year, the CET anomaly is running at 0.28, which would give an annual temperature of 9.76C. This would certainly not be unusually high by 20thC standards, and would bring the five year average down another notch. (You may just be able to make out the green line at the end of the Met graph, which represents this year).
Which brings us back to the question I posed at the start. Why did the Met not show the graph in full?
It seems to me that to produce a partial graph, which begins at an abnormally cold period, can only have been done in order to mislead.