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Harry and Meghan’s British Columbia stay cost taxpayers more than $40,000 USD in security

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harry and meghans british columbia stay cost taxpayers more than 40000 usd in security

Harry and Meghan’s British Columbia stay cost taxpayers more than $40,000 USD after the couple fled to Canada in wake of Megxit, official records show. 

The cost of protecting the couple during their two month stay came to $56,384.52 Canadian dollars, or more than $40,000 US dollars. 

Harry and Meghan’s security and who will pay for it has been a subject of much debate. In March it was reported that the couple had left Canada to set up home in California and they are now living at tycoon Tyler Perry’s mansion in Los Angeles.

The figures, obtained by Canadian Taxpayers Federation, show the cost between November 18, 2019 and January 19 this year; it does not include fees after that. 

And the bill does not include the salaries paid to the Mounties; it shows extra costs including overtime, travel and meals. 

National Division commanding officer Bernadine Chapman wrote on January 10: ‘We are having a greater conversation next week on the go forward on this. This has a potential to cost us huge!’ 

Harry and Meghan’s decision to move to California came following the news the Canadian authorities would not contribute to the cost of protecting them with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police after March 31.   

It is unclear who is paying for their security bill in the US, though friends of the Sussexes say the couple would be paying for protecting out of their own pocket. 

The cost of protecting the couple during came to $56,384.52 Canadian dollars. That's the total cost between November 18, 2019 and January 19 this year

The cost of protecting the couple during came to $56,384.52 Canadian dollars. That's the total cost between November 18, 2019 and January 19 this year

The cost of protecting the couple during came to $56,384.52 Canadian dollars. That’s the total cost between November 18, 2019 and January 19 this year

Pictures taken in January had shown Meghan as she was followed by two royal protection officers on a walk through the Horth Hill Regional Park near the opulent Vancouver Island mansion they were living in

Pictures taken in January had shown Meghan as she was followed by two royal protection officers on a walk through the Horth Hill Regional Park near the opulent Vancouver Island mansion they were living in

Pictures taken in January had shown Meghan as she was followed by two royal protection officers on a walk through the Horth Hill Regional Park near the opulent Vancouver Island mansion they were living in

In March it was reported Prince Charles will also make £2million contribution to their £4million-a-year security bill. Donald Trump had tweeted to say US taxpayers would not contribute towards protecting them.   

‘The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have no plans to ask the U.S. Government for security resources,’ a Sussex spokesman said. ‘Privately funded security arrangements have been made.’ 

It was unclear whether this meant UK taxpayers would no longer have to contribute towards any future bill. 

Last month it was reported the couple had hired an exclusive A-list security firm to protect them for £7,000 per day.

 The couple are said to be using the firm also used by a slew of A-listers, including Jeff Bezos and Tom Hanks. 

The team watching the royals in LA is believed to have been handpicked by Gavin de Becker, 65 – a former security chief for President Ronald Reagan. 

Canada’s prime minister Justin Trudeau had tweeted before Christmas that Harry, Meghan and Archie ‘were among friends, and always welcome here’. 

But the Mounties said they would no longer pay for their security after their status as working members of the royal family came to an end in March. 

Nearly three quarters of Canadians surveyed in January said they did not want to pay for their move to the country or to pay for their security arrangements. 

After the figures were made public Canadian Taxpayers Federation spokesman Aaron Wudrick said: ‘For months, the Trudeau government refused to even acknowledge Canadian taxpayers were on the hook for Harry and Meghan’s security costs. Now we know the answer is yes – to the tune of at least $50,000.’ 

The couple left Canada for LA and are now living tycoon Tyler Perry's mansion

The couple left Canada for LA and are now living tycoon Tyler Perry's mansion

The couple left Canada for LA and are now living tycoon Tyler Perry’s mansion

Pictures taken in January had shown Meghan as she was followed by two royal protection officers on a walk through the Horth Hill Regional Park near the opulent Vancouver Island mansion they were living in.    

The Duke and Duchess are now understood to be looking to buy the home in the famous 90210 zip code, which is complete with a ‘granny annex’ for her mother Doria to live in. 

The UK and US have a long standing reciprocal agreement when it comes to bodyguards protecting diplomats and members of the royal family.

President Trump’s Secret Service agents would have been allowed to carry their weapons on his state visit and likewise bodyguards for the Queen and Prince Charles when they made official trips to the US.

Having left the royal family the usual rules no longer apply to Harry and he would need to rely on President Trump to make an exception. 

But the President tweeted in March to say US taxpayers would not contribute towards protecting them.

Harry and Meghan have been clear from the beginning that they wish to ‘stand on their own feet’ and there are already lucrative contracts in the pipeline, including one with the Oprah Winfrey Network.   

The couple have been spotted only a handful of times since their move to Los Angeles, first volunteering for a local charity dropping off food to locals who are more at-risk of catching coronavirus, as well as taking their beloved dogs out for a walk.

It is unclear who is paying for the security bill in the US, though friends of the Sussexes say the couple would be paying for protecting out of their own pocket

It is unclear who is paying for the security bill in the US, though friends of the Sussexes say the couple would be paying for protecting out of their own pocket

It is unclear who is paying for the security bill in the US, though friends of the Sussexes say the couple would be paying for protecting out of their own pocket

Meghan was this week dragged into best friend Jessica Mulroney’s race row after the Canadian ‘threatened’ a black social media influencer in an argument over white privilege.

Canadian fashion stylist Mulroney, who attended Meghan’s wedding to the Duke of Sussex, has now said she is ‘stepping back’ from social media following an online disagreement with Sasha Exeter.

The controversy has seen the CTV network remove Mulroney’s reality show I Do, Redo from its channels, saying her ‘recent conduct… conflicts with our commitment to diversity and equality’.  

Mulroney frequently appeared on Meghan’s Instagram page, before it was closed as the former actress prepared to join the Royal Family.

But Meghan Markle is said to be ‘absolutely mortified’ with her best friend’s ‘tone-deaf’ threats and can ‘no longer be associated with her’

A source told Dailymail.com: ‘Meghan is absolutely mortified that she’s been dragged into this complete mess. She said Jessica is in no way a racist, but the way she handled the situation (with the fashion influencer) was tone-deaf and heartbreaking’.  

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TEN police officers are injured with ‘corrosive substance’ during drugs raid in north London 

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ten police officers are injured with corrosive substance during drugs raid in north london

At least 10 officers have been injured by a suspected corrosive substance during a drugs raid in North London

Officers attended an industrial area in Barnet to execute a drugs warrant at around 2pm today when several were ‘injured by a suspected corrosive substance,’ the Metropolitan Police said.

Witnesses reported hearing a ‘loud bang’ before ‘hundreds’ of officers flooded the area, alongside paramedics and fire crews.

One woman who was in the area reported seeing ‘police officers being showered down’ by firemen following the incident.

A spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police said: ‘A number of officers have been injured following a police operation in Barnet.

‘At around 13:50hrs on Wednesday, 23 September, officers attended an industrial area in Dale Close, Barnet, to execute a drugs warrant as part of a proactive operation.

‘As they executed the warrant, officers were injured by a suspected corrosive substance.

‘Full enquiries into the exact circumstances continue.

’10 officers are believed to have suffered injuries and are receiving medical treatment have all gone to hospital. We await an assessment of the extent of these injuries. However none are believed to be in a life-threatening condition.

‘We are working to inform their families.

‘A number of males were arrested on suspicion of drug offences at this stage.

‘They have been taken to hospital having also suffered injuries related to the substance. Their conditions are not believed to be life-threatening.

‘Officers remain at the scene and enquiries continue.

‘London Ambulance Service and London Fire Brigade colleagues are also in attendance.

‘The Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards have been informed as is routine.’

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How China has poured billions into the Caribbean

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how china has poured billions into the caribbean

China has poured billions of dollars of investment into the Caribbean while signing tax and trade deals in an attempt to wrest the region out of the West’s sphere of influence and bring it under the sway of Beijing.

The Chinese government has invested at least $7billion in six Caribbean nations since 2005, records show – building roads, ports and the five-star Baha Mar casino and resort in the Bahamas – though the true figure is thought run well into the tens of billions.

While some of the money arrives as part of trade and investment deals, much of it is offered as ‘soft loans’ for infrastructure projects that are harder to track and typically come with requirements to use Chinese contractors for the work. The loans also provide long-term leverage for Beijing over the cash-strapped island nations. 

MailOnline investigated China’s growing influence in the region after Tom Tugendhat, chairman of the UK’s foreign affairs committee, accused Beijing of ‘playing a large role’ in Barbados’s recent calls to drop the Queen as the Head of State.  

In addition to the loans and investments, eight countries in the Caribbean have signed on to Beijing’s Belt and Road initiative, including Jamaica, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago, with agreements in place to deepen trade ties along with building bridges and airports, and improving energy and telecommunications networks.   

China has pumped at least $7billion in investment into the Caribbean since 2005, records show, though the true figure - when taking into account soft loan deals and private investment - is thought to run well into the tens of billions. Showpiece projects have included a cricket stadium in Grenada, a casino and resort in the Bahamas, and acquiring Jamaica's largest port

China has pumped at least $7billion in investment into the Caribbean since 2005, records show, though the true figure - when taking into account soft loan deals and private investment - is thought to run well into the tens of billions. Showpiece projects have included a cricket stadium in Grenada, a casino and resort in the Bahamas, and acquiring Jamaica's largest port

China has pumped at least $7billion in investment into the Caribbean since 2005, records show, though the true figure – when taking into account soft loan deals and private investment – is thought to run well into the tens of billions. Showpiece projects have included a cricket stadium in Grenada, a casino and resort in the Bahamas, and acquiring Jamaica’s largest port

The Queen pictured with Governor-General of Barbados Dame Sandra Mason at Windsor Castle in 2018

The Queen pictured with Governor-General of Barbados Dame Sandra Mason at Windsor Castle in 2018

The Queen pictured with Governor-General of Barbados Dame Sandra Mason at Windsor Castle in 2018

Mr Tugendhat told the Times: ‘China has been using infrastructure investment and debt diplomacy as a means of control for a while and it’s coming closer to home for us.

‘British partners have long faced challenges from rivals seeking to undermine our alliance.

‘Today we’re seeing it in the Caribbean. Some islands seem to be close to swapping a symbolic Queen in Windsor for a real and demanding emperor in Beijing.’

In the past, China has been particularly generous with nations that have agreed to cut relations with Taiwan – a country in the East China Sea which Beijing claims as a province – and establish ties with Bejing instead.

In 2005, China rewarded the island of Grenada, which has an annual turnover of just $1.8billion, with a brand new $55million cricket stadium after it cut relations with Taiwan.

Similarly, in 2018, the Dominican Republic was received Chinese investments and loans thought to have topped $3billion after it also cut ties with Taipei.

Beijing has largely stepped away from vote-buying projects in recent years, however, and now largely focuses on economic deals aimed at providing work for its citizens, acquiring resources such as rare earth materials and food, and providing long-term trading and economic benefits.

In 2018, leaders from the region and South America – as part of a trading bloc known as CELAC – signed up to a 2019-2021 roadmap with China that aimed to deepen political and economic ties, including in trade, agriculture, infrastructure, and science and technology, among other areas.

More recently, a Chinese firm took full control of Jamaica Kingston Freeport in April this year, the island’s largest container port and one of the largest in the Caribbean. 

China has also invested heavily in Cuba, helping to modernize the country’s second-largest port – Santiago de Cuba – with a new shipping terminal opening in 2019.

Chris Bennett, managing director of The Caribbean Council, a London-based trade organisation, told Mail Online: ‘Over the last 15 years, China has steadily acquired control of strategic assets necessary for its trading interests across the wider region. 

‘It controls two of the largest container ports in the region, has acquired large amounts of land in Jamaica, Guyana and Suriname, multiple oil and gas blocs and large-scale mineral deposits of bauxite and gold.

‘By tying concessional finance to the use of Chinese contractors and Chinese imported labour, China has forced out many Western contractors who cannot compete with the cheap Chinese credit being offered.’

For example, British construction firm Kier was forced to exit both the Caribbean and Hong Kong three years ago, at an estimated loss of £72million, in part because of competition from China.

Meanwhile in Guyana – which China has taken a prominent interest in since large oil deposits were discovered there in 2014 – is currently accepting tenders to rebuild the Demerara Harbour Bridge in its capital, Georgetown.

Originally built with British assistance in the 1970s, seven of the 11 contracts that are now bidding for the rebuilding job are Chinese.

Barbados, meanwhile, is has received at least $490million, mostly as investment in the tourist sector, but is also thought to be benefiting from private deals.

The country has established beneficial tax deals with Beijing in recent years in an attempt to make itself a hub for Chinese financial firms looking to invest in South America.

In 2019, a permanent branch of Invest Barbados was established in Beijing to help attract this investment.

Also last year, Barbados signed a Memorandum of Understanding with China, making it part of the country’s Belt and Road initiative – otherwise known as the new Silk Road.

Queen Elizabeth ll smiles with a young girl in Barbados on November 1, 1977

Queen Elizabeth ll smiles with a young girl in Barbados on November 1, 1977

Queen Elizabeth II on a walkabout during a visit to Bridgetown, Barbados, during her Silver Jubilee tour of the Caribbean

Queen Elizabeth II on a walkabout during a visit to Bridgetown, Barbados, during her Silver Jubilee tour of the Caribbean

Left: Queen Elizabeth ll smiles with a young girl in Barbados on November 1, 1977. Right: The Queen on a walkabout during a visit to Bridgetown

The agreement promises development of Barbados’s shipping, aviation, infrastructure and agriculture sectors.

However, not everyone has welcomed China’s increased presence in the region. Trade and investment with the likes of Belize, St Lucia, St Kitts, Haiti and St Vincent is still non-existent, largely due to their recognising Taiwan.

Meanwhile resentment is also growing among locals who have seen large construction projects handed to Chinese labourers, under the terms of loan deals, starving them of income.

While most labourers return to China once the work is completed, some have stayed behind – establishing businesses, particularly in retail, which often out-compete locals, furthering the resentment.

Barbados has maintained strong relations with Britain even after gaining independence in 1966, but last week announced it would become a republic in 2021.

A speech written by Prime Minister Mia Mottley quoted the Caribbean island nation’s first premier Errol Barrow’s warning against ‘loitering on colonial premises’.

Buckingham Palace has said Barbados’ intention to remove the Queen as head of state and become a republic is a ‘matter’ for the Caribbean nation.

Reading the speech, Governor-General Dame Sandra Mason said: ‘The time has come to fully leave our colonial past behind. Barbadians want a Barbadian Head of State. 

‘This is the ultimate statement of confidence in who we are and what we are capable of achieving.

‘Hence, Barbados will take the next logical step toward full sovereignty and become a Republic by the time we celebrate our 55th Anniversary of Independence.’

Asked to comment on the Commonwealth country’s plans a palace spokesman said: ‘This is a matter for the government and people of Barbados.’

Downing Street said it was a ‘decision for Barbados and the Government there’ but that Britain would continue to ‘enjoy a partnership’ with the Caribbean island nation as members of the Commonwealth.

A Number 10 spokesman said: ‘We obviously have a shared history and remain united with Barbados in terms of history, culture and language, and we will continue to have and enjoy a partnership with them as members of the Commonwealth.’

The country gained its independence from Britain in 1966, though the Queen remains its constitutional monarch.

In 1998, a Barbados constitutional review commission recommended republican status, and in 2015 Prime Minister Freundel Stuart said ‘we have to move from a monarchical system to a republican form of government in the very near future’.

Most Caribbean countries have kept formal links with the monarchy after achieving independence.

Barbados would join Trinidad and Tobago, Dominica and Guyana if it proceeds with its plan to become a republic.

Jamaica has also flagged such a transition, with Prime Minister Andrew Holness saying it is a priority of his government, but has yet to achieve it.

Barbados took another step towards independence from the UK in 2003 when it replaced the London-based Judicial Committee of the Privy Council with the Caribbean Court of Justice, located in Trinidad and Tobago’s Port of Spain, as its final appeals court.

Former Prime Minister Owen Arthur promoted the idea of a referendum on becoming a republic in 2005, however the vote was called off due to concerns raised by the Electoral and Boundaries Commission.       

Barbados: The country’s colonial history 

The Sugar Revolution, the introduction of sugar cane from Dutch Brazil, in the 1640s was highly lucrative but came at great social cost

The Sugar Revolution, the introduction of sugar cane from Dutch Brazil, in the 1640s was highly lucrative but came at great social cost

The Sugar Revolution, the introduction of sugar cane from Dutch Brazil, in the 1640s was highly lucrative but came at great social cost 

Barbados was one of the oldest English settlements in the West Indies, being surpassed only by Saint Kitts.

The countries’ historical ties date back to the 17th century and involve settlement, post-colonialism and modern bilateral relations. 

Since Barbados gained its independence in 1966, the nations have continued to share ties through the Commonwealth, with the Queen as Monarch. 

The Barbadian Parliament is the third oldest in the entire Commonwealth and the island continues to practice the Westminster style of government.

Many of the historic Anglican churches and plantation houses across the island show the influence of English architecture. 

In 1627, 80 Englishmen aboard the William and John landed on the Caribbean island and founded Jamestown (close to today’s Holetown), in the name of King James I.

The early settlers struggled to develop a profitable export crop and faced difficulties in maintaining supplies from Europe.

However, the Sugar Revolution, the introduction of sugar cane from Dutch Brazil, in the 1640s was highly lucrative and over the next decade more than two thirds of English emigres to the Americas went to Barbados. 

But while this shift to sugar yielded huge profits, it came at a great social cost. Thousands of West African slaves were shipped across the Atlantic to work the plantations and workers suffered from low wages and minimal social services. 

It is estimated that between 1627 to 1807, some 387,000 Africans were shipped to the island against their will and the country shifted from having a majority white population to a majority black population. 

On 28th August 1833, the British Government passed the Slavery Abolition Act, and slaves across the British empire were granted emancipation. 

Barbados remained a British colony until internal autonomy was granted in 1961. 

The country became fully independent on November 30, 1966, during a time when the country’s economy was expanding and diversifying. 

Since then, the Barbadian Parliament has remained a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, which is modeled on the British Westminster system of government. 

In 2008, British exports to Barbados stood at £38 million, making it Britain’s fourth-largest export market in the region.  

In recent years a growing number of British nationals have been relocating to Barbados to live, with polls showing that British nationals make up 75–85 per cent of the Barbados second home market.

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Herd immunity wouldn’t work without overwhelming the NHS, study finds

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herd immunity wouldnt work without overwhelming the nhs study finds

Relying on the herd immunity strategy in Britain wouldn’t work because the risk of overwhelming the NHS would be too great, a study suggests.

Researchers modelled how the controversial strategy, which was pondered by the UK government in March, would play out in different scenarios.

They found letting the virus run rampant with no preventative rules — the simplest way to achieve herd immunity without a vaccine — would lead to too many hospital admissions. Britain would need around 300,000 beds to cope — almost triple the current capacity in hospitals, the team estimated. 

This would put too much strain on the health service and may lead to excess deaths among non-virus patients, such as those with cancer and heart issues.

The study found simultaneously achieving the strategy and protecting hospitals would require keeping the reproduction ‘R’ rate at around 1.2 for ‘years’. This would be an ‘impractical’ balancing act because it would require constant tinkering with social distancing rules for long periods of time, researchers said.

And when the R is above the dreaded number of one — meaning infected patients pass the potentially life-threatening disease on to at least one person, on average — the epidemic still risks spiralling out of control. 

The team’s model also found it was ‘possible’ to suppress the virus ‘with plausible levels of social distancing over a period of months’.

Writing in the paper, the University of California scientists warn: ‘Our study finds that achieving herd immunity without overwhelming hospital capacity leaves little room for error.

‘Intervention levels must be carefully manipulated in an adaptive manner for an extended period… Such fine-tuning of social distancing renders this strategy impractical.

‘Various governments have entertained the idea of achieving herd immunity through natural infection as a means of ending the long-term threat of Covid-19. This has provoked alarm in sections of the public health community. Our work confirms that this alarm is well founded.’

But health chiefs in Sweden, one of the only countries to remain open throughout the pandemic and avoid using a crude lockdown, say the tactic has worked for them, which has allowed people to keep their freedoms.

Researchers modelled various lockdown scenarios and found that simultaneously achieving the strategy and protecting hospitals would require keeping the reproduction 'R' rate at around 1.2 for 'years'

Researchers modelled various lockdown scenarios and found that simultaneously achieving the strategy and protecting hospitals would require keeping the reproduction 'R' rate at around 1.2 for 'years'

Researchers modelled various lockdown scenarios and found that simultaneously achieving the strategy and protecting hospitals would require keeping the reproduction ‘R’ rate at around 1.2 for ‘years’

Herd immunity wouldn't work because the risk of overwhelming the NHS would be too great, a study suggests (file)

Herd immunity wouldn't work because the risk of overwhelming the NHS would be too great, a study suggests (file)

Herd immunity wouldn’t work because the risk of overwhelming the NHS would be too great, a study suggests (file)

Herd immunity is achieved when a disease runs out of room and is no longer able to spread because enough of the population have been exposed to it.

Experts say between 60 and 70 per cent of communities need to get infected, or be vaccinated against a disease, for the tactic to work.

Expert claims Sweden now has ‘herd immunity’ against coronavirus 

Sweden has beaten coronavirus by refusing to shut the country down and achieving herd immunity, according to an expert.

The Scandinavian nation was the only country in Europe not to introduce strict lockdown measures at the start of the pandemic.

But scientists believe that this may have helped it avoid a second wave of Covid-19 as it continues to record its lowest number of cases since March – with just 28 infections per 100,000 people.

This figure is less than half of the UK’s own infection rate of 69 per 100,000 people.

 He told Denmark’s Politiken newspaper: ‘There is some evidence that the Swedes have built up a degree of immunity to the virus which, along with what else they are doing to stop the spread, is enough to control the disease.

‘Perhaps, the epidemic is over there.’

He said that the virus may now have run out of steam.

He added: ‘That is what they have said.

‘On the positive side, they may now be finished with the epidemic.’

Sweden was initially criticised at the start of the outbreak after recording a spike in its mortality rates which was five times that of Denmark and ten times that of Norway and Finland.

Number of deaths per 24 hours peaked in April at 115 with more than half in care homes.

But its seven-day average for coronavirus-related deaths is now zero.

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The UK pondered herd immunity as its main strategy in March, but the tactic never became official policy.

News that ministers were looking into the strategy sparked a furore because it signalled they were prepared to allow millions people to get infected, and for hundreds of thousands to inevitably die, in order for it to work.

The new study was done by the University of California, Davis and published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States (PNAS).

Researchers used mathematical modelling to simulate the different scenarios needed to achieve herd immunity.

Using the first wave of the pandemic in the UK as a benchmark, they inputted data about how fast the coronavirus spreads when left unchecked and the virus’s mortality and hospitalisation rates.  

The team found that, in the absence of any intervention measures, the disease would spread rapidly through the UK and infect 77 per cent of people.

While this would likely lead to herd immunity, it would also cause about 410,000 deaths — including 350,000 over the age of 60 — and cause hospitals to be completely overwhelmed.

They said social distancing by older individuals and the public adhering to self-isolation rules would also lead to a ‘much smaller outbreak’ among over-60s. 

School closures also help to keep cases down and reopening them too soon may trigger a second wave, the researchers added.

They wrote: ‘Our modeling indicates that, if sustained, such control measures can lead to the suppression of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom by reducing R to below one.’

The academics looked at various lockdown scenarios to see if herd immunity could be reached by tinkering with schools, workplaces or amenities.

They took into account different adherence rates to self-isolation, social distancing, among other factors that can change the course of an outbreak.

The model was based on old data analysing how quickly outbreaks grow in different settings, and how they contribute to the epidemic overall. 

But the results showed that the NHS would be pushed to the brink in most instances where the R rate is above 1.2.

They wrote: ‘Attempting to achieve herd immunity while simultaneously mitigating the impact of Covid-19 on hospital burden is an extremely challenging task.

‘In order to ensure the hospital burden does not exceed levels comparable with that of the UK in April 2020, R needs to be reduced from its initial value (assumed to be 2.3) to about 1.2).

‘Due to the fine margins (in terms of control effectiveness) between successful disease suppression and overwhelming hospitals, making herd immunity the primary objective (rather than applying maximal social distancing and aiming for suppression) is not supported by our modelling.’

Hospital capacity was modelled at the average burden in April, during the height of the pandemic, when around 18,000 infected patients were in beds. 

Scientists insist models are not always accurate and are only designed to be helpful to guide policies.

It comes after emails released today showed Sir Patrick Vallance and Professor Chris Whitty asked for help to ‘calm down’ angry academics after facing backlash over the herd immunity approach discussed in March.

The top experts, who’ve been steering Britain through the Covid-19 crisis, were hounded by fellow scientists for comments they made about the controversial tactic at the start of the pandemic. 

On at least three occasions, Sir Patrick Vallance, England’s chief scientific adviser, said the aim is to ‘build up some degree of herd immunity’ — when a disease runs out of room and can no longer spread because enough of the population have been exposed to it.

On at least three occasions, Sir Patrick Vallance, the chief scientific advisor, suggested to media outlets the 'aim is to... build up some degree of herd immunity'

On at least three occasions, Sir Patrick Vallance, the chief scientific advisor, suggested to media outlets the 'aim is to... build up some degree of herd immunity'

Professor Whitty, the chief medical officer, also raged in emails he was 'misinterpreted' in a conversation with a minister about herd immunity

Professor Whitty, the chief medical officer, also raged in emails he was 'misinterpreted' in a conversation with a minister about herd immunity

Sir Patrick Vallance and Professor Chris Whitty faced backlash over the ‘herd immunity’ strategy in March and asked for help to ‘calm down’ angry academics, emails show

The comments sparked a furore because it signalled the Government was prepared to allow millions people to get infected and inevitably die in order to successfully achieve the strategy. 

No 10 was even forced to deny herd immunity was the strategy after Boris Johnson’s chief aide Dominic Cummings reportedly confirmed the plan at a private event back in February, allegedly saying it was ‘too bad’ if it meant ‘some pensioners die’. 

Emails obtained by the BBC reveal the panic among top advisers in reaction to the outpouring of criticism. In one email sent to a colleague in March, Sir Patrick said: ‘Anything you can do to calm our academic friends down over herd immunity would be greatly appreciated.’

Professor Whitty, England’s chief medical officer, also raged in emails that he was ‘misinterpreted’ after an unnamed senior politician claimed they had conversations in January that ‘were absolutely focused on herd immunity’. 

While the majority of scientists have shied away from publicly endorsing herd immunity as a viable strategy, some believe it is the only route out of the current crisis without a vaccine.  

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