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Pest controllers warn warm weather ‘accelerated’ growth of wasps

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pest controllers warn warm weather accelerated growth of wasps

Britons should beware of ‘giant’ wasp nests this summer as the coming months are set to bring more of the stinging insects, a pest control expert has warned.

Norfolk pest controller Andrew Dellbridge, 51, said high temperatures early on in the year has ‘accelerated the growth of the insect population’ meaning more adult-sized wasps will be buzzing around.

He said high temperatures mean the wasps will stay active until at least late October and warned ‘it can only get worse in the next few weeks’. 

Norfolk pest controller Andrew Dellbridge, 51, (pictured) had to remove a giant wasp nest on the edge of the Norfolk Broads

The nest (pictured) was the size of a Space Hopper

Norfolk pest controller Andrew Dellbridge, 51, (left) had to remove a giant wasp nest (right) the size of a Space Hopper on the edge of the Norfolk Broads

Mr Dellbridge, 51, said high temperatures early on in the year has 'accelerated the growth of the insect population' meaning more adult-sized wasps will be buzzing around. Pictured: The giant nest he had to remove

Mr Dellbridge, 51, said high temperatures early on in the year has ‘accelerated the growth of the insect population’ meaning more adult-sized wasps will be buzzing around. Pictured: The giant nest he had to remove

Why are there more wasps this year? 

Britons will likely see more wasps in the next few months as warm weather early in the year has meant the insects have grown quicker.

 For most of the year, adult wasps hunt insects to feed the larvae – in exchange for a sugary substance released by the larvae as a reward.

But August and September brings less larvae – as they pupate in the warm summer months – and, in turn, less sugar.

As the warmth started early this year, wasps have been able to pupate sooner meaning more adult-sized wasps will be buzzing around.

So adult wasps are forced to hunt out sugar of their own, which explains why the insects tend to fly straight towards sugary drinks and food. 

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For most of the year, adult wasps hunt insects to feed the larvae – in exchange for a sugary substance released by the larvae as a reward.

But August and September brings less larvae – as they pupate in the warm summer months – and, in turn, less sugar.

So adult wasps are forced to hunt out sugar of their own, which explains why the insects tend to fly straight towards sugary drinks and food.

Mr Dellbridge has already had to remove a giant wasp nest the size of a Space Hopper on the edge of the Norfolk Broads.

The nest measured around two-and-a-half feet in diameter, and is estimated to have contained over 5,000 wasps.

He said the nest was holding so many wasps that the insects were queuing to try and find entry points to get inside.

Kitted out in full protective gear, Mr Dellbridge sprayed the giant nest with two different types of spray to kill off all the wasps, including any that returned later.

But he left the nest where it was found in a barn as wasps never use the same nest to build by another colony.

And Mr Dellbridge, who works for Ace Pest Control Ltd. in Norwich, warned that this is not the first giant nest they have seen – and that the nests are likely to get even bigger in the coming weeks. 

The nest (pictured) measured around two-and-a-half feet in diameter, and is estimated to have contained over 5,000 wasps

The nest (pictured) measured around two-and-a-half feet in diameter, and is estimated to have contained over 5,000 wasps

What is the best way to treat a wasp sting? 

With the number of wasps only set to increase throughout the summer months, the potential to be stung by the pests will likely increase too.

There are dozens of home-remedies around, but experts at the British Pest Control Association say they should be shunned in favour of a much-simpler solution. 

The sting should be washed with soap and water before applying a cold compress – such as an ice pack – for at least 10 minutes.

The area should then be elevated – if possible.

They warn that famous home remedy vinegar and bicarbonate of soda will only make the sting worse.

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He said: ‘We’ve had such a good start to the year, with such excellent, warm weather very early on, that it has accelerated the growth of the insect population.

‘This has meant the wasps have been more active for longer – giving them more time for the queens to build nests to hibernate in during the winter.

‘There are large nests all over the place – there are lots more wasps, and the nests are huge.’

The space hopper-sized nest that Mr Dellbridge was called out to had been built in a barn attached to a house.

He said: ‘It was quite an intense job – when you’re in that space, up close to the nest and can hear the deep buzzing sound, you really get a sense of the massive scale of the structure.

‘I can well believe that there were multiple thousands of wasps inside that nest.

‘You have to be careful when a nest built in a roof space gets to that size, as the wasps start running out of space, and will chew through the ceiling board to create more room.

‘I started by spraying the nest with a knockdown spray, which is like a fly spray, which will kill off all the wasps inside the nest.

Mr Dellbridge said high temperatures early on in the year has 'accelerated the growth of the insect population' meaning more adult-sized wasps will be buzzing around (file image)

Mr Dellbridge said high temperatures early on in the year has ‘accelerated the growth of the insect population’ meaning more adult-sized wasps will be buzzing around (file image)

Do you have wasp nests in your house? 

Email jemma.carr@mailonline.co.uk 

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‘Then I came back and sprayed it with a residual spray, to ensure any wasps that returned to the nest later would also be killed off.

‘In most cases, including this one, we would leave the nest in situ – as wasps will never use a nest built by another colony in a previous year.’

He added that the giant nest would have started out in spring the size of a golf ball, built by a single queen wasp, who would have laid around a dozen eggs inside it.

It then grew in size as these eggs hatched and worked to expand the nest – while the queen bee continually laid multiple layers of eggs inside it.

Mr Dellbridge said: ‘It’s colossal, really, what wasps can build in just a few months, starting with just one wasp.’

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Chaos in Britain’s Covid labs: Scientist lifts lid on government facilities

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chaos in britains covid labs scientist lifts lid on government facilities

A leading scientist has today warned that Covid testing ‘is dying on its a**e’, as he said he was ‘appalled by what I saw’ at the Government’s testing labs. 

Concerns have been raised about the Government’s seven ‘lighthouse labs’ and their ability to process results, due to shortages of staff and equipment. 

Genomics scientist and inventor Phil Robinson told The Times that the Lighthouse Labs were poorly managed, running out of staff and failed to set up automatic processes before a second wave of infections. 

He told the paper: ‘Every part of the process was poor. The other ludicrous issue they have is they have 20 different types of tube coming into the lab. When you are running a high throughput lab it’s only sensible to have one. Why they haven’t standardised that I have no idea’.

A scientist has warned of chaos in the Government's coronavirus testing labs. Pictured is a volunteer processing samples at a laboratory in Alderley Park, Cheshire

A scientist has warned of chaos in the Government’s coronavirus testing labs. Pictured is a volunteer processing samples at a laboratory in Alderley Park, Cheshire

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The proportion of people getting their Covid-19 test results within 24 hours has plummeted for all kinds of test, performance data showed today

The proportion of people getting their Covid-19 test results within 24 hours has plummeted for all kinds of test, performance data showed today

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TEST & TRACE ‘COULD BE OUTSOURCED TO AMAZON’ 

The UK’S test and trace system could be outsourced to a delivery giant such as Amazon, it was reported last night.

Ministers are said to be planning to hand over the running of the testing service to a logistics firm as the system struggles to cope with increased demand for tests.

A invitation to bid for a contract covering the management of the entire ‘end-to-end’ supply chain will be issued next month, The Daily Telegraph reported.

A Government source said ‘experts in delivery services’ were needed. ‘At the moment, the management of NHS Test and Trace has been in-house but, as we go into winter, we need experts in this area to take it forward,’ they said.

Amazon, DHL and other major logistics firms are all reportedly likely to be competing for the huge contract which will be the linchpin of the Health Secretary’s promise to deliver 500,000 tests a day by the end of next month.

An information notice issued by the Department of Health calls for potential bidders to register their interest in the contract to co-ordinate the testing service’s supply change.

It says: ‘In order to significantly scale up the number of daily tests as well as making the operations more efficient, we are looking for an end-to-end management of all associated supply chain and logistics processes along the chain.’

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On Thursday, the Government announced that it was launching two new ‘Lighthouse’ testing labs in Newcastle and Bracknell.

Accompanying new sites in Newport and Charnwood, the four labs promise to increase capacity to deliver 500,000 tests per day by the end of October, DHSC said.

NHS Providers, which represents NHS trust leaders, argued that the country was ‘a long way off where we need to be with testing’.

Plans have also been released for a Lighthouse laboratory dealing with testing and a Covid-19 research hub, which could create 1,100 jobs in the North East of England.

The new facility would serve the region, as well as northern Cumbria and Yorkshire, and would be the latest expansion of the Government’s national Test and Trace programme.

The Lighthouse lab will be based in Gateshead with a specialist innovation lab at the Helix site in Newcastle, focused on developing new approaches to coronavirus science.

The project will be a partnership between Newcastle City Council and the Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, as well as public health teams, local universities and industry.

Deputy chief executive Saffron Cordery said trust leaders were ‘increasingly concerned’ that testing shortages could put pressure on NHS services and winter preparations due to growing staff absences.

‘Trust leaders are concerned that they do not have the detail on why there are shortages, how widespread they are or how long they will last,’ she added.

Reacting to the latest test and trace figures, Justin Madders, Labour’s shadow health minister, said it was a ‘huge concern’ that the test and trace system performance ‘continues to go backwards’ and appeared ‘on the verge of collapse’.

He added: ‘Perhaps the biggest problem is that people cannot get tested, which means thousands of people are not going into the system in the first place. Ministers must get a grip and fix testing now.’ 

Dr Mike Skinner, who volunteered to work in a Lighthouse Laboratory dealing with Covid-19 tests, said half the work was involved in sorting the logistics of handling the samples.

The reader in virology at Imperial College London told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: ‘In the lab, when the testing was upscaled back in March, you really had to get all kinds of sample kits from lots of different producers, there were lots of difficulties in that.

‘We had to put half of our staff into handling issues with barcoding, leaks – we actually had to remove the swabs from the tubes so they didn’t gum-up some of the robots down the line.’

He added: ‘It really is very much about logistics.’

Members of the public are pictured queueing outside a coronavirus testing centre in Edmonton, North London, as people across the country say they are struggling to get hold of tests

Members of the public are pictured queueing outside a coronavirus testing centre in Edmonton, North London, as people across the country say they are struggling to get hold of tests

Coronavirus testing centres have been pictured empty today despite hundreds of people saying they cannot book an appointment online. Meanwhile the company that runs them, Sodexo, is recruiting more staff and officials will say only that they are diverting capacity to badly-hit areas (Pictured: A test site in Leeds)

Coronavirus testing centres have been pictured empty today despite hundreds of people saying they cannot book an appointment online. Meanwhile the company that runs them, Sodexo, is recruiting more staff and officials will say only that they are diverting capacity to badly-hit areas (Pictured: A test site in Leeds) 

No staff at test centre on the same day the new measures were announced 

Dozens of drivers turned up at a test site to find there were no staff to swab them, on the day the health secretary announced tougher coronavirus measures for people in the north-east.

People who had booked a test on Thursday at Doxford Park, an out-of-town business park in Sunderland, were told by the media they would not be tested, as there were no officials there to inform them.

Some had been turned away on the approach to the centre by security guards, who told them the computers had crashed and to try again later.

HGV mechanic Brad Cockburn, 28, made a 100-mile round trip from Bedale, North Yorkshire, only to find there were no staff, not even a tent or other infrastructure, at the site on the out-of-town business park.

He said: ‘There’s no organisation, it’s piss-poor performance as usual.’

Rob Reid, a 58-year-old cash and carry manager from Sunderland, booked for 3.45pm, only to find there were no staff.

He said: ‘It annoys me. My concern is about my health and it comes across that the Government is not that concerned, when they are taking bookings on the NHS website and there’s nobody here to do it.’

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Concerns have been echoed by Nicola Sturgeon, who yesterday said she still has concerns about the amount of time being taken to process coronavirus tests at UK Government laboratories.

The First Minister again spoke of pressures on the testing system in England which have caused a delay in people getting results.

Her comments came as a UK Government minister insisted coronavirus testing capacity in Scotland is ‘increasing enormously’.

Iain Stewart also said that if decisions need to be made over who should be the priority for testing in Scotland, that would be for the Scottish Government.

Coronavirus tests in England are to be rationed as the Government at Westminster struggles to get to grips with soaring demand.

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock said there will be testing ‘prioritisation’ for people with acute clinical need and those in social care settings, as he acknowledged ‘operational challenges’ in the system.

First Minister Ms Sturgeon stressed on Tuesday there was ‘not by and large’ an issue with getting tests north of the border.

But she said ‘constraints’ at the UK Government’s Lighthouse laboratories meant results were being delayed – an issue she has raised in talks with Mr Hancock and Dido Harding, the head of the UK testing system.

Speaking at her coronavirus briefing on Wednesday, the First Minister said: ‘Although we continue to have some concerns about the time being taken to process tests in the Lighthouse laboratories, there are no signs at this stage of people in Scotland facing widespread difficulties in booking a test.’

She said the backlog in testing is now reducing and her Government will ‘monitor these issues very closely’.

She added she is considering if the regular testing of care home staff – which is currently dealt with by the Lighthouse laboratory system – could be taken over by the NHS in some areas.

Ms Sturgeon said: ‘The reason we have been looking at that is to see if we can free up capacity within the UK system, given the pressure it has been experiencing.’

Mr Stewart stressed the UK Government, which he said is responsible for the majority of testing in Scotland, is acting on the problems.

Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland, he said the Government is ‘increasing the overall capacity’ in the testing system.

He insisted it is right that the UK Government had acted to prioritise access for testing in England to key workers and those in care homes.

Asked what should happen in Scotland, Mr Stewart said: ‘That is for the Scottish Government to determine.

‘What we are doing as a UK Government is increasing enormously the availability of testing in Scotland.

‘I am glad that the Scottish Government are increasing their side of testing but the majority of testing in Scotland is run by UK bodies, and we are expanding that. There will be another walk- through centre opening in Glasgow in the next few days, so that availability will be there.

‘At this point we just ought to say a huge thank-you to the people at the Lighthouse lab in Glasgow who are working 24/7. When they first started off they were doing about 40 tests a day, they’re now doing tens of thousands.’

The new walk-in testing centre at the Arc Sport Centre in Glasgow is due to open on Friday afternoon, the Scotland Office said.

With a walk-in centre already open in St Andrews, Ms Sturgeon said plans are ‘on track’ for a further four such facilities to open in the next two weeks as part of a move to ‘establish 20 more walk-in centres across Scotland over the autumn and winter’.

The 90-minute coronavirus test that’s 94% accurate: On-the-spot Covid-19 screening that delivers result in less than two hours could transform diagnosis this winter, experts say

An on-the-spot Covid test which delivers a result in 90 minutes could transform diagnosis in NHS hospitals this winter, experts say.

A study published last night revealed the CovidNudge test – a machine the size of a shoebox – does not deliver any ‘false positive’ results, meaning all those who test positive are carrying the virus.

It has a ‘specificity’ of 94 per cent – meaning 6 per cent of those given the all-clear will actually have the virus – but this is far better than the 70 per cent specificity rate seen with the standard Covid test.

The NHS has already ordered 5,000 machines and 5.8 million testing cartridges, at the cost of about £30 per test. 

The CovidNudge is a machine the size of a shoebox and delivers results in 90 minutes

The CovidNudge is a machine the size of a shoebox and delivers results in 90 minutes

The NHS has already ordered 5,000 machines and 5.8 million testing cartridges

The NHS has already ordered 5,000 machines and 5.8 million testing cartridges

Dido Harding claims demand for testing is up to four times capacity 

Baroness Harding

Baroness Dido Harding (right) was grilled by MPs

Demand for Covid tests is up to four times the system’s capacity, Baroness Harding admitted today.

The Tory peer revealed the staggering mismatch between the number of people wanting tests and the ability to carry them out as she claimed 27 per cent have no symptoms.

Extraordinarily. she said no-one had ‘expected’ the ‘sizeable’ increase in demand – although it was widely predicted, blaming SAGE for getting their estimates wrong.

Lady Harding has been hauled before MPs to explain the shambles that has left thousands struggling to get checked.

She told the Science Committee that she did not have precise numbers for how many people wanted tests. But she said phone calls and website visits suggested it was ‘three to four times the number of tests we have available’.

Brazenly passing the buck for the chaos, Lady Harding said: ‘We built our capacity plans based on SAGE modelling for what we should be preparing for in the Autumn.’

Lady Harding confirmed the capacity now for diagnostic tests is just under 243,000 per day – a figure that the government has failed to publish for more than a week. Thousands of tests are being sent abroad to be processed, she said.

She said the government was ‘on track’ to increase capacity to 500,000 tests a day by the end of October – although that would cover all types of tests, not just for whether people currently have coronavirus.

And she conceded that will not be enough. ‘I am certain we will need more as we go beyond the end of October,’ she said.  

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Eventually the machines could be used in schools, theatres and even private homes. They were used by the London Symphony Orchestra last month to give musicians the all-clear to perform at the Proms.

Some 10,000 people have been tested on the NHS so far, with a major roll-out due in the coming weeks.

The machine, designed by Imperial College London spinout company DnaNudge, is particularly useful for hospitals because it can be used at a patient’s bedside.

Because the turnaround time is so quick, doctors can make rapid treatment decisions without waiting hours or days for laboratory results.

The process involves collecting nasal and throat swabs and placing them on to a cartridge which goes into the machine – called a ‘NudgeBox’ – for analysis.

The device then looks for traces of genetic material belonging to the coronavirus.

Each machine has the ability to process up to 15 tests on the spot each day. Professor Graham Cooke, of Imperial, whose evaluation of the machine was published in the Lancet Microbe journal, said: ‘This test is particularly well suited for clinical settings when you are trying to make a rapid decision for a patient. 

‘For example, we had a patient from last week who had a new diagnosis of Covid.

‘We were able to get the diagnosis confirmed within two hours of arriving and start remdesivir and dexamethasone [drugs used to treat severe Covid-19] on that basis.’

The test is being used across eight London hospitals and is expected to be rolled out at a national level.

Professor Cooke said there was no practical reason why it could not be used in someone’s home, but for now manufacturing was being targeted at healthcare use.

And while the machine excels at speed, accuracy and ease of use, it is not the answer to the Government’s current testing problems, because each machine can process only one test at a time.

‘It is not the answer if you need millions of tests a day,’ Professor Cooke said.

The team is also modifying the device so the test can simultaneously assess other respiratory diseases.

Dr Bob Klaber, director of strategy at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, said: ‘Getting accurate results back to clinicians and their patients as quickly as possible makes a huge difference to how we safely manage clinical pathways and we are very much looking forward to rolling this out more widely.’

Professor Chris Toumazou, co-founder of DnaNudge, added: ‘The platform is well suited to testing in primary care and community settings with potential for use in non-healthcare settings such as care homes, schools, transport hubs, offices, and, to help bring the arts back, in theatres and venues.’

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John Lewis Christmas decorations: Experts reveal 2020 trends

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john lewis christmas decorations experts reveal 2020 trends

For most of us, Christmas decorations involve a few strings of fairy lights, a wreath on the door and maybe a strand or two of tinsel.

But John Lewis has decidedly loftier ideas about what families will be looking for this festive season. 

The retailer yesterday unveiled a sneak peek of its seasonal offerings and suggested ‘art nouveau’, ‘post-impressionism’ and ‘renaissance’ will be among the ‘ trends sought out by shoppers in the run-up to Christmas.

‘Zoom corners’ will also be a must-have for image-conscious families who might be spending part of the day on video calls with loved ones, according to John Lewis partner and Christmas buyer Dan Cooper. ‘Wreaths, garlands and hanging lights can come into play and spark joy amongst virtual gatherings.’

Elsewhere mantlepieces, traditionally used to hang stockings, will become the backdrop for social media-worthy displays. ‘The mantlepiece has now evolved into a display of stems, baubles, pearls and candlesticks, our Renaissance trend works perfectly here,’ he explained. 

Read on to discover more about the seven key trends John Lewis is predicting we’ll see in our living rooms this year.  

BLOOMSBURY 

BLOOMSBURY: The 'Bloomsbury' style is an 'eclectic marriage of bohemian and chic', according to John Lewis and will be a hit with vintage lovers. Pictured, a 'Bloomsbury' tree

BLOOMSBURY: The ‘Bloomsbury’ style is an ‘eclectic marriage of bohemian and chic’, according to John Lewis and will be a hit with vintage lovers. Pictured, a ‘Bloomsbury’ tree 

WHAT IS IT? This art movement is characterised by the groups’ work of literature, thought-provoking modern attitudes to feminism and economics. 

The soft illustration style is captured throughout the works of art, usually in interior settings which are reflected in the tree decorations. An eclectic marriage of bohemian and chic, with a love of vintage reflects this customer.

GET THE LOOK: Rooms filled with books, antiques, hidden treasures and art handed down through the generations would suit this look. Add natural materials such as thistles, fruits and berries with woven baskets and rich velvet stockings to add warmth. Darker faux fur and patchwork designs work well here.

RENAISSANCE 

RENAISSANCE: Glamorous customers who adore life in the city will like this approach to decorating, the experts claim. Feathers, soft furnishings and faux fur are all involved

RENAISSANCE: Glamorous customers who adore life in the city will like this approach to decorating, the experts claim. Feathers, soft furnishings and faux fur are all involved

WHAT IS IT? This trend takes classical references from the Renaissance frescoes and updates them in a contemporary way with the use of feathers, velvet and pearls. The movement is characterised by sculpture and decorative arts, with references to literature and music throughout which are reflected in tree decorations and sprays. Ideal for the glamorous city living customer that enjoys hosting beautiful, indulgent dinners at home.

GET THE LOOK: Think extravagant feathers, luxurious embroidered soft furnishings with delicate pearls and faux fur to add texture. Drape garlands, beads and sprays over bannisters and mix with beautiful pastel accessories. The colour palette includes soft pinks and builds through to blues and greens with hints of metallic gold.

ART NOUVEAU 

ART NOUVEAU: 'The architecture, paintings and in the late 1800s is the main inspiration behind this theme,' John Lewis explains. Try mixing luxe materials to achieve the look at home

ART NOUVEAU: ‘The architecture, paintings and in the late 1800s is the main inspiration behind this theme,’ John Lewis explains. Try mixing luxe materials to achieve the look at home

WHAT IS IT? The architecture, paintings and in the late 1800s is the main inspiration behind this theme, it embraces a wide range of fine and decorative arts. The style is opulent with rich materials and extravagant accessories, as well as bold characters such as peacocks and animal prints that are featured throughout the decorations.

GET THE LOOK: Mix luxe materials such as silk, cut glass, velvet, marble and heavy rich jacquards against deep blues, yellows and metallics. Barware plays a heavy role in this theme, think gold cocktail shakers, champagne saucers and striking bar trolleys with animal print accessories.

POST-IMPRESSIONISM 

POST-IMPRESSIONISM: Animal prints and plenty of colours are on display in this example of an art nouveau tree. A traditional palette is replaced with yellows, oranges, blues and reds

POST-IMPRESSIONISM: Animal prints and plenty of colours are on display in this example of an art nouveau tree. A traditional palette is replaced with yellows, oranges, blues and reds

WHAT IS IT? This theme is inspired by the reaction against Impressionists’ concern for the naturalistic depiction of light colour. The trend uses vivid colours, using real-life subject matter and emphasises geometric forms. 

This is reflected in the use of exotic animals and eccentric home furnishings within the collection. The customer is inspired by travel, world cinema and antiques with interests in nature and wellbeing.

GET THE LOOK: A bright, painterly, tropical inspired palette, with narrative prints featuring insects, exotic birds and animals from the jungle. 

The palette builds from greens to yellows and oranges with splashes of blues and reds throughout the decorations. Think bold mosaics, hand blown glass and painted ceramics with embroidered stockings and alternative tree toppers.

POP ART 

POP ART: Christmas Day meets nightclub with neon lights, metallics and multi-coloured wreaths for the Pop Art look, which draws on the experimental art movement of the 60s

POP ART: Christmas Day meets nightclub with neon lights, metallics and multi-coloured wreaths for the Pop Art look, which draws on the experimental art movement of the 60s

WHAT IS IT? This theme takes inspiration from the Pop Art movement that explores modern artists experimenting with new ways of seeing and working with the nature of materials and functions of art. Abstract themes, reflective surfaces of polished stainless steel and mirror-like pieces of work distort the viewer and surroundings. The collection plays with light and colour through glass effects, foils and beading.

GET THE LOOK: To recreate this look within the home build on a contemporary interior that has unique pieces of furniture and bold geometric shapes that characterises the room. 

Add colour through neon lights, metallics and sequins and fun multi-coloured wreaths. This theme is about experimenting with colours, being as brave and bold as you dare.

IMPRESSIONISM 

IMPRESSIONISM: Based on the impressionism movement in the 1870s and 80s, the Impressionism trend will see shoppers build on a neutral base with blues, teal and lilac

IMPRESSIONISM: Based on the impressionism movement in the 1870s and 80s, the Impressionism trend will see shoppers build on a neutral base with blues, teal and lilac

WHAT IS IT? This theme is based on the impressionism movement in the 1870s and 80s. The movement is characterised by small, thin delicate brush strokes with emphasis on depictions of light movements which are reflected in the materials used in this collection such as tinted glass, tarnished silver with darker tones coming through the use of acorns and cones. This theme works well in a rural setting, and lends itself to a mindful retreat filled with home-cooked dinners and long country walks in the snow.

GET THE LOOK: The colour palette builds on a neutral base with light blues, teal and lilac coming through the tree decorations. Layer faux fur and chunky knit home accessories with natural elements to create a snug and cosy setting. Ceramics and linens are perfect for this trend on the table with eucalyptus and a frosted spray above the table.

ART OF JAPAN

ART OF JAPAN: The modern illustration style and vivid colours come across in our tree decorations with bright flowers, berries and dragons. Will work well in contemporary spaces

ART OF JAPAN: The modern illustration style and vivid colours come across in our tree decorations with bright flowers, berries and dragons. Will work well in contemporary spaces

WHAT IS IT? The rediscovery of Japanese art and design by western culture reinvented this movement in the 21st century. The modern illustration style and vivid colours come across in our tree decorations with bright flowers, berries and dragons. Contemporary, open plan living spaces will highlight the bold designs in this collection paired with natural and sustainable materials wherever possible through home furnishings.

GET THE LOOK: The colour palette for this look moves from bright red through fuschia to metallics. Cut glass, high shine finishes and laser cut paper embolden this trend, along with blossom sprays and poinsettias for softness. The living space is simple, pared back with a clean style, suitable for someone in a suburban area that enjoys spending time in the local surroundings.

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Tricky brainteaser challenges puzzlers to spot the differences in a set of pictures

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tricky brainteaser challenges puzzlers to spot the differences in a set of pictures

A tricky series of spot-the-difference images are leaving puzzlers baffled as they struggled to find the oddities between two sets of pictures. 

Maik Zehrfeld, from Berlin, shares the spot-the-difference puzzles online on his blog LangweileDich.net, with some of the hardest images collated into an online gallery by BoredPanda.  

Internet users from across the world have been left scratching their heads over the difficult images.

And while in some pictures the differences will jump out at you immediately, others are a lot harder to find. 

If you’re finding the challenge a little too testy, than scroll down to the bottom for solutions… 

1.  11 Differences

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2. 14 Differences

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3. 10 Differences

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4. 10 Differences

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5. 10 Differences

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6. 13 Differences

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7. 12 Differences

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8. 11 Differences

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9. 11 Differences

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10. 10 Differences

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11. 14 Differences

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12. 13 Differences

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13. 12 Differences

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14. 12 Differences

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 15. 10 Differences

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