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Newspaper review: Pensioners 'taking out home loans'

Papers

"A million to repay home loans after they retire" is the stark prediction in the Daily Telegraph.

As the financial crisis depletes savings and forces people to release the equity in their homes, the number of pensioners with a mortgage will rise to a million in five years, it says.

The Daily Mail says rickets - the childhood disease caused by vitamin D deficiency - is making a resurgence.

It says more middle-class children are suffering because modern lifestyles mean they are not spending enough time outside.

The man who carried out the research, Professor Nicholas Clarke, tells the Telegraph he is seeing cases "reminiscent of 17th Century England".

The government is said to be turning to an unusual source to try to make the nation healthier - employing fast food and drinks firms to help devise its public health policies.

According to the Guardian, Mars, PepsiCo and Diageo are working alongside ministers and the NHS to find ways to deal with obesity, alcohol misuse and diet-related disease.

Top grade

The Guardian says leaked Lib Dem documents show the party planned to abandon its pledge to abolish tuition fees within six years of government before the election.

As early as March, the paper states, senior Lib Dems were considering the prospect of a coalition government and finding areas for consensus with Labour or the Conservatives.

The Treasury Secretary Danny Alexander is said to have written: "On tuition fees we should seek agreement on part-time students and leave the rest. Let us not cause ourselves more headaches."

According to the Times, many A-level students who fear the prospect of tuition fees may find it was not worth worrying because they may not get a university place unless they have at least one A* grade.

The paper says the number of higher education institutions demanding the top grade has trebled in the past year, with 15 of the leading colleges making the requirement part of their standard offer.

Royal fun

The Independent reports on what it claims is the government's abandonment of Labour initiatives to protect animal welfare.

It says ministers have dropped prosecutions against four abattoir workers accused of cruelty, allowed farmers to cull badgers to stop the spread of TB and failed to ban the caging of game birds.

Agriculture Minister James Paice has defended the decisions, insisting they were based on "robust scientific evidence" and the opinions of expert groups.

The Telegraph says councils have been sent an edict from on high warning them not to "squeeze the fun" out of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations in 2012 by imposing health and safety restrictions.

It says Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has written to every local authority to say the "excitement... must not be dampened or extinguished because of red tape or bureaucracy".

"We British are not accustomed to taking out insurance before lunching with our neighbours," says the paper.

Inspirational run

But amid all the doom and gloom there is an inspirational story in the Sun.

Mark Ormrod has run across the United States despite losing both legs and an arm while serving with the Royal Marines in Afghanistan.

He completed his 3,500-mile journey across 16 states in eight weeks, running on prosthetic limbs.

After arriving in Santa Monica, California, the 27-year-old from Plymouth said he felt he had "achieved the impossible".

The Mirror focuses on the story of the Chinese vase sold at auction in Surrey for a whopping £43m.

The paper says the vase had been sitting on a shelf in a house in Pinner, Middlesex, and had been insured for only £800, but it turned out to be a highly sought-after Qianlong period pot.

Auctioneer Peter Bainbridge said: "I hit the gavel down so hard it broke. At least I can afford to repair it now."

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