Thursday morning UK news briefing: Today’s top headlines from The Telegraph

Welcome to your early morning news briefing from The Telegraph – a round-up of the top stories we are covering today. To receive twice-daily briefings by email, sign up to our Front Page newsletter for free.

1. Water plant that could prevent hosepipe ban ‘secretly mothballed’

A £250 million water plant built to protect hundreds of thousands of households from the effects of drought has been switched off, The Telegraph has learnt.

As hosepipe bans were imposed on a million more people across the south of England, Thames Water admitted that a major water desalination plant opened by the Duke of Edinburgh in 2010 will not work until next year at the earliest. Read the full story.

2. Cameras catching congestion zone flouters may be illegal

Using spy cameras to catch motorists with polluting cars may be illegal, the surveillance commissioner has ruled.

Professor Fraser Sampson, the commissioner, said the use of Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras to identify motorists breaching low emission zones was of “questionable legality” and there was “limited evidence it would benefit society”. Read the full story.

3. Suella Braverman declares war on ‘woke witch trials’

Suella Braverman revealed that her officials took part in almost 2,000 hours of diversity training as she declared a war on “woke witch trials”.

The Attorney General announced she had scrapped the training schemes in her department, claiming they were “downright dangerous” in the wake of high-profile court cases centred on transgender and equality issues. Read the full story.

4. Bank of England to admit that high inflation will last far longer than hoped

The Bank of England will on Thursday be forced to admit that inflation will remain high for far longer than previously predicted as it increases interest rates for the sixth time in a row.

Andrew Bailey, the Governor, is expected to unveil forecasts showing inflation will still be significantly above 10pc in 2023 as Britain battles soaring energy bills sparked by the war in Ukraine. Read the full story.

5. Rishi Sunak accused of ‘policy flip-flop’ after U-turn on onshore wind

Rishi Sunak has been accused of a major U-turn on onshore wind after announcing he would scrap a ban on new turbines.

The former chancellor said on Wednesday night he supported building new wind farms if they had the consent of local communities, and suggested residents could be financially incentivised to support them. Read the full story.

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