Five things you need to know in Yorkshire today

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Don’t have the time to read the news in the morning?

No worries, here’s an overview of the main headlines in Yorkshire today.

1. Studies show £1bn cuts far exceed devolution deal cash

The impact of public spending cuts in Yorkshire is laid bare in a new study today. The research from Sheffield and Middlesex Universities shows that cuts in welfare and council funding have cost the Sheffield City Region alone more than £1bn in income since 2010. Academics have pointed out that the loss is bigger than the £900m promised to the area over the next 30 years as part of the devolution deal struck with then chancellor George Osborne last year. But council leaders have criticised the researchers for connecting the issues, pointing out the Government’s spending cuts were going ahead regardless of whether the area agreed to a devolution deal or not.

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2. ‘Game-changing’ offshore wind farm hub hailed by town leaders

Plans to build a “game-changing” operations base in Grimsby to serve the nation’s growing list of offshore wind farms have been hailed as “fantastic news” by the town’s political and business leaders. The operations and maintenance hub at Grimsby’s Royal Dock will create 200 jobs and be the largest base of its kind in the UK, according to Danish firm DONG Energy, which is behind the £20m project. It will initially support and maintain the Westermost Rough Race Bank and Hornsea Project One offshore wind farms off the coast of Lincolnshire, but has capacity to serve DONG’s future developments. The hub, which will sit alongside the existing Westermost Rough operations and maintenance facility, will be served by high-tech vessels capable of accommodating up to 60 crew and technicians while remaining at sea for long periods.

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3. We cannot cope with visitors, taxi association warns

Taxi drivers in Hull have warned that they will not be able to cope with the deluge of visitors during next year’s City of Culture. The Taxi Drivers’ Association represents all of the city’s 900 drivers and says there is already a critical shortage of cabs caused by over-stringent council regulations. While there are more than 1,300 taxi drivers licensed in Hull, there are only 900 actively working as the remainder keep their licence while focusing on other jobs. An estimated one million visitors are expected to descend on the city over the course of the coming year.

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4. Bake-off team split as ‘Silver Fox’ heads for exit

Yesterday Mary Berry announced she will no longer be part of the baking contest when it moves from BBC to Channel 4. Her co-judge Paul Hollywood has decided to join the Great British Bake Off on Channel 4, despite reportedly being approached by the BBC about Top Gear. A BBC source revealed there were discussions with Hollywood about Top Gear, but not for a full presenting role. Hollywood is jumping ship to the rival channel even though Berry and presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins are staying with the BBC.

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5. Seven-year gap in first home-ownership age

First-time home owners in South Yorkshire are among the youngest in the UK according to new figures. Research by Halifax shows that the average age of those getting onto the property ladder is 30 but differences in house prices across the country means this age varies significantly depending on where buyers live. The average in the UK is 30, but in south Yorkshire it is 28, while in other parts of the UK it is as high as 34. People buying for the first time in some areas can expect to wait up to seven years longer than those in others, the bank said. According to the bank’s figures the average age of those moving onto the property ladder in Yorkshire and the Humber is 29.

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