By BBC News

Staff

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The headline in the Mirror reads:

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A number of Friday’s papers lead with the news of the huge profits made this year by energy giants British Gas and Shell. The Daily Mirror reports that Centrica, which owns British Gas, has made £1.3bn in six months while Shell made £9.4bn in just three, figures labelled “truly obscene” by the paper at a time when households are “wondering how they will pay sky-high energy bills”.

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The energy profits are described as an “insult” to working people in the front page headline of the Guardian. The paper points out that the news comes just a day after it was reported that average annual energy bills could rise as high as £3,850 by the start of next year. The page also carries a picture of the huge mechanical bull that featured in Wednesday night’s opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, a tribute to the city’s industrial past.

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The Daily Star takes an even less sympathetic line on the energy firms’ profits. Centrica chief executive Chris O’Shea and and Shell counterpart Ben van Beurden are pictured on the front page above the headline: “Money-grabbing scumbags”.

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The Financial Times reports that Centrica has reinstated profits to its shareholders while also calling on the government to offer more support to households hit by soaring energy costs. Mr O’Shea is quoted acknowledging that it’s “difficult to see words like ‘dividend'” when people are suffering, but pointing out that the company has paid more than £600m in windfall tax.

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Ministers worry they can no longer have frank discussions about policy in case what they say is weaponised in the Tory leadership race, the i reports. The paper says the Cabinet Office is investigating multiple leaks from inside Whitehall that were intended to damage certain candidates who were jostling to become prime minister.

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The Daily Express reports that Rishi Sunak, one of the two candidates left in the race, has vowed to double the number of foreign criminals deported if he becomes prime minister.

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The Times leads with the news that an NHS clinic known for being the only one in the country providing gender identity services to children and young people is to close. The paper says the clinic, run by the Tavistock & Portman trust in London, has been criticised for “rushing teenagers into life-altering treatment”. It adds that the decision comes after a report found the clinic was not a “safe or viable long-term option”.

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The same story leads the Daily Mail, which reports that “struggling youngsters will now be sent to new regional centres and given better mental health support”. A front page editorial says: “In years to come, we will surely look back and wonder how this was ever allowed to happen.”

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The NHS could be banned from giving puberty blockers to children in future, the Daily Telegraph reports. Both Mr Sunak and Liz Truss have told the paper that if they become prime minister they would consider restricting the use of the drugs until a person has reached the age of 18.

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The Metro reports that texts shared by Metropolitan Police officers in a Whatsapp group with Wayne Couzens, the officer who confessed to the murder of Sarah Everard, have been revealed in court. The paper describes the messages, which appeared to make light of sexual and domestic violence, as “vile” and “sickening”.

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And The Sun claims that the judge in Rebekah Vardy’s libel case against Coleen Rooney has not given either woman advanced notice of the verdict, set to be announced later, “so no-one could be tempted to leak it”.