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Summary

  1. Thousands apply for Chocolate tasting job in Reading
  2. £3m Reading Abbey restoration starts today
  3. Reading bin collections change today
  4. Arrest after suspected ram raid
  5. Sport: Reading drop to fourth after draw

Live Reporting

By Toby Wadey, John Hudson and Sarah Lee

All times stated are UK

That's all for today!

Sarah Lee

BBC South

That's Monday done and dusted for us here at BBC Berkshire. 

Don't forget to join us tomorrow from 08:00 for all the latest news, travel and weather.

See you then!

Rohan Ince

Doorman Gregor Jurcic suffered a "nasty" head injury and was left with scarring in the Christmas Day attack.

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Man last seen in Reading missing

Sarah Lee

BBC South

Police are appealing for the public's help in tracing a man from High Wycombe.

Thomas Birks, aged 27, was last seen in the Tilehurst area of Reading on Saturday 4 February at about 5pm.

Officers believe he may have travelled to the High Wycombe area.

Thomas is white, 5ft 10ins, slim, with brown hair and blue eyes.

Thomas Birks
TVP

Life in a Victorian classroom...

Earlier BBC Radio Berkshire's Bill Buckley went back in time to experience life at school over 100 years ago. He was joined by Victorian teacher Phillip Hammond, better known as Richard Ousley from Reading Museum.

Over half term they're giving you the chance to enjoy a 45 minute lesson in the Victorian style, learning the three Rs; Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic. 

Footballer on trial for doorman assault

Sarah Lee

BBC South

Footballer Rohan Ince has gone on trial accused of assaulting a doorman with a glass bottle on Christmas Day. 

The 24-year-old, of Ashford, Middlesex, is charged after an assault outside Atik night club in Windsor on 25 December, 2015. 

Reading Crown Court heard there was no dispute that doorman Gregor Juric suffered a head injury after being hit. 

A jury was told that the Swindon Town midfielder denied being the person that caused that injury.

Rohan
Rex Features

Royal Berkshire Hospital 'quoted £855 for blackout blind'

Toby Wadey

BBC South

A senior doctor has spoken out after his hospital was quoted £855.80 for a blackout blind by its official NHS contractor.

Dr Christopher Davies, who works for the the Royal Berkshire Hospital, said a matron later purchased the item for £22.95 from Homebase instead.

Dr Davies, a respiratory consultant, said it was then fitted for free by in-house staff.

Royal Berkshire Hospital
Andrew Smith

A hospital spokesperson said the quote was reviewed and "firmly rejected".

Dr Davies said the blackout blind "must have been gold plated" to warrant such a price, the Mail on Sunday reported.

Heathrow - One not to miss

Patrick O'Hagan

BBC Berkshire political reporter

If you live in Bracknell and are worried what a bigger, expanded Heathrow will mean for you, then put this one in your diary. 

This Thursday the Department for Transport will be holding a public exhibition in Winkfield Row so people can find out more about proposals to open a third runway at the airport. 

The public consultation exercise closes in May and the Government's expected to ask Parliament to vote on its third runway proposals later this year. 

The DfT are holding further exhibitions in Slough, Windsor and Maidenhead between now and the 2nd of March. 

Oh yes, and if you want to go to the Bracknell one this Thursday, you need to be free between 11 am and 8 pm. Location: Winkfield Row's Carnation Hall.

There's something funny going on here...

Wanted...new Chief Executive at up to £140,000 a year

Patrick O'Hagan

BBC Berkshire political reporter

Reading Borough Council has started its search for a new managing director to replace Simon Warren who's been doing the job on an interim basis since last spring. A job ad placed in The Guardian newspaper by the council says:

"Our new Chief Executive will play a vital leadership role in our organisation, leading by example and encouraging people to set their own ideas, ambitions and expectations higher than ever before."

What the advert neglects to mention is that Reading Council along with many others in the region faces huge budget cuts in the coming years. Reading's got to find £44 million of savings by 2020 and warns that it'll need to make further cuts after that as well. 

The new Chief Executive will be paid up to £140,000. People may not like it but that's the going rate for the job.      

Reading Abbey ruins

The conservation project at 900-year-old Reading Abbey is expected to take two years to complete.

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"I see the Thames as an obvious linking theme"

Have you ever been to the the River & Rowing Museum in Henley on Thames?

David Worthington has been appointed as the new chairman of the attraction, having previously held a similar position at the Transport Museum in London.

He told BBC Berkshire's Sarah Walker he has big plans for the future. 

Neighbourhood policing in Slough 'an example for others'

A five-year study by the Police Foundation praised social cohesion and effective policing.
Slough is a 'an example for others' when it comes to neighbourhood policing, a five-year study by the Police Foundation has found.

Zafar Ali, is a local Muslim community leader and former Police officer:

"The police have changed massively since I was a police officer, there's much more community engagement, consultation, engaging with individual groups to identify potential areas of problems.

"It has worked remarkably well. All community groups in Slough work positively with the police.

"They work alongside them and often they're critical friends, and I think they welcome that."

Trains back to normal

Uber driver hit with £860 bill

Toby Wadey

BBC South

An Uber taxi driver has been ordered to pay £860 in fines and costs after illegally plying for hire in Reading.

Aldin Stefanov is licensed to pick up customers in London, but was caught out by council officers carrying out a test purchase during last year's Reading Festival. 

The 46-year-old pleaded guilty to the offence on 3 February and fined £250. He was also ordered to pay costs of £400 and a victim surcharge of £30.

Uber app
Getty Images

Councillor Paul Gittings, the borough's lead member for consumer services, said: “Reading’s Licensing Committee took the decision to reject Uber’s application for a private hire operating licence in March 2016.

"It is unfortunate that some drivers continue to flout this decision. 

"Hopefully this prosecution sends out the message that Reading will not tolerate illegal taxi activity.”

UKIP MP declines to support bid to oust Speaker Bercow

UKIP's only MP Douglas Carswell has condemned recent alleged breaches of impartiality by House of Commons Speaker John Bercow as "student politics". 

Mr Bercow revealed to students at Reading University that he voted Remain in last year's referendum on European Union membership.

Douglas Carswell
PA

Mr Carswell has also savaged Mr Bercow's attempt to stop Mr Trump addressing Parliament as "an absurd overreach ... student politics" in a blog. 

But he cautioned Brexit-backing MPs against trying to unseat the Speaker, warning it could create "Commons chaos" and increase the chance of defeat in key forthcoming votes on EU withdrawal. 

The Clacton MP said: "Parliament has some big Brexit battles ahead. We need to win them. So Brexiteer MPs should base everything they do in the Commons on a simple litmus test: does it benefit Brexit, or not? 

"That's my perspective on the latest effort to unseat the Speaker - and why I won't support it."

Neighbourhood policing in Slough 'an example for others'

Slough is a shining beacon for others when it comes to social cohesion and effective policing, according to the Police Foundation.

Over five years, they compared policing in Slough and Luton - two demographically similar areas, with two very different approaches. 

BBC Radio Berkshire's Martin Stanford spoke to local Muslim community leader Zafar Ali.

WATCH: Chocolate job attracts thousands of applicants

A vacancy for a chocolate and cocoa beverage taster has attracted thousands of applications.

Confectionery company Mondelez, which owns brands including Cadbury and Oreo, started advertising the part-time role in Reading, Berkshire last week. 

We took the opportunity to visit the company to see what it takes to get the job. 

£3m Reading Abbey restoration starts today

Work on a £3m restoration of the 900-year-old Reading Abbey starts today. 

CRL Restoration were handed the keys to the historic site, which has been closed to the publlic since 2009, this morning. 

Reading Borough Council said it was now "another step closer" to its ambition of reopening the ruins by 2018.

View more on twitter

Reading boss reacts to 0-0 draw

BBC Sport

Following Reading's 0-0 draw with Barnsley at the weekend, Royals boss Jaap Stam told the BBC: "We had most of the ball and possession, but you should also look at the opposition and see what they're doing.

"Normally, this team (Barnsley) wants to play and wants to go forward playing football.

Jaap Stam
Getty Images

"But now they come here and they sit, they make it as small and as tight as they can, and just wait for that moment to go out on the break.

"That's the thing, most of the time when we play at home, that we need to deal with."

Bin collections change today

Man arrested after suspected ram raid

A man was arrested on Saturday after a car crashed into the front of a building society in the early hours of Saturday morning in a suspected ram raid.

Police said they were called at just before 05:00 GMT to Crowthorne's High Street after reports a Peugeot 306 crashed into branch of Nationwide.

The bank
Wes Day

They arrested a 26-year-old man from Wokingham on suspicion of burglary.

Nothing was stolen in the incident and the man was released on police bail until 8 March.

TRAVEL: Trains Reading to Oxford

Mandy O'Neale

BBC Berkshire travel presenter

Delays of up to 30 minutes and some cancellations on CrossCountry Northbound between Reading and Oxford due to signalling problem.  

View more on twitter

Slough murder investigation as man dies of stab wounds

A murder investigation was launched at the weekend after a man was found with fatal stab wounds in Slough.

A second man was taken to hospital with life-threatening stab wounds and police said they do not believe anyone else was involved.

He was found in Lower Cippenham Lane at 17:43 GMT on Friday.

Police then went to a property in Lewins Way where they found a 59-year-old man who was confirmed dead at the scene.

Weather latest: Sunny day ahead

Bee Tucker

BBC Weather

Most of us can look forward to a dry and bright day with highs of 10C. 

However, a strong breeze will make it feel a bit chillier. 

Speaker Bercow tells Reading students he voted Remain

BBC Politics

Commons Speaker John Bercow insists his impartiality has not been affected after he revealed he had voted Remain in the EU referendum during a talk at the University of Reading

A spokeswoman for the Speaker, expected to be politically neutral, said his vote against Brexit did not affect his ability to handle MPs' debates fairly.

Speaker John Bercow: I voted to remain in EU

Mr Bercow, who was a Conservative MP before becoming Speaker, is already facing calls for him to be replaced for voicing his opposition to US President Donald Trump addressing Parliament on his UK state visit.

Labour deputy leader Tom Watson called Mr Bercow "one of the great Speakers".

Reading drop to fourth after draw

BBC Sport

Reading's hopes of automatic promotion suffered a setback on Saturday as they were held at home by a determined Barnsley side.

Marc Roberts headed just wide for the visitors in a below-par first half, and Tom Bradshaw volleyed inches over shortly after the re-start.

The Royals responded as Yann Kermogant forced a good, low save from Adam Davies and Garath McCleary went close.

But it was Barnsley who came closest to a winner as forward Marley Watkins struck the base of the post.

Top of Championship
BBC Sport

Morning headlines: Murder investigation launched and bank ram-raided

Toby Wadey

BBC South

  • A murder investigation has been launched after a man was found with fatal stab wounds in Slough  
  • A man was arrested at the weekend after a bank ram-raid in Crowthorne
  • Slough is setting the standard of neighbourhood policing in the country, according to a five-year study by the Police Foundation
  • Reading's hopes of automatic promotion suffered a setback on Saturday after they were held to a draw by Barnsley

Good morning

Toby Wadey

BBC South

Good morning and welcome to the BBC's Local Live service for Berkshire. 

We will be bringing you all of the Royal County's latest news, travel, sport and weather until 18:00.

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