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Summary

  1. Updates from across the West of England on Monday, 3 October 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Calm and settled for the rest of the week

Watch: Ian Fergusson with the West country forecast

That's it from Local Live for tonight, as we leave you here's a look at the week's weather prospects.

Have a good evening - we're back at 7am tomorrow morning with more news, sport, travel and weather.

Ben Smith: 399 marathons down, two more to go

Watch: Ben Smith is near to the end of his 401 marathon challenge

Karen Edwards' husband 'worried' she might take her life

Watch: Becky Godden's mother Karen Edwards explain how she felt when she was told of her daughter's murder

The mother of Becky Godden said her husband was concerned she might take her life when she was told of her daughter's murder.

Karen Edwards said she "just wanted to be with Becky". 

Christopher Halliwell was jailed last month for the 2003 murder of Becky Godden, having already been convicted of killing Sian O'Callaghan in 2011. 

Watch the full interview with Karen Edwards on the iPlayer here.

Terminally ill Mike Brandon 'cancer free' after US treatment

A man with terminal leukaemia whose wife's online plea to fund his treatment in America went viral appears to be beating the disease.

Mike Brandon, 32, from Bristol, underwent treatment in Philadelphia after UK doctors were unable to help .

His wife Kate said his biopsy results were clear for the second time and doctors said they were delighted with his progress.

The couple have launched a campaign to help patients in a similar position.

Kate and Mike Brandon
Kate and Mike Brandon

Calne gas leak: Homes given alternative sources of gas

Wiltshire police chief hits back over Halliwell case criticism

A police boss has defended his force after it took "unfair criticism" over an inquiry into a woman's murder.

Wiltshire Chief Constable Mike Veale said he wanted "to put the record straight" on the case of Christopher Halliwell who was given a rare whole life sentence for killing Becky Godden.

Mr Veale said the criticism was based on "misunderstanding, misleading information and factual inaccuracies".

In his latest blog, Mr Veale "thought long and hard" before he responded.

Chief Constable Mike Veale
BBC
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Jail for burglar who targeted disabled pensioner's home

Shane Egan
Avon and Somerset Police

A man who burgled the home of an elderly woman with disabilities has been jailed for just over a year.

Shane Egan, who's 27 of St Luke’s Crescent in Bristol, was seen on CCTV going in and coming out of the pensioner's home last Tuesday. He only got away with a briefcase full of knitting patterns.

Egan pleaded guilty to one count of burglary and one count of theft, after also stealing a colleague's phone.

Magistrates in Bristol sent Egan to prison for a total of 63 weeks.

Watch: Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival Concerts 2016

BBC Somerset were given special permission to film the dress rehearsal.  

More than 600 performers will take part in the four hour show which is being held for 12 nights at the Town Hall.  

Watch: Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival Concerts dress rehearsal

Bristol students help to keep the homeless warm this winter

Students from Bristol have started a new knitting group to help keep the city's homeless people warm. 

The Bristol Knititiative gets together once a month to knit blankets, hats and scarves for those sleeping rough. 

Helena Raymond-Hayling is one of the organisers of the group. She told the BBC it's a student-led group but is open to all. 

Listen: Helena Raymond-Hayling says the Bristol Knititiative gives students a safe place to meet

Gloucestershire cricketer to play T20 in Bangladesh

Gloucestershire all-rounder Benny Howell is to spend part of the winter playing T20 cricket in the Bangladesh Premier League. 

It comes after Howell was named Gloucestershire's bowler of the year.

He finished as country's top wicket taker in this summer's T20 tournament. 

Listen: BBC Radio Gloucestershire's Ian Randall with details of Howell's call-up to the Bangladesh Premier League

First black dormouse discovered in UK

Black dormouse
Blackdown Hills Area of Outstanding Beauty

A black dormouse is discovered in the UK for the first time.

The mammal, previously only seen in small numbers in northern Germany, was found in the Blackdown Hills on the border of Devon and Somerset.

Britain has only one native species of dormouse - which has hazel fur. The black colour is thought to be caused by a recessive gene.

View more on twitter

Fire victim 'failed by agencies'

A vulnerable man who had a history of hoarding and lighting fires died after being failed by mental health services, an inquest has heard. 

Bob Crane, 61, who had bipolar disorder, suffered fatal smoke inhalation at his Bristol flat. 

One of Mr Crane's friends, Noel Kelly, who gave evidence today, believes the severity of his bipolar disorder should have rung alarm bells. 

Watch: Noel Kelly talks about how fire victim Bob Crane should have been given more help by the authorities

After Mr Crane's death in 2014, Bristol Safeguarding Adults Board (BSAB) launched a serious case review.

Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership said it was cooperating with the inquest. 

Bob Crane
Crane Family

Karen Edwards: Steve Fulcher 'a genuine man'

Watch: Becky Godden's mother Karen says Steve Fulcher didn't have to personally let her know her daughter's body had been found

Becky Godden's mother described the former police detective who caught her daughter's killer as "a genuine man".

Karen Edwards said Steve Fulcher, who failed to follow the proper procedures when arresting murderer Christopher Halliwell "does not deserve to be treated the way he has". 

Christopher Halliwell was jailed last month for the 2003 murder of Becky Godden, having already been convicted of killing Sian O'Callaghan in 2011. 

Watch the full interview with Karen Edwards on Inside Out on BBC One West tonight at 8pm.

Number of children with type 2 diabetes doubles

An investigation by the BBC's Panorama, being shown tonight, has found a sharp rise in the condition among under 16s since 2005. 

Type 2 diabetes can lead to serious long-term health problems, including blindness, kidney failure and heart disease.

Professor Julian Hamilton-Shield of Bristol Royal Hospital for Children led the study. He told the BBC poor diet is largely to blame.

Listen: Professor Julian Hamilton-Shield of Bristol Royal Hospital for Children who led the research

Campaign to stop hospital staff being verbally abused

Staff at the Great Western Hospital in Swindon say being verbally abused by patients has become the norm.

Doctors and nurses have now launched a campaign, called Never OK, to try and reverse the trend. 

Clinical Matron Annette Baskerville says it's a big problem.

Listen: Clinical Matron Annette Baskerville explains some of the cases that have led to the campaign

Stolen car smashes into 14th Century bridge

Bradford-on-Avon bridge, Wiltshire
BBC

The 14th Century bridge in Bradford-on-Avon has suffered extensive damage after a car crashed into it in the early hours of this morning.

Police were called to the bridge at about 2am and found a black Mercedes car which had been abandoned after smashing into the bridge wall.

Wiltshire Police said further checks on the car showed it had been stolen from Leigh Park Road sometime overnight.

Bradford-on-Avon bridge, Wiltshire
BBC

New rubbish permits for Somerset recycling centres

Permit
Somerset Waste Partnership

New measures are being introduced at Somerset's recycling centres to try and cut queues and reduce delays.

From today anyone wanting to dispose of waste using a larger vehicle, such as a van, trailer or pick-up, will have to apply for a permit in advance. 

The new system is designed to cut down on waiting times at recycling centres caused by large vehicles with huge amounts of waste. 

Somerset Waste Partnership says a lot of the problem is out-of-county visitors trying to avoid paying commercial disposal rates.

More than 600 homes without gas in Wiltshire

More than 600 homes in the Calne and Melksham area will be without gas following a mains gas leak.

Wales and West Utilities said it was repairing a damaged pipe which was a "complex job" and it didn't know how long it would take.

"We have had to turn part of the gas network off. We now need to visit every home affected to safely turn their gas supply off," a spokesman said.

“Our engineers are going door to door, and we are asking people to please give them access to their gas meters. All our engineers will be carrying identification."

View more on twitter

Murder inquiry in Cheltenham after stabbed teenager dies

Shakespeare Road, Cheltenham
BBC

Gloucestershire Police have launched a murder investigation into the death of a teenager who died after being stabbed in the stomach. 

The 17-year-old boy was attacked at a property on Shakespeare Road in Cheltenham at about 8.20pm on Sunday.

He was taken to Gloucestershire Royal Hospital in a critical condition but died this morning.

Police said they were working on a "number of active inquiries" to trace the offender, who was "believed to be a man".

Det Insp Ruth Mather said: "We understand the concern this prompts in the local community but at the moment it is too early to provide any answers about the circumstances as we are still following up a number of inquiries."

Steve Fulcher: 'I did the right thing - I am not a maverick cop'

Watch: "I did the right thing," says Steve Fulcher

Steve Fulcher says he has been portrayed as a "maverick cop" who "got a good result by doing a bad thing". But he insists that was not the case.He is calling for a public inquiry into the investigation over the murder of Becky Godden.  

In response to Mr Fulcher’s claims, Wilshire Police says the former detective was "found guilty of two counts of gross misconduct and received two final written warnings, but remained a member of Wiltshire Police. He later resigned".

Tonight BBC Inside Out West speaks to him about the criticism of his handling of the case and his claims that there is a risk to public safety.

Watch: Champion bodybuilder from Bristol to defend his title

Watch: Romane is from Fishponds and is defending his bodybuilding championship title

BreakingTeenager dies in Cheltenham stabbing

A 17-year-old boy who was stabbed in the stomach in Cheltenham last night has died in hospital, police have confirmed. The attack happened at an address on Shakespeare Road at around 8.20pm.

Coach firm boss owes £130,000 to clients

Rikki Powell
BBC

A former coach firm boss owes nearly £130,000 to customers and contractors, the BBC's Inside Out programme has found out,

Rikki Lee Powell, from Salisbury, has 59 unpaid county court judgements against him and his companies since 2010.

Some of his clients who were left by the side of the road include a bride on her wedding day and a group of stage school children taking a trip to the West End.

Mr Powell, 30, did not respond to questions from the BBC about the unpaid debts.

Tempo Coaches Ltd
BBC

Gloucester City's new Norwegian supporters club

Gloucester City
Getty Images
Joe Hanks celebrates his sides first goal during FA Cup Qualifying Third Round match between Gloucester City and Hemel Hempstead Town on Sunday

A group of football fans have set up their own Gloucester City Supporters Club - in Norway.

It was started after a group of Norwegian friends discovered the non-league team on a computer game. 

It inspired them to follow the club's fixtures and progress in real life. 

Jonas Solbakken says they really want to head over to England in January or February and actually watch a game.

Mains gas line ruptures 'under moving car' in Wiltshire

View more on twitter

A mains gas line has "exploded underneath" a passing car in Calne, according to police.Officers were called to Mile Elm at about 10pm last night where they confirmed there had been a "major leak".

"Thankfully no one was injured as a result of the explosion," Calne Police said.

The A3102 at Mile Elm is temporarily closed while gas engineers work on the line.

Manslaughter arrest after Soundwell house death

Jon Richardson
Avon and Somerset Police
The body of Jon Richardson was found at a property in Soundwell Road, in Bristol on Tuesday 19 July.

A man, 43, has been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter after a 44-year-old man was found dead at a house in Southwell, Bristol.

The body of Jon Richardson was found at a property in Soundwell Road on Tuesday 19 July.

Avon and Somerset Police said a forensic post-mortem examination had "identified injuries" on Mr Richardson which "warranted further investigation" and his death was "being treated as suspicious".

Severe disruption: A3102 Wiltshire both ways

BBC Travel

A3102 Wiltshire both ways severe disruption, between A4 New Road King George and A342 Devizes Road.

A3102 Wiltshire - A3102 in Calne closed and slow traffic in both directions between King George and the A342 Devizes Road junction, because of a gas leak. Diversion in operation.

Check local traffic and travel reports for:

Road re-opens after fatal crash investigation

Scene of collision
BBC

The road where a man died after being hit by a van near Gloucester, this morning, has now re-opened.

The crash happened at the junction of Henley Bank Lane and Shurdington Road at around 7:40am.

Huge blaze at caravan dealership - investigation ongoing

Around 160 caravans were destroyed or damaged in the fire

About 160 caravans went up in flames at a caravan dealership in Somerset over the weekend.

The blaze began early on Saturday morning at Highbridge Caravans and caused more than £1m worth of damage.

Police said an investigation into how the fire had started was ongoing.

Detective to climb Mount Kilimanjaro for charity

Watch: Take a look at the challenge facing Leanne

A senior detective is off to Africa to climb its highest mountain to raise money for a Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) rescue centre. 

Leanne Pook, who leads Avon and Somerset Police on FGM issues, will be staging a sponsored climb of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. 

She'll also be volunteering at an FGM rescue centre run by the Divinity Foundation in Kenya and visiting communities where FGM is still practised.

Children at The Divinity Foundation’s rescue centre making signs to support the fundraisers
Avon and Somerset Police

Cake smash! The new first birthday trend

Watch: A cake-smashing photo trend

Planting a baby in front of a cake on their first birthday and photographing the demolition is getting more and more popular, according to a Wiltshire photographer.

Kate Jones, who runs a photography studio in Melksham, says it's an idea that has come from America.

She says "cake smashing" is catching on and she has been inundated with requests from parents.

Steve Fulcher: 'I'm calling for an immediate inquiry'

More from ex-detective Steve Fulcher who arrested double murderer Christopher Halliwell before his recent conviction for the murder of Becky Godden.

Mr Fulcher - who resigned from Wiltshire Police after being found guilty of gross misconduct in 2014 - has called for an immediate inquiry into the "working practices" of the force during the whole investigation.

He said: "The issues in this case are so important they are a matter of public safety and public interest and through my MP - I shall be asking for early intervention at the highest levels of government."

See the whole interview on BBC Inside Out West tonight on BBC One at 7.30pm.

Watch: A clip from BBC Inside Out West's interview with Steve Fulcher

In response to Mr Fulcher’s claims, Wilshire Police says its "relentless investigation led to the conviction of Halliwell" for the murder of Becky Godden.

It said there had been a "huge responsibility to ensure the case wasn't thrown out due to the apparent previous breaches of legislation" and it had "built an entirely new case for the Becky Godden prosecution".  

"This was conducted diligently and was unprecedented in size and complexity," a spokesman said.

BreakingPedestrian dies in Gloucester van crash

A man has died after being hit by a van in Gloucester.

It happened on the A46 at about 7:40am on the Henley Bank Lane and Shurdington Road junction in Brockworth.

The pedestrian was taken to hospital where he later died.

Severe accident: A46 Gloucestershire both ways

BBC Travel

A46 Gloucestershire both ways severe accident, between Ermin Street and A417.

A46 Gloucestershire - A46 Shurdington Road in Brockworth closed in both directions between the Ermin Street junction and the A417 junction, because of a serious accident involving van and pedestrian.

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Teen stabbing in Cheltenham

Police car in Cheltenham
BBC

A 17-year-old man is in a critical condition in hospital after being stabbed in the stomach in Cheltenham yesterday.

Gloucestershire Police said the attack happened on Shakespeare Road at about 8.20pm.

A force spokesman said the teenager was taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries and is still "in a critical condition this morning".

Anyone with information has been asked to call police.

Marathon man's 399th race

A runner from Portishead, who's trying to complete 401 marathons in 401 days for charity, is on number 399 in Bristol today. 

Ben Smith has covered more than 10,000 miles around the UK and has visited 101 schools along the way.

Ben Smith
BBC

So far, he's got through 22 pairs of trainers. 

He's raising money for anti-bullying and equality causes.

Becky Godden murder: Former detective calls for public inquiry

A former Wiltshire Police detective is calling for a public inquiry into the investigation which followed the murder of Becky Godden

Steve Fulcher led the investigation into Sian O'Callaghan's death in 2011, but broke police guidelines to secure Christopher Halliwell's confession of Becky's murder. He resigned in 2014 after being found guilty of misconduct.

Tonight, BBC Inside Out West speaks to him about the criticism of his handling of the case and his claims that there is a risk to public safety...

Watch: Steve Fulcher speaks about the reason he left Wiltshire Police

In response, Wiltshire Police said they carried out a relentless investigation and have always had an open mind as to whether Halliwell has other victims - however there is no evidence to directly to link him to other offences.

They add there was a huge responsibility to ensure the case wasn’t thrown out due to the apparent previous breaches of legislation and built an entirely new case for the Becky Godden prosecution.  This was conducted diligently and was unprecedented in size and complexity.

£250k 'touring corridor'

Stonehenge, Wiltshire
BBC

Plans are underway to encourage tourists out of London and into the west. 

Visit Wiltshire has been given £250,000 to create a long-distance touring corridor between London and Bristol - to promote interesting places to visit, stay and eat.

'The Great West Way' will also take in Stonehenge, Bath and the Cotswolds.

It's hoped the route will grow the visitor economy and create a world class tourism experience. 

Hundreds of caravans destroyed in fire

Highbridge Caravans
BBC

A clean-up operation is under way after a huge fire at a caravan dealership in Somerset over the weekend.

The blaze started in the early hours of Saturday morning at Highbridge Caravans - causing more than £1m worth of damage. 

No-one was hurt, but at one point more than 60 firefighters were on site, battling the flames in 160 or more caravans.

Highbridge Caravans fire
BBC

Severe accident: A37 Bristol northbound

BBC Travel

A37 Bristol northbound severe accident, at A4 Bath Road affecting B3122 Redcatch Road.

A37 Bristol - A37 Wells Road in Totterdown blocked and very slow traffic inbound at Three Lamps Junction, because of an accident. Congestion to the B3122 Redcatch Road junction.

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