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  1. News, sport, weather and travel updates from across the West of England on Monday

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Goodnight from us

It's time for us to say goodnight as we leave you with Ian Fergusson who has the weather forecast for the West Country.

Thanks for joining us today.  

We'll be back from 7am tomorrow morning.


Watch: Ian Fergusson has the latest weather forecast

'No decision yet' on future of Stroud Sub Rooms

Watch: Joanne Jordan from the council says no decision on its future has been made yet

A number of groups have come forward to take over the famous Subscription Rooms in Stroud. 

The district council can no longer afford to run the venue after cuts in its budget.

Campaigners hope it can be saved for the future as selling the venue is one option being considered.

Vet sends out warning to dog owners after dog gets bitten by snake

Molly was walking on the Mendips when it's thought she was bitten by an adder

Molly the retriever was bitten while she was on a walk on the Mendips.

Her vet is now urging dog owners to be hypervigilant when walking near thick undergrowth, bushes and where adders have been reported before.

Luckily Molly was treated with anti-venom and is now back to her happy self.

Stroud courthouse secured by PCC


The future of Stroud's old courthouse has been secured after Gloucestershire's Police and Crime Commissioner signed a deal to acquire the building.

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has surrendered its lease of the Magistrate's building, next door to the police station, after months of negotiations. 

The move is part of Martin Surl's intention to modernise the police estate and ensure that police buildings meet the needs of the community.

He described it as "a landmark building" and said a consultation on possible future is use to be held in the coming months.

Changes on the way at Bath Spa railway station

Dave Harvey looks at what is happening in Bath ahead of the introduction of new trains on the Great Western line.

Dave Harvey looks at what is going to happen to make way for new trains at the station.

Metro mayor role not expensive for what we're getting says chancellor

As the West metro mayor role is up for grabs some voters have been raising concerns over the cost of paying for another mayor.

Over the next 30 years, it could cost around £900m for running the combined authority.

However, Philip Hammond allays financial concerns as he says we'll be getting good value from the new role.

Watch: Philip Hammond on costing up the Metro Mayor over thirty years

M32 overnight closure southbound between J2 and J3

West Metro Mayor: How important is the role? Philip Hammond shares his view

Chancellor Philip Hammond has been in Bristol today, throwing his weight behind the upcoming Metro Mayor elections.

Almost a million people will get the chance to vote for the new Mayor for the West of England next month - but the signs are that many voters think the job is a waste of money. 

Mr Hammond talks about how important he sees the role to be.

Watch: Philip Hammond talks about the importance of the Metro Mayor role

'Traffic wardens' in Weston-Super-Mare: 'Fair cop' to ticket one of thier own

Watch: What happens when council 'traffic wardens' find one of their own vehicles illegally parked?

Rugby: Deals for seven Bristol academy players

Ashton Gate
Rex Features

Premiership club Bristol have given professional contracts to seven academy players ahead of the 2017-18 season.

Prop Tom Rowland, England Under-18 back Iwan Hughes, lock James Dun and centre Matt Welsh have all signed on.

Joining them are Wales Under-18 hooker Nick Freeman, back row Dan Thurston an versatile wing Tom Hargan.

"This is one of the strongest age groups to have come through the academy set-up for a long time," academy boss Mike Hall told the  club website.

North Somerset 'traffic wardens' cracking down on illegal parking; what you need to know

We've been talking today about how parking warden have been handing out tickets in North Somerset as part of a crackdown.

BBC reporter Dickon Hooper explains more about why they are doing it.

Watch: Why they're cracking down on parking in Weston-Super-Mare

'Brushes are not just a mundane thing'

Watch: "Brushes are not just a mundane thing," says Phillip Coward from Hillbrush

We have many museums across the West country celebrating art, literature and local tradition. 

But today, a new one opens in Wiltshire devoted to brushes. 

It's part of the Hillbrush factory site in Mere and shows the materials from all over the world which are imported and made into everything from hair brushes to brooms. 

Time running out to register for a vote in Metro Mayor elections

Polling station
Getty Images

Time is running out for anyone who has not yet registered to vote in the Metro Mayor elections this May, the Electoral Commission is warning.

On Thursday 4 May, voters in Bristol, Bath and North East Somerset and South Gloucestershire will be voting for their new Combined Authority Mayor. 

To take part in the polls, voters must be registered by midnight on Thursday 13 April. 

Anyone not already registered to vote at their current address can register online at

It’s important that anyone who is eligible to vote has the opportunity to participate in elections which will have a direct effect on local issues. Registering to vote is easy to do online and only takes a few minutes.

Emma Hartley Head of Campaigns at the Electoral Commission

Mixed responses from residents as traffic wardens clamp down on parking

As traffic wardens clamp down on parking in North Somerset, they've had a mixed response from residents.

Weston-Super-Mare resident, Sue, who lives and works on a street that's being targeted is unimpressed with the new measure.

Watch: Weston-Super-Mare resident is unhappy with the parking enforcements

Triumphant Bethan finishes the Brighton marathon unaided

Triumphant Bethan finishes the Brighton marathon unaided

Being part of a marathon has long been the dream of Bethan Griffiths, who has cerebral palsy.

The 22-year-old from from Stourbridge took part in the Brighton Marathon with the help of Becky Amor and Andy Woolway, from the National Star College in Gloucestershire.

They pushed her in an all-terrain wheelchair for 25 miles but she was determined to cross the finish line unaided.

Bethan wanted to take part in the race in memory of her mother, Amanda, who died of motor neurone disease last year. 

ATM gang that 'blew up' cash machines is convicted

Police renew appeal to find two potential witnesses following sexual assault in Bath

A renewed appeal has been made to find two people who supported a woman following a sexual assault to come forward.

The attack happened on Victoria Bridge Road in Bath between 4.15am and 5am last Friday. 

A 30-year-old man who was arrested in connection with the incident has been released under investigation.

I'd like to reiterate how rare attacks of this kind are in Bath and reassure people we're carrying out a full and thorough investigation.

Detective Inspector Dominic Graham Avon and Somerset Police
Police cars at night
Avon and Somerset Police
Police are investigating a sexual assault that happened last Friday in Bath

Broken down train causes delays on line

A broken-down train is causing delays of up to 30 minutes between Reading and Westbury.

View more on twitter

Airlander 10 over Glastonbury would be 'fun'

Airlander 10

Seeing Airlander 10 over the Glastonbury Festival would be "fun", according to Stephen McGlennan, chief of Hybrid Air Vehicles which has made it.

"You can imagine it popping out over the top of a hill. It would be quite exciting," he added.

The aircraft uses helium to become airborne.

It is 302ft (92m) long, 143ft (44m) wide, 85ft (26m) high and can travel at 92mph.

What we're trying to do is take the aircraft from a very simple flight to one where it's flying as fast as it's designed to fly, as high as it's designed to fly, in a range of different weather conditions, doing some different jobs, beginning to prove what the aircraft can do. By the time we get a few months down the track we'll be looking for really big events to fly by, whether that's sporting events, football, festivals, to let people see the aircraft, get them used to it, show people what it's about.

Stephen McGlennan Chief executive, Hybrid Air Vehicles

'We're improving the environment within the station' - Network Rail

Watch; Network Rail engineer Julian Mason says work will improve the station while respecting its heritage

Work to modernise Bath Spa railway station is now in full swing and trains are still running as normal, albeit from just one platform. 

Travellers are being warned though to expect disruption at the weekend over Easter, when replacement buses will be running so work at the station can be carried out.

Glasto visit on the cards for the world's largest aircraft?

The Airlander 10
Hybrid Air Vehicles/PA
An artists' impression of how the appearance could look

Might the world's largest aircraft be seen over Glastonbury this summer?

The Airlander 10's manufacturer has said yes, it may conduct a flypast as part of a series of public outings.

The part-plane, part-airship, is the length of a football pitch and is resuming test flights this week after crashing last year.

Around 20 to 30 flights are expected this summer, and one of them could be an appearance at the Glastonbury Festival.

Yogscast boss tells YouTubers 'Do it for love'

Watch: CEO Secrets: Advice to young YouTubers - 'Do it for love'

Mark Turpin, chief executive of Bristol-based Yogscast - which streams video gaming to 23 million subscribers globally - gives newbie YouTubers tips on building their brand.

Above all, he says, don't do it for fame or money - do it for love, and you never know, you might one day get the fame and money as well.

Video journalists: Greg Brosnan and Pamela Parkes

Headlines from papers across the West

Witnesses sought after fatal car crash

Police road sign

A passenger travelling in a car died when it crashed near Bristol on Saturday.

The incident involved a Mitsubishi car and happened on the B4058 Bristol Road at Frampton Cotterell shortly after 9am.

The car lost control on a bend and hit trees and a telegraph pole. 

A rear seat passenger in the car sustained serious injuries and died at the scene shortly afterwards.

Avon and Somerset Police is appealing for witnesses to contact the force. 

Glastonbury ticket resale details announced

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Festival-goers keen to be in on the action at Worthy Farm in June will get another chance for tickets next week.

Glastonbury Festival organisers have announced the dates and details of their ticket resale.

Sun beams through Box Tunnel on Brunel's birthday

Light shines through the tunnel on Brunel's birthday

Yesterday would have been Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s 211th birthday.

As the sun rose, staff from GWR gathered to test the theory he aligned Box Tunnel so the rising sun would shine directly through on his birthday. 

But while the team didn’t see the light shine through the full 1.83 miles of the tunnel, they did get some beautiful pictures of the sunrise on one of the sunniest days so far this year. 

Light shines through the tunnel on Brunel's birthday

Severe accident: A356 Somerset both ways

BBC News Travel

A356 Somerset both ways severe accident, near West Street.

A356 Somerset - A356 Prophet's Lane in Stoke sub Hamdon blocked and very slow traffic in both directions near the West Street junction, because of an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Learn more about the mysterious world of brushes and brush making

Watch: See part of the Hillbrush collection in Mere

A Wiltshire-based firm that has been making cleaning equipment for almost 100 years is opening a new brush museum today.

Hillbrush started in Mere in 1922 and moved into a new factory at the end of last year.

As part of a new on-site attraction visitors are being offered the chance to learn how brushes are made and how techniques have changed over the decades.

More blue plaques for Weston

Bob Hope
Bob Hope lived for a short time as a baby in Weston-super-Mare

Weston Town Council has published a list of 12 names being considered for a blue commemorative plaque.

The Olympian Paulo Radmilovic - who won four gold medals in the Olympic Games between 1908 and 1920 - was honoured last month with a plaque at the pub he used to run.

Now the council is considering putting up more. 

Names on the 12-strong list include comedian Bob Hope, who once lived in the town, Roald Dahl, who went to a local school and Dwight D. Eisenhower, who spent a night in Weston Woods in the build-up to D-Day.

Charitable group's stockpile 'a fire risk'

Gloucestershire Bundles, Gloucester

A charitable group is being asked to leave its premises in Gloucestershire because its stock is posing a fire risk. 

Gloucestershire Bundles provides packs of clothes and other essential items to families in need.  

But the group's landlord - Gloucester City Homes - says it's storing too many items at its premises which is creating a significant health and safety risk. 

Volunteer Louise Coughlin, says they've run out of space.

"We have a lot more referrals and the amount of stuff people are asking from us has increased so as a result we need a lot more things to give out," she said.

Gloucester City Homes has advised the group to reduce the number of items stored immediately and are helping with storage.

Local reaction 'positive' to parking clampdown in North Somerset

Listen: "People are thanking us," says Alan Taylor from the council (Picture: Richard Bosher)

More than 700 drivers were caught out during the first week of a blitz on people who flout parking restrictions in North Somerset.

The local council has taken over the enforcement of all parking regulations from the police. 

It has vowed that its warden patrols will continue to crack down on drivers who ignore bans on parking in such places as loading bays, bus stops, taxi ranks and on yellow lines.

Elderly woman gets stuck in a sun-lounger

Deckchairs on a beach

The balmy weather across the region yesterday wasn't fun for everyone.

Fire crews in Somerset were called to a house in Wellington to find an elderly woman with her leg stuck in a sun-lounger.

Cutters were used to release the lady from the chair and she was relatively unhurt. 

It brings a new meaning to the phrase 'sun trap' though.

Police officer killed in Westminster terror attack remembered

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Today is the funeral of PC Keith Palmer who was killed in the Westminster attack.

Thousands of officers will line the route as his coffin is taken from a chapel at the Palace of Westminster to Southwark Cathedral.

Deadline looms to save the Stroud Subscription Rooms

Watch: Pictures taken by Melissa Briggs from the Support our Subs group

Deadline day for expressions of interest in the famous Stroud Subscription Rooms is looming.

A group called Support our Subs has been trying to save the music and arts venue, after the district council said it could no longer afford to run it. 

They recently showed their support by linking hands around the building. 

The council's looking at a number of options for its future, which includes selling it.

Council's 'traffic wardens' crack down on drivers

Weston-super-Mare, Somerset
Richard Bosher

Several hundred drivers have been caught out after the first week of a blitz on people who flout parking restrictions in North Somerset. 

The local council has taken over the enforcement of all parking regulations from the police. 

It has vowed that its warden patrols will continue to crack down on drivers who ignore bans on parking in such places as loading bays, bus stops, taxi ranks and on yellow lines.

Disruption essential to allow 'important work for Bath Spa' - GWR

Watch: "This is important work for Bath Spa station," says GWR's Paul Gentleman

A reduced rail service is running to and from Bath Spa station this morning to allow for works as the station gets ready for electric trains.

Only one platform will be in use, so some services will be less frequent. 

No trains will run through Bath Spa station at all over the long Easter bank holiday weekend.

Visit the GWR website for more travel information relating to the modernisation plan .

Drivers warned to avoid travelling at peak times over Easter


It's a four-day working week for many and there's a long weekend to look forward to - unless you're joining more than 20 million cars expected on the roads over Easter.

Thursday is expected to be the busiest day for drivers, according to traffic information company Inrix.

The M5, M4 and A303 in the West all make it onto the list of the predicted worst road delays.

We expect significant delays over the Easter period due to a combination of factors, including the regular post-work peak, the start of the school break, people travelling on holiday, railway engineering works and Tube closures. Our advice to drivers is to consider alternative routes or avoid peak times altogether.

Graham Cooksonhead of research at Inrix

Dog nearly dies after adder bite

Adders can grow up to 75cm (29in) in the UK

Dog-walkers in Somerset are being warned to take care of adders while out in the countryside. 

It's after an incident in Midsomer Norton where a dog was nearly killed after being bitten by one of the snakes. 

Anyone with a dog that suffers an adder-bite is being urged to take it straight to the vet, so it can be treated with anti-venom. 

BBC local radio headlines

Radio studio

Here's what your BBC local radio headlines are this morning:

  • BBC Radio Bristol - Estate agents in South Wales are reporting Bristolians pushing the prices up in Newport and Chepstow as they move to find more affordable properties to buy. It comes as house prices here are some of the fastest rising in the UK
  • BBC Radio Gloucestershire - A pavilion in Gloucestershire has been reopened after it was almost completely destroyed in an arson attack last year
  • BBC Somerset - Members of brass bands from across the South West are getting tested to see if they're a stem cell match for a musician from Shepton Mallet who has an aggressive form of cancer
  • BBC Wiltshire - A Swindon family have presented their son's school with a defibrillator, having heard about a campaign from a Swindon mum on BBC Wiltshire

Easter getaway: M5 southbound expect long delays


More than 20 million cars are expected to be on the roads, and more than 200 rail engineering works are taking place, over Easter. 

The busiest day for the great getaway will be Thursday, with drivers being warned some journeys could take 90 minutes longer than usual.

Traffic hotspots identified include the M5 from Bristol to Taunton.

Drivers going southbound on the M5 towards the West Country are being warned delays could be almost an hour as average speeds fall to less than 25mph.

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