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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

  1. Plans for 150 homes in Somerset rejected

    Local Democracy Reporting Service

    Plan for the homes

    Crewkerne residents applauded as councillors rejected plans for a major new housing development on the edge of the town.

    James Tizzard of Land Value Alliances LLP applied to build 150 homes between Kithill and the railway line, at the town's southern edge.

    South Somerset District Council’s area west committee voted in August to refuse the plans, claiming it would create a “death trap” on the busy Cathole Bridge Road.

    The council’s regulation committee – which has the final say on major housing developments – upheld this decision on Tuesday, prompting residents at the meeting to break out in applause.

    To mitigate the extra traffic the housing would generate, Mr Tizzard proposed putting in a new junction, improving passing places and widening sections of Cathole Bridge Road where it was physically feasible.

    But councillor Robin Pailthorpe – who represents Crewkerne – said he was doubtful whether this could be achieved.

    The committee voted to refuse the plans by a margin of eight votes to two (with one abstention), prompting applause from residents in the public area.

  2. New roof set for historic building after fire

    Image of St Michael on the Mount's roof after fire damage

    St Michael on the Mount in Bristol is set to have a new roof fitted.

    The new fitting comes three years after it was gutted by a fire.

    The landmark building was left open to the elements following the blaze in 2016.

    Work is now under way to replace the roof to ensure the building is watertight in time for winter.

    The owner of the building, Norman Routledge, said the lack of a roof had been devastating.

    He said it has had "three years with no roof", which has made the upkeep of the building difficult.

    He said he had found dry rot in the left-hand section and right-hand section of the roof's structure.

  3. Cargo sailing ship has arrived in Bristol

    Image of cargo

    A cargo sailing ship has arrived in Bristol as part of efforts to reduce fossil fuels in trading.

    The ship was carrying wine, olive oil, almonds and honey from Portugal.

    The organisation, New World Traders, is behind the project and wants Bristol to be included in a growing community of farmers, sailors and traders trying to reduce emissions by using wind power.

    A spokesperson from New World Traders, said: "We're not reinventing anything. We are just trying to go back to the old ways.

    "The voyage is a great step forward".

  4. Workplace mental health campaign set to launch

    Image of woman at window

    Businesses in Somerset are being encouraged to sign up to a new mental health campaign which launches next week.

    It's being run by the charity MIND in Somerset and is aimed at preventing poor mental health in the workplace.

    Stress and depression or anxiety accounted for 40 per cent of work-related ill health, according to the most recent figures for 2017.

    Jess McKeith said businesses will benefit from this because when they sign up to the pledge "they will have access to lots of free resources".

  5. Envelope update

    Severe accident: M5 Gloucestershire northbound

    BBC News Travel

    M5 Gloucestershire northbound severe accident, at J13 for A419.

    M5 Gloucestershire - One lane blocked on M5 northbound at J13, A419 (Stroud), because of an accident involving two vehicles.

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

  6. A303 remains closed after serious crash near Chicklade

    Police tape

    Wiltshire Police are advising people to avoid the area on the eastbound carriageway of the A303, close to Chicklade.

    The road remains closed after a serious traffic collision, which happened just after 11am today.

  7. Air ambulance "one step closer" to being used again

    Image of Wiltshire County air ambulance

    The team behind Wiltshire Air Ambulance said it is one step closer to returning the county's main helicopter to active service.

    The helicopter has not been able to attend emergencies since the start of 2019, following technical problems and the company which provided the air licence going out of business.

    The head of the emergency service said the team had a successful inspection by the Civil Aviation Authority and is now waiting to be issued a certificate.

    Bosses are hoping it can return to active service in the near future.

    The Bell 429 helicopter in the air ambulance's green and yellow colours, was grounded on 2 January.

    This came less than a month after Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, officially opened the charity's new base at Semington, near Melksham.

    It was initially taken out of service after a technical problem, but soon after the company which provided the air licence went out of business.

    In the meantime the helicopter is being used for training.

  8. B&B could become children's home

    A large house in Highworth could be used as a children’s home.

    Ruth Parker, of Park Blue Homes, a private provider of residential homes for children, has applied for permission to change the use of Highlands in Swindon Road from a bed and breakfast to a home for youngsters.

    Highlands is still operating as a B&B for visitors to the town.

    The County Durham company, which already runs Summer’s End, a home for three children near Castle Combe in Wiltshire, said in a statement: “Park Blue Homes strives to provide exciting places for young people to live.

    “Each home benefits from being in close proximity to local towns for all essential amenities.”

    Highlands is just south of the centre of Highworth on the main route in from Swindon.

    It is not necessary for an applicant to own a property to make a planning application, and it is common to try and get permission before offering to buy a property.

  9. Pilot knife crime scheme could be extended

    Image of a person holding a knife

    A pilot scheme looking to reduce the number of teenagers getting involved in knife crime could be extended by Avon and Somerset Police.

    It's been run by the force with help from NHS staff and the courts with the aim of tackling the root causes and help young people make better decisions.

    Police and Crime Commissioner, Sue Mountstevens, says she has been impressed with the scheme and it could be cost effective to extend it further.

    Ms Mountstevens said it costs police services more than £1m for murder investigations.

    As a result, she wants to invest in projects like this which work with young people so they do not become "victims or perpetrators".

  10. Envelope update

    Severe disruption: M5 Somerset northbound

    BBC News Travel

    M5 Somerset northbound severe disruption, from J26 for A38 to J25 for A358.

    M5 Somerset - One lane closed on M5 northbound from J26, A38 (Wellington) to J25, A358 (Taunton), because of a break down. Traffic is coping well.

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

  11. Students taught to mind their 'pees and poos'

    A water company is hoping to help students keep their digs blockage free, by teaching them 'toiletiquette'.

    Wessex Water is visiting UWE Bristol and the University of Bath to encourage freshers to only flush "paper, pee and poo" down the loo.

    Up to 75% of sewer blockages are caused by disposable items, such as wet wipes, being flushed down the toilet, the firm said.

    Freebies to "help" students out will be handed out at UWE Bristol on Friday and University of Bath on 27 September.

    View more on twitter
  12. Envelope update

    Severe accident: M5 Gloucestershire southbound

    BBC News Travel

    M5 Gloucestershire southbound severe accident, after J12 for B4008 Quedgeley.

    M5 Gloucestershire - One lane closed and it's slow on M5 southbound after J12, B4008 (Quedgeley), because of an accident.

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

  13. Envelope update

    Severe accident: A303 Wiltshire both ways

    BBC News Travel

    A303 Wiltshire both ways severe accident, from A350 to A36 Deptford.

    A303 Wiltshire - A303 closed and it's heavy in both directions from the A350 junction in Chicklade to Deptford, because of accident investigation work. Diversion in operation - via A350 and A36 following the solid black diamond.

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