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  1. Ex-teacher and church spokesman denies abusing boy, saying he "got married"
  2. Police investigate whether an injured dog was thrown from a vehicle on the A38
  3. Reports involving indecent images of children 'nearly doubles in three years'
  4. Portholland diver death: Group from West Sussex
  5. Police consider terrorism materials search extension
  6. Ticket machine stolen in 'thought-out operation'
  7. 'Sticky situation' after Helen Glover's Olympic medal dropped by fiancé
  8. The Duke & Duchess of Cambridge start a two-day visit to Cornwall & the Isles of Scilly
  9. More news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Friday

Live Reporting

By Andrew Segal

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Our live coverage across the day

Live updates for Devon and Cornwall have finished for the day, but we'll be back at 08:00 on Friday with the latest news, sport, travel and weather. 

Don't forget Spotlight on BBC One later. There will also be news through the night on your BBC Local Radio station.

Tricorn style wars break out in BBC newsrooms

Spotlight anchor Justin Leigh and producers Claire Hawke and Louise Walter are the latest BBC staff members to don a tricorn in anticipation of the launch of the second series of Poldark on BBC One on Sunday.

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Latest weather: Cloud increasing, but some sunny spells on Friday

BBC Weather

It will be dry through this evening, but cloud will increase from the northwest. After midnight, some showery rain will arrive, with the odd heavier burst possible. Minimum temperature: 14C (57F).


It will be fairly cloudy for much of Friday, with occasional light rain. That said, some sunny intervals are likely to develop through the afternoon. Maximum temperature: 19C (66F).

Latest headlines in Devon and Cornwall

Andrew Segal

Local Live

  • Tests are carried out on scuba diving equipment worn by a man from West Sussex who died in the sea of Cornwall
  • A former teacher and church spokesman denies abusing a boy in the 1970s, saying he got married and was no longer interested in boys
  • Police investigate whether an injured dog found near Exeter was thrown from a vehicle on the A38
  • A south Devon NHS boss denies temporary bed closures are part of "sneaky" moves to close community hospitals
  • Exeter's Royal Academy for Deaf Education is to move to a former Plymouth University site in Exmouth and double its student numbers. 
  • Penzance rower Helen Glover's Olympic gold medal needs repairs after her fiance drops it on a concrete floor
  • The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge start a two-day visit to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly

University gave 'no guarantees about future use of Rolle Campus'

Hamish Marshall

BBC Spotlight

Plymouth University says it gave no guarantees "about future use" of its Rolle Campus in Exmouth after a community group says it was disappointed not to be given the chance to take it over.

Rolle Campus

The Exeter Royal Academy for Deaf Education is moving to the former teacher training site, which has been disused for eight years. Rolle Exmouth Ltd had been using a building for a local businesses hub and had hopes of a permanent future there.

The university said: "We are fully satisfied that we have arrived at a highly positive solution for the Rolle Campus, its new owners, and, we believe, for Exmouth."

Looe harbour documents are put in the frame

BBC Radio Cornwall

People interested in seeing old maps and documents discovered in a Cornish harbour office will not have to wait until they are available online because some have been put up in the harbour master's office.

Looe archive

The centuries-old documents, found in Looe, are being been digitally photographed with the ultimate aim of putting the archive online. 

However, retiring harbourmaster Jeff Penhaligon, who found the documents stored in bin bags, has had some framed and they are on display. The find includes dozens of old maps, charts and books relating to the port's history, including its original lease.

A Poldark refresher in one image


Teenagers 'lucky not to have been hurt' on homemade raft

BBC Radio Cornwall

Lifeguards say a group of teenagers are lucky not to have been seriously injured after they took to the sea off Fistral Beach in Newquay on board a homemade raft. 

Lifeguard lifejacket. Pic: Andrew Segal
Andrew Segal

The alarm was raised early yesterday evening when the trio, two males and a female, were spotted in the water. The group were not in trouble but soon realised they didn’t have a plan to get back to shore safely.

The RNLI said they'd launched the vessel from nearby rocks. The lifeguards transported the three people ashore and dismantled the raft.

Injured dog 'thrown from car'

Andrew Segal

Local Live

Police are investigating reports that a dog found injured was thrown from a vehicle on the A38.

Officers said they were called to Kennford Services on the dual carriageway, near Exeter, at about 14:00 "after initial reports of a dog being thrown". A black King Charles Spaniel was found with suspected broken legs and taken to a vets for treatment.

Police appealed for witnesses, saying: "At this time, police only have third-hand reports of how the dog came to be on the road and how it sustained its injuries."

Sadness at closure of Exmouth seafront crazy golf course after 40 years

Exeter Express & Echo

It was the end of an era for Exmouth seafront when the Jungle Fun attraction and Arnold Palmer Putting Course closed for the last time.

Indecent child images cases: The figures

BBC Spotlight

There's been a sharp increase in Devon and Cornwall in the number of reports to police involving possessing of indecent images of children, according to freedom of information requests made by children's charity the NSPCC.


The figures reveal:

  • 2013 - 144 cases
  • 2014 - 179 cases
  • 2015 - 281 cases

Source: NSPCC

Across the UK, the total number of recorded crimes for the possession, distribution and production of indecent images of children rose from 4,530 in 2013 to 10,818 in 2015. Of those cases, 2,031 of the suspects were under 18-year-old.

Temporary bed closures 'not sneaky move to shut community hospitals'

Jenny Walrond

Health Correspondent, BBC Spotlight

An NHS boss has denied that temporary bed closures have been part of "sneaky" moves to close community hospitals.

Hospitals graphic

A consultation has begun on plans to close community hospitals in Ashburton, Bovey Tracey, Dartmouth and Paignton. Health commissioners said they wanted to care for people in the community instead, and needed to make cuts somewhere. Critics said the move would increase pressure on other facilities and increase bed-blocking.

Dr Nick Roberts, of South Devon and Torbay Clinical Commissioning Group said those beds were temporarily closed due to  "patient safety issues. 

He said: "The keys issue is around workforce, so there are some community hospitals where we find it difficult to recruit to have safe nursing numbers. Other aspects are about buildings being fit for purpose."

New academy for deaf site 'will double student numbers'

Hamish Marshall

BBC Spotlight

A new site in Exmouth will allow the Exeter Royal Academy for Deaf Education to cater for 160 youngsters, double its current number of students.

Rolle Campus

The academy, which has been in Exeter for nearly 200 years, hopes to be working out of a new facility at Rolle Campus in Exmouth - after taking it over from Plymouth University - within 24-30 months. The site has been vacant for eight years since the university moved its teacher-training facilities to Plymouth.

The academy's current premises on Topsham Road are to be sold. Discussions with housing developers have already taken place, it is understood.

Getting ready for Poldark? We are!

Debbie McCrory

BBC Radio Cornwall

Repair to Helen Glover's Olympic gold medal 'quite a mission'

BBC News England

Fixing Penzance rower Helen Glover's Olympic gold medal, after her fiance dropped it on a concrete floor, was "quite a mission", a gold and silversmith says.

Helen Glover and Steve Backshall. Pic: Phil Walter/Getty Images
Phil Walter/Getty Images

Ms Glover (pictured left) won the women's pair in Rio with partner Heather Stanning. She and TV nature presenter Steve Backshall (right), who met her in 2014, are due to get married later this month.

Bourne End Jewellers gold and silversmith Richard Bull said: "It was damaged on two edges - on one edge quite badly and the other less badly ... They are pretty heavy and bigger than you think. They are about 4in in diameter, and must weigh half a kilo." 

He added he was "honoured to have been trusted with restoring such a priceless object".

Three parking ticket machines stolen

BBC Spotlight

A number of parking ticket machines have been stolen in Devon and Cornwall.

The South West Lakes Trust said two of its machines were sawn off at the base and taken away: one from Roadford Lake, near Okehampton, on Friday night; and another from Trenchford Lake, near Bovey Tracey, on Saturday. 

One of the trust's machines was found under a bridge in the Launceston area in Cornwall, with reports that it appeared to have angle grinder damage on it.  

Another machine was taken from the harbourside at Fowey in Cornwall.

Man 'did not abuse boy because he had just got married'

Eleanor Parkinson

BBC Spotlight

A former teacher and church reader accused of abusing a young boy in the 1970s says he didn't commit the alleged offences because he had just got married and no longer had an interest in young boys.

Jeremy Dowling, 78, a former press spokesman for the Bishop of Truro, is accused of sexually abusing a boy that he met whilst he was working at two churches near Bude.

He denies six counts of sexual abuse involving a child and two counts of gross indecency with a child. The trial, at Truro Crown Court, continues.

'Fabulous' Looe harbour documents include original lease

BBC Radio Cornwall

A retiring Cornish harbour master who discovered hundreds of "fabulous" maps, charts and documents by chance in an office says the harbour's credentials will never be questioned because he found the original act establishing it.

Jeff Penhaligon with Looe documents

The centuries-old documents were found in bin bags in Looe by Jeff Penhaligon. They have been digitally photographed with the ultimate aim of putting the archive online. He said he couldn't believe his luck when he found them. 

He said: "Some of them are so delicate. We've got the original act of leasing the harbour. No one can argue with us because we can go back donkey's years. It's fabulous."

Community group 'disappointed' at Rolle Campus takeover

Hamish Marshall

BBC Spotlight

A community group says it is disappointed not to be given the chance to take over the Rolle Campus in Exmouth from Plymouth University. 

Rolle Campus

The Exeter Royal Academy for Deaf Education is moving to the former teacher training site, which has been disused for eight years. 

Rolle Exmouth Ltd had been using one of the buildings for a pilot scheme for a local businesses hub, with community events taking place. Chairwoman Deborah Hallett said the organsiation had been encouraged to give time, effort and up to £250,000 in the hope of a permanent future there.

Up close with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

James Churchfield

BBC Radio Cornwall

I've been keeping interesting company this morning.  

Duke and Duchess of Cornwall
James Churchfield

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge began a two-day visit to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly at Truro Cathedral this morning. 

They were greeted by thousands of well-wishers, some of whom waited for hours to catch a glimpse of the Royal couple.

After signing a slate to support the cathedral's roof appeal, William and Kate went on a walkabout.

Purrington set to stake claim for regular place at Argyle

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Ben Purrington says he is ready to stake his claim for a regular place in the Plymouth Argyle side.

Ben Purrington
Getty Images

The 20-year-old left-back is set to deputise for injured counterpart Gary Sawyer against Cheltenham Town.

"I've got the opportunity through Gary's injury, so hopefully I can capitalise on that and hopefully keep the position," he told BBC Radio Devon.

New Bampton community centre opened

BBC Radio Devon

The north Devon town of Bampton has officially opened its new library and community resource centre. 

The town was given funding to renovate an old school building to provide the facility.

St Ives sergeant: 'Decisions can't be made about individual officers'

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Sgt Mike Friday, who works in St Ives and Hayle, is being moved to an office job in Camborne in a few months' time. Campaigners at a public meeting say he is "integral" to the community and want to keep him there.

What are the arguments around community hospital beds?

Jenny Walrond

Health Correspondent, BBC Spotlight

As a consultation begins today on plans to close community hospitals in Ashburton, Bovey Tracey, Dartmouth and Paignton, I look at the arguments surrounding them.  

Paignton Hospital

Campaigners say:

  • They are essential to reduce bed-blocking in hospitals
  • They say they are cheaper, closer to family and friends 
  • It isn't always appropriate to care for people in their own homes

But, those in favour of closing community beds say:

  • They are actually more expensive - particularly those in older buildings 
  • They are difficult to recruit staff to
  • They highlight statistics that show older people lose their mobility very quickly when they are bed-bound
  • Surveys suggest most of us would rather die at home than in a hospital bed

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visit Cornwall

BBC Spotlight

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have started a two-day tour of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

Truro Cathedral

This morning they arrived at High Cross in Truro to meet dignitaries and staff at the city's cathedral, where they signed a slate in support of an appeal for a new roof. 

More than £3m is needed to repair it because it's been in place since the cathedral was completed in 1908. 

It's the first official visit to Cornwall by William and Kate who will later visit a project to help disadvantaged children through surfing, before travelling to the Isles of Scilly tomorrow.

Slate signing

Portholland diver death: Tests on scuba cylinders

Andrew Segal

Local Live

Tests are being carried out on scuba diving equipment after a man from West Sussex died after getting into difficulty in the sea of Cornwall, police say.

The 43-year-old man and a 12-year-old girl were retrieved from the sea at Portholland beach after getting into difficulty on Tuesday. The girl was taken to hospital in Plymouth but was discharged on Wednesday. The pair were among a group of five on holiday.

Portholland. Pic: Julia McIntosh
Julia McIntosh

Insp Paul Norlund, of Devon and Cornwall Police, said: "We are carrying out routine tests on the man’s scuba diving cylinders, but this is a routine test and there is nothing to suggest this is anything other than a tragic accident." He added a file was being prepared for the coroner.

Latest weather: Getting cloudier

BBC Weather

During the afternoon, we will have more cloud, and the sunshine will turn more hazy. Winds will be light mainly south westerly, becoming moderate in the west and around the coasts. Maximum temperature: 20C (68F).


It will remain quite cloudy overnight with a few showers. Cloud will lower and thicken later in the night, with some patchy rain reaching the far west and islands late in the night. Winds will be moderate south westerly, becoming fresh in the west by morning. Minimum temperature: 14C (57F).

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Latest travel updates in Cornwall

BBC Travel

  • The A38 in the Glynn Valley is partially blocked due to a broken down caravan near turn for Bodmin Parkway
  • The A30 westbound at Temple is partially blocked due to an accident
  • In Helston, there are reports of an accident on Meneage Street, near Bullock Lane

Hospital closures, and what's in a name?

Janet Kipling

BBC Radio Devon

Two big health stories making the news: Plans to close local community hospitals, and the junior doctors' strike. Have your say.

Also, if you were the victim of a crime, would you want to meet the perpetrator? There are calls to make it a right. What do you think? 

And one in five parents wish they'd given their children a different name. Have your choices caused you problems?

Call in on 0345 3011034.

Western Power helicopter patrolling Devon

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Western Power has five patrol helicopters which it uses to monitor power lines.

Redruth to be 'judged on away success'

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

New Redruth head coach Marek Churcher says he will be judging whether the season is a success by how well his side do away from the Rec.

Redruth v Plymouth Albion
Dan Barbary/Redruth RFC

The Reds recorded an unprecedented nine away wins as they finished fourth in National Two South last season.

"One of the measures for us as a group of players is how we win on the road and how many we win on the road," Churcher told BBC Radio Cornwall. "We've got to carry that form forward this year."

Man accused of being a paedophile because his girlfriend looks young for her age

Exeter Express & Echo

A man says he is scared to leave his home after being wrongly labelled a paedophile because his girlfriend looks too young - despite being 32.

Restorative justice: Should victims meet the criminals?

Martin Bailie

BBC Radio Cornwall

If you were the victim of a crime, would you want to meet the perpetrator? We'll hear from the parents of a young man beaten to death by a gang of teenagers.

Ray and Vi Donovan now believe that restorative justice should be a part of the process, but they didn't always feel like that.

And there is a pair of Royal visitors in Cornwall today.

Call in on 01872 222222.

Search continues for 'stolen' Penlee Lifeboat Disaster medal

Andrew Segal

Local Live

View more on twitter

An investigation is continuing into the disappearance of a bravery medal posthumously awarded to the coxswain of a lifeboat which lost all eight crewmen in the Penlee Lifeboat Disaster.

It was given to William Trevelyan Richards, who died when the Solomon Browne went to the aid of the stricken coaster Union Star in December 1981. A total of 16 people died from the coaster and the lifeboat.

The gold gallantry medal, the highest award for bravery, is missing from the RNLI's head office in Poole, Dorset. The charity said police had been informed.

A sunny start in Truro for Royal Visit

Devon bowlers become national champions at singles and pairs

Gordon Sparks

Presenter, BBC Radio Devon

Devon’s Sam Tolchard has added the Bowls England National Two-Wood Singles Championship to his collection after an exceptional couple of days at Royal Leamington Spa. 

The England international defeated Hertfordshire’s Bradley Coles 17-2 in the final.

Together with Louis Ridout, he has also won the Men’s National Pairs Championship. The Kings Bowling Club duo defeated Herefordshire’s Mike Ricketts and Dan Holmes 20-13.

Good view for Royal Visit

'Keep St Ives sergeant' petition gets 4,000 signatures

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Sgt Mike Friday, who works in St Ives and Hayle, is being moved to an office job in Camborne in a few months' time. Campaigners said he was "integral" to the community and want to keep him where he is. 

A public meeting is discussing the issue.