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Summary

  1. Two dead and two in hospital after road crash
  2. Murder trial woman 'could have been unlucky to have been at fire sites'
  3. 'Vast quantities' of perfumes stolen in ram-raid
  4. Teenager arrested by police investigating disused supermarket fire
  5. Mud claims Mercedes on Aveton Gifford tidal road
  6. Overgrown roadside hedgerows 'never touched' and causing 'safety concerns'
  7. Updates on Tuesday 18 October 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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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 Wednesday 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.

'No final decision' over Army's future at Plymouth's Royal Citadel

BBC Radio Devon

The Ministry of Defence says "no final decision" has been made about the future of an Army base in Plymouth's Royal Citadel.

The 19-acre Citadel site (pictured), on the city's seafront, is home to the Army's 29 Commando Regiment.

Citadel
BBC

Local newspapers have reported leaks regarding the future of Plymouth's military bases, saying a decision had been made to move 29 Commando Regiment out of the historic Citadel.

The MoD said it was "currently conducting a review of its estate which will be announced in due course. This work is on-going and no final decision about the future of sites not already announced for release has been made at this point".

Latest headlines in Devon and Cornwall

Andrew Segal

Local Live

  • A judge at Truro Crown Court begins summing up in the case of a woman accused of murder and a series of arson attacks
  • The head of Ofsted criticises police for failing to take child protection matters seriously, saying officers in Torbay did not communicate with social workers before taking action
  • Police investigate a ram-raid at a Tiverton department store, saying burglars got away with "vast amounts of perfume"
  • Police appeal for witnesses after a crash on the A358 near Axminster leaves two people dead and a further two in hospital, including a four-year-old boy
  • A flood alert is issued by the Environment Agency for the North Devon coast, from Hartland Point to Lynmouth, for Tuesday evening's high tide

Two rescued from Waitrose lift after vehicle hit

Andrew Segal

Local Live

Two people have been rescued from a lift at a Waitrose store in south Devon after it was hit by a vehicle.

The fire service said they were called to a "report of a vehicle that had been in collision with lift doors" at the store in Lower Brook Street, Teignmouth, at about 15:30.

Firefighters used hand tools to open the lift doors. The occupants were uninjured, the service said.

Trains suspended after man found lying on railway tracks

Plymouth Herald

A man is said to have forced the suspension of Plymouth train services after he was reported to be lying on the tracks.

Murder jury 'should not infer anything from accused's absence'

Denis Nightingale

BBC Radio Cornwall

A judge at Truro Crown Court has told a jury that they should not infer anything from a woman charged with murder and a string of alleged arson attacks not being in court.

Truro Crown Court
BBC

Forty-three-year-old Karen Pedley, from Caharrack, near Redruth, denies murder, attempted murder and 13 counts of arson between 2002 and 2010. She is alleged to have murdered a 96-year-old woman in a care home in Truro in 2008 by starting a fire in her room.

Mr Justice Teare instructed the jury to infer nothing from her absence, saying she had a perfect right not to give evidence. The trial continues.

Devon finding it 'increasingly difficult to get high-quality healthcare'

Martyn Oates

BBC South West Political Editor

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Mr Dunne was talking during a Westminster Hall debate about healthcare provision in Devon.

County MPs used the opportunity to criticise problems with healthcare in the county, saying it was underfunded, and there had not been adequate consultations over planned community hospital closures, among other problems.

However, Mr Dunne also said that "Devon is a leader in some areas of healthcare - perhaps a surprise to some MPs who have spoken".

Latest weather: Staying mainly dry

David Braine

Weather Forecaster

It will be a mainly dry night with clear spells and just the odd shower possible. It'll be a colder night than of late under clear skies. Minimum temperature: 6C (43F).

Weather
BBC

Wednesday will be a mainly dry day with sunny spells. The odd shower remains possible, mainly in north coast areas, and it'll feel cool in the northerly breeze. Maximum temperature: 13C (55F).

Repair works on flood relief bridge after steel work exposed

BBC Radio Devon

Essential repair work has to be carried out to the underside of the bridge deck on the Countess Wear Flood Relief Bridge because of exposed metal work and corrosion, Devon County Council says.

Flood Relief Bridge. Pic: Devon County Council
Devon County Council

Concrete on the underside of the structure, which takes the weight of traffic over the bridge, had cracked and fallen away, exposing its steel reinforcement, the authority said

Repairs are to be done in two phases. The first will be on the weekend of the 28-31 October, closing the road. The second phase has yet to be scheduled.

Murder accused 'tried to rescue victim' and had 'warped sense of heroism'

Denis Nightingale

BBC Radio Cornwall

A judge at Truro Crown Court has begun summing up in the case of a woman accused of a series of arson attacks in Cornwall between 2002 and 2010.

Rosewyn House
BBC

Forty-three-year-old Karen Pedley, from Caharrack, near Redruth, denies murder, attempted murder and 13 counts of arson. The jury heard the murder charge related to the death of 96-year-old Gladys Rowe from smoke inhalation after a fire in her bedroom at Rosewyn House care home in Truro in 2008.

Prosecutor Nigel Lickley alleges Mrs Pedley set fire to the curtains in the room and so murdered her. Simon Laws, defending, said she clearly intended to rescue Mrs Rowe and her roommate but was driven back by dense smoke. He described it as a possible "warped sense of heroism". The trial continues.

Council 'tries to resolve overgrown hedge safety fears informally'

BBC Radio Cornwall

Cornwall Council says it will take legal action against landowners who do not cut back overgrown roadside hedgerows, but added it tried to resolve such situations informally first.

Hedge on road. Viewer's picture
Viewer's picture

Some hauliers have raised safety concerns, claiming the state of some hedges is forcing drivers further out into the road. Cutting hedges is the responsibility of landowners.

Peter Tatlow, the network manager of Cornwall road contractor Cormac, said: "The power we've got on landowners is under the Highways Act. If any overgrown vegetation is causing a safety problem, then we can serve notice. We do do it, but it’s relatively rare. If we approach them informally first, they will normally say 'fair enough', and get the work done."

Ofsted warns over police weaknesses in child protection

Katherine Sellgren

BBC News Education

The head of Ofsted, Sir Michael Wilshaw, has criticised police forces in England for failing to take child protection matters seriously.

Child
Thinkstock

In a letter to the chief inspector of constabulary, he said that, in Torbay, Ofsted found that police did not communicate with social workers before taking action, including instances where children were taken into police protection without any discussion about alternative options.

He said that a failure to change could lead to further cases of child abuse like the ones in Rotherham and Oxford.

'Viable' plan needed for derelict hotel site

Andrew Segal

Local Live

A planning committee boss in north Devon admits something needs to be done at the site of a derelict hotel because the building and grounds "have deteriorated alarmingly".

Lee Bay
BBC

An application to redevelop the Lee Bay Hotel site near Ilfracombe into 20 homes was refused by North Devon Council last week because of concerns about the impact on the local area.

Planning committee chairman Councillor Eric Ley said: "The general consensus is that something badly needs to be done at this site. However, the question remains 'what?' Nothing will happen here unless it is viable."

Latest travel: Incidents in Devon

BBC Travel

  • In Paignton, there are reports of an incident on Barton Avenue, around Hillside Road. 
  • In Kilmington, there are reports of an incident on the B3261, near the A35 and the wildlife park

Daley thanks public for getting behind athletes

BBC News England

Britain's Olympic and Paralympic stars are being honoured with a celebration in London's Trafalgar Square.

Team GB
PA

Diver Tom Daley, who won bronze in Rio, said: "It’s so great to think that the whole of the British public have, you know, been behind all of Team GB and ParalympicsGB and to be able to like come and actually celebrate, everyone’s home and finished for their holidays and stuff, it’s going to be a fun day."

Flood alert on North Devon coast

BBC Weather

A flood alert has been issued by the Environment Agency for the North Devon coast, from Hartland Point to Lynmouth. 

The alert means people should "be prepared".

The agency said flooding was possible for coastal and tidal areas including the Taw Torridge Estuary over this evening's high tide, due at about 20:15. Low lying coastal land and roads would be affected first, it added.

Police appeal following vehicle 'arson attacks'

Andrew Segal

Local Live

Police in Plymouth are hunting two men after two cars were damaged in suspected arson attacks in the same street.

Officers said the vehicles - a black Volkswagen Golf and a green Audi A6 - caught fire in Copplestone Walk, in the Tamerton Foliot area, between 01:10-01:40 last Thursday. 

A witness said two men were seen "fleeing the area soon after".

Has a fan found a way to beat the bookies?

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

One Exeter City supporter may have found a sure-fire way of beating the bookmakers.

Roger Hamilton-Kendall, a lifelong fan of the Grecians, has been putting £10 on his club to win 4-1 in every game they have played since April 2008 - and his side's 4-1 victory at Barnet on Saturday was the sixth time he has been able to cash in.

Betting slip
Getty Images

Over the last eight years he believes he is about £600 up and said the whole ritual of his bet came from a premonition he had against the League Two club's local rivals in 2008 - his first pay day.

"It's a lottery really and just a bit of fun," he told BBC Sport. "But I do it every game because the one time you don't do it, it'll come in."

Beach rescue after person 'trapped in quicksand'

Andrew Segal

Local Live

A person has been rescued after reports that someone was trapped in suspected quicksand in Cornwall.

Falmouth Coastguard Rescue Team said on its Facebook page that they were called to Crantock Beach at about 13:55.

The team said the person was "quickly recovered", adding: "Although Crantock is out of our patch ... we're the specialist coastguard mud rescue team for the area." 

The team also said: "If you're unfortunate enough to find yourself stuck. Don't panic, spread your weight the best you can. Don't wriggle. This can make your situation worse. Keep calm and call the experts."

Latest traffic news in Cornwall: A39 Penryn partially blocked

BBC Travel

  • In Cornwall, the A39 in Penryn is partially blocked by an accident near the Treluswell roundabout
  • There's slow traffic in both directions on the A30 at Penzance, in the roadworks area between Treweath Road and Eastern Green
  • There are long queues of traffic on the Castle-an-Dinas Road, between St Columb Major and Belowda, due to resurfacing. There are delays in the area
  • There's slow traffic on the A39 near Wadebridge around the Hals' Grave Junction in the roadworks area

Murder trial woman 'could have been unlucky to have been at fire sites'

Denis Nightingale

BBC Radio Cornwall

A lawyer in the trial of a woman accused of murder and a series of arson attacks in Cornwall has said one person could be so unlucky as to be at the scene of all the fires. 

Simon Laws, defending 43-year-old Karen Pedley, told Truro Crown Court it would be a ridiculous thing to suggest, but it was up to the jury to decide.

Ms Pedley, 43, from Carharrack, near Redruth, denies murdering 96-year-old Gladys Rowe in a fire at Rosewyn House in Truro in 2008. She also denies charges of attempted murder and 13 counts of arson. The trial continues.

'Horrendous' school walk route considered suitable

BBC Radio Cornwall

A 2.7-mile walking route to school for a girl which a mother claims is "horrendous" was considered suitable after an assessment, Cornwall Council says.

Muddy field. Pic: Julie Hewitt
Julie Hewitt

Julie Hewitt, from St Wenn, near Wadebridge, said the council identified a more direct route for her nine-year-old daughter to get to school, which was under a three-mile limit. The new route means it does not have to pay for her transport. She said a lot of it cut across farmland, which was totally unsuitable.  

Cornwall Council said a "recent Pedestrian Route Assessment has concluded there is a suitable walking route in this case".

it added that a stage one appeal made by Ms Hewitt was not upheld, but that a parent or carer "has the right to submit a stage two appeal if they do not agree with the stage one findings".

NHS used as 'expensive social care service'

Teenager arrested by police investigating disused supermarket fire

Andrew Segal

Local Live

A teenager has been arrested by police investigating a suspected arson attack on a disused former supermarket near Camborne.

Camborne fire. Pic: Tolvaddon CFRS
Tolvaddon CFRS/Twitter

At its height, about 45 firefighters tackled the incident on 10 October.

Police said: "A 15-year-old boy has been interviewed in connection with the incident. He is bailed until 4 January, pending the fire report and subsequent liaison with the Youth Offending Team on the matter."

'Happy Birthday, Laurence! I remembered your day, but forgot my sister's!'

Council 'will take action' over roadside overgrown hedgerows

BBC Radio Cornwall

Cornwall Council says it will take action against landowners who don't cut back overgrown hedgerows after hauliers raised serious safety concerns.

It's claimed the state of some hedges is forcing drivers further out into the road.

Cutting hedges is the responsibility of landowners, although council-run services used to help out with seriously overgrown areas. Cuts have forced the council to stop helping out as much. However, it did say it had powers under the Highways Act to serve notice to compel landowners to carry out the work.

MoD admits failings as Plymouth MP slams Royal Citadel sell-off leak

Plymouth Herald

The Ministry of Defence has admitted it needs to re-think its communications strategy following a series of leaks regarding the future of Plymouth's military bases.

Police appeal for witnesses after two people killed in crash

Police are appealing for witnesses after a crash left two people dead and a further two in hospital.  

A Citroën Xsara Picasso and a Ford Transit van collided on the A358 Chard Road at about 15:30 on Monday, near Tytherleigh. Police said the 44-year-old female driver of the Citroën and a 17-year-old passenger were pronounced deceased at the scene. 

A 39-year-old woman is in intensive care in hospital in Bristol, and a four-year-old boy is in the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital "as a precaution". Both were also passengers in the Citroën.

The 38-year-old driver of the van suffered minor injuries but was later released from hospital. An investigation is under way.

Fishing boat wreck sparks rescue operation

BBC Radio Cornwall

The wreck of what appears to be an old fishing vessel off Land's End has sparked a major search and rescue response.

MCA helicopter
Andrew Segal

A coastguard helicopter from Newquay, along with the Penlee and Sennen Cove RNLI lifeboats, went to investigate after an upturned boat was spotted. There were no distress calls and no-one was reported as missing or overdue. 

Coastguards said that, on closer inspection, the vessel appeared to be a small fishing boat that had been in the water for some time.

Redevelopment plans of former hotel 'rejected over impact concerns'

Andrew Segal

Local Live

An application to redevelop a former hotel site near Ilfracombe was refused by North Devon Council because of concerns about the impact on the local area, the authority has confirmed.

Lee Bay
BBC

Developers had applied to demolish the former Lee Bay Hotel and build 20 homes, a cafe and toilet block, and create an open space.

Members of the planning committee voted last Wednesday against recommendations for approval. The council said it was because the "benefits of redeveloping the site did not outweigh the impact of the proposed new development on the character of the area and landscape".

Mud claims Mercedes on Aveton Gifford tidal road

Jonathan Morris

BBC News Online

A Mercedes came off the tidal road at Aveton Gifford earlier today.

Car
BBC
Car
BBC

Emergency services called to help the woman driver blamed muddy conditions caused by spring high tides.

The road is covered by water at high tide.

The driver and a number of passengers were unhurt. A tow truck was called to remove the vehicle. 

Car
BBC

Teenager arrested on suspicion of arson after Camborne fire

West Briton

A teenager has been arrested on suspicion of arson after an old supermarket was burnt to the ground.

Building summit attempts to address construction industry worries

BBC Spotlight

Construction workers are desperately needed across the South West to help build new homes, members of the industry say.

Bricks
BBC

A building summit is being held in Plymouth today to address the skills shortage.

Organisers said they were aiming to work out how best to encourage more people to train and join the industry in a bid to help solve the housing crisis.

'Vast quantities' of perfumes stolen in ram-raid

Andrew Segal

Local Live

Ram-raiders have stolen "vast quantities" of perfumes during a burglary at a shop in Tiverton, police say.

Banbury’s department store. Pic: Google
Google

Officers said a saloon-type car was used to force the doors to gain access to Banbury’s department store in Gold Street at about 04:15, and people wearing balaclavas fled up Bampton Street in the vehicle after the raid.

Anyone who comes across discarded items in the area, including perfumes and balaclavas, or is offered any cheap perfume for sale is asked to contact police.

Betting slip

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

An Exeter City supporter who has backed his side to win 4-1 in every game since 2008 reveals his secrets after another big payday.

Read more

A sunny Swanpool

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Troubled families scheme makes 'no significant impact'

BBC Radio Devon

A report says a government scheme to help disadvantaged families in England has had little effect

The Troubled Families Programme was launched in 2012, at a cost of £440m. 

Plymouth was one of the areas chosen to take part. A city council report last year said it had helped 745 local families and was looking to help a total of 2,420 by 2020. 

But analysis by the National Institute of Economic and Social Research found the programme had had "no significant impact" on unemployment, school attendance or anti-social behaviour.

Car crashes into Bodmin house and narrowly misses elderly woman

West Briton

A 90-year-old woman was sitting in the front room of her home in Bodmin when an empty car crashed into her house.

Sex abuse headmaster's victims show 'incredible bravery'

BBC News England

Victims of a former headmaster jailed for sexual abuse showed "incredible bravery" in assisting an investigation, police say.

William Duxbury, 88, from Wembury, Plymouth, attacked 10 pupils in the 1980s when he worked at Deddington Primary School, in Oxfordshire. He was jailed for five years after being found guilty at Oxford Crown Court of 12 charges, including indecency and indecent assault.

Det Con Jo-Anne Holland, of Thames Valley Police, said: "His victims, who are now adults, have shown incredible bravery throughout this investigation, and have been extremely courageous in providing details about very distressing incidents."

Latest weather: Bright with isolated light showers

Kevin Thomas

BBC Weather Forecaster

It'll be a mainly dry afternoon, with bright or sunny spells, and just a few increasingly isolated light showers.

It will also feel colder with moderate or fresh northwesterly winds that will be strong at times around the coast and over high ground. Maximum temperature: 14C (57F).

Weather
BBC

Although the odd light shower is possible near the coast, it will be a mainly dry night with some clear periods.

Moderate or fresh northwesterly winds will become lighter inland. Minimum temperature: 7C (45F).