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Summary

  1. Tombstoning man Vincent Wagstaff suffered 'unsurvivable injuries'
  2. Armed police cordoned off Barbican streets after reports of shots fired into harbour
  3. Driver, 84, dies after A30 crash
  4. Plans to turn redundant mills and weirs into electricity generators are discussed by government ministers
  5. The number of bus journeys being made across Devon is falling
  6. Squatters buy old South West Water building
  7. Updates on Wednesday 19 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 Thursday 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.

Medical boss cleared of misconduct 'did have some failures'

A former medical director in Cornwall has been cleared of misconduct by a tribunal, but it did note some failures by him.

Paul Upton
BBC

Dr Paul Upton (pictured) was found to have not taken appropriate steps against consultant Rob Jones between January 2010 and October 2011 when he was in the post at the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust.

The Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service hearing in Manchester noted Dr Upton did not obtain a report about complaints involving Mr Jones over concerns raised in 2010. He also failed to promptly respond to fears about Mr Jones from colleagues that year, and made two misleading statements regarding Mr Jones to the media in February 2013.

But it was argued by counsel on behalf of Dr Upton that those facts "amounted to isolated and discrete shortcomings and did not form a pattern of behaviour". Dr Upton had denied allegations of misconduct. Mr Jones retired and voluntarily removed himself from the medical register.

Health watchdog to keep eye on Plymouth mental health services

BBC Radio Devon

Inspectors from a health watchdog are to keep an eye on progress being made in improving access to community mental health teams in Plymouth.

Services provided by Plymouth Community Healthcare CIC have been rated as "good" overall following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

However, the CQC said inspectors "did have concerns about the safety of patients accessing the community mental health teams for adults of working age and for older people". 

It said it found Plymouth Community Healthcare needed "to take significant steps to improve the quality of this service to ensure urgent improvements take place". It added that the it was confident the organisation would "work to deliver these improvements on behalf of all of their patients".

Latest headlines in Devon and Cornwall

Andrew Segal

Local Live

  • The actions of a former medical director of the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust, who did not protect patients from risk of harm by a gynaecologist, did not amount to misconduct, a tribunal rules
  • Badger culling in parts of the South West come to an end, the government says
  • Devon and Cornwall Police defend their child protection work after criticism from the head of Ofsted
  • Inspectors from a health watchdog are to keep an eye on progress being made in improving access to community mental health teams in Plymouth

Police defended child protection work after Ofsted boss criticism

Sophie Pierce

BBC Radio Devon

Devon and Cornwall Police have defended their child protection work. 

Yesterday, Ofsted head Sir Michael Wilshaw criticised police forces in England for failing to take child protection matters seriously. He cited Torbay as an area where children were too readily taken into police protection without any discussion about alternative options.

Det Supt Keith Perkin said officers often had to make difficult decisions in challenging situations in the interests of the safety of the child. But he acknowledged that, wherever possible, they needed to liaise with social workers.

He added that, since the beginning of the year, officers had been working hard with children's services and that fewer children have been taken into police protection.

Man has three cars destroyed by speeding drivers

Exeter Express & Echo

Someone will be killed unless drivers slow down – this is the message coming from residents who are fed up with the increasing number of crashes on their road.

Councillor 'really pleased' private taxis did not pick up on-street fares

Andrew Segal

Local Live

A senior Plymouth councillor says he "really pleased" that private hire taxi drivers in the city did not try to pick up any on-street passengers during a recent sting operating by licensing officials.

The council said, over the past month, two test purchase operations by its taxi licensing team had been carried out, and none of 19 private hire drivers approached on the street accepted passengers.

Councillor John Riley, the city council cabinet member responsible for licensing, warned: "All private hire journeys must be pre-booked through their respective operator. Pick-ups by private hire vehicles are not covered by the vehicle’s insurance, so this in turn puts passengers at risk."

School offers booster lessons transport help to families with 'financial hardship'

Laurence Reed

BBC Radio Cornwall

A Cornish school says it will help fund transport back from school booster lessons if a student's family is suffering "genuine financial hardship".

Treviglas College
Google

Newquay's Treviglas College offers after-school booster lessons for GCSE pupils and used to offer free bus transport afterwards. It now plans to charge £4 a week. Mother Sarah Le Vien, from St Columb Major, said the policy could result in education being denied to those who could not afford the charge.

Deputy head David O'Neill said school fiances now meant "we have to ask parents to make a contribution". 

However, he added: "If somebody has got a genuine financial hardship, then come and speak to us. We're more than happy to help, because that is what a community college does. We will look at things on a one-to-one basis."

Latest weather: Clear spells overnight and a sunny Thursday

David Braine

Weather Forecaster

Any showers will soon ease and clear spells will develop overnight. With the clear skies and light winds we could see patchy frost and fog developing towards dawn. Minimum temperature: 3C (37F).

Weather
BBC

Thursday will start crisp and bright with early fog soon clearing. It'll then be a sunny day but perhaps with the odd shower or two. Maximum temperature: 15C (59F).

BreakingDoctor's failure to protect patients from gynaecologist 'not misconduct'

Press Association

Dr Paul Upton
BBC

Failings by a medical director in Cornwall to protect patients from risk of harm by a gynaecologist did not amount to misconduct, a disciplinary tribunal has ruled. 

Dr Paul Upton (pictured) was found to have not taken appropriate steps against consultant Rob Jones on various dates between January 2010 and October 2011 when he was in the post at the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust.

But a Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service hearing in Manchester noted there was evidence of "deficiencies" in governance systems when he came into the job. It also said he improved care standards during his time there. Dr Upton had denied allegations of misconduct.

More than 200 former patients of Mr Jones, who also practised as an obstetrician, are taking legal action against the trust for the harm they say was done to them under his care. Mr Jones retired and voluntarily removed himself from the medical register.

Environment Agency 'will work with mill owners over power plans'

BBC Radio Devon

Environment experts say they will work with mill owners if plans to refurbish and turn a group of old mills and weirs in the South West into a network of electricity generators go ahead.

About 60 owners have signed up to a scheme that's being discussed by government ministers. The owners want to put new technology on old sites to create a network of hydro-electric power producers.   

Building conservationists have warned against damaging the structures if they need modifying. The Environment Agency said it would work closely with the group to avoid unacceptable impacts on fish.

4x4 towed away by police after DVLA clamp cut off

Winter parking charge changes in Torbay

BBC Radio Devon

There'll be cheaper parking charges in Torbay from 1 November, with the cost of one hour's parking reduced to £1.

The council said it was cutting prices throughout the winter period.

Police 'catch their first killer clowns in Plymouth'

Transport charges for after-school lessons 'could hit struggling families'

Laurence Reed

BBC Radio Cornwall

A Cornish school's new transport policy could hit children from struggling families, a mother says.

Newquay's Treviglas College offers after-school booster lessons for GCSE pupils and used to offer free bus transport afterwards. But it now plans to charge £4 a week.

Sarah Le Vien, from St Columb Major, said: "To some people, £4 a week might not sound like a lot, but some parents might not be able to afford that. They are usually the people that are struggling more."

The school said it would listen to people's concerns and could off some support to people who are in financial difficulties.

'Crazy start' for Olympic swimming star Rebecca Adlington

BBC Radio Devon

Olympic swimming gold medalist Rebecca Adlington says starting swimming at a young age was the start of her Games career.

Rebecca Adlington
BBC

The Olympian has been meeting more than 100 children at the Plymouth Life Centre, telling them about the importance of swimming.  

She said: "That's where it begins - your three-year-old is going to lessons, even though you don't think that child is ever going to end up at the Olympics. Somehow, 10 years on, they're at the Games, competing, and it's crazy. That's exactly what it was like for my mum and dad."

Want to poppy on down to next year's Devon County Show?

Cowan-Dickie set to miss autumn tests

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

England hooker Luke Cowan-Dickie is set to miss the autumn internationals after suffering an ankle ligament injury.

Luke Cowan-Dickie
Getty Images

The 23-year-old was hurt in Exeter's European Champions Cup loss to Clermont Auvergne and will see a specialist to decide if he needs surgery.

"It's relatively serious," Exeter head coach Rob Baxter told BBC Sport. "There's no fracture but it does look like a badly sprained ankle with some ligament damage so we're not going to be seeing him in the next few weeks."

Private hire taxis pass on-the-street passengers test

Andrew Segal

Local Live

No private hire taxi drivers stopped in an operation by Plymouth City Council took on unauthorised passengers, the authority says.

Private hire cabs can only take pre-booked passengers, not pick up on-the-spot customers from the street.

The council said that, over the past month, two test purchase operations by its taxi licensing team had been carried out, and none of 19 private hire drivers approached on the street accepted passengers.

Latest badger cull comes to an end

BBC News England

The government says an operation to cull badgers in parts of the South West and the West Midlands has come to an end "normally as expected".

Badger. Pic: PA
PA

The BBC learnt in August of the plans for the shooting of badgers - including in South Devon, North Devon and North Cornwall - as part of the government's 25-year-strategy to eradicate bovine TB. Opponents say there is no evidence culling is effective.

Cull figures are expected to be published next year.

Pop-up shop offering pocket money loans for kids could be coming to Redruth ... or is it?

West Briton

Social media users have slammed a proposed new pop-up shop in Redruth offering pocket money loans for children, but all may not be what it seems.

Water supply problems resolved in Langore

Ex-mills and weirs electricity plan could have 'knock-on benefits'

BBC Radio Devon

Old mills and weirs in mid-Devon could be turned into a network of electricity generators.

Waterwheel
BBC

About 60 owners have signed up to a scheme that's being discussed by government ministers. The owners want to put new technology on old sites to create a network of hydro-electric power producers. 

Brendan Bellis, from Flock Mill, near Rewe, who is heading up the group, said there were "a lot of knock-on benefits of supporting this". He said: "It will ensure future infrastructure in terms of energy supply, and could help reduce flood risks."

Water supply repairs in Langore

Latest weather: Staying dry

Kevin Thomas

BBC Weather Forecaster

It will be mainly dry and, although it will be cloudy at times, some sunny spells will develop. There will also be a few isolated, but mainly light showers. Winds will be from the northwest and mainly light or moderate. Maximum temperature 14C (57F).

Weather
BBC

Tonight it'll be dry and skies will clear to become cold enough for a ground frost in some rural areas. Patches of mist and fog are also likely to form before dawn. Light or moderate north to northeasterly winds will become calm inland. Minimum temperature: 4C (39F).

Plymouth healthcare deemed 'good' by regulator

BBC Radio Devon

Services provided by Plymouth Community Healthcare CIC have been rated as 'good' overall following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).   

The CQC inspected the main services for three days in June 2016.

Dr Paul Lelliott, from the CQC, said: “The organisation can be proud of many of the services that it manages. 

“We found the service to be well led at board level with a leadership team including non-executive directors, who had a good understanding of the organisation and were not afraid to challenge the executive team."

Plymouth Community Healthcare provides community, physical and mental healthcare for around 270,000 people in the city.

Olympic star Rebecca Adlington splashes out on swimming advice

John Henderson

BBC Spotlight

View more on twitter

The Olympic gold medalist has been talking to more than 100 local children, telling them about the importance of swimming.

Row over transport for after-school classes

Laurence Reed

BBC Radio Cornwall

An angry mum from Cornwall says a new school transport policy for her 15-year-old son is divisive and could mean education is denied to those who cannot afford to pay new charges for transport.

Newquay's Treviglas College offers after-school booster lessons for GCSE pupils and used to offer free bus transport afterwards. But it now plans to charge £4 a week.

Sarah Le Vien, from St Columb Major, criticised the charge, saying it would hit family finances and could affect the education of her son, Oliver, who is taking some of the booster classes.

The school said it would listen to people's concerns and could possibly change the policy for them.

Brixham to be 'Europe's largest shellfish operation'

Torquay Herald Express

Brixham could become home to the largest shellfish operation in Europe, it has been revealed.

Woman seriously injured in Plymouth house fire

Andrew Segal

Local Live

A woman has been seriously injured in a house fire in Plymouth.

Firefighters said they were called to to the "serious" blaze in Sussex Road at about 06:45 and brought out the woman, who was taken to hospital.

The house was badly damaged, they added.

How'd I get on a drone ad?

Tips from Olympic champ

John Henderson

BBC Spotlight

Jury out in murder and arsons trial

Denis Nightingale

BBC Radio Cornwall

The jury in the trial of a woman accused of murder and a string of alleged arson attacks has gone out to consider its verdict.

Karen Pedley, 43, 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. Ms Pedley, from Caharrack, near Redruth, denies murder, attempted murder and 13 counts of arson between 2002 and 2010.

The trial, at Truro Crown Court, continues.

South West people 'significantly more likely to know adopted children'

BBC Spotlight

People in the South West are significantly more likely to have one or more family members who have adopted children.

See-saw
BBC

The research, by YouGov, was commissioned to mark National Adoption Week which encourages more people to consider taking in children from care.

Changes in court practices meant there was a national decline in the number of children suitable for adoption at the beginning of this year, but since then the number of children waiting for new homes has increased.

Tombstoning man Vincent Wagstaff pronounced dead near jump site

Sian Davies

BBC News Online

A man who died tombstoning in Devon was pronounced dead near where he jumped into the water and sustained "unsurvivable injuries", an inquest has heard. 

Plymouth Hoe
BBC

Thirty-nine-year-old Vincent Wagstaff hit rocks after jumping from the city's Hoe last Thursday. Plymouth Coroner's Court heard he was with friends when he decided to jump, and the incident was witnessed by friends and members of the public. 

He was pronounced dead on a pontoon off the Corinthian Yacht Club, the hearing was told. Mr Wagstaff was also separated from his partner and unemployed at the time, it heard. 

The inquest was opened and adjourned until next February.

Bodmin roadworks 'cause restaurant closure'

BBC Radio Cornwall

View more on twitter

The closures for road improvements are due to last nine months. They are part of Cornwall Council plans to make Bodmin a so-called "cycle town" in a bid to make it more friendly to bike users and help regenerate the area. 

The council said it was looking at ways to helps businesses in the area affected by the disruption.

What do you think of the plans and road closures? Email us your views.

40,000 visitors shell out for Falmouth's Oyster Festival

BBC Spotlight

More than 40,000 people visited Falmouth's Oyster Festival this year, and an estimated 25,000 oysters were eaten and more than 1,000 bottles of fizz drunk, organisers say.

Oyster Festival
BBC

The festival was started to draw attention to native Fal oysters and celebrate the start of the dredging season. 

The event also featured local musicians, cooking demonstrations, and an oyster shucking competition.