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  1. Central and eastern European women 'forced into sexual slavery in pop-up brothels' in South West
  2. Seven taken to hospital after A39 crash
  3. Christopher Tester: Shot Antigua tourist back in Devon
  4. Search continuing for missing Bideford man
  5. Campaigners protest against latest increase in rail fares at South West train stations
  6. Superheroes on RNLI new year shout
  7. Plymouth earmarked for government scheme aimed at building thousands of new starter homes
  8. More news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Wednesday

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 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.

Antigua shooting: Christopher Tester's parents 'unbelievable'

John Ayres

BBC Spotlight

The parents of Christopher Tester, who was shot in the head on Christmas Day during a burglary at his parents' restaurant in Antigua,have been "unbelievable" in their care and concern for their son, his sister says.

The 37-year-old (pictured right), from Torquay, is in Plymouth's Derriford Hospital after an air ambulance transporting him landed at Exeter Airport last night.

Tester family
Tester Family

Vicky Tester said: "I think my parents are unbelievable: my mum is the strongest woman I think I’ve ever seen. Dad has been fantastic - he's been with him the whole way, sat with him in that air ambulance the whole time, and hasn't left his side. 

"But it’s their son and, like any parents, they’ll do everything they can."

Gritters out on roads across Devon and Cornwall

Andrew Segal

Local Live

Highways bosses in Devon and Cornwall say gritters are out on the roads again in both counties as temperatures were expected to drop overnight to near freezing.

Temperatures are expected to fall to 1C (34F) in places.

Cornwall Council contractor Cormac said its vehicles had been out on routes since 14:00.

Devon Highways tweeted: "It's going to be another cold night, take care ice possible."

Gangland drug baron who flooded Plymouth with cocaine is on the run

Plymouth Herald

A jailed gangland leader who helped flood Plymouth with hard drugs is a wanted man again - after going on the run on Christmas Day.

A light bit of filming on Exmoor?

Adrian Campbell, Environment Correspondent

BBC Spotlight

Council 'prefers to pursue fly-tippers through courts'

Laurence Reed

BBC Radio Cornwall

Cornwall Council is defending a small number of fixed noticed penalties it has handed out since tougher rules on fly tipping were brought in last year. 

A Freedom of Information request from the Press Association showed Cornwall issued just three notices to people fly-tipping in the county. However, the authority has also won several high-profile prosecutions in the courts. 

Lyn Carter, from the council's Public Protection Service, said the authority preferred to pursue offenders through the courts, particularly businesses over fly-tipping, because courts are "very serious about fly-tipping".

Latest weather: Cloud thickening with patchy rain

David Braine

Weather Forecaster

The cloud will continue to increase and thicken across all parts tonight, bringing patchy light rain at times, mainly over the higher ground of the moors. It will be noticeably less cold than last night. Minimum temperature: 1C (34F).


Cloud and patchy light rain will slowly clear south-westwards through Wednesday, leaving drier, brighter conditions and sunny spells. However, the far west will probably remain rather cloudy. Maximum temperature: 9C (48F).

Exeter space protection order has tent seizure provisions removed

Andrew Segal

Local Live

Revisions have been made to a proposed Public Spaces Protection Order for Exeter city centre and the St Thomas area, the city council has confirmed.

Local authorities can use such orders to ban activities having a "detrimental impact" on an area. However, the original Exeter order included on-the-spot fines and measures to allow tents to be seized from homeless people, prompting an outcry.

Exeter Public Spaces Protection Order. Pic: Exeter City Council
Exeter City Council

The council said it had reduced the scope of the order to only take action against:

  • The taking of intoxicants (alcohol, so-called legal highs and other stimulants)
  • Individuals or groups causing anti-social behaviour
  • Urinating in the street
  • Aggressive begging

Another change, it added, was that fixed penalty notices would "be served retrospectively (i.e. not on-the-spot) in the vast majority of cases".

The council will decide whether to approve the order next month.

Antigua shooting: Christopher Tester's family 'unsure of full effects of injuries'

John Ayres

BBC Spotlight

The family of Christopher Tester, who was shot in the head on Christmas Day during a burglary at his parents' restaurant in Antigua,"don't really fully know what the long-term effects will be" of his injuries, his sister says. 

Vicky Tester

The 37-year-old, from Torquay, is in Plymouth's Derriford Hospital after an air ambulance transporting him landed at Exeter Airport last night. 

Vicky Tester (pictured) said teams who would be involved in treating his brain, eyes, and also the reconstruction of his face, had been involved in assessments after he arrived at the hospital.

She added: "The main point is that he's stable and there's was nothing they needed to urgently operate on when he arrived, which is fantastic."

House price predictions for 2017

Kevin Peachey

Personal finance reporter

Will home prices rise or fall this year? 

Interactive table

Stamp Duty rises and a lack of homes going on to the market have been having an effect on the biggest financial transaction of most people's lives

Try the interactive table to see what you can afford.

Latest headlines in Devon and Cornwall

Andrew Segal

Local Live

  • A man from Torquay who was shot in the head during a robbery in Antigua is is in a stable condition after being flown back to Devon, his sister says
  • A former motel in Paignton is badly damaged by a fire which broke out overnight
  • Police name an 88-year-old man who died following a serious collision near St Blazey just before Christmas as John Perks
  • Cornwall Council defends only issuing three fixed penalty notices to fly-tippers since getting such powers in May, saying it preferred to take offenders to court

Warning over 'un-neighbourly and unnecessary' bonfires

Andrew Segal

Local Live

A Cornish parish council has warned against "un-neighbourly and unnecessary" bonfires, and added it was reminding people that there were restrictions "on burning of certain materials".

Feock bonfire. Pic: Feock Parish Council
Feock Parish Council

Posting a photograph on Facebook it was sent of a plume of black smoke from what it believed was a bonfire, the council said suitable re-cycling facilities existed locally and that "Cornwall Council run a scheme for collection of items which cannot be disposed of with normal household waste or re-cycling".

It said: "This is a far more neighbourly and environmentally friendly option for things like old mattresses and other goods than burning them in the back garden."

How much is a return ticket from Plymouth to London?

BBC Spotlight

View more on twitter

Campaigners against rail fare rises have been protesting outside train stations in Exeter and Taunton over the latest increases.

Rail passengers are facing higher fares across the UK with average price increases of 2.3%.

However, fares have gone up by around 25% since the mid-1990s, and some tickets have spiked by 40% in just a decade, BBC transport correspondent Richard Westcott said.

Friend thanks fundraisers for getting Christopher Tester home

Sian Davies

BBC News Online

A friend of Christopher Tester, who was shot in the head on Chrsitmas Day during a burglary at his parents' restaurant in Antigua, has thanked fundraisers for helping to save his life.

Friend Charlotte Williams said: "There has been a huge amount of people involved in this. It has been a mammoth effort and we're delighted we had the generous support from everybody and we could get Chris home. 

Christopher Tester

"His injuries were so critical at the time and there was only so much the doctors could do in Antigua it was common sense to get him back to the UK as quickly as we possibly could." 

"We are all so relieved - it's the conclusion we were all wishing for." 

Increased student numbers at Falmouth and Exeter Universities set to be approved

Cornwall Live

Falmouth and Penryn could have a lot more students than they bargained for if plans to lift the maximum allowable number are approved this week.

Missing woman 'last heard from on Christmas Day'

BBC Radio Devon

A search is under way for a missing woman who police were last in contact with on Christmas Day.

Julija Dubovika

Police said they were "growing increasingly concerned" for the welfare of 30-year-old Julija Dubovika, who officers were last in contact with on her mobile phone.

Officers said Ms Dubovika, known as Julia Belova, was last believed to have been in the north Devon area, "quite possibly the Braunton area in particular". She also previously lived in Leicestershire and has links to Blackpool, Leicester, Derby, Lancashire, Nottingham and Preston and Bristol, they added.

She is described as 5ft 7ins tall, slim build, with very long, blond hair and green eyes. She has an eastern European accent and a tattoo on each wrist.

Latest travel in Devon

BBC Travel

  • In Exeter, Rydon Lane is partially blocked due to an incident at the Countess Wear roundabout
  • In Plymouth, Shapters Road is partially blocked at the Cattedown roundabout due to an incident. Traffic is slow-moving
  • Traffic is busy in both directions on the A379 in Exton - Exmouth Road - because of temporary traffic lights due to roadworks

Morgan: Pirates' high tempo paying off

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Cornish Pirates captain Chris Morgan says the side's plan to play a faster-paced game is paying off.

The Pirates have won three of their last seven games and are only one point and one place outside the Championship play-off places, but three of their four defeats have come to runaway leaders London Irish.

Chris Morgan
Brian Tempest

"We're trying to play at a bit more of a tempo, it suits us with the players we've got and I think it's coming off," Morgan told BBC Radio Cornwall.

"It's taken us a while to get into our straps and we're creating a lot of opportunities, but we've seen that we've not finished all those opportunities to date."

St Blazey crash victim named as 88-year-old man

Andrew Segal

Local Live

An 88-year-old man who died following a serious collision near St Blazey in Cornwall has been named by police as John Perks.

Mr Perks was fatally injured in the two-vehicle crash at about 15:15 on Wednesday 21 December on the A390 at Penpillick.

Police investigating the crash have appealed for witnesses.

Cornish village marks 25 years of UK wind power

The Guardian

From Pam the lollipop lady to the repairs for a storm-battered church roof, the fruits of wind power are not hard to find in Delabole.

Fly-tipping: Nearly 30 fixed penalties handed out by councils

Andrew Segal

Local Live

Councils in Devon and Cornwall have handed out 28 fixed penalty notices for fly-tipping since new powers were introduced in May. 

Of the authorities which responded to a Freedom of Information request from the Press Association, South Hams District Council issued most with 13. 

Other issuing authorities included: 

  • Plymouth City Council - 6
  • Cornwall Council - 3 
  • Teignbridge District Council - 2 
  • Torbay Council - 2 
  • East Devon District Council - 1 
  • Exeter City Council - 1 

The top three councils nationally who had used the powers were all London boroughs, issuing more than a 100 notices each. 

Missing man in Plymouth found

Latest weather: Mostly sunny, but cloud increasing and feeling cold

Kevin Thomas

BBC Weather Forecaster

It will be mostly sunny and feeling cold, but cloud will increase across the north towards evening. Light variable winds will become mainly northwesterly and occasionally moderate later. Maximum temperature: 8C 46F.


This evening and tonight, cloud will spread further to the south and west, becoming thick enough for a few spots of light rain, mainly over the high ground. Further south there will be some clearer spells at first, while winds will be from the northwest and mainly light or moderate. Minimum temperature: 2C (36F).

Brexit-hit Plymouth firm looks doomed after failing to find investors

Plymouth Herald

Hopes of rescuing Plymouth's Brexit-hit Rame Energy plc are looking bleak at the start of 2017 after administrators said they can't find investors and all its shares were cancelled.

Seven taken to hospital after A39 crash

Police are appealing for witnesses after a two-vehicle crash on the A39 near Bude yesterday.

Emergency services were called just before 14:45 after a Renault people carrier and a Renault van crashed.

The people carrier had two adults and five children on board - all were taken to hospital by air and land ambulances. Their injuries are described as stable.  

The van driver had minor injuries and did not need hospital treatment.

Both the north and southbound lanes were closed for several hours for the air ambulance to land and police to investigate the crash.

The FA People's Cup is back - sign up now!


Looking for a new project for the start of 2017? How about getting fit/fitter with a chance to win free tickets to the FA Cup final?

BBC Get Inspired has again teamed up with the Football Association to launch the 2017 FA People's Cup, a free knockout competition that will give the people of England the chance to play in their version of the FA Cup. 

From Sunday League regulars to folk who have only kicked a ball in their back yard everyone can take part.

Find out more and sign up here.

You could be at the FA Cup final on Saturday, 27 May

Watkins and Threlkeld in line for award

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Exeter City striker Ollie Watkins and Plymouth Argyle midfielder Oscar Threlkeld have been nominated for the League Two Player of the Month award for December.

Newton Abbot born Watkins, who celebrated his 21st birthday on 30 December, scored a hat-trick the day after - part of a five-goal haul in four games last month. 

Ollie Watkins and Oscar Threlkeld
Rex Features

Threlkeld has scored twice for Argyle in December and and helped the Pilgrims to three clean sheets as well as winning their FA Cup second-round replay at Newport County to book a third round tie at Premier League giants Liverpool.

The pair are up against Carlisle's Nicky Adams and Wycombe’s Scott Kashket for the award.

Two deer rescued from 7ft well

Andrew Segal

Local Live

View more on twitter

Two deer have been rescued from a well after falling 7ft into it, firefighters say.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service said the animals were found in 2ft of water when they were called to the scene in Woodburn, Torr, in the Yealmpton area, at about 14:50 on Monday.

A vet sedated the animals before a pulley system was used to get them out.

SW Ambulance gets 750 calls in 12 hours

Latest travel in Devon and Cornwall

BBC Travel

  • In Devon, there are reports of an incident on the A373 Dowell Street in Honiton, near Northcote Lane
  • In Paignton, Dartmouth Road, near Penwill Way, is partially blocked due to an incident
  • In Exeter, there are reports of an incident on North Street, near South Lawn Terrace
  • On the A386 in Bideford, near Ford Rise, there are reports of a collision. Expect delays
  • In Cornwall, on the B3266 at Valley Truckle, near the A39 Atlantic Highway, there are reports of an accident
  • The A38 westbound in Saltash, near the B3271, is partially blocked due to a broken-down vehicle

Latest headlines in Devon and Cornwall

Andrew Segal

Local Live

  • A man from Torquay who was shot in the head defending his mother during an armed robbery in Antigua arrives back in Devon
  • Police say European women are being forced into sexual slavery in so-called "pop-up brothels" across Cornwall and Devon, with 14 such operations appearing in Newquay since July
  • Campaigners hold protests at train stations in Exeter and Taunton to oppose the latest rail fare increases
  • Police search for two missing men in Devon - a 76-year-old in Bideford and 32-year-old in Plymouth

'Surprising number' raise £850 for RNLI in Looe New Year's Day swim

Andrew Segal

Local Live

More than £850 has been raised for the RNLI's lifeboats in Looe by "a surprising number" of people taking part in the town's New Year's Day swim, the charity says.

Looe RNLI swim. Pic: Ian Foster
Ian Foster

The RNLI said about 100 swimmers were involved, "despite the cold and heavy rain".

There were also more than 100 spectators and supporters watching the event "from the comfort of their waterproof coats, hats and gloves".

But, after the swim, hot drinks and refreshments were available in the boathouse to help those taking part to warm themselves.

Pop-up brothels 'not wanted in Newquay'

Denis Nightingale

BBC Radio Cornwall

Newquay is working with police to ensure so-called pop-up brothels "don't take hold in the town", its mayor says.

Carl Leadbetter

Since last July 14 such brothels have appeared in the town, mainly in holiday lets.

Mayor Carl Leadbetter said: "We market ourselves in being a family-oriented holiday destination. It's not the sort of thing we want to be associated with."

Homeless man jailed for urinating outside library

Exeter Express & Echo

A drunken homeless man has been jailed for urinating against a wall and abusing police community support officers – outside a library.

Traffic problems in Devon

BBC Travel

  • In Plymouth, North Prospect Road is partially blocked near Furneaux Road due to an incident
  • In Paignton, there are reports of a collision on Dartmouth Road, Brixham-bound, near Torbay Leisure Centre

Tisdale nominated for League Two award

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Exeter City manager Paul Tisdale has been nominated for the League Two Manager of the Month award. 

The Grecians have taken 17 points from the last 21 and are up into 11th place in League Two after Monday's 4-0 win over Leyton Orient.

Paul Tisdale
Rex Features

Wycombe Wanderers boss Gareth Ainsworth, Colchester United’s John McGreal and Cambridge United’s Shaun Derry have also been nominated for the award.

"It's no surprise when you get your squad back together again. We've got one or two out but we've got a strong squad, the bench looked strong, the spine of the team was good," Tisdale told BBC Radio Devon after Monday's win.

Shot tourist Christopher Tester returns to Devon

Sian Davies

BBC News Online

Shot tourist Christopher Tester arrived at Exeter Airport last night, accompanied by his dad Tony. 

Mr Tester is now being assessed by doctors at Derriford Hospital after being shot in the head during a robbery

Christopher Tester's family
Family Handout

Family friend Charlotte Williams said it was not yet clear what the long term implications of Mr Tester's injuries could be. 

"He landed back safely, but was very tired," she said. "He's stable and was transferred to Derriford with no problems."

Water supply problems in Plymouth

Plymouth sites chosen for starter home project

BBC Spotlight

Several sites in Plymouth have been chosen as part of a government scheme aimed at building thousands of new starter homes.


The idea is to sell the properties at a discount thanks to a government subsidy, but only those aged 23 to 40 will be eligible to buy, the government said.

Whitleigh and Bath Street are among the sites chosen.