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Summary

  1. Husband and wife found dead at Dunkeswell property
  2. Plymouth Argyle director pledges more than £4m for new stand
  3. Gunshots 'fired over Cornwall hunt riders'
  4. Derriford Hospital on highest possible alert due to number of patients
  5. iPhone 'stolen' from teenage crash victim
  6. Lorry driver has 'very serious' injuries after A30 slip road crash
  7. Two children and man rescued from house fire in Plymouth
  8. Royal Cornwall Hospital at 'level 4' and asking people not to visit A&E unless it's life threatening
  9. Ammunition belt found by Dartmoor walker
  10. Bude is set to become a home for up to two families of Syrian refugees after a community fundraising project
  11. More news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Friday

Live Reporting

By Jonathan Morris

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Our live coverage

That's all from BBC Local Live in Devon & Cornwall for today, we'll be back at 08:00 to bring you all the day's news, sport, travel and weather updates.

Don't miss BBC Spotlight at 18:30 and the late bulletin at 22:30 tonight.  

Derriford Hospital on highest alert level

Miles Davis

BBC News Online

Derriford Hospital in Plymouth is on the highest level of alert - Level 4 -  which means hospital services are unable to cope with demand.

A hospital spokesman said: "This week has been even busier than we anticipated, largely due to the number of sick patients who are coming to our Emergency Department."

The hospital said there had been "a knock-on effect on the demand for beds within the entire hospital".

The Level 4 status was previously referred to as being 'on black alert'.

The Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro confirmed yesterday it had moved to Level 4 status.

Butcher un-retires himself

Laurence Reed

BBC Radio Cornwall

A retired butcher from Cornwall says he was so bored and lonely when he shut his shop that he just had to reopen it. 

73 year old Ralph Michell - who ran the shop for decades at Calenick near Truro - was inspired by the story of the 89 year old man in Devon, Joe Bartley who put an ad out for work. He is now working at a cafe in Paignton.

Butcher
BBC

It made him think, by comparison, he's a young man. So two years after the doors closed, he's back trading again.

Harrad and Reid agree Torquay deals

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Torquay United have signed striker Shaun Harrad and extended the loan of Exeter City forward Jamie Reid until the end of the season.

Harrad, 32, rejoins the Gulls after leaving Wrexham, subject to international clearance, having spent the second half of 2015-16 at Torquay.

Jamie Reid and Shaun Harrad
Rex Features

He comes in to replace Nathan Blissett, who is set to move to Plymouth Argyle, while Reid, 22, who moved to Plainmoor on loan in the summer, has scored three times in 26 National League games.

"I was delighted to get the call and be here to help the club progress up the league table," Harrad told BBC Sport. "I want to help us finish as high as possible, there are some talented players who came in here over the summer and we're looking to get some consistency into the performances to progress and get up that league table."

Jamie Reid and Shaun Harrad

Harrad and Reid agree Torquay deals

Torquay United sign striker Shaun Harrad and extend the loan of Exeter City forward Jamie Reid until the end of the season.

Read more

Dead husband and wife named locally

Kirk England

BBC Radio Devon

A husband and wife found dead at a farmhouse in Devon have been named locally as Nicola and Michael Beck.

Their bodies were discovered at the farmhouse in countryside near Dunkerswell Abbey in the early hours of the morning.

Scenes of crime officers and search teams have been on site all day. Police are not looking for anybody else in connection with the bodies.

More knives handed over after amnesty

These knives were handed in at Falmouth Police Station yesterday.

It follows a knife amnesty that lasted for six days in November across Devon and Cornwall.

Knives
Falmouth Police

More than 200 knives were handed in across the force area.

The amnesty was prompted by legislation that banned the sale or importation of ‘zombie knives’.  

Severe delays in Bodmin area

Military items left on Dartmoor 'a rare occurrence'

Jonathan Morris

BBC News Online

A belt of blank rifle cartridges, a glove, camouflage and knee pads have all been found by a walker on Dartmoor. 

They were found by Steve Granger near Doe Tor on the Willsworthy firing range in north Dartmoor on Wednesday. 

The MOD said: “We have collected the items found by Mr Granger. Before they begin training, all exercising personnel are reminded not to leave anything behind on Dartmoor and training area staff conduct sweeps to check for items left. 

"Military items being left on Dartmoor is therefore a rare occurrence but unfortunately items are occasionally missed. 

"We would therefore like to remind the public not to touch any items they find, as they may be dangerous. Anything found should be reported to 01837 657210 and will be safely removed by MOD personnel.”

Equipment found
Steve Granger

Shot cat has leg amputated

Shocking photos have been released of a St Blazey cat which was brutally attacked and left riddled by shotgun pellets. 

Gringo has had to have his leg amputated and needs more treatment. 

Cat
Sally's cat rescue

He arrived at Sally's Cat Rescue Centre in St Austell on 22 December with multiple injuries.

Well-wishers have raised more than a thousand pounds for his vets bills. 

BreakingArgyle director funds new stand at Home Park

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Plymouth Argyle director Simon Hallett has invested £4.1m into the club to help finance the building of a new grandstand at Home Park. 

The Plymouth-born American-based businessman has increased his stake in the League Two club to 41.9%, the second-largest shareholder behind owner and chairman James Brent. 

Simon Hallett
BBC

Hallett will be repaid over the next 30 years at a rate 'less than 3%' and all the loans currently owed to Hallett, Brent and director Tony Wrathall have been turned into equity in the club, reducing Argyle's debt level. 

"It's a labour of love for me," Hallett, who has supported the club for over 50 years, told BBC South West. "The new investment made by me is clearly not made on commercial terms, it's been made on very soft terms, so it's mine and my wife's contribution to Plymouth Argyle and towards the city of Plymouth."

Breaking'Murder and suicide' of husband and wife

Miles Davis

BBC News Online

Police are treating the discovery of two bodies in Devon as a "domestic related murder and suicide".

Officers found the bodies of a man, 62, and his 52-year-old wife at a property at Dunkeswell in east Devon shortly before midnight yesterday.

Devon and Cornwall Police said they are not looking for anybody else in connection with the deaths.

Plymouth Argyle sign Torquay's Blissett

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Plymouth Argyle have signed Torquay United striker Nathan Blissett.

The Pilgrims have paid the Gulls an initial fee of £15,000 for the target man, the first player Argyle have paid a fee for since the summer of 2012.

Nathan Blissett
Rex Features

The 26-year-old has scored four goals for Torquay this season and scored eight times in 17 games last season as he helped the Gulls avoid relegation.

Blissett joined National League Torquay in January 2016, and signed a new deal at Plainmoor in the summer. Argyle has not disclosed the length of the former Bristol Rovers striker's contract.

Nathan Blissett

Plymouth Argyle sign Torquay's Blissett

Plymouth Argyle have signed Torquay United striker Nathan Blissett for a £15,000 fee.

Read more

Rates rise may lead to price hikes

The price of food and goods from small businesses in Cornwall may increase because of a big rise in business rates in some parts of the county. 

Anne Vandermulen from the Federation of Small Businesses in Cornwall says shops and cafes may have to increase their prices or shed staff to be able to afford the rise in rates. 

St Ives
BBC
St Ives

In areas like St Ives and Wadebridge the rates will go up this year because of a reassessment based on the latest property prices.

In other towns such as Bodmin and Penzance they're expected to fall. 

Lorry driver has 'very serious' injuries

Johnny O'Shea

BBC News Online

Police say the driver of a lorry that partially overturned on a slip road near Bodmin this morning has been taken to Derriford Hospital with "very serious lower leg injuries".

The accident happened at about 09:00 this morning.

The lorry is partially resting on a railway bridge which is causing problems for the emergency services. A crane and other removal vehicles are on site.

There is major traffic congestion in the Bodmin area as a result of the crash, combined with roadworks at Temple and in the town centre.

Crash
Twitter/TruroWindows

Residents object to plans for four storey block of flats replacing pub in Henver Road

Cornwall Live

Residents have objected to plans to transform a former pub on one of Newquay's main roads into a four-storey block of flats.

Two bodies found in East Devon: What we know so far

Kirk England

BBC Radio Devon

  • Police found the bodies of a man and a woman at a property in East Devon
  • Officers attended the address in Dunkeswell at 23:40 on Wednesday
  • The alarm was raised following concerns for the welfare of the man and woman
  • The property remains sealed off and officers are still at the property
  • Police are treating their deaths as "unexplained"
  • No-one is being sought in connection with their deaths
Scene
BBC

Latest travel across Devon and Cornwall

BBC Travel

  • On the A392, St Columb Road is partially blocked and there's slow traffic near the entrance to the Atlantic Reach Holiday Resort junction, because of an accident involving a single lane
  • One lane is closed and there's slow traffic on the A30 eastbound in Bodmin at Carminow Cross, because of an overturned lorry and barrier repairs
  • On the A386 Tavistock Road in Plymouth the road is busy but traffic is moving in both directions at Derriford Roundabout

Penzance on global 'places to go' list

Johnny O'Shea

BBC News Online

Penzance is "having a moment" according to the New York Times who place the town 14th on its '52 places to go in 2017' list.

The author David Shaftel writes "Penzance, the Cornish port town in the southwest of England is having a moment thanks to the popularity of 'Poldark', the BBC costume drama set in 18th-century Cornwall".

Jubilee Pool
BBC

The article recommends visiting the Jubilee Pool, as well as some local accommodation and restaurants.

Canada tops the list, with the Atacama Desert in Chile in second place.

Council jobs freeze in bid to plug £8.1million of overspending

Plymouth Herald

A jobs freeze is being introduced by Devon County Council to manage a projected budget overspend.

Afternoon weather forecasts

BBC Weather

  • CORNWALL - It is a mainly cloudy afternoon with some light rain or drizzle in the west. Conditions will be drier elsewhere with some bright spells in the east. Winds will be light easterly, but moderate along the south coast. Maximum temperature: 9C (48F).
Cornwall weather
BBC
  • DEVON - It will be a fine but cold afternoon with light winds and plenty of winter sunshine. However across western parts, it will be cloudier and less cold. Maximum temperature: 7 Deg C (45 Deg F).
Devon weather
BBC

iPhone 'stolen' from teenage crash victim

Miles Davis

BBC News Online

A man has been arrested on suspicion of stealing an iPhone from a teenager as she lay in the street with two broken legs after being hit by a car.

Ruby-Tuesday Hobbs, 18, was hit by a suspected drink-driver on Christmas Eve near Drake Circus in Plymouth.

Police confirmed they arrested a 35-year-old man in Plymouth yesterday on suspicion of the theft of a mobile phone. He was released on bail until 1 February.

Miss Hobbs is understood to be receiving treatment at Derriford Hospital in Plymouth for multiple fractures to her legs.

A 27-year-old man from Plymouth was previously arrested on suspicion of causing serious injury by dangerous driving and driving under the influence and bailed until 23 January. 

Ruby-Tuesday Hobbs
Facebook

Congestion on A30 at Bodmin

BBC Travel

There remains heavy congestion on the Eastbound carriageway of the A30 near Bodmin after a lorry crash on a slip road.

Highways England expect it to remain busy until early afternoon.

View more on twitter

Gunshots 'fired over Cornwall hunt riders'

Jonathan Morris

BBC News Online

A wildlife charity is investigating claims a member of staff fired a shotgun over the heads of a hunt.

Hunt
Amanda Carpenter

Cornwall Wildlife Trust confirmed that it was investigating the claims by North Cornwall Hunt against the man. 

Police said they had spoken to the charity worker but concluded there had been "no crime". 

A video from a member of the hunt appears to show four shots being fired near the hunt, spooking horses, with spent shot raining down on the riders.  

Police guard remains around property where two bodies found

Kirk England

BBC Radio Devon

Scene
BBC

A police guard remains in place around a property in East Devon after officers found the bodies of a man and woman inside. 

Police went to the property in Dunkeswell just before midnight last night following concerns for welfare

Officers say they are not looking for anyone else in connection with the deaths.

Scene
BBC

MP fury at 'appalling' rates rise

Tamsin Melville

Political Reporter, BBC Radio Cornwall

A Cornish MP has branded as "appalling" rates rises that some St Ives businesses say could force them to close.

It's after a nationwide government review of business rates that's left some having to find hundred of pounds more every month from April.

Derek Thomas
BBC

Ministers say it makes the system fairer and nearly three quarters of companies across the country will see no change or a fall in their bills.

St Ives MP Derek Thomas says it is unfair on some local businesses.

Government backs Bude refugee homing campaigners

BBC Radio Cornwall

The government has welcomed a campaign by a Bude group to home two families of Syrian refugees.

Refugees
AFP

Bude Refugee Support Group has raised £15,000 so far and are confident of doubling this amount.

Its plans are supported by the Government's Community Sponsorship Scheme and have been welcomed by the Minister of State for Immigration, Robert Goodwill MP.

He accepts that some people may be uncomfortable with refugee families moving close to them but has urged communities to support the initiative.

"Having been out in these camps to see the dreadful conditions that these people are living in and as a country we have a long tradition of charitable help," he said.

There's more here on the issue of homing refugees.

Man arrested on suspicion of stealing phone from crash teenager

Plymouth Herald

A man has been arrested on suspicion of stealing a gold-coloured iPhone as a teenage girl lay suffering multiple fractures to her legs after she collided with a car, according to the Plymouth Herald.

Filling up - where are the most expensive and cheapest places in Devon?

BBC Radio Devon

Petrol and diesel prices rose by about 3p a litre in December taking them to their highest average prices since July 2015.

Petrol
BBC

Apparently Woolacombe in north Devon is one of the most expensive places in the country to buy fuel.

Well Radio Devon wants to hear from you about this. How expensive (or cheap) is it where YOU live in the county?

Let us know on FacebookTwitter, or email so we can put together a list of the prices right across Devon.

Thousands raised for student whose family died in house fire before Christmas

Exeter Express & Echo

Thousands of pounds has been raised for a Devon student whose family died in a tragic house fire before Christmas.

Lorry crash on A30 slip road

A lorry crash on a slip road to the A30 near Bodmin is causing delays.

Police believe the road will be closed for several hours.

Crash
Twitter/TruroWindows
View more on twitter

Ammunition belt found by Dartmoor walker

Jonathan Morris

BBC News Online

A belt of blank rifle cartridges has been found by a walker on Dartmoor.

Ammo
Steve Granger

The belt was found by Steve Granger near Doe Tor on the Willsworthy firing range in north Dartmoor on Wednesday.

He said he had contacted the Army which would be collecting the ammo and other equipment including a glove, camouflage and knee pads today.

Steve, 42, from Okehampton, said: "I have found military debris in the past but it's always been fired ammunition.

"It looks as if it has been used in night training and has been left behind."

The MOD has been contacted for a response.

A30 slip road 'shut for hours' after HGV crash

Unannounced inspection at hospital

Johnny O'Shea

BBC News Online

The Care Quality Commission is carrying out an unannounced inspection at the Royal Cornwall Hospital's Trust.

Nineteen inspectors arrived on Wednesday and are expected to complete their work later today.

Hospital
BBC

Last January, the trust received an overall rating of 'Requires Improvement'.

The trust is currently at 'level 4', formerly known as 'black alert'. People are being asked not to attend A&E except in life threatening circumstances.

Hodges worried at poor Truro City form

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Truro City manager Lee Hodges says he is concerned about his team's poor run of form in National League South.

The White Tigers have lost four successive league games, having not got a victory since 19 November, and have slumped to 16th in the division, two points above the relegation places.

Lee Hodges
Vaughan Pickhaver/Truro City FC

"It is worrying because we've got to get those points on the board as quickly as possible," Hodges said.

"We've been in every game that we've played in and at times we've dominated. We have to make that domination count and put teams to bed, because we are creating chances," he added to BBC Radio Cornwall.

BreakingA30 exit slip road closed after lorry overturns

Crash
Highways England

Family life on film for triple-amputee Mark Ormrod

BBC Radio Devon

Most little boys want to be just like daddy... and Mason is no exception!

His father is Plymouth former Royal Marine Mark Ormrod, who's trying to get a fly-on-the-wall documentary made about his life as a triple amputee. Hear him on Radio Devon with Fitz after 11 today.

Mason
Mark Ormrod

Tom returns to Plymouth to meet fitness book fans

BBC Radio Devon

Plymouth's Tom Daley will be back in his home city today. 

Tom Daley
Tom Daley

The Olympic diver and TV presenter will be signing copies of his new health and fitness book at Drake Circus, in a ticketed event.