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Live Reporting

By Lynsey Bradford

All times stated are UK

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  1. Halloween deadline set for proposed Usher Gallery takeover

    Local Democracy Reporting Service

    Two charitable trusts have been given a deadline of 31 October to make their case to operate Lincoln's Usher Gallery.

    Usher Gallery

    Members from the Usher Gallery Trust and Historic Lincoln Trust have come together to hold discussions with Lincolnshire County Council over running the gallery as a whole.

    It comes after the county council proposed that areas of the gallery could be used for weddings or celebrations, with some works of art moved to another museum.

    The proposals are part of wider plans by the county council to cut £750,000 a year from its heritage budget.

    Councillor Nick Worth, executive councillor for culture at the authority, said discussions were ongoing with the trusts over a “sustainable plan” for the site.

    “They’ve been set a deadline of October 31 to come back with an initial business plan and we will be working quite closely with them between now and then to get to a sustainable plan that will have to be in place by the end of the year,” he said.

  2. Live music on the bill at Grantham market

    Live music will be a regular feature at Grantham market from this weekend in a bid to attract more shoppers.

    Grantham  Market

    Local bands, singers and musical groups will be able to perform on the first Saturday of every month.

    First on the bill are The Harrowby Singers who will be performing this coming Saturday from 11:00 until 13:00.

    Steve Bowyer, from regeneration organisation Invest SK, said: "Our markets are an important part of our retail offer and bring vibrancy and variety to our town centres.

    “We want our markets to offer more than just a great shopping opportunity so we’ve trialled various performances to see how they’re received by local residents.

    "We’re now introducing a regular live music and entertainment feature in Grantham to attract more shoppers and make the market much more of an event," Mr Bowyer added.

  3. Charity pays tribute to man killed in house fire

    Tributes have been paid to a man who died in a house fire in Lincoln.

    The scene of the fire

    The man, who has been named by homeless charity Let Them Eat Cake as 39-year-old Richard Thompson, died as a result of a blaze at a house in St Hugh Street, on Monday.

    Drew Potts, from Let Them East Cake said: "He was just such a good laugh, he was a real good lad. He was great with everybody, and he had lots of friends. He was one of those guys that's just super inspirational to everybody else. He was a great man, a great inspiration to others."

    The house was a domestic rental property managed by YMCA Lincolnshire.

    An initial investigation has concluded there were no suspicious circumstances.

  4. Self-styled 'Muslim Slayer' sentenced

    A self-styled "Muslim Slayer" who sent fake poison to the Queen with a letter saying "The Clowns R Coming 4 You" has been sentenced to 12 years and six months.

    David Parnham

    David Parnham, 36, from Lincoln also posted letter containing extremist views to a Hull mosque and addresses around the University of Sheffield campus.

    He also sent "Punish a Muslim Day" hate mail urging people to attack and kill Muslims, the Old Bailey heard.

    Parnham, from Lincoln, must serve his sentence in hospital until he is well enough to be transferred to prison.

    He admitted soliciting to murder, making hoaxes involving noxious substances and bombs, sending letters with intent to cause distress, and encouraging offences.

    The authorities were alerted to his activities in July 2016 when seven letters were intercepted at Sheffield mail centre and found to contain harmless white powder.

  5. What a relief: Boston loos to stay open 24 hours a day

    Public toilets in Boston town centre are to stay open 24 hours a day in an attempt to stop people using shop doorways to go to the toilet.

    Boston Market Place

    The three-month trial will mean facilities on Lincoln Lane, Wide Bargate and Central park will be available overnight.

    Wendy Reed, who runs Westland Bridals on West Street, says she welcomes the plan as she was getting so fed up with the problem she set up a portable toilet outside her boutique.

    "There was nothing open at 8pm at night and that's the reason they used my shop and other places," says Ms Reed.

    "At least now they've got somewhere to go - the decent ones anyway - and hopefully it will work."

  6. Former doctor threatened woman with scissors during rape

    A former A&E doctor who threatened a woman with a pair of scissors while raping her has been jailed for nine-and-a-half years.

    Lincoln Crown Court

    Dr Joel Ajewole, 61, attacked and assaulted the woman, who can't be named for legal reasons, at a property in south Lincolnshire in March.

    He also threatened to kill the woman and himself as he did not want to go to prison.

    Ajewole, who previously worked as an A&E doctor at Boston's Pilgrim Hospital, pleaded guilty at Lincoln Crown Court to two charges of rape and one offence of assault by penetration.

  7. YMCA 'saddened' at death of man in house fire

    Officials at YMCA Lincolnshire say they are "deeply saddened" following the death of a man in a house fire at one of the organisation's properties.

    The scene of the fire

    Emergency services were called to St Hugh Street at about 09:00 yesterday.

    Officers later confirmed a 39-year-old man had died as a result of the blaze.

    The house was a domestic rental property managed by YMCA Lincolnshire.

    Chief executive Caroline Killeavy said: “We are deeply saddened by the death of a man as a result of the fire and are currently working with the emergency services to establish the circumstances around it.

    "We extend our sincere condolences to the deceased’s loved ones."

    Investigations into the cause of the fire are continuing, but police and the fire service say they believe there were "no suspicious circumstances".

  8. Five men arrested after gunshots heard in Lincoln

    Police have now arrested five people in connection with an incident in Lincoln in which gunshots were heard across the Ermine Estate last week.


    Three men in their 30s were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to cause GBH, and two other men, a 50-year-old and a 37-year-old, were detained on suspicion of possessing a firearm.

    Officers have also been interviewing a sixth man who attended the police station voluntarily.

    All five men have been released on bail, and police say investigations are continuing into the incident on 29 August.

  9. Charitable trust plan for Lincoln's Usher Gallery

    Lincolnshire's only publicly-run art gallery could be saved if plans to allow a charitable trust to take it over are approved.

    The Usher Gallery

    A Lincolnshire County Council meeting later is expected to discuss the future of the Usher Gallery in Lincoln.

    Under county council proposals, areas of the gallery could be used for weddings or celebrations, with some works of art moved to another museum.

    The proposals are part of wider plans by the county council to cut £750,000 a year from its heritage budget.

    Will Mason, the council's head of culture, says having a third party take over the gallery would be a good option.

    Mr Mason says: "We've actually already started having meetings and supplying information to the two trusts which have come together as a partnership to explore that as a possibility.

    "I genuinely believe it is a move forward because more people will be engaging with a wider range of activity."

    The county council is expected to vote later on whether to give two years' notice to City of Lincoln Council as part of its plans to save money.

    But City of Lincoln Council argues that would mean it would be forced to move some of the artefacts currently in the Usher Gallery out the county.

  10. 'No suspicious circumstances' to fatal Lincoln house fire

    Investigators examining the cause of a fatal house fire in Lincoln on Monday have said they do not believe there were any suspicious circumstances.

    The scene of the fire

    A 39-year-old man died as a result of the blaze on St Hugh Street which started just after 09:00 yesterday morning.

    Nobody else is believed to have been injured in the incident.

    In a joint statement, Lincolnshire Police and Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue said they were awaiting the result of the post-mortem examination before finally determining the cause of the fire.

    However, from initial investigations they said: "We do not believe there were any suspicious circumstances around this incident.

    Quote Message: However, we will now await forensic testing and results of the post mortem which is due to take place tomorrow before we are able to make a firm determination about the cause and circumstances around the fire." from Joint statement Lincolnshire Police and Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue Service
    Joint statementLincolnshire Police and Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue Service
  11. New support group for patients with head and neck cancer

    Lincolnshire patients with head and neck cancer will no longer have to travel out of the county to go to a support group.

    The launch of the support group

    NHS staff have teamed up with The Swallows Head and Neck Cancer Support Group to hold regular meetings each month in locations across Lincolnshire.

    They've now officially launched the group.

    Rachel Thompson, from the oncology team at Lincoln hospital, said: "Last year there were 12,000 diagnoses within the UK, so it's not big numbers.

    "But in terms of the side effects of the treatment, it can really affect patients in terms of their quality of life."

  12. Fire service reassures residents after fatal house blaze

    Officers from Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue will be visiting households and reassuring residents in the Monks Road area of Lincoln after a man died in a house fire there on Monday.

    The scene of the fire

    The 39-year-old man died as a result of the blaze on St Hugh Street which started just after 09:00 yesterday.

    Nobody else is believed to have been injured in the incident.

    Investigations are continuing to establish what caused the fire.

  13. Swing bridge blocks rail lines for second day in a row

    A fault on a swing bridge over a canal has blocked rail lines between Doncaster and Scunthorpe this morning.

    The same bridge was causing disruption yesterday morning too.

    Some services are being delayed or cancelled, according to train operator Northern.

    Engineers are on site, Northern said.

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  14. Mental health incidents dealt with by police up by 60%

    The number of mental health incidents dealt with by Lincolnshire Police has increased by more than 60% in four years, the force says.

    Upset woman

    Last year, officers responded to just under 4,300 calls which were flagged as mental health related.

    Ch Insp James Trafford says it's a huge pressure on the force.

    "Sadly, I think there are more and more instances of mental health issues.

    "People are more able to come out and speak about it because of increased openness about mental health that we have in society," he said.

  15. Residents vow legal move after losing village green bid

    Residents in a Lincolnshire town have vowed to launch a legal challenge after losing their right to access a piece of land.


    County councillors have rejected an application to grant village green status to a field on the outskirts of Market Deeping, near Bourne.

    An independent planning inspector said the application fulfilled all but one of the legal criteria.

    The county council owns the land, which has permission for housing, and council leader Martin Hill says the authority will now carry on with its development plans.

    Reacting to the news that the application had been rejected, one local resident said: "Mill Field is an area of countryside which is bordered by trees and hedges and a very beautiful country lane.

    "It's a last little bit of the old historic market town that's left really, the countryside that the town used to be surrounded by.

    "It's a piece of land which a significant number of people from the locality have used for recreational activities for more than 20 years."