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  1. Alderney health services 'still impacted' by suspension of doctor
  2. NatWest to close branch in Alderney
  3. Jersey smallholder wants to see growth in organic farming
  4. Superman star nominated for worst actor award
  5. Updates on Tuesday 24 January 2017

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Local Live in the Channel Islands

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

That's your lot from the team at Local Live this evening, but we're back from 08:00 tomorrow morning.

Head back for all the latest news, sport, travel and weather across the Channel Islands.

Don't forget, BBC One is the place to be at 18:30 - you can catch all the latest headlines with BBC Channel Islands News.

States department responds to 'Jersey's environmental time bomb' report

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Jersey Environment Department has responded to report from a campaign group which criticised the water quality in the island.

The report from Save Our Shoreline was entitled "The Nitrate Problem in Jersey and its Consequences: Death by Neglect – Jersey’s Environmental Time Bomb".

The report was SOS's submission to the Scrutiny panel as part of its review on nitrate levels in Jersey's water.

Sea lettuce

The department thanks SOS for their response, but looked to "address inaccuracies" on the following issues:

  • It says Jersey "is not at an environmental tipping point" - it admits there are challenges ahead, but says "Jersey’s water quality is improving"
  • It's working with the Infrastructure Department to improve water quality and has adopted recommendations made in a previous review
  • It says the States approved five-year water management plan is in place
  • It claims water quality in Jersey is improving: stream quality is higher, average nitrate levels are falling, pollution incidents and storm overspills are reducing
  • It says the Action for Cleaner Water Group is "improving agricultural and horticultural practices" and fertiliser use is reducing
  • Together with Infrastructure, it's following current protocols and carry out monitoring, sampling and research in their specific areas to "ensure public safety and environmental stewardship"
  • The revised Rural Economy Strategy "will support the work of the Water Management Plan in improving water quality"
  • A planned sewage treatment works will "improve the quality of treated waste flowing to St Aubin"
  • It says that sea lettuce is a global problem - the key focus of their work is to "reduce nitrates at source"

Weather: Watch out for icy patches overnight and early morning

BBC Weather

It'll be dry with clear spells this evening and tonight.

This will allow temperatures to fall away leading to the risk of a ground frost overnight, with some icy patches forming on untreated surfaces. Minimum Temperature: 2C (36F).

Weather map

It'll be a cold and frosty start to Wednesday morning, although it will be dry with good spells of sunshine for many.

However, the cloud will increase during the afternoon, becoming fairly overcast by the end of the day. It will feel cold with a brisk south-easterly wind. Maximum Temperature: 8 Deg C (46 Deg F)  

Health to review report recommendations

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Guernsey's Health and Social Care Committee says it is reviewing the recommendations made by an independent report into health care provision in Alderney.

Dr Peter Rabey, Medical Director for the committee, said: "HSC, working closely with colleagues and residents in Alderney, has made considerable progress recently in terms of governance and the provision of services delivered for the Alderney community."

Mignot Memorial Hospital

"I am pleased to say that some recommendations highlighted in the report are already becoming well embedded into practice between Alderney and Guernsey. The VTC (Video Teleconferencing) link in particular has been praised by Alderney service users as it minimises the need for travel.

"Whilst still in the pilot phase of the project I am delighted that opportunities to widen its use are being investigated throughout HSC."

Jersey 'not set up for cycling'

BBC Radio Jersey

A campaigner for better transport in Jersey says the island is not well set up for cycling.

This morning, volunteers from Jersey In Transition were out at various places around the island counting the number of bicycles being used to commute.

Organisers hope ministers will use the findings to improve traffic planning.

Ruth Baier-Rolls, who organised the count, said cycling in Jersey isn't always easy.

I think a lot of the cycling paths are disjointed, and one has to go into the road and one has to cross the roads and really difficult roads like the English harbour where there's a bend in the road. There's lots and lots that can be done if one puts an effort towards it."

Ruth Baier-RollsJersey in Transition

One week left to vote on Unsung Hero

BBC Radio Guernsey

You have just one week left to place your vote for the Specsavers Unsung Hero of 2016. 

The award recognises behind the scenes contributions made by people in the Bailiwick of Guernsey.

This year, seven nominees have been chosen by a panel of judges, with the public able to vote for them until next Tuesday.

The nominees are:

  • Roger Reddall of the Rocquaine Regatta
  • Geoff George from the GSPCA
  • Gerry Le Roy from the Cardiac Action Group
  • Liz Timms at Guernsey Citizens Advice
  • Ray Peacegood for his charity work with Active 
  • Maureen Wright and Sandra Hardhill, of the Guernsey Voluntary Service's Russels Day Centre.

You can either vote on the Specsavers website or fill in a form at their head office or market street shop.

Year of the fire rooster stamps 'full of Chinese meanings'

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Guernsey Post has released a set of stamps to coincide with the Chinese new year.

It's the year of the rooster, which features in the design by Artist Chrissy Lau.

It's the fourth Chinese new year set in the series and is expected to attract interest in the global market - Bridget Yabsley of Guernsey Post says the stamps are full of symbolism.

Chinese stamps

A lot of the pattern work has Chinese meanings. It's the year of the fire rooster this year, so all the symbolism is worked into the patterns. Whether the rooster is facing right or left, or if there's a group or chicks in - there's always reasons behind it."

Bridget YabsleyGuernsey Post

Alderney health changes could save £150,000 in flight costs

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Greater levels of local care provision in Alderney could potentially lead to large savings "in the region of £150,000" per year.

Patients regularly have to travel to Guernsey for treatment, incurring travel costs, inconvenience costs, and "out-of-pocket costs" for families.

Jonathan Le Ray

The report also recommends increased use of videoconferencing for mental health services, which it says could make "significant savings".

Another recommendation - making seatbelts compulsory - could save £10,000 per year, according to the report.

Guernsey Post releases new stamps

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Yesterday we had the new Meadow Pipit stamps, featuring the endangered species of bird.

Today it's another set of stamps to celebrate the Chinese new year.

Guernsey Post are on a roll...


Shortage of land 'biggest problem' for GHA

BBC Radio Guernsey

Shortage of land is the biggest challenge facing Guernsey Housing Association, according to its chief executive.

The association works with the States to provide affordable housing for rent or partial ownership.

Steve Williams

Latest figures show it has about 800 properties on its books but Chief Executive Steve Williams says there's demand for far more.

He says after a slow down in 2015 things are picking up - but finding suitable sites remains a problem.

NatWest roles in Alderney are at risk of redundancy

BBC Radio Guernsey

NatWest says the two full-time employees at the branch in Alderney are at risk of being made redundant.

One other temporary member of staff will see their contract end when the branch closes in June.

The two members of staff in the St Peter's branch in Guernsey - which is also closing - will be relocated to other branches on the island.

NatWest St Peter's branch

Minister rejects farming strategy claims

BBC Radio Jersey

Jersey's Economic Development minister has rejected claims his department has taken two years to come up with a plan for the island's farming industry.

Mark Forskitt, an islander who grows organic produce, said delays in publishing a clear plan for Jersey's countryside shows a lack of interest in farming. 

He said he'd been asking for almost two years where the Rural Economic Strategy is.

But Minister Senator Lyndon Farnham expressed surprise at the criticism, saying a new plan will be published tomorrow.

London Welsh won't be allowed to continue in the Championship

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

England Rugby has confirmed that London Welsh - a team playing in the same league as the Jersey Reds - won't be allowed to continue playing in the Championship.

Liquidators were appointed to the club last month, and have not met the necessary conditions to continue under a temporary licence.

Jersey were due to play the London side next weekend at St Peter.

View more on twitter

Alderney health review calls for improvements

Ben Chapple

BBC News Online

A review of the health services offered in Alderney has recommended a number of changes be made.

Rory Lyons

The report, by the University of Aberdeen's Centre for Rural Health, suggests the following changes:

  • Dr Rory Lyons should receive a full apology from Guernsey's health services and be encouraged to return to practice after the events surrounding his suspension
  • Structure and financing of general practice needs to change - various options suggested
  • Residents should formally register with a practice
  • More support for Alderney clinicians, including paid study leave
  • Greater use of the Mignot Memorial Hospital
  • Increasing the visits of consultants from Guernsey to Alderney and video conferencing to cut travel costs
  • Improve clinical governance, professional regulation and data systems
  • Alderney States and public should set their own health service priorities and allocate resources
  • Ambulance volunteers should be trained to provide emergency treatment
  • Improve midwifery, sexual health services, physiotherapy, mental health services and access to social workers
  • Succession planning for key roles
  • Moves to prevent the causes of disease and ill health
  • Overhaul web services to provide Alderney residents with the same online services as Guernsey residents

BBC Weather Watchers: Fancy a swim?

BBC Weather Watchers

Andy's been down to Vazon to take this picture.

These panoramic views are becoming something of a regular feature on Local Live this year...


States of Alderney 'welcome request for full and heartfelt apology to Dr Lyons'

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

The States of Alderney says they "welcome the request for a full and heartfelt apology to Dr Rory Lyons".

One of the recommendations within a report into the health care provision in Alderney was that Dr Lyons would be encouraged to return as medical practitioner in Alderney.

Dr Rory Lyons

In a statement, the chairman of Alderney's top committee - Policy and Finance - said the report makes some important recommendations - including a need for the collection and compilation of data to substantiate investment and institutional change.

The chairman said the report highlighted two important factors in Alderney health care:

  • The differences between Alderney and Guernsey and the consequent requirement for different approaches to primary medical care on the two islands
  • The options for institutional change in the way that primary and secondary health care might be delivered

Justice Select Committee arrive in Guernsey for Brexit talks

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

The UK Justice Select Committtee has now arrived in Guernsey for their talks with government, business leaders and industry about the potential implications of Brexit on the island.

The committee has already visited the Isle of Man and Jersey, and it follows up on evidence submitted by the States of Guernsey last year.

The main topics on the agenda are:

  • Fisheries and agriculture
  • Financial services
  • Free movement of people
  • Customs and goods

Dance festival starts today

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Guernsey's Festival of Dance starts at Beau Sejour today.

The first session started at 14:00, and it's scheduled to last well into the weekend.

I better dig out my leotard...

View more on twitter

Condor ‘not complacent’ over improved reliability in 2016

Guernsey Press

Condor Ferries’ reliability and punctuality improved in 2016.

Half of the Alderney health recommendations predicted to have financial implications

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Half of the 38 recommendations made by an independent report on Alderney's health services are predicted to cost taxpayers money, the findings suggest.

Not all of the recommendations have firm estimates of how much they could cost - most, simply claim they will be a net cost - therefore it's not possible to put a figure on the total.

The recommendations that do have estimates include:

  • £60,000 for a project manager to increase video conferencing utilisation and to develop scheduling systems for two years
  • £30,000 per year for a community worker
  • £25,000 per year for a nurse or GP to be present in Alderney to assess patient condition and provide data

Teenager attacked in street by 'youths'

Jersey Evening Post

A teenage boy suffered injuries to his face after he was allegedly attacked by two youths in St Helier on Monday.

Weather in the Channel Islands

BBC Weather

Let's take a look at this evening's weather.

Here's the forecast for Guernsey...

Weather chart

And this is the outlook in Jersey...

Weather chart

NatWest branches to close due to 'declining usage'

BBC Radio Guernsey

Two NatWest branches across the Bailiwick are closing because "usage is declining and customers are changing their habits" according to the owners.

RBS International declined the opportunity to be interviewed by BBC Radio Guernsey after announcing the closure of the only NatWest branch in Alderney and another branch in St Peters, Guernsey.

In a statement, the bank said: "There are other banks still available in Alderney and customers will be able to use the Industry-wide Current Account Switch Guarantee Scheme.

"NatWest remains committed to serving the Channel Island communities. The bank will be notifying their Alderney customers to make them aware of the closure and the different ways they can still bank with them. The bank is happy to discuss customer concerns in the St. Peter and Alderney branch and explore the alternative options available, as well as being able to provide further information."

Asbestos fly-tipping 'costs Jersey taxpayers £5,000'

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Jersey's Department of the Environment has had to spend £5,000 of taxpayers money clearing asbestos after nine bin bags full of the hazardous material were left in a field.

They were dumped overnight on the 6 December - but the investigation has "reached a point where the public's help is needed".

Asbestos clear-up
States of Jersey

Investigators want to hear from people who may have seen nine full black bin liners being carried from a premises and loaded into a vehicle, "most likely a small van or car".

Officers at the department would also like to hear from anyone who may have concerns about asbestos in demolition or renovation works.

Six road traffic collisions in Jersey this morning

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

There were six traffic collisions on Jersey's roads this morning.

Many roads were slippery, with the police repeatedly taking to social media to remind road users to take extra care.

The weather forecast overnight suggests it's going to be another cold one.

Weather chart

Weather radar out of service

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

I guess we'll all just have to look up for a bit...

View more on twitter

Latest headlines in the Channel Islands

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online


  • The only NatWest branch in Alderney is to close, along with another in St Peters, Guernsey 
  • There is still a "significant negative impact" on Alderney's health services due to the events surrounding the suspension of Dr Rory Lyons, an independent review has found
  • Shortage of land is the biggest challenge facing Guernsey Housing Association, according to its chief executive


  • Jersey's economic development minister has rejected claims that his department has taken two years to come up with a plan for the island's farming industry
  • The police are appealing for witnesses after a teenager was allegedly assaulted in town during rush hour yesterday evening

'A second practice' in top three changes requested in Alderney health survey

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

A second medical practice was among the top three requested changes listed by Alderney residents in a new report.

The Eagle Medical Practice remains closed, meaning the island is served only by the Island Medical Practice.

Based on 260 responses, these were the top five changes requested by islanders:

  1. More permanent GP's (23%)
  2. Better continuity of care (17%)
  3. A second practice (13%)
  4. Improved standards at the Island Medical Practice (12%)
  5. Reopening of Eagle Medical Practice (12%)

Cyclists in hospital after crashes in icy weather

Jersey Evening Post

Two cyclists were taken to hospital on Tuesday morning after accidents on La Haule Hill, St Brelade.

St Peter's staff to be relocated to other branches

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

The owners of NatWest have confirmed that the staff working in the St Peter's branch will be relocated to other locations in Guernsey.

Rob Girard, Senior Country Head of RBS International said: "Our colleagues in the St Peter branch will be redeployed to other branches in our network. When we take the difficult decision to close a branch we are committed to supporting our colleagues through the change."

The bank says it's in consultation with the landlord about future occupancy of the building.

GHA publishes financial reports on its 15th year in the island

BBC Radio Guernsey

The Guernsey Housing Association has released its Annual Residents' Report for the past two years.

The association turns 15 this year and aims to provide new additional social housing on the island.

GHA housing

On the first of January 2016, the GHA owned and managed 750 properties and provided 54 new homes over the past two years.

In 2015, the average price per month to rent one of their one bedroom homes was just under £800. The association carried out more than 3,500 repairs and maintenance works.

During the year, they collected £6.7m in rent and service charges, with total expenditure equalling just over £6.5m.

Environment minister to be question on water quality

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

The Environment Minister Deputy Steve Luce will be questioned on what's being done to tackle nitrate levels in Jersey's water.

The 1972 law allows 50mg of nitrates per litre of mains water, but Deputy Luce has given Jersey Water an exemption for tap water.

Tap water

The exemption allows levels to reach a maximum of 65mg.

Deputy Luce will be questioned by the Scrutiny panel at a public hearing held in the States building on Thursday at 14:00.

Police appeal after teenager assault

BBC Radio Jersey

Police are appealing for witnesses after a teenager was allegedly assaulted in St Helier during rush hour yesterday evening.

Officers say the 15-year-old was physically assaulted by two youths outside the Robin Hood Takeaway on Union Street at 17:45.

Police would like to speak to a woman who stopped and was shouted at by one of the youths. 

Dolphins caught on camera at sunset

James Rabey

BBC Radio Guernsey

Did you manage to get out and see the sunset last night?   

Guernseyman Luc De La Mare was out on his boat with a friend last night when he was joined by some visitors...

Dolphins caught on camera at sunset

Volunteers brave the cold to count bicycles

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

If you keep your eyes peeled in Jersey this morning, you might see some particularly brave volunteers sitting around St Helier. 

"What are they doing?" I hear you cry.

Well, they're counting the number of bicycles using Jersey's roads to commute to work.

Counting cyclists

Environmental group Jersey in Transition is running the survey at several sites across the island including Victoria Avenue and Havre des Pas.

Nigel Jones from the group hopes ministers will use the results to come up with more sustainable transport policies.

Some NatWest customers will have 'no alternative but to switch'

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

The only Alderney branch of NatWest is closing in June.

It was announced at the same time as the closure of another branch in St Peters, Guernsey.

For Alderney residents that have NatWest accounts, there will no longer be a physical presence in the island.

The bank says that while islanders will still have access to online and mobile services, it accepts there will be some customers that will be forced to change who they bank with.

For many customers based in Alderney they can continue to use their NatWest account through online and mobile access. The bank appreciates that a number of customers may need a local branch facility for paying in cash, in which case there may be no alternative but to switch to an alternative service provider through the Current Account Switch Service."

Statement from RBS InternationalOwners of NatWest