Yeovil

England, United Kingdom

Latest Stories

'I was the only person with brown skin in the countryside'
Louisa Adjoa Parker hopes to raise awareness about the racism people can face in rural areas.
Coronavirus: Care workers reunited with families after 12 weeks
Meet the care workers who opted to live in their care home to protect the residents from Covid-19.

Luxury car caught speeding at 130mph

Lamborgini caught speeding
Avon and Somerset Police

Police in Bristol have arrested a driver who reached 130 miles per hour on the M32 early on Sunday.

In a post on social media, Avon and Somerset Police said the driver of this Lamborghini failed to stop, and quoted the story of the hare and the tortoise.

Avon and Somerset Police Road Safety Team said: "However we all know the story of the Tortoise and the Hare. Tortoise 1, Hare nil."

Police added that the driver would be in court for various driving offences.

Thousands of gallons of beer tipped down the drain

BBC Radio Cornwall

Thousands of gallons of beer have been poured down the drain in Cornwall in the past week as pubs prepare to reopen.

It has been a challenge for South West Water, which has had to co-ordinate time slots for every pub to avoid overloading the system.

Alex Williams, who runs the Polgooth Inn near St Austell, had 100 gallons to dispose of.

Beer
Reuters

Mr Williams had to get rid of his beer on a Friday and a Monday, pouring 50 gallons each day.

"It took over an hour to get rid of but it had to be done," he said.

Staff at South West Water said they had to make sure only small amounts of beer were released into the system on any one day.

Andrew Rowntree, from the utility company, said beer took a lot of oxygen to break down - oxygen which was vital to the way water treatment plants worked.

If the treatment process gets hit with a lot of beer, then the bacteria within our system has a 'bad night out', and it doesn't do any good at all. It can completely kill our sewage treatment processes."

Andrew RowntreeSouth West Water

South West Water provides water and sewerage services to Devon and Cornwall, plus small parts of Dorset and Somerset.

Somerset man created convoy for Armed Forces Day

Steve Mellen

Broadcast Journalist

The Armed Forces convoy
Martin Tier

One man’s determination not to let Armed Forces Day go unnoticed led to an eye-catching convoy passing through the roads of Somerset on Sunday.

The events which would normally mark Armed Forces Day were largely cancelled because of lockdown restrictions, but Martin Tier, from Taunton, decided to do his bit to fly the flag for those serving in the military.

Along with other enthusiasts, he put together a nine-vehicle convoy featuring Land Rovers and two trucks – a Bedford MK and an Austin K9.

The nine-vehicle convoy
Martin Tier

Proudly flying the union flag, they made their way from Taunton to Minehead on the A358 then went on to Bridgwater on the A39.

“It was a brainwave I had on Wednesday night,” said Mr Tier, 37. “I knew the Armed Forces Day events were cancelled because of everything that’s going on and I came up with the idea of a military convoy.

“We had a great response from other drivers and people standing at the side of the road. I’m really pleased with how it went.”

Mr Tier put the convoy together by contacting local fellow military vehicle enthusiasts and putting out an appeal on social media.

Mr Tier’s grandfather and great uncle served in the Royal Navy while his father was in the Army.

The convoy cars parked
Martin Tier

Severe accident: Somerset both ways

BBC News Travel

Somerset both ways severe accident, between A37 Dorchester Road and Rexes Hollow Lane.

Somerset - Church Lane in Barwick closed in both directions between Keyford roundabout and the Rexes Hollow Lane junction, because of accident investigation work. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Algae warning to lake swimmers and their pets

Chew Valley Lake
Bristol Water

Bristol Water has issued a warning to the thousands of visitors and dog walkers to their reservoirs about poisoning from algae.

The company says it continues to see a stream of people trying to enjoy outdoor exercise at its lakes in Somerset, but it advises against people or their dogs swimming in the waters.

"High levels of blue-green algae have been reported across Chew Valley Lake, Litton Lake, Cheddar Lake and Barrow Tanks" the warning said.

"Algae is totally natural and tends to bloom during hot weather, [but]... It’s toxic to both dogs and humans."

Steve Smith, Head of Recreations at Bristol Water, said: "It’s never safe to swim in our lakes due to hidden machinery in the water and cold water shock, to name a few, but the presence of algae adds an extra layer of risk."

"On Thursday, I spoke to over 300 people failing to enjoy the lakes safely. Rules might seem boring, but we promise they’re there for a reason.”

Algae
Centre for ecology and hydrology

Bristol Water gave the following description of what to avoid:

Algae can make the water look bright green or brown tinged, it may also foam towards the surface.

It can often be mistaken for sewage as it can have an earthy like smell.

Algae does not affect water supplies as water goes through an intensive treatment process before it reaches your tap.

Signs of algae poisoning in dogs, including vomiting, diarrhoe, seizures or fits and difficulty breathing.

Exmoor welcoming tourism reopening

Managers at Exmoor National Park have welcomed the news that significant parts of the hospitality and tourism sectors can begin reopening from 4 July.

Dan James, the park's sustainable economy manager, said tourism contributed almost £130m a year to the local economy and 2,300 people were employed in tourism businesses on Exmoor.

Exmoor
BBC

Road closed after man died in crash

Back of police officer
BBC

A man died following a crash between Axbridge and Cheddar in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

The green Ford Mondeo crashed on the A371, in Somerset, at about 1.10am and a 24-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene.

His family have been informed.

The road has been closed while a collision investigation team from Avon and Somerset Police inspect the scene.

It is expected to be closed for some time and people are advised to avoid the area.

Ofsted says more work is needed for children's services

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Stephen Sumner

Weston-super-Mare Town Hall
Google

Improvements to children’s services in North Somerset are disjointed and more work needs to be done, Ofsted says.

The latest report, following an inspection in March, said some children are not getting the help they need at the earliest opportunity because social workers and managers are not making consistently good decisions.

Assessments are detailed and capture children’s wishes and feelings, but they do not go into enough depth into their identities, social context, ethnicity, poverty and family identity, the government's schools watchdog said.

The last inspection, in 2017, concluded that the council’s children’s services required improvement and a follow-up visit in 2019 found large numbers of children who needed an allocated social worker.

The council is also inconsistent in helping children quickly enough if they are at risk of exploitation, but inspectors praised social workers as “reflective and thoughtful practitioners who develop positive relationships with children and their families”.

Ofsted said the experience of young people in care had improved since the last inspection, but while leaders have stabilised the workforce and relied less on agencies, they still needed to achieve consistent quality in all service areas.

Sheila Smith, North Somerset Council's director of children’s services, said: "I am confident that overall we are continuing to improve our services. I am disappointed that we have not received an overall judgement of ‘good’ at this inspection.

“There is much for us to be proud of, and still more for us to do to support our families.”

BAME coronavirus safety plan not published

People in the street in masks
PA Media

A report containing measures to protect ethnic minority groups from coronavirus has been drawn up for government, BBC News has learned.

Public Health England (PHE) published a review last week confirming coronavirus kills people from ethnic minorities at disproportionately high rates.

PA MediaCopyright: PA Media

But a senior academic told BBC News a second report, containing safeguarding proposals to tackle this, also existed.

And PHE now says this report will be published next week.