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Thames Valley crime rises 2% more than national average

Thames Valley Police headquarters in Kidlington, Oxfordshire
Thames Valley Police
Thames Valley Police has its headquarters in Kidlington, Oxfordshire

Recorded crime in the Thames Valley rose by 9.7% in the financial year that ended in March - 2% more than in England and Wales overall - according to the Office for National Statistics.

Det Chf Con Jason Hogg said: "We continue to see rises in some crime categories as victims are having more confidence to report previously hidden crime such as domestic abuse, sexual crime as well as stalking and harassment.

"The reasons for crime recording fluctuations are quite complex and are not necessarily just as a result of an actual increase in crime.

"The increase in overall crime numbers in the Thames Valley is linked to changes in our crime recording processes with our officers and staff now recording crimes at point of contact."

£5m for children's services review

BBC Radio Oxford

Nearly £5m will be spent on an "ambitious" overhaul of children's services in Oxfordshire.

Experts in substance misuse, domestic abuse and adult mental health will work together to help families in the county.

The new way of working is designed to help spot struggling children earlier.

It's already been tried in Hertfordshire - where the number of children on protection plans has more than halved.

Oxfordshire County Councillors said it would be a shift from cure to prevention

'Perfect storm' of cuts is behind rising mental health issues for police

Craig O'Leary

A "perfect storm" of austerity and cuts to police resources is behind rising levels of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and stress among police officers, a force federation has said.

More than 10,500 officers across the UK had to take time off with stress, depression, anxiety or PTSD symptoms in the past year, a rise of 69% since 2012/13.

400 Thames Valley Police (TVP) officers took time off work for stress, depression, anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder in the past year.

TVP federation chairman Craig O’Leary said: "If you keep exposing police officers to that much pressure, coupled with the traumatic things they deal with on a day-to-day basis in their jobs, it doesn’t take a scientist to work out that we’re going to suffer disproportionately to most other occupations in terms of PTSD, workplace stress, depression and anxiety.

"“[These figures] show it’s not a good story. Now we need to make sure that we are there, that people step up to the plate, organisations support officers that are going through these tough times," he added.

Broken down tanker blocks lane

A broken down tanker is currently blocking a road between Berinsfield and Shillingford in Oxfordshire.

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Training launched to tackle risk of gangs


A scheme has been launched to help tackle the issue of young people being exploited by gangs.

Thames Valley's police and crime commissioner has launched the programme for professionals who try and help young people who are being exploited or who are at risk.

The training, delivered by Reach Every Generation, is part of the Early Intervention Youth Fund Project and includes testimony from former gang members.

The 26 training sessions will be delivered across the Thames Valley until November.

Six decades on, another Cumbrian explorer heads for jungle

Neil Smith

South Cumbria journalist, BBC Cumbria

A student from South Cumbria who is about to lead an expedition into the Borneo jungle has been meeting another Cumbrian who explored the same area 64 years ago.

Matt Smith and Gordon Pickles

Matt Jones from Crosthwaite (pictured left), who is president of the Oxford University Exploration Club, is leading a team to the Usun Apau plateau, in one of the most remote areas of Borneo.

He planned the trip after finding records of an earlier university expedition, and then learned that Gordon Pickles, a member of the that team, lived only 10 miles away near Ulverston.

Gordon's advice to his successor is to be well-equipped for first aid, after he had to stitch up a fellow team member's leg after an accident.

One of the most interesting parts of Borneo is that it's been completely devastated by deforestation, and the area we are going to has remained a little island of undeforested area, raised above the jungle canopy.

Matt Smith

In those days there were no roads so we went up the river on government launches and then walked for about a week to get to our first camp."

Gordon Pickles

Weather for the south: 'Sunny intervals, patchy cloud'

Dan Downs

Weather Forecaster

BBC Weather forecast for the south of England

For most of us it will be mainly cloudy and dry, with warm temperatures where there is sunshine.

There is a risk of light drizzle in the east. Temperatures could reach highs of 23C.

Your pictures: Shiplake, Gosport and Lyme Regis

BBC Weather Watchers

Thanks to BBC Weather Watchers "cameracarrot", "Tony" and "dorset girl", for their snaps of dreamy-looking clouds over Shiplake in Oxfordshire, a golden sunrise over Gosport in Hampshire and Dorset's Lyme Bay shimmering in the summer sunshine.

Gosport sunrise
Lyme Regis
dorset girl

Send us your pictures of the south region via our Berkshire, Dorset, Hampshire and Oxford Facebook pages, or on Twitter: @BBCBerkshire, @BBCDorset, @BBC_Hampshire and @BBCOxford.

BBC Weather forecast for the south of England

Alex Osborne

BBC Weather

Today will be mostly dry with sunny spells but there is the risk of a shower.

Highs of 22C (72F).

A34 among England's 'worst roads'

A34 in Berkshire

The A34 between Hampshire and Oxfordshire has been rated one of England's worst roads.

Transport Focus published findings of its Strategic Roads User Survey of major A-roads managed by Highways England.

Worst ranked was the M20 in Kent which was described as "bumpy" and "full of potholes".

The best road, according to the survey of 8,500 people, is the A19 in the North East of England.

Appeal for witnesses after man attacked in Witney

Police have appealed for witnesses after a man was attacked in Witney in the early hours of Sunday.

The victim, a 28-year-old man, was walking along an alleyway between The Leys and St Mary’s Court when he was attacked by a group of up to eight people. He was hit on the head from behind and then struck several more times.

He was treated in hospital for a number of facial injuries including a fractured eye socket, and also shoulder and back injuries.

The Leys

South of England weather: Dry with more sun later

BBC Weather

It will be rather breezy or even windy along the coast.

It will be dry with some areas of cloud this morning. However, more in the way of sunshine is expected in the afternoon.

Highs of 22C.

Weather forecast for 3 July

Weather: Sunny start with cloud later

BBC Weather

A sunny start this morning. There will be more sunshine today, although some cloud is expected to develop.

It should remain dry throughout the day and it will feel pleasantly warm in the sunshine.

Highs of 22C.

Weather forecast for Monday, 1 July

CCTV images released after man threatened to stab shop worker

CCTV images have been released by police after a man threatened to stab a Co-op staff member with a penknife.

Officers said they would like to speak to the man pictured in connection with the robbery at the shop in Kennington, Oxfordshire.

Thames Valley Police said at about 20:40 BST on Saturday the man attempted to leave the store without paying for the goods and was challenged by a member of staff.

The force said he pulled a small penknife and threatened the staff member before leaving with the items, valued at about £200.

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Suspect swallowed drugs after officers were 'distracted'

Leroy Medford
Leroy Junior Medford was arrested in April 2017 on suspicion of assault and taken to Loddon Valley police station in Reading

A police force has said it was "relatively uncommon" for officers to encounter suspects who concealed drugs on them in custody after a man died when he swallowed heroin.

An inquest found a "failure" by Thames Valley Police officers to carry out "constant observations" on Leroy Junior Medford was the "main contributory factor" to the 43-year-old's death.

The force admitted two officers "became distracted", allowing Mr Medford to swallow the drugs he had hidden in between his buttocks.

The father-of-eight died 15 hours later from a heroin overdose, the inquest found.

Deputy Chief Constable Jason Hogg told the BBC the force would "seek to make organisational change and learn" from the death.

Weather: 'Fine, warm, and sunny'

Dan Downs

Weather Forecaster

Oxford's £9.7m George Street revamp shelved

Local Democracy Reporting Service

A potential £9.75mn revamp that would have changed the face of one of Oxford’s busiest streets has been shelved.

The city council said its plan to knock down 1-5 George Street and rebuild it with a plush new unit was now unaffordable.

It said it will now "go back to the drawing board" to see what it can do in the future.

The ASK Italian restaurant will be offered a longer lease to stay in 5 George Street, the council said.

Other tenants had all moved out by mid-2018. They included a dentist, a chiropodist and luggage shop Solutions.

Ask Italian
Ask Italian will be offered a longer lease to stay where it is
Kylie surprises twins who lost their mum to cancer
The pop star surprised the girls by joining them in a rendition of their late mother's favourite song.

Watch: Today's weather for the south of England

Dan Downs

Weather Forecaster

We're expecting a warm and humid day with a risk of thundery showers.

Weather: Risk of thunderstorms

Dan Downs

Weather Forecaster

Tuesday's weather: Dry start with thunderstorms later

A dry start to the day but from 18:00 BST there is a yellow warning in place for thunderstorms which will see heavy downpours across the region.

Temperatures will hold up in the double figures at about 18C.