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Boy, 4, seriously injured after being hit by 4x4

Jenna Hawkey

BBC News Online

A four-year-old boy has been seriously injured in a collision with a 4x4 in Plymouth, police say.

Emergency services were called to Maidstone Avenue at 17:50 on Thursday following reports of a crash involving a Skoda Yeti and a young boy.

Maidstone Avenue, Plymouth

The boy, from Plymouth, was taken to Derriford Hospital with serious leg and arm injuries but his condition is not thought to be life-threatening or life-changing.The female driver was not injured.The road was closed but reopened at about 20:10.

Statue of former Plymouth MP Nancy Astor takes shape

BBC Radio Devon

Sculptor Hayley Gibbs fine-tunes the top half of a statue of former Plymouth MP Nancy Astor, which will be placed on Plymouth Hoe.

Alexis Bowater

"We have levelled the statue as a whole and I'm now working on the legs and shoes," said Hayley.

The statue is due to be unveiled on 28 November outside Lady Astor's family home on Elliot Terrace.

Lady Astor was the first female MP to take her seat in the House of Commons after she was elected to Plymouth Sutton in 1919.

She kept her Plymouth seat, which she stood for after her husband vacated it when he became a viscount, until the 1945 election when she decided not to stand.

Nancy Astor

Bladed item seized in group fight which leaves man injured

Hayley Westcott

BBC News Online

A man is in hospital with a "serious neck injury" after a fight in Plymouth where a bladed item was seized by police.

Officers were called to the fight between a group of people on Bath Street at about 19:00 on Wednesday.

Two men, aged 36 and 38, were arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm with intent, police said.

They were taken into custody where they remain.

Any witnesses are asked to contact Devon and Cornwall Police.

MP candidate quits after BBC interview

Chris Quevatre

BBC News Online

Kirsten Johnson has resigned as a Liberal Democrat candidate for MP after an interview on BBC Radio 4.

When asked why her prospective North Devon constituents voted Leave in the Brexit referendum three years ago, Mrs Johnson said it was because they are "98% white", and "don't travel a lot".

In a post on Facebook, she said she was "acutely aware" her comments had caused offence, adding she had "lost the thread" of what she was saying.

Mrs Johnson said her words were "interpreted in ways that I certainly did not intend or believe about the people of North Devon".

Kirsten Johnson
Kirsten Johnson

Salcombe collisions nearly double in a year

BBC Spotlight

The number of collisions that took place in waters around Salcombe Harbour nearly doubled last year.


Official figures show a sharp increase in incidents with 39 crashes this summer - the majority involving sailing dinghies.

The town's harbour master says it follows a busy season mainly due to the long periods of fine weather.

Mary Truell: The 91-year-old walking 91 miles
Mary Truell is walking 91 miles across Devon's nature reserves to raise money for their upkeep.

Coach drivers reported after getting stuck in lane

BBC Spotlight

Two bus drivers have been reported to court for driving without due care and attention, after their coaches which were carrying schoolchildren became stuck in a lane.

Bovey Tracey Fire Station

The emergency services had to help some of the passengers get out near Moretonhampstead on Monday.

"The Year 6 pupils were all very brave and showed excellent ladder mounts as firefighters on and off the bus helped them to safety," said Bovey Tracey fire crews.

Forty four students and five staff were rescued.

"Both drivers have been reported to court for driving without due care and attention," said a Devon and Cornwall Police spokesperson.

Sentencing review 'should include not revealing victim identities'

MP calls Vanessa George prison release "sickening"

Johnny O'Shea

BBC News Online

A Plymouth MP has called the decision to release convicted pedophile Vanessa George from prison "sickening".

Luke Pollard, Labour MP for Sutton and Devonport added that "she should not be released at all".

George, a former nursery worker was convicted for sexually abusing babies and toddlers in her care in Plymouth and served 10 years.

She is banned from entering Devon and Cornwall.

It was decided by a parole board in July that George, who is 49, no longer poses a "significant risk".

Vanessa George

It's sickening, to be honest, she should not be released at all. She still refuses to name the babies and toddlers that she abused and the sheer level of anger and disgust that families here in Plymouth feel about this cannot be underestimated. I don't think you can show genuine remorse for a crime like this when you are refusing to name the children that you, she abused."

Luke PollardLabour MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport

BreakingVanessa George: Plymouth paedophile released from prison

It's understood paedophile nursery worker, Vanessa George - who sexually abused children in her care - has been released from prison.

The 49-year-old from Plymouth was jailed for a minimum of seven years in 2009 for abusing children at Little Ted's nursery.

View more on twitter

Motorcyclist critical after crash near Plymouth

Johnny O'Shea

BBC News Online

A motorcyclist is in a critical condition after an accident at Lee Moor near Plymouth on Tuesday evening.

Devon and Cornwall Police said the 49-year-old man from Launceston lost control on a right hand bend on the B3417.

He was taken to Derriford Hospital where he remains.

The road was closed for six hours whilst officers from the serious collision unit investigated the scene.

Officers would like to hear from anyone who witnessed the incident.

Woman walker, 91, smashes £3,000 charity target

BBC Spotlight

A 91-year-old woman is walking 91 miles around all 50 of Devon Wildlife Trust's nature reserves to raise money for the charity.

Mary Truell

Mary Truell, from Lympstone in east Devon, hopes her journey will encourage more people to get out and about and enjoy them more.

She's already smashed her target of £3,000 with 24 miles still to go.

"It's been a wonderful experience," she said.

"People have been very kind and very generous."

'Please help find Poppy' the dog who fled crash

BBC Radio Devon

Fire fighters have appealed for help in tracing Poppy "a beautiful Poodle Cross" who ran from a vehicle after it crashed.

Buckfastleigh Fire

Poppy was in the car which crashed on the A38 on Tuesday afternoon at Dean Prior in Devon.

"Poppy was obviously scared and ran from the vehicle in the direction of Rattery," said Buckfastleigh firefighters on Facebook.

She was last seen running up the Rattery turn off on the northbound carriageway.

Poppy's owner who was driving the car was taken to hospital "for checks".

"We would dearly love to locate Poppy and reunite them after their very scary ordeal," said the 999 crew.

Buckfastleigh Fire

Devon and Cornwall weather: A day of sunshine ahead

Alex Osborne

BBC Weather

It will be a dry and fine day with almost unbroken sunshine.

It was also feel pleasantly warm with mainly light northeasterly winds that will be moderate at times towards the south coast.

Max temperature: 19C (66F).

Weather map

Motorcyclist 'critical' after 'losing control' on B3417

Hayley Westcott

BBC News Online

A motorcyclist is in hospital in a "critical condition" after a crash near Lee Moor, police have said.

Officers were called to the B3417 at about 19:05 on Tuesday.

They said the 49-year-old motorcyclist - from the Launceston area - was travelling in the Plympton direction and "lost control on a right hand bend".

He sustained "serious injuries" and remains in Derriford Hospital in Plymouth.

The road was closed for about six hours.

Any witnesses are asked to contact Devon and Cornwall Police via 101.

Schoolchildren stuck on coaches

Schoolchildren got stuck on coaches on a "very narrow road" on Dartmoor.

Police said they were called to Wray Barton, Moretonhampstead, at around 10.55 on Monday with reports a coach, carrying schoolchildren, was stuck.

Police then received further reports that a second coach had become stuck.

A police spokesman said: "Officers and the fire service attended the scene and helped passengers to exit one of the coaches.

"The other vehicle was able to free itself."

Both drivers have been reported to court for driving without due care and attention.

Severe disruption: M5 Devon northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Devon northbound severe disruption, from J31 for A30 to J30 for A376 Sidmouth Road Exeter.

M5 Devon - One lane closed and queues on M5 northbound from J31, A30 (Okehampton turn off) to J30, A376 (Exeter), because of a break down.

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

Council freezes 'non-essential spending'

Ed Oldfield

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Torquay Town Hall

Torbay Council has put a freeze on non-essential spending to save money as it faces millions of pounds of extra costs for children’s care.

It is the second year in a row the council has imposed the restriction as it tries to balance it books.

Children’s services are on course to go £4.2m over-budget by the end of the year.

That would leave the council with an overall funding gap of £4m, so it is aiming to find extra savings and transfer cash from reserves to stay within its planned budget.

Although the number of cared-for children has remained stable at around 360, spending is being driven up by an increasing number of residential care placements.

The sector has seen costs rising, and complex cases can lead to bills of up to £10,000 a week.

The cost of agency staff to fill vacancies caused by a shortage of social workers is also adding to the overspend pressure.

An extra £4.4m was added to the children’s social care budget this year on top of £3m extra last year.

But that has not been enough to deal with the extra pressure.

Meanwhile the department is carrying out an improvement plan after an ‘inadequate’ rating by inspectors.

Details of the council’s financial position are outlined in a report to its overview and scrutiny committee which meets on Thursday.

Severe disruption: A30 Devon westbound

BBC News Travel

A30 Devon westbound severe disruption, from A377 to A382.

A30 Devon - One lane closed on A30 westbound from Alphington Junction in Exeter to Whiddon Down, because of a lorry having a tyre changed. Traffic is coping well.

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

Devonport ship has key role in huge 'war games' exercise

Johnny O'Shea

BBC News Online

A naval ship based at Devonport has been heavily involved in a multi-national war games exercise off the Canadian coast.

HMS Northumberland has been using its submarine hunting capability in the task group of 20 ships and 36 aircraft.

The Type 23 frigate can track submarines at range and is kitted out with torpedoes, depth charges and a Merlin MK2 helicopter.

Canada, Belgium, Denmark, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, USA and the UK have all been involved in the operation, called Cutlass Fury, off the coast of Nova Scotia.

There is nowhere to hide really from a warship like Northumberland. We will find that submarine”

Lieutenant Commander Markus AdcockHMS Northumberland’s Weapons Engineering Officer
HMS Northumberland
Royal Navy

Orphan foal gets first taste of freedom

BBC Spotlight


A orphan foal that was found alone, has made a full recovery.

The foal, named Ava by staff at the Mare and Foal Sanctuary near Newton Abbot, has been getting around the clock care since she was rescued a few months ago.

Ava has now been allowed out of quarantine and has experienced her first taste of freedom while staff at the sanctuary are continuing to monitor her condition.

She now weighs a very healthy 116kg – more than twice as much as she weighed when she was found.


Early morning cloud across Devon and Cornwall captured

BBC Weather Watchers

Although cloudy across Devon and Cornwall on Tuesday morning, the cloud will break up and it'll become sunny for most by the afternoon.

Thanks to our BBC weather watchers for sharing their pictures.

If you have photos to share, please email us.


'Hundreds of nursing shifts go unfilled' in south west

Jenny Walrond

Health Correspondent, BBC Spotlight

More than 1,100 nursing and health care assistant shifts went unfilled in just one week across three of the region's hospitals, according to figures gathered by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).


The figures suggest almost double that number had been filled with agency and bank staff.

Trusts say they are working to recruit more staff and deploy existing staff to ensure patient safety isn't compromised.

The RCN has launched a petition and says it is a problem that affects everyone:

Susan Masters, from the RCN, said: "We need the citizens of this country to understand that nursing affects all of them, that we need to have the numbers in place, the right numbers of staff in the right place with the right skills to care for them and their families."

Devon and Cornwall weather: A dry day with sunny spells

Dan Downs

Weather Forecaster

Any patchy cloud on Tuesday morning will largely clear and will otherwise be dry with good spells of sunshine.

Feeling pleasant in the sun.

Highs of 20C (68F).

Weather map

MP candidate apologises over 'white' North Devon comments

BBC Radio Devon

The Liberal Democrats' prospective parliamentary candidate for North Devon has apologised after she said the area was "98% white" and local people had not "appreciated" the EU.

Some 57% of people in the area who took part in the 2016 European Union referendum voted to leave the EU.

In an interview with BBC Radio 4 on Sunday afternoon's The World This Weekend, Dr Kirsten Jones said: "We don't have a lot of ethnic minorities living in North Devon, people aren’t exposed to people from other countries, they don’t travel a lot and I think there is a slight disconnect that North Devon being isolated, being rural and low income perhaps hasn’t appreciated the advantages of being in the European Union."

North Devon's incumbent MP, Conservative Peter Heaton-Jones, had demanded she apologised, saying: "She was saying: 'you're too white, you're too poor, you're not well-travelled to make the right decision and therefore the Liberal Democrats are going to have to tell you what you should be thinking'.

"That is an extraordinarily patronising and condescending offensive thing to say about the majority view here in North Devon."

Dr Johnson said on Twitter she "misspoke", adding her comments "do not reflect my views or that of my party.

View more on twitter

Devon and Cornwall weather: Overnight cloud clearing

Dan Downs

Weather Forecaster

Apart from the odd spot of drizzle on Monday evening, a mainly dry but largely cloudy night is anticipated. Later in the night, clear spells will develop from the north. A chillier night.

Minimum temperature: 9C (48F).


A dry Tuesday with some areas of cloud initially, but there will be more in the way of sunshine later in the day. Gentle northerly breezes.

Maximum temperature: 19C (66F).

Exeter county councillor resigns

Daniel Clark

Local Democracy Reporting Service

A Labour Party county councillor representing Exeter has resigned, triggering a by-election.

Cllr Emma Brennan, who represented the Heavitree and Whipton ward, was first elected to the council in May 2017.

No reasons for her stepping down have been announced.

A by-election to elect her replacement is set to take place on 24 October.

Nominations for candidates must be received by Exeter City Council, who are administrating the election on behalf of Devon County Council, by 16:00 on 27 September.

The list of nominated candidates will be published on 30 September and anyone wishing to vote must be registered by 8 October.

The elected councillor would serve until May 2021, when the next elections are due to be held.

Emergency services called to property fire

Charley Adams

BBC News Online

Emergency services were called in the early hours of Sunday morning to reports of outbuildings on fire.

The fire which had spread to a domestic building was tackled by crews from Ivybridge, Modbury and Crownhill.

Two dogs had to be rescued from the fire at Dairy Lane, Ivybridge.

The ground floor of the property was damaged by smoke and a hot tub and some windows were impacted by the fire.

Devon and Somerset Fire Service said the fire was believed to be accidental.

Paignton death 'treated as unexplained'

Andrew Segal

BBC South West

Paignton body scene

Police in Torbay investigating a body being found in Paignton say the death is being treated as unexplained.

Officers were called at about 07:10 to reports of a sudden death of a person in the Esplanade Road area and found the body of an adult.

Police said the incident was "ongoing".

City council have nothing to go on for Exeter toilet usage

Daniel Clark

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Exeter City Council has no idea how many people used the toilets of city centre business over the summer.

Councillors in April voted to close 15 of the 26 toilets that the city council operates and those toilets have since closed.

As well as the council having to make £60,000 of savings from its budget, councillors were not told that there would still be 11 public toilets available and there would be an abundance of publicly accessible alternatives in the city centre.

Proposals were also put forward for a community toilet scheme to be introduced that would allow the general public to use toilets in city centre businesses – although the majority of businesses did not support it.

Following the closures, Cllr Diana Moore asked questions at last Tuesday night’s executive meeting about usage levels, saying: “How many city centre businesses welcomed visitors who were not customers to use their toilets this summer?”

But in response, Cllr Phil Bialyk, leader of the council, said that they didn’t have any figures to that effect.

He said: “We would have to ask all the businesses who have facilities to keep a record and if they thought someone was a customer or not. I don’t think anyone records that information and in the larger stores over more than one floor, it would be very difficult to say, and I don’t think anyone has the resources to record that.”

Asking if public toilets would be part of the CityPoint scheme – the £300m redevelopment of the area around the bus station – Cllr Bialyk said that they would have to look at the planning proposals that came forward, and then it will be discussed at the time when they did.

Exeter public toilets