Stoke Gifford

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Severe accident: M4 Bristol westbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Bristol westbound severe accident, from J22 for M49 to J23 for M48.

M4 Bristol - One lane closed and it's heavy on M4 westbound from J22 M49 in Gloucestershire to J23 M48 in Monmouthshire, because of an accident.

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

Severe disruption: M48 Gloucestershire westbound

BBC News Travel

M48 Gloucestershire westbound severe disruption, between J1 for A403 and J2 for A466 Wye Valley Link Road.

M48 Gloucestershire - One lane closed on M48 Severn Bridge westbound in Monmouthshire between J1, A403 (Aust) and J2, A466 (Chepstow), because of a break down. Traffic is coping well.

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

Severe disruption: M4 Wiltshire westbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Wiltshire westbound severe disruption, from J17 for A350 to J18 for A46 Bath.

M4 Wiltshire - Break down and (Named) Lane Blocked on M4 westbound from J17, A350 (Chippenham) to J18, A46 (Bath). Traffic is coping well.

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

Severe disruption: M48 Gloucestershire westbound

BBC News Travel

M48 Gloucestershire westbound severe disruption, between J1 for A403 and J2 for A466 Wye Valley Link Road.

M48 Gloucestershire - Strong winds on M48 Severn Bridge westbound in Monmouthshire between J1, A403 (Aust) and J2, A466 (Chepstow). Matrix sign set to 40 mph.

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

Severe disruption: M5 Bristol northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Bristol northbound severe disruption, at J16 for A38 Gloucester Road.

M5 Bristol - M5 in Gloucestershire lane closed on entry slip road and it's slow northbound at J16, A38 (Aztec West), because of a break down.

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

Severe disruption: M4 Wiltshire westbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Wiltshire westbound severe disruption, from J16 for A3102 Swindon Road to J17 for A350.

M4 Wiltshire - One lane closed on M4 westbound from J16, A3102 (Swindon West) to J17, A350 (Chippenham), because of a broken down vehicle on the opposite side. Traffic is coping well.

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

Severe accident: M5 Bristol southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Bristol southbound severe accident, from J19 for A369 Martcombe Road to J20 for B3133 Ettlingen Way.

M5 Bristol - One lane closed and it's slow on M5 southbound in Somerset from J19, A369 (Portishead) to J20, B3133 (Clevedon), because of an accident.

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

Severe disruption: M4 Wiltshire westbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Wiltshire westbound severe disruption, from J17 for A350 to J18 for A46 Bath.

M4 Wiltshire - One lane closed and queues on M4 westbound from J17, A350 (Chippenham) to J18, A46 (Bath), because of a break down.

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

Severe disruption: M4 Wiltshire westbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Wiltshire westbound severe disruption, between J17 for A350 and J18 for A46 Bath.

M4 Wiltshire - One lane closed on M4 westbound between J17, A350 (Chippenham) and J18, A46 (Bath), because of a break down. Traffic is coping well.

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

Severe disruption: A4018 Bristol westbound

BBC News Travel

A4018 Bristol westbound severe disruption, from A4 Anchor Road to Unity Street.

A4018 Bristol - A4018 College Green closed and it's slow westbound from the A4 Anchor Road junction to the Unity Street junction, because of Red Maid Founders Parade.

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

Council's redundancy payments total £1m despite fewer staff laid off

Local Democracy Reporting Service

South Gloucestershire Council building
BBC

South Gloucestershire Council laid off nearly 100 fewer staff in 2018 than the year, before but still racked up around £1m in redundancy payouts.

The authority made 125 people redundant in 2017/18, at a cost of roughly £1.6million. Last year, there were only 30 compulsory redundancies, but they added up to around £1m – chiefly because of large payments to made three individuals.

A council spokesman said: “There were a number of redundancies in 2018/19, following reorganisation within the council as part of our ongoing work to improve the value for money as we continue to deliver our priorities and the services people need.

“A number of individuals received contractual redundancy payments as part of this process, which are capped by the council’s policy.

“The total costs to the council (described as ‘exit packages’) includes pension costs payable to the pension fund to comply with pension rules.”

Altogether the council paid out almost £1.25m in severance payments in 2018/19, compared with nearly £2.05million the previous financial year.

Gloucestershire Police warn drivers over flooding

Road users in parts of Gloucestershire are being advised to take caution and find alternative routes as a number of roads are currently impassable due to surface water/flooding.

Gloucestershire Police said the most affected roads are:

  • he A40 near Over and Highnam
  • The B4077 near the Teddington Hands and Alderton
  • The A46 Beckford Road near Evesham
  • The A38 from Treddington to Fiddington, Minsterworth
  • And a number of roads around Winchcombe
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Rare bird spotted in Gloucestershire

The Great Grey Shrike or butcher bird has been spotted at Woorgreens Nature Reserve in the Forest of Dean.

The butcher bird is beautiful but dangerous to small reptiles.

Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust has asked if people spot the bird to "please watch respectfully from the tracks and paths to avoid disturbance".

Click here for facts about the Great Grey Shrike.

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Severe disruption: M48 Monmouthshire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M48 Monmouthshire eastbound severe disruption, between J2 for A466 Wye Valley Link Road and J1 for A403.

M48 Monmouthshire - Lane closed on M48 eastbound between J2, A466 (Chepstow) and J1, A403 (Aust), because of a break down. Traffic is coping well.

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

Racing at Cheltenham cancelled due to weather

The opening day of The November Meeting at Cheltenham Racecourse has been abandoned.

A spokesman told BBC Gloucestershire he estimated that the equivalent of half a million gallons of water fell on the track in recent rainfall.

It is still very soggy and there will be an inspection at 3pm this afternoon, with the hope racing will resume tomorrow.

View more on twitter

Busy Gloucestershire road reopens after flooding

Highways England say the A40 near Over and Highnam in Gloucestershire has reopened this morning, after extensive flooding forced it to close yesterday.

Heavy rainfall made the route impassable, with some motorists becoming stranded.

Crews worked overnight to clear the flood water to reopen the route ahead of Friday's rush hour.

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Severe disruption: A466 Monmouthshire both ways

BBC News Travel

A466 Monmouthshire both ways severe disruption, between Wyesham Avenue and Newland Turn Off.

A466 Monmouthshire - A466 Redbrook Road in Monmouth closed in both directions between the Wyesham Avenue junction and the Newland Turn Off junction, because of flooding.

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

Severe disruption: M5 Gloucestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Gloucestershire northbound severe disruption, at J13 for A419.

M5 Gloucestershire - M5 lane blocked on exit slip road northbound at J13, A419 (Stroud), because of a break down. Traffic is coping well.

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

Severe disruption: M5 Gloucestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Gloucestershire northbound severe disruption, at J13 for A419.

M5 Gloucestershire - M5 lane closed on exit slip road northbound at J13, A419 (Stroud), 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

Gloucestershire schools affected by weather

Twyning School has announced it will be closing early today.

The school near Tewkesbury will be closing at 13:30 GMT.

It is the fourteenth Gloucestershire school to either close fully or early due to today's adverse weather conditions.

Others around the county include Blockley Primary School, Tredington Primary School and Winchcombe School. North Cerney Primary School is also closed due to a power cut in the village.

Severe disruption: M4 Gloucestershire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Gloucestershire eastbound severe disruption, from J18 for A46 Bath to J17 for A350.

M4 Gloucestershire - Temporary closure and stationary on M4 eastbound from J18, A46 (Bath) to J17, A350 (Chippenham), because of a vehicle on fire.

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

Severe accident: M5 Somerset northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Somerset northbound severe accident, from J20 for B3133 Ettlingen Way to J19 for A369 Martcombe Road.

M5 Somerset - It's heavy on M5 northbound from J20, B3133 (Clevedon) to J19, A369 (Portishead), because of a temporary closure and an accident, which is now on the hard shoulder.

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

Severe accident: A4174 Bristol both ways

BBC News Travel

A4174 Bristol both ways severe accident, at Queens Road.

A4174 Bristol - A4174 Anton Bantock Way in Bishopsworth blocked and queues in both directions at the Queens Road junction, because of an accident involving two cars.

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

'Working people are using our food bank'

Rev Howard Jameson at St Chad's Church in Patchway
BBC
Rev Howard Jameson at St Chad's Church in Patchway

Reverend Howard Jameson, Vicar at St Chad's in Patchway, can watch his potential congregation grow just by drawing back his curtains.

His predecessor's parish contained 9,500 people. The housing development at Charlton Hayes has added a possible 5-6,000 more to that number, and yet more homes are being built close by.

Mr Jameson's church sits in the 'old' Patchway - streets of housing built for the men and women who made aircraft during World War II.

"People from the older generation say their kids used to play on the grass at the end of the taxiways at Filton Airport. They feel that's been taken from them." said Mr Jameson.

His parish is surrounded by big employers such as Airbus and Rolls Royce, and The Mall at Cribbs Causeway is a ten-minute walk away.

But the fact that St Chad's hosts a food bank suggests all is not well, even if the unemployment figure in the area is low.

"I used to be the vicar of four churches outside Bath and I knew more people who worked at Airbus and Rolls Royce then than I do now I'm the vicar here," said Rev Jameson.

He says there are lots of jobs available, but not necessarily careers.

"Historically the Patchway Community School pupils would go on to become apprentices on the shop floor but my impression is that those jobs are gone.

“We see a lot of young people who don’t seem to have quality jobs that they would aspire to. That has a knock-on effect. You don’t see a huge amount of young people who think they can get a career and training."

The food bank at St Chad's has been open for a year. The church was approached by the North Bristol Food Bank who have outlets on Filton Avenue, in Lockleaze and in Southmead. They noticed a quarter of the people visiting them had BS34 postcodes.

And it's sometimes people who have jobs who need the food that's provided.

"We do see people who are in employment who need food banks," said Rev Jameson. "Sometimes people jobs don't give them adequate sick cover so when they get ill they struggle.

"Universal Credit is also a big reason for the extension of peoples’ need to use food banks.

"Sometimes women end up in the local refuge at short notice because of domestic abuse so they also need help."

The development is set to continue around Patchway. The former Brabazon Hanger could well become Bristol's new arena. Hidden from view next to the hanger is a railway line which could be brought back into use for passenger trains.

Mr Jameson says his conversations with parishioners and looking at social media makes him worried about the tone surrounding next month's General Election.

He said: "I think the way that our political leaders present themselves in the public eye is very confrontational, very soundbitey. I don’t think it encourages informed political debate and I’m concerned about that."

'We waited five hours for an ambulance'

The High Street in Shirehampton
BBC
The High Street in Shirehampton

St Mary’s Church in Shirehampton opens its doors six days a week for coffee or tea and the chance for locals to socialise and, this time of year, sit in the warm.

Yvonne and Laurie Dando, both 81, are a regular sight at the tables set out next to the pews. The drinks and biscuits are free, although donations are welcome.

Laurie has lived in Shirehampton since he was six years old. The couple have seen plenty of changes over the years.

"A lot of our lovely shops have gone," said Yvonne. "Ten years ago you could buy anything in the village from a bed to a clothing to shoes. You can't get any of that now. It's a shame."

The couple avoid the centre of Shirehampton after dark, saying lots of young people gather and cause vandalism, making them feel unsafe.

Yvonne's daughter comes across from Wales to help them with their monthly big supermarket shop, as they have given up driving.

Their dependency on others was made clear last week when Laurie fell and cut his head open.

"We waited for an ambulance for five hours," said Yvonne. "They said they were really busy but I was explaining he's 81, a diabetic and has dementia. I'm 81 and I'm his main carer. I said 'I'm trying to stop the blood, I need help.

"We've got one GP surgery. You ring up and you're lucky to get an appointment within three weeks, but that's the same everywhere. They've lovely doctors once you do get an appointment."

With a General Election looming, neither Laurie nor Yvonne hold out much hope their votes will make a huge difference.

Yvonne said: "“I don’t pay any attention to the news. They always just seem to be arguing. And then people voted for Brexit and what happens? They don’t do it.”

Laurie added: “So many people have lost faith in voting.”

Motorway junction improvement plan to support county growth plans

Shire Hall, Gloucester
BBC

Gloucestershire County Council is expected to vote tonight to increase its highways budget so it can upgrade junction 10 of the M5.

It's in anticipation of a bid for government funding which will be decided after the election.

The work would give access from the motorway both northbound and southbound to a new link road into Cheltenham.

The council says it would support the county's plans for growth, and solve long-standing traffic issues.

Severe disruption: M5 Gloucestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Gloucestershire northbound severe disruption, from J14 for B4509 Thornbury to J13 for A419.

M5 Gloucestershire - One lane closed on M5 northbound from J14, B4509 (Thornbury) to J13, A419 (Stroud), 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

Severe disruption: M4 Gloucestershire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Gloucestershire eastbound severe disruption, at J18 for A46 Bath.

M4 Gloucestershire - M4 lane closed on exit slip road and it's slow eastbound at J18, A46 (Bath), because of a break down.

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

Severe weather warning issued in south west

The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning for tomorrow evening, with 20-30mm of rain expected to fall within three to four hours.

The yellow warning for rain stretches from 17:00 GMT to 23:59 GMT and is likely to affect drivers during tomorrow evening's rush hour.

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Severe disruption: M5 Somerset northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Somerset northbound severe disruption, at J21 for A370.

M5 Somerset - M5 entry slip road partially blocked northbound at J21, A370 (Weston-Super-Mare), because of a break down. Traffic is coping well.

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