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Victim hands over £3,000 in fake police scam

A victim of a scam handed over £3,000 cash to a fraudster after a bogus telephone call from a man posing as a police officer.

Kent Police said it was one of eight similar reports on Thursday from people living in Faversham.

In each call, the man claimed to be from the police and said he had someone in custody who had cloned their bank card or told the caller that they had a substantial amount of money taken from their account.

They were then told to withdraw money from their account and meet a courier who would collect the money.

Det Sgt Rachel Howson from the Volume Fraud Team said: “Unfortunately those who are targeted are often the most vulnerable, such as elderly people or victims with learning difficulties.”

She added that police officers will never ask a member of the public for their bank details or money over the phone.

Schools' racial equality policies come under the microscope

Dean Kilpatrick

Local Democracy Reporter

Medway's schools are to get a “health check” on whether they effectively adhere to their racial equality policies.

Only 15% of institutions in the Towns responded to a “support pack” from the Medway Youth Conference in 2017, which gave examples of workshops and lessons to help tackle racism in schools.

Medway Council’s children and young people overview and scrutiny committee expressed concerns about the statistic on 6 June, but was told it did not mean the subject was not being addressed elsewhere.

Councillors were told later on in the meeting that each school has its own racial equality policy, and officers will test how effective they are within the next 12 months.

Men arrested 'while printing fake money'

Caitlin Webb

Local Democracy Reporter

Kent Police has uncovered an alleged money laundering ring worth a “staggering” £5.2m in £20 notes.

When the in investigation was launched the Bank of England knew of at least £152,000 of counterfeit cash in circulation.

Chief constable Alan Pughsley told a meeting on Wednesday: “An operation commenced in January with regard to intelligence from the organised crime group counterfeiting currencies.

“Lots of work then commenced over a period including covert and overt work building an intelligence picture until May, where we believed we had identified the premises and believed there was a print run live at that time.

“We went to the address and found two individuals there at the time literally hands on in the middle of counterfeiting a number of £20 notes.”

At least five people have been arrested as part of the alleged conspiracy to print fake notes at a business premises in Beckenham.

Mr Pughsley added: “This is, according to the Bank of England, the biggest ever seizure of £20 notes.

“It would have had significant damage to the UK economy."

Bodycam captures knife attack on police officer
Stab vest stops three knife blows as officer's hand cut in struggle.

Green light for new flats despite noisy location

Dean Kilpatrick

Local Democracy Reporter

Ten new flats are to be built to the rear of a former newspaper office in the Medway Towns.

Plans for the four-storey block, which will front Gundulph Road, in Chatham, was given planning permission for behind the building where the now-defunct Medway News used to be based in New Road Avenue.

Initial concerns about the potential noise from the nearby Coyotes nightclub and The Stanley Ballroom were dismissed by Medway Council last Wednesday and the proposal unanimously supported.

Councillor Adrian Gulvin said: “This is to be welcomed. Once again, we’re filling in a spot within the town centre for residential accommodation.

“Yes, the town centres will be noisy places – and some people will like that. I think in my early 20s, having a nightclub or pub around the corner would have been an absolute delight.

“People will make a conscious choice if they want to live there, so I think wrapping the whole thing in cotton wool is not possible.”

Kent Premium Bond holder wins jackpot

Lizzie Massey

BBC Live reporter

A Premium Bond holder in Kent is celebrating after bagging the £1m jackpot.

The winner has £4,210 invested in Premium Bonds, and the winning bond was bought in 2000.

Jill Waters, NS&I retail director, said: "We hope that news of this win will bring them happiness and financial security for many years.”

In 62 years Premium Bonds have paid out 442 million prizes worth £19.5bn.

In Kent, there are 40,623 unclaimed prizes, collectively worth just over £1.5m.

One person has a £50,000 prize from November 2007 which is still waiting to be claimed.

Plans for 151-flat block approved

Dean Kilpatrick

Local Democracy Reporter

A block of flats proposed by a Medway Council’s own house building company has been granted planning permission.

Plans for 151 apartments at the Whiffens Avenue car park in Chatham were given the go-ahead by councillors on Wednesday as the authority continues to attempt to attract more people to live within the town centre.

The scheme had to be redesigned following objections from Heritage England over fears of the impact on nearby Fort Amherst, but was felt the level of harm had been “reduced” by a “package of heritage gains”.

The eight-storey building, which stands at 24m high, includes 35 one-bedroom and 80 two-bedroom properties, nine of which are shared ownership.

The rest of the affordable homes will be located at the White Road Community Centre scheme also approved at the meeting

There will be 90 parking spaces for residents in the basement, with the proximity of the bus and railway stations deemed to be sufficient in attracting those who do not have a car.

Today's local news website headlines

Newspaper printing press
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The Argus: Botched bunion surgery leaves woman housebound

Kent Online: Tributes to girl set to 'rule the world' before unexplained death

Get Surrey: Former Epsom Hospital children's doctor suspended

Chichester Observer: Selsey sexual assault: Man hands himself in

Eastbourne Herald: Injury left working mum relying on foodbanks

Crawley and Horley Observer: Runaway lorry rolls downhill with unconscious driver

Worthing Herald: Graffiti by Worthing's Banksy should be removed, council officers say

Mid Sussex Times: Burgess Hill Academy celebrates ‘good’ Ofsted rating

Brighton and Hove News: Most Brighton A&E patients satisfied despite having to wait longer than average

Hastings Observer: Firefighters battling another blaze at derelict Hastings care home

Brighton and Hove Independent: Brighton shortlisted for Best Walking Neighbourhood Award

BreakingSouth East results

View more on twitter

Brexit Party: 915,686

Lib Dems: 653,743

Green: 343,249

Conservatives: 260,277

Labour: 184,678

Change UK: 105,832

UKIP: 56,487

South East turnout

Turnout in the South East was 39.36% - up from 35.4% in 2014.

The South East region is made up of the Isle of Wight, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey, Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

The biscuits bridging generation divides

These biscuits help to bridge the generational divide
A community project in Kent is bringing young and old together with the help of biscuits and dancing. 
The "Love Grows" projects aims to encourage friendships between generations and challenge the perceptions of what it is like to be young or old.

Today's local news website headlines

Newspaper (generic)
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Kent Online: Self-harm at record level in Rochester Prison

The Argus: Lion and Lobster pub in Brighton to host beach themed street party

Get Surrey:Cystic fibrosis University of Surrey student studying to find a cure for her condition

Hastings Observer: Historic buses roll into Hastings

Mid Sussex Times:Warning over toxic caterpillars across Sussex which can cause a painful rash

Chichester Observer:Chichester community spaces given a £19,000 funding boost

Worthing Herald:Shoreham Airshow Memorial: Pictures show the story so far as the 11 arches are erected

West Sussex County Times:Thieves steal village brownie pack’s scarecrow

Brighton & Hove Independent:Fundraisers abseil for Blind Veterans UK

Eastbourne Herald: Road closed for more than five hours after serious accident on A27 Pevensey Bypass

Brighton and Hove News:Planning inspector overrules council on seven shared houses in Brighton