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Killed PC 'will have police funeral'

A Thames Valley Police officer killed while investigating a burglary will have a formal police funeral, it has been announced.

PC Andrew Harper, 28, died after he was dragged along the road by a vehicle in Sulhamstead, Berkshire, on 15 August.

Thames Valley Police said his family has confirmed their wish for a formal police funeral to take place.

A force spokesman said: "We will continue to work closely with Andrew's family so that their wishes are front and centre and ensure that the funeral is a fitting tribute that honours our colleague Andrew's strength, courage and bravery."

No further details about the funeral have been released.

PC Andrew Harper
Family handout via Thames Valley Police

Officer cleared after using Taser on suspect

Thames Valley Police have cleared an officer of misconduct after he used a taser on a "compliant" suspect, it has been revealed.

The officer discharged the taser when responding to reports of a man in possession of a sword, during an incident in Newbury, Berkshire, in 2015.

The man, who has not been named, said he had been standing still at the time and did not have a sword. He complained to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.

The police watchdog ruled the tasered man had been shown on CCTV to be compliant and not in possession of the weapon. They directed Thames Valley Police to hold a tribunal.

At a meeting last year, the officer was found not to have committed misconduct in using the Taser and when giving his account of the incident.

Buckinghamshire's 'crazy old girl' farmer becomes internet star
Family farming a hit - "I find her so funny and I wondered whether that would translate on camera".
Boris Johnson pays tribute to police officer killed
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has described the killing of PC Andrew Harper as "mindless and brutal".

Police open day cancelled due to weather forecast

TVP open day
TVP

A police force has decided to cancel its open day to the public due to adverse weather forecast.

Thames Valley Police said it would "not be safe or practical" to hold the event due to strong winds posing a risk to a "significant amount" of temporary structures.

Chief Constable John Campbell said: "We apologise for any inconvenience caused to all those who were looking forward to the open day as much as we were."

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for wind throughout Saturday.

The event was due to take place on Saturday between 10:00 and 16:00 BST at the force's training centre in Sulhamstead, Berkshire.

91,100 government-funded trees planted in Aylesbury Vale in eight years

There have been 91,100 government-funded trees planted in Aylesbury Vale between 2010 and 2018, Forestry Commission data shows.

This works out at 465 trees per 1,000 people.

Between 2010 and 2018 the government funded about 15 million trees in England. Figures for trees planted with private funds or by local councils are not included and the data only covers new trees, not replacements for any that were cut down.

Overall tree planting rates across the UK would need to more than double to combat rising temperatures and climate change, according to official figures.

Last year 13,400 hectares of new trees were planted across the UK, most of them in Scotland, but the Committee on Climate Change says this should rise to at least 30,000 hectares a year.

Campaign group The Woodland Trust said more trees were needed to provide summer shade, reduce air pollution, improve water quality and manage flooding.

The government said it had made it "much easier" to apply for planting grants.

Find out about tree planting across the UK here.

This story has been generated using Forestry Commission data, BBC analysis and some automation.

Police chase flying geese down the M4 in Berkshire
Officers were forced to shut the motorway as they pursued the geese that were recorded flying at 26mph.

Police drone trial set for take-off

Drones are starting to be used to fight crime across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Hampshire from next month.

Thirty-five officers have been trained as part of a joint trial involving the Thames Valley and Hampshire forces.

The drones will be used to search for missing people or offenders on the run as well as policing large events or dealing with the aftermath of road accidents.

High quality footage from the drones can be beamed into control rooms or incident command units in real time.

The use of drones in policing is already wide spread across Dorset, Wiltshire, Sussex and Surrey, and has already helped secure convictions.

Police drones
BBC

Certainly in rural areas where we're trying to cover large areas of land, the use of drones rather than using large numbers of police officers is one of the significant benefits we think we'll get out of it

Ass Ch Const David HardcastleHampshire Constabulary

Blouse in fridge declared 'best mistake ever'

Those on the early shift at BBC Three Counties Radio in Dunstable were surprised to find that someone - hopefully a colleague - had left a white blouse in the office fridge overnight.

Marveling at the workmate's forward-planning skills in advance of what could be the UK's hottest day ever (imagine arriving after a hot commute and slipping in to something cool), it prompted a breakfast phone-in on novel ways to beat the heat.

Blouse in the fridge
BBC

However, it turned out that said colleague left it there "by mistake" - as you do - while collecting her sandwiches from the fridge before leaving on Wednesday.

However, posing in the white shirt in sweltering midday temperatures, journalist Jane Killick declared her lapse the "best mistake ever" and is going to put it back in there tonight!

Jane Killick
BBC

Thames Valley Police crime recording 'inadequate', watchdog says

Thames Valley Police
BBC

Thames Valley Police's crime recording has been rated inadequate by the government watchdog, with concerns raised over the recording of domestic abuse and rape.

Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) said although the force has "improved its crime recording" it "needs to do more".

HMICFRS said the force records 87.9% of crimes reported to is, about an increase of 13,800 crimes more than in 2017.

But the inspectorate said despite an increase in recording the numbers "for violent crime are still too low".

It added: "Officers and staff are still failing to correctly identify and record domestic abuse and rape crimes."

A force spokesperson said: "Last year we responded to over half a million calls for assistance.

"That is over 1,400 incidents a day and every day the members of this force come to work to fulfil only one purpose, and that is to keep the communities of Thames Valley safe from harm."

Police advise people to lock windows to curb summer burglaries

UK heatwave: Rail companies urge passengers not to travel

With temperatures predicted to soar to an unprecedented high of 39C (102F) today, many train companies in the eastern region are urging people not to travel unless absolutely necessary.

Network Rail has announced that speed restrictions will be in place for most of the day because of fears that rail tracks could buckle.

Thameslink, Great Northern and Southern have said there will be delays and cancellations to services across the whole network.

View more on twitter

East Midlands trains are not calling at Bedford and Southern trains to Milton Keynes are not running.

Greater Anglia has advised people against travelling unless its urgent.

John Halsall, from Network Rail, said: "I've been working on the railway for 10 years - I've never encountered temperatures like this or put in the level of blanket speeds that we're talking about.

"We're not making this decision easily but it is essential in terms of passenger safety."