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Council briefing warns of Brexit risks

Local Democracy Reporting Service

West Berkshire Council

Brexit could close schools and force care homes to shut in West Berkshire, according to a leaked council briefing.

The West Berkshire Council slides listed the "risks to the council and the community".

The briefing also warned of fuel shortages, disruption to food and medicine supply chains and an increase in hate crime. It also said the council had put aside £315,000 to deal with the risks.

It comes after the government was forced to publish its Yellowhammer contingency plans for Brexit.

A spokesman for the council said last week councillors were updated on its Brexit preparations and many of the scenarios detailed on the slides were "worst case".

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Thousands in rural areas affected by delays to install broadband

Ten thousand people in rural parts of Berkshire are facing delays in getting broadband.

Internet service provider Gigaclear, which is installing the infrastructure for a fibre network in the Berkshire countryside, has written to residents to inform them of delays.

Resident Jane Rimmer, from Binfield, said she was told her home would be connected to broadband in August, but has since received a letter saying the date has been put back.

Jane Rimmer

She said: "Network Rail are obstructing them from putting the service over one of their bridges, so we're still back at square one where we don't have broadband, let alone super-fast broadband. "

Many bridges carry pipes and cables, and digging them up can be disruptive for road and rail users.


Gigaclear said in this case the project was being stalled by access needed to lay wires over a railway bridge.

A spokeswoman said: "In situations like this there are inevitably factors which are beyond our control."

Speaking on the case, Network Rail said: "We have been working with providers to assist with installation where possible, and where we have been unable to we are investigating alternative arrangements."

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