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  1. Updates from across the West of England on Tuesday 2 August, 2016

Live Reporting

By David Bailey

All times stated are UK

Brighter and sunnier on Wednesday

Did you get caught in the showers today? Lots of us did - but it looks as if it's going to be brighter tomorrow, however it will be windier.

Here's Ian Fergusson with Wednesday's forecast, and a look ahead to the end of the week...

Here's Ian with the weather for Wednesday

That's all from Local Live today. We'll be back with the West's news, sport, weather and travel from 7am tomorrow.

Uncovering the stories behind a memorial's names

A retired army officer from Bristol has spent the past three years investigating how 37 pupils at his former primary school died during World War One.   

The war memorial will now be restored

Through his work, Lieutenant Colonel Steen Clarke has raised enough money to have the Clifton war memorial restored and he now knows the story behind every name listed on it. 

He's been speaking to BBC Points West's Liz Beacon.

The full future of Gloucester's quarter?

Plans have been unveiled showing how the Kings Quarter in Gloucester could look in the future.

Gloucester City Council wants to hear people's opinions on four concept schemes for the area's redevelopment.

If you want to have a say you've been given until 10 September to do so.

Kings Quarter plan 1
Roberts Limbrick
Kings Quarter plan 1
Kings Quarter plan 2
Roberts Limbrick
Kings Quarter plan 2
Kings Quarter plan 3
Roberts Limbrick
Kings Quarter plan 3
Kings Quarter plan 4
Roberts Limbrick
Kings Quarter plan 4

'Almost as if racism has been legalised'

The PCC for Bristol called for incidents of hate crime to be reported

Avon and Somerset's Police and Crime commissioner says it's "almost as if racism has been legalised".

Sue Mountstevens was responding to a number of recent incidents, including a Pakistani family in south Bristol who suffered a racist outburst and had their car windows smashed.

On another occasion a Somali family in Bristol said their eight-month-old baby was covered in sticky liquid thrown from a van.

Ms Mountstevens told BBC Points West's David Garmston that "people think they can get away with it".

Travellers move onto the Bristol Downs

A group of 20-30 caravans moved onto the Downs in Bristol yesterday. 

Bristol City Council has been to investigate and said the group had refused access to a "transit site".

20-30 caravans have moved on to The Downs in Bristol on Monday.

The traveller sites officer visited the group and completed a welfare assessment. They are new to Bristol. The travellers have been offered access to the transit site but this was turned down. Paperwork has been sent to our legal team to apply for a possession order to recover the site from the travellers as swiftly as possible.

Bristol City Council

Have you seen this reptile?

Hattie wandered off from an animal rescue centre on Saturday

The owners of this missing 95-year-old tortoise want the public's help to find her.

Hattie wandered off from an animal rescue centre in the Staple Hill area of Bristol on Saturday, and hasn't been seen since.

Tortoise wanted poster

Staff told the Bristol Post they thought she might have made a dash for it when somebody left her enclosure open, and they'd love to get her back.

By my reckoning, in 1921, the year she was born, David Lloyd George was Prime Minister and Ernest Shackleton set sail on his last expedition to Antarctica.

Hattie the tortoise

Watch BBC Radio Bristol's sports forum

Geoff Twentyman

With the seasons just around the corner, fancy a fix of footy and rugby?

BBC Radio Bristol's Geoff Twentyman will be joined by a panel of guests tonight in a Sports Forum, ahead of the big kick offs - and you can even watch part of it streamed live on Facebook.

Live from Ashton Gate at 7pm are Bristol City head coach Lee Johnson, Bristol Rovers manager Darrell Clarke and Yeovil Town boss Darren Way, along with guests from Bristol Rugby and Bath Rugby.

Head over to Radio Bristol's Facebook page to watch the live stream at 7:30pm.

Heidi to star in TV documentary

Heidi Loughlin from Portishead delayed chemotherapy to give birth to a baby girl, only to see her die a week later.

Now she's set to star in a documentary about extraordinary birth stories, on the Discovery Channel.

The 33-year-old spoke to BBC Radio Bristol's John Darvall, in an emotional interview, this morning. 

“It will be very hard to watch as it covers Ally’s birth and her stay in the neo-natal unit,” she said.

Heidi Loughlin

Talking about her two sons, she said: “I don’t want them to be swallowed by the darkness and get to 18 and think their childhood was all doom and sadness.

“I want them to remember Ally and that their mum carried on and did everything she could to give them the best while she was here.”

You can listen again to her interview on the BBC iPlayer.

In the news

Family 'scared' by racist outburst

Members of a Pakistani family living in south Bristol have been telling the BBC about a racist outburst against them.

The family told Scott Ellis they were "very, very scared" by the incident

It happened in their back garden while they were celebrating their daughter's birthday party. Car windows were also smashed.

They say it's never happened to them before and think it could be linked to Britain's decision to leave the EU. 

Police said a person was questioned in relation to the incident and released pending further enquiries.

The head of the family, who doesn't want to be identified, has been speaking to BBC Points West's Scott Ellis.

Somerset BMX rider going for gold at Rio

Liam Phillips from Burnham-on-Sea is no stranger to the Olympics. 

This will be his third time competing and even though he hopes to win big for the UK, he accepts that winning a BMX race is a bit of a lottery...

Liam Phillips is getting ready to compete in his third Olympic games

Mermaid swimming classes start in Gloucestershire

Mermaid swimming classes start in Gloucestershire

It may seem like the stuff of fiction, but now mermaid swimming has started in Gloucester. 

Fin2Fit runs mermaid classes for children at Brockworth Sports Centre.

Former soldier's research leads to Bristol war memorial restoration

Remembering the fallen pupils of St John's Church of England Primary

A Bristol-born army officer has spent months researching the fate of 27 pupils of his former primary school who died fighting in Europe in World War One.

Retired Lt Col Steen Clarke, is a former pupil of St John’s Church of England Primary School in Bristol and he has also arranged for the Grade ll-listed memorial, which stands outside the former St John’s Church in Clifton, to be cleaned and restored in time for Armistice Day.

Exmoor stag 'in tip top condition'

Leukaemia patient chasing his dreams after bone marrow transplant

Ben Connolly from Chippenham is set to pursue his dream of becoming a professional drifter. 

If you've never seen what drifting is, Ben is able to demonstrate this rather unusual style of driving:

Ben Connolly aims to become a champion car racer - but don't try this yourself

What is more remarkable is that Ben is paralysed because of a cancerous tumour that is pressing on his spinal cord.

He has recently undergone a bone marrow transplant as part of his cancer treatment.

Capybara on the loose in Taunton

Bristol North Baths project starts again

Work to finish the troubled Bristol North Baths project has started. 

The project was initially scheduled for completion in October 2013, but the council decided to take back control of the project after delays.

Bristol North Baths

Bristol City Council have appointed CW Duke to finish off the work, it is hoped that flat buyers will receive their keys in November 2016.

Gloucester Rugby players try wheelchair rugby

A group of rugby players have been trying wheelchair rugby as part of their pre-season training.

They took on the Gloucester Wheelchair rugby team in Cirencester on Saturday.

Players have to wheel themselves round the court while passing a ball to score a try, or smash into each other to defend.  

Gloucester Rugby players try wheelchair rugby

Fire crews look at different ways to rescue obese people

Trowbridge Fire Station has taken delivery of a new dummy, which has been used to practise bariatric rescue. 

The team is one of 2 rope rescue teams in Wiltshire, which means they could be travelling up to 1 hour 20 minutes for a call.

View more on twitter

A spokesperson for Dorset and Wiltshire Fire Service said that a lot of their bariatric rescues are often helping with manpower - so that paramedics can safely take people downstairs on a stretcher.

In extreme cases, they sometimes have to take people out of windows on to aerial platforms.

A happy reunion at the Cleveland Pools in Bath

On Saturday, dozens of people who learned to swim at Bath's Cleveland Pools got together for a reunion. 

This photo captures the happiness of that day. 

Bridget and John
Cleveland Pools

The man on the right is former swimming instructor John Dagger, who taught generations of people to swim in the pools. On the left, is 87-year-old Bridget who used to work in the ticket kiosk

They hadn't seen each other for 38 years.

The picture was sent to us by Sally Helvey, who wrote Bridget was absolutely determined to get out of her care home to see John again

The look here on John's face when he realised who she was is just wonderful and Bridget couldn't wipe the smile off her face all day

Pair remanded in custody following child neglect charge

Cheltenham Magistrates Court

Two people have been remanded in custody following the death of a three-month-old baby at the weekend.

Hannah Henry, 20, and Alastair Walker, 26, from Archdeacon Street, Gloucester, appeared before magistrates in Cheltenham charged with child neglect.

Both were remanded in custody. Their case will be heard by Gloucester Crown Court on Friday 2 September.

Harmonie-Rose shows off her doll

We just had to share this smile - thanks to the parents of Bath toddler Harmonie-Rose have shared with us the latest photos of their daughter and her new doll.

Family photos

The doll has been specially-adapted to look like the two-year-old who lost her arms and legs after contracting meningitis as a baby. 

It was a special reward after her latest trip to hospital for treatment.

Family photos

Gloucester Cathedral £6m renovation work starts

Gloucester Cathedral
Gloucester Cathedral

A £6m project to renovate Gloucester Cathedral has begun.

It is called Project Pilgrim - with £4m of the funding coming from the Heritage Lottery Fund - its aim is to improve the medieval building's facilities.

The proposals include building a new glass entrance, replacing the car park with a public space and installing solar panels on the Nave roof.

Project Pilgrim manager Anne Cranston said it was to "make sure the building is here for future generations".

Find out more about this story by clicking here.

Pokémon not welcome at Taunton Flower Show

Rio 2016: Glastonbury swimmer going for gold

We're just four days away from the greatest sporting event in the world - the Olympic Games. 

One of the strongest medal hopes for the region is Somerset swimmer and double world champion James Guy.

Yeovil road re-opens after gas main repaired

Work to repair a damaged gas main in Yeovil has been completed and Western Avenue is now open to traffic.

Wales & West Utilities said a "strategic" gas pipe had been damaged by third-part contractors on Monday and this had led to a "complex repair job in challenging conditions".

Bristol Cathedral closes for period drama filming

If you're planning to go to Bristol Cathedral then you'll see some parts have been closed off for visitors for the rest of the week.

Although church services are continuing as normal, the building has been chosen as the location for a film so you won't be able to use the shop or cafe.

The White Princess will be a period drama based on the novel of the same name by Philippa Gregory about Elizabeth of York who later became the wife of Henry VII and the mother of Henry VIII.

Filming has been taking place at Bristol Cathedral.

Leader of BANES Council in the radio hot seat

The leader of Bath and North East Somerset Council, Tim Warren joined BBC Radio Bristol's John Darvall this morning to ask questions from listeners.

Banes leader Tim Warren
  • Laura in Keynsham asked about the proposed cuts to the number 38 service which serves Keynsham. Tim said that the council will fund two evening services from Bath to Keynsham, but that some routes were subsidised by up to £14 per person per trip, which was costly
  • Roger from central Bath wanted to know what the council was doing about rubbish taken from black bags by seagulls. Tim replied that the council were planning to introduce more gull-proof bags. He also said he wanted to fine companies that leave bags out for gulls to attack
  • Tim also revealed that he used to be a stunt horse rider for the TV show Robin of Sherwood!

Bath's North Parade closed for roadworks

Tweet of the day?

Andrew Linthorne took this colourful photo of a robin singing in the sunshine near Tarr Steps on Exmoor.

If you've got a photo you want to share, please email it to us at

Andy Linthorne

The top stories in today's local newspapers

Fallen tree affecting cyclists' commute

Users of the Bristol to Bath Railway Path have had to deal with a fallen tree this morning:

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

BreakingPair charged with child neglect after death of baby

A man and woman have been charged in connection with the death of a baby in Gloucester over the weekend. 

Hannah Henry, 20, and Alistair Walker, 26, both of Archdeacon Street in Gloucester, have been charged with child neglect. 

They are due to appear at Cheltenham Magistrates Court later.

Look what's cropped up in Wiltshire

Fly over Wiltshire's newest crop circle

A new crop circle has appeared in a field in Warminster, Wiltshire. 

The design attracted a lot of attention over the weekend with people walking right into it and lying down. 

This footage taken from the air above Cley Hill has been shared by James Moore.

Residents return to their homes after gas leak in Yeovil

Engineers have been working overnight to repair a gas leak in Yeovil. 

A key gas main was broken yesterday by a digger and people living within a 100m radius of the leak were told to leave their homes - but they've since been allowed home.

Residents have now been allowed home

But some nearby residents took to Facebook to report strong smells of gas both inside and outside their houses. 

Wales and West Utilities have advised those people to call the gas emergency service on 0800 111 999 so the reports can be checked out.

You can hear more from the company just after 8am on BBC Somerset.

Bristol City fans upset over club's booking fee charges

Bristol City fans

Some Bristol City fans are upset their club has reintroduced a £1 booking fee for tickets. 

The charge, which applies to all tickets - including those bought at the ground on the day of the game - had been scrapped in recent seasons. 

The chairman of the Bristol City Supporters Club and Trust, Stuart Rogers, says it made an unwelcome return in last weekend's pre-season friendly against Portsmouth.

He described it as a "bit of a stealth charge".

And chief executive, Andrew Billingham will be speaking to Radio Bristol with his response just after 8am.

Cloudy with outbreaks of rain, maybe drier later

Weather map

Good morning from BBC Local Live for the West Country. We're here until 10pm with all the latest news, sport, travel and weather. 

It'll be cloudy this morning, with some limited spells of brightness. 

There'll be patchy rain at times through the day, although the skies will tend to brighten later on in the afternoon. 

Maximum Temperature: 21C.