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Summary

  1. The latest news, sport, travel and weather for the West of England on Monday 27 February 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Good night - it's going to be a cold one

Watch: "A wintry mix of hail, sleet and possibly snow overnight" says Ian Fergusson

It's goodnight from us as we leave you with Ian Fergusson and the latest weather forecast for the West region.

We'll be back with more live updates from 7am tomorrow.

Thank you for joining us today.

Thai death man's brother 'wants answers'

Watch: Scott Ellis reports for BBC Points West

The brother of a British tourist found dead after a beach party in Thailand says he suspects foul play and want answers from the authorities.

Andrew Apperley, 38, from Eastbourne, was reported missing after failing to return to his hotel four days after going to a Full Moon party.

On behalf of his family in Gloucestershire, Richard Apperley said the situation was "just heartbreaking".

"My mum lost her husband and now she's lost her youngest son... it's created a big loss in our lives," he said.

A house full of vacuum cleaners

Watch: Steve Cook has a passion for vacuum cleaners

Earlier we told you about Steve Cook from Swindon who has a collection of 300 vacuum cleaners.

He's got so many he has to store loads of them in a lock-up garage.

His oldest one is more than 80 years old but he says his favourite was made in 1980. 

Broadchurch writers consult rape charity

Watch: "Watching a TV drama can have such a big impact," says Rowan Millar

The new series of ITV drama Broadchurch starts this evening, starring David Tennant and Olivia Coleman.

As in previous series, some of the scenes were filmed in Clevedon, North Somerset, and also in Bristol.

This series features a serious sexual assault and ITV consulted local charity Somerset and Avon Rape and Sexual Abuse Support (SARSAS) to ensure the right help would be available for anyone affected by the storyline.

Boggs' buzzer beater gives Bristol dramatic win

Bristol Flyers Brandon Boggs scores late winner against London Lions

American forward Brandon Boggs scored a last minute winner for Bristol Flyers as they beat London Lions 73-72 in the British Basketball League on Saturday night.

Wartime experiences of grandfather followed

Watch: David Garmston reads a poem to the war dead

BBC Points West presenter David Garmston has been on a journey of discovery for tonight's Inside Out West programme. 

He travelled to the battlefields of the Western Front with historian Jeremy Banning to trace the wartime experiences of his grandfather, George Theobald. 

But he found out there was more to his family's story than he originally thought.

Bath's Berry back on the telly

Mary Berry
PA

Bath-born baker Mary Berry is back on TV tonight for a new series in which she journeys back to her childhood to share a number of personal family memories.

One of those, in the first episode tonight, is of her mother who enjoyed cooking right up the age of 105 when she died.

Mary was trained at The Cordon Bleu in Paris and at the Bath School of Home Economics before beginning her food writing career as cookery editor of Housewife magazine in the 1960s.

'Mary Berry Everyday' starts tonight at 8.30pm on BBC Two.

Watch: Mary Berry demonstrates how to make a variation on bacon and eggs

Detective misconduct probe - a 'process which has to be followed'

Det Supt Sean Memory
BBC

A senior detective who was probing claims of historical child abuse against the late Sir Edward Heath is being investigated for "misconduct", Wiltshire Police has confirmed .

The force added the probe did not relate to Operation Conifer or his work as the senior investigating officer.

It said the investigation against Mr Memory "is not an indication of guilt" but "a process which has to be followed as laid out in the Police Regulations".

It also confirmed the "conduct under investigation" does not warrant suspension, "therefore Supt Memory is not suspended from duty".

Road crash victim's partner meets killer

Watch: "I want to know how he's feeling now," said Meg Williamson

A woman whose partner was killed in a road crash has met the driver responsible for his death. 

Meg Williamson, from Swindon, met Lewis Stratford ahead of his sentencing for dangerous driving. 

Gavin Roberts, 28, died after Stratford's car crossed the central reservation on the A34, in Oxfordshire last year, while he was arguing with his girlfriend on a mobile phone.

You can watch the full interview  on BBC Inside Out (South) at 7.30pm tonight , or via the BBC iPlayer afterwards.

Severe disruption: M4 Bristol westbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Bristol westbound severe disruption, at J19 for M32.

M4 Bristol - M4 lane closed on exit slip road and slow traffic westbound at J19, M32 (Bristol), because of a broken down vehicle.

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

Yellow warning of ice tonight

Weather graphic
BBC
Close to freezing temperatures in the morning

As the Met Office announces a yellow warning of ice, Ian Fergusson tells us more:

There's a risk of ice on unsalted roads and pavements tonight and tomorrow morning as temperatures fall towards freezing and below. Showers in the West will bring a mixture of rain, hail, sleet and some small amounts of snow.

Ian FergussonBBC Weather forecaster

Police want to ID driver of grey BMW

Edward Heath probe cop faces misconduct inquiry

Det Supt Sean Memory
BBC

A senior detective is being investigated for "misconduct", Wiltshire Police has confirmed.

It said Supt Sean Memory, who is investigating claims of historical child abuse against the late Sir Edward Heath, is off work "through sickness".

But it added the probe did not relate to Operation Conifer or his work as the senior investigating officer.

The Sir Edward Heath Charitable Foundation is confident the former Tory prime minister's name would be cleared.

Travel: M5 delays southbound from Clevedon

'Suspicious black car' prompts police appeal

View more on twitter

The girls, aged 9 and 11, were playing on the afternoon of Thursday, 21 February, when they were asked by two men in the car if they wanted a lift home. They declined.

Police described the driver as a black male, "quite old" with an eastern European accent and wearing a denim jacket.

The passenger was white or mixed heritage and "quite wrinkly".

The black car could be a Renault Clio.

Billie Piper signs up as theatre patron

Billie Piper
BBC

Acclaimed actress Billie Piper has returned to her roots to become a patron for the Shoebox Theatre in Swindon.

The Swindon-born star - perhaps best known for her roles in Doctor Who, Diary of a Call Girl and Penny Dreadful - has recently won best actress awards for her title role in the stage show Yerma at the Young Vic in London. 

Plenty of expertise there to draw from and extend to the theatre company which offers contemporary theatre a platform.

Newspaper headlines from across the West

Severe disruption: M48 Monmouthshire both ways

BBC News Travel

M48 Monmouthshire both ways severe disruption, between J2 for A466 and J1 for A403.

M48 Monmouthshire - One lane closed on M48 Severn Bridge in both directions between J2, A466 (Chepstow) and J1, A403 (Aust), because of strong winds. Matrix sign set to 40 mph. Traffic is coping well.

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

Broadchurch could prompt calls from sex assault victims

Olivia Coleman and David Tennant
ITV

A support service for victims of sexual assault is predicting a spike in calls following tonight's episode of Broadchurch.

The popular ITV series is returning for a third series, in which it is looking at the aftermath of a serious sexual assault. 

Some of the scenes were filmed in Clevedon and at a studio in Bristol.

Somerset and Avon Rape and Sexual Assault Abuse - or SARSAS - has been working with the programme's producers to ensure support is available to people who've been affected by what they've seen. 

Green belt 'needed for housing'

View of Bristol
BBC

A think tank has called for more homes on green belt land around Bristol and Bath.

The Centre for Cities says building on green belt is the only way of addressing the region's growing housing crisis.

"About 4,300 houses could be built on brownfield land - clearly that's nowhere near what's needed," said Alexandra Jones from the think tank.

The Metro Mayor for the West (Bristol, Bath & North East Somerset, South Gloucestershire) will have the power to decide housing policy when he or she is elected in May.

Man seriously injured in street brawl

CCTV image of wanted man
Avon and Somerset Police

A man has suffered serious head injuries in a brawl in Weston-super-Mare.

Police were called after a number of men were seen fighting in Regent Street in the early hours of Saturday. 

The 36-year-old victim is currently being treated at Weston General Hospital.

Avon and Somerset police arrested one man but need help identifying the man pictured above.

He is described as white, with dark hair and was wearing a light-coloured top and jeans.

Horse rescued from sinkhole

Buzz in a sinkhole
Avon Fire and Rescue Service

A horse had to be rescued by firefighters after it got stuck in a sinkhole.

Buzz was in a paddock in East Harptree, Bristol, when he fell into the hole on Friday afternoon.

Crews from Bedminster were on hand to rescue him.

Police say thoughts with Lewis Ball's family

Earlier we told you how a body had been found in search for missing Bristol careworker Lewis Ball, 26.

The police are liaising with his family over the discovery.

View more on twitter

Sugar babies: Earning a minimum of £1,000 a month

Watch: Coco works as a "sugar baby"

Coco gets an allowance of at least £1,000 a month as well as additional shopping for being a "sugar baby" to a wealthy man.

It helps her fund her education but she talks about the downsides of the practice.

"Darren", a "sugar daddy" who wants to remain anonymous, says it is not exploitative.

Inside Out West's investigation into sugar babies can be seen on BBC One tonight at 7.30pm and afterwards on the BBC iPlayer.

Petition set up after fatal road sweeper crash

A petition has been set up calling for a pedestrian crossing at a Swindon junction where a woman died last Thursday.

The 32-year-old woman from north Swindon died after being hit by a road sweeper outside Arkells Brewery on Beechcroft Road.

It happened as she was on her way to collect her child from a minder. 

More than 1,500 people have signed an online petition calling for a pedestrian crossing at the busy crossroads. 

Watch: Louise Gallavin has organised the petition

Pupils take part in Lego challenge

Pupils from across the UK have been taking part in a national robotics competition. 

Teams of students aged 9-16 worked together in the Lego League competition held at the University of the West of England in Bristol on Sunday.

The science and technology challenge invited teams to solve a real world problem with the help of a robot made from Lego.

Watch: The University of the West of England hosts the final of a national robotics competition

Body found in missing clubber search

Lewis Ball
Avon and Somerset Police

Police divers searching for a missing Bristol clubber who disappeared three weeks ago have found a body in the city's harbour.

Lewis Ball, 26, had not been seen since he left the Thekla on Bristol's Floating Harbour at 03:20 on Sunday 5 February.

Lewis Ball

Body found in missing clubber search

Lewis Ball has not been seen for more than three weeks since leaving the Thekla nightclub in Bristol.

Read more

Bristol v Bath: Reaction

Bristol Rugby beat Bath 12-11 at Ashton Gate to record a vital win in their fight against relegation. 

Gavin Henson kicked all 12 points for Bristol in his return from injury. 

Semesa Rokoduguni scored the only try of the game for Bath but Rhys Priestland missed the conversion and Bristol held on to move just two points behind Worcester in the Premiership table. 

Henson was named man of the match.

Watch: Gavin Henson on Bristol's derby victory and his return to fitness

Severe disruption: M4 Wiltshire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Wiltshire eastbound severe disruption, between J16 for A3102 and J15 for A346 Marlborough Road.

M4 Wiltshire - One lane closed on M4 eastbound between J16, A3102 (Swindon West) and J15, A346 (Swindon East), because of a vehicle fire. Traffic is coping well.

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

Severe disruption: M50 Gloucestershire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M50 Gloucestershire eastbound severe disruption, between J2 for A417 and J1 for A38.

M50 Gloucestershire - One lane closed on M50 eastbound between J2, A417 (Ledbury) and J1, A38 (Tewkesbury), because of a broken down vehicle. Traffic is coping well.

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

BreakingBody found in search for missing Lewis

A body has been found in the hunt for missing Bristol care worker Lewis Ball.

Lewis, who is 26, was last seen leaving the Thekla nightclub in the Harbourside area of the city on 5 February. 

A spokesman for Avon and Somerset Police said a body was found by police divers in Bristol's Floating Harbour this morning and they believe it to be Lewis.

He said there had been no formal identification but Lewis' family had been informed.

Lewis Ball and Thekla
Google

A34 fatal crash driver meets victim's girlfriend

Moment killer driver meets victim's partner

A driver who killed a man in a head-on crash has told his victim's partner he lived "to pay for what I've done". 

Lewis Stratford met Meg Williamson ahead of his sentencing for the crash he caused during an argument with his girlfriend on the phone. 

Gavin Roberts, 28, died after Stratford's car crossed the central reservation on the A34, in Oxfordshire. At the meeting, which Ms Williamson set up, Stratford, 24, said he knew he had ruined lives.

Retracing grandfather's steps to the Somme

The story of two Bristol soldiers - who fought in World War One - will be retold in tonight's Inside Out West

Points West's David Garmston has travelled to the battlefields of the Western Front to retrace the steps of his grandfather George Theobald with the help of local historian Jeremy Banning. 

While he was there he also discovered the grave of another Bristol soldier, Oliver Badman, who lived just a few streets away from his grandfather in the city.

Cemetery of war graves in France
BBC

Bird flu restriction to be lifted

Some farmers in Gloucestershire who keep chickens, ducks and geese will be able to release their birds this week. 

DEFRA rules mean they've been kept under cover since the start of December to protect them from avian flu. 

It's hoped birds in low risk areas will be released on Tuesday. 

But those in high risk areas will have to keep birds under cover, either in housing or by putting netting over the range. 

It means free range farmers who can't net their range will lose their status. 

The Wildfowl and Wetlands Slimbridge reserve was also subject to the ban after four cases were confirmed there.

Wigeon at Slimbridge
PA

Sugar daddy: 'It's not exploitative'

Earlier we told you about the practice of "sugar dating" in which cash-strapped female students get paid by wealthy older men.

A growing number of students in the West are becoming "sugar babies" to help fund their way through higher education.

One so-called sugar daddy - who wished to remain anonymous - told us he would not know how to meet women otherwise.

Inside Out West's investigation into sugar babies can be seen on BBC One tonight at 7.30pm  and afterwards on the BBC iPlayer.  

Watch: One man explains how he advertised for a "sugar baby"

Foo Fighters confirm Glastonbury headline slot at 'secret' Somerset gig

Foo Fighters
Getty Images

When we left you on Friday long-haired American rockers Foo Fighters had dropped another huge Glastonbury hint by inviting fans to a 'secret' gig in Frome, Somerset (not far from Worthy Farm) that night.

It was all very cloak and dagger.

After much noise and confusion the intimate gig went ahead and Dave and co finally put us all out of our misery (not really, it was blindingly obvious wasn't it?) by confirming they will play the much bigger Pyramid stage on Saturday, 24 June.

View more on twitter

The band were originally meant to headline the festival in 2015 but were forced to cancel after their singer fractured his leg falling off a stage in Sweden.

The best thing to come of that whole sorry saga was this picture of Dave below on his throne.

Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters
Getty Images
Dave Grohl on his throne

They will now join the Glasto class of 2017 alongside Radiohead.

Festival organiser Michael Eavis introduced them on stage on Friday, confirming their slot.

"So, who knew?" said singer Dave

"How did you know?

"You just can't keep a secret any more!"

The NME report that during the set at the Cheese and Grain bar, Dave also said that Eavis had agreed to "let us play for three hours". Cor Blimey.

Good luck on the night lads. Break a le..., erm, well, you know, have have a good gig!

Read more.

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

Icy conditions in store for the West

Petition launched over cuts to school hours proposal

Hundreds of parents in South Gloucestershire have signed a petition protesting at potential cuts to schools in the area.

Last week we reported  how the Olympus Academies Trust says it could be forced to shorten the school day at its seven schools because it cannot afford to staff lessons for the whole week.

Other proposals are cutting teaching and support jobs within the schools, increasing class sizes and reducing the curriculum.

Parents are furious and are lobbying the Government.

Olympus Academies Trust CEO Dave Baker
BBC/Olympus Academies Trust

Broadchurch third series to air

The hotly-anticipated third series of Broadchurch starring Olivia Coleman and David Tennant starts tonight on ITV. 

It has been partly filmed in Clevedon and Bottleyard Studios in Bristol.

Olivia Coleman and David Tennant
ITV