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Summary

  1. News, sport, travel and weather updates from across the West of England on Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Goodnight from us

Thanks for being with us today.

Before we go, here's how the weather is shaping up for the next few days - in a nutshell, wet and windy.

Watch: Sara Thornton with the weather forecast

BBC Local Live for the West will return tomorrow morning at 7am.

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.

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

Discworld illustrator involved in new Terry Pratchett exhibition

Listen: Discworld illustrator involved in new Wiltshire Pratchett exhibition

An exhibition celebrating the life of the late Sir Terry Pratchett will open in Salisbury later this year. 

Discworld illustrator and friend of the author, Paul Kidby, has been asked by the family to create a seven-foot-tall statue of Sir Terry for the city centre.

He said it was "a fantastic opportunity" to celebrate the author's life.

Speculation over Dyson's airfield plans

This disused RAF airfield at Hullavington near Chippenham will become home to thousands of jobs, working under billionaire inventor Sir James Dyson.

Watch: Dyson hasn't announced what his plans are yet

The site is huge, but nothing has yet been revealed about what will actually go on here. 

Even local councillors have been sworn to secrecy.

Cribbs expansion 'could damage Weston-super-Mare'

John Penrose, MP for Weston-super-Mare, said he had written to the Secretary of State, Sajid Javid MP, arguing an expanded Cribbs Causeway "could damage Weston's regeneration".

He said it could take away about 8.3% of trade (£39m) by 2021, "making the town’s rebirth harder to achieve".

Cribbs Causeway
GEOGRAPH/BRIAN ROBERT MARSHALL

This isn’t a final decision, but it means that Weston’s voice is being heard loud and clear, and I’m delighted the Minister clearly understands the strength of local concerns about its impact on the wider local economy of places like Weston, and central Bristol too.

John PenroseMP for Weston-super-Mare

Tornado steam train prompts call to fire brigade

When a loud bang and smoke was spotted in Swindon this evening, it caused a lot of concern for one local resident, who promptly called the local fire brigade.

Tornado steam train
BBC

Crews came out to the Bruce Street area of the town just after 7pm, only to discover it was actually a false alarm.

The loud bang had been created by the A1 Pacific Tornado on its return journey through Swindon.

The firefighting spike/spray which could save lives

This new piece of firefighting equipment is going to be issued to every crew across the Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue area.

Watch: See the tool in action

The spike produces a spray of water that can quickly and radically reduce the temperature of a room on fire.

In a recent test, it reduced a burning room from 400 degrees to 80 degrees in just 30 seconds.

The service hopes it will change how building fires are tackled in the future.

Could Colston Hall get a name change?

More than 1,500 people have signed a petition calling for a change to the name of Bristol's Colston Hall.

They are unhappy with Edward Colston's ties to slavery.

But others believe we shouldn't attempt to whitewash history and keep the name while teaching about how slaves were traded in Colston's day.

Watch: Two people against the current name share their views

The Bristol Music Trust says it is reviewing the name as part of the venue's revamp, which began in 2014 and is expected to be finished by 2020.

Tool theft warning to Bristol residents

Avon & Somerset Police have handed out these letters to residents in Horfield, after a recent spate of break-ins.

The thefts have targeted tradespeople, their vans and the expensive tools kept inside. In the last four months, 200 sheds and garages were burgled. 

Letter to residents from the police
Avon & Somerset Police

Travel: M5 issues 'cleared' near Weston

Cribbs Causeway expansion plans called in

Aerial image of Cribbs Causeway showing propsed development
BBC

Plans to extend Cribbs Causeway are on hold because of concerns about the impact on the surrounding economy.

The proposals - which include shops, flats and an indoor ski centre - would increase the size of the site by 50%.

Planning permission was granted in November but the scheme has now been called in for review by the Secretary of State.

Rugby: Bath hooker Dunn to miss rest of season

Tom Dunn
Getty Images

Bath Rugby hooker Tom Dunn will miss the rest of the Premiership season after suffering an ankle injury.

He was forced to leave the field in the early stages of Bath's 22-12 win over Harlequins on 18 February.

The 24-year-old has scored one try in 15 appearances this season to help the club to fourth in the table.

Cribbs Causeway expansion plans 'called in'

Poultry allowed outside under new rules

Watch: WWT's Peter Morris explains the risk of bird flu spreading

Emergency measures introduced 12 weeks ago, to try to prevent the spread of bird flu, have been scaled back. 

From today flock owners in many areas can now let their birds outside again. 

But in certain "high risk" areas, such as near the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust at Slimbridge, the restrictions are still in place. 

The trust's Peter Morris said it's still a good idea to keep birds indoors in other areas.

The Brexit effect for Single Gloucester cheese

Watch: Gloucestershire farmer worried cheese will be under threat

A Gloucestershire cheese maker is worried his EU protected cheese will be under threat, post Brexit.

Charles Martell's Single Gloucester can only be made according to a pre-defined recipe and in a specific location.

But Britain’s impending EU exit puts that status at risk.

Travel: Queues on the M5 near Weston

Christian preachers fined for Muslim rant

Preachers arrested in Bristol
Simon Holliday
The men were arrested while open air-preaching in the Broadmead centre

Two street preachers who told Muslims their God "did not exist" and called a crowd of shoppers "animals" have been fined £300 each.

Michael Overd, 52, and American Michael Stockwell, 50, have been convicted of a religiously aggravated public order offence over their sermons to shoppers.

They were filmed in July preaching at Bristol's Broadmead Shopping Centre and appeared before the city's magistrates.

Christian Concern, which defended the men, is to appeal over the conviction.

The pair were convicted under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998. You can read more about the story here .

Severe accident: A370 Somerset westbound

BBC News Travel

A370 Somerset westbound severe accident, between M5 J21 and Churchland Way.

A370 Somerset - One lane closed and very slow traffic on A370 inbound between Weston-Super-Mare and West Wick Roundabout, because of an accident.

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

'No bird flu cases since early January'

Watch: WWT's Peter Morris on the risk of avian flu spreading

New measures have come in to effect to prevent the spread of bird flu. 

The government says most keepers will have the option to let their birds outside from today, but that's not the case in "higher risk areas", such as the area near at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust at Slimbridge in Gloucestershire. 

The trust's Peter Morris said there is still a risk of avian flu spreading.

Tornado: your photos

The A1 Pacific Tornado has been heading across the West today, attracting a fair amount of attention en route.

The steam engine set off from London this morning and has passed through Swindon, Bath and Bristol. 

But don't worry if you missed it - there's another chance to spot her this evening at the following times:

  • Gloucester - 17:39
  • Swindon - 18:28
  • Didcot Parkway - 19:17
View more on twitter
View more on twitter
View more on twitter

Are the new mobile phone penalties tough enough?

Watch: Are the new mobile phone penalties tough enough?

From today, penalties for drivers using a mobile phone at the wheel have doubled to six points, and it'll also result in a £200 fine.

The tougher punishments come alongside a hard-hitting advertising campaign.

We've been to a truckers' cafe in Wiltshire to ask lorry drivers how much mobile phone use behind the wheel they witness.

Government responds to academics' Stonehenge tunnel opposition

Proposed tunnel map
BBC

Highways England has responded to a 13-page submission from academics opposing a planned road tunnel near Stonehenge.

Archaeologists believe the proposal for the A303 will place future discoveries at risk and ruin views of the winter solstice sunset.

Highways England says a tunnel will cut congestion and improve journey times.  A public consultation runs until 5 March. 

We continue to find the best solution possible to improve journeys for drivers while also protecting Stonehenge. This consultation is all about offering people the chance to see our initial proposals. For now, we can only identify broad possible locations for the tunnel portals but the plan is to put them beyond the horizons of the stones

SpokesmanHighways England

Missing Bristol woman's car found in Devon

Lauren Philips
Avon and Somerset Police

A search for a missing woman led by Avon and Somerset Police has found her car in north Devon,  officers say .

Twenty-six-year-old Lauren Philips has not been seen since Thursday 23 February, and failed to turn up to work in Bristol on Sunday. Officers said they were concerned for her welfare.

Police from the Devon and Cornwall force, a police helicopter, coastguards and the RNLI and the National Police Air Service have also been assisting in the search. Her car was found in Woolacombe on Tuesday.

Police said: "We’re particularly keen for bed & breakfast owners or hoteliers in and around the Woolacombe area to check whether she has booked in with them."

How do you explain 'gert lush' to foreigners?

Watch: Internet sensation Korean Billy

Korean Billy has become a bit of an internet sensation with his videos explaining British words and sayings to foreigners.

So what West Country phrases should he have a go at?

You've been giving us lots of suggestions  on BBC Radio Bristol's Facebook page .

Any more?

Gurt lush

Dan Jones

Wher bist too?

Michael Munford

Come on me babbers

Jessica Leigh Jenkins

Tornado steams across the West

After a delayed start, a new steam locomotive is travelling through the west en route to Cardiff. 

The A1 Pacific Tornado cost three million pounds to build and is the first timetabled mainline steam train service in England for almost fifty years. 

Our Wiltshire reporter Will Glennon was on board when she left Swindon for her West Country tour.

Tornado steam train travels across the West

Failand fire leaves man with minor injuries

Fire in Failand
Brian Hamblin

A man in his 30s has been treated for the effects of minor smoke inhalation after a fire broke out at an industrial unit on Clevedon Road, Failand.

Fire crews were called out after receiving reports of a blaze in a single story building.

Fire engines from Bedminster, Nailsea, Pill, Portishead, Hicks Gate and Kingswood have also been sent to the scene, the fire service said.

We'll bring you more news when we get it.

View more on twitter

Eight fire engines tackling Failand fire

Academics oppose Stonehenge tunnel plan

Lorry passes Stonehenge
PA

A consortium of academics is urging the government to rethink plans for a tunnel near Stonehenge. 

Highways England says it would cut congestion and improve journey times on the busy A303.

But in a 13-page document professors and archaeologists say the tunnel option will:

  • Ruin views of the winter solstice sunset
  • Place future archaeological discoveries at risk 
  • Cause a "visual blemish" and "vast gash" on the landscape
  • Set a "bad precedent" for developing other Word Heritage sites                                                                                                            

A public consultation runs until 5 March.

BreakingFire in Failand

Fire
Brian Hamblin

We're getting reports that a fire has broken out at an industrial unit on Bristol's Clevedon Road.

Avon Fire and Rescue was called out to the Failand area just before 1pm.

Four crews are attending the scene, with extra support on its way. 

We'll bring you more as we get it.

Tornado in the West: Royal Wootton Bassett

We're loving the dog's reaction to the train.

View more on twitter

Tornado in the West: Steaming through Chippenham

Tornado leaves Swindon - heading Bath and Bristol direction

Steam train leaves Swindon and heads to Bath and Bristol on its tour of the West.

And BBC Wiltshire was live from Swindon station. You can watch it again below.

View more on facebook

Severe disruption: M5 Somerset southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Somerset southbound severe disruption, between J23 for A39 and J24 for A38.

M5 Somerset - One lane closed on M5 southbound between J23, A39 (Bridgwater North) and J24, A38 (Bridgwater South), because of a broken down lorry and recovery work. Traffic is coping well.

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

Severe disruption: M4 Wiltshire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Wiltshire eastbound severe disruption, between J15 for A346 Marlborough Road and J14 for A338.

M4 Wiltshire - One lane closed on M4 eastbound between J15, A346 (Swindon East) and J14, A338 (Hungerford), because of a broken down vehicle. Traffic is coping well.

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

Tornado steam train arrives in Swindon on travels through the West

Our reporter Will Glennon captured the moment...

The Tornado steam train arrives in Swindon on its travels through the West.

Classic car show in Wiltshire cancelled

Organisers say the Wilton Classic and Supercar Show, which was due to have taken place in June, has been cancelled.

View more on twitter

Tornado steam train timetable - watch out for delays if you're waiting to see it

A1 Pacific Tornado steam locomotive
BBC

Earlier we told you about the new £3m A1 Pacific Tornado steam locomotive which is heading through our region today.

It'll pass through places including Swindon, Chippenham, Bath, Bristol on its way to Cardiff from London.

And on its way back it'll pass through Lydney, Gloucester, Kemble and Swindon.

Click here to see the full time table  on the UK Steam website - although we've now been told it's delayed by about 30 minutes.

Stonehenge tunnel plan: Archaeologists' response

Stonehenge
PA

Earlier we told you about a group of archaeologists, who have written a joint letter to the government.

The Times reported on how the winter solstice sunset would be ruined by the current tunnel plans. The story was based on a letter sent to government by a group of prominent archaeologists which we now have a copy of.

The group claims the tunnel will have "dreadful consequences" for the World Heritage site and cause a "destructive impact".

They say the only option which will not severely impact the World Heritage Site is to route the bypass above ground to the south of the site.

More on this through the day on Local Live.