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Summary

  1. News, sport, travel and weather updates from across the West of England on Monday 22 May.

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Goodnight - looks like it could be sunny again tomorrow

Weather for evening May 22

That's it for today from your Local Live team in the West.

We'll be back tomorrow from 7am with all the latest news, travel, weather and sport.

Here's Ian Fergusson to see us out with tomorrow's forecast.

'His vulnerability made him a target'

Two teenagers have been found guilty of murdering a vulnerable man in Gloucester.

Paul Pass was abused and killed at his own flat last October. His friend was also put through a terrifying ordeal and seriously assaulted.

The killers were part of a drug dealing gang from outside the area who took over Paul's home before the attack.

Our Gloucestershire reporter Steve Knibbs has been following the case and provides this heartbreaking account of Paul's last hours...

Paul Pass was abused and killed at his own flat last year by a gang who took over his home

Anyone missing a clarinet?

'Well that's the kiss of death!' - Chris Beardshaw reacts to a compliment from Alan Titchmarsh

Not-so-fantastic Mr Fox makes mark on Chelsea Flower Show entry from Chris Beardshaw.

It's the eve of the Chelsea Flower show, but there has been something of a setback for six-time gold winner Chris Beardshaw.

The TV gardener from Gloucestershire has had to rebuild part of his entry after there was an expected visitor during the night - an urban fox which took too much of a liking to his flowers.

Alan Titchmarsh is still impressed and reckons the garden is a firm favourite to take the top prize.

But it doesn't look like Chris is that pleased with the endorsement...

Quaker tapestry made by 4,000 people in 15 countries goes on show

It was started 30 years ago, but now a tapestry which captures Quaker history across the centuries has gone on show in Taunton.

The 77 intricate panels were woven by 4,000 people aged 3-93 from 15 different countries in a community project that showcases momentous events in woven form.

Some sewers contributed whole panels and others only a stitch but the finished product showcases everything from the Industrial Revolution to the abolition of slavery.

The Quaker Tapestry was made by 4,000 people in 15 countries

Council to 'hold meetings' on Bristol harbourside safety

Safety signs at Bristol's waterfront
BBC

Bristol City Council is responsible for safety around Bristol's waterfront.

It said it is holding meetings this week to discuss safety, in the wake of the death of Jason Gurgul and others over the last few months.

[The council has] recently completed extra safety measures such as moving some life rings, clearing foliage, improving visibility of quayside ladders.

Bristol City Council

Nine charged with using drones to fly drugs and weapons into prisons

Two women and seven men have appeared in court charged with conspiring to use drones to fly drugs, weapons and other contraband into several UK jails.

They are accused of supplying the banned goods to inmates at Winson Green prison in Birmingham, as well as HMP Hewell, Worcestershire, HMP Stoke Heath, Shropshire, and HMP Featherstone, near Wolverhampton.

They each face five counts of conspiring to supply prohibited items into prisons between July 2015 and January 2017.

Among those appearing at Birmingham Magistrates' Court on Monday was Sanjay Patel, 37, of Bush Court, Cheltenham.

The case has been adjourned until June 23.

Drone
BBC

'Everyone needs to be aware' - dead man's family campaign for better waterside safety

Family and friends of Jason Gurgul call for more safety measures to be put in place.

The family of a man whose body was found in Bristol's Floating Harbour is calling for more safety measures to be put in place.

Jason Gurgul, who was 33 and had two children, disappeared on a night out with friends earlier this month.

Today, friends and family gathered at the waterside to call for more to be done to prevent further deaths.

'It's very nice!' - Marcus Trescothick on scoring his 50th century for Somerset

Marcus Trescothick on becoming Somerset CCC's top century scorer

But the question remains: can he become the club's all-time top run scorer?

Police praise Asian community for helping bring the killer of Paul Pass to justice

Initially we didn't realise other people were present in that flat [at the time of the murder] and that only came to our attention because of help from the Asian community. They became aware through relatives that some of these lads were involved and they came to the police station and offered to help. We have continued to have their support and I admire them for having the foresight to see that the right thing to do was that.

DCI Julie Mackay

Will Brexit affect Bath general election vote?

With two-and-a-half weeks to go until the general election, experts say Brexit will have a big impact on the way people vote in Bath.

After longstanding Liberal Democrat Don Foster stood down at the last general election the city elected Conservative Ben Howlett as MP.

But in the EU referendum last year Bath voted overwhelmingly to remain.

Now people have to chose between the pro-EU Lib Dems or hard Brexit Tories. It's thought to be a tight race.

Gary Weisberg sells flowers in Bath and is pro-Brexit. He says the fall in the pound has cost him but he doesn't think Bath will lose visitors.

Experts say Brexit will impact on the way people vote in Bath in the general election
Marcus Trescothick

Marcus Trescothick breaks Somerset's record for the most first-class centuries to help his side avoid defeat by Warwickshire.

Read more

Police stop car doing 117 mph with smoke pouring out of the bonnet

Severe disruption: M4 Wiltshire westbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Wiltshire westbound severe disruption, at J17 for A350.

M4 Wiltshire - M4 lane closed on exit slip road westbound at J17, A350 (Chippenham), because of a broken down vehicle.

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

Paul Pass murder a case of 'slavery and torture'

From left, Bilal Moosajee, Abdulmalik Adua and Rezwan Islam
Gloucestershire Police
From left, Bilal Moosajee, Abdulmalik Adua and Rezwan Islam

The Gloucestershire Police detective who led the investigation into the murder of Paul Pass says the case was one of modern-day slavery and torture.

She said she was struck by the "violence of the attack and the vulnerability of the victim", adding: "Clearly it was brutal and no-one deserves to die like that."

I think this is a case of slavery. I think Paul was a slave. The way his flat was used, the way he was paid with scraps of drugs to allow that to happen. The torture they suffered during that half an hour; what they were made to endure, there is no other way than describing it as torture.

DCI Julie MackayGloucestershire Police

Police warning to trespassers after Flying Scotsman tour

Timetables for the Flying Scotsman will no longer be put online and police will be stepping up patrols to combat fans trespassing along the route.

The engine's journey from Gloucester to Bristol was delayed by almost an hour on Friday after about 50 people trespassed on the line near Cam and Dursley.

Today British Transport Police said: "It is incredibly disappointing that despite repeated warnings, people chose to risk their lives and the lives of others by going onto the railway tracks to view the Flying Scotsman.

"We understand that people are excited, but the railway is a hazardous environment and trespassers endanger their safety and that of others.

"The disruption caused to trains as a result of the trespass over the weekend meant that many people were affected by the actions of the trespassers."

View more on twitter

Bristol council offers meaty response to Vegfest rent complaints

Vegfest Bristol
Neil Owen

Bristol City Council has responded to Vegfest organiser Tim Barford, who said a 200% rent increase from the authority was forcing the event from the city.

A spokesman said the council worked closely with organisers to "support them in scaling events to what is affordable and achievable".

But costs including rent, staff, statutory licensing fees and safeguarding council land, as well as emergency services support and crowd management, had to be taken into account.

Vegfest has grown year-on-year and the larger the event has become so the cost to host it has increased. We recognise that in addition to the extra costs, due to the size of the event, our own price increases have had an impact on event organisers. While we understand that affordability is a big factor for event organisers, we too must operate a competitive charging policy to sustain such a busy annual calendar of events and avoid passing a burden on to local taxpayers.

Bristol City Council

Man to brave -110 degrees in wingsuit challenge

A wingsuit jumper is hoping to become the fastest person to travel without the use of powered technology.

Fraser Corsan, who trains in Salisbury, Wiltshire, is in California for the first of two attempts.

He aims to glide for 20 miles at a speed of 250 miles an hour.

He'll jump this evening from a height of more than 40,000 feet, wearing a special suit, an oxygen mask and heated gloves.

We'll bring you updates on his attempt later on.

Salisbury man aiming to raise £1 million for SSAFA

Paul Pass was 'ruthlessly exploited and brutally killed'

DCI Julie Mackay
BBC
DCI Julie Mackay

More from DCI Julie Mackay on the murder of Paul Pass in Gloucester.

We should be very clear that Paul Pass was a vulnerable drug user who was ruthlessly exploited and brutally killed by serious and organised criminals who had no hesitation in resorting to extreme violence. Paul's friends wanted to reclaim his flat because they realised he was being taken advantage of. What they didn't realise was the lengths to which the people they stole from with were willing to go and the consequences it would bring.

DCI Julie Mackay

Watch the interview later on Points West at 6:30pm on BBC One.

Police appeal after Co-op ram-raid

Somerset CCC v Warwickshire CCC: Match drawn

Vegfest organisers blame 200% council rent increase for leaving Bristol

Vegfest founder Tim Barford
NIKOLAY MIRCHEV
Vegfest founder Tim Barford

Organisers of Bristol's annual Vegfest festival are blaming a 200%, non-negotiable rent increase from Bristol City Council for their decision to leave the city.

Vegfest is all about vegan food and was on in the city centre over the weekend, with hundreds of stalls, live music and cookery classes.

But as the event wrapped up last night organisers came out on stage to tell the crowd this was its last year in Bristol.

Organiser and Vegfest founder Tim Barford said there was "no blame attached" to individuals but budget constraints made working with the council "unworkable".

The squeeze is coming from budget constraints and an increase in rent of thousands of pounds — a 200% non-negotiable rent increase to rent the space. I feel the council has to ask questions about whether their current policy should be reviewed. We can't negotiate with people who are non-negotiable.

Tim Barford
Nathan Smith

Yeovil Town give a new one-year contract to long-serving defender Nathan Smith and a two-year deal to forward Francois Zoko.

Read more
Callum Evans

League Two-bound Forest Green Rovers sign defender Callum Evans on a free transfer from Championship club Barnsley.

Read more

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 van.

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

Severe disruption: M5 Somerset southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Somerset southbound severe disruption, at J25 for A358.

M5 Somerset - One lane closed on M5 southbound at J25, A358 (Taunton), 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

Well that's cleared that one up then...

Paul Pass was a victim of 'cuckoo' drugs network

Paul Pass
Gloucestershire Police
Paul Pass

Paul Pass, 49, was a heroin and crack addict, who weighed just eight stone when he was killed in his flat at Marian Court, in Gloucester's Archdeacon Street.

Police say he was the victim of 'cuckooing' - a term used to describe how dangerous drugs networks take over vulnerable people's lives.

The cuckoo is a bird that lays its eggs in a smaller bird's nest and that smaller bird has to bring up their young. So they inflict their daily duties on a bird that is more vulnerable. That is exactly why we us this to refer to dangerous drugs networks like this: someone bigger and more powerful with control, who comes into a flat and exerts their influence on the people who are there.

DCI Julie MackayGloucestershire Police

Record-breaking Tresco!

Killers were part of drugs gang trying to move into Gloucester

Rezwan Islam (left, in blue t-shirt) and Bilal Moosajee (right)
BBC
Rezwan Islam (left, in blue t-shirt) and Bilal Moosajee (right)

The teenagers found guilty today of the murder of Gloucester man Paul Pass were part of a drug dealing gang from outside the county who were trying to establish themselves in the city.

They offered Mr Pass free drugs in exchange for using his flat as a base.

When Mr Pass's three friends broke in and stole the gang's drugs they took revenge.

Rezwan Islam and Bilal Moosajee arranged to meet Mr Pass and his friend Mark Andrews under the pretence of selling them more drugs.

Instead they were attacked and both men were then frogmarched back to Mr Pass's flat where they were met by Abdulmailk Adua.

Trio of Gloucester teenagers involved in Paul Pass death

Rezwan Islam, 19, from Gloucester, and 17-year-old Abdulmalik Adua, from Woolwich, have been found guilty of murdering the vulnerable drug addict, Paul Pass, in Gloucester in October 2016.

Bilal Moosajee, a 19-year-old man from Gloucester, has previously pleaded guilty to the kidnap and manslaughter of Paul Pass.

A 17-year-old boy from Gloucester was found not guilty of assisting an offender.

Sentencing will take place at a later date.

BreakingDrug dealers found guilty of murder

Two teenagers have been found guilty of murdering the 49-year-old drug addict Paul Pass in his Gloucester flat in October.

More soon.

Severe disruption: M5 Bristol southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Bristol southbound severe disruption, at J19 for A369.

M5 Bristol - M5 lane closed on entry slip road and slow traffic southbound at J19, A369 (Portishead), because of a broken down lorry and recovery work.

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

Severe disruption: M5 Somerset southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Somerset southbound severe disruption, at J26 for A38.

M5 Somerset - M5 lane closed on entry slip road southbound at J26, A38 (Wellington), because of a broken down vehicle. Traffic is coping well.

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

Cow rescued from River Avon

Arrest follows fire in block of flats where man's body found

Rowan Houase
Google

A 16-year-old girl has been arrested on suspicion of arson with intent and burglary following a fire at a block of flats in Hartcliffe, Bristol.

Crews were called to the blaze at a flat in Rowan House, Bishport Avenue, last Monday.

The body of a man, 49, was found inside the property, but police now say they believe he died of natural causes before the fire started.

Det Insp Mark Almond of Avon and Somerset Police said the suspect had been released on police bail while further enquiries took place.

They will be stepping up patrols in Hartcliffe over the next few days.

View more on twitter

Beautiful day across the West of England

It's beautiful out this lunchtime - here's the view of the Avon Gorge earlier this morning.

If you're still stuck at your office desk and want a taste of the outdoors then check here for more photos.

Avon Gorge in Bristol
BBC

Tributes to basketball player after fatal crash

View more on twitter

The Bristol Flyers basketball team has paid tribute to one of its former players who has died in a car crash in America.

Ryan Williams, 34, played for the side from 2007-2008 but had been living back in the USA for several years.

"Ryan was an integral member of our team during our first year in EBL Division One,” said Andreas Kapoulas.

“He made a huge contribution to the growth of basketball in Bristol during his short time with the club.

"We are very saddened to hear about him passing away and we want to extend our condolences to his family in this very difficult period.”

Co-op on Gloucester Road in Bristol is ram-raided

Four men ram-raided the Co-op on Glocuester Road in Bristol before confronting staff and stealing cash and cigarettes, police say.

A silver Peugeot 405 was reversed through the main doors just after 11pm on Sunday.

It was later found abandoned on Harcourt Road.

One of the men assaulted a staff member with a hammer, leaving them with minor injuries.

Witnesses reported seeing two men leaving the car and getting into a dark coloured BMW 3 Series saloon.

Co-op shop
BBC
Co-op shop
BBC