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  1. Updates on Tuesday 31 May 2016
  2. More news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Wednesday as well as live coverage of the Cornwall rugby team's victory parade through Truro

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

Live updates for Devon and Cornwall have finished for the day, but we'll be back at 08:00 on Wednesday with the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

Family cat-astrophe reversed as missing moggy found a year on ...six miles away

BBC Radio Cornwall

A cat in Cornwall which went missing for more than a year has been found - after being discovered just six miles down the road.

Foage the cat

Deborah Reeve's cat, Foage, went missing from Redruth and she said the family had all but given up hope of his return, until he was found alive and well in nearby Troon.

The rather handsome ginger tom was known as a bit of a wanderer, and was quite partial to visiting neighbours for titbits. He was finally found after the family put the cat's picture up on Facebook.

Car smashes into North Devon shop front in 'possible ram-raid'

North Devon Journal

Police are appealing for witnesses to a "potential ram-raid" after a car smashed through the window of a North Devon pharmacy this morning.

Graham Dawe fears revamp of County Championship ahead of Wednesday's victory parade

James Law

BBC Sport Online

Cornwall coach Graham Dawe hopes the County Championship final won't be moved from Twickenham as part of a potential revamp of the competition.

His side beat Cheshire on Sunday in-front of around 3,000 Cornwall supporters to retain the title they won last year.

Graham Dawe (right) with Eddie Jones
Brian Tempest

"Hopefully they don't take it away from the stadium, because young players want to play at this stadium," Dawe told BBC Sport. "It all depends on the RFU, doesn't it? How they keep this competition going, how they keep it alive."  

Meanwhile the route has been revealed for the team's victory parade: 

View more on twitter

Inquest told speedboat 'in wrong place at wrong time'

A speedboat which capsized and resulted in the death of a 14-year-old girl was "in the wrong place at the wrong time", an accident investigator has told an inquest.

Emily Gardner, from Gloucester, died in the speedboat accident in Brixham in May last year after the vessel was hit by a wave and capsized, but her lifejacket - which was the wrong size - trapped her under the stern, keeping her underwater.

Emily Gardner. Pic: Gardner Family
Gardner Family

Nicholas Hance, from the Marine Accident Investigation Branch, said: "The sea conditions were manageable but far from ideal." He added that, while the boat was in a vertical position after capsizing, Emily's buoyancy aid would have been behind her, so out of her reach. He said: "The sea is an unpredictable place". The inquest, in Torquay, is due to continue on Wednesday.

Parts of Plymouth 'devastated' by the Battle of Jutland

BBC Spotlight

Large parts of Plymouth would have been affected by the Battle of Jutland 100 years ago, a senior Royal Navy officer says.

The navy has held a special commemoration service in the city, also home to Devonport Naval Base, to mark the battle. Of more than 6,000 British personnel who died in the battle in the North Sea, near Denmark, about 1,600 were from Plymouth-based ships.

Commodore Ian Shipperley

Commodore Ian Shipperley (pictured) said: "It took two or three days for the news to get back to the city that there had been a huge battle. Whole areas of the city would have been absolutely devastated by sailors and marines not coming home."

Latest weather: Cloud spreading and a grey Wednesday

Bee Tucker

BBC Weather

Cloud will continue to spread eastwards overnight, with one or two outbreaks of light patchy rain at times.The winds will stay brisk, especially in exposed areas. Minimum temperature: 12C (54F).


Wednesday looks to be cloudy and grey for most of the day with rain at times, which could turn heavy in some parts. It will be another breezy day. Maximum Temperature: 18C (64F).

South Devon gets £3.5million boost from Radio 1's Big Weekend

Torquay Herald Express

Radio 1's Big Weekend at Powderham Castle has been declared a massive economic success with £3.5million was bumped into the local economy.

Police Commissioner says people can be 'reassured despite election investigation'

BBC Radio Devon

Devon and Cornwall's new Police and Crime Commissioner has told the BBC that people should feel reassured she is continuing in her role.

Alison Hernandez

Alison Hernandez is being investigated by another police force over allegations she failed to declare expenses as election agent in Torbay in the 2015 general election. She denies any wrongdoing. 

The force's Police and Crime Panel ruled last week she could carry out her role during the ongoing investigation. Ms Hernandez told the BBC: "For some reassurance for the public, there's been some scrutiny as to whether I can carry out this role and, unanimously and cross-party, it is actually there to support me and they want me to carry on."

Cornwall to get Border Force 'hub' as part of campaign against people smuggling

Andrew Segal

Local Live

New maritime enforcement powers have come into force that will allow Border Force officers to stop, board and detain vessels, and arrest anyone they suspect has broken immigration laws. 

Cornwall is to house one of three maritime co-ordination hubs in England. The other two are in the Thames Estuary and the Humber.

The powers were announced by the Home Office last week and are intended to crack down on illegal immigration and people smugglers.

Wharves tenant may create new jobs after buying building

BBC Radio Cornwall

Nearly 40 jobs could be created in Falmouth because a specialist marine contractor, which has been a tenant at Falmouth Wharves, has decided to buy the facility.

KML, which operates specialist vessels, now plans to renovate the wharves and said it would create 39 new posts.

Afrojack and Subfocus at MTV Crashes in July

Plymouth Herald

Not one, but two of the biggest names in the dance world will be playing to thousands on Plymouth Hoe this summer.

Thousands join in Art Deco lido's reopening

Andrew Segal

Local Live

More than 2,000 people joined in celebrations at Jubilee Pool in Penzance on Saturday to mark the Art Deco lido's reopening, Cornwall Council says.

Jubilee Pool. Pic: Andrew Segal
Andrew Segal

The pool underwent £3m of repairs after being wrecked in the storms that hit the South West in January and February 2014. Walls have been repaired, paving and handrails replaced, and drainage and electrical systems updated.

Jubilee Pool. Pic: Andrew Segal
Andrew Segal

The pool, which first opened in 1935, is one of a small number of saltwater tidal open air swimming pools in Europe. It previously closed in 1992 as it had fallen into disrepair, but was restored to reopen in 1995.

Police search for train attacker

Two men were left with cut lips after an assault on a London to Plymouth train on Monday evening.

Officers on board carried out a search of the train but did not find the attacker who was thought to have left the train at Totnes at around 22:00.

Police said the offender is in his 40s, around 6ft (180cm) tall, of large build and was wearing a dark tracksuit.

Emily Gardner inquest: Teenager 'wearing adult's lifejacket'

Latest travel for Devon and Cornwall

BBC Travel

  • The A38 is partially blocked and busy but moving westbound because of a broken down vehicle between Wrangaton Cross, Ugborough and Ivybridge
  • On the A303 near Upottery near the Yarcombe turning, watch out for temporary traffic lights for recovery work
  • The A379 in Brixham is busy but moving 
  • Delays likely on the A30 eastbound over Bodmin Moor because of long-term roadworks

Plymouth marks the Battle of Jutland

BBC Spotlight

The Royal Navy has held a special commemoration service in Plymouth to mark the Battle of Jutland, the most devastating sea battle of World War One.

Sailors at commemoration

The service was held at the Naval Memorial on Plymouth Hoe. It ended with a 21-gun salute from frigate HMS Monmouth offshore.


More than 6,000 British personnel and 2,500 Germans died in the battle, which involved around 250 ships, on 31 May 1916 in the North Sea, near Denmark. Of the British casualties, about 1,600 were from Plymouth-based ships. Relatives of some of those lost in the battle attended the service.

Speedboat death inquest hears details of passengers trapped underwater

Sophie Pierce

BBC Radio Devon

An inquest into the death of 14-year-old Emily Gardner, from Gloucester, in a speedboat accident in Torbay has heard that another passenger was also trapped underneath the boat.

Emily died after the vessel was hit by a wave and capsized. Her buoyancy aid became snagged and trapped her under the stern.

Today, Paul Pritchard, who was driving the boat, told the inquest that Emily's friend Gemma Gadsden, who was also on board, also got trapped under the boat but was pulled to safety by his daughter Holly.

The inquest heard Mr Pritchard had driven with the girls down to Brixham the previous day and they had all slept in the car that night prior to going out in the boat the next day. The inquest continues.

Two Muslim women confront a bigot in an Exeter street and he got really confused


Kalsoom Naqvi and her friend Tayiba Hussain said they were minding their own business in Exeter city centre last week when a man walking past allegedly decided to make some racist comments.

Torquay captain Angus MacDonald signs new deal

James Law

BBC Sport Online

Torquay United captain Angus MacDonald has signed a new contract with the National League side.

The 23-year-old centre-back is one of the club's longest-serving players and made 41 league appearances this season.

Angus MacDonald
Rex Features

"We'll struggle to keep him moving forward as he has the ability to play two or three leagues above this one," said player-boss Kevin Nicholson. "It is up to us to match his talent by fighting for promotion and he is going to be a key figure for us."

Call for DNA testing for dogs on Scilly

Miles Davis

BBC News Online

All dogs on the Isles of Scilly should be given mandatory DNA tests, according to the islands' newest councillor, on the This is Scilly website.

Andrew Combes believes the move will help identify dogs whose owners fail to dispose of their mess.

A pilot scheme was launched earlier this year in Barking and Dagenham to use DNA testing to try to catch owners who do not clear up after their dogs.

Torbay Local Plan published

BBC Radio Devon

An outline of where thousands of new jobs and homes should be based in Torbay has been published.

Torquay seafront

The Local Plan sets out the unitary council's vision to deliver about 5,500 new jobs and 9,000 new properties by 2030. 

The council said the strategy aimed to encourage investment and develop infrastructure whilst respecting the Bay's natural environment.

Council contracts 'exemptions' increase over the years

BBC Radio Cornwall

Cornwall Council has granted more than 500 so-called "exemptions" from tendering for contracts valued in excess of £145m since 2009, an internal report seen by the BBC has revealed.

Cornwall Council

There were just 42 in 2009/10 worth nearly £12m. That went up to 117 in 2014/15, with a value of more than £41m. In the first six months of 2015/16, there were already 96 exemptions approved with a value of more than £20m.

There are strict rules on exempting contracts from tendering - and the document suggests these aren't always being properly followed. The council said that, ideally, it limited the use of exemptions and it recognised their use retrospectively should be avoided. It added it was taking steps to address this.

Police tape outside Paignton Co-op after suspected shop raid

Torquay Herald Express

A police cordon has been placed outside the Co-op in Hookhills on Tuesday morning after a suspected shop raid.

Latest weather: Becoming hazier and cloudier

BBC Weather

The fine day will become hazier from the east later in the afternoon. Winds will be fresh northerly, but strong along the north coast where it will feel cooler. Maximum temperature: 20C (68F).


Cloud amounts will continue to increase from the east overnight, with one or two outbreaks of light patchy rain at times.The winds will stay brisk, especially in exposed areas. Minimum temperature: 11C (52F).

Latest headlines for Devon and Cornwall

Claire Hawke

BBC Local Live

  • An inquest into the death of 14-year-old Emily Gardner, who died when a speedboat overturned in Brixham, has heard how she was underwater for around 15 minutes after her life jacket caught on the vessel 
  • Cornwall Council says it is taking steps to tackle the number of contracts awarded without going through the official tendering process, after a document showed £145m worth had been given out under exemption rules 
  • A letter to the government, signed by 57 primary school headteachers from Devon, condemns the government for its "chaotic" handling of the education system 
  • A memorial service has been taking place to mark the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Jutland, in which 1,600 people from Plymouth-based ships were killed    

Police commissioner Alison Hernandez joins Devon Debates

Janet Kipling

BBC Radio Devon

Today I'll be joined by newly-elected Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez.

It's your chance to ask questions and tell her what you think about policing in Devon. 

What do you think her priorities should be? What is affecting you? Get involved in today's phone-in by email or call us on 0345 3011034.

Emily Gardner inquest: Teenager 'underwater for 15 minutes'

Claire Jones

BBC News Online

A teenage girl who died after a speedboat accident in Devon was trapped by her lifejacket which snagged on the vessel, an inquest has heard.

Emily Gardner, 14, died in the accident in Brixham in May last year. The inquest, in Torquay, heard a statement from John Ford, captain of the Silver Sea Brixham Express Ferry, who estimated she was underwater for about 15 minutes.

Emily Gardner
Gardner Family

Lifeboat volunteer crew member John Heale told the inquest: "The boat was vertical. The boat was about 16ft, and 11ft below the surface. I jumped in, I wasn't directed. We could see the casualty was there. The sole intention was to remove her from the water so she could receive medical attention." 

Mr Heale requested a knife to help, but managed to release Emily before the knife reached them. The hearing continues.

Children being 'taught to take tests, not being educated'

BBC Radio Devon

Children's education is being damaged by a system that is making teachers prepare children for tests, rather than teaching them, a union says.


Its comments come after a letter, signed by 57 primary school head teachers in Devon, Plymouth and Torbay, condemned the government's handling of the education system as "chaos" that was damaging children, families and staff.

Andy Woolley, regional secretary of the NUT in the South West, said: "Teachers assess their children all the time. What the tests which are being imposed on them do, is to get teachers to teach to the tests and children to concentrate on the tests ... The tests become the end on themselves, not the education of the young people." The Department for Education said its reforms were raising standards.

Open top bus victory parade for victorious Cornwall rugby team

BBC Radio Cornwall

Cornwall's rugby team will hold an open top bus victory parade through the streets of Truro city centre on Wednesday.

Bill Beaumont Cup, Cornwall v Cheshire. Pic: Getty Images
Getty Images

They became the first Cornwall team to retain the Bill Beaumont Cup when they beat Cheshire at Twickenham on Sunday by 35-13

The parade is due to start at County Hall at 18:00 and head into Truro, via Station Road and Boscawen Street, before pausing on Lemon Quay. They will then return to County Hall.

Inquest opens into death of teenager who died when speedboat overturned

Sophie Pierce

BBC Radio Devon

The inquest has opened into the death of Emily Gardner, 14, who died in a speedboat accident in Brixham in May last year.

The inquest has heard the boat was being driven by Paul Pritchard, the father of Emily's friend Holly who was also on board. He was the joint owner along with Philip Marr, who was riding in a jet ski accompanying the boat at the time of the accident.

Detective Sergeant Andrew Turner showed the jury a video of the rescue operation and Emily being taken ashore where she was met by an awaiting ambulance. Several members of Emily's family are at the inquest which continues in Torquay.

Council contracts 'exemptions' raise 'very serious concerns'

BBC Radio Cornwall

An internal Cornwall Council report which looks at how many contracts were exempt from the official tendering process, raises "very, very serious concerns", a senior Conservative on the council says.

Cornwall Council

The report, seen by the BBC, reveals the authority has awarded contracts valued in excess of £145m since 2009, without tendering them. 

Councillor Fiona Ferguson, Tory Group finance spokesperson, said: "What's concerning is that, there are always going to be some mistakes made, but the problem seems to be getting worse." The council said it was taking steps to address the exemptions' use.

Reid bemoans his season after Argyle's play-off final loss

James Law

BBC Sport Online

Plymouth Argyle striker Reuben Reid says he will be happy to put this season behind him after losing the League Two play-off final against AFC Wimbledon at Wembley yesterday.

The 27-year-old, who had been Argyle's top scorer for the previous two campaigns, was dogged by injuries this term after a foot operation last year.

Reuben Reid (left)
Rex Features

"My season has been a write-off from the start," he told BBC Radio Devon. "I've ended up picking up strains because I've not been prepared for the regime we've got at Plymouth.

An inconvenient truth about public conveniences?

Laurence Reed

BBC Radio Cornwall

There's anger as a BBC report has revealed that 1,800 toilets have been closed by local councils across the UK over the last 10 years.

We know there have been problems locally after Cornwall Council handed control of public conveniences to town and parish councils and community groups, with five closing altogether. 

Is this the start of further closures? Let me know by calling today's phone-in on 01872 222222.

Latest travel: Warning of delays on A303 after truck breaks down

BBC Travel

  • In Devon, St John's Road in Exmouth is partially blocked near Bassetts Gardens due to an incident
  • On the A38 Haldon Hill at Kennford, one Plymouth-bound lane is blocked on the exit slip road because of a broken-down vehicle
  • There are reports of an incident at Bishops Nympton on the A361, near the B3227
  • South West Trains between Exeter St Davids and London Waterloo are suffering delays of up to 20 minutes due to signalling problem in Dorset
  • In Cornwall, traffic on the A392 near Newquay, Treloggan Road, is slow-moving due to temporary traffic lights and roadworks
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Most expensive seaside towns: The Top 10


Devon and Cornwall have seven out of 10 of the UK's most expensive seaside towns, a report has revealed.

Halifax used house price figures from the Land Registry and the Registers of Scotland for the report, covering 196 seaside towns across Britain.

Andrew Segal

The complete top 10, according to the Halifax, is:

  • Sandbanks, Dorset: £664,655
  • Salcombe, Devon: £539,950
  • Padstow, Cornwall: £443,396 (pictured)
  • Aldeburgh, Suffolk: £439,379
  • Lymington, Hampshire: £426,112
  • Dartmouth, Devon: £401,361
  • Fowey, Cornwall, £379,003
  • St Mawes, Cornwall: £373,746
  • Wadebridge, Cornwall, £373,351
  • Budleigh Salterton, Devon: £360,984

High tide times for the region

Holly Green

BBC Weather

If you're planning a trip to the coast or seaside, here are the next high water times around Devon and Cornwall.


We'll have the latest forecast on Spotlight at 13:30 on BBC One.