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  1. Baby death 'could have been avoided'
  2. Police continue to quiz man over fatal stabbing in Plymouth
  3. Campaign to get farmers to wear seatbelts gathers momentum
  4. Two arrests as stolen firearms recovered
  5. Calls to scrap plans for Exe Estuary wildlife zones
  6. Soldiers, spades and mermaids among beachcombing finds
  7. Updates on Wednesday 9 August 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the South West

That's all from BBC Local Live in Devon and Cornwall for today, but we'll be back at 08:00 tomorrow to bring you all Thursday's news, sport, travel and weather updates.

Don't miss Spotlight with Andy Breare and Clare Casson tonight on BBC One at 18:30 and the late news bulletin at 22:30.

Sparks will fly as the firework championship teams battle it out

Lynne French

BBC News Online

People planning to watch the first night of the British Firework Championships in Plymouth are being reminded to allow for a series of partial road closures, including Hoe Road, Madeira Road, Armada Way, Lockyer Street, Citadel Road, Notte Street and Staddon Lane.

The two-day event, in its 21st year, attracts tens of thousands of spectators to the Hoe and every possible vantage point surrounding Plymouth Sound.

British Firework Championships, Plymouth

Tonight's battle, which starts at 21:30 will be between Dragon Fireworks from Chertsey, Surrey; AJ Pyrotechnics from Folkstone and the UK Firework and Events Company from North Finchley, London.

Tomorrow the remaining teams will be Smart Pyrotechnics from Devizes in Wiltshire; Nemisis Pryotechnics from Nantwich in Cheshire and Selstar Fireworks from Selsey, West Sussex.

British Firework Championships

Plymouth City Council estimates the annual event is worth about £4m to the local economy.

Penguins on parade in Portugal

Lynne French

BBC News Online

Torquay’s Living Coasts has sent 20 penguins to Parque Zoologico de Lagos in Portugal as part of the European Endangered species Programme for African penguins.

The birds travelled by road in a temperature-controlled van, taking a ferry across the Channel before being driven on to the Algarve - a total journey of 1,700 miles (2,736km).

Living Coasts

The group - two breeding pairs and a collection of younger birds – appeared none the worse for the long trip.

“They arrived and all went for a swim - they seem to be fine after their journey," Clare Rugg, Living Coasts Operations Manager/Curator, said.

Bobby on the beat offers her view of 'foot patrol'

A police colleague has posted her response to Sgt Harry Tangye who has been criticised for sharing a video of him travelling at 140mph in a police car on the way to a suspected burglary at a scrap yard.

PCSO Kirsty Down wanted to let the world know "what it looks like on foot patrol".

View more on twitter

Weather: Wind dying down as the sun comes out

BBC Weather

Winds will ease overnight and it will become chilly in many places under clear spells.

Isolated mist or fog patches may form in the early hours in prone spots like the Tamar Valley. Minimum Temperature: 10C (50F).

Weather map

Any mist or fog will quickly clear to give some sunny spells through the day.

It will stay dry with lighter winds, so it will feel warm in the sunshine. Maximum Temperature: 20C (68F).

Council issues advice to festivalgoers


It's day one of the Boardmasters surf and music festival in Newquay.

The event attracts thousands of people every year - and brings in an estimated £30m to the local economy. The mix of music and sport kicks off with the World Surf League qualifying series.

The event runs until Sunday and Cornwall Council has tweeted some advice to festivalgoers...

View more on twitter

Cyber-security 'hero' supporters to meet in London

BBC Spotlight

Friends and supporters of Marcus Hutchins, the cyber-security 'hero', are meeting in London later to discuss how they can support him.

The 23-year-old from Ilfracombe has been accused of involvement with Kronos - a piece of malware used to steal banking logins from victims' computers.

He was previously praised for finding a "kill-switch" that curbed the WannaCry ransomware that infected more than 300,000 computers in 150 countries in May. The malicious software demanded a ransom from users so they could regain control of their machines.

Marcus Hutchins

First South West sighting of rare striped dolphins

Lynne French

BBC News Online

A pod of rare striped dolphins has been spotted off the coast of Cornwall for what's thought to be the first time.

The sighting of the rarely-seen cetaceans was made by ORCA volunteers on an oceanwatch project who were on board the Scillonian III passenger ferry on its way from St Mary's to Penzance.

Lucy Babey, ORCA's head of science and conservation, described it as a "sensational finding".

Striped dolphin
G Overington

"Though we have seen them stranded (live and dead) around the Cornish coast there has never been a sighting of this species in the water.”

She said that as no photographs were captured, the sighting can only be recorded as a "likely striped dolphin".

“However, the surveyor in question is one of our most experienced and we are 100% confident it wasn’t one of the other dolphin species commonly seen in the area," she added.

Striped dolphins

Severe accident: A39 Cornwall both ways

BBC News Travel

A39 Cornwall both ways severe accident, between Poundfield Hill and B3254 East Road.

A39 Cornwall - A39 blocked and very slow traffic in both directions between the Poundfield Hill junction in Stratton and the B3254 East Road junction in Kilkhampton, because of an accident involving a car.

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

Cornish beachcombing exhibition

BBC Radio Cornwall

A ship's bell and rare, but highly collectible, Lego figures are among the beach combing finds at a new exhibition in West Cornwall.

The display at Pendeen highlights the weird and wonderful wreckage of the past, but also highlights growing concerns over carelessly discarded harmful plastics.

Lego octopus on beach

Man who died after Plymouth station stabbing named

Police said the Wayne Fenton, 49, from the Plymouth area was seriously injured on the concourse, was rushed to hospital by paramedics but sadly died as a result of his injuries.

Following the stabbing yesterday a man was arrested on suspicion of murder and remains in police custody with officers receiving authorisation to detain him for a further 12 hours.

Det Ch Insp Paul Langley said: "This is a fast-paced investigation and I have a number of officers working behind the scenes."

Plymouth railway station closed off by police

I would like to thank the large numbers of witnesses who have come forward and my officers are in the process of speaking to those individuals. Yesterday's news would have come as a devastating shock for this family. My thoughts are with them at this stage and we have specially trained officers supporting them as they come to terms with this news."

Det Ch Insp Paul LangleyBritish Transport Police

Bus hits child in Exeter

A bus has hit a child in Sidwell Street, Exeter. The road is expected to be closed for some time.

View more on twitter

Petition to reinstate scrapped Torbay bus service

Nearly 1,000 people have signed a petition to reinstate a bus service in Torbay which was scrapped in April.

People say the number 65 route covered some of the most hilly areas of the town including Hele, Babbacombe and Ellacombe and axing the service has left many vulnerable and elderly people isolated.

"People say they feel cut off from the outside world now and their only alternative is to use a taxi, which they can ill afford," petition organiser Val Baker said.

The service was one of a number affected by bus operator Local Link's decision to withdraw its services, quoting increased overheads and reduced income.

The petition is due to be presented to Torbay Council and the House of Commons in September.

Stalker who called his ex abusive names in street is jailed

Devon Live

A stalker has been jailed for defying an order to stay away from his ex partner and shouting abuse at her in the street.

Baby death 'could have been avoided'

Johnny O'Shea

BBC News Online

The lead police officer investigating the suspected murder of a baby who died last year has told an inquest she doesn't believe the father should have been in the family home.

One-month-old Cooper Johnson-Hicks died of serious head injuries on 26 June 2016.

His father, Tristan Hicks was arrested on suspicion of murder, and took his own life days after being released on bail. The hearing in Truro has heard how he had a history of mental health illnesses, and was involved with a number of domestic violence incidents that had been reported to police.

Polgrean Place
Cooper Johnson-Hicks lived in a flat on Polgrean Place, St Blazey

Cooper had been placed on the child protection register under the category of physical violence before he was born in May.

Det Insp Gail Winsor said analysis of Mr Hicks' phone found an internet search for sudden infant death syndrome the day before Cooper died. A post-mortem of Cooper found 24 rib fractures and two complex head fractures, some of which were "days old". Det Insp Winsor said "my opinion is he [Mr Hicks] would have been charged with murder".

The coroner, Dr Emma Carlyon, asked if she believed there was "any way this death could have been avoided?"

"Absolutely", she replied, "I don't think Tristan should have been in that home".

The inquest continues.

Travel update for Devon and Cornwall

BBC News Travel

  • In Devon, Weston Lane in Awliscombe is blocked due to a lorry that's stuck near Tape Lane
  • Near South Molton on the A361 at Aller Cross there are reports of debris on the road
  • On the M5 southbound between Bridgwater south and Taunton traffic is slow moving due to an earlier accident. All lanes have reopened
  • There's busy traffic in Falmouth town centre in Cornwall

Police officer did nothing wrong, says force

Sophie Malcolm

BBC News Online

Devon and Cornwall Police have backed one of their officers who came under fire online for tweeting a video of a police car travelling at 140 mph.

Sgt Harry Tangye posted the video, which he said was taken while responding to reports of a break in.

Some people said the video should never have been tweeted.

Devon and Cornwall Police responded with the following statement:

  • Harry was not breaking any rules in relation to the speed and incident they were responding to
  • Harry did not break any rules in posting a video on to social media
  • This incident is not being investigated and the matter is closed
  • Our social media policy is an internal policy

Sgt Harry Tangye's video

Police find missing woman

Anne Luddington who was missing from Budleigh Salterton has been found by emergency services, police have said.

Officers were asking for the public’s help to find the 60-year-old woman who was reported missing on Tuesday night.

Police appeal for witnesses to Barbican assault

Police have released CCTV footage of people they wish to identify and speak to in connection to an assault in Plymouth.

Between 10:00 and 11:50 on Sunday 30 April, two men were assaulted by an unknown man outside the Crown and Anchor on the Barbican, Plymouth.

One of the victims had a fractured jaw and the other victim had minor bruising, police said.

View more on twitter

'Severe delays' on M5 after crash involving four vehicles

BBC News Travel

If you're travelling back to Devon or Cornwall this could cause you delays...

View more on twitter

Very slow traffic Cornwall-bound on A38

BBC News Travel

In Plymouth, on the A38 Parkway from the St Budeaux area there is very slow moving traffic heading towards Cornwall.

Horse rescued from trench

Fire crews have rescued a horse stuck in a 10ft deep trench in Cornwall.

The crews cleared the area and recovered the mare from the trench near St Kew, Bodmin, earlier today.

Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service said the horse was recovering well.

Delabole Fire Station

Water firm fined for effluent discharge

Lynne French

BBC News Online

South West Water Ltd has been ordered to pay more than £142,000 in fines and costs for discharging poor quality effluent from its sewage treatment plants at Denbury in Devon and Praze an Beeble in Cornwall.

In a case brought by the Environment Agency, the water authority pleaded guilty to three charges of breaching regulations relating to the amount of amonia discharged into nearby watercourses.

SWW was ordered to pay £85,000 for two breaches at Denbury and £57,000 for a breach at Praze an Beeble. The case was heard by Bodmin Magistrates last week.

Baby's injuries usually seen in 'high speed car accident'

Johnny O'Shea

BBC News Online

A four-week-old baby that died had injuries usually seen in a high speed car accident or a fall from a second storey building, an inquest has heard.

Cooper Johnson-Hicks died from serious head injuries on 26 June 2016. A statement from Simon Thorogood, consultant radiographer was read to the hearing in Truro.

He said: "To produce skull fractures of this magnitude in a child of this age, in accidental circumstances, is usually seen in the context of a high speed road traffic collision or a catastrophic fall from a major height such as a second storey building."

Cooper Johnson-Hicks
Family photo

The inquest previously heard how Cooper's father, Tristan Hicks, told police he tripped over a Moses basket causing Cooper to fly from his arms and hit his head.

He later changed his account to say he landed on top of the baby.

Mr Hicks took his own life the following month, having been released on police bail after being arrested on suspicion of his son's murder.

The inquest continues.

Tension over Exe wildlife zone proposals

Harriet Bradshaw


Sailors, kite surfers and other water users on the Exe Estuary want plans for two exclusion zones to protect wildlife scrapped, claiming they would cause conflict among them and could force them out the water.

Pete Hardy, from the Exe Powerboat and Ski Club, described the plans as "very frustrating" and claims water users concerns are not being listened to.

"Powerboating would be affected by the other sports being pushed into our area and it would lead to conflict between powerboaters, kite surfers and paddle boarders," he said.

Wildlife on the Exe

But Exe Estuary Management Partnership says in its eight months of consultation it has listened to "hundreds" of views and, as a direct result, has amended some proposals.

It says human activity directly influences the distribution and behaviour of wildlife on the Exe and with more people choosing to live, work and holiday in the area, the number of water users will continue to rise.

Wildlife charities have declined to comment before the consultation period finishes tomorrow.

Census recognition for the Cornish?

Lynne French

BBC News Online

The Cornish identity and language could be recognised in the next national census in 2021.

It follows a meeting between Cornwall Council and the Office for National Statistics to discuss the possible inclusion of self-identity tick boxes for the Cornish and Cornish languageon the census.

Cornish flag

Earlier this year the Council of Europe made a specific recommendation to the ONS that it should "take the necessary measures to include the possibility to self-identify as Cornish", like the Welsh, Scottish, Irish and Norther Irish.

The council's deputy leader, Julian German. said the meeting was an important milestone as Cornish people had a "proud and distinct identity" which should be reflected in the census.

Although no commitment on the inclusion of the Cornish as a tick box option was made, the ONS reaffirmed its "commitment to support ethnic groups across the UK".

Fast track trains tested in South West

Lynne French

BBC News Online

Great Western Railway's new Hitachi intercity express trains are being tested in the South West.

The Class 802 fleet is due to enter service next summer, operating between Devon and Cornwall and London Paddington.

View more on twitter

On Tuesday, the trains carried out test runs in Somerset, between Bruton and Cogload.

We know how important the railway is to the economies and communities of the South West, and the start of testing marks another milestone in delivering the improvements we know our passengers wish to see. These trains will help us deliver faster, more frequent services into the South West, each providing up to a fifth more seats per train.”

Mark HopwoodManaging director of GWR

Places to watch the British Firework Championships if you want to avoid the Hoe

Plymouth Herald

The British Firework Championships is one of the most eagerly anticipated yearly events Plymouth's calendar.

Search for woman missing on coastal path

Lynne French

BBC News Online

Emergency services, including the police helicopter, are searching for a woman who has gone missing from Budleigh Salterton.

It's thought Anne Luddington, who was last seen about 14:00 yesterday, had gone out walking on the local coastal path.

Anne Luddington
Devon and Cornwall Police

Devon and Cornwall Police officers and coastguard teams have been carrying out searches and have urged members of the public to look out for Ms Luddington.

The 60-year-old from Taunton, who was working in Budleigh Salterton, is described as 5ft 2in (1.57m) tall with shoulder length blond/ginger hair, who sometimes wears glasses.

Football: Adams says he made 'too many changes' after heavy Argyle loss

James Law

BBC Sport Online

Plymouth Argyle manager Derek Adams says he made "too many changes" as his side were thrashed 5-0 at Bristol City in the EFL Cup first round.

Only two players kept their places from Saturday's 2-1 defeat by Peterborough in the Pilgrims' League One opener.

Derek Adams
Rex Features

"It was everybody's fault that we lost the game, and I include myself in that because I'm the manager," Adams told BBC Radio Devon.

"Cups are important, but they're not as important as the league competition and I've got to judge that the best I can."

Plymouth station reopens after stabbing death

Lynne French

BBC News Online

Plymouth railway station has fully reopened following the fatal stabbing of a man yesterday.

The man in his 40s, who hasn't yet been named, died after the incident which happened on the station concourse just after the morning rush hour.

Plymouth Railway Station

British Transport Police said officers are continuing to question a 29-year-old man arrested on suspicion of murder.

Det Ch Insp Paul Langley said the victim and suspect are thought to have known each other and has appealed for information "no matter how small" which could help the investigation.

He said extra police officers will be on patrol in the area, adding that assaults of this nature were "thankfully very rare",

Surf's up! Boardmasters festival begins

BBC Spotlight

It's day one of the Boardmasters surf and music festival in Newquay.

The event attracts thousands of people every year, bringing in an estimated £30m to the local economy.

Boardmasters surfing and music festival 2016

The festival - a mix of music and sports - runs until Sunday and kicks off today with the World Surf League qualifying series.

Demolition begins in city centre thanks to The Muncher

Devon Live

Demolition has begun at a city centre site where a number of empty shops are being cleared to make way for what will be new retail units, restaurants and 300 homes.

Tide times for Devon and Cornwall

Dan Downs, Weather Forecaster

If you're thinking about heading to the beach, here are the all-important times of high water around the region's coastline.

Tide times

There's a full forecast in Spotlight's lunchtime news on BBC One at 13:30.

Two arrests as stolen firearms recovered

Firearms stolen in a burglary in north Devon have been recovered, police have said.

The weapons were among a number of items taken during the burglary sometime between Saturday 8 and Sunday 9 July.

Devon and Cornwall Police said a 38-year-old man and a 36-year-old man arrested in connection with the incident have been released under investigation.

Det Insp Phil Gray from Barnstaple Police Station said the weapons "were not considered to pose a significant risk to the community".

Soldiers, spades and mermaids among beachcombing finds

BBC Radio Cornwall

An exhibition in Cornwall is displaying the bizarre items found on local beaches.

The event at Pendeen also highlights the amount of harmful discarded plastics that make their way into our seas.

View more on twitter

Water users' concerns over Exe wildlife zone plans

BBC Spotlight

Sailors, kite surfers and other water users on the Exe Estuary want plans to zone two areas for wildlife to be scrapped.

The Exe Estuary Management Partnership, which wants to safeguard the habitat, says it's been talking to users and has already amended some proposals.

Paddle boarder on Exe Estuary

The official consultation period is due to close tomorrow, but water users are concerned they're not being listened to and they could be kicked out of their current recreational areas.