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Summary

  1. Court told of 'revolting assault by navy officer'
  2. Kate Bushell murder: 'Justice long overdue' - brother
  3. Possession order granted against homeless camp
  4. Falmouth University told to change advertising claims
  5. South West Water: Shareholders 'paid more than infrastructure'
  6. Police hunt driver 'watching porn in van on A38'
  7. Eviction fears for riverbank homeless group
  8. Shopping trolley thrown on rail lines
  9. Updates on Wednesday 15th November 2017

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 Thursday with the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

Don't forget Spotlight on BBC One later. There will also be news through the night on your BBC Local Radio station.

Weather: Cloudy and rain overnight, dry on Thursday

BBC Weather

Remaining largely cloudy and with hill fog is likely in places overnight.

It is going to be dry for many, but some patchy rain will develop later in the night. Minimum Temperature: 8 Deg C (46F).

Weather
BBC

Cloud will break on Thursday morning, allowing a good deal of dry and fine weather during the first half of the day before it turns cloudy later with some rain.

Maximum temperature: 14C (57F).

Crowbar-armed burglar steals £800 in raid

Andrew Segal

BBC Local Live

Police are hunting a burglar who made off with £800 in cash after threatening a householder with a crowbar in Paignton.

Officers investigating the aggravated burglary said the offender entered a property on Adelphi Road between 08:30 and 08:45 on Tuesday and "demanded cash and gold from the occupant".

As well as the cash he also made off with clothing and a purse, police said.

The suspect was described as a white man, about 6ft tall, of pale complexion, and of slim build. He was wearing a black jacket, shiny black trousers, a black balaclava and black gloves.

How a Cornwall man talked a woman down from Tamar Bridge

Cornwall Live

A Cornwall biker has been sharing the story of how he talked a vulnerable woman down from Tamar Bridge.

Daniel Knill, 42, was on his way home when he saw the woman standing at the side of the road, looking upset. He pulled over, took her hand and after speaking to her, managed to lead her to police and to safety.

Sailor 'left shaking after assault by navy officer'

Hamish Marshall

BBC Spotlight

A Royal Navy sailor was left "shaking and very upset" after being assaulted by the second-in-command on his Devonport-based ship, a court has heard.

The man said he was groped a number of times by Charles Howeson (pictured), from Plymouth.

Charles Howeson
BBC

The man, who can’t be named for legal reasons, was said to be “stuttering words a bit and shaking” as he told a more senior sailor about what had happened in 1985.

He said his private parts were groped a number of times on the upper deck of HMS Cleopatra.

Paul Edwards, who was the Master at Arms, in charge of discipline, told the court this was very serious and reported to the captain. The next day Lt Cdr Howson was airlifted off the ship.

The complainant thought Mr Howeson had been dismissed but the court was told he was simply switched to another ship and given a warning.

The 67-year-old denies 12 sexual offences against nine different men dating back to the 1980s and 1990s.

The trial, at Bristol Crown Court, continues.

Nancy Astor statue: First female MP who sat in Parliament

Andrew Segal

BBC Local Live

A bid has been launched to build a statue to honour the first female MP to take her seat in the House of Commons - Plymouth's Nancy Astor.

A current city MP says he would like to see a memorial to the Conservative to mark the 100th anniversary of her election in 1919 to the Plymouth Sutton ward.

It is hoped the statue will be near Lady Astor's former home on Plymouth Hoe.

Nancy Astor
BBC

But who was she?

  • Born in Virginia, USA, in 1879 to a rich family, she moved to England in 1904 after a failed first marriage
  • She met and married wealthy politician Waldorf Astor in 1906 who became the Conservative MP for Plymouth Sutton in 1910
  • He relinquished his seat when his father died, because he inherited his title of Viscount Astor and his place in the House of Lords. His wife decided to stand in Plymouth Sutton in his place
  • She won the election in November 1919, beating her main rival, Liberal Isaac Foot, father of 1980s Labour leader Michael Foot.
  • The first woman to be elected to Parliament was Constance Markievicz in 1918, but, as a member of Sinn Fein, she disqualified herself by refusing to take the Parliamentary oath
  • Lady Astor's maiden speech was about the perils of drinking, and in 1923 she introduced a Private Member's Bill that raised the age qualification for buying alcohol to 18
  • She was also a fervent fighter for women's causes and equal rights
  • Astor had a famously combative relationship with Winston Churchill
  • She also was friends with TE Lawrence - better known as Lawrence of Arabia - and was known to be seen as a passenger on his motorcycle
  • She kept the seat until the 1945 election when she decided not to stand
  • She died in 1964

Exeter to mark 307 Squadron Day every year

BBC Radio Devon

Exeter now has a new official annual date in its calendar - 15 November is now known as 307 Squadron Day.

It's a chance to remember the Polish 307 squadron that protected the city during the 1942 Blitz in World War Two.

The Polish flag was raised above the Guildhall as part of today's commemorations (pictured), and the city's cathedral will be unveiling a commemorative plaque later in memory of the South West-based Polish pilots.

It's 75 years since the city was presented with a Polish flag as a sign of international cooperation.

Exeter Polish flag
BBC

Eden goes green for Macmillan

Sarah Gosling

BBC News Online

The Eden Project glowing green
The Eden Project

It's known for being green at heart, but tonight The Eden Project will be glowing green all over for the opening of the Cornwall Macmillan Christmas Fair.

The biomes are being lit in support of Cornwall's cancer patients and in memory of the fair founder and president Lady Mary Holborow, who died this year.

Water supply problems in Ivybridge

Kate Bushell: Nearly 200 messages from information appeal

Andrew Segal

BBC Local Live

Nearly 200 messages have been recently received by police investigating the 20-year-old murder of a Devon school girl, officers say.

Fourteen-year-old Kate Bushell was killed while walking her neighbour's dog in Exwick, near Exeter, on 15 November 1997.

Police launched a renewed appeal last week for more information about the case to mark the 20-year anniversary. Some officers have come out of retirement to help.

Kate Bushell
BBC

Senior investigating officer Paul Burgan, of Devon and Cornwall Police, said the recent public response "has been extremely positive".

He said: "We have received around 180 messages and calls, and this continues to rise.

"This compares to 19 responses received during a similar appeal on the 10th anniversary in 2007. We are following a number of viable lines of enquiry as a result."

He added: "However, we are still looking for that one call from someone who may well be wrestling with their conscience and debating whether to call the police.

"They may be having that debate due to misplaced loyalty or may think they will be treated criminally if they only come forward at this late stage. Let me be very clear, our priority is to apprehend a child murderer and clearly the overwhelming public interest issue is for us to do that."

Dad trying to save family from being deported to Guatemala

Devon Live

A father of two from Devon is desperately fighting to prevent his wife from being deported to one of the most dangerous countries in the world - Guatemala - breaking up their young family.

Wollaston speaks out over 'mutineer' status

Sarah Gosling

BBC News Online

Today the front page of the Daily Telegraph showed a number of Conservative party members branded "mutineers" for their refusal to back a "hard" Brexit.

Front page of The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph

Conservative Totnes MP Dr Sarah Wollaston, one of those pictured on the front page, has spoken out on the matter.

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

Dr Wollaston has been vocal on her blog about her position as both a Remain supporter and has commented on the Brexit result in June last year.

Cornwall travel: Road crash in Flushing

BBC Radio Cornwall

In Flushing, near Penryn, Kersey Road is blocked in both directions due to a two-vehicle collision near St Peter's Road.

Urgent water supply repairs in Plymouth

Possession order granted against homeless camp

BBC Radio Devon

A group of homeless people who have been living in a makeshift camp in Barnstaple will likely have to leave within the month.

Following a court hearing this morning, North Devon Council has succeeded in gaining a possession order for the Seven Brethren site on which the group is camped, and which the council own.

A possession order is an order made by a court directing that possession of a property be given to the owner.

The council said it was only taking the action after fireworks were illegally let off at the site.

In a statement, the council confirmed that a possession order "has been made to take effect in 14 days time. Our rough sleeper outreach team is continuing to work with the individuals living at the camp to resolve their housing issues".

Seven Brethren camp
BBC

Fraud investigation into Honiton market finances ends

Devon Live

A criminal investigation into possible illegal financial irregularities regarding the Honiton market finances has ended.

Firearms amnesty guns for more success during first week

View more on twitter

The two-week amnesty began on Monday.

In Devon and Cornwall, police stations in Plymouth, Exeter, Barnstaple, Bodmin and Truro are among those across the region taking part in the national initiative.

Overton in 'pole position' for Ashes debut

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Craig Overton is in "pole position" to make his England debut in next week's first Ashes Test against Australia, says bowling consultant Shane Bond.

The Barnstaple-born pace bowler, 23, is vying with Jake Ball for a place in the England side, but Ball has missed the final warm-up match with an ankle injury.

"Craig is ahead because we have a guy recuperating from injury," Bond told BBC Sport.

"Jake is a little bit behind and Craig has come out and performed well."

Craig Overton
Getty Images

Overton took 2-32 on the first day of England's final warm-up match against a Cricket Australia XI in Townsville on Wednesday.

That followed four wickets against the same opposition in Adelaide last week.

"I was pleased for Craig, that was a really good performance," added former New Zealand international Bond.

"He bowled 18 strong overs, used the short ball and created chances. He's building well and he'll certainly be ready for the Test match."

Navy exercise uses RNAS Culdrose aircraft carrier mock-up

Andrew Segal

BBC Local Live

View more on twitter

Exercise Kernow Flag is making use of the layout of an aircraft carrier which has been built at the Cornish base near Helston.

It allows personnel to train for working on the Royal Navy's latest aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth.

The navy said the latest exercise was "based on a fictitious war in 'Kernovia' - involving Camberland (the baddies), Redruvia, Praa-Sandovia and Helstopia", and would last for 10 days.

Can you guess what places in Cornwall those names are based on?

Keith Barron: Family 'had a laugh' at Radio Cornwall

Debbie McCrory

BBC Radio Cornwall

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

UK actor Keith Barron, who starred in Duty Free, has died aged 83 after a short illness.

Barron - who was from West Riding of Yorkshire, but lived in Cornwall in recent years - is perhaps best-remembered for his role in the Yorkshire Television sitcom, Duty Free, where he played David Pearce.

He rose to fame in the 1960s as Detective Sergeant Swift in The Odd Man. He has also appeared in Coronation Street, The Professionals, Doctor Who, Benidorm and Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased).

Man 'groped by navy officer during man overboard exercise'

Hamish Marshall

BBC Spotlight

A man who claims he was groped by a senior Royal Navy officer whilst at sea has told a court the incident occurred during a man overboard exercise.

The man is one of nine who have accused Charles Howeson, who lives in Plymouth, of serious sexual offences. The 67-year-old (pictured) denies 12 charges of sexual offences dating back to the 1980s and 1990s.

The man claims to have been indecently assaulted in 1985, when they were both serving on Devonport-based HMS Cleopatra, which had 210 sailors on board

Charles Howeson
BBC

The man accused Mr Howeson, second-in-command on the frigate, of groping him while they were manoeuvring a large dummy up stairs.

Defence barrister Daniel Janner QC said to the man: "It was your imagination". The man replied: "I wish it was."

The man said he did not know until last year that no formal action had been taken following his complaints.

He said: "I believe the navy wanted to keep this quiet. Here he is, groping a sailor; the last thing the navy would want would be any scandal in the service.

"I honestly thought he had been kicked out of the service. I genuinely thought he had been dealt with."

The trial, at Bristol Crown Court, continues.

Appledore finally gets Christmas lights after years of fighting

Devon Live

After a six-year battle, a Devon fishing village can finally put up Christmas lights this year.

Kate Bushell murder: 'Justice long overdue' - brother

Andrew Segal

BBC Local Live

Twenty years on from the murder of their 14-year-old daughter, the family of Kate Bushell have urged anyone holding on to vital information to "find it within themselves" to come forward to police.

Officers have marked the case on the 20th anniversary of her murder, where she was killed while walking her neighbour's dog in Exwick, near Exeter, on 15 November 1997.

Kate Bushell
Bushell family

Kate’s older brother, Tim Bushell, 35, said: "We maintain a joint view with the police that somebody must have that piece of information that will lead to the police apprehending the person who killed Kate.

"We hope that somebody may find it within themselves to let the police have that information.

"Today marks the 20th anniversary of the day I lost my sister in brutal circumstances. It is long overdue that the killer is brought to justice."

Cornwall travel: Car fire at A30 Chiverton Cross

BBC Radio Cornwall

There's slow traffic on the A30 due to a car fire on the Chiverton Cross roundabout, near Truro.

View more on twitter

Falmouth Uni 'disappointed' at advertising watchdog ruling

BBC Radio Cornwall

Falmouth University, which has been told to take down marketing claims that could be misleading, says it "must accept" a ruling by the advertising watchdog, but added that it was "disappointed" at the move.

Falmouth University
BBC

It was among six UK universities told by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) to take down marketing claims that could be misleading.

Falmouth was told to stop describing itself as "the UK's number one arts university" or "the UK's number one creative university".

The ASA said it warned against exaggerated claims made to attract students.

The university said: "We attributed our 'number one arts university' status to the Sunday Times league table and the body responsible for compiling the table wrote in our support during this investigation. We held this position according to the Sunday Times - not our own claims.

"We have not used this phrase in our literature for some time, therefore this ruling does not have any impact on our current or future marketing and so there is no merit in an appeal."

Black people 'nine times more likely' to be stopped by police

Devon Live

Figures from the Home Office have found that in Devon and Cornwall, black people are almost eight times more likely to be randomly stopped by the police.

North Devon Council seeks court order against homeless group

BBC Radio Devon

Representatives of North Devon Council are currently in court to determine whether they can gain a possession order for the land on which a group of homeless people have set up camp.

Council Leader Des Brailey said: "We have applied to the county court for a possession order, which will enable us to take back the land if those camping on it refuse our offers of accommodation".

The council has previously stated that eviction will be "a last resort".

North Devon Council said it was offering support and alternative accommodation and was only considering taking the action after fireworks were let off at the site.

Mr Brailey said: "We've got two outreach workers that work with them, we're trying to arrange accommodation for them.

"Once we make that offer, then clearly, if they refuse it, then we would need to move them on."

Barnstaple homeless
BBC

Court told of 'revolting assault by navy officer'

Hamish Marshall

BBC Spotlight

A man has told a court of a "disgusting revolting incident" when he was indecently assaulted by a senior Royal Navy officer whilst at sea.

The man is one of nine who have accused Charles Howeson, who lives in Plymouth, of serious sexual offences.

The 67-year-old (pictured) denies 12 charges of sexual offences dating back to the 1980s and 1990s.

The man claims to have been indecently assaulted by Mr Howeson in 1985, when both were serving on Devonport-based HMS Cleopatra, which had 210 sailors on board.

He was asked by Mr Howeson's defence barrister if the alleged indecent assault really happened.

He said: "It wasn’t trivial - it did happen it was a disgusting revolting incident," adding that Mr Howeson "was too over-familiar - he made me feel uncomfortable".

The trial at Bristol Crown Court continues.

Charles Howeson
BBC

Weather: Cloudy but occasionally brighter later

Kevin Thomas

BBC Weather Forecaster

Although cloudy at times with a few scattered outbreaks of mainly light rain or drizzle, there will be the occasional brighter period and a perhaps a few sunny intervals.

Winds will be from the west or south-west and mainly light to moderate.

Maximum temperature: 14C (57F).

Weather
BBC

Tonight, it'll be mostly cloudy with a little drizzle in places along with some hill fog patches.

However, the occasional break in the cloud is likely to develop leading to the possibility of some isolated fog patches at lower levels by morning. Winds will remain light or moderate from the southwest.

Minimum temperature: 7C (45F).

British and Irish Cup to be scrapped

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

The British and Irish Cup will be scrapped at the end of the season after the 12 clubs from England's second tier Championship, including the Cornish Pirates, decided to withdraw at the end of the season.

'A' sides from the four Irish Pro 14 sides and 'Premiership Select' teams from the four Welsh regions face England's second tier teams in pool stages and subsequent knockout rounds.

Scottish sides pulled out of the event in 2014 and Championship sides tend to rest their best players in the cup.

Munster 'A' win 2017 British and Irish Cup
Rex Features

An RFU spokesperson told BBC Sport that Championship sides were 'looking into alternatives' for cup competition next season.

Clubs play at least three homes games in the tournament, with each side in a pool of four playing their opponents home and away.

The event was set up in 2009 as part of changes which saw the Championship replace the old National One as English rugby's second tier.

The Cornish Pirates won the first event in 2010, while Munster 'A' beat Jersey in last season's final.

Keith Barron: Duty Free star dies aged 83

BBC Entertainment and Arts

Keith Barron
BBC

UK actor Keith Barron, who starred in Duty Free, has died aged 83 after a short illness.

Barron - who was from West Riding of Yorkshire, but lived in Cornwall in recent years, rose to fame in the 1960s as Detective Sergeant Swift in The Odd Man.

He has also appeared in Coronation Street, The Professionals, Doctor Who, Benidorm and Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased).

Barron is perhaps best-remembered for his role in Yorkshire Television sitcom, Duty Free, where he played David Pearce.

Kate Bushell: 20th anniversary appeal

Andrew Segal

BBC Local Live

Police have relaunched a murder appeal on the 20th anniversary of a schoolgirl's murder.

Fourteen-year-old Kate Bushell was killed while walking her neighbour's dog in Exwick, near Exeter, on 15 November 1997.

Devon and Cornwall Police said the public may still "hold the vital clue to find the killer ... and bring them to justice".

Detectives added that they were "calling on people to come forward with critical information that they may have withheld at the time, either due to misplaced or divided loyalty, intimidation, or duress, or simply not thought relevant over the years".

Charity Crimestoppers has also offered a £10,000 reward for any information that leads to the arrest and conviction of anyone in relation to the murder.

Kate Bushell
Via Family

Children In Need: See how some of your money is spent

BBC Radio Cornwall

View more on twitter

Young People Cornwall supports county youth clubs and "helps young people tackle all the challenges and opportunities they face, growing up in Cornwall".

Nancy Astor: MP backs statue despite policy disagreements

Jonathan Morris

BBC News Online

A Plymouth MP who is backing a bid to build a statue to honour the first female MP to take her seat in the House of Commons says he supports the move despite disagreeing with many of her policies

Plymouth Labour MP Luke Pollard says he would like to see a memorial to Conservative Nancy Astor, who represented the city from 1919 to 1945.

Nancy Astor
BBC

He is aiming to mark the 100th anniversary of her election to the Plymouth Sutton ward and it's hoped the statue will be near her former home on Plymouth Hoe.

Mr Pollard said: "She wasn't just Plymouth Sutton's MP, she was the Member of Parliament for women and it's right that this is celebrated.

"I am determined to work cross-party, in her memory and her name to garner support to get more women to stand and be elected in Parliament."

There is no figure for the cost of the statue, but Mr Pollard said he would be forming a committee of supporters to raise funds for it.

Devon travel: Road accident at Totnes school

BBC Radio Devon

In Totnes, on the A385, there are reports of an accident outside KEVICs School (King Edward VI's School). There's heavy traffic in the area.

Homeless people in Barnstaple camp 'should get support'

BBC Radio Devon

A group of homeless people living in tents by the river in Barnstaple who may be evicted should be given the right help, their supporters say.

North Devon Council, which owns the land the group is camped on, is expected to apply for a court order that will allow it to move them on.

Barnstaple homelesss camp
BBC

The authority said it was offering support and alternative accommodation, and was only taking the action after fireworks were let off at the site.

Supporter Katherine Armitage said: "It's really important to look after the homeless people, and this is the home of these people.

"Unless there is some alternative, they should not be evicted from this camp."

Ampadu gets first Wales start

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Exeter-born Chelsea youngster Ethan Ampadu got his first international start for Wales as they drew 1-1 with Panama in Cardiff.

The 17-year-old, who was the youngest-ever Exeter City player when he made his debut aged 15 in September 2016, played the first 67 minutes of the match.

Ethan Ampadu
Getty Images

Ampadu made his debut as a substitute against France last week, having moved to Chelsea in the summer.

The Premier League champions have yet to agree a fee with Exeter City for the youngster.

Inactivity rates 'rise' in wider South West

Sarah Gosling

BBC News Online

Employment rates in the wider South West - the area up to and including The Cotswolds and down to Cornwall - show an increase in "labour inactivity".

The government defines "inactivity" as people "not in employment who have not been seeking work within the last four weeks and/or are unable to start work within the next two weeks".

In the South West, unemployment rates have remained stagnant with an increase of only 0.1%, the joint second lowest region in the country, according to figures released by the Office for National Statistics.

Inactivity however has increased by 1.3% among 16-64 year olds in what appears to be a direct transfer from previous employment figures.

The rates for 16-64 year olds are:

  • Employment - 77.4% (-1.3% decrease from April to June 2017)
  • Unemployment - 3.6% (0.1% increase from April to June 2017)
  • Inactivity - 19.6% (1.3% increase from April to June 2017)