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Summary

  1. Updates from Thursday 3 August
  2. US manhunt for Oxford University worker
  3. Rise in assaults on police
  4. Cladding to be removed from towers
  5. Hovercraft crossings on the Solent stopped
  6. Michael Eisner takes over Portsmouth FC

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Severe accident: M3 Hampshire southbound

BBC News Travel

M3 Hampshire southbound severe accident, at J9 for A34.

M3 Hampshire - M3 exit slip road partially blocked and slow traffic southbound at J9, A34 (Winnal Roundabout), because of an accident involving lorry and two cars.

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

Robert Hardy: Harry Potter and All Creatures Great and Small star dies

The actor Robert Hardy has died aged 91, his family has said.

Robert Hardy
BBC

He starred as Dick Carlton in The Spy Who Came In From the Cold, Siegfried Farnon in All Creatures Great and Small, and Cornelius Fudge, The Minister for Magic, in four of the Harry Potter films.

In recent years a west Oxfordshire and Hampshire resident, he studied English at Magdalen College under the tutorage of C S Lewis in the 1940s.

His family said he had had a "tremendous life" and "a giant career in theatre, television and film spanning more than 70 years".

Magdelen College said: "Sad news breaking that Magdalen alumnus Robert Hardy (1944) has died at the age of 91."

Road sign spelling gaffe by council

A sign for a main road has been spelled incorrectly by a council.

The sign for Burnham Lane installed by a Slough Borough Council worker earlier included an extra A, making it erroneously read "Burnaham Lane".

Burnham Lane
Joao Silva

After the gaffe was pointed out on Twitter, the authority responded: "Whoops. Our bad. That will be coming right back down again."

The council confirmed the sign would be removed but told the BBC it had no further comment to add to its tweet.

Oxford Uni murder suspect employee was 'missing'

An Oxford University employee who is wanted in connection with a murder in Chicago disappeared last week.

Andrew Warren, 56, who works at Sommerville College, was reported missing to Thames Valley Police on Monday 25 July.

He had left the UK the day before, the force said, and inquiries are continuing.

Mr Warren and Prof Wyndham Lathem are wanted after Trenton Cornell-Duranleau, 25, was found dead last week, and Chicago Police says its "search will only intensify".

Prof Wyndham Lathem and Andrew Warren (right)
Chicago Police
Andrew Warren (right) and Prof Wyndham Lathem have been urged to turn themselves in.

Severe disruption: M4 Berkshire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Berkshire eastbound severe disruption, between J5 for A4 and J4B for M25 affecting J6 for A355 Slough.

M4 Berkshire - Three lanes closed and queuing traffic on M4 London-bound between J5, A4 (Langley) and J4b M25, because of an overturned vehicle, recovery work and a fuel spillage. Congestion to J6, A355 (Slough).

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

Reading FC: Stam itching to get season under way

Royals boss Jaap Stam wants to start the new season and forget last year's heroics.
Royals boss Jaap Stam wants to start the new season and forget last year's heroics.

He has said that the play-off final heartache should not be the only motivation for the coming season.

"We don't need to use only that," he told BBC South Today's Andy Moon. "We've got our own motivations in doing well.

"From these games you can learn...different pressure, different ambience and everything."

And he admits the nature of the transfer market has been frustrating his efforts to sign new players.

"It is difficult because a lot of clubs within the Championship have got a lot of money to spend.

"There are going to be a couple of players coming in, but I can't tell you when."

Overrun with rodents? Here's a happy tail...

Helen Burchell

BBC News

Meet Rocco and Cory. They're degus. Very happy degus, as it happens.

These little rodents came from a home in Oxford that was overrun with more than 40 fellow degus, gerbils and hamsters.

They weren't particularly happy, all crammed together - so the RSPCA stepped in and these two brothers (below) ended up at the charity's Block Fen rehoming centre in Wimblington, Cambridgeshire.

Degus Rocco and Cory
RSPCA

As cute as they are, no-one wanted little Rocco and Cory and here they stayed for a more than year before volunteer Aga Clark thought enough was enough, and adopted the pair.

"They are two lovely little degus and I saw them and thought it was a shame they spent such a long time in the RSPCA without a forever home," she said.

The pair are now happily living in a big purpose-built cage with lots of toys to play with.

The degu cage
RSPCA

"I never expected they would be so much fun to be around - they are real characters," their new owner said.

Characters they may be, but just what is a degu?

It's a new one on me so I asked the RSPCA's "degu guru" Dr Jane Tyson to set me straight:

  • Degus originate from Chile - not Oxford - and live for about six to seven years
  • They're rodents and look a little like gerbils - but a bit bigger
  • Being sociable little creatures they need another degu for companionship - but if you pair a male and female, make sure you have the male neutered or you could end up with a colony
  • They like to chow down on commercial guinea pig food containing seeds and grains, as well as fresh vegetables and green alfalfa
  • They need to be kept at the right temperature as they can easily overheat, and need access to a dust bath twice a week
  • Degus like to be active so need lots of opportunities to dig, climb and chew things

So now you know!

Degus Rocco and Cory
RSPCA

Severe accident: A41 Oxfordshire both ways

BBC News Travel

A41 Oxfordshire both ways severe accident, at M40 J9.

A41 Oxfordshire - One lane blocked and slow traffic on A41 at Bicester, because of an accident involving lorry and car.

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

BreakingMan 'crushed by tree' on golf course

A man has "potentially life-threatening injuries" after being hit by a falling tree on a golf course, South Central Ambulance has said.

Emergency services were called to Dibden Golf Centre near Southampton shortly after midday.

The man, thought to be in his 40s, was on a ride-on lawnmower when he was trapped, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said.

The golf course confirmed that one of its employees had been injured and the man's next of kin had been informed.

View more on twitter

Severe accident: M3 Hampshire southbound

BBC News Travel

M3 Hampshire southbound severe accident, between J11 for A3090 and J12 for A335.

M3 Hampshire - Queuing traffic on M3 southbound between J11, A3090 (Winchester South) and J12, A335 (Eastleigh), because of all traffic being temporarily held and an accident involving three vehicles.

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

Oxford Uni in contact with police over murder suspect employee

Andrew Warren and Prof Wyndham Lathem
Chicago Police
Andrew Warren (right) and Prof Wyndham Lathem are wanted in connection with the murder in Chicago

Oxford University says it's ready to provide any help US police need to find one of its employees who is a suspect in a murder investigation.

Andrew Warren, 56, is wanted after a man was found dead in a flat in Chicago on 27 July.

The victim, Trenton Cornell-Duranleau, was found with "several lacerations" to the body, US Police say.

Mr Warren's colleagues at Somerville College have been "shocked to learn of the case", according to the university.

It adds, UK police have been contacted and are pledging to help US police "in any way they need".

Whatever the circumstances, we would urge him to contact the US authorities as soon as possible, in the best interests of everyone concerned.

Oxford University

UK universities need urgent Brexit 'clarity' from ministers

Judith Burns

Education reporter

Students in library
Getty Images

UK universities could lose talented EU staff unless they receive "greater clarity" from the government on the post-Brexit rights of EU nationals, according to the Russell Group.

The group of top research universities says Brexit is causing EU staff "uncertainty and anxiety" and making the recruitment of others harder.

The group has outlined 10 points it says the government must answer.

Ministers say they want "a reciprocal agreement as quickly as possible".

The Russell Group is composed of 24 universities, including Oxford, Cambridge, Glasgow and Cardiff, which are often oversubscribed at undergraduate level and heavily focused on research.

End of an era for Pompey fan-owners

Michael Eisner's takeover of Portsmouth FC brings to an end four years of joint ownership by fans and club presidents.

Eisner takes control of a club which was on the brink of liquidation in 2013, having experienced both administration and relegation twice in three years.

A High Court ruling in April 2013 allowed the Pompey Supporters' Trust to buy 48.5% of the club's shares and help the club to recover from its financial struggles.

fans at Fratton Park
Mike Hewitt

£10m investment promised for Pompey

Michael Eisner
BBC Sport

Michael Eisner's takeover of League One Portsmouth FC will include a £10m investment in the club, the former Walt Disney chief has promised.

Eisner, 75, and his Tornante investment group offered £5.67m to buy 100% of the club and will invest an extra £10m.

"My family and I are thrilled to take on this incredible responsibility as stewards of a football club with such a rich heritage," Eisner said.

Super furry animals at Countryfile Live

BBC Radio Oxford's Kat Orman has been broadcasting live from Countryfile Live at Blenheim Palace, and by the look of her tweets, as well as visitors to the event, she's been interviewing ferrets, puppies and little stallions too.

View more on twitter
View more on twitter
View more on twitter
View more on twitter

From committing a stabbing to serving Michelin star food

The Reading Prison Inmate whose life changed thanks to the Duke of Edinburgh Awards.

Weather stops hovercraft crossings

Hovercraft crossings on the Solent have been stopped - Hovertravel said the service between Southsea and Ryde was unable to run due to the current adverse conditions.

View more on twitter

Could you help out on the rooftop walkway of one of Britain’s most historic homes?

The Vyne near Basingstoke is on the hunt for new roof top walkway volunteers.
One of Britain’s most historic homes, The Vyne near Basingstoke, is looking for rooftop walkway volunteers. A major storm badly damaged the building in 2013 and visitors can now watch the huge roof being repaired, from a 360° rooftop walkway.



Jean Morton has been volunteering at The Vyne for many years, so BBC Radio Berkshire's Bill Buckley asked her a simple question... why?





"There are so many benefits, I think I read somewhere that if somebody volunteers they'll live longer.



"Before I came to live in Hampshire I used to live in France...it was wonderful opportunity when I saw the advert to volunteer to be surrounded by beautiful trees and fields and things, but also to meet very nice people.



"I do tours in the house, I do taster tours, and now I'm doing the roof as well. You are up there for hours on end."

Teen arrested after man found 'critical' in Portsmouth

A man is in a critical condition in hospital after being found injured in a Portsmouth street.

Emergency services were called to a walkway leading to Isambard Brunel Road near the Guildhall shortly before 18:15 BST on Monday.

The 45-year-old was found to have serious head injuries and multiple fractures to his skull, face and ribs.

Police said a 19-year-old man from Southsea had been arrested on suspicion of grievous bodily harm with intent.

Portsmouth Civic Officer
Google
View more on twitter

Mystery around statues found in garage

Mystery statues
Hampshire Constabulary

Hampshire Constabulary is attempting to find out where two statues found in a garage in Farnborough come from.

The owner of the garage, in the Barnes Close area, noticed it had been a broken into on 11 March and found both statues standing there.

They are about 20in tall and are thought to be grave furnishings.

The break-in may have happened as far back as November, police said.

PC Mark Hoban said: "Since the incident was reported to us, we have been in touch with local churches and cemeteries, but we have been unable to find where these statues belong.

"We are now appealing to the public for their help. Do you recognise these statues, or know where they may have been sited originally? Is so, please get in touch."

BreakingLyme Regis East Cliff Beach sealed off over suspected ordnance

Part of East Cliff Beach in Lyme Regis has been sealed off after a suspected hand grenade was found.

Police and Coastguard were called shortly before 11:00 and a team of bomb disposal experts are travelling to the scene to deal with the item.

'Lucky escape' after crash near Kidlington

Car crashed in ditch
Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service

Two women had to be freed from a car which crashed near Hampton Poyle close to Kidlington.

It happened at about 15.00 yesterday and one of the women suffered injuries to her shoulder.

Incident Commander Will McPhail said he believed their injuries would have been "far more severe" if they hadn't been wearing seatbelts.

Cuttlefish mural marks marine week

A remarkable painting has appeared on a wall in Portsmouth as part of National Marine Week

Legoland are planning a massive expansion, which locals feel will ruin green belt land.
The Windsor theme park plans to build a holiday village with attractions and parking on green belt.

Bovington Tank Museum workshop gets lottery funding boost

A new workshop to carry out conservation work on vintage military vehicles is set to go ahead following lottery funding.

The £2m facility at Bovington Tank Museum near Wareham will allow work on its collection of more than 300 tanks and armoured vehicles.

The project also includes setting up a research programme into the care of historical vehicles and a new apprentice scheme to train conservators and restorers.

Director Richard Smith said it would "transform our facilities and deepen our knowledge".

Tank Museum
Tank Museum
Oxford United: Pep Clotet prepares to lead club into new era as manager
Oxford United prepare for a new season in League One with manager Pep Clotet in charge.

'Mystery' boat rescued from Portsmouth Harbour

Wooden boat
GAFIRS
The 12ft wooden sailing dinghy was drifting outside the entrance to Portsmouth Harbour

An empty wooden boat has been rescued from Portsmouth Harbour after it drifted towards the paths of large ships.

It's believed the dinghy slipped its mooring at Bembridge on the Isle of Wight.

Gosport & Fareham Inshore Rescue Service (GAFIRS) were called at 0800 (BST) yesterday.

The craft was on a course to drift into the paths of the large vessels entering and exiting the harbour. We quickly placed it under a stern tow and then headed towards the sheltered waters in Portsmouth.

Chris NewbrookGAFIRS inshore lifeboat coxswain
Portsmouth FC: Kenny Jackett leads club into League One campaign
Portsmouth get set for a new era on and off the pitch in League One and under new ownership.

Oxford towers' cladding will be removed

Windrush Tower
BBC
Windrush Tower is one of two that will have their rain-screen cladding replaced

Cladding on two tower blocks in Oxford will be replaced following the results of the government's latest tests.

Samples from Windrush and Evenlode towers first failed checks on 26 June after the Grenfell Tower fire in London and further checks were ordered last month.

Replacing the cladding is expected to take six months and Oxfordshire's chief fire officer, Simon Furlong, says residents can safely remain while the work proceeds.

More signage for Countryfile Live

Organisers say they'll be more signage for visitors to BBC Countryfile Live, which starts at Blenheim Palace today.

In total, 125,000 people attended the event last year - which was more than organisers initially expected, and caused serious delays on the roads.

Operations manager, Tim Filmer, says they have chosen a new company to produce the traffic management plan.

BBC Radio Oxford's Kat Orman will be live from this year's event, with regular traffic updates through the morning.

Queues
BBC
There were hour long delays for many people visiting Countryfile Live last year

Assaults on police rise

Police officers have told BBC South about increasing levels of violence against them

Assaults against police officers at two forces in the south are rising.

The number of incidents in the Thames Valley have risen by more than 200, from 686 in 2014/15 to 903 in 2015/16, and they were also up in Dorset.

Reports in Hampshire have fallen but there are concerns some attacks are not being reported as many officers see it as 'just part of the job'.

Union anger over 'fire risk' building

Trauma unit
Oxford University Hospitals Trust
The trauma unit at John Radcliffe Hospital may be closed for up to a year

A decision to use cladding, which is to be removed from a unit at the John Radcliffe Hospital, needs to be investigated, a union says.

Patients are to be moved from the trauma unit by tomorrow after "serious and embedded" fire safety issues were discovered.

The cladding was found to be similar to that used on Grenfell Tower, and there were also concerns about escape plans and the alarm system.

The union, Unison, wants an "immediate investigation" into who made the decision to use the cladding.

People are responsible for these decisions that have put lives in danger and will cost the NHS a fortune to put right...They should be held responsible.

Ian McKendrickUnison