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  1. Reading festival waiting for drug-testing licence
  2. Cowes floating bridge fares reintroduced
  3. 'Vicious' attack on bridge in Reading
  4. Slough property searched in gun smuggling inquiry

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

That's all for today

We will be back on Tuesday at 08:00 with all of the region's latest news, travel, sport and weather.

Neighbours rescued after cat flap ‘arson’

Two women have been rescued after a suspected arson attack on a house in Bournemouth.

The neighbours had gone into the burning property in Milford Drive, Bournemouth, on Sunday afternoon in an attempt to rescue two cats. The occupants were not home at the time.

Milford Drive

The pair, who had inhaled smoke, were taken to hospital for treatment. It is thought the cats were uninjured.

Fire destroyed the front door and caused heavy smoke damage to the house.

Dorset Police said it was believed the fire was started deliberately through the cat flap in the front door of the property at about 15:00 BST.

IT upgrade leads to planning delays

Planning applications in three Dorset districts are being delayed while the authorities overhaul their IT systems.

North Dorset, Weymouth & Portland and West Dorset's joint planning department has moved staff onto the IT project which aims to "improve efficiency".

The councils said new staff had been hired to cover the vacancies but it had caused planning department delays.

The "major transformation of IT systems" is aimed at "resolving significant technical difficulties".

Drain cleaner injury photos released

The family of a man who was left with serious burns after drain cleaner was thrown in his face have released photographs of his injuries.

Joe Davies, 23, also suffered burns to his chest and hands in the attack outside a property in Myrtle Crescent, Slough, on Saturday.

Joe Davies
Family handout

He was discharged from hospital on Sunday following treatment, police said.

A 43-year-old man was arrested in relation to the incident and has been released under investigation.

Royals' pre-season gets under way

Royals boss Jaap Stam has said his team's pre-season matches will be an early chance for his player to "get into a rhythm again".

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Have your say on Oxford's development

Oxford has started consulting on the draft version of a plan which will influence the city's growth over the next 20 years.

It addresses issues like transport and whether taller buildings should be allowed in certain areas to create more homes in the city.

The consultation will finish on 25 August, with a further consultation due next summer once the plan is finalised.

Oxford's skyline
One option could see taller buildings permitted in Oxford providing the city's 'iconic' skyline is not damaged

Fire station officially opened

Milford Drive in Bournemouth

Two neighbours entered the burning house to rescue a pair of cats they believed were trapped inside.

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Severe disruption: A36 Hampshire northbound

BBC News Travel

A36 Hampshire northbound severe disruption, between A3090 and Shelley Lane.

A36 Hampshire - A36 Salisbury Road / Romsey Road in Blackhill blocked and slow traffic northbound between West Wellow Services Roundabout and the Shelley Lane junction, because of a broken down vehicle.

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

Man jailed for Ventnor manslaughter

A man has been jailed for six and a half years for killing an off-duty prison officer on a night out in the early hours of Christmas Day.

Nick Medlin, 57, died at the scene outside the Rose Inn pub in Pier Street, Ventnor, on the Isle of Wight.

Nick Medlin
Hampshire Constabulary

Michael Hudson, 33, of no fixed address, admitted manslaughter at a hearing at Winchester Crown Court.

Mr Medlin, a father of two from Ventnor, worked at HMP Parkhurst and played bass in a local punk band.

Andrija Novakovich

Striker Andrija Novakovich signs a new two-year contract at Reading and joins Dutch club Telstar on a season-long loan.

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Oxford house fire was 'suspected arson'

Police are appealing for information following a suspected arson in Weyland Road, Headington, Oxford.

The blaze started at about 04:00 in a downstairs room, but no one was harmed as a result of the fire and the house was unoccupied at the time.

Detective Constable James Macaro said; "We are in the early stages of this investigation but we suspect that this fire may have been started deliberately.

"We are asking for any witnesses to come forward.

"We are particularly keen to speak to a man pushing a bicycle and a woman, who knocked on doors in the neighbourhood to raise the alarm about the fire."

Front bench post for new MP

Anneliese Dodds has been appointed to Labour's front bench within a month of being elected as the MP for Oxford East.

Ms Dodds, who is standing down as a Member of the European Parliament, has been made a Treasury spokeswoman by party leader Jeremy Corbyn.

Anneliese Dodds

Windsor Castle needs 'extraordinary' cleaners

The Royal Household has advertised for cleaners in "all areas" of Windsor Castle, including state rooms and accommodation.

No experience is needed for the post, which involves cleaning everything in the royal residence from "rest rooms" to "historic vases and irreplaceable paintings".

Successful candidates are offered an unspecified salary, a pension scheme and a free lunch, in return for delivering "extraordinary service".

A marble bust of German Emperor Frederick III

This is your opportunity to use your enthusiasm and passion to deliver the exceptional

Advertisement for cleaners at Windsor Castle

Driver charged with injuring police officers

A driver has been charged with seriously injuring two police officers in a crash on Portland Beach Road, Dorset.

The injured officers were in a police vehicle which was in collision with a Volkswagen Polo at about 02:30 BST on Friday.

Police said a 22-year-old Weymouth man would appear before local magistrates charged with causing serious injury by dangerous driving, assault and drink-driving.

Portland Beach Road and Chesil Beach
Oliver Dixon

UK festival boss Melvin Benn waiting for drug-testing licence

BBC Newsbeat

The organiser of Reading and Leeds, Melvin Benn, hopes drug testing will start soon at UK festivals but says the Home Office needs to issue a special licence for that to happen.

Pilots took place at last year's Secret Garden Party and Kendal Calling.

But festival promoters are waiting for the government's final approval to make sure they aren't breaking the law.

Melvin Benn says he's hopeful to have a licence in place by the time Reading and Leeds starts in August.

Drug testing

The people that are doing the drugs testing have to have a licence from the Home Office to be in possession of controlled drugs, otherwise they are in possession of illegal drugs. We haven't got that permission yet. When we get that permission, we can announce that it'll happen at Reading and Leeds, but until I get that permission I can't say it will."

Melvin Benn

Kitten rescued from drain-pipe

A four-week-old kitten has been rescued by RSPCA inspectors after becoming trapped in a drain-pipe in an office car park.

The organisation said it took several attempts to extract the kitten, who was "well and truly stuck" in the pipe at Bartley Wood Business Park, Hook, on Wednesday.

Animal Collection Officer Philip Hamilton said: "The staff who called us said they’d also seen a mum and three other kittens. Hopefully the family can be reunited."


How are the legs, Steve?

Salisbury City boss and former Portsmouth striker Steve Claridge started himself in a friendly against Portsmouth on Saturday.

The 51-year-old had 10 players absent for the pre-season match and spent 81 minutes in action.

He spoke to Joel Holt after the 3-0 defeat.

Woman denies Portsmouth murder

A woman has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Nadine Burden, 36, who was found stabbed at her home in Portsmouth in January.

Victoria Arthur, 44, of Milton Road, entered a not guilty plea at Winchester Crown Court this morning.

Nadine Burden
Hampshire Constabulary

Julie Palmer, 53, of Westminster Place, pleaded not guilty at a previous hearing to assisting an offender.

Both women are due to stand trial on 4 October.

Drone causes Gatwick Airport disruption

We have been hearing more stories this morning about people caught up in the disruption caused by a drone at Gatwick airport.

Niamh Slatter, from Sussex, was flying home from Valencia, Spain, when her BA flight was diverted to Bournemouth.

"We were due to land 15 minutes early, but ended up circling over the south coast for a while," she said.

Tweet about Bournemouth airport

"Our attempted landing at Gatwick was aborted quite late as the drone had been spotted again, so we were told that the flight was being diverted to Bournemouth Airport."

An Easyjet spokeswoman said three flights would continue on to Gatwick, while passengers from a fourth, diverted to London Southend Airport, would be provided with coach transfers.

"While the circumstances are outside of our control, Easyjet apologises for any inconvenience caused," she added.

Injured climber airlifted after fall

A climber had to be airlifted to hospital after suffering a suspected broken ankle in a fall in Dorset.

The man landed awkwardly on rocks at Durlston Head, near Swanage, on Sunday afternoon.

Coastguards had started to set up a rope rescue when the helicopter from Lee-on-the-Solent arrived in 13 minutes and airlifted him to hospital.

It was the latest rescue for the new regional helicopter service after the local aircraft was retired on Friday.

Coastguards had started to set up a rope rescue when the helicopter arrived

Security increased on Brittany Ferries

Brittany Ferries has implemented new security measures across its fleet of ships which travel from Portsmouth and Poole.

These include specialist security personnel who will travel with ships on some services and random bag checks as passengers leave car decks.

Brittany ferry, Mont St Michel

The move follows the introduction of armed patrols by French military personnel which started last summer.

The company says the extra security is not in response to a specific threat but follows a six month review.

Reading 'Horseshoe' taxi rank reopened

Reading's taxi drivers will be able to pick customers up from the front of Reading train station again as the 'horseshoe' rank was temporarily reopened.

The Reading Taxi Association told Reading Borough Council that drivers were losing trade as passengers were unsure of where to pick up a cab due to work at the nearby Thames Tower.

The 'horseshoe' rank is on the south side of the station, facing Reading town centre

The 'horseshoe' rank was closed when new ranks were built as part of the upgrade of the station.

Cllr Tony Page , deputy leader of the council, said: “We have listened to the representations and it makes sense to re-open this rank again, pending the finalising of timescales for Station Hill.

"I want to emphasise however, the horseshoe rank remains a temporary arrangement and the Reading Taxi Association is clear that is the case".

Slough property searched in gun smuggling inquiry

Police investigating the attempted importation of illegal firearms have seized 79 handguns from a vehicle bound for the UK and searched an address in Slough.

The weapons were found hidden in the vehicle's trailer in France on Saturday.

Police said enquiries were continuing following the Berkshire operation, which involved officers from the National Crime Agency and Thames Valley Police.

Two men - from Poland and the Czech Republic - have been charged with weapons-smuggling offences and are due before Uxbridge magistrates today.

New balls please

The Cerne Abbas giant is reported to have had a Wimbledon makeover.

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Students seriously hurt in crash

Two 16-year-old German students have been seriously injured by a driver who hit another car and then crashed into railings in Bournemouth.

The girls were walking at Cemetery Junction at about 19:00 BST yesterday when they were hit by a silver Astra which police said may have ignored a red light.

Cemetery Junction, Bournemouth
Chris Downer

Officers are searching for the driver who fled the scene on foot.

Both of the students were taken to hospital - one was conveyed to Southampton General for specialist care.

Steve Claridge: Salisbury boss plays against Portsmouth aged 51

BBC Sport

Salisbury boss Steve Claridge came out of retirement at the age of 51 to play in a pre-season friendly on Saturday.

Claridge, who played more than 1,000 senior games before retiring in 2012, started the 3-0 defeat by Portsmouth.

He came in as there was a player shortage against the League One side, with two on holiday.

Steve Claridge

M4 traffic back to normal

Traffic has returned to normal after an earlier broken down vehicle on M4 London bound at J8/9 A404(M) / A308M Maidenhead.

Women rescued from bungalow fire

Two women who entered a burning bungalow to rescue a neighbour's cats are reported to have been found unconscious by firefighters.

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Charges resume on troubled ferry

The troubled Cowes floating bridge has reintroduced fares after nearly three weeks of free crossings.

Isle of Wight Council suspended charges on 13 June in recognition of a "frustrating and disappointing start" for the ferry.

new chain ferry
Allan Marsh

Since launching late on 14 May the chain ferry has broken down, run aground and been suspended by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency due to "training issues".

Cars have also been damaged getting on and off.

Severe disruption: M4 Berkshire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Berkshire eastbound severe disruption, at J8 for .

M4 Berkshire - M4 lane closed on exit slip road and slow traffic London-bound at J8, because of a broken down vehicle.

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

Man kicked in head in 'vicious' attack

A man was left unconscious after being repeatedly kicked in the head in a "vicious" attack on a pedestrian bridge.

The 33-year-old was assaulted on Christchurch Bridge in Reading at about 21:00 BST on Saturday.

Thames Valley Police said the attacker only stopped when someone walking on the bridge intervened.

Police said the attacker only stopped when someone walking on Christchurch Bridge intervened.

The force added they did not think it was a random attack.

Headlines from around the south

Big weekend for the M3

A £174m upgrade to turn the M3 into a "smart" motorway in Hampshire and Surrey has been opened.

The 13.4-mile stretch between Farnborough and the M25 is now a four-lane carriageway, after a project that cost £50m more than first expected.

Motorists have faced years of delays and disruption since work began in late 2014, with an original £124m price tag.

Ongoing roadworks will continue to affect motorists with speed limits in place as the system is tested.

Technology is being used to manage traffic flows with variable speed limits and use of the hard shoulder.

Speed limits will remain in place until later this month.

A 50mph speed limit will remain in place while traffic management systems are tested

Man dies in Reading town centre incident

A man was declared dead at the scene of an incident in Reading after police were called out in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Emergency services attended Southampton Street in the town centre at about 04:15 BST, where the man was found.

An investigation into the circumstances of his death is ongoing, Thames Valley Police said.

However, it said the death was currently being treated as unexplained, rather than a murder inquiry.

Southampton Street
Southampton Street was closed between Pell Street and The Oracle shopping centre

Weather: Grey at first, turning brighter

Bee Tucker has the Monday morning weather forecast.