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  1. Plans for specialist police cuts in Hampshire 'devastating'
  2. Eastleigh FC founder Derik Brooks dies aged 94
  3. Sinkhole appears on historic Oxford street
  4. Sex abuse survivor tells his story in bid to encourage others
  5. Updates from Tuesday 23 January

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK


We will be seeing you again, do not fear.

There will be more news, sport, travel and weather from the South from 08:00 GMT Wednesday, so keep your eyes peeled.

In the meantime, You can get in touch with us using our Oxford, Hampshire, Dorset, and Berkshire Facebook pages, or via our Twitter accounts: @BBC_Hampshire, @BBCDorset, @BBCBerkshire and @BBCOxford.

A van driver drove through a railway barrier causing long delays.
British Transport Police say the driver's actions caused more than 10 hours of delays.

Hospital clerk 'told to improve waiting time figures'

An Isle of Wight hospital clerk cancelled a patient's appointments to improve waiting time statistics, an inquest has heard.

Holly Pritchett, 26, from Ryde, told the hearing she was warned repeatedly she would lose her job if she recorded breaches of waiting time guidelines.

Ms Pritchett "rejigged" appointments for 36 endoscopy patients at St Mary's Hospital before being suspended from her job in May 2016, the inquest heard.

One patient, John Fisher, 64, was found dead at his home in East Cowes from a condition related to alcoholism after his appointments were cancelled four times.

Coroner Caroline Sumeray told Ms Pritchett: "Your actions... didn't lead to his death but they could have done. For that you are very fortunate."

Isle of Wight NHS Trust has been approached for comment.

The hearing in Newport is due to conclude tomorrow.

Teenage pair attacked with metal pole

A 14-year-old and a 17-year-old have both suffered broken bones after being attacked in Reading with a metal pole.

The pair were attacked at 19:00 GMT on Thursday in an alleyway between Moriston Close and Strathy Close in the town.

The victims were assaulted by two male offenders, who punched and kicked then, as well as hitting them with a metal pole.

The teenagers were attacked in an alleyway between Moriston Close and Strathy Close in Reading

The 17-year-old sustained a fractured arm and the 14-year-old has suffered a fractured cheekbone.

They were both taken for hospital for treatment and have since been discharged.

Thames Water investigating burst pipe near sinkhole

Thames Water says it is looking into whether a burst pipe caused the sinkhole on Oxford's Broad Street.

A spokesman said: "We will investigate if [it] caused the ground to collapse or vice versa while we carry out the repair.

"We’re sorry we’ve had to close off Broad Street, but it’s essential to allow us to complete the work safely. We expect to be finished by tomorrow afternoon."

The burst is on an 8-inch water main.

While there has been no impact to the water supply in the area, the company will have to shut it off temporarily this evening during repairs. It says the impact on customers "will be minimal".

Poole bridge reopens to traffic

Poole Bridge has reopened after extensive refurbishments fell seven months behind schedule.

The lifting bridge closed in September 2016 for the £4.2m works, and had originally been expected to reopen in June 2017.

Apologising for the delay, the borough council said it had been a "challenging project" but there had been no "compromise on quality or engineering standards".

Contractor Interserve has said that alleged financial difficulties at the firm were not the cause of the delays.

Limited and temporary overnight planned closures will take place in February to allow the contractor to resolve "some minor visible defects", according to the council.

Poole Bridge
Borough of Poole Council

'Whitney' spelling mistake sign removed

A road sign that led to jokes on social media about an Oxfordshire town being accidentally named after Whitney Houston has been removed.

The Witney sign, which includes an extra "h" and was put up by Highways England, was spotted on an A34 slip road north of Oxford.

The sign

Fans of the late singer responded with jokes and graphics on Twitter.

Highways England said it was looking into how the sign escaped its "quality control checks".

The sign

'Whitney' spelling mistake sign removed

Social media users suggested Witney had been renamed after late singer Whitney Houston.

Read more

Severe accident: A3 Hampshire southbound

BBC News Travel

A3 Hampshire southbound severe accident, between A272 and B2070.

A3 Hampshire - A3 in Petersfield blocked and queuing traffic southbound between the A272 junction and Buriton turn off, because of an accident.

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

Academia reacts to Oxford sinkhole

Oxford sinkhole
The sinkhole was found on Broad Street outside the Sheldonian Theatre early on Tuesday

Forget puns about "police looking into it", when a sinkhole opens up in the middle of Oxford only literary quotes will do.

The Faculty of English (@engfac) reaches for Jules Verne: "Wherever he saw a hole he always wanted to know the depth of it. To him this was important".

Which prompted the English Faculty Library (@EFLOxford) to respond with some Tolkien.

View more on twitter

Not wanting to be outdone the Philosophy and Theology Library (PTFLOxford) chimes in with some Lewis Carroll.

View more on twitter

A4 Crash: Report from the scene

Jack Winstanley

BBC Berkshire Reporter

The A4 is closed in both directions between Ford's Farm and Langley Hill.

Multiple emergency vehicles are still at the scene - it must be said, less than there were an hour ago.

There are six or seven police cars still on the scene, no ambulances now, the last one left moments ago.

The police cordon is very wide at the moment as the investigation continues.

There is no indication how long the road will be closed for but it could be some time.

Calcot 4

Tax rise stops 'damaging' police cuts

A council tax rise will prevent a police force from making "unacceptable" cuts to frontline services.

Anthony Stansfeld, Thames Valley police and crime commissioner, said he did not approve of raising the police precept, but added it was necessary to prevent "damaging" cuts.

Police officers
Thames Valley Police Federation
The force revealed its officer levels were "under strength" due to high numbers of retirements and transfers.

The force revealed its officer levels were "under strength" due to high numbers of retirements and transfers.

The changes will mean Band D householders will pay £12 more a year.

Police officers

Tax rise stops 'damaging' police cuts

Force commissioner says a precept increase will protect frontline services.

Read more

A4 Crash: Pictures from the scene

Two people have been seriously injured in a crash on the A4 Bath Road in Calcot, Reading.

All three emergency services are at the scene of the incident, and the road has been closed in both directions.

Calcot 2
Calcot 3
View more on twitter

Severe accident: A4 Berkshire both ways

BBC News Travel

A4 Berkshire both ways severe accident, between Bath Road and Honey End Lane.

A4 Berkshire - A4 Bath Road in Reading closed and very slow traffic in both directions between the Bath Road junction and the Honey End Lane junction, because of an accident.

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

Two 'seriously injured' in multi-vehicle crash

Two people have been seriously injured after a two-vehicle accident on the A4 in Reading.

The South Central Ambulance Service (SCAS) have said three ambulances are currently at the scene, which is between Bath Road and Honey End Lane.

The road has been closed in both directions, and there are huge traffic delays and diversions in that area.

View more on twitter

Severe disruption: M40 Oxfordshire northbound

BBC News Travel

M40 Oxfordshire northbound severe disruption, between J10 for A43 Brackley and J11 for A361.

M40 Oxfordshire - One lane closed on M40 northbound between J10, A43 (Brackley) and J11, A361 (Banbury), because of medical emergency. Traffic is coping well.

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

Severe accident: A4 Berkshire both ways

BBC News Travel

A4 Berkshire both ways severe accident, at Wexham Road.

A4 Berkshire - A4 Wellington Street in Slough closed and very slow traffic in both directions at the Wexham Road junction, because of an accident involving two vehicles.

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

Bodleian Libraries still open for business despite 'structural collapse in street'

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

Two councillors resign following a council leader's call to clear rough sleepers from Windsor.

Read more

Newbury kayak instructor missing in Ecuador

A kayak instructor from Newbury is missing following flash floods in Ecuador.

Saturday's incident on the Abanico River led to two Irishmen dying while Adam Vaughan, 22, has not been found. Two others - an American and Ecuadorian - who made up the group, were rescued.

Adam Vaughan
Adam Vaughan was described as an "inspirational" kayaking teacher

Mr Vaughan, a former Cardiff University Spanish student and instructor at Cardiff white water rafting centre, was described as "embodying the spirit of adventure" and "made a long-lasting positive impact" as vice-president of the university kayak club.

Mr Vaughan has written blogs about his love of kayaking, having paddled since the age of 11, around the world.

Biff Baff Boom or Trashosaurus?

Waste truck
South and Vale councils
The trucks are part of a new £6.5m fleet of waste and recycling vehicles for the councils

Residents in south Oxfordshire are being asked to name two new food waste recycling trucks.

Shortlists of possible options put forward by school children have been released by Vale of White Horse and South Oxfordshire District Councils.

The most popular will be printed on to the two districts' new trucks.

Possible names for South Oxfordshire's truck include Garbage Gobbler and Wesley Waste Truck, while Banana-much Bob and Compost Carl are names on Vale of White Horse's shortlist.

Stranger Things happening in Oxford

Thames Valley Police budget passed with tax increase

Michael Race

BBC South

The force's budget has been approved after the chief constable said the proposals had been "the most challenging it has ever gone through".

Anthony Stansfeld, the territory's Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), endorsed proposals that included a £12 council tax increase - saying that without it, frontline policing would have been cut, which he said would have been "unacceptable".

He criticised central government for the increase, saying funding should have come from them.

The force is having to make an additional savings of £14.3m before March 2021, having already cut £99m from its budget since 2011.

Chief Constable Francis Habgood had earlier said that proposing the 2018/19 budget had been the "most challenging" process they "have ever been through", adding resources were "already pretty lean".

He also added that no decision had been made on whether the force's resources could be reduced in roads policing, the dogs section and mounted horse section.

The approved budget will be put to the Thames Valley Police and Crime Panel next week to be passed.

'Challenging underground conditions' delay road opening

A town centre street in Wokingham, which has been closed for major renovation work, is due to have a delayed opening because of an undiscovered "underground spaghetti junction" of "poorly laid pipework".

Broad Street in Wokingham was expected to be opened at the end of January, as part of the town council's Market Place Improvement Project.

Broad Street
Broad Street looks rather different now

The authority say that this discovery is likely to mean there will be another month of work on the project, which is set to cost £3.8m.

Councillor David Lee, who's Wokingham's member for planning and deputy leader, said: "We are doing our best, and we are working with the contractors, and we believe the end of March is a realistic target."

He added: "In all honesty, it was always a spring target that we were working towards."

'We haven't got the money'

Reading manager Jaap Stam will have to make do with limited funds to strengthen his out-of-form squad in the rest of the January transfer window.

Stam saw his Reading side slip to 18th in the Championship on Saturday after a 1-0 home defeat by Brentford.

The Royals are just four points above the relegation zone and without a league win in eight games.

"We haven't got the money now to spend a couple of million pounds on players," Stam told BBC Radio Berkshire.

Jaap Stam
Getty Images
Reading have not added any new faces so far this month, but brought in seven new players in the summer

Severe disruption: M40 Oxfordshire southbound

BBC News Travel

M40 Oxfordshire southbound severe disruption, at J9 for A34.

M40 Oxfordshire - M40 lane closed on exit slip road and slow traffic southbound at J9, A34 (Bicester), because of a broken down lorry.

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

Chris Packham joins bid to save island tree

TV wildlife presenter Chris Packham has hit out at plans to cut down a tree on the Isle of Wight.

It's understood the "Umbrella Tree" in East Cowes which stands on the corner of York Avenue and Clarence Road is facing the axe because it has a fungus.

Mr Packham said: "It’s much loved and solutions have been proffered."

View more on twitter

Oxford sinkhole lies near to underground book storage

We understand the sinkhole on Broad Street is near to - but not above - a book storage area belonging to the Bodleian Libraries.

The sinkhole is outside the Weston Library, which is the renovated former New Bodleian Library, originally built in the 1930s.

As well as underground book storage there is a tunnel which connects it to the Old Bodleian.

It's also near to the Sheldonian, a Grade-I listed building designed by Sir Christopher Wren, which serves as the official ceremonial hall of the University of Oxford, as well as a concert venue.

Oxford sinkhole meeting to be held

Will McPhail, station manager at Oxford Fire and Rescue Service, says talks are under way to sort out a small sinkhole in Oxford, which has closed Broad Street, one of its most iconic streets.

He said: "On investigation we found that under the road is a larger sinkhole. It appears to stretch a metre or so in either direction.

"We are looking to have a multi-agency meeting with ourselves, the county council and Thames Water, to try and find out the approach so we can get this fixed as soon as possible."

The area outside the Sheldonian Theatre and the Weston Library, which is popular with tourists, has been cordoned off. It is currently open to pedestrians and cyclists.

Eastleigh founder Brooks dies aged 94

The founder of Eastleigh Football Club Derik Brooks has died, aged 94.

Brooks helped paved the way for the National League side to move to their current home ground in 1957 and founded the original Swaythling Athletic.

He remained involved in various roles with The Spitfires up until his death.

In a statement, the club confirmed they will be holding a tribute to Brooks before their next home National League game against Hartlepool on Saturday.

Eastleigh Football Club founder Derik Brooks

Eastleigh founder Brooks dies aged 94

Derik Brooks, who founded Eastleigh Football Club and helped move them to their current Ten Acres home in 1957, dies aged 94.

Read more

Severe disruption: M4 Berkshire eastbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Berkshire eastbound severe disruption, at J6 for A355 Slough.

M4 Berkshire - M4 lane closed on entry slip road London-bound at J6, A355 (Slough), because of a broken down car. Traffic is coping well.

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

Oxfordshire town dismayed at 'Whitney' road sign
A signpost to the Oxfordshire town of Witney has a problem.

Work to strip cladding from Oxford tower blocks begins

Contractors have begun removing cladding from two tower blocks in Oxford where samples failed fire safety tests.

The results of the checks, which followed the fatal Grenfell Tower Fire, were announced in July last year but residents have remained in the flats.

The cladding on the Windrush and Evenlode towers will be replaced with material meeting new government standards, Oxford City Council said.

It expects the work to finish in July.

Windrush Tower
Windrush Tower is one of two that is having the rain-screen cladding replaced