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  1. Updates from Wednesday 18 March 2015

Live Reporting

By Andrew Humphrey

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good evening

That's all from Local Live this evening, the service will be back from 08:00 on Thursday.

Evening TV

Geraldine Peers

Presenter, BBC South Today


South Today this evening: An Oxfordshire charity which supports adults with learning disabilities has been awarded more than £250,000 by the National Lottery.

Style Acre

Style Acre has for the past year been converting a former nightclub in Banbury into a hub for its services in North Oxfordshire.

It will provid supported living, training and employment opportunities.

Join me at

18:30 for the full story.

Fog returning

Bee Tucker

BBC Weather

It will start clear this evening, but

mist and fog will drift in overnight.

Bee Tucker

For most we're looking at lows of 4C (39F), but it could be a bit colder in rural areas.

So a grey start to Thursday with the odd rain shower, but some sunshine to be had later on.

Burst water main

Oxford Times

About 50 homes in Abingdon have

suffered from low water pressure after a burst water main.

University vice-chancellor leaving

The vice chancellor of the University of Oxford is

leaving to become the next president of New York University.

Professor Andrew Hamilton has been in the role since 2009 and is the second longest vice-chancellor of the modern era.

He will step down in December.

Crunch time

via Facebook

Oxford City Stars have rallied their fans on

Facebook for their next game.

Oxford City Stars
Oxford City Stars

"Calling all Oxford City Stars fans. Planning a quiet weekend? Not anymore!

"This weekend we travel west as one big Oxford City Stars family for THE biggest game in NIHL1 this season. Stars are taking on relegation rivals the Cardiff Devils knowing one simple, immutable fact:

"If Oxford win, Oxford survive."

Concern over hospital ready meals

Witney Gazette

Replacing freshly cooked food with chilled ready meals at Oxfordshire's community hospitals will be a "step back into the dark ages", a patients' watchdog has warned.

Anti-social behaviour survey

Oxford residents, businesses and visitors have been

asked by the city council to give their views on anti-social behaviour in the city centre.

Hooded people
Getty Images

The council said that the consultation would help them decide if a new Public Spaces Protection Order would improve the experience of visiting the city centre for shopping, eating and entertainment.

You can take part


News on the hour

Bethan Phillips

Newsreader, BBC Radio Oxford

A temporary new home has been found near Didcot for staff at South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils.

Join me for all the headlines at


Wheelchair stolen

A wheelchair has been stolen from the Wilkinsons shop on Bridge Street in Banbury.

CCTV images

Police have released CCTV images of people they would like to speak to about the theft.

The chair was stolen at 15:00 on Tuesday 17 February when a group of people requested the use of the in-store wheelchair but failed to return it after paying for their shopping.

Pitcairn Islands get huge marine reserve

Jonathan Amos

Science Correspondent

The UK is to

establish the largest marine reserve in the world, around the Pitcairn Islands in the Pacific, with a satellite "watchroom" run from Harwell.

Satellite watchroom

It will cover some 834,000 sq km (322 sq miles) - more than double the land area of the British Isles.

The intention is to protect the wealth of ocean life from illegal fishing activities.

Safety fears over police closures

Banbury Cake

Shutting the county's police buildings will

increase safety worries among residents, community leaders have warned.

Two charged in connection with fatal robbery

Two men have been

charged in connection with a robbery at John Gowing Jewellers in the Covered Market in March 2013,
in which another man died.

Police van outside covered market

Lee Pullen, 32, of Saxton Road, Abingdon and Paul Anderson, 33, of Abingdon Road in Oxford, have both been charged with one count of conspiring to commit robbery.

They will appear at Oxford Magistrates' Court next week.

Benson development protest

Stuart Tinworth

Reporter, BBC South Today

People living in Benson have staged a rally against plans to build a new housing estate in the village

Benson protest

Campaigners took to the parish hall this morning to hear the start of a planning inquiry.

The plans for nearly 200 homes were submitted by development firm

West Waddy in April of last year.

More than 100 people have objected to the scheme, which is alongside a conservation area.

News on the hour

Bethan Phillips

Newsreader, BBC Radio Oxford

Funding for a project to monitor illegal fishing in the Pacific - from here in Oxfordshire - has been secured in the Budget.

Join me for more on that and all the Budget headlines at


Safe solar eclipse

via Facebook

BBC Radio Oxford is looking forward to Friday morning when we will be covering the UK's biggest eclipse this century.

Chris Lintott

We asked Chris Lintott - Radio Oxford's resident astronomer from Oxford University and co-presenter of the BBC's Sky at Night - to show us how to watch the eclipse.

You can see his tips for a safe solar experience on our

Facebook page.

Bus route prompts petition

Wantage Herald

Residents in Didcot are protesting against plans that could see

seven buses an hour running past their homes.

Fast furniture

Lilley Mitchell

Reporter, BBC Radio Oxford

Al Rogers, a former engineering manager at British Airways and member of the RAF, has started an "upcycling" business near Bicester.

Jet engine

It means instead of old jet parts going for scrap, they will get turned into bespoke furniture.

This morning I welcomed a retired 747 jet engine into his workshop, and you can watch a video of the huge delivery on our

Facebook page.

U's sign Estonian defender

Robyn Cowen

Sports reporter, BBC Radio Oxford

Oxford United's Women have

signed Estonian international Hannaliis Jaadla.

Hannaliis Jaadla
jacquiline cross

The centre-back will be available for the opening game of the new Women's Super League season tomorrow night when the U's host Watford at Northcourt Road.

News on the hour

Bethan Phillips

Newsreader, BBC Radio Oxford

Two men have been charged with a robbery at an Oxford jewellers in which another man died.

Join me for more on this at


Sex education 'lowering teen pregnancies'

Oxford Times

Teenage pregnancy rates in the county are at their

lowest level for more than a decade.

Spring sprung

Andrew Humphrey

BBC Local Live

As the fog clears and our skies brighten, here's a picture to lift your spirits with the delights of Spring.

Anthony Morris

It was taken by Anthony Morris from Farmoor. Please do send in your pictures to

Local Live.

'Astonishing admission'

Andrew Humphrey

BBC Local Live

Labour leader Ed Miliband has attacked the

Budget as being "from a government for the few", and criticised George Osborne for not mentioning the NHS once.

He said: "They'll end up cutting the National Health Service, that's the secret plan that dare not speak its name today."

News on the hour

Bethan Phillips

Newsreader, BBC Radio Oxford

The chancellor George Osborne has told MPs "Britain is walking tall again" in his final Budget before the general election.

I'll have the latest at


Budget 2015: 'The chancellor cannot be believed'

Andrew Humphrey

BBC Local Live

Ed Miliband has started

his response to the Budget.

Ed Miliband MP

He said: "People are earning less at the end of this parliament than they were at the beginning."

And declared: "This is a Budget people won't believe from a government that's not on their side."

Budget 2015: Tax and pension cuts

Andrew Humphrey

BBC Local Live

The personal tax free allowance is to go up to £10,800 next year and then £11,000 in the year after next - a tax cut for 27 million people, says

the chancellor.

George Osborne

George Osborne also announced that the threshold at which people pay the higher tax rate will rise above inflation, not just with it. "It will rise from £42,385 this year to £43,300 by 2017-18."

Higher earners will however face a reduction in the Lifetime Allowance of their pension contributions from £1.25m to £1m.


In his

Budget speech George Osborne has said the duty on tobacco will stay the same, but a pint of beer will see a 1p reduction, and 2% can be saved on cider and spirits.

Alcoholic drinks

New council building 'much better'

Nick Piercey

Afternoon presenter, BBC Radio Oxford


new offices for the two local authorities whose headquarters were destroyed by a major fire will be a big improvement on their temporary facilities, according to the leader of South Oxfordshire District Council.

Council office fire
Ian negus

John Cotton

told me: "It's a big building and a good deal for the councils. At the moment staff are in very cramped conditions, in a cupboard or corridor somewhere, or working from home. This will be a much better situation."

Lunchtime TV

BBC South Today


South Today this lunchtime: We'll have the latest reaction to the chancellor's budget from people and businesses in the South.

Pound coins
Getty Images

Join Caroline Richardson at


Budget 2015: 'The sun is shining'

Andrew Humphrey

BBC Local Live

George Osborne says billions of pounds gained from the sale of assets associated with bank bailouts will be used to pay down the national debt, rather than pre-election vote winners.

He said: "The sun is beginning to shine and we are fixing the roof."

News on the hour

Bethan Phillips

Newsreader, BBC Radio Oxford

Chancellor George Osborne is delivering his final Budget of this parliament, telling MPs that Britain was "growing, creating jobs and paying its way".

Join me for the latest at


'This budget works for you'

Andrew Humphrey

BBC Local Live

George Osborne

began his Budget speech in a very much pre-election vein, celebrating what he sees as the government's strong economic record, and pledging to continue the road from "austerity to prosperity".

Budget 2015

George Osborne is on his feet.

Budget 2015 is under way.

Budget: Behind the scenes

Chancellor George Osborne, chief secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander and their treasury team leave 11 Downing Street before heading to the House of Commons to deliver the annual Budget statement.

Treasury team

Budget 2015

Andrew Humphrey

BBC Local Live

There's only a few minutes until George Osborne unveils his Budget at 12:30, if you want a blow-by-blow account my colleagues are

covering it here.

Stick with us for the key points.

'We will listen'

BBC Radio Oxford

Authorities in Oxfordshire have pledged to visit schools to reassure children they will listen to alleged child sexual exploitation.

Boy on stairs
Jupiter Images

Leader of the county council Ian Hudspeth told

BBC Radio Oxford that they have made mistakes in the past, but changes are being made.

He said: "We want to emphasise that at the county council, with the police and the other agencies, we will listen to you and take action."

News on the hour

Paul Jenner

Newsreader, BBC Radio Oxford

In the next hour, George Osborne will set out his last Budget before the general election.

He has already said there will be "no giveaways" or "gimmicks" but he is expected to relax austerity measures and reduce some taxes.

I'll have all the details at


National Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Day

Thames Valley Police is supporting National Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Day,

tweeting: Together let's raise our hands to #StopCSE #helpinghands #CSEDay15

CSE poster