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Summary

  1. News, sport, travel and weather updates resume at 08:00 on Wednesday

Live Reporting

By Chris Brown and Anna Browning

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Our news coverage through the day

That's your lot from BBC Local Live for today. A pleasure for us to bring you the latest news as always.

So much so that we'll be back from 08:00 tomorrow. Join us then.

Travel latest: Delays in Oxford city centre

BBC Travel are tweeting the latest traffic news for our county. Sounds bad in the city centre.

The BBC Travel site has more details for you to check.

View more on twitter

Weather: Fine and dry night

BBC Weather

Staying generally fine and dry overnight with clear spells initially. Gradually turning cloudier from the east later in the night. Low temp 6C (43F).

Oxford weather 24 May 2016
BBC

Latest headlines: Didcot recovery work a 'national disgrace', says MP

Chris Brown

BBC News

Here are Oxfordshire's top stories this evening:

Wildlife blogger Alex White, 12, urges people to perform "random acts of wildness"

Oxford Times

Nature lovers in Oxfordshire are being urged to perform random acts of wildness every day in June as part of the annual "30 Days Wild" campaign.

Children's centres campaigners launch legal action against council

Campaigners fighting against the closure of children's centres across Oxfordshire have begun legal action against the county council.

Protest over cuts to Oxfordshire's children's centres
BBC
Cuts to Oxfordshire's children's centres have drawn a long-running protest campaign

They say Oxfordshire County Council is breaking the law by pressing ahead with the controversial  plans, and are now waiting for the date of a judicial review to be set. 

Cabinet members voted earlier to keep open 18 of 44 children's centres in different forms: eight children and family centres, two 'shared locality bases', and eight outreach centres.

In a statement, the council said the campaigners' claims were "legally and factually misconceived".

MP calls Didcot bodies recovery delays a 'national scandal'

The Labour MP campaigning on behalf of families of the missing men at Didcot power station has called the latest delay to the recovery work a "national scandal".

Didcot power station
Thames Valley Police

The recovery operation has been halted, potentially for months, as workers have now reached the 50m exclusion zone around the unstable remains of the boiler house.

Rotherham MP Sarah Champion says there will be other disasters like this in future and the slow progress to recovering bodies can't happen again.

St Giles 'wasted', says Oxford pedestrian campaign group

St Giles is arguably one of Oxford's most beautiful streets, but it's being wasted, according to a campaign group. 

St Giles, Oxford
Google
St Giles, Oxford

Members of the Oxford Pedestrians Association are meeting the council's city centre manager this evening to work out how the area can be made better for everyone - especially those who travel on foot. 

University staff to strike from tomorrow

Staff at Oxford Brookes University and the University of Oxford will join a two-day national strike taking place across the UK tomorrow. 

UCU picket line
BBC

It's to do with a dispute over pay after an increase of 1.1% from Universities and Colleges Employers Association was rejected. 

The University and College Union says universities can afford to pay more. 

Repairs being made to riverbank destroyed after boat was pulled to safety

Oxford Mail

Environment Agency workers were out in full force yesterday to make repairs to land destroyed by a boat being pulled to safety from the River Thames.

Travel latest: Delays in Banbury, Eynsham and Oxford

BBC Travel

Here are the latest spots to avoid if you can:

  • The A361 South Bar Street in both directions in Banbury at Banbury Cross
  • The A40 westbound in Eynsham at Eynsham Roundabout
  • And the A4142 Eastern Bypass Road westbound in Oxford between Cowley Junction and Littlemore roundabout

Latest headlines: hundreds gather for funeral of Ellis Downes

Chris Brown

BBC News

Here are your mid-afternoon top stories:

  • Hundreds of mourners gathered for the funeral of 16-year-old Ellis Downes at St Matthew's Church in Harwell this morning
  • It could take months before work to recover the bodies of three men at Didcot power station starts again, according to the editor of industry magazine Demolition News
  • And in sport, Oxford United will not rush to complete their summer transfers, boss Michael Appleton says

Oxford United: No rush to sign new players, boss says

Ross Heaton

BBC Oxford Sport

Oxford United will not rush to complete their summer transfers, boss Michael Appleton says. 

Michael Appleton
Rex Features
Michael Appleton

The U's head coach chose to recruit early last summer to get his squad used to the culture and practices that were to be used for their promotion-winning season.

This time he's happy to use the whole of the close season to bring in more fresh faces to the Kassam Stadium. 

Turner's iconic view bought for £100,000

An iconic view of Oxford's dreaming spires has been saved. 

View more on twitter

A 19-acre field on Harcourt Hill, which has views across the city, has been bought by the Oxford Preservation Trust for more than £100,000.

It's close to where Turner painted his famous view. More than 200 people contributed to help the charity buy the site from private landowners. 

They want to improve access for the public to the site and protect the view for generations to come. 

Ellis Downes funeral takes place

Hundreds of mourners gathered as the body of 16-year-old Ellis Downes arrived at St Matthew's Church this morning.

'Massively loved' teenager's life is celebrated

Woman in her 60s sexually assaulted on Banbury bus

A woman in her 60s has been sexually assaulted on a bus in Banbury, police have said.

An Asian man sat next to the woman on the B5 bus last Tuesday between 11:40 and 12:00, and touched her "inappropriately".

He's described as aged in his mid to late sixties, with grey hair swept back. He had no facial hair and light brown eyes.

He is slim, about 5ft 6in tall, and was wearing a cream-coloured, long-sleeved jumper with a roll neck and brown trousers.

Work to find bodies at Didcot power station could take months to begin again

It could take months before work to recover the bodies of three men at Didcot power station starts again, according to the editor of industry magazine Demolition News, Mark Anthony. 

Didcot power station recovery work
Thames Valley Police

Contractors have now reached the 50m exclusion zone around the half of the building which is still standing.

You've got an unstable building, 10-storeys high, with half of it already fallen down. The stability of that building is very, very questionable.

Hundreds attend funeral of drowned teen

Ellis Downes
Downes family
Ellis Downes disappeared under the water while playing with friends in Culham

Rev Dr Jonathan Mobey, rector of St Matthew's Harwell and All Saints' Chilton said Ellis was "massively loved".  

Ellis Downes

Hundreds attend funeral of drowned teen

Hundreds of mourners attend the funeral of a "massively loved" boy who drowned while swimming with his friends.

Read more

Weather: Remaining dry throughout the afternoon

BBC Weather

It will remain dry throughout the day, with some sunshine at times, although cloud will gradually increase through this afternoon. Feeling warm and pleasant in any sunshine, with highs of 18C (64F).

Oxford weather 24 May
BBC

Travel latest: Queues around Wolvercote and Cutteslowe roundabouts

BBC Travel

According to the BBC Travel website, we're looking at a quiet day on the roads. 

Unsurprisingly, there are queues though around the Wolvercote and Cutteslowe Roundabouts.

Latest headlines: Ellis Downes funeral takes place

Chris Brown

BBC News

Here are the top stories for you to digest over lunch:

MP says tuition fee plans help rich at expense of the poor

A Labour MP in Oxford has been telling us why he and his party are opposing government plans to allow universities to set fees above the present £9,000 a year limit.

University students
BBC

The universities minister said freeing colleges to set their own higher fees would make it easier for new universities to open, and encourage more competition and better value for students.

But Andrew Smith, the MP for Oxford East, said this morning many students already get a "raw deal" from the education system.

I don't believe education is for the rich, but the path for the rich has been made easier at the expense of the poorest, and that's not right.

Andrew SmithMP for Oxford East

Mourners gather for Ellis Downes funeral

Dozens of family members and friends of teenager Ellis Downes have been gathering this morning at St Matthew's Church in Harwell.

Mourners gather at St Matthew's Church, Harwell
BBC
Mourners gather at St Matthew's Church, Harwell

Ellis, 16, drowned in the River Thames near Culham earlier this month. His body was found 48 hours after he went missing by a volunteer dive team.

EU referendum: British newspaper articles 'more likely to favour Brexit'

British newspaper articles on the EU referendum are more likely to be in favour of 'Brexit', a study by Oxford University has claimed.

British newspaper coverage of EU referendum
BBC

The Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism found that, of the 928 articles focused on the referendum since the campaign kicked off in earnest on 20 February, 45% were in favour of leaving compared with only 27% in favour of staying in the EU.

It also reveals newspapers have been more likely to quote Conservatives. Of all the spokespeople quoted in the articles, 36% were UK politicians, of whom 69% were Conservatives and just 14% Labour.

The Elmsbrook development

Residents move into the UK's first housing complex where every home has solar panels and 6,000 properties are expected to be built by 2031.

Read more

Ellis Downes funeral a 'chance to give thanks and seek comfort'

Peter Cooke

BBC South Today

The funeral of drowned teenager Ellis Downes takes place later today and the Rev Dr Jonathan Mobey has spoken to BBC Oxford ahead of the service.

He says the 16-year-old was "massively loved" and messages of support have been flooding in. 

View more on twitter

It's an opportunity to give thanks for his life, to say goodbye and to comfort one another, and to seek God's comfort, too.

Rev Dr Jonathan MobeyRector of Harwell with Chilton

Are you a hidden carer?

Are you a 'hidden carer'? If so, pharmacists across the county are being asked to spot you and let you know about help and support that's on offer.

Carer
BBC

It's tough to be a carer, and you may not even realise you are one yourself. But there are an estimated 61,000 carers in Oxfordshire - with only 18,000 'known' as a carer.

City council calls for 12,000 new homes to be built on the edge of Oxford

The Herald

More than 12,000 homes could be built on protected Green Belt land surrounding Oxford over the next 15 years, according to a new report.

Latest headlines: Didcot power station recovery work halted

Chris Brown

BBC News

The top stories so far this morning:

Hairy Bikers school gets £50k to spread pensioner project nationwide

A pilot scheme at an Oxfordshire school, backed by the Hairy Bikers, has been given £50,000 so it can be rolled out nationally. 

Old School on the BBC
BBC

The Oxford Academy has starred in the BBC programme Old School - where pensioners were paired with pupils to help their well-being.

You can see the success of the scheme in the final episode of Old School on BBC Two tonight at 21:00.

Work to recover Didcot bodies halted

Didcot Power Station collapse
Thames Valley Police

Site owner RWE Npower said work cannot continue until the rest of the building is demolished.  

Didcot Power Station collapse

Work to recover Didcot bodies 'scandal'

The failure to recover the bodies of three men killed when Didcot power station collapsed is a "national scandal", their families' MP says.

Read more

O'Dowda on a mission to make Irish Euro 2016 squad

Oxford United's Callum O'Dowda says he's on a mission to prove he's worth a place on the plane to France as part of the Republic of Ireland's squad for Euro 2016. 

Callum O'Dowda
Getty Images
Callum O'Dowda

The 21-year-old had his first training session with the full international squad yesterday ahead of Friday's friendly against the Netherlands in Dublin.

Veteran goalkeeper Shay Given has urged him to enjoy the experience, while boss Martin O'Neill offered a tantalising glimpse of a bright future.

With a little bit of luck he's the future of the Irish national side.

Martin O'NeillManager, Republic of Ireland

Mum of four-year-old left for dead after hit and run says it will take time for daughter to recover

Oxford Mail

Christina Kowalchuk has criticised the suspended jail sentence handed to the teenager driver responsible for leaving her in the middle of the road clutching her “bleeding child”.  

BreakingDidcot power station recovery work stops

Chris Brown

BBC News

Work to recover the bodies of three men buried under the rubble of Didcot power station has been stopped, the owners of the site have said this morning.

Didcot power station
BBC

RWE said contractors have reached a 50m exclusion zone around the structure of the boiler house that is still standing.

Because the structure is unstable, recovery work can't continue until the building is completely pulled down.

Ken Cresswell, John Shaw and Chris Huxtable are still missing following the collapse of the building on 23 February, which claimed the life of Mick Collings.

Working-age population set to fall

Chris Brown

BBC News

The number of working-age people living in Oxfordshire is set to fall over the next 20 years, thanks to the chronically high prices of houses.

Oxford from the air
Dave Price

That's according to the county's Local Enterprise Partnership, who say this is despite an overall rise of 13% of the total population.

With key workers being priced out, Oxfordshire is set to buck the national trend - with the number of people aged 20 to 64 set to rise by about 10%.

Flick through to page 16 of the LEP's report here to see what they've got to say.

Weather: Bright but chilly start, and a dry day to come

Holly Green

BBC Weather

It's a bright but chilly start to the day with any mist or fog patches soon melting away. 

Holly Green brings you the forecast for today

It will remain dry throughout the day, with some sunshine at times, although cloud will gradually increase through this afternoon. 

Feeling warm and pleasant in any sunshine. High temp 18C (64F).

Latest headlines: Affordable housing crisis could see population drain

Chris Brown

BBC News

The top stories to kick off your day:

  • Oxfordshire's working age population is set to fall over the coming years, according to the Local Enterprise Partnership, due to a lack of affordable housing
  • The first residents of the UK's first eco-town in Bicester have moved into their new homes
  • And in sport, Oxford United's Callum O'Dowda says he's on a mission to prove he's worth a place on the plane to France as part of the Irish squad for Euro 2016

Travel latest: Delays on GWR and on the A429

BBC Travel

Your all-important travel info.  

  • There are delays on the A429 between Moreton-in-Marsh and Chipping Norton, with the temporary traffic lights stuck on red
  • And there are delays of up to 20 minutes on Great Western Railway between Basingstoke, Reading and Newbury due to an earlier broken-down train

Keep up to date on the BBC Travel site.

Welcome to Oxfordshire Live

Good morning to you all. A misty start but we're ready to go here in the BBC Oxford newsroom to bring you all the day's news, sport, weather and travel as it happens.

Beautiful evening and sunset over the Thames near Swinford Toll, Farmoor
Anthony J Morris
Beautiful evening and sunset over the Thames near Swinford Toll, Farmoor

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