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Summary

  1. 'Marine A' sentencing for Taliban manslaughter postponed
  2. Anger over Buckfast wine sold with Easter Egg
  3. Former Cornwall MP calls for 2p Health Tax to 'save' NHS
  4. 'Ghost nets' blamed for rise in deaths of dolphins and other animals at sea
  5. HMS Ocean steams home to Devonport after six months in the Mediterranean and the Gulf
  6. Updates on Friday 24 March 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. Our live coverage across the day

    Victoria Gould

    BBC News Online

    Live updates for Devon and Cornwall have finished for the day, but we'll be back at 08:00 on Monday with the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

    Don't forget  Spotlight on BBC One  later, and from 19.00 join BBC Radio Devon’s Janet Kipling and BBC Radio Cornwall’s Claire Rowley on your local BBC Radio Station for a Red Nose Day special live from the Comic Relief south west call centre.

  2. Cornish seal pups released after successful recovery

    Rob England

    BBC News Online

    The Cornish Seal Sanctuary had a grey seal pup release this afternoon at Porthtowan Beach. 

    Grey seal pups Merlin, Polar Bear, Penguin, Panda, and Arctic Fox were all released into the Celtic Sea.

    Seals

    A sanctuary spokesman described the release as a "major operation" involving several members of the team.

    Each pup was transferred from their rehabilitation pools to the beach by cage.

    The pups were "fit and healthy, ready to return to the wild", he said.

    A seal on a beach

    The spokesman said: "As soon as a pup has reached 40kg and has received a clean bill of health they are then released back into the wild.

    "There are a variety of reasons why grey seal pups need to be rescued, from malnutrition to being separated from their mum at just a few days old."

    Seal
    Quote Message: We'll miss them because we've got to know them all so well, but at the same time it will be great to see them back in the wild where they belong." from Tamara Curator, Cornish Seal Sanctuary
    TamaraCurator, Cornish Seal Sanctuary
  3. Safety row over Bucky egg with lighter

    Jonathan Morris

    BBC News Online

    An Easter egg package which contains a lighter and a miniature bottle of notorious Buckfast tonic wine has been branded "highly irresponsible" .

    Buckfast

    The Buckfast package which includes a 140g chocolate egg with a miniature 5cl Buckfast bottle as well as a Buckfast-branded pen and a lighter is being sold by off-licence D-Bees, in Co Armagh.

    Stewart Wilson of Buckfast bottlers J Chandler told BBC News: "It's an unofficial product and we oppose the actions of the individual. 

    "It's highly irresponsible given the nature of a confectionary product that's mainly given to children." 

    Buckfast Tonic Wine has been made by Benedictine monks at Buckfast Abbey in Devon for almost 100 years.

  4. Future of St Martin Primary School in Cornwall to be debated

    BBC Radio Cornwall

    Directors of St Martin Primary School on the Lizard Peninsula have confirmed closure is being considered after pupil numbers dropped to 13.

    Two weeks ago Tom Harman, head teacher of the Keskowethyans Multi-Academy Trust denied that there are plans to close the school, describing it as "a lovely site and it would be madness to not utilise it".

    On Monday, however, all parents in the trust received a letter that said its legal team were looking at various options and proposals, and that one of which "might" be the closure of St Martin.

    Quote Message: In view of projected pupil numbers, directors have been exploring with our legal team the various options open to us, recognising that one of these options might be the closure of St Martin School. Whilst the school has an operational capacity of 52, there are currently only 13 children on roll, two of which will leave us in September for secondary school. There are no children expected to join the school in reception in September 2017." from Pam Miller Chair of the board of directors, Keskowethyans Multi-Academy Trust
    Pam Miller Chair of the board of directors, Keskowethyans Multi-Academy Trust
  5. Family's last plea to find missing ex-soldier before he is declared dead

    Devon Live

    A former soldier missing since 2004 is set to be legally declared dead unless a last-ditch plea for help to find him is successful.

  6. Lighter sold with Buckfast 'violent wine' Easter egg

    Jonathan Morris

    BBC News Online

    A notorious wine linked with violence is being sold by an off-licence as an Easter egg gift including a lighter.   

    Buckfast

    Distributors of Devon monks' brew Buckfast have called it "highly irresponsible" and threatened the seller, an off-licence in Northern Ireland, with legal action.

    The Buckfast package includes a 140g chocolate egg with a miniature 5cl Buckfast bottle as well as a Buckfast-branded pen, lighter and magnet.

    Off-licence D-Bees, in Co Armagh, was unavailable for comment.

  7. Latest weather: Chilly spring into summer time

    David Braine

    Weather Forecaster

    Tonight will be mostly clear and rather cold though frost is not likely. It will stay rather breezy, especially in the south. Minimum Temperature: 3C (37F).

    Saturday's weather map

    Tomorrow will start cold but become dry and sunny. Strong north-easterly winds will continue to trouble coasts and hills so it won't feel quite as warm as temperature figures suggest.

    Maximum Temperature: 15C (59F).

  8. Needle bins to be installed in Bodmin public toilets to meet increase of used needles across town

    Cornwall Live

    Bodmin will soon see sharps disposal bins installed in public toilets across the town, in what the council says is a response to the increase in the number of used needles left in public areas.

  9. Devon denied Thomas signing again

    James Law

    BBC Sport Online

    Devon have been blocked from signing former Somerset fast bowler Alfonso Thomas for the second year running, due to Minor Counties Cricket Association (MCCA) regulations.

    They hoped to bring in South Africa-born Thomas in as a player-coach, but had their appeal turned down at a hearing in Birmingham.

    Alfonso Thomas

    "There was a strong reluctance by MCCA to act discretionarily, which they can do," said Devon chief executive Neil Gamble. "It is deeply disappointing for Devon that the MCCA wouldn’t use its discretion and be flexible over a middle-significance referral issue."

  10. Man airlifted to hospital with 'serious' injuries after A3058 crash

    Rob England

    BBC News Online

    A man has been airlifted to Derriford Hospital with "serious" injuries after a collision on the A3058 at Quintrell Downs.

    A Polish-registered car collided with the back of a lorry at 13:55 this afternoon.

    Two other people in the car have been taken to the Royal Cornwall Hospital.

    The road has been closed until further notice.

  11. New bus companies for Torbay announced

    Two new bus operators have been announced to serve Torbay.

    Last month it was revealed that 'Local link' would be withdrawing from 1 April.

    Now, Torbay Council has said Routes 62, 64 (revised), 108/109 and supermarket services S1-S6 and TC1 will be served under the name "Torbay Buses".  

    Torbay Town Hall

    Also from 3 April, Torbay Community Development Trust have joined forces with a team of volunteers to take over the running of the recently withdrawn 60/61 bus service between Paignton and Torquay.     

  12. Support group 'couldn't help as many people' without Comic Relief

    The founder of a company that runs support groups across Devon has said without the funding it receives from Comic Relief, they would not be able to "help so many people".

    Debbie Humberstone, who is also a director at The Project, said the company were "proud" to be part funded by the charity.

    The Project runs peer support groups for young people aged 13-24 with mental health issues as well as parents and carers.

    They wore red noses, and "baked with Maltesers" to mark Red Nose Day. 

    The Project staff

    Comic Relief, the charity which runs Red Nose Day, will be broadcasting a night of comedy tonight at 19:00 on BBC One.

  13. 'Top social scientist' joins Exeter Uni

    Johnny O'Shea

    BBC News Online

    One of the UK's leading social scientists is joining the University of Exeter from her previous post as chief executive of the Economic and Social Research Council.

    Professor Jane Elliott will join the University's College of Social Sciences and International studies as Professor of Sociology in September.

    Professor Jane Elliott

    She said: "I'm delighted to join a university with strong synergies in my research areas. 

    "Exeter is an attractive place to be, both geographically and having soared up the rankings over the past decade.

    "It is a vibrant university and I'm very much looking forward to building strong research collaborations and contributing to teaching the next generation of social scientists at Exeter."

  14. Welcome home HMS Ocean!

    HMS Ocean arrives back in Plymouth

    There have been emotional scenes in Plymouth as the Royal Navy's flagship HMS Ocean returned home after six months at sea. 

    During the deployment she covered more than 23,000 miles and visited 11 countries. 

    There were more than 500 personnel on board including members of 829 Naval Air Squadron from RNAS Culdrose and Lima Company of 42 Commando Royal Marines from Bickleigh in Plymouth. 

  15. Missing Axminster woman found

    Devon and Cornwall Police have thanked the public for their help in locating a missing woman. 

    Karen Wyatt, 43, had been missing from her home in Axminster since 10:00 yesterday. 

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