Haywards Heath

England, United Kingdom

Latest Stories

Waters receding at New Road

Sussex 255 v Worcestershire 14-2 - lunch

While they're at lunch at Chester Road, Kidderminster, on the second day of Worcestershire's rescheduled game with Sussex, things are now looking a little brighter 15 miles away back at county headquarters, at New Road.

It has stopped raining, the River Severn has now reached its peak, the waters are starting to recede and the clean-up operation has begun in parts of the ground.

New Road first thing on Wednesday morning
Worcestershire CCC on Twitter
New Road Wednesday lunchtime
Ged Scott - BBC Sport

On past experience, it usually takes three weeks to get the place ready for cricket again after a New Road flood, which would wipe out next week's one-day game against Australia A, on 25 June.

But the next home game after that, the Championship fixture against Derbyshire on 7 July, at least looks a reasonable target.

The club are yet to comment on how long they expect to be at Kidderminster this time.

£1.4m plans to improve country park

Lizzie Massey

BBC Live reporter

Adonis blue butterfly
SDNPA
Adonis blue butterfly

The South Downs National Park Authority is set to take over the running of the Seven Sisters Country Park and is announcing £1.4m plans to improve the area.

Following a decision by East Sussex County Council, ownership of the 280-hectare site will transfer to the National Park Authority by March 2020.

The authority is to improve the habitat for seven animal and plant species: the breeding Lapwing, Adonis blue butterfly, redshank, meadowsweet, ringed plover, reed warbler and the wigeon.

It is also planning to improve the nature trails, wildlife watching facilities, the visitor centre and landscape to be bio-diverse.

The breeding Lapwing
SDNPA
The breeding Lapwing

Concern for 'vulnerable' missing man

Police in Sussex have appealed for help to find a vulnerable man who has gone missing from Hailsham.

Steven Dunne, 50, was seen on the town's High Street at about midday on Thursday, and has since been spotted in Brighton city centre.

Officers say they are concerned for him.

Steven is about 5ft 7in, of stocky build, with thinning grey hair and is clean shaven.

He was last seen wearing a navy top and jacket, blue jeans and green Adidas trainers.

Anyone who sees him is asked to call 999 immediately.

A passport-style photo of Steven Dunne
Other

Low vision services 'not evenly spread'

Odera Ezenna

Services available to people with very poor eyesight "are not evenly spread throughout West Sussex", the Royal National Institute for the Blind has said.

Responsibility was passed on to local authority following the Brighton & Hove Clinical Commissioning Group’s (CCG) decision to withdraw funding for low vision services in 2018.

Christine Glanville, the RNIB’s network manager for south east England, said at a health and adult social care select committee at West Sussex County Council, there were 5,000 people in Horsham and Mid Sussex living with sight loss. A number slightly above the national average.

Patients are referred elsewhere for help and have to pay for services usually provided freely across the rest of the county.

Ms Glanville added: “There is a need to reinstate a low vision service for those patients who’ve had no low vision service for over a year now.”

Meanwhile, Frances Russell, of Healthwatch West Sussex, said people were not aware of the help already available to them.

“I think there’s a real need to get this service sorted out and publicised.”

Investigation into cause of Adur bridge damage

Neville Dalton

Damaged glass panels on the Adur ferry bridge
Jacqui Peek

Vandals have caused thousands of pounds of damage to a footbridge across the River Adur - or have they?

Police and bridge owners West Sussex County Council are investigating the latest spate of damage to glass panels on the £10m Adur Ferry Bridge, which links Shoreham town centre with the beach.

The council says four panels, which cost about £1,000 each to repair, have been damaged in recent days.

Police are investigating reports of criminal damage by a group of youths, but the council wants to carry out tests to establish whether there was a recurrence of previous defects in the glass, which have been responsible for a number of previous similar incidents.

Investigations into a similar occurrence in 2014 established that impurities in the glass had caused some of the panels to shatter.

And a council spokesman said at least some of eight panels found damaged in January this year were the result of similar imperfections.

But the spokesman said the council would also be studying CCTV footage in case of other causes.

A Sussex Police spokesman said: "Officers attended and an area search was carried out. However, there was no trace of the suspects and there are currently no further lines of inquiry."

Close-up of one of the damaged panels
Jacqui Peek
Close-up of damaged panel
Jacqui Peek

Woman wrongly accused of dodging care fees

Karen Dunn

Local Democracy Reporter

A council wrongly accused a woman of giving away £140,000 to avoid paying for care fees, a report found.

West Sussex County Council should not have assumed the elderly woman had given the money to her daughter in order to avoid paying for her care, the Local Government & Social Care Ombudsman said.

The council decided the £140,000 was a deliberate deprivation of assets and decided to treat the gift as notional capital – meaning that, while the mother did not actually have the money, she would be treated as if she did.

The ombudsman’s report said: “It is my view the council is at fault in how it considered the issue of deprivation.”

Paul McKay, the county council’s director of adults’ services, said: “The council has introduced a formal deprivation of assets panel and the process for considering cases has been revised.

“As requested by the ombudsman, this case has been reviewed and further evidence has been considered by the panel.”

Leader's funding plea to PM candidates

The leader of West Sussex County Council has written to the Tory leadership candidates and asked how much money they would give to local authorities if they became Prime Minister.

Louise Goldsmith, who last week survived calls for a vote of no confidence in her own leadership, described in her letter the "severe financial restrictions" faced by councils across the country and said, by the end of 2021-22, West Sussex would have streamlined its budget by £338m.

Ms Goldsmith also asked when the long-awaited Green Paper on social care would be published and if the government would be looking for cross-party approval of its contents.

The controversial paper which looks at the future of adult social care in England was due to be published in 2017. The government now has it listed to be published "at the earliest opportunity".

Brexit party MEP's comments on homosexuality condemned

Karen Dunn

Local Democracy Reporter

The leader of West Sussex County Council has condemned as "outrageous" comments made by Ann Widdecombe which suggested science could "produce an answer" to being gay.

The Brexit Party MEP hit the headlines earlier this month for her comments, which led to several theatres cancelling dates for her Strictly Ann one-woman tour.

The issue was raised at County Hall, in Chichester, on 7 June when councillors asked for condemnation of Ms Widdecombe’s "LGBT negative outburst".

I condemn the absolutely awful comments that were made. They were absolutely outrageous.”

Louise GoldsmithLeader West Sussex County Council

Looking at the inclusivity work carried out by the county, the leader recalled people’s delight when the rainbow flag was first flown at County Hall – a day Mr Oxlade said was "a big highlight".

The council is also working to regain its place in the Stonewall top 100 – a list of the employers which achieve acceptance without exception for all LGBT people, with the next Worthing Pride taking place on 13 July.

Leader survives vote of no confidence

Karen Dunn

Local Democracy Reporter

West Sussex County Council leader Louise Goldsmith has survived a call for a vote of no confidence in her abilities.

The call was made by Lib Dem leader Dr James Walsh after a horrific Ofsted report into the county’s children’s services, which were rated inadequate.

The call was supported by a number of Tory councillors.

Calling Ofsted’s findings "a shocking indictment" Dr Walsh said: “There are many references in the report to leadership failure at all levels."

He said children could be "scarred for life".

There was applause for Tory councillor Andrew Baldwin, who suggested that he and others had been removed from scrutiny committees because they were "not nodding donkeys and not afraid to ask questions".

After listening to the debate for more than an hour, a tearful Mrs Goldsmith said: “I care very deeply about the children so this hits me more than you can imagine.”

The call was defeated by 38 votes to 18, with 5 abstentions.

Today's local news website headlines

Papers
Getty Images

The Argus: 'Picasso' Seated Bather up for auction at Brighton and Hove Auction Rooms

Kent Online: Disabled boy stopped from using pool slide

Get Surrey: Shepperton nursery 'devastated' after children's tree pulled out of the ground and burned

Chichester Observer: Motion of no confidence in Tory council leader tabled

Eastbourne Herald: Eastbourne man given prison sentence for stealing meat

Crawley and Horley Observer: Shocking footage shows Lancing man caught speeding at 151mph on the M23

Worthing Herald: Rustington machete attack victim comes forward: 'I lost a lot of blood. It was horrifying"

Mid Sussex Times: Cyclists gear up for annual Burgess Hill Bike Ride this Sunday

Brighton and Hove News: Brighton and Hove tenant reps criticise lack of publicity over 'improvement survey'

Hastings Observer: Couples can now get married in iconic Hastings cinema

Brighton and Hove Independent: Residents oppose academy plans for Moulsecoomb Primary School

New homes to get electric car-charging points

Karen Dunn

Local Democracy Reporter

More than 150 new homes in Mid Sussex will be built with electric car-charging points in their garages.

Members of the district council’s planning committee said they were "delighted" with the addition to the development, which will be built west of Copthorne, close to the M23.

The issue of future-proofing homes had been raised during the consultation period, and chairman Robert Salisbury was keen for the public to know that their views had been taken into account.

He said: “I would like the residents to know that we have considered them. I think that’s important when we get a development of this size coming in next door to you.”

The charging points will be in 158 garages in the 303 homes that will make up the first two phases of a 500-property development by St Modwen Homes, which was given outline planning permission in 2016.

The rest of the scheme includes a doctors’ surgery and primary school.

Work on a spine road linking the development to a newly built roundabout in Copthorne Way, as well as commercial units, is already under way.

Railings and a gate will now be added to a children's play area as a result of representations from the public and Sussex Police.

Mr Salisbury said: “So often residents think that we don’t take too much notice of what they say, but we jolly well do.”

Fire at Haywards Heath hospital

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

A fire broke out at Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath this morning.

Four fire engines were sent to the hospital at 08:30 BST to put out a small electrical blaze in an equipment cleaning room.

West Sussex Fire and Rescue have now left the scene.

There were no injuries and no patients were evacuated.

Three-month road closures for new roundabout

Karen Dunn

Local Democracy Reporter

Balcombe Road junction
Google

Closing a major route into Haywards Heath for three months next summer to build a new roundabout has been described as "the least worst option" available.

The roundabout, at the junction of Balcombe Road, Borde Hill Lane and Hanlye Lane, will be built by Redrow as part of its Penlands Green development, which is well under way.

Members of Mid Sussex District Council’s planning committee approved a number of changes to the application on Thursday, including allowing work on the roundabout to be carried out seven days a week.

The original plan had been for the work to take five months but the extended hours mean it should be completed in three.

The committee was told the impact on residents from the increased work hours had been balanced against the potential wider impact of a duration of up to five months.

Councillor Peter Bradbury, who also serves on the county council, said it was "the least worst option in terms of what is going to be a very significant road closure for the area".

Arrests made as Hells Angels event continues

Ten arrests have been made for drugs and weapons offences during a Hells Angels Motorcycle Club (HAMC) ride, after police revealed they cancelled holidays to cope with the event.

HELLS ANGELS RIDERS
Getty Images

Up to 700 motorcyclists, from overseas and across the UK, began their trip from London last night and will finish in Brighton on Sunday.

Police introduced a stop and search order in designated parts of Surrey and Sussex after they made the arrests.

Prior to the ride, officers announced they cancelled leave days to deal with the large-scale events happening this weekend and said "criminal activity will not be tolerated".

BRIGHTON SEAFRONT
BBC

Today's local news website headlines

Papers
Getty Images

The Argus: Man died in flat in York Place, Brighton

Kent Online: Doctor suspended after 'sexually motivated behaviour'

Get Surrey: Chef set fire to Farnham restaurant before sending nude photos to his colleagues

Chichester Observer: 10 arrested for weapon and drug offences ahead of Hells Angels 'Euro Run'

Eastbourne Herald: Eastbourne 15 year old guilty of malicious wounding

Crawley and Horley Observer: Armed police called to incident at Three Bridges station

Worthing Herald: Two people arrested on the A27 in Lancing following incident in Peacehaven

Mid Sussex Times: Major retailer announces sudden Sussex store closures

Brighton and Hove News: Brighton student housing scheme's backers outnumber objectors

Hastings Observer: Historic Hastings tapestry on display in Rye wows visitors

Brighton and Hove Independent: Parents robbed Brighton teenager in savage ammonia attack that left him partially blind

Today's local news website headlines

Newspaper printing press
Getty Images

The Argus: Botched bunion surgery leaves woman housebound

Kent Online: Tributes to girl set to 'rule the world' before unexplained death

Get Surrey: Former Epsom Hospital children's doctor suspended

Chichester Observer: Selsey sexual assault: Man hands himself in

Eastbourne Herald: Injury left working mum relying on foodbanks

Crawley and Horley Observer: Runaway lorry rolls downhill with unconscious driver

Worthing Herald: Graffiti by Worthing's Banksy should be removed, council officers say

Mid Sussex Times: Burgess Hill Academy celebrates ‘good’ Ofsted rating

Brighton and Hove News: Most Brighton A&E patients satisfied despite having to wait longer than average

Hastings Observer: Firefighters battling another blaze at derelict Hastings care home

Brighton and Hove Independent: Brighton shortlisted for Best Walking Neighbourhood Award

Labour sees off Tory efforts to chair Crawley council committees

Karen Dunn

Local Democracy Reporter

Labour councillors will chair all of Crawley Borough Council's committees in the coming year, despite protests from opposition Conservatives.

The Tories now have just two fewer councillors than Labour on the 36-member authority following the council elections earlier this month, prompting their leader, Duncan Crow, to call for stronger representation for his party at the head of the committees.

But councillors voted to retain Labour's dominance of the roles, while only two deputies - agreed before the meeting - will be opposition councillors.

Richard Burrett will be vice-chairman of the governance committee and Jennifer Millar-Smith vice-chairwoman of the audit committee.

The Conservatives also fielded candidates for mayor and deputy mayor, but Labour councillors secured both posts, with Raj Sharma taking the chain of office for the second time in three years. His deputy will be Shahzad Malik.

Mr Sharma said: “It is indeed a privilege to be the mayor of any town but to be the mayor of Crawley twice - and so soon - is an outstanding honour.”

Man arrested after cyclist dies in collision near Bexhill

A man has been arrested in connection with the death of a 53-year-old cyclist who was killed in a collision with a car near Bexhill.

The cyclist, who police said was "local", died at the scene on the A2690 Combe Valley Way at about 06:20 BST on Sunday.

A 34-year-old man from Bexhill was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and causing death by driving without due care while unfit through drink or drugs.

He has been bailed until 23 June.

Sussex Police want to hear from witnesses to the collision or from anyone who saw the cyclist or a blue Vauxhall Astra in the area shortly beforehand.

BreakingSouth East results

View more on twitter

Brexit Party: 915,686

Lib Dems: 653,743

Green: 343,249

Conservatives: 260,277

Labour: 184,678

Change UK: 105,832

UKIP: 56,487

South East turnout

Turnout in the South East was 39.36% - up from 35.4% in 2014.

The South East region is made up of the Isle of Wight, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey, Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

Workshop to teach dads to style their daughters' hair
The man behind the idea spent years "trying and failing miserably" to learn to style girls' hair.

Today's local news website headlines

Papers
Getty Images

Kent Online: Thanet council accused of missing bin collections and leaving rubbish strewn across streets

The Argus: Prison for charity tins snatcher

Get Surrey: Multiple fire crews called to Walton Community Hospital due to 'overheated light fitting'

Hastings Observer: Man made more than 50 images of children in Bexhill

Mid Sussex Times:Boots pharmacy closure: Retailer reveals why it is closing Haywards Heath store

Chichester Observer: Rolls Royce in Chichester holds fundraiser in aid of cathedral roof appeal

Worthing Herald: Blind man from Worthing thanks 'wonderful people' who helped him after fall

West Sussex County Times: Horsham anger over plans to chop down tree to make way for new bus stop

Brighton & Hove Independent: Valley Gardens campaigners to enter mediation with council

Eastbourne Herald: Woman dies in crash outside Eastbourne

Brighton and Hove News:Brighton charity's detox project rated outstanding by official healthcare watchdog.