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50 Syrian refugees accepted in Norfolk

Norfolk county council have voted to accept 50 vulnerable Syrian refugees into the county Credit: ITV News

Members of Norfolk County Council have today (July 25) voted overwhelmingly to accept 50 vulnerable Syrian refugees into the county.

A full meeting of the council voted 64 votes to six with one abstention to take part in the government’s Syrian Vulnerable Person’s Resettlement Scheme which will see refugees settled in the Norwich area.

The scheme gives priority to survivors of torture and violence, women and children at risk and those in medical need and is part of a government initiative to accept up to 20,000 Syrian refugees from camps around Syria over the next five years.

All councils in Norfolk have committed in principle to contributing towards a predicted housing shortfall for resettling the refugees.

“Norfolk has a long tradition of extending the hand of friendship to those in need and I am sure that will hold true in the case of the Syrian refugees.

"This was an overwhelming vote. A number of voluntary agencies have offered positive support to ensure the arrival of the refugees and their help - along with the excellent groundwork already done by officers and councils in Norfolk - will give the scheme every chance of success.”

– Cliff Jordan, Leader of Norfolk County Council


Judo paralympian Jonathan Drane aims for medal in Rio

Video report by ITV Anglia's Donovan Blake

Paralympian Jonathan Drane from Norwich is aiming for a medal in the Paralympics in Rio in a few weeks.

The 29-year-old will compete in the visually impaired category in the under 81 kilogram class. He hails from the same club as Norfolk Olympian Colin Oates.

Jonathan achieved a bronze medal in the Paralympics Judo Grand Prix event in Rio earlier this year.

Chubby toad stuck in Norwich garden

A chubby toad had to be rescued from a garden decking in Norwich as it was stuck face down. Credit: RSPCA

A chubby toad had to be rescued from garden decking in Norwich as it was stuck face down.

Inspector Jason Finch from the RSPCA attempted to carefully try and release the toad with his hands, but he was concerned about hurting the toad’s delicate and soft body, so the homeowner kindly agreed to let him saw the wooden board to release the toad.

But then the toad had managed to wriggle and squeeze himself through the gap, and was completely trapped underneath the decking.

Inspector Fitch from the RSPCA managed to lift the toad to safety Credit: RSPCA

Luckily, after continuing to saw the wood, the inspector managed to lift the toad to safety.

There was no way he would have been able to get out from under the decking, so I carried on with my plan to saw the plank of wood and lever it up, where I was then able to lift the toad out to safety.

He was the biggest, fattest toad I have ever seen! I can only think he was after a nice fly or a juicy bug when he decided to stick his head down the gap. I released him near the garden pond and watched him hop off to where he belongs - all in a very successful rescue.

– RSPCA Inspector, Jason Finch

NNUH says they're determined to improve finances

The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital says they are determined to improve after being put into financial special measures. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Norfolk and Norwich University hospital say they're determined to improve after being put into financial special measures.

The NNUH Trust board is determined to improve the financial position while ensuring the best possible quality of care for patients is maintained.

The demand we are faced with is rising relentlessly and we are treating more patients who require more complex care from a large geographical area.

Our staff are doing an amazing job but they are under significant daily pressure which is not sustainable.

This is why our plan to expand our services is crucial in both providing the best possible care to patients and bringing our finances back into balance.

– Mark Davies, NNUH Chief Executive

Norfolk and Norwich Hospital put in special measures

The Norfolk and Norfolk Hospital. Credit: PA

The Norfolk and Norwich Hospital has been put in "financial special measures".

The Trust is one of five nationally to be affected after the NHS claimed they need to bring about a "rapid improvement in their finances."

The hospitals will now need to undergo a review and agree a financial recovery plan.

They will only be able to leave special measures if they can show they are returning to financial discipline.

This suite of measures will help ensure that the providers facing the greatest financial challenges are supported to bring about rapid financial recovery, while maintaining or improving quality where necessary.

This plan will help restore financial discipline and ensure ongoing financial sustainability in the NHS.

– Jim Mackey, Chief Executive at NHS Improvement


Foster family battle to keep Bangladeshi man in Norfolk

Jakir Ahmed Credit: ITV News Anglia

A young Bangladeshi man, who was found on the streets of Norwich, is fighting deportation from the country he now calls home.

Jakir Ahmed who is 21, was discovered on Prince of Wales Road when he was just 14.

It's thought he'd been trafficked into the country and kept as a domestic slave.

He and his foster parents are now battling to allow him to remain here permanently.

"I work so hard to get where I am now and my plan in the future is to go up more higher. If I go back to Bangladesh, where would I go, what would I do, there is nothing there. So I will have to go all the way back down to step up the ladders"

– Jakir Ahmend

Jakir needs £4000 to fund his legal fees to fight the deportation. You can find out more here

Watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Kate Prout.

Ambulance Service admits failings in not admitting patient to hospital

Adam Frere-Smith.

The East of England Ambulance Service has admitted its failings in not admitting an alcohol-dependent patient to hospital after he fell and hurt his dead.

48-year-old Adam Frere-Smith from Norwich died on November 16th last year, the day after striking his head on his bathroom sink.

At his inquest today, the coroner was told he had serious alcohol problems and was suffering from depression.

Paramedic Geoffrey Billings responded to the 999 call from Mr Frere-Smth's mother.

He noticed a graze on the patient's head but felt he didn't require further treatment.

He told the inquest he contacted the doctors' service and his concern was chiefly about Mr Fere-Smith's alcohol dependency and the fact he wasn't taking his medication.

Another paramedic, David Allen, carried out an investigation in the light of what was regarded as a serious incident.

He said that with a combination of intoxication and a head injury, Mr Frere-Smith should have been admitted to an emergency department.

"The assessment was not thorough" he admitted.

Dr Tom Davis, deputy medical director with the East of England Ambulance Service, apologised to Mr Frere-Smith's family. "We had not delivered the appropriate care to the patient," he told the coroner.

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