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Britain's Got Talent's Ashleigh and Pudsey to get freedom of town

Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey pose for photographs at the premiere of their new film in London.
Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey attend the premiere of their new film in London. Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Britain's Got Talent winners Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey will be given the freedom of Wellingborough today.

The dancing duo have been jet-setting around the world after their success in the ITV show in 2012.

On Sunday, they attended the premiere of their new film Pudsey The Dog: The Movie.

It has a special screening in Northamptonshire tonight.

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RSPCA appeal after bird of prey is shot

Red Kite injured by shotgun pellets
Red Kite injured by shotgun pellets Credit: RSPCA

The RSPCA is appealing for information after a rare bird of prey was shot in Wellingborough.

The bird suffered a badly-injured wing and was taken to the East Winch Wildlife Centre in Norfolk. It was x-rayed and found to be peppered with shotgun pellets. The bird had to be put down.

X-ray showing Red Kite's shotgun injuries
X-ray showing Red Kite's shotgun injuries Credit: RSPCA

Under the Wildlife and Countryside Act it is an offence to take, injure or kill a Red Kite and punishment can include fines up to £5,000 and/or a prison sentence of up to six months.

Red Kite's injured wing
Red Kite's injured wing Credit: RSPCA

Earthquake 'strongest in 13 years'

Rutland was hit by its strongest earthquake in 13 years this morning.

The 3.2-magnitude earthquake, powered from a depth of 2.5 miles, struck the Oakham area at 7.07am.

"There was a 4.1 in Melton Mowbray in October 2001 - so this is the biggest in the region for 13 years.

"It was quite widely felt but we probably get about three of these at this size somewhere in the UK each year.

"We record about 200 earthquakes and it is to do with the earth's dynamic plates moving, probably about the pace of the growth of a fingernail.

"The most common reports we have had is that houses shook, windows rattled for quite a few seconds, people were quite alarmed.

"We do not get the big earthquakes like they would get in places like Japan."

– Davie Galloway, British Geological Survey seismologist.

It was felt up to 28 miles (45 km) away from the epicentre of the earthquake near Wellingborough but most reports have come in from people who are within 15 miles (25km) of Oakham. Residents in parts of Stamford, Kettering and Oakham went online to say they felt the earthquake.

The UK's most powerful earthquake was the 5.4 magnitude tremor which hit the Lleyn peninsula in north Wales in July 1984 and in 2008 a quake centred on Market Rasen, Lincolnshire, was measured at 5.2.

New Wellingborough mayor named

Jim Bass has been named as the new Mayor of Wellingborough and will take office in May Credit: Borough Council of Wellingborough

Conservative councillor Jim Bass has been named as the new Mayor of Wellingborough.

Mr Bass, who had a long career in the engineering industry, wants to use his year as mayor to develop relationships with industry and educational facilities.

Cllr Bass said: “It is a great honour to be appointed as mayor by my peers. The borough is changing and growing, and we’re excited to become a part of new communities that will be developing throughout this year and beyond."

Jim Bass has been a councillor for Ecton, Mears Ashby and Sywell for seven years. He takes office as mayor on Thursday 29 May.

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Structural engineers checking building after major fire

Structural engineers are to check the stability of buildings which were damaged in a major fire at a recycling plant on the Leyland Trading Estate in Wellingborough.

Smoke coming from the fire on Friday Credit: ITV Anglia

Last week more than 60 firefighters were called to the blaze.

Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service monitored the site over the weekend and crews are still attending every four to six hours to conduct after fire inspections and to monitor the remaining hot spots and structure.

Fire crews at the scene on Friday Credit: ITV Anglia

The area around the fire has now re-opened and experts say there is now a minimal risk for residents from the smoke and therefore the advice to close doors and windows and stay indoors has been relaxed

Firefighters scrambled from surrounding counties to help bring Wellingborough fire under control

More than sixty firefighters have spent much of the day dealing with a large blaze at a recycling plant in Northamptonshire.

The fire at the Leyland Industrial Estate in Wellingborough started at around 8 o'clock this morning.

People living nearby were told to keep their windows and doors shut.

Click below to watch a report from ITV News Anglia's Olivia Paterson

Read more: Residents advised to keep windows shut

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