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Brit, 31, falls to death from hotel balcony in Thailand

Christopher Laidler was on holiday in the resort of Pattaya. Credit: Family handout

A 31-year-old British man has fallen to his death from a hotel balcony in Thailand.

Christopher Laidler, from Pontefract, was on holiday in the resort of Pattaya at the time.

He fell into the street below in the early hours of Friday and is understood to have died on his way to hospital.

A Foreign Office spokesman confirmed a man had died and they were providing assistance to his family.


Rio 2016: Sheffield swimmer Max Litchfield narrowly misses out on medal

Credit: Press Association

Sheffield swimmer Max Litchfield narrowly missed out on securing Team GBs first medal at the Rio Olympics.

The 21-year-old, originally from Pontefract, finished 4th in the 400m individual medley final with a time of 4:11.62.

“It’s an honour to be the first British guy out in the first finals session at an Olympic Games.

“Competing at the Olympics is what everyone dreams of and to be able to go out there and swim fast and swim well is amazing. Hopefully that will spur the team on for the rest of the week.

“I knew the guys at the top would go out quick next to me. It was a matter for me of sticking to my race plan, knowing that I would probably be a few body lengths behind at 100m.

“I wouldn’t have changed anything – I’m happy to have got another 0.3 seconds off my personal best from the morning.

“It is annoying to finish fourth but I was still two seconds behind the guy who was third. So to come fourth at my first Olympic Games and to set a personal best is all I could ask for.”

– Max Litchfield

Pensioner killed another fighting for life in hospital after Pontefract collision

An investigation is underway after a collision between a car and two elderly pedestrians, which left one dead and the other seriously injured in hospital.

Credit: ITV Yorkshire

It happened on Wakefield Road, opposite the Victoria Garden Centre in Pontefract involving a red Vauxhall Corsa and two pensioners.

An 81-year-old woman from Pontefract died at the scene, whilst an 89-year-old woman was taken to hospital suffering life-threatening injuries.

The 21-year-old male driver of the car was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. He was released on bail pending further inquiries.

We are appealing for anyone who may have witnessed the collision or saw the involved vehicle beforehand to come forward to assist with our investigation.

– PS Carl Quinn of the Major Collision Enquiry Team

Witness appeal after motoryclist dies in crash in Pontefract

Police are appealing for witnesses after a motorcyclist died in a crash in Pontefract.

The 57-year-old Bradford man died after his red MV Agusta bike and a black Vauxhall Insignia collided on Common Side Lane in Ackton, at about 7.15pm on Wednesday.

The driver of the car was treated at the scene but did not need hospital treatment.

Investigations are ongoing into this tragic accident in Pontefract and we are appealing for witnesses.

"I would like to speak to anyone who saw the collision or saw either of these vehicles on this road before the collision occurred."

– Sgt Ann Drury, West Yorkshire Police major collision enquiry team

Anyone with information should call 101.


83-year-old woman attacked by woman picking flowers in Pontefract Park

File image Credit: Press Association

An elderly woman was attacked as she walked her dog in a West Yorkshire park.

The 83-year-old was with a friend when they saw a younger woman picking flowers by the lake in Pontefract Park.

The victim's friend told the younger woman to stop, at which point she turned on the 83-year-old and tripped her up before assaulting her as she was on the ground.

She suffered facial and leg injuries which required medical treatment.

The incident happened between 2.35pm and 2.55pm last Friday.

"This was an unprovoked attack on an elderly woman and it is very fortunate she was not more seriously injured.

"We believe the suspect was with a man at the time of the attack, and I would ask anyone who saw the assault itself to contact myself."

– PC Reece Heath, West Yorkshire Police

Anyone who has information can contact the police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.

Universal Credit to become available across Yorkshire from today

The government's new Universal Credit benefit will be available across Yorkshire from today, when the last four jobcentres in West Yorkshire switch over to the new system.

Credit: Press Association

Centres in Hemsworth, Pontefract, Castleford and Wakefield will now be able to provide the means-tested benefit which merges tax credits with other benefits.

"Today marks a real milestone – with Universal Credit now available across Yorkshire.

"Universal Credit allows people to keep more of what they earn and helps them to move into work faster – giving them the confidence, self-esteem, and security that a job and a pay-packet bring. In Yorkshire, 4.500 people on Universal Credit have now moved into work benefitting from the better work incentives that the new service offers."

– David Freud, Welfare Reform Minister

The rollout of Universal Credit has reached 98% of jobcentres around the UK and the government is hoping it will be available everywhere by the end of this month.

The government says more than 400,000 people have made a claim to Universal Credit with 10,000 new claims every week.

Man wanted for breach of bail conditions

Police have released an image of a man they are trying to trace who is wanted for breaching his Crown Court bail conditions after being charged in relation to a serious assault offence.

Credit: West Yorkshire Police

Steven Davies, 30, from Wakefield, is charged with grievous bodily harm. Wakefield District Safeguarding Officers would like to speak to anyone who has information about him.

He is described as white, 6ft tall and of medium build with short dark hair and frequently stubbled.

The 30-year-old has several prominent tattoos including a red rose behind an ear, a Tazmanian Devil on his back, and a dagger on his back.

He is known to have links to Normanton, Pontefract and Leeds areas.

"Steve Davies is wanted for breach of bail after being charged in relation to a serious assault offence. We have been conducting a number of enquiries to find him and I would ask anyone who knows of his whereabouts or who sees him to contact the Wakefield Safeguarding Unit on 101. "Information can also be given in total anonymity to the independent charity Crimestoppers, who can be contacted on 0800 555111."

– Acting DI Dave Watts of Wakefield District Safeguarding
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