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Medics drive to improve children's mental health

A drive to improve mental health care for children and young people is getting underway across Kent.

Doctors and health workers will be touring towns, meeting young people who've had treatment, to get their ideas and feedback.

Six workshops for children and young people over 11 who have used CAMHS (child and adolescent mental health services) are being held next week in Sittingbourne, Gravesend, Folkestone, Margate, Maidstone and Tonbridge.

There’s also a drop-in session for younger children with their parents in Ashford.

Dover delays easing but police warn of more disruptions

There was traffic chaos at the Port of Dover at the weekend Credit: ITV News Meridian

Delays have eased following a weekend of chaos for travellers heading towards the Channel crossing, but police have warned of further disruption for weeks to come.

Holidaymakers faced hours on gridlocked roads near Dover this weekend as some spent the night in their cars as they tried in vain to get to the port. At one stage there were twelve-mile tailbacks and people endured waits of more than ten hours.

Rail disruption for passengers in the Thames Valley

Great Western Railway is reminding passengers to plan their journeys Credit: ITV News Meridian

Rail services in the Thames Valley will face major disruption from the end of this week as work begins to protect the tracks from flooding.

Replacement buses will cover affected routes. The work will continue through to mid-August.

The company have provided the following travel information:

Travelling between Oxford and Didcot during the work? Rail replacement coaches will operate in both directions up to every 12 minutes taking approximately 30-40 minutes; where customers can connect for onward services.

Travelling between Oxford and London? In addition to usual services between South Wales, Bristol and Cheltenham Spa (calling at Didcot) GWR will also operate: · An hourly service between London Paddington and Didcot calling at Slough and Reading · Two stopping services an hour calling at London Thames Valley stations between London Paddington and Didcot

Travelling between Oxford and Hereford? · One service an hour between Oxford and Worcester Foregate Street, with connecting London Midland services to Hereford · Peak hour trains in both directions between London Paddington and Worcester will be diverted via Cheltenham Spa extending journey times by 40 minutes

The improvements being made will bring Brunel’s railway into the 21st century providing a more resilient infrastructure and paving the way for the new electric trains. These improvement works will allow passengers to take advantage of the full benefits of electrification once complete: new trains, faster, more frequent services and importantly, given the growth this network has seen in recent years, more seats.”

– Richard Fry, Oxford Station Manager


Body cams for traffic wardens after rise in attacks

It is hoped body cams will make people Credit: ITV News Meridian

Traffic wardens in Gravesham will wear CCTV cameras on their uniforms from today in a bid to reduce the risk of attacks and to help to settle disputes over issuing fines.

It comes following a rise in aggressive incidents towards Civil Enforcement Officers over the past twelve months. In one incident a traffic warden suffered head injuries after being assaulted outside a school. He was off work for several weeks as a result, but police were unable to prosecute due to lack of evidence.

Gravesham Borough Council says it reports all incidents to Kent Police and the new body cams will provide clear evidence to help take action against offenders.

The safety of our officers is paramount and we will not tolerate any level of abuse or physical attack. There is an easy way for motorists to avoid a penalty notice – just park legally. There is never an excuse to assault or abuse public servants who are doing their jobs.

Our officers are trained in conflict management and they know how to defuse a situation. However, it can be very difficult to reason with some people and I hope these cameras will make those individuals think twice before they do something they might regret.

These officers do an important job, helping to keep our roads safe and enabling people to find somewhere to park in busy areas."

– Cllr John Cubitt, Council leader
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