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Russell Brand rewards 'guinea pig' audience with cupcakes

Russell Brand rewards audience with cupcakes Credit: ITV News

Comedian Russell Brand rewarded a "guinea-pig" audience in posh Henley-on-Thames by giving each of them a cupcake, carefully placed on every seat in the town's theatre.

Controversial Brand was trying out 90 minutes of new material on the theatre-goers - a full house at 234 - before embarking on a tour of America.

The witty comic, whose patter was littered as usual with expletives, gave up on several unpopular sketches during the one-man show delivered to his neighbours who sold out the performance within an hour of tickets going on sale. Brand now lives in the riverside town and told tales of being rebuked by a Henley farmer for straying from a footpath while walking his pet dog.

It's official: public vote choses name for Reading bridge

The new crossing in Caversham opened in September 2015

A name has been chosen for Reading's new pedestrian and cycle bridge following a public vote.

The shortlist included four potential names:

  • Christchurch Bridge
  • Cusden Bridge
  • De Montfort Bridge
  • William Marshal Bridge
Local residents started using the structure as soon as it was opened

The consultation ended at 5pm today, and by popular vote the crossing at Caversham which opened last September will now be called 'Christchurch Bridge'. The crossing over the River Thames links the Christchurch Meadows park to the town centre and Reading railway station.

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'Commune with the pods' - unique sound experience

Sounds pods provide a 'unique' audio experience

Two giant humming sound pods will be arriving in Reading today to as part of the town's year of culture.

The spheres play calm and soothing music that hums. Visitors to the Broad Street attraction can hug the globes and feel the reverberations.

The people behind the scheme say the spheres play calm and soothing music that hums. The pods will be at Broad Street all day. Visitors to the attraction can hug the globes and feel the reverberations.

Woman communing with a pod

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  1. Tom Savvides

Firefighters in pole position for world record

Sussex firefighters have been attempting a world record pole drop today.

They've been sliding down a pole which has been specially built at Brighton's main shopping centre. Money raised will go towards two charities. But did they break the world record? Here's Tom Savvides with the outcome, talking to Hove firefighters Kieran Wood and David Ball.

The firefighters say the event is also a sentimental one, as it is one of the last times the team will be together.

Firefighters in 7,000 metre pole challenge for charity

Firefighters ahead of their pole challenge Credit: Tom Savvides

A group of firefighters from Brighton & Hove are attempting to break the world record for pole dropping.

Green Watch from Hove Community Fire station are also raising money for the Fire Fighters Charity, as well as the Rocking Horse appeal.

The team are planning to climb and slide nearly 7,000 metres up and down a fire station pole that has been put in place at Brighton's Churchill Square between 9am and 5pm today. They want to grab back the record which they set in 2009.

The challenge for the East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service firefighters marks one of the last time the 13 members of Green Watch will be together. Next month one of the fire engines will be taken away from the Hove fire station and the team will be cut down to seven members.

"We have a change of establishment on station, as you know, at the end of March and we want to go out in style getting back our world record before we go our separate ways upholding our continued good work we undertake for charity.

"We have match funding in place, which enables individuals' donations to charities to be doubled, so would like to raise an enormous amount of money for the two fantastic charities.

"We want the public to turn out in their thousands to support us, cheer us on and donate whatever they can, as it is gonna be a great family day.

"Whilst it is important to keep fit for our jobs, we have definitely upped our training for the big event. Each day on duty we spend an hour coming down our fire pole on station and running back up the stairs."

– Darren Eaton, Firefighter

Young chefs battle it out for chance to be Roux scholar

Many young chefs in our region dream of becoming a Roux scholar. To achieve the prestigious title, you need to battle off dozens of other 18 to 30 year olds and impress some of the best chefs in the world in a tense day of cooking.

The Roux Scholarship is now chaired by Michel Roux Jr. and his cousin Alain, after they took on the mantle from their fathers. Just taking part is a huge achievement for up-and-coming chefs, but to win can take their career to the next level.

This year's semi-final cook-offs took place at University College Birmingham and the University of West London. Scott Dineen lives in Folkestone and has made it to the final a few times before. He's hoping this is his lucky year.

Watch Emma Wilkinson's report.

What's in the box? Five tiny fox cubs find a new home

Prepare to say 'Ahhh'.

Five little fox cubs are being hand-reared by an animal charity outside of Brighton, after four of them were discovered under the floorboards of a home being renovated.

They're around two weeks old, the fifth brought to Roger's Wildlife Rescue when a member of the public spotted her falling from a tree into a pond!

Andy Dickenson reports.

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