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Should exploratory drilling for oil and gas be allowed in the South Downs National Park?

Exploratory drilling has already caused protests elsewhere in the country Credit: ITV news

A decision on whether exploratory drilling for oil and gas can take place at Fernhurst in the South Downs National Park is to be made later. The proposal has provoked protests from some local residents. Exploratory drilling took place in nearby Balcombe last year. The park's planning committee is looking at Celtique Energie Weald Limited's application for Nine Acre Copse - which includes a well, access road and soil bunds - for a temporary period of three years..

Members of the South Downs National Park Authority's Planning Committee are being recommended to refuse planning permission by SDNPA officers as it is a protected landscape and not in public interest.

Three million Minis for BMW

A landmark for Mini Credit: ITV Meridian

Mini has announced the production of its three millionth car since 2001, and its two millionth international export.

The three millionth MINI to be produced is a 5-door Hatch Cooper S and has a special exterior design to celebrate its heritage and its British roots.

A £750 million investment is underway across three of BMW Group's UK manufacturing facilities.

Highlights include a new 1,000-robot bodyshop at Plant Oxford and the installation of new body manufacturing technologies including laser welding at Plant Swindon.


Major new centre for Rolls Royce in Sussex

Artist's impression of the new complex Credit: Rolls Royce

Rolls-Royce announced today that a new Technology and Logistics Centre will be built at Bognor Regis, close to the Home of Rolls-Royce at Goodwood, West Sussex - employing 200 people.

The centre will consolidate a number of current logistics functions and allow for future expansion.

The Technology and Logistics Centre will be located on the Oldlands Farm Business Park on the northern edge of Bognor Regis, eight miles from Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.

The Centre will be ideally situated to take advantage of the forthcoming Bognor Regis Northern Relief Road, due to open in 2015.

Around 200 people will be employed at the centre, with a number of new roles created in addition to those transferred from existing logistics functions. The Technology and Logistics Centre is planned to be fully operational in early 2016.

New flood defences for Purley-on-Thames

It was hit hard by flooding - one of the worst affected areas - today though, defences are finally being installed at Purley on Thames - to try and protect it in the future.

70 homes there were affected by the rising waters over winter but it wasn't the first time - for many years there's been a problem.

Now a five metre wide embankment is being built - but many living there say it won't solve the problem. Divya Kohli reports.

Record breaking year for tourism in Bournemouth

Bournemouth is celebrating a record breaking year for visitor numbers. Seven million people are expected to have travelled to the seaside resort over the Summer season - with one million over the bank holiday and next week alone. The week will culminate in the four day Bournemouth air festival. The council says it will be investing a further four-million pounds into seafront improvements and new attractions this winter.


Has the Gelato stalled the ice cream van?

It's been a bumper year for ice cream sales across the region - thanks to the sunshine and our new appetite for gelato - the italian-style ice cream.

For many of us one cornetto will no longer do, we've got the taste for a scoop - or two - of the continental treat that comes in more flavours than you could ever get in your freezer.

Have lollies been licked and is it the end of the road for the ice cream van? Apparently not as Andrew Pate has been finding out.

The end of an era for shipbuilding in Portsmouth

Centuries of shipbuilding came to an end in Portsmouth today. A section of the last aircraft carrier to be built there was moved out of the dockyards, to begin its journey north to Scotland for completion.

BAE Systems, announced in November last year that it was moving its operations to Glasgow resulting in the loss of more than 900 jobs.

In June, it was announced 100 roles would be saved with the MoD awarding BAE a £70 million pound contract to maintain the Royal Navy's Type 45 Destroyers.

Bids to take over Portsmouth shipyard are currently being submitted to the Ministry of Defence.

Richard Slee was in Portsmouth today to witness the end of an era. Here is his report.

Shipbuilders mark an 'immensely proud moment'

Staff at BAE in Portsmouth have transferred part of the aircraft carrier onto a barge Credit: ITV Meridian

A milestone has arrived today - as the end of shipbuilding in Portsmouth draws closer.

A large section of the aircraft carrier, Prince of Wales, is being moved onto a large barge ready for its departure for Scotland next week. More than nine hundred workers have lost their jobs, but BAE says most of them are being re-deployed.

Paul Bowsher from BAE Systems, said it was an honour to be involved in the building of the nation's aircraft carriers.

Make-over for locks along the River Thames

Locks along the River Thames to get refurbishment Credit: ITV news

Eleven locks along the River Thames will be refurbished this winter now that the Environment agency is investing nearly 1.8 million pounds in the scheme. Some locks will be closed for a time, but the renovation work will see improved navigation routes for boaters and visitors along the water.

The River Thames is used by millions of people each year - from boaters and walkers, through to anglers and those attending various events all along the river. The Environment Agency will invest the money between September 2014 and March 2015. Among the locks set to benefit are Abingdon Lock , Caversham Lock, Marlow Lock and Cookham Lock.

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