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South's first cat cafe opens in Bournemouth

Welcome to the new cat cafe

The South's first ever cat cafe opens its doors on Friday. It's a concept that's popular in Far Eastern countries - the idea being that the stresses of urban life can be more easily forgotten if you spend some quality time in the company of cats.

Martin Dowse joined some specially invited customers for a sneak peak before the grand opening, to see what they, and the twelve resident rescue cats, would make of it..


ASLEF train drivers reject Southern deal - Rail boss says: 'Naturally we're saddened'

More industrial action to come in the dispute on Southern trains

The head of Govia Thameslink Railway - Southern's parent company, has given his reaction to the decision of ASLEF union members to reject a deal in the ongoing dispute about driver-only trains.

“Naturally we’re saddened and hugely disappointed, as will be our passengers, with today’s decision by drivers, particularly as the agreement carried the full support and recommendation of the ASLEF leadership. We now need to understand the issues which led to this outcome and we’ll be seeking to meet with the union as soon as possible to see how we can agree a way forward.”

– Nick Brown, Chief Operating Officer of Govia Thameslink Railway, Southern’s parent company

Public consultations on Heathrow's third runway begin

Public consultation for the third runway begin today Credit: PA

Campaigners will gather outside the first of twenty public consultation events over a third runway at Heathrow later today.

The Government say they will allow communities to get information and express their views on the £17 billion scheme.

The first is being held near the airport with others in Bracknell, Reading, Maidenhead, Windsor and Buckinghamshire soon to follow.

There will also be events further away including Brighton for the wider South East.

People have until May to express their views.

The Government says it backs the third runway because of the economic benefits. Local people say it will lead to more noise.

A final decision is expected early next year.


  1. National

BA cabin crew to stage new four-day strike

Credit: PA

British Airways cabin crew are to stage a strike in a long-running dispute over pay.

The four-day walk-out is currently due to take place on 17 February, said the Unite union.

The announcement was made on the second day of a three-day stoppage, which followed a similar strike earlier this week.

A BA spokesman reassured passengers who might be affected saying: "We have flown all customers to their destinations during the previous strikes by mixed fleet Unite and we will ensure this happens again.

"We will publish more details on February 14 once we have finalised our contingency plans", he added.

Supermarket first in the country to introduce 'quiet hour' for autistic shoppers

More and more of our children are being diagnosed as autistic. Thirty years ago, it was considered a relatively rare condition affecting around one in 500, but now that figure stands at one in every 100.

Much of that could be down to better awareness - but its cause is still a mystery. However, it leaves a generation of children and their parents struggling with the sensory overload of modern life.

Now some respite is now being offered in perhaps the most unlikely of places - a supermarket in Crawley is going out of its way to help.

Andy Dickenson reports and speaks to Emma Castle, who's son Oliver has autism, Abi Smith, Emma Holdsworth and Raj Sivalingam, as well as supermarket manager Gary Powis and Jo-Ann D'Costa Manuel of Autism Parent Power.

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