Live updates

In his sights: should parakeets be culled?

A video company which has posted a guide on how to lure and kill parakeets has been criticised by an animal welfare charity.

There are some 30,000 parakeets in the South East, an invasive species, which are harming local wildlife and crops - according to some. And their numbers are growing all the time. Thanet, alone, is believed to have a population of many thousands.

But the RSPB has told us that shooting the birds is cruel - and an ineffective way of controlling their numbers. Sarah Saunders reports

Parakeets invade South East: should they be shot?

Should they be shot? Credit: ITV

A video company which has posted a guide on how to lure and kill parakeets has been criticised by an animal welfare charity.

There are some 30,000 parakeets in the South East, an invasive species, which are harming local wildlife and crops - according to some. And their numbers are growing all the time . Thanet, alone, is believed to have a population of many thousands.

But the RSPB has told us that shooting the birds is cruel - and an ineffective way of controlling their numbers.

A full report, with Frad and Amanda, on ITV Meridian at 6pm.

Advertisement

Museum gateway project secures £4 million

A rural museum has secured £4 million to build a new gateway for visitors at its site in South Downs National Park.

Weald & Downland Open Air Museum

Weald & Downland Open Air Museum at Singleton, in West Sussex, secured the money from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The grant will go towards the museum's Gateway Project, which will provide new ticketing, retail and catering facilities as well as a flexible annexe that can be used as a classroom and venue for community events and functions.

Our Gateway Project has been over 10 years in the planning and we are thrilled to have received this award.

Without the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund it would have been impossible for the museum to have progressed with its ambitious scheme for improving our visitors' experience of our unique collection.

– Museum director Richard Pailthorpe

Weald & Downland Open Air Museum houses a collection of more than 50 historic dwellings, including a medieval farmstead and a working Tudor kitchen.

Work on the new gateway will start in 2015 and it is hoped that the new buildings will be available to visitors from the beginning of the 2017 season.

Bournemouth wins award for best coastal resort for second year running

Cyclers in Bournemouth Credit: Press Association

For the second year in a row, Bournemouth has won the Best UK Coastal Resort at the British Travel Awards 2014, held in London last night. Known as the Oscars of the travel industry, over a million votes were cast by the public for this year’s awards. Bournemouth had to see off tough competition to win Gold, with Tenby in Silver and Bude in Bronze position. Other nominees included Blackpool, Brighton, Newquay, Scarborough, St Ives, Weymouth and Whitby.

Tree growers in bid for festive Downing Street glory

Christmas tree growers from across the ITV Meridian region are bidding for the chance to present the tree which will take pride of place at the official residence of the Prime Minister.

The winning tree in 2012 Credit: Press Association

Over 100 growers will take part in a national competition organised by the British Christmas Tree Growers' Association in Oxfordshire today.

The event will see the hopeful contenders - who span in age from 18 to 80 - coming together to showcase their trees to expert growers, and be judged by fellow members.

Each farmer, who will have spent around 10 years nurturing the tree to full 'competition' height, is able to enter categories including Best Nordman, Best Other Fir, Best Pine, Best Norway Spruce, Best Other Spruce, Best Container Grown, and Best Festive Wreath.

Finalists can submit only one tree into each category, and trees entered must be commercially cultivated and be 1.8 metres high from base to tip. Each will be judged for foliage, colour, shape and marketability.

Following the verdict from the prestigious competition day, the winning grower will supply Downing Street's 20 ft Christmas tree, while the winner of the wreath category will create a wreath to hang at the front door of Number 10.

Advertisement

An award for the treehouse, created in the woods of Sussex

Today we are featuring a winner of the RIBA prize - an oscar in the world of architecture and only awarded to those buildings that really stand out. It is a home in the middle of a forest, deep in the heart of Sussex. Using unusual materials and simple styling, it offers a unique place to live for a family that dared to be different. Stacey Poole has been for a look around.

'Remarkable' findings at Stonehenge

Astonishing findings at Stonehenge Credit: Birmingham University

A host of previously unknown archaeological monuments have been discovered around Stonehenge as part of an unprecedented digital mapping project that will transform our knowledge of the iconic landscape – including remarkable new findings on the world’s largest ‘super henge’, Durrington Walls.

The Stonehenge Hidden Landscapes Project, led by the University of Birmingham in conjunction with the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Archaeological Prospection and Virtual Archaeology, is the largest project of its kind.

Remote sensing techniques and geophysical surveys have discovered hundreds of new features which now form part of the most detailed archaeological digital map of the Stonehenge landscape ever produced. The startling results of the survey, unveiled in full at the British Science Festival, include 17 previously unknown ritual monuments dating to the period when Stonehenge achieved its iconic shape.

Dozens of burial mounds have been mapped in minute detail, including a long barrow (a burial mound dating to before Stonehenge) which revealed a massive timber building,

  1. David Johns (@davidjohns_itv)

Volunteers to capture badgers for innoculation

They are either seen as charming, nocturnal creatures who are a rare treat to spot - or as a bacteria-ridden pest bringing disease to our farmers - badgers polarise opinion like perhaps no other wildlife creature in this country.

Long linked with the spread of Bovine Tuberculosis, the animals have, in some parts of the country, been culled to stop the spread of the disease. But in East Sussex, a project's underway to vaccinate the creatures instead.

David Johns explains, talking to Kate Edmonds from the Sussex Badger Vaccination Project; Annie Vernon from the National Farmers Union; and wildlife conservationist Trevor Weeks MBE.

Load more updates