Live updates

Part time soldier recruitment drive shortfall

A recruitment drive to double the number of part-time soldiers in the Armed Forces is falling short. New figures show only 20 have joined in the last year.

But despite the shortfall, their role remains crucial to the Government's reform of the army.

This week the reservists from Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Dorset are taking part in a live firing exercise, from where Duncan Sleightholme reports.

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Firefighters go on strike today

Firefighters are to go on strike, from this evening, for four days in a bitter ongoing row with the Government over pensions.

They're set to walk out from six o'clock this Hallowe'en evening, until next Tuesday. Contingency plans are in place. Managers say they've hired in contract staff to cover but this is one of the busiest weekends of the year with bonfires and firework displays.

Fire crews prepare to strike in a row over pensions Credit: ITV Meridian

Hampshire fire officer reaches fifty years of service

He's helped tackle some of the most dangerous incidents to hit Hampshire over the past fifty years. And now having made history, he's being honoured. Martyn Long is the first person to reach fifty years service for Hampshire Fire and Rescue. From Winchester Guildhall going up in flames to the Great Storm, he's been on hand to help others. Andrew Pate went to meet him.

No fire call outs during strike in Berkshire

Firefighters in Berkshire only received one call during its two houre strike this lunchtime.

The Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service joined fire services in industrial action over pensions between midday and 2pm today. During that time, the service received one call regarding a domestic automated fire alarm, but firefighters didn't need to attend.

The next strike period runs from 10.59 pm until 11.59 pm tonight and this pattern will continue every day up to and including 16 August.

More firefighter strikes today across the south

Firefighters will take further industrial action this week Credit: Philip Toscano/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Firefighters across the south will launch a fresh wave of strikes today in a bitter row with the Government over pensions, with no sign of a breakthrough in the long running dispute.

Members of the Fire Brigades Union will walk out for two hours at noon and again for an hour at 11pm. Strikes will be held for the same times over the next eight days.

Fire brigades will again put contingency plans in place, including using contract staff. Fewer fire engines will be available during the action.

The union has been campaigning for the past few years against controversial Government plans to change pensions. The FBU claims firefighters will have to work longer and receive lower pensions when they retire. The union accused the Government of "walking away" from talks earlier this week.

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