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  1. National

New 12-sided £1 coin goes into production

The new 12-sided £1 coin has gone into production - a year before it is to be released.

New 12-sided £1 coin Credit: HM Treasury/PA

More than 4,000 coins are coming off the production line a minute, and they will enter circulation in March 2017 according to the Chancellor.

When the new coin is introduced, there will be a six-month crossover period when the current round pound coins and the new pound coins are both in circulation.

The current £1 coin is being replaced for the first time in more than 30 years because of its vulnerability to sophisticated counterfeiters.

Councillors to vote on budget cuts

Campaigners gather to protest over proposed budget cuts Credit: ITV Meridian

Councillors in West Berkshire will today vote on more proposed cuts having already approved £10m of savings for next year because its receiving less money from central Government.

Residents have demonstrated against the cuts. Funding for theatres and buses is threatened, and libraries face closure.

Schoolchildren have been protesting to save Theale library.

A local author best selling author who went to school in Theale Green, has joined their campaign.


  1. Christine Alsford

Reaction to plans to make ALL schools academies

Chancellor George Osborne has announced the biggest overhaul in education in more than a century. Secondary schools will finish an hour later and every school will become an academy

It means in Hampshire - excluding Southampton and Portsmouth - that 439 schools will need to change - 47 are already academies.

Across Wiltshire, there are more than a 70 academies but 164 will still need to adapt.

And in West Sussex, there are already 52, so 177 of their state schools will need to switch by 2020.

Social affairs correspondent Christine Alsford reports.

  1. National

New sugar levy on the soft drinks industry announced

A new sugar levy on the soft drinks industry will be introduced, the Chancellor said.

It will be introduced in two years time to ensure companies reduce the sugar content of drinks and promote low sugar brands.

He said it was a "perfectly reasonable step" to protect children's health.

"Money from this new [sugar] levy will be used to double the funding we dedicate to sport in every primary school," Mr Osborne said.


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