Live updates

Fight to keep Invicta Park army barracks in Kent open

Campaigners fighting to keep open an army barracks in Kent say that over 200 years of military heritage will be lost if the proposals go ahead.

The Maidstone MP, Helen Grant, is among the supporters of efforts to keep the site open. She says the decision to close the Invicta Park army barracks will be a negative step for the army. Nashreen Issa reports.

In the report we hear from Helen Grant MP, Conservative, who represents Maidstone and the Weald; Sir Julian Brazier, Conservative, MP for Canterbury; and Lt Col Brian Awford, a former Commanding Officer.

Advertisement

'Fuel bank' scheme used by 500 children in Hastings in less than a year

A 'fuel bank' that's been running for just under a year in Hastings has already helped more than 1,100 people - including 500 children.

The scheme gives foodbank users vouchers for gas or electricity so families don't have to choose between keeping the lights on and heating their home.

Jeffery Beale, manager, said: 'During the last few months, we’ve seen an increase in people coming through our doors for both food and fuel support, largely due to the roll out of Universal Credit in our area.

'With waiting times of up to six weeks before receiving any benefit means that not only those out-of-work are struggling, but also those in-work and on low incomes.'

Family's plea for treatment to be made available on the NHS - that could have saved young father's life

National charity Anthony Nolan is calling on the Government to intervene on behalf of cancer patients they say have been 'abandoned' by the NHS.

They're asking Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt to overturn a decision stopping the health service from funding stem cell treatments if a previous transfusion has failed.

The procedure costs between £50,000 and £120,000 - yet without it one young family from Sussex say they have lost a father and a husband.

Andy Dickenson reports and speaks to Lisa Hepburn.

AWE staff in 24 hour strike over pension changes

Workers have been carrying out industrial action over pension changes

Up to 600 workers at the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) in Berkshire are on strike today in a continuing dispute over changes to their pensions.

Members of the Unite union from the sites at Aldermaston and Burghfield will join colleagues from across the country protesting at the Ministry of Defence in Whitehall. They say they stand to lose thousands of pounds in retirement income.

The firm's defined benefit pension scheme was closed on 31 January 2017.

"Our committed members feel betrayed and badly let down by what has happened to their pensions and they don't deserve to lose thousands of pounds when they retire.

"There is a solution that could resolve this dispute and that is to allow the AWE workforce to join the principal civil service pension scheme.

"Our members want to have a constructive dialogue with Michael Fallon, but they have met with a brick wall which is insulting to such a dedicated workforce delivering the government's flagship Trident nuclear programme.

"So on Tuesday, our members will be knocking on the proverbial front door at the MoD as they seek to secure a decent retirement income that they were promised by a Tory government a quarter of a century ago."

– Jennie Formby, Unite regional secretary for the south east

Advertisement

More 'affordable' homes needed as well as council homes

Councils are being encouraged to build more social housing to meet that ever-rising demand. But the numbers of new homes remain stubbornly small.

Meanwhile in the general housing market there are complaints of high rents, a housing shortage, and a lack of land to build on - so many people are struggling to find anywhere to rent - let alone to buy.

Across the south east, fewer than fifteen hundred council houses were built in Kent as a whole. East Sussex and Brighton managed less than three hundred. Medway Council built almost 200. Maidstone under 200. Hastings just 19. And Lewes just 12.

Despite those dismal numbers, the Housing Minister was in the Medway Towns this afternoon. He told our reporter Tom Savvides that extra funding is being made available to build more affordable homes.

Another strike on Southern as talks collapse

A fresh strike is to take place Credit: ITV

Workers on Southern Railway are to stage a fresh strike in the long-running

staffing dispute following the collapse of talks.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union will walk out for 24 hours on Wednesday February 22, threatening fresh misery for Southern's 300,000 passengers.

The two sides met at the conciliation service Acas on Tuesday, but the row over the role of conductors remains deadlocked.

Load more updates