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''Lack of surgeons'' leads to Kent hospital switch

High-risk surgery in East Kent is to take place in one hospital from May this year due to a shortage of consultant surgeons.

The move effects an estimated 1,000 patients a year who will now have to travel to the Kent and Canterbury Hospital in Canterbury. There will be no such operations in future at The QEQM at Margate or Ashford's William Harvey.

David Johns speaks to Nick Wells, the East Kent Hospitals Trust chairman.


Brief relief as weather turns sunny

Despite better weather than expected overnight and today, the battle continues to save homes and businesses at risk of flooding. With 76 flood warnings and more than 100 alerts still in place for the region, some river levels are still dangerously high.

David Johns has been to see what the authorities are doing to help, speaking to Engineering Manager Ted Edwards from Canterbury City Council, meteorologist Peter Inness, and the Environment Agency's Ian Nunn.

Trio head to USA after winning Lego competition

Three teenagers from the Simon Langton schools in Canterbury have won a trip to the World Lego Festival in America.

They won the UK National Final of the Institution of Engineering and Technology's First Lego League.

Oli English, Emma English and Carlos Purchase-Galarza beat 29 other teams at the competition this weekend.

The competition challenged the teams to find a solution to tackle the effects of natural disaster.

The team, named "Invicta", invented a high-tech wristband for those affected by earthquakes, designed to help rescue workers find people trapped under rubble using radio waves.

Carlos, who is 14-years-old, said, "I thought the final was fun, enjoyable and well organised. Last year we went to Germany so it will be interesting to see how the competition is different."

The winning team, Invicta, will be heading to America for the World Lego Festival Credit: Institute of Engineering and Technology

Petrol thief 'destroyed our lives' say injured man's family

The family of a filling station manager who was left hanging onto a car when a teenage petrol thief drove off at speed - say the incident has destroyed their lives.

Joshua Charnley has been jailed for 11 years for using his car as a weapon in the incident which took place last year.

His victim, Lekshmanan Asokkumar, who was working at the petrol station in West Kingsdown near Sevenaoks, has been left with serious head injuries and is still recovering. Nashreen Issa sent this report from Canterbury Crown Court.

University block in flames

Flames engulf university block Credit: @SalamaMohammed

Four fire engines were called to Park Wood Road in Canterbury shortly before 4am after an extractor fan caught alight in a first floor bathroom.

Fire takes hold Credit: @SalamaMohammed

Canterbury Watch Manager Mark Jones, who attended the incident, said: “I would like to highlight the planning shown by the University as all the students and staff knew exactly what to do once the fire was detected."


Here come the girls. Breaking a thousand years of tradition at Canterbury Cathedral

After more than a millennium of male dominated singing, a new girls choir will perform at Canterbury Cathedral for the first time this weekend.

The female choristers had their final rehearsal last night. And the new choir has been welcomed as an 'exciting addition'.

But the girls won't be performing on exactly the same footing as the boys, as Sarah Saunders reports.

Girls choir to make their public debut this Saturday

Preparations are under way for Canterbury Cathedral's first ever girls choir first public appearance.

Last night was their final rehearsal, as they will appear at Evensong on Saturday.

It's the first all girls choir for the cathedral in more than a thousand years.

The girls rehearsing earlier this month Credit: Press Association
They are Canterbury Cathedrals first all girls choir in 1000 years Credit: Press Association

Jail for lorry driver caught smuggling 10 kilos of cocaine

Ioan Vasile Ionce, 24, from Cernesti, Romania Credit: UK Border Force

A Romanian lorry driver has been jailed for seven years at Canterbury Crown Court for attempting to smuggle 10 kilos of cocaine into Dover.

The drugs had an estimated street value of £675,000.

Ioan Ionce was stopped at the eastern docks in October as he headed to Sundridge in Kent with a load of stonework.

Border Force officers found a purpose-built concealment within the cab containing ten brown taped packages containing the drugs.

10 kilos of cocaine were found concealed in a lorry cab in Dover Credit: UK Border Force
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