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Firefighters hold Santa's grotto for hospital children

Santa's Grotto organised at Cosham fire station Credit: Hampshire Fire & Rescue Service

Firefighters at Cosham Fire Station in Hampshire have turned their station into a Santa's Grotto to host a party for children who have been receiving treatment at the nearby Queen Alexandra Hospital.

The party included a petting zoo, a children’s entertainer, and a chance for the youngsters to watch firefighters rescue Santa from a tower using an aerial ladder platform.

“Each year we organise this event to give something back to the community, to put smiles on the children’s faces and to give families the chance to come and spend time together in a fun and enjoyable setting.

“This year, the station has been completely transformed into Santa’s grotto, with firefighters and volunteer students from South Downs College on hand as his ‘little helpers’.”

– Crew Manager Stu Vince, party organiser

Money worries lead to murder in burglary gone wrong

Stanley Carter

Lindsay Pennell, from the Crown Prosecution Service said: “His own financial difficulties were Stephen Cowdrey’s motive to kill Stanley Carter, an 87-year-old vulnerable elderly person who had been living on his own... for more than two decades.

"He was described by his son as someone who had become somewhat reclusive and whose health had deteriorated.

“The defendant was described by his friends as someone having permanent financial difficulties and who was drinking away his money.

“On Friday, September 13, Stephen Cowdrey visited Mr Carter’s house in Greenwood Avenue and gained entry by pretending he was there to examine leaking pipes with the intention of stealing money from him."

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Life for burglar who killed retired policeman

A man who killed a retired policeman in his home during a burglary that went wrong has been jailed for life.

Widower Stanley Carter was found dead at his home in Greenwood Avenue, Cosham.

Stanley Carter

Stephen Cowdrey, 49, of St Augustine Road, Southsea was jailed for life with a minimum of 20 years after pleading guilty to murdering Mr Carter.

Winchester Crown Court heard that Cowdrey tricked his way into Mr Carter's home but that Mr Carter challenged him when he became suspicious.

Portsmouth teenager assaulted

An 18-year-old woman from Portsmouth was walking in Cosham when she was indecently assaulted.

The incident happened on Saturday 17th August at around 6.30pm along Southampton Road.

The victim was walking near Allaway Avenue junction when a man approached her.

He indecently assaulted her before she pushed him away and the man ran towards the centre of Cosham.

The woman was not injured.

The suspect is described as white, aged in his 40s or 50s and of medium build with a beer belly.

He was around 5ft7ins tall with short black and grey hair under a baseball cap.

Witnesses or anyone with information is asked to contact Fratton Police Station on 101.