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'Responsibility should be taken' - father's dismay after tree destroys family home

A family of five from Crawley in Sussex has been left homeless after a ten tonne tree toppled onto the roof destroying much of their house.

The mature oak, in full leaf, collapsed without warning despite regular inspections by the council. No-one was injured but as Andy Dickenson reports it could have been a very different story.

He speaks to the householder Imkiaz Najam and his neighbours Vera King and Mahomad Ibrahim.

Family of five left homeless after tree falls on house

A family of five have been left homeless after a tree fell on their house in Crawley - causing part of it to collapse.

Tree surgeons were called to remove the oak and as they did the side of the house caved in even more.

The recent windy weather caused by Storm Brian could have been a factor.

Two adjoining houses had to be evacuated.

Luckily no-one was injured.

Our first concern is for the welfare of the residents involved. The mature oak was on West Sussex Highway's land. An arboriculturist has been in attendance to see if there are any indications as to why the tree fell. Recent high winds, wet weather and a tree in full leaf could have been a factor but investigations are continuing."

– West Sussex County Council

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Hundreds take part in Diwali, Hindu festival of light

The Diwali festival of lights is being marked in colourful style at numerous locations across the South East tonight.

In Crawley the celebrations - symbolising the victory of good over evil - centre on the Hindu Sanatan Mandir temple.

Malcolm Shaw has been finding out more about the five day festival.

'Superman' inspired gym for disabled children turns to crowdfunding

Christopher Reeve was known to a generation as 'Superman' - starring in four films before a tragic riding accident left him paralysed in 1995.

But he went on with his wife to pioneer new treatments for serious spinal injuries - treatments now being used by a Paralympic athlete, among others, in Sussex.

The Neurokinex gym in Crawley is the first of its kind outside America and is now turning to crowdfunding to expand its work to help toddlers.

Andy Dickenson reports and speaks to David Smith, Jenny Suggit and Jamie Fielding.

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Robber threatens newsagent staff with hammer

A robber armed with a claw hammer has threatened staff at a newsagents in Crawley.

The man, who was wearing a mask, forced staff at Martin's on Dorsten Square to hand over cash from a safe.

It happened shortly after 3pm on Sunday, as the 51 year old staff member was locking up.

The suspect fled in the direction of Bewbush Drive and Byrd Road.

He is described as in his early 30's, 5'11 tall and about 14 to 15 stone with an Irish or Scottish accent.

He was wearing a dark blue or black long sleeved top, black trousers and glasses.

He was wearing a balaclava or mask over his face and was wearing latex gloves.

Anyone who may have noticed anything suspicious or who has other relevant information is asked to email 101@sussex.pnn.police.uk, report details online or phone 101, quoting serial 965 of 09/07.

Alternatively they can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via its website here.

Man left in critical condition after street robbery

Police line Credit: PA

A man in his 30s has been seriously injured after a street robbery in Crawley.

The local man is believed to have been punched, causing him to fall to the ground and hit his head.

A group of youths are then alleged to have made off from the scene with his wallet.

The incident happened outside Corals betting shop in Ifield Parade at around 4.50pm yesterday.

The victim was taken to St George’s Hospital in London with head injuries, where he remains in a critical condition.

A 16-year-old boy from Crawley arrested on suspicion of grievous bodily harm with intent and robbery, and a 15-year-old boy from Crawley arrested on suspicion of robbery, remain in police custody.

A 23-year-old man from Crawley arrested on suspicion of grievous bodily harm with intent and robbery has been released without charge.

Anyone with any information is asked to report it online quoting Operation Kempston.

“This incident has left a local man in hospital with potentially life-threatening injuries. It happened in broad daylight in a busy area of town, when a number of people would have been around. We’re keen to speak to anyone who saw what happened, or anyone who has any video or CCTV footage of the attack.”

– Detective Inspector Vicki Tomlinson, Crawley Investigations
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