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Rare 'Dragon Leaf' plant blooms in Kew Gardens

The plant is a first for experts at the country estate in Kew's Botanic Gardens Credit: Kew Gardens

An extremely colourful plant that has flowered at Kew's Botanic Gardens is a first for experts.

Seeds of the rare plant were collected on a trip to Tasmania so the beautiful flower can be displayed at a Kent garden.

The plant is also known as the Pineapple Candleheath or Dragon Leaf Richea because of its blade shaped leaves and is so rare because it is hard to propagate in the UK.

Conservation Unit manager collecting seeds in Tasmania Credit: Kew Gardens

Jo Wenham, Plant Propagation and Conservation Unit manager at Wakehurst, said: "As far as our records show, the Richea dracophylla is a new species in cultivation for Kew and Wakehurst Place.

"Because the Richea has complex propagation needs, the success of the first germination and flowering at Wakehurst Place is something to celebrate and it is wonderful to see it flowering.”

Sussex firefighters tackle flames despite strike

Crews at a home with smoke issuing from the roof Credit: Eddie Howland

Firefighters in Sussex turned out to reports of fire in Haywards Heath last night despite the strike over pensions.

Appliances were called to a kitchen fire in Roundwood Lane and then immediately went to distinguish a roof fire in Haywards Heath.

Firefighters tackle flames inside a Sussex building Credit: Eddie Howland
West Sussex firefighters at the scene of a fire Credit: Eddie Howland
The firefighters fought flames in Haywards Heath to save people's homes from fire destruction Credit: Eddie Howland


Cyclist injured in collision

A cyclist has been injured after being involved in a collision with a car.

The incident happened today in London Road, Balcombe near the Cowdray Arms pub at around 3pm.

The cyclist, a man, thought to be in his 20s was taken by ambulance to St Georges Hospital in London with serious head injuries.

If you witnessed the collision and have not yet spoken to officers please call 101 quoting serial 929 of 6/7 or email

Travel - trains: Sussex - Haywards Heath, First Capital Connect

Disruption on First Capital Connect between Luton and Sutton (Greater London), and between Bedford and Haywards Heath due to person hit by a train at St Pancras International.

Tickets being accepted on Underground, Southern and East Midlands trains services. All Thameslink lines are blocked. First Capital Connect do not have an estimate for normal service.



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