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Girl rescued after swimmers 'tried to reach festival site'

The swimmers were thought to be heading for the festival site Credit: ITV

A young girl has been rescued after reports of several young people in the River Medina - possibly trying to reach the Isle of Wight Festival site.

Solent Coastguard was alerted along with Cowes RNLI and the police launch.

One of the swimmers, a girl, was rescued by a yacht and taken by ambulance to St Mary’s Hospital.

Using their powerful searchlights, the lifeboat and police launch began a thorough search of the water from Island Harbour to the Table Table pub/restaurant for what appeared to be three youths.

Eventually the search was called off without any sign of the other young people.

Isle of Wight Festival gets underway

The glorious weather we've been experiencing turned to rain in many places today so it can only mean one thing - the festival season has begun!

Yes thousands of people on the Isle of Wight swapped their flip-flops for wellies in preparation to see headlines acts such as Blur, Fleetwood Mac, Billy Idol and The Prodigy.

Divya Kohli has been among the festival goers and met one visitor of a very different kind...

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Festival present is just the ticket for newlyweds

Festival-goers have been arriving on the Isle of Wight for this year's music festival.

It's the 13th time the event has been run - and among the headline acts are the band Fleetwood Mac.

For most people, it's about camping, socialising and enjoying the performances - but for one couple this year's Isle of Wight Festival is extra special. Divya Kohli reports from the island.

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Concern for missing teenager

Mason Gagen was last seen on Thursday morning Credit: Hampshire Constabulary

Police are appealing for information about the whereabouts of a missing teenager from the Isle of Wight.

Mason Gagen, aged 15, was last seen at around 7.30am on Thursday, April 30, 2015, having left his home address in Wroxall.

He is described as:

  • White
  • 5ft 5ins to 5ft 7ins tall
  • Slim build
  • Black hair with ginger undertones, styled in a quiff

“We're becoming increasingly concerned for Mason's welfare. It's believed he may be attempting to travel to, or be in the Yorkshire area. If you have seen him or know where he is, please contact officers at Newport police station. Equally I would appeal to Mason directly to contact police to let us know he’s ok.”

– Investigating officer PC Kirsty Dunn

Officers investigated over sexual offences will not face action

Three police officers arrested as part of an investigation into serious sexual offences on a holiday island will face no action, it emerged today.

All 13 men, including the three serving offices, were released from police bail and will face no charges after detectives received independent advice from the Crown Prosecution Service and a specialist barrister.

The men were arrested after a female member of the public made allegations about incidents reported to have taken place on the Isle of Wight during 2014.

Six men, including the three officers, were arrested in December 2014, at which point the officers were suspended from duty. Another seven arrests were made in February after further investigation took place.

None of the officers will face disciplinary proceedings and will return to work with Hampshire Police later this year.

We have full confidence in the honesty and integrity of the three officers, all of whom have been exonerated. They have been supported throughout the investigation by dedicated welfare officers and representatives from the Police Federation.

– Superintendent Julie Fry

The woman who made the allegations was informed of the decision before it was made public.

Police said there were no further lines of inquiry at this time and the allegations were not being linked to any other known cases or crimes.

Investigating any allegation fully, irrespective of those involved, is essential to maintaining public trust and confidence in policing. Lines of inquiry during Operation Annaside have been conducted with meticulous care and precision due to the exceptionally sensitive nature of these allegations - and the impact on the lives, families and welfare of everyone affected.

We have made every effort to handle this investigation with fairness, transparency and impartial scrutiny.

– Superintendent Julie Fry

Shanklin Cliff lift to remain closed for immediate future

Credit: ITV Meridian

The Shanklin Cliff Lift will remain closed for the foreseeable future due to safety concerns after the public footbridge structure was found to have significantly and unexpectedly deteriorated.

The normal pre-season inspection undertaken last week has revealed the condition of the supporting steelworks of the footbridge at the top of the lift have significantly worsened since the last inspection and the lift cannot be opened until remedial works are carried out.

The council is urgently investigating whether anything other than a full replacement of the bridge can be done to ensure the lift can be used for at least part of the summer season.

One of the challenges for the council is that the operating plant is nearing the end of its serviceable life so an investment into replacing the bridge without also committing to the replacement of the plant would not be the best use of the council's limited financial resources. The combined value of these works is estimated at nearly £750,000.

"The council's normal programme of works to ready the lift for opening at Easter was well in hand and whilst some further deterioration of the bridge was expected it is fair to say that we are completely shocked at the results of the inspection. Public safety has to be our prime concern and although we will look at all options to get the lift open for the seasons I am not optimistic about its chances. It is ironic the scale of deterioration has been discovered only a few weeks before council was due to consider a report to release funds to replace the bridge and the lift plant at the end of the 2015 operation period."

– Councillor Shirley Smart, Executive member for tourism

A bus service operates on Shanklin Esplanade every half an hour between 9.58am and 5.28pm during the day (apart from between 1pm and 2pm) between 20 June and 31 August which members of the public can use to travel into the town centre, the railway station or the bus station.

Summer of Love at this year's Bestival

The glitter ball and finale fireworks at last year's Bestival Credit: David Jensen/EMPICS Entertainment

Bestival will have a Summer of Love theme for this year's festival on the Isle of Wight.

The three-day festival in September will be taking its 50,000 revellers back to the 1960s.

Tickets for Bestival's Summer of Love go on sale at 10am on Thursday February 12, when they'll be announcing the first wave of acts, including two headliners.

The main stage crowd at last year's Bestival Credit: David Jensen/EMPICS Entertainment
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