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Blaze tears through floor of Oxford flats

A blaze ripped through a high-rise block of flats this morning, just hours after firefighters began a 24-hour strike.

An investigation was underway after the fire broke out on the fifth floor of the block at around 10.30am, three hours after firefighters launched another strike over a pensions dispute.

No-one on strike was called in to help with the blaze at Hockmore tower block in Cowley, Oxford, which was tackled by 40 firefighters.

"Striking firefighters were not called in. We are responding to all 999 incidents regardless of the strike, as we have been able to do in every fire strike."

"The incident commander established that there was a fire on the fifth floor of the residential premises, firefighters wearing breathing apparatus quickly entered the flat and extinguished the fire, adjoining flats were evacuated on the fifth floor as a precautionary measure."

– statement released by Oxfordshire County Council Fire and Rescue Service


Apology for travellers after bowling alley ban

A group of young women who were turned away from a birthday party at a bowling alley in Oxfordshire after being told it was a traveller-free zone last night.

The women, aged in their 20s, were told by a bouncer on the door that company bosses had "banned all travellers" because previous groups had caused trouble.

Leisure giant Bowlplex issued an "unreserved apology" today and said that the company had no such blanket policy.

The women had gone to the bowling alley to celebrate a friend's birthday, but said they were left "humiliated" after being refused entry.

Four men arrested in unsolved Hastings murder

Four men have been arrested in connection with the murders of Jason Martin-Smith and Jimmy Millen in Hastings in 2001.

Officers from the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team made the arrests early this morning

A 46-year-old St Leonards man has been held on suspicion of conspiracy to murder Jimmy Millen.

A man aged 42 from Hastings was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder Jason Martin-Smith.

The arrests relate to the homicide investigations into Jason Martin-Smith and Jimmy Millen who were murdered in Hastings in 2001. Despite a major investigation and exhaustive enquiry, the cases remain unsolved.

Police investigating the murder of a Sussex father say they are examining a new lead in the case Credit: ITV Meridian

Mr Millen aged 27 was shot as he worked on his car in Carpenter Drive, Hastings on October 24, 2001. He died in Carpenter Drive after the passenger on a black motorbike fired shots from a handgun.

The bike drove off from Tilebarn Road where Mr Millen was shot and past the junction of Lancaster Road. It then went toward the Castleham Industrial Estate.

During this investigation information came to light that 28-year-old Jason Martin-Smith, an acquaintance of Millen, who had disappeared in August 2001 in Hastings had been abducted and murdered. His body has never been found.

CCTV released after theft from Dorset store

Police investigating a shoplifting offence in Poole are appealing for witnesses and anyone with information to come forward – with a CCTV image of a suspect being released.

At 10.20am on Monday 23 February 2015 a man went into the John Lewis at Home store in Redlands Retail Park and selected a pair of Beats by Dr Dre headphones.

No arrests have been made following the incident Credit: Dorset Police

The suspect was challenged by a member of staff but he left without paying.

Police Sergeant Richard Jeffery, of Poole police, said: “As part of my investigation, I am now in a position to release a CCTV image of the suspect."

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