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Serious sexual assault in Reading

A man has been arrested this morning following a report of a serious sexual assault in Reading.

At around 1.10pm yesterday a woman in her thirties reported that earlier that day she had been serious sexually assaulted by a man at an address in Tilehurst Road.

Officers carrying out an investigation into the incident have this morning arrested a 49-year-old man from Reading on suspicion of sexual assault and he is currently in custody.

Anyone with any information about this incident is asked to contact Thames Valley Police on 101.

If you don't want to speak directly to the police you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org. No personal details are taken, information is not traced or recorded and you will not go to court.

Man banned from football matches for three years

Following an investigation by Thames Valley Police, a man has been given a three year banning order from football matches.

Charlie Sumner, aged 20, of Grays Crescent, Woodley, was given a three year football banning order at Reading Magistrates’ Court.

The order prevented him from attending all football matches, as part of the Football Offences Act 1991.

Sumner entered the pitch during Reading Football Club’s FA Cup quarter final match at home to Bradford City AFC on Tuesday 17 March.

He entered the pitch, ran towards the Bradford fans, made obscene gestures and then performed a number of somersaults.

Sumner was arrested at the scene and charged the following day with going onto the playing area at a football match.

He pleaded guilty to the offence at the same court on 1 April.

“This was a high profile game which was broadcast live on the BBC. Sumner’s stupidity could have serious consequences, as he antagonised the Bradford fans by running towards them and making obscene gestures. This type of action will not be tolerated and we will do our utmost to bring those who feel they need to commit this type of offence or other football related offences to justice.”

– Investigating officer, Sgt Richard Noone of Tactical Operations and Football Intelligence

Have your say on minimising flood risk

It's the final day today for people to have their say on a package of plans designed to minimise the risk of flooding in Reading.

Areas of the Thames Valley were devastated by flooding in 2014 Credit: ITV Meridian

Eight sites across the town have been identified as at greater risk. The plan describes the work to alleviate the flooding and where it's already underway.

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Plans for new tower blocks rejected

Artists impression of what the blocks would have looked like Credit: Reading Borough Council

Controversial proposals to build three new tower blocks in Reading have been rejected.

Known as Swan Heights - the development would have included 350 new flats built on the former Cooper Reading BMW site on King's Meadow Road.

Reading Borough Council receiving a number of objections and the planning application was refused at a council meeting last night.

Reading tower block proposal to go before planners

Artist's impression of the Swan Heights development

Controversial proposals to build three new tower blocks in Reading go before the planning committee today.

The development, known as Swan Heights, would see existing buildings and structures on King's Meadow Road demolished and more than 350 flats built up to 28 storeys high.

The council has received a number of objections and planning officers are recommending refusal.

Double amputee killed by rolling car in hospital car park after woman left handbrake off

A wheelchair-bound double amputee was knocked down and killed by runaway car in a hospital car park after the woman driver parked but left the handbrake off, an inquest has heard.

Pensioner Frederick Morton had arrived at the hospital and asked for directions to the wheelchair accessibility unit when he was struck down by the out-of-control silver Vauxhall Zafira which had rolled out of its parking bay and rumbled towards him.

Despite the efforts of paramedics and doctors from an air ambulance, Mr Morton - who previously had had both legs amputated - was declared dead at the scene.

Witnesses told the coroner how they had seen Mr Morton wheeling himself across the car park before spotting the rolling Zafira heading towards him.

In a statement read by the Berkshire coroner, nursing auxiliary Virginia Stalley described how she saw the 79-year-old try to get out of the way of the oncoming car after he noticed it rolling towards him, but it was too late.

Staff and patients at St Marks Hospital in Maidenhead, Berks., rushed to the aid of Mr Morton and two men held the car in place until police and paramedics arrived.

Sergeant Dean Franklin tried to open the car but after discovering it was locked used his baton to smash the window and pull on the handbrake, which he said had not been applied when he reached into the car.

"I saw there was a white elderly gentleman trapped underneath the vehicle," he said in a written statement to the inquest in Reading.

The air ambulance was scrambled but doctors could not save Mr Morton, who lived at Ploughlands in Bracknell, and he died from multiple injuries, including fractures to all his ribs and chest.

Lane closure on Reading Bridge extended by a week

One lane closure on Reading Bridge as part of the on-going strengthening project will continue for an additional week.

The 24 hour a day, 7 day a week lane closure to one side of Reading Bridge began has been in place since early April for carbon fibre strengthening work. This phase of work was due for completion on Sunday April 26th, however the removal of additional concrete under the surface of the bridge has delayed work. It means the lane closure will now continue until Sunday May 3rd instead.

As with all previous lane closures, there will still be a lane running in each direction over the bridge, and one of the pavements will remain fully accessible to pedestrians. The extended lane closure will be advertised on the Council’s variable message signs across the town.

Reading Bridge is a major strategic route for Reading and the wider region. The structure is in need of essential strengthening and waterproofing to ensure it can continue to carry the amount of traffic it does in future years.

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