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Gosport sailor misses family Xmas: 'I miss and love you all'

A Royal Navy sailor will be celebrating Christmas in the South Atlantic this year - working away from his five young children and wife.

Adam Bartle, aged 26, is working on board HMS Clyde in the South Atlantic over the festive period and has said he misses his family back home in Gosport, Hampshire.

Adam Bartle's first deployment was on HMS Southampton Credit: Navy

“I would like wish my five young beautiful children a very merry Christmas, I miss and love you all very much and can’t wait to see you. Love you all so much, miss you all millions see you soon daddy. “To Kelly, I love you so much and miss you, wish I could be there with you to see our kids open their presents on Christmas morning.”

– Adam Bartle

Isle of Wight sailor sends festive message from South Atlantic

Over the festive period he will be based on HMS Protector, who sailed from Portsmouth in October 2013 Credit: Navy

Christmas for Royal Navy Officer Martin Scutt will be different this year - as he spends it miles away from family and friends in the South Atlantic.

Surgeon Lieutenant Commander Scutt, 42, of Ryde in Hampshire, is serving on board Royal Navy Ice Patrol Ship, HMS Protector, in the South Atlantic – one of 4 Royal Navy Ships deployed to the region this Christmas.

In true naval tradition the ship’s doctor, will join his fellow officers in serving Christmas dinner to the rest of the sailors on board – a switch in the day-to-day routine – while his wife Christine and her family enjoy their Christmas lunch back in Ryde, Isle of Wight.

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Portsmouth sailor spending Xmas in South Atlantic

Portsmouth sailor sends christmas wishes home Credit: Navy

Maxine Richardson, who lives in Portsmouth, will be spending Christmas in the South Atlantic after she was deployed with one of the 4 Royal Navy ships in the region this year.

She'll be based on HMS Clyde, a Portsmouth-based ship, which is permanently stationed in the South Atlantic to deliver security to the area.

Maxine, 42, will be enjoying Christmas dinner abroad while her two children will be back in Portsmouth and her parents enjoying Christmas in the Caribbean.

Scuba-diving santa joins sharks in Hastings tank

He's used to flying high in the skies, but this year Santa's gone underwater to deliver some Christmas joy to people in Sussex.

Father Christmas donned his scuba gear and immersed himself in Hastings's Aquarium's tropical ocean display - sharing his swim with sharks, rays and hundreds of bright ray fish.

Santa spreading some Christmas spirit at Hastings Blue Reef Aquarium Credit: Hastings Blue Reef Aquarium

Several metres underwater may not be the first place you’d expect to come face to face with Father Christmas.

It just goes to show there really isn’t anywhere Santa can’t deliver presents – and it’s certainly a lot warmer than the North Pole.

Santa’s unexpected dive was a particularly welcome treat for a youngster who was enjoying a birthday party at the aquarium.

Father Christmas and his elf surprised the birthday party by first going in to the café to say hello and then invited all the children to go and watch them dive – they loved it!"

– Leanna Lawson, Blue Reef Aquarium worker
Fearless Father Christmas surprised visitors to the Hastings attraction Credit: Hastings Blue Reef Aquarium

Fareham sailor sends Xmas message to fiancee and baby

A Naval sailor from Fareham in Hampshire who is serving on board HMS Kent in the Gulf has sent a special message to his fiancee and 11-month-old daughter.

Paul Howe, 27, joined the Navy in January 2013 and so this is his first deployment and although missing friends and family, he says he is enjoying the job.

Warning over Chinese lantern dangers

People are being warned about the dangers of Chinese lanterns, ahead of the Christmas and New Year celebrations.

Chinese lanterns, also known as wish or flying lanterns, have become increasingly popular worldwide as a means of celebrating special occasions - however, they carry a significant risk of fire or injury if not used wisely.

The lanterns are generally made from paper, supported by a wire frame that incorporates a holder at the base for a solid fuel heat source.

There have been house fires in the county in recent years caused by Chinese lanterns landing on roofs.

Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Home safety manager Neil Chamberlain said: "With Chinese lanterns, you're basically throwing a naked flame into the sky with no control over the direction it will take or where it will land - in addition, there is no guarantee that the fuel source will be fully extinguished and cooled when the lantern eventually descends, and that presents a real fire hazard."

He added: "Chinese lanterns are very attractive when they're in the sky, and we fully understand why people use them.

"We would just urge anyone who's thinking of buying some to celebrate Christmas or New Year to think very carefully about where they will be released."

Locations that should be considered unsuitable for flying lanterns include areas with standing crops, anywhere near buildings with thatched roofs, areas of dense woodland and areas of heath or bracken, especially in dry conditions.

Consideration should also be given to the proximity to major roads or airfields.

Further advice on the use of Chinese lanterns can be found at www.wiltsfire.gov.uk/chineselanterns

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Swimmers brave the cold on Christmas Day

Swimmers set to brave the cold on Christmas Credit: Macmillan

Swimmers are set to the brave the cold today for a traditional Christmas Day dip.

One event has been organised to raise funds for the Macmillan Unit at Christchurch Hospital in Dorset.

It is a Specialist Palliative Care Unit for cancer patients in the local community.

The event takes place 9.45am at Boscombe beach this morning.

Fire safety tips for the Christmas holidays

Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service has released 12 top tips for ho-ho-home safety over the festive period

· Check your Christmas lights are in good working order and conform to the British Safety Standard. Never overload electrical sockets, and make sure outdoor lights are fitted with a residual current device.

· Always switch off Christmas lights before going to bed or leaving the property.

· Never place candles near your Christmas tree, decorations or furnishings – and never leave a burning candle unattended.

· Decorations can burn easily – so don’t hang them near lights or heaters.

· Keep matches, lighters and candles out of the reach of children.

· If you’re having a few festive drinks, take extra care in the kitchen. Never leave your Christmas dinner cooking unattended and make sure you switch off the oven and hob when the meal is done.

· Make sure any guests know what to do in the event of an emergency – do they know where door/window keys are kept and have you shown them the escape route?

· Many fires start when people fall asleep while smoking, so make sure you extinguish cigarettes properly – and never smoke in bed.

· If you’re planning on celebrating with fireworks, make sure you follow the instructions.

· Never remove the batteries from your smoke alarm to power a new Christmas toy.

· Make sure you test your smoke alarm every week – and why not spread a little festive goodwill by checking on any elderly relatives, friends or neighbours as well.

· If you don’t already have one, get a carbon monoxide alarm and test it regularly – this is essential in homes with gas appliances, real fires and/or woodburners.

Home safety manager Neil Chamberlain said: “Sadly, over the years, we have seen too many fires both locally and nationally during the Christmas period. We want everyone to have a happy, enjoyable and safe Christmas, so we hope these top tips will be a handy reminder.”

Some households will qualify for a free home fire safety check from Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service. To find out more, call 0800 389 7849 or visit www.wiltsfire.gov.uk

Rapist jailed for historic offences

A man from Hove has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for rape. Patrick Foley, who's 83 years old, was convicted of seven counts of rape against a girl, when she was aged between 11 and 18. The jury at Lewes Crown Court unanimously found him guilty of all seven counts between 1968 and 1975.

Rapist Patrick Foley jailed Credit: Sussex Police

The victim has had to live with this for the last forty years and this is a fantastic result for her. She has shown enormous courage in coming forward and talking to us about what she endured and now she has the justice she deserves. I would urge anyone who has suffered any form of historic abuse to also have the courage to come forward.

– Detective Constable Holly Hallahan
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