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Poor eyesight causes 3,000 accidents each year

Credit: ITV news

Drivers in Wiltshire are being offered on-the-spot eye tests to ensure they are fit to drive. Police warn some drivers are failing to get their eyes tested regularly putting themselves and others in danger. Poor vision is estimated to cause nearly three thousand casualties on the roads every year.

Currently, drivers of cars, vans and motorbikes are only required to have their eyesight checked once, when they take their driving test, by reading a number-plate. Beyond this, when they hit age 70, drivers must simply declare their vision meets legal requirements. The project is a joint initiative between Wiltshire Sight, Wiltshire Police, Wiltshire Fire & rescue, Wiltshire Council, Swindon Borough Council, opticians Haine & Smith and ROSPA. Organisers say the aim is to highlight the importance of good eye health and getting your eyes tested and to reinforce the message that people need to stop driving if their eyesight is deteriorating and cannot be improved by corrective lenses.

Credit: ITV news

The Campaign coincides with the clock change. Less hours of daylight has been shown to have a significant impact on road traffic accidents, as many journeys become more challenging in the dark whilst people adjust to the reflective glare from on-coming headlights.

The roadshows take place in · Salisbury - outside the Guildhall Tuesday 27th October · Swindon - Wharf Green 29th October


Tributes to motorcyclist who died following crash

Simon Brinkley died following the crash on Wharf Road last week Credit: Wiltshire Police

Friends of a motorcyclist from Swindon who died in a crash last week have paid tribute to him.

Simon Brinkley was pronounced dead at the scene of the collision on Wharf Road, near Wroughton on Thursday afternoon.

"Simon was much loved and respected and will be missed daily. He will never be forgotten as my best friend and comrade in arms. He will always be in our hearts forever. You will always be a part of me. I’ll make you proud as I was of you."

– Wayne Russell

"Simon wasn’t just my friend, for 22 years he was my second brother. He was always smiling and lit up the room when he was around. He touched so many peoples lives and will never be forgotten. He wanted his black belt and given the chance he would have done it. We are completely devastated by his loss. Love you player."

– Marc Russell (Chopper)

"Simon was a great guy with a huge heart, his charisma was beyond epic. He was very helpful with me and others with martial arts and his passion and determination for Jun Fan was awesome. He would always make me laugh and we would have a lot of banter about football."

– Jonny Simpson - Friend from Martial Arts

Wiltshire family get a surprise garden visitor

Credit: Family photo

A Wiltshire family was surprised when they spotted this inquisitive baby otter scurrying around their garden. The secretive creatures usually don't venture away from the safety of the river bank, and are rarely spotted by people. This young animal was seen pottering around the garden in Swindon and sniffing around the homeowner's patio and lawn. The family managed to get a few photographs before the little animal scurried out of sight.

Credit: Family photo

The rare sighting was logged by the Wiltshire and Swindon Biological Records Centre, and manager Purgle Linham said "Otters, despite their fairly large size and occurrence throughout all of Wiltshire and Swindon's waterways, are rarely themselves seen. Once widely hunted, this alongside habitat destruction and pollution of watercourses and fish caused a dramatic decline in their numbers and led to their protection under UK law. Although populations are slowly recovering, otters remain a priority for conservation efforts. More usually, an otter's presence is made known by other signs such as footprints, feeding remains and their sweet-smelling droppings which they regularly leave in prominent positions to mark their territories. It's not clear what brought this individual, likely to be a juvenile, into a garden but the presence of a nearby watercourse and a garden pond may well have had something to do with it as it was probably searching for food. This unusual and very fortunate sighting was reported via our Living Record online recording system, which is a great way to share your wildlife sightings with us. A garden or local greenspace can be a haven for wildlife and if you keep your eyes peeled you might see something amazing or strange or unusual."

Hunt under way after cat found with nine inch kitchen knife in its back

Police want to track down the person responsible for deliberately stabbing a cat with a large kitchen knife in Swindon.

It was found in Spindle Tree Court, Pinehurst this morning sat amongst bushes, with a knife handle clearly seen sticking out of its back.

The cat was found with a knife clearly visible sticking out of its back

Despite this, the it was still able to move around.

After police caught the cat, it was confirmed that a large, nine inch knife had deliberately been driven through its shoulder.

It would appear that this poor cat has been deliberately stabbed... The knife blade was approximately nine inches long with a two inch brown handle and was dragging along the floor as the cat moved.

– PC Jon Mapson, Wiltshire Police

The cat is currently recovering at the local vet, where it was sedated and the knife was removed.

Unfortunately, the cat is not chipped and police are appealing for help to track down the owner.


'Blood donations are so important, transfusions keep our child alive'

Family share their experience of how blood donations have helped them

The number of people donating blood has fallen dramatically across the region. The blood supplies are essential for the health service to save lives, so a campaign has been launched to find a new generation of blood donors.

Figures released by the NHS Blood and Transplant service show fewer than three per cent of us donate regularly. As Caron Bell reports, the organisation hopes more young people will come forward.

Witness appeal following assault

Police want to speak to these men in connection with an assault Credit: Wiltshire Police

Wiltshire Police are appealing for witnesses to an assault that took place in Old Town, Swindon in the early hours of Friday 17th April 2015.

A 30 year old man was seriously assaulted leaving him with lacerations to his head that required 22 stitches. The victim was found by a member of the public in Chandler Close and reported being assaulted by a number of people whilst at a house party.

Police want to speak to these men in connection with an assault Credit: Wiltshire Police

The victim had been in The Sir Daniel Arms some hours before the assault occurred and had met two men in the pub.

The men were unknown to him and the victim recalls leaving the pub with them and ending the evening at a party where it is believed he was assaulted.

The men in the photo are not believed to be suspects in the assault however they may hold vital information and Police are appealing for them to come forward and assist in our enquiries.

Honda investment secures thousands of jobs in Swindon

Honda employs over 3,000 people in Swindon Credit: Tim Ireland/Press Association

Honda is investing over £200 million in a new Civic model - which will be made at the car manufacturer's plant in Swindon.

Over 3,000 people are employed at the factory, which will produce an estimated 120,000 cars a year.

The investment will secure thousands of jobs at the Swindon plant, which saw hundreds of job losses last year.

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