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A mother's despair as cost of looking after her disabled daughter increases fourfold.

The cost of care for their sick daughter has gone up FOUR times under new government rules - and now family from Wantage in Oxfordshire say they're struggling to cope.

26 year old Jody Dickinson suffers from Charge Syndrome - which affects her eyes, ears, growth, heart and breathing A council care grant helps with the cost of a day care centre four days a week - but from April she'll have to pay a lot more.

Her mother says it's because of the new Care Act and that it is a tax on disabled people. Divya Kohli reports.


Oxfordshire student honoured by Youth Sport Trust

A student from Oxfordshire has been named Young Person of the Year, by the Youth Sport Trust.

16-year-old Holly Clack was praised for the role she plays in helping with sport and P.E. at King Alfred's Academy in Wantage.

She was nominated by staff at the school. The Year 12 student is also a football referee, and says that has given her a great deal of confidence:

Chimney fire at thatched village pub

The chimney fire at a thatched village pub near Wantage Credit: Oxfordshire Fire & Rescue Service

More than thirty fire fighters tackled a chimney fire at a thatched village pub in Oxfordshire last night.

Five crews were called at 8.45pm to Hyde Road, Denchworth, near Wantage. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Incident Commander Station Manager Mike Adcock said: "Our fire crews worked quickly to make a break in the thatch to stop the fire spread.

'This quick action saved ninety nine per cent of the thatch roof with approximate twenty square metres of thatch removed by crews. We are really pleased that our swift actions saved this vital and wonderful village pub.'

The property had working smoke alarms, and Oxfordshire County Council Fire and Rescue Service have urged all residents and businesses to ensure they have working smoke alarms that are checked on a regular basis.

Firefighters "Reindeer" rescue

Wantage and Kidlington firefighters have been called to help a stag that had become trapped when it slipped down a bank into a brook near West Hendred. The large stag had slipped backwards into a cavern that had been formed as a result of a collapsed concrete bridge over the brook. The stag was unable to get back out due to the sheer drop of the bank and the metal rods from the remains of the bridge, across the cavern opening.

Incident Commander Graham Turner said ‘This really was a potentially dangerous incident for the firefighters involved as the frightened stag was trying to force its way out of the cavern, and its large antlers could easily have caused a serious injury. But it was a beautiful animal that was uninjured, so we felt that in spite of the dangers, we had to at least try and release it, if we could. The operation was made more difficult as the stag also had some nylon twine wrapped around its antlers and neck and this had to be cut away to avoid it being strangled once it was released. We worked closely with the RSPCA in order to free the animal without causing it any injury and we are all pleased that he is up and about in time for Christmas in case he is needed to pull a sleigh on the big night!’

Witness appeal after motorcycle and bike crash

The scene of the crash Credit: Thames Valley Police

Thames Valley Police is appealing for witnesses to a serious road traffic collision in Wantage.The collision involved a red Ducati motorcycle and a pedal cycle on the southbound carriageway of the B4494, Wantage Road, near the Ridgeway crossing just before 7am yesterday.

The rider of the motorcycle, a 49-year-old man, received injuries to his wrist.

Meanwhile, the rider of the pedal cycle, a 42-year-old man, received injuries to his leg and ribs.

Both were taken by land ambulance to the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford.

The collision investigation team is keen to speak to anyone who may have witnessed the incident, or saw either vehicle prior to the collision.


Leading head teacher complains to Michael Gove

Video. A leading head teacher, who has embraced many of the government's new education policies, is criticising the Education Secretary over last minute changes to rules over GCSE exams.

Simon Spiers, of King Alfred's Academy at Wantage in Oxfordshire, has written a scathing letter to Michael Gove. He says the changes will cause chaos and affect his school's results - and has hit back at claims that schools are "gaming" the exam system.

But the government says the changes are in the best interests of students.

Christine Alsford has this exclusive report.