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Appeal for witnesses following crash near Weymouth

Officers investigating a collision near Weymouth are appealing for witnesses and anyone with information to come forward.

Dorset Police was made aware of the incident on the B3157 near Bagwell Farm Touring Park at 10.44am this morning. A white Ford Transit had collided with a blue Toyota Aygo. The occupants of the car were uninjured.

“It appears that the driver of the van, a 50-year-old local man, had a medical episode leading up to the collision. Following enquiries, I believe that the same vehicle was in a collision with a maroon coloured car on the Granby Industrial Estate a little while earlier. This car was occupied by two men and I am appealing for those two witnesses to come forward. I would like to stress that they are not in any kind of trouble. They might simply be able to assist with the investigation surrounding the circumstances of these two collisions. Also, I am appealing for anyone who witnessed either of the two collisions to contact police as soon as possible.”

– Police Constable Rhiannon Stroud, of Dorset Police’s Traffic Unit

Historic rape detectives release suspect photo

Detectives investigating an allegation of a historic rape in Beaminster are searching for a 54-year-old man who is believed to be responsible.

Police search for Keith Charles Starling

Keith Charles Starling is wanted on suspicion of rape. The incident, in which Starling allegedly raped an unconscious woman, occurred between 1993 and 2000.

He is described as white, of medium build, has grey straight hair and a tattoo of an eagle on his left upper arm.

After following various lines of enquiry the victim, a 47-year-old woman from an area near Chard in Somerset, has now given her permission for us to issue Starling's details.

I am pleased to be in a position to release an image of Starling and I would encourage anyone who has any information regarding his whereabouts to contact Dorset Police in confidence.

He is believed to have links with Fife in Scotland, Chard in Somerset and the equestrian community.

I am also appealing directly to Keith to make contact with the authorities as soon as possible.

– Detective Constable Sarah Iveson, of Weymouth CID


Courier fraud scam targets Dorset residents

Dorset residents targeted by a courier fraud scam Credit: Press Association Images

Dorset residents have been targeted by conmen posing as police officers as part of a courier fraud scam.

Dorset Police received 19 reports of the attempted courier fraud in Weymouth last week.

Each victim reported how a man said he was calling from a police station, where they had a man in custody who had taken money from the would-be victim's bank account.

They were then told to withdraw large sums of money to send to London by courier or taxi.

The victims suspected the attempted scam and called the police. No money was stolen and Action Fraud has been notified.

New lifeguards ready for a busy summer!

With the sun expected to shine this weekend, the RNLI lifeguards are preparing for action.

Today at Weymouth, they'll be training new recruits and getting them ready for the summer beach season.

Last year they helped more than 21,000 people around the UK.

Lifeguards on Weymouth beach are preparing for a busy summer! Credit: Barry Batchelor/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Charity warns that risk of home repossession is high in the South West

Homes under threat Credit: ITV news

More than 13,000 homes in the South West are at risk of eviction or repossession, the equivalent of 253 households threatened every week, according to new figures released today by Shelter.

The housing charity has revealed the hotspots across the South West where people are most likely to face losing their home, showing Gloucester at the top of the list, followed by City of Bristol, Weymouth and Portland and Bournemouth.

Shelter is warning that despite the economic recovery, growing numbers of families are still set to struggle in the future. It predicts that with the majority of families already struggling month to month with their housing costs and interest rates set to rise, many could soon hit danger levels.

The charity is stressing that people must get advice as soon as possible to prevent arrears from spiralling out of control, and start preparing for future mortgage or rent rises.

Rail line closed between Bournemouth and Weymouth this weekend

As work continues on the rail track between Bournemouth and Weymouth this weekend commuters are warned the line will be closed between Bournemouth and Dorchester South today and tomorrow.

Bus services will be operating in place of trains. The work is part of an investment plan to upgrade signalling on the route.


Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre officially opens

The Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre has officially opened in Weymouth today.

It was launched at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, with close friends Sir Ben Ainslie and Iain Percy OBE along with Paul Godison and Andrew's children cutting the red ribbon.

Sir Ben Ainslie cuts the ribbon with Iain Percy, Paul Godison and Andrew Simpson's children Credit: onEdition

The centre hopes to deliver sailing tuition right through to advanced race coaching for all age groups.

Ben Ainslie said, "Today is a very poignant day, but also a really exciting one to be opening the Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre. It's fantastic to see what has been achieved in such a short space of time: and I'm sure the great man would be very proud."

Sir Ben Ainslie on site at the newly opened Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre Credit: onEdition

Weymouth Community Kite Festival launched

Weymouth’s year of great festivals and events is off to a flying start this weekend with the first Community Beach Kite Festival.

The event which runs until Monday will be packed full of colour, fun and excitement, with tens of thousands of visitors expected to descend on Weymouth to enjoy the aerial acrobatic kite displays. The kite festival is a big favourite with kite flyers from all over Britain and Europe.

There will also be scheduled displays in where expert kite flyers will show off their skills. This year’s event is being organised by the Kite Community Group after it took on the event from the borough council.

We are delighted to have the opportunity to organise one of Weymouth’s iconic and long standing festivals, the group of volunteers have been working very hard in completing what has been a steep learning curve. The response from many local businesses has been great, with many wonderful prizes donated for our kite festival raffle. Our aim is to develop the Kite Weekend into a real community festival with many different aspects, including dog show, international food fair and assault course, we are looking forward to a great success in our first year at the helm.”

– Kite Community Group representative Michael McManus

This year’s Weymouth Kite festival promises to be a real success story for the local community, their energy and commitment is of great value and will ensure that the kite festival weekend will develop and provide many benefits to the local community and the visitor economy of Weymouth and Dorset.”

– Charlotte Sheppard, Weymouth & Portland Borough Council

Two people arrested after Weymouth robbery

A man and a woman have been arrested after a alleged robbery in Weymouth.

A 26-year-old woman was robbed and got minor bruises and grazes as the men took cash from her.

The incident on the Rodwell Trail happened between 12pm and 1pm on Monday 14th April.

A 22-year-old and a 23-year-old, both from Weymouth, have been arrested on suspicion of robbery and have been released on bail.

The victim, who had gone to the trail to meet a friend, was allegedly approached by two people and attacked. I believe that the attack, in which they pulled her to the ground and forcibly removed items from her, was unprovoked. I would like to speak with any witnesses or anyone who has information about this incident."

– Detective Constable Gerald Marchant, of Weymouth CID

"Peace of mind" to residents as flood defences restored

Sea defences in Weymouth, which were washed away by the storms earlier this year, have been restored and repaired.

After the wettest winter on record, the Environment Agency had to repair over 350 flood defences nationally to protect hundreds of thousands of homes.

Dr Paul Leinster, chief executive of the Environment agency said the protection would provide "peace of mind" to many flood hit residents.

He also said:

Many of the flood risk management assets damaged in the extreme weather since December have already been repaired, restoring protection, and peace of mind, to many communities across the country. But there is still much more to do, and thanks to the completed inspections we now have a full picture of the condition of all the flood risk management assets across the country. We have prioritised the most urgent repairs.

– Dr Paul Leinster, chief executive of the Environment Agency

Floods Minister, Dan Rogerson, has also said that the Environment Agency would be provided with an extra £270 million to maintain the defences.

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