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Grinding to a halt - rail dispute hits rural communities

Rail bosses went to the High Court today to try to stop train drivers on Southern going on strike next week.

Members of ASLEF are due to walk out on Tuesday, bringing the service to a complete standstill.

The rail company claims the action breaks European law.

Meanwhile, the effects of the long-running dispute are being most keenly felt in some of our rural communities, as Malcolm Shaw reports.

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"Upstairs is completely gone - the kitchen is no longer." Fire destroys 17th century pub.

A landlord whose pub was almost completely destroyed by fire has vowed to try and re-open within 6 months.

40 fire-fighters tackled the flames at the Hooden on the Hill pub in Willesborough in Ashford, after the blaze was thought to have started in the kitchen.

Sarah Saunders spoke to landlord Howard Lapish and Rupert Roberts from Kent Fire and Rescue Service.

Additional footage from Lousie Kennett and stills courtesy of @Kent_999s

Santa's special gift to children with autism

With Christmas just a month away, a visit to Santa's grotto will be on many families' list of festive treats.

But for children with autism it can become a stressful experience, with too much noise and bustle.

Now, one mother from Sussex has developed a special autism-friendly grotto, and the idea is being rolled out nationwide.

Malcolm Shaw spoke to Jo-Ann D'Costa-Manuel of Autism Parent Empower, Mark Haynes of County Mall Crawley, and Sharon Watt from Desmond Anderson Primary School.

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Meet Harvey Matusow - 'America's most notorious liar'

They called him 'America's most notorious liar'. Harvey Matusow was once a professional witness in Senator Joe McCarthy's communist witch hunts, and then later admitted his testimony was false.

But this extraordinary character later came to the UK and his archives ended up at the University of Sussex. Now a one-man show is now being performed in his name.

Andy Dickenson speaks to Diarmuid Hester and Doug Haynes from the university, as well as actor and writer Robert Cohen.

A lecture 'Who is Harvey Matusow' will take place tomorrow and the performance 'The Trials of Harvey Mostow' on Wednesday at the Latest Music Bar, Brighton.

No going back - Chagos Islanders stay exiled in Sussex

They've been living in exile in Sussex, but today the Chagos Islanders were told they cannot return to their home in the Indian Ocean.

The British government cleared the remote archipelago to let the Americans build a giant military base on Diego Garcia.

Many of the islanders eventually settled around Crawley, but they've continued their fight to return home ever since.

Today, the Foreign Office said resettlement is too difficult and costly, and offered the islanders compensation.

Malcolm Shaw spoke to Sabrina Jean, Chagos Refugees Group, Allen Vincatassin, President of the Provisional Government of Diego Garcia & the Chagos Islands, and Henry Smith, Conservative MP for Crawley.

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