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Fears grow for profoundly deaf pensioner missing since Friday

Thomas Swan is profoundly deaf Credit: Sussex Police

Can you help find Sussex pensioner Thomas Swan?

He left his home in Hove early on Friday morning (16 January) but has not been seen or heard from since.

Police are now becoming increasingly worried for Thomas as they have been unable to confirm where he is or where he has been.

Inspector Rachel Glenton said: "Thomas has a set routine that involves him going to the shops, for a walk and then back and he has not been known to fail to return home within a few hours of going out.

"He is profoundly deaf and has health problems and we are keen to find him as soon as possible to make sure that he is safe and well.

"If you see Thomas or you know where he is, please contact us urgently."

Thomas is 5' 8" and of large build with short cropped greying hair. He was wearing jogging bottoms, a t-shirt, and a blue hooded jumper with orange writing on it when he left home and was carrying a bum bag over his shoulder.

Anyone with information should call 101 or email quoting serial 1084 of 16/01.

If you see Thomas and believe he could be in danger please call 999.

Fire alert at Bournemouth shopping centre

Fire crews put out the fire before it took hold Credit: Library picture

FIRE crews were called to a Bournemouth shopping centre early on Sunday morning after alarms were triggered.

Dorset Fire and Rescue Service was alerted at 5am and firefighters from Springbourne and Westbourne were sent to the Richmond Gardens Shopping Centre.

They found that an ultra sonic jewellery cleaner, which had been left on overnight, had overheated.

Damage was confined to the cleaner unit, with light smoke-logging to the shop and surrounding corridor.


DNA screening to help catch grandmother's killer

Valerie Graves was killed as she house-sat in Bosham Credit: ITV Meridian

Mass voluntary DNA screening is set to begin by police investigating the unsolved murder of a grandmother as she house-sat for friends.

Men who live, work or visit the Bosham area of West Sussex are being invited to eliminate themselves from suspicion following the killing of artist Valerie Graves.

The DNA screening will take place at the Millstream Hotel in the village from Wednesday, with posters alerting locals about the dates the screening will take place.

It is the latest move by detectives who have launched a large-scale manhunt for the killer of grandmother and mother of two Ms Graves.

The 55-year-old is believed to have been killed with a claw hammer in a ground floor bedroom in Smugglers Lane, Bosham, on December 30, 2013.

Appeal posters put up on the 1st anniversary of her death Credit: PA

She was bludgeoned as she house-sat with her sister Jan, mother Eileen and her sister's partner, Nigel Acres, while the property's owners holidayed abroad over Christmas.

More than 9,500 people have been interviewed by police, a £20,000 reward has been offered, a BBC Crimewatch appeal has been made and a limited DNA match of a suspect has been yielded.

But despite an exhaustive inquiry, no-one has been charged. On the first-year anniversary of the murder, officers handed out leaflets and put up posters about the DNA screening.

Volunteers give out leaflets about DNA testing Credit: PA

They asked for men aged over 17 who live, work or visit Bosham to provide a DNA mouth swab and thumbprint to eliminate them from the inquiry.

The death of Ms Graves shocked the small community of Bosham, which featured in an episode of the ITV crime drama Midsomer Murders.

Last month Ms Graves's two children Tim Wood, 32, and Jemima Harrison, 35, spoke - along with Mr Acres - ahead of the first anniversary of her murder.

The family said Christmas was put "on hold" as they faced their first festive season without her and as her murderer still remains at large.

Chinese warships leave Portsmouth after 'historic visit'

Ships set sail out of Portsmouth Credit: Royal Navy Media Archive

Following a historic five day visit to British shores three Chinese warships have sailed from Portsmouth.

The Royal Navy says the visit by the assault ship Chang Bai Shan, frigate Yun Cheng and the replenishment ship Chaohu has helped strengthen relations between China and the UK.

Crowds gather to wave off the ships Credit: Royal Navy Media Archive

It was the first time since 2007 that a Chinese warship has visited the UK and they will now head for Kiel in Germany.

"Je suis Charlie" rally in Deal

More than 200 people took part in the solidarity event Credit: Steve Wakeford

More than 200 people took part in a "Je Suis Charlie" solidarity rally in Deal on Sunday (11 Jan).

The gathering took place at the same time as the million strong march in Paris, remembering those who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks that rocked France last week.

"One of the many privileges of living in Deal is that you see France on most days; in the last week France has been closer to us”

– Adrian Sullivan, Deal With It

Serious sex attack on teenager - investigation launched

Wiltshire Police are appealing for wirnesses Credit: ITV Meridian

Wiltshire Police have begun an investigation after an 18-year-old woman was the victim of a serious sexual assault in Swindon late on Saturday evening.

The woman, who is from the Swindon area, told officers she was walking through the underpass between Station Road and the Oasis leisure centre when the assault took place.

Police were alerted just after midnight and the underpass was sealed off for several hours to allow scenes of crime officers to search for evidence.

“We are investigating a serious sexual assault which occurred between 10pm and midnight in the underpass. I am very keen to hear from anyone who was near to the underpass or who walked through the underpass during those times."

– Det Insp Mark Power

Anyone with information is asked to call Wiltshire Police on 101.


Chinese warships arrive in Portsmouth

Three Chinese Naval ships have arrived in Portsmouth for a formal visit aimed at enhancing military understanding between the UK and China.

Chinese Ambassador Liu Xiaoming and hundreds of UK-based Chinese residents are due to officially welcome the ships into the city’s Naval Base tomorrow.

They arrived into port this morning.

Replenishment ship Chaohu Credit: Royal Navy

Heading the task group is the assault ship Chang Bai Shan, accompanied by the frigate Yun Cheng and the replenishment ship Chaohu.

Chang Bai Shan was due to fire a 21-gun salute as she approached the entrance to Portsmouth Harbour, with a response fired from Fort Blockhouse, Gosport.

The ships’ last port of call was Salalah in Oman and on leaving Portsmouth they will head for Kiel in Germany.

During the five-day visit, senior officers from both Navies will discuss various maritime topics including recent counter-piracy operations across the Indian Ocean.

"We are looking forward to welcoming our Chinese visitors to the operational home of the Royal Navy. As with our ship visits abroad, these events are not only of great diplomatic significance, but also very useful militarily given that we share similar global challenges including counter-piracy, preventing conflict, protecting our citizens overseas and supporting UN peacekeeping efforts."

– Commodore Jeremy Rigby, Naval Base Commander

Crew members from all three vessels will be given tours of local attractions including HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and the Mary Rose and they'll also be shown around the Royal Navy's newest warship - Type 45 destroyer HMS Duncan.

The two nations will also compete in badminton and basketball matches at HMS Temeraire in Portsmouth – the Navy's home of physical training.

The ships leave Portsmouth on January 16.

Young woman dies after being hit by a car in Kent

Kent Police are appealing for witnesses Credit: ITV

A woman in her twenties has died after she was hit by a car on the A258 in Deal.

A silver Vauxhall Astra was travelling along a rural section of the Dover Road at 8:40 last night when it collided with the pedestrian in the main carriageway.

Any motorists who might have seen the accident are asked to contact Kent Police on 101

'Although we have several witnesses having seen the woman walking towards Dover, I would urge anyone who was travelling this section of road between Dover and Deal, which was about 700m prior to the junction with Ripple Road, to contact us as soon as possible.'

– PC Jamie Woodhams

M25 re-opened after fatal collision

The M25 has now re-opened but witnesses are being sought Credit: PA

The M25 anti-clockwise has re-opened following a fatal collision in which a female pedestrian was killed.

The carriageway was closed between Junction 14 at Heathrow Airport to Junction 12 at Chertsey while accident investigators carried out work.

The woman, who was in her 30s, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The male driver of a black Volkswagen Golf, which was found nearby, has been arrested on suspicion of failing to stop following an injury road traffic collision and providing a positive breath test. He remains in custody and will be interviewed later today.

Shortly after the fatal collision, a second collision took place between Junctions 13 and 14 of the M25.

An officer in a police vehicle had put traffic control measures in place in response to the fatal collision when the second collision, involving a white minibus, a black Range Rover, a silver Vauxhall Meriva and a bronze Honda CRV, took place.

The driver of the minibus, who was the sole occupant of the vehicle, was taken to St George's Hospital in Tooting with a serious leg injury and is expected to undergo surgery later today. The driver of the Range Rover was taken to St Peter's Hospital in Chertsey with a suspected neck injury.

Police are appealing for anyone who saw the female pedestrian walking in the area or along the motorway prior to the collision, or anyone who witnessed either of the collisions, to contact the Collision Investigation Unit straightaway on 01483 632299

M25 closed after woman killed while walking along carriageway

Surrey Police is investigating Credit: ITV Meridian

Surrey Police is appealing for witnesses following a fatal collision on the M25 earlier this morning

A woman was walking along the motorway around 2-50am near the slip road at Junction 13 at Staines-upon-Thames when she is believed to have been hit by a vehicle.

She was pronounced dead at the scene.

The M25 is closed anti-clockwise from Junction 14 at Heathrow Airport to Junction 12 at Chertsey and is likely to remain so for some time while emergency services deal with the incident. Motorists are asked to avoid the area and to find an alternative route.

Police are appealing for witnesses to contact them straightaway on 101

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