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Badger cull protestors back at the High Court

"The government has not just moved the goalposts on the badger culls - now it wants to sack the referee". That's what a lawyer told the High Court today.

The Badger Trust is asking a judge to stop the culls in Somerset and Gloucestershire, unless an expert panel is reinstated to oversee them. Dozens of supporters demonstrated outside, as Bob Constantine reports

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Badger cull protestors gather at High Court

badger cull protestors
Badger cull protestors outside the High Court today Credit: ITV News West Country

Campaigners have gathered outside the High Court in London today for another hearing about the Government's badger cull.

The Badger Trust is seeking a ruling that there has been a failure to install an independent panel of experts to monitor this year's pilot culls in Gloucestershire and Somerset. The culls are taking place to try to stop the spread of TB in cattle.

Taunton Deane Borough Council to move to County Hall

Taunton Deane Borough Council has finally voted to move to Somerset County Hall, one month after a similar proposal was narrowly rejected.

Brick sign
A sign outside the Council's current premises. Credit: ITV News

The council says it costs £650,000 a year to occupy the ageing Deane House off Station Road in Taunton. Its report also found that creating a public sector 'one-stop-shop' together with the County Council would make life easier for service users.

Discussions will now start with the County Council about how best to facilitate the move.

Wells MP urges people to boycott Israeli goods

Wells MP Tessa Munt urges people to boycott Israeli goods
Wells MP Tessa Munt urges people to boycott Israeli goods Credit: John Stillwell/PA Archive/Press Association Images

A west country MP is asking people to send a message to Israel by boycotting goods coming from the country. The MP for Wells, Tessa Munt says she's hearing from people across the area that are angry and upset about what is happening abroad.

"This summer, it’s not the potholes, traffic lights or broadband, not even poor local planning which is dominating discussions – although they are all high on the list and must be dealt with.

This summer, the majority of people I meet out and about are disturbed, upset and angry.

It’s clear that Israel has crossed a line.

The use of a boycotts is one example of non-violent action and whilst a protest march is effective in

raising awareness and publicity, a boycott hits states and organisations where it hurts most – the wallet.

Israel exports all sorts all sorts of things from food to financial services into the UK and we all have a choice about how we spend our money."

– Tessa Munt, Mp for Wells

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Bishop of Gloucester interviewed over alleged indecent assaults

The Bishop of Gloucester Right Rev Michael Perham has been interviewed by police today on suspicion of indecently assaulting a woman and a girl more than thirty years ago.

Bishop Michael, 66, attended a police station in Gloucestershire today to be interviewed about the allegations which date back to 1980 and 1981.

The investigation is being run by the Metropolitan Police Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command.

Rt Rev Michael Perham, Bishop of Gloucester
The Right Rev Michael Perham, Bishop of Gloucester Credit: Press Assocation

A 66 year old man today attended a police station in Gloucestershire by appointment and was interviewed on suspicion of indecent assault of a child aged under 18 and indecent assault of a second female aged over 18.

He was not arrested.

The alleged incidents are said to have occurred between 1980 and 1981 and are being investigated by officers from the Metropolitan Police Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command. Enquiries continue.

– Metropolitan Police

Today's police announcement follows a brief statement from the Gloucester Diocese last weekend saying Bishop Michael was 'stepping down' from his post for 'personal reasons.'

There has since been no further comment from the diocese except to say that steps are being taken for the Bishop of Tewkesbury, Right Rev Martyn Snow, to take over his duties.

Bishop Michael, who has served as Bishop of Gloucester for almost ten years and was due to retire on his 67th birthday on Nov 8, did not fulfil an engagement to take part in a major World War One centenary service at Gloucester Cathedral on Sunday.

A service to say farewell to Bishop Michael had been organised for his birthday at the cathedral but it now appears that will not be going ahead.

The West Country council "fat cats" who earn more than the Prime Minister

The Prime Minister earns less than a number of South West officials
David Cameron earns less than thirty council officials in the South West Credit: Russell Cheyne/PA Wire

Thirty so-called 'fat cat' council officials in the South West earn more than David Cameron, according to a report by the Taxpayers' Alliance.

The Prime Minister is paid an annual salary of £142,500 for running the country. But thirty senior council staff in the region earn in excess of £150,000.

Cornwall Council has the most, with a dozen employees getting paid in excess of £100,000 in 2012-13.

And one director at Swindon Council gets paid a salary of £256,268. The Board Director is in charge of Transformation and Strategic Projects for the council.

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