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Banksy Spybooth mural 'worthless'

'Spybooth' by Banksy Credit: PA

An art dealer who initially valued the Cheltenham 'Spybooth ' Banksy at more than a million pounds now says it's effectively worthless.

Cheltenham borough council commissioned a report which found it has no commercial value.

It is my professional opinion that the dilapidated state of the mural and the listed status of the flank wall that the work has been applied to has resulted in the work having no viable commercial value.

This assessment is based on more than ten years of experience working with and successfully marketing similarly difficult street works by this artist.

– Robin Barton, specialist Banksy art dealer
Credit: PA

The mural appeared on the the house in Fairview Road, Cheltenham, on April 13th 2014. It shows three secret agents eavesdropping on conversations at a phone box and is widely interpreted as being a side swipe at the role of GCHQ operations in Cheltenham.

The GCHQ 'doughnut' building is less than two miles from the house which is owned by David Possee. It is believed Banksy chose the house because of the position of the wall and the now famous phone box in the street alongside it.

Credit: PA

Mr. Posse was offered £650,000 by an American collector for the painting when it first appeared but the offer was withdrawn when the mural was listed as a result of an application to the Council.

Mr Possee had authorised the Council to commission separate valuations for the building and the mural in order to arrive at an acceptable selling price for his property.

Giving his reaction to the recent valuation, Mr Possee said he wasn't surprised and that he hoped the work could be restored. He also remained philosophical about losing a potential fortune saying "what you never have, you never miss."

A local businessman has offered to buy the property and restore the Banksy for the benefit of Cheltenham.

Police investigate death of 65-year-old man

A 65-year-old man has died at a house in Charlton Kings in Cheltenham.

Emergency crews, including the air ambulance, were called to London Road at lunchtime but the man diied at the scene.

Forensics teams examined the property and have now left.

Police they are investigating the circumstances surrounding the man's death but there is no indication that it is suspicious.

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High five for Victoria Pendleton in Foxhunter Chase

Victoria Pendleton on Pacha Du Polder celebrates winning the Betfair Switching Saddles Hunter Chase at Wincanton Racecourse, Somerset. Credit: PA

Victoria Pendleton has finished fifth in the in the St James's Place Foxhunter Chase riding Somerset trained, Pacha Du Polder.

The olympian's journey from track cyclist to jockey is one of the most remarkable sporting stories of the year.

12 months ago Pendleton had never ridden a race horse, and now's she's finished 5th at one of the world's most prestigious races.

£1 million horse Cue Card falls at Gold Cup race

Dorset's Cue Card has fallen during the Cheltenham Gold Cup, losing out on a £1million bonus.

He was one of the leading fancies for the blue riband event.

He's trained by Colin Tizzard at his stables at Milborne Port on the Dorset & Somerset border.

Cue Card will compete for the Cheltenham Gold Cup. Credit: ITV West Country

The race was won by Don Cossack ridden by jockey Bryan Cooper.

Don Cossack ridden by Bryan Cooper on the way to winning the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase. Credit: David Davies / PA

Can Victoria Pendleton win at Cheltenham?

Two time Olympic cycling champion Victoria Pendleton on Pacha Du Polder Credit: PA

The olympian's journey from track cyclist to jockey is one of the most remarkable sporting stories of the year.

12 months ago Victoria Pendleton had never ridden a race horse, and now she will be competing at one of the world's most prestigious races.

She'll be riding Pacha Du Polder in the St James's Place Foxhunter Chase which gets underway at 4.10pm this afternoon. It's one of the most competitive amateur races of the year with 24 runners.

Victoria Pendleton was unseated in February, riding Pacha Du Polder at Fakenham Credit: PA
20/1
Victoria Pendleton's odds

In her corner is the very experienced trainer, Paul Nicholls, who's given the 35 year-old the green light to compete. She also rides Pacha Du Polder, a strong horse which only lost last year's chase by three and three-quarter lengths.

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Drunken pair arrested in connection with stolen golf buggy

Two drunk men were arrested at Cheltenham Festival last night after a golf buggy was stolen from the racecourse.

One man, 25, from Gloucester, and another, 22,from Longhope were picked up by officers at around 9.20pm.

It was one of several arrests at Cheltenham Festival, as race-goers descended on the town to celebrate.

Third day of Cheltenham races gets underway

action during the Weatherbys Champion Bumper during Ladies Day of the 2016 Cheltenham Festival. Credit: Mike Egerton / PA

In a few hours time gates will open for the third day of this year's Cheltenham Festival and it's St Patrick's Day.

They’ll be plenty of Guinness available on tap and performances from Irelands very own ‘The Dublin Legends’, as well as all the action on the course, including the two big races the World Hurdle and the Ryanair Chase.

265000
pints of Guinness knocked back by spectators at The Festival 2015.

ST PATRICK'S DAY PROCEEDINGS (THURSDAY)

  • 13.30 The JLT Novices’ Chase
  • 14.10 The Pertemps Network Final
  • 14.50 The Ryanair Steeple Chase
  • 15.30 The Ryanair World Hurdle
  • 16.10 The Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate
  • 16.50 The Trull House Stud Mares Novices’ Hurdle
  • 17.30 The Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Steeple Chase (0-145)
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