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Man tries to grab young girl after following her to school

Credit: PA

Police have issued a warning to schools in the Corsham area after a man tried to grab a young girl at a school this morning (3 February).

The man followed the Year 7 student to school and tried to grab her arm once she was on school grounds.

She was between the Astro turf pitch and the entrance to the school, next to a bike shed, when the incident happened at about 8.30am.


  • white
  • aged 30
  • 5'7"
  • thin build
  • dark medium length, unkempt hair
  • mustard coloured zipped hoodie
  • spoke with local accent

Anyone with information is asked to call 101 and quote reference 010292.

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Inquest rules tragic drowning of 4-year-old boy 'accidental'

Harley Barnes with his mum, dad and their two dogs Lenny and Trev. Credit: Wiltshire Police

An inquest has ruled the death of a 4 year-old boy who drowned in a pond in Gastard was accidental.

The coroner assessed that Harley Barnes either climbed over a gate or opened it to get to the pond at his grandparents' stables in Wiltshire. It's thought he was trying to help feed the horses.

The toddler disappeared on the morning of July 28 this year before he was found unconscious. He was taken to the Royal United Hospital in Bath but he could not be resuscitated.


Family pay tribute to 4-year-old found in Wiltshire pond

Harley Barnes with his mum and dad. Credit: Wiltshire Police

The family of a 4-year-old boy, Harley Barnes, who died after being found unconscious in a pond in Gastard have paid tribute to him today.

Wiltshire Police were called to a property in the village near Corsham last month, following a call from the emergency services.

He was taken to the Royal United Hospital in Bath but he could not be resuscitated.

An inquest has been opened and adjourned.

We are absolutely devastated by the sudden loss of our beautiful son, grandson, nephew and cousin, Harley Barnes.

We would like to thank everybody for their love and support over the last week.

We would also like to ask people to respect our privacy at this very difficult time.

– Vaughan and Barnes families

Funeral of Wiltshire man killed in Tunisia massacre

John Welch and his partner Eileen Swannack were both killed in the Tunisia beach shootings

The funeral of a man killed in the Tunisia beach shootings will be held in Wiltshire this lunchtime, 21 July.

John Welch from Corsham and his partner Eileen Swannack were among 30 Britons killed in last month's attack. The service will take place at Semington Crematorium near Trowbridge.

Permanent memorial to victims of Tunisia shootings

Eileen Swannack and John Welch were killed in the attack on a Tunisian hotel. Credit: ITV News

The families of a couple from Wiltshire who were killed in the Tunisia shootings are to be asked about the design and location of a new memorial to mark their deaths.

Eileen Swannack from Biddestone near Chippenham and her partner John Welch from Corsham were killed in the attack at the holiday resort of Sousse just over a week ago.

The Prime Minister announced a permanent memorial to all of the victims will be created.

David Cameron also announced that a special service would be held in the autumn dedicated to all those caught up in the attack on the Tunisian resort of Sousse which left 30 British holidaymakers dead.

Those who lost their lives in Tunisia last week were innocent victims of a brutal terrorist atrocity.

It is right that we mark and commemorate them and others murdered by terrorists overseas appropriately and support the loved ones they have left behind in every way we can.

– David Cameron, Prime Minister


Passenger on train which was "struck by lightning" in Wiltshire describes ordeal

The train was stranded in several inches of water Credit: Robin Matthews

One of the ninety rail passengers stranded near Corsham for several hours last night, has described how the train was struck by lightning shortly before it came to a halt.

Robin Matthews, who lives just outside Cardiff, was on the 23.45 from Paddington. He says:

"After about 20-30 minutes outside of Swindon there were a few very large cracks of lightning and rumbling thunder. One particular lightning strike must have either hit the train or at least something very close because it was extremely loud and the window glass vibrated heavily. Shortly afterwards the train came to a complete stop. We were told that the train would be delayed due to adverse weather affecting the signalling. The rain was now coming down very hard and a number of passengers were commenting on the torrent of water outside. I went to take a look and grabbed a couple of photos using my phone."

"The train crew were really good and came through the train, regularly letting people know that we couldn’t move because of the water. Before long paramedics had made it onto the train to deal with anyone who had medical issues (there was a diabetic on board). Everyone was quite lighthearted but tensions were beginning to build when they announced that we would need to leave the train. People were worried about leaving luggage and a few ladies had evening wear on, and were concerned about wading up the track through the water. In the end, it was decided that they could ensure the safety of one carriage and the engine, so we were all moved into one of the carriages, and the rest of the train was de-coupled."

"The fire brigade had made some temporary steps to help us up the embankment. It was now very hot and sticky with 90 people crammed into one carriage, so patience was beginning to wear thin. The crew did their best to group people into destination groups of four, so we could be led up to waiting taxis and taken home.

All in all, I think the train crew and rescue chews did an excellent job."

90 passengers stranded on train overnight

90 stranded on train overnight Credit: ITV West Country

90 rail passengers were trapped over night after a train became submerged in 4ft-deep flash flood water.

The overnight service from London Paddington to Swansea got stuck near Corsham in Wiltshire at around midnight.

Emergency services were called to the scene at 1am but the 90 passengers remained stuck on board until 6am.

A fleet of taxis turned up at the site where the stranded commuters were eventually driven home.

Passenger Chris Williams took to Twitter to document the journey:

90 passengers evacuated from train

Train stuck in flood water in Corsham Credit: ITV West Country

A train traveling from London Paddington became stuck in floodwater at Pound Pill in Corsham in the early hours of this morning. 90 passengers were on the train, which came to a halt in a cutting where water was up to a metre deep in places.

All the passengers were rescued from the train by 0600 this morning.

The train is still blocking the track causing major disruption to rail services in the region.

Services to and from Bristol Temple Meads are unable to call at Chippenham. Trains are being diverted via an alternative route, adding around 45 minutes to journey times.

We are trying to arrange rail replacement trains and tickets will be accepted on local transport and other trains.

– First Great Western

Six month jail term for Wiltshire bomb-maker

A science fan from Somerset who made explosive devices after being inspired by the hit television show Brainiac has been jailed for six months.

Michael Thomas, 40, was part of a group of friends who made six pipe bombs before taking them to a remote quarry in Corsham, Wiltshire, to detonate.

One of the devices was blown up inside a microwave in a re-enactment of an experiment in the show, which has been presented by Richard Hammond and comedian Vic Reeves.

However, the group forgot to detonate one of the pipe bombs and it was unwittingly carried home in an Adidas sports bag by Thomas, who placed it in his shed following the outing in 2006.

Bristol Crown Court heard Thomas separated from his wife in 2010 and on August 17 last year, she decided to clear out his shed.

Police were called when the woman, who was not named in court proceedings, spotted a copper pipe and green cord poking out from the sports bag.

Eighty homes close to the shed, described as being in a "built-up area", were evacuated for five hours while an Army bomb disposal squad used a robotic device to examine the bag.

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