Live updates

£2 billion to be pledged on Monday for West's roads

Two billion pounds' worth of new road schemes for the region are due to be announced on Monday, ITV News West Country understands. These are likely to include a tunnel at Stonehenge and making the A358 into dual carriageway - something Yeovil MP David Laws has been campaigning for.

David Laws MP. Credit: PA

"It's totally unacceptable that we've got a road that is so congested for large parts of the year. That's very inconvenient for people in my constituency who travel around parts of Somerset, it's certainly very inconvenient for people who want to travel across the region. It's absurd that when we're investing so much in other parts of the country that the South West has had to wait for so long."

– David Laws MP, Lib Dem, Yeovil

The People's Millions: Wednesday's Vote

The two projects going head-to-head today are Handfuls Of Harmony Choir and Studley Wildlife Trail.

Here’s your chance to vote for the project you’d like to see get the money. To vote from a landline call 09015 228216 or from mobiles ONLY call 6228216 and press option 1 for Handfuls Of Harmony Choir or press option 2 for Studley Wildlife Trail.

Mobile and BT landline votes cost 15p. Other landlines may vary. Lines close at midnight tonight. PLEASE DO NOT TRY TO VOTE IF YOU ARE WATCHING ON DEMAND.

For terms and conditions see here


Health workers picket the BRI in Bristol

Health workers and ambulance staff across the region have been taking part in a four hour strike in a long-running dispute over pay.

They walked out between 7am and 11am today and will be working to rule for the rest of the month.

Health staff picket the Bristol Royal Infirmary as part of the national action Credit: ITV News
Staff are calling for a 1% pay increase, which the Government says it can't afford Credit: ITV News

The People's Millions

Voting has started in this year's People's Millions competition Credit: ITV News West Country

Lines are now open for day one of voting in The People’s Millions competition. Today in the West Country FAB Keynsham goes head to head with Space 2 Play.

A grant of up to £50,000 is up for grabs for the winner. The other project is still in with a chance of winning National Lottery cash if it gets the highest number of runner-up votes.

Details of how to vote here for terms see here

The People’s Millions is a long-running collaboration between ITV and the Big Lottery Fund. We want to help projects that capture the public’s imagination, inspire local people to get involved and to make a lasting difference to those in their area through improvements to the neighbourhood.

Health workers on four-hour strike this morning

Health workers and ambulance staff across the region are taking part in a four hour strike today.

Members of the GMB and Unison unions will walk out between 7am and 11 am in an ongoing dispute over pay.

They will also refuse to do any unpaid overtime until the end of the month.

Health workers went on strike last month too. Credit: PA


Christmas money worries for 1 in 4

More than a quarter of people in our region are worried about how they will afford Christmas this year, according to a new survey.

The Money Advice Service says almost a third of us will turn to credit cards to help fund our celebrations, while 1 in 25 will take out a payday loan.

It is urging shoppers to plan their festive spending carefully, including making a budget, comparing online and high street shops and looking for special offers.

Christmas shoppers should spend wisely Credit: Barry Batchelor/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Start of pre-Christmas anti-puppy-trafficking campaign

Today marks the beginning of a six-week rise in the number of puppies being illegally imported into the UK for Christmas.

The Dog Trust warns that importing animals from abroad brings with it an increased risk of disease and behavioural problems.

The owner of a kennels near Bristol says they're being brought in before they're old enough to be vaccinated.

Many puppies are too young to be vaccinated. (File photo) Credit: PA

There are hundreds and hundreds of puppies coming through, not detected. And they're coming through in van loads - they're brought in at very early ages. The ones that we've had - and we've been quite busy with them - we've had little ones coming in that have obviously never been wormed. They're very tiny. They're under-size and they're under age.

– Meg Purnell-Carpenter, Overhill Kennels

Unemployment drops in the South West

Unemployment in the South West has dropped in the last quarter Credit: PA

The number of people out of work in the South West has dropped in the quarter between July and September.

According to the Office for National Statistics, the number of unemployed people in the region stands at 129,000 - that's down 13,000 on the last quarter.

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