Infamous house gets royal re-opening

The Duke of Gloucester has opened the renovated Castle House in Taunton. We look back at its somewhat chequered past

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"Amy's death was so unnecessary, I had to speak up"

A mother whose 13-year-old daughter was killed by a speeding driver says she hopes her death will be as a warning to others. Amy Hofmeister died while cycling close to her home in Taunton.

Shortly afterwards her mother Jane started the "THINK Amy" campaign. It's just been given charitable status, with top cricketer Marcus Trescothick as patron. Eli-Louise Wringe reports

To find out more about the Think Amy campaign, click here.

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Duke of Gloucester to open Castle House, Taunton

Duke of Gloucester to open Castle House, Taunton Credit: ITV News West Country

Taunton's newly restored Castle House will be officially opened by The Duke of Gloucester today. It's been described as one of the finest medieval buildings of its type in the region.

It's in the courtyard of Taunton castle and is believed to have been the place where Judge Jeffreys stayed during the notorious Bloody Assizes. It was restored at a cost of around a million pounds using original techniques.

Mother hopes 'safe driving campaign' goes nationwide

Mother hopes 'safe driving campaign' goes nationwide Credit: ITV News West Country

A woman whose 13-year-old daughter was killed by a speeding driver says she hopes her death can warn other drivers. Amy Hofmeister died while cycling in Taunton three years ago. Now her mother Jane's campaign has won charitable status and she wants her message to go nationwide.

Woman taken to hospital after crashing into wall

A silver Renault Clio crashed into the wall on Wellington Road early this morning Credit: Bing

A woman has been taken to hospital after her car hit a wall in Taunton.

She suffered serious injuries and was taken to Musgrove Park Hospital. It happened on Wellington Road just before one o'clock this morning. Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen the crash to contact them.

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M5 inquest - smoke ruled out as cause of crash

Smoke from a fireworks display has officially been ruled out as the cause of the M5 pile-up which killed seven people.

That was the summary from the West Somerset coroner this afternoon at the inquest into one of Britain's worst motorway accidents.

Michael Rose said he would be meeting with authorities before making further rulings on safety - including whether there should be tighter controls on fireworks displays near busy roads. David Woodland reports.

Coroner: Reduced visibility caused M5 crash

by David Woodland

Coroner Michael Rose says the deceased died as a result of a road traffic accident as vehicles entered an area of reduced visibility.The Coroner will meet authorities before making a ruling regarding:

  • Education for fireworks operators - whether minimum distances should be set for displays near highways
  • Whether licensing of displays is needed
  • Whether visual detection devices should be installed on this stretch of motorway

The Coroner thanked all emergency services and members of the public.

A minute's silence was held as the names of the dead were read out.

Smoke from fireworks display not to blame for crash

by David Woodland

The Coroner in the M5 crash inquest has dismissed the possibility that smoke from firework display caused the accident.

Some firework smoke carried over motorway - some lower level smoke carried in a different direction.

HSE, British Pyrotechnics Association and highways legislation has been examined - none contain a warning about risk from firework smoke in foggy conditions.

Coroner Michael Rose says "I was left with the impression that fireworks organiser Geoffrey Counsell was a competent operator who had been putting on displays for 20 years".

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