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Shelterbox founder appears on fraud charges

Tom Henderson, the founder of Shelterbox Credit: ITV News West Country

The founder of the Cornish aid charity Shelterbox has appeared in court on fraud charges.

Tom Henderson from Helston faces three counts of fraud and one of attempted theft. He appeared at the Central Criminal Court in London with his son John Henderson and another man, Darren Gervis who also face charges. They didn't enter a plea and will appear again in December, when the court will decide if the case should be moved to a court closer to Cornwall.

Tom Henderson left the charity in July 2012 and was arrested a year later.

Cliff fall teenager is named

A teenage boy who died after falling from a cliff in Torquay last week has been named. Tom Rendle who was 17 and from Torquay, is believed to have fallen from a cliff in the Ilsham Marine Drive area onto rocks last Friday.

Tom was rescued and taken by lifeboat to the harbour, before being taken by ambulance to Torbay District Hospital with a severe head injury, spinal and leg injuries.

He was later transferred to Derriford Hospital where he was pronounced deceased on the evening of Saturday 20 September due to injuries sustained during the fall.

The death is not being treated as suspicious.

“Our son Tom lived life to the full and was a cheeky chappy. He will be missed by all of his family and friends.”

– Family statement
  1. West Country (E)

NFU statement on badger death claims

The National Farmers Union has responded to claims that a dead badger in Somerset suffered an unnecessarily lingering death because it had been shot in the abdomen and left to die.

“We have seen no evidence that a badger has been found. If one has been found there is no evidence to suggest it is associated with the cull. All badgers shot as part of the cull have been collected and accounted for. Humaneness monitors are also going out with contractors.”

– NFU statement

Business leaders back stadium plans for Cornwall

Business leaders in Cornwall and representatives from the world of sport are urging the local council to support plans for a Stadium for the county.

They've signed an open letter to all members of the County Council, urging them to back an application for a supermarket which is considered crucial for funding the development. Among the signatories are Bill Beaumont, the Chairman of the RFU, the Grand Bard of Cornwall and the Chairman of Truro's Chairman of Commerce,

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  1. West Country (E)

Humane Society comments on badger cull claims

The Humane Society's executive director and veterinarian, Mark Jones, has voiced his concern over claims that a female badger who had been shot in the abdomen in Somerset will have taken a considerable time to die.

Earlier today pictures were released by the wildlife charity Secret World claiming that "Badger 41" had been shot in the abdomen and left to die.

Badger 41 may have taken "a considerable amount of time to die" Credit: Secret World

“The discovery of badger 41 confirms our worst fears about the horrendous animal suffering the so-called trained badger cull marksmen will be inflicting. Shooting badgers in the abdomen will likely result in those animals taking a considerable time to die. DEFRA’s assurances that steps have been taken to ensure this year’s culls would be humane have been shown to be meaningless. Badger 41’s death was almost certainly not humane; how many more like her are suffering the same fate?

– Mark Jones, Executive Director at Humane Society International/UK,

Teenage pregnancies decline in Cornwall

Teenage pregnancies show significant decline in Cornwall Credit: ITV News West Country

The average rate of teenage pregnancies in Cornwall has fallen significantly according to new figures from the Office of National Statistics.

There are now 24.6 conceptions per 1,000 women aged under 18 . This is down from 27.9 in the previous year and is now below the national average of 25.8 throughout England and Wales

Its fantastic that Cornwall continues to see a decline in its rates of teenage pregnancy. Good partnerships work and continued commitment to providing a range of contraceptive and sexual health services to young people have been effective in supporting young people to make healthy choices.

– Louise Sweeney, Teenage Pregnancy & Sexual Health Coordinator

Cattle reintroduced to Devon healthland

Bovey Heathfield nature reserve Credit: Devon Wildlife Trust

Wildlife campaigners are celebrating after the successful reintroduction of cattle to an area of heathland in Devon.

Bovey Heathfield nature reserve, close to Bovey Tracey, is now home to six Galloway cattle. The job of the cows will be to munch their way through the some of the grasses, brambles and scrub that threaten to take over some areas of the delicate heathland. When the cattle are removed later this year it is hoped that they will leave the nature reserve in a better state to help rare wildlife including reptiles, birds, butterflies and wildflowers.

Bovey Heathfield nature reserve is managed by the charity Devon Wildlife Trust.

“This heath would once have been grazed by cattle belonging to local people. This grazing helped to keep it in balance, allowing its unique heathland wildlife to thrive.

However these old ways of land management largely ceased in the first half of the 20th century and many heathlands were lost as a result of this.

After a break of many years, introducing grazing animals means that Bovey Heathfield should now remain as a wonderful place for wildlife and people.”

– Jackie Gage, Devon Wildlife Trust
  1. West Country (E)

Badger cull is inhumane claims Somerset charity

Somerset wildlife charity Secret World claims it has evidence that badgers are being shot inhumanely as the cull continues in the county.

They have produced pictures of a female badger which they claim shows it was shot through the abdomen rather than the chest in contravention of DEFRA guidelines. There was no evidence of a second shot and they say the badger will have suffered a lingering death.

The female badger handed in to Secret World Credit: Secret World

Notably there was no evidence of a second follow up shot or of evidence that the cull contractors had observed the badger after shooting it for signs of life, both these are requirements under the Defra culling licences. It is intended that a detailed post mortem will be carried out and that the findings will be made available.

– Secret World statement
Secret World claims the badger was shot through the abdomen Credit: Secret World
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