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Crowds brave freezing weather in support of Ilfracombe theatre

Performers on the green outside the Landmark Theatre Credit: ITV News West Country

Crowds braved freezing weather in Ilfracombe this afternoon to see a variety show in support of the town's Landmark Theatre. Performers from around North Devon staged the free event following the Landmark's sudden closure last month.

The Queens Theatre in Barnstaple also closed when the trust that owns them went bust, leaving actors and ticket holders out of pocket. It's hoped both theatres could re-open under new management. More details here.

Crowds braved the freezing weather Credit: ITV News West Country

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Government backs Taunton 'garden village' plan

Taunton is among 14 areas to have bids backed by the Government Credit: ITV News West Country

Taunton is among 14 areas across the country to get government backing for plans to build thousands of new homes set in so-called garden villages. Today ministers announced that Taunton Deane Borough Council would be given £350,000 to cover planning costs towards building new homes on sites already earmarked for development.

Plans are already in the pipeline to build houses at Monkton Heathfield, Comeytrowe, Trull and Staplegrove. The garden village scheme would link green space to housing estates and work areas through country parks, community woodland and recreation areas.

“Taunton already benefits from many of the characteristics of a Garden Town – we want to strike that balance between retaining our character and wonderful environment to our growth aspirations that will make our county town more prosperous in future."

– Cllr Roger Habgood, Taunton Deane Borough Council

The garden village scheme announced by the government will also take in developments already planned at West Carclaze in Cornwall and at Culm in mid Devon.

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Bumper Boxing day reported at Cabot Circus

Cabot Circus managers report a bumper day at the Boxing Day sales Credit: Geoff Caddick/PA

Thousands of shoppers descended on Bristol's Cabot Circus shopping centre for the traditional Boxing Day sales.

The biggest queues were reported outside Next, with bargain hunters arriving as early as 4am, drawn by discount of up to 50 per cent. Other stores that saw early queues were JD Sports and House of Fraser.

"Boxing Day is always one of our busiest days of the year and we were delighted to welcome thousands of shoppers hoping to bag a bargain on the official start of the post-Christmas sales with queues from 4am."

– Stephanie Lacey, General Manager, Cabot Circus
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