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Street urinals trialled on busiest weekend of the year

Temporary urinals near the Rococo club in Exeter City centre Credit: ITV West Country/Seth Conway

Exeter's partygoers will benefit from temporary urinals in the city centre this weekend.

As the festive season gets underway people are being warned that there is no excuse to urinate on the street following a night out. The street urinals are being trialled on one of the busiest weekends of the year. They can be found on Bailey Street and just off Mary Arches Street.

Help over Christmas for Exeter's homeless

Exeter City Council have reached out to those who find themselves with nowhere to go this Christmas Credit: ITV West Country

People in Exeter have been offered an out-of-hours service if they find themselves homeless over Christmas.

Exeter City Council have released a phone number for anybody who finds themselves with no where to go over the festive period. The service is available to all - particularly those who face challenges such as a family fall-out or domestic violence.

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Police statement following manslaughter charges

"Our thoughts are with the family of Thomas Orchard at this difficult time. The two-year long investigation that has followed has been difficult for all of those involved.

“The case was subject to an immediate referral to the IPCC by the Force and has been independently conducted by them since 2012. The Force and all officers and staff involved have fully co-operated with investigators from the IPCC and, latterly, the Health and Safety Executive throughout their investigation. [...]

"As a result of being charged a decision has been made that the officer and two members of staff have been suspended and this will be continually reviewed. We will continue to give appropriate welfare support to those officers and staff concerned.

“Devon and Cornwall Police take 25-30,000 people into custody each year and we remain committed to ensuring that they remain safe and receive a high standard of care from us.”

– Statement from Devon and Cornwall Police

Thomas Orchard's family welcome decision to charge three officers

The family of Thomas Orchard welcome the decision to charge three officers with his manslaughter Credit: Family

The three officers have been charged with the manslaughter of Thomas Orchard and with misconduct in public office.

Prosecutors said there was insufficient evidence to bring charges against three constables and a custody nurse employed by a private contractor.

All three individuals will appear at Exeter Magistrates' Court on January 29.

Thomas Orchard's family, who have been campaigning for justice since his death, say they are pleased with the decision.

We welcome today's decision and it makes us cautiously optimistic that justice will be done for our much-loved son and brother. Most importantly, we think that members of the public will get the chance to decide questions of criminal responsibility.

Public trust in the police force and the justice system demands a robust prosecution and we hope that the public will be interested in this case and join us in our demand for rigour and fairness from our justice system.

Our thoughts today are also with the families of others who have died in police custody and who feel that there should have also been prosecutions in their cases. Whilst we know they will be happy for us, we understand that today's news will have increased their sense of injustice and their feelings of frustration.

We can only hope that this decision to prosecute heralds a more robust approach by the IPCC and CPS to deaths in police custody in the future.

– Orchard family statement

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Police charged with manslaughter after death in custody

Thomas Orchard died in police custody in 2012 Credit: Family

A custody sergeant and two detention officers have been charged with manslaughter following an investigation into the death of a man while he was in police custody in 2012.

Thomas Orchard from Exeter died a week after being found unresponsive in a police cell. Since his death police forces have been warned against the use of restraining belts.

Six try victory for the Chiefs at Sandy Park

Today's rugby results.

Exeter Chiefs maintained their grip on the top of European Challenge Cup Pool 2 with a comprehensive 41-17 victory over La Rochelle at Sandy Park.

The Chiefs ran in five tries courtesy of Kai Horstmann, Greg Bateman, Fetu'u Vainikolo, Tom James, Adam Hughes, with a penalty try and four conversions and a penalty kicked by Ceri Sweeney sweeping aside the visitors.

In the British and Irish Cup, Tom Riley scored a hat-trick of tries, but the Cornish Pirates lost 41-40 in a thrilling game at Bedford.

And Plymouth Albion have finished bottom of Pool 4 after going down 59-26 at Leinster.

Travellers at Haldon Forest told to move

Travellers living at Haldon Forest don't want to move to new site Credit: ITV News

A number of travellers are still living on an unofficial site near Exeter - despite a deadline passing for them to leave the land.

The new site near Exeter racecourse has been built with over a million pounds of government grants. Each of the fifteen pitches for caravans and mobile homes has its own cabin with bathroom, washing facilities and storage. But many of the people on the adjacent unofficial site say they have no intention of moving there. Despite the efforts of the council they say it's not suitable for their communal lifestyle. They don't want to live with barriers, a warden and CCTV, and they don't have the money for the rent, council tax, and other bills they'd have to pay.

Each of the fifteen pitches for caravans and mobile homes has its own cabin with bathroom Credit: ITV News

Cllr John Goodey, Teignbridge Council Housing and Planning, says: "We've worked very closely with the Gypsy and Traveller Council. We've worked very closely with the Environment Agency and other authorities on what we should be doing up there, and what we've come up with is innovative. It's a new traveller's site. It's one of the first in the country. We're obligated to provide this provision. We can't just evict people off the land and hope that they'll find somewhere to live. As an authority we have a duty of care to residents even if they are living up there illegally."

The first caravan moved to the new site over the weekend, and Teign Housing says it's expecting 12 pitches to be occupied in the coming days. People still on the unsanctioned site have been issued with notices to move.

But it may be some considerable time before this site is cleared. The authorities will serve injunctions on those who are reluctant to leave, and if necessary they are prepared to use force.

The council will then restore the area to forest again.

John Goodey says: "What we've got up there is an accumulation of something like 13 years of illegal site. There're over 50 vehicles in various states of dilapidation up there. Most of them unoccupied and falling apart. It is going to be quite a task to clear it. But we have contractors ready to move on to the site once it is vacated and we can safely move on there."

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