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Plymouth family start cancer charity

The family of a Plymouth boy with a rare form of cancer have launched a new charity to help others in the same situation.

Five year old Henry Hallam has neuroblastoma, a rare form of childhood cancer with frightening mortality rates. His cancer is now stable.

The charity, Hugs From Henry, will offer financial help and pastoral support to other families affected by neuroblastoma.

Elsbeth Hallam, Henry's mum, has been speaking to ITV News.


Care worker arrested on suspicion of raping female patient

A care worker was arrested on suspicion of rape at a psychiatric unit at Derriford Hospital Credit: ITV News

A NHS care worker has been arrested on suspicion of raping a female patient.

The alleged assault is said to have happened at the Glenbourne psychiatric unit, which is part of the Derriford Hospital site in Plymouth. It cares for up to 46 people with serious mental health illnesses.

Plymouth Community Healthcare, which manages the unit, said they cannot comment while the police inquiry continues.

The 50-year-old man from Plymouth has now been released on bail while inquiries continue.

The father of the alleged victim said he is making a formal complaint to managers at the unit.

This sort of thing simply should never happen. To be told that my daughter at her most vulnerable has been raped within an institution that’s supposed to protect her is absolutely appalling. It’s had a traumatic impact on my daughter and our whole family.

– Father of the alleged victim

Plymouth cornershop staff held at knife point

Staff at the Kwik Shop in Devonport was held at knifepoint on Saturday evening Credit: ITV News

Police are appealing for witnesses after a man used a knife to hold up a Plymouth cornershop.

The man went into the Kwik Shop convenience store in Devonport on Saturday evening. He threatened staff with a knife and stole cash, cigarettes and alcohol.


Six new free schools announced for the South West

The Government has today said six new free schools will open in the South West - part of 49 being announced nationwide.

All three are planned for Devon, with one in Plymouth, one in Exeter and one in Newton Abbot.

Six new free schools have been announced for Swindon Credit: PA

Today's announcement, the final wave of free schools to be approved before the election, brings the total number of open and approved free schools to more than 400. It has created around 230,000 new school places.

The Government claims 72 per cent of free school heads say they are having a positive impact on schools in their local area – driving up standards and ensuring more parents have a great school in their neighbourhood.

Over 40,000 pupils are already attending free schools, with more than two-thirds rated good or outstanding. 72 per cent are located in areas with a shortage of places.

Education Secretary Nicky Morgan Credit: PA

Today’s announcement sends a clear sign that children for generations to come will be able to benefit from a place in a free school. With already more than two-thirds being rated good or outstanding, today’s news will reassure parents that standards will continue to rise.

– Nicky Morgan

Construction industry urged to encourage more women workers

CITB say more needs to be done to encourage women into the construction industry Credit: ITV West Country

A new report has urged construction firms to do more to attract women workers after it said the industry was still seen as sexist. A survey of 1,500 employers found that three out of four believed perceptions of a sexist culture were a major reason why women were under-represented.

The study by the Construction Industry Training Board - on International Women's Day - identified a lack of female role models as well as poor awareness of the types of jobs on offer.

The industry is on course for a major comeback, but we need a dynamic and diverse workforce to help deliver it. This poll shows that construction employers realise we are still a long way from overcoming the perceptions of sexism in our sector, which potentially keep women away.

To attract the best skills and talent from all parts of society, we are challenging industry to make women and people from all backgrounds feel welcome and valued.

– Gillian Econopouly, head of research at the CITB

The CITB's research shows that young people believe the industry is male dominated and poorly paid.

This weekend members of the public have been invited to visit a site in Plymouth to gain an insight into the construction industry, and potential career opportunities in the building trade.

Kat Simpson has gone into the industry as a trainee site manager. She says women are thriving in the trade.

Kat Simpson is a trainee site manager Credit: ITV West Country

The construction industry is so diverse. You can be working on a housing project one minute, and the next minute you can be working on a multi-million pound sky scraper.

Women are thriving. They're successful. And they need to start thinking about this as a career.

– Kat Simpson, trainee site manager

Richard Lawrence has been finding out what's being done in the South West to change preconceptions.

No disciplinary action for policeman following death of man after use of taser

Andrew Pimlott died four days after being tasered Credit: Family

A Policeman who tasered a man who later died will not face any further disciplinary action from Devon & Cornwall Police.

Andrew Pimlott died four days after being tasered in the garden of a house at Honicknowle in Plymouth in 2013. He'd poured petrol over himself. No criminal charges were brought against the police officer and today the force said an internal investigation found no case to answer for gross misconduct.

This has been a long and difficult period for both Mr. Pimlott’s family and the officer and our condolences remain with the Pimlott family.

The internal disciplinary process has given us the opportunity to further examine what happened on that night in April 2013.

The matter was referred to the IPCC and the Force has fully supported them in their independent investigation.

Any officer using Taser is subject to extensive training, and we should not under-estimate the challenging circumstances police officers face in their line of duty. Difficult decisions sometimes need to be made in highly pressured situations.

We will continue to support and train our officers to use Taser appropriately and safely in line with national guidance.

– Deputy Chief Constable Bill Skelly
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