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Vigil to be held following A&E closure at Weston General

Protestors against the closure gathered outside the hospital earlier this year. Credit: ITV West Country

A candlelit vigil has been scheduled to take place from 8.30pm tonight, Monday 4th September at Weston General Hospital.

It is in protest of the overnight closure of the hospital's A&E department. Patients have had to travel to Bristol or Taunton for emergency treatment.

A second protest is also set to hold tomorrow at 9am during the board meeting.

The Weston Area Health NHS Trust says the closure is a temporary move, after a Care Quality Commission report labelling the department as 'inadequate' was published.


Protest as hospital closes last patient beds

Protestors staged a vigil outside Seaton Hospital in East Devon today. Credit: ITV News

Protestors staged a vigil outside Seaton Hospital in East Devon today as the site prepares to close its last inpatient beds.

The plans to remove beds from Seaton, Honiton, Exeter and Okehampton community hospitals have been met with strong opposition since they were confirmed in March.

Health officials say they're introducing a new system for more care to be provided at home.

This is the end of an era. This hospital was built by the community with a huge amount of community money in the 1980s. Extensions were paid for entirely by the community in the 1990s. The community put in something like £3 million into this hospital, and now the beds are being closed and we don't know what the future of the hospital is.

– Councillor Martin Shaw, Seaton & Colyton

Protest called against teacher pay cap

A protest will be taking place in Bristol today. Credit: PA

A protest will be taking place in Bristol today as the National Union of Teachers fight against the 1% cap on pay increases for teachers.

The cap on pay rises, initially of 0% and then 1% after, has been in place since 2010 as part of the Government's austerity measures.

That means teachers' pay has fallen behind inflation, with many choosing to leave the profession as they struggle to cope.


Hundreds of South West students join national protest

Hundreds of students from the West are heading to London today (4 November) to take part in a demonstration calling for free education.

The protesters are angry about the Government scrapping Maintenance Grants, its plans to raise tuition fees and slashing support for disabled students.

Around 10 thousand people attended a similar rally last year:

The student protests in 2014 Credit: ITV News

Under the plans, student grants, available to undergraduates from low income families, will be replaced by loans, in a shake-up of education funding. Critics say it could put the poorest students off attending university.

Hundreds expected to protest budget in Bristol "mass die-in"

Chancellor George Osborne delivered the budget earlier today. Credit: PA

Hundreds of people are expected to protest today's budget in a "mass die-in" in Bristol this evening.

The protest, organised by the Bristol People's Assembly, aims to highlight what the organisers call "the many deaths and huge damage to millions of lives which continues to be caused by austerity and the cuts".

Today's budget included a reduction in the benefit cap for households, an end to housing benefit for 18-21 year-olds, a two-child limit for child tax credits and a freeze in working age benefits for four years.

The Chancellor also announced a new National Living Wage of £7.20 an hour, which will increase to £9 an hour by 2020.

Protestors are planning to move around Bristol, beginning at fountains near the city's Harbourside at 5pm, and ending at College Green.

More than 800 people have signed up to attend so far.

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