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Son 'wants answers' about mother's care home death

Credit: ITV Meridian

A man whose mother died at a care home in Sussex has said he wants answers about what happened to her.

78 year old Valerie Tilley was found dead at Longfield Manor in Billingshurst.

Her death is being investigated, along with that of 11 other people, after police raided the homes, all owned by the same company, Sussex Health Care (SHC).

SHC owns properties in East Grinstead, Horsham, Crawley, Uckfield, Henfield and Billingshurst.

They house 580 people who are not all elderly.

The 12 deaths took place between the spring of 2015 and spring this year.

Valerie's son Adrian says he's determined to find out why she died and why the home told him so little about her last days at Longfield Manor.

As John Ryall reports.

John spoke to Valerie's son, Adrian Tilley and Nadra Ahmed from the National Care Association.

Picture credit: 'Sussex Care Homes' promotional video


Drink driver, more than three times over limit, banned after crashing into children's nursery

The BMW came to rest against the building Credit: Sussex Police

A drink-driver who crashed into a children’s nursery in Billingshurst has been disqualified.

At about 2am on Sunday 18 June, police were called to the incident at the junctions of Lower Station Road and Natts Lane.

On arrival, they discovered a BMW 430d had collided with the nursery, both of which were significantly damaged.

The vehicle had demolished a fingerpost, and gone through metal railings and a wooden picket fence, before coming to rest against the building.

Officers identified the driver at the scene as being Craig Grantham, 29, a clerk, of Longhurst Avenue, Horsham.

He was arrested and charged with driving with 113mcg of alcohol per 100ml of breath in his system. The limit is 35 mcg.

At Worthing Magistrates’ Court he was disqualified from driving for 24 months. He was also ordered to pay a £585 fine, £85 costs and a £58 victim surcharge.

The car left the road and went through two fences Credit: Sussex Police
The scene of the accident - a street sign was knocked over

Rare mammoth skeleton fetches £189,000 at auction

The skeleton of one of the most iconic ancient mammals- an Ice Age Woolly Mammoth- went under the hammer in West Sussex today.

In Summers Place Auctions' second Evolution sale, at three and a half meters tall and over five meters long, the rare beast- known as Monty- fetched £189,000.

Leeanna Faulkner was in Billingshurst earlier today:

Mr Fuller said the 30,000-50,000-year-old creature would have looked like "a rather large elephant".

The animal, which had been in an old private Eastern European collection for years, was sold to a private buyer.

West Sussex holds adoption open evening

West Sussex County Council's adoption service is holding a special open evening in Billingshurst.

The evening will give people a chance to think more about adoption and find out more about what it involves.

The event will take place on Tuesday 12th November from 7pm to 9pm at Billingshurst Community Conference Centre.

The aim is to give people a chance to meet the adoption team and learn what it takes to become an adoptive parent and offer a child a permanent home.

It is part of National Adoption Week which is organised by the British Association for Adoption and Fostering.

Choosing to adopt a child and offer them a permanent home is a wonderful thing, but it is also a life-changing decision.I would encourage anyone who is considering adoption to come along to the open evening to find out more about the process and what’s involved. Adoption is open to more people than you might think and parents can come from all walks of life, regardless of their marital status, sexuality, or cultural background.”

– Peter Evans, Cabinet Member for Children – Start of Life


Famous signs under the hammer

Rupert van der Werff of Summers Place Auctions in Billingshurst, West Sussex, with some of the signs up for auction Credit: PA Wire

Distinctive road signs which have directed Londoners and tourists to world famous landmarks including Buckingham Palace and Hyde Park are to be auctioned in Sussex.

Estimates range from £20 to more than £1,000 for each of the 362 signs.

The sign for Abbey Road made famous by The Beatles is up for auction Credit: PA Wire

Also being auctioned at Summers Place Auctions in Billingshurst, West Sussex, on May 21 will be a limited number of enamelled road signs, including for Abbey Road and Downing Street. Sealed bids will be considered for other lots.

Rupert van der Werff of Summers Place Auctions in Billingshurst, West Sussex prepares over 300 historic London street signs for auction Credit: PA Wire

The sell-off comes as Westminster City Council and Transport for London upgrade all of their signposting in the capital as part of a campaign called Legible London to make directions more user-friendly.