31/10/2011 Inside Out South


31/10/2011

Jon Cuthill looks at what is at stake should the region lose its specialist child heart unit. Plus, the residents of a tower block put the idea of The Big Society to test.


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Transcript


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Hello and welcome to Inside Out. I'm here, you're there, so what's

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coming up? On tonight's programme... We're going to put him out with gas

:00:10.:00:18.

and air and then say goodbye. surgery for the south under threat.

:00:18.:00:24.

Southampton General Hospital fights to keep its life-saving unit.

:00:24.:00:27.

seems a great shame to move the services away from where the

:00:27.:00:31.

patients are. We put the Government's Big Society dreams to

:00:31.:00:38.

the test. That looks fantastic. It's for the community. I like to

:00:38.:00:42.

put a bit back. But is this high rise, high-problem block in

:00:42.:00:45.

Portsmouth up for the challenge? Tower blocks are the ruination of

:00:46.:00:54.

family life. Do you think we can change it? I don't think you can.

:00:54.:00:59.

And just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water...

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Yeah, it's going well. I'm getting very wet. Moving home, big style.

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Killers of the deep head to Berkshire. It's just making sure

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they are happy in their new environment. This is Inside Out

:01:11.:01:21.
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First tonight, imagine the stress as a parent if your child has a

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heart condition. Add to that the threat that the very unit which

:01:35.:01:39.

could save your child's life may be about to close. That is exactly

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what is happening here in Southampton. We have been behind

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the scenes to see what is at stake. Meet two-year-old Harry Rogerson.

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His dad, Ben. And mum, Cerys. Harry may look like a healthy boy, but he

:02:04.:02:09.

has a very unhealthy heart. It is very difficult sometimes to put the

:02:09.:02:12.

heart condition together with the personality of the child, because

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he is such a life force and he deals with it all so well. It is

:02:19.:02:24.

very inspiring for me to watch him. Harry was born with transposition

:02:24.:02:27.

of the great arteries, which meant blood flowed round his heart the

:02:27.:02:33.

wrong way, causing a lack of oxygen. Harry will need a series of

:02:33.:02:38.

complicated operations during his childhood to keep him alive.

:02:38.:02:41.

Nothing is ever very straightforward with these things.

:02:41.:02:47.

Extremely complex, what they're trying to do with Harry. Anything

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can happen. When they're telling you that his heart is fundamentally

:02:54.:02:58.

malformed, and he is going to need a big operation to fix it, it is at

:02:58.:03:08.
:03:08.:03:10.

extreme odds with that happy, smiling little fellow in your arms.

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And he is going to be kind of made ill. We're going to put him through

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an operation. He will feel dreadful. Harry is having his life-saving

:03:24.:03:28.

heart operation at Southampton General Hospital. The children's

:03:28.:03:34.

heart unit rates as the top performing centre outside London.

:03:34.:03:38.

Right, I've got your special medicine. 300 children born with

:03:38.:03:48.
:03:48.:03:51.

serious heart conditions are operated on here every year. There

:03:51.:04:01.
:04:01.:04:01.

are what ifs. Of course there are what ifs that wind you up. But it's

:04:02.:04:06.

the things that I know are going to happen. But I don't think he

:04:06.:04:13.

realises it. For the next day or two, he will feel very ill. When he

:04:13.:04:17.

goes downstairs, they're going to put him out with gas and air and

:04:17.:04:27.
:04:27.:04:30.

Harry is about to have a valvotomy - an operation to widen the

:04:30.:04:37.

narrowed valve. This will help increase the blood flow through his

:04:37.:04:42.

struggling heart. The operation will take three and a half hours.

:04:42.:04:52.
:04:52.:04:56.

There is a long wait ahead for his 15-year-old Hallam Stuckey from

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Wareham is also a patient here. Like Harry, Hallam was born with

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transposition of the great arteries. He had major surgery as a baby, but

:05:07.:05:14.

now needs a life-saving operation to replace a failing valve. I'm 15.

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I enjoy just hanging out with my mates. Gaming. That sort of thing.

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I enjoy cycling to work. I work down a cafe. I go to a public

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school in Wareham, doing history, geography, more GCSEs. And short

:05:32.:05:38.

course French, which I'm terrible at. I just generally tend to forget

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that I have a heart problem. I feel like any other normal kid. But

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surgery is going to be a little scary. I've got my little brother

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over there. He's OK. But he's not getting anything in the will. I'm

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joking, he can have that! It's had quite a devastating effect. There's

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no point pretending this kind of thing isn't upsetting. It's very

:06:08.:06:15.

hard to come to terms with. It's a serious operation. But you have

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just got to put a lot to the back of your mind and get on with it. If

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everyone mopes around, everyone will be upset all time and that is

:06:23.:06:27.

not really good for Hallam. He needs to be as positive as possible.

:06:27.:06:32.

We all do. On the children's cardiac ward, the team is preparing

:06:32.:06:37.

Hallam for a long and complex operation. Marcus Haw will be

:06:37.:06:40.

performing the surgery. He has been operating here for 14 years, but

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there's never anything routine about open heart surgery. The heart

:06:49.:06:52.

is growing. The volume of the heart is increasing faster as you're

:06:52.:07:00.

getting bigger. So that means there is a situation where the leak is

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beginning to stretch the heart. We wanted, really, to get a solution

:07:05.:07:08.

for you that fixes you for everything you want to do but also

:07:08.:07:15.

lasts you potentially for the rest of your life.

:07:15.:07:19.

This major operation is not without its risks and Marcus has to explain

:07:19.:07:22.

them all. If anything acute were to happen,

:07:22.:07:29.

any part of the body can be affected. Southampton is one of 11

:07:30.:07:32.

children's cardiac units in the country.

:07:32.:07:35.

The government says it is looking to improve services across the UK

:07:35.:07:38.

by merging children's heart surgery into fewer but larger and better

:07:38.:07:45.

performing units. But better performance comes at a price.

:07:45.:07:50.

Almost half the surgical units may close, including Southampton. The

:07:50.:07:53.

NHS group believes skills are spread too thinly around the

:07:53.:07:55.

country and that these changes, although tough, will improve

:07:55.:08:01.

quality of care for children. Everybody agrees that we need

:08:01.:08:04.

bigger centres and that we can improve things and make them more

:08:04.:08:07.

sustainable in the future by having the centres, but nobody wants it to

:08:07.:08:14.

be their unit to change. Everybody has built up a unit and it has been

:08:14.:08:16.

through hard work, teamwork and putting their heart and soul into

:08:17.:08:22.

it. It is understandable that people do not want to change that.

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But it is the right thing to do. We need to make these difficult

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decisions about which units will continue doing the same things in

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the future. But surgeons here are concerned about the effects of

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breaking up local teams. You can't just send them to different centres

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all over the country and expect them to perform in exactly the same

:08:40.:08:48.

way. Different units are different. This team has taken decades to

:08:48.:08:52.

assemble. It has evolved. It has not just been placed. It has

:08:52.:08:55.

evolved over 40 years. It's very difficult to actually keep

:08:55.:09:05.
:09:05.:09:08.

everybody together and move them. Harry's operation is over. First

:09:08.:09:13.

thing to say, Harry is safe. We have finished the operation.

:09:13.:09:17.

The valve will now keep him healthy until his body is fully grown.

:09:17.:09:22.

Eventually, he will need a complete valve replacement. It's all smiles

:09:22.:09:25.

for Harry's parents, but for Hallam's mum, the wait is about to

:09:25.:09:35.
:09:35.:09:41.

OK, you will feel that going a bit tight on your arm. Give him a kiss.

:09:41.:09:51.
:09:51.:09:57.

He is off to sleep. I think he is! Good night. I will see you in a bit.

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Marcus is going to replace one of Hallam's leaky heart valves with a

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mechanical one made of carbon. It is a delicate and complicated

:10:05.:10:07.

procedure, made even more difficult by scarring from previous

:10:07.:10:17.
:10:17.:10:21.

Hallam's heart goes into an abnormal rhythm. Shock. Go for it.

:10:21.:10:31.
:10:31.:10:31.

Quickly. OK. Good. Well done. it is reset and the operation

:10:31.:10:37.

continues. The first thing you feel is that you're sorry for the

:10:37.:10:41.

patient to have to go through it. You feel a number of different

:10:41.:10:45.

things. You do not feel emotional, but you feel very proud of the team

:10:45.:10:50.

that you work with because you know you can do this effectively.

:10:50.:10:53.

Hallam's blood is now circulated by machine. His heart can now be

:10:53.:11:01.

stopped so the valve can be fitted. Sometimes, you have to pinch

:11:01.:11:05.

yourself to think, gosh, we are really doing this! It is a very

:11:05.:11:08.

unusual type of work to do. Obviously, you train over decades

:11:08.:11:15.

to be able to do this sort of work. The new valve should last forever,

:11:15.:11:19.

but Hallam will have to take blood thinning drugs for the rest of his

:11:19.:11:24.

life. Every part is vital.

:11:24.:11:27.

If you get the diagnosis wrong, you don't interpret things right, make

:11:27.:11:33.

the wrong decisions, then it can be a disaster. It is a very well

:11:33.:11:38.

controlled process. The operation has taken five hours.

:11:39.:11:43.

Hallam is moved to paediatric intensive care. If the children's

:11:43.:11:49.

unit is closed, half the beds in here will disappear.

:11:49.:11:52.

The consequences of the closure of the cardiac surgical unit will mean

:11:52.:11:54.

that the resources available to critical young children across the

:11:55.:12:01.

south coast will be reduced dramatically. This unit has

:12:01.:12:04.

developed over the last 10 or 15 years to be one of the best

:12:04.:12:11.

children's intensive care units in the country. It was not always here.

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We will return to a situation which the children of the south

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experienced 10 or 15 years ago. They're very much more likely to

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have to be moved to Bristol, London or Birmingham for the care they

:12:23.:12:27.

need. It has been three weeks since the

:12:27.:12:30.

surgery and Hallam is making a speedy recovery at home. But he

:12:30.:12:37.

knows if he needs another operation, it may not be at his local hospital.

:12:37.:12:40.

The wonderful thing about the service in the UK at the moment is

:12:41.:12:45.

every unit's population is doing a superb job. That is great. The

:12:45.:12:49.

problem is that is not sustainable in the future and that is why we

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have to change. We have to look people in the eye and tell them

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they're difficult decisions, but they must be made. We have a

:12:55.:12:58.

responsibility to children in the future to take these difficult

:12:58.:13:04.

decisions now. We should find out by the end of

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the year whether Southampton's unit will stay or go, but in the

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meantime, good luck to young Harry and Hallam.

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This idea of a Big Society is starting to get interesting, given

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the cuts we face here in the region. People power will save the day,

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according to the politicians. We thought we would put that to the

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test. Handsworth House in Portsmouth.

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Built with the high-rise dreams of the post-war era. Full of the low-

:13:33.:13:40.

down problems of modern life. 154 flats over 17 floors. A complete

:13:40.:13:44.

little society, if you like. What better place to try out the

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Government's plans for a Big Society? I moved here in 1965. I

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was in an old house and never had no bathroom. I came to a place like

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this. It was like a palace. year-old war veteran Cyril Wheelan

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has lived here ever since the flats were built. It was good. All the

:14:11.:14:15.

people in the flats, you knew everybody. Everybody. Now, it has

:14:15.:14:23.

deteriorated. I don't have no conversation with anybody on this

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floor. And I like talking to people. I would say good morning or it is a

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cold day, and they don't want to know. Do you think we can change

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it? I don't think you can. I don't think you can. Well, if anyone can

:14:44.:14:49.

change things, it is this man, Gerry Stoker. He is the person who

:14:49.:14:53.

helped come up with the idea of a Big Society. It was his research

:14:53.:14:59.

that has been taken up as a mantra by the Government. The Big Society

:14:59.:15:02.

is about a huge culture change, creating a country that feels like

:15:02.:15:05.

a community to try and build a bigger and stronger society. People

:15:05.:15:11.

call it responsibility. I call it the Big Society. If you're going to

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create the Big Society, you need people with skills and resources.

:15:14.:15:18.

That is not evenly distributed in our society. You also need to

:15:18.:15:21.

recognise that people need to be asked in the right kind of way,

:15:21.:15:25.

which encourages them to get involved. Our work is focused on

:15:25.:15:27.

the practicalities of creating the Big Society, often in very

:15:27.:15:32.

difficult circumstances. Circumstances I find at Handsworth

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House. It does look quite foreboding in some ways. But it is

:15:40.:15:43.

a good test, because if you can create the conditions for the Big

:15:43.:15:48.

Society here, you can probably create them virtually anywhere.

:15:48.:15:51.

Gerry will be coming to the Handsworth coffee mornings. This

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weekly event is the only get- together for the entire block of

:15:54.:16:00.

flats. It is here that the woes of the estate are aired by the few who

:16:00.:16:06.

bother to turn up. Tower blocks are the ruination of family life.

:16:06.:16:09.

You can go three months without actually seeing a neighbour. People

:16:09.:16:12.

are no longer interested in their neighbours, in loyalty to

:16:12.:16:17.

neighbours, in friendships with neighbours. We had six warrants in

:16:17.:16:21.

here last week for drug dealers and doors being smashed in. We should

:16:21.:16:26.

not have to live like that in our old age. This community room used

:16:26.:16:30.

to be in use every single day of the week. Monday was the gymnastics

:16:30.:16:34.

class I used to take. Tuesday was stroke club. Wednesday, a be used

:16:34.:16:39.

to have a tea dance. Thursday was bingo. Friday, I used to do a

:16:39.:16:42.

really big coffee morning and we used to get 40 people to do the

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raffle. It was good then, but I want to get it good now. I don't

:16:48.:16:55.

think it will ever go back to that. Really? No. Why? Because you've got

:16:55.:16:58.

too many different cultures and too many different age groups. The

:16:58.:17:01.

youngsters don't want to come down and sit down there with the old

:17:01.:17:05.

wrinklies like us, do they? But Big Society expert Gerry Stoker doesn't

:17:05.:17:09.

think it's an age issue. The modern generation, just as much as the old

:17:09.:17:12.

generation, value caring for others and looking after their community

:17:12.:17:17.

and trying to make a wider contribution to society. But we

:17:17.:17:21.

live in a much more pressured society. I actually think it means

:17:21.:17:25.

that we have to work a lot harder on creating the conditions for the

:17:25.:17:32.

Big Society in today's world, compared to the 1950s. This is the

:17:32.:17:39.

fifth floor. We get trouble sometimes with rough sleepers here.

:17:39.:17:44.

Do they sleep in the hallway? usually go in the back stairs. But

:17:44.:17:53.

the worrying part is the children. One man was thrown out the window

:17:53.:18:00.

at the other side of my landing. Poor old me, I had gone over in the

:18:00.:18:03.

morning to get my paper and I walked in there to put my rubbish

:18:03.:18:09.

in the bin and I thought there was red paint dripping on me. No?!

:18:09.:18:13.

I looked up and saw this arm and leg hanging over the parapet. It

:18:13.:18:18.

was blood. Gerry is going to help us make

:18:18.:18:25.

things better. But you have to want things to be better.

:18:25.:18:28.

Gerry has a huge challenge - selling his Big Society to the

:18:28.:18:34.

unhappy coffee group. What are the things which do actually give you a

:18:34.:18:38.

chance to come together? The coffee morning. The coffee morning. We

:18:38.:18:42.

could maybe build on that. What about if we had some sort of lunch

:18:42.:18:45.

where people could bring different things together, kind of like a

:18:45.:18:47.

community picnic. So, a resident's buffet meal seems

:18:47.:18:51.

the popular choice. All those in favour?

:18:51.:18:56.

Aye! OK, well, that is pretty unanimous!

:18:56.:18:59.

Posters go up, invitations go to every single household, so that

:18:59.:19:02.

three weeks later, on the day of our Big Society meal, I am hopeful

:19:02.:19:08.

that apathy may give way to expectation.

:19:08.:19:14.

Has anyone been talking about the lunch? Yes. Do you think they're

:19:14.:19:18.

going to come? Yes, I don't see why not. If they don't, they're nut

:19:18.:19:21.

cases. As mouth-watering dishes appear, it seems some residents

:19:21.:19:27.

have really got into the spirit of being good neighbours. Can we have

:19:27.:19:37.
:19:37.:19:39.

a sneaky peak? Wow! Look at that. We have some rice. And then down to

:19:39.:19:42.

the 10th floor, because we have two fresh quiches that have just come

:19:42.:19:51.

out of the oven. Is it nice to see people talking? Yes, it is. That

:19:51.:19:57.

looks fantastic. What is it? Lasagne? Yes. The amount of food

:19:57.:20:02.

being donated is astounding. Don't worry about me, I'm fine! And most

:20:02.:20:05.

of it seems to be coming from hard- up pensioners, for whom every penny

:20:05.:20:11.

counts. I didn't have to come up but when it's for the community, I

:20:11.:20:18.

like to put a bit back. That one is vegetable curry. This one is beef

:20:18.:20:25.

stew. The end one is a Jamaican pork curry. What we have tried to

:20:25.:20:29.

do is just a little lunch. The whole idea is to see if we can

:20:29.:20:32.

build something that will last and give them a way of working with one

:20:32.:20:35.

another and making a better community for themselves in the

:20:35.:20:38.

long run. Although the room is full, it is mostly local volunteer groups

:20:38.:20:40.

who have come to lend support. They're outnumbering residents

:20:40.:20:47.

three to one. I'll be honest, I'm a bit disappointed. On the basis of

:20:47.:20:57.

153 flats, 17 floors... There weren't a lot turned out from this

:20:57.:21:03.

block. Yeah. It's like the old army days, isn't it? There is still a

:21:03.:21:06.

good vibe, even if only the coffee group regulars and a handful of

:21:06.:21:09.

others have come from the flats. Yet again, it is the older

:21:09.:21:12.

residents who are willing this to succeed. Most of their younger

:21:12.:21:17.

neighbours have stayed away. I only thought it was going to be

:21:17.:21:22.

sandwiches. I didn't expect this. This is what was wanted.

:21:23.:21:25.

Unfortunately, the reality is that the people who are keen on doing

:21:26.:21:28.

something, they are involved, they are engaged, but it's getting that

:21:28.:21:33.

wider community involved that is much harder. That is why, when his

:21:33.:21:36.

activists step forward, we need to think hard about how we can support

:21:36.:21:39.

them, and give them the strength and courage to carry on in very

:21:39.:21:43.

hard circumstances. People start to leave.

:21:43.:21:46.

The piles of lovely prepared food go mostly uneaten and the kind

:21:46.:21:54.

chefs who made such an effort head home.

:21:54.:21:57.

Those two are pillars of the community. They worked so hard to

:21:57.:22:00.

try and get everything off the ground. But it is an uphill

:22:00.:22:04.

struggle. If there were more people like those two in the world, the

:22:04.:22:12.

Big Society would be easy. Sadly, it appears there aren't. People

:22:12.:22:20.

outside are more friendly. I wish they would get together and get to

:22:20.:22:26.

know each other more. Then you could have parties and more of that.

:22:27.:22:36.

But they won't. They're all stick Don't forget to tell me what's

:22:36.:22:42.

happening where you live. E-mail me at this address.

:22:42.:22:46.

They say moving house is as stressful as it gets. Don't believe

:22:46.:22:50.

a word of it. Moving sharks in a lorry from Weymouth to Windsor is

:22:50.:22:56.

as bad as it gets. You have to be as cool as a sea cucumber.

:22:56.:23:01.

This ambitious project has been two years in the planning. The aim is

:23:01.:23:04.

to fill this massive aquarium with over 50 species of shark, ray and

:23:04.:23:10.

tropical fish. All of them are coming from Weymouth. The man in

:23:10.:23:15.

charge of welcoming the new arrivals will be Iain Grieve.

:23:15.:23:18.

we're doing here is just checking all of the levels to make sure that

:23:18.:23:22.

when the fish come, there is enough water, so we can move the water

:23:22.:23:26.

from the truck into the aquarium. Everything looks OK. We're good to

:23:26.:23:30.

go for the fish transport. Meanwhile, in Weymouth, where some

:23:30.:23:33.

of the fish have been bred, preparations for the moves are

:23:33.:23:36.

under way. It is Chris Brown's job to make sure all the sharks are

:23:37.:23:42.

ready and fit for travelling. Is there a risk moving them? There

:23:42.:23:46.

is always a risk moving animals. It is the most stressful time for them.

:23:46.:23:49.

We have had years of experience of this and we really know how to

:23:49.:23:54.

reduce the stress levels to the animals. This lot have not been fed

:23:54.:23:57.

for a while, have they? Not for three days. This is very important.

:23:57.:24:01.

If you move an animal once they have just been fed, they might be

:24:01.:24:04.

sick into into the tank or produce waste, so the water will get dirty.

:24:04.:24:09.

This would affect the animal. Altogether, they will be moving

:24:09.:24:16.

over 250 fish tomorrow, including a dozen sharks and 25 stingrays. It's

:24:17.:24:21.

all about timing, isn't it? Once the clock starts ticking, that's it.

:24:21.:24:24.

Once we move the first fish and its transport container, for that

:24:24.:24:27.

animal, it is a race against time to get it to the aquarium as

:24:27.:24:35.

quickly as possible. It is 5:05am. The trucks are here.

:24:35.:24:40.

The clock has started to tick. The sharks are about to be moved.

:24:40.:24:44.

The team is split into two, with one half having to pack over 200 of

:24:44.:24:53.

the smaller fish and the others are moving the rays and the sharks.

:24:53.:24:57.

How's it going? Yes, it's going well. I'm getting very wet. Which

:24:57.:25:05.

is normal. Lots of pressure. don't want to be the ones letting

:25:05.:25:11.

the side down. So pack like mad men for the next couple of hours.

:25:11.:25:14.

It is essential that everybody keeps to time so the fish do not

:25:14.:25:17.

stay too long in the transport tanks.

:25:17.:25:21.

Just watch your foot there. These are the ones with the stings, so we

:25:21.:25:25.

have to be careful where they are. That is why we're using long-

:25:25.:25:29.

handled nets. The team has kept to their timing

:25:29.:25:39.
:25:39.:25:40.

and the fully loaded truck is Ethically, I strongly disagree with

:25:40.:25:45.

animal circuses and that side of things. I certainly wouldn't have

:25:45.:25:49.

any of our animals performing tricks. That is the opposite way to

:25:49.:25:53.

the way we want to go. Lots of people don't ever get the chance to

:25:53.:25:56.

travel abroad or to go scuba-diving to see some of these wonderful

:25:56.:25:58.

creatures and to see what is happening underwater. We're

:25:58.:26:01.

bringing that to the UK so that the children can actually experience

:26:01.:26:11.
:26:11.:26:27.

I am hoping for some nice energised rays swimming round. Perfect. Very

:26:27.:26:37.
:26:37.:26:42.

We're just going to try and send them off out into the main body of

:26:42.:26:46.

the tanks so they have lots of space to swim round and orientate

:26:46.:26:50.

themselves. As they are introduced, you are watching their behaviour to

:26:50.:26:54.

make sure everything is good. What you looking for? It is important

:26:54.:26:57.

that when we move them from the lorry to the tank, that is their

:26:57.:27:01.

highest stress point. We hold them still so they have a chance to get

:27:01.:27:05.

used to their surroundings but be in the safe confines of the net.

:27:05.:27:09.

Once they have calmed down a bit, we release them. We want release

:27:10.:27:14.

them so they go straight into the main body of the tank. How long

:27:14.:27:17.

before they are really comfortable in their new surroundings?

:27:17.:27:20.

ideal thing to tell you is really when they start feeding. That is

:27:20.:27:24.

when they are truly happy in their home and feel relaxed enough to go

:27:24.:27:31.

on the feed. That would take two or three days, really. Lovely.

:27:31.:27:34.

So we're kind of halfway through the unloading now. Rays and sharks

:27:35.:27:38.

and smaller fish have all gone into the tank. It is just making sure

:27:38.:27:48.
:27:48.:27:56.

that they're happy in their new This is it, Chris. It will be very

:27:56.:28:02.

exciting see this one swim off into its new home. The final one.

:28:02.:28:05.

fact that they are feeding so early, does that mean that they're quite

:28:05.:28:08.

settled? Yeah, it means they are relaxed enough to feed. Sometimes,

:28:08.:28:11.

they won't feed for three or four days after transport. This shows

:28:11.:28:14.

that they have settled straight away, which is just the kind of

:28:14.:28:21.

news I want to hear. A perfect end for you? Absolutely fantastic.

:28:21.:28:25.

And I bet they all taste delicious with chips. That's it for tonight.

:28:25.:28:30.

I will see you next week. We ask what would you do if squatters

:28:30.:28:40.
:28:40.:28:40.

invaded your home. It that they have changed the locks and they are

:28:40.:28:45.

Will the South lose its specialist child heart unit? Jon Cuthill looks at what's at stake if it goes. We test the idea of the 'The Big Society' with people living in a tower block, and an operation to move hundreds of fish and sharks from an aquarium to a new home.


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