12/01/2017 Channel Islands News


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Welcome to BBC Channel Islands on Thursday 12th January.


Millions of pounds wasted - damning criticism of the now


suspended Jersey Innovation Fund, which used public money


There has been a complete incompetence in administration here.


It has simply not been followed. There are no key set performance


indicators to it even measure the company.


Booming bus use - how incentives have helped turn around public


Flying high - the soaring numbers of birds no longer under threat.


And not only is it blowing a gale across the islands right now, but


colder air is following this area of rain and some of the showers


overnight are likely to turn increasingly wintry. More details


from me later in the programme. Good evening.


I'm Alison Moss. A damning report's been published


into a States of Jersey fund that's potentially lost millions of pounds


of taxpayers' money. According to the report,


the Jersey Innovation Fund, which has now been suspended,


may have been linked The Chief Minister says he's shocked


and angry at the way We'll be hearing from him live


in a moment, but first This is one of the companies


that got a loan from But the start-up software firm


'logfiller' never paid back It's emerged six of the seven


companies given loans totalling ?2 million of taxpayers'


money are in arrears. Now the idea of the


Jersey Innovation Fund, when it was set up under


the Economic Development Department four years ago, was to support


new business ideas. But a report has highlighted serious


failings in how it was run. One of those running


it was chief executive You may remember him


from the scandal around business Well, last week, he resigned,


with six months' pay - that's ?70,000 - and hasn't


responded to our calls Elsewhere in the document,


the author also hints at criminal links to the fund,


saying: The fund will be investigated


by the Public Accounts Committee, In my time as chairman of public


accounts and in my time as a politician, this is the worst


I've seen. There's been a complete absence


of competent administration here, the terms of reference agreed


by the States have There are no set key performance


indicators to even measure the companies that were lent these


sums, so that really really is very disappointing


and quite distressing. Joining me in the studio now


is the Chief Minister, Chairman of the Public Accounts


Committee was calling it disappointing. This report isn't


easy reading. The criticism says is not fit for purpose, more should


have been done to protect public money. This was ?5 million worth of


taxpayers money, the innovation fund. Has it been a disaster? The


report is damning. It shows a shocking failure in management, in


governance, in administration. So perhaps that is a word that could be


used. Only 2 million of the 5 million has been spent, there has


been no new loans during 2015. I was angered and shot and find it


completely unacceptable when I read the report. Who do you blame? The


report is clear. It deals with feelings of administration, but I am


not sufficiently happy with that. As the chief executive should also look


to see whether their discipline measures taken. He also reviewing


the other grant funded organisations to make sure these feelings are not


replicated there. On top of that, this is the report of that


administration, but I want to make sure the politicians involved have


not added to or been involved in the conclusions that the report says and


I'm instigating an investigation that will be without fear or favour


and if it says action should be taken, action will be taken. Can the


public trust this Government with their money? Is said this evening,


there are questions that need to be asked and until we have the answers


to those questions, I can't be satisfied that the Government and


management is in place when it comes to money being given to third


parties and it is only this extra piece of work that will tell us


whether these feelings are more widespread and will rebuild trust.


The idea of an innovation fund is very good for local entrepreneurs.


Do you imagine in the future a different type of innovation fund


could exist? The report was clear. The innovation fund is a good idea,


it's just the management of it that failed. There are ?3 million roughly


left in the innovation fund, we will need to think about how we could


apply that, perhaps in smaller amounts to different modes of


companies, that will be a decision for the States to make in due


course. Innovation is important. It's important our economy innovates


and diversifies and this fund was supposed to be helping that happen.


Chief Minister, thank you for joining us tonight. Thank you.


An internal investigation has been launched by Guernsey's bus operator


after footage shared on social media appears to show one


of its fleet driving in a potentially dangerous way.


The bus is seen drifting into the centre of the road


and forcing oncoming vehicles to mount the pavement.


It comes on the same day that government figures reveal


the number of passengers using the service has


Love them or loathe them - Guernsey's buses are proving


increasingly popular with the travelling public.


More than 1.65 million people made use of the bus service last year,


the highest recorded figure since records began.


Well, it's ?1 to anywhere in the island, which certainly


helps, but how have they managed to get so many passengers


Well, we're being told that it's because students now


have free transport, there's been the introduction


of a new bus app, and also a greater use of smart cards which has made it


But not everything is running smoothly on the buses.


This footage shared on social media has resulted in an internal


investigation being launched by CT Plus.


We have a contract with CT Plus, and the contract does not deal


with terms and conditions or how the drivers happen to drive,


but we clearly would show our disapproval or communicate with CT


Plus, if we felt that an incident was inappropriate.


But the buses are wide, we know that and I think sometimes


for the newer drivers to the island who drive in cities,


rather than in small, what were once cart tracks,


then it takes them some time to acclimatise.


CT Plus has declined to comment further while


the investigation is ongoing, but elsewhere it's


And, these buses, which have caused so much controversy are set


to be replaced by these, shorter and narrower ones,


with phase one of that plan due to happen by May.


Sark Vineyards has announced the closure of its business in Sark.


Sark Estate Management, owned by the Barclay Brothers,


say they have "invested millions of pounds in the project,


but they now fail to see any future in Sark or its economy."


The company says in a statement the authorities in Sark "have


obstructed the vineyards' progress throughout".


Guernsey's newest politician has been elected unopposed as a member


of the Committee for Education, Sport and Culture.


Deputy Neil Inder was nominated and seconded


by the President and Vice President of the Committee.


He replaces Marc Leadbeater, who resigned from the committee last


month, when Emilie Yerby wrote to members announcing her intention


Unemployment in Jersey fell to its lowest for


1,280 people were registered as looking for work -


more than 100 fewer than the same time the previous year.


The drop is being put down to the success of the States Back


to Work scheme and support from local businesses.


It's a sight many of us take for granted -


watching wild birds like chaffinches and skylarks soar through our skies.


But for the past few years, several of these species


Now, thanks to a scheme run by researchers,


there's been a huge increase in the number of wild farmland


birds in the island, as Jessica Banham reports.


Ready to take flight. These wild birds have spent the winter growing


stronger on seeds. Around 50 fields across the island have been planted


with crops to make sure it endangered species have another food


to survive the coldest months of the year. The species are declining


across Europe and the reason is for changes in farming practices,


climate change and destruction of their habitats. What do we had in


the field here? In this field, these plans have seeds that the birds will


eat straightaway from, like mustard, millet and sunflowers, which you can


see they have been perched on top and feeding from here from this


position because all the little empty shells are still here. As well


as using this field to feed the birds, researchers sometimes catch


them. They picked one of these small rings on their legs which has a


unique number, then they can track their movements. Last winter, there


were almost 14,000 more birds than the year before, an increase of 54%.


Since the winter of 2013, there's been an even bigger increase of more


than 500%. It costs around ?100 to cover an area the size of a football


pitch in seeds. That cost is met by private donations, often from


farmers taking part in the scheme. Sign that it's giving something back


to the environment and the island because we are not just all about


growing potatoes and making money. Therefore, we want to be seen as


doing what is right. Researchers haven't finished painting the birds


spotted this winter but believe numbers are still growing.


Ultimately, they hope to take species like these of the endangered


list forever. The weather's getting pretty wild


in the Channel Islands. Here's the scene in Jersey


a little earlier today. Several roads


in Jersey were closed or blocked, including access


to Fort Regent Leisure Centre. Condor's cancelled its fast ferries


to France and England for the next two days


and Jersey Met Department has issued the highest level of storm warning,


while honorary police are urging David Braine can tell us


exactly what's in store. It's going to be a tricky night for


people tonight. It is, yes. Not only have we got these really strong


gusts of wind which I is damaging, we've also got some very cold air


that is flooding dying from the Arctic. It is a bitter winter for us


tomorrow. There will be more sunshine than we've seen today, that


is good news. There is also likely to be wintry showers around and some


of the showers will be with his overnight tonight. Why is it so


windy and cold? The air is coming from the Arctic. There are several


areas of low pressure coming down to the UK across the Channel and moving


into northern France. This one in particular is giving us these really


strong gusts of wind. It will eventually move away. Once we lose


that area of low pressure, we've still got a gusty and strong


north-westerly breeze. We will also find trapped within the flow several


lines of showers which will come tonight, some tomorrow. Those


showers are increasingly likely to turn to sleet or hail at times, snow


possible across the islands, mainly in the showers. That is the setup.


Very windy conditions overnight tonight and there is a warning


issued by the Jersey Met Office because of the concern about the


strength of the wind. It's going to be pretty cold as well. Temperatures


to start the day tomorrow between zero and plus two. If you throw in


the strength of wind with those kind of temperatures, with the wind


chill, it will feel more like -2 minus three. A bitterly cold day,


one line of wintry showers leases first thing in the morning then


there is a chance of a shower it through the rest of the day and


temperatures really struggling. It's going to feel colder than that


because it's still very blustery. The winds will ease a little bit in


the second half of the day. Here are our times of high water. Big tides


as well because we are a full moon and for those heading out to sea,


some very, very difficult conditions agency. Big waves. Stormy conditions


for the servers. The winds north westerly, wintry showers, the good


news is it's less windy and warmer by the weekend.


We will try and keep you updated with all the latest travel details


on social media. I'll be back with your


headlines at eight. Plymouth City Council has suspended


work on its road improvement scheme in Plymouth after more white


phosphorous grenades were found on the site in Tavistock road. Ten


World War II grenade grenades were found and detonated on Tuesday by a


bomb disposal team. An extra 14 grenades were found and removed


today. A court has ordered a psychiatric


assessment on a Devon man charged with possessing an explosive


substance for an unlawful purpose. Timothy Holman, who's 41


and from Osborne Road in Ilfracombe, was arrested after a major police


operation in the town last month. A 31-year-old woman has died


after a crash involving a tractor and trailer near Redruth.


A one-year-old baby in the car survived,


suffering only minor injuries. It happened on the A30 near


the Avers roundabout last night. The road was closed


for around eight hours. Three men had been charged with


murder after a man's body was found in St Austell. 31-year-old Stephen


bowl was found with knife wounds in a part in Truro road yesterday


morning. Three local men all aged in their 20s will appear at Bodmin


Magistrates' Court tomorrow. A couple from North Devon say


they've been struggling to keep warm after a new eco-heating system broke


down 39 times in the last 21 months. Robert Smith's oil-fired system


was removed by social landlords Westward housing group and replaced


by one that uses wood pellets. Filling up the wood pellet


boiler is something He has also got used to it breaking


down time and time and time again. Right from the start,


it's just been a disaster and we are now on the 39th breakdown


in 21 months. As a tenant, I am


relying on the landlord to give me reliable,


adequate heating, which is their job.


Which they have not done. Robert and his partner,


Brian Ridgway, rent their house through social landlord,


Westward Housing Group. Brian is disabled and


has had five strokes. I have to keep warm in whatever room


I am in and it is no good me getting cold because I know I am


going to end up straight This room already had


an electric fire. The couple were also given extra


electric radiators and money I'm very disappointed the way this


has had to drag on for so long. I contacted Westward initially well


before Christmas about this These are two elderly


gentlemen, one is disabled It is highly unsatisfactory the way


they have been treated. Westward Housing Group has


apologised and has promised to reinstall oil fired heating


as soon as possible. It says of 75 similar


systems that were put in, in other properties,


only three have had Manufacturers Warmflow say -


we have established that there have been issues with the whole heating


system in this house, When our wood pellet boiler


is correctly installed, commissioned, properly maintained


and operated by the householder, using the correct fuel,


these issues do not occur. Installers Anesco


declined to comment. But Robert Smith says he has been


using the boiler as instructed, so is he confident things


will finally be sorted out? Until I see engineers here,


putting the new system in, I still have got no confidence


it is going to happen. A new lifeboat's been


launched in Devon today - we'll meet the woman


who paid for it. And after the rain,


sleet and some snow, the main problem for us tonight


is the risk of ice, especially first thing


tomorrow morning. More details from me


later in the programme. A book created and funded by parents


in Cornwall to prepare children for primary school has been


so successful, it's gone global. are being sent to every three-


and four-year-old in the county. You may remember we featured


the picture book on Spotlight last year - it includes children


with Down's Syndrome and it's been so powerful the creators have had


enquiries from as far away Emma Thomasson has been to meet Noah


- one of the stars of the book. And you need to do some windows.


Can you do some windows? Noah sat on Miss Elliott's chair


because no one wanted to pretend to be the teacher.


It felt a bit giggly. He likes running around


and he falls over a lot. And we play on the whiteboard


with him and we take turns. Not one of Noah's classmates


I spoke to talked about him And that is exactly the point


the parents who created the book that he is featured


in want to get across. Instantly, I pick out similarities


rather than differences. Children will say, oh, I read that


book, or we have that at home. Several comments into


the conversation, then it might appear, oh,


that child, why does he look like that?


Why has he got those in his ears? And that is really refreshing for us


and encouraging because we know that children of that age,


they haven't really formed any hard Today, she is working


with Vicky who is another of the volunteers who have produced


and financed the book. It is being sent every


to childminder, nursery and preschool in Cornwall over


the next four years. And news about the book


is spreading around the world, thanks to celebrities turning


to social media. They include the Poldark cast,


Miranda Hart and a whole host And that kind of support


is something they could only have dreamt of when they started


producing the second in the series of books


from their kitchen table office. They are now being distributed


around the world with one of the biggest orders


in North Carolina in the US, where they are being included


in welcome bags to parents They are like any other child


and they should be given the same thing that you when I had


when we were little babies. So, how do you feel about Noah


being in the book and it being seen potentially all around the world?


It's amazing. It speaks a thousand words,


the pictures, just details, children going about everyday school life.


And it's very, very... Noah, can you show me


where you are again, in the book? Where you are in the book?


There! I'm not sure if Noah feels quite


the same awe as Mum... He has the more pressing issue


of getting back to play No has got far better things to do!


-- Noah. Lifeboats are a familiar sight


around our coast and today Exmouth took delivery


of a new inshore lifeboat. The current D-class vessel has


reached the end of its busy It's been called out more


than 600 times and rescued Spoligtht's Rebecca Wills


was there to see the end of one era It was out with the old at


Exmouth Lifeboat Station today... The inshore lifeboat,


the George Bearman, taking to the water for the final time


as it was retired after ten years' It's been a decade in which the


D-class vessel has been called out 614 times,


rescued 466 people, 28 Also a D-class vessel


and also bearing George And getting a prime seat


to watch the new inshore lifeboat enter service was George's


granddaughter, Pauline. It was her donation


which provided by the old As they both came in towards


the shore, I was so proud, Sad also, seeing the first


one on its last trip. But hopefully, this one


will give just as good George Bearman was a


coastguard in Norfolk. He was just 38 when he


lost his life at sea in It is that family tragedy


which prompted Pauline to support My father never knew his father


because he was only I just wish that he had


lived to see what I've done with the money


that A fantastic legacy.


Yes, absolutely. The D-class boat is considered


the workhorse of the RNLI, so the The old boat has given ten years


of really good service, hard service here.


It is quite a busy station. So the new boat should


seamlessly take over as it has this morning


and give equally as good service


over the next ten years. It will be officially


named in May when hopefully, champagne, rather


than rain, will cover the bow. Plenty of rain in Exmouth earlier


today, as we have seen on the programme tonight, some of the rain


has turned to snow in places so let's get the latest from David.


Some snow falling, mainly above 300 metres, about 1000 feet. But even at


lower levels, some of the showers and it could feel quite wintry. A


bit of a problem with a risk of ice developing, the temperatures have


fallen and they will continue to fall overnight. You will really need


to wrap up warmly. Probably the coldest feeling day we have had so


far this winter. Some wintry showers dotted around as well. Some quite


heavy. Overnight tonight, all of the rain we have seen on some of the


sleet and snow on higher ground, we have a risk of ice which continues


through the night and for a good part of tomorrow morning. Stay tuned


across BBC local radio for updates. It isn't just the cold. The snow on


the ice and the wintry showers. It is also very windy at the moment and


the strength of wind is also of some concern because we have some pretty


high tides tonight. Some coastal flood alerts in force across the


North Cornwall and Devon coast. Winds straight from the Arctic and


trapped within it, several lines showers which could affect this


during the day tomorrow. Saturday, a little bit less windy. A little


quieter. Still a bit fraught because a weather front is trapped in


amongst all that which could produce some sleet or even some snow over


higher ground. A definite change on Sunday to less cold air. Even the


possibility of some light rain or drizzle. Temperatures will start to


come back up. The wings are bitterly cold. Particularly lively at the


moment, across the more western parts and some really strong gusts.


They stick with us through the day tomorrow and in that flow from the


north-west, leaving Ireland this evening and overnight tonight, some


more wintry showers. Don't expect everything to be clear and cold and


windy overnight, there is a risk of some wintry showers turning up


during the night. Dartmoor, Princetown, there is some snow that


fell earlier today. Not a huge amount but it has left a covering of


snow on the houses and grass and on the mauls and the vehicles. Traffic


moving quite nicely still at the moment but of course it will freeze


overnight tonight so a risk of some ice on untreated roads and


pavements. The main area of rain now moving into south east England is


now giving snow. Even right down to quite low levels. If you are


travelling out of the region, be prepared to run into some snow later


on tonight. A scattering of showers possible through the night. Sleet or


snow mainly over high ground. A bitterly cold north-westerly wind.


The risk of ice existing first thing tomorrow morning. Plenty of winter


sunshine so not all bad news but the risk of a few passing showers


through the day and of us, not very warm. With the wind chill, it will


feel a lot colder. A particularly windy day on the Isles of Scilly.


The times of high water. For our surfers, some pretty lively


condition out at sea. Dangerous along the north coast.


Bulletins at 10:30pm and on your radio station from 6:30am in the


morning when it could be quite tricky. Goodnight.


..and keep telling yourself over and over, "This will end."


Ladies and gentlemen, the bride and groom.


So what if I forgot our poxy anniversary?


Er, I think this year was copper. 14th is poxy.


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