06/01/2017 South Today - Oxford

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The latest news, sport, weather and features from Oxfordshire and the surrounding region.

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The Manor Formula One team, based in Banbury,


is on the brink of collapse after being put into administration.


More than 200 staff work at its headquarters.


But the team now need to find new investors before the 2017


Just like the weather, staff here at the Manor Racing


headquarters in Banbury are likely to be feeling cold and dreary.


The team are officially in administration after failing


It means 212 members of staff are now facing an uncertain future.


Putting a Formula One team into administration is the last


resort anybody would want to do becuase when you put a team


into administration, you essentially void its entry.


What's fasincating today from a legal perspective is that


while the team itself has been put into administration,


the company that owns the entry, we found out, is a separate entry.


It's not the first time this has happened.


Back in 2015 when the team were known as Marussia,


administrators were brought in because of debts


But a new investor was found at the last minute -


that being the current owner Stephen Fitzpatrick -


and the team rebranded under their original name, Manor.


The team have been in talks with new investors but so far, no


It's a big blow for all those involved, with high hopes


for the year ahead, after finishing bottom of the championship


In a statement by the administrators, it said no


redundancies have been made so far and all staff were paid in full up


But of course the ongoing staff situation depends


on if a new investor can be found in the limited time available.


The new F1 season starts in March, but we'll just have to wait and see


A newspaper claim that a major crime unit was investigating the death


of George Michael is false, according to Thames Valley Police.


Tributes have been placed outside the Goring home of the 53-year-old


The Sun newspaper claimed that major crime officers


Thames Valley Police say it s not a force investigation,


but detectives were working on behalf of the county's coroner.


Oxfordshire's secondary schools are seeing some of the highest rates


There are now calls for a review of why the problem's so bad.


If your child misses more than 10% of their lessons during a year,


then they're classed as being "persistently absent".


And that's a big problem in Oxfordshire.


Last year, more than 4,300 students were repeatedly skipping school.


That's nearly 14% of secondary school students in the county,


and it's well above the national average of just over 12%.


In fact, these figures mean Oxfordshire is one of the worst


counties in the country for young people repeatedly skipping school.


John Howson is the Liberal Democrat spokesperson for education


He says he believes some teenagers are being put off school


because of the emphasis on academic subjects.


The concern is that, in that crucial 14-16 age range,


if they lose the desire for education, it can


affect their adult life, their working potential,


their earning potential, and because we want them to stay


in learning until they're 18 now, they won't be able to do


the right sort of courses in the further education sector.


Oxfordshire County Council has pointed out that almost


all our secondaries are now academies - they're


independent from the council, and so responsibility for truancy


But it has said it's written to schools offering to work


with them to address the underlying causes of the problem.


It says if there's not an improvement, then there may be


a case for the Government's regional schools commissioner,


who oversees academies in our area, to step in.


The Blue Rock thrush hasn't been seen in the UK for ten years.


But in recent weeks it's taken up residence in Stow on the Wold


in Gloucestershire - attracting hundreds


And a charity that allows older people to stay in their homes says


Trying to catch a glimpse of history in the making -


these bird-watchers have come from across the country,


all in a bid to see something rarely seen -


It's a big adrenaline rush and it's an even bigger rush


The guy who found this must have been, like, "Yes!"


It's just the seventh confirmed sighting of this bird since 1985.


Bridget Jennings spotted it in her garden just before Christmas,


but didn't initially realise its importance.


It looked like a cross between a blackbird and a starling,


but in the light it was a bluey colour and we weren't


A picture was posted online and since then,


We didn't realise what a furore it was going to cause,


but with all the people coming, it was quite a surprise.


The appearance has even boosted a charity that


These volunteers have been keeping the bird watchers fuelled


with teas and coffees, raising ?2,000 in donations.


This little bird has done so much, cos it's going to help people.


This bit of money he's raised is just incredible.


No-one knows exactly how long the blue rock


Experts believe it could stay until the spring.


For now it's proving a popular attraction in this


Oxford United have announced the death of their all-time


Graham Atkinson passed way yesterday morning aged 73,


He joined United in 1959 alongside his brother Ron,


before going on to make 394 appearances for the club,


The weekend weather is next with Sarah Farmer.


We have further outbrekas of rain in store for the night but the


amount of rain is clearing southwards so we do have drier,


albeit murky conditions following on benhind it.


We will see some patchy hill fog and drizzle.


Milder temperatures than last night with temperatures down to


A gloomy and grey start to the day for Saturday with some hill fog


lingering and patchy drizzle at first.


Quite a cloudy day and there may be one or


two spots of rain here and there and a few breaks


Temperatures up to nine or 10 degrees.


Sunday looks to be another day which will be largely


A breezy start to Monday with rain arriving later.


Good evening. The weather has been turning milder and also cloudier


through the course of the day. We did see some clear spells moving in


from the North will stop this was the sunset, captured in Dundee. Some


clear spells as we headed through the course of the afternoon into the


evening. Really, through the weekend, wiki with a similar theme.


Much milder than it has been. A lot of cloud around in general, but for


most of us think. Dry. Not dry everywhere at the moment,


particularly across central and southern parts of England and Wales.


We have a lot of cloud, bringing outbreaks of light rain and drizzle.


The patchy rain will ease away slowly towards the south through


tonight and further north across the country, drier conditions. Wherever


you are, it's pretty cloudy. Mostly frost free to start the weekend, but


there could be frost across the