18/01/2017 South Today


18/01/2017

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Hello and welcome to South Today, I'm Jo Kent.

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Fighting on the home front - service families say they're not

:00:07.:00:11.

being listened to when it comes to complaints about

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A plea for better funded policing - as a force says it's done

:00:15.:00:18.

Three-year-old Marla's delight with her prosthetic

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The armed services covenant says accommodation provided to military

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families should be "of good quality, affordable, and suitably located."

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Yet tonight, we can reveal that service personnel

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and their families across the South, are living in damp

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The firm in charge of maintaining the homes,

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Carillion Amey, received more than 1300

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That's an increase of nearly 50% on the same month the previous year.

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The MoD has retained more than ?4 million of payments

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to Carillion Amey due to performance failings.

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Six months ago, the firm was threatened with losing

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its multi-million pound contract unless things improved.

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The Public Accounts Committee says they have - but that's not

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the experience of residents, as Lewis Coombes reports.

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It's the battle that's closer to home.

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Military families fighting for an acceptable standard

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These are just some of the pictures sent to BBC South.

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Kim is married to an RAF pilot based in Hampshire.

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After 13 years, he's decided to leave his job,

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partly due to the state of military housing.

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A small leak from their boiler resulted in their lounge ceiling

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being replaced as it took nine months to fix what was initially

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Kim was heavily pregnant and recently diagnosed with cancer.

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I just don't know what happens between the people being called

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The process doesn't seem to work, the administration or the computer

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It did affect my health cos I was just so stressed about it

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and I was so focused about it and I felt so helpless.

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Carillion Amey maintains 47,000 homes in a five year contract

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BBC South has been inundated with families on e-mail talking

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about their experiences, but unwilling to do so on camera

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over fears of the consequences it could have on their jobs.

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It includes a soldier of 22 years who's weighing up whether to leave

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the military because he's embarrassed about the standard

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of accommodation he's providing his family.

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MoD figures show the average rent fo an unfurnished three bedroom service

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It's subsidised to help keep forces mobile, but families feel more

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It doesn't seem like we're important enough to care about making

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We expect our homes to be up to standard and then it

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Carillion Amey has apologised to Kim and insists it is "working hard

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for service personnel and their families and

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focusing on how they can improve things further.

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In a statement the MOD said, "it will absolutely not hesitate to take

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Well, Caroline Dineage is the MP for Gosport who's taken up the issue

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I spoke to her earlier tonight and asked what conditions she'd come

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across in military homes she'd visited.

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Everything from pet infestations to damp, to

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We also had massive problems with just the way

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in which the complaints were dealt with, getting through to the right

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When the complaints were dealt with, people

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taking time off work to be there when workmen came out and the

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workmen never turning up, consistently, day after day.

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You know, a lot of different things like that.

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And what effect does it have on those families?

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Well, it can have a devastating effect.

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What you have to remember is these families are

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also, at the same time as going about their daily lives

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as normal residents, they're are also having to deal

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with the additional pressures of a partner

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of husband, wife, away, maybe at sea, for months on end.

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Often bringing up small children alone and often away

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from their own family networks and support networks.

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So, what could be a small domestic problem with a

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house, a small complaint, can feel like a really big issue.

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You say you've seen some improvement, but we're

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hearing things are still bad for some families.

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Ha the governments being tough enough on Carillion Amey?

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I think we have seen, spoken to a lot of the Government

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ministers about this because we were in position

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previously, like a lot of MPs, where we had to make every

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complaint by the ministry, which was incredibly long and overly

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So, we have spoken to them at length about this and

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they have made very clear to Carillion Amey that,

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if that improves, then they'll take away their contract.

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Give us more money or police services could suffer.

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That's the message from those in charge

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of running Hampshire Police today as they lobby

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The force needs to save ?23 million by 2021.

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For which they've identified ?10 million worth of savings.

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The Chief Constable and the Police and Crime Commissioner

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claim they've already made all the savings they can and they're

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a victim of the national police funding formula.

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Our Home Affairs Correspondent, Emma Vardy, reports.

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The thin blue line is being stretched ever more thinly.

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In Hampshire, the force has lost hundreds of officer posts in

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recent years and it seemed a specialist

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than 30 police stations are said to have been

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I am concerned because, if I wasn't concerned,

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What we do know is it's a great police force and we have

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We are a really efficient constabulary.

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Today is about securing our financial future.

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Hampshire says it is around 25% underfunded compared with other

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forces, getting less money for policing.

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But the Government is changing the way it calculates how

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That's why Hampshire is making its case now.

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In a number of places around Hampshire, police have moved out of

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the traditional police stations and into shared buildings with the

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council and Fire Service, like here in Southampton Civic Centre.

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But the force says it got out all the savings that can and they

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The current national funding formula which is

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two thirds of my money is not fit for purpose.

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There is a process at the moment are updated and I'm

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giving the evidence to the Minister to nature we get the funding

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nationally and they are funding locally.

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The Home Office said today it believes there

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is no question the police still have the resources

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to do their important work, but will be considering

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Hampshire's case and that of other forces in the coming months.

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The Conservatives have taken control of Isle of Wight Council tonight.

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It follows the resignation of the Independent leader

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Jonathan Bacon and Steve Stubbings stepped down

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in protest at the impact of Government cuts -

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and claimed that politics and ego were being put before the concerns

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This evening, Tory councillor Dave Stewart was voted

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in as the new leader, ahead of another

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A girl from Newbury who was born without a left hand has had one

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Three year-old Marla Trigwell's new hand was made

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by members of a community club who work on technical projects.

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They used a free online design using materials costing

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It's a boost to her confidence and it's a psychological boost for her.

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So, when she meets people, instead of that,

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You've got the fingers, the palm, the lower arm, the upper arm,

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the connecting pieces, put them together and you can get

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I'm quite proud that this has turned out better than I'd expected

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and it's really changing the lives of young Marla and her family.

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The Gosport sailor Alex Thompson has tonight admitted victory

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in the Vendee Globe round the world race is probably beyond his reach -

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saying it's very likely now that current leader Armel Le Cleac'h

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This evening supporters gathered in the pub in Gosport

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where Thompson's brother is the landlord.

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Friends and family have met at the pub every Wednesday

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since the race started to hear a phone call from Thompson

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This evening, his distance from Le Cleac'h slipped back to 57

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nautical miles but he said he was not giving up

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He's expected to reach the finish in South West France tomorrow.

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Football - and Southampton are through to the next stage

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of the FA Cup after beating Norwich City in their third

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But they left it very late - the match was goalless and looked

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to be heading for extra time - when a goalmouth scramble ended

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in Shane Long getting the ball in the net.

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Saints go on to host Arsenal in the fourth round,

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That's all from the South Today news team this evening.

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We're back tomorrow with bulletins in BBC Breakfast and there's more

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Here with our regional weather forecast is Alexis Green.

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It will be a very cold and frosty night to come

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with perhaps some freezing fog patches in places.

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Last night, we saw a low of -6 Celsius.

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Tonight, in the countryside, perhaps a low of -5 Celsius.

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These are temperatures in our towns and cities.

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So, with light winds, the mist and fog may linger

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A frosty morning, a cold start to the day.

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Lightening up, from the amount of sunshine.

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Slightly more cloud the further north you are.

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Also the further east you are with cloud drifting in.

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Temperatures are reaching a high of 5-7 C.

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It will feel quite chilly in shady places.

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Through the course of Thursday to Friday,

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we are expecting high pressure to remain.

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That's not to say you won't see some bright spells,

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but where the cloud is

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thicker, we could see the odd spot of light rain.

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This cloud lingering over the north of the country

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will slip its way southwards, slowly during Friday, producing the odd

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The brighter spells and best of the sunshine on Friday

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along the south coast and for the Isle of Wight.

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As we head throughto the rest of the week, a frosty start to

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the day tomorrow with a high of six Celsius with light winds.

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Some bright spells and eventually a frosty start on Friday.

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next few days, no great changes over the next few days, more sunshine on

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the way. Despite high-pressure sitting across

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the country so only slow changes in the weather, we have had

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