The latest news, sport, weather and features from the South of England.
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The top stories this evening. Helping roughly this get off the
shelter. A 15% rise in council tax shelter. A 15% rise in council tax
being put to the vote. And drama only water as a fire breaks out on
board a very. -- ferry. Government figures on homelessness
show the numbers of people sleeping rough have more than doubled
in the last six years. In times of austerity services
which support some of those However in Hampshire,
one council has taken the initiative to try to reduce the number
of people sleeping rough. Basingstoke has just won government
funding for specialist psychologists to work with homeless people -
to try to turn their lives around. Pete has been sleeping rough
in Basingstoke for as long as he can He will use the emergency night
shelter that's been provided by It is getting the rough
sleepers in, offering them Crowdfunding helped
raise ?14,000 to open a For the volunteers, it
has become obvious many rough sleepers have
mental health problems. We can start to focus
in on the mental health, getting that sorted,
then that in ables them and
equips them to move on. The Government has awarded
Basingstoke ?250,000 to fund specialist psychologists to work
with homeless people over To get someone to the point
where they can live independently support is needed and we know
there are real issues around mental health support at the moment,
so they need If help was offered,
with you take it? I won't say I would,
I'd say probably. Figures show that the number
of rough sleepers rose to 26, but the council,
health services and volunteers despite financial
pressures they are facing. We can cross to Steve now who is out
in Southampton at a hostel for young, Ross leaders. Steve. -- rough
sleepers. Yes, the Society of St James
runs a couple of night shelters here in Southampton
and another in Portsmouth. And on a freezing night like this
they can be life savers. But they have been under
massive financial pressure. Trevor Pickup from
the society is with me. What numbers are we seeing? Yes,
quite a lot. Resources are not an offer us to resolve this issue. Was
unique? Funding. We would like more property as well. We need to address
health issues, mental health issues, health issues, mental health issues,
to address it in the first place. In Basingstoke they're going to get
psychologists to work with rough sleepers -
is that going to be Yes, I think that is a good idea.
We've tried ourselves a number of years ago. Lots people really rather
have got underlying issues that they have experienced, traumatic
childhood and so on. Psychological help is very useful.
What is your message to the government?
A lot of emphasis on Brexit and a union American president. This is
not a knot and will issue, I'm sure you want them to address it as well.
They just need more property. We need specialist intervention from
people who have underlying issues to help address the problems that they
are facing. Thank you very much indeed. From the apostle here in
Lambton, back to uni should give. -- from the possible here, back to you
in the studio. Across the south, council budgets
are being set for the coming year, and many local authorities
are facing difficult choices. In Surrey, residents
are being asked if they're prepared to have their council tax put up
by fifteen percent. The Conservative controlled county
council is going to hold It says it needs the extra
money because of the A short while ago I spoke
with our reporter Tim Yes, Surrey County Council
has to make savings of about ?21 million,
which could mean an average of ?190 multiple sclerosis and is in a care
home in Thames Ditton Surrey. This afternoon, she told me how
she'd used up all her savings and has now recently got
help from Surrey County Council. It costs ?6,000 per
month to care for her. I think the people of Surrey do need
to dig into their pockets, as much as it pains me
to come a begging bowl and I don't like to do so,
but I'm doing it on behalf of all the disabled and
vulnerable people in Surrey. No income tax rise looks
to be planned by the Government at the moment but,
of course, Surrey is now proposing this quite dramatic
measure on council tax. What do the people in Thames Ditton
didn't think about that? Social care is very important
and I think, possibly, we should So, Tim, this is quite a decision
for a council to take, isn't it? It's only happened once before that
a council, Bedfordshire, has held a referendum
about a council tax A lot of pressure on new
leader, David Hodge. Will they trust me,
and the Conservative council, to make this
hugely difficult decision? Will they trust us and put
their confidence in us? Because we cannot do
anything else about it. The Government haven't
got money, it will not The Government, of course,
says it is providing some instant relief, making ?900 million
available across the country. A lot of people far
beyond Surrey will be Meanwhile, County councillors
in West Sussex have been trying to decide how to close a 41 million
pound hole in next year's budget. The plan is to raise council tax
by nearly 4% and cut spending by almost ?17 million,
though the council says many of the cuts are being
offset by other measures. Nine million pounds will also be
taken from the council's reserves. An investigation's underway
into the cause of a fire 50 passengers were on board
when a fire broke out on the bridge of this morning's nine o'clock
Wightlink crossing, It was extinguished within minutes,
before continuing into dock. I didn't see it actually
start, but soon after. It was quite a small fire and then,
within a few seconds, there was 18 feet of flames and huge
black smoke next to it. A third day of talks between
Southern and Aflef will be underway tomorrow. The two sides are said to
have made good progress. They are nanograms union Mill stole held its
strike on Monday. -- Aslef. -- RMT Union.
Plans for a controversial beach-front tower block have been
passed by councillors in Worthing tonight.
This 21-storey building on the Aquarena site
was rejected last year but developers returned
with proposals for a 15-storey building with 141
Opponents reject claims it'll regenerate the area saying its too
high and will set a precedent for other seafront sites.
Gosport sailor Alex Thomson has had to settle for second
in the Vendee Globe round the world yacht race.
The Frenchman Armel Le Cleach crossed the finish line off
the coast of France just before four o'clock this afternoon.
Just over 100 nautical miles ahead of Thomson,
who had pushed him all the way in his bid to become the first
Very happy for him, because he did a very good race.
It was very, very difficult with him.
I'm very happy to win and it's the best...
That's all from the South Today news team this evening.
We're back tomorrow with bulletins in BBC Breakfast and there's more
It'll be another cold and frosty night to come with
perhaps some freezing fog patches in the usual prone spots.
During the early hours of the morning, the
Temperatures will drop away to minus figures
in the countryside and even in our towns and cities.
low in the countryside of minus seven Celsius,
Cold and frosty with perhaps some freezing fog patches
for areas north of Berkshire, which may linger through the morning.
Otherwise, it's another glorious day.
Barely a cloud in the sky and, as a result, temperatures will
There will be a good deal of sunshine on offer.
Tomorrow night, once again, another widespread frost,
particularly widespread, coastal counties.
Cloud thinking southward and a high from the west, during the
Saturday really is an east-west split.
The further east you are, the more sunshine.
The further south and west you are, more cloud.
But there are sunny spells in between.
more cloudy day with some bright and sunny
spells here and there, but do
enjoy the sunshine there tomorrow and Saturday.
Those days will start on a frosty note.
looks as though we can, a bit more cloud on Sunday. Now the national
picture. Good evening, it will gradually get
colder in the UK in the next few days, something we don't have to
worry about in Australia at this time of year. Of course it's the
Australian tennis open at the moment and there's a big storm moving
through Melbourne at the moment. Hopefully it will have cleared
through by the time of Andy Murray's match. We have high withers and
light winds and some interesting contrasts despite things being very
slow moving, with the sunshine to the south of the weather zone but
stuck underneath the weather zone, it's been another miserably grey
day. No doubt quite dreary with some patches of drizzle. This is how it
looked in Staffordshire, under the weather front. In the sunshine,
despite the Frosty start, a sparkling day and a fantastic sunset
here in the Isle of Wight. Some areas, in parts of Northern Ireland
that haven't seen much sunshine this week, actually saw