10/02/2017 Spotlight


The latest news, sport, weather and features from the South West of England.

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Tonight in the South West, increasing anger over


Why should a Devon child be worth that much less than somebody


Critics say a plan to make funding fairer doesn't add up and many


Also tonight - removing eco boilers from social housing.


They're being taken away after elderly tenants struggled


to fill them with sacks of wood pellets.


At this beauty spot in Exeter, a swan has been killed


in what police believe was a deliberate


A new way is needed, you just can't see it!


And the amateur actors hoping that they'll soon be


Headteachers in Devon and Cornwall are writing to parents asking them


to get involved in a campaign to change the way


After years of criticism that children in the South West receive


less money than those elsewhere the Government has introduced


a new way of working out how much each child will get.


Unions say this will actually leave the region more


In Devon, the county council says almost two thirds


Our political reporter Anna Varle has more.


Does anyone remember the difference between the people that sat


on either side of the room when we are having the debate?


It's never too young to get engaged in current affairs.


But this school is amongst hundreds across the region which is taking


politics out of the classroom and direct to Westminster.


In Devon, pupils like me are currently worth ?290 less


To make it fairer, the government is looking at changing


They say we will be better off by a little bit.


What we're trying to do is make sure that every single child,


wherever they're growing up in England gets the same amount


of funding, with then top up in relation to additional needs,


whether it's in relation to deprivation which has been based


on out of date data up until now, or indeed additional funding


But Devon County Council is one local authority which has


And it says far from being better off, 61.9%


Why should a Devon child be worth that much less than somebody


The government's got to do something about it.


Unions claim the formula, coupled with increasing


costs such as inflation, could lead to the region's schools


being ?105 million worse off in the next three years.


Which will result in fewer teachers and larger class sizes.


We've cut right the way back in recent years anyway.


The only thing left to cut unfortunately will be staffing


That's why headteachers across Devon and Cornwall are sending out letters


to parents asking them to get involved and write to their MP.


You can't sit there and say that it's the school's job to do


Your children go over, so you've got a bit of a responsibility


to make sure you support the school your children go to.


The more pressure we put on, hopefully the more


Even Devon's Tory MPs are threatening to oppose


If these proposals are adopted, we're going to have 15


primary schools gaining, 20 losing out, and all the secondary


This is clearly neither fair nor acceptable.


The government says that under this new formula,


schools in Devon, Cornwall, Somerset and Dorset will benefit.


The consultation runs until the 22nd of March,


and it's keen to hear from parents, schools, governors -


Our Political Editor Martyn Oates is here now.


How have we arrived at a situation where Devon is even worse off?


We should be clear that this does vary from one local authority to


another, and from school to school. So Cornwall Council for instance,


says that overall Cornwall would gain from this. But as we heard


there, there will be winners and losers among individual schools. A


similar situation in Somerset. In Devon, which is an authority which


historically has been one of the worst funded in the country, clearly


the council believes overall it will be worse off. As one Devon MP said


recently in Parliament, after all the years of campaigning to change


this, it has ever anticipated that when the changes finally came, Devon


would be worse off. And Devon is far from alone. Looking across the


country, looking across the Commons more particularly, there are lots of


furious MPs who say the outcome for their schools in real areas is less


fair. Is the government likely to change its mind? The rural MPs, tend


to be Conservative MPs, so it is not great for the government to have a


lot of discontented MPs on its own backbenchers. Many of the same MPs


also very angry at the moment about the level of grant that the


government's offering to local authorities, and that'll be signed


off in a couple of weeks. The focus for


a lot of this is something called the rural fair share group, which is


now almost entirely run by MPs from Devon, Cornwall and Somerset. As the


Prime Minister said at premises questions this week, this is still


only a consultation, not the final offer. Over the last few years we


have seen all of these MPs making a fuss about this kind of thing,


threatening rebellions and very often have to say, have been brushed


off, sometimes quite briskly by the government. The question is whether


this time they can be more successful. Thank you very much.


And the debate continues in this weekend's Sunday Politics,


that's at 11 o'clock on Sunday Morning here on BBC One


with guests Peregrine Mears, Sheryl Murray and Gareth Derrick.


A housing association is removing eco boilers from some


of its properties after complaints they were unsuitable for the elderly


The boilers need to be filled with sacks of wood pellets,


but some residents struggled to lift the bags.


The equipment had also broken down repeatedly.


Westward Housing in North Devon says its dealing with


Tony Walker and his wife Jen, who is 68, dread having


But if it runs out, their central heating stops working.


Jen now has a bad back, and says the couple just can't cope with it.


It's not very easy at all, especially if you're


not well or, you know, I suffer with asthma and breathing.


And, you know my husband, he's not very well.


Well, it's not appropriate because we're too old.


We're just too old now to be able to cope with it.


There are around six Wesward Housing tenants who are either disabled,


have limited mobility or are elderly, who have had these


There have also been complaints about them not working properly.


Up the road, tenant Robert Smith's house now has


No one told us what we're going to have to do


No one said, you're going to have to fill it up day or every other


day, and there was no way would have managed to ash it out once a week.


And there was no consultation with us all.


In a statement, Westward Housing told us...


The manufacturer, Warmflow, told us...


Back at the Walkers, and Tony Walker is pretty clear


about what he wants done with his wood pellet boiler.


I don't want it on site, because it's no use to us.


A swan has been killed in Exeter in what police say appears


It's the second swan to have been found dead in the past week.


The news has shocked and angered people who regularly


The birds are a protected species and its' illegal to harm them.


Our Environment Correspondent Adrian Campbell reports.


Exeter's Swans are familiar and popular site, but in recent days


there have been concerns for their welfare after two deaths. On


Wednesday this week, Devon and Cornwall police say the body of a


swan was found close to this footbridge. Exeter City Council have


also told us that on Saturday, the body of a swan was taken to the


offer is not far from here, and it is understood that the swan had been


decapitated. The RSPB says suggestions that the birds may have


been deliberately attacked are disturbing. We don't quite know what


has happened here. These animals can be attacked, obviously by other


creatures, like foxes. But if it is a person that has done this, then


this is a really heinous crime, and it does unfortunately happened to


Swans. They do get attacked. Of course, it is against the law. In


wild birds in the UK are protected under the wildlife countryside act,


so people do see any crimes against bugs, please report it to the police


-- if people do. People who live here say they are concerned. I think


it's sad and disgusting behaviour. However, it is very unusual.


Everyone ranter care about the wildlife, and the majority of people


coexist very well. Defra has been informed about what happened, and


went a's incident has been reported as a crime. Police are appealing for


information from the public. Potholes are the curse


of motorists across the region, as council's struggle to keep up


with the backlog of repairs. In Devon the local authority has


turned to volunteers to help patch up the roads in the first scheme


of its kind. Jenny Kumah has been to see


what progress they're making, but not everyone is happy


with the idea. Ken lives in the village


of Halberton, and he's part of the yellow army


of volunteer road wardens. He's got training and insurance


from the county council, Some people say it's double


taxation because, you know, we pay our council tax,


all this should be done. The trouble is, when the money


won't go round, the money is being spent on childcare


and adult social care, So, maintaining the roads


is an expensive business, especially in Devon,


which has the largest road According to the county council,


it would cost ?750 million to complete the backlog of repairs


and to get the roads This year, the council


got ?45 million from But the council says that it


needs around ?15 million So is the scheme a form


of cheap labour? I mean, we're finding


that the parish councils are coming to us and they're taking pride


in their communities, and they're saying that they would like to come


and help the county council doing The road wardens scheme means


that they are expecting free labour to fill in holes in the road,


dig out the ditches and clean signs, but we're all


paying our council tax. 11 other local councils have shown


interest in the volunteer scheme, It's a big Devon Derby


football match this weekend. Our intrepid sports


reporter has gone to great lengths to catch a glimpse


of the top secret training. And this is how cold


it is going to get tonight, Also, more cloud coming


in from the east. The Devon composer who


wrote the music to one of the most watched -


and poignant films in the country has today been back


to the Teignmouth School that helped Laura Rossi was asked


to compose the soundtrack to the Imperial War Museum's film,


The Battle of the Somme. She's been holding workshops


with music students to help them understand the film ahead


of performances with a live symphony After its release in 1916, The


Battle Of The Somme quickly became a must see film. It remains the


biggest box office success, it was seen by over half the population,


and in the first six weeks it was seen by nearly 20 million people. It


was a box office record which wasn't beaten until Star Wars in 1977. Just


over 100 years on, it is as relevant today as ever. Over an hour and a


quarter of life on the front before and after battle. This film was


before censorship came in, so it is the only footage of the British dead


and wounded to this day. We still don't see any at all. I actually


went to the school long time ago, so I'm from Teignmouth. It is really


great to be back. Ten years ago, Laura was commissioned by the


Imperial War Museum to score the film for its 90th anniversary. A


year after its Centenary, it is now being screened 100 times around the


country. The film screenings are in partnership with the Imperial War


Museum, through the First World War Centenary partnership. Today, Laura


was back at her old school, having a workshop with people. Sometimes,


they might have been in a more high-spirited moment. It isn't


necessary because it's the war that you want to write something very


does present. You want to fit the scenes, and when I was scoring this,


there are busy some winded, but in this team they seem quite happy. So


let us think how we can relate that -- there are obviously some winded.


I was convinced that I'd found my relative who was injured in the


Somme, and the War Museum says that they are inundated people thinking


it is him, but it is probably not him, so I'll keep looking. Will be a


chance people into mass on Sunday to see a screening of the film and here


it with the orchestra at Exeter Cathedral tomorrow evening. In the


cathedral, be absolutely wonderful. You have the have the acoustic, the


space and that whole idea of course with the Cathedral itself. And when


this film was originally made. I think the music at a tremendous


amount. With many people watching the film and perhaps going away from


its thinking what it was about. Though often remember they were


moved by piece of music that appears and is suitable for the picture


didn't. -- for the picture it is in. There are performances of the Battle


of the Somme film with live music at Exeter Cathedral tomorrow


and Teignmouth Pavilions on Sunday. It's time for the sport now,


and Andy's been going to great lengths and heights to find out


about this weekend's Devon derby. Some people are calling this game


the biggest match ever played between Plymouth Argyle and Exeter


City. It's no surprise to hear it's


another sell-out at Home Park with around 15,000 fans


expected tomorrow. Local bragging are always at stake


when these arch rivals meet, but with both sides in the top four


of League Two, they're vying for something far more


valuable in the long And both were playing their cards


very close to their chests. Well, you can tell


this is a big game. We're not even allowed to see


Plymouth Argyle training. And it's not just Argyle:


Exeter City have been just as cagey. And they're the form team


in the whole of the country, 12 games unbeaten, seven wins


in a row and a player whose form in front of goal has seen him break


a record that stood at the club I didn't know until I'd equalled it,


you know, what the record was. So, yeah, there was a bit


of pressure before But yeah, it strange pressure,


because, you know, you can't Despite five goals in five wins


in January, it was his team-mate Ollie Watkins who is named league


two Player of the Month. Yeah, some of the lads give him


a bit of stick, but no, Loads of assists and


a couple of goals. So I don't begrudge him, but I think


scoring every game in a month, It shows you how well we've


done the last month. Good form in January,


great, but it's about And we're all focused on getting


to the end of the season The end of the season,


the chance to relax. Well, the Argyle squad couldn't wait


that long and jetted off to Spain His plan was a bit different


to the one you would think, so it was a lot of training up


there. Just nice to train in


warm weather, really. So does the form Exeter's players


are showing at the moment hold any They're not looking


as dangerous as us. You know, we've got, you know,


a lot of dangerous players, We're obviously ahead of them


in the league for a reason. You know, we'll have to be


playing at it some more. -- we will have to be banging at it


tomorrow. Neither side giving


too much away here. For Argyle, they'll be hoping 13


is unlucky for Exeter is the Grecians look


to extend their unbeaten run. For Exeter, they'll be hoping


Argyle are still in Siesta It's good to see you starting to


branch out with your reporting. I think we'll have to move on quickly


from that! Exeter Chiefs' Jack Nowell


and Tomas Francis will line up against each other tomorrow


when England take on Wales in Cardiff, in round two


of the Six Nations. The 23-year-old Cornishman will be


hoping to add to his nine international tries when he replaces


Jonny May on the wing. While Francis has also been called


up to the Welsh starting line-up. On Sunday, their club team-mates


are back in Premiership action The Chiefs beat them the last time


the two sides met at Sandy Park in the Premiership semifinal


and with Wasps providing five of the England squad,


it looks like a good time to play You know, you can't run away


from it, they've got a few But I think regardless of that,


everyone's where they've got You know, they've got


numerous international So it'll be a tough


game whatever happens. That match kicks off at one o'clock


on Sunday and Radio Devon will have It's a rest weekend


for the Championship, but Plymouth Albion are back


at the Brickfields - Finally, our south-west sports


personality of the year is one of five gold medal winners from Rio to


be named in England team for the upcoming tour to South Africa. In


four Riaz, hopefully another gold medal. Thank you very much, Andy. I


hope you filled in a health and safety form when he climbed the


tree. I'm going to take myself back a few years at home and play hide


and seek. Thanks, Andy. A film self-funded by a group


of amateur actors from Torbay has been short listed for a film


festival in Los Angeles. It's about the life of Mordred -


the illegitimate son of King Arthur. It's been filmed at locations


around the South West Spotlight's Janine


Jansen has the story. One day my father will rule these


lands, as well I. Who needs a multi-million pound budget? This


group of South Devon amateur actors had a dream and just ?3000. And to


act as he would, not to make your own rules. What am I supposed to do


now? Dan Leavy has now impressed Hollywood. Mordred is short listed


for a film festival in Los Angeles -- their film has now impressed. You


don't have to look hard to see it was filmed entirely on location in


Devon and Cornwall. I play Guinevere, and basically when


Mordred arrives, I don't trust him at all and I have a bad feeling


about him. I can't put my finger on it. But I feel like he's going to be


a danger. His idea of what's right isn't necessarily the same as one


as's. He sees it black and white, whilst they will see the shades of


grey. With no grant funding, the South Devon players didn't give up.


Through blood sweat and tears, panicking, we have done car-boot


sales, jumble sales, crowdfunds. Some of us did a burlesque night,


including Mordred. With such a tight budget, everyone mucks in. One of


the most brutal characters also had the job of teaching his colleagues


how to fight. How hard is it to drum up the rage that they need for the


fight? Did it come quite naturally? I think for a lot of people it came


naturally. I think everyone was enjoying it, they were having a good


time. They're already psyched up anyway. It was a very brutal style


of fighting, so, you know, a lot of shield grubs and kicks and very sort


of violent stuff. It's going to look very impressive in the film. Could


the Southwest's answer to Game Of Throwing take these budding actors


all the way to the top? -- Game of Thrones. A lot of violence, and


that's just in the studio! A very chilly weekend.


It is cold outside. You need to cuddle up this weekend because there


is a very cold easterly wind and low temperatures, some of the coldest it


has felt so far this winter. Very chilly. There will be a breeze, and


wintry showers around. So those will leave some snow over high ground. At


the moment, we have high-pressure -- low pressure over Spain and


Portugal, dreadful weather. High-pressure to the north, easterly


winds. One weather front trapped in the flow. It has the can of cloud to


produce snow showers at the moment. They're coming through central parts


of Britain and will travel towards us by the end of the night. The risk


of a few flurries in the wind, certainly for Dorset and Somerset.


By Sunday, the wind is stronger. A similar setup, with a lot of cloud


and potentially more wintry showers, too. We continue to see some pretty


low temperatures over the next couple of days. We can is definitely


a cold one. There are showers and more cloud coming in from the east.


In the second half of the night. Some clear skies, and certainly


frost possible. This was earlier today on the south coast of


Cornwall. Call having some of the best of them join today, will hazy


in places. There is quite thick haze, so reduced visibility because


of that. For all of us, it is the wind that makes it feel bitterly


cold. It will be with us on Saturday and Sunday. The holes you saw in the


cloud are already out there, and that means many of us tonight that


temperatures will fall very quickly indeed. Possibly as low as -2, if


not -3 overnight tonight. For all of us, bitterly cold, in places rusty


start to the day. If you are on the terraces watching that important


football match, need to wrap up warmly -- frosty start. The showers


falling readily as sleet and certainly over high ground, falling


as snow. The amount is likely to be small, but you will notice what is


falling out of the sky. Temperatures no more than three or four degrees.


If you add wind strength, it will feel a lot colder than that. That is


the forecast for the Isles of Scilly. A cold wind and wintry


showers, quite blustery wind across the island here. Times of high


water, here they are for ports and harbours. Portland at 6:47am,


Penzance at 440 7p. If you're brave enough to be at the the show this of


year, these are the temperatures. That us look at the coastal waters


forecast, pretty lively winds. From the East and North East, Force 5-6.


A few showers around, Margaret visibility. There is thick haze at


sea at the moment. It is the wind direction that dictate our


temperature as we move through the next few days. This is Tuesday.


You'll notice we have changed the colour. It has been very blue over


the last couple of days. By Tuesday, there is some yellow. Those at high


temperatures, temperatures in double figures. You'll notice that the far


south-west of England has some as well. Be patient, because will lose


the court, it will warm up eventually. It may take all the way


through to the middle of next week before we get some appreciable


sunshine and higher temperatures. The next two days are bitterly cold,


exacerbated by the strength of the wind. You will need to wrap up very


warmly. Have a nice weekend. Thank you very much, David. Wrap up only


if you are going to the Devon derby tomorrow. If not, full match


commentary on BBC radio Devon from TPM tomorrow. From all of us on the


programme, have a good weekend. Goodbye. -- from two PM.


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