21/04/2017 Spotlight


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

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Royal Marines from Plymouth are to help form a new anti-terror


unit to combat the threat to ships and ports around the coast.


The so-called Maritime Operations Commando unit will fight


More than 100 marines based in Scotland will move to Plymouth


Our defence reporter, Scott Bingham, has more.


The new Maritime Operations Commando Unit will have up to 600 Royal


Marines, mainly from 42 Commando, based here at Bickleigh


It will also include 120 members of the Fleet Protection Group,


who currently guard Trident nuclear submarines at Faslane in Scotland.


And it will also have SAS and Special Boat Service liaison


It's due to be operational early next year.


According to a leaked memo from the Commandant General


of the Royal Marines, it will focus on maritime


interdiction and boarding operations, and force protection for


Royal Navy and Royal Fleet auxiliary ships deployed globally.


But, it will also provide a core contribution


to UK domestic operations in response to a terrorist event.


front-line service under a restructuring exercise,


but the MoD says no Royal Marines will be made redundant,


with roles being reallocated across the Navy.


This would seem to fit in with those plans.


The new unit is likely to be based at RMB Tamar


operates the kind of fast boats that would likely carry out some of these


roles, with the Marines being accommodated at Bickleigh.


Some have suggested the Royal Marines are


bailing out the Navy because it is short of sailors.


The MoD says balancing the numbers is a military


judgment, which is kept under continuous review.


Hospitals across the South West are to receive extra cash to try


and help reduce waiting times in A departments.


Labour has described the money as a sticking plaster.


I'm joined by our reporter Chloe Axford.


The aim is to ease the pressure on A departments


It's designed to help hospitals meet the target of dealing


with nearly all patients in A within four hours.


In January, the number of people waiting for MORE than four hours


across England was reportedly the worst it's been for 13 years,


with record numbers of people waiting more than 12 hours


Tonight, the Royal Cornwall hospitals trust, which is getting ?1


million, said it was delighted, and the money would help it


to improve what it calls "Patient flow".


Back then, we reported from the Royal Devon And Exeter Hospital,


waiting times by getting patients to see a consultant as soon as


possible, and carrying out some treatments which would previously


Now, it is important to note, this money


It is part of the ?100 million announced for A in the


And the timing is interesting, given that we


are now weeks away from a general election.


Tonight, Exeter's Labour MP Ben Bradshaw said, "Any extra


"money is welcome, but this sounds like a sticking plaster from a


"Government that does not want to talk about the funding


"crisis in the NHS in the election campaign".


We will have to wait and see just how much the NHS does figure in the


election campaign as it gets South West Water has been fined


?1.8 million for health and safety offences following the


death of an employee. 54-year-old Robert Geach drowned


when he fell into the tank at a water treatment plant


in Falmouth in 2013. South West Water pleaded guilty


today at Truro Crown Court. The death of Robert Geach


in December 2013 was a tragedy. Robert was a valued


colleague, and we very much regret the devastating loss


to his family and friends. South West Water has


tried to ensure it learns We have updated procedures


and policies, carried out comprehensive


staff training, and invested in new equipment and technologies,


particularly to ensure the safety of our staff


who may be working alone. A jury has heard an alleged killer


disguised himself to drag the body of his former partner


through the streets of Exeter in a suitcase before dumping it


near a railway line. 42-year-old Kostadin Kostov


from Bulgaria is accused of murdering Gergana Prodanova at the


flat they shared in the city The prosecution told


Exeter Crown Court Kostov was seen 19 times on CCTV.


He denies the charge. A stalwart of the South-West


newspaper scene is relaunching this weekend after a financial crisis


forced it to close briefly. In its 20th century heyday,


the Sunday Independent, owned by the Mirror,


was a noted training ground in Plymouth


for Fleet Street reporters. Like many newspapers,


it went on to suffer circulation decline,


as internet competition Today, it's in smaller


offices in Liskeard, with a circulation of 12,000


copies a week. Now, time to take a look


at the weather forecast. We have more fine weather


to look forward to this weekend, and some warmth,


temperatures 14, 15 degrees. Bit of a change by next week,


though, as we see colder air arrive, so variable


cloud for Saturday and Sunday, mostly dry,


and at times we will get


some sunshine as well. We still have high pressure close


by, but it is now beginning to What slowly happens


is the high-pressure travels back out into the Atlantic,


this is the middle of the day on Saturday,


and that means we start to see a change is more cloud


moves on from the north. a change as more cloud moves


on from the north. In fact, we've had that today,


some patchy cloud around from earlier today, but a lot


of clear sky further west. That will continue to be


the same same sort of set-up, with Dorset seeing a bit


more in the way of cloud, Devon and Cornwall will have clear skies


overnight tonight, and also quite chilly again, with temperatures down


to five, 6, 7 degrees. Tomorrow, we have


a fine day in store. We may have some


stubborn cloud at times, but it should remain


dry, and sunny spells, bit stubborn in places


and temperatures getting up to possibly 15 degrees


as the maximum. By Sunday, there is not


a great deal of change, We will see some


sunshine, a bit of cloud floating by and spoiling


that every now and then, and a similar temperature of 15


Celsius. But by Monday, and especially


Tuesday of next week, cold Arctic wind really does change


what we are going to see, and a cold day on Tuesday.


Have a nice weekend. The next Billiton is tomorrow at


4:40pm. marathon. Here is the outlook for


the weather for the next few days and Helen Willetts has the National


forecast. While unusual to see snow in May, it


will be a shock to the system. We've seen some interesting contrast. 19


degrees cost is in Scotland in the sunshine today. In the sunshine only


11. The differences we are behind a cold weather front. Seeing


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