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    Controlled Fire at Sutton St Nicholas

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service with crews from Hereford Fire Station and Leominster Fire Station both attended a controlled burning Sutton St, Nicholas area, the fire had spread to surrounding trees, approx 5m by 5m and was well alight on our arrival. Crews extinguished using hose reel jets.

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    Photo courtesy of Leominster Fire Service

    #herefordvoice #herefordnews #herefordshire


    Giveaway | Another Fabulous Giveaway This Weekend!

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Check out our Facebook page for more details this evening for a chance to win another fabulous giveaway

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    #herefordvoice #hereford #herefordshire #hvcomps 


    Doors open to innovative clinical area to ease pressure in Emergency Department

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    An innovative new clinical area at Hereford County Hospital which opened its doors this morning promises to provide same-day-care for emergency patients who would otherwise end up being admitted.

    The Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC) area is located next to the Emergency Department at the hospital and will transform the way non-elective patients (those who aren’t scheduled for treatment) are assessed and cared for.

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    “The dedicated SDEC facility will mean that patients presenting at the hospital with certain conditions can be rapidly assessed, diagnosed and treated without being admitted to a ward, and, if clinically safe to do so, will return home the same day their care is provided,” said James Bartlett, Consultant Acute Physician.

    “In a nutshell, this new facility will help us to ensure patients are in the right emergency/urgent care setting very quickly which will mean a better experience for patients and a more efficient flow of patients at the hospital.”

    The new facility has been created thanks to a £2 million government grant on the back of rising numbers of people turning up putting more pressure on the Emergency Department.

    The key benefit the facility brings is the ability to “stream” patients as soon as they turn up at the Emergency Department. This means getting patients to the most appropriate place for their treatment straight away following a rapid clinical evaluation.

    The hospital has successfully trialled a temporary version of the facility in recent months using staff borrowed from other areas. On the back of this, plans were drawn up at the end of last year and the submission of a successful a bid for the money submitted to the Department of Health and Social Care.

    The new facility has been created in an area previously occupied by the Emergency Department admin team and hospital site team who have moved out and into Portacabins near the Emergency Department entrance.

    The area now houses five extra clinic rooms and three cubical spaces.

    Some of the money is also being used to reconfigure the Emergency Department itself and within the next few weeks, a separate clinical space for children will be opened within the ED.

    “This is a proven model which will allow us to take huge strides forward in the way we deliver care to non-elective patients and improve our patients’ experiences.

    “It’s taken a huge amount of effort in a very short space of time and I’d like to thank our staff, our PFI partner, Sodexo, and the contractors who have had to work in difficult circumstances allowing all our services to run as normal during the construction period while also in the middle of a pandemic,” added James.


    The A49 closed in both directions near Moreton-on-Lugg due to RTC

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    The A49 is CLOSED near Moreton-on-Lugg between Hereford and Leominster due to an RTC involving multiple vehicles.

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    Emergency services are in attendance but the road will remain closed until recovery arrives.

    Please avoid the area if possible.


    Hereford City Centre Shrinking!

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Over the past few years, we have noticed more and more planning applications to change use from shops to flats. Again today plans have been submitted here for 145 Eign Street

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    Quote

    Proposed variation of condition 2 of planning permission 163094 (Proposed change of use of shop to two flats and new dormer window to south elevation) minor changes to layout and change from Dormer to roof extension.

    Hereford shops are slowly disappearing and Herefordshire Council are often granting these plans. We will attempt to start highlighting each of these applications to show the scale of this trend from the Council.

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    How plans were passed in Eign Street for this lot previously is beyond comprehension, how is this in keeping with the surrounding area? These buildings bricked up look horrendous! 


    Duo fined for multiple fly tips in Herefordshire

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Waste found dumped in two locations in and around Bromyard had been taken away from Poundstretcher refurbishment 

    Herefordshire Council has won an Enforcement case against two friends who were found guilty of fly tipping two loads of waste which were found dumped on Bromyard downs and in a layby near to Acton Green crossroads.

    John Hodgkins (40) of Redstone Lane, Stourport-On-Severn and Isaac Janes (48) of 78 Layman Walk, Stourport-On-Severn both pleaded guilty to two counts of fly tipping at Hereford Magistrates’ Court on 9 March 2021. The pair received fines and costs totalling £1072.00 each.

    At the hearing, the court heard how in October 2019, Hodgkins and Janes had been paid £400 to take away refurbishment waste from the former Poundstretcher store on Eign Gate, Hereford. The waste was later found dumped in two large piles on Bromyard downs and in a layby just off the Acton Green crossroads. Although no evidence was found in the fly tipping, officers from Herefordshire Council’s Community Protection Team were able to obtain CCTV and ANPR images to trace the offenders.

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    David Hough, Herefordshire Council’s Trading Standards Service Manager, said: 

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    “Not only is fly tipping an environmental hazard and a blight on our beautiful county, it can also cause accidents on the roads and injuries to livestock, wildlife and people. Every single year, tens of thousands of pounds of council tax payers’ money is spent on tackling fly tipping and unlawful waste disposal.

    “For these reasons, we take improper waste disposal very seriously. Anyone found fly tipping will be prosecuted, with the maximum penalty being a £50,000 fine and/or 5 years imprisonment, so it really isn’t worth the risk.”

    The Community Protection Team will investigate unlawful waste disposal and fly tipping cases that are reported via the Herefordshire Council website or by calling 01432 261761.


    West Mercia Police Chief Constable announces retirement

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Today, Tuesday 16 March, our Chief Constable, Anthony Bangham, has announced his decision to retire in September of this year after 30 years in policing.

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    Mr Bangham joined West Mercia Police in 1991 as a Police Constable in Redditch. He has worked his way through the ranks, spending the last five years as Chief Constable.He said:

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    “I have served as a police officer across West Mercia in many roles and different ranks and have always done so with great pride. I also served in Avon and Somerset Constabulary as an Assistant Chief Constable. It has been an amazing career with every day bringing new challenges and I will leave with happy memories from both Forces and some great stories from those 30 years.

    “It has been a privilege to work alongside many dedicated, highly-skilled officers and staff in both forces and in particular in my time leading West Mercia over the past five years as Chief Constable.

    “It has been an absolute honour to serve the local communities across the counties of Herefordshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire. I am delighted to be able retire and finish my service in my home force. West Mercia is not only where I joined policing, but where I have lived for the majority of my life.

    "In the meantime, over the next few months, whilst there is a process to appoint my successor, I will continue to lead the force until the end of my term of office as Chief Constable in September.

    “I want to thank my officers, staff and colleagues, and indeed our local communities, partners and fellow emergency services for their support during my time as Chief. I know you will all continue to work together to keep the communities of West Mercia safe.”

    Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said:

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    “I would like to thank Anthony on behalf of the communities of West Mercia for his commitment to public service and keeping people safe. Across 30 years as an officer in many different roles, Anthony has always placed the public at the heart of his work.

    “As Chief Constable he has been a determined leader in challenging times. He has taken brave, and sometimes difficult decisions, but his focus has always been the best interests of his police force and the communities they serve, rather than what was easiest or most convenient. He will leave West Mercia in a strong position, with much higher officer numbers and the foundations for a renewed, reinvigorated focus on West Mercia’s communities and how the force can best address their needs for years to come.

    “Appointing a new Chief Constable will be one of the first and most important duties for West Mercia’s Police and Crime Commissioner after the upcoming elections in May. Ensuring the best possible candidate is found and appointed will be vital in ensuring our communities are as safe, happy and prosperous as they can possibly be.”

     


    Firefighters Tackled House Fire Near Bromyard Downs Herefordshire

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service were called to a house fire near Bromyard Downs just before midnight last night.

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    Firefighters from Bromyard, Leominster and Malvern were in attendance and tackled the house fire using hose reels, main jets and Breathing Apparatus to extinguish this fire.

    #herefordvoice #herefordshirenews #herefordnews


    Four men charged with drugs offences in Herefordshire.

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Four men have been charged with drugs related offences after a series of warrants were carried out in Leominster and Kington, Herefordshire.

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    Five warrants were executed last week and five people were arrested. Of the five people arrested, the men named below were charged with the listed offences and then remanded into police custody.

    Keith Hill – aged 46 of Ridgemoor Road, Leominster was charged with:

    Conspiring to supply a class A controlled drug - crack cocaine

    Conspiring to supply a class A controlled drug - heroin

    Possessing a weapon for the discharge of a noxious liquid / gas / electrical incapacitation device / thing

    Possessing with intent to supply a controlled drug of Class A - cocaine

    Acquiring / use / possess criminal property

    Possession with intent to supply a controlled drug of Class A – heroin

    Possession with intent to supply a controlled drug of Class A - crack cocaine

    Lewis Plant – aged 22 of West Street, Leominster was charged with:

    Conspiring to supply a class A controlled drug - crack cocaine

    Possession with intent to supply a controlled drug of Class A - crack cocaine

    Possession a controlled drug of Class B - cannabis / cannabis resin

    Conspiring to supply a class A controlled drug - heroin

    Timothy Stanley – aged 36 of Coningsby Road, Leominster was charged with:

    Conspiring to supply a class A controlled drug - crack cocaine

    Conspiring to supply a class A controlled drug - heroin

    Possession with intent to supply a controlled drug of Class A - crack cocaine

    Possession with intent to supply a controlled drug of Class A - heroin

    Bradley Reader – aged 19 of Tan y Bryn, Valley, Holyhead, Gwynedd, was charged with:

    Possession with intent to supply a controlled drug of Class A - heroin

    Acquiring / use / possess criminal property

    Conspiring to supply a class A controlled drug - crack cocaine

    Conspiring to supply a class A controlled drug - heroin

    Possession with intent to supply a controlled drug of Class A - crack cocaine

    All four men were due to appear in court today (Monday 15 March).

    A fifth man, aged 43 of Presteigne, was arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of controlled drugs and was released under investigation.


    Floral City Service to brighten up Hereford as shops reopen

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    A stunning, floral display is being organised by Hereford Business Improvement District to welcome back shoppers into Hereford in May, with member businesses being offered 2 free hanging baskets each. 

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    Hereford BID Handy Team watering hanging baskets in Church Street

    Rhiannon Burns, Marketing and Projects Manager, explained,

    Quote

    ‘it has never been more important to support our businesses, following what has been a challenging year to say the least. This all-inclusive offer is designed to help brighten up the city, ready for the reopening of stores’.  

    As part of their yearly Floral City service, available exclusively to Hereford BID members, businesses will be able to claim two free hanging baskets to add colour and decoration to their frontages. This all-inclusive offer provides free installation, maintenance (watering, feeding, deadheading) and removal at the end of the season.  

    Rhiannon added,

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    ‘not only will it make streets and shops look more attractive, it will show that Hereford is ready to welcome visitors back to enjoy our beautiful city safely’. 

    The Floral City service has proved popular in previous years, with many businesses taking up the offering to brighten up storefronts. Sadly, due to the first lockdown and subsequent restrictions, the Hereford BID were unable to provide this service last year but the team are looking forward to being able bring it back for 2021. 

    If you are a Hereford BID member and would like to take up this offer, visit www.herefordbid.co.uk to find more information and an order form. Alternatively, contact info@herefordbid.co.uk.  

    Hereford BID is a non-profit private company (limited) funded by 500 businesses in the city centre. The organisation has 3 core strands underpinning its business plan, a document based on feedback from its member businesses on what they want to see happen, these are: i) High Profile Hereford - Marketing and Events ii) The Hereford Experience – Safe and Clean iii) Business Voice – Lobbying & Support. The company is run by up to 15 board directors who are also levy paying members.


    Hereford City Council Grant £7,000 Towards Pavilion Project

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Friends of Castle Green are now able to begin the much needed renovations to The Pavilion after securing funding for the repairs.

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    Hereford City Council are granting £7,000 towards the project, which will enable the community group to begin the first phase of improvements to the building.

    Paddy Nugent, Friends of Castle Green Director said;

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    “This is an incredibly exciting project and we are grateful for the funding that has allowed us to make these building improvements which will ensure that the Pavilion becomes a multifunctional, flexible and accessible space for evolving community use. We hope that this technology will act as a beacon of innovation and encourage other local facilities to harness the natural resource of the river for renewable energy.”

    More details here

    #herefordvoice #herefordnews #positivehereford


    New replacement bridge installed over the brook in Belmont

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    The previous bridge had completely rotted away but this new bridge near Canterbury Close is superb, credit where credit is due.

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    Thank you to Parish Councillors Adrian Bridges, Colin Warne and Phil Rudd with much needed help from Bert.

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    Uni accommodation Widemarsh Street

    ragwert
    By ragwert,

    I have just found some pictures of  three proposed buildings that were to be built on the steel suppliers site just off Widemarsh Street.
    The plans have now been shelved but the timber merchants next door has now shut with demolition of buildings taking place in readiness for building new Uni student accommodation.
    I hope that whatever is built there is nothing like the horrendous images you can see below of what was proposed for the old steel site.

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    uni1.jpg

    uni.jpg


    UK Horror Feature is being made in Herefordshire. It's called "Wyvern Hill"

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    A microbudget UK Horror Feature is being made in Herefordshire. It's called "Wyvern Hill" and on its way very soon.

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    UK horror director Jonathan Zaurin is to tackle his first feature film later this summer and it already looks like it’s one to keep an eye on. 

    Wyvern Hill is described as ‘the story of one woman’s struggle with reality’ as a series of gruesome killings is shaking the small county of Herefordshire, UK. It tells the tale of Beth, a woman in her sixties who starts to show signs of early Alzheimer’s. Her daughter and son in law move into an old house large enough to accommodate the three of them so that they can look after Beth during this difficult time, that house… Wyvern Hill. It isn’t long before Beth begins worsen but is it her Alzheimer or is there SOMETHING in the house. 

    I recently had a little chat with Jonathan to find out more about Wyvern Hill, what we can expect, how he feels tackling his first feature and when we can expect to see this new UK horror.  

    What can people expect from Wyvern Hill? 

    I think people coming into Wyvern Hill can expect a twisted, violent tale with plenty of twists and turns along the way… but also hopefully a very moving drama about a set of characters that are very unusual for this type of horror films.

    We tried to create an atmospheric, brutal horror that will deliver on tension, suspense and visceral horror but also to create a true drama in which you will get to love and care for the characters who are thrown into a horrible situation.

    It’s two films in one in a sense, but that’s something that always interested me, the fluidity of genre, I don’t see it as stiff, I see it as a multitude of potential combinations of narrative conventions, plenty of which we haven’t seen yet! 

    How are you feeling about your coming feature as a Director? How have you been preparing? 

    To be honest, nervous is the first word that comes to mind haha! 
    Look here’s the thing about Wyvern Hill, it’s a microbudget, we’re really not spending that much money (total budget around 5k) and we were prepared for it to be exactly that, a (hopefully) high production value microbudget film… but then it started growing (while the budget stayed the same) and now we have a tonne of amazing people involved! For example our main actress Pat Garett who has spent the first half of her career working with Jim Henson and Frank Oz on things like The Muppets Christmas Carol and The Little Shop of Horrors amongst other things. 
    And so since we started the production the cast has grown to welcome some incredible, established and rising, actors! And the crew has grown to welcome some amazing talent which I can’t quite reveal yet ha! But also the usual suspects and collaborators, first of all my wife Sarah who always produces, Jérome Bardon who is a consistant figure at LBS films, having produced and written a number of films for us but also Mike Coombes who has been a longtime friend and collaborator and who was Georgie in Portrait(s) , Joe Nurse who played Baby Gerald in Santa Baby, Pete Bird with whom I worked on several shorts and Michael Sanchez, the genius from Belgium who is slowly becoming our official composer as he did the music for both The Pit an Santa Baby! the special effects are being 
    As far as preparing, again it’s a microbudget film so the idea is to try and get as much as my knowledge and time allows me to get done, myself. So on this I am officiating as director, DoP and editor and currently we are in a phase where I swear a lot and try to do my shot by shot breakdown between the thousands of emails from cast and crew all day everyday! 

    When are you due to start shooting? 

    We are due to start shooting with a very limited Cast and crew end of August. These are the first wave of scenes which we are shooting before our main actress arrives to Hereford. Then things start seriously kicking off on 11th September. 
    We’re having to do that also because we obviously want to protect our cast and crew from Covid which represents as you can imagine, quite a challenge on production. 

    What are your plans for the film upon completion? When is your proposed release date? 

    The plans are to tour the festivals and find a distributor! We are already having those conversations with some fairly interesting people…  
    We are basically fairly confident with that though, part of our History at LBS Films is that we, over the last 4 years, have created a series of Award Winning shorts for ridiculously low amounts of money (from £80 to a maximum of £300), all of which ended up being actually VERY profitable both financially and artistically, despite the (almost) total lack of distribution opportunities for shorts! In that respect we were lucky to meet Tood Rodgers at Meridian Releasing who gave our films a huge platform, and now Todd is a producer on Wyvern Hill! 
    So in a sense the feature is a logical continuation of what we’ve been doing but hopefully with the proper potential channels for distribution available to us! 

    How did you come across the script? 

    A few years back I did a BA (Hons) at Hereford College of Arts. My last year was spent making a film called Dirt and we had a course leader replacement halfway through. Long story short the new course leader was Keith Temple, a fairly well known and very talented TV writer who worked on basically every major UK show. 
    We clicked immediately and we expressed the idea of working together at some point. I hired Keith to play a part in my then new short film The Pit and from there a conversation started. 
    Keith had an idea for a horror film but he was a bit nervous about writing it as he had never written pure horror (although his Dr Who episode comes close). So I told him that if he wrote it… I’d get it made. 
    Initially it was called Suburban Shadows, and a lot of work and a year and half later, there it is, ready to shoot: Wyvern Hill.

    Source


    Full Council approves budget and Council Tax for 2021/22

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Council Tax set to rise by 4.99% as council faces long-term Covid-19 cost pressures on its budget

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    Full Council has approved the 2021/22 budget today (12 February 2021). This includes the setting of Herefordshire Council tax rates which will come into effect from April 2021.

    The final budget takes into account the 2021/22 final local government finance settlement announced by central government. This includes:

    A new ‘Lower Tier’ Services Grant of £0.25m

    Revenue Support Grant funding of £0.6m

    New Homes Bonus funding of £1.7m

    Rural Services Delivery Grant of £5.3m

    The council is continuing to face long-term Covid-19 cost pressures on its budget. The council has looked first to find savings within its core activities to offset these costs. This has resulted in £11.2m in savings being identified across the council’s services – the largest one-year saving this council has ever had to make.

    Councillor Liz Harvey, Cabinet Member for Finance and Corporate Services, said:

    Quote

    “2020 didn’t turn out the way any of us expected, and none of us anticipated the impact the Covid-19 pandemic would have on us nationally and locally. The council’s 2021 budget has to address a shortfall of £15.1m in a base budget of £157m – that’s almost 10% savings in-year – whilst continuing to deliver on core and statutory public services.

    “We have managed to identify more than £11m of internal savings, but following consultation with the public and stakeholders, we do need to set a 4.99% Council Tax increase to bridge the funding gap.

    “We are mindful that this is a very challenging time for everyone, so alongside this tax rise we have also increased the Council Tax discount scheme to 100%, for those that qualify, and we are providing £1.9m to fund this alongside the council’s local assistance fund for others experiencing financial hardship.”

    Council Tax funds around 29% of the council’s budget. A 4.99% total increase to Council Tax has been recommended. This is an equivalent rise of £1.51 a week for a Band D property. The increase is made from a 3% increase to the ‘adult social care precept’ and 1.99% increase to ‘core Council Tax’. In total this will provide £3.2m towards the cost of council services.

    Residents on a low income may be eligible for help to pay their bill through the Council Tax Reduction scheme. Some residents will continue to pay no Council Tax at all, such as young adults who have left care and, with effect from 2021, also all the council’s Foster Carer families.


    Welsh Water Delivers Boost to Hereford Environment

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    The local environment in a part of Hereford has received a boost thanks to the completion of an investment scheme by not for profit water company Welsh Water.

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    Welsh Water has invested almost £307,000 in a project which will improve the sewerage network in the Three Elms area. 

    Until now, some properties in the area had not been able to connect to the main sewerage network and instead had to rely on septic tanks which regularly failed. This in turn posed a pollution risk to the surrounding environment. The failures of the tanks also breached the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ (DEFRA) general binding rules which govern how septic tanks should operate. 

    To address the situation, the company designed and installed a new sewer system to replace a septic tank system. The new sewer system will enable the properties to connect to the main sewerage network which in turn will benefit the local environment. 

    Chris Jones, Head of Wastewater Programme Delivery at Welsh Water said: “We’re very proud to have been able to complete this project on schedule to protect the environment during the challenging circumstances surrounding the pandemic. The construction team managed to adhere to all of the government social distance guidelines and received some excellent written feedback from residents in the area. We appreciate that our work can be inconvenient, so we really did appreciate the cooperation shown to us by the local residents while we worked in their community.”

    The company has also partnered with Herefordshire Community Foundation as part of its increased support to local communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s increased its Community Fund threefold to £300,000 and has given over £100,000 to Trussell Trust foodbanks since the pandemic started.


    Emergency Services Called to Large Fire near Bromyard

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service crews from Worcester, Tenbury, Evesham and Malvern using specialist equipment attended a very large fire yesterday evening in the open involving undergrowth and scrub at Bringsty Common, Herefordshire.

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    Barbed Wire Deliberately Placed on Malvern Hills Tracks

    Hereford Voice
    By Hereford Voice,

    We reported yesterday that Malvern Copswere out on bike and foot patrols on the Malvern Hills following barbed wire being hung across several tracks on the hills.

    Below are more disgusting photographs showing this evidence of such a vile act!

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    Photographs courtesy of Malvern Police

    Last August we also reported similar incidents where nails had deliberately put into pieces of wood on bike trails in the Forest of Dean in this article

    Why would people do this?

    Anyone with any information please call 101 and quote log ref: 0622_i_07032021

    #herefordvoice #herefordnews #herefordshire


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