Other News In Brief

Police Hunt Suspect Following Co Down Armed Robbery

Police are on the hunt for a suspect following an armed robbery of a business in Co Down.

A female member of staff was left shaken after a masked man armed with a knife entered the company premises on Wednesday evening, 15 January.

The suspect demanded the till from the staff member before fleeing with a sum of cash. He is reported to have been wearing jeans, white or light-coloured trainers and a navy hooded top.

The male, believed to be aged in his twenties or thirties, is described as being 5'7" tall and of a skinny build with blue eyes.

The incident took place at around 5.45pm.

Detectives are investigating a possible link with an armed robbery in the Movilla Street area of the town on Tuesday night.

Anyone who was in the area of the town and witnessed either incident or saw a male matching the description provided is urged to call police on 101 quoting reference 1378 of 15/01/20.

Details can also be provided anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Electric Vehicles To Be Trialled Across Belfast Parks

A set of electric vehicles are to be trialled across parks in Belfast in an effort to transition toward low carbon transport.

Lord Mayor of Belfast, Cllr Daniel Baker introduced the 12 vehicles yesterday, 15 January, as part of Belfast City Council's plans to review its fleet.

Cllr Baker said: "Climate change has reached a point where we need to make urgent and concerted efforts to understand and prepare for its impact.

"Our goal is to transition Belfast to an inclusive, low carbon, climate-resilient economy within a generation, so there is work to be done.

"Today sees us take another step on that journey with the introduction of these new electric vehicles which will be trialled in our parks."
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The Mayor also followed up the trial with a call to people across Belfast to help shape action on climate change by sharing their views on the Council's draft resilience strategy. Actions outlined in the strategy include significantly improving levels of tree planting across the city, reducing commuters' dependency on cars, improving air quality, and developing a 'green' policy for the city's festivals and cultural sector.

Councillor Baker added: "Over recent months we have seen young people show strong civic leadership on climate issues; we know that it is something they are concerned about and which has implications for their generation and the next.

"Inaction is not an option and there is a renewed sense of urgency for us to be, not only climate resilient, but resilient as a city to shocks and stresses – both those we can plan for, and those which are unexpected."

Anyone interested in sharing thoughts on the Council's draft resilience strategy can do so here.

Govt Pay Package To Create Finance Difficulties For Stormont

The Government funding package pledged in the 'New Decade, New Approach' deal will create public finance difficulties for the Stormont administration, SDLP Leader Colum Eastwood has said.

Secretary of State Julian Smith offered a significant financial package for the restoration of devolved government after three years of political stalemate.

Full details of the financial award are yet to be made clear.

Mr Eastwood said that he welcomed earmarked, ring fenced funding for the expansion of the Ulster University campus in Magee and an addiction centre in the North West. Overall, however, the new MP said the overall package must be improved.

"If the goal of the British Treasury was to unite the new Stormont administration, they've succeeded in fostering universal opposition to the scale of this package," the Foyle MP said.

"The gulf between the ambition of the deal and the money on the table is substantial and will cause serious public finance difficulties for the Executive. This is not, and cannot be, the end of the matter.

"I am, however, pleased to see earmarked and ring fenced allocations for the expansion of Magee and a new addiction centre for the North West. These were priorities that I raised with the Secretary of State on behalf of the people of Derry. I intend to see both critical projects delivered for our city.

"I will be raising this matter at Westminster as a matter of urgency."


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