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Convicted terrorist back in the dock.

A convicted Irish terrorist freed on licence from a life sentence appeared at a special court in Cheltenham at the weekend accused of causing grievous bodily harm and perverting the course of justice.

Magistrates made an order banning any identification of the man who is aged 46.

The bench chairman Prof Alice Newing said: "His identification could upset the delicate peace negotiations which are going on in Northern Ireland."

Det Con David Fryatt told the court the man had been given a new identity and passport by the security services before his release from prison after he co-operated in investigations into a number of terrorist killings in Ulster.

"Any identification of this man would be extremely dangerous," he said.

The court heard the alleged victim suffered a fractured cheekbone in the alleged incident.

The accused was remanded in custody until Thursday.

Stranded seal rescued

Firemen had to take to a boat to help a stranded seal escape to freedom.

The crew herded the seal to safety after it was spotted in the River Avon, just below the Abbey Mill, Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire.

They used a rescue boat to get behind it and herd it down the river into the Severn, from where it was hoped it would make its own way back to the sea.

The seal was first reported last week by a fisherman who for a while had it in his net.

Fifth man on murder charge

A fifth man has been charged with the murder of a 40-year-old Wolverhampton man who died in a fight outside a pub.

Christopher Maybin (36), of Keats Road, The Scotlands, Wolverhampton, was charged with the murder of Mr Glenn James and violent disorder when he appeared before the town's magistrates on Saturday. He was remanded in custody until Wednesday.

Four other men - brothers Scott Garcia (26) and Shaun Garcia (24), of Byron Road, Michael Whitehouse (27), of Keats Road, and Paul Thomas (36) of Tennyson Road, all The Scotlands, have already appeared before the court charged with murder and violent disorder.

Mr James died after a fight outside the Moon Under Water public house in Old Fallings Lane, Bushbury, on May 9.

Splash of colour at centre

Youngsters at Walsall's Forest Community Centre have been using their creative talents to the full to spruce up their surroundings.

The group has been working with artists Pete Smith and Stella Petifer to spray a colourful aerosol mural on an outside wall at the centre.

The project has been organised by the Walsall Council community arts team in association with the National Association for the Care and Resettlement of Offenders' youth empowerment project.

Women in Navy course

Students on a new university course have been learning just how many women managed to pass themselves off as men to get aboard ship in Nelson's Navy.

The open studies lecture and seminar series at the University of Warwick, Kissing the Gunner's Daughter, is aimed at people with an interest in history.

As well as the secret role of women in the navy, the course examines everything from where they stashed rum to tackling men-of-war. The course is due to finish in mid-June.

University challenge

Dr Jonathan Nicholls has been appointed as the new Registrar of the University of Warwick, taking over from Mr Michael Shattock who retires in September.

He joined the university in 1982 and has held a variety of posts, most latterly academic registrar.

In 1988/89 he spent six months on exchange to the University of Sydney where tuition fees were being introduced and said he hoped that experience would be of benefit in his new post.

Post Script

Best-selling writer Jilly Cooper has already got plastered to celebrate the Millennium.

Her unmistakable visage has been cast in plaster for an exhibition featuring the faces of residents of Stroud, Gloucestershire - the nearest town to her country home in the Cotswolds.

Jilly, who lives in Bisley near Stroud, is one of more than 1,000 people who agreed to be cast for the Facing the Millennium exhibition which has opened in the town.

The display of 1,010 local faces has been created by plaster cast makers Mask Studio based in nearby Nailsworth with the help of a pounds 5, 000 grant. Each cast took about 30 minutes.

It is believed to be the first of in kind in Britain and organisers are hoping the idea will spread to other parts of the country and Europe.
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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:May 24, 1999
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