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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Greater Anglia says its arrangements were '100% robust'

Greater Anglia has responded to criticism by the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) over the use of office workers who were trained up to work as guards during the recent industrial action by members of the RMT.

The Chief Inspector of Railways has written to the rail operator having identified a "number of areas with deficiencies" that need to be addressed.

Greater Anglia train
BBC

Train Service Director for Greater Anglia, Richard Dean, said he was somewhat disappointed over the letter: "We met the ORR and we took them through our arrangements.

"We believe 100% that our arrangements were robust and we are following that up with the ORR.

"We said to them we would not use our contingency conductors until such time as we'd satisfied them that the arrangements were robust.

"We made that offer to them, they didn't tell us to do it.

"What we are actually talking about is a piece of administration that they want to see ie they want us to write up what we did, and that's exactly what we have done.

"We'll be sitting down with them and we'll be going through in as much detail as they want until they are satisfied.

"I am absolutely satisfied that our arrangements were 100% robust."

Unison appeals to Home Secretary over scrapping PCSOs

The general secretary of Unison has written to the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, urging her to intervene to stop the scrapping of Police Community Support Officers in the county.

Female PCSO
Norfolk Police

Dave Prentis writes: "This is an extremely short-sighted move by the Norfolk constabulary.

"Police community support officers play a vital role maintaining police and community relations.

"They also tackle low-level crime and anti-social behaviour, which would otherwise fall to hard-pressed police officers to deal with.

"Ruthless budget cuts are forcing police forces to make unsavoury choices, which damage public confidence and coerce already over-burdened police staff into taking on yet more responsibilities.

"I urge you to intervene in the matter and call for a rethink in the approach to police budgets - the protection of the public is in everyone's interest."

A consultation with police staff is currently being carried out.

Overnight weather: Dry at first but some outbreaks of rain later

Dan Holley

BBC Look East weather

There'll be a few clear spells at first tonight where it will turn a little chilly, but thickening cloud will eventually bring outbreaks of rain from the west.

Southerly winds will strengthen during the early hours, with temperatures initially falling to 8C (46F) but becoming milder by dawn.

Wind chart
BBC

There'll be a sunny start to Saturday morning, with just a few isolated showers, but these will become more widespread as cloud builds through the day.

Windy with southwesterly winds gusting 40-50mph during the afternoon, temperatures peaking at 16C (61F).

Get the full forecast where you live from BBC Weather.

RMT calls for Greater Anglia to be stripped of its franchise

Steve Blower

BBC Radio Suffolk

The Rail Union, the RMT, is demanding that Greater Anglia be stripped of its franchise after comments by the Chief Inspector of Railways.

The safety organisation has told the train operator that until issues are resolved, office staff can't be used again as replacements.

Picket line at Ipswich station
BBC

The RMT had raised a number of safety concerns when the train company used replacements for the guards who were on strike.

There was an incident at Ipswich station where the doors were opened on the wrong side.

The RMT also says there was a safety breach on the East Suffolk line when office staff were being trained, when doors were opened while a train was moving.

We'll bring you reaction from Greater Anglia shortly.

Promoters apologise for problems accessing Gary Barlow tickets

"Unprecedented" demand for tickets to see Gary Barlow in his Forest Live gig at Thetford Forest next year is being blamed for big problems being reported on social media.

Here are some of the comments on the BBC Suffolk Facebook page:

  • Helen Robinson writes: "I was in the queue at 10am...number 950....i waited an hour and 38 minutes and was directed to the website only to be told due to high usage i could'nt acess the site"
  • Ronan Devlin said: "Website crippled. Unable to sign in or re register. Phone either engaged or hangs up after option 1"
  • Jacqueline Taylor posts: "No access to website, as too many people trying to access it. Telephone calls get through and get told no one to answer call. So frustrated"

In a statement, the Forestry Commission has said: "Tickets went on sale this morning for Forest Live dates next Summer by Gary Barlow and Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott.

"Unfortunately due to a technical issue with an external ticketing software platform the system stalled.

"Additionally due to an unprecedented demand for tickets phone lines were also down for a while.

"We apologise for any inconvenience caused."

Gary Barlow
Reuters

Essex lad named as 'Young Builder of the Year'

A 17-year-old student from Witham has been judged to be the UK Young Builder of the Year in a competition run by the national organisation Youthbuild UK.

Kyron Dalton
Essex Youthbuild

Kyron Dalton, from Essex Youthbuild, a charity which offers construction and employability skills training for young people, beat off competition from five other finalists in the 14-18 year-old category.

Harvey Baker, Essex's other finalist, received a commendation.

Manager Jane Cosh said: "This was a fantastic day that recognised the courage and determination of these young people to overcome obstacles in their personal lives and to make the most of opportunities presented to them."

Rugby player's funeral takes place

Kevin Burch

BBC Look East

The funeral of Thurston rugby player Josh Gilbert has been held in Walsham-le-Willows:

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Police confirm start date for Corrie Mckeague search to resume

The resumption of the search for missing airman Corrie Mckeague will take place on Monday, 23 October.

The extended search, which is likely to take around four to six weeks, will concentrate on an area of Cell 22 next to the site of the earlier search.

The indications are this is the next most likely area where Corrie could be, say police.

Corrie Mckeague
Family photo

The Major Investigation Team re-checked data and concluded the area of the original 20-week search was still the location where there was the highest likelihood of finding Corrie.

However, police say the nature of waste disposal and its movement is not a precise science, hence the requirement to extend the search.

On 21 July, police announced their search of the Milton site was at an end.

Mr Mckeague's family said at the time they were "devastated" by the decision.

Milton landfill site
BBC

'Important' Garner in contention for East Anglian derby

Graeme Mac

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Ipswich Town could have both striker Joe Garner (pictured) and midfielder Tom Adeyemi back for Sunday's Championship fixture with Norwich City at Portman Road.

Joe Garner
PA

Garner missed last weekend's 1-0 defeat to Sheffield United with a knee injury, while Adeyemi has missed the last two matches with a hamstring problem.

Manager Mick McCarthy believes the latter is in with a good chance of featuring against his former club this weekend, and remains hopeful on Garner, who has clearly impressed him since joining the Blues from Rangers.

"He's trained today with the physios," said McCarthy. "He's done what he needed to do in order to be out training with his teammates tomorrow, to be in with a chance of playing on Sunday.

"He's a really important player for us. I thought he would be when I signed him, but as a footballer he is better than what I thought he was, which is always nice."

BreakingSearch of landfill site for missing Corrie to resume next week

The search of the Milton landfill site in Cambridgeshire for missing RAF Honington serviceman Corrie Mckeague will resume on Monday.

We'll bring you more details shortly.

Spedeworth fined for Health and Safety failings

Spedeworth International has been ordered to pay a total of £118,000 in fines and costs, for a number of health and safety breaches at Foxhall Stadium.

Foxhall Stadium
BBC

At a hearing at Suffolk Magistrates Court in July, following a prosecution brought by Suffolk Coastal District Council, the company pleaded guilty to four charges under the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 in relation to:

  • Emergency exits
  • Structural stability and maintenance of grandstands
  • Failure to comply with an improvement notice requiring safety improvements to the grandstands
  • Having eight emergency exits locked at a stock car race meeting

On Thursday they were fined £100,000 for the four breaches, as well as £18,000 in costs to Suffolk Coastal.

Project connecting NDR to A47 gets go-ahead

Work is to begin on finding ways to connect the new Norwich Northern Distributor Road to the A 47 West of Norwich.

There are fears the project, which is being called the Norwich Western link, could damage the sensitive wildlife in the Wensum Valley

Martin Wilby, chair of the county council's transport committee, which has backed the project, said: "We all love our local environment, all of our animals, wildlife, and we need to make sure we don't interfere with them too much, or there must be a solution to the problem.

"Whether it's a bridge or whatever, we need to get on with it."

Woman in lake identified

A woman who was rescued from a lake at the University of East Anglia in Norwich has been identified.

She remains at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital in a critical condition, police say.

No personal belongings, other than a key attached to a red Cath Kidston key ring, were found at the scene when the woman was discovered on Wednesday afternoon.

Norwich City manager says derby will be an 'emotional game'

BBC Radio Norfolk's Rob Butler has been at the Norwich City press conference ahead of Sunday's derby at Portman Road:

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A14 reopens on Orwell Bridge

Police say the A14 has reopened, after an earlier fatal collision on the Orwell Bridge.

Rugby union: Bury aiming to bounce back

Brenner Woolley

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Bury St Edmunds will be hoping to stop the rot when they host Worthing Raiders in National League Two South tomorrow.

Bury Rugby Club in action
Bury Rugby Club

After four victories in a row the Wolfpack have lost their last two, including a narrow 26-20 defeat to leaders Taunton Titans last weekend.

Tomorrow looks like a good chance to get back to winning ways though, with their visitors fourth from bottom of the table, having won just two of their seven matches so far.

Speedway: Mildenhall home in on KO Cup Final

Brenner Woolley

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Mildenhall Fen Tigers will make it through to the final of the National League's Knockout Cup tonight - if they can successfully defend a 16-point first leg lead at Belle Vue.

Jon Armstrong
Jeff Higgott

It finished 53-37 when the two sides met at West Row on Sunday.

Fen Tigers chairman Kevin Jolly says club captain Jon Armstrong (pictured) could be a key man tonight.

"He's guested for them on a number of occasions and I know he was present at the match against Eastbourne, as Drew Kemp's mechanic, so he's already working on set-ups.

"He's one bloke who'll be really fired up to do well, that's for sure," Jolly told BBC Suffolk Sport.

Opportunity for young people to try their hand at sports reporting

Do you know a youngster who'd like to report on their own sports story at the BBC?

The BBC School Report Sports Reporter scheme is open for 16-18-year-olds, with applications open until 10 November.

What's on offer?

  • 5 day placement within a BBC Local or Nations radio or online sports department
  • A mentor from your chosen BBC site
  • The opportunity to share your sports story with BBC audiences
  • Training with your BBC mentor to provide you with the required skills to tell your story. These could be: interviewing and sports story writing skills; editing skills; script writing and presenting skills of packages for radio and online

What are we looking for?

  • You'll need to be aged 16-18 before the start of the scheme
  • You’ll need to be in full-time education*
  • A proven passion for sport
  • A fantastic story idea relevant to the location you’re applying to
  • You don’t need to have any prior journalism experience or training to apply

*Please note this is an opportunity for people studying at school, college or a youth group. This is not a suitable opportunity for university students or apprentices studying at university level.

School Report Sports Reporter logo
BBC

Speed awareness courses 'most expensive' in Essex

Essex drivers paid the highest amount for speed awareness courses in the country last year, according to figures released today.

Policeman carrying out speed check
PA

A speed awareness course is offered to motorists caught exceeding the speed limited by a few miles per hour.

It's offered as an alternative to a fine and three penalty points on a motorists driving license.

Figures from the Press Association show motorists in Essex paid £99 to attend an awareness session last year.

That compares to just £75 for a similar course offered in Northamptonshire.

The "Safer Essex Road Partnership" says it takes speeding seriously and the courses offer motorists the option of education on the dangers of speeding.

The cost of that course is now £91 with roughly half that money going to the police.

Ipswich Town defender targeting another derby goal

Brenner Woolley

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

He was Ipswich Town's derby day hero on two occasions last season and Jonas Knudsen believes he can inflict more pain on Norwich City this weekend.

Jonas Knudsen
BBC

The Dane scored at Portman Road and Carrow Road last year as both matches finished 1-1.

On Sunday lunchtime the two great rivals meet, on Suffolk soil, for the first time this season.

"If I get a chance to get a shot or get into the box I'll definitely take the chance because there's something about these games and me.

"Hopefully it'll be the winner this time because it would be brilliant to win against Norwich as it's been a long time since we beat them."

New primary school for Great Yarmouth moves a step closer

Norfolk County Council has decided to move ahead with proposals to extend the age range at North Denes School and close the Alderman Swindell Primary School, pictured, in Great Yarmouth.

The decision, which follows a consultation period on the plans, means a new 420-place school will be built for primary-aged children in the north Yarmouth area.

Alderman Swindell Primary School
Google

Matt Dunkley, interim director of Children's Services, said: "I have considered the representations made during the consultation and I am very aware of the passion and support for keeping Alderman Swindell.

"However, I have to look at this purely from an educational perspective, to do what is best for children both now and in the long term."

Norfolk County Council says it will now work closely with both schools during the transition to the new school building, to ensure that the changes are well planned for current pupils.

All existing children will be offered a place at North Denes Primary from September 2018, when the changes take place.

The new building will be separate from the current North Denes buildings, meaning that children can continue to be taught in the current classrooms while the building project goes ahead.

Investigation continues into Orwell Bridge fatal crash

As soon as we have any further information about when the A14 might reopen eastbound on the Orwell Bridge, we'll let you know.

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Highways England warns of long delays northbound on A12 at J17

Ipswich Buses reports 'high levels' of calls as services are delayed

Ipswich Buses apologised earlier this morning for "major delays on most services" as a result of the earlier fatality on the Orwell Bridge.

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Woman hit by car in Norwich

A woman in her 60s has suffered leg and head injuries after being hit by a car in Ber Street in Norwich this morning.

It happened near the junction with Finkelgate at about 07:15.

Scene of Ber Street crash
BBC

It happened near the junction with Finkelgate at about 07:15.

Police say Ber Street could be closed for some time.

No entry sign
BBC

Traffic still being affected by A14 closure eastbound on Orwell Bridge

We've taken a call from John, who described Hadleigh as "choc-a-bloc" as drivers try to find alternative ways of getting to the A12 southbound.

He said it is gridlocked, particularly heading towards East Bergholt.

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Forest Live tickets go on sale

Tickets to see Gary Barlow and former Beautiful South stars Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott perform at Thetford Forest, near Brandon, go on sale this morning.

The concerts, on 8 & 9 June 2018, are part of the Forestry Commission's Forest Live season.

Gary Barlow
BBC
Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott
Contributed

Ed Sheeran bike crash injuries 'could have ended guitar playing'

Singer-songwriter and Suffolk son Ed Sheeran's been through the mill this week - he's broken both arms and a rib after crashing his bike on Monday.

He has told ITV's Jonathan Ross show that it happened when he was in Suffolk going down a steep hill, and that he went to the pub afterwards before later realising the extent of his injuries.

Ed Sheeran
PA

He said he'd initially wanted to carry on with show dates in Asia, but had eventually decided to cancel them on the advice of doctors.

"I did try to be like 'I will'," the singer said. "I tried to say I'll carry on doing the shows, but they said if I put any more stress on it, I might not be able to play (guitar) again so it's good to be sensible."

MP optimistic over bereavement rights bill

The MP for Colchester says he's confident the bereavement rights bill will make it to the next stage in parliament.

Conservative Will Quince, whose son was stillborn in 2015, is campaigning for parents to get paid leave if their child dies.

Will Quince
BBC

He said: "I'm really optimistic at second reading that the parental bereavement leave will make its way on and through to the next stage, which is committee and report stage.

"It would literally give us world-class bereavement rights.

"Parents would be entitled to two weeks paid leave if they lose their child up to the age of 18, something we don't have at the moment."

The legislation, which Mr Quince helped introduce, has its second reading today.

Chelmsford man given award for helping terror victims

A Chelmsford man has just received a bravery award from the Queen for helping people who were shot by a gunman during a terror attack in Sousse in Tunisia in 2015.

Floral tribute on beach at Sousse
Reuters

Allen Pembroke was on the beach with his wife when the gunman opened fire. They ran to their hotel but then Allen went back to the beach to help the injured.

He told us how he helped one woman: "I could see she was semi-conscious.

"I observed that she had some horrific injuries. I spoke with her, I gave her water. I tended her wounds as best I could, I stopped the bleeding.

"I then checked 15 or 20 other bodies in the immediate vicinity.

"All the time the gunman was shooting and throwing grenades. It was pretty scary."

Home Office: funding not responsible for PCSO decision

Andrew Sinclair

BBC Look East political correspondent

The Home Office has rejected claims by the Labour Party that the decision to axe all of Norfolk's police and community support officers (PCSOs) is the fault of government spending cuts.

In a statement issued late last night it said: "The government has protected overall police spending in real terms since 2015"

"Norfolk police received £3.4 millions more in 2016/17 compared with 2015/16 and in March it had £25.3 millions in reserves"

Ministers and government MPs accept that public money is tight but they believe the police can be more efficient.

Several of Norfolk's MPs have told me that losing all PCSOs but creating more full police officers will, ultimately, provide a better service.

The Home Office statement also says that it is "sensitive to the pressures the police are under" and it's begun "a programme of engagement to better understand their needs and how they can best be managed"

Investigation begins into A14 fatality

An investigation is under way into a fatal collision on the Orwell Bridge earlier this morning.

Police and emergency services are still at the scene of the crash, on the eastbound carriageway between J56 (Wherstead) and J57 (Nacton).

A Nissan Cabstar van had stopped on the carriageway and the driver was out of the vehicle when both he and the van were struck by a large agricultural vehicle.

The man died at the scene as a result of his injuries.

Police are asking any witnesses, or drivers who may have relevant dash-cam footage, to contact them.

The road is expected to be shut for several hours.

Agricultural vehicle involved in A14 fatality

Kelly McCormack

BBC Radio Suffolk

Police say they were called at about 06:45 to reports of a collision on the A14 eastbound at Nacton.

They have told us a van broke down on the carriageway, the driver got out of the vehicle and he and the vehicle were struck by a large agricultural vehicle.

The man died at the scene.

Sgt Julian Ditcham said: "We're dealing with a two-vehicle traffic collision, we have got considerable tailbacks.

"The closures are at Copdock, J55 but all vehicles are being put off the A14 and through the centre of Ipswich.

"We're in the process of turning all the vehicles round and getting them off at Wherstead between the collision and the Wherstead off-slip.

"It does take a little bit of patience. We're trying to turn heavy goods vehicles round."

Sgt Ditcham anticipates the road being closed for another two hours, maybe three.

BreakingMale van driver dies in A14 collision

Police say a male van driver has died in the collision on the eastbound carriageway of the A14 on the Orwell Bridge.

We'll bring you further details as we get them.

Drivers share their frustration over gridlocked Ipswich

With Ipswich bring pretty much gridlocked due to the closure of the A14 eastbound over the Orwell Bridge, a number of drivers have taken to social media to express their frustration.

If you're affected by the closure and can safely contact us, let us know what's happening where you are - use the "Get involved" link at the top of this page.

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A14 closure delays start of school day at Ipswich Academy

Ipswich Academy has put a message on its website saying it is having a "delayed start".

"Due to an incident on the Orwell Bridge and staff being stuck in traffic, Ipswich Academy will be having a delayed start of period 3 (11:30am) today.

"If any students need to come to school at normal time, they can do so as we will have enough staff to supervise them."

Latest from Highways England on A14 closure eastbound on Orwell Bridge

Mystery surrounds collision on Orwell Bridge

This is the scene on Freston Hill, close to the Orwell Bridge, in Ipswich, which is closed eastbound due to a collision earlier this morning.

We have contacted Suffolk Police several times asking for information about the crash, and they say they're still trying to figure out what vehicles were involved, but that it is "very serious" and it's safe to say the road will be closed for several hours.

Traffic queuing at Freston Hill
BBC

MP says people will be 'gutted' over PCSO proposals

The Labour MP for Norwich South says many people across the city, and across the county, will be "gutted" there will be fewer police officers visible, following the announcement on Thursday by Chief Constable Simon Bailey, that he is looking to axe his entire force of Police Community Support Officers.

Clive Lewis
PA

Clive Lewis said: "I understand why the chief constable has done this, and I understand that there is a changing face of policing, a changing face of crime, but the reality is, part of the decision has been forced on him because of cuts to police budgets."

A 45-day formal consultation with staff on the proposals has just begun.