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Summary

  1. Updates on Monday, 25 April 2016
  2. The northern section of Bedford's western bypass is officially opened today
  3. The famous concrete cows of Milton Keynes have been moved back to their original home
  4. Watford have been knocked out of the FA Cup, losing 2-1 to Crystal Palace in the semi-final at Wembley
  5. A GP who groped women during medical examinations in Hatfield has been jailed for 18 months
  6. Updates resume at 08:00 on Tuesday

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

That's all from us today but we'll be back from 08:00 tomorrow to bring you all the latest news, sport, weather and travel for Beds, Herts and Bucks.

If you missed anything today, why not take a scroll through the page? We took a look back at Watford's FA Cup semi-final and followed Milton Keynes' concrete cows being moved to a new home...

Weather Watchers: Ominous clouds over Hertfordshire

BBC Weather Watchers

There have been a few ominous-looking clouds over the three counties this afternoon.

Check out this moody scene over Chipperfield in Hertfordshire from Weather Watcher "Chris's view".

Black clouds in Hertfordshire
BBC Weather Watchers/Chris's view

Weather: Showers overnight could turn to sleet

Alex Dolan

BBC Look East weather

Tonight there will be further showers which could turn to sleet or snow as temperatures drop during the night. Lows of 0C (32F) with widespread frost and risk of icy patches.

Weather graphic shows rain tomorrow
BBC

Tuesday: Sunshine and showers or longer spells of rain. The risk of showers falling as hail and sleet. Highs of 9C (48F).  

Empty space after cows move to pastures new

Dani Bailey

BBC Local Live

This is what Oak Court in Milton Keynes' Intu Centre looks like today after the concrete cows and old oak tree were removed.

Milton Keynes' shopping centre - empty space after cows were moved
Other

The famous - some say infamous - cow sculptures, made in 1978, were moved to the Milton Keynes Museum in Stacey Bushes today.

The great oak that was protected and required builders of the shopping centre to construct shops around the tree, died after "drowning". An events area and stage will now be created in the space.

Local artist 'glad' Milton Keynes' cows moved to museum

Gail Sanderson

BBC Three Counties Radio

A local artist says she is glad the concrete cows of Milton Keynes have been moved back to their original home at the Milton Keynes Museum.

Concrete cow on moving van
BBC

"I think they're much better off here than at the centre; they were a bit out of place. They're back in a field, which is what the artist Liz Leyh wanted," artist Sarah Wright said.

In recent years the cows have been standing under the oak tree at the shopping centre, while a replica group were on display in a field at Bancroft.   

England's Farrell cited for foul play

BBC Sport

England international Owen Farrell, from Hertfordshire, is among three players cited for foul play in European matches over the weekend.

Owen Farrell
Getty Images

Saracens fly-half Farrell is alleged to have committed a dangerous tackle on Wasps scrum-half Dan Robson. Read more here.  

Van break-ins prompt police warning

Jane Killick

BBC Three Counties Radio

Bedfordshire Police has issued a warning following a spate of thefts of Ford Transit vans.

Officers believe thieves may be using a device to bypass the locking system. 

There have been more than 20 break-ins reported since the start of April, all of them at night.

Evening headlines: Bedford bypass open... Man stabbed outside club

Jane Killick

BBC Three Counties Radio

The latest headlines:

  • The northern section of Bedford's western bypass, costing more than £18m and linking the A428 with the A6, is now open to traffic
  • A man has been stabbed in the back outside of a nightclub in Luton 
  • Milton Keynes' concrete cows have been moved back to their original home at the Milton Keynes Museum

Bedford bypass: Classic cars first to take trip

Kate Bradbrook

BBC Look East

These classic cars were the first vehicles on the Bedford western bypass which was officially opened by the town's mayor today.

The northern section of the road, designed to ease traffic flow around Bedford, cost more than £18m and links the A428 with the A6.

You can see my full report on Look East tonight at 18:30 on BBC1.

View more on twitter

MK Dons 'should have used Alli money'

BBC Sport

MK Dons made a mistake not investing in the squad with money from Dele Alli's sale, says boss Karl Robinson, after being relegated from the Championship.

Dele Alli
Getty Images

Alli joined Tottenham in February 2015, but was loaned back to the Dons to help them win promotion last season.

"Nobody can turn around for one moment and say we could have kept Dele Alli," Robinson told BBC Look East. Read more here.

MK Dons: Karl Robinson says 'getting relegated takes its toll'

BBC Sport

MK Dons manager Karl Robinson speaks to BBC Look East about his future and some of the reasons behind the club's relegation from the Championship this season.  

Luton parking officers to wear body cameras

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Traffic wardens in Luton are to start wearing video cameras to help keep them safe, the council has announced.

Body cam
Luton Borough Council

Luton Borough Council said it hoped the cameras would prevent abuse and attacks on its civil enforcement officers (CEOs). Violent and aggressive incidents rose from 18 in 2014/15 to 47 in 2015/16. 

The council said the cameras would remain off for the majority of the time, and only used when CEOs found themselves in a confrontational situation. The public will be informed if they are being recorded. The system will be rolled out over the next few days.

Woman rescued from Luton fire

Gail Sanderson

BBC Three Counties Radio

A woman has been rescued from a fire in a flat at Hockwell Ring in Luton. 

The fire in a second-floor flat in Green Court started at about 14:15. Four fire engines and an aerial platform attended. 

Green Court in Hockwell Ring, Luton
Google

Man stabbed in back outside club

Jane Killick

BBC Three Counties Radio

A man has been stabbed in the back outside a nightclub in Luton. 

Exchange nightclub in Luton
Google

He is believed to have been involved in an argument or a fight before approaching door staff at the Exchange Nightclub in King Street to say he had been stabbed. 

It happened just after 03:00 on Saturday morning. Two men arrested at the weekend have been released without charge.  

Watch: Watford fans wave flags for the Hornets

Dani Bailey

BBC Local Live

BBC Three Counties Radio was broadcasting live from Wembley yesterday for the FA Cup semi-final between Watford and Crystal Palace.

There were thousands of Hornets fans celebrating on their way into Wembley with flags, and more flags!

However, they went home disappointed as the Hornets were knocked out by Crystal Palace, losing 2-1.

Cow cam: Milton Keynes sculptures on the moo-ve

BBC Look East

Milton Keynes' famous cow sculptures have been moved from the shopping centre to the town's museum.

Here we see some of their journey to Stacey Bushes.  

Obama visit: Student 'comes out' to US president

A person from Watford, who believes they're neither male nor female, says they don't regret coming out about their gender to US President Barack Obama

Maria Munir
BBC

Maria Munir, 20, identifies as "non-binary" and says they wanted to raise awareness of the issue, by speaking out during a question-and-answer session with the US president.

"If I do this in front of the world then perhaps other people will have the ability to be more accepted within society; at the end of the day, we are all human beings," Maria said.

Weather Watchers: Spring flowers brightening up day

BBC Weather Watchers

It's looking a bit grim and cloudy out there today but this photograph of bright, vibrant flowers in Buckinghamshire is brightening our mood!

Thank you to Weather Watcher Oldboy for sharing this image from Great Linford with us.

Flowers in Great Linford
BBC/Oldboy

Anthony Joshua to defend IBF title against Dominic Breazeale

BBC Sport

Watford boxer Anthony Joshua will defend his world heavyweight title against the undefeated American Dominic Breazeale in June.

Anthony Joshua
Getty Images

IBF heavyweight world champion Joshua will take on Breazeale on 25 June at London's O2 Arena.

Breazeale, 30, has won all 17 of his professional fights, with 15 knockouts. Joshua, 26, won the title with a second-round stoppage of American Charles Martin on 10 April.

Bedford bypass officially opened by town's mayor

Kate Bradbrook

BBC Look East

The northern section of the Bedford western bypass is officially open.

Mayor Dave Hodgson cut the ribbon this lunchtime ready for the first vehicles - classic cars - to travel along the road, which has been 50 years in the making.

View more on twitter

St Albans junior doctors to teach lifesaving skills during strike

St Albans Review

Junior doctors in St Albans will be holding free paediatric basic life support sessions during this week’s planned strike action. 

Oldest marathon runner 'calls it a day'

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

An 88-year-old woman from Bedford who was the oldest competitor in this year's London Marathon has confirmed Sunday's event will be her last.

Iva Barr
Getty Images

Iva Barr was taking part in her 20th marathon and said she had to call it a day at about mile 14 (23km). She said she took an Underground train to Westminster and walked the final part of the course to The Mall.

She decided ahead of Sunday's event that it would be her last marathon, and despite not finishing, said she had "no regrets" about giving it a go. 

"I rather wanted to go out in a blaze of glory," she said. "That didn't happen but I still had a great day."

Weather: Showers will ease this afternoon

BBC Weather

Skies should brighten a little this afternoon and the showers will ease for a time, although towards evening cloud is likely to thicken again introducing some light rain. It will feel chilly in the wind. 

Maximum temperature: 11C (52F).

Weather graphic shows some rainy spells
BBC

Lunchtime headlines: Bedford bypass opens... Service stations worst in country

Jane Killick

BBC Three Counties Radio

The top stories this lunchtime:

  • The northern section of the Bedford western bypass is being officially opened today
  • Food outlets at three service stations in Herts and Bucks have been named among the worst in the country for hygiene
  • Milton Keynes' concrete cows have been moved back to their original home at the Milton Keynes Museum

Man rescued from height at Hertfordshire building site

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Emergency services were called to a Hertfordshire building site just after 08:00 today after a man, believed to be in his 30s, collapsed after becoming unwell.

Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service performed a "rescue at height" on the site in Alma Road, St Albans, then paramedics treated the man at the scene before taking him to hospital.  

View more on twitter

Watch: Video footage of wrong-way A1(M) driver released

Police have released video footage of the moment they stopped a motorist who had driven for about 10 miles (16km) on the wrong side of a motorway.

The elderly man was seen on the A1(M) near Hinxworth in Hertfordshire last month, driving towards oncoming traffic in the outside lane of the southbound carriageway.

No-one was hurt and no vehicles were damaged but an application was made by police to have the driver's licence revoked on medical grounds.

Hidden steps found at Bletchley Park

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Steps built during World War Two have been uncovered at the home of the conflict's codebreakers in Buckinghamshire, after being hidden for more than 60 years.

Uncovered steps at Bletchley Park
Bletchley Park

They lead to the entrance of Block B at Bletchley Park where codes used by the German navy and air force were broken. The historic find was revealed during work to create better visitor access.

The museum said the steps would remain in situ and be preserved before a new access path and steps were constructed.

Cows 'symbolised new town of concrete'

Dani Bailey

BBC Local Live

Today the famous concrete cows of Milton Keynes have arrived at their new home in a museum after years under an oak tree in the shopping centre.

Concrete Cows pictured in 1978
Getty Images

The cows were created by Canadian-born artist Liz Leyh with help from local schoolchildren, back in 1978.

On the information sign at the Intu Centre, from where the cows have moved, The Parks Trust wrote: "The cows were once cynically said to symbolise a new town consisting entirely of concrete."

Stores remain open as BHS put into administration

Lee Agnew

BBC Three Counties Radio

The BHS store in St Albans remains open this morning after news that the company is being put into administration.

BHS in St Albans
South Beds News Agency

Jobs at nine stores across Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire have been put at risk. 

The company has a pension fund hole of more than £0.5bn and efforts to find a buyer have been unsuccessful.

Bedford bypass officially opened today

Lee Agnew

BBC Three Counties Radio

After 50 years of planning, the northern section of the Bedford western bypass is being officially opened today.

Bedford bypass sign
BBC

The new section of road, which links the A4280 at Biddenham with the A6 at the Clapham roundabout, has cost more than £18m and completes a north-south route that by-passes Bedford town centre. 

The first vehicles to travel along the new bypass will be a selection of classic and vintage cars, while cyclists will be using a new path which runs along the length of the road. The bypass will be fully opened ahead of this evening's rush hour.

Tring school wins Choir of the Year Competition

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

A Hertfordshire choir has won this year's prestigious BBC Songs of Praise Senior School Choir of the Year competition.

Tring Park School of Performing Arts
BBC

Tring Park School of Performing Arts were named winners on BBC One on Sunday.

One of the judges, Katherine Jenkins, said they were "so professional" and "very accomplished".

Dons drop out of Championship

BBC Sport

Milton Keynes Dons have been relegated to League One with two games remaining after Saturday's 4-1 defeat at home to Brentford.

MK Dons following the match between Milton Keynes Dons and Brentford
Getty Images

The Dons went ahead when Nicky Maynard stabbed in a goal but Brentford's Segi Canos, Lasse Vibe, Ryan Woods and Jake Bidwell struck in the second half to condemn the Dons to League One football next year.

Manager Karl Robinson said: "It's a difficult one for us all to take and I want to say thank you to the fans, but the most honest thing for all of us is the league table... There will be a lot of talking going on in the next seven days for obvious reasons, but certain people will not be here next season."

Mark Altabas stab death: Two charged with murder

Two people have been charged with the murder of a man found stabbed in a street in Stevenage on Thursday.

Mark Altabas
South Beds News Agency

Mark Altabas, 47, was discovered by police on Angle Ways at 04:20. He died later at Lister Hospital.

Robert Crook, 57, and Katie Holmes, 43, both of Long Leaves in the town, have been charged with murder. Two others were released on bail by Hertfordshire Police while another remained in custody.

Service stations in Beds, Herts and Bucks named amongst worst in country for hygiene

Lee Agnew

BBC Three Counties Radio

Food outlets at three service stations in Beds, Herts and Bucks have been named among the worst in the country for hygiene - inspectors found serious failings in shops in South Mimms, Baldock and Beaconsfield.

South Mimms service station
Google

Inspection reports released following Freedom of Information (FoI) requests by the Press Association revealed Hertsmere Borough Council found food kept at the wrong temperature in Subway at South Mimms on the M25, while the system for washing fruit and vegetables at Tossed couldn't be "wholly relied on" for dealing with E. coli.

At Baldock on the A1 inspectors also found outlets failing to reach good standards of hygiene, while Beaconsfield on the M40 was the only service station in the country with an outlet scoring zero: The Carvery Express was warned "urgent improvement" was necessary.

Concrete cows arrive at museum

Nicola Haseler

BBC Three Counties

I'm at Milton Keynes Museum where the famous concrete cows are being moved into position at their new home in Stacey Bushes. 

We'll bring you more on this story during the day.

Concrete cows at Milton Keynes Museum
BBC

Watford manager 'positive' after FA Cup defeat

BBC Sport

Watford manager Quique Sanchez Flores has said everyone connected to the club was "disappointed" after their FA Cup semi-final defeat to Crystal Palace, but [the team] need to be "realistic".

Quique Sanchez Flores
BBC

"No-one expected us to be in the semi-final," he said.

"When we started the season the main target was to stay in the Premier League. That's the most important thing for Watford. We need reasons to be happy; to be positive. I don't see why we have to be negative."

Dr Mohammad Haq jailed for groping patients 40 years ago

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

A doctor who groped women during unnecessary clinical examinations in Hertfordshire 40 years ago has been jailed for 18 months.

Dr Mohammad Haq
South Beds News Agency

Dr Mohammad Haq, 74, of Parkstone Avenue, Hornchurch, east London, was found guilty at St Albans Crown Court last month of five offences of indecent assault on four women which took place at surgeries in Hatfield in the 1970s and early 1980s.

Judge Andrew Bright said he had abused the "total trust" of his victims.

Watch: Watford knocked out of FA Cup

BBC Sport

Watford have been knocked out of the FA Cup, losing 2-1 to Crystal Palace in the semi-final at Wembley.

Yannick Bolasie headed Palace ahead before the Hornets, who lost midfielder Etienne Capoue to injury early in the semi-final, levelled when Troy Deeney nodded home Jose Manuel Jurado's corner.

But Palace sealed a first FA Cup final appearance for 26 years when Connor Wickham met Pape Souare's cross.

Milton Keynes cows due to be moved

Carol Abercrombie

BBC Three Counties Radio

The famous concrete cows of Milton Keynes are being moved back to their original home at Milton Keynes Museum today.

Concrete cows in Milton Keynes
Geograph/Cameraman

In recent years, the statues, created in 1978 by Canadian artist Liz Leyh with help from schoolchildren at the museum, have been located under the old oak tree in the Intu Centre, formally known as Midsummer Place shopping centre. 

They came to symbolise the new town, even though their replicas, which still stand in a field at Bancroft became even more well-known. Today the three cows and three calves are being moved from the shopping centre to the grass outside the museum in Stacey Bushes.