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  1. Updates for Friday, 8 July 2016
  2. Man questioned over murder of 81-year-old from Buckinghamshire
  3. Family says she was an "incredibly special" and "completely selfless" woman
  4. CCTV footage released after girl throws herself out a 'stolen' car
  5. Trail of destruction after Watford double-decker bus stolen
  6. Ofsted head warns of radicalisation risk in Luton schools
  7. More news, sport, travel and weather updates from 08:00 on Monday

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All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

Just before we go tonight... it seems today has been perfect for lazing around in the sunshine.

Reqs - the Hertfordshire Fire Service fire dog - has been enjoying a day off today, so he's chilling out with his mates - but you can find him back on duty tomorrow at the Hoddesdon fire station open day from 10am.

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Thanks for your company, you can take a scroll down the page for a catch-up on today's news. 

We'll be back on Monday from 08:00. Have a good weekend (even if you're working like Reqs).

Art 'binstallations' hit Hitchin

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

If an ordinary black bin turns you off putting your litter in it - then be prepared to be galvanised into some litter picking and throwing action.

Hitchin 'binstallations'

Eleven used black bin shells have been upcycled into bold, colourful bins which will be sited in and around the town in July for the duration of the Hitchin Festival.

The organisers - Clean Up Hitchin - think it's the UK’s first art "binstallation".

Rachel Campbell from Clean Up Britain said: "The idea of this project is to encourage everyone to use the bins in Hitchin by being a bit unconventional and creating something out of the ordinary…"

Weather: Tonight clear spells and patchy cloud... Tomorrow rain

Chris Bell

BBC Look East weather

Staying mainly dry through this evening with a mixture of clear spells and patchy cloud. 

Mainly light west to southwesterly winds with lows of 12-14C (mid-50sF).

Weather map

Tomorrow will be mostly cloudy with outbreaks of rain spreading eastwards across the region through the morning, clearing in eastern areas around midday leaving most places dry and a little brighter.

Feeling humid with highs of 23-25C (mid-70sF).

For a more detailed forecast for where you are, visit BBC Weather.

Football grounds made out of Lego: All you need to know

Nic Rigby

BBC News

Football fan Jules Richards is making quite a name for himself in the world of Lego models as it appears that when a fan needs a stadium tribute - he can fix it!

Cardiff's ground
Jules Richards

So with the greatest respect to Bob the Builder... some Lego stadium facts:

  • Jules' first stadium was Cardiff City's ground, the team he supports... his latest is West Ham's ground
  • Each stadium is made out of about 900 to 1,100 bricks
  • They cost between £100 and £140
  • The only stadium Jules thinks he could not build is Wolverhampton Wanderers, because Lego doesn't make its colour in bricks
  • In total he has made 37 football grounds

West Ham
Jules Richards
The Rams
Jules Richards

'Lego man' builds football stadiums for fans

Nic Rigby

BBC News

Football fans from around Britain are contacting a supermarket shop manager from Bedfordshire to get him to build their team's stadium in Lego.

Four of Jules' stadiums
Jules Richards

Jules Richards, who is a manager at a Sainsbury's store in Luton, discovered he could create the mini ground tributes by recreating his own team's Cardiff City stadium.

He's gone on to build nearly 40 football grounds including Luton Town and Norwich City.  

Luton Town FC
Jules Richards
Norwich City
Jules Richards

Now he's getting orders from football fans from all around the country. 

"I started with Cardiff and people started enquiring about it and I started selling them. I just started making them as a hobby and it has taken off," he said.

Tributes paid 'selfless' 81-year-old killed in Bucks village

Nic Rigby

BBC News

The family of an 81-year-old who was killed in a Buckinghamshire village have paid tribute to an "incredibly special" and "completely selfless" woman.

Albertina Choules
Family photo

Albertina Choules was found on Wednesday morning at her remote home in Ragmans Lane, Marlow Bottom, where she lived alone.

Her family said: "She [Ms Choules] never liked to sit still and worked tirelessly to maintain her beautiful garden and produce all year round.

"Even in her old age she would chop trees, dig up flowerbeds and wrestle with her lovely dog, Georgie. 

"She was completely selfless...  Her friends and family in both the UK and Italy will miss her very dearly."

Policeman guides scene of crime

A post-mortem examination has found the cause of death was a blunt trauma head injury. 

A 23-year-old man from High Wycombe is being questioned by police on suspicion of her murder.  

Double-decker stolen in Watford

Nic Rigby

BBC News

A double-decker bus has been stolen in Watford.

Watford Junction station

The bus was taken from near to Watford Junction station at about 22:00 yesterday and driven along Clarendon Road, the Ring Road and Radlett Way, before crashing into a car in St Albans Road.

A 35-year-old man from London has been arrested on suspicion of the aggravated taking of a vehicle without the consent of the owner and failing to provide a specimen of breath.  

Sgt Steve Alison, of Hertfordshire Police, said: “The bus is believed to have travelled some distance, colliding with parked vehicles, barriers and other objects along the route.

"Fortunately no passengers were believed to have been on the bus at the time it was taken and no one was hurt as a result of the incident."

Police are appealing for witnesses.

Shaun Donnellan

West Bromwich Albion defender Shaun Donnellan joins League Two side Stevenage on loan until January.

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James Corden talks of Michelle Obama's 'surprising' karaoke

Andy Collins

BBC Three Counties Radio

Buckinghamshire-raised James Corden has been telling me about the next rather surprising guest in Carpool Karaoke.

Michelle Obama

Corden's feature on his US talk show - where he gets a lift from a multi-platinum winning singing star in order to be able to drive in America's "carpool lane" on the freeway - has gained a huge following as he duets with stars including Stevie Wonder, Adele, Elton John and One Direction.  

But in the next couple of weeks viewers will be treated to someone who is not an obvious singer as Corden gets in a car with America's first lady, Michelle Obama. 

He said: "We're driving round the grounds of the White House... you're going to be so very surprised."

James Corden: Gavin and Stacey 'unlikely' to return

Andy Collins

BBC Three Counties Radio

Actor and writer James Corden, who penned the hugely popular and BAFTA award-winning series Gavin and Stacey above the China Diner in Beaconsfield has told me he "doesn't think" it will return. 

James Corden and Matthew Horne
Baby Cow

Speaking on BBC Three Counties Radio's breakfast show earlier he said: "We talk about it Ruth [Jones, co-writer] and I, but it feels like we left it in such a lovely place that the last thing you want to do is sort of make something that cheapens the other shows that we've made.

"You can never say never, but I would be very surprised if we chose to."

James Corden's 'great affection' for High Wycombe

Andy Collins

BBC Three Counties Radio

A rather bleary-eyed James Corden OBE was on my breakfast show this morning - the actor, writer and presenter was out last night celebrating fellow comedian Jack Whitehall's birthday, but he took some time out to express his affection for the Buckinghamshire town where he grew up and where his parents still live - Haslemere in High Wycombe.  

James Corden
Getty Images

Corden who now lives in Los Angeles said the biggest difference between LA and High Wycombe was "the people".

He said: "I brought my first flat in Beaconsfield and series one of Gavin and Stacey was all written in a flat above the China Diner, so I have great affection for the whole place, I really do."

China Diner in Beaconsfield

But will Gavin and Stacey ever make a come back...

'Blue-light hub' plans to go on show

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Plans for a new centre for the emergency services in Milton Keynes go on display for the first time today.

MK Hub artist's impression
Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue

The so-called "blue-light hub" at West Ashland would house police, ambulance and the fire service - with the fire stations at Bletchley and Great Holm closing. 

Great Holm residents still have major concerns over the plans as it fears it will be left at risk, but area commander Paul Holland has sought to allay fears over response times.

He said: "We don't respond from fire stations in the traditional sense of how we did perhaps 15-20 years ago, we're now out in the community much more and we utilise technology to enable us to ensure we deliver the nearest possible resource to an incident."

Woman, 81, of Marlow Bottom, died from 'blunt trauma head injury'

Nic Rigby

BBC News

Post-mortem tests have been completed on an 81-year-old woman who was killed in a Buckinghamshire village.

Albertina Choules was found on Wednesday morning at her remote home in Ragmans Lane, Marlow Bottom, where she lived alone.

A post-mortem examination has found the cause of death was a blunt trauma head injury. The victim was then set on fire at the scene of the murder.  

A 23-year-old man from High Wycombe is being questioned by police on suspicion of her murder.

This afternoon's weather: Dry, turning brighter

BBC Weather

During this afternoon it will turn drier and brighter, with some warm sunny spells and perhaps the odd shower.

Maximum temperature: 22C (72F).

Grove Park, Dunstable

Wycombe set for windfall over Ibe sale

Simon Oxley

BBC Three Counties Radio

Wycombe Wanderers could be set for a £2m windfall if former winger Jordan Ibe joins AFC Bournemouth from Liverpool. 

Jordan Ibe
Getty Images

£15m deal has been agreed and the Chairboys have confirmed they have a sell-on clause which is thought to be in the region of 15%.

The England Under-21 winger has made 58 appearances for Liverpool since signing from the Chairboys in 2011.

Dunstable pedestrian 'suffered minor injuries'

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Earlier we told you that a pedestrian had been knocked down on a crossing at Church Street in Dunstable.

I've just spoken to the East of England Ambulance Service who told me they were called to the scene just after 12:30 where they treated an elderly male patient - thought to be in his 80s.

He had suffered minor injuries, but was taken to the Luton and Dunstable Hospital as a precautionary measure. 

Pedestrian knocked down in Dunstable

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

We're getting reports that a pedestrian has been knocked down on a crossing at Church Street by the junction with High Street North.

The road is blocked towards West Street and emergency services treating the person at the scene.

We'll bring you more on this as we get it.

Church St junction, Dunstable

Lewis Hamilton fastest in British Grand Prix first practice

Andrew Benson

Chief F1 writer

Lewis Hamilton beat team-mate Nico Rosberg to the fastest time as Mercedes dominated the British Grand Prix first practice.

Lewis Hamilton
Getty Images

He was just 0.033 seconds quicker than Rosberg as the dust settles on the controversy following their collision at Sunday's Austrian Grand Prix.

Mercedes say the drivers are on their "last warning" and risk "financial and sporting penalties" if they crash together again.

Hamilton is 11 points behind Rosberg in the championship going into the race.

On this Day 2012: The Olympic Torch in Bedfordshire

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Today, Hertfordshire's Lewis Hamilton is racing around the Silverstone track in the practice day for this weekend's British Grand Prix.

But four years ago today he was pounding the streets of Luton carrying the Olympic torch - as we've been reminded by Bedfordshire Police who worked hard at the event throughout the county. 

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University of Hertfordshire has best rate of employment in East region

Dani Bailey

BBC Local Live

The University of Hertfordshire has the best rate of employment for graduates in the East of England, according to new figures.

Ranking at number 21 in the UK, the university has outscored Russell Group universities Oxford and Cambridge.

University of Hertfordshire de Havilland Campus

According to the survey by the Higher Education Statistics Agency, 96.2% of Uni of Herts students are working or doing further study six months after graduating compared to the national average of nearly 94%.

The University of Bedfordshire placed 89.7% of students in employment or further education for the same period of 2014-15 and Buckinghamshire New University 94.6%.

"We are delighted at this further evidence of the continued success of our students."

Prof Quintin McKellarUniversity of Hertfordshire

Shoreham crash pilot investigated for manslaughter

BBC News England

A Hertfordshire stunt pilot, whose vintage Hawker Hunter jet crashed at the Shoreham Airshow last year killing 11 people, is being investigated for manslaughter, Sussex police have confirmed.

Andy Hill

Former RAF pilot Andy Hill, 52, from Sandon near Buntingford was interviewed under caution by police in December, after recovering from critical injuries in the August crash.

The details of the interview emerged in papers filed by Sussex Police in its High Court bid to access evidence.

Sussex Police said: "A 52-year-old man was notified in December he is being investigated for possible endangerment pursuant to Article 138 Air Navigation Order 2009 and also manslaughter by gross negligence."

Greg Rutherford wins gold at European Championships

BBC Sport

Milton Keynes long jumper Greg Rutherford has won gold at the European Championships in Amsterdam.

Greg Rutherford
Getty Images

Olympic and world champion Rutherford, 29, retained his European long jump title with a leap of 8.25m.

His gold medal means he maintains the long jump grand slam, holding the Olympic, World, European and Commonwealth titles.

"Although 8.25 isn't very big, it's good to be the best of Europe again," he said.

"It's now about being the best of the world again. I now have five major titles and not many athletes can say that."

Watford appoint Mazzarri's backroom staff

Simon Oxley

BBC Three Counties Radio

Watford have confirmed new manager Walter Mazzarri's backroom team, appointing three coaches who have all worked with him in Italy - Nicolo Frustalupi, Claudio Nitti and Luca Vigiani will all be assistant coaches.

A fitness coach, an analyst and a scout have also been appointed, with three previous members of staff including Dean Austin leaving the club.

Walter Mazzarri
Getty Images

British GP: Hamilton in first practice

BBC Sport

Turning to sport... and the first practice is under way at Silverstone for Sunday's British Grand Prix with Hertfordshire driver Lewis Hamilton and his championship rival Nico Rosberg on a final warning from their Mercedes team after recent collisions.

Keep up-to-date with the latest from Silverstone on BBC Sport's live page.

Lewis Hamilton
Getty Images

Marlow Bottom death: Residents 'sad and a little worried'

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

A Marlow Bottom parish councillor has said residents have been saddened by the death of Albertina Choules at her remote home in Ragmans Lane.

Ragmans Lane scene

Councillor Mark Harris said: "Sadness is very much the mood and a little bit of worry, but I think people are generally accepting the police's stated point of view which is this is to be regarded as an isolated incident."

An investigation is continuing into the 81-year-old's death. A  23-year-old man from High Wycombe is being questioned by police on suspicion of her murder.

Marlow Bottom death: Murder investigation continues

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

An investigation is continuing into the death of an 81-year-old woman in a Buckinghamshire village.

Albertina Choules
Family photograph

Albertina Choules was found on Wednesday morning at her remote home in Ragmans Lane, Marlow Bottom, where she lived alone.

A 23-year-old man from High Wycombe is being questioned by police on suspicion of her murder.  

CCTV footage released after girl throws herself out a 'stolen' car

Rebecca Cafe

BBC News

CCTV footage has been released after a car was "stolen" with two children inside in Enfield on Saturday, one of which was later found in Cheshunt.

CCTV released after a car was stolen with two children inside

A 12-year-old girl threw herself out of the car and was treated for minor injures, however she did not require hospital treatment.

An 11-month-old baby was later found on a doorstep in Cheshunt.

Police are appealing for the suspect to hand himself in to police. He has been described as white, in his late teens, with light hair in a spiky style and possibly wearing a hooded top.

Luton Council calls Ofsted letter 'inaccurate'

Judith Burns

Education reporter

Luton Borough Council chief executive Trevor Holden has called a letter from Ofsted chief to Education Secretery Nicky Morgan "both inaccurate and ill-advised".

Luton Borough Council

The letter expresses concerns that children in a Luton school were at a greater risk of being radicalised as the local authority doesn't have sufficient safeguards in place.

Mr Holden said the letter was in contradiction to Ofsted's most recent inspection report, which made no recommendations about safeguarding or children missing from school or in home education in the borough and has contacted the chief inspector to "clarify his concerns".

He said: "As a council we are committed to working closely with Ofsted to improve educational services and safeguarding practices for the children and young people of Luton."

Travel: Queues on M1

BBC Travel

There's a 12-mile queue of traffic on the southbound M1 due to earlier resurfacing at J8 for Hemel Hempstead. All lanes have been re-opened, but congestion is back to J11 for the A505 at Luton.

Traffic is also queuing on the northbound M1 at J10 for Luton airport due to a four-vehicle collision on the exit slip road. Congestion is back to J7/J8 for Hemel Hempstead.

Get the latest updates from BBC Travel.

DfE taking 'tough action' on unregistered schools

Judith Burns

Education reporter

The government has said it is taking tough action on unregistered schools after Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw said Luton was one of three councils doing too little to trace pupils who go missing from mainstream schools.

Anonymous school children

Sir Michael said children educated at home, in unregistered schools or in some independent faith schools could be at risk of exposure to extremist views.

A Department for Education spokeswoman said the government had announced a significant escalation of Ofsted investigations into unregistered schools and had "a team of inspectors dedicated to identifying, investigating and prosecuting such settings".

She said Ofsted had acknowledged that schools had improved but added: "We must remain vigilant against a small minority in communities who seek to undermine fundamental British values."

Ofsted chief warns of Luton radicalisation threat

Carol Abercrombie

BBC Three Counties Radio

Children in Luton schools are at greater risk of being radicalised because the local authority doesn't have sufficient safeguards in place, the head of the schools watchdog Ofsted has said following a recent visit to the town.

Sir Michael Wilshaw

Sir Michael Wilshaw has written to Education Secretary Nicky Morgan, recommending an inspector be sent in to monitor the council and report back.

He says he's particularly concerned about Luton's failure to address the problem of children missing from education and satisfy itself that they are not exposed to harm, exploitation or the influence of extremist views.

Luton Borough Council chief executive Trevor Holden says Sir Michael's letter is inaccurate and ill-advised.

Today's weather: Patchy rain, brighter later

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC Look East weather

It's a warm, muggy start today and due to continue cloudy and wet this morning, turning sunny this afternoon.

Maximum temperature: 22C (71F).  

Welcome to Local Live for Beds, Herts and Bucks

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Good morning and welcome to the live page for the three counties, where we'll bring you the latest news, sport, weather and travel until 18:00.

Today, among other things, we'll be looking at how the head of Ofsted has warned that children in Luton schools are at greater risk of being radicalised.

Plus, it's looking rather gloomy outside in Dunstable - will it stay that way? A weather forecast is coming up.

Remember, if you'd like to get in touch, you can email us or send us a tweet.