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  1. Updates on Monday, 13 June 2016
  2. 'Internal critical incident' declared at Southend Hospital as it runs out of beds
  3. Two parents given conditional discharge for taking children on holiday during term time
  4. Football fan from Southend describes violence in Marseille as England play Russia
  5. School introduces "gender neutral" clothing allowing boys to wear skirts
  6. Essex lightning strikes caught on camera
  7. Updates resume at 08:00 on Tuesday

Live Reporting

By Jack Warren

All times stated are UK

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That's it for today

That's all from us at Essex Live. But before we go, here's a recap of the top stories we've covered:

  • Two Essex parents have been given a 12-month conditional discharge after taking their children on holiday during term time
  • Southend Hospital has declared an "internal critical incident" after a "very high number" of patients arrived at its A&E, with the hospital already operating at full capacity
  • A Maldon primary school has become the first in Essex to introduce a "gender neutral" uniform - which means boys are allowed to wear skirts and girls can wear trousers if they choose to do so

We'll be back tomorrow morning from 08:00 with another day of live coverage for the county.

Have a great evening. 

Weather: Heavy, thundery showers continuing

Julie Reinger

BBC Look East weather

The risk of heavy, slow moving and possibly thundery showers will continue through this evening and overnight. It'll turn misty and murky in places. 

There'll be light south-westerly winds and temperatures falling no lower than 11C (52F).

Map for the East

Tuesday is looking a similar day of sunny intervals and further showers. However, some places may stay largely. Remaining quite humid with highs of 19C (66F).

There is a "yellow" weather warning in place for this evening, overnight and tomorrow for heavy rain and the risk of localised flooding. You'll find the latest forecast for your area at BBC Weather.

Broomfield Hospital midwife suspended after nipple squeeze

A midwife who squeezed a woman's nipples while she was in labour and told her to imagine she was smoking a spliff has been suspended.

Broomfield Hospital

At Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford, midwife Samantha Stanton asked the woman: "What do you expect? You're in labour, you should be in pain."

A Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) panel found she acted unprofessionally towards the woman in June 2014.

Ms Stanton was suspended for 12 months, as reported by the Essex Chronicle.

Greater Anglia spends £40m improving service

Greater Anglia has published its annual report today and says it has to do more to meet customers' expectations.

Greater Anglia

Last year, the rail operator came 20th out of 22 companies in a survey of customer satisfaction. 

It says it has spent £40m to improve experiences for commuters, including refurbishing trains and adding thousands of extra seats. 

'Are you going to make a five-a-side team?' Four Braintree Town players leave in 24 hours

Four Braintree Town players have left the club in the space of 24 hours, prompting some social media users to question whether the team was going to play five-a-side instead.

Getty Images

Mark Phillips, Daniel Sparkes, Sam Habergham and Alex Woodyard are the latest names to leave the Iron. 

Find all the latest football transfers on BBC Sport's dedicated page.

More of your pictures from last night's storm

Thanks to everybody who has continued to share photos of last night's storm. 

Us Brits love talking about the weather, don't we...

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

Southminster couple guilty in term time holiday case

Richard Smith

BBC Essex

I'm at Chelmsford Magistrates' Court where a couple who took their children on an 11-day holiday during term time have been found guilty of failing to make sure their children regularly attend school.

Ben and Rebecca Walker

Ben and Rebecca Walker, of Southminster, took their two daughters on holiday to Tenerife in October 2015. Their decision meant the children had 22 unauthorised absences from Latchingdon Primary School.

The pair were found guilty and a 12-month conditional discharge was imposed. They were also told they had to pay the initial £240 fine given to them by Essex County Council for failing to make sure their daughters, aged 10 and six, attended school regularly.

BreakingParents get conditional discharge for taking children on holiday during term time

Two Essex parents have been given a 12-month conditional discharge after taking their children on holiday during term time. 

More details to follow. 

Is the end of 'heat-related' delays on trains nigh?

Leaves on the line, staff not turning up, or signalling problems. If you're a commuter, these words probably send shivers down your spine - but now there's light at the end of the tunnel for "heat-related" delays. 

Line replacement
Network Rail

Network Rail is replacing 320km (199 miles) of overhead lines connecting Essex, Suffolk and Norwich with London Liverpool Street, so during hot weather lines won't sag and cause delays for passengers. 

The work, however, is not due to be completed until 2019.

Drone used in search for Sylvia Stuart in Weybread

Philippa Taylor

BBC Local Live

Police say they've deployed a drone to help search the Weybread area as they continue to try and find Sylvia Stuart, who was reported missing on 3 June.

Det Ch Supt Simon Parkes

As part of the investigation into Mrs Stuart's disappearance, and the murder of her husband Peter, police are also continuing their hunt for Ali Qazimaj, 42, who had been living in the Tilbury area of Essex and is believed to have travelled to France.

Det Ch Supt Simon Parkes (pictured during an earlier interview) said: "Over the weekend police have been continuing searches and these will be ongoing in a bid to locate Sylvia. 

"A lot of work is continuing behind the scenes, including liaison with authorities on the continent to try to locate Ali Qazimaj."

Not the first time this year Southend Hospital has declared an 'internal critical incident'

It's not the first time Southend Hospital has run out of beds and struggled to cope this year. 

In January, we reported three occasions that the hospital declared an "internal critical incident". 

Southend A&E

Poster threatening dog walkers of poison traps handed to police, reports Echo

A poster warning that dog food laced with poison has been put down in Leigh to teach "selfish" owners a lessons has been handed to police, the Echo reports

Marine Parade

The flyer, which is said to have been pinned to a lamppost on Marine Parade, warned: "The recent level of mess on the path has become intolerable. Due to selfish dog owners, dog food laced with poison will be placed in this area of path and woods."

The man who found the poster told the paper the person responsible was a "sick individual". 

Should boys be allowed to wear skirts to school?

Lots of you have been sharing your thoughts on social media this morning on the news that a school in Maldon is introducing a "gender neutral" uniform policy, meaning girls can wear trousers and boys skirts if they wish.


Rita tweeted: "Oh for goodness sake! What next? Hair ribbons!!!".

Beverly wrote: "I think the issue here is getting rid of gender discrimination, not just 'letting boys wear skirts'."

Gary said: "I've never heard anything so ridiculous".

Southend Hospital says only come if it's an emergency

Robby West

BBC Essex

I'm outside Southend A&E after an "internal critical incident" was declared here earlier today. 

The hospital says it has "run out of beds" and is calling on people only to come here if it's an emergency.

Southend A&E

I'll bring you further updates when I get them. 

Weather: Cloudy with some further heavy showers developing

BBC Weather

This afternoon will be another humid and largely cloudy one with scattered showers - with some heavy, thundery downpours likely. 

Maximum temperature: 20C (68F).


You can find the latest forecast for your area here.

If you're just joining us...

Jack Warren

BBC Local Live

Good afternoon - here at the top stories we've covered on Essex Live so far today: 

  • Southend Hospital has declared an "internal critical incident" after an influx of patients to its A&E department 
  • A school in Maldon has become the first in Essex to introduce a "gender neutral" uniform - which means boys are allowed to wear skirts and girls can wear trousers if they choose to do so
  • A Southend man who is in Marseille for Euro 2016 described fan violence over the weekend as "the worst I've ever seen"

'Think very carefully' about using Southend A&E, bosses warn

Southend Hospital bosses are urging members of the public to "think very carefully" about using its A&E. 

Southend Hospital

However, those experiencing choking, chest pain, blacking out, blood loss and fractures "should not hesitate" to visit, they say.

We'll keep you updated with information throughout the day as we get it. 

'We have no beds available at the hospital'

The chief operating officer of Southend Hospital says there are "no beds available" at the hospital.

Jon Findlay
Southend Hospital

We are working closely with our partners at the Clinical Commissioning Groups and local authorities to allow us to safely discharge patients who are medically fit so that we can free up beds for new admissions."

Jon FindlayChief operating officer, Southend Hospital

What is an 'internal critical incident'?

A "internal critical incident" means Southend Hospital is currently so full it is losing its ability to deliver services and needs specials measures and support from other agencies to restore normal operating functions.

The hospital says it has seen an increase in the number of patients while already operating at full capacity. 

It also remains on a "black alert", which indicates the hospital has run out of bed space. 

Southend Hospital

BreakingSouthend Hospital declares 'internal critical incident'

Southend Hospital has just declared an "internal critical incident" after a "very high number" of patients arrived at its A&E, with the hospital already operating at full capacity. 

More to follow.

Cyclist dies after crashing with van in Weeley

Some news just in from Essex Police.

A cyclist has died after he crashed with a white van in Weeley yesterday afternoon. 


It happened on the southbound carriageway of the A133 at about 18:00.

The cyclist, a man in his 40s and from Clacton, suffered serious head injuries and later died in hospital. 

Ugh... weather warning issued

Just when you thought the storms had passed and we could get on with enjoying the summer, the Met Office has issued a "yellow" warning of heavy rain for the region for today, tomorrow and Wednesday.

It says there's a risk 15-25mm of rain could fall within an hour in scattered locations, bringing the risk of flooding, especially if it falls in urban areas. 


Weather warning

Essex tie cup thriller against Somerset

BBC Sport

Former captain James Foster made an unbeaten 75 off 50 deliveries as Essex earned a thrilling tie off the final ball against Somerset at Chelmsford yesterday.

View more on twitter

Adam Hose (77) and Jim Allenby (68) shared a stand of 141 as Somerset totalled 179-8 in a game reduced to 29 overs each after rain interruption.

Essex were set a revised target of 177 to win, but slumped to 83-7.

The home side needed 16 off the last over but Foster hit a six, then ran a bye off the final ball to earn the tie.

Essex school introduces 'gender neutral' uniform which allows boys to wear skirts

What do you make of this next story then? 

A school in Maldon has become the first in Essex to introduce a "gender neutral" uniform - which means boys are allowed to wear skirts and girls can wear trousers if they choose to do so. 


Maldon Primary is one of eight state schools across the country to relax clothing stereotypes.

We're currently trying to contact the school to hear how it has gone down with parents, but we'd love to know if you think it's a good idea. Contact us via TwitterFacebook or email

Lightning reactions: More storm pictures from Chelmsford

More of your pictures from yesterday's storm. Thanks to Shantelle for taking these in Chelmsford.

Chelmsford storm
Shantelle Robinson
Storm in Chelmsford
Shantelle Robinson
Chelmsford storm
Shantelle Robinson

Essex fan meets World Cup legend in Marseille

But despite the violence in the city, David did manage to spot and get his photo taken with 1998 France World Cup winner Marcel Desailly.


Daivd and Marcel Desailly
David Hancock

Essex Police to speak with Euro 2016 'victims or witnesses' of Marseille violence at Stansted

Football violence in Essex?

The violence in Marseille over the weekend comes as BBC Essex learned there were 27 arrests for bad behaviour at football games in the county during the 2014-15 season.


The majority of arrests were for violent disorder, but some were related to alcohol and one was for a pitch incursion. Seven people are currently banned from attending football matches. 

The man in charge of football liaison at Essex Police is Ch Insp Richard Phillibrown. He said: "Any offence that occurs in a football ground goes to court and people will come away with a banning order."

Essex football fan in Marseille describes 'worst violence'

We've managed to catch up with David Hancock from Southend who was in Marseille over the weekend for England's first Euro 2016 match against Russia. 

The 1-1 result wasn't the only thing making the headlines - no doubt you've seen pictures of the violence that erupted towards the end of Saturday's game.

David said: "I've been all over the world to watch football, and this is the worst [violence] I've seen." 

Crowd at game on Saturday

At about 01:00 on Sunday morning, our driver was trapped in the side streets... It was dark, the police were wielding truncheons and people were smashing windows. We were very lucky to get out."

David Hancock

Weather: Rather cloudy with some further heavy showers developing

Kate Kinsella

BBC Look East weather

Today will be another humid and largely cloudy day with scattered showers. There will be some brighter spells at times, but this brightness will help develop the showers further with some heavy, thundery downpours likely come the afternoon. 

Maximum temperature: 20C (68F).

You can stay up-to-date with the latest forecast for your area via BBC Weather

'It's the end of the world'... Essex rocked by thunderstorm

Some described it on Twitter as "the end of the world" and it certainly felt like it at times as Essex was rocked under a storm. Thick clouds began rolling in across the county in the early evening...

Storm coming in Rayleigh

... and then it wasn't long before lightning struck, thunder rumbled and rain fell.


After a while the storm passed, and an amazing skyscape was uncovered. 

Lower Sheeing

Welcome to Essex Live


Jack Warren

BBC Local Live

Good morning and welcome to Essex Live. It was quite an electrifying end to the weekend last night as thunderstorms swept the county. 

View more on twitter

We'll take a look at your storm pictures from overnight shortly - plus the latest forecast for your area.

You can share your photos with us on Twitter using #esxlive