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  1. Updates on Monday 20 June 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Goodbye from us

Claire Cottingham

We're off for the evening, but I'll be back at 06:00 BST tomorrow as there's a strike by RMT members on the Southern network. The company says there'll be no service on many routes and only a limited service between 07:30 BST and 18:00 BST on others. We'll be keeping you posted throughout the morning.

You can get involved by tweeting us using #southernstrike, emailing us or sending a message on Facebook

For now, have a nice evening. 

Police called after man spotted with 'weapon'

Police were called to Gladstone Road in Broadstairs at 11:00 BST after a member of the public reported seeing a man with what they believed to be a weapon.

Firearms officers were sent and they carried out a search of the area alongside police dogs.

No arrests have been made but officers are still in the area and enquiries are ongoing.

Channel Tunnel delays

Drivers travelling through the Channel Tunnel are facing delays of up to six hours.

An inspection's being carried out after problems with the overhead power supply, leading to delays of at least three hours.

There are further delays, also of around three hours, at the French end of the Tunnel, due to tougher security and passport checks. Eurostar services are also being affected.

Help to Buy ISA 'goes from strength to strength'

The Chancellor has defended the deposit scheme for first time buyers, after a BBC South East investigation revealed that many would-be homeowners in the area are being priced out of it.

Under the Help to Buy ISA, the government gives savers a bonus of up to £3,000 when they buy their first home, but it can only be claimed on properties worth less than £250,000.

That rules out a two-bedroom home in nearly 70% of the South East.

But speaking on a visit to Shoreham today, George Osborne said the scheme was working.

Chancellor defends Help to Buy ISA scheme

Cot death grief: Parents in first aid plea after son's tragic death

Kent Messenger

A grieving mum and dad have recounted the heartbreaking chain of events after finding their baby lifeless in his cot.  

You can read the full story here.

Natalie Spicer with son Harvey Coyle the day before he died
Kent Messenger
Natalie Spicer with son Harvey Coyle the day before he died


You've been having your say ahead of the planned Southern rail strike tomorrow.

@SouthernRailUK hi, can passengers travel for free on strike day? It's the least you can do. Ta

WHAT IS HAPPENING?! #SouthernFail #SouthernRail @SouthernRailUK #GoViaNowhere 😭😭😭😭😭😭

WHAT IS HAPPENING?! #SouthernFail #SouthernRail @SouthernRailUK #GoViaNowhere 😭😭😭😭😭😭

Fix yourself, @SouthernRailUK . Seriously...

Another day of delays... @SouthernRailUK

Another day of delays... @SouthernRailUK

A wicket at the cricket

After a rainy start, the second day of Kent's match at Glamorgan is now underway.

You can listen live here.

WICKET! Low catch by keeper Adam Rouse at the feet of first slip as Bragg (35) edges Claydon. Glamorgan 95-3 #bbccricket

Jewellery stolen from Bluewater

Police are investigating after a 'quantity of jewellery' was stolen from Bluewater shopping centre at 02:19 BST today.

Officers believe six people entered the shopping centre and carried out the raid. 

Anyone with information should call Kent Police on 101 quoting reference 20-0062.

'I don't think we could ever stop young children going missing'

Around four young migrant children a week are going missing from Kent County Council's care.

Many are feared to have been trafficked and exploited by criminal gangs.

Peter Oakford, the Council's cabinet member for specialist children's services, says often there's little that can be done.

Migrant children going missing from Kent County Council's care

Emergency services at M2 crash

Kent Fire and Rescue Service is helping at the scene of a crash on the M2 involving a Kent Police vehicle and a lorry.

Paramedics and Kent Police are also on the scene. 

BreakingPolice vehicle involved in crash

A stretch of the M2 between junctions 5 and 6 has been closed after a Kent Police vehicle was involved in a crash with a lorry at 11:08 BST.

Two officers are being treated for their injuries.

Kent Police says the carriageway is likely to be closed for 'several hours'. 

Man jailed for unprovoked attack

A man who launched a vicious and unprovoked attack on an elderly woman in her home near Ashford has been jailed for 27 years.

Leonidis Mouzakitis, 24, from Folkestone, was found guilty of attempted murder at Canterbury Crown Court earlier this year and was sentenced today. He stabbed the woman multiple times before driving off. She has since recovered.

Detective Inspector Lee Whitehead said: ‘'Leonidis Mouzakitis is a very dangerous man and his considerable sentence of imprisonment is the only way to protect the public from the risk of his further offending."

Leonidis Mouzakitis
Kent Police
Leonidis Mouzakitis

Road to Rio

Claire Cottingham

Olympic rower Tom Ransley is not only a Bronze medalist, but he also gets two breakfasts in the morning!

And it's all down to the small challenge of training for the Olympic games in Rio this summer.. 

Road to Rio

Top stories in Kent

Claire Cottingham

First-time buyers struggle, more calls for the expansion of Gatwick and disruption on the rails. I've got a look at your top stories today.

3 in 30

Weather update

Will today's rain let up?

Here's the forecast with Kate Kinsella.

Here's Kate Kinsella with Monday's weather

Delays continuing on Hastings line

Problems expected until 13:00 BST.

Delays of 40 minutes between Tonbridge and Hastings expected until 13:00 #HastingsLine

Pembury Road reopens

The accident on the Pembury Road this morning has now been cleared.

'The franchise is failing'

Labour has renewed its call for ministers to consider stripping Southern Railway of its franchise, ahead of another strike by guards tomorrow, in a dispute about changing their role.

The company has been cancelling dozens of trains each day, blaming high levels of staff sickness.

Shadow Transport Secretary Lillian Greenwood says the franchise is failing. 

Shadow transport minister calls for Southern franchise to be reviewed

More rail problems

This time due to a signalling fault.

#Otford - A signalling failure is currently preventing us from running trains between Swanley to Sevenoaks, and between Swanley to Ashford.

Woman suffers minor injuries after being hit by train

A woman has been taken to hospital with minor injuries after being struck by a train at High Brooms station at 09:16 BST.

British Transport Police, Kent Police and paramedics attended. They say it isn't being treated as suspicious. 

Southeastern says the line has now reopened.

SE UPDATE: The #HastingsLine has now re-opened, however delays will continue for a while while we work to restore the full service

Long queues of traffic after crash

Roads around Tunbridge Wells were blocked this morning after a crash near the A21 roundabout involving a car and a lorry.

The A264 Pembury Road has now partially reopened.

Motorists were caught up in long queues
Sophie Hamer
Motorists were caught up in long queues


HGV drivers accused of putting lives at risk, cannabis warning and a pier closure. Here's today's #OnThisDay.

#OnThisDay 20 June

Southeastern trains disrupted

Southeastern say trains are currently unable to run on the Hastings line because of reports of a person struck by a train at High Brooms.  

#HastingsLine - Trains are currently unable to run on this route because of reports of a person struck by a train at High Brooms.

First-time buyers 'struggling' to use Government scheme

That's because prices are too high in many areas, BBC research has shown.

The Help to Buy Isa was introduced last year to help people save for a deposit.

The maximum purchase price outside London is £250,000, but in many places the average price of a starter home exceeds that limit. The problem is particularly acute in the South East. Read the full story here.

Good morning from Kent Live

Claire Cottingham

Yes, it's a rainy Monday morning - but don't worry, we're here until 17:00 BST with all your news, sport, travel and weather in the county. If you see something we should be talking about, you can tweet us, email or Facebook us. 

Let's brighten up this morning with a lovely picture of Ramsgate. Thanks to Brian Whitehead for this one.

Ramsgate by Brian Whitehead
Brian Whitehead
Ramsgate by Brian Whitehead