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Summary

  1. Our live coverage has now ended
  2. Live updates on Thursday 23 March

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Good night from the BBC Live team

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Thanks for joining us again, we'll be back tomorrow from 06:00 GMT with all the news, sport, travel and weather for the county.

If you'd like to get hold of us in the meantime, you can get in touch on  Twitter , on  Facebook , or by sending us an  email .  

Sandie Bowen

No further action will be taken against the killer of Sandie Bowen after her body was found in a reservoir, police say.

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Councillor apologises over tweet that he says led to suspension

Rajdeep Sandhu

Political Reporter, BBC Radio Kent

A Conservative councillor, Jim Wedgbury, says he's been suspended from his party over a tweet which was a "foolish mistake" and he fully apologizes for it. 

The tweet that he has now deleted was sent in response to journalist and commentator Julia Hartley Brewer. She tweeted: "ONE man armed with just a car & knives can kill FOUR people & injure 20, many seriously, on our streets. This is the country we now live in."

In his reply Cllr Wedgbury suggested the blame for the Westminster terrorist attacks lay with the Labour Party. 

Cllr Wedgbury sits on Kent County Council and also Ashford Borough Council. The Ashford Conservative Association confirmed he had been suspended but wouldn't say whether it was because of the tweet. 

There will now be a formal investigation. But as long as Jim Wedgbury is suspended he cannot stand as a Conservative in the upcoming Kent County Council elections in May. He told me if that was the case he wouldn't stand as an independent or with another party. 

Could the electrical activity in our brains hold the key to cyber security?

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Scientists at the University of Kent are working on new technology which could enable you to access your bank account just by thinking.     

Severe accident: M20 Kent eastbound

BBC News Travel

M20 Kent eastbound severe accident, between J10 for A20 and J11 for B2068 Hythe.

M20 Kent - Queuing traffic on M20 coastbound between J10, A20 (Ashford South) and J11, B2068 (Hythe), because of a rolling road-block and an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Rochester town crier dies

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Rochester’s iconic town crier Robin Burfoot has died at the age of 81.

Robin had been in the voluntary post for 12 years and was a popular figure in Rochester town centre with both locals and tourists.

I filmed with him back in 2005 when he was preparing for his new role and trying on his uniform for the very first time. 

Kent man nominated for soldiers award

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

A soldier from Snodland who lost both legs to a roadside bomb in Afghanistan is up for a major award.

Adam Francis has been nominated in the Inspiration Category of the Soldiering On Awards.

An improving forecast for the weekend

Rachel Mackley

Weather Presenter

It's looking dry for the weekend but feeling quite chilly. 

Missing: Have you seen 12-year-old Louis?

Louise Whittington has been missing since yesterday, and Kent police is appealing for help to find him.

He went missing from Sandling in Maidstone, and was last seen yesterday in Gravesend. Police believe he may still be in the area.

Missing 12-year-old
Kent Police

Could this be Britain's cheapest supermarket?

Bryony MacKenzie

Correspondent, BBC South East Today

Nathaniel Richards fell on hard times in 2011 and had to turn to food banks. 

When he heard that supermarket suppliers were throwing away food that was still safe to eat he decided to do something. 

He set up Nifties in Dover in 2016, where the average price of an item is just 60p.

Severe disruption: M25 Kent anti-clockwise

BBC News Travel

M25 Kent anti-clockwise severe disruption, between J1A for A282 and J31 for A1306.

M25 Kent - Two lanes closed and queuing traffic on M25 Dartford Tunnel anticlockwise between J1a, A282 (Swanscombe) and J31, A1306 (West Thurrock), because of a broken down lorry.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

'Communities defeat terrorism'

Claire Cottingham

BBC Live reporter

Kent Police have confirmed that are increasing armed patrols around key locations in Kent - and have urged the public to remain vigilant following the attack in Westminster yesterday, in which four people died.

They say there is no specific threat to county - but the force is working closely with the Metropolitan Police.

Gillingham and Rainham MP Rehman Chisti spoke about the attack in the Commons today.

BreakingCosta crash: More details from our reporter

Simon Jones

Reporter, BBC South East Today

An 87-year-old man who crashed his car into a Costa Coffee shop in Kent on Christmas Eve 2015, killing a customer, has been given a 22-month sentence, suspended for two years.

David Lord admitted causing the death by dangerous driving of Valerie Deakin, who was 74, after he lost control of his Audi in Westerham. 

Maidstone Crown Court heard he had confused the accelerator pedal with the brake. 

Mrs Deakin was in the coffee shop with her eldest daughter and her best friend. She was thrown from her seat by the window, across the coffee shop and into the wall on the far side. 

Mrs Deakin's family said that they believed the crash was entirely avoidable and should not have happened. 

 The Court was told Mr Lord had written a letter to Mrs Deakin's family to apologise. 

BreakingCosta coffee crash trial ends

Simon Jones

Reporter, BBC South East Today

BreakingWestminster attacker named

The man believed to be responsible for the Westminster attack has been named as Khalid Masood, who was born in Kent.

Masood, who died in the attack, was not the subject of any current police investigations, but he had a range of previous convictions for assaults.

The 52-year-old was born in Kent but was believed to have been living in the West Midlands.

Gillespie to join Kent

Claire Cottingham

BBC Live reporter

This is big news for Kent cricket fans - former Australia fast bowler Jason Gillespie is to join the Kent coaching staff at the start of the season.

The former Yorkshire head coach will join Matt Walker and the first-team squad ahead of the upcoming County Championship season which starts on Friday 7 April.

Kent Cricket
Kent Cricket

Obviously I moved back to Adelaide for family reasons last year but the opportunity to assist Kent on a short-term basis was one that I couldn't resist and works well with my current situation."

He will cover for former South Africa Test paceman Donald, who was appointed assistant coach in January 2017 and is awaiting a visa to work in the UK.

An improving forecast

Elizabeth Rizzini

Weather presenter

The rain is moving away, with some sunshine expected for the weekend. 

Ex-West Indies batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul is returning to Lancashire as a Kolpak player

With the 2017 county season here, keep up to date with the latest signings, departures and rumours ahead of the new campaign.

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Charlton Athletic pay tribute to PC Keith Palmer

BBC
Charlton Athletic

A scarf has been placed by Charlton Athletic on Seat 166 in the East Stand at The Valley - the seat of season-ticket holder PC Keith Palmer.  

Charlton Athletic statement over PC Keith Palmer's death

Charlton Athletic have paid tribute to PC Keith Palmer, who died in the Westminster attacks yesterday.

The club have called him a true hero who will be greatly missed by all the Charlton family.

It is with great sadness that the club has learned of the tragic news of the death of PC Keith Palmer, a loyal Charlton supporter and season-ticket holder, who lost his life as a result of the terror incident in Westminster on Wednesday afternoon.

PC Keith Palmer
PA

Keith was a familiar face at The Valley to many supporters and sat in his same East Stand seat for many years.

As an immediate tribute, a red and white scarf has been placed on his seat which will remain until the next home game on Tuesday 4 April while the club will discuss ways in which it can commemorate his life at the game itself."

Today's Kent newspaper headlines

Newspapers
Getty Images

Kent Online : Police have issued a warning to pet owners after at least four cats were poisoned in Tonbridge. 

Kent News : Armed police officers are continuing to line the streets of Kent today in response to a “terror attack” in London

Kent and Sussex Courier : The story so far as Kelly Turner hits halfway mark of £1m target for potentially lifesaving surgery

Gills chairman reiterates desire for relocation

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

Gillingham's chairman has written to fans urging them to write to Medway District Council in support of plans to move the club to a new home. 

Paul Scally wants the club to relocate the club from Priestfield Stadium to a "multi-purpose community stadium" in Medway. 

The proposed site, known as Mill Hill, is near the current training ground. 

View more on twitter

Concern over rise in reported child sex offences

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

Child on a bicycle
BBC

There's been an 18% rise in the number of child sex offences recorded by Kent Police in a year, according to the NSPCC. 

The child protection charity says there were 1,500 offences during 2015-2016, including more than 500 against children under 10. 

It's calling for investment in early recovery services for abused children. 

Westerham Costa crash sentencing

Hamish Mureddu-Reid

BBC News Online, South East

David Lord
PA

David Lord, 87, from Westerham is due to be sentenced later after he admitted causing death by dangerous driving.   

He lost control of his Audi on the High Street, in Westerham, on Christmas Eve 2015 killing 74-year-old Valerie Deakin, from Udimore, East Sussex. 

Valerie Deakin
Kent Police

A consultant neurologist told an earlier court hearing Lord had suffered a complex partial seizure imminently before the crash. 

Speaking outside the court after the hearing, Lord said he "blacked out" and had written a letter to apologise for the crash.  

Lord is due to be sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court this afternoon. 

Terror attack: 'It was horrendous'

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

Anna Chaplin's child was on a school trip to Westminster when yesterday's attack happened.

Severe disruption: M25 Kent anti-clockwise

BBC News Travel

M25 Kent anti-clockwise severe disruption, at the Dartford Tunnel affecting J3 for M20.

M25 Kent - Queuing traffic on M25 anticlockwise at the Dartford Tunnel, because of a broken down vehicle. Congestion to J3, M20 (Swanley Interchange).

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Terror attack: 'I felt scared and helpless'

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

Groups of school children from the South East who were visiting Westminster as a major terrorist incident unfolded, are returning to lessons today, after arriving home safely last night. 

A group of primary school pupils from Herstmonceux were kept under lockdown in Parliament while the attack was underway. 

Plans to merge east Kent councils on hold

Rajdeep Sandhu

Political Reporter, BBC Radio Kent

In the next few days we were meant to be taking part in a public consultation on whether Dover, Canterbury, Thanet and Shepway should become one council. 

But last night, councillors at Shepway put an abrupt halt to those plans. 

The four east Kent councils are considering the merger in a bid to save money. Council leaders say the status quo isn't an option, if they don't change, frontline services could be cut. 

What began as an idea for five councils to merge (Ashford pulled out earlier this year) has now become just three – and even then only Dover and Thanet voted in favour of taking the next step. Canterbury council didn't vote after hearing Shepway said no. 

The aim is to get it all wrapped up in time for elections in 2019. Already that timetable has slipped.

Rain to start, brightening up later

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC weather presenter

Here's today's forecast.

The return of the pre-fab?

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Could ready-made pod homes, assembled in Scotland and exported to Kent, ease the South East's housing crisis?  

One day closer to the weekend

We're here until 22:00 GMT with the county's news, sport, travel and weather.    

Dean Spinks made a splash with this picture from Broadstairs, it's our #PhotoOfTheDay  

Splashing water
Dean Spinks

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