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Summary

  1. Our live coverage has now ended
  2. Live updates on Thursday 20 April

Live Reporting

By Hamish Mureddu-Reid and Bob Dale

All times stated are UK

Get involved

That's it for Thursday

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

We'll be back tomorrow from 06:00 BST, and with you right through to 22:00.

If you want to get in touch with us you can do so on Twitter, on Facebook or by sending us an email.   

Thanks for joining us.

Which South East constituencies are most vulnerable to change?

The electoral map of the South East is almost exclusively blue at the moment, but whilst there are several very safe seats, there are also plenty of constituencies that could see a change in the upcoming election.

We've compiled this list of the most vulnerable seats in Kent and Sussex.

ICYMI: Man crushed under his own car

A Kent man who was crushed to death under his own car while carrying out maintenance was a health and safety professional who didn't take risks, according to his partner.       

Robbers strike in Ashford

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Two masked men have robbed a convenience store in Ashford.

It happened about 10:30 BST on 19 April, at the One Stop Shop in Beaver Lane.

The men threatened two female members of staff and escaped with several hundred pounds.

Faversham fire to be investigated

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Police are treating a fire in Faversham as suspicious.

The blaze broke out in a commercial premises in Preston Street at about 21:00 last night, and spread to two neighbouring properties.

Nobody was in any of the buildings at the time.

BreakingFarage won't stand for election

The former UKIP leader and South East MEP, Nigel Farage, has told the BBC that he will not stand in the forthcoming general election. 

It's clouding over

Nina Ridge

BBC Weather

There's the chance of rain on the horizon, although it will be feeling warmer.

Here's my forecast.

Appeal over fatal crash

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

There's an appeal for drivers who may have witnessed an accident in which a motorcyclist died to come forward.

It happened at 16:14 BST on the B2075 Romney Road yesterday, when a grey Yamaha bike collided with a silver Ford Mondeo, near the A259 junction at Hammonds Corner.

The bike rider, a man in his sixties, died at the scene.

Police are particularly keen to speak to the occupants of a pick-up truck travelling from Lydd towards Hammonds Corner, as they may have important information about how the accident happened.

South East rape figures soar

The number of rapes reported to police in Kent and Sussex has more than trebled over the past four years.

Police think the rise could be down to increased confidence in people coming forward. 

Appeal after pet is stabbed

Dog
Kent Police

The public is being asked to come forward with information after a dog was stabbed in Gillingham earlier this month.

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier was brought into an animal charity in Edenbridge with stab wounds and had to undergo two emergency operations. 

The dog is now on the mend. Anyone with information about the attack is asked to contact Kent Police.

Flying squad arrests

Three men have been arrested by Met Police flying squad officers after a vehicle was stopped on the A21 near Pembury. 

They were arrested on suspcion of attempting to commit commercial burglary and attempting to cause an explosion.

The three men were taken to a south London police stations where they remain in custody, a Kent Police spokesman said. 

Arrest generic
Kent Police

Severe accident: M25 Essex clockwise

BBC News Travel

M25 Essex clockwise severe accident, from J31 for A1306 to J1A for A206 affecting halfway between J30 - J29.

M25 Essex - Delays and one lane blocked on M25 QE2 Bridge clockwise from J31, A1306 (West Thurrock) to J1a, A206 (Swanscombe), because of an accident involving a car and a lorry. Congestion to halfway between J30 - J29.

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

Actress to unveil seafront artwork

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Brenda Blethyn
BBC

Award winning actress and Ramsgate resident Brenda Blethyn will tomorrow unveil some colourful new artwork along the town's seafront.

Pleasurama artwork
Project MotorHouse

Projection SEAS has given students from the Royal Harbour Academy the opportunity to work with some of the best creative professionals in East Kent to create huge panels on the site of Ramsgate's former Pleasurama funfair site.

It has been organised jointly by Project MotorHouse, a local heritage scheme, and the South East Archive of Seaside Photography.  

Shaky's coming to town

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Shakin' Stevens was the biggest-selling UK singles artist of the 80s. 

He's got gigs coming up in Tunbridge Wells and Hastings. 

Here are some facts you might not know about him.   

Clouding over but warmer tomorrow

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC weather

This afternoon cloud is spreading across most of Kent and Sussex from the north west. 

Tomorrrow will be warmer than today. I've got your latest weather forecast. 

Kent's local newspaper headlines

Newspapers (generic)
Getty Images

Kent Online: Eva Giles' heartbroken dad told of her infectious laugh and inspiring spirit as her family said a final goodbye after the five-year-old died from a rare brain tumour. 

Kent News: "He is a loser." Sir Roger Gale rips into Nigel Farage as the former UKIP leaders ponders standing again in Thanet. 

Kent and Sussex Courier: Why was smoke coming from the hills in Folkestone last night?

Meet Countryfile's newest presenter

So what do we know about Steve Brown?  

Disused pub fire 'suspicious'

Hamish Mureddu-Reid

BBC News Online, South East

Holly Tree pub fire
Ian Pulman

The cause of a fire at the Holly Tree pub in Holly Tree Lane, Margate over the weekend is being treated as suspicious, Kent Police say. 

The fire started in the roof of the disused pub at about 08:40 BST on Sunday. 

The blaze was brought under control at about 11:00. There were no reported injuries. 

Severe disruption: M25 Kent clockwise

BBC News Travel

M25 Kent clockwise severe disruption, between J3 for M20 and J4 for A21.

M25 Kent - One lane closed on M25 clockwise between J3, M20 (Swanley Interchange) and J4, A21 (Orpington), because of wheelbarrow on the road. Traffic is coping well.

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

'We need to be more aware for our children's sake'

Leanne Rinne

BBC Reporter

Her son's life was about to begin, but it was cut short by a drugs overdose.  

Two charged over Bluewater "affray"

Hamish Mureddu-Reid

BBC News Online, South East

Bluewater Shopping Centre
PA

Two people have been charged with public order offences after an incident at Bluewater Shopping Centre on Sunday. 

They were arrested after reports of a disturbance when a man was stopped by a vigilante gang who accused him of grooming. 

Biker killed in crash

A motorcyclist has been killed in a crash with a car near New Romney.

The man in his 60s was riding a Yamaha on the B2075, Romney Road at about 16:15 BST yesterday when his bike crashed with a Ford Mondeo. 

Police would like to hear from any witnesses, in particular those in a pick-up truck which was going from Lydd towards Hammonds Corner at the time. 

They are not believed to have been involved in the crash but may have important information, Kent Police said. 

B2025
Google

Shaky's coming to town

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Shakin' Stevens was the biggest-selling UK singles artist of the 80s. He's got gigs coming up in Tunbridge Wells and Hastings. Here's some facts you might not know about him.  

#ICYMI: Kent rower set to be a film star

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

A woman from Kent who rowed thousands of miles across the Pacific is about to feature in a film which follows her and her team on their epic journey.    

Faversham fire update

Hamish Mureddu-Reid

BBC News Online, South East

Residents of five flats over a parade of shops in Preston Street in Faversham have been allowed home after a fire overnight. 

Fire crews have now left the scene, but will return later to make further checks, Kent Fire and Rescue Service says. 

Three arrested over ATM 'explosion'

A car was stopped by officers from the Metropolitan Police Flying Squad on the A21 earlier.

Three men were arrested on suspicion of attempting to commit commercial burglary and attempting to cause an explosion.

The arrests followed an attempted gas-enabled explosion at an ATM in Southborough, Kent.

Nigel Farage 'undecided' on whether to stand in election

Today Programme

BBC Radio 4

Nigel Farage
EPA

South East MEP and former UKIP party leader Nigel Farage told Radio 4's Today programme: "I haven’t decided [whether to stand] I still have to weigh it up.

"I have got to weigh up where am I best to be in terms of having an impact in Brexit."

He said he would decide "over the next couple of days".

Farage failed to get elected in South Thanet at the last general election. 

Rise in reported rapes

Hamish Mureddu-Reid

BBC News Online, South East

The number of rapes reported to police in Kent and Sussex has almost trebled in the last four years. 

More than 2,300 cases were reported in 2016 compared to just over 840 in 2012. 

Rape generic
PA

Police say the rise could be down to increased confidence in reporting rape.   

'Lost' Archbishops of Canterbury found

Hamish Mureddu-Reid

BBC News Online, South East

The remains of five Archbishops of Canterbury have been found beneath a medieval parish church next to Lambeth Palace, the Archbishop of Canterbury's official London residence.  

Builders found a hidden crypt containing 30 lead coffins at the deconsecrated church of St Mary-at-Lambeth. 

The remains date back to the 1660s.

More here

Archbishop's remains
Garden museum

Huge fire in Faversham

Hamish Mureddu-Reid

BBC News Online, South East

Fire crews are still on the scene of a blaze at a parade of shops in Faversham.

The fire in Preston Street was reported to Kent Fire and Rescue Service at about 21:00 BST on Wednesday.

Overnight six fire engines were at the scene and searches took place to check no-one was trapped.

A chilly start but warming up

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC weather

If you haven't been outside yet, you'll need something warm to wear. Watch my forecast to find out more.

Meet Countryfile's newest presenter

So what do we know about Steve Brown?  

The weekend's almost here already

This placid shot was taken in Broadstairs by Sue Fewings, it's our #PhotoOfTheDay.

Broadstairs coast
Sue Fewings

We'll be here until 22:00 BST with all your news, sport, travel and weather. 

Is there anything you'd like to tell us about?

You can get in touch on Twitter, on Facebook or by sending us an email