Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.

Summary

  1. Our live coverage has ended
  2. Updates on Thursday 22 June 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

That's it from us

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Thanks for joining us - we'll be back at 06:00 BST tomorrow with all your latest 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.

ICYMI: 'Wheelchair rugby changed my life'

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

21-year-old Ben Richardson, who has cerebral palsy, says Wheelchair Rugby League has had a huge impact on his life. #thisisme

#ICYMI: Born on the A21

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Did you miss this one? It's a great story, well worth a watch.

A mother has given birth in her car after her husband got lost on the way to hospital.

A cooler and fresher forecast

Nina Ridge

BBC Weather

It's going to be considerably less hot and be prepared for some rain.

Emaciated dog on road to recovery

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Snoopy the lurcher, who was found abandoned and starving on a busy roadside, is making a full recovery, thanks to the people who rescued him.

What's in the Gibb report? Analysis from our political reporter

Ben Weisz

Political reporter, BBC Sussex

Chris Gibb may begin his long-awaited report by saying he doesn't want to "dwell" on what went wrong on the Southern Network, so as to focus on how to fix it. But the parties involved will seize on what he has to say here.

While he refuses to blame any one party for the overall chaos, Chris Gibb is clear he feels the industrial action from Aslef and the RMT was the immediate cause of the system failure in 2016.

If the strikes hadn't happened, Gibb says the service would have been delivered in an "acceptable" manner. What's more, he takes Southern's side in the dispute over Driver-Only Operation (DOO). As you can imagine, the RMT strongly disputes this.

Southern train
BBC

So how does Chris Gibb propose fixing matters?

Some of his recommendations have already been carried out - remember, the Government has had a copy of this since late 2016. So, it chose to spend £300m on Thameslink upgrades before 2018 to avoid scrapping the programme. It chose to reduce overnight services on the Brighton Mainline to make room for engineering work.

But other recommendations remain, to name a few: Phasing out older trains, spinning off parts of the network to TfL, fewer trains through underused stations like Newhaven Harbour. and selling Gatwick Airport railway station to the airport operator, GAL.

But what about stripping Govia Thameslink of the franchise? Gibb says this may be counterproductive and would probably lead to work on the Thameslink programme pausing.

Yet Gibb does acknowledge that Chris Grayling has been shaping the industrial dispute from behind the scenes - and suggests the unions will need to be negotiated with on DOO to stop the dispute spreading nationwide, as the technology is issued elsewhere.

Is it hot enough for you?

Let us know if you're loving or loathing the heat.

You can do that on Twitter, on Facebook or by sending us an email.

Here's what people in Gravesend told presenter Rob Smith.

Tom Eaves

Gillingham sign striker Tom Eaves on a two-year contract following his release by League Two side Yeovil Town.

Read more

ICYMI: Theatre technician says he's 'living his dream'

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Oliver Tourle says he wanted to work in theatre since he was a small boy.

#thisisme

Arriva Rail North train

The long-running dispute centres on union concerns about staffing and driver-only-operated trains.

Read more
Emaciated dog found on roadside is recovering well
Snoopy as been given a fresh start in life by the couple who found her at the roadside.

Do you recognise theft suspect who was carrying man-bag?

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

A 14-year-old boy's had his BMX bike stolen by an older teenager in Ashford.

The victim had been given the turquoise Mongoose Scan R160 as a birthday present a week earlier.

It was taken from him in woodland off the A292 Hythe Road at about 18:45 BST on 8 June.

Police have released this e-fit of the suspect and say he was carrying a man-bag.

E fit of suspect
Kent Police

BreakingNew RMT strike date on Southern rail

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

The RMT union has just announced that guards and drivers on Southern rail will strike again for 24 hours in the on-going disputes over Driver Only Operation and the removal of guards from services.

The strike will take place on Monday 10 July 2017.

Southern train
Getty Images

Southern Rail: long-awaited report 'to be published today'

Ben Weisz

Political reporter, BBC Sussex

The long-awaited Gibb report on how to improve the troubled Southern rail franchise is to be published today.

View more on twitter

The report was finished late last year but the Government had delayed its publication until after the election.

MPs and campaigners have been calling for its release for months.

There has been speculation in the press that it will spread the blame widely, and that it may even call for the large Southern franchise to be split up.

But we'll also see whether recent changes to the service - like the scrapping of some late night trains on the Brighton Mainline - was the result of the report's recommendations.

Cooler after the storm

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC weather presenter

Did you get a thunderstorm this morning?

The temperatures are down now a good few degrees from yesterday.

Today's Kent newspaper headlines

Newspapers
Getty Images

Kent Online: Cecilia Larner, from Tovil, celebrates her 107th birthday

Kent News: Pick-up truck catches fire on A249 close to Detling turn-off

Kent Live: Two men have been charged after a man was 'assaulted and forced to get in a van' in Paddock Wood

BreakingSouthern report a 'fit up' RMT says

In response to the findings of a Government report, which says the main source of disruption on the Southern network was union action and high levels of sick leave, the RMT union's General Secretary, Mick Cash, has issued the following statement:

No wonder the Government have sat on the Gibb report for seven months. It's taken them that long to slice and fillet it into a document that they can spin up as an attack on the unions and the staff. Nobody who uses Southern Rail day in and day out will be fooled by this fit up by Chris Grayling and the minority Tory Government.

This is a classic case of who pays the piper calls the tune. ‎It's a shame Mr Gibb never bothered to talk to the unions and the staff and has allowed himself to be used by the Government as a human shield over the Southern Rail fiasco.

What the Government don't want the public to know is that, despite their spin, Gibb also says;

* That despite ministers saying the dispute is a matter for GTR Gibb says Chris Grayling has been determining the “strategic direction of the dispute”

* That Gibb considered nationalisation but said this should be ruled out as it could effect the roll out of driver only trains and increase the power of the unions

*That some routes should be transferred to TFL.

Let me make this clear. Th‎e fight for safety and access to services on Southern Rail goes on. Chris Grayling can cut and paste Gibb however he likes to try and prop up the basket-case GTR operation but the passengers forking out thousands of pounds a year for Britain's worst rail service won't buy it. GTR should be stripped of the franchise with the whole lot taken into public ownership.

BreakingUnion action main cause of Southern disruption - Government report

Tanya Gupta

BBC News Online, South East

A report into the troubled Southern rail franchise that the government said it could not publish before the election has been made public.

It was commissioned last September and written by Chris Gibb, a non-executive director at Network Rail.

Last week, the RMT union demanded it should be released immediately

Publishing the paper, the Department for Transport said it found the main cause of Southern disruption was union action and high levels of sick leave.

Rocking all over the South East

The scene of a famous Eurovision victory in Sussex, a shopping centre in Maidstone and Woking town centre - the region's musical legends and iconic venues were honoured on BBC Music Day.

Stopping the movement of people could be 'catastrophic'

Matt Davison

Investigative journalist, BBC South East

Some of the South East's fruit farmers say they haven't been able to hire enough migrant seasonal workers this summer.

13 Kent farmers replied to a BBC Survey - 12 said recruitment was harder than last year and only five said they had enough workers.

I asked a fruit farmer from Goodnestone, near Faversham, if he was worried about the future of his business.

University gold

The University of Kent is one of only four universities in the South East to be given a gold rating in the government's first assessment of teaching excellence in higher education.

This sees the university ranking among the top 20% of the 299 higher education providers in the UK.

The new teaching rankings aim to help students make informed choices about degree courses.

Many of the 56 universities rated as bronze have criticised the system as unfair and unreliable.

You can read more on this story here.

Students
Gett

'It goes like an oven'

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

In the current scorching temperatures it only takes minutes for a car to become a death trap for your dog.

ICYMI: Theme park deal collapses

Developers behind plans for a huge theme park in north Kent have announced they've split with film studio Paramount Pictures.

In a statement London Resort Company Holdings (LRCH) said the two parties had "jointly agreed to discontinue the licence agreement" for the proposed resort on the Swanscombe Peninsula near Dartford.

LRCH said it still intends to submit a planning application for the resort in November.

Theme Park
London Resort Company Holdings

At last, it's cool!

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC Weather

Temperatures across the South East plummet today, although it's still going to be warm.

Here's my latest forecast.

Emaciated dog on road to recovery

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Snoopy the lurcher, who was found abandoned and starving on a busy roadside, is making a full recovery, thanks to the people who rescued her.

Marvellous Margate

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

What a great pic by Esther Nevill-Jones of a dog at Margate. It's our Kent #PhotoOfTheDay.

Dog
Esther Nevill-Jones

We'll be here till 22:00 BST keeping you updated with all the 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.