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  1. Our live coverage has ended for the day
  2. Updates on Wednesday 26 July 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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That's it for Wednesday

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Half the week is over and that's it for us for today.

Thanks for joining us today, and we hope you'll be back tomorrow, when we're live between 06:00 BST and 22:00 BST.

We'll bring you all the local news, sport, travel and weather, and you can get in touch on Twitter, on Facebook or by sending us an email.

75-year-old leak mystery solved

The cause of a mysterious leak at a church in Folkestone has finally been discovered.

'My eye socket was completely shattered, I had haemorrhages in both eyes'

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

On the 50th anniversary of the partial legalisation of homosexuality, is it safe to be gay now?

Victims of recent homophobic violence describe their horrific experiences.

'Is it safe to be gay in the UK?' is on BBC2 on Tuesday, 1 August at 21:00 BST.

Teenager who died at railway tracks named as Taiyah Pebbles

Lizzie Massey

BBC Live reporter

A 16-year-old girl found dead on the tracks at a railway station is believed to have been electrocuted.

Officers said the girl, named locally as Taiyah Pebbles, was with friends near Herne Bay station in Kent shortly before 23:00 BST on Tuesday.

The teenager was injured between then and 07:00 BST on Wednesday, when emergency services were called and she was pronounced dead.

Friends and family have gathered at a vigil this evening.

Taiyah Pebbles
Provided by family
The girl has been named locally as Taiyah Pebbles

A mixed bag for Thursday

The day will start dry, but then showers start to approach.

ICYMI: Teenager's hope for tumour treatment

The family and friends of a Kent teenager are trying to raise £120,000 so she can have experimental treatment for a rare brain tumour.

'He'd been shot seven times... four pellets remain in his skull'

The animals killed or maimed by the irresponsible use of airguns, with the South East one of the worst areas of the country for attacks

People smuggling by air and water

Colin Campbell

Special Correspondent, BBC South East

Migrants trying to cross the Channel are using increasingly sophisticated and desperate methods, with attempts foiled in the air and on the water this week.

Lorry drivers caught watching film on lap top, driving and doing paperwork
Police catch truck drivers using phones, completing paperwork and watching a film on a laptop.

Teenage girl found dead after railway electrocution

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

A 16-year-old girl has been found dead at Herne Bay station.

British Transport Police and paramedics were called to the station just before 07:00 BST, but she was declared dead at the scene.

A post mortem examination is due to be carried out on Friday, but police said she had suffered serious injuries due to electrocution.

Her death is being treated as unexplained.

She' had been spotted near the station with a group of friends just before 23:00 BST last night.

Flowers at the scene of a tragedy in Herne Bay
Flowers have been left at the station

The family are now desperate for answers and my officers are focussed on understanding how this girl came to be on the tracks. The girl was with a group of friends near the station shortly before 11pm yesterday evening. Sometime between then and 7am this morning she came to receive these injuries.'

Det Ch Insp Paul LangleyBritish Transport Police

Police use lorry to catch distracted truckers

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Using mobiles, completing paperwork and even watching a film on a laptop.

Traffic officers took to the M20 in an unmarked 40-tonne lorry that allowed them to see into HGV cabs, and were shocked at what they saw.

Severe disruption: M25 Kent clockwise

BBC News Travel

M25 Kent clockwise severe disruption, between J5 for M26 and J6 for A22.

M25 Kent - Slow traffic and one lane closed on M25 clockwise between J5 M26 and J6, A22 (Godstone), because of a broken down van.

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

Lorry driver caught watching film on M20

Lorry driver watching a laptop behind the wheel
Kent Police

Police have stopped and fined a lorry driver for watching a film while he was driving along the M20.

Officers say the man was glancing at his laptop screen as he drove.

He was one of dozens of drivers who were stopped, fined, given points or educational advice in a special roads policing operation last week.

The 40-tonne lorry allows officers to see into cars and larger vehicles.

Motorists caught committing driving offences were filmed and then stopped by marked police cars.

This five day operation has made it clear that despite the costs a minority of motorists are still prepared to break the law. Any momentary lapse in concentration, such as talking on the phone, texting or looking at a device such as a laptop in the vehicle, can have disastrous and life-changing consequences.

It is for this reason that such offences can carry a large fine and six points on your licence. It is completely unacceptable behaviour, which puts the individual and other road users at risk. I urge those caught in this operation and others who have used such devices while driving to learn from their mistakes and drive safely in future."

Supt Andrew ReevesKent Police

Have you seen Paul Baker?

Paul Baker, who's gone missing
Sussex Police

Police in East Sussex are looking for missing 30-year-old Paul Baker.

Paul, of no fixed address, was last seen in Five Ashes, near Mayfield, on Monday evening (24 July) and had been on the way to stay with a friend in Crowborough.

Officers are concerned as Paul has recently been suffering from depression.

Police have had a report that he was seen in Maidstone yesterday (25 July) and that is being followed up. He may also be in the Crowborough area.

Is it really summer?

Kate Kinsella

BBC Weather

It looks more like autumn out there today.

Here's my forecast.

Thinking of buying a dog? Be careful who you get it from

Calls to the RSPCA complaining about unscrupulous puppy sales have risen in the South East.

'The hardest thing was telling my daughter I was going to die'

A mole on an ear became a lethal cancer for this man from Kingsdown near Deal.

Now he wants his story to be a warning for others.

What's in today's Kent newspapers?

Stack of newspapers
Getty Images

Kent Online: Herne Bay train station shut off after body found on tracks

Kent News: England and former Canterbury head coach Danny Kerry recovering after suffering heart attack in South Africa

Kent Live: Police were called to a gay bar in Canterbury following a sting operation by 'paedophile hunters'

Car hits wall in Hawkhurst

A woman's been rescued from a car after it came off the road and hit an 8ft brick wall in Hawkhurst.

Emergency services were called to the A268 at about 03:20 BST.

The woman was treated by ambulance crews.

Severe accident: M25 Kent clockwise

BBC News Travel

M25 Kent clockwise severe accident, at J1A for A282 affecting J30 for A13 Lakeside.

M25 Kent - M25 partially blocked and queuing traffic clockwise at J1a, A282 (Swanscombe), because of an accident. Congestion to J30, A13 (Lakeside).

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

Medway to become a "smart city"

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

Traffic jam

Medway Council has announced plans to become a so-called "smart city".

It's applied for funding to install new technology on roads such as the A2 which it's hoped will reduce congestion.

The council says the population in Medway is expected to grow by 50,000 by 2035 and the money would help the roads stay fit for the future.

'Wait till she shows you how she can bat'

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

From being the only girl in a boys' team in Sandwich, to being Player of the Tournament in England's World Cup winning side, opening bat Tammy Beaumont is putting women's cricket on the map.

Rail services affected after incident at Herne Bay

Emergency services are dealing with an incident on the railway line at Herne Bay which means that all lines are blocked.

Southeastern says services running between Margate and Faversham will be cancelled and disruption is expected until 10:00 BST.The company says that where possible, trains are being diverted to run via alternative routes and replacement buses are being arranged to run for stations via Herne Bay.

We'll bring you more details as soon as we can.

Bird lovers tackle turtle dove decline

Two turtle doves
Andrew Edginton

One of the UK's most threatened bird species has had its breeding groups in Kent saved after a group of villagers stepped in to stop it being sold off.

For more than eight years Staple, near Sandwich, has been a summer home to migratory turtle doves.

When their feeding ground was being sold last summer, RSPB conservationists David and Ann Tingey and David and Bridget Burridge stepped in, using their own money and donations from friends to buy the plot.

A flock of eight turtle doves and up to three youngsters are now frequently seen foraging at the site.

A turtle dove
Andrew Edginton

Villagers came together to support the project and a pond, hide and hedge have all been added to improve the site for fledgling birds.

This month, the ‘Friends of Staple Turtle Dove Summer Field’ have access to the hide to watch the first breed of young without disturbing the species.

The actions of our RSPB members have shown that with a little passion and commitment anyone can help the wildlife on their doorstep, even an incredibly threatened species, and it’s so encouraging that their efforts are already showing success.”

Nicole KhanRSPB Turtle Dove Conservation Advisor

School exclusions in Medway among highest in England

The number of school exclusions in England is at its highest level since 2009, with Medway making the top 10.

Gormley sculpture for Margate

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

A life-size Antony Gormley sculpture is to be installed on Margate beach.

The work will be a cast of Gormley's body and will be placed in front of the Turner Contemporary.

At high tide it'll be completely hidden underneath the water.

Gormley is well known for the Angel of the North in Tyne and Wear and Another Place near Liverpool.

The Angel of the North
Antony Gormley's The Angel of the North is located in Gateshead

The sculpture in Margate will be installed over the next three weeks.

'I just had total meltdown'

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

A hospital has apologised over a series of cancelled operations which have left a woman bedridden.

Rat infestation leads to heavy fine

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

The Faversham brewery Shepherd Neame has been fined £160,000, after rats infested the kitchen of one of its hotels.

Environmental health officers from Tunbridge Wells Borough Council visited the Royal Wells Hotel several times, following complaints.

dead rat
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council

Shepherd Neame closed the kitchens voluntarily.

The council's investigation found the hotel failed to act on advice given by its pest control agency.

dead rat
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council

Shepherd Neame pleaded guilty to four charges of food hygiene offences, and was also ordered to pay £9,988 in costs.

rat droppings on a food container
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
Rat droppings on a food container

The company says it's carried out a thorough review of its systems and the hotel now has a new management team.

grease on a warming cupboard
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
Grease on a warming cupboard

This disregard for even the most basic standards of hygiene and food safety put people's health at risk. Whilst I acknowledge their apology, I think it entirely reasonable that the owners should be held to account and fined."

Dr Ronen BasuCabinet member with responsibility for Sustainability, Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
edge of drain gully
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
Edge of drain gully

This incident should not have happened and we have done everything within our power to ensure it will not happen again."

SpokesmanShepherd Neame Ltd
drain at the Royal Wells Hotel
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
Drain at the Royal Wells Hotel

Time to get your brolly out again

Kate Kinsella

BBC Weather

There's rain on the way later and it'll feel a bit cooler than recently.

Here's my latest forecast.

'Oh I do like to be beside the seaside'

What a great shot of Walmer Beach by Christopher Brown - it's our Kent #PhotoOfTheDay.

Walmer Beach
Christopher Brown

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

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