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  1. Updates from London on Thursday 29 January 2015

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

That's all for today's BBC Local Live.

Join us from 08:00 tomorrow where we'll be bringing you the latest news, sport, travel and weather updates for London. Have a good evening.

On air

BBC London News



tonight's programme at 18:30, the head of the Met Police says he needs millions of pounds of extra funding to protect London from the threat of terrorism.

Plus a war of words - now Thames Water blames Network Rail for the flooding at Farringdon as passengers endure a seventh day of disruption.

Dippy the dinosaur

And Asad Ahmad will be live at the Natural History Museum as it's been announced that Dippy the dinosaur's days in the Great Hall are numbered.

Military museum backing

Nearly 3,000 people have signed a petition calling for a military museum to remain in Woolwich,

reports the News Shopper.

Firepower, the Royal Artillery Museum, is set to leave Woolwich by 2017 and relocate to Salisbury Plan in Wiltshire.

Sleet and snow risk early tomorrow

Scattered snow showers will ease for a time during the evening, with clear, dry conditions developing and patchy ice developing on untreated surfaces.

However, there is the chance of further heavy rain, sleet and snow showers during the early hours, with snow most likely over the North Downs and other high ground.

Lows of -3C (27F).

FGM campaigner honoured

Campaigner and model

Waris Dirie has been honoured for her work to help fight female genital mutilation.

Waris Dirie

A Somalian, Ms Dirie underwent FGM when she was five and fled from a forced marriage when she was 13 before moving to London.

She collected the 2014 (Liberal International) LI Prize for Free at the Houses of Parliament and dedicated it to other women who are affected by the "brutal" act of FGM.

Deal 'not dead yet'

BBC Sport

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce says a deal to sign Darren Fletcher from Manchester United is

"not dead yet".

Scotland captain Fletcher, 30, has been granted a free transfer to allow him to move to another club during the mid-season transfer window.


There are

long delays on the A12 northbound in Wanstead at the Green Man roundabout because of an earlier broken down vehicle and accident. All lanes have reopened although there's congestion to the Gillender Street junction.

For the latest travel, tune into Billy Reeves on

BBC London 94.9 who will updates every 15 minutes.

Solar power doubles

Solar panels

Solar power almost doubled in the last year, with 650,000 installations ranging from solar farms to panels on homes, figures showed.

By the end of 2014 there was almost 5 gigawatts (5GW) of solar photovoltaic panels installed, up from 2.8GW at the end of 2013, the

Department of Energy and Climate Change figures showed.

Panels in London generate 65% as much energy as in Madrid, and the panels work more efficiently in cooler temperatures, said Paul Barwell of the Solar Trade Association.

Flood-affected trains to return

Tom Edwards

Transport correspondent, London

Thameslink services are to resume through central London tomorrow.

Some of Thameslink trains have been damaged by the water so there will be shorter trains and there still could be some cancellations.

Network Rail said more than one million litres of water had been pumped from the tunnel since the water main burst last Friday.


There's been a lot of talk today about dippy the Diplodocus, but how do you pronounce it?

BBC Magazine finds out.

News on the hour

Will Shindler

BBC London 94.9

A full Thameslink train service will begin running again between St Pancras and Farringdon tomorrow morning following the flooding in a railway tunnel under Clerkenwell.

Bob Collington, the wholesale water managing director for Thames Water, tells me in the

17:00 bulletin that the responsibility is not solely theirs.

Will you miss them?

The National Grid owns over 500 gas holders but now they are being removed. Sarah O'Carroll has been documenting them and visited more than 30 in London.

Read more about these sentinels of the industrial age.

Bethnal Green Gas Holders
Ed Ram

Have your say

BBC Local Live brings you the latest news, sport, travel and weather all in one place.

Tell us what you think.

Dippy v blue whale

BBC News


BBC News graphic

Analysis: Hammer attacker sentence increased

Clive Coleman

Legal correspondent, BBC News

In court today the Solicitor General Robert Buckland QC argued that, although

Philip Spence was convicted of attempted murder and not murder, he should receive a whole of life term.

These sentences are normally reserved for the most heinous murderers - people who have murdered more than one person, or murdered for a second time, or murdered a child with a sexual or sadistic motive.

There are some 50 people currently serving whole life terms. They include Rose West and Mark Bridger, who murdered five-year-old April Jones.

Mayfair jewellers targeted in raid

A jeweller to the royal household was today targeted by smash and grab raiders in a violent attack.

William & Son, in London's exclusive Mayfair district, was targeted by thieves reportedly carrying metal baseball bats.

Police examine jewellers in Mayfair

The Met said it believed about eight suspects riding motorbikes attempted to rob the store at about 12:30. No arrests have been made.

London Ambulance Service said took a man to hospital after he received a head injury.

Mixed reviews for new Stoppard play

Olivia Vinall as Hilary in The Hard Problem by Tom Stoppard
Johan Persson

Tom Stoppard's new play The Hard Problem has opened at the National Theatre to

mixed reviews.

The play, which poses big questions about the nature of consciousness, is Stoppard's first at the NT since 2002.

News on the hour

BBC London 94.9


Coming up at 16:00, eight suspects riding motorbikes attempted to rob a jewellery store in Mount Street, Mayfair this lunchtime.

And a 65-year-old woman arrested on suspicion of the murder of Luke Jackson in Pimlico last month has been released without charge.

Will Shindler will have more on both of these stories.

Schoolchildren at proms

Schoolchildren will

perform their own work at this year's Proms.

Two special concerts at the Royal Albert Hall will see pupils perform their own response to 10 pieces of classic music.

What was dippy?

As a campaign to save Dippy from being moved at the Natural History Museum gains support, here are some facts about the

extinct animal:

  • It was one of the longest animals to have lived on Earth and may have reached over 30m and weighed around 15 tonnes
  • It had four large sturdy legs supporting a long neck and a long tail that could be flailed around like a whip
  • They lived in North America about 150 million years ago during the late Jurassic period
Science Photo Library

Palace sign Mutch

BBC Sport

Crystal Palace have

signed midfielder Jordon Mutch from Queens Park Rangers for an undisclosed fee.

The 23-year-old has agreed a four-and-a-half year deal at Palace to end his short stay at Loftus Road, having only joined Harry Redknapp's side in August 2014 from Cardiff City.

Call the police

No one has turned up to visit police officers at contact meetings in Leytonstone which were arranged after a police station controversially closed, it has emerged.

This is Local London says officers were made available three times a week to consult with the public at the Tesco cafe after the closure of the station in Kirkdale Road in October.

But at a community forum meeting last night concerns were raised about people being able to raise confidential issues in a public place.

Murder arrest boys released

Three 14-year-old boys and another aged 13 have been released without charge after they were arrested in connection with the murder of a man in Edmonton.

Christopher John Barry
Met Police

Christopher John Barry, 53, was killed at his home in The Broadway, last month.

Another 13-year-old boy has been charged and will appear at the Old Bailey on 6 March.

Met taking data breach 'very seriously'

Danny Shaw

Home affairs correspondent, BBC News

The Metropolitan Police, whose officers were involved in the Mark Duggan and Azelle Rodney cases, says it is

taking the data breach "very seriously".

The Met says it has "risk assessed" the material and taken "appropriate" steps, as well as offering its support to the Ministry of Justice investigation. But it is not conducting its own investigation.

News on the hour

BBC London 94.9


Our top local news story this hour:

A full Thameslink train service will begin running again between St Pancras and Farringdon tomorrow morning following the flooding in a railway tunnel under Clerkenwell.

Around a 1,000 trains have been cancelled since last Friday.

Semi-secret inquiry data 'lost'

Dominic Casciani

Home affairs correspondent, BBC News

Azelle Rodney
Azelle Rodney was shot six times in 2005

Information from three of the UK's most sensitive semi-secret inquiries has gone missing after being put on discs sent in the post.

The Ministry of Justice has confirmed the missing material relates to investigations which examined the roles of police in the death of three members of the public.

Two inquiries relate to fatal police shootings of crime suspects in London - Mark Duggan and Azelle Rodney.

The third relates to the 1997 murder of Robert Hamill in Northern ireland, which campaigners claim involved the collusion of police officers.

In each inquiry there were witnesses, including police officers, who were given anonymity because of possible threats to their safety - but officials have refused to confirm whether any of the missing documents include personal information relating to these witnesses.

Professor asks why he was attacked

A professor, who was beaten badly by burglars, has asked the men why his family home in Wimbledon was targeted.

In a witness statement, Paul Kohler said: "The pointless ferocity and utter senselessness endangered my family's peace of mind, my physical and our psychological well-being and risked fomenting issues within the wider community both in Wimbledon and beyond."

Pawel Honc, 24, of no fixed abode, and Mariusz Tomaszewski, 32, of Crusoe Road, Mitcham, are

being sentenced at Kingston Crown Court.

Hotel hammer attacker's sentence increased

Clive Coleman

Legal correspondent, BBC News

A man who

bludgeoned three sisters with a claw hammer in a London hotel while their children slept alongside them has had his sentence increased to life with a minimum term of 27 years by the Court of Appeal.

Philip Spence
Met Police

Philip Spence, 33, was convicted at Southwark Crown Court in October last year of three counts of attempted murder.

He was given a life sentence with a minimum term of 18 years but that has been raised today.

News on the hour

BBC London 94.9


Our top local story this hour:

A man who smashed the skulls of three sisters with a claw hammer as they slept in a London hotel room has had his minimum term increased from 18 years to 27 years.

Music exam

Music promoters have been told they must sit an exam if they are to hold events in Croydon town centre,

reports the Advertiser.

Croydon police have introduced the requirement following an increase in violent offences and antisocial behaviour connected to the night time economy.

Sunny with snow showers

It will stay cold and breezy this afternoon with sunny spells and scattered sleet or snow showers, some of which may be heavy with hail also possible.

Highs of 4C (39F).

Lunchtime news

BBC London News


Flooded tunnel
Network Rail

Coming up at 13:40, Tarah Welsh has the latest on the growing row between Network Rail and Thames Water over which is responsible for the flooded track at Farringdon.

And the capital's police chief has been outlining how the force has reassessed its safety measures in the wake of the Paris terror attacks earlier this month.

Gang 'enjoyed' beating professor

A gang of Polish burglars seemed to enjoy "raining" down punches on a university professor as they raided his house, a court has heard.

Paul Kohler, 55, suffered a fractured eye socket, a fracture to his left jawbone, a broken nose and bruising that left him "utterly unrecognisable" during the attack at his home in Wimbledon, south London in August last year.

Paul Kohler after he was attacked

Pawel Honc, 24, of no fixed abode, and Mariusz Tomaszewski, 32, of Crusoe Road, Mitcham, have admitted causing Mr Kohler grievous bodily harm with intent and aggravated burglary.

News on the hour

Will Shindler

BBC London 94.9

I'll be bringing you all the latest news for London in the

13:00 bulletin.

I'll have the latest on the latest school table results, Thameslink flooding and problems with funding retirement.

And find out what a 99-year-old WWII veteran is doing in Hyde Park.


According to

Trendsmap, #savedippy and dippy are trending on Twitter in London.

It comes as a new

Twitter account is set up as part of a campaign to keep Dippy the dinosaur in the main hall of the Natural History Museum.

Robson to return

BBC Sport

Laura Robson
Getty Images

Former British number one Laura Robson

plans to return to the WTA Tour at the BNP Paribas Open in March after a year out with a wrist injury.

The 21-year-old Londoner, who had surgery on her left wrist in April, is on the entry list for the tournament at Indian Wells, in southern California.

Chocolate mice

London Evening Standard


The flagship central London branch of Thorntons chocolate shop has been shut due to a suspected mouse infestation,

says the Evening Standard.

The chocolatier's Oxford Street branch was closed down by Westminster Council.

Expensive nostalgia

A Star Wars toy that cost £1.50 when it came out 35 years ago

has sold at auction for £18,000.

Star Wars toy

The figure, of bounty hunter Boba Fett, was put up for action by Craig Stevens, from Croydon, who is a former chairman of the UK Star Wars Fan Club.

Farringdon floods

Tom Edwards

Transport correspondent, London

It's horrendously embarrassing for Network Rail if the Farringdon flooding was down to them.

Yesterday it wanted to give Thames Water a

£1m bill after more than 1,000 trains have been cancelled because of the flooded track.

However, Thames Water is not denying that burst water pipes caused the disruption Friday to Monday. Blame game.

And corporate wrangling aside it's actually good news for Thameslink commuters - they have found the problem - a blocked pipe.