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Summary

  1. Updates on Wednesday 22 March

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good evening from BBC London Live

Updates on BBC London Live covering the attacks at Westminster have now ended for the day but our UK colleagues will be bringing you the very latest news and information throughout the night.

What we know so far:

  • A police officer has died after being stabbed outside the Houses of Parliament
  • At least one other woman has died and several others are critically injured after a car hit people on Westminster Bridge
  • The alleged assailant was shot by armed officer
  • The Met say they are treating as a terrorist incident

Westminster attack: latest updates

MP tells of shutting Westminster Tube

Mary Creagh
BBC

Labour MP Mary Creagh arrived at the scene shortly after the incident.

She told the BBC: "When we were on our way to vote there were armed police officers standing at the escalator.

"As I got off the escalator I saw people running towards me. Penny Mordaunt [another MP] ran up and said 'shots have been fired, we need to get out now'.

"We had no choice but to go out of the revolving doors one at a time - I shouted to the security guard 'you've got to open the doors' and he then opened them. 

"I found myself in Westminster Tube station, I thought the one thing we don't want is tourists wandering in with their children into this situation.

"I went into the control room and told the controller 'there's been what we think is a terror attack on the Palace of Westminster and I said 'you need to shut the station now'."

Police - 'We are not afraid'

River closed between Vauxhall Bridge and Embankment

The Port of London Authority have said the River Thames has been closed between Vauxhall Bridge and Embankment.

Severe disruption: A4 London eastbound

BBC News Travel

A4 London eastbound severe disruption, between St James's Street and Trafalgar Square.

A4 London - A4 Pall Mall in Westminster closed eastbound between the St James's Street junction and the Trafalgar Square junction, because of a security alert.

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

Lifeboat launched twice after attack

The RNLI has confirmed the Tower lifeboat was requested to launch twice to help deal with the attack.

It was first launched at 14:25 in connection with the incident then again at 15:55. 

The boat returned to the station at 17:10.

Pupils who posed for picture before terror attack 'are safe'

Alex Homer

BBC Local Live

The head teacher of Holy Family Catholic Primary School in Small Heath, Birmingham, Peter Foley, has reiterated the pupils who had been visiting Parliament are safe.

The school Twitter account published a photo of the children there shortly before the terrorist incident on Westminster Bridge unfolded.

View more on twitter

He said: “All the children on the school trip are safe and their parents have been informed of the situation. The deputy head teacher is with the children and is providing me with regular updates.”    

View from Waterloo Bridge

Tom Edwards

Transport Correspondent, BBC London

I'm on Waterloo Bridge where not much traffic is moving because of the road closures in place.

Traffic on Waterloo bridge
BBC

No boats are moving on this part of the River Thames.

River Thames
BBC

You can also see people on the London Eye but it is not moving.

London Eye
BBC

Met police praised

Prominent police blogger, former Met borough commander and police negotiator tweets:

God forbid we ever take our police officers for granted...

Former newspaper political editor tweets:  

Every day since 9/11 at work in Commons I thought about my escape route/place to hide. But police at gates cannot run/hide. Such bravery.

The Church of England shares a prayer for Westminster

The Church of England has shared a prayer for Westminster on twitter.

View more on twitter

Extra officers across rail network

Richard Westcott

Transport correspondent

Police officers
AP

British Transport Police tell me they have extra officers out tonight across the whole British rail network, not just London, in order "to reassure" people.

No numbers have been given and they aren't clear if they will be armed or not.

To be clear, they say it's just to reassure people, not because of a specific threat. But you could see a bigger presence going home tonight.

'Two attackers in vehicle on Westminster Bridge'

BBC News Home Affairs Correspondent tweets...

Three French high school students injured - French media

Three French high school students are among those who have been hurt in the attack, French media are reporting.

They were part of a visiting group from a school in the town of Concarneau in Brittany.

The students were hit by the car that drove into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge. One of the students is in a critical condition, Ouest France newspaper reported . Another has serious injuries and there is no information on the condition of the third student, the newspaper said.

After the incident the students were evacuated onto a boat and taken back to the hostel they were staying at, Le Telegramme newspaper reported .

Poilce Statement: This is a terrorist incident

BJ Harrington:
BBC

Full statement from Metropolitan Police Commander, BJ Harrington:

"Since 2.40 pm this afternoon the [Metropolitan Police Service] has responded to an incident in the area of Parliament Square.

The senior National co-ordination has declared this is a terrorist incident.

Although we remain open-minded to the motive, a full counter-terrorism investigation is already underway. This is led by the Met counter-terrorism command.

At this stage I will confirm what we know has happened but I will not speculate. We received a number of different reports which included a person in the river, a car in collision with pedestrians and a man armed with a knife. Officers were already in that location as part of routine policing but immediately additional officers were sent to the scene and that included firearms officers. We are working closely with the London ambulance service and the London fire brigade ...

We know there are a number of casualties, including police officers, but at this stage we cannot confirm numbers or the nature of these injuries ...

The acting commissioner, Craig Mackey, is being treated as a significant witness as he was at the scene when the incident started. Whilst he is not injured, it would be inappropriate for him to be here to talk about this incident at this stage.

Our thoughts and his thoughts are with all those involved and responding to that incident this evening. I would stress that if anyone has information about today’s incident they are urged to call 0800789321 and I want to stress that if the public have any information or see anything suspicious to dial 999 immediately."

'Our priority is London'

Commander BJ Harrington
Getty Images

"I would absolutely stress to the public our number one priority, working with our partners, is to keep London safe. If people have information please dial the number - 0800 789321."

Commander BJ HarringtonMetropolitan Police

People get off the London Eye after Westminster attack

Sightseers held on the London Eye for safety are now getting off, say the attractions bosses.

View more on twitter

Woman recovered from river

The Port of London Authority has confirmed that a seriously injured woman has been recovered from the Thames river.

Spoken Martin Garside said: "A female member of the public was recovered alive from the water, but with serious injuries.

"She has been brought ashore and is undergoing urgent medical treatment. The working assumption is that she fell or jumped from the bridge".

He added that the river is completely closed to vessels between Vauxhall Bridge and the Embankment

Staff departing Ministry of Defence building

Anna O'Neill

BBC Radio London reporter

Staff leaving MoD building
BBC

Staff are now leaving the Ministry of Defence building on Horse Guards Avenue.

Staff leaving MoD building
BBC

Special service in Southwark for victims

Road closures in Westminster

Details from Transport for London

Westminster Bridge is closed westbound at York Road.

There is no traffic access to Parliament Square.

Victoria Embankment is closed southbound at Northumberland Avenue.

Northumberland Avenue eastbound from Trafalgar Square is also blocked. 

Whitehall has also been closed southbound at the junction with Trafalgar Square by the police.

TfL adds :

"Victoria Street at the junction with Storeys Gate has been closed towards Parliament Square. Lambeth Palace Road has been closed northbound at the roundabout by Albert Embankment. Traffic is being diverted by the Police. Traffic is also queuing southbound on York Road with tailbacks approaching Leake Street. Traffic southbound is slow moving with tailbacks to Downing Street. Millbank is closed to traffic northbound at Lambeth Bridge and traffic is being diverted. Drivers are advised to use an alternative route where possible. "

Affected roads include:

A3211 (SW1A) both directions

A3212 (SW1P, SW1A) both directions

A302 Bridge Street (SE1,SW1P,SW1A) both directions

Canon Row (SW1A) all directions

Youngsters in House of Parliament during terror attack

Young people from Hammersmith Boxing Club were at the Houses of Parliament when shots were fired, Get West London has reported.

The site is running live video of the aftermath in London.

Video from Get West London
Get West London

'At least 10 patients' treated on Westminster Bridge

Westminster
PA

London Ambulance Service deputy director of operations Pauline Cranmer said:

“We can confirm we have treated at least 10 patients on Westminster Bridge and have put a number of hospitals on alert as we continue to respond to this incident.

“We were called at 2.40pm today, with the first ambulance crew arriving within six minutes.

“We have sent a number of resources to the scene including ambulance crews, London’s Air Ambulance and our Hazardous Area Response Team.

“We are working closely with other members of the emergency services at the scene, with our priority being to ensure patients receive the medical help they need as quickly as possible.

“We have declared a major incident and our priority is to assess patients and ensure that they are treated and taken to hospital as soon as possible.

“As we are very busy dealing with this incident, we would ask the public to only call us in a genuine emergency.”

Police advice: 'Remain calm and alert'

Police are advising people to avoid the area and to remain "calm... alert and vigilant".

View more on twitter

In pictures: Westminster terror attack


          Police and ambulance crews are at Westminster where a person has been shot and a police officer stabbed
BBC
Police and ambulance crews attend Westminster after a police officer was stabbed and a man shot
policeman points gun at man on floor
PA
A policeman points a gun at a man on the ground outside Parliament

          Medical staff on the scene after the police officer was stabbed and his assailant shot
PA
Medical staff on the scene after the police officer was stabbed and his assailant shot
Armed police were seen running towards the palace
EPA
Armed police were seen running towards the palace of Westminster

          BBC Reports say a car also apparently struck and injured a number of pedestrians on nearby Westminster Bridge.
BBC
A car struck a number of pedestrians on nearby Westminster Bridge
Ambulance crews could be seen treating injured people
BBC
The car crashed into railings outside the Palace of Westminster
ambulances on the bridge
PA
Medical staff arrived on Westminster bridge to treat the wounded

          Emergency services transport an injured person to an ambulance
AP
Emergency services transport an injured person to an ambulance

          forensics officers work around a grey vehicle that crashed into the railings of the Houses of Parliament
AFP/Getty
Forensics officers work around the vehicle that crashed

Westminster Abbey to hold prayers

Westminster Abbey is closed for the rest of the day, but is still planning to hold evening prayer for anyone in the area.

@wabbey Evening Prayer will take place at 5.00pm for anyone remaining within the Abbey precincts

London attractions closed after attack

Several attractions have been closed with visitors kept inside following the attack. These include:

  • London Dungeon
  • Madame Tussauds
  • Shrek's Adventure!
  • Southbank Centre
  • London Eye
Eyewitness 'saw bodies' after Westminster terror incident
Steve Voake was on Westminster Bridge when a car mowed down pedestrians.

Statement from Mayor of London

“There has been a serious incident near to Parliament Square this afternoon which is being treated as a terrorist attack until the police know otherwise. 

"I have spoken to the Acting Commissioner. The Metropolitan Police Service is dealing with the incident and an urgent investigation is underway. My thoughts are with those affected and their families.

I would like to express my thanks to the police and emergency services who work so hard to keep us safe and show tremendous bravery in exceptionally difficult circumstances

Sadiq KhanMayor of London

Man arrested for trying to breach police cordon

Stay away from terror scenes say police as exclusion zone expanded

Evening Standard

Londoners were told to stay away from a swathe of central London after a terror attack in Westminster, the Evening Standard has reported. 

Exclusion zone in London after terror attack
Evening Standard

Minister 'tried to resuscitate police officer'

The BBC understands Tobias Ellwood, Foreign Office Minister, attempted to resuscitate an injured police officer before the London Air Ambulance arrived.

An image of Mr Ellwood, who served with the British Army with the Royal Green Jackets, on social media appears to show blood on his clothing.

Tobias Ellwood,
@Hugh_Dickinson

'Use 999 for emergencies only'

The Met Contact Centre is asking people to use 999 for emergencies only.

View more on twitter

Two ambulances 'screech away' as cordon moved back

Anna O'Neill

BBC Radio London reporter

Two ambulances have just screeched up Whitehall away from the scene as the police cordon and the public are moved further back.

Police cordon
BBC

Facebook activates Safety Check

Facebook has activated its Safety Check service for people in London to let friends and family know that they are safe. 

It was used after the 2016 Brussels bombings and the lorry attack in Nice.

Labour leader tweets

Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Opposition and Islington MP, has tweeted:


          My statement on the ongoing incident in Westminster. Our thoughts are with the victims, their friends and families

My statement on the ongoing incident in Westminster. Our thoughts are with the victims, their friends and families

Eyewitness 'hid behind concrete'