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  1. Updates on Friday 8 December

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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BBC London News

Updates for London have ended for the day but we'll be back at 08:00 on Monday with the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

Have a great weekend.

Tonight's weather: Cold and dry

BBC Weather

There will be long clear spells overnight and it should remain dry across the region.

The brisk northwesterly winds will also tend to ease a little by morning. It will be very cold, with a widespread frost expected.

Minimum temperature: -1C (30F).

Soap star Jessie Wallace drenched in alcohol after pub melee

Jessie Wallace

EastEnders actress Jessie Wallace was left shaken after fans launched glasses at her during a pub melee.

The 46-year-old soap star was in The Partridge pub in Bromley, south-east London, last night when a fight broke out after she refused to pose for photographs.

Police were called after two men started shouting and throwing the glasses at the actress, who was drenched in alcohol but escaped unharmed, an eyewitness said.

The former Queen Vic landlady is currently playing the Wicked Queen in the production of Snow White at Bromley's Churchill Theatre.

A child on a swing

A report into the Shirley Oaks care home in London revealed abuse took place on an "industrial scale".

Read more

Epping Forest tree wins Tree of the Year 2017

The Gilwell Oak was awarded the top prize by the Woodland Trust.

An oak tree with connections to the scouting movement has been crowned UK Tree Of The Year by the Woodland Trust.

The Gilwell Oak was reputedly used by Scouts founder Robert Baden-Powell as a metaphor for the movement's growth.

Dick Turpin, the notorious highwayman, is believed to have hidden under the tree in Epping Forest as he prepared to ambush stagecoaches, the trust said.

The tree won the contest following a public vote and will represent the UK at the European Tree Of The Year awards next year.

The Friday night rush

How far can you get in an hour?

London radius graphic

How far could you get in an hour in a car leaving Charing Cross at 16:00 on a Friday?

Traffic jams on a Friday afternoon always seem to be the worst of the working week - as daily commuters are joined by those heading for a weekend getaway.

But how far can motorists get in an hour on a typical Friday?

And does leaving later - to avoid the worst queues - make that much of a difference?

Take a scroll through these maps -created by mapping and analytics software company Esri UK - which show driving distances from 10 of the busiest city centres.

Send us your London pictures

The Shard
Dave Scrivener

Dave Scrivener sent us this great photo of the Shard and London Bridge to use on our live page, and we'd like to see more photos of the capital.

If you have a picture which you think would be suitable, email it in high resolution (2048 x 1152 or 1680 x 945) to

Pair jailed for 10 years after cleaning fluid attack

A pair robbers who laughed after squirting corrosive cleaning fluid at two women have been jailed for 10 years for the "horrifying, cruel and barbaric" attacks.

Rapper Sadik Kamara, 24, aka Trizzy Trapz, and Joshua Jordan, 20, both of Newham, east London, used the noxious liquid to instil terror in their vulnerable victims.

Both women suffered facial burns, but were not permanently disfigured, in the attacks which happened within minutes.

The defendants were sentenced at the Old Bailey for robbery, attempted robbery and "applying a corrosive fluid with intent to burn, maim, disfigure or disable or to do some grievous bodily harm".

Brighton and Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace say they are "surprised and disappointed" that their FA Cup third-round tie with Brighton is scheduled for a Monday evening.

Read more

Severe accident: A312 Greater London southbound

BBC News Travel

A312 Greater London southbound severe accident, between A4020 Uxbridge Road and A437 North Hyde Road.

A312 Greater London - A312 The Parkway in Hayes closed and queuing traffic southbound between Ossie Garvin Roundabout and Bulls Bridge roundabout, because of an accident.

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

Train disruption continues into rush hour

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Govia Thameslink says its rail services between Brighton and London will be badly disrupted "until the end of the day".

Trains have been cancelled and delayed by up to an hour since early this morning, because of a fault with the signalling system between East Croydon and Gatwick.

The Gatwick Express was suspended, but is gradually being reinstated.

The operator had hoped to have services back to normal by 16:00 GMT.

Severe accident: A3203 London both ways

BBC News Travel

A3203 London both ways severe accident, between Lambeth High Street and A3036 Lambeth Palace Road affecting Imperial war museum.

A3203 London - A3203 Lambeth Road blocked and stationary traffic in both directions between the Lambeth High Street junction and Lambeth Bridge, because of an accident. Congestion to the Imperial war museum junction, on A3036 Lambeth Palace Road to the A302 Westminster Bridge junction and to Lambeth Bridge.

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

Mayor launches London's Brexit analysis

A Union Flag is seen with Elizabeth Tower (Big Ben) shrouded in scaffolding in the background

The mayor of London has announced he has commissioned studies on how Brexit could impact the city.

The study will be based on Brexit scenarios, from continued membership of the single market and customs union, to leaving the EU on World Trade Organisation terms.

The Department for Exiting the European Union said it was a matter for the Mayor of London.

It comes asTheresa May struck a deal with the EU to advance talks.

Blue lights installed to stop station platform gap falls

Blue lights which flash when train doors open have been introduced at Paddington Station this afternoon to help stop passengers and staff tripping in the gap as they get on and off Heathrow Express services.

Heathrow Express train
Heathrow Express

The lights and a number of "mind your step" floor warning messages have been installed on Platform 6 which is used by the trains.

According to the company, there have been four accidents this year and five near misses attributed to people stepping into the gap - which are called step board incidents - on the platform this year.

Blue lights under platform
Heathrow Express

It is the first time blue lights have been installed at a national rail station.

Severe congestion: City Of London both ways

BBC News Travel

City Of London both ways severe congestion, at King William Street affecting A201 Farringdon Road.

City Of London - Queuing traffic on Cannon Street in both directions at the King William Street junction. Congestion on A201 New Bridge Street to Ludgate Circus.

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

Council posters attack police cuts

Police poster
A number of the posters have been placed in Hackney

Hackney Council has launched a campaign against police cuts, asking its residents to complain to the Home Secretary.

Posters put up around the borough ask residents to "add your voice" to the councils "Foot the Bill" campaign.

The council says Hackney has lost one in four police officers since 2010 and that offending in the borough is now increasing.

The Home Office has been approached for comment.

Three arrests after patrols increased at Stratford stations

Stratford Station

Three people have been arrested for possessing offensive weapons around Stratford and Stratford International stations after police patrols were increased in the area following reports of violence and anti-social behaviour.

Commenting on the arrests, Ch Insp John Loveless of the British Transport Police (BTP) said it was "horrifying and totally unacceptable that individuals are carrying weapons like this in public."

"On this occasion I have no doubt the seizure of these weapons prevented a serious assault or worse taking place," he said

A 19-year-old man, a 15-year old boy and a 16-year-old boy were all charged with of possession of an offensive weapon and will appear at Highbury Corner Magistrates Court on 11 December.

Severe disruption: A3211 City Of London eastbound

BBC News Travel

A3211 City Of London eastbound severe disruption, between A3211 Upper Thames Street and A300 Southwark Bridge.

A3211 City Of London - A3211 Puddle Dock in London blocked and slow traffic eastbound between the A3211 Upper Thames Street junction and the A300 Southwark Bridge junction, because of a broken down lorry.

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

'First' Muslim pantomime comes to town

Comedian Abdullah Afzal, of BBC sitcom Citizen Khan, is starring alongside a family of seven in the Great Muslim Panto.

The producers hope to encourage more Muslims to enjoy pantomime.

Power cut leads to Gatwick Express and Southern problems

Crowds at Clapham Junction on Friday morning

The express train service to Gatwick airport from central London was suspended this morning after a signal failure caused major disruption on busy routes across the South East.

Network Rail said a fault with the National Grid power supply meant power was lost to all signalling over a wide area, including Southern's Brighton Main Line north of Redhill, the Uckfield line and the East Grinstead line.

All trains were stopped while the power was off for a period before 7am and passengers were warned it would take until at least 4pm for services to return to normal.

Trains across the whole Gatwick Express, Southern and Thameslink networks may be cancelled or delayed by up to an hour, it was announced.

Brentford FC's current home ground Griffin Park

Championship club Brentford receive approval for revised plans for their proposed new stadium near Lionel Road.

Read more

Afternoon weather: Cold and sunny

BBC Weather

Most places will remain fine, with plenty of sunshine. The cold weather will continue into the afternoon for shoppers in Oxford Street. The odd flurry of snow remains possible.

Maximum temperature: 4C (39F).

New safety systems for London's tram drivers
The BBC's Richard Westcott looks at Transport for London's warning systems aimed at stopping tram drivers dozing off.

Murder hunt launched after man stabbed to death in Hackney

The murder happened at the junction of Christie Road and Cassland Road in Hackney

A murder inquiry has been launched after a man was found with fatal stab wounds in Hackney yesterday afternoon.

Emergency services were callled to Christie Road at the junction with Cassland Road where they found the 24-year-old with stab injuries. He died at the scene shortly afterwards at 17:20.

Detective Chief Inspector Jamie Piscopo who is leading the investigation, said: "We understand the victim was involved in an altercation with a group before he was fatally attacked.

"Were you there? Did you see anything that can assist police?

"A large crowd had gathered shortly after the attack and following the victim collapsing in Christie Road. I would urgently appeal for those present to contact my team with information."

Charlton Athletic manager Karl Robinson

Charlton Athletic will mark 25 years since they returned to The Valley, but the club's off-field future is still uncertain.

Read more

Severe accident: A201 City Of London southbound

BBC News Travel

A201 City Of London southbound severe accident, between A201 New Bridge Street and Bride Lane.

A201 City Of London - A201 Farringdon Road in Central London closed and queuing traffic southbound between Ludgate Circus and the Bride Lane junction, because of an accident.

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

Close-up of the chocolates

A "delicious smell of cocoa" is released when the century-old box is opened, say the auctioneers.

Read more

Royals to attend Grenfell National Memorial Service


The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry will attend the Grenfell National Memorial Service on 14 December.

The occasion at St Paul’s Cathedral will mark exactly six months on from the day of the Grenfell Tower fire.

Elements of the service will include:

  • A specially-commissioned banner incorporating the 'Grenfell Heart' which will be brought into the service and displayed throughout, before being taken to the silent vigil being planned in North Kensington later in the day
  • Music from a variety of traditions, including: Ebony Steel Band, the Portobello Road Salvation Army Band, an Islamic girls' choir from the Al Sadiq and Al Zahra Schools, and the St Paul's Cathedral Choir
  • Representation from the various different faith communities will sit, stand and speak together from the Cathedral dais in a show of unity
  • A pre-recorded sound montage of anonymous, real voices from the Grenfell community, reflecting the range of different emotions felt.
  • Bereaved families and survivors will be invited to leave the Cathedral together through the Great West Door at the end of the service, in silence, holding white roses

Severe disruption: London both ways

BBC News Travel

London both ways severe disruption, between A4 Hyde Park Corner and The Mall.

London - Constitution Hill in Westminster closed in both directions between the A4 Hyde Park Corner junction and The Mall junction, because of the Changing the Guard. Also affecting The Mall between Marlborough Road and Constitution Hill and Birdcage Walk between A3214 Buckingham Gate and A3214 Great George Street.

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

Severe disruption: both ways

BBC News Travel

both ways severe disruption, between A117 and A2204 New Ferry Approach.

- Vehicle ferry not operating on Woolwich Ferry in both directions in London between North Pier and South Pier.

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

Watch: Trafalgar Square tree lit for 70th year

The lights on the Trafalgar Square Christmas tree have been switched on.

The conifer, which stands in the famous London landmark, has been provided by Norway - as it has for the past seven decades.

Severe disruption: M4 Greater London eastbound

BBC News Travel

M4 Greater London eastbound severe disruption, at J2 for A4 affecting J3 for A312.

M4 Greater London - One lane closed and queuing traffic on M4 London-bound at J2, A4 (Brentford), because of a broken down van. Congestion to J3, A312 (Hayes).

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

CCTV released after girl, 15, sexually assaulted on bus

Man wanted in connection with a sexual assault
Metropolitan Police

Police have released a CCTV image of a man wanted in connection with a sexual assault on a 15-year-old girl.

The girl was assaulted on the 326 bus to Barnet on Thursday, 18 May.

She stood by the back doors of the bus and during the journey the suspect sexually assaulted her. She moved away and again he repeatedly sexually assaulted her.

The suspect is described as a white man, with brown hair, in his 20s or 30s.

Today's photo of London

We used this wonderful photo by Jason Hawkes of the city's skyline as our banner, but we want a new picture every day to show off the capital.

Have you taken a photo of your part of London which you think would be suitable? If so, email it in high resolution (2048 x 1152 or 1680 x 945) to

London skyline
Jason Hawkes

Watch: News headlines from BBC London

BBC London News

Victoria Hollins has this morning's top stories for the capital.

Power failure causes Gatwick Express suspension

BBC London Travel

BBC Radio London Travel

Gatwick Express services are suspended from Victoria to Gatwick Airport and Brighton following a power failure

But its also causing delays of up to 45 mins on Southern and Thameslink services.

Wormwood Scrubs prison sees 'surge in violence'

Wormwood Scrubs prison

Chronic staff shortages, food running out and a surge in violence were among the findings of a critical prison report into Wormwood Scrubs.

Inspectors also found areas of the west London jail were strewn with litter, attracting rats and cockroaches.

Chief inspector of prisons Peter Clarke said the findings painted an "extremely concerning picture".