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  1. Our live coverage has now ended
  2. Live updates on Thursday 20 July

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Another night over

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Thanks very much for joining us today, we'll be back first thing tomorrow morning, from 06:00 BST, with more of the county's news, sport and weather.

'An absolute insult', says severely disabled man forced to prove his illness

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

A terminally ill man has been forced to fill out a lengthy form to prove his disability - even though the authorities have been aware of his illness for the last 12 years.

'I had to try and do something'

Mark Norman

Health Correspondent, BBC South East

A man from Haywards Heath is campaigning to force a social media site to remove material which promotes self harm and suicide.

Richard Harrington attempted to take his own life five years ago.

He says other people on Tumblr made him feel he didn't deserve to be alive.

The social media site has not responded to a request from BBC South East for a comment.

If you have been affected by this and would like advice or support - visit the BBC Action Line where you can find information on issues surrounding self harm.

Tall teen off to shoot hoops in USA

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

A 15-year-old from Hove has been given a scholarship to play basketball in America.

Brighton's pride in revamped shelter

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

One of Brighton's art deco bus shelters has been transformed for the city's Pride.

Connor Goldson

Brighton defender Connor Goldson says he hopes he can inspire more cardiac screening after returning from heart surgery.

Read more

Sun and showers

Rachel Mackley

Weather Presenter

You'll need both your brolly and your sunglasses, as we've got a mixed few days of weather ahead.

Find out more in my latest forecast.

Southern analysis from our Political Reporter: Credit where credit's due?

Ben Weisz

Political reporter, BBC Sussex

Well that didn't take long.

A day after the rail unions agreed to suspend their industrial action, the drivers' union Aslef has met the Transport Secretary Chris Grayling. The guards' RMT union (which represents some drivers too) will meet him tomorrow.

The Secretary of State described the first meeting as "constructive". He's been clear he doesn't think it's his place to negotiate terms with the unions - that's for Govia Thameslink - but said earlier he hoped these meetings could reopen those talks.

This wouldn't be a Southern Rail story without a bit of a political tussle. Tories are both privately and publicly furious at Eastbourne's Lib Dem MP Stephen Lloyd, who they claim has taken credit for this development.

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

They point out that Chris Grayling has frequently offered to meet with the unions on the condition they called off their strike action - see here, here and here - so today's meeting, they say, doesn't represent a climbdown or a change of position on his part.

But since the unions announced their offer to suspend action after a meeting with Mr Lloyd, Lib Dems say he deserves credit.

In reality, all this talk of who to praise may be a little premature. We know too well that talks don't always end in deals, and deals don't always end disputes if rejected by rank and file members.

This renewed diplomacy gives grounds for optimism, but it's a little early for celebration.

BreakingTalks with Southern strike union and Government begin

Sue Nicholson

BBC News

The government had said it has held "constructive talks" with the union representing drivers on Southern rail.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said he hoped the meeting would "pave the way for the reopening of negotiations" between Aslef and Southern.

In a statement, Aslef described the talks as "proactive", and added: "Further talks are planned with both the company and then the minister."

The union called off three strikes on Southern in August ahead of the talks. It also lifted a ban on overtime and rest day working.

'He'd been shot 7 times...4 pellets remain in his skull'

Alex Bish

Investigative journalist, BBC South East

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.

Crawley gardens enjoy the sweet smell of success

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Three of Crawley's parks have been awarded prestigious green flags.

Tilgate Park
Tilgate Park

Tilgate Park, Goffs Park and Memorial Gardens have been given the accolade by the environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy.

Goffs Park
Goffs Park

It's Tilgate's sixteenth consecutive flag, while Goffs Park and the Memorial Gardens have 10 each.

Memorial Gardens
Memorial Gardens

We have several beautiful parks and green spaces in Crawley and these latest awards reflect the hard work and dedication of our staff who keep them looking their best.'

Cllr Chris MullinsCabinet member for Wellbeing, Crawley Borough Council

'It was a real experience and one I'll never forget'

A 20-year-old pilot from Horsham has become the youngest woman to fly with the US Air Force Thunderbird display team.

Beth Moran started flying a year ago after deciding she wanted to do something positive following the Shoreham air disaster.

She took to the skies over RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire.

ICYMI: Your amazing storm pictures

Tom Darby

BBC Live reporter

Storms over Margate
Mark Battersby

Hundreds of you got in touch with your pictures of this week's epic storm across the South East.

We've compiled the best of them in a gallery on our Facebook page, here's a taster of a few of our favourites.

Lightning over Eastbourne
Matt Cooper
Lightning in Horsham
Ollie Buchanan
Lightning over East Kent
Greg Esson

It's turning unsettled...

Georgina Burnett

BBC Weather

...although tomorrow will be brighter.

Here's my forecast.

Seagulls sign young Norwegian international

Johnny Cantor

BBC Sussex commentator

Brighton and Hove Albion have signed young Norwegian midfielder Mathias Normann.

The 21-year-old has represented his country and under-17 and under-18 level, and joins from Norwegian second division side FK Bodo/Glimt, where he's scored three goals in 42 appearances over four years.

Mathias Normann
Geoff Penn/BHAFC

He is a talented and versatile young player, who already has good experience playing regular senior football in Norway. We are looking forward to welcoming him into the club, and his longer-term plan will be to break into the first-team group.'

Chris HughtonManager, Brighton and Hove Albion FC

Man charged over house gun shots

A man has been charged with possessing a shotgun after gun shots were reported outside a house in Ardingly in West Sussex on Monday evening.

Shots were fired at a house in Oaklands at about 20:30 BST damaging a door, and at the windscreen of a parked car. No-one was hurt.

The 41-year-old unemployed man has been charged with possession of a shotgun with intent to cause fear of violence, possession of a loaded shotgun in a public place and criminal damage.

He is due to appear at Lewes Crown Court on 16 August.

Oaklands, Ardlingly

'The kids would be publicly flogged'

Sent to Australia as a child, David Hill was beaten and forced to work.

He recalls the abuses he and others suffered in a new book.

South East buildings up for award

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Two of the South East's newest buildings have been shortlisted for a major prize.

Hastings Pier and the redeveloped Chatham Dockyard, named Command of the Oceans, are among six projects nominated for the Royal Institute of British Architects Stirling Prize.

Hastings Pier
Hastings Pier

They're up against buildings in Glasgow and London.

Command of the Oceans, Chatham Dockyard
The Command of the Oceans, Chatham Dockyard

The winner will be announced on 31 October.

William Edwin born at 10:50 BST

See all the pictures from our hour-by-hour gallery

Read more

Meet Jane Austen superfan Zack

The self-taught period tailor enjoys wearing Regency clothes and doesn’t own a pair of jeans, preferring to fashion his clothes on Regency styles.

Zack Pinsent is inspired by author Jane Austen and stars alongside a host of other dedicated 'Janeites' in a special documentary to mark the 200th anniversary of her death on Tuesday.

Jane Austen superfan Zack dresses in authentic Regency clothes

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.

'By the time we were there, she was gone'

Brothers Lee and Luke Payne speak out about Sarah's murderBrothers Lee and Luke Payne speak out for the first time about their sister's murder.

Reading bedtime stories while on duty

A new app helps connect armed forces families by giving parents a chance to read stories while away from home.

It's another day for an umbrella

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

There's more unsettled weather on the way today.

Here's my forecast.

Full steam ahead for outstanding collection

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Take a look at this extraordinary collection of railway memorabilia at the end of a Hastings garden.

A striking silhouette

We were completely stunned by this shot of Rottingdean windmill by Alan Barnes, it's our #PhotoOfTheDay.

Rottingdean windmill
Alan Barnes

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

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