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  1. Updates for Monday, 24 July 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK


Stuart Bailey

BBC News

That's it for another week of live updates.

You can scroll back on this page to catch up with any Essex stories you may have missed, including:

  • Man jailed for driving car into pregnant woman
  • Pitsea tower blocks fail fire safety tests
  • Staff shortages blamed for Chelmsford Prison violence
  • Knife crime crackdown sees 40 arrests in a week
  • Road flooded after burst water main

We'll be back with more news, sport, weather and travel for the county from 08:00 on Monday.

Have a good weekend.

Our live coverage across the day - and the week

That's it for our regular updates for another week - thanks for your company, it wouldn't be the same without you.

Scroll down to find out what's been happening across the county, and remember, any breaking news will still appear here over the weekend.

Whether you're going for a walk - doesn't this photograph from BBC Weather Watcher "Tammy's Cottage" look inviting - seeing friends and family, or just enjoying a bit of peace and quiet, have a great weekend.

We'll see you on Monday morning.

Woodland walk in Lavenham

That's it for this week's live coverage

The team here is signing off, but we'll be back bright and breezy on Monday morning.

You can catch up with what's been happening during the day by scrolling down through our coverage since 08:00 and as ever, if there's any breaking news over the weekend, this is where you'll find it.

Have a great weekend, hopefully we'll see more of the blue sky captured by one of our BBC Weather Watchers at Cromer this morning.

Beach at Cromer

Academy responds to concerns over charges for transport

Following on from our story about parents of some pupils attending the Samuel Ward Academy facing charges for school transport from September, we've received a statement from the Trust.

Mark Neild, Deputy CEO and Director of Education said: "The Trust has worked closely with leaders and governors of the Academy and has made a number of savings always with a keen focus on protecting the educational experiences of young people.

"However the Trust can no longer fully subsidise the cost of transport for parents living outside of the Council's Transport Priority Area.

"As such we have had to make the very tough decision that from September this subsidy will be at a level of 50% with parents haveing to pay £1 per journey and in so doing bringing it closer to the position of other schools in the area who charge for transportation.

"The Trust has met with concerned parents and from the outset the Academy has supported parents for whom this change represents a financial hardship, as well as parents of children with special educational needs/disabilities."

Snetterton hosts Touring Car championship

The British Touring Car championship, which is taking place at Snetterton this weekend, is expected to attract crowds of about 30,000 people.

The championship sees professional motor racing teams and amateur drivers competing in highly modified versions of family cars.

Snetterton has been hosting the event for more than fifty years.

BBC Norfolk's Phil Daley's been out on the track:

View more on twitter

Unexpected transport charges imposed on parents

Pupils at a Suffolk academy have been told they'll have to pay for school transport from September.

Parents of children at Samuel Ward in Haverhill who travel from Hundon, Clare and Glemsford, have been told they'll have to pay £10 a week for each child, despite getting a letter in March saying there'd be no change to the current provision.

Samuel Ward Academy

Rachel Cannon, chair of governors at Hundon and Thurlow Primary Federation, a feeder school for the academy, said: "It's come too quickly for parents, they're not able to plan for that change to their financial situation.

"They were told in a letter just a few weeks before the end of term that they would have to pay from September and they were asked to commit to paying for transport within a week of receiving the letter.

She said it's almost certainly the case that some parents would have chosen other schools to send their children to, if they'd known this was going to happen.

At the time of choosing a school, she said parents were "assured" by Samuel Ward that transport would be free and therefore they felt free to make that choice of school.

"Had they had the information about transport charges they may well have made a different decision," she said.

We've tried to contact the academy for a response, but have so far, not received one.

Central role the long term aim for Ipswich loanee

Graeme Mac

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy is set to give the biggest hint yet over his team selection for next weekend's Championship opener when his side faces Charlton tomorrow.

Dominic Iorfa
Getty Images

The match at the Valley will be the Blues final warm-up game before the serious stuff starts against Birmingham seven days later.

Recent arrival Dominic Iorfa (pictured) is one of those hoping to get the nod, as he competes with Jordan Spence at right-back.

But the versatile defender, who made 25 appearances for his parent club Wolves last season, has been telling us that he sees his long term future at centre half.

"As things stand, I've played more games at right back, but I think I'm adept in both positions," Iorfa said.

"I'd prefer to play at centre-back on a regular basis in the future."

"At the moment, my speed is one of my best attributes and I like to use that when I'm out wide to overlap and help push teams back."

Extra help enlisted to help boat on Broads

We understand a salvage vessel, equipped with a large pump, has been taken to the mouth of the Chet to assist in pumping out a vessel on the Broads which is taking in water.

The fire service are also involved in the pumping operation.

Baden Powell reaches her destination

The historic fishing boat, the Baden Powell, is back in the water.

She was lowered into the Bentinck Dock at King's Lynn a short time ago - much to the delight of the team which has been restoring her.

The boat will be fitted out in the dock before she makes her first trip in the river for 25 years.

Baden Powell about to be lowered into dock

International call-up for Witches skipper

Graeme Mac

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Ipswich Witches captain Danny King will represent Great Britain at the World Games event in Poland this weekend.

Danny King

The 30-year-old, pictured here after being crowned British Champion last year, has received a late call-up, as the current British title holder Craig Cook is injured.

King joins Robert Lambert and Steve Worrall in the GB side for the event in Wroclaw tomorrow.

The meeting is the first of a couple this weekend for the Witches skipper, as he will race for the Suffolk side away at Glasgow on Sunday in the Championship.

Appeal for witnesses after man has substance thrown over him

A man was taken to hospital for treatment, after he had something sprayed on him while he was asleep on a bench in Gippeswyk Park in Ipswich.

The incident happened on Thursday afternoon, at about 16:30. Police believe the substance may have been bleach, although this has not been confirmed.

The man was taken to hospital for treatment to his eyes but he's not thought to have suffered any permanent damage.

Officers would like to hear from anyone who witnesses the attack, or saw anything suspicious inthe park at the time.

Coastguards called to help boat on Broads

A boat's taking on water on the Broads.

The cruiser, called Midsummer Dream, contacted the coastguard at about 14:30 asking for help.

A couple of teams from Lowestoft and Southwold are on their way.

The fire service has also been called out to the incident, at Hardley near Loddon.

Council chairman has no regrets over wording of graves notice

The chairman of a parish council in the south of the county is refusing to apologise in a row over graves.

A woman who contacted BBC Suffolk told us she'd been asked to remove sentimental items from the grave of her husband at St Mary's Church in Glemsford.

The notice from the parish council there referred to "offending items", which upset Tina Bell.

In response, Michael Brown, chairman of Glemsford Parish Council, says they get ornaments, windmills, ceramic stuff and glass vases on the graves, and the grass can't be cut properly with those sorts of items on there.

"When we say 'offending', it's offending in as much as they can be dangerous to mowers", he said.

Mr Brown said he doesn't regret using the word. "Not really, it depends how you take the word really.

"The word was not 'offensive', they're offending items that we don't allow on there.

"The rules are displayed in the cemetery.

"We've had people complain about the amount of items that are on graves and how much it spoils it for other people.

"We are in a no-win situation."

Norfolk Euro MP in bid to become UKIP deputy leader

Andrew Sinclair

BBC Look East political correspondent

Nominations close today in the latest election to choose a leader for the UK Independence Party, an election which could see one of the East of England's MEPs become deputy leader.

Norfolk farmer Stuart Agnew is the running mate of Anne Marie Waters, a controversial candidate who's seen as one of the favourites to win.

Ms Waters has made a number of disparaging comments about muslims and ethnic minorities and there is pressure on the party leadership to prevent her from standing.

But Mr Agnew says he expects her to be allowed to stand and he's praised her for her "real courage" in being prepared to talk about issues which he says, other people arn't prepared to confront.

"There is an increasing element of people who are beyond the law in this country," he said.

"Well we say we have our own way of life and culture in this country and we want to keep it."

He said it was "really really frustrating" that some people regarded such views as racist.

Nominations for UKIP's fourth leader in a year close at 5pm. The list of those standing probably won't be made public until next week.

Stuart Agnew MEP
European Parliament
Stuart Agnew MEP
Anne Marie Waters
Leadership contender Anne Marie Waters

'Attitudes need to change in Garby's survival fight'

Diss Express

This is the back page of the Diss Express:

Back page of Diss Express
Diss Express

Man dies and girl badly hurt in crash

Diss Express

Here's a look at the front page of the Diss Express:

Front page of Diss Express
Diss Express

Man jailed for driving car into pregnant woman

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

A man who ran over a pregnant shop-worker and left her with life-threatening injuries has been jailed for three years.

Vinisha Ajanraj, 32, was working in an off-licence on London Road, Leigh on Sea, at around 17:00 on Monday, 27 March when she suspected three men of using a stolen credit card.

She chased the group after they went behind the till, took the card back and ran out of the shop with some goods.

They got into a car driven by Rico Dupres which was then reversed into Mrs Ajanraj - who was 27-weeks pregnant at the time - leaving her in intensive care with serious internal injuries.

Rico Dupres.
Essex Police

Dupres, 25, of Anderson Close, London pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm and dangerous driving.

Mrs Ajanraj, who has since given birth to a healthy baby girl, said: "I am still unable to walk and am in constant pain every day. My family and I are also suffering financially.

"I think those responsible for my injuries are very cruel and it upsets me greatly that anyone could do this to another human being."

'Something for everybody' at revamped pier

A multi-million pound reconstruction project for Felixstowe Pier will see the pier partially open on Saturday, ahead of the official opening in September.

According to the Felixstowe Pier website, the pier will include a boardwalk, a cafe/bar with alfresco dining, bowling, a family entertainment centre and food kiosks.

Catering manager Greg Barnes agrees there's something for everybody: "I think we've done a great job here making sure it's up-to-date, it's modern.

"We're maintaining that Felixstowe seaside feel, but we've got the contemporary feel of the new pier building."

Felixstowe Pier

Afternoon weather: Cloudy and drizzly

BBC Weather

Cloud will continue to thicken and it will become breezy, with some oubreaks of rain.

There will be the occasional bright spell too, but it will feel cool for late July.

A top temperature of 19C (66F).

Forecast for Southend.

In pictures: Prince William's final air ambulance shift

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

As we reported yesterday, The Duke of Cambridge completed his final shift for the East Anglian Air Ambulance last night.

Prince William joined the emergency service two years ago, but is leaving to concentrate on royal duties on behalf of the Queen.

Here are some photos from his final day with the service:

Prince William.
Getty Images
Prince William.
Getty Images
Prince William.
Getty Images
Prince William.
Getty Images
Prince William.
Getty Images

Historic boat set to return the the water

It's more than 100 years since the fishing smack Baden Powell was launched for the first time into the River Nar at King's Lynn.

Today, after 25 years on dry land, she's being relaunched into the water after a major restoration.

Historic boat Baden Powell

The Baden Powell is famous because of the shipwright who built her. Walter Worfolk came to King's Lynn at the end of the nineteenth century to set up his shipyard, and this double ended fishing boat was the first he built here.

Ken Hill, one of the volunteers who've restored the boat, said: "We're going to have it craned onto a low-loader and then it will make its way slowly to King's Lynn docks where we've been very happy to get permission to lower her into the dock.

"She''ll be in the water for the first time in many many years."

Boxing: First KO important for Wardley

Brenner Woolley

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Ipswich heavyweight Fabio Wardley believes it was a landmark moment in his fledgling career when he knocked out Zheko Zhekov in Norwich last weekend.

Fabio Wardley

The 22-year-old was fighting for the first time as a professional, after graduating from the white collar ranks earlier in the year.

"A first knock-out victory was something that I wanted," Wardley told BBC Suffolk Sport.

"I want to make an impact on boxing and the heavyweight scene itself, (I need) to start taking some people out."

Pitsea tower blocks fail fire safety tests

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Parts of cladding on two tower blocks in Pitsea have failed fire safety tests.

But Genesis Housing Association - which manages Cleves and Aragon Courts - says it won't be removing it until new government guidance is published.

Fire monitors will be patrolling the site 24 hours a day.

Cleves and Aragon Courts in Pitsea.

A spokesman for Genesis Housing Association said: "In the wake of the Grenfell tragedy, Genesis Housing Association carried out tests to the cladding materials on blocks of six storeys and above across its portfolio.

"The tests have shown that parts of the external cladding used in panels on portions of Cleves and Aragon Court in Pitsea have failed the new test set by Government.

"Genesis has taken all appropriate actions recommended by the Ministers and the fire brigade including placing 24-hour fire monitors on-site to patrol and reassure residents, made sure that all relevant Fire Risk Assessments are up to date and all fire precautions are in place and functioning effectively.

"We are not currently planning to remove the cladding from the buildings until updated Government guidance is provided by the Department for Communities.

"We have written to residents to reassure them that their safety is – and will remain - our top priority. We will continue to keep them informed throughout this process and thank them for their continued patience."

Your pictures: Sunny spells

BBC Weather Watchers

It's been a decent day so far with some sunshine breaking through the cloud, as captured by our BBC Weather Watchers.

Clouds in North Fambridge.
Clouds in Great Chesterford.
Blue skies in Frinton on Sea.
Welcome to Braintree sign.

Man arrested following criminal damage to butchers

A man has been arrested in connection with the criminal damage to a butchers in Norwich, which we told you about earlier.

The man, who is in his 40s and from the Norwich area, is at Wymondham Police Investigation Centre awaiting questioning.

A brick was thrown at the shop, in Magdalen Street, at about 23:20 on Tuesday, 25 July.

The brick caused damage to the glass in the door, but the door remained intact.

Police seek to reassure community following Halal Butcher attack

Police say while hate crimes are extremely rare, that's the line of inquiry they're following in relation to an attack on a Norwich Halal Butchers earlier this week.

Butchers shop

A brick was thrown on Tuesday night at Haider Butchers on Magdalen Street.

PC Dave Block said: "Obviously it's a concern when anybody's property gets damaged.

"It's all the more concerning when it appears to be motivated by some form of hate so of course it's a concern but I would reiterate that Magdalen Street is a particularly strong and diverse community and incidents like this are extremely rare in Norfolk, and extremely rare in Norwich."

Pair deny killing man who died after Hullbridge robbery

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Two men have pleaded not guilty to the manslaughter of a man who suffered fatal head injuries during an alleged robbery in Hullbridge.

Timothy Smith, 57, died two days after the incident which happened in The Drive on 19 March.

The Drive, Hullbridge.

Andrew McVicar, 33, of Dewsgreen, Basildon and Colin Garrod, 50, of Crowborough Road, Southend appeared at Basildon Crown Court yesterday.

They denied manslaughter and robbery and are due to stand trial on 8 January 2018.

Witnesses sought after police collision in Ipswich

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) is seeking witnesses to an incident in Ipswich last month, after a man sustained a broken ankle when he was in collision with a car driven by a Suffolk Constabulary police officer.

Police vehicles at St Helen's Street

The man collided with the unmarked hire vehicle, which was being driven by an on-duty police officer, on St. Helen's Street at about 13:40 on Friday June 23.

The IPCC says its investigation will focus on how the man came to be in collision with the car and injured in the incident.

At the time, police said the man's injuries weren't serious enough for an automatic referral to the IPCC, but that an internal investigation had been launched.

Girl injured at retail park expected to leave hospital over weekend

An eight-year-old girl who was airlifted to Addenbrooke's Hospital after she was hit by a car at the entrance to the Suffolk Retail Park off Yarmouth Road in Ipswich, is described as being in a "stable" condition.

She's expected to be released from hospital over the weekend.

Suffolk Retail Park

Police say they were alerted to the incident by the ambulance service at 13:20 yesterday afternoon, in which the girl was hit by a blue Skoda Yeti.

They're keen to hear from anyone with information about what happened.

Greater Anglia targets younger travellers

A127 flooding delays set to continue for 'a few hours'

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

There are still long delays on the A127 near Rayleigh after a burst water main this morning.

One lane is closed on the London-bound side because of flooding.

A spokesman for Essex and Suffolk Water said engineers were called at about 08:00 and that repairs were likely to take 'a few more hours'.

Congestion near Rayleigh.

School praised for its TV role

Lynn News

Here's the front page of the Lynn News:

Front page of Lynn News
Lynn News

Chelmsford MP 'concerned' about prison violence

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

The Conservative MP for Chelmsford, Vicky Ford, says she's "concerned" about the level of violence at Chelmsford Prison.

Figures released yesterday by the Ministry of Justice showed there were 122 reports of attacks on staff and inmates last year, which is an all time high.

Chelmsford Prison.

I've asked to go and visit the prison. There is concern - not serious concern - but there is concern. An extra £100m has been put in place for new prison officers, to have 2,500 by the end of the next year. Already 500 are in place but they need to be properly recruited and trained."

Vicky FordMP for Chelmsford

'Wow' location for sheepdog trials

The first day proper of the English National Sheepdog Trials, is under way at Haughley Park near Stowmarket, the first time the competition has been held in the county in its more than 100-year history.

Pic 1 in sequence of sheep handling

Bob Wilden, chairman of the East Anglian Sheepdog Society, said: "When I was asked by our national president whether we'd got a venue in Suffolk for a national trial, the truth of it, we had several.

"There were several superb bits of parkland and places where you could hold a national.

"When I brought him to this location, for various reasons, I distinctly heard him say 'wow' because it has got a 'wow' factor to it.

Pic 2 in sequence of sheep handling

"The thing that makes it absolutely ideal for the trials we're having today is that the ground just gently rises away so that gives perfect visibility for all spectators," he added.

Alongside the trials, which run from 08:00 to 16:00 until 30 July, Suffolk on Show will include local food and drink producers, as well as local breeds, and demonstrations of arts and crafts.

Pic 3 in sequence of sheep handling

McEvoy shares leads at European Open

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

The Shoeburyness golfer, Richard McEvoy, shares the lead after the opening day of the European Open in Hamburg.

He carded six birdies in an opening round 66 to finish alongside the American Julian Suri on six under.

Play is just getting under way on day two.

Richard McEvoy
Getty Images

Aldi abandons plans for Holt store

The discount retailer Aldi has dropped its plans to open a store in Holt.

The town currently has a Budgens, and many independent stores, but no big-name supermarkets.

Maggie Prior, the local district councillor, said Aldi's decision not to go ahead with a store in the town was "disappointing."

Market Place, Holt
Christopher Hilton/Geograph

"I felt that Aldi would be a super product, a super company for Holt and the number of residents, many over the last two years I've spoken to, I definitely know we need a new food store in Holt.

"We need affordability, we need greater choice.

"We also have a lot of new houses being built, just the plain simple numbers are going to increase, but it isn't as disappointing for us as it might seem because I've spoken to the developer in the last 24 hours and what we have actually is two or three other interested food stores. It isn't a full stop for us," she said.

An Aldi spokesperson said: "Although Aldi had planning consent for a new store in Holt, it was not possible to complete the contract so we are no longer bringing a store to this site."

Essex batsman Tom Westley's Test debut 'highs and lows'

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

England will resume on 171-4 on day two of the third Test against South Africa at the Oval at 11:00.

Essex batsman Alastair Cook is 82 not out while his county colleague, Tom Westley (pictured), made 25 on his Test debut yesterday.

Tom Westley.
Getty Images

Westley said it was a day of highs and lows: "The proudest moment of my life was getting my cap this morning and it was exciting batting for the time that I did.

"But it was equally frustrating then getting out just after lunch having got a start.

"So, mixed emotions but hopefully the guys are in a relatively good position".

Staff shortages blamed for Chelmsford Prison violence

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Yesterday we reported that assaults on staff and inmates at Chelmsford Prison last year were at an all time high.

Figures from the Ministry of Justice showed there were 122 reports of attacks in 2016 compared with 80 in 2015.

Nick Adams from the Independent Monitoring Board doesn't think the prison has been safe over the last few years and is blaming it on a shortage of staff: "2016, we hope, was an absolute low point.

"As far as Chelmsford is concerned, things can only get better.

"If the government follows through on this, there's money there and prison officers can be recruited and retained then things should improve."

Prison worker locking a door.

A former inmate at Chelmsford Prison said: "In an ideal world we need more staff but I understand it's easier said than done especially with budget cuts.

"In Chelmsford, when there wasn't enough staff, you'd all be locked up in your cells much longer, which annoyed everyone."

Woman told to remove 'offending' items from husband's grave

A woman whose husband died last August says she's been left angry and upset after her local parish council left her a note, telling her to remove "offending" items placed on her husband's grave.

Tina Bell's husband Peter is buried in St Mary's Church in Glemsford, and she's been tending his burial plot by planting flowers and leaving a small memento.

St Mary's Church Glemsford
Simon Knott

Now Glemsford Parish Council has told her, and other bereaved families and friends, that decorations and plants have to be removed from graves by the beginning of August.

She told us: "The only thing I had on the grave was a heart which I put on which was made of wood and I put it against the headstone and I have actually removed that, that was from Valentine's Day, but basically it's planting.

"If I remove all the plants and everything it's just going to be grass.

"Are they going to be mowing over the graves?

"It's ridiculous, it's insensitive, its disrespectful because it started off saying 'we respectfully request you to do' etc etc and then I quote 'if you don't comply with removing the offending items' I think that's just so... they've handled this in not a very good way at all."

We have contacted Glemsford Parish Council but no-one has been available so far to speak to us.