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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

  1. Union condemns changes to patient transport provider

    Unison has condemned the appointment of a private company to run the NHS patient transport service in Suffolk and parts of Norfolk.

    The decision comes just weeks after Essex-based Private Ambulance Service, which operated in Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire, went bust, leaving patients stranded and staff unpaid.

    Unison regional secretary Chris Jenkinson said it was "beyond belief" that the clinical commissioning groups, which handed out the contract, were prepared to take on a private firm, E-Zec Medical Transport.

    In 2014 there were complaints about the service provided by E-Zec in Dorset. At the time it said it was striving to make improvements.

    Mr Jenkinson said: "The private sector has shown time after time that it is incapable of running NHS services.

    "We cannot continue having our vital public services handed over to the lowest cost bidder in the hope they won't mess it up."

    Wayne Spedding, operations director at E-Zec, said the contract showed "our service quality is being noticed in other parts of the country", adding it was the "largest and most consistent private ambulance service in the UK".

    Meanwhile, a spokesman for Ipswich and East Suffolk, West Suffolk, and Great Yarmouth and Waveney clinical commissioning groups, said the process to appoint a new provider had been "rigorous and in-depth".

  2. Weekend weather forecast

    Julie Reinger

    BBC Look East weather

    Tonight will be fine and dry with long clear spells.

    With temperatures falling as low as 3C (37F), a touch of ground frost is possible in rural areas.

    After a chilly start, Saturday will be fine and dry with some sunny spells.

    Cloud will thicken from the north, with some outbreaks of rain and drizzle during the night.

    The temperature is expected to climb to about 15C (59F).

    Weather graphic for Saturday 05:00

    Sunday will be mostly dry, with an odd shower likely in eastern parts of the region.

    It'll feel colder, with temperatures reaching 13C (55F).

    There's likely to be a widespread frost on Sunday night, with temperatures falling as low as -2C (28F) in some areas.

    BBC Weather has more.

  3. Ex-policeman turned conman loses court appeal

    A former police officer who conned his former business partner and the taxman out of £140,000 has failed to overturn his convictions.

    Ben Staff, 38, of Lucas Court, Norwich, was jailed for four-and-a-half years at Norwich Crown Court in January.

    He'd been found guilty of eight fraud-related charges at two previous trials.

    The court heard that Staff, who'd resigned from Norfolk Police in 2008, used his connections to gain his victims' trust.

    At the Court of Appeal today his lawyers argued that jurors at his trial in December 2016 should not have been told that he'd been found guilty of various offences at his trial in March.

    Mr Justice Holroyde said he was satisfied the "convictions are safe" and dismissed the appeal.

  4. Two men charged over Great Yarmouth stabbings

    Two men have been charged after three people were stabbed in Great Yarmouth on Wednesday.

    Police were called to St Peter's Road shortly after 21:30 to reports of a street fight involving a number of people.

    Police vehicles in St Peter's Road

    Three people were taken to the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston for treatment for knife wounds. All have since been released.

    Two men from the town, aged 20 and 21, were arrested and have now been charged with three counts of assault occasioning grievous bodily harm.

    They remain in police custody and will appear before magistrates tomorrow.

  5. Chance to cycle new bypass free from traffic

    Cyclists have the chance to explore sections of Norwich's Northern Distributor Road before any motorists do.

    The stretch between the A1067 Fakenham Road and the Drayton Lane roundabout is to open for just one day, on Sunday, as part of the Norfolk Walking and Cycling Festival.

    This part of the road is not due to open to traffic until November.

    John Birchall, public liaison officer for the bypass, said there had been many requests to run or cycle on the main carriageway before it opened to vehicles.

    Runners will get their opportunity when the last sections of the route, north of Postwick, nears completion next Spring.

  6. Police dogs get set to go on patrol at Stansted

    Next time you're at Stansted Airport, keep a look-out for Holly the police dog and her handler PC Hayley Peek.

    PC Hayley Peek and Holly

    The pair, along with PC Mark Webster and police dog Buddy, pictured with the chief constable, have just completed an eight-week course in the search and detection of explosives, and will be on operational duties from next week.

    Ch Con Stephen Kavanagh said: "The security and the safety of passengers and airport staff is a key priority for our force.

    "I'm delighted we are strengthening our team with these new additions."

    PC Mark Webster with Buddy and Ch Con Stephen Kavanagh
  7. Drop in music session at seaside Martello tower

    Ahead of regular free music sessions for young people at the Jaywick Martello Tower, which will be held every Tuesday from 7 November, a drop-in session is being held there on Saturday, between 12:00 and 15:30.

    Jaywick Martello Tower

    Eight to 18 year olds can go along and meet the organisers and play some instruments.

    The sessions are being provided by Harwich-based charity We Are Music.

    Susan Barker, who looks after culture and communities at Essex County Council, said it has been able to make the music sessions happen through joint funding from the Arts Council and the Music Hub.

  8. New provider for patient transport services

    Non-emergency ambulance services in Suffolk and parts of Norfolk are going to be run by a new operator.

    Wheelchair user being wheeled into ambulance

    The service, currently run by the region's NHS ambulance trust, will be taken over by E-zec Medical Transport in April next year.

    Health bosses signed a five-year contract with the firm to transport patients who have a medical condition which means they cannot use any other transport without risking their health.

    Existing staff at the East of England Ambulance Service say they are concerned about their future, but have been told they will be supported by unions during the change.

  9. Warning of road closure linked to Norwich's Northern Distributor Road

    Work to provide traffic calming in Weston Longville, ahead of the opening of the Northern Distributor Road, will see a road in the village closed from Monday for six weeks.

    The Honingham Road, Church Street and Marl Hill Road stretch through the village will be shut, with a marked diversion in place.

    Norfolk County Council says access to properties within the closure will be available on request at the points of closure. School buses will be allowed through to reduce disruption to pupils.

    The traffic calming measures include road narrowings, improved passing bays on Marl Hill Road and a 20mph speed limit throughout the village.

  10. Campaign to save Redgrave's Cross Keys pub reaches milestone as purchase agreed in principle

    Diss Express

    A campaign to save an historic village pub has reached a big milestone after the building's purchase was agreed in principle.

    Campaigners outside pub
  11. Former post office could be 'refurbished and extended'

    The building that used to house the main post office in Bury St Edmunds is set to have a new owner.

    St Edmundsbury Council says it is "close to completing" its purchase.

    Former post office in Bury St Edmunds

    The leader of St Edmundsbury, John Griffiths, said: "While the building is sited within the historic town conservation area, ownership could unlock short term and longer term opportunities to make the area, including Market Thoroughfare, more attractive and further boost the offer of the town.

    "Once completed, the borough council will look over the coming months at various options including to refurbish and extend the former post office building, using the existing structure."

    When plans for the Arc shopping development, which is behind the post office, were first revealed, it had been hoped a wide thoroughfare would link it with the historic part of the town, but the idea was dropped when it proved too expensive.

    The council says the purchase price of the building is £1.6m.

  12. Breast cancer patient welcomes launch of Blossom Appeal

    A woman who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013 and received treatment at Ipswich Hospital has welcomed plans for a dedicated breast care centre there.

    An appeal has been launched today to raise £2.5m for a centre that would see all elements of breast care under one roof.

    Launch event at Ipswich Hospital

    Katherine Simpson-Jacobs said: "The level of care at Ipswich Hospital that I experienced was phenomenal, but the actual facilities don't match the care.

    "It's a time when obviously you're in a heightened state of anxiety so [it would be so much better] if you could just go to one place and all the facilities were there."

    A spokeswoman for Ipswich Hospital said there were no plans to change services at Colchester Hospital at the moment.

  13. Council seeks more feedback about young people's mental health services

    Norfolk's mental health services for children and young people are being redesigned.

    The county council and the local NHS commissioners say the current system doesn't meet the needs and rising demand being placed on it.

    According to their own estimates, only about a third of the under 18s with mental health problems get the help they need.

    County Hall

    A consultation on future changes runs until 12 November.

    Tim Ayres, from Norfolk County Council's children's services department, says it's determined to get it right.

    "We're getting quite a lot of feedback. We want more, and it's really really important that people engage in this consultation and discussion," he said.

    "We have to design services from the end users' point of view otherwise we risk getting it terribly wrong."

  14. FA Trophy: Leiston on a revenge mission

    Brenner Woolley

    BBC Radio Suffolk sport

    A week after a 5-1 hammering at home to Folkestone Invicta in the league, Leiston host the Kent side again tomorrow in the first qualifying round of the FA Trophy.

    FA Trophy

    "Hopefully we don't make as many mistakes as we did last Saturday," said Leiston manager Glenn Driver.

    "They're a good side and this is a difficult game, because when you've been beaten 5-1 sometimes you can be over enthusiastic to try to get revenge, but we'll set up a system to go out and get us a result."

    Elsewhere, Needham Market host Arlesey, Lowestoft Town are at Worthing, Mildenhall Town travel to King's Lynn, it's Bury Town against Chalfont St Peter while AFC Sudbury play Met Police.

  15. Webster hails Ipswich Town's firepower

    Brenner Woolley

    BBC Radio Suffolk sport

    Ipswich Town defender Adam Webster believes the club's strikers give them a chance of beating any team in the Championship.

    Martyn Waghorn

    Speaking ahead of tomorrow's trip to Burton Albion, the 22-year-old's been waxing lyrical about Martyn Waghorn (pictured), Joe Garner and David McGoldrick, who've got 16 goals between them so far this season.

    "The boys up the top are such a threat," Webster told me. "I'm glad that we've got them on our team, especially Garns, Waggy and Didzy. They're up there with the best in the league.

    "I train with them each day and it definitely helps improve me as a player."

  16. Delay compensation greatest cause of dissatisfaction among rail passengers

    We reported earlier there had been an increase in complaints from passengers using Greater Anglia.

    Figures from the Office of Rail and Road show a rise of 17% in complaints in the first quarter of 2017-18, compared to the same period last year, with 58 complaints per 100,000 passenger journeys.

    The highest proportion of the complaints, 25%, was about delay compensation.

    Greater Anglia said where passengers had been let down it needed to "compensate them properly, fairly and appropriately".

    Greater Anglia train
  17. Norfolk actor Colman to play Queen Elizabeth II

    Former Norfolk school girl Olivia Colman is taking on the role of Queen Elizabeth II in the third and fourth seasons of royal period drama The Crown, Netflix has confirmed.

    The Broadchurch star, 43, who went to Gresham's at Holt, will take over the reins from the programme's current leading star Claire Foy, who played the Queen in the first season and is to return in the forthcoming second season.

    Olivia Colman
  18. Highways England reveals plans to ease Orwell Bridge closure problems

    Vikki Irwin

    BBC Radio Suffolk political reporter

    The possibility of some vehicles being allowed to cross the Orwell Bridge in future when there are high winds was one of a number of updated Highways England plans revealed at a meeting last night of Ipswich Borough Council.

    Orwell Bridge

    Insp Timothy Lusher, from Suffolk Police, said: "It would potentially allow classes of vehicles to pass over the bridge if the wind speeds allowed that and thereby reducing the volume of traffic going through Ipswich, but I think that's a big piece of work for Highways [England] to lead on, but I know they're looking at it."

    On the subject of diversions when the bridge is closed, Insp Lusher said: "It's difficult because of the logistics of where the town is sited, next door to the bridge.

    "It's not an easy solution, but I think again we should be heartened that Highways with their partners are looking it and they're looking at every opportunity to try and resolve the problem."

  19. Stanway leisure park development halted over incorrect GPS co-ordinates

    A multimillion-pound restaurant development has been temporarily stopped in its tracks, as structures have been built in the wrong place.

    As the Daily Gazette has reported, the buildings at Stane Park in Stanway are just centimetres away from the original agreed plan.

    Churchmanor Estates, which is behind the project, says work continues on the Stane Leisure Park, but there is likely to be a six-week delay due to a setting out error.

    Rose Builders, the main contractor for the Leisure Park, said: "Human error in setting out the GPS co-ordinates incorrectly has led to some of the works being built in the wrong position.

    "Nevertheless we are sorting this problem out, but the major part of the construction work including to the car park, drainage and access roads are all continuing apace."

    Stephen Clark, of Churchmanor Estates, said: "These things happen and sadly a small human error has led to a slight delay in completion, but the good thing is that the leisure park will, after a five-year wait, be finished next summer."

  20. If you were wondering what was happening in Norwich earlier...

    ...well, we've found out that an attempted break-in is being investigated in the city.

    Police say they were called to Castle Meadow at about 10:00.

    We'll bring you further details as and when we get them.

    Police vehicles at Castle Meadow, Norwich