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Summary

  1. HGVs are 'target group' for police in mobile phone crackdown
  2. No sentencing in Thames Water case due today
  3. Updates on Friday, 17 March 2017

Live Reporting

By Alex Pope

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Matthew Henry

    BBC Sport

    Crystal Palace

    Matthew Henry

    BBC Sport

    Crystal Palace earn their third successive victory thanks to an own goal by Watford's Troy Deeney at Selhurst Park.

    Read more
    next
  2. Goodbye

    Alex Pope

    BBC Local Live

    Sadly it's time for us to go for another week.

    But don't despair, we'll be back with more news, sport, travel and weather on Monday morning from 08:00. 

    Whatever you're doing this weekend, we hope it's a good one. 

    If it stays dry I might even mow the lawn! The drawbacks of spring ay...

    See you again soon.

  3. A mix of weather for the region tomorrow

    Julie Reinger

    BBC Look East weather

    A mostly cloudy night, with some outbreaks of patchy rain and drizzle across the BBC East region.

    Temperatures falling to 7C (45F).

    Weather graphic for Saturday morning

    It's a mixed bag of weather for the region tomorrow.

    Some parts will remain cloudy with further outbreak of patchy rain - and other areas could have a mainly dry day with sunny intervals.

    Winds will ease, with temperatures reaching 14C (57F).

    BBC Weather has more details for where you live.

  4. Charity saves dog from the Korean meat market

    Sinead Carroll

    BBC South Today

    A dog saved from a dog meat farm in Korea has found a new life in Buckinghamshire. 

    Faith, the collie cross jindo, is being trained by Buckinghamshire-based charity  Medial Detection Dogs .

    It uses dogs to sniff out conditions like cancer and is also helping people with diabetes. 

    Faith the dog and trainer

    The charity describes her as "beautiful and a whirlwind" and named her Faith, as despite all that has happened to her, she "has the most amazing faith in humans". 

    The charity is hoping to take on another dog from South Korea in the coming months. 

  5. Shedding light on the darkness

    Dan Holley

    BBC Look East weather

    The Spring Equinox marks the start of astronomical Spring - and that's on Monday.

    But today's the Spring Equilux.

    Confused? This tweet explains:

    View more on twitter
  6. Video content

    Video caption: Gang travels by bike to stores stealing gems worth millions

    Six men have been jailed for stealing more than £3m worth of jewellery from shops around England.

  7. Student jailed for assaulting man on train

    A Bedfordshire student has been jailed for a year after he was found guilty of assaulting a man on a late night train .

    Sam Pearce, 24, of Rickmansworth Road, Pinner, north west London, hurled film-maker Benjamin Kerr, from Flitwick, out of the carriage after the train stopped at Luton's Parkway Station on 17 June 2015.

    Sam Pearce

    Mr Kerr told St Albans Crown Court he was attacked when he woke up on the train and mistakenly told Pearce they had reached the "end of the line" at Bedford station, when in fact they were at St Albans.  

    He said he realised moments later he had made a mistake, but not long afterwards Pearce found him in another carriage and attacked him, before violently ejecting him from the train at Luton.  

    The student was found guilty on Monday of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

  8. Envelope update

    Severe disruption: A6 Bedfordshire both ways

    BBC News Travel

    A6 Bedfordshire both ways severe disruption, between Newbury Lane and Barton Road.

    A6 Bedfordshire - A6 in Silsoe blocked in both directions between the Newbury Lane junction and the Barton Road junction, because of a police incident.

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

  9. Dr Dons

    A beaming Pete Winkelman collected an honorary degree from The University of Buckingham today. 

    The chairman of MK Dons was awarded a Doctor of Science at a graduation ceremony. 

    Pete Winkelman at a graduation ceremony

    He was one of five to be given the special accolade, including the former governor of the Bank of England, Lord Mervyn King.

  10. Wheely good fun

    Gareth Lloyd

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    A mountain unicyclist who has competed in World Championships says he now does it "purely for fun".

    Edd Hawkes, from Dunstable, Bedfordshire, started unicycling after his brother went to a juggling club.

    That was 14 years ago, and just one year later he moved on to riding off-road.

    Video content

    Video caption: Why I take part in extreme mountain unicycling for fun

    Mountain unicyclist Edd Hawkes says most people associate his sport with "clowns".

    The 30-year-old used to run a display team which travelled all over the UK and Europe, and he also made it into the elite downhill category in the Mountain Unicycling World Championships.

    "There's not a living to be made... for me it's purely for fun" he said. 

  11. Drivers appear blasé after being caught using phone while driving

    Justin Dealey

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    While Thames Valley Police officers have been using an unmarked lorry to catch motorists using their mobiles, I've been out with Bedfordshire Police to see what it's doing. 

    HGV and police motorbike

    In the two hours I was with the force, three people were pulled over and  I managed to talk to two of them

    What I heard amazed me, as they didn't seem that bothered that they had received six points on their licence and a £200 fine. 

    Michael told me he was his phone as his speaker was broken, and said "I know it's wrong but it was a necessity. If I have to take a call for work then I will take a call for work". 

    When I challenged him on if he will do it again, he said he will "try". 

    Marcus was caught syncing his phone to his bluetooth and said: "Yes, it's wrong in the eyes of the law. It's not that I don't think it's dangerous, but there's a lot of other things happening on the roads." 

  12. GBBO: The gift that keeps on giving

    Alex Pope

    BBC Local Live

    Yes - Beds, Herts and Bucks has another link to the Great British Bake Off

    Not content with having two winners from the area - Milton Keynes' Nadyia Hussain and Barton Le Clay's Candice Brown - we can now claim former Buckinghamshire New University graduate Noel Fielding as our very own.

    View more on twitter

    The comedian and actor, best known for the surreal BBC sitcom The Mighty Boosh, has been announced as the show's new presenter, along with Sandi Toksvig. 

    I also saw him at a gig at the Clock Inn in Milton Keynes years ago, so I hope this also counts?!

  13. How much?

    Jozef Hall

    BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

    Earlier this week, you may remember we mentioned that you, humble taxpayers, are still paying for the regional fire control centre that never was .

    The Waterbeach headquarters would have answered all emergency fire calls from Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Hertfordshire and north Essex.

    However, the project was  abandoned in 2010  after the coalition government determined the "requirements of the project cannot be delivered to an acceptable timeframe".

    Mothballed fire control centre in Waterbeach, Cambridgeshire

    The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) initially refused to comment on why it had failed to let the building.

    However, we've now finally got a breakdown of exactly how our money is being used to support this ongoing venture.

    The total costs in 2015-16 were:

    • Rent (net): £1,384,903.36
    • Rates: £49,296.33
    • Service charge: £17,268.76
    • Water: £246.78
    • Electricity: £25,605.73
    • Fixed Maintenance: £200,227.33
    • Reactive Maintenance: £1,166.57

    Total: £1,678,714.86 = £4,599 a day

    Yep, going on for £2m a year.

    Man snapping pencil

    We asked the DCLG to comment on the figures. We especially wanted to know why £26,000 of electricity was being used each year when no-one was there, but they wouldn't. 

    With another 14 years left on the lease, the final spend will dwarf the millions spent so far on a service which has never been used. 

    White elephant? You decide...

  14. Pedestrian in critical condition after being hit by car

    Alex Pope

    BBC Local Live

    A woman in her 50s has been left in a critical condition after being hit by a car in Luton on Wednesday.

    Police say she was hit by a grey Audi A3 Sport at about 21:20 on the Dunstable Road, by Wordsworth Road. 

    Dunstable Road

    Her injuries are described as serious and she's currently in a stable condition in hospital. 

    Police are appealing for witnesses. 

  15. Weather: Cloudy afternoon ahead

    BBC Weather Watchers

    Sadly the bright skies of Wednesday are a dim and distant memory as it's gone rather cloudy over the three counties, as this picture by BBC Weather Watcher Steves Skies shows. 

    Field in Ampthill

    For the rest of the day it will be a dry but rather cloudy day although there will be some brighter spells, most likely in eastern areas. 

    Maximum Temperature: 11C (52F). 

  16. Man still being questioned over Stevenage death

    Lee Agnew

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    Police have been granted an extension to question a man who's been arrested on suspicion of murder.

    It's after Bill Floyd, 57, was found dead in his flat on Harrow Court, in Stevenage, on Sunday. 

    A man in his 30s was arrested on Wednesday and remains in police custody. 

    Harrow Court
  17. Envelope update

    Severe disruption: M25 Greater London anti-clockwise

    BBC News Travel

    M25 Greater London anti-clockwise severe disruption, between J25 for A10 and J24 for A111.

    M25 Greater London - One lane closed and queuing traffic on M25 anticlockwise between J25, A10 (Enfield) and J24, A111 (Potters Bar).

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

  18. Envelope update

    Severe disruption: M1 Bedfordshire southbound

    BBC News Travel

    M1 Bedfordshire southbound severe disruption, between M1 J10 and J9 for A5.

    M1 Bedfordshire - Stationary traffic on M1 southbound between M1 J10, Luton Airport Spur Road and J9, A5 (Redbourn), because of a rolling road-block.

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

  19. Envelope update

    Severe disruption: M25 Surrey clockwise

    BBC News Travel

    M25 Surrey clockwise severe disruption, between J13 for A30 and J14 for A3113.

    M25 Surrey - Heavy traffic on M25 clockwise between J13, A30 (Staines) and J14, A3113 (Heathrow), because of onlookers.

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