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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

  1. Wednesday's updates as they happened

    Thanks for joining us to find out how the East of England is reacting to the coronavirus pandemic.. as well as coverage of other stories.

    Live updates have now finished for the day

    Join us again on Thursday when a live page will resume at 08:00.

    Find it via your BBC News county index.

  2. Schoolchildren pen thank you letters to Marcus Rashford

    Sarah Jenkins

    BBC News

    Pupils at a school in Luton have written letters to Marcus Rashford, thanking him for his "amazing hard work" campaigning for children to receive free school meals during summer holidays.

    Year six students at St Margaret of Scotland Catholic Primary watched a BBC Newsround report on the footballer's campaign and wanted to thank him personally, teacher Miss Atkinson said.

    One letter said: "Thank you for fighting for children who are vulnerable in this sort of time.

    "You are a hero to many children my age suffering because of the devastating feeling of hunger."

    View more on twitter

    Another pupil said they were "so happy" with the star's support as "some people in our school are struggling with food".

    One Chelsea supporter said the Manchester United forward had "inspired" them.

    "Even though I don't support Man United the free kick you scored against Chelsea was outstanding," the pupil said.

  3. Cobblers and U's players pass Covid-19 tests

    Kris Holland

    BBC News

    Northampton Town and Colchester United have reported no cases of Covid-19 among players in the latest round of testing.

    Both clubs are to take part in the League Two play-offs with Colchester meeting Exeter and Northampton facing Cheltenham, with the first legs to be played tomorrow.

    The results will be a relief to both clubs, as a positive test - and subsequent self-isolation - would have effectively ruled individuals players out of the entire play-off campaign.

    Exeter and Cheltenham also returned no positive tests.

    The second leg of the semi-finals are set for 22 June and the winners progressing to the final at Wembley on 29 June.

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  4. 32,000 Essex children to qualify for free meals

    Piers Meyler, Local Democracy Reporter

    More than 32,000 children in Essex will benefit from free school meals over the summer holidays, after a government U-turn was sparked by a campaign from Manchester United footballer Marcus Rashford.

    The biggest impact will be felt in the Thurrock parliamentary constituency, where 3,094 children qualify for free school meals.

    As many as 2,704 children qualify for free school meals in Rochford and Southend East, while in South Basildon and East Thurrock, 2,643 will qualify.

    Marcus Rashford

    The U-turn means that eligible children will qualify for a six-week voucher through the summer.

    It was going to end at the end of this summer term.

    The government welcomed Rashford's "contribution to the debate around poverty".

    It was believed his intervention contributed to Tory MPs putting pressure on the government to back the move, given the amount of opposition it was facing during Labour’s opposition day motion.

    Rashford, 22, said: "Just look at what we can do when we come together."

  5. Norfolk's Bure Valley Railway in trouble

    Jessica Frank-Keyes

    Local Democracy reporter

    A tourist attraction is in “dire straits” and risks closing for good, due to the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic, it has been revealed.

    The Bure Valley Railway (BVR) in Norfolk is facing potential closure due to the financial effects of the lockdown, Broadland Distirct Council has been told.

    The railway operators said it could also have to lay off staff if it is unable to reopen this summer.

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    Councillors have agreed to waive the railway’s rent payments until September and to work on a reopening strategy.

    A report ahead of Conservative-controlled council's cabinet meeting revealed the railway had requested its rent be waived "for the whole of this financial year".

    The railway pays the council £30,000 in annual rent and would have owed £22,455 in business rates – but the firm has been given full relief, in addition to receiving a £25,000 Covid-19 support grant, and furloughing some of its staff.

  6. By-election for 'racist posts' councillor delayed

    Jason Noble

    Suffolk Local Democracy Reporter

    A by-election to replace a councillor who resigned amid allegations of sharing racist posts on social media cannot take place until May next year.

    Conservative Frank Warby resigned from West Suffolk Council on Monday, after his party started an investigation into posts the 79-year-old shared on his Facebook account.

    Frank Warby

    The posts shared were asking questions as to why no riots took place in the UK following the death of fusilier Lee Rigby, who was killed near the Royal Artillery Baracks in Woolwich, London, in 2013.

    Mr Warby also shared posts about the removal of statues with links to slavery and Britain’s colonial history.

    It means that a by-election will now need to be held for his Moreton Hall seat in Bury St Edmunds, but current social distancing restrictions means the election has been postponed until May 2021, although that could be moved forward if the government deems it safe.

    Mr Warby said he was deleting his Facebook account and that he has "had enough" of people "picking on him".

    He added: "I’m not a racist. I have never been a racist. I am not a racist person. I did not post these images, I shared someone else’s posts."

  7. What the papers say in Cambridgeshire

    • A woman who punched a police officer at the height of the coronavirus crisis has been ordered to pay the officer £200 compensation, writes the Peterborough Telegraph
    • And the Cambridge News reports that unemployment in the city has risen by 142% since March
  8. 'Time for change' as BLM supported in Woodbridge

    The Guildhall in Woodbridge has become a focal point for a Black Lives Matter campaign.

    Young people from the town have put up anti-racism signs outside the building.

    Organiser Harry Raithatha said: "The global outcry shows it's time for change now."

    He said there was "a lot of racism" in the area that just went unnoticed because it was "considered the norm".

    BLM signs have been put up outside the Guildhall in Woodbridge
    Image caption: Signs have been put up outside the Guildhall in Woodbridge
  9. Police officer hurt in 'outrageous' party attack

    A police and crime commissioner has decried an "outrageous" attack on an officer who needed stitches to his head after he was hit while trying to break up a party that was allegedly breaking lockdown rules.

    Around 20 people were reported as not observing social distancing rules at the party in Underwood Close, Luton on 13 June.

    As they attempted to break the gathering up, one of the two officers had a drink thrown in his face by a man and was then hit over the head with an object.

    Underwood Close, Luton

    The officer was taken to hospital, where he received stitches to his head wound. The other officer had minor injuries.

    Bedfordshire PCC Kathryn Holloway said: "It is outrageous that a police officer who was acting to protect the wider public with regard to the deadly risks presented by the coronavirus should have been attacked and injured in this way.

    "A vicious assault of one of our officers is not part of the job and is wholly unacceptable in any circumstances but, especially, in those represented by the current emergency."

    Two women in their 20s, a man in his 20s and an 18-year-old man were arrested and have been released under investigation.

  10. Lifeguards to resume patrols at Lowestoft South

    Lifeguards will return to Lowestoft South beach this weekend following the easing of lockdown restrictions.

    The RNLI has already resumed patrols at nearby Gorleston.

    New measures to deal with the coronavirus pandemic mean the lifeguards will wear personal protective equipment like ambulance crews in some situations.


    New protocols for all first responders mean the lifeguards may not deal with some minor first aid cases, but will support people to treat themselves.

    The charity is also continuing to urge to everyone to follow beach safety advice:

    • Have a plan - check the weather forecast, tide times and read local hazard signage
    • Keep a close eye on your family – on the beach and in the water
    • Do not allow your family to swim alone
    • Do not use inflatables
    • If you fall into the water unexpectedly, fight your instinct to thrash around and instead lean back, extend your arms and legs, and float
    • In an emergency dial 999, and ask for the coastguard
  11. What the papers say in Norfolk

    • The Eastern Daily Press reports that a bus service had to be cancelled this morning, after cars blocked its route
    • North Norfolk News lists the Catholic churches in Norfolk and Suffolk which are back open for private prayer following coronavirus restrictions