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  1. Updates on Wednesday 15 March 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. That's it from us

    Thank you for joining us today. We'll be back at 06:00 GMT with more news, sport, weather and travel.

    Don't forget, if you've got a story for us, please get in touch.

    You can get in touch on  Twitter , on  Facebook  or by sending us an  email

  2. £1m funding to help businesses in East Sussex

    Stuart Maisner

    BBC Live reporter

    Businesses in East Sussex are being given a £1 million funding boost thanks to new council funding.

    East Sussex County Council has allocated the extra cash to help new companies set up or existing firms to expand over the next three years.

    Since May 2013, the council has already supported 210 businesses.

  3. Video content

    Video caption: Southern rail passengers give their reaction to Aslef strike deal

    Southern rail passengers in Eastbourne give their reaction to the Aslef strike deal which was announced today

  4. Do you want to manage Hastings Castle?

    Stuart Maisner

    BBC Live reporter

    Expressions of interest for an operator to develop and manage Hastings Castle are being sought. 

    It was the first Norman castle to be built in England, and is featured on the Bayeux Tapestry. 

    Hastings Borough Council says it needs more investment to provide a better visitor experience there. 

    The council's Heritage Lottery Fund bids to improve the castle weren’t successful, and it says it doesn't have the resources to invest in it.

    Hastings Castle
  5. Southern rail passengers give their reaction to Aslef strike deal

    Video content

    Video caption: Southern rail passengers give their reaction to Aslef strike deal

    Southern rail passengers in Eastbourne give their reaction to the Aslef strike deal which was announced today

  6. Have you got a story that needs to be investigated?

    Video content

    Video caption: South East Today investigates promo

    If so, get in touch with the award-winning BBC South East Today investigations team.       

  7. Waxwings at Wakehurst

    John Rieley of Lindfield has sent us these lovely pictures taken at Wakehurst Place.       

    Quote Message: One bird that my wife and I have always wanted to see is the Waxwing so when we heard that some had been seen at Wakehurst, only just up the road from us in Lindfield, we decided to become 'Twitchers' and see if they were still there. We were not disappointed. Not only was it a beautiful morning but about half a dozen were present and I was able to get these photos of them in the 'Pocket Handkerchief tree'.
    Quote Message: If anyone decides to visit ask at the desk and you will be directed to where they are. Don't delay - they may decide to return from whence they came. I believe morning and late afternoon are the best times. from John Rieley
    John Rieley
    Two waxwings
    A waxwing
  8. Southern strike deal: Analysis

    Paul Clifton

    Transport correspondent, BBC South Today

    This is not a done deal – yet. 

    Last month the drivers rejected a deal that had been brokered by their own union. Neither the union nor the company had expected that.

    The margin wasn’t large – 55% against – and the two sides have been talking ever since to find a way of bringing a majority of the union members back on board.

    Aslef picket line

    We’ve not been told the details of the revised agreement.

    But it’s likely to include further improvements to the CCTV monitoring systems that drivers use when closing the train doors.

    That agreement will now be put to a second ballot among drivers, with the result due on 3 April.

    Passengers will be crossing their fingers that this time the deal will be strong enough to stick.

    But the separate dispute involving train guards is not part of this deal, and the year-long action by the RMT union continues.

    Crowded Southern train
  9. Southern strike deal: RMT statement

    Stuart Maisner

    BBC Live reporter

    Quote Message: RMT has not seen the detail of the proposed outline agreement between GTR and Aslef and we are of course requesting a full copy as it goes to the heart of our disputes with the company. In the meantime RMT is pressing yet again for urgent talks with the company in our guards and drivers disputes. from Mick Cash General Secretary, RMT
    Mick CashGeneral Secretary, RMT
  10. BreakingDeal agreed over Southern strike

    Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), the parent company of Southern railway, and Aslef today announced they have agreed a deal to settle their dispute.

    The agreement will now be put to Aslef members in Southern in a referendum, with a recommendation from the union's Executive to accept.

    The two sides say that subject to securing the support of Aslef members, the dispute between the union and Southern will be over.

    Mick Whelan, General Secretary of Aslef, said: "Aslef members now have the opportunity to decide on the new terms of the agreed resolution with GTR Southern.

    "This agreement has the full support of the negotiating team and the executive committee, and offers solutions to our concerns, as well as restoring the confidence of all parties, and the travelling public".

    Southern trains

    GTR Director Andy Bindon said: "We've had constructive talks with Aslef and we're pleased we've been able to secure a recommended deal, subject to approval from its members, to end their dispute.

    "It's been an extraordinarily difficult period for passengers, staff and the regional economy and we are glad we've found a way to move forward together. We look forward to restoring good industrial relations with Aslef".

    The result of the referendum will be on 3 April. Until then, GTR and Aslef intend to make no further statements.

  11. #ICYMI: Your amazing pictures

    Kathryn Langley

    BBC Live reporter

    Video content

    Video caption: Montage of weather pictures

    Thank you for all of the amazing pictures you've been sending us on  TwitterFacebook  and by  email .

    We loved them so much that we decided to create a music montage of just some of the best.

    Please keep them coming.

  12. Open verdict recorded after woman's death

    Emma Crowhurst

    A coroner has recorded an open conclusion at the inquest into the death of Emma Crowhurst who died in Eastbourne in April 2015.

    The 36-year-old, of Albion Road, was found on the pavement in Chawbrook Road on 26 April.  

    She was taken to hospital with a head injury, but died two weeks later.  

    An inquest into her death was held in Eastbourne today.  

  13. Albion manager to start Brighton Marathon

    Chris Hughton

    Brighton and Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton will be sending more than 12,000 runners on their way as he officially starts the 2017 Brighton Marathon on Sunday 9 April.

    Chris says he is delighted to have been asked to start the race.

    He said: "It’s a huge honour for me to be the race starter for the Brighton Marathon in 2017 and it’s a testament to what the team has done this season.

    "The support that we’ve had through some difficult periods this last year shows how much the team mean to the area and it’s great to be able to do this in their name.”

  14. This dog is lucky to be alive

    Claire Cottingham

    BBC Live reporter

    Video content

    Video caption: A lurcher cross has been thrown out of a van on the M23

    Police are hunting for a callous driver who threw a dog out of a van on a busy motorway near Gatwick Airport. 

    Police believe the vehicle was travelling at up to 70mph, and the dog was left with severe injuries including two broken legs. 

  15. Rikki Clarke has rejoined his first county Surrey, from Warwickshire

    With the 2017 county season here, keep up to date with the latest signings, departures and rumours ahead of next season.

    Read more
  16. Visiting the South East's beautiful gardens

    Stuart Maisner

    BBC Live reporter

    Video content

    Video caption: National Garden scheme unveiled for 2017

    Gardens across the South East that are opening to the public under the banner of the National Gardens Scheme have been announced. Details here