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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Goodbye and have a great Christmas

Martin Barber

BBC News

Thanks for joining us today, we'll be back on Wednesday, 28 December.

Just before we drive home for Christmas, here's a little festive offering featuring Clementine, the sparkly Living Fashion Doll, and her version of Santa Baby.

Clementine The Living Fashion Doll: Christmas Santa Baby

The creation of Norfolk puppeteer Mark Mander, Clementine is alleged to have been discovered in the surf off Sheringham Beach looking for mermen! 

Her new award-winning show will feature as part of the Manipulate Festival, a celebration of visual theatre and animated film, at the Norwich Puppet Theatre in January.

Christmas greetings from the Suffolk Live team

Philippa Taylor

BBC Local Live

It's almost time to sign off until Wednesday, 28 December but before we go, the Suffolk Live team would like to wish you a very merry Christmas.

Cleah Hetherington, Graeme Mac (hiding behind his mug), Kate Arkell, Steve Martin and Luke Deal are in the back row, (l-r) and I'm sporting a very fetching jumper (even if I say so myself) with antlers on the front, with Kelly McCormack resplendent in red.

Have a great few days, we look forward to your company again next week.

Suffolk Live team

Our live coverage across the day

Jack Warren

BBC Local Live

That's all from us this side of Christmas - the team returns on Wednesday, 28 December at 08:00. 

Whatever you're up to, have an excellent festive period. 

Good night.

The Local Live: Norfolk advent calendar comes to an end

Take a look at Day 23 on our advent calendar by clicking play for a BBC Weather Watchers scene:

Day 23 of Norfolk's Advent calendar

And, as we're not returning tomorrow, here is the all-important Christmas Even window number 24. Can you resist saving it until tomorrow?

Day 24 of Norfolk's Advent calendar

No pressure on McCarthy to sell Ipswich stars

Graeme Mac

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy says there is no pressure on him to sell any of his players in the January transfer window.

Adam Webster
Getty Images

Supporters are worried that the likes of Adam Webster (pictured), Bartosz Bialkowski or Andre Dozzell could be lured away, particularly after the club reported a loss of £6.6m in their latest accounts this week. 

However, McCarthy's been telling us owner Marcus Evans isn't on his back to balance the books.

"No, he isn't and that's never been the case for as long as I've been here," said the manager.

"In fact, the need to sell has been resisted in the past with David McGoldrick a couple of years ago and Daryl Murphy [at this time] last year."

And still the shopping continues...

Philippa Taylor

BBC Local Live

I've just nipped out into Ipswich town centre to see how many people are still doing their shopping - and there are still lots of shoppers either carrying big bags of goodies, or studying their shopping lists with big frowns on their faces.

I wonder what it will be like tomorrow? 

Ipswich Town Centre
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A130 third lane still not ready to be opened

A newly-constructed third lane on a major road between Rettendon and Howe Green won't be opened until safety improvements are made, Essex County Council says.


Concerns were raised earlier this year after routine investigation work on the A130 dual carriageway. 

A long-term solution to the issue is still being sought. Road chiefs say an opening date for the new lane is likely to be revealed in the new year. 

Ipswich players will train on Christmas Day

Graeme Mac

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

It will be business as usual for the Ipswich Town players and coaching staff ahead of the Boxing Day fixture with Fulham at Portman Road.

Mick McCarthy

After having today off, the squad will be in both tomorrow and on Christmas Day. 

Manager Mick McCarthy says it is something that has to be done: "If they don't come in and don't train the day before a match then it wouldn't be normal.

"It's good to get them in and get them away from the Action Man and Sindy dolls for a bit, or whatever the equivalent is now!"

Windy conditions won't help Stan find his way home

The owner of Stan, the captive golden eagle who disappeared two weeks ago from his home in Hemingstone, near Ipswich, says the current weather conditions could make it difficult for the raptor to make his way back.

Stan the golden eagle
Kris Ford

His keeper Kris Ford said: "If the wind really picks up as forecast during daylight hours, he literally could end up just about anywhere.

"Eagles, golden eagles in particular, really thrive in the wind, whereas a lot of birds will sit down, hold on to something.

"An eagle will actually go on the soar, they can fly great distances at great speeds against the wind, and with it as well."

Overnight weather: A dry night after heavy rain clears

Chris Bell

BBC Look East weather

A brief period of heavy rain and gusty wind are possible at first, but clearing to the east by about 20:00, leaving a dry night with clear skies across the BBC East region.

Overnight weather map

Strong southwesterly winds at first with some gusts over 50mph (80 km/h)possible, but winds easing to moderate after the rain clears as the temperature dips to 2-4C (upper 30sF).

Christmas Eve will be dry and long spells of sunshine, but turning cloudier later from the west, with the temperature peaking at 9-10C (upper 40sF).

Visit BBC Weather for a more detailed forecast where you are.

Prison Service comments on man jailed for attack on Norfolk governor

Earlier we reported that a 34-year-old man has been given a three-year sentence for an attack on a prison governor at HMP Wayland, near Watton, which left him needing to have a metal plate put in his face.  

Now the Prison Service has issued a statement which says: "We do not tolerate any violence against the hard-working and dedicated prison staff who work with our offenders."  

Woodturner seeks new premises following fire

Guy Campbell

BBC Radio Suffolk

A woodturner from Beccles is looking for new premises, after an electrical fire devastated his workshop.

Outside of fire premises

Andy Coates, who needs to replace about £40,000 worth of equipment and tools, says he needs to find premises to work: "It has to be somewhere affordable that is physically big enough to fit the lathes in and the other equipment so I can get back working again.

A Just Giving page set up for Andy has already brought in donations of nearly £4,000.

One from the archives: New boathouse for lifeboat in Cromer 1928

Some 88 years ago this month, the lifeboat HF Bailey II entered the new boathouse at Cromer beach. 

December 1928: The lifeboat HF Bailey II enters the new boathouse at Cromer beach.
Getty Images

Donations come in for woodturner whose business was wrecked by fire

Guy Campbell

BBC Radio Suffolk

Donations of nearly £4,000 have been raised this week, to help a Beccles woodturner whose business was wrecked by an electrical fire.

Scene of fire

Andy Coates says two friends on Twitter set up a Just Giving page: "I was in tears for hours.

"[The amount is] staggering, it has been absolutely and utterly overwhelming.

"Hundreds upon hundreds upon hundreds of messages."

The fire at Cobweb Crafts destroyed about £40,000 worth of equipment and tools.  

Witnesses sought over car-jacking and A14 crash

Philippa Taylor

BBC Local Live

Further details have been released about the robbery of a car in Waldringfield earlier this morning, and subsequent events:

  • Newspaper delivery man is approached at about 05:30 by a 4x4, and has his Suzuki Alto stolen by one of the occupants. Both vehicles drive out of the village towards Martlesham
  • Police receive reports of people attempting to break into outbuildings at property in The Street, Nacton at about 05:50. Suzuki Alto found here, rammed into a set of gates and set alight
  • Ford Transit van stolen from property is driven away, colliding with police vehicle
  • Van is pursued by police along Nacton Road towards A14 where it enters westbound carriageway, driving in the wrong direction, before colliding with central reservation
  • Driver flees scene and runs into nearby fields, and despite a search involving NPAS helicopter, is not located
  • Land Rover Freelander located by police on A14 westbound off-slip at Seven Hills - believed to be the 4x4 used during incident in Waldringfield

Anyone with information is asked to contact Suffolk Police on 101.

Video: Scene of safety barrier crash on A14

The driver of a vehicle which crashed into the safety barrier on the A14 at Nacton, while being driven the wrong way along the westbound carriageway, is being sought by police:

A14 crash: Vehicle hits barriers

Pug + Christmas =

Only in Essex...

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Armed men raid Domino's pizza and lock staff in store room

Two men, one armed with a gun concealed in a McDonald's bag, have raided a Domino's pizza takeaway in Pitsea, police say.


The suspects ordered staff to open the till before locking them inside a store room with a broom handle at the shop in Station Lane at about 00:00 this morning. 

The drawer from the till was the removed and the suspects left.

Read a description of the men on the Essex Police Facebook page

Girl thanks BBC Radio Norfolk listeners for appeal response

Nic Rigby

BBC News

An 11-year-old girl from Norwich, who is to be treated for cancer, has thanked all the listeners of BBC Radio Norfolk who have sent her cards and presents.

Faith Barnard

Faith Barnard (pictured above) will start treatment in the New Year after a lump was found in her arm.  

Her mother Tequila appealed for people to send her Christmas cards.

BBC Radio Norfolk has collected thousands of items and presenter Wally Webb handed them to Faith this morning.

Faith and her parents Ady and Tequila

Faith told the BBC: "Thank you so much. I wish I could give all of them hugs."

Her parents Ady and Tequila (pictured) said they were amazed by the number of cards and presents.

Tequila said: "The response has been overwhelming. Just to see her face. It means everything to us."

Man charged with robbery following Co-op incident

A man has been charged with robbery and possession of an imitation firearm, following an incident at the Co-op store on Woodbridge Road on Wednesday.

Co-op store

The 27-year-old, who lives in the town, is due to appear before magistrates today.

Police had been called at about 13:15, to reports that a man had demanded money, holding what appeared to be a gun concealed beneath a sock.

No-one was injured in the incident.

Remember this: Egg check at Bernard Matthews farm in Norfolk 1960

Some 56 years ago this month a worker at a Bernard Matthews turkey farm in Norfolk was photographed checking the temperature of turkey eggs.

December 1960: Turkey eggs are checked for temperature on Bernard Mathews turkey farm in Norfolk.
Getty Images

Ipswich Town: Knudsen's love for festive football

Brenner Woolley

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Ipswich Town'sundefinedDanish left-back Jonas Knudsen's clearly a big fan of England's busy Christmas schedule.

Jonas Knudsen

After being used to a mid-season break back home, the 24-year-old's now gearing up for his second Yuletide at Portman Road. 

"In Denmark you go and see family on the 25th and 26th and have some Christmas dinner, so it's a little bit different," said Knudsen. 

"Here it's about football on Boxing Day, everybody has to go to the football. I like it and look forward to this time of the year because I enjoyed it a lot last year." 

Greater Anglia warns of disruption to rail services over Christmas

Nic Rigby

BBC News

Train company Greater Anglia is reminding customers about planned disruption to rail services due to engineering work over the Christmas period.

Engineering work is due to take place from 24 December to 2 January.

Great Anglia train

There will be no Greater Anglia services between Ingatestone/Billericay and London Liverpool Street during this time.

There are no services at all on Christmas Day and Boxing Day, apart from a special Stansted Express service from 06:30 on Boxing Day.

At weekends and bank holidays (24, 27, 31 December, 1 and 2 January) there will be rail replacement bus services between Witham/Ingatestone and Billericay to Newbury Park for Central Line services.

From 28 December to 30 December, passengers from Norwich, Ipswich, Colchester, Braintree, Clacton, Walton-on-the-Naze and Harwich should change at Witham for rail replacement bus services to Stansted where they can catch the Stansted Express to Liverpool Street.

Passengers from Hatfield Peverel, Chelmsford and Ingatestone should use a rail replacement service from Ingatestone to Newbury Park for Central Line services.

On 1 January, London Liverpool Street services will be replaced by buses between Cheshunt and Bishop’s Stortford. Stansted Express services will be replaced by direct buses between London Liverpool Street and Stansted Airport.

Tendring council needs to save £600k by March

Tendring District Council needs to find £600,000 worth of savings by March in order to balance its books, the authority has revealed. 

Clacton Town Hall

The council says it has already saved almost £1m - but more is needed. 

It's blaming "significant and unprecedented cuts" to its funding from central government.

Rucksacks donated to help the homeless in Chelmsford

Rucksacks full of warm clothes, sleeping bags and tinned food have been distributed to people living on the streets in Chelmsford. 

The Rucksack Project in the city has been operating independently for about a year, having worked with the national scheme last year. 

Brian McGovern from the project says although it doesn't offer solutions for the homeless, it "makes life a little easier".

Rucksacks donated to help the homeless in Chelmsford

Council proud of Norwich writing centre plans for Dragon Hall

Nic Rigby

BBC News

We've been covering the news that Writers' Centre Norwich has been awarded £789,435 by Arts Council England to help it develop the city's medieval Dragon Hall.  

Dragon Hall
Writers' Centre Norwich

We've had some more reaction on the plans. 

Alan Waters, Labour leader of Norwich City Council, said: "It is only fitting that England's first UNESCO City of Literature should be home to the new National Centre for Writing.

"Norwich City Council is very proud to have worked with Writers' Centre Norwich on this ambitious project and delighted that the new centre will be housed in one of our most iconic buildings."

Dragon carving in Dragon Hall, Norwich
Writers' Centre Norwich

Margaret Dewsbury, chairwoman of the communities committee at Norfolk County Council, said: "The centre will provide flagship new cultural facilities and a wealth of opportunities for Norfolk as well as further strengthening its reputation as a vibrant and rich cultural destination."  

Man airlifted to hospital following collision with a car

A man has been airlifted to hospital in a serious condition, after he was hit by a car on Birkfield Drive in Ipswich.

Ambulance crews treated the male pedestrian, believed to be in his 30s, for a serious head injury before he was airlifted to Addenbrooke's Hospital for further care.

The incident took place just before 11:00.

Birkfield Drive has been closed, near Cambridge Drive.

Christmas services will go on at church despite 'sick' theft

Jo Thewlis

BBC Radio Norfolk

Earlier we reported the theft of lead from the roof of St Margaret Church in Toft Monks.

BBC Radio Norfolk has now talked to the rector of the church Reverand Nick Will.

St Margaret Church, Monks Toft in Norfolk
Evelyn Simak/Geograph

He said: "I have seen it before but it is sick. The thieves have obviously got no scruples and morals.

"It is going to be quite a big job to repair the roof and considerably expensive."

The rector said they are holding a service tomorrow aimed at the children of the parish and tarpaulin is being put over the roof as a temporary measure to protect the church from the weather.

"We are absolutely determined for the service to happen," he said.

"We don't want to be beaten and so many people are coming."

Drink driving on the rise in Essex this Christmas

The number of motorists in Essex caught drink or drug driving has risen compared to this time last year, figures from the police show.


The force has arrested 129 drivers so far on suspicion of the offences, up from 86 during the same period in 2015. 

Sgt Danny Parsons, from the police's casualty reduction unit, said: "I really don't know what the motivation is. Some people simply just don't care."

Lead stolen from church

Police are investigating the theft of lead from the roof of St Margaret Church in Toft Monks, near Beccles.

It has happened sometime overnight on Wednesday to Thursday.

St Margaret Church, Monks Toft

Newspaper delivery driver had been doing job for 10 years

A newspaper delivery driver who was the victim of a car-jacking this morning had been doing his normal round of villages covering Newbourne, the Bealings, Debach and Debenham.

His car was stolen in Waldringfield.

Bob Chamberlin, the owner of Grange News newsagent, said: "It's pitch black out there this time in the morning, and he's been doing this for over ten years now without any problems whatsoever, so it's quite a shock to the system.

"We had rumours the vehicle was involved in an accident on the A14, but that seems to have been a different vehicle so no, we don't really know what's happened yet."

Car-jacking: Victim 'very shaken up'

A newsagent says his delivery driver was approached by two men who stole his car and drove off.

They were then believed to have crashed it on the A14 while driving the wrong way on the westbound carriageway near Nacton during a police pursuit.

Bob Chamberlin, of Grange News in Woodbridge, says his driver called him in the early hours of this morning to tell him his vehicle had been taken by the two men, who had arrived in a 4x4.

"In his car he had his wallet and his phone and all the newspapers," he said.

"He was left stranded but managed to flag down a passing milkman who called the police then later on he found a customer who was awake and managed to get on the phone to me and explained what's happened. 

"Since then he's been with the police, making a statement.

"I only saw him briefly - he was very subdued, quiet and obviously very shaken up."

BreakingPedestrian injured in Ipswich collision

We're getting reports that a man has been airlifted to hospital after being hit by a car in Birkfield Drive in Ipswich.

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

CCTV released after Tilbury railway worker is racially abused and assaulted

Police want to trace this man after a worker at Tilbury Town railway station was racially abused and assaulted.


It's understood the incident happened following an altercation over money to pay for a ticket on 9 December.

PC Laura Heath from the British Transport Police said: "We will not tolerate aggressive behaviour like this towards any person on the rail network, particularly someone who was just trying to do their job and diffuse a tense situation."

Prisoner sentenced for attack on HMP Wayland governor

Nic Rigby

BBC News

A 34-year-old man has been given a three year sentence for an attack on a prison governor at HMP Wayland, near Watton which left him needing to have a metal plate put in his face.

HMP Wayland

Thomas Howard pleaded guilty at Norwich Crown Court to two counts of assault on governor Paul Cawkwell and prison staff member Stephen Hyde occasioning grievous bodily harm.

The separate incidents took place on Saturday, 23 July and Wednesday, 27 July.

Howard, who was a serving prisoner at the time of the incidents, was sentenced to three years in prison.  

The court was told that Mr Cawkwell was hit in the face - causing multiple fractures. 

He now has a metal plate in his head - and no sensation on one side of his face.

HMP Wayland

Bear Hunt illustrator talks about Suffolk roots

Andrew Woodger

BBC News

Michael Rosen's classic children's story We're Going On A Bear Hunt is getting the animated treatment on Christmas Eve/Saturday at 19:30 on Channel 4.

We're Going On A Bear Hunt animation
Channel 4

The musical version was recently seen on stage at the Haverhill Arts Centre, and my two-year-old loved it.

The book's illustrator is due on BBC Radio Suffolk later this afternoon: 

View more on twitter

Co-op recalls chocolate Santas after 'tampering'

The Co-op grocery chain has announced a nationwide recall of 165,000 hollow milk chocolate Santa figures after two alleged tampering incidents.

Chocolate Santa

A spokesperson for the Co-op said two of the chocolate figures had been found to contain a small button-cell battery.

"The health and safety of our customers is our top priority," said the spokesperson, adding that the chain store was investigating and the police and Food Standards Agency were being notified.

The chocolates that had been subject to tampering were bought at two different locations, one in Suffolk and one in Essex.

Ipswich Town: Knudsen not surprised by recall

Brenner Woolley

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Ipswich left-back Jonas Knudsen says he was always confident of returning to Town's starting line-up at Wigan last weekend.

Jonas Knudsen

Because of injury the 24-year-old Dane missed the previous match, at Birmingham City, and watched on as replacement Myles Kenlock put in an assured display.

"I've been consistent this season and had some good games," said Knudsen. "If the gaffer wants to pick Myles he'll do that, but I wasn't under pressure because I thought I would go back into the team again."

Armed robbery at newsagents

Nic Rigby

BBC News

 A newsagents in Norwich has been robbed this morning.

Just before 07:30 a man entered the newsagents on Woodgrove Parade (pictured below) and threatened the shopkeeper with what is believed to be a knife.

Woodgrove Parade, Norwich

The suspect then stole cash from the till and fled.

He is described as a white male wearing a black hoodie, balaclava, gloves and dark trousers. It is believed he turned left when leaving the store heading towards Woodcock Road.

Anyone who may have witnessed the incident is asked to call Norfolk Police.

Stansted coping well on busiest day of festive season

Today is expected to be the busiest day of the festive season on UK roads as the Christmas getaway gets under way. 

Our major routes seem to be coping well so far today, and at Stansted Airport, it looks like business as usual.

Stansted Airport
Stansted Airport