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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Time to say goodbye

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

That's it for this week from all of us here at Local Live for Beds, Herts and Bucks.

Regular streaming will start again on Monday morning at 08:00 but if anything happens in the meantime, it will appear here. 

Sadly it's set to be another cold night, and everyone seems to be feeling it. Even the projections at Bletchley Park!

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Goodbye for now

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

Well done. You made it through the first working week of 2017!

*Insert party blower sound effect here*.

That's us done for the week, too. Thanks for your company.

We'll be back from 08:00 on Monday.

Stay tuned to this page over the weekend for any breaking news, and for highlights of Peterborough United's trip to Chelsea in the FA Cup.

Have a great weekend.

That's all from us

Live updates have now finished for Northamptonshire.

You can follow Northampton Town's trip to Bristol Rovers in League One and Northampton Saints hosting Bristol in rugby's Premiership on the BBC Sport website.

We'll be back on Monday from 08:00.

Until then have a good evening and weekend.

Local teams in FA Cup action

Nick Fairbairn

BBC Radio Cambridgeshire sport

It's a big weekend (and Monday) in the FA Cup for our local teams.

Peterborough United travel to Premier League leaders Chelsea, while Cambridge United host Leeds United.

Here's Posh boss Grant McCann on his team's big match...

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You can hear full coverage of both games on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire - 96 and 95.7FM, as well as the BBC Sport website (UK Only).

Parking charges to be cut

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

Good news if you park in Cambridge.

Car park charges are set to drop on Mondays and Tuesdays as part of budget proposals from the city council. The reduced charges will be similar to those seen in 2012.

The council says that the price cut will "make these low peak times of the week more attractive to visitors and shoppers".

Parking sign
Ben Harris/Geograph

It's hoped that by tempting shoppers into the city on Monday and Tuesday, congestion around the city will be reduced at the most popular times of the week. The council says this will "improve air quality and reduce carbon emissions".

While car park charges for these two weekdays are set to be reduced, the cost of parking on other weekdays, evenings and overnight, will be frozen at 2015 levels.

The new charges will take effect from April 1.

Prof Stephen Hawking 'has made huge difference' to perception of Motor Neurone Disease

Pete Cooper

BBC Local Live

On Sunday Prof Stephen Hawking celebrates his 75th birthday.

Prof Hawking is Director of Research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology within the University of Cambridge, and also patron of the Northampton-based MND Association, which supports people with Motor Neurone Disease.

prof stephen hawking
MND Association
Stephen Hawking with Benedict Cumberbatch at a MND Association event in Buckingham Palace in 2016

Chris James from the MND Association said Prof Hawking had  "made a huge difference to people's perception of Motor Neurone Disease" and that he raised awareness of the disease "which we wouldn't have been able to achieve without him".

Mr James said that Prof Hawking had "achieved so much with his life and not been defined by his condition, but he is very unusual because a third of people die within a year of diagnosis and half within two years".

Watch: Robo-cleaner name to be voted on by you

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

A new robotic cleaner is set to sweep the floors of Hinchingbrooke Hospital.

Custom-made in the shape of an ambulance, the robotic scrubber-dryer uses a GPS system to guide the it around the hospital.

It also has a series of built-in sensors that enable it to react to its surroundings, meaning it will stop immediately if a person steps in front of it.

And it needs a new name...

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Westley to return to Stevenage tomorrow

Geoff Doyle

BBC Three Counties Radio sport

Away from FA Cup action, a familiar face will return to Stevenage FC tomorrow

Graham Westley will be at the Lamex Stadium with his current club Newport County. 

Stevenage manager Darren Sarll told me: “Graham Westley and Dino Maamria should always be welcomed back and welcomed back in a loud and appreciative fashion for what they have done for the football club.

"Then we have got to go and win a game of football. It doesn’t matter if it is Graham Westley, Terry Venables or Chris Wilder."

Graham Westley
Getty Images

Watch: 'Time capsule' house wins lottery grant

Sue Dougan

BBC Local Live

The house of David Parr, an 'artist-painter’ who worked for the Cambridge decorative arts firm F. R. Leach in the 1800s, has won a £625,300 Heritage Lottery grant to repair and restore it, and open it to the public.

Parr lived there between 1886 and 1927. After his death in 1927, his granddaughter Elsie came to live in the house aged 12 and stayed there for the next 85 years.

Her regard for her grandfather’s work and the survival of her family artefacts has created a 20th Century time-capsule that tells remarkable stories of how ordinary people lived in Cambridge.

Chief officer: 'Leave A&E for those who really need it'

Earlier today we brought you news that you could face a lengthy delay if you visit accident and emergency this weekend.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has subsequently issued further advice.

Tracy Dowling, chief officer, said: "Our message to local residents is clear. A&E is for emergencies and life-threatening conditions.

"Patients who attend A&E with a minor illness or injury that could be treated elsewhere, such as Minor Injury Units, may be asked to use an alternative service or they are likely to face lengthy delays.

"Patients with more serious conditions or illnesses will take priority to be seen.

"If you are unsure where you should go, then call NHS 111. Open 24/7, NHS 111 will help you find the right service for your illness or injury.  By using the right service you can help us to ensure A&E is kept available for those who really need it."

FA Cup: What to expect

Geoff Doyle

BBC Three Counties Radio sport

Tomorrow it's the FA Cup Third Round so here's my assessment of our sides' chances.

On paper Watford appear to have the best opportunity to progress as they host Championship strugglers Burton. But the Hornets are struggling for form, confidence and fit players so it will be no easy ride.

Wycombe are favourites against the lowest-ranked side left in the competition, Stourbridge. The Chairboys are in terrific form and have Scott Kashket banging in the goals but the rest of the football world would like to see the visitors progress.

Wycombe Wanderers' Scott Kashket celebrates scoring his sides fifth goal
Getty Images

MK Dons have the hardest task. The Dons are away to Championship leaders Brighton. Scott Neilson has lost players during the transfer window already and MK will need to do business themselves.

Luton also travel as they head to Accrington from the same division. The Hatters will have to find a midfielder to score the goals Cameron McGeehan was getting before breaking his leg. Luton would probably take a replay up north.

Police appeal for witnesses after serious sexual assault in Kettering

Sarah Foster

BBC Radio Northampton

Police in Kettering say a 43-year-old woman was seriously sexually assaulted in a churchyard in the early hours of New Year's Day.

The woman was attacked close to the entrance of St Andrew's Church on the corner of Rockingham Road and Eskdaill Street, some time between 04:30 and 05:00.

Kettering map

A 25-year-old man from Kettering has been arrested in connection with the offence and is currently in police custody, however, detectives would like to speak to any potential witnesses.

Shortly before the attack, the woman is believed to have approached three men near the car park next to The Swan pub in Montagu Street and told them she was being followed.

Watch: Up, up and away!

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

A flight of fancy has been spotted by East Hertfordshire Rural Police...

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'No legal proceedings' against Singhbury's Local

Helen Burchell

BBC News

We've just heard back from Sainsbury's about the ongoing saga of an Aylesbury shop with a sign that looks remarkably similar to the supermarket's.

In February last year, Inderjit Singh Nagpal re-branded his shop Singhbury's Local, telling the BBC "Singh" is his name and "bury" refers to Aylesbury.

He said the supermarket chain was taking legal action against him, leading to his taking the sign down. 

Singbury's Local

A spokesperson from Sainsbury's said "no legal proceedings" had been taken but that the company "did contact the owners after customers raised their concerns with us".   

Sainsbury's Local sign
Getty Images

Lord Heseltine fined £5,000 for knocking cyclist off bike on Northamptonshire road

Pete Cooper

BBC Local Live

The former Deputy Prime Minister Lord Heseltine has been fined £5,000 by magistrates after he admitted knocking a cyclist off his bike.

He appeared at Northampton Magistrates' Court yesterday and entered a guilty plea to a charge of careless driving.

Lord Heseltine
Getty Images

The 83-year-old, driving a green Jaguar, pulled out of a lane and into the path of the cyclist on the B4525 near Thenford on 19 June last year.

The male cyclist was left with multiple injuries from the crash, including a broken arm, which was fractured in four places, and shattered knees which later required plates and pins.

Lord Heseltine was ordered to pay a £170 victim surcharge and £85 costs and was given five penalty points.

MK hospital nearly at full capacity

Ross Hawkins

Political correspondent

Winter pressures are still being felt at our hospitals with Milton Keynes Hospital currently at 92% bed occupancy.

Joe Harrison, chief executive of the Milton Keynes Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said patients were "struggling" to get out of hospital to go home or into another form of care.

"We have significant numbers of patients needing hospital beds, putting pressure on the system," he told BBC Radio 4's Today.

"Patients coming through our doors are clinically sicker. They have got more things that need looking after and tend to stay longer in hospital.

"We should be at 85% routinely, but quiet times are unfortunately becoming fewer."

Hospital ward

Watch: 'The Carla we love is no longer there'

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

The family of Bedfordshire mother Carla Bramall have spoken about the anguish they go through seeing her in a care home after being diagnosed with Alzheimer's three years ago. 

You can watch their heart-breaking story below. 

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Your pictures: Up close and personal

BBC Weather Watchers

It's no secret that our BBC Weather Watchers love a close-up when it gets a bit cold.

Here are some of the best pictures from around the county...

Parson Drove

Seeing daughter with Alzheimer's is 'heart-breaking'

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

For Rita Pepper, seeing Carla Bramall every day but realising her daughter no longer recognises her is "heartbreaking". 

Rita, who now lives in Rushden, Northamptonshire, says since her daughter was diagnosed with Alzheimer's at the age of 36 she has seen her "deteriorate so quickly".  

Carla Bramall
Bramall family

Carla, now 39, "can no longer lift her head, she can't walk or speak and needs to be fed with soft food" she said.

Carla's children, who now live with their grandmother, no longer visit their mother as it is too upsetting for them.

Carla Bramall and Rita Pepper
Bramall family

She said: "I thought by now there’d be new treatments out there but there just isn’t anything available that can slow down the progression.

"I’m desperate for as much research as possible to go into the disease. It might be too late for Carla but I will spend the rest of my life worrying about my grandkids, and I’m not going to be around forever.”  

Anguish for family after mother is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at 36

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

The family of a Bedfordshire mother, diagnosed with Alzheimer's in her 30s, are campaigning to raise awareness of the disease. 

Carla Bramall, 39, from Flitwick, no longer recognises her family, including her two children, and is in a care home. 

Carla Bramall
Bramall family

The inherited form of dementia has already claimed the life of her father Barry, her grandfather and her uncle, who were all in their 40s. Her cousin, who is a similar age to her, is also in a care home. 

Her brother Lee Bramall (pictured), from Rushden, Northamptonshire, said: "People need to recognise it happens to people in their 30s."

Carla and Lee Bramall
Bramall family

He believes Carla started getting the disease at about 27. "You think nobody at that age is going to get Alzheimer's," he said.  

Edwards up for Goal of the Month

Peter Swan

BBC Radio Cambridgeshire sport

It's been a bit of a cracker of a December for Peterborough United's Gwion Edwards, who was not only up for Player of the Month but is now a contender for "Goal of the Month".

Gwion Edwards
Joe Dent/Peterborough United

Edwards' stunning solo effort in the 5-2 win against Chesterfield sees him up for the award against Rochdale's Ian Henderson and Sammy Ameobi from Bolton.

This was how BBC Cambridgeshire Sport marked the moment the goal went in...

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Local paper round-up: Toxic smell, Daventry arson, and 'Smart Corridor' U-turn

Pete Cooper

BBC Local Live

Elsewhere in Northamptonshire:

  • Kettering Council says it is investigating reports of a toxic odour which left one Burton Latimer resident’s eyes watering, according to the Northamptonshire Telegraph.
  • The Daventry Express says a building off a country lane just outside Daventry was completely destroyed in a suspected arson attack.
  • And a controversial measure banning a left turn at a busy Northampton junction as part of a so-called Smart Corridor scheme in St James has been scrapped after a public backlash, writes the Northampton Chronicle and Echo.

Midfielder D'Ath leaves Northampton to join Luton

Caroline Densley

BBC Radio Northampton Sport

Northampton Town midfielder Lawson D'Ath has left the club and joined Luton Town for an undisclosed fee.

The 24-year-old joined the Cobblers in 2014 and was part of last year's League Two championship-winning side, scoring four goals.

Lawson D'Ath
Getty Images

Northampton Town manager Rob Page said that D'Ath's opportunities club were "limited" and it "makes sense for Lawson to move on to play regular first-team football".

D'Ath has signed a 18-month contract with the Hatters.

Cobblers 'have done what they can' to bring Ivan Toney back

Pete Cooper

BBC Local Live

Northampton Town chairman Kelvin Thomas has said the Cobblers "have done whatever we can to bring Ivan Toney back to the club and the decision is now with him".

The 20-year-old striker had been on loan from Newcastle to League One rivals Shrewsbury for the first half of the season, but returned to his parent club earlier this month.

Ivan toney
Getty Images

Toney, born and brought up in Northampton, was sold to Newcastle United by the Cobblers in 2015, and made two appearances in the Permier League for the club, before going on loan to Barnsley and helping the club achieve promotion to the Championship.

Toney scored six goals for Shewsbury in League One this season, including two against Northampton, in the Cobblers' 4-2 win.

Weather: Cold and frosty

BBC Weather Watchers

Our BBC Weather Watcher pictures show us it was a cold and frosty start this morning, and the cold weather looks set to stay. 

Frosty Hitchin
Frosty Codicote
Frosty log

Maximum Temperature: 5C (41F).   

Lunchtime weather: Cloudy and wet

BBC Weather

After a cold but bright morning, fog patches will gradually lift.

Cloud will gradually increase from the north-west through the rest of the day with outbreaks of rain arriving through the late afternoon and evening.

Temperatures will rise only slowly through the day. Highs of 6C (43F).

For more information, visit BBC Weather.


Saints make just one change for visit of Bristol

Northampton Saints take on Bristol at Franklin's Gardens tomorrow in rugby's Premiership and have made just one change with Jamie Elliott coming in for Ken Pisi on the wing.

Wales wing George North once again starts after making his comeback from his head injury in the narrow victory at Gloucester last week.

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Brothers committed 'truly despicable offences'

Lee Agnew

BBC Three Counties Radio

During the trial of William (left) and Michael O'Donoghue (right), St Albans Crown Court heard the brothers robbed a 77-year-old man.

He was held down by the men, who said they were police officers, while they stole £13,200 from a pillow case.

Judge Andrew Bright QC said: "This was a campaign of distraction burglaries committed over three months.

"They were truly despicable offences of the most appalling type. You targeted elderly vulnerable victims in the daylight hours."

William and Michael O'Donoghue
Hertfordshire Police

Brothers jailed for targeting pensioners in burglaries

Lee Agnew

BBC Three Counties Radio

Two brothers have been jailed for their involvement in a number of distraction burglaries over three months across Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.  

William O'Donoghue, 32, of Croxley View, Watford, pleaded guilty at St Albans Crown Court to conspiracy to burgle and robbery. He was jailed for a total of 12 years. 

Michael O'Donoghue, 39, of no fixed address, was convicted by a jury of conspiracy to burgle and was jailed for nine years. 

St Albans Crown Court

The court heard they they targeted 19 homes between August and October 2014. Their victims were aged between 73 and 99, and 11 lived in sheltered accommodation.

Co-defendant Thomas Hannifin, 24, is serving a sentence of 11 years, six months for conspiracy to burgle and robbery offences.

Double-fatal crash: More on charges

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

A man has been charged with killing two men in an apparent hit-and-run crash.

Thomas Fletcher, 19, and Thomas Northam, 22, died after they were struck by a BMW as they walked on Broadway in Yaxley, near Peterborough, at about 11:10 on Tuesday.

Richard Frost, 38, of Dorset Avenue, Chelmsford, Essex, has been charged with causing their deaths by dangerous driving.

He was arrested in Chelmsford on Tuesday. He is expected to appear before magistrates this afternoon.

Mr Frost has been further charged with actual bodily harm.

The two men who died were formally named by Cambridgeshire Police earlier.

BreakingDouble-fatal crash: Man charged

A 38-year-old man from Essex has been charged in connection with the death of two men in Yaxley, near Peterborough, on Tuesday.

Brexit positive but 'not all good' says Oundle boat-builder

Pete Cooper

BBC Local Live

Adam Greenwood of Oundle-based English Harbour Yachts says that the impact from the Brexit vote has been "good but not all good" on the company.

As the firm was preparing to its exhibition at the London Boat Show, he said the fall in the pound's value had meant that parts, including motors, sourced from Europe had become more expensive.

English Harbour Yachts
English Harbour Yachts

However, Mr Greenwood said since the vote "the interest we are getting in Europe has significantly improved".

The fall in the value of the pound has helped exporters, with a £2bn rise in exports in October, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Chairboys proud of 'man of the moment' Scott Kashket

Geoff Doyle

BBC Three Counties Radio sport

Wycombe Wanderers are proud of their "man of the moment" Scott Kashket who's today been named the Sky Bet League Two Player of the Month for December.

He's also rather pleased...

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Watch: Magic month for Kashket

Geoff Doyle

BBC Three Counties Radio sport

So December has been a pretty good month for Wycombe's Scott Kashket

Not only has been been named Sky Bet League Two Player of the Month for December, but on 3 December he scored a hat-trick to help The Chairboys cruise into the third round of the FA Cup with a 5-0 win over Chesterfield.

You can relive the goals below. 

Crowdfunding page set up for Yaxley crash victims

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

A crowdfunding page has been set up "to help fund the funerals" of two men killed in Yaxley, near Peterborough, on Tuesday.

The page is aiming for a £10,000 target, with half of that almost reached.

Just Giving page target

Thomas Fletcher, 19, of Meadow Walk, Yaxley, and Thomas Northam, 22, of Lilac Walk, Yaxley, were killed when they were struck by a man driving a BMW, who subsequently fled the scene.

A description on the page says that both families are well-known in Yaxley and nearby Farcet, and that villagers "are devastated". 

A man, arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and causing actual bodily harm, remains in custody at Thorpe Wood Police Station.

Wycombe's Scott Kashket named Player of the Month

Geoff Doyle

BBC Three Counties Radio sport

After scoring in all of December's Wycombe Wanderers league games, striker Scott Kashket has been named the Sky Bet League Two Player of the Month for December.

The 20-year-old was converted from winger to striker by the Wycombe boss Gareth Ainsworth, who says: "He's made a real impact for us in front of goal." 

Kashket, who also scored a hat-trick in the club's second round 5-0 win over Chesterfield in the FA Cup, says he's "over the moon" with the award and hopes he "can keep that run going." 

Scott Kashket
Sky Bet

Boss Ainsworth was also shortlisted for Manager of the Month but the award went to Colchester United's John McGreal.  

From 'not existing' to the London Boat Show in under a year for Fairline

Pete Cooper

BBC Local Live

The managing director of Fairline Yachts has said that exhibiting at the London Boat Show from today is a remarkable turnaround for the company.

Russell Currie said that this time last year "...we were not at London Boat Show, we had no staff - we didn't exist".

Fairline Yachts

In December 2015 Oundle-based Fairline Boats went into administration with 374 jobs lost. Its Corby factory eventually closed, but just over a month later, the company was taken over by two Russian investors and re-established at Fairline Yachts.

Mr Currie said it now had 227 staff at its Oundle site and "every single one of them" felt like they had a stake in the company's success.

Oatmeal gruel for supper, anyone?

Helen Burchell

BBC News

How's this for supper tonight: "1 pint of Oatmeal Gruel"?

I thought so ...

But that was one of the meals served up to petty offenders at "The Spinning-House" in Cambridge in the 1800s.

Cambridgeshire Police tweeted this picture to show what was on offer for inmates. 

Prisoner dinner menu
Cambridgeshire Police

Also on the menu was bread and tea for breakfast, cooked meat and bread and potatoes or soup, bread and suet pudding for dinner, and bread or oatmeal gruel for supper.

Re-launched Fairline Yachts exhibits at London Boat Show

Martin Borley

BBC Radio Northampton

Northamptonshire companies, including Oundle's Fairline Yachts, are exhibiting at the London Boat Show, which starts today.

Fairline celebrates its 50th birthday this year but it was touch-and-go whether the luxury boat-builder would ever see its half-century.

Following a series of job losses and restructurings, the company went into administration at the end of 2015 with 400 people were made redundant. Some were rehired when the company was bought and reborn as Fairline Yachts.


At the London Boat Show, Fairline is exhibiting its range of yachts. A new model is due to be launched later this month in Germany.

Another Oundle-based company, English Harbour Yachts, is reporting renewed interest from overseas buyers since the fall in the value of the pound after the Brexit vote.

Lengthy delays expected at hospitals

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

Stories of busy hospitals over the Christmas period and into New Year are nothing new.

However, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough's Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is warning that some patients could be looking at delays of up to eight hours to accident and emergency departments this weekend.

All three major hospitals in the county - Addenbrooke's, Peterborough City and Hinchingbrooke - have reported pressures this week.    

Tracy Dowling, chief officer for the CCG, said patients should expect "lengthy delays".

Cambridgeshire hospitals

"People shouldn't be surprised if it's a minor injury if they're asked to go to one of their minor injury units," she said.

"It's important we keep emergency departments for emergencies."

Ms Dowling also added that Addenbrooke's did have 20 empty beds, but they were unable to be filled due to other people on the ward having flu.