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Our live updates through the day

That's it for live updates for today, and indeed this week.

We'll be back with all the latest news, sport, weather and travel on Monday from 08:00.

Thanks for joining us, and have a great weekend.

Our live updates through the day

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

That's it for live updates for today, and indeed this week.

We'll be back with all the latest news, sport, weather and travel on Monday from 08:00.

Thanks for joining us, and have a great weekend.


Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

As the sun begins to set over Beds, Herts and Bucks, it also marks the end of our regular updates on Local Live today. 

But never fear, we'll be back with more news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Monday. 

Sun setting in Toddington

Scroll back through the feed to read today's stories from across the region.

Whatever you're doing tonight and over the weekend, we hope you have fun - and we'll see you again next week!

Fancy looking after some puppies?

And finally... cute dog alert!

Assistance dog charity needs volunteers to help with puppies

A charity that trains assistance dogs to support people with disabilities is appealing for volunteers to help look after puppies. 

Dogs for Good puppy socialisers have been speaking to people in Milton Keynes this week about what they do to encourage others to get involved. 

Puppy socialisers give pups basic obedience training and introduce them to a variety of different environments to build their confidence. 

A dog is placed with their socialiser from seven weeks old until 16 months, when they go on to assistance dog training. 

"Watching them work and watching the bonds grow between [assistance dogs and their client] is brilliant," says Yasmin Smyth, from Woburn Sands, who has been a puppy socialiser for 11 years.

Corr return 'needs to be managed'

Peter Swan

BBC Radio Cambridgeshire sport

Meanwhile, Cambridge United fans may have to wait a little longer before they see striker Barry Corr in the starting eleven.

The 31-year-old has made two substitute appearances since returning from a 14-month injury lay-off, and scored the equaliser at Yeovil on Tuesday.

Barry Corr
Getty Images

Ahead of tomorrow's home clash with Newport, U's boss Shaun Derry said they're continuing to monitor his comeback.

"14 months is such a long time to be out for," said Derry.

"We've looked after him and we'll continue to do that.

"We'll have to manage his minutes properly before throwing him back into the starting line-up."

Full match commentary of Cambridge United v Newport can be heard on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire tomorrow from 14:00, on 96FM and Freeview channel 722.  

Posh looking to advance on league position

Nick Fairbairn

BBC Radio Cambridgeshire sport

Peterborough United travel to Walsall this weekend, looking to close the gap on the teams in the play-off places.

Posh are three points off the top six.

Inevitably in the build-up to the game there has been plenty of talk about Posh coming up against one of their former favourites, Erhun Oztumer (pictured).

Erhun Oztumer
Getty Images

Posh were keen to keep hold of the midfielder, nicknamed "Turkish Messi", but he opted to join Walsall in the summer.

He's scored 12 goals for the Saddlers this term.

Posh boss Grant McCann knows he's a threat.

"Erhun is a good player," he said.

"I would have like to have kept him here, but for financial reasons we couldn't.

"We snuffed him out in the home game earlier in the season and we need to be aware of him again."

Full match commentary can be heard on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire tomorrow from 14:00, on 95.7FM and 1026MW.

Newport Pagnell gets ready for FA Vase game

Geoff Doyle

BBC Three Counties Radio sport

It's a massive weekend for Newport Pagnell Town. 

The non-league club, who play in the United Counties League – step five in the non-league pyramid - play their FA Vase Quarter Final on Saturday away to north-east side South Shields. 

It's the furthest Newport Pagnell have ever got in the competition, having beat Sunderland RCA in extra time in the last 16. 

The Swans, based at Willen Road, are taking a coach-load of supporters up to Tyneside.

Northampton-based barrister disbarred

A barrister has been disbarred from the profession after being convicted of harassing his partner.

Sanjay Roy, a family lawyer at Northampton Chambers, was stripped of the right to practise at a Bar Tribunal and Adjudication Service (BTAS) hearing.

He was handed an 18-month suspended prison sentence at Nottingham Crown Court in July after pleading guilty to putting a woman in fear of violence by harassment.

Roy made his partner refer to him as "master" during a controlling relationship, the court heard.

He was also said to have beaten his victim with a belt buckle, poured iced water on her head, as well as taking over her Facebook page and accessing her email and bank accounts.

Roy is able to appeal the tribunal's decision.

Helen Bailey murder trial: Defence finishes summing up

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

The defence team in the case of Ian Stewart, accused of killing Royston author Helen Bailey, have finished summing up at St Albans Crown Court.

Today the jury was told Mr Stewart, 56, was trapped in a "terrible nightmare" after being accused of a murder he did not commit. 

His defence argued "others are guilty, not him", and it was two kidnappers called Nick and Joe who killed Ms Bailey.

Jurors heard the cesspit under the garage of their home on Baldock Road was the last place Mr Stewart would want to hide his bride-to-be.

Helen Bailey

Mr Stewart's team said "crucial" witness evidence demonstrated the Hertfordshire author was still alive beyond the date of the alleged murder.

Judge Andrew Bright has now started his summing up.

Mr Stewart denies murder, preventing a lawful burial, fraud, and three counts of perverting the course of justice. 

Court resumes on Monday.

A505 crash update: Man in his 70s dies

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

We've just received more information about the fatal crash on the A505 in south Cambridgeshire.

A man, believed to be in his 70s, died in the crash between Flint Cross and the M11.

Police said he was driving a white Audi A1 which struck a white Vauxhall Insignia at about 12:40.

The driver of the Vauxhall received serious injuries and was taken to Addenbrooke's Hospital. 

The road is shut in both directions between the M11 and the A10 roundabout in Royston, but is expected to be open within the hour.

Man, 86, killed in Stevenage crash

Jane Killick

BBC Three Counties Radio

An 86-year-old man has died after the car he was in hit a wall in Stevenage. 

The victim, who lived in the town, died from his injuries after the black Vauxhall Vectra he was in struck the wall on Swingate, by the Ibis Hotel, at 08:40. 

Ibis Hotel in Stevenage

Watch Ellie Robinson getting her MBE

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

And here's the moment the 15-year-old Northampton Paralympian picked up her MBE...

View more on twitter

Ellie Robinson describes picking up MBE 'surreal'

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

Northampton schoolgirl Ellie Robinson, who won gold at her first Paralympics in Rio last summer, has received her MBE at Buckingham Palace.

Ellie Robinson with her MBE
Getty Images

The 15-year-old beat her swimming hero, Ellie Simmonds, to win gold in the S6 50 metres butterfly last summer.

Robinson said picking up the accolade was "amazing" and "quite surreal".

"I had to try hard not to be so nervous," she said.

"It has been a whirlwind, going from qualifying, being selected, being in with a chance of a medal and then winning."

The swimmer, who has achondroplasia - known more commonly as dwarfism - says she is currently focusing on her GCSEs and then wants to compete at the World Championships in Mexico.

The investiture was carried out by the Prince of Wales.

Cambridge students 'reach out' to dozens of homeless after note burning claim

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

Yesterday we brought you news students were gearing up to hand out food and drink to homeless people living around Cambridge.

A post has recently gone up on the event's Facebook page, which says up to 40 rough sleepers were helped yesterday evening.

About £400 has also been raised by the event, which was organised after a Cambridge student was filmed appearing to burn a £20 note in front of a homeless man.

Students handing out food and water to homeless people

Ella Jenkinson, who organised "Let's Love Cambridge's Homeless", posted on the page thanking people for their help.

"Our estimates suggest we reached around 30-40 individuals sleeping rough," she said.

"We really appreciate you giving up your time!"

Dog dies after eating mould

Nic Rigby

BBC News

A mother has warned dog owners of the dangers of mould from food waste after her cockapoo died from licking a recycling bin that had fallen over.

Mother-of-three Sarah Dent, of Bovingdon, near Hemel Hempstead, put a warning on Facebook after the death of her dog Dexter, who died from Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS).

Sarah Dent and Dexter
Sarah Dent

Ms Dent said: "He was shaking and having a fit. We took him to the vets and they worked on him. 

"He had to be put into a coma. He had multiple organ failure."

Eventually it was decided Dexter had to be put down.

Bread shop kneads new home

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

A community interest company that helps train ex-offenders from Bedford Prison to become bakers is hoping to find a more permanent home. 


Companions Real Bread opened its shop on Mill Street in January, but on a short-term rental agreement.


Nigel Spencer, one of the managers, said since it opened things had gone "better than they ever thought" and it's been getting "loads of passing trade". 

Nigel Spencer

He's hoping to get another shop in the centre of town so it can continue working with the community. Today it held its first ever children's workshop.   

Vauxhall takeover bid: Feeling 'not good' inside the plant, say workers

Kate Bradbrook

BBC Look East

Workers at Vauxhall Motors in Luton say they're still waiting to hear anything official about a possible takeover by Peugeot

Business Secretary Greg Clark says he's been given "assurances" by the French car giant, though he hasn't elaborated on what those assurances might be.

Workers at Vauxhall in Luton

Staff at the plant today have told me they've faced similar uncertainty before, they feel a bit down, they don't know what's going on and generally the feeling inside is "not good".   

It's feared many British jobs could go if the takeover goes ahead.

Butlers' school to keep on butling

Dani Bailey

BBC Local Live

A butlers' school at Wrest Park in Bedfordshire has proved so popular it's being extended. 

Butler and children

It was first planned to run from Monday to Friday, but will go on over this weekend.

Children learning to be butlers

English Heritage says 2,000 visitors have "enjoyed" the event this week.

Children and butler

A6 closure to be extended

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

An extra mile of the A6 near Desborough and Rothwell is to be closed this weekend as repairs to a damaged road bridge continue.

Gaps were found under the road surface on both sides of the carriageway during a routine inspection on 18 January.

Engineers decided to dig under the bridge, which crosses the River Ise, and shore up its foundations. 

Diggers excavate on a road bridge over the River Ise on the A6.

From 08:00 on Saturday the closure will be extended to cover the mile north of the Desborough/Braybrooke roundabout, to the B576 junction.

Map showing the River Ise Bridge on the A6

It's hoped this section will reopen by Monday's evening rush-hour, with the entire A6 closure lifted by the end of the month.

Police 'photograph' locomotive in Peterborough

Time for a quick game of "spot the Tornado".

British Transport Police may be good at policing transport, but they're not so hot when it comes to photographing it.

And they admit it... it's not just us being big meanies.

View more on twitter

If you're struggling, here's what the Tornado should look like...


If you don't know, the Tornado is Britain's newest steam locomotive - the first mainline steam engine to be built in the UK since the 1960s.

It was travelling through Peterborough last night on its way back to London, after three days of timetabled services to mark the reopening of the Settle-Carlisle line in the North.

Person killed in A505 crash

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

One person has died on the A505 between Flint Cross and the M11 in south Cambridgeshire, police have confirmed.

The crash, involving two cars, happened at about 12:40.


The road is closed in both directions.

Embarrassing FA Cup moments

BBC Three

The FA Cup returns this weekend with the fifth round, giving us eight more games that could throw up some brand new "magic of the cup" moments.

Sadly no teams are left from Beds, Herts and Bucks, but to get you in the mood for a potential humbling of epic proportions, we are revisiting some embarrassing FA Cup moments

Here's that moment when Steven Gerrard fell over during a live TV interview, after helping Liverpool beat Luton in 2006.

Steven Gerrard falls over

A look at the papers

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Elsewhere in Northamptonshire:

  • The Northamptonshire Telegraph says there have been no reports to police about alleged sexual abuse or kidnap incidents near Corby swimming pool, despite speculation on social media.
  • The Northampton Chronicle and Echo has a CCTV image of a man police want to speak to after someone reached over the counter of a shop to steal a mobile phone.
  • The creation of a local lottery to raise money for good causes in the Daventry area has moved a step closer, reports the Daventry Express.

Crash closes A505

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

There's been a two car collision on the A505, between the junction for the M11 and Flint Cross.

It's causing queues in both directions.

View more on twitter

We've got calls in to the emergency services and will update you when we know more.

Drugs and imitation gun found in Letchworth police raid

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

Drugs, an imitation handgun and cash have been recovered from a property in Letchworth.

Officers raided the property in Spencer Way at about 06:30. 

A 30-year-old man from the town has been arrested on suspicion of possession of a Class A drug and possession with intent to supply.  

He's currently in police custody.

Spencer Way

Statue stolen from graveyard

Lee Agnew

BBC Three Counties Radio

A bronze statue has been stolen from a graveyard in Cheshunt.

Hertfordshire Police has only just released the information and believes the "Our Lady Virgin Mary statue" was taken between 22 and 29 January from a memorial in Bury Green Road cemetery. 

It's about 2ft tall (61cm) and has the supplier's name "Vezzani" engraved on the back.

Hertfordshire police

Dementia support groups to close

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Dementia support groups across Northamptonshire are being closed because of a cut in funding by the county council.

The Alzheimer's Society says the authority is cutting support for eight dementia cafes and three activity groups where people can share experiences and get advice.

The groups have been running for the past six years but will close at the end of March.

A hand next to a cofffee mug.

Service users in Corby have told us the services are important to them...

The main thing is meeting up with friends. Without that kind of place we wouldn't meet these people. When the cafe stops it'll be very sad. People don't understand the care and comfort it gives us."

Gladys WilliamsUses the cafe in Corby because her husband has dementia

I go to the cafes because we get vital information and meet like-minded people. It gives us a couple of hours' break. You've got someone to tell your troubles to."

Margaret TelferUses the dementia cafe in Corby

A spokesman for Northamptonshire County Council said it is "continuing to support people with dementia through a range of specialist residential placements, domiciliary care, respite, and information and advice services". 

The authority suggested the Alzheimer's Society could run the cafes with financial support "from other sources or client contributions".

But Sally Grundy, from the charity, said: "The contribution we'd need from service users would be so significant that this isn't an option."

A cloudy afternoon in Northants

BBC Weather Watchers

It's mostly cloudy but dry this afternoon in Northamptonshire, with a top temperature of 10C (50F).

It might not be as sunny as yesterday, but that hasn't discouraged our BBC Weather Watchers from snapping away...

Geese in Irthlingborough
Cloudy skies in Roade
Cloudy skies in Corby

Wanted: Cute architect with red shoes

Justin Dealey

BBC Three Counties Radio

I turned into cupid this morning to try and reunite Emma with a man she met on a train last week.

On her way home from London, she started talking to a young man, but didn't take his number.

She now regrets it and is trying to track down a "cute architect" who wore red shoes and was possibly getting off at St Albans. 

To find him she's put up posters at the railway station.

Poster notice

So far she's not had any luck finding him, so I decided to help...

View more on twitter

Competition among Cobblers players 'raises performance'

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Cobblers defender Gabby Zakuani says he's back to full fitness and is relishing competition for places, after recovering from a hamstring injury. 

He's been away since the start of January, captaining the Congo side in the Africa Cup of Nations, but picked up the injury during their first game. 

Northampton Town Football Club logo
Getty Images

Zakuani says he'd like to be involved in Saturday's game at Southend.

"My main focus is my fitness and I'm fit now. So it's about, when I do get the opportunity, stamping my authority again," he said.

"Competition for places is good because it keeps everyone on their toes and I'm happy because it raises my performance levels and everyone else's."

BBC Radio Northampton will have full commentary from Roots Hall tomorrow. The build-up starts at 14:00.

Saints make two changes for Newcastle trip

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Northampton Saints have made two changes to the side that lost at Bath for Sunday's trip to Newcastle.

Api Ratuniyarawa and Calum Clark join the second row and back row respectively.

Ben Nutley and Juan Pablo Estelles come onto the replacements bench. 

Franklin's Gardens

Fly-half Stephen Myler said Newcastle possess plenty of threats.

"I think they're looking to play an expansive game which encompasses all the back line and the forwards," he said.

"So we've got to prepare for that, but we've also got to put ourselves on them."

BBC Radio Northampton will have full commentary from Kingston Park on Sunday. The build-up starts at 14.30.

Lunchtime weather: Light winds but feeling warm

BBC Weather

It's not been the brightest of starts to the morning, as these BBC Weather Watchers pictures show...


Brighter spells are likely to develop into the afternoon, with perhaps some sunshine in places.

However, there will be light winds everywhere and feeling very mild. Highs of 11C (52F).

Police searching for six men after woman dies in MK attack

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

The men who attacked the woman in her home in Orne Gardens are described as white, had their faces covered and they were wearing dark tops, jogging bottoms or jeans.

One man who came to the door was described as 6ft 2in tall and of large build with a wide face. He also wore a baby blue sweater with a high neck, and had jeans and fingerless gloves. 

It's thought the group of six left the property after 18:00 by running down Orne Gardens towards Lacy Drive. 

A post-mortem examination took place yesterday and following the results a murder investigation was launched. However, Thames Valley Police has yet to state how the victim died.

Orne Gardens area

Police are appealing for witnesses as they think the men might have been "cold calling" on doors in the area. 

Anyone with any information is asked to call Thames Valley Police on 101.

Residents oppose 'destructive' river crossing

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

However, the approval of a new £4.5m bridge over the River Cam has not satisfied everyone.

Both Fen Ditton Parish Council and campaign group Friends of Ditton Meadows have been vocal in their opposition to the bridge in the past, with the latter stating they "oppose any form of destructive development in Ditton Meadows, including the new river crossing".

Ditton Meadows

A petition set up by the group had more than 300 signatures when it was submitted to Cambridgeshire County Council.

We've contacted Friends of Ditton Meadows for further comment following the bridge's approval.

Murder probe after woman dies days after MK home attack

Alex Pope

BBC Local Live

A murder investigation has been launched after a woman in her 60s died 11 days after being attacked in her Milton Keynes home. 

Police say the woman was taken ill the day after six men pushed their way into her home on Orne Gardens, Bolbeck Park, at about 18:00 on 31 January.

She was knocked to the floor and one man held her down with a hand over her mouth. 

While this happened the other men searched her home and stole cash and jewellery. 

Orne Gardens

When the woman was giving a witness statement the next day, she was taken ill and admitted to Milton Keynes hospital. 

She died on 11 February. 

More to follow.

What is the Chisholm trail?

Adam Jinkerson

BBC Local Live

We've been talking about a new bridge that will form part of the Chisholm trail in Cambridge. But what is it?

It's a mostly traffic-free route between Cambridge Station and the new Cambridge North Station and forms part of the Greater Cambridge City Deal.

It would also link up to routes to Addenbrooke's Hospital and the Biomedical Campus in the south of the city, and the business and science parks in the north.

Artists impression of bridge
Knight Architects
Artists impression of bridge
Knight Architects
Artists impression of bridge
Knight Architects

The north-south route closely follows the railway line, which the City Deal board says would provide a "quicker and safer route, largely off-road or along quiet streets and avoiding busy junctions".

The trail would also connect to the Busway by the two railway stations, allowing people to travel to other parts of the city and county.

Vauxhall takeover bid: 'Plant closures inevitable', says business expert

Urgent talks have been taking place over the future of thousands of jobs in the British car industry - including Luton.

It follows confirmation that the owner of Vauxhall, GM, may sell its European operations to French giant PSA

Prof David Bailey from Aston Business School says it will be "inevitable that if this deal goes ahead there will be plant closures in Europe in years to come". 

He says it won't be known for a while where those jobs will go, but as it's "easy to fire workers in the UK" and Brexit has created "uncertainty", it could make Britain an easy target for redundancies.

Vauxhall plant in Luton
Getty Images

He added assurances given now are "just not nearly enough" and the big decisions will be made in 2018, when the location to build the next Astra is made.   

Vauxhall says it has "no definitive news to report at this time".

Vauxhall takeover bid: Brexit vote has made UK 'less attractive', says Vince Cable

BBC Three Counties Radio

"The risks are serious." 

Those are the words of Sir Vince Cable, the former Lib Dem business secretary, who helped rescue Vauxhall in 2012 when part of the coalition government.

He told BBC Three Counties Radio we should "hope for the best, prepare for the worst" if a takeover of GM's loss-making European Opel business by Peugeot's owner goes ahead.

It's feared a number of jobs in Luton could be affected.

Vauxhall Luton plant
Getty Images

He said unlike a few years ago Britain was in a "weaker position" and that since the vote to leave the EU the balance had "shifted against the UK because of the uncertainty about Brexit".

He added that "GMs' operations are heavily linked to the European market, but any disruption makes the British operation less attractive".

GM said it is in talks with PSA, which owns Peugeot, "to build on the success" of Opel Vauxhall and put it in "the strongest possible position".  

Museum prepares to close for expansion

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Northampton Museum and Art Gallery is getting ready to close down for well over a year ahead of its major expansion.

It'll be closed from Sunday, then displays will be dismantled and objects put into storage.

The new-look museum is expected to open in autumn next year, though an exact date isn't yet known.

Artist's impression of the new-look Northampton museum
Northampton Borough Council
Artist's impression of the new-look museum

Once finished, the new museum will have:

  • An extension including new galleries and a glass atrium linking the buildings
  • A new temporary exhibitions gallery in the old Gaol Block
  • New shoe galleries
  • A Great Hall events space
  • Schools and activity space
  • A shop and selling gallery
  • A café

Anna King, cabinet member for community engagement and safety at Northampton Borough Council, said: "During the extension and renovation, we will be running an appeal to expand and enhance the collection, and we have already been approached with donations linked directly with Northampton's heritage."

Most of the work will be funded through the £8m proceeds from the controversial sale of the Sekhemka statue in 2014. 

Alcohol stolen in cricket ground break-in

Stuart Bailey

BBC News

Burglars have stolen alcohol from a bar at Northamptonshire County Cricket Club.

The break-in at the Abington Avenue ground happened in the early hours of Wednesday morning. 

Northamptonshire County Cricket Ground

A set of keys was also taken and a door pulled off its hinges in the terrace area.

Police are looking for two men described as wearing hooded tops, tracksuit bottoms and trainers.