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Summary

  1. News, sport, travel and weather updates resume on Thursday at 08:00
  2. Updates for Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. Our live coverage across the day

    That's all from us here at Local Live for Beds, Herts and Bucks today.

    We'll be back with you from 08:00 tomorrow. In the meantime, if you missed anything why not take a scroll through the page...

  2. Weather: Showers to ease tonight with more sun tomorrow

    Alex Dolan

    BBC Look East weather

    Showers in the south will ease, leaving most parts clear and dry. Lows of 14C (57F).

    Weather graphic

    Tomorrow will be another warm and often sunny day. It will remain dry for most, with only a slight risk of one or two afternoon showers. High temperatures of 20C (68F).

  3. MP's call for debate over e-cigarette rules

    Nic Rigby

    BBC News

    "Severe" EU regulations on e-cigarettes will be "absorbed" by Britain without debate among MPs and to the detriment of smokers' efforts to quit, a Tory Brexit campaigner and St Albans MP has complained.

    Anne Main MP

    Anne Main called for an emergency debate on the new directive, which requires warnings for e-cigarettes, limits their nicotine levels to 20mg and restricts advertising and sponsorship by their makers.

    Speaker John Bercow turned down the emergency debate, but suggested that if there was "significant interest" either among MPs or the public, party whips could arrange a debate before recess on 15 June.

  4. Brits who 'went to Syria by mistake' admit their story is fake

    A 25-year-old who claimed he and two friends had travelled from Ayia Napa to Syria on a fishing boat by mistake has admitted they made the story up.

    James Wallman, Alex McCormick and Lewis Ellis

    Lewis Ellis, who set up his own vlogging page on YouTube four months ago, told friends on his Facebook page that it was all a hoax. The club rep turned prankster said: "Hahaha what a prank." 

    And when asked if they had actually got on the wrong boat, he replied: "Naaa we just made it up for fun."

    Mr Ellis appears in the photos with fellow club reps Alex McCormick, 19, from Essex, and 23-year-old James Wallman from Hertfordshire.

  5. Taxi driver stabbed in Luton by 'violent opportunists'

    Katy Lewis

    BBC Local Live

    A taxi driver was stabbed in Luton in the early hours of this morning.

    Bedfordshire Police said the man was parked near a cash point in Calverton Road just after midnight, when he was approached by two black men riding push bikes. The pair attempted to steal money from the victim before stabbing him in the back with a knife.

    He was taken to hospital, where his injuries have been deemed non-life-threatening. 

    Det Con Benjamin Stone, said: “This was a nasty attack on an innocent individual by two violent opportunists."

  6. Women 'will no longer give birth at Bedford Hospital' after review

    Nic Rigby

    BBC News

    Maternity services are to be moved from Bedford Hospital to Milton Keynes Hospital under plans announced following a healthcare review of services.

    The proposals will be discussed at a joint meeting of Bedfordshire and Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Groups next week.

    Bedford Hospital

    The review says moving the service to Milton Keynes would "help to attract and retain essential staff and provide the highest quality of care".

    But it recommends Bedford Hospital keep its accident and emergency and paediatric services - which people feared might also be transferred to Milton Keynes. Bedford MP Richard Fuller had argued that in any review A&E, paediatrics and maternity should stay in the town.

  7. Police officer charged with fraud

    Nic Rigby

    BBC News

    A Bedfordshire Police officer has been charged with fraud and computer misuse.

    Bedfordshire Police HQ

    The officer is due to appear before Stevenage Magistrates' Court. 

    No details about the allegations have been released. The officer, based at Luton Police Station, has been suspended.

  8. Rio 2016: Greg Rutherford has sperm frozen over Zika virus fears

    BBC Sport

    Milton Keynes long jumper Greg Rutherford has had his sperm frozen before competing at the Rio Olympics because of fears about the Zika virus, says his partner.

    Greg Rutherford

    "The Zika news has caused no end of concern," wrote Susie Verrill for Standard Issue Magazine.

    "We've made the decision to have Greg's sperm frozen. It's just another thing we don't want to chance."

  9. Slavery trial: Man 'worked unpaid for seven years', court told

    Nic Rigby

    BBC News

    The trial of a couple who deny holding a man in slavery has heard testimony from a Scotsman picked up on the streets of London and taken to St Albans in Hertfordshire.

    Johnny Moloney, aka Murphy, and his wife Shanon Loveridge, of Watford Road, St Albans, deny holding a person in slavery or servitude.

    St Albans Crown Court

    Giving evidence via a video link from Kilmarnock, Cameron Biggar said he met Mr Moloney in 2004 on the Strand where he was sleeping rough.

    "He (Moloney) shouted to people if they wanted work. I thought it would be an opportunity to maybe earn some money and a chance to not be homeless anymore," he said.

    The court heard that between 2004 and 2011 Mr Biggar was never paid, but was made to clean and carry out block paving and tarmacking work.

    The case continues.

  10. St Albans accordion man memorial approved

    Katy Lewis

    BBC Local Live

    A memorial to a musician known as the "accordion man of St Albans" on the spot where he played has been approved by the council and is due to be installed over the summer.

    John "Paddy" Delaney plaque

    John "Paddy" Delaney, who died on 31 March 2015, aged 86, spent more than 35 years entertaining people in the city's market place outside W H Smith.

    St Albans singer Melanie Wall, who organised a busking event and street collection to raise money for the 300mm plaque, said it would be placed in the "lovely, dark coloured bricks" outside the shop.

    "Thank you to everyone who has made this happen," she said.

  11. It's raining again in Dunstable

    Katy Lewis

    BBC Local Live

    It's not so much been raining again in Dunstable, it's been tipping it down.

    So much so that I caught Matt Lockwood, who's been reporting on the floods all morning, outside assessing whether he needed to go back to the High Street.

    Matt Lockwood
  12. Slavery trial: Alcoholic picked up to do unpaid work, court hears

    Nic Rigby

    BBC News

    The trial of a couple accused of holding a man in slavery has heard how an alcoholic Scotsman was picked up on the streets of London and made to carry out unpaid block paving and building work.

    Johnny Moloney aka Murphy, 26, and his wife 22-year-old Shanon Loveridge,

    The man, now 43, was taken to St Albans where he lived in sheds and a camper van while working up to 14 hours a day, sometimes seven days a week, St Albans Crown Court was told.

    Johnny Moloney, aka Murphy, 26, and his wife 22-year-old Shanon Loveridge (pictured), from Watford Road, St Albans, both deny knowingly holding a person in slavery or servitude and knowingly requiring another person to perform forced labour in St Albans between April 2010 and December 2014.

  13. Travel: Eight mile queues on M1

    BBC Travel

    It's looking slow on the M1 this afternoon.

    One lane is closed southbound between J14 for the A509 at Milton Keynes and J13 for the A421 at Bedford due to an accident involving two lorries. Traffic is queuing for eight miles in the area.

    Meanwhile, on the northbound carriageway, traffic is queuing because people are slowing down to look at the accident.

    Also northbound, between J12 for Flitwick and J13 a lane is blocked due to a broken down car that's towing a caravan.

    Get the latest updates from BBC Travel.

  14. Bedford MP to discuss hospital with health secretary

    Simon Oxley

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    The Conservative MP for Bedford is meeting health secretary Jeremy Hunt today and says he'll raise the issue of Bedford Hospital.

    Bedford Hospital

    Richard Fuller says the plan proposed by the borough council, which recommends major services - A&E, paediatrics and maternity - should stay in the town, should be accepted.

    He said: "I can put my hand on heart and say this is the best answer... it retains in the town those services that people have told me on the doorstep they want to keep."

  15. The One Show: Bedfordshire couple fall for 'text spoofing'

    Katy Lewis

    BBC Local Live

    If, like me, you watched BBC One's The One Show last night, you might also have been horrified by the story of a Bedfordshire couple who face paying for their home all over again after falling for a spoof text message from someone pretending to be their bank, informing them that there had been "unusual activity" on their account.

    It seems those texts we might receive from banks alerting us to potential fraud are now themselves being hijacked by scammers.

    Watch the report and think about what you'd do.

    Video content

    Video caption: A couple face paying for their home all over again after falling for a spoof text message
  16. Whipsnade Zoo ditches water bottles

    Katy Lewis

    BBC Local Live

    There might be some people in the area who are a bit fed up of water stories today, but once we're on a theme we're relentless.

    Today, Whipsnade Zoo has announced it is ditching plastic water bottles, as part of a campaign by the Zoological Society of London to protect the world’s oceans from the growing threat of plastic pollution. It's switching to paperboard water boxes in its refreshment areas and encouraging visitors to re-fill their reusable drinks bottles.

    In solidarity, these Humboldt penguins at its sister zoo in London have been pictured investigating a new feeding device made entirely from recycled plastic water bottles.

    View more on twitter
  17. Dunstable flooding: Council calls for clean up volunteers

    Central Bedfordshire Council has put out a call for volunteers to help with the clean up after last night's flooding.

    The authority said various council teams were already out but they needed help.

    It tweeted: "We need small teams of people to check properties and streets in Dunstable so we know who has been affected by the flooding and what help they might need."

    View more on twitter
  18. Dunstable flooding: A505 latest update

    Katy Lewis

    BBC Local Live

    Earlier we told you one lane in each direction under Duck Bridge on the A505 was open while repairs were carried out - but the road would be closed again at 18:30.

    Well, the council has now tweeted the westbound carriageway will be closed between 12:00 and 15:00 - and the eastbound carriageway will be single lane only.

    The repair work is obviously a moveable feast, so we'll keep you updated with the latest information as we get it.

    View more on twitter
  19. Hair salon flooded for third time... but still open

    Matthew Lockwood

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    Dunstable's Red Hair Salon in the High Street has been flooded for the third time in 11 years, but the business is still open to customers.

    Sandra Lauder, from the salon, said about two to three ins of water came in to the shop and mopping up started this morning. So far, they have used 40 towels - which have had to be thrown away - and the wood flooring may have to be replaced.

    Red Hair Salon
  20. Dunstable flooding: Council emergency response team assess damage

    Matthew Lockwood

    BBC Three Counties Radio

    Environmental Heath officers from Central Bedfordshire Council are in Dunstable, assessing the level of the damage in the High Street from the flood.

    Guy Quint said they were seeing how people were coping and if there was anything the council could do to help.

    He said: "At this stage it's really about gathering information and feeding it back to our emergency planning team... we're seeing how bad it is and making sure people know we're here to support them if we can."

    Emergency response team