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Live Reporting

Alex Pope and Mariam Issimdar

All times stated are UK

  1. Tuesday's updates as they happened

    Thanks for joining us to find out how the East of England is reacting to the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown.

    Live updates have now finished for the day.

    Join us again on Wednesday when a live page will resume at 08:00.

    Find it via your BBC News county index.

  2. The back to school quandary: Your questions answered

    The big post-lockdown coronavirus discussion in many homes is whether to send children back to school if, as the government plans, they re-open at the start of June.

    It's an issue that's become really divisive and tonight we're talking about it here in our latest BBC East digital live event on Facebook.

    Your Questions Answered graphic

    Teaching unions, backed by the British Medical Association, have raised concerns about safety. Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove has insisted England's schools are safe to reopen, but acknowledged that "you can never eliminate risk".

    On the panel will be experts from the world of science and education including Cambridge-based virologist Dr Chris Smith from The Naked Scientists, along with your host BBC Look East's health correspondent Nikki Fox.

    We'd love your questions and view points - add them now as a comment here and during the broadcast starting on this page from 19:00.

  3. Coronavirus death rate increases in East again

    Julian Sturdy

    BBC Look East

    The latest number of new daily coronavirus deaths has just been released by the government, and the rate of increase is higher than the previous two days.

    In the East, there was an increase of 27 deaths in the region's hospitals, taking the total number to 3,336.

    • Bedford Hospital: 6
    • Cambridge University Hospitals: 3
    • East and North Hertfordshire: 3
    • East Suffolk and North Essex (Ipswich and Colchester hospitals): 1
    • James Paget, Gorleston: 1
    • Kettering General Hospital: 1
    • Mid Essex Hospital: 3
    • Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals: 1
    • Norfolk Community Health and Care: 1
    • North West Anglia (Peterborough and Hinchingbrooke hospitals): 4
    • West Hertfordshire Hospitals: 2
    • West Suffolk Hospital: 1

    Figures released yesterday showed a rise of 19 deaths, and there was a rise of 12 in Sunday's figures.

    The total number of Covid-19 associated UK deaths now stands at 34,796.

  4. Worst Covid-19 death results for county's care homes

    Local Democracy Reporting Service

    Northamptonshire care homes have just suffered their worst week for losing residents to Covid-19.

    Elderly person walking in corridor

    Figures based on Care Quality Commission data show that from 8-15 May, a total of 21 people living in care homes died from the virus.

    This brings the number of Northants care home Covid-19 deaths to 102, and compares to 17 Covid deaths the week before, and 18 the week before that.

    In total, 46 Northamptonshire care home residents died last week of all causes including Covid-19.

    The deaths follow criticism of the government's approach by Professor Martin Green, of Care England, who said people who were most at risk of dying of Covid-19 should have been prioritised from the beginning.

    He told MPs there were still problems with testing and personal protective equipment in care homes.

  5. Building industry worker who has lost her job has 'positive mindset'

    Video content

    Video caption: Coronavirus: 'I'm vulnerable and have been made redundant'

    Emma Timberlake from Thurrock in Essex, who has a disability, was one of those workers who was made redundant by her employers before the furlough scheme was extended.

    She worked in the construction sector has been told her job will come to an end on 30 June.

    Over the past few weeks, she has taken part in a volunteer "buddy scheme", calling other people who are feeling lonely during lockdown.

    "Obviously, I am very disappointed. I adored my job. But I know we're going to come out of this so strong. If you can keep a positive mindset, it gets so much better," she said.

  6. Praise for specials making 'exceptional sacrifice'

    The "spirit" and "exceptional sacrifice" of volunteers working for the police has been praised by the Hertfordshire Police and Crime Commissioner.

    David Lloyd said: "We need the whole community to pull together in a crisis, and nothing epitomises this spirit more than the Special Constabulary.

    "Many have been volunteering for extra shifts for the past few months, and I am also grateful for their employers who have be willing to give them more time to carry out their duties."

    Special police constables

    Assistant Chief Constable Nathan Briant, said: "The sacrifice is truly appreciated by all of us at Hertfordshire Constabulary."

  7. Chorister 'privileged' to be singing in virtual Evensong

    Alfie Bottley

    A young chorister is warming up to perform along with Stephen Fry, celebrity vicar Reverend Richard Coles, Alexander Armstrong and Simon Russell Beale, for a virtual choral Evensong.

    Alfie Bottley, 12, has been chosen from Ely Cathedral in Cambridgeshire and will sing at 18:30 this evening.

    It will be broadcast live on YouTube and Facebook for The Rodolfus Foundation, a charity dedicated to supporting and raising the profile of the choral Evensong tradition.

    "It is such a nice feeling to be able to sing with everyone even though we're far away from each other, and a privilege to sing Evensong with such famous people," he said.

  8. Bog roll stolen and public loos forced to close over Covid-19 vandalism

    Local Democracy Reporting Service

    It's emerged that public toilets across north Norfolk were closed as coronavirus spread because people were stealing toilet paper and hand soap from them before the lockdown began.

    Toilet rolls

    North Norfolk District Council closed its 17 public toilets following repeated vandalism, a report for councillors said, ahead of a virtual council meeting held yesterday.

    "As guidance on social-distancing increased during the week of 16 March and there was some evidence of panic buying of hand sanitiser, soap and toilet rolls, the authority saw some vandalism and theft from its public toilets and a decision was taken to close 17 facilities on 19 March, under delegated authority of the head of paid service," the report stated.

    The thefts were described as a "response to panic buying" and the closures allowed for the "redirection" of cleaning staff to other areas and activities.

  9. What the papers say in Northants...

    • Car parks around KFC in Northampton have been littered with packaging over the weekend, reports the Northampton Chronicle & Echo
    • Lockdown didn't stop Doreen from Wellingborough raising a glass to toast her 104th birthday through the window with her son, as reported in the Northamptonshire Telegraph
    • Covidiot! BMW driver clocked at 129mph on 60mph Rothwell road, says the Daventry Express
  10. Cuts to services possible says council

    BBC Look East

    The leader of Labour-run local authority has said reports it is on the brink of declaring bankruptcy were "premature".

    Sharon Taylor told BBC Look East that coronavirus had created a difficult financial situation at Stevenage Borough Council, and it was expecting to have a £4m shortfall by the end of July.

    "At its worst it will mean making cuts to essential key services that everyone has really valued during the epidemic and potentially to the jobs of those people that at the moment are our local government heroes," she said.

    Sharon Taylor
  11. British Grand Prix: No F1 race without quarantine exemptions

    Andrew Benson

    BBC Sport’s chief F1 writer

    Formula 1 says it would be unable to hold a British Grand Prix at Silverstone if personnel are not given exemptions from plans to quarantine international travellers.

    The UK government will "soon" impose a requirement on all arrivals from abroad to self-isolate for 14 days to stop the spread of coronavirus.

    Lewis Hamilton
    Image caption: Lewis Hamilton won last years British Grand Prix at Silvertstone

    An F1 spokesman said: "A 14-day quarantine would make it impossible to have a British Grand Prix this year.

    "Additionally, it has a major impact on literally tens of thousands of jobs linked to F1 and supply chains."

    A spokesman for the Department of Culture, Media and Sport said no decisions on exemptions had yet been reached.

  12. What the papers say in Essex

    • Essex Live is reporting that London Southend Airport has become the latest airport to introduce a drive-through coronavirus testing facility on its site
    • Meanwhile, pranksters who allegedly fed cider to a Dedham cow are fined for breaching lockdown rules, according to the Essex County Standard
    • Finally, the Echo has a focus on the nine million EasyJet passengers whose details have been hacked
  13. Drive-through testing centre opens at airport car park

    An appointment-only, drive-through Covid-19 testing centre has opened at a car park at London Luton Airport.

    London Luton Airport

    Run by military personnel, it is for NHS staff or other essential workers (and members of their households), and people over the age of five with symptoms.

    Testing is not available for air passengers arriving or embarking.

    Dr Nicola Smith, chairwoman of Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Groups, said: "The setting up of pop-up testing centres has contributed to controlling the spread of Covid-19 locally."

  14. What the papers say in Norfolk...

    • The Lynn News is reporting on the economic impact of coronavirus which it says has seen unemployment benefit claims in west Norfolk jump to their highest level in nearly 25 years
    • Dining greenhouses that have sprung up on the banks of Amsterdam's canals are coming to Norfolk’s waterways according to the EDP
    • And the Great Yarmouth Mercury says campsite owners are geared up to adapt their businesses to keep customers safe as they keep their fingers crossed for a summer reopening
  15. Seaside town's big summer events called off over Covid-19

    More festivals have been cancelled due to the pandemic including Great Yarmouth Wheels Festival, Great Yarmouth Maritime Festival and the Out There Festival.

    Out There festival performer

    Carl Smith, leader of Great Yarmouth Borough Council, which normally runs the Wheels Festival in July, said: "While we're all sad these popular events can't go ahead this year, public health and safety must be everyone's top priority, and being safe while having a good time is an important part of a positive visitor experience.

    Joe Mackintosh, director of Sea Change Arts which organises the Out There International Festival of Circus and Street Arts, said the cancellation was inevitable.

    "We have diversified our offering by creating free online circus tutorials and implementing a circus equipment giveaway to support wellbeing and provide healthy activities to the young people," he said.

    A number of other events are also cancelled for this year, including the Great Yarmouth Festival of Bowls and the Gorleston bandstand concerts.

  16. Long queues at waste recycling centres

    BBC Northampton

    There are again long queues at household waste recycling centres across Northamptonshire after the county council reopened them yesterday.

    It has said the sites are "very busy" and is advising people to only travel "if you cannot store waste safely at home".

    Information on opening time and locations is on the council's website.

    Towcester waste recycling centre