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  1. Our live coverage has now ended
  2. Live updates on Thursday 4 May 2017

Live Reporting

By Bob Dale and Claire Cottingham

All times stated are UK

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Good night from the BBC Live team

That's all from us for another night, we'll be back tomorrow from 06:00 BST with more of the county's news, sport, travel and weather.

Need to get hold of us in the meantime? You can find us on Twitter, on Facebook or send us an email.

Enjoy the rest of your evening

Kent under pressure to secure long term security

Mark Norman

Health Correspondent, BBC South East

The Heart of Kent Hospice needs to raise £600,000 in order to ensure its long term financial stability, according to managers. 

The hospice has gone from being rated as requiring "improvement" - to outstanding in less than a year, but had to make a number of staff redundant as part of the plan. 

Meet Charlie, the seven-year-old cancer survivor

Peter Whittlesea

BBC South East Today reporter

When Charlie Hewson from Lindfield, was just a baby his parents noticed a swelling on his left leg. 

It turned out to be a rare form of cancer - and ultimately he had to have it amputated. But that hasn't stopped him from doing anything - especially playing football. 

'It's going to be an amazing, amazing experience'

Claire Cottingham

BBC Live reporter

After bursting onto the world athletics scene as a surprise call up to Team GB at the 2012 London games at just 18, Dartford Sprinter Adam Gemili says he's now aiming to compete at the world championships in London. 

Cloudy and dry weekend ahead

Rachel Mackley

Weather Presenter

The weather hasn't given us much to smile about this week, lots of cloud and feeling cool out there. Here's my forecast. 

Severe accident: A26 Kent both ways

BBC News Travel

A26 Kent both ways severe accident, between B2176 Bidborough Ridge and Harland Way.

A26 Kent - A26 London Road in Bidborough closed and heavy traffic in both directions between the B2176 Bidborough Ridge junction and the Harland Way junction, because of an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Have you got a story that needs to be investigated?

If so, get in touch with the award-winning BBC South East Today investigations team.

What's it like to race Usain Bolt?

Claire Cottingham

BBC Live reporter

Dartford Sprinter Adam Gemili has been taking your questions and discussing the 2017 World Athletics Championships, to be held in London in August. 

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Fire services recruits for 'first time in 10 years'


Kent Fire and Rescue

For the first time in a decade a recruitment drive has been launched to find new full-time firefighters for Kent. Applicants will be able to submit their applications for the 20-25 new roles at Kent Fire and Rescue Service when the job window opens on Monday morning. 

Read the KentOnline story here.

More grotty weather on the way

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Cloudy and drizzly again this afternoon, and same again tomorrow.

Here's my forecast.

Pensioner dies after being runover by his own car


The victim became trapped as he tried to bump-start his red Fiat Doblo on a dirt track near his Maidstone home on Sunday afternoon. Read the KentOnline story here.

Bower Street
The accident happened in Bower Street

Belgium and Lyon now being targeted by migrants

Alex Bish

Investigative journalist, BBC South East

After the demolition of the so-called Calais Jungle, the Freight Transport Associaton told me they're concerned about an apparent rise in stowaways trying to board trucks as far away as the south of France.  

Duke of Edinburgh to stop public engagements

Kathryn Langley

BBC Live reporter

It's been announced His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh will no longer carry out public engagements from the autumn of this year. 

The 95-year-old last visited the South East in October.

#ICYMI: ‘Wheelchair rugby changed my life’

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

Ben, who has cerebral palsy, says Wheelchair Rugby League changed his life.


Ricky Miller

Peterborough United sign prolific Dover Athletic striker Ricky Miller, who scored 42 goals in all competitions this season.

Read more

Calais exhibition opens

Ian Palmer

Reporter, BBC South East Today

A new exhibition highlighting the Calais Jungle has opened at the UK's first museum dedicated to migration. 

Migrants have camped in Calais for years with hope of securing a better life in the UK. 

In recent times tens of thousands of migrants and refugees have flocked to the French port - hoping to embark on an often perilous journey to Kent, using whatever means possible.  

Severe disruption: M25 Kent anti-clockwise

BBC News Travel

M25 Kent anti-clockwise severe disruption, between J1A for A206 and J31 for A1306.

M25 Kent - Queuing traffic on M25 Dartford Tunnel anticlockwise between J1a, A206 (Erith) and J31, A1306 (West Thurrock), because of an earlier broken down vehicle. All lanes have been re-opened.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Rikki Clarke has rejoined his first county Surrey, from Warwickshire

With the 2017 county season here, keep up to date with the latest signings, departures and rumours ahead of next season.

Read more

Meet the seven-year-old avid Addick with a Charlton-themed prosthetic leg

Claire Cottingham

BBC Live reporter

Charlie Hewson, a Charlton Athletic season ticket holder from Lindfield, loves the club so much he has Charlton’s colours painted on his new leg.    

Today's Kent newspaper headlines

Getty Images

Kent Online: Kent Fire and Rescue Service launches recruitment drive to find 20-25 full-time firefighters

Kent News: Two arrested in connection with stabbing of man in Tonbridge

Kent and Sussex Courier: A luxury care home is planned for Edenbridge for the town's most vulnerable

Maternity unit celebrates 'baby boom'

Mothers and babys
Darent Valley/Jex Hughes

Staff at a Kent maternity unit are showing they "practise what they preach" after 25 workers gave birth to 26 babies in the space of 14 months.

Darent Valley Hospital has released a picture to mark the International Day of the Midwife on Friday.

The hospital said many of the women had care from community and hospital midwives and its own obstetric team.

The NHS trust said it was testament to the trust staff had in their colleagues and friends to provide the best care.   

Hospice desperately needs fundraisers

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Despite cutting jobs, a Maidstone hospice says it needs the public to help, if it's going to stay open.

What do we know about Canterbury's first Poet Laureate?

Poet, writer and broadcaster Lemn Sissay is Canterbury’s first ever Poet Laureate. So what do we know about him?

The #Southernstrikes one year on...

Can you believe that we've had more than a year of Southern rail strikes? 

Here we take a look at the strike in numbers…

Family thanks emergency services with donation

The family of Ben Savage who died after falling into the River Medway have thanked emergency services for their efforts to find him.

The 18-year-old was last seen in Sun Pier, Chatham, on December 6, 2016. His body was found in the river in February 2017.

An inquest into his death is being held today, but his family will not be attending.

His parents, Tara and Martin released a statement thanking Kent Police for keeping them informed throughout the ordeal and said "there are no further questions to be answered".

We'd also like to again thank the rest of the emergency services; and we hope that the £600 we, Ben's family and friends, raised for the RNLI and Kent Search and Rescue will aid your ongoing work."

Statement from Tara, Martin and the family of Ben Savage
Ben Savage

ICYMI: 'I love theatre'

Stuart Maisner

BBC Live reporter

This 26-year-old theatre technician says he's "living his dream". 


Another dreary day

Elizabeth Rizzini

BBC Look East weather

A re-run of yesterday's grotty clouds and drizzle, I'm afraid.

Here's my forecast.

BBC South East Today breakfast bulletin

BBC South East Today logo

Here's the headlines from BBC South East Today's breakfast bulletin:

  • New figures show an average of six motorists a day from Kent and Sussex were caught drink driving last year.
  • Police investigating an attempted abduction of a 13 year old girl in Hove have released an e-fit image of a suspect.The man allegedly tried to drag the girl away as she walked to school through Hove Cemetery last week.
  • A hospice in Kent that has gone from being rated as "requiring improvement" to "outstanding" in less than a year is now asking the public to help raise money to keep it going.Despite its achievement the Heart of Kent Hospice in Maidstone has had to make a dozen staff members redundant in an attempt to cut costs.

It's feeling like autumn...

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Surely we should be feeling a bit summery? We are in May after all.

If the grey days are getting you down, this stunning picture of Bawley Bay in Gravesend by Martyn Mincington should cheer you up - it's our Kent #photooftheday.

Bawley Bay
Martyn Mincington

Is there anything you'd like to tell us about? Or have you got any lovely pictures of Kent to send us?

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