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  1. Updates on Thursday 5 May 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

Updates for London have now ended for the day but we'll be back tomorrow at 08:00 with all the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

Plus, we'll have the latest election results as they come in for the London Assembly and London Mayor.

Have a good evening.

Tonight's weather: Dry and clear night

BBC Weather

It will stay dry across the region this evening and overnight with some good clear spells. 

With light winds it will become rather chilly by morning in some rural parts, such as around the Lea Valley. 

Minimum temperature: 8C (46F).

On air tonight: Barnet voters turned away & are the NHS choir about to become film stars?

Alice Bhandhukravi

Coming up on BBC London News this evening:

Londoners went to the polls in the Mayoral and Assembly elections but not everyone got to cast their vote after some residents were turned away from polling stations in Barnet - we'll have the latest.

And we'll be hearing from the Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Choir whose unlikely rise to the top of Christmas charts could now be turned into a film.

Join me at 18:30 on BBC One.

West End theatre ticket prices 'creating a divide between rich and poor'

High theatre ticket prices in the West End are "creating a divide in the audience between the rich and the poor", a top director has claimed. 

Jamie Lloyd, who launched Doctor Faustus at the Duke of York's Theatre starring Game Of Thrones' Kit Harington last week, called the industry "corrupt" over decisions to charge more than £100 for some tickets. 

In an interview with theatre magazine The Stage (behind a paywall), he said despite people being willing to pay such high prices, it did not mean charging them was right.

Watch: Cruise liner facts and figures

The Sea Viking cruise liner has arrived in Greenwich for its naming ceremony.

BBC News looks at some of the facts and figures behind the huge ship.

Wilfried Zaha a doubt for FA Cup Final

BBC Sport

Alan Pardew has told BBC London Sport reaching the FA Cup Final has gained Crystal Palace "four or five thousand more fans".

Alan Pardew

The Eagles boss also revealed Wilfried Zaha is a doubt for the cup final and will definitely not play this weekend against Stoke.

Meanwhile, Pardew revealed midfielder Lee Chung-yong will be fined after reportedly criticising him in a publication in his native South Korea

"He has made an error, he said it got lost in translation, and that can happen... But some of it is not lost in translation and he will get a fine."

Lee Chung-yong

London universities ranked in top 100 in the world

The UK has 10 universities in the top 100 of the world's best when it comes to global reputation, but many have slipped down the rankings this year.

Three London universities stay in the top third of the reputation table - Imperial College London at 15, University College London at 20 and the London School of Economics and Political Science at 24 - but each has fallen slightly on last year's ranking.

University College London sign
Getty Images

King's College London (43rd), and London Business School (between 81st and 90th) also made the top 100 global reputation ranking.

The highest ranking UK universities were Cambridge and Oxford which came fourth and fifth respectively.

Sir Bradley Wiggins designs race medal

Sir Bradley Wiggins has helped design the commemorative medal which will be presented to finishers of the inaugural PrudentialRideLondon-Surrey 46, the race organisers have announced.

Sir Bradley Wiggins
Getty Images

The sportive takes place on 31 July, beginning at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and finishing on the iconic stretch of The Mall in front of Buckingham Palace.

Sir Bradley said it was "a pleasure to work on the design", which will be unveiled in July.

Barnet voters urged to return to polling stations

East Finchley polling station

Voters turned away from polling stations in Barnet have been urged to return before they close at 22:00.

Barnet Council has apologised to anyone who was unable to vote because their name was missing from the poll list.

It confirmed all 155 polling stations had been affected but said staff now had accurate registers.

Travel: Commuter chaos around Vauxhall & Waterloo Bridge accident

BBC Travel

Trains which travel through Vauxhall are being severely disrupted because of the earlier fire, with Waterloo and Clapham Junction stations being particularly busy.

South West Trains has said people should avoid travelling through the area as a full service will not resume by the end of the day.

See a full list of what services are running here.

On the roads, Waterloo Bridge has been blocked southbound between Strand junction and the Imax roundabout because of an accident.

For the latest travel updates visit the BBC London travel page or follow @BBCTravelAlert

Victoria station fire: Delays and empty information boards at Waterloo

Girl bites man after being dragged along West Norwood road

A 12-year-old girl bit a man on the arm after he grabbed her on the arm and dragged her along a road in West Norwood, police have said.

The school girl was approached by the man along Elmcourt Road on 26 April. He pulled her along the street for a few metres then reached inside her jacked for her mobile phone.

Elmcourt Road

The girl, who was not injured, then bit the man and he ran off empty handed.

The man is described as white with brown hair, a pointy nose and a London accent.

Scotland Yard have appealed for any witnesses to contact them.

Vauxhall fire statement from Network Rail

Network Rail have released an updated statement about the disruption caused to train services by the fire at Vauxhall:

We are sorry for the inconvenience and disruption caused by a fire underneath a platform at the station in the early hours of this morning which severely reduced the number of trains able to run in and out of London. We are working hard to get the railway open and to reintroduce a full service, but it is not yet possible to say when that will happen. It is clear though that severe disruption will continue through the evening peak. We thank passengers for their patience and advise them to continue to use alternative routes to travel in and out of London wherever possible.

Network Rail spokesperson

Watch: Cruise ship squeezes through Thames Barrier

A 47,800-ton cruise ship had to squeeze through the Thames Barrier as it headed into the capital.

Water hoses were sprayed from nearby ships as the Viking Sea approached, on the way to its official naming ceremony in Greenwich.

The tricky manoeuvre was filmed by Twitter user @AJBC_1.

Vauxhall station fire: Police warning over rush hour travel

The British Transport Police has warned passengers to expect disruption to services caused by the earlier fire at Vauxhall.

View more on twitter

During this morning's rush hour, rail unions said there had been "dangerous overcrowding" on trains along with "chaotic scenes" at stations.

Information about what services will be running can be found here.

Police searching for sisters missing after mother's Facebook plea

Police are searching for a woman who is believed to have gone on the run with her two children after posting on Facebook that her daughters had been taken into care.

Shanti Harbourne and Maya-Rose Kelly-Johnson
Met Police

Shanti Harbourne, 12, and Maya-Rose Kelly-Johnson, five, were last seen in Camberley, Surrey, on 1 May.

The day before, their mother Angela Kelly posted a message online asking: "Can anyone help? The police took my children into care".

Scotland Yard said it was searching for the girls who are believed to be missing in the company of their mother around Camden.

Hampton Court Palace awarded by RICS

Hampton Court Palace was named Project of the Year at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Awards, London last night at The Lancaster Hotel.

Duchess of Cambridge speaking to children

Judges said the building was a worthy winner as "it reflects the magnificence of the Tudor palace whilst creating a space for entertainment, enrichment and learning".

"As a visitor, one leaves feeling very much uplifted by the experience – the 'wow' factor was in every judges heart as we left Hampton Court”, chair Hugh Kemsley said.

The palace was visited yesterday by the Duchess of Cambridge who unveiled a plaque in the new Magic Garden.

Burnt section of platform removed from Vauxhall station

Sections of the platforms damaged during the earlier track fire are being removed from Vauxhall.

Burnt track put on lorry
Network Rail

South West Trains advises it will have a "clearer understanding" of what trains will be able to run tomorrow from 20:00 tonight.

Murder investigation launched after man dies from stab wounds

Scotland Yard has launched a murder investigation after a man who was stabbed in Lewisham on Saturday evening died today.

Molesworth Street

Police said they were called to Molesworth Street at about 20:40 after a 21-year-old was found stabbed.

He was taken to a south London hospital in a critical condition and died at 8:25 this morning.

His next of kin have been informed.

No arrests have been made and police have appealed for any witnesses to contact them.

Vauxhall fire: Station queuing systems may be implemented as rush hour approaches

Interior of Vauxhall Station

Trains are still being cancelled or delayed by up to 90 minutes, with problems expected until tomorrow morning because of the earlier fire, South West Trains says.

Stations around Vauxhall will be busier than normal especially during the rush hour and queuing systems may be implemented at short notice.

Burnt wood around Vauxhall Station rails

Anybody with tickets valid for travel on 5 May will now also be able to use them tomorrow and off peak ticket restrictions have been lifted.

For a full list of what services are running, visit the South West Trains website here.

In pictures: Viking Sea arrives at Greenwich for christening ceremony

The largest ocean ship to be named at Greenwich has arrived in the capital.

The Viking Sea cruise ship passes through the Thames Barrier

Viking Sea, which can accommodate 930 passengers, squeezed through the Thames Barrier as she sailed along the River Thames.

The largest ocean cruise ship "Viking Sea" approaches Canary Wharf

The 47,800-tonne ship will be the largest christened on the river.

The Viking Sea cruise ship is guided by tug boats along the River Thames

Upon her arrival in Greenwich, the ship was saluted by able seaman from the Cutty Sark.

Able seamen salute the cruise liner "Viking Sea" from the Cutty Sark

Tributes paid at Marathon runner's funeral service

Tributes have been paid to Capt David Seath, the former Green Beret, who collapsed during the London Marathon.

At his funeral in Dunfermline Maj Jim McCaffery, 7 (Sphinx) Commando Battery told the service: "David was an inspiration to all of us. I genuinely could not have wished for a finer officer."

A family notice published in the Dunfermline Press said the service would be a "celebration of David's life" and urged mourners to wear bright colours.  

Watch: 'Do not cross me' - Anthony Joshua

BBC Sport

IBF heavyweight world champion Anthony Joshua says he is not interested in "playing a character" ahead of his bout against Dominic Breazeale on 25 June.

The boxer also spoke to BBC Sport about the prospect of fighting compatriot Tyson Fury.

In pictures: Relaxing in the London sun

Londoners have been out in force enjoying top temperatures today across the capital.

Tower Bridge
Sunbathers at Tower Bridge
St James's Park
Fun in the sun in St James's Park
Potters Fields Park in Southwark
Workers enjoying their lunch break in Potter's Field Park

Don't worry if you haven't managed to get out and enjoy the weather today - temperatures are expected to reach 25C (77F) over the weekend.

Watch: 'I've just lost my vote'

Voters were turned away earlier from polling stations in Barnet because of registration problems. 

Barnet Council has apologised after some were unable to vote because their names were missing from polling lists. 

The council says new registers have now been delivered and those denied a vote should come back. London is voting for a new mayor and the London Assembly.

Voters in Barnet complain about not be able to vote

Afternoon weather: Dry, warm and sunny

BBC Weather

This afternoon will be dry, warm and sunny with light winds. There will be some very high cloud overhead which will make the sunshine look a bit hazy at times. 

Maximum temperature: 19C (66F).

Barnet residents 'may be able to use emergency proxy vote'

Barnet Council have said people who experienced difficulties voting this morning may be able to use an emergency proxy vote:

Anyone who attended a polling station in Barnet this morning, and was turned away and therefore could not vote, and was unable to return due to work reasons, may be able to use an emergency proxy vote. They will need to complete an application form on our website ( and return it by 5pm today. People can find out more about how to vote by emergency proxy at

Barnet Council spokesperson

On air this lunchtime: Election latest & Fusilier Lee Rigby's mother releases book

BBC London News

Coming up on BBC London News this lunchtime:

We'll have the latest from Barnet where some voters were turned away from polling stations after they found their names were missing from polling lists.

And three years after Fusilier Lee Rigby was killed outside his Woolwich Barracks, we'll hear from his mother who is releasing a book about her son's death.

Join Sonja Jessup at 13:30 on BBC One.

In pictures: Enormous cruise ship heading up the Thames

A large cruise ship is making its way up the Thames on its way to the capital.

The Viking Sea cruise ship passes the Sikh temple in Gravesend in Kent,

The Viking Sea, which is pictured here passing Gravesend, will stop in Greenwich later for its official naming ceremony.

The Viking Sea cruise ship passes through Gravesend in Kent
The Viking Sea cruise ship passes through Gravesend in Kent

Vauxhall trains 'disrupted until end of service'

View more on twitter

Services passing through Vauxhall are still being severely disrupted with only four of the eight tracks available to use, South West Trains say.

The problems are expected to last until at least the end of service today.

Find out what services are affected here.

Engineers looking at damaged tracks

Watch: Duchess in Vogue

The Duchess of Cambridge visited the Vogue exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery yesterday.

She looked at photos of herself which will appear in the centenary edition of the magazine.

Mourners gather for Marathon runner's funeral

Hundreds of mourners have gathered for the funeral of an Afghanistan veteran who died after collapsing during the London Marathon.

Capt David Seath, originally from Cowdenbeath in Fife but based in Plymouth, Devon, was a fire support team commander in 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery.

Mourners arrive at Capt Seath's funeral

The 31-year-old suffered a suspected cardiac arrest while running the 26.2-mile course and later died in hospital.

Family members, friends and military colleagues have gathered for a service at St Margaret's RC Memorial Church, Dunfermline.

Capt Seath's girlfriend Gaby Schoenberger said his death had left a "devastatingly large hole in our lives".

Captain David Seath with partner Gaby Schoenberger

Watch: How to vote in the London elections

Alex Bushill explains how to vote in the London elections today.

Road crash victim was 96-year-old refugee who saved Jewish women from Hitler

Evening Standard

A refugee who helped scores of women escape Nazi-occupied Austria before fleeing to London where she became a milliner whose hats were worn by the Queen has been killed in a road crash.

Tom Hiddleston defends war zone children

Actor Tom Hiddleston has called for more support for children caught in conflict zones, saying that "the strongest have to stand up for the weakest".

Tom Hiddleston in South Sudan

The Westminster-born star was in South Sudan last year with Unicef when he visited a village where 89 children had been seized from a school while they were preparing for an exam.

He told BBC News it was "very bleak, walking into an empty playground, seeing desks upturned. It felt very desolate."

It is believed the children were forcibly recruited by one of the country's armed groups - and have never been returned.

Middlesex and Surrey games end in draws

BBC Sport

Both Middlesex and Surrey drew their matches in the latest round of cricket's County Championship.

Tom Curran
Getty Images

Hampshire batted until tea to ensure their match with Middlesex ended equal, while a Tom Curran half-century left Surrey on even terms with Durham at the Oval.

Middlesex welcome Nottinghamshire to Lords on Sunday for their next County Championship match. Surrey have to wait until 15 May until they play again.

Updated Barnet electoral registers now in place

Polling station in East Finchley

Barnet Council has released an updated statement about the problems experienced by voters in the borough:

All the updated electoral registers are now in place and people can vote as normal. We are advising people who were unable to vote this morning to return again before the polling stations close if at all possible. We apologise for the problems we have experienced.

Barnet Council spokesperson

Murdered soldier Lee Rigby's mother tells of constant pain

Lyn Rigby

The mother of murdered soldier Lee Rigby has told how she suffers constantly over his killing.

Lyn Rigby, 49, says she has daily chest pains following her son's murder outside his barracks in Woolwich, London, three years ago.

The fusilier, 25, was run over and hacked to death by Michael Adebolajo, 31, and Michael Adebowale, 25, on 22 May 2013, who were later jailed.

Mrs Rigby has now set up the Lee Rigby Foundation in honour of her son.

"The idea is to help bereaved families of those who served in the armed forces," she told the BBC.

The mother of Lee Rigby reads aloud the 'treasured' last text her son ever sent her

Watch: Paranoia treated by using virtual reality video

Virtual reality is being used to help treat severe paranoia.

Patients who suffer persecutory delusions are being encouraged to step into a computer-generated Underground train carriage.

The BBC's Fergus Walsh went to find out more.

Polling stations open across London

Ballot Box

Voting is taking place in the London mayor and London Assembly elections across the capital.

Polling stations opened their doors at 07:00 and will close at 22:00.

Voters can choose their first and second preferences for mayor, as well as two types of London Assembly member.

Across England elections are taking place for more than 120 councils, and to elect mayors in Bristol, Liverpool, London and Salford, and 36 police and crime commissioners.

How the BBC reports polling day 2016>