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

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our local coverage across the day

Mariam Issimdar

BBC Local Live

That's it on the day when we've seen racing return to Great Yarmouth after a nine-month lull for repairs to the course.

We also heard the father and girlfriend of missing climber Aiden Webb plead for more effort from the British Embassy to help in the search for him.

Other stories have included a Yarmouth restaurant owner being ordered to pay more than £21,000 over hygiene offences and councillors' approval for 1,000 homes at Hellesdon. 

Finally if you're driving home, a little safety reminder... a week-long campaign by police saw 122 people stopped and served offence notices for using a mobile phone.

Stay safe and have a good evening. 

Founder of pub chain backs Leave campaign in Norwich

Mariam Issimdar

BBC Local Live

The founder and chairman of the pub chain, JD Wetherspoon was in Norwich today to give his support to the Leave group, campaigning for Britain's exit from the EU in the forthcoming referendum

Tim Martin
Mustard TV

Tim Martin said: "In the modern world you don't need trading groups." 

He added that with the US being the country's biggest trading partner, exiting the EU would not have a major impact on British businesses. 

Weather: Fine and dry overnight

Staying fine and dry overnight with lows of 9C (48F). 

Weather map

 Tomorrow will be sunny again with temperatures of 19C (66F).  BBC Weather has more details. 

Sniffer dog aids newt conservation

BBC Look East

Rocky the spaniel is helping with the construction of a new bypass near Norwich by sniffing out newts. 

The route of the Northern Distributor Road is home to great crested newts which are protected.

Ecologists have already relocated 340 of the amphibians and Rocky will sniff out any stragglers so they can be safely re-homed. 

It's the two-year-old's first foray into newt conservation as he's more used to sniffing out bats on sites designated for windfarms.

Week-long campaign nets 122 people using mobile phone

Mariam Issimdar

BBC Local Live

Police caught 122 people driving while using a mobile phone in Norfolk and Suffolk during a week-long campaign in May.

Texting while driving

In total, 122 motorists received Traffic Offence Reports (TORs), 118 for driving while using a mobile phone and four for not being in proper control of a vehicle.

A breakdown of the figures show 72 people in Norfolk committed offences while in Suffolk the number was 50. 

Using a mobile phone behind the wheel increases your chances of being involved in a collision and no message or call is so important that you could end up putting yourself and others in harm’s way."

Ch Insp Kris BarnardNorfolk and Suffolk Roads Policing Unit

Go-ahead given for 1,000 homes for Hellesdon

Mariam Issimdar

BBC Local Live

Plans for up to 1,000 new homes to be built on a golf course on the outskirts of Norwich have been approved. 

House building
Getty Images

There was local opposition to the plan for the Royal Norwich Golf Club site at Hellesdon, with fears including increased traffic and a lack of green space, but Broadland councillors today granted planning permission. 

Owners of the club plan to relocate the course to a site at Weston Park, near Lenwade.

The homes will be built in phases, with the first 108 approved in detail today. The developers behind the plans are Persimmon Homes. 

Pair deny killing pizza delivery man

Two men, including one from Norwich, have pleaded not guilty to killing a pizza delivery man in Peterborough.

Ali Qasemi
Cambridgeshire Police

Ali Qasemi, 45, (pictured) was attacked in Shrewsbury Avenue, Peterborough, in the early hours of 8 May. He died in hospital two days later.

Mark Lintott, 29, of no fixed address, and Joel Lawson, 25, of Goodhale Road, Norwich, denied manslaughter and robbery.

They appeared at Peterborough Crown Court today, and are due to return to the court for trial on 17 October.

Birthday boy celebrates with Yarmouth win

Phil joins racing legend in the commentary box

Our reporter Phil Daley is watching the latest race at Yarmouth alongside veteran commentator Derek "Tommo" Thompson.

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Favourite wins the 16:20 at Yarmouth races

Phil Daley

BBC Radio Norfolk sport

The 2/5 favourite, Longside won the 16:20. Second was 50/1 shot, Troy Boy. 


Norfolk jockey wins the 15:50 at Yarmouth

Peregrine chicks show good bonding

The Hawk and Owl Trust says new peregrine chicks nesting in Norwich Cathedral are showing great bonding as they groom each other after eating.

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Man accused of fatal stabbing changes plea to manslaughter

Mariam Issimdar

BBC Local Live

A man who denied murdering a man in Norwich last December has changed his plea to manslaughter.

Suffolk Square, Norwich

Kristian Tarragan, 31, of Suffolk Square, Norwich had denied murdering Lee Tingle, who was 50.

The jury at Norwich Crown Court was discharged after Tarragan pleaded guilty to manslaughter. He's been remanded in custody and will be sentenced at the end of July.

Watch: Shypen wins the 14:50 at Yarmouth

Picture: First winner at Yarmouth races

Chinese restaurant ordered to pay more than £21,000 over hygiene

Andrew Turner

BBC Radio Norfolk

A Chinese restaurant owner was ordered to pay £21,701.40 in fines and costs after environmental health inspectors found a dead insect in a sweet-and-sour sauce and rat droppings in the cellar.

Officers also discovered mould on food and faulty fridges at the Energy Chinese Buffet restaurant on Marine Parade, Great Yarmouth.

Jai Ming Pang, 49, admitted 16 food hygiene offences at Great Yarmouth Magistrates' Court yesterday. 


In mitigation, his solicitor Wah-Piow Tan said: "At Yarmouth he has the perennial problem that he opens only for six months a year and was unable to get any trained staff and had staff with little or no experience in the restaurant trade." 

But magistrate Paul Allen said: "These offences took place over a long period of time and the fact that you are allegedly an experienced restaurateur, you should have known better."

Ardad wins first race at Yarmouth

Here's the favourite in the 14:20 in Yarmouth

Tommo draws a crowd at Yarmouth

Racing commentator Derek "Tommo" Thompson has been running through the form at Yarmouth.

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Racing resumes at Great Yarmouth in less than 20 minutes

Our reporter Phil Daley is at Great Yarmouth Racecourse where the first race since September will shortly get under way.

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Amazing! Mental health fund appeal stands at £330,000 just two months after launch

Eastern Daily Press

Today's EDP front page:


Foreign Office responds to criticism from girlfriend and family of missing climber

Mariam Issimdar

BBC Local Live

The Foreign Office has answered criticism from the girlfriend and father of missing climber Aiden Webb, that not enough was being done to find him.

In a statement, it said: "Our staff in London and Vietnam have been providing advice and assistance to the family of Aiden Webb since he was reported missing in Vietnam on 4 June.

"We remain in contact with local authorities, and continue to offer support to Mr Webb’s family during this distressing time."

Aiden Webb
Bluebell Baughan

Police appeal for witnesses after pensioners hit by car

Police want to hear from witnesses who saw two pedestrians in their 80s knocked down by a car in Hunstanton yesterday lunchtime.

Police sign

It happened in Le Strange Terrace. A woman was airlifted to hospital with serious injuries alongside a man with a leg injury. 

The driver of the Audi was arrested at the scene and has been released on bail until next month while inquiries continue.

Man and woman sought after boys assaulted in King’s Lynn park

Lynn News

Police have this morning issued a CCTV image of a man and woman they want to speak to in connection with an alleged assault on two young boys.

Norfolk Police

Labour In campaign battle bus hits Norwich

Andrew Sinclair

BBC Look East political correspondent

The Labour In campaign battle bus has arrived in Norwich and among those on board is the party's foreign affairs spokesman Hilary Benn and MEP for the East of England Richard Howitt.

Labour battle bus

The visit comes as the party tries raise its profile in the EU referendum campaign

There have been complaints that the party has not been very visible and it's widely thought that Labour voters could hold the key to the outcome of the 23 June referendum.

Uneven racetrack now 'lovely and flat' at Great Yarmouth

Great Yarmouth Racecourse finally hosts a meeting today having missed months of racing due to delays after delays to track improvements.

There was a false start to restoring racing last summer when a key festival had to be abandoned due to wet weather. 

Racing at Yarmouth
Getty Images

Owners of the course, the Arena Racing Company, faced criticism from some trainers after laying a new racing surface which had ridges in and did not meet standards.   

The trainers want to get back to Yarmouth. We had ridges here that's why we did the job. We're flat now; jockeys galloped on it, they said it's lovely and flat."

Richard AldousClerk of the course

Businesses 'felt the pain' of racecourse closure

The uneven track at Great Yarmouth racecourse has been levelled after nine months of work at a cost of £300,000 and the course is now open for the season with 16 races scheduled today and tomorrow.

Geograph/Andy Jamieson

The executive director of the racecourse says the closure affected many other local businesses economically.   

I think they felt the pain from the lost fixtures and the short season. When we race there will be more people in town; people looking for accommodation; they go to the local pub, a local restaurant. The list of people benefiting from a secondary spend is quite substantial.

Glenn TubbyGreat Yarmouth Racecourse executive director

Great Yarmouth geared for summer of racing

Andrew Turner

BBC Radio Norfolk

This morning I've been at Great Yarmouth racecourse, which is reopening today after it closed nine months ago because of problems with the track.

Great yarmouth racecourse
Geograph/G Thomas

The first thing that hits you is how pristine the lawns are. All the catering vans are lined up ready to sell their wares and then you come past this sign, "2016 raceday fixtures" and it shows four dates in June, four in July, five in August, three in September and two more in October - a full racing calendar for the first time since 2014.

Last year racing was abandoned at the Eastern Festival after a newly-laid track was beset by various problems.

Racing at Great Yarmouth under starter's orders

Rob Butler

BBC Radio Norfolk sport

One of Norfolk's biggest sporting venues opens its doors for the first time in nine months today.

There has been no racing at Great Yarmouth since last September when the Eastern Festival had to be abandoned because of safety concerns after extensive work to level the course.   

But the course has a double-header over the next two days, featuring 16 races in total. The first is at 14:20 today.

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Weather: Feeling warm with sunny spells

BBC Weather

Sunny spells will warm things up nicely with temperatures reaching 17C (63F).

BBC Weather has more details.   

Listen: Father says he will not leave Vietnam without his son

Trever Webb, father of missing traveller Aiden Webb, 22, says he won't leave Vietnam until his son has been found.

Aiden, an Anglia Ruskin University graduate who grew up in Norwich, has been missing for six days since he slipped and fell down a ravine. 

"The longer it takes to find Aiden, my hopes are fading of my son being alive and that is so hard – we’re so close; he’s so special. We just need help," he said.

Embassy says it's working closely with authorities searching for missing backpacker

The British Embassy says it is "working closely with the authorities leading the search" in Vietnam where a backpacker from Norwich has gone missing

Aiden Webb
Bluebell Baughan

Aiden Webb, 22, slipped and fell in mountainous jungle near Sa Pa six days ago. His father and girlfriend have expressed frustration about the lack of help from the embassy. 

A representative is due to arrive in Sa Pa later today.

Girlfriend of missing backpacker says British Embassy needs to do more

The girlfriend of missing backpacker Aiden Webb says she can't understand why the British Embassy has not done more to help her boyfriend, now missing for six days.

Bluebell Baughan, who went out to Vietnam with Aiden and was in contact with him via mobile phone after his accident, says she called the embassy soon after he slipped and fell into a ravine.

I called the embassy on the first day, within an hour, and on the sixth day they've finally sent someone but they haven't even arrived yet. We need some serious back-up here because it's been a long time."

Bluebell BaughanGirlfriend of missing backpacker

Family of missing backpacker 'frustrated by lack of help' from British Embassy

The father and girlfriend of a Norfolk man missing in mountainous jungle in Vietnam say they are running out of time to find him alive.

Trever Webb says they desperately need a proper mountain rescue team to search the deep ravines near to where his son Aiden fell. 

Aiden Webb
Bluebell Baughan

Mr Webb, who has travelled to Vietnam to take part in the search, says it has taken until today to get the British Embassy to visit the area and he's desperately worried. 

Aiden's girlfriend Bluebell Baughan was in contact with him after he fell until his mobile signal died. She says the local police have done what they can but they "need some serious back-up here as it's been a long time" since Aiden has gone missing. 

British Embassy staff are not expected to arrive at the location until later today.

'Desperate' family hoping drones will arrive to help search for missing son

The father of Aiden Webb says he's "desperate" for proper help to find his son. 

Aiden Webb
Bluebell Baughan

It's six days since the 22-year-old backpacker went missing in Vietnam after setting off alone to climb the Fansipan mountain range. He fell, injuring himself, and his mobile phone ran out of battery on Saturday.

Aiden's father, Trever Webb, says they really need a trained mountain rescue team. 

The family have been given permission to use drones to help find him, but they are having to wait a few more hours before they arrive.

Hello and welcome to Norfolk Live

Mariam Issimdar

BBC Local Live

Good morning. It's gloriously sunny here in Norwich, hope it's as wonderful where you are in the county.

We start today with an update on Norfolk backpacker Aiden Webb, who is still missing in mountains in Vietnam. 

His father Trever, who's in Sa Pa, the township nearest to Fansipan Mountain, says drones will be used today to help in the search for his son.