06/04/2017 London News


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Good evening and welcome to BBC London News,


They were once thought to be the greener choice for drivers,


but the pollution diesel cars emit means they could soon be paying


an extra 'toxin tax' to drive in the capital.


Now the Mayor has written to the Prime Minister,


asking her to help diesel drivers who were encouraged to buy


their vehicles with tax incentives and lower costs.


But the mayor wants to make it more difficult to drive


He says our toxic air leaves him no choice.


But it's not welcome news to drivers like Saffy,


I went diesel because of economic reasons,


They tend to do more miles than a petrol car,


I thought they were better for the environment.


We were led to believe that diesel was the way forward and many


The mayor's plans include the T charge - drivers of the worst


polluting cars would pay an extra ?10 in the Congestion Zone.


Today, he wrote to the Prime Minister calling for the government


The total cost, thought to be more than ?500 million.


The mayor recognises he's in a difficult position.


On the one hand, he says it's vital to clean up the capital's air.


On the other, he is under pressure not unfairly penalise London's


drivers who were once encouraged buy diesel cars.


And encouraged by the mayor's own party.


It was a Labour government who lowered the tax on diesel


at a time many believed it was greener.


I think it's a good thing for politicians


Now the experts say that diesel is responsible for a lot of the air


I don't want to leave families worse off, I don't want to leave


I'm saying, the government has got to step up and help.


But some are worried whether they will get


Most cars at this dealership in Willesden are diesel,


because they say that's what most customers still want.


At the moment a lot of our vehicles are diesel.


Obviously if Sadiq Khan is looking at a scrappage scheme it'll


affect us in the long run, because we could have diesel


vehicles we can't sell and customers who are very concerned.


The mayor agrees the message to consumers must be clearer,


but says it is now over to the government to play its part.


He wants drivers discouraged from using diesel, but not punished


We heard the Mayor asking for the government's help.


It's a possibility. The reason Sadiq Khan is pushing hard on this is


because London is one of the most polluted cities in Europe. More than


9000 people die early as a result of pollution, caused by diesel


vehicles. If Sadiq Khan wants them scraps, but it's tough for him, but


it's Labour that encouraged us to buy diesel in the first place. So he


needs the help of a Tory government. Theresa May has signalled in the


last few days she doesn't want to see the owners of diesel cars


punished. So the signs are looking good. But she's got big things


coming up this year, Brexit and soap it's not known how much of a


priority this is for her. The indications are that diesel cars are


going to be on our roads for some time yet.


A woman from St Albans accused of knocking down and killing


a 70-year-old cyclist has been cleared of careless driving.


Michael Mason was knocked off his bike on Regent Street


and died three weeks later from a brain injury.


The case, brought by a cycling charity, is believed to be


the first to be paid for through crowd funding.


The Prime Minister has used the launch of her party's local


election campaign to attack Labour for its handling of the Ken


Theresa May said the Jewish community had been betrayed


A Labour Party, which just this week revealed the depths


to which it has now sunk, betraying the Jewish community


in our country by letting Ken Livingstone off the hook.


It could not be clearer that the Labour Party is now a long


way away from the common centre ground of British politics today.


An Essex council is heading to the High Court to stop


the construction of two illegal travellers' sites.


The Hovefield camps are less than two miles from Dale Farm -


which cost Basildon Council millions of pounds to clear six years ago.


The travellers at the new site say they have nowhere else to go,


Green belt land in Basildon, which the council says should


Last month, people living nearby on Hovefields Avenue


Tarmac was laid, and mobile homes appeared.


That's despite an injunction by the High Court back in October,


banning any further development on two specific sites.


If you develop an area, you have to have infrastructure,


The council has to agree, you cannot just set up,


be it a caravan, a house, a bungalow, just where you think


you will, because you have decided to develop.


It matters not that they are Travellers, it's just an individual


or a group of people cannot develop illegally.


Basildon Council is now taking legal action.


On this one, we've had injunctions down for a number of months now


which have been breached, and that is a criminal offence.


The unauthorised development is just three miles away


from the Dale Farm Travellers Site in Wickford.


There are two separately-owned pieces of land in question,


one is west of Hovefields Avenue, the other is known as


And, if nothing's done, some people fear a repeat of this,


the chaotic clearance in 2011 of the part of Dale Farm that had


been illegally occupied and developed by Travellers


80 families were evicted from unlawful plots,


the process costing Basildon Council more than ?4 million.


Six years on, and Dale Farm, to the right of the existing legal


site, is slowly returning to green belt.


But those who work with Travellers say there aren't


People have to exist, and they have to have a place to live.


They can buy their own property, they can put in for planning


permission, but sometimes that takes years to go through.


And in the meantime, 99.9% of Gypsy and Traveller


Lawyers for Basildon Council will come here to the High Court


tomorrow to ask for an order giving them permission to go onto the land


west of Hovefields Avenue, to undo some of the recent


developments, and restore the site to how it was in October


when the injunction banning further development was issued.


Although, it could be just the start of a long


Refugees should be treated with respect and sympathy -


that's the message from Kurdish leaders in Croydon, after a teenage


asylum seeker was severely beaten there last week.


Members of his community have been visiting him in hospital and told


us how he's grateful for people's support.


With a broken spine, fractured eye socket


and a bleed on his brain, Reker Ahmed had trouble recognising


But when he did, he told them what was going through his mind


He thought he was really going to die.


That's what he said, he thought he is gone.


You could see from his face when he was trying to move,


that he was in quite a bit of pain and agony.


His left eye, he couldn't quite open it, it was black and blue.


The 17-year-old had been settling well into his local community.


He had fled the regime in Iran last year.


What is it that drove Reker to the UK?


There's a huge repression and oppression against


So he fled from the persecutions and oppression over there,


He's been living there, and for something like this


to happen to a refugee who has gone through so much suffering


13 people have been charged in connection


The teenager was beaten and kicked by a gang as he waited


Since then, more than ?50,000 has been raised to help him.


When I actually conveyed the message to say that the British people


were well behind him, that they were totally


against this attack, it put a big smile on his face,


and he actually lifted his hand and put it on his


So he did really appreciate that, and that was something I think that


I hope that he's going to make a steady recovery, and this will not


cause him any further complications as a result of this attack.


But nevertheless, I think this will stay with him


You could see from the extent of the injuries to his face


and body, he will never forget about this attack.


That's it for now from me, but let's find out what


Three more days and days to come and temperatures will be on the rise.


After a quiet day today we have sunshine, sky clear tonight.


Temperatures dip away. It will be a chilly start, a chilly start to what


should be a lovely day with long spells of sunshine. The sun will be


up quite quickly in the morning. It will be a lovely morning. A bit


chilly, like winds, some sunshine could compensate. Patchy cloud in


the afternoon. 16-17, very nice. The wind direction will change as we go


into the weekend. The south-easterly breeze develops. With that comes


some slightly warmer air. Temperatures on Saturday rising a


touch or two. Another decent day with patchy cloud and sunny spells.


The outlook, temperatures continuing to rise into the weekend. We'll see


Hello. There was some warm sunshine around today, but it's set to get


even warmer this weekend. 18 Celsius in London this afternoon. This was


the scene in Chiswick, much quieter than it was on Sunday for the boat


race. Under the cloud for


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