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Thousands brave heat and threat of storms for Latitude Festival

Thousands of people have been descending on Henham Park near Southwold in Suffolk for the Latitude Festival.

The event, in its ninth year, kicks off tonight with headliner, Lily Allen. The singer stepped in at the last minute to cover sickness.

The weekend is a mixed bag of arts, comedy, music and according to the forecast, weather too.

Latitude attracts some big names - this year they've got Chrissie Hynde, Alison Moyet and locals like Emma Freud and her partner, Richard Curtis.

"We have dance, we have West End shows on the Waterfront stage, we have a huge kids' area which is a festival within a festival really. There's something for everyone. Kids come, babies come, even my granny is here. So everyone turns up"

– Jennifer Roberts, Latitude

Click below to watch a report from Latitude by ITV News Anglia's Kate Prout

Ashleigh and Pudsey return to region for special screening of first feature film

Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey pose for photographs at the premiere of their new film in London.
Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey attend the premiere of their new film in London. Credit: Press Association Images.

Britain's Got Talent winners Ashleigh Butler and her dog Pudsey were back in the region today to be given the freedom of Wellingborough.

Tonight, they'll head to Northampton for a special screening of the dancing duo's first feature film.

Our reporter Olivia Paterson has been there too.

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Norfolk's "Mini Monet" exhibits work alongside his artistic hero

Kieron Williamson.
Credit: ITV News Anglia.

The Norfolk schoolboy dubbed "Mini Monet" is staging his latest summer art exhibition - featuring his own paintings and those of his hero.

Kieron Williamson, who was a multi millionaire at only 11, already has a big collection of work by Edward Seago that he bought with his earnings.

It is now 40 years since the artist's death. He was a favourite of the Queen Mother and taught Prince Philip and Prince Charles to paint.

Lily Allen steps in as last-minute Latitude headliner

Lily Allen
Lily Allen is to headline at Latitude Festival. Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Pop star Lily Allen will headline the opening night of the Latitude Festival in Suffolk after indie band Two Door Cinema Club pulled out of the event.

The decision comes after the band's singer, Alex Trimble, announced he was too ill to perform at the Henham Park arts and music festival.

Allen, whose latest album is entitled Sheezus, stepped in at the last minute to fill the slow.

The outspoken star sent her best wishes to the performer and said she was looking forward to taking to the stage at Henham Park.

She said: "So sorry to hear about Alex from Two Door Cinema Club. However I am more than happy to step in."

"I've never been to Latitude but I hear it's fabulous and I can't wait to get my heels on for some serious dancing action on Friday evening - so, so excited."

– Lily Allen.

Two Door Cinema Club issued a statement, saying: "It is with a heavy heart that we are going to need to cancel our upcoming shows at Latitude and Bournemouth Academy.

"Alex collapsed at Seattle airport on the way to London and has been hospitalised with a chronic stomach complaint.

"We are devastated to have to cancel shows that we were so looking forward to. We can only apologise and hope for your understanding at this time."

Melvin Benn, managing director of Festival Republic which runs the event, said he was sad that Two Door Cinema Club had been forced to cancel their performance "under advice of doctors".

He added: "We wish Alex all the best and a speedy recovery.

"We are honoured that Lily Allen is able to step in at the last minute and would like to thank her for filling the headline slot.

"After her show-stopping performance at Glastonbury Lily was a natural choice, the Latitude audience are in for something really spectacular."

Two Door Cinema Club.
Two Door Cinema Club has had to pull out of Latitude Festival due to an illness. Credit: Ian West/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Britain's Got Talent's Ashleigh and Pudsey to get freedom of town

Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey pose for photographs at the premiere of their new film in London.
Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey attend the premiere of their new film in London. Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Britain's Got Talent winners Ashleigh Butler and Pudsey will be given the freedom of Wellingborough today.

The dancing duo have been jet-setting around the world after their success in the ITV show in 2012.

On Sunday, they attended the premiere of their new film Pudsey The Dog: The Movie.

It has a special screening in Northamptonshire tonight.

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Cambridgeshire: Extra officers on patrol for The Secret Garden Party festival

The Secret Garden Party in Abbots Ripton.
The Secret Garden Party in Abbots Ripton. Credit: ITV News Anglia

More than 30,000 people will be descending on a village in Cambridgeshire later this month for an annual music festival.

Police say they've been working closely with the organisers of The Secret Garden Party in Abbots Ripton near Huntingdon to make sure the event runs safely.

Extra officers will be on patrol over the festival weekend which starts on July 24.

Secrets of the Walking Tree - on ITV's Countrywise

One of the region's best preserved medieval landscapes is to feature in ITV's Countrywise series later this year.

Hatfield Forest near Stansted Airport is home to many historic trees dating back hundreds of years to the time of the Tudor monarchs.

Elodie Harper met up with presenter Paul Heiney to find out more about this well-loved woodland - including the magical sounding Walking Tree.

Click below to watch the report:

Brad Pitt tucks into a £6 cheeseburger in Essex

Brad Pitt was spotted in Wimpy in Billericay High Street Credit: PA

Multi-millionaire Hollywood actor, Brad Pitt, has reportedly been spotted in a fast food restaurant in Essex, treating himself to a £6 cheeseburger. The 50-year-old actor tucked into a cheesburger meal with chips at Wimpy in Billericay High Street on Tuesday evening surrounded by bodyguards.

According to The Mirror, the actor also reportedly ordered the following for his entourage:

A £9.85 smokey barbecue burger with cheese, bacon and chips

£2.95 classic cheeseburger

£4.60 sausage, egg and chips meal

And some fizzy drinks

Speaking to The Mirror, one insider said:

Brad was really polite and friendly to staff. He’s a fan of the Wimpy donuts after having them when he was filming World War Z here a few years ago, but sadly there weren’t any on Tuesday night.

High hopes for economic boost as the Tour de France gets closer

As the "Big Weekend" gets underway in Cambridge tonight, the people planning for the arrival of the Tour de France in the city say they're ready.

And they're hoping it will provide huge economic benefits to the region as the Tour de France races through Cambridgeshire and Essex on Monday.

Click above to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Claire McGlasson.

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