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Phoenix Choir off to represent the UK in Las Vegas next year

A Choir made up with members from Cambridge, Suffolk, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire - and are off to represent the UK in Las Vegas next year.

Phoenix Choir have come a long way since they started with 6 members in 1978.

Sometimes referred to as Potton’s best kept secret, in their 36 year history Phoenix have consistently been in the top 5 choruses in the UK and are the current silver medal chorus in Region 31. And now they are off to Las Vegas.

Click below to watch nativity scenes from St Barnabas School in Wellingborough and a Christmas message from The Dean of Ely Cathedral who are accompanied by music from Phoenix Choir:

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70-year-old woman robbed of Christmas gifts

CCTV image of the woman police would like to speak to Credit: Suffolk Police

Police are investigating after a 70-year-old woman had her Christmas shopping stolen whilst out in Newmarket, Suffolk.

She'd put her bags containing Christmas presents down whilst looking around a charity shop in the Guineas Shopping Centre. When she returned to collect them they had been stolen.

Police would like to speak to the woman pictured in the CCTV picture above about this incident.

Anyone with information should call 101.

Much-needed makeover of train carriages to begin

An Abellio Greater Anglia train. Credit: ITV News Anglia.

Train operator Abellio Greater Anglia will today begin a much-needed refurbishment of carriages used on the Norwich to London rail line.

The improvements will include new tables and seat covers, power points and better lighting.

The first of the refurbished carriages will return to use early next year with the entire fleet finished by October 2016.

"We are delighted to begin this major refresh for our MkIII carriages, which will deliver a significant improvement in the travelling environment for passengers on our key intercity services between Norwich, Ipswich, Colchester and London."

– James Burles, Abellio Greater Anglia's managing director.

Health minister says ambulance response times should stay as they are

Health minister and Suffolk MP Daniel Poulter says he does not agree ambulance response time targets should be lengthened.

It follows claims in a national newspaper at the weekend that proposals had been agreed by NHS England bosses "in principle" to double the target from eight to 19 minutes for some patients.

A leaked NHS document suggested the change would affect people in the "Red2" category, meaning their condition was considered "serious but not the most life-threatening".

Yesterday health secretary Jeremy Hunt said there were "no plans to double ambulance waiting times, and there never have been".

Daniel Poulter, MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich, said he believed the current targets were appropriate.

"At the moment, I think we have response times that work for the ambulance service and they are there to make sure people who are the most sick are prioritised when a 999 call somes in.

"That's what good care is about. So I think the response times as they are at the moment are helping us to make sure, over those busy periods at Christmas, people are being seen in the right way."

– Daniel Poulter, Health Minister.

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Body pulled from river in Suffolk

A man's body has been pulled from the River Orwell in Suffolk. Credit: ITV News Anglia.

The body of a man has been pulled from a river in Suffolk.

Police are treating the death as unexplained and are working to identify the victim.

They were called at about 8.45am on Sunday to reports of a body that had been found in the River Orwell at Ipswich.

Greater Anglia trains suspended until further notice

Trains on the Great Eastern Mainline are at a standstill this afternoon.

Operator Abellio Greater Anglia says there are problems with the electricity supply between Shenfield and Chelmsford.

It means all trains out of London Liverpool Street heading to Chelmsford and Norwich have been suspended.

Greater Anglia is warning passengers to expect delays and cancellations. It is not known when services will begin again.

'Black Friday' lives up to its name as ambulance crews kept busy

An East of England Ambulance Service crew heads out in response to a call. Credit: ITV News Anglia.

The region's ambulance trust dealt with more than 2,700 emergency calls last night as crews battled through what has been dubbed "Black Friday".

Emergency services had expected it to be a busy evening as many people headed out for festive celebrations on the final weekend before Christmas.

The East of England Ambulance Service said it saw a 7.5% increase on the average volume of daily calls over the last four weeks.

The trust's locality director Matt Broad urged people to think carefully before dialling 999.

“We were extremely busy yesterday and last night, but I would like to thank our staff in the control rooms and on the frontline who worked really hard to provide a good service to patients.

"The Christmas and winter period is always busy for the ambulance service and I would encourage anyone who needs medical help to choose well – if you need help but it is not an emergency please call 111, which is open 24 hours a day and who will be able to get the right help for you.”

– Matt Broad, East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust.
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