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An entrepreneur who secured an exclusive top prize at last year’s Thames Gateway Business Awards has spoken of the “amazing” effect it has had on his charity.

With summer in full swing, here are some of the days, and nights, out families can enjoy over the next few weeks.

The 1916 Battle of the Somme typifies the Western Front for many among the public – fierce trench fighting, dubious tactics from the British Army, casualties numbering in the thousands.

A children’s charity is inviting residents to an evening of bowling fun.

“We had what I would call a ‘council estate of mind’. Our benchmark for success was how impressive the local drug dealer’s car was, or which of the native gang members had the most respect.”

Welcoming a baby into the world is a profound, life-changing event, where much can be overwhelming.

More than a thousand fundraisers were bathed in glorious sunshine – and colourful bubbles – as they tackled a 5km course.

The king of American reality TV, master of a multi-million pound estate, Mark Burnett has certainly come a long way from his Dagenham roots.

With World Book Day fast approaching, test your knowledge of some of the globe’s most beloved children’s books.

Each year, hordes of Willy Wonkas, Mad Hatters, Gruffalos and Harry Potters walk the nation’s classrooms for the ultimate celebration of literature – World Book Day.

Grief manifests itself in a myriad of ways. For Helen Fisher, her shattered world blurred like she was “walking through the fog”, life’s warmth grown cold after the death of her soldier son in Afghanistan.

A bus journey with a difference included visits to heritage buildings in Barking and Dagenham.

All 52 victims of the 7/7 bombings left behind devastated family, friends and colleagues, heartbroken at losing their loved ones in such a barbaric manner.

On the last day Neill Buchel was seen alive, two defendants charged with his murder exchanged text messages arranging drinks and “female company”, a court has heard.

After visiting eight cemeteries and memorials, one museum and a commemorative workshop, our tour came to an end.

On July 1 1916, thousands of soldiers walked across to German lines on the Western Front and began their assaults, confident their enemy had been weakened by a week-long bombardment of 1.6 million shells.

The fate of British deserters and the stories which lie behind every war grave were among topics considered by the students yesterday.

Sixteen million deaths, 20 million wounded, six million missing. These are the cold, stark facts of the Great War, the world’s first truly modern conflict.

Police are hunting a man last known to living in Dagenham over a burglary.

Three people have been arrested in connection with a fire in Chadwell Heath that left a teenager with serious burns.

A teenager seriously injured in a fire is now in a stable but critical condition.

A letter written on board the Titanic by the mother of a famous survivor has sold for a record-breaking £119,000.

A dedicated Scout from Barking won an award for his commitment to the youth organisation.

A poppy seller who operates out of a Ford Model T car was back on Dagenham’s streets last week.

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Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

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