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London Tonight Tonight

Good afternoon. Sir David Frost once, famously, invited Peter Cooke to a dinner party featuring show-bizz, political and even 'royal' gliteratti. But such was Peter's distaste for Frosty that, after a moment's pondering, he answered the invite with the collectable response, "I find I'm watching TV that night, David..." If you were watching , last week, what follows London Tonight on ITV you will know I was presenting the Evening News. This week , I am back in harness and what a day to return!
Swine 'flu, which has been building up like gathering clouds, is moving from dark skies to a torrent - after the Essex death last week, we have a little school girl, today, from West Drayton, who has tragically died. Glen is at her school and is trying to find out as much as he can about her, her family and her friends. We will also have the best and most reassuring advice we can muster. But it is a bleak day.
Tragedy, too, from Afghanistan, but lifted by the remarkable valour of the victims of that dusty, distressing conflict. Three more young men from our part of the UK died at the end of last week and died seeking to help their comrades. They died, as Gordon Brown is telling the House of Commons as I write, protecting us from terrorism. You may or may not agree with his analysis but you will, I am sure, share the heartbreak of their families and friends. Ronke pays tribute.
We have all paid tribute on many occasions to the brave men and women who fight fires in London. We have smiled, too, when they have rescued cats from trees or helped extract people from often odd situations with goodness knows what stuck gracious knows where. So, our eye-brows rose when we learned that the GLA said it was investing £9 million of your money to sub-contract "emergency cover" to a private firm which currently services the fire-engines and other appliances our brave lads and lasses in blue serge use. It seems it is to replace the Green Goddesses and the Army who sprang, or trundled, to keep us safe when the FBU went on strike. Right or wrong? Provocative or a wise precaution? We'll ask Brian Coleman who runs the GLA's Emergency Services Sub-Committee.
Harris has pictures of the first new rolling stock, apart from the tasty Javelin trains, to grace London's over-ground railway in 30 years. Have they learned nothing in three decades, some of you may be moved to query, when we tell you that among the defining characteristics of these carriages is fewer seats. The boss of TfL says it is so we can move "more freely" through the carriages in pursuit of the Holy Grail of railway travel - a seat. My experience of Tokyo and New York, let alone the Bakerloo Line, is such that this will often prove a fruitless scrum. Harris will, I know, be entirely objective but I doubt my ire will wain.
Lucy has an interesting tableau which features an imaginary meeting between Nirvana rock-star Kurt Cobain, who blew his brains out with a collectable shot-gun, and Sex Pistols rock-star Sid Vicious, who was stabbed to death by his lover in a drug-alcohol haze. Not my idea of a pleasant Saturday night party but very watchable, perhaps. Tussaud's Chamber of Horrors does good business, so why not.
The Americans thought they were buying Tower Bridge when they bought, and had delivered , London Bridge. I do not know which bridge a latter day Evil Knievil thought he was leaping over on his motor-bike but the pictures are spectacular so we will share, several times.
Chrissie clears the bench to deliver her forecast, and the front-pages may be graced with my biker friend. They would if I was the editor but I am not. I am here.
And I am sitting next to the Oz who has helped me spell Mr Knievil's name. If it's right, what a pair we make; if it's wrong, I'll transport her back to the land of the koalas and barbies.
Assuming she is right, we'll see you at 6.
Alastair and Alex.