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Summary

  1. Man hunted in PC murder inquiry
  2. Hillsborough inquests hear medics' evidence
  3. Fresh appeal in hunt for missing man
  4. Gales force ferry cancellation
  5. Guide dog attacked by another dog
  6. Updates on Thursday 15 January 2015

Live Reporting

By Stephanie Barnard

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good evening

BBC Local Live will be back from 08:00 with the latest news, sport, travel and weather for Merseyside.

'Hard for families'

Sue Johnston says hearing evidence at the Hillsborough Inquests today has been "incredibly emotional".

Sue Johnston
BBC

She tells BBC Radio Merseyside: "I'm glad I've come. I know it's been hard for those families every day but I think it's so important that they are there in that court.

"The reality is those families - it's not just facts and figures."

Overnight forecast

Early evening gales, will gradually ease as

outbreaks of mainly heavy rain and hill snow clear east.

Mel Coles with the weather forecast
BBC

Scattered wintry showers will follow, falling as snow over the hills. Otherwise clear, but cold, with widespread frost and a risk of ice.

Man hunted in PC murder inquiry

A European arrest warrant has been issued for a man wanted as part of the PC Neil Doyle murder inquiry,

BBC News Online reports.

Timmy Donovan, who is also known as Timmy O'Sullivan
Merseyside Police

Timmy Donovan, also known as Timmy O'Sullivan, is understood to have left the country on the day the officer was fatally injured in Liverpool.

Police seek man who 'grabbed' teenager

Police release an e-fit of a man they would like to speak to after a teenage girl was grabbed while walking in Wallasey last month.

E-fit of man police want to speak to
Merseyside police

The 17-year-old was walking along Withens Lane at about 22.50 on 8 December when a man approached her and grabbed her arm.

She challenged him and managed to struggle free and escape.

Sky Pier shelved

Liverpool Echo

North Liverpool's flagship tourist project,

the futuristic Sky Pier, has been temporarily shelved after the council lost £900,000 in European funding.

'Local knowledge will be lost'

Judy Hobson

Correspondent, BBC North West

More on the closure of the North West's coastguard station.

Twenty-two volunteers worked from the lifeboat station in Southport and if they got a call out it came from a centre in Liverpool.

Lifeboat volunteer Keith Porter
BBC

From tomorrow that will change and instead they'll receive their messages and calls from a centre in Holyhead.

Some staff have concerns - volunteer Keith Porter says knowledge of the local area will be lost once it becomes more centralised.

Coming up on BBC One at 18:30

Roger Johnson

Presenter, North West Tonight

Our main story on North West Tonight at 18:30 is Professor John Ashton's evidence to the Hillsborough Inquests today.

BBC reporter Andy Gill talking to Annabel Tiffin
BBC

Andy Gill will have all the details from Warrington and we'll hear from the staff at Crosby Lifeboat Station on the eve of its closure.

I hope you can join Annabel, me and the team on BBC One from 18:30.

News on the hour

BBC Radio Merseyside

In the news at 17:00: A Conservative councillor in West Lancashire has resigned from his party and gone independent, claiming his colleagues take local residents "for granted."

Adrian Owens, who represents the Derby Ward, covering Ormskirk, says he's had reports of councillors falling asleep in meetings.

'Privilege' to sit in Hillsborough Inquests

Actress Sue Johnston has sat among the families attending today's Hillsborough Inquest hearings.

Sue Johnton and Margaret Aspinall
BBC

Ms Johnston tells the BBC: "Like everyone, if you're a Liverpool supporter I have my own memories of the day. It's a privilege to be able to come and sit among these families because they're remarkable."

'Lack of qualified staff'

At the Hillsborough Inquests

Andy Gill

BBC North West Tonight

Dr Ed Walker (pictured) wasn't based at the Northern General Hospital but he went there because he thought that's where he could do the most help for patients.

Dr
BBC

He said he treated about nine patients initially.

He said the lack of qualified staff meant that sometimes he had to abandon resuscitation efforts on young patients, something that he wouldn't normally have done but there were other patients who needed him more.

Children 'quizzed by Ofsted on lesbian sex'

Wirral Globe

A Wirral MEP says he was "horrified" to learn that Ofsted inspectors quizzed 10-year-old school children about lesbian sex and transsexuality

News on the hour

At the Hillsborough Inquests

Phil Cooper

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside

In the news at 16:00: The Hillsborough inquests have heard claims that a police officer failed to respond when a fan told him "there are kids dying in there".

Professor John Ashton has been giving evidence at the hearings in Warrington.

Concerns over lifeboat safety

BBC North West Tonight

The North West's coastguard station on Merseyside is closing tomorrow to be replaced by a new centre in North Wales.

The government says the new system will be more efficient, but local lifeboat crews are not convinced.

Southport Lifeboat centre
AFP

BBC correspondent Judy Hobson has been to the lifeboat house in Southport where staff will be affected by the changes.

Police describe suspect

A description of the man police want to trace after he was reported for making inappropriate comments to three children in Birkenhead on Sunday, has been released by police.

He is described as being white, tall and slim with brown hair. He was wearing a black jumper, blue jeans and brown and white Adidas training shoes.

Guide dog may retire after attack

Marc Gaier

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside

There are fears that a guide dog may have to retire after it was attacked by another dog while walking with its owner in north Liverpool.

Ushi, a 2-year-old Labrador Retriever cross with her owner Rose
BBC

Ushi, a two-year-old Labrador Retriever cross, had only been with Rose Hill for six weeks.

They were walking on Scargreen Avenue in Norris Green when a Staffordshire bull terrier type set upon Ushi. It took several local people to pull the dog away.

Gil could play

Phil Kinsella

BBC Merseyside Sport

Liverpool's opponents on Saturday Aston Villa could give an immediate debut to their new signing Carles Gil

Villa manager Paul Lambert says the Spanish under-21 international who signed earlier this week is definitely in with a chance of playing against the reds at Villa Park

News on the hour

Alex Dibble

BBC Radio Merseyside

Our top story in the news at 15:00: The Shadow Home Secretary's promised to protect 1,000 police jobs in Cheshire if it wins the election, by reforming the national force.

Labour talk crime figures

Simon Moffatt

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside

Crime in Chester's the subject of a meeting in the city later.

Shadow Home secretary Yvette Cooper will meet local residents later as her party claims the coalition government's let them down by allowing officer numbers to fall.

Official figures though show crime's fallen in the area in recent years.

Liverpool FC in 2007

via Facebook

Liverpool FC posts: Remember this from Steven Gerrard against Aston Villa FC - Official in 2007? Click here to find out where the breathtaking victory ranks in ‪#‎LFC‬'s top 10 Villa Park triumphs:
http://lfc.tv/AmbY

Steven Gerrard, Liverpool FC
liverpool fc

News on the hour

Alex Dibble

BBC Radio Merseyside

A doctor who volunteered to treat casualties after the Hillsborough disaster has told the inquests if a major incident had been declared sooner, there would have been more people with the right kind of skills ready to help.

Edward Walker, an anaesthetist based in Rotherham, went to the Northern General in Sheffield when he saw what was happening on TV.

'Need to stop building'

A demonstration was held ahead of a council meeting last night to discuss plans to build on green spaces in the city.

Protesters oppose building on sites such as Woolton Woods and Sefton Park Meadows.

Green space campaigner
BBC

One campaigner (pictured) told the BBC: "When do you stop building? You build on top of another build. Once there's no parks left when do you build then? We need to stop somewhere - we've got to have green spaces in the city."

Everton 'are improving'

Phil Kinsella

BBC Merseyside Sport

Everton captain Phil Jagielka (pictured) believes the team are improving, even if results are still proving hard to come by.

Everton captain Phil Jagielka
Getty Images

The Blues have to wait until next Monday for their next league game and they're now seven games without a win

Jagielka says the squad are aware of how important a win against West Brom will be.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

Our top story in the news at 13:00:

Merseyside Police are investigating after a man made inappropriate comments to three children in Wirral while they played outside a house.

Plus we'll from our reporter Phil Cooper who is following the Hillsborough Inquests in the next hour.

'Simple interventions' needed

At the Hillsborough Inquests

Andy Gill

BBC North West Tonight

An anaesthetist who treated people at Sheffield's Northern General Hospital has appeared at the Hillsborough inquests in Warrington.

Dr Ed Walker says a delay in declaring a major incident at the hospital meant that for a time he was the only doctor in A&E who could get airway into patients' tracheas. Adding: "The patients needed very simple interventions but they needed it immediately."

You can read more

by following @MerseyHack on Twitter.

Police seek man after children approached

Police want to speak to a man after three young children were approached by a man in Birkenhead over the weekend.

At about 15:00 on Sunday the children, aged between four and five years old, were playing on New Ferry Road when an unknown male approached them.

Merseyside Police say the man made inappropriate comments to the children and showed them images on his mobile phone before walking away.

Guide dog Ushi attacked

Guide Dogs Liverpool

tweets: Guide dog owner Rose being interviewed by
@bbcmerseyside about the horrible attack on her guide dog Ushi

Guide Dogs Liverpool speak to BBC Radio Merseyside after a dog was attacked
Guide dogs liverpool

Drugs baron to be extradited

BBC Radio Merseyside

Plans to extradite a Liverpool drugs trafficker from Spain will be put into place today.

Stephen Blundell, 36, formerly of Leathers Lane, Liverpool, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply heroin in 2013.

The 36-year-old handed himself in Tenerife on Monday.

Rare cinnamon frogs bred by zoo

More than 40 rare frogs from South East Asia have been bred in a "European first" by

Chester Zoo.

Cinnamon frogs
chester zoo

The zoo says the

43 cinnamon frogs are the only amphibians of their kind to hatch in any zoo in the world in nearly two years.

Zoo manager Ben Baker says: "Relatively little is actually known about the cinnamon frog and so we now hope to learn a lot from our new arrivals."

News on the hour

At the Hillsborough Inquests

Phil Cooper

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside

Our lead story in the news bulletin at 12:00: A senior doctor has told the Hillsborough inquests he was the only specialist available to treat the first casualties who arrived at hospital in the early stages after the disaster.

Dr Edward Walker was off duty on the day, but went to the Northern General in Sheffield when he heard what was happening at the ground.

He told the court there could have been more staff and the right types of drugs available had a major incident been declared sooner.

'Observe not as witness'

Andy Gill

BBC North West Tonight

Earlier the inquest heard from senior nurse Fred Eccleston from the Wirral who was at Hillsborough as a spectator.

Actress Sue Johnston and Margaret Aspinall, whose son, James, died at Hillsborough
BBC

Actress Sue Johnston of Brookside and Downton fame is at new Hillsborough inquests in Warrington today. To observe, not as witness.

Sue (pictured) walked into the inquest with Margaret Aspinall, whose son, James, died at Hillsborough

Stories we're working on

Christian Spooner

News editor, BBC Radio Merseyside

It's a busy news day with our reporters across the patch this morning. Phil Cooper is keeping us updated with the Hillsborough inquests in Warrington where we've already seen the surprise appearance of actress Sue Johnston. She's not giving evidence but is there to support the families.

Simon Moffatt is in Chester for the visit of Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper who is criticising the government's record on crime in the city.

And Marc Gaier is currently speaking to the owner of a guide dog in Liverpool which was seriously injured when it was attacked by another dog.

Dog attack

Police are trying to trace a dog which attacked a guide dog in Liverpool.

It happened on Monday afternoon near Scargreen Avenue in Norris Green, when the two-year-old Labrador Retriever was walking with her owner.

The dog suffered injuries to her ribs and ears, and is now recovering at home.

News on the hour

At the Hillsborough Inquests

Phil Cooper

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside

An off-duty nurse who treated fans on the pitch at Hillsborough has told the inquests he spent an hour and a half trying to revive casualties after the crush.

The court heard from Frederick Eccleston who said he couldn't understand why the local health authority's major medical disaster team wasn't called upon, when it became clear there were lots of people injured.

Disappearance 'unusual'

Police release the full statement online as they renew their appeal to trace Adam Whitehurst, 34.

Mersey Police website
Mersey police

He's been missing from his home in Southport since New Year's Eve.

Merseyside Police describe his disappearance as unusual.

Hillsborough inquests

Phil Cooper

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside

The court is due to hear more evidence this morning from an off-duty nurse who tried to revive casualties on the pitch.

Other medical professionals will also be questioned about their role on the day.

A41 closed southbound

The A41 New Chester Road is closed southbound due to accident between Port Causeway and Bromborough Village Road.

Read about the latest disruptions on BBC Travel News.

Derry Matthews

BBC Sport

Liverpool boxer

Derry Mathews (pictured right) wants to give injured Anthony Crolla a first shot at the WBA world lightweight title he intends to take off Richar Abril in March.

Derry Matthews
Getty Images

Crolla, 28, was due to fight Cuban Abril this month, but was badly hurt when he tried to apprehend burglars in December, with Mathews replacing him.

Liverpool-based Mathews stopped Manchester's Crolla, also 28, in 2012 and the pair drew in 2013.