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  1. Updates for Wednesday 21 January 2015
  2. More news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Thursday

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved


That's all from the Local Live team. Join us for all your news, sport, travel and weather again from 08:00 on Thursday.

Cold and wet weather tonight

Showery rain, sleet or snow this evening will die out overnight, with most places becoming dry but remaining rather cloudy and cold.

Weather forecast

However, there will be some cloud breaks which will allow frost, fog patches and the risk of ice.

Coming up

Roger Johnson

Presenter, North West Tonight

On tonight's programme we meet Leslie Potts, the veteran paper boy on the Wirral, who celebrated his 90th birthday today by making his deliveries.

Also, after Lancashire planners

recommend rejecting plans to test drill at two sites, what does this mean for any potential shale gas plans on Merseyside?

And we'll reflect on

Liverpool's 1-1 draw with Chelsea last night.

Hollywood's Harrelson in Liverpool

Liverpool Echo

Hollywood actor Woody Harrelson has arrived in Liverpool to talk to performing arts students.

Woody Harrelson

He was snapped outside the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, which was co-founded by Beatles legend Sir Paul McCartney.

Cannabis farm found in Liverpool

Merseyside Police has uncovered a cannabis farm at a property on the outskirts of Liverpool city centre.

Cannabis plants
Merseyside police

Officers found 88 plants in six rooms at some flats above the Brewery Tap pub, on Stanhope Street.

Sgt Richie Smith said: "We believe that this cannabis farm has only been operational for a couple of weeks and if had continued to run, had a potential yield of approximately £350,000 per year."

Burglary victim's appeal

A woman has appealed to thieves who burgled her home before Christmas to return a family heirloom.

The gold bracelet contained seven princess cut diamonds and was customised from jewellery items given by relatives over many years and melted to form one unique piece.

"I'd like to appeal to the consciences of the offenders," said the woman, whose home in Childwall Valley Road was raided on 20 December.

Are you a winner?

A Lotto prize worth £1m has yet to be claimed from a ticket bought in Liverpool.

A National Lottery spokesman said the winning ticket matched one of the 20 raffle numbers in the draw on Saturday 22 November with the code TEAL 38616313.

The lucky ticket-holder has until 21 May to claim their prize.

Cocaine dealers 'used firm as front'

Tom Mullen

BBC News Online

Three men have been jailed after they used a Cheshire car valeting business as a front to supply cocaine.

Cocaine dealers
cheshire police

Christopher Shaw, Mark Currie and William Quinn were arrested after a covert police operation last August.

Cheshire Police said they used a van from Shaw's Widnes-based business, UK Valeting Solutions, to carry drugs. The men were jailed at Liverpool Crown Court after admitting conspiracy to supply cocaine.

Whistleblower's blacklisting claim

Paul Burnell

BBC News

A Liverpool nurse who was struck off after secretly filming colleagues abusing patients says it stopped her getting another job in the NHS.

Margaret Haywood says she has not even had an interview since 2005.

She was responding to a report by the Commons Health Select Committee which said the failure to protect whistleblowers was a "stain" on the NHS. Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has welcomed the report.

Accident closes road

BBC Travel reports the A5090 Hawthorne Road in Litherland is closed with queuing traffic in both directions between Tesco and the A566 Linacre Lane junction, because of an accident.

Wilkin takes on Saints captaincy

BBC Sport

Super League champions St Helens have announced

Jon Wilkin will replace Paul Wellens as captain.

Jon Wilkin

The 31-year-old joined Saints from Hull KR in 2002, but missed last season's Grand Final with a shoulder injury.

Wilkin captained England in the 2012 series against the Exiles and now takes the captaincy at Langtree Park.

Best surgery in Merseyside

Grove Road Surgery, in Wallasey, has been ranked the best in Merseyside in an national NHS survey.

Staff at Grove Road Surgery

Overall it was the 24th best in England.

News on the hour

Alex Dibble

BBC Radio Merseyside

In the 17:00 news bulletin: A Merseyside man's been jailed for 14 years for helping smuggle cocaine into the UK in tins of fish.

Paul Scott, 32, was caught trying to sneak back into Britain in a light aircraft last month.

Holocaust exhibition planned

A special exhibition is to be held in Liverpool city centre next week to raise awareness about the Holocaust.

Fathers House, a Christian congregation based in Deeside, is setting up a pop-up shop on Manestys Lane from 27 to 29 January and talking to shoppers about the extermination of millions of Jews and others by the Nazis.

Holocaust Remembrance Day take place on 27 January each year and marks the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1945.

Temporary lights in Chester

Cheshire West and Chester Council

tweets: There are temporary traffic lights at Bridge Street/Pepper Street in Chester. Permanent lights due to be installed tomorrow #cwacroads

Foster carers needed

Fifty foster carers are needed to look after children across Liverpool, the city council says.

Liverpool City Council says the carers it has are doing an "amazing job", but Councillor Jane Corbett said: "We really need more people to come forward and support us".

A meeting is being held at the Town Hall from 16:00 to 19:00 on Monday for anyone wanting to find out more details.

Former Liverpool captain turns 61

Liverpool FC

tweets: Happy birthday to former #LFC captain
@Phil_Thompson4, who turns 61 today

News on the hour

Alex Dibble

BBC Radio Merseyside

A Merseyside man's been jailed for 14 years for helping smuggle cocaine into the UK in tins of fish.

Paul Scott, 32, was caught trying to sneak back into Britain in a light aircraft last month.

Listen live at 16:00.

'Clandestine' disaster pact denied

Chris Long

BBC News

There was no "clandestine" pact by top police officers to avoid giving statements about Hillsborough in the wake of the disaster,

a jury has heard.

The Hillsborough disaster
Inquest handout

The inquests were shown a solicitor's note, dated 10 days after the 1989 tragedy, which recommended four senior police officers give no statements until they had received legal advice.

Former Asst Ch Con Walter Jackson was one of the officers named in that note.

He told the court he "didn't make any agreement" with other officers.

Coming up

Simon Hoban

BBC Radio Merseyside

We're talking about care for the elderly. What is it like for care workers who often have to do all the tasks including personal care, having a chat, and cooking a meal for an elderly person within a timeframe of half an hour?

It comes as Age UK say council cuts in social care are leaving the elderly "high and dry", and increasingly it' is families who are having to take up the slack.

And a hotel in Llandudno has been voted the best value on the travellers bible website, Trip let's hear your good hotel/bad hotel stories tonight. What makes a good hotel for wifi, clean sheets and hot water is all I ask for.

Join me on Drive at 16:00.

Lukaku's 'not doing the business'

BBC Sport's

Gossip column is reporting Romelu Lukaku, 21, is not doing the business at Everton.

West Ham United's James Collins, right vies for the ball with Everton's Romelu Lukaku during their English FA Cup third round replay in January

The club also need to buy another striker, says former Toffees goalkeeper Neville Southall according to


Congestion causing slow traffic

BBC Travel reports there is very slow traffic on the M62 eastbound between J7 Rainhill Stoops and J11 Birchwood, due to congestion.

Liverpool can reach final - Rodgers

Phil McNulty

Chief football writer

Liverpool boss

Brendan Rodgers says his side can reach the Capital One Cup final after being held by Chelsea in the semi-final first leg at Anfield.

Brendan Rodgers
Getty Images

Eden Hazard put Chelsea ahead from the penalty spot before Raheem Sterling equalised with superb solo effort.

"I felt the performance here was a good benchmark of how we are working right now," Rodgers said.

News on the hour

Alex Dibble

BBC Radio Merseyside

A Sunday League football team on Merseyside has told us how they had to travel home covered in mud because Sefton Council turned the showers off to save money.

Listen live at 15:00.

Yellow warning for snow reduced


Met Office's yellow warning for snow and ice has moved out of the Merseyside region meaning the severe risk of snow and sleet is no longer in place.

Weather forecast
Met Office

Cannabis farm uncovered

A cannabis farm has been found on the edge of Liverpool city centre by Merseyside Police.

Brewery Tap pub

Officers, acting on a tip, raided flats above the Brewery Tap in Stanhope Street, finding six rooms set up to grow cannabis in canvas tents. They seized 88 plants.

Sgt Richie Smith said: "This was an excellent result and thanks to community intelligence we have been able to take a significant amount of drugs off the streets of Merseyside."

Lambrini factory job cuts

Liverpool Echo

Huyton drinks group Halewood International is in talks with unions about job losses that could result in more than

60 redundancies among its workforce.

The news comes in the same week that the firm, famous for its Lambrini and Crabbie's Alcoholic Ginger Beer brands, revealed another slump in annual profits.

No Eto'o move - Martinez

BBC Sport

Everton boss

Roberto Martinez says Samuel Eto'o is not on the verge of leaving the club for Sampdoria.

Samuel Eto'o

The Serie A side had said they hoped to sign the 33-year-old former Cameroon striker this week.

But Martinez said: "The Samuel Eto'o situation is something that we're going to make sure that the next two weeks is a period of reflection and see what's the next move in that respect."

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

A Liverpool nurse, who was struck off after secretly filming her colleagues abusing patients, says its stopped her getting another job in the NHS.

Listen live to the 14:00 bulletin.

Appeal for man's family launched

An appeal has been launched to find the family of a 69-year-old man who died, on behalf of the Liverpool Coroner's Office.

Merseyside Police said Gordon Walter Brown, of Cygnet House, St James Drive in Bootle, who died at Royal Liverpool University Hospital on 21 January having been admitted in December 2014.

There are no suspicious circumstances surrounding his death. Anyone with information is asked to call Coroner's Officer Clair Crilly on 0151 225 5064.

On this day

Did you know on this day in 2003 Liverpool booked their passage to the League Cup final?

Liverpool FC badge
Getty Images

The club beat Sheffield United 3-2 on aggregate.

Catacomb tours to return

Theatrical performances during the tours of St George's Hall's Catacombs are returning in March.

Catacombs at St George's Hall
Ant Clausen

Manager Alan Smith said: "The popularity of these tours has been incredible with over 4,000 people attending and it is wonderful to see these previously unused areas animated in such a way for public use."

The Catacombs were used by the police and the army during transport strikes and as a food dispensary and water store during World War Two.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

A former assistant chief constable has denied making an agreement with other senior officers to make no statements about the Hillsborough disaster in the days after the tragedy.

Listen live to the 13:00 bulletin.

Crimewatch appeal for wanted man

Millions of people across the country will be asked if they can help

catch a Merseyside man suspected of murdering police officer Neil Doyle in Liverpool.

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

Timmy Donovan, also known as Timmy O'Sullivan, will be featured in a Crimewatch appeal later.

Detectives think he could be in Spain, after fleeing the UK on the same day PC Doyle was killed in December.

Hillsborough legal advice sought

Phil Cooper

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside

The jury at the Hillsborough inquests has seen evidence that four senior police officers were told to make no statements about the disaster until they'd received legal advice.

Tunnel leading to central pens
Hillsborough Inquests

But former assistant chief constable Walter Jackson has denied being involved in any "clandestine issue", saying "I didn't make any agreement."

Mr Jackson was asked if there was ever an agreement between himself, match commander Ch Supt Duckenfield, and Supts Roger Marshall and Bernard Murray they would make no statements about the day until much later.

Liverpool 'unfortunate not to win'

BBC Sport

Brendan Rodgers says Liverpool were "unfortunate not to win" after
drawing 1-1 with Chelsea at Anfield in the first leg of their League Cup semi-final.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers
Getty Images
Liverpool 'unfortunate' not to win

The visitors were awarded a penalty after Emre Can's clumsy challenge on Eden Hazard. The Belgium forward picked himself up to convert with ease.

However, Raheem Sterling gave Liverpool a deserved equaliser with a superb run and finish, leaving the tie finely poised for the second leg at Stamford Bridge on 27 January.

20mph zone plans

New 20mph speed limits are set to be introduced in area of St Helens to encourage people to walk and cycle, the council has announced.

20mph zone sign

Funding has been secured from

St Helen's Council's public health team to create restricted areas in Bold, Parr and Sutton after research showed vehicle speed can deter people from walking and cycling.

Anyone with objections must contact write to the council by 12 February.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

The jury at the Hillsborough inquests has seen evidence that four senior police officers were told to make no statements about the disaster, until they'd received legal advice.

Listen live to the 12:00 bulletin.

Honour killing awareness

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

One of the world's most famous magazines is using the case of a Warrington teenager to raise awareness of so-called "honour based" killings.

Shafilea Ahmed

Shafilea Ahmed,

who was murdered by her parents in 2003, is mentioned on the front cover of Cosmopolitan's February edition.

Afrah Qassim, who works to rescue girls from forced marriage and honour-based violence in Merseyside, said it puts the problem on the international map.