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  1. More news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Friday
  2. Updates for Thursday 26 March 2015

Live Reporting

By Paul Burnell

All times stated are UK

Get involved


That's all from the Merseyside Local Live team. Join us again tomorrow at 08:00 for a comprehensive round up of news, sport, travel and weather.

Evening forecast

BBC Weather


Dry and largely clear for most tonight with winds easing.

Weather evening

Temperatures will fall close to freezing so a frost is expected. However, cloud will start to increase by dawn.

Quids in?

Chris Long

BBC News

Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson is looking to extend his £1 a home scheme to another part of the city and to include shops.

Joe Anderson surveys empty homes
Liverpool City Council

The vacant units, along with 150 homes, will be offered under plans which go before the council's cabinet in April.

The plan focuses on "neglected" properties on and around Smithdown Road in Picton.

Disability ruling demo

Supporters of

the family of a severely disabled child who are challenging a rule limiting benefit payments gathered at the Supreme Court before the hearing began.

Jackie Spiegel supporter of Mathieson family

Jackie Speigel from Camden took part in the demonstration.

Ms Spiegel said:"We're here to support the Mathieson family whose story really rings with my own, about having a disabled child who is in hospital a lot.

"And they are an amazing family to fight the fight after their child has sadly passed away."

Arts venue plan for gardens

Liverpool's Festival Gardens could become a place for community, cultural and artistic events, following a proposal by Mayor Joe Anderson.

Liverpool Festival Gardens

Mr Anderson wants the city to acquire the land to create open space for the public to use and which could also be used for these events.

The city's cabinet will discuss later whether to back a proposal to buy the land off property investment and development company Langtree with some of it used to develop new housing.

Queuing traffic

BBC Travel North West

BBC Travel

There has been an accident involving three vehicles on the A5117 westbound between M53 J10 (Little Stanney) and A5032 Chester Road Backford.


Traders back hate crime victim

Southport Visiter

Southport traders and businesses have rallied around a Duke Street shopkeeper who was targeted by racist bullies.

Dominic Pillai, who runs Daily Mart, was subjected to a torrent of abuse from a group of teenagers who threatened to kill him after he refused to sell them cigarettes.

More on Tranmere signing

James Mountford

BBC Radio Merseyside Sport

Tranmere Rovers signing of Everton midfielder George Green, 19, on loan until the end of the season is subject to clearance from the Football Authorities.

George Green
Getty Images

The 19-year old is in his fourth season at Everton having arrived at Goodison Park from Bradford City in October 2011 for a reported fee of £2m.

He has also represented England at Under-17 level.

Meanwhile, Everton have also loaned 23-year-old midfielder Francisco Junior to League One side Port Vale for the rest of the season.

News on the hour

Megan Key

BBC Radio Merseyside

Merseyside Police are promising to continue their crackdown on gangs who illegally ride scrambler bikes, after carrying out a series of raids this morning.

A total of 28 vehicles were found during searches in Liverpool, Knowsley and Sefton.

Ice cream firm worker loses finger

Lynette Horsburgh

BBC News

An ice cream firm has been fined £7,500 after admitting safety breaches when part of

a worker's finger was cut off while cleaning a machine.

Drumlan Hall Farm

The 60-year-old employee, who does not want to be named, was unaware the fruit feeder attachment on the ice cream maker was still switched on when she started cleaning it.

Her left index finger sliced off below the knuckle at Drumlan Hall Farm, Tattenhall in August 2013.

Everton star reveals England saucy secret

BBC Sport

Everton's Phil Jagielka has revealed how England boss Roy Hodgson has made life happier for the players.

Phil Jagielka
Phil Jagielka says it helps that England players are 'allowed to be themselves'

Contrasting his style with former boss Fabio Capello he said: "There can be too many rules. If Fabio didn't want anyone to have ketchup there was no ketchup.

"Roy allows us ketchup if we want."

Stop and search drugs find

A Liverpool man has been charged after a routine stop and search in Cumbria led to the discovery of cannabis and cannabis resin with an estimated street value of around £200,000.

He was pulled over on the M6 near Carlisle.

Pennies from heaven

Six churches in Merseyside, Cheshire and Wirral have had their prayers answered after sharing in the money earmarked for church roof repairs by Chancellor George Osborne.

They are:

  • St Bridget's with St Thomas' Church, Wavertree, Liverpool £99,500
  • St Michael in the Hamlet Cast Iron Church (pictured), New Ferry £97,300
  • Emmanuel Parish Church, Southport £78,300
  • Holy Trinity, Runcorn £78,300
  • St Mary, Widnes £70,400
  • St Catherine's Church, Tranmere £45,100.
St Michael's In The Hamlet
Sue Adair/Geograph

News on the hour

Megan Key

BBC Radio Merseyside

A Warrington family's at the UK's highest court challenging welfare rules which meant their disabled son's benefit was stopped while he was in hospital.

Cameron Mathieson was just five years old when he died. His disability payments were stopped because he'd spent more than 84 days in hospital.

Lollipop recruitment drive

A drive to recruit

more school crossing staff has been initiated by Cheshire West and Chester Council.

A new crossing patrol has been identified on Mellock Lane in Neston but there are other vacancies across the borough, the council said.

Coun Lynda Jones, Executive Member for Growth and Innovation said: "Their role is particularly valued and I know that they have a special place in the hearts of their communities. "

Vigilantes catch online paedophile

Liverpool Echo

A Walton paedophile was caught by an online vigilante group.

Gary Irving, 52, chatted to a person he thought was a 14-year-old calling herself 'Little Laura' on an internet forum.

'Lucky to be alive'

This teenage boy is lucky to be alive said Merseyside Police releasing footage of him driving a quad bike into oncoming traffic.

Wrong way driver
Merseyside Police

Police revealed the video as part of their clampdown on off road bikes.

More on Liverpool ladies

Former Everton player Brooke Chaplen scored from the penalty spot as newly-promoted Sunderland began their FA Women's Super League 1 campaign by beating reigning champions Liverpool 2-1.

News on the hour

Megan Key

BBC Radio Merseyside

The company which produces Cheshire Farm Ice Cream has been fined after an employee's finger was cut off by a fruit feeder machine.

The 60-year-old employee was injured when trying to clean the machine at Drumlan Farm but did not realise it was not switched off, Chester Crown Court heard.

Disability ruling 'unfair'

The family of a severely disabled child is challenging a "grossly unfair" rule limiting their benefit payments, at the Supreme Court.

Cameron Mathieson

Benefits for Cameron Mathieson, five, who died in October 2012, stopped after he spent more than 12 weeks in Alder Hey Hospital, Liverpool.

His father Craig Mathieson said a ruling in his family's favour would help up to 500 other children and their relatives.

Man held over shootings

A 24-year-old man from Old Swan has been arrested over two shootings in Liverpool.

Merseyside Police said he was arrested on Tuesday suspected of possessing a firearm and criminal damage using a fire arm. He has since been bailed.

The arrest is linked to two shootings in Kensington on Monday and one in Islington on 14 February.

Who can resist rescued rabbit?

Paul Burnell

BBC News

As I wrote earlier Freshfields Animal Rescue is alerting people to the dangers to pet rabbits released into the wild.

Freshfields Animal Rescue

So I'm very grateful to them for sending a shot of one of their cutest rabbits.

Afternoon weather

There will be further showery rain around this afternoon, but this should clear. Things will then turn sunnier, particularly in the west around Hoylake or Formby. It will stay rather breezy though.

Maximum temperature: 10C (50F).

News on the hour

Megan Key

BBC Radio Merseyside

A Warrington family is at the UK's highest court challenging welfare rules which meant their disabled son`s benefit was stopped while he was in hospital.

Coming up on North West Today

Annabel Tiffin

Presenter, North West Tonight

We will have footage of the Merseyside Police raids on off road bikes.

And there will be the latest on a Warrington family's fight against the benefits system for disabled people.

Join me now.

Pound land?

Chris Long

BBC News

I'm looking at getting more details on the proposal by Liverpool's Mayor Joe Anderson to extend his homes for £1 scheme to another part of the city and to include shops.

More homes for a quid

Liverpool City Council is set to expand its Homes for a Pound scheme with a further properties up for grabs.

It follows the success of a pilot initiative, involving properties around Granby Four Streets and Arnside Road where people who live or work in the city for £1 as long they bring them up to decent standard and do not sell within five years.

Joe Anderson surveys empty homes
Liverpool City Council

A report to the council's Cabinet on Thursday is recommending the sale of empty terraced homes off Smithdown Road in Picton.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

A family from Warrington whose disabled son`s benefit was stopped while he was in hospital are at the Supreme Court in London challenging the current rules on welfare payments.

More on bike seizures

Rachael Connors

BBC News Online

Sixteen people have been arrested after Merseyside Police seized 28 off-road bikes during a clampdown on their dangerous and anti-social use.

Scrambler bikes raids
Merseyside Police

Officers executed warrants at 14 properties in Liverpool, Knowsley and Sefton and one in Greater Manchester. Searches continue at several addresses.

The police operation is in response to large groups of people who have been illegally riding the bikes.

Rovers sign Everton player

Wirral Globe

Tranmere Rovers have signed Everton midfielder George Green on loan until the end of the season.

Fans to protest over ticket prices

Richard Conway

BBC Radio 5 live sports news correspondent

Football fans will protest against the price of match tickets by

staging a demonstration outside a meeting of Premier League club executives.

Goodison Park
Getty Images

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore is to present a letter to shareholders during their scheduled summit at a central London hotel.

He will do so on behalf of the Football Supporters' Federation and fan groups from all 20 top-flight clubs.

The letter renews a demand for all away tickets to be capped at £20.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

Merseyside Police have arrested 16 people in a crackdown on scrambler bikes in aids which saw 28 bikes seized.

Marquee moon

Paul Burnell

BBC News

I have been hearing more about the marquee planned for St Luke's the bombed out church in the city centre.

"It's made out of transparent plastics where you can see the stars and the moon and you can see the building," says Ambrose Reynolds, who is part of the group trying to secure the landmark's long term future.

He added: "This will be an opportunity to experience the church like never before. It's only going to be up for 10 days, but we're committed to make maximum use out of it."

Ancient dress hook find

St Helens Star

A dress hook which dates as far back as the 14th century has been officially declared as national treasure after being dug up on farmland in Billinge.

The silver gilt hook, which was discovered during a metal detecting rally at Fir Tree Farm in February 2014, will now be acquired by a national museum.

A rabbit is not just for Easter

Paul Burnell

BBC News

A Merseyside animal charity is warning people not to release pet rabbits into the wild.

Freshfields Animal Rescue
Freshfields Animal Rescue

Freshfields Animal Rescue said each year it "re-homes hundreds of rabbits - many of which have just been set free despite the fact that they are entirely unable to survive".

More on seized scramblers

Merseyside Police's operation to seize scrambler bikes was an attempt to halt this "plague", a senior officer has said.

Ch Supt Jonathan Roy said: "We know that many people are plagued by the problem of off road vehicles and actually find them incredibly intimidating.

"When they are ridden dangerously, they pose a huge risk, not only to the safety of the rider, but also to pedestrians and other law abiding road users."

Sixteen people have been arrested and 28 off road bikes were recovered in raids earlier.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

The Hillsborough inquests are not sitting today so legal arguments can be heard.

No Hillsborough witnesses

Andy Gill

BBC North West Tonight

The Hillsborough inquests will be hearing legal arguments today - no witness evidence we are told.

The hearings had been due to hear how South Yorkshire Police took statements from its own officers.

School accused of accident neglect

Wirral Globe

A mum has accused a Wirral school of neglect in the way it handled an accident which left her son with "life-changing" injuries.

Candidates under scrutiny

Nearly 200 young people from across Merseyside will grill election candidates this afternoon as part of the National Youth Debate.

Ballot box

Youth charity Uprising has organised election debates for 16-25 year olds all over the UK, including at the Camp and Furnace in Liverpool.