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Summary

  1. Updates for Thursday 2 April

Live Reporting

By Jenny Coleman

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Have a lovely Easter!

That's all from us today but from all of us in the team, have a lovely Easter weekend. Join us on Tuesday for more news, sport, travel and weather across Merseyside.

Coming up on North West Tonight

Roger Johnson

Presenter, North West Tonight

On tonight's programme, we have more about Liverpool City Council's decision to put another 150 homes up for sale as part of its Homes for a Pound scheme.

We'll see why the Liverpool manager is offering an olive-branch to outspoken striker Raheem Sterling.

And we look at "Dazzle Ferry" across the Mersey, which has been painted by the pop artist Sir Peter Blake in commemoration of the centenary of World War One.

Bank holiday weather

BBC Weather

Cloud and rain will continue to move eastwards reaching all areas by midnight.

weather chart grab
BBC

Some heavy bursts of rain are possible, and also some snow across the highest ground of the north Pennines and Fells if you're planning to go for a walk there.

Sensory garden opens in Birkenhead

A new sensory trail and garden has been opened in Barnstondale in Birkenhead.

garden
BBC

The Lord-Lieutenant of Merseyside, Dame Lorna Muirhead, cut the ribbon at the garden, which has been designed for children of all abilities.

Drugs complaints lead to closure order

The occupant of a St Helens property, who attracted complaints over drug-related activity and anti-social behaviour, can no longer reside at the address after police issued a closure order.

Neighbourhood Insp David Brennan said the Creswell Street address was the "third address we have closed in the last week.

"The order will run for three months, after which time officers will review the order."

Super League: Wigan Warriors v St Helens

St Helens meet their local rivals Wigan tomorrow for the first time since winning the 2014 Grand Final at Old Trafford.

St Helens v Wigan
SWPIX.COM

Described by St Helens captain Jon Wilkin as the "biggest derby" in rugby league, the two teams meet in their traditional Good Friday fixture at the DW Stadium, kick off at 15:00.

Police appeal on petrol station robbery

Police are looking for a man who robbed the BP garage on Great Howard Street, north Liverpool, at about 09:30.

He is described as white, aged in his late 30s or early 40s, of chubby build and wore a blue and grey hooded jacket.

He is believed to have then cycled away on a red mountain bike

News on the hour

Megan Key

BBC Radio Merseyside

Plans to sell 150 homes and shops in Liverpool for £1 have been welcomed by people who live in the area.

Liverpool City Council is expanding its "homes for £1" scheme - two years after the first 20 homes were sold in the Granby area of Toxteth.

Sterling now under pressure - Mark Lawrenson

BBC Sport

Liverpool's Raheem Sterling should stay at the club but

is now "under pressure" after talking about his future, says former Reds defender Mark Lawrenson.

The 20-year-old England winger told BBC Sport he is motivated by trophies and not money after rejecting a contract worth £100,000 a week.

Sterling says he will address a new deal at the end of the season.

Suspected burglar fails in River Mersey escape

A suspected burglar tried to escape from the police by

swimming across the River Mersey in Warrington.

River Mersey
Google

Cheshire Police received a call at 01:51 BST about a break-in at a house. The suspect was seen heading towards the river before he jumped in and started swimming to evade officers who were deployed on both banks.

When the man, 38, climbed back on to dry land, he was arrested on suspicion of burglary and was treated in hospital before being taken into custody.

Comedian's stand-up daughter wins playwriting prize

Rochdale stand-up Katie Mulgrew, who is also the daughter of entertainer Jimmy Cricket, has won the inaugural Liverpool Hope Playwriting Prize.

She was awarded £10,000 and her play Omnibus - about housemates settling down for a soap opera marathon - will now be considered for production by the Royal Court in Liverpool.

Landmarks to turn blue for Autistic

Wirral Globe

Landmarks across Merseyside and Cheshire are set to turn blue in a campaign to raise awareness of autism.

Goodison Park
Everton FC

Goodison Park, Chester Cathedral, lighthouses and town halls are amongst those taking part in the "Get Your Blue On" on World Autism Awareness Day,

News on the hour

Megan Key

BBC Radio Merseyside

Plans to sell 150 homes and shops in Liverpool for £1 have been welcomed by people who live in the area.

Liverpool City Council is expanding its "homes for £1" scheme - two years after the first 20 homes were sold in the Granby area of Toxteth.

Liverpool petrol station held up during rush hour robbery

Liverpool Echo

A north Liverpool petrol station was held up this morning during a rush hour robbery.

Police were called to the BP garage in Great Homer Street, Vauxhall, at around 09.35 this morning.

A police spokesman said a man walked into the station and demanded money. He escaped with some cash, although nobody was hurt during the robbery.

Mayor eyes Festival Gardens

Liverpool Mayor, Labour's Joe Anderson says he's 95% certain a deal to buy the Garden Festival site in Aigburth will go ahead.

Festival Gardens
Google

He says it's a site he's "had his eyes on" since he was elected mayor of Liverpool.

Planning was passed in 2007 for more than 1300 apartments and around 60 houses but building work by Langtree stalled because of the financial crash.

Mayor Anderson says he won't go ahead with the purchase if there's any risk to the council's investment.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

Liverpool City Council is offering people who applied for the first "homes for a pound" first refusal on the latest offers.

Six thousand registered an interest in 20 homes when the scheme was piloted in the Granby area of Toxteth two years ago.

It is now being extended to Smithdown and Picton where another 150 homes are up for grabs as well as some shops.

Burglary suspect tried to escape by swimming

Cheshire Police

tweets: Burglary suspect in Warrington tried to escape last night by swimming the River Mersey. #failed We stood on each bank and waited. #arrested

Liverpool forward staying - Brendan Rodgers

BBC Sport

Liverpool forward Raheem Sterling will not be leaving the club in the summer despite a breakdown in talks over a new deal, says manager Brendan Rodgers.

Brendan Rodgers
BBC

The 20-year-old England player told BBC Sport he is motivated by winning trophies and not money after rejecting a contract worth £100,000 a week.

"If his ambition is to win trophies that's aligned with what we do here," said Rodgers.

Sterling has two years left on a contract worth £35,000 a week.

Wenger on Sterling

BBC Sport

Here is what Gunners boss Arsene Wenger, who spoke earlier, said about the Raheem Sterling, who is stalling on signing a new deal for Liverpool.

Raheem Sterling
Reuters

Sterling had said it was "quite flattering" having previously been linked to a move to the Emirates Stadium.

"Raheem Sterling is a top player, everybody in the country knows that now. He is a very important player for Liverpool of course," said Wenger.

"I do not want to speak about any move. We are not in a transfer period, we are in front of a big game. I respect Liverpool and I do not want to go into any supposed move for any of their players."

WATCH: Liverpool's 'Dazzle ship' opens to public

A Mersey ferry has been treated to a dazzle ship makeover as part of plans to commemorate the centenary of World War One.

Dazzle Ferry
BBC

The Snowdrop has been repainted in a unique design created by Sir Peter Blake, the artist behind the cover of the Beatles' Sgt Pepper album.

So-called "dazzle camouflage" was invented to confuse the enemy, as the bright and twisty designs made it hard for hostile forces to track the range and speed of allied ships.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

Liverpool City Council says valuable lessons have been learnt from the first homes for a pound scheme as they announce plans to extend it to another part of the city.

150 properties will be made available in Smithdown and Picton along with some shop units - all going for £1 each.

Tough criteria will need to be met but Mayor Joe Anderson says help will be available for applicants.

Southport's obsolete pay and display machines scrapped

Southport Visiter

Southport's outdated parking meters will be replaced this summer. The current machines cannot accept the "new" 5p and 10p pieces introduced in 2012.

Council officers confirmed drivers would soon be able to use chip and pin readers or a contactless payment system as well as update parking tickets via text while shopping.

Sunshine this afternoon turning cloudy later

There should still be some sunshine around this afternoon, but things will turn increasingly cloudy from the west, with some rain perhaps later on.

weather graphic
BBC

Maximum Temperature: 8C (46F)

Super League: Widnes v Warrington

BBC Sport

The Widnes Vikings take on Warrington Wolves at home tonight in what could be the biggest derby game the two sides have ever contested. Widnes captain Kevin Brown returns from a hamstring problem for the match at the Select Security Stadium which kicks off at 20:00.

Widnes Vikings
SWPIX.COM

Live text and radio commentaries matches here.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

People who applied for Liverpool's first "homes for a pound" will get first refusal on plans for an extension of the scheme.

Six thousand people expressed interest in 20 homes when the scheme was piloted in the Granby area of Toxteth two years ago.

The scheme is now being extended to Smithdown and Picton where another 150 homes are up for grabs as well as some shops -

RSPCA investigating death of birds at Carr Mill Dam

St Helens Star

The RSPCA is investigating the death of a mute swan at Carr Mill Dam. A dead goose was also retrieved from the water.

Carr Mill Dam
Google

The nesting birds at the dam have previously been the target of vandals who have shot them and hurled bricks and bottles. In 2013 the RSPCA issued a warning after a swan was attacked by a dog.

Police appeal after leisure centre crash

Merseyside Police are appealing for help in tracing the occupants of a stolen car which crashed into Wirral leisure centre on Tuesday causing a gas leak.

The stolen grey Renault Clio hit a small outbuilding in the car park of Woodchurch Leisure Centre on Carr Bridge Road at around 18.10.

Three or four young men were seen running away from the scene in the direction of Noctorum. Officers believe the impact of the collision may have left them with whiplash or other injuries consistent with a road traffic collision and are appealing to the community for help in tracing them.

CBeebies Mr Bloom in St Helens

CBeebies' Mr Bloom will be in St Helens this weekend as part of the Easter celebrations in the town.

Mr Bloom
BBC

The green-fingered gardener will be looking for young helpers between 12:00 - 15:00 on Saturday in Church Square.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

The thousands of applicants who applied for Liverpool's first "homes for a pound" will get first refusal on plans for an extension of the scheme.

Around 6,000 applied for just 20 homes when the scheme was piloted in the Granby area of Toxteth two years ago.

The scheme is now being extended to Smithdown and Picton where another 150 homes are up for grabs as well as some shops.

Life in 1970s Liverpool

Photos of 1970s Toxteth go on display at the Bluecoat Arts Centre this weekend as part of the
LOOK/15 international photography festival.

Tricia Porter
Tricia Porter

Tricia Porter's photographs of life in the L8 district of the city paint a vivid picture of everyday life at a time when its tight knit communities were being fragmented.

Woman arrested on suspicion of assaulting a police officer and driving while on drugs

Liverpool Echo

A woman was arrested in Wallasey on suspicion of assaulting a police officer and driving while unfit through drugs.

The 20-year-old's car collided with a police car when they attempted to stop her on Brighton Street at about 20.35 last night.

One of the officers in the police car was taken to Arrowe Park Hospital for treatment and has since been discharged.

No-one else was injured in the incident.

M6, J23: Accident

BBC Travel

There has been an accident on the M6 northbound at J23, A580 for Haydock.

News on the hour

Giulia Bould

BBC Radio Merseyside

One of Liverpool's ferries has been transformed into a moving work of art.

The Snowdrop has been "dazzled" in a technique used during World War One to avoid detection by enemy submarines.

It was designed by Sir Peter Blake as part of the Liverpool Biennial art event which runs at locations across the city until December.

Is Sterling worth the fuss?

BBC Sport

With all the fuss and the figures of £180,000 a week currently swirling around - Just how much would Liverpool miss Raheem Sterling if he left? And where might he go?

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty considers the England international's future in the game.

Raheem Sterling
Getty Images

A5036: Copy Lane, Sefton

BBC Travel

The A5036, Dunnings Bridge Road southbound is partially blocked and traffic is queuing at the A5207 Copy Lane junction.

Chester 'cash-for-crash' bus fraud: Ringleader convicted

The ringleader of a gang who ran a "cash-for-crash" scam involving bus passengers has been convicted of fraud.

Car crash
Cheshire Police

John Smith, 41, from Connah's Quay, Deeside, staged seven collisions in Chester allowing more than 200 people to make false personal injury claims.

Ten other people were also found guilty at Manchester Crown Court for their part in the plot which police say could have totalled more than £1m.