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  1. Updates on Thursday 7 April
  2. More news, sport, weather and travel updates from 08:00 on Friday

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

Live updates from Merseyside and west Cheshire have finished for the day, but we'll be back from 08:00 on Friday with the latest news, sport, weather and travel updates from around the region.

Weather: Mostly dry and bright with isolated showers

BBC Weather

Occasional sharp showers are expected through the evening, but these will become isolated overnight with most places staying dry.

weather map

Away from the showers, clearer spells and light winds may lead to a patchy frost forming by dawn.

Football: Liverpool fans looking forward to first leg of Europa League quarter-final

Grand National: Two horses die on meeting's first day

Two horses have died after collapsing at Aintree on the first day of the 2016 Grand National meeting.

Aerial view of Aintree Racecourse

Clonbanan Lad and Marasonnien were pulled up by their jockeys in the Fox Hunters' Chase but later collapsed.

Neither incidents were associated with a fall, a spokesman for the racecourse said.

Travel: Obstruction on M57 near Knowsley

Latest headlines in Cheshire and Merseyside

Today's top stories in Cheshire and Merseyside:

Hillsborough jury asks to view Leppings Lane footage

The jury in the Hillsborough inquests returned briefly to court this afternoon to see footage comparing the situation outside the Leppings Lane turnstiles in 1988 and 1989.

The clip was produced by the legal team of John Beggs QC, who represents the match commanders including former Ch Supt David Duckenfield.

The six women and three men then retired to the jury room to resume their deliberations.

Self-styled celeb botox nurse 'could be struck off'

Liverpool Echo

A self-styled celebrity botox nurse from Woolton could be struck off for allegedly giving money to a disgruntled patient in exchange for dropping a complaint against him.

Grand National: Winners celebrate at Aintree

Latest headlines in Cheshire and Merseyside

Today's top stories in Cheshire and Merseyside:

Grand National: Pictures from the Grand Opening Day

Champagne is not just the drink of choice at Aintree this year- its also proving to be a popular colour for ladies outfits.

Racegoers at Aintree
Getty Images

Today saw the first day of racing at Grand National Festival - 150,000 people are expected over the three-day event.

Racegoers at Aintree
Getty Images

The big race is at 17:15 on Saturday and the final 40-runner line-up was confirmed this morning.

Racegoers at Aintree
Getty Images

Police appeal over violence at Man Utd v Liverpool Europa League match

Police have issued an appeal to trace nine men they want to speak to in connection with a violent disturbance at the Europa League last-16 second leg at Old Trafford.

Men sought by police over match violence
Greater Manchester Police

Liverpool and Manchester United fans were seen fighting in the stand and a child was injured after being hit by a plastic seat that was thrown. Five men were arrested.

Det Sgt Stephen Warriner described them as "mindless thugs" who "paid absolutely no regard to the safety of those around them".

£15m plan to move Isle of Man ferry terminal from Pier Head to Waterloo dock

Liverpool Echo

Port bosses the Peel Group are in discussions with the Isle of Man government over the £15m plans, which could see work start on the Waterloo site in around 12 months time.

Liverpool Waterfront
Peel Holdings

Hillsborough banner: Two charged over 'murderers' taunt

Two men have been "charged after a banner with the word "murderers" was displayed ahead of a match between Liverpool and Manchester United.

Offensive banner
Liverpool Echo

Police removed the sign from a bridge on the M602 ahead of the Europa League tie on 17 March after complaints it referred to the Hillsborough disaster.

A 24-year-old from Oldham and a 20-year-old from Manchester have been charged with a public order offence.  

Rugby League: Widnes winger Stefan Marsh signs two-year deal

Ian Kennedy

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside Sport

Widnes winger Stefan Marsh has signed a new a two-year extension to his contract securing his services until the end of 2018.

Stefan Marsh

Suspected arson at Bootle house is investigated

A suspected arson at an empty house that may have been used as a meeting place for local youths is under investigation, Merseyside Police said.

Neighbouring houses were evacuated after emergency services were called to the property in Scott Street, Bootle, at about 19:55 on Wednesday.

The house was gutted and the area remains cordoned off. Anyone with information is asked to contact the force.

Sentence handed to gym instuctor for running over man's body slammed by victim's son

Warrington Guardian

A sentence handed to a gym instructor after he ran over a man’s body and drove away to avoid being breathalysed has been slammed by the victim’s son.

Weather: Brighter afternoon after showery morning

Latest headlines in Cheshire and Merseyside

Today's top stories in Cheshire and Merseyside:

  • A member of the Hillsborough inquests jury is discharged on the first full day of deliberations
  • The gates open at Aintree for the Grand National Festival
  • The list of candidates for next month's mayoral election in Liverpool will be confirmed later

Hillsborough juror discharged for 'medical reasons'

 A member of the Hillsborough inquests jury has been discharged on the first full day of deliberations.  

Sir John Goldring

The coroner Sir John Goldring told the remaining jury members there was a "medical basis" for the woman being discharged. 

Six women and three men will continue to consider how and why 96 Liverpool fans died in Britain's worst sporting disaster on 15 April 1989.

The jury was sent out on Wednesday after more than two years of evidence.

Football: Countdown to 'Klopp derby' as Liverpool face Borussia Dortmund

James Mountford

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside Sport

Liverpool's clash with Borussia Dortmund is being labelled by some as the "Klopp derby" as the Reds face their manager's old team in the first leg of their Europa League quarter final.

Jurgen Klopp

You can listen to all the build up to our live simulcast from 19:00 on BBC Radio Merseyside.

Unseen Sir Paul and Linda McCartney pictures released

A celebrity photographer from north Wales has released previously unseen pictures of Sir Paul McCartney and his late wife Linda.

Paul and Linda McCartney
Clive Arrowsmith/Camera Press

They were taken at the end of a shoot for The Wings' Speed of Sound album in 1976 and during the 1995 session for McCartney's solo album Off The Ground.

Hillsborough juror discharged from inquests

Tom Quinn

BBC News

A juror has been discharged from the Hillsborough inquests.

The coroner Sir John Goldring said she was discharged on a "medical basis".

Six women and three men will continue deliberations after being sent out at 14:05 yesterday once the coroner had finished summing up.

Travel: Mersey ferries suspended due to high winds

More cruise liners to use Liverpool next year in further boost to port economy

Liverpool Echo

Cruise line operator Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) has unveiled its “largest ever” cruise programme out of Liverpool next year including a “spectacular” 28-night voyage to Canada.

Cruise ship on River Mersey

Latest headlines in Cheshire and Mersesyide

Today's top stories in Cheshire and Merseyside:

Travel: Extra buses and trains for the Grand National

Racegoers are encouraged to use public transport to get the Aintree racecourse this week for Grand National Festival.

Extra bus and rail services are in place to cope with the 150,000 people expected at the three-day event.

View more on twitter

Chester city car park to close for four days

Chester Chronicle

Hamilton Place car park in Chester will be closed for four days due to archaeological work needed as part of the Northgate development.

Football: How will Jurgen Klopp do on Dortmund return?

BBC Sport

Jurgen Klopp
BBC Sport

Dan Walker, Mark Lawrenson and Dion Dublin preview the Europa League clash between Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool and his former club Borussia Dortmund.

More form BBC Sport

Grand National: Rainy morning at Aintree Racecourse

Marc Gaier

Reporter, BBC Radio Merseyside

It's a rainy morning at Aintree Racecourse for the opening day of the Grand National Festival and the going is officially good to soft.

Aintree Racecourse

Final preparation are being made before the gates open at 10:00.

Pothole fund: £1.5m for Merseyside and west Cheshire roads

Councils across Merseyside and west Cheshire are being awarded more than £1.5m to improve the roads - it is enough to fill in almost 30,000 potholes.

Getty Images

It's part of the Department for Transport's £250m Pothole Action Fund, which will be used to fill in more than four million potholes nationwide by 2021.

Grand National 2016: Aintree festival set to start

BBC Sport

The Grand National Festival gets under way at Aintree today - and more than 150,000 racegoers will attend the meeting over the three days.

Grand National

Annie Power and Cue Card are among today's favourites. Willie Mullins has a strong team as he bids to beat Paul Nicholls and become the first Irishman to win the British trainers' title since the 1960s.

Travel: Congestion in Everton Valley

BBC Travel

There is very slow traffic on Everton Valley southbound in Liverpool between the Netherfield Road North junction and the A567 Stanley Road junction in the roadworks area.

More from BBC Travel

Latest headlines in Cheshire and Merseyside

Today's top stories in Cheshire and Merseyside:

Missing teenager Jade Lynch found 'safe and well'

A 14-year-old girl missing for 11 days has been found "safe and well", police have said.

Jade Lynch
Cheshire Police

Fears had been growing for Jade Lynch since her various social media profiles had been "silent" following her disappearance on 26 March.

The teenager was found in Wigan, Greater Manchester, last night.

Weather: Rain will clear but heavy showers later

BBC Weather

After a cloudy, wet start the rain will clear for a time but it will return this afternoon and could be heavy and thundery. Highs of 11C.

BBC Weather

More from BBC Weather

Good morning: Join us for today's live news coverage

Jenny Coleman

Reporter, BBC Local Live

Hello from Liverpool, I'm here with all your news, sport, travel and weather updates from across Merseyside and west Cheshire today. 

If you've got a story you'd like me to hear about or a photograph you'd like to share, you can contact me on email, Facebook or Twitter.