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  1. Updates on Wednesday 17 December 2014

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good evening

Lloyd Watson

BBC News

That's all from BBC Local Live for today. We'll be back from 08:00 on Thursday. Francis Thompson sent us this picture of the sun breaking through on the calm North Sea in Tynemouth.

Francis Thompson

You can send your pictures by email to or tweet
@BBCNewsNE and we may feature them on BBC Local Live tomorrow.

Tottenham v Newcastle in stats

Match facts ahead of the League Cup game tonight: Newcastle have won their last two games at White Hart Lane, including 2-1 in the Premier League in October.

Tottenham won 2-1 at St James' Park when the clubs last met in the League Cup, in the third round in 2008-09. Roman Pavlyuchenko and Jamie O'Hara scored for Spurs.

Pardew and Pochettinio
Richard Heathcote

This is Newcastle's first appearance in the quarter-finals of the League Cup since 2006-07, when they were eliminated by Chelsea.

Cloudy but mild night

Continuing cloudy and breezy overnight with outbreaks of rain continuing to affect the North Pennines, occasionally affecting other areas also. It will be a fairly mild night with temperatures just dipping into single figures.

Weather forecast

Minimum temperature: 8C (46F).

Check the forecast near you.

Pools 'run very well'

Paul Addison

BBC Tees Sport


new owners of Hartlepool United have been speaking for the first time about their plans for the club.

The club's new chairman is Peter Harris who says off the pitch, things are in good order.

He told BBC Tees: "It's a good model, it's professional, it's run very well. So all we needed to concentrate on was the football and that's the side I'm very keen on and that's where all of our efforts will be put."

Durham to host World Cup games

Martin Emmerson

BBC Newcastle

The England and Wales Cricket Board has announced its international home fixtures for 2017 to 2019. Durham's Emirates Stadium will host seven games, including three World Cup matches in 2019, but no Test cricket.

England will meet the West Indies there in a T20 international in 2017, followed by a one-day international against South Africa the same summer. Only one match will be held in 2018, which is a one-day international between England and Australia. And Pakistan will play a one-day game against England, in Chester-le-Street in 2019.

In order to host the World Cup the same summer, the club must have permanent floodlighting in place, which is something they are already looking into.

Spreading cheer for youngsters

Firefighters from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service visited children in hospital to spread some Christmas cheer.

Young patients at Sunderland Royal Hospital who won't be able to make it home for December 25 received presents from Santa.

Child receiving present

Gary Teasdale from the service said: "We've had orders from Santa to bring presents. We want to give presents to the kids that can't go home for Christmas. My daughter was in this ward with a broken back 10 years ago. The fire service came in that Christmas and it's brought a lot of memories back for me."

More on Newcastle council cuts

Fergus Hewison

BBC Newcastle political reporter

A large amount is being cut from Newcastle City Council's budget - £40m in the coming year and another £50m in the two years after that.

We'll see the budgets of things like Sure Start Children's Centre's cut, and other services for children in the city, some economic development projects will take a hit, the transport budget will reduce in some places, environmental protection services - so teams that deal with noisy neighbours - will be cut, special educational needs provision, all of these things and many more will see reductions in budgets and in some cases staffing.

Now those cuts are of course controversial and raise the question, for instance when it comes to children's services, of what the long term impact will be?

Newcastle council cutting more jobs

BBC Newcastle

Newcastle City Council has set out its budget for the year, and years ahead.

It says it must make £90m of savings over the next three years, with £40m this year. This will lead to another 260 job losses between now and 2016.

Movie pirate told to repay £73,000

The Chronicle

A movie pirate traced to his Tyneside home in a sting which read like a Hollywood script made £1.25m from the scam -

but must pay back just £73,000.

Anton Vickerman
The Chronicle

Man dies after being hit by car

A 40-year-old pedestrian has died in hospital after being hit by a car on the Redheugh Bridge.

The man was hit on the slip road by a car travelling from the bridge to the A184 at about 19:45 on Saturday.

He was taken to hospital with serious injuries. He was in a critical condition and later died. Northumbria Police is appealing for witnesses.

'Two steps away from failure'

Mark Denten

Political Correspondent, BBC North East & Cumbria

The North East Ambulance service says it's just two steps away from possible service failure.

It's operating at level four on a scale which measures the pressure it's working under. Reaching level six could see it go into meltdown.

People taking emergency calls

And that's without having to deal with any major illness outbreaks, or severe winter weather. It's led to renewed calls for people to only dial 999 in emergencies. I'll have more on this story on

BBC Look North at 18:30 on BBC One.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 17:00 include:

  • BBC Tees: The North East has seen a bigger quarterly fall in its unemployment rate than any other part of the UK.
  • BBC Newcastle: Jon Harle and Anne Leuchars have a round-up of the day's news.

Tributes paid to crash death driver


parents of a County Durham driver who died in a car crash have paid tribute to their 23-year-old son.

Kieran Arkless, from Willington, died on Sunday when his car was in collision with a taxi on the outskirts of Bishop Auckland.

Kieran Arkless
Durham Police

His parents, Shaun and Gillian Arkless, said he had just moved into his first home after landing a "dream job" at a pharmaceutical company. They said the keen Sunderland fan would be remembered with a smile.

Cloudy and breezy

Lisa Gallagher

Weather Presenter, BBC Look North

Cloudy and rather breezy, with a few bright spells possible in eastern areas such as towards Sunderland. Staying mainly dry, though a few outbreaks of light rain are possible over the Pennines. Much milder than yesterday.

Weather forecast

Maximum temperature: 11C (52F).

Check the forecast near you.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 16:00 include:

  • BBC Tees: We've been told how more and more children are turning up at accident and emergency because they've been poisoned by an e-cigarette refill.
  • BBC Newcastle: Jon Harle and Anne Leuchars have a round-up of the day's news.

North East murder cases in focus

There have been a number of murders in the North East where the case has rested on the

joint enterprise law which MPs now say needs to be reviewed.

Joseph Tingle, 23, and 28-year-old Mark Pearson

were ordered to spend a minimum of 18 years in jail for the murder of Richard Petty, aged 35.

Thomas Petch, 26, and George Romero Coleman, 45,

were found guilty of the August 2001 murder of Kalvant Singh and jailed for life in March 2002.

And two teenage girls were jailed for life for the

murder of Christopher Chapman in Blyth during a drunken row in 2011, when one just stood and watched.

NUFC player in court over assault

A former Newcastle United player has appeared in court charged with an assault at a bar.

Jamaal Lascelles, 21, is alleged to have been involved in an incident with another man at Lola Lo bar in Victoria Street, Derby, earlier in April. The

defender was bought by Newcastle in August for an undisclosed fee and loaned back to Nottingham Forest until June.

Jamaal Lascelles

Mr Lascelles, of Oakwood, Derby, was bailed to appear back at Derby Crown Court in March.

Your pictures: Tommy in Seaham

Donald Thynne from Seaham sent us this picture of the sun rising in Seaham with the silhouette of a sculpture called 1101, but known locally as Tommy, in the foreground.

Tommy 1101
Donald Thynne

You can send your pictures by email to or tweet

Review after 'new medical opinion'

A review is set to take place into the death of a Middlesbrough man who had been out celebrating his son's birth.

Benji Bolsenbroek, 23, died in hospital after a disturbance at the Park Hotel pub in October 2013. Following forensic examinations, police said his death was not linked to the trouble.

Benji Bolsenbroek
Cleveland Police

An inquest has now been adjourned after "new medical opinion" was put to the coroner, and a file has been passed to the Crown Prosecution Service.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 15:00 include:

  • BBC Newcastle: The Newcastle United defender Jamaal Lascelles has appeared in court in connection with an alleged fight in a bar.
  • BBC Tees: The children of a County Durham woman found dead in a US hospital 17 days after going missing are set
    to receive a payout of almost £2m.

Woman missing for a year

Hundreds of lines of inquiry and several potential sightings have been investigated by police, but

Janis Hall from Hexham in Northumberland still remains missing one year on.

She was reported missing from her home in Catton at about 22:40 on 19 December 2013.

Janis Hall
Northumbria Police

She had spoken to a relative that afternoon but no-one has heard from or seen the 65-year-old since. Anyone with information should call police on 101.

Breaking'Three-parent IVF' rules announced

The rules for creating babies from the DNA of three people in the UK have just been announced by the Department of Health.

The fertility technique uses material from the mother, father and a donor woman to prevent deadly diseases. MPs will now go on to vote on whether to make the UK the first country in the world to legalise the procedure.

ivf graphic

Opponents say it is unethical to make babies with DNA from three people and that it represents a "slippery slope" to designer babies.

Newcastle University has pioneered research in mitochondrial donation and backed the move earlier this year.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 14:00 include:

  • BBC Newcastle: A man's body has been found in a back lane in South Shields.
  • BBC Tees: The North East has seen the biggest quarterly fall in its unemployment rate of anywhere in the UK.

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Tell us what you think.

Tottenham v Newcastle

Newcastle United travel to Tottenham in the League Cup quarter-final which kicks off tonight at 19:45.

Steven Taylor and Moussa Sissoko are available after suspension but Daryl Janmaat will serve a ban.

Rival managers Alan Pardew and Mauricio Pochettino
Richard Heathcote

Manager Alan Pardew remains without the injured Tim Krul, Rob Elliot, Mehdi Abeid, Rolando Aarons, Ryan Taylor, Siem de Jong and Gabriel Obertan.

Are private drives the new car park?

Francesca Williams

BBC News

When homeowners renting their driveways for parking were threatened with huge fines for not having planning permission, it looked like the end of a trend.

Guide rental prices

But, a year after communities secretary Eric Pickles told councils to back off, the industry has grown so much demand for spaces is outstripping supply.

I've been speaking to people who rent out car parking spaces.

Sunderland murder: CCTV released

Police have released CCTV of people they need to speak to in connection with a murder in Sunderland.

David Wilson, 51, was found dead at an address in Southwick Road on Sunday and a man has been arrested on suspicion of murder and bailed. Officers are now appealing for any witnesses to another alleged incident that they think could be linked.

CCTV of people in Sunderland
Northumbria Police

A man reported being mugged in the area around the Post Office ATM in the Southwick Green area between 03:30 and 04:15 on Sunday.

Postcard arrives 30 years later

A postcard sent from a young girl on holiday headed for County Durham to her gran has finally arrived - 30 years later.

The card, dated 1984, was sent from Gwynedd in north Wales to Chester-le-Street but it only arrived this month. The lady it was sent to, Mrs Selby, has since died, but the owner of her old house, Joanne Wilkinson, is keen to return the card to the sender.

Picture of a postcard
The Northern Echo

Ms Wilkinson, 43, said: "It was posted in 1984. It is in perfect condition. I don't know where it has been. She must have been young when she has written it because it is all spelt wrong. She would be mid-40s now I imagine."

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 13:00 include:

  • BBC Newcastle: A man's body has been found in a back lane in South Shields.
  • BBC Tees: The North East has seen the biggest quarterly fall in its unemployment rate of anywhere in the UK.

Durham-trained woman first female bishop

Reverend Libby Lane has been announced as the first female bishop for the Church of England, just a month after a historic change to canon law.

After being schooled in Manchester and then Oxford University, she trained for ministry at Cranmer Hall in Durham,

according to her church's website.

Reverend Libby Lane

She will become the new Bishop of Stockport, a post that has been vacant since May.

$3m offer over US stairwell death

The children of a British woman found dead in a US hospital 17 days after going missing

are set to receive a payout of almost $3m (£1.9m).

Lynne Spalding, from County Durham, disappeared while in San Francisco General Hospital on 21 September 2013. She was eventually found in a stairwell on 8 October.

Lynne Spalding

Her twin brother Bill dismissed the proposed settlement as "blood money" and said there were still questions surrounding his sister's death. Ms Spalding, 57, was from Haswell but moved several years ago to San Francisco, where she worked in the city's tourism industry.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 12:00 include:

  • BBC Newcastle: A man's body has been found in a back lane in South Shields.
  • BBC Tees: The North East has seen the biggest quarterly fall in its unemployment rate of anywhere in the UK.

Man's death 'unexplained'

The death of a man in South Shields is being treated as "unexplained",

Northumbria Police says.

A man's body was found at about 07:30 in a rear lane in Dacre Street. He was pronounced dead at the scene and a cordon is in place.

Police are carrying out inquiries to find out what happened and are appealing for witnesses.