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  1. Updates on Thursday 26 March 2015

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good evening

That's all from BBC Local Live today. We'll be back from 08:00 on Friday.

Philip Lowe sent us some photos of the weather over the Cheviots showing the snowy March clouds.

Clouds over the Cheviots
Philip Lowe

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

Cloud clearing

Paul Mooney

BBC Weather presenter

Remaining cloud and rain should soon clear eastwards during the evening, leaving a dry night with clear periods developing.


Wind will gradually ease, perhaps allowing a slight frost in places by dawn.

Check the forecast where you are.

Muzzy loaned to Brighton

Rob Law

BBC Tees

More outgoings at the Riverside - Now Muzzy Carayol has joined Brighton and Hove Albion on a month's loan deal.

Mustapha Carayol

Hartlepool sign Jordan Hugill on loan

League Two strugglers Hartlepool have signed Preston striker Jordan Hugill on loan for the rest of the season.

The 22-year-old has joined Pools after spending the last month with

Tranmere Rovers, where he failed to score in six appearances for the club.

Jordan Hugill

The Middlesbrough-born forward signed his first professional contract with Port Vale in July 2013 and went on to score five times in 24 matches. Hugill

signed for Preston in 2014, but has been restricted by a knee injury.

He is set to make his Hartlepool debut in Saturday's home game against Cambridge United. Pools are bottom of League Two, one point from safety, with eight games remaining.

'Unable come to an agreement'

After it emerged that workers are to be balloted for industrial action in a dispute with steel giant Tata over pensions, a spokesman for the firm said: "The company and the trade unions have had a number of meetings to discuss the preliminary actuarial valuation of the British Steel Pension Scheme as at 31 March 2014. Those discussions have been held in a constructive and transparent atmosphere.

"The unions and company have discussed the performance of the UK business and considered the challenges facing the pension scheme. We have been unable come to an agreement that would have enabled defined benefit provision to continue and will be consulting employees on a proposal to close the defined benefit scheme to future accrual.

"It is proposed that future pension provision will be on a defined contribution basis. We remain committed to providing employees with competitive future pension provision."

More on £2bn cable project

Richard Moss

Political editor, North East & Cumbria

More now on how a cable bringing green power from Norway to the North East could help plans to bring new jobs to Northumberland. A deal has been struck to build a 730km underground cable connecting Norway with Blyth.

It'll allow hydroelectric and wind energy from Norway to be imported into the UK. The £2bn project is scheduled to be completed in 2021 and could power up to 750,000 homes.

The pipe will land at Cambois, and some of the new equipment needed will be based at the site of the former Blyth Power Station.

There will be some construction jobs created to build a converter station to channel electricity into the national grid. But Arch - the Northumberland development company - says it also hopes it will help attract new jobs to the enterprise zone around the site.

Atkinson joins Carlisle

Rob Law

BBC Tees

That's another one out the door for Boro. David Atkinson has joined Carlisle United on loan until the end of the season.

David Atkinson
Getty Images

Anger over rubbish and pollution

Carol Malia

BBC Look North presenter

On the programme tonight: The Environment Agency is under fire for failing to curb the actions of a Tyneside waste contractor at the centre of a series of recent pollution incidents.

People living near the Blaydon Quarry landfill, in Gateshead, say piles of rubbish, as well as bad smells and traffic chaos, are making life miserable.

Watch Look North at 18:30 on BBC One

or catch up here.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 17:00 include:

  • BBC Tees: Fifty more police officers in County Durham are to be trained to use taser stun guns.
  • BBC Newcastle: Shell has announced it's planning to cut another 250 jobs in its North Sea operations this year.

Shearer v Kane in stats

Here's how the record books stand for when former Newcastle striker Alan Shearer made his England debut, and how it stands for potential new Three Lions star Harry Kane, from Spurs.

Shearer v Kane record

Moskwa murder was "senseless attack"

Following the

jailing of Scott Jefferson (pictured) for the murder of Uriel Moskwa, Northumbria Police says the case should serve as a warning to anyone carrying knives.

Det Chief Insp Nicola Musgrove said: "This offence shows just how lethal a single stab wound can be, and in this case, has cost a man his life. This was a senseless attack which has had tragic consequences.

Scott Jefferson
Northumbria Police

"I hope this case will remind people of the dangers of carrying knives and how quickly a situation can deteriorate and spiral out of control."

Amble's harbour village

A "harbour village" in a Northumberland coastal town is set to open on Saturday.

It follows a redevelopment of the harbour area in Amble.

Amble Harbour
Darryn Wade

Events on the day include a flotilla, and the area's past of Viking raids will be celebrated with a Viking camp in the town square.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 16:00 include:

  • BBC Tees: Fifty more police officers in County Durham are to be trained to use taser stun guns.
  • BBC Newcastle: Shell has announced it's planning to cut another 250 jobs in its North Sea operations this year.

Oscar winner among new Freemen

Oscar-winning producer Lord David Puttnam,

Sage Gateshead general director Anthony Sargent and The Royal Northern Sinfonia will all become
Freemen of Gateshead.

Lord Puttnam

A special ceremony is taking place at the Northern Rock Foundation Hall at The Sage.

Others to have been given the honour include athlete Jonathan Edwards, MetroCentre founder Sir John Hall and actress Jill Halfpenny.

More police get Tasers

Helen Richardson

BBC Newcastle

The move follows recent calls from the Police Federation that all officers should be equipped with the devices, which were first introduced in the UK in 2003 and in Durham were issued to authorised firearms officers two years later.

Durham currently has 103 authorised Taser users and a further 24 response officers are due to be trained in their use by June.

Norwegian green energy to power UK homes

John Moylan

Industry correspondent, BBC News

Green power from Norway will be powering hundreds of thousands of UK homes from 2021, National Grid has said.

Energy will travel via the world's longest sub-sea electricity interconnector when the project is completed in 2021 and connect to the UK network at Blyth in Northumberland.

The €2bn (£1.4bn) project has been rubber stamped between National Grid and its Norwegian equivalent Statnett.

The UK aims to import enough hydro-power from Norway to provide 14% of yearly household electricity needs.

Back to the 1950s

Nine houses in the north-east of England have the chance to feature in a museum.

Beamish in County Durham has appealed for semi-detached houses to use as a design base to replicate at a new attraction.

Houses in Newbottle in 1953

Built between 1950 and 1959 as social housing, the nine selected finalists were people's childhood - or current - homes.

The public can now vote for the winner which will be announced at the beginning of April.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 15:00 include:

  • BBC Newcastle: Shell has announced it's planning to cut another 250 jobs in its North Sea operations this year.
  • BBC Tees: It's claimed Middlesbrough has the second unhealthiest high street in the country.

Rail academy opens

BBC Newcastle

A new Rail Academy is opening in the North East today - the first of its kind in the country.

It is being run by

Newcastle College and is based in Gateshead.

It is hoped it will make the region a focal point for rail engineering in future and fill the gap of 1,100 workers in the industry.

Latest football talk

BBC Sport

Here's today's Gossip Column: Newcastle are considering a pre-season tour of the United States to help increase the club's global fanbase,
according to The Chronicle.

Newcastle's Jonas Gutierrez, who has fought off cancer this season,

tweets: "A club is not about a owner, a manager or a player, is about the fans and I am proud about the fans of Newcastle, thanks for the support and love, that is the most important."

North Shields murderer jailed for life

A man has been jailed for life with a minimum term of 20 years after

being found guilty of murdering Uriel Moskwa in North Shields last September.

Scott Jefferson, 22, of Stanley Street, Wallsend, was sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court today over the fatal stabbing.

Jamie Leigh Denley, 22, of Belford Terrace, North Shields, was sentenced to a total of 21 months in prison suspended for two years after admitting affray and possession of a blade.

BreakingTata workers balloted over pensions row

Workers are to be balloted for industrial action in a dispute with steel giant Tata over pensions.

The union Community accused the company of being "hell bent" on closing its final salary scheme, which it claims is an attack on staff terms and conditions.

National executive member Paul McBean said: "We have tried to bring Tata back to the negotiating table, but to no avail. Even after coming up with schemes to bridge all of the deficit, Tata did not want to know and are hell bent on closing the scheme.

"This response is totally unacceptable to Community and its members and we know we need to stand up to Tata."

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 14:00 include:

Rugby fans to watch matches at fanzone

Rugby fans will be able to watch all the 2015 World Cup action from a free fanzone in Newcastle.

The city is one of the hosts of the tournament in October and the supporters' area will be on the Science Central site opposite St James' Park.

Organisers are promising entertainment along with a big screen to watch all of the games as well as rugby-themed events. The announcement was made at news conference just now.

Press conference

Body found is missing hillwalker

Police have confirmed

that a body found in the search for a missing hillwalker is that of Durham University software programmer Daniel Bennett.

The 43-year-old, from Bishopbriggs in East Dunbartonshire, Scotland, was reported missing on Saturday after going walking in the hills around Tyndrum in Stirling.

Missing man
Police Scotland

Police and mountain rescue teams searching the area found a body in the area of Ben Oss on Tuesday.

A post-mortem examination is to be carried out, but officers said there were no suspicious circumstances.

Ben Oss
Alan O'Dowd

Dean delighted by cathedral fund

The Very Reverend Michael Sadgrove, Dean of Durham, says he's delighted with the funding for repairs to the cathedral's 216ft (66m) high tower.

He said: "The cathedral is made of beautiful, yet very vulnerable, sandstone and the conservation work to be done on the fabric is never-ending.

Durham Cathedral
Durham Cathedral

"This generous award will enable work to start on the most visible part of the entire cathedral and perhaps the best-loved aspect of the Durham skyline.

"It will mean that this enduring symbol of life's spiritual dimension will continue to inspire the people of today and tomorrow as it has done for centuries."

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 13:00 include:

  • BBC Newcastle: A dead horse has been found on a village green in County Durham.
  • BBC Tees: The Mayor of Middlesbrough Ray Mallon says he doesn't have any regrets about suggesting knocking down homes in Gresham.

Football club helps tackle child obesity

BBC Newsround

We've been

to the home of Newcastle United to look at how youngsters can eat more healthily.


The programme has carried out its own "big food survey", which showed more than half of children do not eat any vegetables on a daily basis.

Crime commissioner on more Tasers

Helen Richardson

BBC Newcastle

Durham's Police and Crime Commissioner, Ron Hogg, said: "We will not be arming all officers with Tasers even though the Police Federation have asked for it.

Ron Hogg

"This is being done to improve the safety of our officers and has no relation to crime levels within County Durham and Darlington, which are currently stable.

"The force uses Tasers less than the national average and this reflects our approach of talking to people and helping them."

Fans to protest over ticket prices

Newcastle and Sunderland fans will protest against the price of match tickets by staging a demonstration outside a meeting of Premier League club executives.

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 (FSF) and fan groups from all 20 top-flight clubs. The letter renews a demand for away tickets to be capped at £20.

Fans applaud Gutierrez

My take on Kane's England chance

Alan Shearer

BBC Sport

Harry Kane has already shown he has the ability to be a top Premier League striker, but it is his attitude that will help him make it at international level too.

I spoke about him recently to one of his former coaches at Tottenham, my old Newcastle team-mate Les Ferdinand, and he says Harry always wants to learn and improve.

He is not the kind of player who will stop working hard just because he has been called up to the senior squad for the first time by Roy Hodgson.

Harry Kane and Alan Shearer

Yes, there was an arrogance about what Kane said over the weekend about him wanting to play for England now, and not just be part of the squad. But it was a good arrogance.

Read more of my column here.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 12:00 include:

  • BBC Newcastle: A dead horse has been found on a village green in County Durham.
  • BBC Tees: A new scheme to support children caught up in domestic abuse is piloted by Cleveland Police and Hartlepool Council.

Durham Cathedral gets £568,000 for repairs

Durham Cathedral will be given £568,000 from the government-sponsored First World War Centenary Cathedral Repairs Fund to carry out urgent repairs to its main tower.

Workmen at the top of the tower

Repairs are required to the upper parapet including sandstone conservation work, work on roof coverings and rainwater systems, as well as new decking.

Although scaffolding will be put up the tower will remain open to visitors during most of the rennovations.

Doing the rounds

Lisa McCormick

BBC Tees

George Anderson-Reid has been a postman in County Durham for 40 years, and is a familiar face in Bishop Middleham and Mainsforth.

Today I got to accompany him on his final round for BBC Tees.

George the postman

Concern over bus accidents in Stockton

Mike Parr

BBC Tees


BBC Tees today we're looking at the worrying number of people being hit by buses on Stockton High Street.

Over the past six months five people have been struck -

two of whom have died.

Yesterday a pensioner became the latest to be injured.

Warning after promenade collapse

Hartlepool Mail

People in Hartlepool are being urged to tread carefully when strolling along a

stretch of seaside promenade after an area of it collapsed.

Hartlepool promenade collapse
Hartlepool Mail

A section of pathway on the prom at the Headland, in Hartlepool, caved in with the rubble falling into the walkway.

News on the hour

The top local headlines at 11:00 include: