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Summary

  1. Updates on Monday 4 July 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

That's the end of our updates here today - thank you very much for joining us. We'll be back from 08:00 tomorrow with more news, sport, weather and travel updates from across the North East.

In the meantime there will be more updates on BBC Newcastle, BBC Tees, online and on Look North.

If you'd like to get in touch you can find us on TwitterFacebook, or send an email to northeast.locallive@bbc.co.uk.

Weather: Outbreaks of rain turning heavy at times and easing later

Outbreaks of rain moving east through the evening, which will turn heavy at times but become lighter after midnight. 

Rain will begin to ease towards the end of the night, although it will remain cloudy, with a cool northerly breeze developing. 

weather graphic
BBC

Minimum Temperature: 12C (54F). 

Charity walk raises fund for brain tumour research

BBC Tees

www.bbc.co.uk/BBCTees

A Redcar woman who has three brain tumours is hailing a charity walk in aid of research into her condition as a success.

About 200 people climbed Roseberry Topping, in North Yorkshire, yesterday morning at an event organised by Mel Hennessey.

She hopes it will raise awareness of brain cancer, with all money raised going to a charity which supports medical research into it. Brain tumours kill more people under the age of 40 than my other cancer.

New Sunderland bridge starting to take shape

Fabricated steel sections that will form the deck of Sunderland’s new bridge are being delivered to the site at Pallion.

The cross beams that will provide the framework for the concrete deck are 20m (65ft) long by 2m (6.5ft) deep.

In total, 38 will be transported from the Port of Sunderland to the site in the coming weeks, along with the main girder sections, which will run along the edge of the deck.

Sunderland City Council leader Paul Watson said: “There is an enormous amount of activity taking place on both the north and south sides of the river, and in the river itself. We are a year into the project and remain on track for a 2018 spring opening. Exciting times are lying ahead.”

The new bridge will cross the River Wear between Wessington Way in Castletown and European Way in Pallion. It is the first bridge to be built over the Wear in Sunderland for more than 40 years and is part of the wider strategic transport plan to link the Port of Sunderland and city centre with the A19.

Steel beams which will make up Sunderland's new bridge
Sunderland City Council

Cricket: Play abandoned at Chester-le-Street

Martin Emmerson

BBC Newcastle

It is lashing it down now and the skies are dark.

Play has been abandoned for the day with Durham on 79-2. We have lost 27 overs. Hampshire had declared at 472-9.

Coast Road scheme to enter second phase

Motorists are being warned to expect delays when the second stage of a major road improvement scheme in North Tyneside gets under way tomorrow.

The borough council says it is investing £7.2m into the Coast Road project to make the road safer and reduce journey times.

The first phase involved creating two eastbound traffic lanes along Beach Road to the A192 Tynemouth Pool roundabout and a new footpath and cycleway, while the second phase, which is due for completion early next year, will see the Billy Mill roundabout replaced with a junction with traffic signals.

Initial works mean lane closures will be in place next to Billy Mill roundabout from 09:30-15:30 and a 30mph speed limit will be in place between Norham Road Bridge and Billy Mill roundabout while there are lane restrictions on the Coast Road.

The removal of Billy Mill roundabout is expected to begin on 18 July.

Anti-Corbyn Labour MPs not banned from miners gala, but invitations rescinded

The Durham Miners Association says it has not banned Labour MPs who refused to support the party's leader Jeremy Corbyn from this year's Durham Miners' Gala, however invitations to its events and functions have been rescinded.

The 132nd gala is being held this weekend and Mr Corbyn is a guest of the association.

Last week Labour MPs voted 172-40 to pass a motion of no-confidence in him.

In a statement the association said: "...we will not allow those who have sought to humiliate him and undermine the democratic process in the Labour party the honour of taking part in the aforementioned Gala traditions."

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Football: Mannone agrees new contract with Sunderland

Goalkeeper Vito Mannone has signed a new two-year deal with Sunderland.

The 28 year old has been at the Stadium of LIght since 2013 aftre joining from Arsenal. He has made 69 appearances for the Black Cats.

Vito Mannone
Reuters

Warning issued over river risks

People are being warned to take care near rivers after they were alerted to two incidents in Ovingham.

On Sunday morning a man was swept under by the current and was pulled out by a friend after he went for a swim at Ovingham Bridge.

Later the same day police received a report of children climbing on scaffolding beneath the bridge. Officers moved the children on after explaining the dangers.

Northumbria Plice East Tynedale acting neighbourhood Insp Mick Aspey said: "The public should be cautious in unfamiliar stretches of water and encourage their friends to do the same. I'd also ask parents to remind their children of the dangers of open water."  

Ambulances offer end of life transport service

Dying patients across the North East now have access to a dedicated ambulance service. 

The North East Ambulance Service (NEAS) has set up an End of Life Transport scheme to take terminally ill people to their preferred places to die. 

Patients are offered help in planning where they want to go, such as a hospice, a care unit, or their home. Dedicated ambulances are then provided, staffed by specialist technicians trained in end-of-life care. 

A pilot scheme which ran from October 2015 to March 2016 was used by 1,037 people, with more than 80% reaching their destination in less than two hours.

ambulance
BBC

Sunderland illuminations to return

We may still be waiting for a sustained spell of summer weather, but Sunderland Council has announced the city's Illuminations will be back this autumn - and a £1 entrance fee will be introduced for the first time.

More than 300,000 people from across the North East visited last year.

This year's event will run from late September until Bonfire Night and the council says every penny of the new charge will go towards running the event in years to come. 

Tyneside Cinema announces Thomas Peutz as chief executive

The Tyneside Cinema, in Newcastle city centre, has announced Thomas Peutz (pictured) has been appointed its new chief executive.

The Dutchman has commissioned and created more than 250 international cultural programmes and the move has been described as "bold and exciting" by the board of trustees.

He takes over the role from Mark Dobson, who is moving to Manchester's Royal Exchange Theatre where he will become executive director.

Thomas Peutz
Tyneside Cinema

Man charged over Sunderland racist abuse

A 55-year-old man has been charged by police investigating an incident of racist abuse in Sunderland.

The victim - a woman - was assaulted and racially abused in the Bridges Shopping Centre at about 15:40 on Sunday.

The suspect will appear at Sunderland Magistrates' Court on 19 July.

Dog attacks on Royal Mail staff 'unacceptable'

The number of dog attacks on postal workers in the UK is at an "unacceptable" level, a union has said.

A Royal Mail survey revealed there were more than 2,600 attacks across the country in the last year.

Attacks in the NE postcode area (which includes Belford in Northumberland) totalled 48 - up 17% on the previous number.

Nottinghamshire had the highest number of attacks - 68 between April 2015 and April 2016 - the report indicates.  

A dog with ripped mail
Thinkstock

Girls who kidnapped todder in Primark to be sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court

Fiona Trott

BBC News

Two girls aged 13 and 14 who admitted kidnapping a two-year-old from a Primark store in Newcastle, have been committed for sentence at the city's crown court. The hearing is due to take place on 8 August.

The sentencing venue was decided at a hearing this afternoon at North Tyneside Youth Court.

The two-year-old girl went missing from the shop on Northumberland Street in Newcastle in April. She was found one hour and 45 minutes later after being tracked via CCTV cameras to a park in Gosforth, about three miles away.

The girls were also charged with shoplifting dummies, baby milk and a bottle.

The Primark store on Newcastle's Northumberland Street
BBC

Cricket: Floodlights on at Chester-le-Street

Two arrests following Newcastle Great Park thefts

Two men have been arrested after a number of thefts from cars on Newcastle's Great Park estate. Police were called in the early hours of Sunday after it was reported two people were acting suspiciously and trying to open car doors on Barmoor Drive.

A number of pairs of stolen designer glasses were found and further stolen property was recovered following house-to-house enquiries, Northumbria Police said.

A 24-year-old was given a police caution, while a 25-year-old was due to appear at South East Northumberland Magistrates' Court today.

Farne Island puffins are picture-perfect

Everybody loves a cute puffin picture so here's one from Carolyn Farthing-Dunn, of Consett, which she snapped on the Farne Islands.

"He didn't look too impressed with his mates' singing," she tells us.

Puffins on the Farne Islands
Carolyn Farthing-Dunn

Footballers back for pre-season training

It has been the first day of pre-season training for many football teams across the country. 

Among those being put throgh their paces were Sunderland, Middlesbrough and Newcastle players.

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View more on twitter
View more on twitter

Gosforth High Street plan would 'alleviate parking issues'

More now on the story we brought you earlier about plans to improve Gosforth High Street.

Newcastle City Council is proposing to revise some parking restrictions and replace some double yellow lines with an extra 20 parking spots. It says this would alleviate problems caused by people leaving their vehicles in residential zones.

It's also put forward a suggestion for a 20mph speed limit from the area around The Grove in the south to Salters Road in the north.

Tees MP Blenkinsop 'won't be intimidated' by online threat

BBC Tees

www.bbc.co.uk/BBCTees

A Teesside MP who was threatened on social media says he's not surprised because of the current state of the Labour Party.

Tom Blenkinsop, the Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland MP, received the tweet which said he would have his teeth kicked in because he was one of 172 MPs who backed a motion of no confidence in leader Jeremy Corbyn.

A Labour Party member has been suspended pending an investigation.

Mr Blenkinsop told BBC Tees he won't be intimidated. He said: "I'm disappointed, but I'm not surprised. Under the current climate, a hard-left militancy is trying to force its argument upon individuals, including MPs. I'm not budging one millimetre."

Tom Blenkinsop MP
PA

Public help restrain knife-man behind Whitley Bay supermarket

Police have praised members of the public who helped restrain a knifeman behind a Whitley Bay supermarket.

Officers were called to the area by Morrisons on Hillheads Road on Saturday evening after it was reported a man who had been drinking had a large kitchen knife.

Two members of the public kept him calm, but when police arrived he assaulted one of the officers. Another member of the public then intervened.

An 18-year-old man was due to appear at North Tyneside Magistrates' Court today charged with possession of an offensive weapon and assault.

Weather: Bright start but cloud increasing and rain later

It will be a bright start to the afternoon with broken cloud. This cloud will increase from western parts with outbreaks of rain arriving, turning heavier and more persistent later in the afternoon. 

weather graphic
BBC

Maximum Temperature: 19C (66F). 

Cricket: Hampshire interested in Durham's Mark Stoneman

BBC Sport

Hampshire have approached Durham opener Mark Stoneman, BBC Radio Solent reports.

The 29-year-old who is Durham's limited-overs captain has also been offered a new contract at Chester-le-Street.

He is understood to interest a number of sides.

Tory hopeful Andrea Leadsom would 'supercharge' Northern Powerhouse

BBC Politics

Conservative Party leadership contender Andrea Leadsom says the Northern Powerhouse project would be "supercharged" if she won the top job, recalling that Sunderland was one of the first places to record a Leave vote.

She has said she wants to keep negotiations on leaving the EU "as short as possible" to avoid "prolonged uncertainty".

A member of the cabinet would be dedicated to these negotiations - consulting businesses, farmers, trade unions and others. Devolved institution would also be consulted, she says, adding: "I will do everything in my power to keep the United Kingdom united."

She commits to reducing the deficit, saying "we have to get our house in order".

Andrea Leadsom
Reuters

Halloween slasher left fancy dress reveller scarred for life

The Chronicle

Halloween horror attack victim Jack Taylor’s face was “torn like paper” when a stranger slashed him during a night out.

Attacker Brian Murray, inset, and victim Jack Taylor
The Chronicle

Tees MP James Wharton denies Northern Powerhouse is 'smokescreen'

BBC Tees

www.bbc.co.uk/BBCTees

The Government minister responsible for the Northern Powerhouse project has hit back at a report which says the scheme is "destined to fail".

A report by four northern Lib Dem MPs claims it is a "smokescreen to hide extensive cuts to local government" and adds it is "not sufficient" to reverse the "growing inequalities between North and South".

Chancellor George Osbourne launched the scheme in 2014, but the report says cuts to local government have undermined the project.

However, James Wharton, the MP for Stockton South and Minister for the Northern Powerhouse (pictured), says there is investment coming to the area.

He told BBC Tees: "Every single Pacer train on our railway network is going to be replaced with a new train and there's going to be a 33% capacity increase. And devolution for Tees Valley will mean a £450m fund will give more control to local people over what happens to our economy."

James Wharton MP
PA

Missing Euan McGregor: Body found near Byker Bridge

BBC Newcastle

Police searching for missing Newcastle man Euan McGregor have found a body. 

On Friday evening officers received a report that the body of a man had been discovered near the city's Byker Bridge.

Police and paramedics attended and he was identified as 41-year-old Mr McGregor, who was from the Walker area. He had been reported as missing.

A report has been prepared for the coroner.

In the news: Landlords urged to cut rents to save South Shields’ dying town centre

A South Tyneside councillor is calling on landlords to play their part in reviving South Shields’ main shopping area.

Shields Gazette front page
Shields Gazette

County Championship Division One: Durham v Hampshire

Martin Emmerson

BBC Newcastle

It's day two of Durham's clash with Hampshire at Chester-le-Street.

The visitors enjoyed a much-needed strong opening day to their County Championship Division One game yesterday, reaching 316-9, and will be looking to build on that today.

Here is the commentary link for today's action. It's a warm morning and the ball should swing.  

Jimmy Adams made his fourth half century of the season for Hampshire
BBC

Next UKIP leader will need to target the North

Richard Moss

Political Editor, BBC Look North

Following Nigel Farage's announcement he'll be stepping down as UKIP leader, the key question for the party will be who can help it target Labour seats in the North where the Leave vote was strong in last month's EU referendum.   

Nigel Farage
BBC

Great North 10k sees record number of runners

A record turnout of more than 5,000 people hit the streets around Tyneside yesterday for the annual Great North 10K.

The event is the biggest of its kind in the North East and is seen by many as a training milestone ahead of the Great North Run in September.

Participants in the Great North 10k go past the Sage Gateshead building
North News

Hexham MP Guy Opperman announces support for Theresa May

Richard Moss

Political Editor, BBC Look North

The Tory leadership contest is in full swing and Hexham MP Guy Opperman has announced he is backing Theresa May for the job.

He says she'd get the best deal for Britain and the North East.

The Home Secretary - currently the runaway favourite - is up against Michael Gove, Andrea Leadsom, Stephen Crabb and Liam Fox.

Theresa May
Getty Images

Liam Fee murder evidence 'will never leave me', says juror

There are calls for jurors to be given more support to cope with the effects of traumatic court cases.

It comes in the week Rachel and Nyomi Fee are due to be sentenced for murdering Rachel's son Liam.

Originally from Ryton, the couple were convicted in May of assaulting and killing the young child at his home.

Alan Tait was one of the 15 men and women who were picked at random to make up the jury and he has told the BBC he experiences flashbacks, wakes up in the night and has found himself in tears on more than one occasion.

Nyomi (left), Rachel Fee and two-year-old Liam
BBC

Travel: A1 speed restrictions lifted

Gilly Hope

BBC Travel

Just to remind you, speed restrictions on the A1 have been lifted both ways between the Coalhouse Roundabout junction and the Swalwell turn-off junction in Lamesley. 

It comes after work on a £61m project to build an extra lane in each direction was completed.

In the news: Sunderland MP fights twitter trolls after resigning in Jeremy Corbyn debacle

A Wearside MP is fighting back against twitter trolls after taking flak for quitting her role as a shadow minister.

Sunderland Echo front page
Sunderland Echo

Gosforth High Street plan revealed

Proposals to improve pedestrian facilities, revise parking restrictions and reduce speed limits on Gosforth High Street have been released by Newcastle City Council.

The authority says they have been drawn up following talks with community groups and traders.

Councillor Ged Bell, cabinet member for investment and development, said: “Gosforth High Street is a busy shopping area, with the potential to be so much better."

Business owner Duncan Young, of Sanderson Young, said: “I've been trading in Gosforth for years and believe that the street as a destination could be better. Like many local businesses, I am firmly against making the street more of a through route rather than somewhere people would want to come to."

Gosfroth High Street
Google

Weather: Sunny spells expected

There's set to be a bright or occasionally sunny start to the day with broken cloud. The cloud will increase from the west with outbreaks of rain arriving from midday onwards, turning heavier and more persistent later in the afternoon.

Today's forecasted temperatures across the North East
BBC