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  1. Today's headlines:

Live Reporting

By Ana Guerra-Moore

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage throughout the day

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

That's all for today - thank you for joining us.

We'll be back tomorrow at the usual time of 08:00 with more news, sport, weather and travel updates.

If you'd like to get in touch you can tweet us @BBCNewsNE, email us or contact us via our Facebook page.

Weather: A dry night with clear spells

BBC Weather

Any light showers will quickly die out this evening to give a dry night across the region with clear spells. 

Winds falling light and feeling chilly in rural spots by dawn.

Weather graph

Darlington clubs set to move back to Blackwell Meadows

Darlington football and rugby clubs are set to return to their home at the Blackwell Meadows grounds.

The directors of have announced that the “licence to ground-share” and the commercial agreements for the site have been signed today.

Both clubs have been working together for several months to satisfy the groups who will be funding the redevelopment programme. 

Man arrested over author's disappearance bailed

A 55-year-old man who was arrested yesterday morning  in connection with the disappearance of Northumberland-born author Helen Bailey has been bailed.

Helen went missing with her dog Boris on 11 April. She has not been seen since.

The man, from Royston in Hertfordshire, was arrested on suspicion of murder, disposing of a body in a manner likely to obstruct the coroner and theft.

He is due back at a police station in Hertfordshire in August.

Searches at Helen's home in Royston are continuing, and searches at her property in Broadstairs in Kent are now complete. 

Helen Bailey

Alfie the Shih Tzu saved from being put down

Andy Bell

BBC Tees

Alfie the angry Shih Tzu from Teesside was about to be put down, but a chance meeting in a vets' waiting room led to a last-minute reprieve.

Alfie is now an online celebrity with more than 1,500 followers on Facebook. His owner spoke to me just now:  

Alfie the Shih Tzu was saved from being put down

Durham gymnast makes Team GB

A 2012 Olympic trampoline gymnast has made Team GB for a second time.

Kat Driscoll, from Durham, is set to take part in Rio 2016 as part of the gymnastics team.

Following the news, she posted this tweet:

View more on twitter

Sunderland Mayoress dies

The Mayoress of Sunderland, Janice Emerson, has passed away.

The Mayor's Civic Church Service planned for Sunday 17 July at the local parish church of the Mayor, councillor Alan Emerson, has therefore been postponed and will now be held in the Autumn. 

The leader of Sunderland City Council, Paul Watson, said: "On behalf of his colleagues and of the people of Sunderland, I would like to express our deepest sympathy and condolences to the Mayor, councillor Alan Emerson, for the sad loss of his wife"

Teesside athlete bitten by police dog misses out on Rio Olympics place

A man who was bitten by a police dog was a Teesside athlete who was out training to take part in the Rio 2016 Olympics, it has emerged.

But Jonathan Taylor missed out on joining Team GB after suffering what he described as "some issues" leading up the trials.

The 28-year-old said that these were linked to being bitten by the police dog while he was out running in a field near Ormesy Stables in Eston on 6 June.

Jonathan Taylor
Getty Images

He admitted attack by the German Shepherd affected his confidence, saying: "It cost me a week's worth of training pretty much, and when you come back you're not right because of antibiotics and stuff... I thought I might be okay for the trial race two weeks after that, but I guess I wasn't."

The athlete was treated in hospital for puncture wounds, as was the PC who was also injured. The dog was put down.

Man racially abused in Hartlepool

A 19-year-old man has been racially abused and assaulted in Hartlepool.

The victim was cycling towards Seaton Lane when a grey van with three males inside deliberately swerved towards him, causing him to quickly move out of the way. 

The three attackers then began shouting racial abuse towards the victim and threw a can at him, which struck him above the eye.

The driver of the van got out and it is believed he waved an axe towards the victim, before getting back in the van, when he picked up a stone to defend himself. 

The incident took place on Saturday at about 16:00.

Two-tier school system approved by Northumberland Council

Mark Denten

BBC Look North

Northumberland Council has voted to introduce a two-tier school system in the Ponteland area.

The decision means that seven first schools and one middle school will become primary schools.

Ponteland High School will become an 11-18 secondary school.

Young archaeologists make discoveries

Three budding archaeologists joined an archaeological team from the Bamburgh Research Project on site at Bamburgh Castle in Northumberland on Saturday.

The three children enjoyed a busy day working alongside the archaeologists on the project.

They excavated, cleaned and catalogued archaeological finds, including animal bones and teeth. 

The star find of the day was uncovered by 11-year-old James: an iron object that the archaeologists believe may be a 9th-century belt buckle.

James said: "If I had to describe my day in five words, I'd say exciting, enjoyable, happy, nice... Rainy"

Could this be the start of a future career for these guys?

James with his belt buckle
Young Archaeologists' Club

Which North East town is a hotspot for pets swallowing strange items?

Sunderland Echo


Socks, corn on the cob and babies’ dummies were among the ‘favourite’ items for pets to swallow - according to PDSA vets responsible for their surgical removal.

Dog chewing sock
Sunderland Echo

Woman assaulted in Tynemouth

A 49-year-old woman has been assaulted in North Tyneside.

The incident took place in The Broadway, Tynemouth at about 01:10 on Saturday.

The woman was punched by a man in the street and received hospital treatment for her injuries.

A man has been arrested and released on bail.

Broadway Tynemouth

Amy Tinkler joins women’s gymnastics team for Rio 2016

Bishop Auckland's Amy Tinkler is officially part of Team GB as she has made the women's gymnastics team.

At only 16 years old, Amy will be the youngest member of the team at the Rio Olympics - one month younger than Lois Toulson of the diving team.

The gymnast has expressed her excitement on Twitter:

View more on twitter

Pitch inspection at Surrey v Yorkshire

BBC Sport

There's a pitch inspection right now at the Surrey v Yorkshire cricket match.

Surrey are currently 164-5 at The Oval where the rain has apparently now stopped. 

Only one session plus one over was possible yesterday - let's hope things will improve this afternoon to allow more play today.

Follow live coverage here. 

Getty Images

Sunderland Ladies' matches move as league changes dates

Jo Currie

BBC Sport

The Women's Super League will be played through the winter in 2017-18, the Football Association have announced.

The WSL, in its sixth year, currently takes place in the English summer, with the 2016 campaign starting on 23 March.

The 2017-18 WSL will run from September to May after Women's Euro 2017, moving in line with other divisions in Europe.

The FA say they hope the changes will help England win the 2023 World Cup, improve player welfare and double both participation and attendances.

It means Sunderland Ladies' matches would not be played over the summer next season.

Sunderland Ladies
The FA

Attempted robbery in Sunderland

Police are reappealing for witnesses to an attempted robbery in Sunderland.

The incident took place at about 19:10 on 17 June, when a man entered the Subway sandwich shop in Chester Road armed with a knife and threatened a member of staff.

He demanded money before fleeing the store empty-handed.

The offender is white, in his 20s, about 5ft 5in and spoke with a local accent.

Officers have identified an individual captured on CCTV in the area who appears to match the description of the offender

Officers are keen to identify this person:

CCTV footage

Sunderland charity wins £350k funding

A mental health and arts charity based in Hendon, Sunderland, has been awarded £350,000 over three years from the Big Lottery, Reaching Communities.

This is the second lottery award that The Art Studio has won, and it will help to continue the project, which started in 1986.

The charity helps anyone suffering from mental health issues, using art as a means to help them improve self-confidence, self-esteem as well as learning new skills in a safe and caring environment.

The Art Studio manager, Barney Craggs, said: "A big thank you to the Lottery for their continued support which means so much to our members, many of whom see the studio as a lifeline and a way to improve their mental health and general well being."

Gateshead woman missing

A woman from Gateshead has gone missing.

Sandra Oni, 21, from Dunston, was last seen at about 18:30 on Friday in Newcastle city centre. 

She is 5ft, has black hair, brown eyes and was wearing an orange top, white trousers, black boots and a brown and cream fur jacket at the time of her disappearance.

Sandra Oni

Teesside projects nominated for National Lottery award

BBC Tees

A project on Teesside has been nominated for a National Lottery Award for its hard work in helping young people aged 16-24 manage their money. 

The Know Your Money project is run by volunteers who offer advice on budgeting, homelessness, housing benefits and grants to those who may not know where to go. 

Our Reporter Louise Hobson was at the project this morning to see what they've been doing:

View more on twitter

Stockton South MP wants to continue as Northern Powerhouse Minister

BBC Tees

David Cameron has chaired his final cabinet meeting before leaving Number 10 to be replaced as prime minister by Theresa May tomorrow.

The Conservative MP for Stockton South, James Wharton, says he would like to continue in his role as the Northern Powerhouse Minister.

He told BBC Tees that he's "satisfied" with the assurances he's had about the wider economy and the North East after talks with Mrs May.

Talking about the new prime minister, he said: "It's good news both that it's Theresa May, but also that it's done, with everything else that's going on in politics, to have that stability, to have a new prime minister in place, I think will be welcomed by most people who are looking for that stability and reassurance."

Theresa May

Chris Sutton backs Sam Allardyce as England manager

Former Chelsea and England striker Chris Sutton supports Sam Allardyce as the next England manager.

He believes that the Sunderland boss "proved himself" last season by keeping Sunderland in the Premier League, something he described as "an incredible achievement".

Sutton added: "He gets the job done... If Euro 2016 has taught us anything, it's about learning how to win football matches and Sam Allardyce is the master."

"He studies opposition's weaknesses, he knows his team's strengths and he plays to them. It's all about winning."

Sam Allardyce
Getty Images

More parking at South Shields crematorium

Work is due to start this week to create more parking at South Shields crematorium.

The improvements will extend the car park and install markings throughout the crematorium, creating a total of 67 parking spaces.

The move will help to alleviate on-road parking problems and issues with parking in nearby residential streets.

Councillor Moira Smith said: "By increasing the number of spaces, the site will be better able to accommodate large funeral parties. People will still be able to park at the crematorium while this work is ongoing and we will try to keep disruption to a minimum." 

The work will start this Friday and is expected to be completed in the autumn.  

South Shields Crematorium

Boro's young players confirmed to play in EFL Trophy

Middlesbrough's young players will play in the EFL Trophy this season, the club has confirmed.

League One and League Two clubs will play alongside invited Category One Premier League academies. Championship Newcastle's academy team has also been invited.

The 16 groups of four teams will each comprise an academy side with the top two from each qualifying for the first knockout round of 32 teams.

The group stage draw will be announced by the EFL in due course.

Known last season as the Football League Trophy and sponsored by Johnstone's Paint, the competition has been rebranded for this season along with the Football League as a whole.

Man arrested after stun gun incident in Gateshead

Police have arrested a man on suspicion of possessing a stun gun in Gateshead.

Officers received a report of a man with the device in Clavering Road, Swalwell, at 21:55 on Sunday.

A 42-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of possessing a prohibited weapon.

Police are particularly keen to speak to a man and woman who walking in the area.

BreakingAdam Johnson's bid to appeal against child sex offences refused

Adam Johnson's bid to appeal against his conviction and sentence for child sex offences has been refused by a judge, his solicitor has confirmed.

Mr Johnson's solicitor said that the footballer is "obviously disappointed", but will keep fighting to overturn his sentence and conviction.

He added: "Having carefully considered all of the information, we will be lodging renewed applications on conviction and sentence in the coming days."

Adam Johnson

Update: Missing Nicholas Sewell found

Northumbria Police has confirmed that Nicholas Sewell, a 24-year-old who was last seen on Friday, has now been found.

View more on twitter

Middlesbrough 'could sign striker Alvaro Negredo'

BBC Tees

BBC Tees Sport

Talks are on-going between Middlesbrough and Valencia as Aitor Karanka looks to bring striker Alvaro Negredo to The Riverside, BBC Tees Sport understands.

Talks have taken place for sometime, but it's thought that any deal is still some way off as things stand.

Negredo joined Valencia in 2014, on loan from Manchester City.

Alvaro Negredo

Newcastle University appoints new vice-chancellor

Professor Chris Day, one of the country's leading medical academics, has been appointed as the new vice-chancellor of Newcastle University.

Currently Newcastle University's pro-vice-chancellor for medical sciences, Professor Day will take over from Professor Chris Brink when he retires in December.

Speaking of his appointment, Professor Day, said: "This is a huge honour and I am privileged to be able to lead such a wonderful University with so many talented and dedicated staff and students."

Appeal after South Shields man goes missing

Police are trying to locate 24-year-old Nicholas Sewell, who is originally from the South Shields area.

Mr Sewell was last seen in Stockton Road, Sunderland, on Friday. 

He is white, 5ft 9in and has short dark hair. 

Nicholas Sewell
Northumbria Police

Man 'threatened with axe in Hartlepool race-hate attack'

Hartlepool Mail


Here's a look at today's front page - and a link to the top story.

Front page
Hartlepool Mail

Fifty years since the World Cup came to Middlesbrough

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

Can you believe it? Today marks exactly 50 years since the World Cup came to Middlesbrough, when the Soviet Union beat North Korea 3-0.

The game was the first of three matches to be played at Ayresome Park, and more than 22,000 people turned up to watch.

Boro seemed to make a good impression on the North Korean's, and in 2002 the remaining members of the 1966 side, who famously beat Italy 1-0, returned to the town.

Ian Stubbs, curator at Middlesbrough's Dorman Museum, recalls: "They actually went back to the site of Ayresome Park and stood on the site where the goal was scored, and they brought a signed vase and a pennant for us to display."

But all of this almost never happened, as the government considered denying North Korea visas to attend the 1966 World Cup.

Here's some pictures of that first match:

Players pre match
Getty Images
North Korea team
Getty Images

Some more 1966 World Cup trivia: The shirt worn by Sir Geoff Hurst in England's victory is expected to fetch up to £500,000 at auction later today.

North East MEP to stand as UKIP leader

UKIP MEP Jonathan Arnott has announced that he will run to become the party's new leader.

The 35-year-old was elected to the European Parliament in 2014, and is a former General Secretary of the party.

However, his decision comes with some controversy:

The Eurosceptic party's ruling National Executive Committee (NEC) has said all candidates to replace Nigel Farage must have been a member for at least five years.

Jonathan Arnott
Getty Images

This means UKIP's only MP, Douglas Carswell, ex-MP Mark Reckless and prominent former spokeswoman Suzanne Evans, who is temporarily suspended from the party, will not be able to enter the contest. 

Ms Evans said the decision was "ridiculous" and accused the NEC of "changing the rules as it goes along". 

Nominations, which need to be backed by a proposer and 50 supporters from at least 10 branches, opened on Monday and will close on 31 July.

Johnson 'targeted girl knowing she was underage'

Adam Johnson targeted his victim after meeting her outside Sunderland matches.

Sentencing the ex-Sunderland and Boro player, Judge Jonathan Rose told him he had abused a position of trust and caused the girl "severe psychological harm".

The judge told Johnson, 28, he had engaged in sexual activity with her knowing she was under 16.

The sexual activity with the girl happened in the footballer's Range Rover in January 2015 after he had groomed her using social media apps.

Today his sister says his appeal has been dismissed.

Adam Johnson
Durham Police

Jailing him in March, Judge Rose told the footballer, who played 12 times for England, there had been "an abuse of trust - you are trusted by young fans to behave properly".

He said: "She had only just turned 15 when you began grooming her, because, as you were to admit, you found her sexually attractive."

Adam Johnson 'loses appeal over child sex case'

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

Footballer Adam Johnson has lost an appeal against his conviction for child sex offences, his sister claims.

The former Sunderland and Middlesbrough winger was jailed for six years for engaging in sexual activity with a besotted 15-year-old fan. 

The 28-year-old's trial at Bradford Crown Court heard that he had kissed and sexually touched the girl in his Range Rover while parked in a secluded spot in County Durham.

His sister posted this message on Twitter:

View more on twitter

Sam Allardyce a good choice for England manager, says David Gold

BBC Sport

Sam Allardyce 'would make a very good England manager', according to his former boss at West Ham, David Gold.

The Sunderland manager is favourite to succeed Roy Hodgson, who resigned after England's Euro 2016 exit.

It was reported this week that Allardyce, 61, would be interviewed for the role, but he is yet to be contacted by the Football Association.

Sam Allardyce holding a cup
Getty Images

Weather: Bright and warm

Owain Wyn Evans

Weather presenter, BBC Look North

A bright day with some warm sunny spells. 

Whilst some cloud is likely to build, it should remain dry for most, with just the low risk of very isolated showers developing. Winds remaining light.