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  1. Thursday 20 April 2017
  2. Brendan Foster to retire from athletics commentary
  3. Turkish Baths restoration to get under way
  4. Police look again at missing teenager case
  5. Thornaby fire death post-mortem examination due
  6. Firefighters tackle Washington blaze

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All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

Thank you for joining us today. Our live updates are finished, but you can still find the latest news on BBC TeesBBC NewcastleLook North and online.

We'll be back with more news, sport, weather and travel at 08:00 tomorrow

You can get in touch using TwitterFacebook, or via email.

Weather: Cloudy with light rain possible

It'll be on the cloudy side later but mainly dry, with a few spots of rain possible at times. Expect it to feel a little warmer than recent days, particularly the sunny intervals.  

Tonight it will be mainly dry but staying rather cloudy with some light rain likely. The cloud cover and breeze should prevent a frost.  

Weather chart

Prisoner absconds from HMP Kirklevington

Police are trying to track down a prisoner who absconded from HMP Kirklevington near Yarm.

Samuel Hill, 35 has been missing from the open prison since Monday. He was serving a sentence for conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm.

It has been reported Hill has links to South Tyneside.

Samuel Hill
Northumbria Police

Blaydon will not contest general election

Dave Anderson, the MP for Blaydon, has announced he will not stand as a candidate in the general election on 8 June.

The Labour man, who has represented the area for 12 years, said: "I have reluctantly decided that for reasons of health, age and my family's needs, I cannot commit to another five years in Parliament".

Anderson, 63, is also Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Dave Anderson Labour MP

Denise Welch partners with charity to fight mental health stigma

BBC Newcastle

North East actress Denise Welch has been speaking to BBC Newcastle about living with depression for almost 30 years.

She has partnered with the charity Heads Together to try to encourage people to open up about their mental health.

A film of her talking about it with her husband has been released by the charity. The organisation is also being supported by Princes William and Harry.

I take it very, very seriously. It's so important that we talk about it because it's affecting so many people.

Denise WelchActress
Denise Welch
Getty Images

Work under way in preparation for Tees Valley mayoral debate

The crew are busy preparing the set for tonight's Tees Valley mayoral debate. 

You can watch it on BBC One at 22:45 and we'll have an online catch-up tomorrow.

View more on twitter
County Hall, Morpeth

Home Group cited a "number of reasons" for withdrawing from the Northumberland County Council site.

Read more

Sunderland named depression capital as anti-depressant figures released

Sunderland Echo


The North East prescribes more anti-depressants than anywhere else in England – with Sunderland right at the very top of the regional league table.

Sunderland Echo

Last chance to see Newcastle's Turkish Baths before restoration

Today is one of the last chances to see Newcastle's historic City Pool and Turkish Baths before they undergo a makeover.

A leisure charity called Fusion Lifestyle Ltd was chosen in May last year to restore and renovate the Grade II listed building.

The charity claims the multimillion-pound project will bring the baths "back to life" and that all work will be done "sensitively". 

They were shut in 2013 as part of council budget cuts. The refurbishment is due to be completed in Spring 2018.

Image showing digitised version of new Turkish Baths.
Fusion Lifestyle

Tees Valley mayoral hopefuls to face voters on BBC One

Richard Moss

Political Editor, BBC Look North

Jobs, transport, housing and Brexit are all likely to come up as the candidates face questions from voters - and me - later as part of a BBC One debate on the Tees Valley mayoral election.

The vote is being held on 4 May and the new mayor will be the head of the Tees Valley Combined Authority, which is made up of Darlington, Hartlepool, Redcar and Cleveland, Middlesbrough and Stockton councils.

The government will devolve certain powers to the mayor and give them £15m a year to spend.

The debate will be broadcast at 10:45. If you miss it, we'll have an online recap on Friday.

Graphic with broadcast details of Tees Valley Mayoral debate

Newly qualified police dog locates concealed cash

Newly qualified Northumbria Police dog Felix successfully took part in an operation yesterday.

Well done! 

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Your Photos: The sun sets on Beadnell Harbour

Thanks to Valerie Seaward for this photo of Beadnell Harbour, in Northumberland, as the sun was setting.

Have you got any photos you'd like to share with us? In that case you can tweet them to @BBCNewsNEemail them, or contact us via our Facebook page.  

Sunset at Beadnell Harbour
Valerie Seaward

Funeral details announced for victim of alleged hit-and-run

The Shields Gazette

The funeral details have been announced for alleged hit-and-run victim Lewis Knapp. 

Lewis, 20, was killed when he was struck by a silver Vauxhall Vectra in Anderson Street, South Shields, in the early hours of Saturday.

Lewis Knapp
Shields Gazette

Newcastle United players in PFA Championship team of the year

BBC Sport

Three Newcastle United players have been selected for the 2017 Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) Championship team of the year.

Defender Jamaal Lascelles, midfielder Jonjo Shelvey and forward Dwight Gayle have been named in the PFA selection. Gayle has scored 22 goals for the Magpies this season.

The votes were provided by PFA members from 100 clubs from the Premier League, Football League and Women's Super League.

PFA Championship team of the year

Foster's commentaries 'iconic'

More now on athletics commentator Brendan Foster announcing his plan to retire after August's World Championships in London

Foster, 69, began his athletics career training at Gateshead International Stadium and went on to compete in three Olympic Games.

A European 5,000m gold medallist and a Commonwealth champion at 10,000m, he began his commentary career in 1980 - going on to cover a total of nine summer Olympics for the BBC.

Barbara Slater, the BBC's Director of Sport, said: "His words and iconic commentaries will be heard for years to come."

Brendan Foster with Olympic torch in front of the Angel of the North
Getty Images

He also founded the Great North Run in 1981, which has become one of the most successful half-marathons in the world.

Great North Run
Getty Images

Car plummets 50ft into river following crash in Bedlington

A car ended up in a river after travelling 50ft down an embankment in Northumberland.

The Renault Megane left the A193 at Attlee Bank, Bedlington, in the early hours and went through a barrier before ending up in the River Blyth, police said.

The 18-year-old male driver was rescued from the vehicle and taken to hospital. His condition was described as stable.

Scene of crash in Bedlington
John Tuttiett

Extra Metro trains for Newcastle United v Preston North End clash

Metro chiefs are reminding Newcastle fans extra trains will be running on Monday as the Magpies continue their promotion push against Preston North End.

View more on twitter

Update: Day three of Hike4Hopey's charity hike

It is day three of Hike4Hopey's 333-mile challenge.

The group is raising money for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation by walking from Ipswich to Newcastle in memory of Lee Hope (pictured left) who died last year, aged 33, after a 13-week battle with bowel cancer.

View more on twitter

Quayside bars get river rescue aids

BBC Newcastle

Bars along Newcastle's Quayside are taking part in a pilot scheme to help people who fall into the River Tyne.

Licensed premises are being equipped with flotation aids that can be thrown into the river and used to reel people in. 

Newcastle quayside

It follows a number of incidents involving members of the public who have fallen in - some of which have resulted in fatalities.

If the initiative is successful, it could be extended to other parts of the river.

The scheme is a partnership between Newcastle City Council, Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service and a company which makes the aids known as "throw bags" and is donating them for free.

Missing girl: Police appeal for information

Northumbria Police are appealing for information as they bid to trace a schoolgirl who has been missing since Friday.

Clarice Hoganson, 13, is white, around 5ft 2in tall, of medium build and has long, straight, brown hair. 

She is believed to have been wearing black leather-look trousers, a grey long-sleeved top, blue denim jacket and brown boots.

Clarice Hoganson
Northumbria Police

Defoe to attend birthday party of terminally ill Bradley Lowery

Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe will be guest of honour at the sixth birthday party of terminally ill Bradley Lowery.

The youngster's battle against neuroblastoma has touched the footballing world as he has appeared as mascot for both his beloved Sunderland and England.

Defoe has struck up a close relationship with Bradley, from Blackhall Colliery, County Durham, and said he has been invited to his upcoming party.

Bradley Lowery and Jermain Defoe

He told CNN: "All I can do is try and spend as much time with him as possible and that's what I'm going to try and do from now until the end of the season, just try and see him when I can. 

"He's got a birthday party soon, which I'll be going to with my girlfriend, so we're looking forward to that." 

Doctors believe Bradley's cancer is terminal. After a new form of treatment failed, his family is focusing on creating as many memories as they can.

UKIP guns to poach Hartlepool from Labour as MP Iain Wright stands down

Hartlepool Mail


UKIP has set its sights on claiming the Hartlepool constituency after town MP Iain Wright unexpectedly revealed he will not stand in this summer’s general election.

The MP and former minister, who chairs the Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Select Committee, has said he would “like to do other things” with his life and will not be in the running to represent the town in June’s ballot.

Iain Wright
Hartlepool Mail

Fire damages soft play centre

Colin Briggs

Look North

Firefighters have dealt with a substantial blaze at a former soft play centre in Washington. 

Washington fire
Brian Adamson

Junglerama, on Victoria Road, suffered massive damage in the fire on Wednesday afternoon. 

Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service said the roof of the building collapsed, which actually helped put it out. 

Go North East said the nearby Concord bus station was closed due to the number of people standing in the road watching.   

Police 'revisiting' case of teenager believed murdered

Andrea MacMillan

BBC Tees

Cleveland Police have confirmed they are revisiting the case of missing Middlesbrough teenager Donna Keogh.

The 17-year-old disappeared from the Gresham area of the town in 1998. 

Donna Keogh
Cleveland police

A team of officers are now reviewing historic material attached to the case as part of the ongoing investigation. 

That focus comes after the conclusion of an independent review which resulted in Cleveland Police apologising for its handling of the case.

The last confirmed sighting of the teenager was on Bow Street in April 1998, when she was spotted with a group of people in the early hours of the morning at a house party. 

She was never seen again and police believe she was murdered. 

Post-mortem examination after Thornaby fire death

BBC Tees

A post-mortem examination is due to take place later after a body was found in a fire-damaged flat on Teesside. 

Police are investigating the blaze at the property on Westdale Road in Thornaby on Wednesday morning. 

Scene of Thornaby fire death

Officers were called at around 02:00. The identity of the dead person has not been released.

Weather: Dry but cloudy

Jennifer Bartram

BBC Look North weather presenter

Today will stay mainly on the cloudy side but largely dry, with a few spots of rain possible at times. 

It will feel a little warmer than recent days, particularly in limited bright or sunny intervals. 

Weather map

Maximum daytime temperatures should reach about 14C (57F).

Later it will remain mainly dry, but staying rather cloudy with a little patchy light rain possible. 

The cloud cover and breeze should help prevent any overnight frost, with temperatures at about 9C (48F). 

Welcome to our live coverage

Morning. Welcome to BBC Local Live. We'll be with you throughout the day to bring you the latest news, weather, sport and travel updates.

Have you got any photos you'd like to share with us? In that case you can tweet them to @BBCNewsNEemail them, or contact us via our Facebook page.