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  1. Updates for Wednesday 4 March 2015
  2. More updates from 07:00 tomorrow

Live Reporting

By Conor Macauley and Ciaran McCauley

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Signing off with a lovely shot of Lisburn

That's it for tonight. It's great to see the evenings getting longer. Thanks to

Rebecca McKee for this Lisburn sunset.

Rebecca McKee

Back at 7am tomorrow.

Pollock set for championships:

BBC Sport NI

Holywood man Paul Pollock will

run in this weekend's European Indoor Championships after receiving treatment on an ankle injury that threatened his involvement.

Paul Pollock

"Thankfully the problem seems to have cleared up and it's all systems go for this weekend," Pollock told BBC Sport NI.

The new Land League:

A bitter court battle over one of Ireland's most expensive homes has

highlighted a new protest group with an old name.

Land League

Calling itself the Land League, the group has become embroiled in a campaign to stop an Irish bank from repossessing the home of a high-profile lawyer.

Vet defends cat death decision:

Newtownabbey Times

A veterinary surgery in Newtownabbey has defended a decision to euthanize a cat that was taken to its store after being mistaken for a stray,

the Newtownabbey Times reports.

Murder conviction quashed:

A Londonderry man who was jailed for life for the murder of his pregnant ex-girlfriend has had his

conviction quashed by the Court of Appeal in Dublin.

Stephen Cahoon
(C) British Broadcasting Corporation

Stephen Cahoon, 42, with a last address at Harvey Street, Derry, admitted strangling Jean Quigley in 2008 but denied murder.

Transport costs:

Translink's Chief Executive David Strahan earlier briefed a Stormont committee on job losses and

warned it could go out of existence.

Translink infographic

Above is a breakdown of the firm's figures that emerged today.

Workers say firm was `on the up`

Workers at a west Belfast company

which looks set to lose more than 200 jobs, say they'd been told their jobs were secure.

worker and site

Employee Christopher McNally said they were told Belfast was an `integral part` of the company's plans.

BBC Newsline is live at the company at 18.30.

Pensioner murder appeal:

A woman convicted of murdering a pensioner may not have intended to kill her, the

Court of Appeal has been told.

Karen Walsh

Karen Walsh is seeking to overturn her conviction for murdering Maire Rankin on Christmas Day in 2008.

Virtual correction:

Earlier, we reported some serious news - a cardboard virtual reality box that is in the newsroom had broken down.

Virtual reality box

But we're glad to say we were wrong, a colleague tells us it's in perfect working order. Now we just have to figure out how best to use virtual reality for reporting the news. Any ideas, let us know.

'State of shock':

Mark Simpson


A representative from the union Unite says there is a "state of shock" over

warnings about the financial future of Translink.


David McMurray said: "I think it means they're getting ready to privatise Translink through the back door. I think there could be anything up to 200 plus job losses."

Court stops payout to sex offender:

A convicted sex offender who featured on a Facebook page set up to monitor alleged paedophiles has had

damages of £20,000 stopped by a high court injunction.


The sex offender is now also being sued by one of his victims, it has emerged.

Sullivan win hockey title:

BBC Sport NI

Sullivan Upper School has won the Girls' Senior Schools Cup in hockey after defeating Banbridge Academy in the final.

They will now represent Ulster in the All-Ireland Kate Russell Tournament.

Famed photographer dies:

Tributes have been paid to well known Derry Journal photographer Larry Doherty, who has died aged 85.

Larry Doherty
Derry Journal

In his fifty year career he captured some of the most iconic photographs of the Troubles. He retired as the newspaper's chief photographer in 1995.

Brockwell three released:

Irish police say that the

three people arrested in connection with the escape of Derek Brockwell were released last night.

Derek Brockwell
Garda (Irish police) photo

Police say that a file is being prepared for the Irish director of public prosecutions. Meanwhile, the PSNI say Brockwell has been released from hospital and transferred to a prison in England.

Cannabis plants seized:


Twelve cannabis plants were discovered at address in St James Road, Belfast following a search yesterday at around 00:10am.

Cannabis plants

Hundreds of jobs go in west Belfast

John Campbell

BBC News NI Economics & Business Editor

220 jobs are to go in west Belfast

Ageas Retail operates a call centre in the Springvale Business Park for clients in the insurance industry.

Virtual reality news:

Ciaran McCauley


Here at the Beeb, we're at the cutting-edge of technology - to prove it, here's BBC News NI's Mervyn Jess trying out a cardboard virtual reality box.

Cardboard virtual reality

New frontier of journalism? Well, maybe not quite. The box broke down shortly after. We'll stick to the traditional methods for now.

Burst water main:

BBC NI Travel

There's a burst water main on the A2 at Seapark - one lane is now closed Bangor-bound and it's causing a tailback through Holywood.

Protest song not mean to 'upset':

News Letter

The writer of a protest song campaigning for two men convicted of murdering a police officer said he "didn't write the song to upset anyone",

the News Letter reports.

Stephen Carroll
(C) British Broadcasting Corporation
Constable Carroll was shot in the head after responding to an emergency call

Pól MacAdaim says that he believes Constable Stephen Carroll's widow Kate has been "denied the justice of having the real killers of her husband convicted".

Food fight:

While we have to make do with packed lunch sandwiches and crisps in Belfast, up in Foyle on

the Mark Patterson Show they're getting
"brisket beef on bog oak" for lunch.

Brisket beef

We don't really know what it is, but we want some.

Youngest ever leaders for a lodge:

An Orange lodge in County Tyrone, is being led by two men

believed to be among the youngest ever in the roles.

Orange lodge
Brian Haslett

Brian Haslett, 21, and Jonathan Potter, 25, have been installed as deputy master and worshipful master of the Fardross lodge in Clogher.

Family history:

Jayne McCormack


Our story about BBC News NI's 1960s roving reporter James Boyce has prompted a distant relative of his, who lives in America, to share a Boyce family tale.

James Boyce

Dan Boyce told us that an antique family gun (similar to the one held by Boyce in the photo above), has become a treasured example of US firearms history.

The gun is now on display in the Buffalo Bill museum in Wyoming. Fittingly,

Buffalo Bill was one of James' boyhood heroes.

A4 blocked:


A vehicle has shed its load on the A4 carriageway. Overtaking lanes on both sides of carriageway affected. Please avoid the area.

No title tilt for Derry:

BBC Sport NI

Derry City manager Peter Hutton admits

his side are not likely to challenge for the League of Ireland title this season.

Derry City manager Peter Hutton
©INPHO/James Crombie

Hutton is set to begin his first full season as manager of his hometown club with Friday's Premier Division game against Galway United.

Power cut in Derry:

Foyle MLA Mark H Durkan


Derry power cut

Roaming charges

Reuters is reporting that European Union states have agreed that roaming charges for mobile phones that were due to cease by the end of the year could remain in place until 2018.

Getty Images

Last year

the European Parliament voted to scrap roaming charges within the EU by 15 December 2015.

A frost-free night:

Angie Phillips

BBC News NI Weather Presenter

It is going to get a little bit milder over the next few days and

there'll be some decent spells of sunshine especially in the east this afternoon.

Weather 4 March 2015

There could be a few spots of rain this afternoon and it'll be mainly cloudy this evening so we should be frost-free tomorrow.

Ministers visit Strabane site

Minister for Social Development, Mervyn Storey and Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development, Michelle O'Neill have visited the site of a new centre for government services in Strabane.

Employment and Learning Minister Stephen Farry

The multi-purpose centre, which is in the early stages of construction, will provide a jobs and benefits office, and a Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) Direct office.

Stay posted for eclipse info

Cecilia Daly

BBC News NI Weather Presenter

On 20 March we've got a solar eclipse and a spring equinox - I'll keep you posted on the forecast.

Eclipse graphic

999 call in murder trial:

Natalie Lindo


A recording of a 999 call from the girlfriend of a man shot dead in Londonderry in 2013 has been played at the trial of the man accused of his murder.

Kieran McLaughlin

The court heard Barry McCrory's partner Elizabeth Timony telling the operator that a masked man had forced his way into her flat and that she thinks he shot her boyfriend.

Kieran McLaughlin, 60, from Elaghmore Park, Derry, denies murder.

Translink must take action

The chief executive of Translink has warned that the firm could go out of existence unless it increases fares again or makes cuts to services.

David Strahan

David Strahan told the Regional Development Committee at Stormont: "If we do not take action, Translink is not a sustainable organisation and it will not be here in the future."

Win some, lose some:

Tuesday was a mixed day for rugby star Andrew Trimble - on one hand, his alma mater Coleraine Academical were

beaten in the Schools Cup semi-final but it was also announced he'd
signed a new contract with Ireland and Ulster.

Andrew Trimble

Soaking up the sun:

Hope everyone's enjoying the spring sunshine as much as these alpacas in Portadown (thanks to A Steveneson for the photo).

A Stevenson

Ulster University's economic impact

Universities UK says the Ulster University's annual output is £192m.

University of Ulster
Universities UK

The statistic is part of an infographic

the body has produced showing the return from our universities as part of its opposition to higher education cuts.

Church split on 'conscience clause':

Belfast Telegraph

A split has opened in the Church of Ireland over its attitude to the DUP's 'conscience clause' bill,

the Belfast Telegraph reports.

Twell to race in Antrim:

BBC Sport NI

Former winner Steph Twell will race in the Antrim International Cross Country event at Greenmount on 14 March.

Steph Twell
Getty Images

The Aldershot athlete, who won 1500m bronze at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, helped Britain take

European Cross Country team gold in December.

Economic role of NI universities

Universities UK has produced infographics on the economic role of our universities.

Conor Macauley

The body, which represents universities, says higher education budget cuts here will affect the ability to provide a world class education and hit the wider economy.

Teaching staff face cuts:

Maggie Taggart

BBC News NI Education Correspondent

Education Minister John O'Dowd has told the education committee that schools are likely to face 500 job losses amongst teachers and 1,000 amongst non-teaching support staff.

John O'Dowd

However, the minister said it was too early to tell the full impact of the £28m cuts and it would be May or June before he had all the information from schools.

Talkback talks to prisoners:

BBC Talkback

Prison special