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Summary

  1. Updates on Wednesday 29 March
  2. News, sport, weather and travel updates return from 08:00 on Thursday

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. Our live coverage across the day

    That's it from us today. We'll be back on Thursday at 08:00 with more news, sport, travel and weather updates from across the North West of England. Until then, have a lovely evening.  

  2. Weather: Cloudy and breezy, with outbreaks of rain

    BBC Weather

    Becoming more breezy with rain in some parts turning heavy overnight.

    Video content

    Video caption: Weather: Cloudy with outbreaks of rain. Highs of

    Highs of 13C.

    More from BBC Weather

  3. Professor Brian Cox makes Postman Pat debut

    Professor Brian Cox may be an old hand at presenting, but now he's got a new string to his bow - voicing an animated physicist in the CBeebies show, Postman Pat .

    Video content

    Video caption: Pat has to deliver a real astronaut's spacesuit to Lauren's special Space Day.

    The University of Manchester professor made his debut as the voice of Professor Ryan Farrow, a space expert friend of the show's resident inventor Ted Glen, this morning.

    You can watch the episode, named Postman Pat and the Space Suit, above. 

  4. Plan for £30m Salford to Trafford heritage railway proposed

    A railway line closed in 1964 could reopen as a heritage line for steam engines if new plans come to fruition.

    Video content

    Video caption: The plans for the new line, which would run from Irlam to Timperley, have been submitted.

    Businessman Neil McArthur's £30m plan would see a footpath and cycleway run alongside six miles (9.5km) of tracks between Salford and Trafford.

  5. 'Hillsborough Law' passes first Commons test

    A proposed "Hillsborough law" that would demand police officers and other public authorities to be open and truthful in inquest proceedings has been introduced to Parliament. 

    Andy Burnham

    Former Shadow Home Secretary and Leigh MP Andy Burnham said the establishment had failed to learn lessons from the Hillsborough cover-up, as he introduced draft legislation through a 10-minute rule motion. 

    The Public Authority (Accountability) Bill would make it a criminal offence for the police and other public bodies to cover up wrongdoing at inquests.

    It would also give bereaved families the same resources as public bodies to make their case at inquests.  

    The bill was approved at the first stage and will be given a second reading on 12 May. 

  6. Coleman injury made Williams 'feel sick'

    BBC Sport

    Wales captain Ashley Williams says he "felt sick inside" when he realised Everton team-mate Seamus Coleman had broken his leg in Friday's World Cup qualifier in Dublin.  

    Seamus and Ashley

    Coleman will leave hospital after surgery for a double break, suffered  in a tackle that saw Neil Taylor sent off.

    Williams also revealed Taylor wanted to see Coleman in hospital and sent him a text message from the Aviva Stadium.

    "Neil was gutted. He was sitting on the floor virtually in tears," he said.

  7. Ian Paterson: Cancer ticking 'time bomb' description denied

    A surgeon has denied telling a patient she risked a ticking time bomb of breast cancer, a court has heard .

    Ian Paterson

    Ian Paterson, 59, of Castle Mill Lane, Ashley, Altrincham, said he had never used that "frightening analogy" in his life.

    The trial previously heard Patricia Welch was led to believe she was a cancer "ticking bomb" and was wrongly encouraged to have a mastectomy.

    Mr Paterson denies 20 counts of wounding with intent. The procedures relate to nine women and one man and were carried out between 1997 and 2011.

  8. Rare Star Wars figure bought in Bacup fetches £10k at auction

    A rare Star Wars toy bought at a Lancashire market stall in 1980 has sold for more than £10,000 at auction .  

    Star Wars merchandise

    Its original owner paid "pocket money prices" for the Jawa figure in Bacup when he was a boy.

    The toy, which originally sold for about £1, came with a limited edition vinyl cape and had never been opened.

    It was expected to fetch between £5,000 and £6,000 at the Vectis auction in Thornaby-on-Tees but went to an international buyer for £10,200.

  9. Council to move out Chester headquarters

    Cheshire West and Chester Council is to move out of its headquarters in Chester, seven years after moving in.

    The HQ building in Chester.

    The authority says the move will help save £2.4m.

    Staff will be moved to council sites in Winsford and Ellesmere Port, but the council insists it will retain a "smaller presence" in Chester in other buildings it currently owns.

  10. Flood barriers tested in Ribchester

    Teams from the Environment Agency (EA) have been testing temporary flood barriers in Ribchester today.

    Flood barriers exercise, Ribchester

    The barriers are used to reduce the impact of flooding to homes and businesses, as well as the clean-up required after a flood.  

    The EA has a total of 25 miles (40km) of temporary barriers and 250 high volume pumps, stored around the country.

  11. Wirral explosion: Community hub opens for victims

    A community hub has opened giving support to people affected by a suspected gas explosion on Merseyside.

    Hub

    Up to 100 residents and 30 business owners hit by the  blast in Bebington, Wirral are being offered help from a team of advisers at New Ferry village hall.

    Explosion

    Two people were seriously hurt and 31 others injured in the explosion on Saturday evening.

    The site remains a crime scene as police investigate the cause.

  12. Puppy stolen from house in Trafford

    Police are trying to reunite a family with their five-month-old dog.

    Bobby, a Shih Tzu cross Maltese, was stolen from a house on Hancock Street in Stretford yesterday.  

    Dog

    Melissa Briscoe, the owner, said: "I have three young children and they are absolutely heartbroken. They just keep asking me when he’s coming home."

    Anyone with information should contact police on 0161 856 7635.

  13. Football: Liverpool star helps Brazil qualify for 2018 World Cup

    BBC Sport

    Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho was on the score sheet last night as he helped Brazil become the first side to seal their place at the World Cup finals in Russia next year

    Philippe Coutinho

    Their 3-0 win over Paraguay, along with defeats for Argentina and Uruguay, means they cannot finish lower than fourth in South American qualifying.

  14. Mum's plea to son over child death crash

    The mother of a man believed to have left the country after a four-year-old girl was killed by a car has pleaded for her son to contact police .

    Video content

    Video caption: Aidan McAteer's mother contacted police after seeing her son's photo on the internet

    Violet Grace Youens died after being struck by a stolen vehicle while walking through St Helens, Merseyside, on Friday. 

    Police are trying to trace Aidan McAteer, 23, who is believed to have left the country hours after the crash.

    His mother Alicia contacted police after seeing his photo on the internet.  

  15. Latest headlines for the North West

    • The mother of a man believed to have left the country after a four-year-old girl was killed, pleads for her son to contact police
    • Merseyrail publishes timetable for the day of the RMT strike, which will take place on Grand National Day
    • Staff and players at Morecambe Football Club are paid after a banking delay
  16. Jewish community meeting ahead of Manchester Mayoral elections

    Members of the Jewish community in Manchester are being invited to a meeting this weekend ahead of the Manchester Mayoral Election in May.

    Manchester skyline

    The Jewish Representative Council in partnership with the Jewish Leadership Council and King David Schools will host a debate which will focus on issues such as the rise of anti-Semitism, security and representation of the local community.

    It takes place on Sunday, between 19:30-21:30, at King David High School.

    Candidates who have declared their intention to stand in the election: 

    • Sean Anstee - Conservative
    • Jane Brophy - Liberal Democrat  
    • Andy Burnham - Labour  
    • Marcus Farmer - Independent
    • Stephen Morris - English Democrats
    • Shneur Odze - UKIP  
    • Will Patterson - Green Party  
  17. Work begins to create ecology park on Lancashire coast

    Work has begun to create an ecology park on the site of the multimillion-pound Rossall coastal defence scheme. 

    Rossall

    The site, which is also classed as a biological heritage site because of the rare species of flora and fauna that grow there, will be known as Larkholme Grasslands.

    As well as seating, pathways and bridges, the ecology park will feature aluminium grassland beacons, hand-carved wooden artworks and an artwork trail based on folklore and myth surrounding the local coastline.

    The new sea defences are due to be completed in November 2017, and Larkholme Grasslands in spring 2018.  

  18. Grand National rail strike timetable announced

    Merseyrail has published its Grand National timetable, which includes "key services" running every 7 and a half minutes between Liverpool city centre and Aintree on 8 April - the day of the RMT strike.

    Merseyrail

    The 24-hour strike is planned to take place on Grand National Day only and will not affect other days of the Grand National Festival.

    Members of the RMT are walking out for 24 hours in a row over driver-only operated trains.

    Merseyrail said on 8 April, there will be "fewer trains or no trains at all" on other parts of the network, although rail replacement buses will run on certain lines and services on "key bus routes".

    Full timetable overview from Merseyrail .

  19. MP to meet PM to discuss New Ferry

    Nina Warhurst

    BBC North West Political Editor

    Prime Minister Theresa May has agreed to meet Wirral South MP Alison McGovern to discuss what will happen next in New Ferry after the explosion which devastated the area on Saturday night.

    View more on twitter