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Summary

  1. Updates on Wednesday 4 February 2015

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Good evening

    Lloyd Watson

    BBC News

    That's all from BBC Local Live today. We'll be back from 08:00 on Thursday. Carol Grey captured Middleton-in-Teesdale covered in snow with a wall that has weathered the storm.

    Middleton-in-Teesdale

    You can send your pictures by email to northeast.locallive@bbc.co.uk or tweet @BBCNewsNE and we may feature them on BBC Local Live tomorrow.

  2. Sleet and snow showers

    Paul Mooney

    BBC Weather presenter

    Dry in the west with widespread and locally sharp frost, especially in rural areas. A few mostly light sleet and snow showers lingering further east which could lead to some ice on untreated roads and pavements.

    Weather forecast

    Minimum temperature: -4C (25F). Check the forecast near you.

  3. Hall has 'got fights left'

    The former IBF World Bantamweight Champion Stuart Hall says he's not considering retirement from the sport.

    Hall, from Darlington, has suffered back-to-back losses, losing his world title to Paul Butler last year before defeat in Monaco against the highly rated America Randy Caballero.

    Stuart Hall v Martin Ward

    He told BBC Tees: "There's definitely some more good fights left in me. I can't retire on a performance like that."

  4. Tidal surge, one year on

    Peter Harris

    Look North

    It was a weather event only likely to happen once every 60 years - but the damage cost millions to put right. Now though the nightmare has finally ended for families and businesses flooded out by the tidal surge that hit the east coast in 2013.

    Peter Harris

    One couple, from North Shields, saw their dream house ruined by the rising waters while some seaside attractions lost an entire year of trade. I'll have more on this story on BBC Look North at 18:30 on BBC One.

  5. Snow in Weardale

    Gerry Jackson

    BBC Look North

    I have been dispatched to get a snapshot of snow across the North East for BBC Look North, so here's a picture of a snowy landscape from Wearhead in Weardale.

    Snow in Weardale

    You can send your pictures by email to northeast.locallive@bbc.co.uk or tweet @BBCNewsNE.

  6. Crash on A167

    BBC Tees

    This is the scene at the A167 near Darlington where a man's been airlifted to hospital with serious head and chest injuries.

    Air ambulance on a167
  7. Boxer Marshall unveils sculpture

    Hartlepool boxing champion Savannah Marshall has unveiled a life-size sculpture of herself this afternoon at the town's Art Gallery.

    She made history by becoming the first female world boxing champion in 2012, and took gold last year at the Commonwealth Games.

    Statue being unveiled

    The sculpture's been commissioned by Hartlepool Council.

  8. News on the hour

    The top local headlines at 17:00 include:

    • BBC Tees: A local animal charity has told BBC Tees they're worried more dogs will end up being destroyed after a Guisborough Kennel announced it is to close.
    • BBC Newcastle: Jon Harle and Martin Emmerson have a round-up of the day's news.
  9. Pools' takeover 'ongoing'

    A spokesman for Hartlepool United has told BBC Tees Sport the proposed takeover of the club is "ongoing". A group called TMH 2014 announced in December they were Pools' new owners on the same day Ronnie Moore was appointed as manager.

    Victoria Park

    But since then there's been no further news on their involvement. The firm, Increased Oil Recovery, who've owned Pools since 1997, are still in charge at Victoria Park. The Football League is unavailable for comment so far.

  10. Your photos: Alnwick Sunrise

    Kevin Temple sent us this photo of the sun rising in Alnwick, Northumberland this morning.

    Tree in Alnwick

    You can send your pictures by email to northeast.locallive@bbc.co.uk or tweet @BBCNewsNE.

  11. A1 30mph limit here to stay

    Rebecca O'Neill

    BBC Newcastle

    It's been confirmed a 30mph speed limit on the A1 on Tyneside will stay in place for more than a year.

    Drivers had been contacting us saying there was confusion over the new limit in the roadworks area.

    Project manager Lynn Biddles said: "The change is from Coal House to Lobley Hill, that stretch is now 30mph, the remainder of the roadworks is 40mph. The 30mph will be in place until spring 2016."

  12. 'Not about driving out Mike Ashley'

    Rangers shareholder Dave King has been talking about Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley's influence at the Scottish club, as he tries to overthrow the existing board.

    King told BBC Sport: "It is not about driving out Mike Ashley. I don't get any sense he's going to sell his shares.

    "I think he can be (an asset for Rangers). He's obviously a very wealthy guy and has shown a capacity to put money into the football club. He has a business which is closely aligned to the activities of the football club.

    Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley

    "If there was a way to work with him to create value and that value was appropriately shared between the football club and Sports Direct then I wouldn't see any difficulty with that."

  13. Sunderland 'were better side'

    Sunderland came from behind to beat Championship side Fulham and avoid an FA Cup fourth-round replay upset - and boss Gus Poyet said his team was the better side.

    He said: "I was just thinking how unfair football is because we were the better team by far, we were creating and controlling the ball. We didn't allow Fulham to play the game they like to play but we conceded a very strange goal.

    Gus Poyet

    "The equaliser was probably the turning point of the game, but overall we deserved to win. It was a game where we needed to get back to playing a certain way of football. Overall, I'm pleased. I really enjoyed it. I didn't say this once this year, but I really enjoyed watching the team."

  14. Shop to become 'most eco-friendly'

    Marks and Spencer in Northumberland Street in Newcastle is going to become one of the most eco-friendly shops in the North East.

    It's getting a revamp with a 167 sq m (1,797 sq ft) green wall made up from nearly 16,000 plants.

    It's hoped as well as being pretty, it'll also attract wildlife by providing a habitat for birds and insects.

  15. Share your views

    We've introduced BBC Local Live, which is written by reporters across the North East, to bring you the latest news, sport, travel and weather all in one place. Tell us what you think.

  16. Fire could 'burn for years'

    Gerry Jackson

    BBC Look North

    An underground fire beneath a popular riverside footpath on Tyneside could keep burning for years, firefighters believe. Watch my report here.

    The Keelman's Way, close to Ryton Golf Club, has been closed off after what is thought to be coal waste from an old colliery caught fire. Council officials fear some sections of the path could collapse.

    Fire in Ryton

    Tyne and Wear Fire Brigade believe the blaze may have started in November and could continue burning for several months, or even years.

  17. Staying cold

    Lisa Gallagher

    Weather Presenter, BBC Look North

    Staying cold this afternoon with a chilly breeze and scattered wintry showers. The showers mainly affecting coastal towns with drier and brighter conditions in the west.

    Weather forecast

    Maximum temperature: 5C (41F). Check the forecast near you.

  18. Trust asks minister to 'step aside'

    The trust which runs a free school in Durham, set to close after a damning Ofsted report, has asked the Education Secretary to "step aside".

    In a letter to Nicky Morgan MP, the trust claims to have "no confidence" in the final decision of withdrawing funding and has asked her to "step aside from any further involvement".

    Durham Free School

    North West Durham Labour MP Pat Glass told a debate she had repeatedly raised concerns about Durham Free School.

  19. Light dusting over Teesdale

    Press Association photographer Owen Humphreys took this shot of fresh snow covering Teesdale in County Durham this morning.

    Fresh snow covers Teesdale in County Durham

    If you'd like us to feature your pictures, send them to us by email, tweet us @BBCNewsNE or join our Facebook page.

  20. Arrests and dozens of vehicles checked

    Sharuna Sagar

    BBC Look North

    An overnight operation targeting travelling criminals and involving six police forces has resulted in 189 vehicles being stopped and checked, three people arrested and two vehicles seized.

    Police with BBC Look North's Sharuna Sagar

    Almost 90 police officers were assisted by nearly 100 farmers and volunteers. Using automatic number plate recognition technology, the idea is to gather and share intelligence about offenders who cross borders to carry out crimes, particularly in rural areas. I'll have more on this story on BBC Look North at 13:30 on BBC One.

  21. Lib Dems call for leader to quit

    David Rhodes

    Politics Reporter, BBC North East and Cumbria

    Redcar Liberal Democrats have tabled a motion calling for council leader George Dunning and his fellow independent cabinet members to resign.

  22. 'Disappointing but unsurprising'

    After 10 Labour councillors in Redcar quit the party, a Labour Party spokesman said: "The decision by this group of councillors, the vast majority of whom were not selected as Labour candidates for the forthcoming local elections, is disappointing but unsurprising.

    "The selection process in Redcar and Cleveland has been fair, robust and competitive. The Labour Party expects the highest standards from our councillors and council candidates. These expectations include that a candidate demonstrates a willingness to campaign in their community all year round.

    "The Labour Group on Redcar and Cleveland Council will now make arrangements to elect a new Leadership team committed to an inclusive way of working, listening to local people and fighting for Redcar and Cleveland."

  23. Families 'could face death threats'

    Colin Briggs

    BBC Look North

    Families on Teesside due to appear on the controversial television programme Benefits Street have been warned they could face death threats, bullying and horrendous abuse.

    Some who featured on the first series - filmed in Birmingham - have told BBC Look North they were shocked by the level of abuse they received.

    Deirdre Kelly

    The second series has been filmed in Stockton and those taking part have been told they will be pilloried. I'll have more on this story on BBC Look North at 13:30 on BBC One.

  24. Councillors resign from Labour

    David Rhodes

    Politics Reporter, BBC North East and Cumbria

    Here's the 10 Redcar and Cleveland councillors resigning en masse from the party. There's more on Look North and BBC Tees throughout the day.

    Redcar councillors quitting party
  25. 'Astonished and disappointed'

    Durham Police and Crime Commissioner Ron Hogg says he's "astonished" that an IPCC report over allegations he accepted employee benefits he was not entitled to has been handed to the CPS.

    A statement said: "When serving as Deputy Chief Constable with Cleveland Police I received three benefits. These were awarded by the Cleveland Police Authority in recognition of outstanding performance. The benefits were made in accordance with the national performance bonus scheme in place at the time, and I believe that in one instance the decision was made following independent legal advice.

    "As an employee, I played no part in making any of these decisions, and thus, I am both astonished and disappointed at the decision to refer this matter to the CPS."

  26. Durham PCC investigation

    The former Deputy Chief Constable of Cleveland Police is being investigated over allegations he accepted employee benefits he was not entitled to during his time at the force.

    The watchdog the IPCC had been looking at whether benefits Ron Hogg received before his departure from Cleveland Police were properly in line with rules in place at the time.

    Ron Hogg

    It has now submitted a file to the CPS. Mr Hogg retired from the police service in 2008 but was elected as the first Durham police and crime commissioner in 2012.

  27. Car, van and lorry in accident

    The A1 in East Ord in Northumberland is closed and there's slow traffic southbound between the A698 junction and the A1167 junction because of an accident involving a car, a van and a lorry and recovery work.

    There's a diversion in operation via Rotary Way, on the A698 towards Berwick-Upon-Tweed and the A1167 towards Scremerston.

    And one lane is closed eastbound and there's very slow traffic on the A171 Middlesbrough Road in Nunthorpe between the Flatts Lane junction and Windlebridge Roundabout because of an accident involving two vehicles. More on BBC Travel News for Teesside and Tyne and Wear.

  28. Full statement on PCC Ron Hogg

    A statement from the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) said: "The IPCC has completed its investigation into the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Durham, Ron Hogg, and passed its report to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

    "The CPS will determine whether there is evidence to warrant criminal charges."

  29. Boxer to unveil sculpture

    Hartlepool boxing champion Savannah Marshall will unveil a life-size sculpture of herself this afternoon at the town's Art Gallery.

    She made history by becoming the first female world boxing champion in 2012, and took gold last year at the Commonwealth Games.

    We'll bring you a photo of it when it's unveiled.

    Savannah Marshall (red)
  30. Reaction from Redcar

    Eston councillor Olwyn Peters said: "It's absolutely disgraceful. These are good, grass-rooted community councillors and the Labour Party don't understand what the community needs."

    Longbeck councillor Vic Jefferies said: "I got deselected on Sunday, I know it's come from my branch, I half expected it, but after being treated like this after nearly 30 years, it's disgusting.

    "I've come here with a heavy heart, but I couldn't go back, I've been told I'm illiterate, and not up to being a councillor, and that really hurts."

    Labour North says the decision was taken by local party members, they're putting together a new group, and they're looking forward to working with their new councillors.

  31. Live from Redcar resignations

    David Rhodes

    Politics Reporter, BBC North East and Cumbria

    I'm in Redcar where 10 Labour councillors are resigning from the party. It's sunny in the town but there's grey clouds over the political group.

    Listen live to BBC Tees.

  32. Alan Barnes: Reward to catch mugger

    A reward of £5,000 has been offered by Crimestoppers for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for the attempted robbery of Alan Barnes in Gateshead.

    Mr Barnes, 67, who is visually impaired, was left too afraid to return to his home in Low Fell, Gateshead, after he was mugged and broke his collar bone.

    Alan Barnes

    Alan's story made global headlines after an appeal fund, which was set up to help him move to another house, raised almost £330,000.

  33. News on the hour

    The top local headlines at 11:00 include:

    • BBC Tees: Ten Labour councillors are set to resign from the party in Redcar and Cleveland.
    • BBC Newcastle: A reward's been offered by Crimestoppers to help catch the man responsible for the attempted robbery of Gateshead pensioner Alan Barnes.
  34. Fuel poverty 'affects thousands'

    Stephanie Finnon

    BBC Newcastle

    Fuel poverty affects almost 14,000 homes in Sunderland and many of those houses are inhabited by pensioners, figures suggests.

    Nationally, it's estimated that every winter an older person dies needlessly every seven minutes - that's 200 preventable deaths every day in the UK.

    Mabel Endicott lighting her heater

    Age UK in Sunderland is holding an awareness event today as part of Cold Homes Week to raise the profile of the help available for older people.

  35. Budget process 'may be difficult'

    David Rhodes

    Politics Reporter, BBC North East and Cumbria

    Until these 10 resignations Labour had 29 councillors. Not enough for a majority within the council chamber, but they comfortably ran Redcar and Cleveland Council.

    The resignations mean the largest group is now made up of independents. Unless a motion of no confidence is brought against George Dunning and his independent cabinet he'll remain as the leader of the council.

    Legally the council must soon pass a budget for next year, but with no single party in control of the authority, that process maybe now become very difficult.

  36. Sun out in Seaton Carew

    Andy Bell

    BBC Tees

    Seaton Carew coastline looking epic this morning.

    Seaton Carew coastline

    You can send your pictures by email to northeast.locallive@bbc.co.uk or tweet @BBCNewsNE.

  37. Private firm to take over leisure centres

    Sunderland Echo

    Council bosses are looking for a new team to run the city's sports facilities. The Sunderland council's cabinet is being asked to decide the appointment of a joint venture partner to operate leisure centres across Wearside when it meets next week.

    Leisure centres
  38. Presentation to take place for Alan

    Stephanie Finnon

    BBC Newcastle

    The appeal to raise money for a Gateshead pensioner who was mugged, has been "closed" with donations at about £330,000.

    Katie Cutler says she's spoke to Alan Barnes and his family and they've asked for donations to stop. They say they are very grateful.

    Alan Barnes and Katie Cutler

    In a message, Katie writes: "Good morning, after speaking with Alan & his family. They have asked me to stop any further donations to his fund. He is very grateful for all your love, support & donations. We will be having a little presentation to hand him his cheque so il keep you all updated. X"

  39. News on the hour

    The top local headlines at 10:00 include:

    • BBC Tees: Ten Labour councillors will resign this morning from the party in Redcar and Cleveland.
    • BBC Newcastle: A coroner has recorded a verdict of accidental death after a Sunderland teenager drowned in the River Wear last September.
  40. Give us your feedback

    What do you think of BBC Local Live? It's written by reporters across the North East and brings you the latest news, sport, travel and weather all in one place. We'd like your feedback about this service.

  41. Why donate to strangers?

    Lauren Potts

    BBC News

    Fundraising for a disabled man who was mugged outside his home has topped the £300,000 mark. It's the latest high-profile example of people being moved by the plight of strangers. But what is it that inspires this level of generosity?

    It was a despicable act: the moment a thug pushed Alan Barnes to the pavement and rifled through his pockets for cash.

    Alan Barnes and Katie Cutler

    But in the aftermath of the attack came a torrent of kindness, as more than 24,000 people donated money to a web page set up by beautician Katie Cutler to help the Gateshead pensioner.

  42. Sunderland advance in FA Cup

    Sunderland came from behind to beat Championship Fulham and avoid an FA Cup fourth-round replay upset. Watch the highlights.

    The hosts took a surprise lead against the run of play when Hugo Rodallega fired a shot in off the crossbar. But home goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli gifted the visitors an equaliser when he fumbled Patrick van Aanholt's speculative cross over the goalline.

    Ricardo Alvarez

    Ricardo Alvarez blasted the Black Cats ahead, before Jordi Gomez converted a late penalty as Sunderland advanced. The Black Cats will travel to Bradford on Sunday 15 February for the fifth round.

  43. A1 section closed southbound

    Northumbria Police tweets: Section of A1 southbound at Scremeston in #Northumberland currently closed after a collision, diversions in place. Northbound remains open.

    More on BBC Travel News for Teesside and Tyne and Wear.

  44. Empty shops show North-South divide

    There are twice as many empty shops in England's northern towns and cities than in the south, with the North East worst hit, research suggests.

    The Local Data Company, which monitors 3,000 town and shopping centres and retail parks, says one in five shops in the North is now empty, compared with one in 10 in the south. The average vacancy rate was 13.3% in the second half of last year, down 0.8% on the same period a year earlier, and well below February 2012's 14.6% peak.

    Empty shop

    The North East was the worst affected, with a shop vacancy rate of 18.8% in the second half of 2014.

  45. News on the hour

    The top local headlines at 09:00 include:

    • BBC Newcastle: A coroner has recorded a verdict of accidental death after a Sunderland teenager drowned in the River Wear last September.
    • BBC Tees: BBC Tees understands that 10 Labour councillors will resign this morning from the party in Redcar and Cleveland.
  46. Full list of councillors quitting

    David Rhodes

    Politics Reporter, BBC North East and Cumbria

    Here's the full list of Redcar and Cleveland councillors, who have 239 years combined membership, who are resigning from the Labour Party today:

    • Brian Briggs - Skelton
    • Sheelagh Clarke - Teesville (Deputy leader)
    • George Dunning - Teesville (Council leader)
    • Steven Goldswain - Eston
    • Mark Hannon - Kirkleatham
    • Vic Jeffries - Longbeck
    • Olwyn Peters - Eston
    • Norman Pickthall - Teesville
    • Carole Simms - Normanby (Ceremonial mayor of Redcar)
    • Wendy Wall - Normanby
  47. 'Tories standing under red banner'

    Ali Brownlee asked Redcar and Cleveland Council Eston ward councillor Steven Goldswain, who is resigning from Labour, why the party didn't want him anymore.

    He replied: "I think what it's about is we've got over 230 years of membership combined, and a long-serving member with over 40 years membership is being replaced with someone with six months' membership.

    "It's about bringing people in who can be manipulated to do what those people want, rather than what constituents want.

    "We've got so many Tories who just wanted a seat in Parliament who are just standing under the red banner."

  48. 'We have made mistakes'

    More on the 10 resignations from the Labour Party on Redcar and Cleveland Council - Eston ward councillor Steven Goldswain has been talking to Ali Brownlee on BBC Tees.

    He said: "We have made mistakes on our car parking and we've been held to account on numerous occasions. But we created over 300 apprentices last year and brought in nearly £1m for a catering college."

  49. Councillors to resign en masse

    David Rhodes

    Politics Reporter, BBC North East and Cumbria

    BBC Tees understands that 10 Labour councillors will resign this morning from the party in Redcar and Cleveland.

    The mass walkout is being staged in protest at the recent decision to deselect a number of high-profile councillors. They'll walkout in support of seven councillors who have been told they can't stand as Labour candidates in this May's local elections.

    George Dunning

    They include the leader of the council George Dunning and his deputy Sheelagh Clarke. We'll have more on this throughout the day.

  50. Scattered wintry showers

    Lisa Gallagher

    Weather Presenter, BBC Look North

    Staying cold with a chilly breeze and scattered wintry showers, these mainly affecting eastern, with drier, brighter conditions in the west. Risk of slight snow accumulations.

    Weather forecast

    Maximum temperature: 3C (37F). Check the forecast near you.

  51. Accident closes A1

    The A1 in Scremerston is closed and there's slow traffic in both directions between the A1167 junction and the A698 junction because of an accident involving car and lorry.

    There's hazardous driving conditions on the A69 between Styford Roundabout in Corbridge and the A686 junction in Haydon Bridge because of snow and ice.

    One lane is closed on the A66 eastbound in Great Burdon between Great Burdon Roundabout and the Stockton Road junction because of ice. More on BBC Travel News for Teesside and Tyne and Wear.

  52. Good morning

    Lloyd Watson

    BBC News

    Welcome to BBC Local Live. I'll be bringing you news, sport, weather and travel updates from across the North East. There's a bit of snow on the ground across the region this morning.

    If you'd like us to feature your comments or pictures, send them to us by email, tweet us @BBCNewsNE or join our Facebook page.