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Summary

  1. Updates on Thursday 30 March 2017
  2. Greggs heir jailed for 13 and a half years for sex abuse
  3. Plans for 350 homes near airport approved
  4. Firefighters tackle barn blaze

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. Through the day: BBC North East England Live

    Joanne Carter

    Video Journalist

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

    You can still catch up with the latest news throughout the night on  BBC Tees ,   BBC Newcastle ,   Look North   and online.

    If you'd like to get in touch or share your North East pictures with us, you can do so on   Twitter ,   Facebook , or via   email at northeast.locallive@bbc.co.uk  .

    We'll be back tomorrow from 08:00, have a good evening.

  2. Blackbirds are 'most common garden bird'

    Blackbirds are the most common garden bird in County Durham, the RSPB has claimed.

    More than 3,800 people from the county took part in the bird charity's 38th Big Garden birdwatch survey held over the last weekend of January.

    The RSPB said blackbird sightings were recorded in 95% of gardens but there was a 7% drop in the number of blue tits and an 8% reduction on great tit sightings.

    There was an 18-fold increase in the number of gardens where waxwings (pictured) were seen.

    Waxwing

    The birds are only seen here every seven to eight years with their trip to the UK caused by a berry shortage in Scandanavia.

  3. Watch: Sunderland apprentice says 'Don't let gender get in your way'

    Throughout this week, we've been telling the stories of young people in Sunderland and their hopes for the future.

    Paige Audsley is one of only four females out of a group of 131 carrying out a painting and decorating apprentice in Sunderland. 

    The 17-year-old is training for two years with Carillion. 

    She said: "Don't let your gender or what anyone else thinks of you get in your way."

    Video content

    Video caption: The Sunderland apprentice challenging gender stereotypes
  4. Video content

    Video caption: Windlestone Hall falls into disrepair

    A stately home, which was the former home of former British prime minister Sir Anthony Eden, has fallen into disrepair.

  5. Tees Valley Mayor: Who are the candidates?

    Voters will elect the first Tees Valley Mayor on 4 May.

    The mayor will have responsibility for Hartlepool, Stockton, Redcar and Cleveland, Middlesbrough and Darlington.  

    We've been asking what you want to know about the new role - click here to find out how to ask your questions.

    Vicky Cash got in touch with us to ask who the candidates are.

    Here's a list of those who are standing so far:

    • Chris Foote Wood - Liberal Democrat
    • Ben Houchen - Conservative
    • Sue Jeffrey - Labour
    • John Tennant - UKIP
  6. Gregg sex assault sentencing: 'Never too late to report abuse'

    Bakery heir Colin Gregg, 75, of Home Farm Stedding, Gosforth was jailed earlier for carrying out nine sex attacks on boys. 

    Colin Gregg

    He was arrested in January 2013 following a report of historic sexual offences. 

    Following an investigation, more victims were identified and Gregg was charged with indecent assaults dating back more than 50 years. 

    He had denied indecently assaulting four boys while working as a teacher, beginning in 1963. 

    A jury at Leeds Crown Court found him guilty earlier this month. 

    Det Sgt Chris Wilson, of Northumbria Police, said: "Colin Gregg was in a position of trust which he used to sexually exploit children. 

    "This will have undoubtedly had a huge impact on the lives of these victims and their families. We hope today's outcome gives them a sense of justice and some closure - this case absolutely demonstrates it is never too late to report abuse."

    Colin Gregg, 1986
    Image caption: Colin Gregg in 1986 when he was a teacher
  7. Hartlepool gets ready to take on Portsmouth

    Matthew Nixon

    BBC Tees reporter

    Hartlepool United train ahead of their match against Pourtsmouth this weekend in League Two; with over 1000 travelling Pompey fans expected to make the trip to Victoria Park.

    View more on twitter
  8. Sex abuse complaints made against bakery heir two decades ago

    The lengthy jail sentence handed down to bakery heir, Colin Gregg, earlier comes more than 20 years since police first investigated him. 

    He was cleared of groping a boy at a trial in the late 1990s, then more complainants came forward but a judge ruled he could not be tried on those allegations. 

    Last year he was tried when more victims made complaints and a jury in Newcastle cleared him of some counts but could not agree verdicts on others. 

    Greggs

    That led to a retrial at Leeds Crown Court which concluded earlier this month with nine convictions. 

    Sasha Wass QC, defending, said he continued to maintain that the allegations against him were false. 

    She said he had been happily married for 50 years and was a grandfather and asked the judge to bear in mind "the very positive contribution this man has made to society during the course of his working life". 

  9. Judge brands Colin Gregg a 'sophisticated, predatory paedophile'

    Judge Robin Mairs told Colin Gregg he had groomed the boys. 

    Quote Message: "It is true you have enjoyed great wealth, privilege and social standing. It is also true that you used those benefits as a cloak of respectability behind which you sexually abused young boys. You were a charismatic, inspiring teacher and mentor but you used those attributes to groom boys and to protect yourself from allegations." from Judge Robin Mairs Newcastle Crown Court
    Judge Robin MairsNewcastle Crown Court
  10. NSPCC says Colin Gregg jailing gives victims 'hope'

    Colin Gregg, 75, has been jailed for 13 and a half years at Newcastle Crown Court for abusing boys.

    The former headteacher abused boys aged between 10 and 14 years and some of the attacks took place in his home.

    Quote Message: "This case gives hope to survivors of child abuse that they will be listened to if they speak out - no matter how much time has passed. Gregg's victims have shown incredible bravery in reliving their ordeals and it's these actions that have helped bring their attacker to justice. from NSPCC Spokesperson
    NSPCCSpokesperson

    The statement added: "During a sickening campaign of abuse, Gregg brazenly exploited positions of absolute trust for his own twisted gratification. 

    "We hope today's sentence provides some level of comfort to those whose lives have been so badly affected."

  11. Man hurt when car mounted pavement 'deliberately'

    A 20-year-old man has been hurt after a driver "deliberately" mounted a pavement and ran him over, police said. 

    It happened around 15.40 yesterday while the victim was walking in Yewcroft Avenue in the Scotswood area of Newcastle.

    He was alone on the street when a black Citreon C2 mounted the pavement and drove at him, Northumbria Police said. 

    The vehicle then left the scene before it was found abandoned a few minutes later a short distance away on Armstrong Road.

    Witnesses have reported seeing two men and a woman fleeing the scene on foot in the direction of Denton Road.

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  12. Colin Gregg jailed for 13 and a half years for sex assaults

    A wealthy businessman has been jailed for 13 and a half years at Newcastle Crown Court for abusing boys.  

    Colin Gregg, 75, whose family set up the Greggs bakery business, was convicted of nine indecent assaults on four boys over almost 30 years. 

    The former headteacher abused boys aged between 10 and 14 with some of the attacks taking place in his home. 

    Colin Gregg
    Image caption: Colin Gregg