St Helens

England, United Kingdom

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North West weather: Dry and sunny

BBC Weather

This afternoon will be dry and sunny, and it will feel pleasantly warm too with highs of 17C.

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Hundreds held in county lines crackdown

Nearly 600 suspected members of county lines drugs gangs have been arrested across the UK in the past week, the National Crime Agency has said.

500 men and 86 women were arrested in raids in Norfolk, Suffolk, Cheshire, Bedfordshire and other areas.

Police forces led by the National County Lines Coordination Centre also seized cocaine worth £176,780; £312,649 in cash; and 46 weapons.

County line drugs gangs - linked by a network of mobile phone lines and often coercing children and vulnerable adults - travel out of their usual urban territory and into rural areas to sell drugs.

The NCA estimates there are about 2,000 city-based gangs - mostly from London, Birmingham and Merseyside - exploiting young people to sell drugs in smaller towns.

From being bullied in school to playing for St Helens

BBC Sport

From being bullied for daring to dream about playing for St Helens, to scoring a hat-trick for the club on his Super League debut - Josh Taylor has proved to be one very determined teenager.

Josh Taylor
St Helens

Taylor is a hard-running, energetic, home-grown Saints rookie who wears the red and white 'V' on his chest with the sort of pride that only a lifelong fan of the club can appreciate.

The 18-year-old is also autistic.

But his condition will not stop him from achieving his life's ambition, as he is one of the inaugural members of Saints' learning disability rugby league team, which plays in the Community Integrated Care Super League.

At school, I was bullied about rugby. I always said I wanted to play for Saints so this is like 'wow'.

I'm walking in the footsteps of my heroes for my hometown club.

Read more here.

Batsman 'headbutted' bowler during cricket match

A batsman has been suspended over claims he headbutted a bowler who got him out during a heated cricket match.

Generic cricket player
Getty Images

Eccleston Cricket Club tweeted that there were "shocking scenes" after the opposition batsman was given out caught behind on Sunday.

The Lancashire cup game was abandoned and Merseyside's Rainhill Cricket Club have suspended their player.

The police are not thought to have been called but an investigation has been launched by the local cricket board.

Girlfriend murdered over plans to attend grandmother's funeral

A "controlling and jealous" boyfriend stabbed his partner to death after her plans to attend her grandmother's funeral sent him into a rage.

Adam Brettle
Merseyside Police

Adam Brettle, 24, repeatedly stabbed 29-year-old Samantha Gosney at her home in St Helens, Merseyside.

The mother-of-two dialled 999 as the attack began but fell silent during the call, Liverpool Crown Court heard.

Brettle, of no fixed address, admitted murder and was ordered to serve life with a minimum of 19 years.

North West weather: Dry and sunny

BBC Weather

A dry morning and more sunshine on the way. It will feel warm too with highs of 17C.

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North West weather: Dry and bright afternoon

BBC Weather

A bright and sunny afternoon and it will feel reasonably warm too.

It should stay dry, with only a slight chance of showers and highs of 17C.

BBC Weather
BBC

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New rail services between north Wales and Liverpool

The first rail services directly linking north Wales, Cheshire and Liverpool have started running for the first time in more than 40 years.

Departure board
BBC

Direct daily trains between Wrexham and Liverpool are among the 215 additional weekly services.

Two Wrexham to Liverpool services will run each day from Monday to Saturday, with one in the opposite direction.

The services are being introduced thanks to Network Rail's upgrade of the Halton Curve track in Cheshire.

Commuters braced as railway timetables change

The new National Rail summer timetable has come into effect, with 1,000 new train services being introduced across Great Britain.

People waiting at train station
Getty Images

Last year, an extensive shake-up led to weeks of chaos on the Northern network after the operator tried to introduce 1,700 extra services.

That led to huge delays and cancellations with more than 15,000 services cancelled over the past twelve months due to the failed implementation of the timetable.

This year, Northern says it intends to bring in just 210 extra services including brand new trains on long distance routes connecting larger towns in the North.

The operator says it will monitor the latest changes carefully and respond quickly to any problems.

North West weather: Dry and bright

BBC Weather

A bright and sunny Monday. Staying dry and feeling warm with highs of 15C.

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Former Great Britain scrum-half Bobbie Goulding says it helps him following drug problems.
Former Great Britain scrum-half Bobbie Goulding says keeping fit helps him following drink and drug problems.

Helen's Law 'will help other families'

A woman whose daughter's killer has never revealed what happened to her body has welcomed plans to change the law regarding parole.

Helen McCourt
PA

Helen McCourt was abducted and murdered in 1988 by Ian Simms. Marie McCourt has always opposed his release from prison.

Helen's Law would place "greater consideration on failure to disclose the location of a victim's remains", said the Ministry of Justice (MoJ).

Mrs McCourt, of St Helens, said it felt "like a big weight has been lifted".

North West weather: Some bright spells but risk of rain

BBC Weather

There will be some bright or sunny intervals this afternoon, but there is a chance of a few showers too. A fairly cool-feeling afternoon with some winds and highs of 19C.

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UK knife crime: The first 100 fatal stabbings of 2019

One hundred people have been fatally stabbed in the UK so far this year.

Fifteen have happened in the North West, including 17-year-old Yousef Makki, a Manchester Grammar School student from Burnage, who died after being stabbed in the street in Hale Barns in March.

Yousef Ghaleb Makki
Family handout
Fatal stabbing victims
BBC

Knife crime in England and Wales rose to record levels in 2017-18 with the number of fatal stabbings the highest since Home Office records began in 1946.

The police have made arrests in nearly all of the cases and have charged suspects in 85.

Weather: Dry with lingering cloud

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

It is set to be a dry day, however areas of cloud will tend to linger. Cooler than Thursday.

Generally gentle to moderate winds. Maximum temperature 16 to 19C.

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Weather
BBC

North West weather: Clouding over but staying dry

BBC Weather

It should remain largely dry through tonight. There will be some clear periods at times but with rather a lot of cloud heading west too.

weather
BBC

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Fifteen held in dawn raids targeting organised crime

Fifteen people have been arrested after dawn raid on suspected drug dealers and other organised crime across the North West.

Merseyside Police made ten arrests over drug dealing
Mersesyide Police
Merseyside Police made ten arrests over drug dealing

Ten people were arrested in Mersesyide and Greater Manchester in connection with drug pushing in Liverpool city centre.

Homes in the Toxteth, Anfield, Tuebrook and Crosby areas, as well as in Greater Manchester, were continuing to be searched.

Raid on Oldham home
GMP
Greater Manchester Police raided seven properties in Oldham

In Oldham, seven properties were searched as park of a crackdown on an organised crime group working across the wider north of England.

Greater Manchester Police arrested five men on suspicion of robbery and burglary offences.

Violent crime 'a health issue' says Merseyside police commissioner

The "disease" of serious violence on Merseyside should be treated as a public health issue, the region's police commissioner has said.

Generic image of hand holding knife
Getty Images

Jane Kennedy made the claim at the launch of a new Violence Reduction Partnership aimed at tackling the root causes of violent crime.

It follows the success of a similar model in Scotland, which saw the number of homicides fall by half in a decade.

Ms Kennedy said it could take ten years to "really turn things around".

HS2 will 'short change' the North, say peers

BBC Weather

HS2 will not offer value for money and risks "short changing" the North of England, a group of peers has warned.

HS2
HS2

A report from the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee also said it was "far from convinced" the new high-speed railway will be built within the £55.7bn budget.

It said the project should not go ahead without a new assessment of its costs and benefits.

The government said it "fundamentally disagreed" with the report.

North West weather: Dry and sunny

BBC Weather

The sunshine is back again for another dry day, although it will feeler cooler. Make the most of it before the rain returns tomorrow. Highs of 18C.

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North West weather: Sunny evening and dry night

BBC Weather

Fine this evening with sunshine. Overnight, it will remain dry with mainly clear skies, but there could be a few mist patches forming.

Weather for North West
BBC

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National search for missing Wakefield teenager Nicole

Police officers are trying to find a missing 16-year-old girl who's been missing from Wakefield for five days.

Nicole Harris
West Yorkshire Police

Nicole Harris was last seen in the Quebec Street area of the city, but a national search has now started for her.

She is known to have links to various parts of the country including South Yorkshire, Shropshire, Humberside, Merseyside and North Wales, West Yorkshire Police said.

Nicole who is described as a "vulnerable teenager", is 5ft 3ins tall and has long brown hair and a burn scar on the side of her nose.

Weather: Sunny day ahead

BBC Weather

Any early mist patches will lift to leave today dry and fine with sunshine.

The sunshine will be hazy as times due to high cloud. It will be a warm day for most.

Maximum temperature 22C.

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Wednesday weather
BBC

North West weather: Late sunshine and dry overnight

BBC Weather

Fine this evening with lots of late sunshine. It will stay dry overnight with mainly clear skies. A few mist patches may form overnight ahead of another dry, fine and sunny day tomorrow.

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Wanted armed robber found hiding in loft

A convicted armed robber wanted on recall to prison has been found hiding in the loft of a house in Merseyside.

Winchester Avenue, Waterloo
Google

Edward Metcalfe, 38, was found at an address in Winchester Avenue, Waterloo earlier.

A Merseyside Police spokeswoman said he had been arrested and taken back into custody after breaching the terms of his release under licence.

Weather: Dry with plenty of sunshine

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

Any early mist patches will lift to leave today dry and fine with plenty of sunshine, although high cloud will make the sunshine hazy at times. Warm with a light breeze.

Weather graphic
BBC

Fine this evening with lots of late sunshine. It will then remain dry overnight with mainly clear skies. A few mist patches may form overnight. A light breeze.

Maximum temperature 21C.

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North West weather: Late sunshine and dry overnight

BBC Weather

Late sunshine to end of the day - which saw pleasant highs of 19C. It will stay dry overnight with mostly clear skies and just a little wispy high cloud.

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Deep Brexit divide remains in Liverpool and St Helens

Nina Warhurst

BBC North West Political Editor

They may only be 13 miles apart, but a lot more divides Liverpool and St Helens than the East Lancs Road.

A mural of Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool's Baltic Triangle and the Dream sculpture in St Helens
BBC/Google

One is football mad, for instance, while the other is better known for its love of rugby league.

Then we come to attitudes on the United Kingdom's membership of the European Union.

While people in the Liverpool City area voted 58% to remain in the EU nearly three years ago, it was exactly the opposite story in St Helens with the same proportion wanting the UK to leave.

North West weather: Sunny spells but rain later

BBC Weather

This afternoon there will be some sunny spells but showers will break out later which will be heavy and thundery at times. Cool with light winds and highs of 11C.

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Judge visits serial rape accused in jail

A man accused of 21 offences including eight rapes has been visited by a judge in prison after refusing to appear in court.

Joseph McCann
Met Police

Joseph McCann, of Aylesbury, is charged with the kidnap and rape of eight alleged victims aged between 11 and 71.

The offences are alleged to have been committed between 20 April and 5 May, in London, Watford, Cheshire, Manchester and Lancashire.

Mr McCann was arrested in Congleton in Cheshire following a police manhunt.