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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

  1. Thanks for joining us

    That's the end of our live updates for today and for this week. We'll be back on Friday at 09:00 to bring you the latest on the coronavirus and its impact on our region.

    In the meantime, you can find further information and updates about the coronavirus crisis here.

    Thanks for joining us and if you want to get in touch with us, please email us at

  2. Clap for carers returns for a second week

    Last week, people across the UK took part in a national applause of thanks to NHS workers in helping in the fight against coronavirus.

    Tonight will see the people take to their doors and windows for a second time to again show their appreciation for the nation's health workers.

    View more on twitter
  3. Aintree racecourse to donate 10,000 tickets to NHS staff and care workers

    BBC Sport

    Aintree has donated 10,000 tickets for next year's Grand National festival to NHS staff and carers on Merseyside.

    Tiger Roll winning the Grand National in 2019

    This year's Grand National - scheduled for this weekend - was cancelled because of coronavirus.

    The Jockey Club has named 8 April 2021 NHS Day and will distribute the tickets next year.

    "We understand just how hard NHS and professional carers are working right now and this is our way of showing our gratitude," said director Dickon White.

  4. Council thanks business for foodbank donations worth £14k

    Knowsley Council has thanked Liverpool-based Home Bargains for helping make up foodbank packs for local families in need.

    Generic foodbank

    The council said it was "really struggling" to source a supplier to help get enough food and essential supplies to those who need it.

    In a statement a council spokeswoman said within 24 hours the discount store had identified enough supplies for staff to make up packages for 2,500 families, amounting to more than £14,500 worth of supplies.

    The council praised the "massive joint effort" which will see deliveries assisted by Kirkby-based food distributors Nagel Langdons, hundreds of registered volunteers and council staff.

  5. Manchester-based firm donates £10m

    A Manchester-based company says it is donating the equivalent of £10m to help in the battle against coronavirus.

    The Hut Group products

    The Hut Group is making all 70 rooms at its Great John Street Hotel and King Street Townhouse available to NHS staff and police.

    The company is also giving £1m to charity, and making and distributing £1m of hand sanitiser.

    CEO Matthew Moulding said the firm wanted to "support vulnerable communities, key workers and the emergency services”.

  6. Helpline for most at-risk people launched in Cheshire

    A helpline to support people at higher risk from serious complications as a result of coronavirus has been launched in Cheshire.

    The service, set up by Cheshire West and Chester Council, will provide advice and support, and help with deliveries of food and medicines.

    The council says it can also be used to provide social contact for those calling the helpline.

    View more on twitter
  7. Trapped cruise passenger Dr Partha Basu falls ill

    A passenger trapped on a cruise ship has been taken ill hours before his family hoped he would reach dry land.

    Retired doctor Partha Basu

    Dr Partha Basu, 86, and wife Marion, 69, are on the MS Rotterdam, which hopes to dock in Florida at 18:00 BST.

    The couple, from Greater Manchester, have been confined to their cabin for 11 days, after being transferred from sister ship MS Zaandam.

    The Zaandam was denied access to the US last month after four people died when coronavirus was detected on board.

  8. Should we use drones to disinfect public spaces?

    BBC News Health

    A group of drone experts is calling on the government to relax regulations on chemical spraying from the air during the coronavirus pandemic.


    It wants to train drone pilots from the emergency services to spray public areas with disinfectant.

    It has been done in China and India - but aerial spraying is largely banned in Europe.

    The drones can cover large areas - but there is debate around whether the method is effective.

    The Department of Health and Social Care said there were no plans to disinfect outside on a large scale.

  9. Stockport's Foodie Friday pledges 1,000 meals for the NHS

    The monthly Foodie Friday in Stockport has been cancelled - so organisers have teamed up with Stockport NHS Foundation Trust to provide a hot meal for staff at Stepping Hill Hospital.

    View more on twitter
  10. My Home Is My Museum project launched

    A new National Museums Liverpool project asking children to create their own exhibition at home is about turning "this negative into a positive" and "handing the reins over", a spokeswoman has said.

    Poppy, 7, with her exhibition of items

    Children aged four to 11 are being asked to either gather together 10 items that they would put in a museum about themselves or create an art gallery of their own creations as part of the My Home is My Museum project.

    The spokeswoman said they could then ask parents to share them on social media, using the hashtag #MyHomeIsMyMuseum.

    A selection of the best will be gathered together for an exhibition in Liverpool when the city's museums reopen, she added.

    View more on twitter
  11. Pets at Home seeing ‘exceptional demand’

    BBC Business News

    Pets at Home says it is seeing "exceptional levels of demand" amid the coronavirus outbreak.

    Cat and dog

    The Cheshire-based pet store and vets group said people had been spending more as pets played an "increasingly vital role in our lives" during the crisis.

    As designated "essential retailers", pet shops and vets can stay open during the pandemic.

    Pets at Home said it had now shut non-essential parts of the business such as its Groom Room grooming salons.

  12. Boots staff feel 'unsafe' as shoppers still browse makeup

    BBC News UK

    Boots staff have told the BBC they feel "unsafe" at work as customers continue to browse for hair dye and fake tan despite the coronavirus pandemic.

    Boots in Manchester

    Staff said they were frustrated some branches had reopened beauty aisles and lifted limits on the number of shoppers allowed inside at once.

    Some stores were still waiting for visors, face masks and gloves for pharmacy workers, others said.

    Boots said it was doing whatever it could to protect its staff.

  13. Police in Walton join in rainbow picture trend

    Police in Walton have joined the trend of putting a picture of a rainbow in their window.

    Children across the country have been putting up the paintings to "spread hope" after a trend started online and Walton Lane Local Policing have decided to join in too.

    View more on twitter
  14. Warning over long-term virus mental health effects

    The coronavirus outbreak will cause long-term impacts on mental health and obesity, the new director of public health for Liverpool has said.

    Matt Ashton

    Matt Ashton took over the role at Liverpool City Council on Wednesday.

    The 47-year-old said society must prepare for related health issues which could still be seen a year after the outbreak ends. He said:

    Quote Message: "This is not just short term this is longer term.
    Quote Message: We don't understand what recovery looks like or what society is going to look like in six, nine or 12 months.
    Quote Message: We don't know what the impact will be on collective mental health and wellbeing, or the impact on obesity levels.
  15. 'Scrap Mersey Gateway tolls' plea rejected by government

    The government has rejected pleas to scrap Mersey Gateway Bridge tolls for key workers.

    Mersey Gateway Bridge

    Halton Borough Council in Cheshire said it believed scrapping the tolls was "the right thing to do" to support NHS staff, carers and other key workers.

    It urged the government to reconsider its decision not to waive tolls on the bridge that links Runcorn and Widnes.

    The government told the council it was "not minded" to do so immediately but vowed to keep the matter under review.

  16. Shoppers face 'essential items' confusion

    BBC News UK

    Easter eggs, milk, exercise weights, garden plants, shampoo, children's colouring books - just what exactly should you go out shopping for during the coronavirus lockdown?

    Toilet roll, a plant and an Easter egg

    The government's restrictions brought in on 23 March says people should only be leaving their houses for "very limited purposes" - one of those is to buy "basic necessities".

    But there's been confusion over what this actually means and it's led some shoppers to question what they can buy when heading to the shops.

    BBC News's Cherry Wilson has been taking a look at what does and does not count as essential.

  17. Comedian Eddie Large dies aged 78 with coronavirus

    BBC Entertainment and Arts

    Comedian Eddie Large, best known for being part of double act Little and Large, has died with coronavirus.

    Eddie Large

    The star, 78, was a well known face on TV in the 1970s and 80s and was famous for his partnership with Syd Little.

    Large, whose real name was Hugh McGinnis, was born in Glasgow but grew up in Manchester.

    His family confirmed the news "with great sadness" on Facebook, saying he had been suffering with heart failure and contracted the virus in hospital.