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  1. SAFC's Adam Johnson denies child sex charges
  2. Plans for solar farm in wood unveiled
  3. Light show leisure park approved
  4. Fears for 200 insurance firm jobs
  5. Updates on Wednesday 3 June 2015

Live Reporting

By Lloyd Watson

All times stated are UK

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  1. Good evening

    Lloyd Watson

    BBC News

    That's all from BBC Local Live today. We'll be back from 08:00 on Thursday. Len Smith from Warkworth sent us this photo of people having a stroll to Dunstanburgh Castle.

    Dunstanburgh Castle

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

  2. 'Not a bully' - Sim

    Peter Harris

    Look North

    She spent five years at the helm of Northumbria Police but tonight chief constable Sue Sim leaves her post insisting she's not a bully - and criticising some officers who made complaints about her.

    Last month, Ms Sim was cleared of misconduct but was told to apologise to two of her staff. She admits she shouted at her colleagues - but only when she felt things weren't up to scratch.

    Sue Sim

    Today, the Chief Superintendents' Association said it complained about her behaviour over a "considerable period". I'll have more on this story on BBC Look North at 18:30 on BBC One.

  3. Stokes and Wood called up

    Matthew Raisbeck

    BBC Newcastle

    Durham's Ben Stokes and Mark Wood have been included in England's squad for the one-day series against New Zealand, which starts on Tuesday.


    The fifth match in the series will be played in Chester-le-Street on the Saturday 20 June.

  4. A691 closed after accident

    BBC Travel

    The A691 in Witton Gilbert is closed and there's very slow traffic in both directions between the B6312 Front Street junction and the B6532 junction, because of an accident. Diversion in operation - via the B6342 to Sacriston, the B6532 and vice versa.

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

  5. Cloud to thicken

    Paul Mooney

    BBC Weather presenter

    Mostly clear and dry although there will be more high cloud forming after midnight. This cloud will be thickest in northern parts. Winds will fall light or calm.

    Weather forecast

    Minimum temperature: 4C (39F). Check the forecast near you.

  6. NUFC boss talks move forward

    Nick Barnes

    BBC Newcastle commentator

    Newcastle United are moving ever closer to naming their new head coach following discussions in the past 48 hours with both Steve McClaren and interim boss John Carver.

    Steve McClaren

    McClaren looks almost certain to take over next week, following a planned holiday - with Carver returning to the club as his assistant.

  7. Bridge to close 'for weeks'

    Andrea Macmillan

    BBC Tees

    The Transporter Bridge in Teesside is to close again on Monday - this time for up to two months.

    It's because the Environment Agency is carrying out flood prevention work which will protect the 350 homes and 32 businesses in Port Clarence.

    Middlesbrough's Transporter Bridge

    Chris Milburn from the agency says although the work will close the roads and the transporter for several weeks, it means people in Port Clarence will be protected from tidal surges like the one in 2013.

  8. Nicola Sturgeon's English roots

    David Rhodes

    Politics Reporter, BBC North East and Cumbria

    Nicola Sturgeon's family has roots in the North East, highlighting the close-knit relationship the area has with its neighbours north of the border.

    But will the region benefit from the rise of Scotland's first minister and the SNP or will it be overshadowed?

    Sunderland, like many parts of Scotland, is steeped in industrial heritage, and Nicola Sturgeon's relatives simply reinforce the idea that these two parts of the UK share many cultural and historical ties.

    Nicola Sturgeon

    But the rise of the Scottish National Party north of the border has left many in the North East and Cumbria questioning the region's future relationship with Scotland. Read my full feature here.

  9. Airport firm 'warned of danger'

    An aerospace company from County Durham, charged with corporate manslaughter over the death of a worker, was "explicitly" warned of dangers, a court hears.

    Paul Bowers, 47, died when several tonnes of metal fell on him in January 2013 while working at the warehouse of CAV Cambridge at Cambridge Airport.

    Paul Bowers

    The Old Bailey trial heard the components were stacked too high. Parent company CAV Aerospace, from County Durham, has pleaded not guilty to corporate manslaughter.

  10. Legionnaires' outbreak cause traced

    The cause of an outbreak of Legionnaires' disease at a South Tyneside factory has been traced to two cooling towers on the site, Public Health England has confirmed.

    Four workers at Faltec in Boldon and one resident whose garden overlooks the factory have contracted the disease, taking the total to five.

    Faltec Ltd

    The firm says all cooling towers are being closed down and replaced with sealed water chiller units which do not present a risk of Legionella infection. The work is expected to be completed by today.

  11. 'Intensive' steel talks started - PM

    David Cameron says the government has started "intensive" talks with leaders of the steel industry over its future - amid claims from Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland Labour MP Tom Blenkinsop that it's "in crisis".

    Staff at Tata Steel have voted for a strike over pension cuts. The firm says its UK operations are losing money.

    Prime Minister David Cameron

    In the Commons, Prime Minister David Cameron said: "It's important the Government talks intensively with the leaders of the steel industry, Tata in particular, about what we can do to safeguard the growth and the jobs there have been in the industry over previous years. We've started those discussions." Watch Prime Minister's Questions here.

  12. Latest headlines

    Lloyd Watson

    BBC News

    Here's today's top stories on Local Live:

    • England and Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson has appeared in court to deny charges of sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl
    • The cause of an outbreak of Legionnaires' disease at a South Tyneside factory has been traced to two cooling towers on the site
    • David Cameron says the government has started "intensive" talks with leaders of the steel industry over its future - amid claims from a Teesside MP that it's "in crisis"
  13. Fears for 200 insurance firm jobs

    Up to 200 jobs could be at risk at an insurance company with centres in Newcastle and Bristol.

    Eldon Insurance Services, founded by entrepreneur Arron Banks, is "entering into a period of consultation" about restructuring part of the business.

    Arron Banks

    Staff at Bristol's Go Skippy insurance offices were sent home on Monday while the consultation period got under way. The firm has not confirmed reports that it is diverting work to South Africa for a trial period.

  14. Man 'serious' after stabbing

    Helen Richardson

    BBC Newcastle

    A man has been stabbed in Sunderland.

    It happened at 04:30 in Rawmarsh Road. Paramedics took a 35-year-old man to hospital with several cuts to his arm and head. He's in a serious but stable condition.

  15. Bridge repairs to 'take longer'

    Katie Cole

    BBC Newcastle

    Work to repair a bridge in Northumberland that has already been closed for almost a year is going to take longer than expected.

    Ovingham Bridge links the village with Prudhoe and repairs being carried out are the most significant in its 130-year history.

    Ovingham Bridge

    Northumberland County Council says it's now expected to reopen in November.

  16. Charity wins cash bid boost

    Lisa McCormick

    BBC Tees

    A Teesside charity is one of 12 which have won the chance to get more money.

    The Garfield Weston Foundation will give business mentoring and coaching to Stockton charity A Way Out, which helps women and young people affected by drugs, prostitution and abuse.

    Philippa Charles from the foundation says: "We're really looking forward to introducing them to their business mentors and hopefully helping them to grow and develop their services."

  17. Club's ground purchase is complete

    The Shields Gazette

    South Shields Football Club's return to the town is now official after a deal to buy Filtrona Park was completed.

    Geoff Thompson, centre, with club vice-chairman Gary Crutwell, left, and committee member Bob Wray

    The facility, in Shaftesbury Avenue, has been bought by the club's new chairman, Geoff Thompson, the chief executive of North Tyneside-based energy consultancy firm Utilitywise.

  18. NUFC to play US friendlies

    Matthew Raisbeck

    BBC Newcastle

    Newcastle will play three friendlies in the United States next month.

    They'll face Mexican club Atlas in Milwaukee on Tuesday 14 July. Then, United go to California to play Sacramento Republic on Saturday 18 July

    Three days later, the Magpies finish with a game against Portland Timbers. The club also say they'll confirm details of their domestic pre-season fixtures shortly.

  19. Ruffer's 'most ambitious' project

    Ian Reeve

    BBC North East Business Correspondent

    The plans for Bishop Auckland's £24m Eleven Arches scheme - a nod to the nearby viaduct with 11 arches - which were approved yesterday, are highly ambitious.

    They are the vision of millionaire philanthropist Jonathan Ruffer, who has already bought Auckland Castle, restoring the traditional home of the Bishops of Durham.

    Auckland Castle

    About £90m will go into his projects, but Eleven Arches is surely the most ambitious of them, not least because it will be staffed by 600 volunteers for every night-time show during the summer, starting next June.

  20. Patrick Vieira 'no longer in frame'

    BBC Sport

    Patrick Vieira is out of the running to become the new head coach of Newcastle United with ex-England manager Steve McClaren favourite to get the job.

    Former Arsenal and Manchester City midfielder Vieira, 38, City's under-21 manager, had been considered as a replacement for John Carver.

    Patrick Vieira

    But both parties opted not to pursue a possible deal following differences over recruitment and transfer policy. McClaren is tipped to take over after being sacked by Derby last month.

  21. 'About 1,000 volunteers needed'

    Ian Reeve

    BBC North East Business Correspondent

    Workshops will be set up locally to create sets, props and costumes for the Auckland Castle leisure park and light show.

    In total, 1,000 volunteers will have to be trained, as well as 56 horses, to orchestrate what is said to be on par with the opening ceremony of London's 2012 Olympics.

    If it comes off, the benefits will be immense. Jonathan Ruffer's scheme is based on a project called Puy du Fou in the Vendee region of France.

    Nearly two million visitors a year see outdoor shows at the theme park, which generates revenues of €74m and has created 3,500 jobs.

    Put du Fou

    Eleven Arches will be on a more modest scale, with 180,000 visitors envisaged between May to September.

  22. Masked armed thief robs hairdressers

    An armed thief wearing a Halloween mask has stolen cash from a hairdressers.

    The man, armed with a knife, threatened staff and stole cash from the branch in Waverley Road, Harlow Green, Gateshead at about 10:55 yesterday.

    Waverley Road

    Nobody was injured. The man is believed to have been wearing a grey hoodie and was possibly carrying a navy rucksack or carrier bag.

  23. Johnson denies all charges

    Danny Savage

    North of England Correspondent, BBC News

    Sunderland winger Adam Johnson entered the court surrounded by his legal team, and spoke to enter his not guilty pleas.

    He denied three charges of sexual activity with a girl under 16 in his first appearance at Durham Crown Court. The 27-year-old also denied one charge of grooming.

  24. Johnson continued to play for SAFC

    Johnson, 27, was arrested by police in March and was bailed. He continued to play for Sunderland AFC, who won their won battle against relegation thanks to a 0-0 draw with Arsenal.

    Adam Johnson

    The Sunderland-born winger joined Middlesbrough's youth academy and made his senior debut aged 17, in a 2005 Uefa Cup game.

  25. 'Not guilty plea indicated'

    Adam Johnson's not guilty plea comes after his solicitor told magistrates in Peterlee last month that he intended to deny all the charges.

    He has been charged with sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl and grooming.

    Adam Johnson
  26. BreakingAdam Johnson denies child sex charges

    Sunderland winger Adam Johnson has formally pleaded not guilty to a number of allegations of sexual activity with a child.

    Adam Johnson

    The 27-year-old, from Castle Eden, County Durham, was arrested in March and denied the charges at Durham Crown Court.

  27. 'Chase pair locked up'

    The Gazette

    Here's today's front page and a link to the main story:

    Front page
  28. Johnson faces second court appearance

    On 18 May, Adam Johnson was pictured arriving at court for the first time to face charges of sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl.

    Adam Johnson and girlfriend

    The 27-year-old winger appeared at Peterlee Magistrates' Court for his first hearing after he was charged in April.

  29. 'Played 12 times for England'

    Adam Johnson was charged with three counts of sexual activity with a child and grooming.

    The three offences are alleged to have taken place in January, while the meeting a child after sexual grooming offence is said to have happened between December and February.

    Adam Johnson arriving

    Johnson, who has played 12 times for England, lives in Castle Eden, County Durham.

  30. Adam Johnson answers bail

    Adam Johnson was arrested in March. The 27-year-old, from Castle Eden, County Durham, was bailed and continued to play for Sunderland AFC, who survived their relegation battle.

    Adam Johnson

    The Sunderland-born winger joined Middlesbrough's youth academy and made his senior debut at the age of 17, in a 2005 Uefa Cup game.

  31. BreakingAdam Johnson appears at court

    England and Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson has arrived at Durham Crown Court to face child sex charges.

    He has been charged with three counts of sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl and one offence of grooming.

    Adam Johnson

    In May, his solicitor told magistrates in Peterlee he intended to deny all the charges.

  32. 'Start of a £24m tourism journey'

    Northern Echo

    Here's today's front page and a link to the top story:

    Front page
  33. Don't panic!

    5 Live

    If you're listening in the north of England on 909 AM and we disappear, you can still find us here.

    5 Live graphic
  34. NUFC and SAFC payments revealed

    New figures show Newcastle United earned nearly £8m more than neighbours Sunderland for being in the Premier League last season.

    The Magpies raked in £77.8m from the current deal after being shown live 20 times during the turbulent 2014-15 season and finishing 15th.

    Premier League graphic

    Sunderland collected £69.8m from the league after finishing a place below them, as they were only shown 11 times.

  35. Fuel spillage on A194

    BBC Travel

    There's a fuel spillage on the A194 Leam Lane in Monkton between the Lindisfarne Roundabout and the A185 Jarrow Road junction. Approach with care.

    One lane is closed and there's slow traffic on the A184 Park Road westbound in Gateshead between the Old Fold Road junction and the Shearlegs Road junction because of water main work.

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

  36. 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.

    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.

    If you missed yesterday's live page, you can catch up here.