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  1. Updates on Friday 12 August 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Our live coverage throughout the day

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

That's us done for the week - thank you for joining us.

It looks like these Cleveland Police dogs have started their weekend early by chilling in the sunshine with some chewy toys - bliss:

Dogs relaxing

I hope my weekend is just as relaxing.

We'll be back on Monday at 08:00 with all your news, sport, weather and travel updates.

Feel free to get in touch - you can contact us on TwitterFacebook, or via email at

Teesport green power plant construction to begin

Work on a £650m green power plant on Teesside is due to begin - more than seven years after it was proposed.

Up to 600 people will be employed building the Tees Renewable Energy Plant at Teesport in Middlesbrough.

A further 100 permanent posts will be created when the biomass facility is completed in 2020.

The project was approved by the then Labour government in July 2009, but a complex finance deal involving several countries has only just been sealed.

A drawing of the future plant

Weather: Wind and rain

BBC Weather

Blustery winds and outbreaks of rain for a time through Friday evening, the odd heavy burst possible, but becoming mainly dry and less windy towards morning.  

Weather graph

Check the weather where you are.

Sunderland man killed in car crash

Sunderland Echo


A Sunderland man has died in a car crash.

David Burridge, 38, died when the silver Skoda Estate which he was driving was involved in a collision.

Fabio: Cardiff City defender signs for Middlesbrough

BBC Sport

Former Manchester United defender Fabio Da Silva has joined newly-promoted Middlesbrough from Cardiff City.

The 26-year-old Brazilian's Bluebirds' contract included a release clause understood to be about £2m.

"We'd like to take this opportunity to thank Fabio for his contribution during his two and a half years at the club and wish him the very best for his future," Cardiff said.

Bluebirds boss Paul Trollope confirmed yesterday a deal was close.

Fabio Da Silva
Huw Evans Picture Agency

Are ewe ready for the Sheep Olympics?

Kristie Kinghorn

BBC Newcastle

As Team GB battle it out at the 2016 Rio Olympics, games of a different kind are being held in County Durham.

A flock of 200 sheep have been trained for the Sheep Olympics taking place at Hall Hill Farm in Lanchester.

Six competitors will compete over the weekend in events which include the long jump and shot put.

County Durham hosts Sheep Olympics

People trapped at Diggerland due to fire now allowed to leave

People who were trapped in Diggerland in County Durham due to a nearby factory fire have now been allowed to leave the resort.

Roads to the theme park have re-opened but the fire is still continuing.

BreakingMan held over arson following tyre fire in County Durham

A man has been arrested on suspicion of arson following a fire in Langley Park in County Durham.

The 54-year-old was held after the blaze broke out in tyres at the Riverside Industrial Estate.

Police are urging the public to stay away from the scene as there is still a significant amount of black smoke.

Woman, 88, tricked and burgled

A man tricked an 88-year-old woman into believing he had lost his ball in her garden - in a bid to distract her while a second man burgled her house.

A large number of jewellery items were stolen, three pairs of gold earrings and six gold rings - one of which was an engagement ring.

The incident happened yesterday at 11:00 in the Cleveland View area of Marske.

Sunderland need Kone - Moyes

BBC Sport

Sunderland boss David Moyes was asked at his media conference about Lamine Kone, who says that he wants to leave the club, with Everton interested.

Moyes said: "We've told Lamine Kone he will be offered a new contract in September.

"He is very much part of my plans. We will renew his contract on 1 September. The fans like him and we need him."

What happens to Middlesbrough's football pitch over the summer?

Duncan Leatherdale

BBC News Online

Few people would want to spend their summer watching paint dry and grass grow, but for Tony Bell, it comes with the territory.

As head groundsman at Middlesbrough's Riverside Stadium and the club's training ground at Rockliffe Hall, he is the man responsible for ensuring Boro have a pristine pitch to run out on.

And, with the club kicking-off their return to the Premier League at home to Stoke City on Saturday, there is much more to it than just cutting the grass a few times a week.

"There is a massive science to it and we are learning all the time," said Bell.

Ever wondered what happens to a football pitch over the summer?

Read the full feature here.

Teenage girl reportedly hit by car, police say

A 15-year-old has reportedly been hit by a car in Hurworth Moor, Darlington, Durham Police says.

The teenager was flown to the James Cook Hospital on Wednesday at 16:00 where she was treated for minor injuries.

She has since been released from hospital.

Investigators would like to hear from anyone who spotted a girl wearing a dark cardigan in the Spring Cottage area.

150 people trapped in Diggerland

Around 150 people are reportedly stuck inside the Diggerland theme park in County Durham because of a nearby fire.

35 firefighters are tackling a large blaze on an industrial estate in Langley Park.

Tyres in a factory unit are alight and there's a lot of smoke in the area.

Mackem-speaking tips for Corbyn in Sunderland

Today Programme

BBC Radio 4

Mackem Dictionary author Paul Swinney offers language tips for Jeremy Corbyn during his visit to Sunderland.

A look back at the super strong paper bridge

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

Earlier today we brought you the news that a Teesdale artist who built a paper bridge strong enough to hold a car has started a new creation.

Last year Land Rover used the bridge in a publicity stunt, as this video shows:

View more on youtube

Photo of tyre fire as seen from Consett

A tyre fire continues to burn at Langley Park in County Durham.

Firefighters are currently tackling the blaze.

This is the view as seen from a field in Consett:

Smoke can be seen from a field in Consett
Tracey Laing

Part 5 of the A - Z of Middlesbrough FC

BBC Tees

BBC Tees Sport

It's the final part of our A - Z of Middlesbrough FC in the Premier League. 

Today, ahead of the big kick off tomorrow, it's letters V to Z.

Part 5 of the A - Z of Middlesbrough FC

Sunderland sign Adnan Januzaj on loan from Sunderland

Sunderland manager David Moyes announces that Adnan Januzaj has arrived on a season-long loan from Manchester United.

Adnan Januzaj (right) has scored five goals in 63 appearances for Manchester United
Getty Images

Photo shows tyre fire from the air

This photo shows the fire is even more ferocious:

View more on twitter

BreakingFirefighters tackle tyre blaze in County Durham

BBC Newcastle

Some 35 firefighters are tackling this blaze at Langley Park Industrial Estate in County Durham after tyres in a factory unit caught alight: 

View more on twitter

The only injury is a man who has been treated for breathing difficulties because of the smoke. 

He's been treated at the scene.  

Hundreds at pro-Jeremy Corbyn rally in Sunderland

Luke Walton

BBC Look North

A pro-Jeremy Corbyn rally in Sunderland has drawn about 1,000 people. 

The Labour leader is speaking in a few mins. It's pretty noisy and upbeat here.  

Pro-Jeremy Corbyn rally

Virgin Trains staff confirm strike dates

Staff at Virgin Trains have announced the dates they plans to go on strike.

Workers on Virgin Trains East Coast are to stage three 24-hour strikes in a row over jobs, working conditions and safety, according to the RMT union.

Strikes will take place on 19, 26 and 29 August - which is a bank holiday.

A train

Photo: Large fire in County Durham

A large fire has broken out at Langley Park in County Durham.

The chief fire officer at County Durham and Darlington has reported that a large unit on the Riverside Industrial Estate is currently on fire.

More information as we get it.

View more on twitter

Lamine Kone: Sunderland defender tells David Moyes he wants to leave

BBC Sport

Sunderland defender Lamine Kone has told manager David Moyes that he wants to leave the club.

The 27-year-old Ivorian, who is a target for Everton, joined the Black Cats in January and helped them avoid Premier League relegation last season.

Kone says his decision comes after the club failed to offer him the improved deal that they said they would.

"It is therefore with much regret that I can only assume that I do not figure in David Moyes' future plans," he said.  

Lamine Kone
Getty Images

Who else has turned down an MBE?

Following the news that former Newcastle and Sunderland player Howard Gale has turned down an MBE, here's a list of other people who have made the same decision over the years:

  • LS Lowry - the painter turned down a total of five honours, including an OBE in 1955, a CBE in 1961 and a knighthood in 1968
  • David Bowie - the music legend turned down a CBE in 2000
  • Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders - the comedy duo refused OBEs in 2001 because they didn't think they deserved it. They said that they "we were being paid very well to have a lot of fun".
  • John Lennon - the Beatles legend returned his MBE four years after accepting it in 1965 in protest against the Vietnam and Biafran wars
CBE, OBE and MBE medals

Moussa Sissoko: Newcastle midfielder 'waiting' on Real Madrid approach

Newcastle midfielder Moussa Sissoko wants to join a "big club", with reportedly interested Real Madrid his preferred destination.

The 26-year-old, who has made 133 appearances for the Magpies, wants to leave following relegation from the Premier League last season.

Sissoko was involved in France's run to the Euro 2016 final this summer.

"I hope Real will come for me, I'm still waiting," Sissoko told World Football.

Moussa Sissoko
Getty Images

Paper bridge artist takes on new project

A Teesdale artist who made a paper bridge strong enough to hold a car is creating a new project inspired by the waterfalls of the River Tees.

Steve Messam will transform three whitewashed barns into artwork calledWaterfall which will run across 14-16 and 21-23 October.

Steve will film each of the waterfalls of the River Tees and the films will then be projected on to all four sides of the barns.

The new project
The new project

Behind the scenes at revamped Boro

Kristie Kinghorn

BBC Newcastle

Ahead of Middlesbrough's return to the top flight, we take a look around their revamped stadium.

The club has spent nearly £6m upgrading the Riverside Stadium to meet the league's requirements.

The revamp includes new floodlights, seating and more media space.  

Middlesbrough's Riverside Stadium revamped for Premier League

Huge wind turbine travels through Northumberland

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

A new wind turbine is making its way through Northumberland this morning.

If you spot it - how could you miss it? - send us your pictures.

View more on twitter

Stockton receives school funding

BBC Tees

Some £30m is being given to Stockton Council to help create enough school places.

The money is coming from central government and is on top of the £20m they've received over the last five years.

Ann McCoy from Stockton council says nurseries will also benefit.

The allocation of money is in contrast to neighbouring Middlesbrough which, over the same period, will get just a tenth of the money handed to Stockton. 

Woman dies in house fire in Spennymoor

A woman has died in a house fire in Spennymoor.

Police were alerted at 14:25 yesterday to a fire at a house in Middleham Walk.

The body of a woman was found inside the property and a joint investigation has been launched by the police and fire service to ascertain the cause.

Middlesbrough FC boss Aitor Karanka issues rallying cry ahead of Stoke City opener

The Gazette


Aitor Karanka has issued a rallying cry on the eve of Boro's Premier League opener - “let’s keep the dream going.”

After a seven-year absence from the top-flight, Boro are finally set to retake their seat at football’s top table.

Front page
The Gazette

Prison officer admits to relationship with inmate

A prison officer has admitted having a relationship with an inmate at the jail where she worked, the Crown Prosecution Service has said.

Melissa Priestley, 33, worked at HMP Low Newton, a women's prison in Durham where serial killer Rose West is locked up.

An investigation was launched following a tip off and it uncovered Priestley was having a relationship with a prisoner.

A search of the prisoner's cell led to the discovery of letters suggesting an inappropriate relationship with a staff member.

She appeared before Durham Crown Court and admitted misconduct in public office - She will be sentenced next month. 

Smith: 'Futile' to serve in Corbyn shadow cabinet

Owen Smith has said he will return to the backbenches rather than serve in Jeremy Corbyn's shadow cabinet, should he lose the Labour leadership contest.

Mr Smith said he would be a loyal MP but did not want to engage in "futile" work as Mr Corbyn could not win power.

But Mr Corbyn told a hustings event in Gateshead that Labour had grown "enormously" under his leadership.

The Court of Appeal is to rule later on whether recently-joined members will be allowed to vote in the contest.

Ex-Newcastle and Sunderland player Howard Gayle turns down MBE

The first black footballer to play for Liverpool has turned down an MBE nomination, saying it would be "a betrayal" to Africans who suffered at the hands of the British Empire.

Howard Gayle, 58, made his Reds debut in 1977 and played for Newcastle between 1982-1983 and then moved to Sunderland for two years.

He said he had to decline the nomination, for his Show Racism the Red Card campaign work, as his ancestors would be "turning in their graves".

The Cabinet Office said it did not comment on individual cases.

Howard Gayle

CCTV image released over sex assault

Police investigating a sexual assault in Sunderland have released an image of a man they would like to trace.

The incident happened in Sunderland city centre near Park Lane between 03.30 and 04:00 on Wednesday, 3 August.

The man is thought to have been in the area at the time and may have information that can help police enquiries.

CCTV image of man

Weather: Sunny but breezy

Abbie Dewhurst

Weather Presenter, BBC Look North

A dry day for most with some good sunny spells although the brisk westerly breeze will take the edge off the temperature.

Clouding over from the north late afternoon with some rain by evening for northern parts.  

Check the weather where you are.

Gateshead crash death victims names released

In case you missed it last night - A 43-year-old man and two 17-year-old girls killed in a two-vehicle crash in Gateshead have been named.

Andrew Clark, from Swalwell, was driving a Mercedes which was in collision with a lorry on Fellside Road, early on Wednesday.

Jennifer Fradgley and Kaitlin Tremlett, who were passengers in the car, also died at the scene.

Northumbria Police has appealed for witnesses to the crash which happened at 02:20 near Whickham Golf Club.

The victims

Welcome to Friday's BBC Local Live

Ana Guerra-Moore

BBC News Online

Good morning and welcome to today's live coverage.

As always, we'll be bringing you news, sport, weather and travel updates from the North East throughout the day.

If you would like to get in touch with us you can on TwitterFacebook, or via email at