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  1. Updates on Tuesday 11 October 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. Our live coverage across the day

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

    We'll be back tomorrow at 08:00 with more news, sport, weather and travel updates.

    Fancy getting in touch? If so, you can contact us on TwitterFacebook, or via email at

  2. Ex-BHS worker 'in limbo' over pension

    A former BHS worker from Teesside has told us he still doesn't know what will happen with his pension now the company has gone bust.

    Last night the BBC's Panorama revealed on the day BHS went into administration, 200 workers at its headquarters shared bonuses of more than £2m.

    Sir Philip Green's representative says the payments were to retain workers while a buyer was being sought, but the programme found the payments were only made after all the talks failed.

    BHS has a hole in its pension fund estimated to be £500m and Mark Dadson, from Stockton, says he isn't getting any answers about his pension.

    He said: "I'm in absolute limbo. It's really, really worrying because I've had no news, nothing. I'm in the dark."

    Sir Philip Green
  3. Will new north exhibition evoke an earlier era?

    One of the reasons the Great Exhibition of the North was awarded to Newcastle and Gateshead was because of the "ambition" of organisers.

    However, the 2018 event, set to showcase art, design and innovation, will not be the first in the region.

    In 1929, the North East Coast Exhibition was opened by the Prince of Wales in Newcastle amid great fanfare.

    So, will organisers take inspiration from the grand event, which attracted four million visitors?

    Read more here.

    Entrance to 1929 exhibition
  4. Reaction to Newcastle-Gateshead Great Exhibition of the North victory

    As we told you earlier, Newcastle and Gateshead have been chosen to host the £5m Great Exhibition of the North in 2018.

    The area will showcase art, design and innovation and is expected to attract about three million visitors. 

    In 1929, the North East Coast Exhibition was opened by the Prince of Wales in Newcastle amid great fanfare.

    But will The Blazing World - The Fires of Invention event receive as warm a welcome?  

    Video content

    Video caption: Newcastle and Gateshead to host Great Exhibition of the North
  5. Teenager's phone stolen in Blyth knifepoint robbery

    A teenager had his mobile phone stolen after being threatened by a man with a knife.

    The 17-year-old's Samsung Galaxy Edge was taken when he was approached on Blyth's Newsham Road at about 18:20 on Saturday.

    After stealing the mobile, the robber headed towards the nearby sports centre. 

    He is described as white, 6ft (1.82m) tall with a medium build and local accent. He was wearing a black hooded jumper.

    The victim was shaken but otherwise unhurt, police said.  

  6. Hospital’s apology to Sunderland dad accidentally stabbed by needle found by son

    Sunderland Echo


    Hospital bosses have apologised to a Sunderland dad who was accidentally stabbed with a discarded needle which was found on the floor by his young son.

    Clive Winney with son Lucas
  7. BreakingCream firm owners deny illegal gas sales

    The owners of a "whipped cream delivery service" have denied selling gas canisters allegedly used as a recreational drug.

    Jonathan Lawrence, 30, of West Mews, Stamford and David Jenkins, 29, of Jesmond Gardens, Newcastle, deny the unauthorised sale of nitrous oxide with their firm, Toon Whip.

    They were arrested after the BBC investigated the Newcastle-based firm.

    Jonathan Lawrence and David Jenkins

    The pair appeared before Newcastle Magistrates' Court.

    They are due to return to the same court on 5 January.

    Mr Lawrence and Mr Jenkins were charged under the General Product Safety Regulations 2005, on the grounds they sold allegedly unsafe products.

    Toon Whip is part of Out the Kitchen Limited, based on Starbeck Avenue, a catering business run by the two directors. The company has denied the same charge.

  8. The view from the sidelines at Sunderland training

    Nick Barnes

    BBC Newcastle's Sunderland commentator

    I've been at training with the Sunderland lads ahead of Saturday's trip to Stoke.

    Unfortunately I forgot my boots!

    SAFC training
  9. Osbourne calls on government to ensure Nissan plant has a future

    Former Chancellor George Osborne says it's up to the government to make sure Nissan still has a future on Wearside.

    The boss of the car firm has said investment decisions about the Sunderland plant will depend on the outcome of Brexit negotiations.

    Mr Osborne told a committee of MPs the UK must remain an attractive place to make cars after leaving the EU.

    Nissan production line at the Sunderland factory
  10. Reintroduction of Ashington to Newcastle trains on track, says council

    The latest stage of plans to bring back direct trains between Ashington and Newcastle have been given the thumbs-up by councillors in Northumberland.

    County councillors have welcomed Network Rail's study which found restarting seven-day services on the Ashington, Blyth and Tyne line is feasible.

    The authority estimates reintroducing a regular service from 2021 could boost the local economy by £70m with more than 380,000 people using the line each year by 2034.

    And they say commuters and shoppers could travel from Ashington to Newcastle in 38 minutes with "several new or rebuilt stations along the route linking towns to key areas of employment, training and leisure attractions".

    The next stage of the process will assess whether the scheme can be delivered at the right cost. National Rail estimates the bill will run to £191m.

  11. 'Couple of hundred' clown sightings in Northumbria Police area

    Speaking to the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme this morning, Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Vera Baird said there have been "a couple of hundred" sightings of clowns in the area but "only 13 or 14" serious incidents.

    She said: "The trouble is the level of worry and concern goes up with every story so a clown who might be joking becomes a frightening figure."

    Ms Baird pointed to the potential criminal consequences of being found guilty of carrying knives and of causing harassment, alarm or distress, and reiterated her advice for youngsters not to dress up in the outfits.

    Professional clowns have hit out at pranksters who have been dressing up to intimidate and frighten people across the UK.  

    Clown masks
  12. Disabled pensioner hits out at Hartlepool supermarket in wheelchair row

    Hartlepool Mail


    A disabled pensioner blasted Hartlepool’s Asda supermarket after she was asked to get up out of a wheelchair while waiting for a taxi.

    Marlene Jakubek outside of Asda, Marina Way, Hartlepool
  13. Suspected stolen car crashes into Hartlepool wall

    Police are appealing for information after a suspected stolen car crashed into a garden wall in Hartlepool.

    The VW Golf hit the wall in Wynyard Road at about 22:00 on Saturday, showering the front window of a house with bricks and injuring a 57-year-old man inside.

    The driver and passengers fled. One was wearing a white vest and had heavily tattooed arms. 

  14. Vandals break windows at Stockton museum

    Matthew Nixon

    BBC Tees reporter

    I'm at Preston Hall Museum in Stockton where vandals have smashed 14 windows over the weekend.

    Preston Hall Museum
  15. Benefits Street participant Lee Nutley found dead

    A man who appeared on the Channel 4 show Benefits Street has been found dead on the Stockton street where the programme was filmed.

    Lee Nutley, who featured in the second series, was pronounced dead by ambulance service staff at a house in Kingston Road yesterday.

    Police say there are no suspicious circumstances and a file is being prepared for the coroner.

    Lee Nutley with a dog

    Critics of the Channel 4 programme said it stigmatises the poor, and in 2014 residents in Stockton expressed concern it would portray the town in a bad light

    But its producers said it was a sympathetic portrayal of communities going through hard times.

  16. Drink-drive limit reduction 'a no-brainer', says North East alcohol office

    BBC Tees

    The Government should lower the UK's drink-driving limit to bring it in line with other countries in Europe, A North East alcohol office says.

    Balance says at least 25 lives a year will be saved in the region if the country's limit was lowered.

    England and Wales have the highest limit in Europe at 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood - compared with 50 milligrams in Scotland and the rest of Europe.

    Colin Shevills, from Balance, told the BBC: "It's something the government can do which, in these times of austerity, costs nothing but actually would save a whole lot of pain and heartache.

    "They did it in Scotland in December 2014 and within nine months drink-drive offences as recorded by the police had fallen by 12.5%. It's a no-brainer."

  17. Middlesbrough MP Tom Blenkinsop calls for steel industry protection during Brexit

    BBC Tees

    As the Government resists calls to give MPs a vote on the terms of any deal to leave the European Union, Tom Blenkinsop, the Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, has asked for reassurance over what leaving the EU will mean for the steel industry.

    He has told the House of Commons there are 52 trade instruments which the EU provides for the UK.

    With the Government pushing for greater business links with China, Mr Blenkinsop said he fears the British steel industry could be damaged if those EU protections are eroded.

    Brexit Secretary David Davis told the Commons there will be full parliamentary scrutiny in the run-up to Britain's withdrawal but insisted he won't let critics "undo" the referendum result.

    Redcar Steel Works
  18. Watch: Northumbria PCC on clown craze

    The "killer clown" craze has sent shockwaves through the clowning industry, according to professionals.

    Mattie Faint, who has been a professional clown for 45 years, told Victoria Derbyshire it was frightening and sad that pranksters could "ruin" a child's imagination.

    Police have been inundated with reports of "creepy clowns" jumping out and chasing people since the phenomenon spread to the UK from the United States.

    The Victoria Derbyshire programme is broadcast on weekdays between 09:00 and 11:00 on BBC Two and the BBC News channel.

    Video content

    Video caption: Clowns 'devastated by prank craze'
  19. 'Creepy clowns': Police ask shops to stop selling costumes

    It's been a busy day for Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Vera Baird.

    As well as appearing on the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme, she's been speaking to Radio 5 live about the creepy clown pranking trend.

    She told presenter Adrian Chiles that police in her force area have been asking costume shops to withdraw clown outfits from sale.

    Infographic with Vera baird's quote: "Our police... are going round all the shops and saying... Take them off sale for now".