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  1. Updates on Thursday 26 January 2017

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our coverage across the day

Our coverage has now come to an end. Thank you for joining us.

For updates throughout the night head to BBC TeesBBC Newcastle and Look North and online.

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

If you would like to contact us then do so using TwitterFacebook, or via email at  

Weather tonight: Feeling cold with widespread frost

Low cloud, mist and fog will affect many parts. 

Feeling cold with a widespread frost and brisk winds. 

Strong winds are likely along coasts and over hills. 

Weather temps down to -3

Ed Sheeran to perform in Newcastle

BBC Newcastle

Ed Sheeran has announced he's coming to Newcastle in three months time.

He'll be performing at the city's arena on 19 and 20 April as part of his worldwide tour. 

Tickets go on sale next Thursday.

Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran
Fish and chips

Police warn delivery drivers to take care after a spate of takeaway robberies on Teesside.

Read more

Men charged in connection with armed robbery at County Durham bank

Three men have been charged in connection with an armed robbery at a bank in Horden. 

It took place at a branch of TSB on Blackhills Road on 21 September last year. 

The three men are from the North West of England. They have been charged with conspiracy to commit robbery in connection woth the County Durham robbery, two in Greater Manchester and one in Lancashire.

All three appeared at Manchester Magistrates' Court today and were remanded into custody. 

TSB on Blackhills Road in Horden
TSB on Blackhills Road in Horden

Have you lost a bird of prey?

Our weatherman Paul Mooney was driving along the A695 bypass towards Crawcrook when he spotted a Harris Hawk perched on a bridge.

It's a little odd because they are usually found in the United States and South America. 

The large raptor (example pictured below) is distinguishable by its bright yellow beak and legs.

We're guessing it's been lost by someone involved in falconry.

Harris Hawk

Lottery grant to reveal WW1 training trenches in Northumberland

Lottery money will provide access to a set of World War One practice trenches on a remote area of moorland behind Rothbury, in Northumberland.

They were used to prepare the men of the Northumberland Fusiliers for the Western Front and are extremely well persevered.

Northumberland County Council has received £67,400 from the Heritage Lottery Fund and will work in partnership with the Forestry Commission as well as  a local archaeology group.

Army cadets will be involved in creating a full replica of one of the trenches and education staff will provide tours of the site.

Aerial view of the trenches.
English Heritage
Northumberland Army Cadets will be involved in creating a full replica of a First World War trench.

Clown doctors celebrate their birthday

BBC Newcastle

A team of clown doctors who visit sick children in North East hospitals are celebrating their birthday today. 

The group of actors who dress in red noses and white medical coats have been clowning around at the Great North Childrens Hospital in Newcastle for the last decade. 

Celebrations to mark the anniversary had to be postponed in October last year after the so called killer clown craze.

View more on facebook

Sunderland war hero who fell 800ft when parachute failed to open organises bike ride

Sunderland Echo


A Sunderland war hero who fell 800ft when his parachute failed to open is organising a sponsored bike ride to benefit wounded veterans.  

Army veteran Jim Holborn is taking part in the Emperor bike ride. 8
Sunderland Echo
Army veteran Jim Holborn is taking part in the Emperor bike ride.

Stretcher graduation woman needs life-saving surgery

Stephanie Finnon

BBC Newcastle

A woman from Northumberland, who graduated from university on a stretcher, is trying to raise £150,000 for life saving surgery in America. 

Melanie Hartshorn from Cramlington has been organising all her own fundraising, but recently her health has been setting her back and has spent months in hospital seriously ill. 

Melanie Hartshorn
Newcastle University

The 27-year-old has a rare and debilitating condition that causes her joints to dislocate and means she can't get out of bed. 

She told BBC Newcastle she's in severe pain and is now receiving palliative care. 

She has already raised £21,000 towards her total and is organising a ball at Kingston Park next month to help towards the total. 

There's also a pantomime - Beauty and the Beast - running in Cramlington until Saturday to raise money for her surgery.

Abduction warning on Teesside

BBC Tees

There's a warning to parents after an apparent attempted child abduction on Teesside. 

A 10-year-old girl was approached by a stranger near The Avenue Primary School in Nunthorpe. He spoke to her and then made off on foot, Cleveland Police said.  

He's described as white, about 5ft 8in, medium build and aged in his late 30s with a bald head and facial stubble. 

He also had a tattoo on his right forearm of a woman's face with a red background.

'Positive influence' Taylor joins Town

Graeme Mac

BBC Radio Suffolk sport

Former Newcastle defender Steven Taylor has joined Ipswich Town on a deal until the end of the season.

Steven Taylor
Getty Images

Manager Mick McCarthy says the 31-year-old has impressed during a week long trial at Portman Road, and will be in the squad for Saturday's trip to Preston. 

"He's a really positive influence and an experienced voice, which is what we need at the moment," McCarthy told us this afternoon. 

"He's been organising the back line and he looks fit. He's hungry to prove to everyone that he can play at this level at the very least."

Newcastle school rated 'good' two years ago put into special measure

BBC Newcastle

Two years after it was rated "good" by inspectors, one of Newcastle's biggest secondary schools has been put into special measures. 

Heaton Manor School was rated as "inadequate" by Ofsted after an inspection late last year.

The report highlighted a decline in the school's performance and weak leadership. 

Headteacher Lynne Ackland retired suddenly during the Christmas holidays and a temporary leadership is now in charge.

Heaton Manor School
Heaton Manor School

Test facilities will make North East the 'Nasa of the underwater world'

The Chronicle

A new multimillion- pound research and testing facility will help the North East subsea sector maintain its leading position as the ‘NASA of the underwater world’.

Hyperbaric test facilities at BEL Valves
The Chronicle
Hyperbaric test facilities at BEL Valves
Michael Dunn

A wall behind his fridge was knocked through to create a cavity to hide a runway girl from police.

Read more

Kynren looking for more volunteers this evening

BBC Tees

Volunteers are being sought for this year's Kynren festival in County Durham, with a mix and match session taking place at Flatts Farm in Bishop Auckland this evening at 18:30.

Anyone who signs up can take part - last year more than 1,000 volunteers made up the cast and crew over 15 evenings. 

This year the organisers want to put on 17 shows and they say they'll welcome applications from anyone who's interested.

Image from Kynren last summer
Would you like to take part?

Scrap dealer could lose licence after ‘dreadful’ flytipping

Sunderland Echo


A scrap dealer could lose his licence after he was caught dumping a large amount of rubbish at a well-known fly-tipping hot spot.

Rubbish dumped on Frosterley Close, Easington Lane.
Sunderland Echo

Football: Gaston Ramirez hands in transfer request

A19 in Northumberland partly reopened after water leak

Weather: Feeling very cold

Well it's a cold old day out there. Here's the forecast for the rest of the day - very cold and generally cloudy with mist and fog patches, especially higher parts of the Pennines, Cheviots and the Cleveland Hills.

A few brighter spells may develop towards Kielder. Many inland areas will struggle to rise above freezing with brisk winds accentuating the bitter feel. 

Maximum Temperature: 2C (36F).

weather graphic

Police seek help to trace missing 18-year-old

Police are appealing for help to trace missing 18-year-old Chloe Groves.

She was last seen at a property on Turner Street in Redcar on 22 January.

Chloe Groves
Cleveland Police

Two men charged after County Durham pensioner has life savings stolen

BBC Tees

Two men have been charged in connection with a robbery in which a 77-year-old man had his life savings stolen. 

It happened in Coronation near Bishop Auckland last weekend. 

Two men, one from Trimdon and one from Stockton, have been charged with aggravated burglary. 

They are due to appear before magistrates at Newton Aycliffe today. 

Picture of burst water main on A19 at Holystone

A burst water main has been causing major problems on the A19 at Holystone this morning.

And it was a huge leak as this tweet from Northumbrian Water shows. 

Engineers have been working to fix the scene and clean up the road.

View more on twitter

Metro users facing delays

Teesside's only dry bar opens tonight

BBC Look North

North East and Cumbria

The only bar in Teesside which caters for people who don't drink alcohol opens tonight.

The owners claim it will offer a night out with a difference while supporting people who have a drink problem. 

Bar Zero in Middlesbrough will serve food and soft drinks, and it's claimed it will provide all the fun of a night out without the hangover the next day. 

It's part of a charity-run social enterprise which includes the Fork In the Road restaurant, which offers training to ex-offenders. 

Bar Zero opens tonight
Bar Zero opens tonight

Watch: Ant and Dec win three National Television Awards

Ant and Dec won three prizes at the National Television Awards, including best TV presenter for the 16th year.  

Watch them receiving their awards along with other highlights from last night's show.

Paralysed biker's bid to walk again

Colin Briggs

Look North

A motorcyclist from County Durham, who was paralysed from the waist down in a road accident, is making progress in his bid to walk again.

Andrew Bell, 30, from Chester Le Street, almost died in the crash nearly two years ago, and he was told he'd spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair. 

Andy Bell

But now, following pioneering stem cell treatment in Thailand, he's been able to stand and take steps using a walking frame. 

There'll be more on this on Look North at 18:30.

Funding for 999 service 'lowest in UK'

The Journal


Strained ambulance services are struggling to cope with rising demand for urgent care as crews are put at breaking point, the official spending watchdog has warned.

Journal front page
The Journal

Concern for missing 15-year-old girl

Police on Teesside are appealing for information to find a missing 15-year-old girl.

Saba Hussain from Middlesbrough, was last seen in the Linthorpe Road area of the town at 23:40 on Wednesday.  

Saba Hussain
Cleveland Police

Severe disruption: B1322 Tyne And Wear both ways

BBC Travel

B1322 Tyne And Wear both ways severe disruption, between A1056 Killingworth Way and B1317 Killingworth Lane.

B1322 Tyne And Wear - B1322 Backworth Lane in Backworth closed in both directions between the A1056 Killingworth Way junction and the B1317 Killingworth Lane junction. Diversion in operation.

Check local traffic and travel reports for:

Steel back in profit

The Gazette


The British Steel name is alive and well on Teesside as the company looks forward to a prosperous 2017.

The company ended 2016 in profit after investing £39m into its steelworks - including a £1.8m investment at Skinningrove's special profiles works, one of two British Steel sites which employ around 700 people on Teesside.

gazette front page
The Gazette

Burst water main on A19 at Holystone causing long delays

Stephanie Finnon

BBC Newcastle

Workers from Northumbrian Water are at the scene of a burst water main on the A19 at Holystone roundabout.

One lane is open each way.

Police say there is deep water which means traffic is going slowly and there are long tailbacks. They are advising people to avoid the area if possible.

Weather: Cloudy and staying very cold

Abbie Dewhurst

Weather Presenter, BBC Look North

Today will be very cold for everyone and generally cloudy with mist and fog patches mainly on hills. 

Some brightness is likely, but many inland areas will struggle to rise above freezing with brisk winds.

Weather map

Those winds will be strong on coasts and over hills. Temperatures are unlikely to rise above 0C (32F).

Tonight low cloud, mist and fog will affect many parts. It will feel cold with a widespread frost, ice on surfaces, and brisk winds. 

Winds are likely to be at their strongest along coasts and over hills. Overnight temperatures are expected to dip to about -4C (25F). 

'Heartfelt massive thank yous' from Ant and Dec after awards

Geordie duo Ant and Dec were delighted after winning three times at the National Television Awards, including best TV presenters for the 16th year running.

They tweeted their thanks to the fans who voted for them.

View more on twitter

Ant and Dec win three National Television Awards

Well it was quite a night for Ant and Dec at the National Television Awards last night as they picked up three awards.

The Geordie pair won the best TV presenter prize for an incredible 16th year in a row.

Saturday Night Takeaway won in the best entertainment programme category and I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here was named best challenge show.

Ant and Dec at the National Television Awards

Travel: Flooding on A19 at Holystone

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