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  1. Alcohol investigation after cinema collapse
  2. Grand National honour for Bradley Lowery
  3. Boat building back on the Tees
  4. Moyes never feared for Sunderland job
  5. Wednesday 5 April 2017

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All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

Francesca Williams

BBC News

That's us all done for another day. Thank you for joining us.

You can catch up with the latest news tonight on  BBC TeesBBC NewcastleLook North  and online.  

If you have a photograph you'd like to share with us, you can Tweet us  @BBCNewsNEemail , or contact us via our  Facebook page .

We'll be back tomorrow from 08:00 and hope to see you then.

Crime near care homes and rare Roman artefacts on tonight's Look North

Carol Malia

BBC Look North

In the programme tonight we'll be hearing how residents living near two care homes for vulnerable children on Teesside claim their worst fears have been realised.

Crime has increased and their repeated complaints have been ignored, they say.

We'll also see some rare Roman artefacts which are being put on display at museums along the 130-mile length of Hadrian's Wall.

I hope you can join me on BBC One at 18:30 .

Weather: Cloudy evening with just a few clear spells

It'll stay rather cloudy overnight with only limited clearer spells.

However, where there are any prolonged breaks in the cloud a slight frost is possible.

Weather chart

Fake gun lands man in prison

BBC Newcastle

A man has been jailed after pointing a fake gun at a young family in a road rage incident on the A1 in Gateshead.

Craig Mafhan was travelling on the Western Bypass one Sunday last September when he was overtaken.

The 38-year-old pulled alongside the other driver, who had his two young children in the back seat, and pointed a handgun at him.

Northumbria Police says that although it turned out to be an air pistol and nobody was injured the threatening behaviour could have caused an accident.

Mafhan, from Matfen Place in Gosforth, has been jailed for 27 months after pleading guilty to possession of an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear.

Alex Tait

Full-back Alex Tait signs a new contract with Newcastle Falcons, although the length of the deal is undisclosed.

Read more

Child approached by stranger in North Tyneside

A child on his way to school has been approached by a man, police have said.

The 10-year-old was on Station Road in Forest Hall, North Tyneside, just before 09:30. 

Northumbria Police said the boy wasn't injured. However, it is investigating the incident.

Police appeal for witnesses after Roker disturbance

Police are investigating an incident in Sunderland on Tuesday and say it appears a Vauxhall Vectra was driven at a man in the street before crashing into a VW Passat.

The man wasn't injured and the driver of the Vectra then got into a Ford Transit Connect.  

It happened just before 16:00 in Roker Avenue.

Three men, aged 32, 33 and 39, have been arrested on suspicion of supplying drugs.

Crashed car

Drink-driving 'was caused by sleep-walking'

Sunderland Echo


A woman has blamed sleep-walking after she crashed her car while more than two-and-a-half times the drink-drive limit.

Karissa McGarley had downed half a bottle of vodka the night before the early-morning smash in Southwick on 8 December, Sunderland magistrates heard.

However, the 26-year-old claims she has no memory of the incident due to her parasomnia and the medication she was taking.

County Durham's famous swan returns

Bowes Museum's famous Silver Swan is back in County Durham after being on display at the Science Museum in London.

It was the first time the 250-year-old mechanical swan had been dismantled and reassembled.

She has returned with just one breakage - a little glass rod.

Matthew Read, who has the job of reassembling her, said it was "impossible to expect this kind of voyage without some damage".

Bowes Museum Silver Swan
Bowes Museum

Witness appeal after Sunderland garage robbery

A petrol station in Sunderland has been robbed, police say.

It happened at 02:36 BST at the Shell garage on The Broadway in Grindon.

A man, wearing a grey flat cap and a beige jumper, pointed what is belived to be a handgun at a member of staff and demanded the contents of the till.

Cash was taken, but the member of staff was unhurt.

Parking fine appeal success varies between council areas

Nearly three quarters of people on South Tyneside who challenged their council parking tickets escaped without a fine.

Out of 2,074 tickets, 1,474 challenges were accepted - 71%.

A Freedom of Information request by the Press Association found Durham County Council repealed almost 60% of the 3,300 ticket appeals it received.

In the Redcar and Cleveland area, about 500 people appealed against their tickets with a third of them successful.

Its cabinet member for neighbourhoods, Alec Brown, said councils used their discretion.

"The town centres tend to be the places with the streets where you do have resident parking zones so it's about getting that fine balance for visitors to the town but protecting those who live here every day," he said.

Alcohol allegations being investigated after cinema collapse

The Health and Safety Executive has confirmed it is "investigating allegations relating to alcohol" after Newcastle's former Odeon cinema collapsed into the street.

The 1930s-built cinema, in Pilgrim Street, was in the process of being demolished.

A bus shelter was crushed by scaffolding and falling masonry late on Monday evening, but no-one was hurt.

Collapsed Odeon cinema
Lewis Roseby

David Miliband 'grieves for state of Labour Party'

Ex-South Shields MP David Miliband says he "grieves" for the state of his party , which the public perceives is "going backwards".

The former party leadership contender refused to say if Jeremy Corbyn should resign or who could replace him, but said he was encouraged "there are so many talented people in my party".

"The big thing in politics is not to define your own reality and then fits the facts to it," he added.

David Miliband

Tees Valley major 'must establish cultural identity'

BBC Tees

The first mayor for the Tees Valley must help create pride in the local culture, heritage and tourism industry, the director of the Mima gallery of contemporary art in Middlesbrough has said. 

People across Hartlepool, Stockton, Redcar & Cleveland, Middlesbrough and Darlington will go to the polls 4 May.

The new mayor will be responsible for areas such as economic investment, culture and tourism.

Alistair Hudson said it was vital for the region to establish an identity to be proud of.

Patrols stepped up after spate of Gateshead arson attacks

A run of arson attacks in Gateshead has left seven methane gas wells on a landfill side damaged beyond repair.

Police have increased patrols after the attacks at the site in Wardley and both they and the fire service are investigating.

Acting Insp Paul Cook said: "Not only are people committing a criminal offence, they are putting their lives at risk.

"These are live gas wells and it is completely irresponsible for any members of the public to mess about with them, let alone to quite literally play with fire."

Family angry at being told to leave dying grandfather so his room could be cleaned

BBC Tees

The family of a dying grandfather say being ordered to leave his bedside at James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough to allow for cleaning robbed him "of his dignity in his dying moments".

Dave Roberts said his mother, who was slow to leave the room, was told: "And you, you've got to get out as well, pick up your bags and get out."

She was allowed to stay by a sympathetic member of nursing staff, but Charles Roberts died a few hours afterwards.

Hospital cleaning contractor Carrilion said staff "always try to act in a sensitive manner with patients and their families".

"In this instance we would like to apologise for any distress caused to family members," a spokesperson said.

Grand National 2017: Terminally ill boy awarded honorary 41st place

Terminally ill Bradley Lowery has been awarded an honorary 41st place in the world’s most famous steeplechase, the Grand National.

The  five-year-old from County Durham and his family will be guests of honour at this weekend's race day and he even has his own racecard - with red and white silks matching his beloved football team, Sunderland FC.

Bradley Lowery
Randox Health Grand National
Bradley Lowery racecard listing
Randox Health Grand National

Bradley, who has neuroblastoma, has led out the England team at Wembley as well as his home team Sunderland - and has even been invited to BBC Sports Personality of the Year.

Last year, after appearing as a Sunderland mascot at Goodison Park, Everton donated £200,000 towards his treatment fund.

Newcastle and Sunderland should 'come together' to back culture bid

Helen Richardson

BBC Newcastle

Seen as fierce rivals for generations, one councillor is attempting to thaw the perceived frosty relationship between Newcastle and Sunderland.

Sunderland is bidding to be City of Culture in 2021 - and Newcastle councillor David Faulkner wants the two cities to "come together" for the good of the region as a whole.

The Liberal Democrat member is planning to put forward a motion at a city council meeting to give support to Sunderland's bid.

Sunderland City of Cultre map
Sunderland City Council

Mr Faulkner said: "Too often Newcastle and Sunderland are perceived as rivals in the North East and this is a chance for us to come together and give wholehearted support to the city."

He is asking Newcastle council bosses to consider what help "might be possible" to support Sunderland's bidding team.

New forensics team in hunt for killer of Sunderland schoolgirl Nikki Allan

Sunderland Echo


Northumbria Police are dedicating a new forensics team to finding the killer of Sunderland schoolgirl Nikki Allan ahead of the 25th anniversary of her death .

Nikki Allan
Sunderland Echo

Brandon's flowers can be collected as council removes tributes

BBC Tees

Middlesbrough Council says it's removing the tributes to a young man who died after a crash more than three weeks ago.

Flowers and tributes to 16-year-old Brandon Morris have been left along the pavement and wall of Albert Park after he died on 14 March.

Brandon Morris
Family photograph

They will be moved at the end of the week to a compound in Albert Park if anyone wants to collect any.     


HSE looking at working practices at cinema collapse site

Helen Richardson

BBC Newcastle

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) says it is looking at whether suitable and sufficient working practices were in place at the former Odeon cinema site in Newcastle. 

Part of the under-demolition structure collapsed onto Pilgrim Street on Monday night

Odeon Cinema collapse
Lewis Roseby

No-one was hurt, but a bus shelter was crushed by falling debris and the road was closed for several hours.

One eye witness described it as the scariest thing they had ever seen. 

The HSE said it had launched an investigation and was working with Newcastle City Council to ensure the site remained as safe as possible. 

Watch: Ambassador role for Tees Valley Mayor

The Tees Valley is getting a “metro mayor” and one of the roles they will play is being an ambassador for the region. 

They will be expected to promote Darlington, Stockton, Hartlepool, Redcar and Cleveland and Middlesbrough, to try and attract visitors and investment.  

In the third of our features looking at the election through objects from the region, BBC Tees' David Macmillan asks what can the mayor do to boost culture and tourism? 

Our object is a culinary delight from the Tees Valley, but perhaps not the first one you would think of.

What can the Tees Valley mayor do for tourism?

Behind the scenes at Durham County Cricket Club

Martin Emmerson

BBC Newcastle

Durham cricket club is holding a media day ahead of the start of the season next week.

The club is in Division Two this season after being relegated over financial issues.

View more on twitter

Tide times warning after people cut off

Helen Richardson

BBC Newcastle

A warning is going out yet again to anyone visiting the coast to check the tide times after rescuers were called out three times in the last few days to people cut off by the sea.

On Sunday afternoon a lifeboat was sent out to rescue a man and two children who were stranded on Bear's Back Rocks, between Tynemouth and Cullercoats. 

Then on Monday evening a man and woman had to be rescued from the same place.

Later that same night the coastguard was called to a couple stuck on St Mary's island. 

Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade is urging people to check the tide times before going to the beach. 

Girl died in 'tragic accident' when fireplace fell on her at her Thornaby home

The Gazette


Jessica Azadi died after a “tragic accident” in which she was crushed when a fireplace fell on her, an inquest heard.

Gazette front page
The Gazette

Travel: Metros running again between Bede and South Shields

Travel: Delays on A19 near Billingham after collision

Dry, rather cloudy, but some brighter spells later.

Lisa Gallagher

Weather presenter, BBC Look North

It will be a rather cloudy morning, perhaps leading to the odd spot of drizzle on higher ground.

However the vast majority of places will remain dry, with the odd brighter or sunny spell, especially in the east. 


Maximum temperatures should stay at about 12C (54F).

Later in the day it will remain rather cloudy, with only limited clearer spells. 

However where any cloud breaks do persist, some localised mist patches are possible. 

Overnight temperatures shouldn't dip below about 5C (41F).

Signalling fault hits Metro services on South Tyneside

Boat building back on the Tees

BBC Tees

Boat building has returned to the banks of the Tees more than a decade after the last vessel was launched into the river. 

Yarm-based MacDonald Offshore and Marine has created 15 new jobs for its first construction job, which is to build a ship's hull for Parkol Marine Engineering in Whitby. 

The new vessel is due to be launched into the Tees and towed to Whitby in July. 

A spokesman for MacDonald said it was hoped more new jobs and apprenticeships would follow.

David Moyes

Sunderland boss David Moyes says he never feared for his job following his comments to a BBC reporter that she might "get a slap".

Read more

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