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North West weather: Turning wet overnight

BBC Weather

Northern parts of the region will hang onto sunshine into the evening, while cloud is starting to build further south.

Rain will move in overnight with temperatures falling as low as 9C.

North West weather: Turning wet overnight

Disruption warning as mainline upgrade looms

Acton Grange junction
Network Rail

Passengers using the West Coast mainline face two weeks of disruption and replacement buses as work is carried out to upgrade track.

Work costing £27m will begin on 20 July to replace rails, equipment and overhead lines at Acton Grange junction, near Warrington, which is used by 260 trains each day.

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Network Rail said services between Birmingham and Edinburgh would be replaced by buses on the section between Crewe and Preston.

There will be no direct trains between Blackpool and London Euston and passengers should connect via Preston.

Direct services from Preston and Wigan to London Euston will be diverted via Manchester Piccadilly.

The work is due to be completed by 4 August.

Fatal Lancashire crash: Driver released by police

A driver arrested over a fatal crash in Bacup has been released pending further inquiries, said Lancashire police.

The victim, a 24-year-old pedestrian, was knocked down by a white Suzuki Alto on Market Street at 01:10 BST on Monday.

Market Street, Bacup

A woman, 19, was arrested at the scene on suspicion of causing death by careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs.

Police have appealed for witnesses.

Brexit referendum aftermath sees 'rise in extremism'

BBC Radio Manchester

Political extremism has increased since the 2016 Brexit referendum, the head of terrorism investigations in the North West has told BBC Radio Manchester.

Armed police officer
Getty Images

Det Supt Will Chatterton said dealing with far-right extremism was a real challenge, with "open hostility" towards politicians.

He said the unit's cases included "horrific sentiments" posted online.

The Home Office said it was "committed to stamping out extremism in all its forms".

Top Gear's return with new hosts Flintoff and McGuinness praised by critics

BBC Entertainment and Arts

"Gentler, kinder and all the better for it."

Chris Harris, Paddy McGuinness and Freddie Flintoff

The Guardian's Tim Dowling is among the critics welcoming the return of Top Gear with its new hosts - racing driver Chris Harris, retired cricketer Freddie Flintoff and comic Paddy McGuinness.

"There was likeability as the hosts opened the show," reported Digital Spy's Alistair McGeorge.

The Telegraph's Michael Hogan said the presenters' "chemistry was immediate, their camaraderie warm".

Overnight viewing figures showed an average of 2.54 million viewers which represented a 12.7% share of the audience, making it BBC Two's most watched programme of the day.

By comparison, the launch of the previous series of Top Gear drew an overnight average audience of 1.97 million in February.

Weather: Bright spells break through showers

BBC Weather

This afternoon will have bright spells together with a few showers although these should tend to fade away later on.

BBC Weather forecast in the North West of England

Blustery, with a brisk south-westerly wind. Highs of 17C.

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Weather: Showers and brisk winds

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

Cloudy today with some scattered showers at times.

BBC Weather forecast for the North West of England

The showers should become isolated in the afternoon. Windy with a brisk south-westerly wind. Highs of 17C.

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Weather: Sunny spells and showers

BBC Weather

The rain should continue to peter out to leave sunny spells and a few showers through the rest of this afternoon.

Highs of 17C.

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Ambulance crews battled to save man who fell into lake

Police say the man who died after falling into Windermere earlier this week was 57 and from Heversham, near Milnthorpe.

Emergency services were called to Glebe Road, one of the busiest tourist areas in the Lake District, just before 13:00 on Wednesday, and medical staff from the ambulance and air ambulance tried in vain to save the man's life.

Police say the coroner has been informed, and they have no reason to be suspicious about the man's death.

Woman seriously hurt after being hit by a car

A woman has been seriously injured after she was struck by a car in Preston yesterday.

Deepdale Road

The 45-year-old woman was walking on Deepdale Road when she was hit by a Renault Megane at about 08:15 BST.

The driver of the car, a 37-year-old man from Preston, was not injured, said police.

Lancashire Police said she suffered leg and head injuries and appealed for anyone for information to come forward.

Weather: More rain on the way, then brightening up

BBC Weather

A cloudy and wet start with persistent and heavy rain in places.

Rain should gradually ease and clear during the day with some sunny spells expected this afternoon.

Highs of 17C.

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Anti-fracking protester claimed disability payments

A woman who chained herself to equipment during anti-fracking protests while claiming disability payments has been given a suspended sentence.

Anti-fracking campaigning

Catherine Jackson, 51, pleaded guilty at Blackpool Magistrates Court to dishonestly claiming £5,392 of personal independence payments.

The court she took part in "strenuous demonstrations" in Lancashire after saying she was in constant pain.

She was sentenced to 23 weeks in jail, suspended for two years.

Lancashire match abandoned as a draw

BBC Sport

Worcestershire's rain-hit meeting with Lancashire was abandoned as a draw after heavy overnight rain led to no play being possible on the final day.

Two complete days were washed out in the Worcestershire-Lancashire game at New Road
BBC Sport

After the total loss of play on the second day too, it meant just 71.3 overs were bowled out of a possible 384 during the four days at New Road.

It is a third straight weather-affected draw for Lancashire, whose eight points keep them top of Division Two.

Worcestershire, who are at home again to Sussex on Monday, take six points.

Weather: Rain expected to ease

BBC Weather

This afternoon should see rain easing and becoming more intermittent - although it will remain rather cloudy.

A cool day in store, with highs of 12C.

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Severe accident: A6063 Lancashire both ways

BBC News Travel

A6063 Lancashire both ways severe accident, from A5085 Blackpool Road to St George's Road.

A6063 Lancashire - A6063 Deepdale Road in Preston closed and queues in both directions from the A5085 Blackpool Road junction to the St George's Road junction, because of an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Weather: Another wet day in store

BBC Weather

It will be cloudy this morning with widespread rain becoming persistent and heavy in some areas.

BBC Weather forecast for the North West of England

The Met Office has issued a yellow flood warning, which is in place until 12:00.

But the rain should ease this afternoon and become more intermittent. A cool day, with highs of 13C.

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Two held over Blackburn 'assault' death

Two men are being questioned on suspicion of murdering a man in Blackburn.

Steven Thurston
Lancashire Police

Steven Thurston, who was 50, was found with significant head injuries at his home in Sussex Drive in the early hours of Monday.

A 22-year-old man from Accrington and a man, aged 30, from Blackburn are being questioned on suspicion of murder.

A 52-year-old woman from Blackburn is also in custody in connection with the investigation.

Appeal to find missing man last seen in Salford

A man from Lancashire who has been missing for eight months was last seen in Swinton, police say.

Steven Durand, 31, was reported missing from the Hornby Avenue area of Preston on 28 October last year.

Steven Durand on CCTV
Lancashire Police

Making a fresh bid for information to locate him, police have said his disappearance is of "great concern".

They revealed his last-known movements were in Chorley town centre on 19 October and then Salford and Agecroft Road in Swinton on 20 October.

His mum Christine said:

Steven suffers from mental health issues but is a very kind soul and will talk to anyone.

I’d ask that people think back to those dates in October... if they were in the Chorley or Manchester areas.

Every month that passes is another without my son and another month of pain and worry.

Bowland hen harrier chicks give 'hope for future'

The hatching of hen harrier chicks at nests on a private estate for the second year running "gives hope for the future", the RSPB has said.

Hen harrier chick

The charity said it found the hatchlings in four nests on the Bowland Estate in Lancashire's Ribble Valley.

Project officer James Bray said as hen harriers were in severe decline, the birds had been "closely" monitored.

The total number of chicks was unknown, but it was hoped there would be more than the 13 born in 2018, he added.

Concerns over breast cancer diagnostic delays in Lancashire

Local Democracy Reporting Service

NHS leaders in Lancashire have met to address concerns over increased waits for some patients with symptoms of breast cancer.

Woman being screened for breast cancer
Getty Images

Figures from March show a significant drop in performance at all but one of the hospital trusts in the county offering a cancer diagnostic service.

The short-notice gathering of managers and clinicians was arranged by NHS England in response to lengthening waits for patients whose GP has identified breast symptoms which require further investigation.

A spokesman for Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria said the delays were due to some “difficulties with workforce and scanning capacity” – and that steps were being taken to find a solution.

Only Lancashire escapes rain weather warning

Spells of heavy and persistent rain may bring flooding and disruption to transport across Cheshire, Greater Manchester and Merseyside today.

Weather map showing rain warning over Cheshire and parts of Merseyside and Greater Manchester
Met office

Jobs at over-65s helpline charity put at risk

Helpline workers at a charity run to combat loneliness among the over-65s may be replaced by volunteers.

About 100 staff at The Silver Line in Blackpool, set up by Dame Esther Rantzen in 2013, have been informed of the redundancy process.

The Silver Line
The Silver Line

The charity had lost funding towards its annual £2.2m costs and it struggled to raise money because people were more likely to give to cancer, animal or children's causes, it said.

In a redundancy letter dated 5 June, chief executive Sophie Andrews said a restructuring of the helpline was needed with "significant cost savings" and a "move to a daytime weekday service operated by volunteers".

North West weather: Wet and breezy

BBC Weather

Most parts of the region will see plenty of rain throughout Tuesday.

A brisk north-easterly wind will mean temperatures struggle to highs of 13C.

North West weather: Wet and breezy

Killer picked up at McDonald's drive-thru

A convicted killer, who went on the run for 17 days, was caught by chance when police were called to a McDonald's drive-thru, a court has heard.

Thomas Parkinson
Police handout

Thomas Parkinson, who was eligible for parole having served his minimum term, absconded from HMP Kirkham on 24 April.

He was found on 12 May after the fast food outlet on Southport's Ocean Plaza reported concerns that the driver of a car he was in had been drinking.

The 32-year-old, from Preston, admitted absconding at Liverpool Crown Court.

Further delays for Lancashire link road

Local Democracy Reporting Service

The opening of a road connection from Penwortham to Walton-le-Dale in Lancashire has been delayed for a second time.

Carrwood Road
Local Democracy Reporting Service

The connection between The Cawsey and Carrwood Road was due to open in March.

The launch was pushed back to early summer after land ownership issues and will not open before August, developer Morris Homes said.

Lancashire County Council said: “We have been working with the developer throughout construction to allow the road to be opened and available for public use as soon as possible when it is finished. However, the developer is responsible for its delivery.”

The developer is paying for the road as part of a planning agreement for houses on the site for a former gas works in Lostock Hall.

Today's weather: Don't forget your brolly!

Today will start out sunny for most of the region but rain will move in later. The further north of the region will stay drier for longer. Highs of 18C.

The North West's weather forecast for Monday 10 June 2019

Weather for Monday 10 June 2019

The North West's weather forecast for Monday 10 June 2019

Lancashire held as Leicestershire bat all day

BBC Sport

Leicestershire batted out the whole of the final day at Aigburth in Liverpool to ensure their game against Division Two leaders Lancashire ended in a draw.

Paul Horton (right) and Liam Livingstone
Rex Features
Paul Horton (right) was eventually dismissed by Liam Livingstone

The visitors resumed on 5-1 following on, but the Red Rose county only claimed four wickets in 94 overs as Leicestershire finished on 151-5.

Former Lancashire opener Paul Horton made 49 for the Foxes before he was bowled by Liam Livingstone.

But battling knocks from middle-order batsmen took their side to safety.

Stag and hen party fears over Blackpool hotel conversion plan

Plans to convert a former hotel into an eight-bedroom holiday let have been approved, despite local fears it would be used for stag and hen parties.

North Grange

Blackpool Council approved Northern Nights's plan to convert the former North Grange Hotel on Queens Promenade into "luxurious" accommodation.

Nearby residents had raised concerns about large groups using the property.

The developer said they were targeting multi-generational families and conference guests, not groups.

The Local Democracy Reporting Service said the developer had stated it would "transform a run-down and partially-derelict property subject to an enforcement notice", which would have a positive impact on the entire neighbourhood".

Rain stops play in Liverpool again

Lancashire 449, Leicestershire 288 & 26-1

Just two more overs managed on Merseyside and off they come again - so they are taking lunch.

It is starting to look like Lancashire are going to be denied the chance of victory by the weather for the second game running, following last week's two lost days in Gloucestershire at Cheltenham College.

Time for BBC Radio Leicester's Richard Rae to put his hat on again . . .

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Foxes not following the sun

Lancashire 449, Leicestershire 288 & 5-1 (match resumes 11:00)

Leicestershire's Mark Cosgrove says one of the things holding back the Foxes has been the generally poor early summer weather. And it has not been at its best for them again in Liverpool this week.

"It's been tough this season," the Australian told BBC Radio Leicester. "It feels like we've never seen the sun. As soon as we get our pads on the lights come on and the clouds come in."

Cosgrove hit a season's best 70 against Lancashire at Aigburth which, aided by 87 from South African Dieter Klein and 37 apiece from debutant wicketkeeper Harry Swindells and Callum Parkinson, came within 12 runs of saving the follow-on.

But the Foxes, 5-1 overnight for the loss of nightwatchman Chris Wright, still believe they can save the game.

Mark Cosgrove was LBW at Liverpool to fellow thirty-something Graham Onions
Rex Features
Mark Cosgrove was LBW at Liverpool to fellow thirty-something Graham Onions

"We're really disappointed not to avoid the follow-on because the boys at the lower end batted so well," said Cosgrove.

"It's a pretty nice wicket - you might get the odd one jump up at you or keep low but most of those are every half hour or so and it's not one of those pitches that's a minefield. We showed there are no demons and that we can bat really well and deep. You never know - if we bat well in those first two session we might even get a little lead and you never know where that could take us at the back of the game."

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