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Dozens stopped and searched after stabbing

Lee Thomas

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

More than 60 stop-and-searches were carried out in Crewe over the weekend after extra powers were handed to officers in the wake of a stabbing.

Generic of man being searched by a police officer

In March, police were given greater powers to tackle knife crime, making it easier to search people without reasonable suspicion in places where serious violence may occur.

Just over a week ago a man was attacked on Nantwich Road, with police questioning three teenage boys in connection with the incident.

Cheshire Police were granted extra powers over the weekend to stop and search any person or vehicle looking for weapons, whether or not officers have any grounds of suspicion.

They carried out 64 stop and searches and, so far, have arrested three men on suspicion of knife offences, two for possession of a knife and one for making threats.

North West weather: Unsettled start to week

While the weather is expected to remain warm on Monday, rain is predicted from lunchtime.

North West weather

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North West weather: Plenty of sunshine

BBC Weather

A good deal of dry weather with sunny spells this afternoon, with just a small chance of one or two light showers.

Highs of 18C.

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Probe after MP called 'disgrace' by colleague

The government's chief whip has promised to investigate messages sent to a female Conservative MP by a colleague in which she was was called a "disgrace" and told to quit the party.

Antoinette Sandbach
UK Parliament

In a now-deleted tweet, Antoinette Sandbach, MP for Eddisbury in Cheshire, shared a screenshot of WhatsApp messages which she said were sent to her by a male Tory MP.

"You too are a disgrace. Time you left the party I think," they read.

It comes as Conservative MPs voted for their final two leadership contenders.

Boy, 14, seriously hurt in stabbing

A 14-year-old boy has been seriously injured in a stabbing in Chester.

Police tape
Getty Images

The incident happened at about 15:00 BST in Old Dee Bridge, Handbridge, Cheshire Police said.

The victim has been taken to the Countess of Chester Hospital for treatment, but police have given no further details.

A 15-year-old has been arrested.

Old Dee Bridge was closed while an investigations was launched.

Police panel chair will not resign in LGBT row

Phil McCann

Cheshire Political Reporter, BBC News

Cheshire’s police watchdog chairman said he had "no intention" of resigning after he criticised a senior officer for wearing a rainbow-coloured lanyard.

Fellow members of Cheshire's police and crime panel and the county's police commissioner (PCC) have urged Bob Fousert to step down.

Mr Fousert said his questioning of the neckwear was "never intended to be an attack upon the LGBT community".

He added "I am sorry that it has been made to seem that way".

Bob Fousert

The police and crime panel chair said Deputy Chief Constable Julie Cooke's lanyard was an "overtly political statement" in conflict with regulations requiring police officers to be politically neutral.

PCC David Keane said the views were "outdated" and "inappropriate".

In a letter in response to Mr Keane, Mr Fousert said "It is unfortunate, even sad, that when someone makes an observation or comment with regards to LGBT issues they are often treated by some sections of the community like heretics, to be vilified, pilloried and castigated."

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Weather: Dry clear night with a gentle breeze

BBC Weather

One or two showers are possible tonight, but in general most places should simply remain dry with clear periods. Just a gentle breeze. Lows of 11C.

BBC Weather forecast

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Brexit: Labour MPs urge Corbyn not to go 'full Remain'

BBC Politics

Labour MPs in Leave-supporting constituencies have written to Jeremy Corbyn to urge him not to go "full Remain" as the party considers its position on another Brexit referendum.

Jeremy Corbyn

They include two from Stoke-on-Trent, Ruth Smeeth and Gareth Snell, and Crewe and Nantwich's Laura Smith.

The shadow cabinet is currently discussing whether to soften Labour's stance on a further public vote.

Labour has promised one if it cannot get its own deal with the EU passed by MPs or if there is no general election.

Deputy leader and MP for West Bromwich East Tom Watson says such an "ambiguous" stance is harming Labour.

Anderson and Onions for England?

Lancashire beat Derbyshire by 10 wickets

Lancashire all-rounder Liam Livingstone says England could do worse than having not just one 36-year-old but two spearheading the Test attack against Australia this summer.

England's all-time top Test wicket taker Jimmy Anderson is, of course, a shoo-in for the Ashes series. He now has 28 scalps in five Division Two matches in 2019.

But former Durham paceman Graham Onions, 42 days his junior and not used by England since June 2012, is not far behind with 25 wickets, after the pair finished off Derbyshire.

Jimmy Anderson and Graham Onions have taken 53 Division Two wickets between them this summer
Getty Images

"Jimmy Anderson and Graham Onions are bowling as well as I've seen," Livingstone told BBC Radio Lancashire. "The way they bowled in this game was outstanding.

"They were unplayable at times on that pitch. Certainly, fielding at second slip you feel you are in the game every ball. If they went into the first Test as an opening bowling pair I'm sure Australia would struggle."

Police chair apologises in LGBT lanyard row

Phil McCann

Cheshire Political Reporter, BBC News

A policing watchdog chairman has apologised after he criticised an officer for wearing a rainbow lanyard.

Bob Fousert

Bob Fousert, chair of the Cheshire police and crime panel, claimed it was political for the force's deputy chief constable to don LGBT neckwear.

He’s been urged to resign, but said he has no intention of doing so and added he thinks he’s been vilified for asking a contentious question.

In a letter to the panel, Mr Fousert said his question was not meant as an attack on the LGBT community and he’s sorry that it’s been made to seem that way.

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

Police watchdog chair faces call to quit over LGBT remark

BBC Radio Stoke

Cheshire's police commissioner says the chair of the county's police and crime panel should resign over remarks about officers wearing rainbow lanyards.

Bob Foussert suggested a senior police officer was in breach of impartiality regulations by wearing a rainbow lanyard, which supports the inclusion of LGBT people, saying they crossed the boundary from impartiality into making an overtly political statement.

Bob Foussert

In an open letter, Police and Crime Commissioner David Keane says Mr Foussert's views could create a "crisis of public confidence".

Mr Foussert has been approached for comment.

My view, as a representative of the residents of Cheshire, is unequivocally that your views are outdated and inappropriate and should not, and cannot, be seen to be the views of the Panel. To allow such views to be seen to represent those of the Police & Crime Panel could create a crisis of public confidence."

David KeaneCheshire Police and Crime Commissioner

Cost of A500 road widening increases by £10m

Local Democracy Reporting Service

The cost widening the A500 near Crewe to a dual carriageway has increased by £10m to almost £68.7m, but Cheshire East Council believes it won't have to pay the extra money itself.

Cheshire East Council
Cheshire East Council

The authority said the estimated cost has gone up because there's a defect in the embankment on the existing road and National Grid equipment needs moving.

But because the government has changed funding rules for major road projects, the council said it's confident the cost rise will be met by the Department for Transport.

Work on the stretch between the M6 and the first roundabout towards Crewe is set to begin at the end of next year.

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".

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.

Your photos: River bursts its banks

This photo of the River Weaver in Nantwich, Cheshire, was sent to us by Jonathan White, showing how the waterway has burst its banks in the town.

River Weaver in Nantwic
Jonathan White

There is currently a flood warning for the river at Shrewbridge Lodge with the Environment Agency saying more flooding is expected.

Jonathan told us that nearby houses weren't affected, despite the river spilling over neighbouring land.

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.

More from BBC Weather.

Power station set to close putting 150 jobs at risk

A coal-fired power station in Warrington which employs more than 150 staff is set to close next year.

Fiddler's Ferry power station

Owners of Fiddler's Ferry, SSE, said it follows multimillion-pound losses and the move to greener energy.

The firm said it will look to redeploy some staff and offer enhanced redundancy terms.

SSE is consulting with workers and trade unions with a view to closing by 31 March.

At nearly 50 years old, the station is unable to compete with more efficient and modern gas and renewable generation.

The station is making significant losses and our projections show this will continue to be the case as the UK looks to phase out coal-fired generation by 2025 at [the] latest.

Stephen WheelerManaging director of Thermal Energy, SSE

Flooding continues to disrupt transport

BBC News Travel

Large number of roads, especially in rural areas, are blocked by flooding this afternoon which is also still affecting train services near Stratford-upon-Avon.

Road transport's replaced southbound trains with the railway lines under water between Whitlocks End, near Solihull, and Wilmcote, Warwickshire.

While both the Environment Agency in Shropshire and West Midlands Police in the Solihull area have said many country roads have been flooded.

Travel information firm Inrix has a number of main roads affected by flooding, including the A38 Kingsbury Road in Castle Vale, New Street in Upton-upon-Severn and Gresty Lane in Nantwich, Cheshire.

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.

Read more from BBC Weather

Flooding risks remain

There's still a high risk of flooding across parts of the West Midlands and Cheshire this afternoon, despite the rain easing in many places.

Sutton Coldfield

There are still nine flood warnings - the Environment Agency's second-highest warning level - for the region, meaning flooding is expected.

Just below that level, there are also more than 20 flood alerts spread out over every county in the region.

Police doing 'everything possible' in baby murder inquiry

Detectives investigating the deaths of babies at Countess of Chester Hospital have said they are doing "everything possible" to find out what happened to the infants.

Lucy Letby

It follows the release on bail of 29-year-old nurse Lucy Letby, who was re-arrested on Monday on suspicion of murdering eight babies between July 2015 and July 2016.

She was also held on suspicion of the attempted murder of nine others.

Cheshire Constabulary is also looking into 16 non-fatal collapses between March 2015 and July 2016.

Det Insp Paul Hughes said it was an "extremely challenging" investigation, adding:

I want to reassure people that we are doing everything we can, as quickly as we can, to identify what has led to these baby deaths and collapses.

There are no set timescales for this and ask people to bear with us while we continue with our inquiries.

Homes flooded and travel disrupted by rain

Homes have been evacuated, motorists stranded and trains cancelled as flooding has hit the North West and other parts of England.

Firefighters in flood water
Warwickshire Fire and Rescure Service

The Environment Agency has issued 25 flood warnings and 64 alerts across the country.

The majority are across the Midlands and North West, although warnings are also in place near Whitby and in south-east London.

The Met Office has given yellow warnings for rain across Manchester, Liverpool and the North East.

Cheshire roads shut by floods

Lee Thomas

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

Almost a dozen roads are shut in south Cheshire this morning due to flooding.

Cheshire East Council said they're mostly in Crewe and Nantwich and staff are working to clear them, including getting help from local farmers.

Kidderton Close, Nantwich
Cheshire East Council

Endangered snails helped by Chester Zoo

BBC Science and Environment

Chester Zoo has helped rescue thousands of critically endangered snails from Bermuda and released them back into the wild.

The greater Bermuda land snail was thought to have disappeared for many years until an empty shell turned up in the territory's capital city, Hamilton.

Live snails were then found among litter in a nearby alleyway.

Some were flown to the zoo for a unique breeding programme, and now 4,000 snails have been taken back to the island and released.