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Found 175 results

  1. A prolific thief has been banned from all Sunderland's main shopping outlets. Samuel Metcalf, 35, is forbidden from setting foot in The Bridges Shopping Centre, Hylton Riverside Retail Park, Roker Retail Park and Pallion Retail Park for the next two years. The restrictions are set out in a Criminal Behaviour Order which came into effect last month (February) as a result of theft offences he has committed across the city. Metcalf, of Norfolk Street, Sunderland , has had four shoplifting convictions since August 2018 and was also convicted of a public order offence after becoming aggressive and threatening a shop worker when confronted about his behaviour. He is now no longer permitted to enter any of the city’s prime shopping outlets until 2021, and faces prison if he fails to comply or ignores any of the order’s strict conditions. Metcalf must also leave any other shop or commercial premises if asked by staff.
  2. A new home at Cambois has been given the go-ahead after councillors rejected the planners' view that the site was in the open countryside. Plans for the construction of a two-storey house and detached garage, between Berristock and Debdon House, were recommended for refusal at Wednesday night's (March 13) Ashington and Blyth Local Area Council. But members unanimously backed the scheme, as they did not consider it was in the open countryside, that it was on previously developed brownfield land and that a refusal - saying development was unsuitable in this area - would essentially split Cambois in two. The ward councillor, Jeff Gobin, and East Bedlington Parish Council had both supported the application as well. Coun Brian Gallacher said: "If this applicant didn't build his house there, what else is going to go there? You are going to end up with a patch of wasteland." Coun Grant Davey added: "I would like to see Cambois rebuilt as a very lively village."
  3. A teenager is due to appear in court charged with arson and explosive offences following an incident in Northumberland. The 17-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, will appear before magistrates sitting at Newcastle Crown Court on Saturday following the incident in Glanton. Shortly before 9pm on Tuesday, the Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service called police to a blaze at an address on South View. Officers attended and say a number of potentially hazardous substances were found inside the property. A cordon was put in place and four nearby homes were evacuated as a precaution. A 17-year-old male was arrested and an investigation was launched.
  4. A shocking video has emerged of a sickening street fight between a teenage gang and two adults in Northumberland. The video - which has been shared widely on social media - shows the conflict spill out from a bus into the road on Ravensworth Street, Bedlington, on Friday night. The start of the clip shows an heated argument between a man stood outside the parked Arriva bus and the youths inside the vehicle at about 11pm. After a brief period of time, the man puts down a bag and steps on to the bus when the violence ensues. The fight quickly moves back to the pavement, and the footage shows five teenagers kicking the man several times as he lies on the ground. The violence then moves into the street itself, where a woman has joined the fight and the man is thrown to the tarmac twice.
  5. Two men have made their first appearance in court charged with attempted murder after a gun was allegedly fired at a van. Mark Exley and Christopher Embleton were arrested following an incident in Kingston Park. At about 7.45am on February 22, police received a report that a gun had been shot at a white van as it waited at traffic lights on Windsor Way. Nobody was injured and the driver of the van was able to flee the scene before later contacting police. Officers launched an investigation and a number of people were arrested in connection with the incident. On Tuesday, Exley and Embleton were brought into the dock at South East Northumberland Magistrates' Court in Bedlington, both charged with attempted murder and possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life.
  6. Two men have been charged with attempted murder after a gun was allegedly fired in Newcastle. At about 7.45am on Friday, February 22, police received a report that a gun had shot at a white van as it waited at traffic lights on Windsor Way in Kingston Park. Nobody was injured and the driver of the van was able to run off before later contacting police. The alleged shooter was also seen by witnesses getting into the passenger side of a blue Rover 75 Saloon and being driven away. This vehicle was quickly abandoned and burnt out on South Benwell Road. A police investigation was launched immediately and extensive inquiries have taken place to identify those responsible.
  7. Forced to lie in its own fifth, a starved puppy was rescued from a "putrid" fly-infested dump after being neglected by her owners. The 10-month-old husky, named Missy, was found in Ruth Lane and Lee Kiernan's North Shields family home. Old food was piled up on the floor and it was so high, RSPCA officer's struggled to open the door to rescue Missy. When they did, the puppy was so hungry she "rushed " from her cage to eat some of the leftovers. Both Missy and a white tabby cat named Cuddles were neglected so badly their former owners have been warned they could be jailed - despite their solicitor claiming they are "unsuitable" for prison. Friday's sentencing heard how Kiernan told one RSCPA officer to "f*** off" before calling them a "cocky s****" for trying to check on the pet's welfare.
  8. Assurances have been given that the proposed phased approach to a new passenger rail line in south-east Northumberland will not leave any towns out. Transport Secretary Chris Grayling recently visited the county to take a ride along part of the route and hear more about the £190million plans for what's now being called the Northumberland line, linking Ashington to Newcastle Central via Bedlington and Blyth. It came as county councillors signed off on approximately £3.46m of spending to develop the next steps, with the aim of submitting an outline business case and proposal for the detailed design by the end of the year, and services planned to start in 2022. During Mr Grayling's visit, council leader Peter Jackson said that while the total cost of the project is estimated to be £190m, it can be broken down into phases with a £90m first phase being 'perfectly achievable' given the 'billions being spent on HS2 and other projects in the south of England'. This sparked questions from Labour councillors, who were concerned that the line will only be part-opened, but the Conservative leadership has now offered assurances that the phasing would simply hold back some of the infrastructure work and trains would still run all the way to Ashington. Coun Deirdre Campbell, the Labour member for the Newsham ward through which the line will run, had described it as 'extremely concerning news', suggesting that perhaps the reason behind the dropping of the long-established Ashington, Blyth & Tyne name was 'because the supposed phasing the council leader refers to means it will not reach Blyth, never mind Bedlington or Ashington'.
  9. Labour has continued its attack on cuts to council-tax support in Northumberland, as figures show how the reductions will disproportionately impact wards it represents. From April, all households in the county will have to pay a minimum of eight per cent of their council-tax bill, following approval for changes to save £1million a year. At Northumberland County Council's full meeting in January, members agreed a reduction in the level of council-tax support for working-age claimants from 100 to 92 per cent. The change attracted some fervent criticism, but was passed by 31 votes to 26, with six abstentions, while an amendment to drop the cut as part of last week's budget debate was not put to the vote as it had already been passed the previous month. Now, Labour has released information obtained under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, in which, they say, 'the unfair nature of balancing the county's books is laid bare'. A breakdown of the number of people to be affected in each of the 66 council wards shows that there is a large discrepancy between different areas, much of it along party-political lines.
  10. Changes which will mean increased home-care charges for some in Northumberland have been approved in the face of criticism from opposition councillors. A number of amendments to Northumberland County Council's charges for care and support services for adults were given final approval at the full council meeting on Wednesday, by 36 votes to 26 with one abstention. Setting out the "complex" recommendations which include six main changes to the charging policy for non-residential care and support services, Coun Veronica Jones, cabinet member for adult health and wellbeing, said: "I don't think any of us will be welcoming these changes, but in the overall financial context, I believe they are necessary." But Labour's Coun Susan Dungworth said: "I don't want to get bogged down in what is a very detailed report, I want to focus on who it is we're talking about here and what we are talking about again is very, very vulnerable people in our communities. "It's like the proposals that have already gone through this council in terms of reducing council-tax support, we are attacking the most vulnerable in this community, people who are already struggling." To illustrate her point, she read out a series of consultation responses from those receiving the care that were included in the report to councillors.
  11. Locals fear teens are "running wild" as they gather in this Northumberland town late at night. But police in Bedlington say they're cracking down on ringleaders who are making innocent members of the public feel unsafe. Despite an overall reduction in criminal activity over the last year, over January and February locals say they've felt menaced by groups of teens hanging about in the streets and parks. Police say teenagers are known to be travelling from across Northumberland to meet up in the town. With youngsters as young as 12 and as old as 19 sometimes meeting in the same parks and public places, officers say younger children are at risk of coming into contact with alcohol and drugs. ChronicleLive visited Bedlington to find out what was happening, and sat down with Northumbria Police to find out what's being done about it. Outside supermarkets in Bedlington, many shoppers said they'd noticed a recent spike in groups of teenagers causing disruption around the town.
  12. A drunk woman hurled shoes at passers-by and told police officers who offered her a lift home to "f**k off". Lauren Nash was screaming and swearing at members of the public and throwing her shoes outside Market Tavern in Bedlington, Northumberland, overnight between January 12 and 13. Northumbria Police officers were called to the scene on Market Place to reports of an "intoxicated female" by the owner of the pub. Nash attempted to run away from officers, and told one “go f**k yourself you c**t” when she was offered a lift home. Nash appeared at South East Northumberland Magistrates' Court on February 7 and pleaded guilty to one count of being drunk and disorderly in a public place. Prosecutor Laura Lax said: "Police were called to attend the Market Tavern following a report of an intoxicated female.
  13. Egged on by his friends, this drunk dad tried to get his mate kicked out of a hotel by telling police he was building a bomb. Dad-of-one Steven Lambert enjoyed a night drinking Stella Artois at his home in Bedlington, Northumberland, before deciding to dial Northumbria Police. In a bid to get a friend kicked out of the Royal Court Hotel in Coventry, the 28-year-old falsely claimed his pal was making a bomb. Officers investigated and soon discovered the report to be false, and arrested the 28-year-old the same day. Lambert, of Corchester Road, Bedlington, pleaded guilty to a charge of communicating false information on a bomb hoax after appearing at South East Northumberland Magistrates' Court on February 7. He was sentenced to 18 weeks in prison - suspended for 12 months - and ordered to 300 hours of unpaid work and to pay £155 in court costs.
  14. A man has appeared in court accused of sparking a bomb scare in Newcastle city centre after a fake device was allegedly found in a supermarket. Tesco on Clayton Street, Newcastle , was evacuated on January 15 after a "mobile phone with wires to a battery pack" was found on a shelf. James McDonnell, 53, of Appleby Gardens, Gateshead, appeared at Bedlington Magistrates' Court on February 11 charged with the offence. He is also accused of stealing £160 worth of whisky. Mr McDonnell pleaded not guilty to the bomb hoax matter and did not enter a plea to the theft charge. He will appear at Newcastle Crown Court on March 12.
  15. An £8 billion black hole by 2025 could swallow up popular - but discretionary - council services, local government leaders have warned. Just to stand still and deliver the same services currently being provided today - which have already been significantly cut in the last decade - the Local Government Association (LGA) estimates that councils would need an additional £8billion more than they are expected to have by 2024-25. The organisation has launched a campaign to influence the forthcoming Spending Review by warning about the growing risk to vital local services if the Government does not take action to secure the financial sustainability of councils. But the LGA also said that, with the right funding and powers, councils can continue to lead their local areas, improve residents' lives, reduce demand for public services and save money for the taxpayer. Between 2010 and 2020, councils will have lost almost 60p out of every £1 the Government had provided for services. The LGA's chairman, Lord Porter, a Conservative, said: "The money local government has to provide vital services is running out fast and huge uncertainty remains about how councils will pay for services into the next decade and beyond.
  16. Police are searching for a missing man who may have travelled to Scotland. Andrew Malcolm, 46, was last seen on Bolam Place, Bedlington on Tuesday February 5 and officers are becoming increasingly concerned for his welfare. It is believed that he may have travelled to the Dumfries and Galloway area and anyone with information is urged to get in touch. A spokesperson for Northumbria Police said: "Officers are growing increasingly concerned for his welfare and are keen to make sure he is fit & well. "Andrew is described as white, of stocky build with a bald head. He was last seen wearing a navy blue T-shirt, black jeans, a black hoodie and black Timberland boots. "‪It is believed he may have travelled to the Dumfries and Galloway area of Scotland.
  17. Private surgery helped this teenager live a normal life again - but now she's facing the prospect of yet another operation. Lucy Huddleston, 17, suffers from adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, a condition which causes her spine to be curved and twisted at the top and bottom, leaving it stuck in a distinct 'S' shape, which was getting more and more pronounced. The only NHS-funded treatment available would have fused her spine together, severely limiting her movement. So eager to keep Lucy moving, her family raised over £50,000 and travelled to Germany for surgery. But now, Lucy is facing yet another costly operation as the spinal curves which had been corrected begin to worsen again. Dad Mark Huddleston, 46, said: "We are so grateful to the people who helped raise money for the operation.
  18. This is the spine-tingling moment local darts ace Chris Dobey walked out at the Utilita Arena to Newcastle United anthem Local Hero. A Magpies fan, for years Dobey has been on the terraces watching his boyhood football club walk out on to the St James' Park turf to the guitar-riffs of Mark Knopfler. And on Thursday night, he got to experience that himself at the Premier League darts in Newcastle, as he was given a rapturous ovation by his home support ahead of his 6-6 draw with Austria's Mensur Suljovic. "It was a dream come true to play in front of that crowd tonight, I felt like Alan Shearer at one point!" Dobey told PDC.TV after the game. "If it wasn't for the fans spurring me on I could've easily thrown that one away and it was a great feeling to get the draw in the end." Dobey was handed the opportunity as one of nine wildcards who replaced injured two-time world champion Gary Anderson.
  19. For every boy growing up in Newcastle and its surrounding areas, the dream is to play for Newcastle United at St James' Park. And Bedlington darts star Chris Dobey was no different, and he was still visibly excited to be at the home of the Magpies for the launch of the 2019 Premier League darts. But as he sat down to talk to Chronicle Live, he explained why making his Premier League darts debut at Newcastle's Utilita Arena will be the 'next best thing'. "Every kid's dream is to get out there and play on that pitch but unfortunately football wasn't for me," the 27-year-old explained. "I have come in to the darts world where I am getting the chance to play in front of the next biggest stage in Newcastle in front of a home crowd. Hopefully it will be an amazing feeling. "I am going to enjoy it. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity but hopefully I can get up there permanently in the next few years."
  20. A vision to bring passenger trains back to Ashington and Blyth by 2022 should be a government priority as it will boost opportunities for people living in some of Britain's most deprived communities, a report says. Northumberland County Council has pledged an extra £3.5m towards a goal of restoring passenger services to 20 miles of track which links Newcastle to Ashington and Blyth . Only freight trains have operated on the Ashington, Blyth and Tyne Line since passenger stations were closed in 1964. Today, the council has pledged an extra £3.5m to pay for design work, impact assessments and a range of engineering and ecology work, with a feasibility study nearly complete. Northumberland County Council aims to submit a full business case and design details by the end of the year, and says the plan is to run passenger trains between Newcastle and Ashington by 2022. Reintroducing passenger services to the current freight line could boost the local economy by up to £70m with more than 800,000 annual return journeys by 2038, the local authority says. Council leader Peter Jackson said: "We have always supported this ambitious proposal to help secure future jobs and growth across the whole county.
  21. Bedlington darts ace Chris Dobey says it will be a 'dream come true' when he makes an unexpected Premier League debut at Newcastle's Utilita Arena on Thursday evening. Each year the cream of the darts crop do battle in a 10-player league to be crowned Premier League darts champion and take home the £250,000 first prize 'Hollywood' will get his first taste of Premier League action when he takes on Mensur Suljovic in front of his home town crowd. The news came as somewhat of a surprise on Monday, after two-time world champion Gary Anderson pulled out of the 16-week event with a back injury. Instead of replacing Anderson with a tenth player in the league, the PDC decided to offer nine players a wildcard entry across the first nine weeks of the competition. “First of all everyone at the PDC would like to wish Gary Anderson a speedy recovery back to full fitness as soon as possible,” said PDC Chairman Barry Hearn. “Gary’s withdrawal has opened up an incredibly exciting opportunity for the nine contenders to go out and show what they’ve got on some of the biggest stages in world darts. “The young players who impressed at Alexandra Palace have already shown they can cut it in darts’ biggest ever tournament. “The local favourites have earned their chance to entertain the crowds and TV viewers, with every one of them will bringing something different to the Premier League party in 2019, and I’m sure they’ll cause a few shocks along the way. “The PDC has always been about giving opportunities to players and we felt this was the perfect chance to do something revolutionary, as we now look forward to an exciting year of Premier League Darts ahead in 2019."
  22. A bid for almost 100 new homes on part of the existing course has been lodged to prevent Blyth Golf Club from folding this year. Bellway Homes has submitted the application to Northumberland County Council , seeking to build 92 houses at the Newsham facility, off Plessey Road. The proposals would involve the demolition of some outbuildings with the new homes to be built on the site of the 10th and 11th holes, while the clubhouse would be renovated, new outbuildings would be put up, including a Halfway House, and there would be alterations to the course. The plans are for 24 two-bedroom homes, 41 three-bedroom houses and 27 four-bedroom properties, of which eight would be for social rent and six for sale at discount market value. A planning statement, by consultants Lichfields, concludes: 'The golf club is in a poor financial position and without any measures to address this, it is likely that the club would be forced to close in 2019 given the current overdraft position with the bank who are providing crucial financial support. 'The proposed development would provide the funds required to improve the golf course and the clubhouse, thereby securing the future of the club.'
  23. Politicians say they're "devastated" at delays to a £10m development intended to revitalise a Northumberland town centre. The scheme to regenerate the site of the former Tesco supermarket, in Bedlington, is on hold. Delays came after the much-anticipated 'well-known food retailer', said to be interested in the site, could not be locked down. Early work to prepare the site has been completed, but has now stalled, until the key "anchor tenant" can be confirmed for development. Estimated to cost £10m overall, it was also set to feature more shops, apartments and car parks. Work was initially meant to start in “late 2017”, but ground was eventually official broken in November last year. Representatives of Advance Northumberland, the council company delivering the project, insist they remain "absolutely committed" to the scheme, and will begin discussions with other companies who might fill the gap. But Bedlington Labour representatives have expressed their concerns.
  24. The redevelopment of Bedlington town centre has stalled while final sign-off from the key tenant is awaited, following the completion of ground works. And a warning has been issued that if no word is received soon then other interested parties will be sounded out. Advance Northumberland is leading in the delivery of the major regeneration project focused around the town's former Tesco site. The Northumberland County Council-owned development company, which replaced Arch, describes the scheme as an "opportunity to reposition Bedlington as a retail destination, improving amenities and giving local people greater choice". Tolent, Advance Northumberland's appointed contractor, has recently completed an enabling package of works to prepare the site for construction. However, the actual development can only start once the anchor tenant formally commits to the scheme.
  25. Mere mention the words soft play will ramp up the excitement levels in most young ones and the North East certainly has plenty choice when it comes to places which are perfect for burning off all that energy. Ok, so they may not be every parents' choice but a trip out to a soft play area is guaranteed to please the little tykes. With more than 25 such facilities in and around the region, there really is a wide enough range of facilities - from climbing walls and ball pools to slides and go-kart tracks - to please everyone and no matter how old the children are, they will be able to join in the fun. And who knows but parents may get a chance to relax and catch up with a friend over coffee while the young ones enjoy the entertainment. Here's our guide, with more to come, of some of the top soft play centres in and around Newcastle. Benfield Business Park, Walkergate
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