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Fracking comes a step closer to North Yorkshire

Fracking, the controversial system of extracting gas from underground rocks, came a major step closer in our region today.

An energy company has been given permission to drill boreholes to test water quality on a site near Pickering, where they've already said they want to frack for shale gas.

Opponents of the plans say it's the first step on the process to full-sale fracking in the area around Kirby Misperton.

But county councillors who gave the drilling the go ahead say a final decision on whether fracking can go ahead is still some months away.

Chris Kiddey reports:

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Yorkshire Wildlife Park on track for record year

One of three rare eight week old Amur tiger cubs takes one of their first steps in daylight at Yorkshire Wildlife Park Credit: Press Association

Yorkshire Wildlife Park says it is on target for another record year for the 6th year running with visitor figures set to be 29% higher than the last year after a busy summer.

The innovative park’s combination of dedicated conservation and fun for all the family has drawn in the crowds making it the nation’s fastest growing wildlife attraction.

The surge in visitors has come after the birth of rare tiger and leopard cubs at the park.

“We have already welcomed over 560,261 guests already this season compared to 434,000 in 2014, which is an increase of 29 per cent. We are on track to reach over 682,000 visitors by the end of the financial year which is a remarkable achievement for a business which is only 6 years old. It is the support of these visitors that has enabled the investment for the Park to grow over recent years."

– John Minion, Yorkshire Wildlife Park CEO

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Millers welcome Norwich City duo

Rotherham United have completed the loan signings of Barclays Premier League duo Tony Andreu and Vadis Odjidja-Ofoe from Norwich City, subject to Football League ratification.

The Millers concluded a busy day of transfer activity by landing the duo just seconds before the window slammed shut.

Andreu and Odjidja-Ofoe join permanent new recruit Lee Camp at the AESSEAL New York Stadium.

Drugs gang sentenced to over 39 years in prison

11 men and three woman have been given a combined sentence of 39 years and 2 months for their part in an organised crime group supplying amphetamine across Humberside.

They were arrested as part of Operation Krypton, an investigation by the Humberside Police into an organised Crime Group responsible for the supply of Amphetamine Sulphate in large amounts to dealers across Hull, East Yorkshire, North Lincolnshire and Liverpool.

During the operation, which ran from June 2013 to March 2014, Humberside Police seized over 50 kilos of amphetamine. Investigators say this would have been adulterated by the group to over 100 kilos of amphetamine, with a street value in excess of £900,000. £45,000 in cash was also seized during the case.

The organised crime group was headed by 48-year-old Jeffrey James Taylor, who was sentenced to 7 years and 4 months in prison. Police say the group was well organised and took steps to evade police detection. Beneath Taylor they uncovered a hierarchy of people each with their own roles to fulfil which included organisers, stashes, dealers, people mixing the drugs, customers (mid-level dealers in their own right) and couriers.

Man seriously injured in Bradford crash

Police are appealing for information after a man was seriously injured in a crash on Wakefield Road in Bradford.

The 31-year-old driver's white Seat Leon collided with railings and a lamp post at the roundabout close to the junction with New Hey Road on Sunday morning.

The man from Bradford was taken to hospital with head and back injuries and remains there in a stable condition.

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