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Construction starts on world class sports centre in Manchester

A computer generated image of the Belle Vue Sports Village Credit: Manchester City Council

Construction has started at the Belle Vue Sports Village.

The £11 million development will bring world class significant national centres for both speedway and basketball to Manchester – along with a new National Speedway Academy that will look to develop the next generation of riders.

The purpose built speedway venue – boasting a 1,842 seat grandstand –will be capable of hosting both national and international race meetings, attracting some of the world’s best riders to east Manchester.

We spoke to Cllr Jeff Smith from Manchester City Council:

Watch: Manchester sporting superstar couple

New Zealand international and Salford rugby league star, Kevin Locke, has caught the eye of the Scottish rugby union recently. But he say's he's not interested in a move north.

He's got plenty of motivation to stay put, having recently proposed to Australian girlfriend Chelsea Pitman - this year's new recruit at the netball champions - Manchester Thunder.

Chris Hall went round for a brew and discovered their competitive streak doesn't end on match day.

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Former officer insists police were told to blame drunken fans for disaster

A former South Yorkshire officer has described Police briefing that took place two days after the disaster as 'a call to arms'. He claims that police were told to put the blame for Hillsborough on "drunken, ticketless Liverpool supporters."

But he was accused, in court, of telling 'bare-faced' lies to the jury.

Our Hillsborough correspondent Andy Bonner has this report:

Colin Hendry admits to drink driving

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Former Scotland football captain Colin Hendry has admitted drink driving but is set to fight a ban from the wheel.

Hendry, 49, was arrested by police after being stopped while driving a blue Ford Focus in Church Road, Lytham, Lancashire at 1.15am on February 21.

He provided a reading of 63 micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath - the legal limit in England is 35 micrograms.

Blackpool Magistrates' Court was told that Hendry accepts the facts of the case but argues the amount of alcohol he consumed in a period of time did not "correlate" to the figure provided in the sample.

He was granted unconditional bail until April 22 when the case will be heard in full before sentencing.

Hendry had a long playing career, captaining his country in the 1998 World Cup and appearing for a series of clubs including Blackburn Rovers, Manchester City, Bolton Wanderers and Glasgow Rangers.

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Barrow MP insists Kirkup report must be implemented

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Barrow and Furness MP John Woodcock has pressed the prime minister to implement in full the recommendations of the Kirkup report into the tragic deaths of babies and mothers at Furness General Hospital.

Speaking at prime minister’s questions following Tuesday’s publication of the report, John asked David Cameron to honour the struggle of the families who lost loved ones as a result of failures at the maternity unit, by ensuring that all of Dr Kirkup’s recommendations for the wider NHS were adopted as quickly as possible.

Responding, the prime minister expressed his sympathies for the families.

I’m grateful to the prime minister for his words of sympathy for the families that have experienced such tragedy and fought so long to discover the truth.

But we need to keep pressing all sides to implementing Dr Kirkup’s recommendations within a rapid timescale. The report makes a wide range of sensible and achievable recommendations that could prevent this tragedy re-occuring elsewhere.

– John Woodcock, Barrow and Furness MP

Morecambe Bay Trust full statement:

Credit: ITV NEWS

University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust has apologised unreservedly to the families of those who suffered as a result of poor care in the maternity unit at Furness General Hospital between 2004 and 2013.

Pearse Butler, the chair of the Trust Board said, “This Trust made some very serious mistakes in the way it cared for mothers and their babies. More than that, the same mistakes were repeated. And after making those mistakes, there was a lack of openness from the Trust in acknowledging to families what had happened.

This report vindicates these families.

“For these reasons, on behalf of the Trust, I apologise unreservedly to the families concerned. I’m deeply sorry that so many people have suffered as a result of these mistakes. As the Chair of the Trust Board, it’s my duty to ensure that lessons are learned and that we do everything we possibly can to make sure nothing like this happens again.”

The Trust welcomes the publication of the Morecambe Bay Investigation report, accepts and acknowledges the criticisms and accepts its recommendations without reservation.

Towards the end of the period covered by this report - as a consequence of the problems in maternity and neonatal services - the whole Trust board changed and the Secretary of State for Health commissioned the Morecambe Bay Investigation.

The new board recognised the need for improvement in our maternity and neonatal services and the Trust has now made a number of service improvements including the following:

  • We’ve made a significant investment in staffing with over 50 additional midwives and doctors.
  • We’ve improved culture and team working at the Trust introducing, for
  • example, multi-disciplinary ward rounds that take place four times a day on our maternity units.
  • And we’ve improved patient safety by ensuring best practice and learning are shared consistently across all of our hospitals.

The Morecambe Bay Investigation report notes that concerns over clinical practice were confined to Furness General Hospital and concludes that significant progress is being made at this maternity unit.

Jackie Daniel, the Trust chief executive, said: “We welcome these comments but we must not be complacent. We will address all the recommendations in this report to ensure that we further improve the services we offer to women and families, across our hospitals.”

Watch: all kinds of weapons handed in during amnesty

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Greater Manchester Police has taken over 1500 knives and other sharp weapons off the streets during the ‘Bin the Blade’ knife surrender.

They range from domestic kitchen knives to swords, axes and hunting blades. The most unusual items include wartime cut-throat razors, a small knife in the shape of a shotgun cartridge and a number of ornamental daggers.

The campaign is part of the ‘Save a Life, Surrender Your Knife’ initiative. Surrendered knives will be used to create a spectacular 15-24 feet tall Angel statue in memory of those whose lives have been tragically lost to knife crime.

Detective Chief Inspector Debbie Dooley of Greater Manchester Police told us about the kind of weapons that have been handed in:

MP questions PM over paediatric first aid training

The Cheadle MP Mark Hunter has today asked the Prime Minister why changing the law to make paediatric first aid training compulsory for all relevant nursery staff is taking so long.

Joanne Thompson from Stockport, founded Millie's Trust to help train people in paediatric first aid after her baby daughter Millie choked to death on her food at a nursery in Stockport.

She was been named ITV’s Lorraine inspirational women of the year for her campaigning.

Credit: ITV
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