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Chicken lorry crash on M62 leaves 1,500 birds dead

A chicken lorry crashed on a motorway this morning leaving around 1,500 birds dead and motorists stuck in miles of tailbacks.

Chicken crates are scattered across the motorway after the crash. Credit: @IainCPatterson

The vehicle, which crashed into a barrier on the M62 at 4.15am, was carrying 6,800 live chickens.

The incident left crates scattered across the carriageway with some birds escaping and running loose on the road. The escaped chickens were quickly gathered by the Highways Agency and returned to the truck.

Part of the motorway in Greater Manchester was shut throughout the morning leaving motorists stuck in long queues.

The lorry driver was not injured in the crash.

For more on this story go to ITV Granada

MP apology after woman in coma pursued to get a job

The Minister for Disabled People has apologised to the family of a women with mental health issues who was pursued to attend "intensive job-focused activity", despite having been in a coma for the past two months.

Mike Penning MP said things had clearly "gone wrong" in the case of Sheila Holt.

The Minister for Disabled People Mike Penning has apologised to Sheila Holt's family. Credit: Press Association

Ms. Holt from Greater Manchester was sectioned under the Mental Health Act in December. Her family say she struggled to cope with changes to her council tax benefits and being forced into the Work Programme. She had a heart attack days later and fell into the coma.

Her family repeatedly told the DWP and Seetec, a contractor carrying out work-capability assessments, about her situation but they continued to receive letters from the organisations.

Mr. Penning said: "I apologise, unreservedly, to the family as the minister responsible."It's about time politicians did stand up and apologise when things went wrong. It clearly has gone wrong and the family have every right to be aggrieved and I hope she makes a full recovery, as much as she can."

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Police 'not looking for anyone else' after house fire

Police have said they are not looking for anyone else in connection with a house fire in Bolton, Greater Manchester which killed three people in the early hours of Monday.

The bodies of architect Hassan Rafie, 49, and his law student wife, Mahnaz, 48, were discovered in the blaze at the family home.

Post-mortem examinations showed Mrs Rafie died from stab wounds and Mr Rafie from smoke inhalation and burns.

Mrs Rafie's mother, Dolleh Joseph, 74, was rescued by firefighters from an upstairs bedroom but died soon after in hospital from the effects of smoke inhalation and burns.

Police appeal to former pupils over abuse probe

Detective Constable Christian Chivers, from Greater Manchester Police's Public Protection Investigation Unit, said:

I want to reassure local residents, and more importantly parents of children currently at St Vincent's, that these are historical incidents.

While we do not believe there is any reason for current pupils or their families to be unduly concerned, this is extremely serious and upsetting for the victims in this case, who we are continuing to provide specialist support to.

The safeguarding of pupils is without doubt a top priority for us, the school and Salford Diocese and we are working together as part of this investigation.

As part of this investigation I am appealing to former pupils who may have information about the offences under investigation or who may want to speak to us about similar matters to come forward.

I want to reassure anyone who might want to report any incidents or offences that we treat all allegations of sexual abuse extremely seriously and in the strictest confidence and we have officers on hand to deal with your complaints swiftly and sympathetically.

  • Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

Priest interviewed by police over abuse claim

A Catholic priest has been interviewed by police investigating reports of historic sexual abuse over a 20-year period.

The investigation relates to the indecent assault and sexual abuse of three women during their time as schoolgirls at St Vincent's Primary School in Norden, Rochdale, between 1980 and 2000, Greater Manchester Police said.

It is understood the allegations involve a parish priest at St Vincent de Paul RC Church who was serving at the time of the alleged offences.

The church is located in the same grounds as the school.

The offences did not occur within the school but at an adjacent presbytery, police said.

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Frank Sidebottom statue unveiled in Timperley

Frank Sidebottom became synonymous with Timperley after Chris Sievey regularly featured his hometown in his act. Credit: ITV Granada

Hundreds of fans of the cult comic character Frank Sidebottom have taken to the streets of Timperley, Greater Manchester, this morning for the unveiling of his bronze statue.

The unique tribute was created after a fundraising drive by the family of the character's creator Chris Sievey, who died from cancer in 2010.

Temporarily contained within Sidebottom's beloved shed, the statue was revealed at precisely 11.37am - a time of the day popularly referenced by the character in his act.

For extended coverage of the unveiling, visit ITV Granada

Masked men attack police car with paving slabs

Officers are hunting for masked men who attacked a police patrol car with paving slabs and baseball bats, Greater Manchester Police said.

At around 12.35am officers on patrol on Windmill Lane, North Reddish, requested a stolen Audi A6 stop.

Police said men wearing balaclavas got out of the car and attacked the vehicle, causing extensive damage, before driving off.

The car was later found abandoned.

Thankfully none of the officers were injured, but this once again demonstrates how our officers can face violence in even the most innocuous of situations.

I now want to hear from anyone who saw this car speeding off from Windmill Lane or has any information.

– Inspector Matt Bailey-Smith of the Road Policing Unit
  • Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Talbot abuse claims detectives appeal for ex-pupils

Detectives investigating ITV Granada weather presenter Fred Talbot on suspicion of historic sexual offences are trying to trace pupils from other schools after information has been received from the public following his arrest.

Mr Talbot was arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of historic sex offences in relation to abuseagainst former pupils who attended Altrincham Grammar School for Boys between the early 1970s and early 1980s.

He has been released on bail until August pending further enquiries.

Following the publicity surrounding this man’s arrest information has been received from the public that he taught at various schools in the Tyne and Wear area and which included Saltwell and Slatyford High School.

Anyone who attended these or any other schools between 1968 and the early 1970s and who has any information which they believe may assist police are asked to call Greater Manchester Police.

All information received will be treated in the strictest of confidence.

  • Anyone with information is asked to contact Greater Manchester Police on 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.

Weatherman Fred Talbot released on police bail

ITV Granada Reports weatherman Fred Talbot has been bailed after he was arrested by police investigating historic sex abuse allegations relating to his time as a teacher at Altrincham Grammar School for Boys in Greater Manchester between the early 1970s and early 1980s.

A 63-year-old man arrested as part of an investigation into reports of historic sexual abuse at a school in Trafford has been released on police bail.

The man was arrested on Tuesday 9 April 2013, on suspicion of three counts of indecent assault and four counts of inciting a child to commit acts of gross indecency.

He has been bailed until 16 August 2013 pending further enquiries.

– A Greater Manchester Police spokesman
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