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A good chance to see the Northern Lights

There is an increased chance of catching the Northern Lights over Northern England and Scotland over the next few weeks.

A combination of space weather phenomena are a good sign for stargazers.

A high speed solar wind stream heading towards Earth will disturb our magnetic fields - and that could lead to a spectacular light show.

Credit: Ashley Corr

We are now in a period, lasting a few weeks, where factors are working together to increase the chances of geomagnetic disturbances, which in turn bring with them the aurora.

The strength of the disturbance directly relates to how far south the aurora is visible (or how far north if you are in the southern hemisphere), and of course you need clear skies to see it.

– Met Office

You can see more on the Northern Lights here


The Insolvency Service says a decision has been made to buy sufficient coal to keep the Redcar Coke Ovens going until the weekend.

This will enable the Official Receiver to continue discussions with interested parties about purchasing assets in working order.

A decision about purchasing further coal to keep the ovens operational beyond the weekend will be taken at the end of this week.


Major incident at Northumberland quarry

Emergency services are at the scene of a serious incident at Harden Quarry in Northumberland.

At 10.46am this morning, Wednesday October 7, Northumbria Police received a report of an incident at Harden Quarry in Biddlestone.

A vehicle, believed to be a tractor, fell around 50ft and caught fire.

No details have been released about any casualties but the Health and Safety Executive and police are investigating.

SSI: Insolvency Service update

The Official Receiver is continuing to talk with interested parties about the future use of the site.

Staff continue to be retained on site to maintain the Redcar Coke Ovens and manage the site in a safe manner.

David Kelly, Toby Underwood and Ian Green from PwC continue to assist and support the Official Receiver as special managers.

They have published a further update for employees:

The Redundancy Payments Service (RPS) have issued letters to all SSI staff by post today with details of how to make an online claim for redundancy pay. If you have not received your letter by the weekend please contact the Redundancy Payments Enquiry Line on Monday.

If you have difficulty going online, in the first instance, please ask friends and colleagues if they can assist you or alternatively you may be able to get help from your local library or Citizens Advice Bureau.

RPS is establishing a dedicated team to process these applications as quickly as possible.

You can also call the Redundancy Payments Enquiry Line – please listen to the menu and select the dedicated SSI option."

– Insolvency Service

The redundancy payments enquiry line is open 9am - 5pm, Monday to Friday, on 0330 331 0020.


Enquiries continue into death of 13-year-old boy

Cleveland Police say specially trained officers are continuing to support the family of a 13-year-old boy who died in Middlesbrough on Monday October 5th.

Enquiries are ongoing into the death, at an address in the Acklam area, which is currently being treated as unexplained.

A post-mortem examination is due to be held tomorrow, Thursday October 8th.

The boy has not been named but his school has issued a statement paying tribute.

We are devastated as a school community to find out about the passing away of this young man.

He was bright, talented, a former Student Leader and a great ambassador for his year group and our school.

Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this very difficult time.

We are supporting students and staff in school within or Pastoral system and through ARC Services, including help and advice from trained bereavement counsellors."

– Andrea Crawshaw, Headteacher at Acklam Grange School
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