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Steelworkers march in Manchester as Conservative Party conference gets underway

Redundant steelworkers, including Brian Dennis (centre in black jacket/green collar) from Redcar's SSI plant prepare to rally in Manchester Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Steelworkers who are amongst the two thousand two hundred laid off by SSI UK are in Manchester to march in an anti-austerity rally outside the Conservative party conference. Community Union member Brian Dennis is one of those at the march. He says that he accepts that his job, and the hundreds others at the Redcar site, are now gone. However they want to highlight the plight of other steelworks in the UK which he fears face serious threat.

"We've lost our jobs so we know that we are not going to get that steelworks back opened. It's our comrades in Wales, in Scunthorpe, they're under threat. Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne said in their first parliament, in their first term that they would balance the books within five years, they didn't balance the books within five years. They told us we were all going to be in it together, well we're not all in it together. They've brought taxes in, they're taking away tax credits for the very needy and they're giving their banker chums tax breaks. How is that helping the working man? It isn't. So I'm hoping people listen to what we have to say, listen to what the tens of thousands of people who are marching have to say"

– Brian Dennis, redundant Redcar Steelworker

Chairman 'truly saddened' by Advocaat leaving

Ellis Short. Credit: SAFC

Sunderland chairman Ellis Short says he is "truly saddened" by Dick Advocaat's decision to step down as head coach:

I am truly saddened by Dick’s decision, but I respect him for his honesty and for doing what he feels is right for the club.

He is a man of integrity and a true football person. He was hugely respectful of the club in taking this decision and he acted 100% in our best interests. It is also testament to his character that he has forgone any kind of a financial settlement, something which is very unusual in football.

I want to place on record my sincere thanks to Dick. He will be remembered with great affection by everyone at Sunderland and there will always be a warm welcome for him here at the Stadium of Light.

While this isn’t a situation any of us envisaged being in, what is important now is that we regroup quickly and focus on the rest of the season.”

– Sunderland AFC chairman Ellis Short


Advocaat: stepping down 'right for the club'

Dick Advocaat Credit: PA

Dick Advocaat says stepping down as head coach of Sunderland is "right for the club".

I want to thank everyone who has stood behind me. This is a very special football club, with so many great people, but I feel it is the right time to do this - not for me, but for the club.

I have made the decision to go after only eight games as I felt it was important to give everyone time turn things around - like we did last year. I am thankful to the chairman for understanding my feelings and I remain on good terms with everyone at the club.

I wish Ellis, Lee (Congerton), all of the staff, players and of course the supporters, who made me feel so welcome here, the very best of luck for the rest of the season. I have some wonderful memories to take with me and I hope I will return to see everybody again in the future.”

– Dick Advocaat

Advocaat 'cannot say' whether he will remain in charge

Dick Advocaat Credit: PA

Speculation into whether manager Dick Advocaat will leave Sunderland continues today, after comments he made following his team's draw with West Ham.

Sunderland had led two nil, but conceded two goals and had a player sent off.

It was a much improved performance for the Black Cats, but when asked whether he would remain manager, Advocaat responded "I cannot say".


Steelworkers to lead TUC march outside Conservative Party conference

Steelworkers and their families at a previous protest to save Teesside steelmaking Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

A minibus of steelworkers from the stricken SSI plant in Redcar are preparing to travel to Manchester today for a union-lead march. It will coincide with the start of the Conservative party conference. Business minister Anna Soubry MP is expected to be at the conference following her two days on Teesside last week during which she held emergency talks to try and help the site. It lead to an £80 million pound fund being released by government to support the 2,200 workers who have been made redundant. SSI UK went into liquidation on Friday. The site is now being maintained by skeleton staff as the firm managing the plant examines it for assets. They're expected to release more details on the ongoing situation tomorrow.

Redcar's mothballed SSI steelworks Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Two arrests after Middlesbrough crash

Cleveland Police Credit: Cleveland Police

Two men have been arrested after a car crash in Middlesbrough.

At around 2am on Sunday 4 October a green Vauxhall Astra made off from the police on Wilson Street in Middlesbrough, and it then collided with a number of other vehicles on Albert Road.

A 19-year-old pedestrian received spinal injuries, and he was taken to James Cook University Hospital where he remains in a stable condition.

A 20-year-old man, suspected to be the driver of the Astra, and a 22-year-old passenger, both immediately left the vehicle.

The 20-year-old has been arrested on suspicion of dangerous driving, and the passenger has also been arrested in connection with the incident.

Police are asking anyone with information to contact Cleveland Police on 101.

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