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Scarborough Lifeboathouse to be demolished

Scarborough RNLI is going afloat today to prepare for the demolition of the lifeboathouse.

The two lifeboats will be moored in the harbour while the lifeboathouse is demolished and a new one built.

Artists' impression of the new Scarborough lifeboathouse Credit: RNLI

Two temporary portacabins will be placed in a corner of the harbour for the crew to use as an office, changing rooms, etc.

Today's closure of the lifeboathouse coincides with the 60th anniversary of the capsize in 1954 of the lifeboat ECJR, near the harbour mouth while returning from service.

RNLI crewmembers from yesteryear Credit: RNLI

Coxswain Tom Clark and other RNLI personnel will mark the station closure with a short service beginning at 3pm to remember all those who have not returned to shore.

The lifeboat will launch for the final time from the lifeboathouse, which will soon be demolished and replaced. The crew will lay a wreath in the harbour mouth in memory of the three crew members who died in 1954: coxswain John Sheader, Francis Bayes and John Cammish.

A bagpiper will play a lament as one of the longest serving crew members, Peter Billingsley, lowers the RNLI flag. Everyone is welcome to attend.

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Shrek performs Newcastle Christmas lights 'switch on'

Shrek and The Green Fairy switched on the Christmas lights at Eldon Square in Newcastle Credit: North News

The well-loved film character Shrek has switched on the Christmas lights at Eldon Square in Newcastle.

Ahead of his arrival at Newcastle Theatre Royal in March 2015 as part of the first ever Shrek The Musical tour of the UK and Ireland, he switched on the lights which feature over 100,000 pea lights, and in excess of 25,000 baubles and ornaments.

Shrek to flick the switch for Eldon Square's Christmas lights

Two big green hands will help to welcome Christmas to Newcastle's Eldon Square Credit: Theatre Royal

He may be green, smelly and occasionally rather fearsome.....but swamp-dwelling ogre Shrek has travelled from far, far away to be the guest of honour at Eldon Square today.

The well-loved giant will switch on this year's lights at the Newcastle mall later afternoon.

The display will include more than 100,000 lights to mark the start of the festive shopping season.

Shrek, portrayed by actor Dean Chisnall will appear at the city's Theatre Royal in Shrek The Musical next year but has taken time out from rehearsals to bring some Christmas cheer.

Speaking about the event, Shrek said:

"I am honoured to be invited to turn the Christmas lights on in intu Eldon Square. I have been told that this is usually a job for soap stars and boy or girl band members so I'm very pleased that the organisers recognise my own musical talent and boyish good looks!

I will probably take the opportunity to do a bit of Christmas shopping while I'm here and also a bit of a recce so I can report back to the Fairytale Misfits about the sights and sounds of the city ahead of our arrival with Shrek The Musical next March"

– Shrek (A large green ogre)
The cast of Shrek the Musical Credit: Theatre Royal

Meanwhile the manager of into Eldon Square described her joy at the prospect of meeting Shrek:

"We're absolutely thrilled that Shrek has taken time out from performing in his tour of the UK and Ireland in this hit musical to visit us in Newcastle prior to arriving at Newcastle 's Theatre Royal next year.

This year's Christmas Lights Switch On will be very special indeed, with a brand new scheme of lights waiting for our Shrek-tacular guest to bring them to life.

The lights switch on always signals the beginning of our very busy Christmas shopping period, so if Shrek needs some advice on gifts for Princess Fiona - we're here to help!"

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Fine for leaving out wheelie bin beyond 7pm

Wheelie bins that are left out or abandoned in backstreets could trigger a fine for their owners, under a pilot scheme starting in Hartlepool.

Bins left out later than 7pm on collection day will be removed.

Bins will have to be taken off the streets no later than 7pm on collection days in certain streets. Otherwise, they will be removed, and owners could be charged for a replacement. Repeat offenders could get a £60 fine.

Interviews: Firework prankster's hand permanently damaged

A teenage boy who tried to light a firework in his bedroom says he's lucky to be alive.

Dylan Cosgrove broke seven bones in his hand and had to have surgery.

He has been told he'll never be able to use his hand properly.

Dylan and his family are now helping firefighters to campaign for safety this Bonfire Night.

Kevin Gardner from the Tyne & Wear Fire and Rescue Service says Dylan's story is a valuable warning to other youngsters tempted to misuse fireworks.

Bonfire safety tips

Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue release tips for staying safe at bonfires. Credit: PA

Ahead on Bonfire celebrations Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue's are launching a bonfire safety campaign.

Their plans include a schools education programme, an inspection of outlets storing fireworks, a social media and public relations campaign, as well as a dedicated website.

Officers from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service will be visiting secondary schools across the area to talk to children and young people about the dangers relating to the misuse of bonfires and fireworks, and to highlight the consequences of anti-social behaviour.

Here are their tips for staying safe at bonfires this year:

  • Attend an organised display rather than having your own bonfire,
  • Report illegal bonfires that are being built to your local council,
  • Call 999 to report any illegal bonfires that have been lit,
  • Remember: alcohol and fireworks don't mix,
  • Always supervise children around fireworks,
  • Never give sparklers to children under five,
  • Keep pets indoors and
  • Bring your wheelie bin when it is empty it, or it is an arson target.
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