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'No third party' involved after body found in South Shields

Police set up a cordon at the time of the discovery Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

After an enquiry into a man's body being found in a South Shields back alley police believe there was no third party involvement in his death.

The discovery was made in a back lane in Dacre Street early Wednesday morning, 17th December.

The death was initially treated as unexplained.

A report is now being prepared for the coroner.

Body found in South Shields back alley

Police want anyone with information to contact them

A man's body has been found in South Shields.

The discovery was made in a rear lane in Dacre Street at 7.34am today.

Police have set up a cordon at the location.

A spokesman says the death is being treated as unexplained at this time and enquiries are ongoing to establish the circumstances.

Officers are carrying out house to house enquiries in the area.

Police are appealing for witnesses anyone who was in the area and who may have any information is asked to contact police.

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Rising funeral costs force families to bury loved ones in garden, MP warns

South Shields MP Emma Lewell-Buck Credit: PA

Rising costs are causing people to hold DIY funerals and bury their loved ones in their back garden, MPs have heard.

South Shields Labour MP Emma Lewell-Buck warned people are being forced to sell their possessions or falling into debt by taking out high-interest payday loans to fund a decent send-off for their relatives.

She pressed ministers to tackle "funeral poverty" by holding a UK-wide review of funeral service costs and to reform a Government social fund designed to help low-income households.

She also said funeral directors should also be required to let people know the price of a "simple service" to make it easier for people to choose an affordable service.

Moving a 10-minute rule motion on Funeral Services, Ms Lewell-Buck told MPs that a Royal London report suggested 100,000 of the 500,000 families bereaved each year struggle to afford the cost of a funeral.

She said the problem will get worse as the price of a service accelerates faster than inflation, with the average cost standing at £3,551.

"One woman from my area approached the Citizens Advice Bureau with unmanageable debts.

"She had been unable to get the money together to pay for a headstone for her brother's grave.

"She ended up applying for a payday loan and the cost of repaying this debt had quickly got out of control. Sadly her story is not an isolated one.

"Royal London estimates that 110,000 people are living with funeral debt, with each person owing over £1,300 on average.

"As well as rising debts, we're also seeing people turn to alternatives to the traditional funeral.

"Some are holding do it yourself funerals and even having to bury their relatives in their back garden."

– Emma Lewell-Buck MP, South Shields

Ms Lewell-Buck said the Bill she wishes to bring in has two main objectives: firstly to identify ways of reducing funeral costs by requiring the secretary of state to conduct an over-arching review of funeral affordability in the UK.

And secondly, it would take immediate steps to help hard-pressed households facing funeral poverty via specific measures to reform the funeral payments social fund system by introducing a simple funeral.

Boy hit by car in South Shields

Police are appealing for witnesses after a 15-year-old boy was hit by a car in South Shields.

Police were called to Stanhope Road at the corner of West Park Road at 8.20am on November 20.

The boy was taken to South Tyneside General Hospital and was later transferred to the RVI in Newcastle.

The boy is still in hospital receiving treatment for non-life threatening leg injuries.

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Dementia sufferer left locked in a bus

A dementia sufferer forgotten by charity staff was left in a locked bus in the cold for 45 minutes.

The woman, believed to be in her 80s, had to bang on the windows to get attention after she was left in a depot by Alzheimer's Society staff.

Two people have now been suspended by the charity.

The bus had been parked at about 4:15pm by a charity worker at the Middlefields depot in South Shields. She was found by South Tyneside Council staff at 4:50pm. The woman was returned home at 6:30pm.

An initial report into the circumstances of what happened has now been completed, and the Alzheimer's Society is carrying out an investigation.

Alzheimer's Society takes the well-being and safety of everyone using our services very seriously.

On this occasion mistakes were made that led to this very unfortunate incident.

We have apologised whole-heartedly to the individual and their family that in this instance we fell below the standard of care and support that we usually deliver in the care of our vulnerable service users.

We are sorry for the distress that this has caused to the family.

– Helen Foster, the Alzheimer's Society regional director for the north

From the moment we became aware of this incident, we took action and continue to take the matter extremely seriously.

'We have been in communication with the Alzheimer's Society from an early stage and have urged them to identify exactly what went wrong on this occasion and to review procedures in consultation with our officers.

'Our priority is to ensure that users of services funded by the Council are well looked after and safe.

– South Tyneside Council

Woman robbed in South Shields

Police are appealing for information after a robbery in South Shields.

Around 1:30pm today (Monday, 13th October) a woman, in her car, was approached by a man while parked in Harton Lane.

The man got into her car through the passenger side door and punched the woman twice, in the body and the arm, before stealing an amount of cash.

The offender was wearing a grey / black coloured tracksuit, a black cap and a scarf around his neck and lower face.

After grabbing the money he fled the car.

Anyone who knows any further information should contact the police.

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