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South Shields residents promised 'transformation'

People in South Shields are being promised that their town will be transformed with the opening of new public facilities this year.

Work on a new library and digital media centre, called The Word, is already underway. South Tyneside Council says it is on course to open later this year.

It is part of a wider £100 million pound regeneration of the community.

It is hoped the new building will become a landmark for South Shields, helping to raise the town's profile as a resort and tourist destination.

New transport hub for South Shields - an artist's impression Credit: South Tyneside Council

In addition to being a fantastic facility for residents of the Borough, this centre will also help to put the town on the map as the North East's premier coastal resort 365 days of the year.

– Cllr Iain Malcolm, South Tyneside Council Leader

Work to the nearby Market Place is also scheduled for completion this year, including a new canopy and lighting.

In 2017, the next phase of the development will see the start of work on a transport interchange for bus and Metro services, situated on Fowler and Keppel Streets.

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Defiant fundraiser broke ribs during Channel swim

Three Tyneside women are today celebrating raising more than £5,000 for charity by swimming the English Channel.

Intrepid trio Tracey, Angela and Liz. Credit: Alzheimer's Society

Sisters Tracey Etherington and Angela Moon from Gateshead along with friend Liz Orr, from South Shields have successfully completed the crossing.

They defied choppy water – and in Liz’s case two broken ribs – to swim shore to shore in relays over a total of 14 hours and 25 minutes backed by support boat The Sea Leopard.

“The water was very choppy in the middle of the Channel and when the boat dropped five feet, I went up in the air. On the way down I met the rail with my ribs. We thought it was over – I’m not brave but we had trained all year and I was determined to crack on and did three more swims in the relay. The water was so cold that it helped numb the pain, but I could hear a click in my chest with every arm throw as I swam.”

– Liz Orr

“We dodged an enormous swarm of jelly fish, and seagulls escorted our boat all of the way to France. “Liz was joined on her last swim by a dolphin, which kept nudging her toes seeming to urge her on. We have had a fantastic once in a lifetime experience.”

– Tracey Etherington

In total, the trio raised £5,239.23p for the Alzheimer's Society.

“Liz, Tracey and Angela are inspirational women who did a fantastic job in the face of very tough conditions, showing a breath-taking level of determination – I take off my swimming cap to all three of them! They’ve reached an amazing total, which will help us to continue our support for people affected by dementia across the region. On behalf of the Society, I want to say a huge Thank You for what they did and to everyone who sponsored the swim.”

– Rebecca Scott, Alzheimer’s Society

Man in 'serious but stable condition' after pedestrian crossing collision

The scene at the site of the incident this evening Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees News

ITV News Tyne Tees understands that an elderly man involved in a collision with a van earlier today is in a serious but stable condition in hospital.

Two people were hit by a van on a pedestrian crossing on Wenlock Street in South Shields. It is believed that they were a couple.

The second victim, a woman, was not seriously hurt and is due to be discharged from hospital soon

Man steals £50 from barber after confessing he didn't have enough money to pay for haircut

A customer stole £50 in coins from a barber shop after confessing he did not have enough to pay for his haircut.

Britton Mabrouk was mid trim when he told barber Gary Scott he could not settle the bill at the shop in Green Lane, South Shields, in July.

Newcastle Crown Court heard during the argument that followed, the 22-year-old demanded his haircut was finished despite his lack of cash.

Prosecutor Paul Currer told the court: "There was an argument. The defendant was aggressive and angry with Mr Scott.

"He said he would get the money and demanded he finish the haircut. Mr Scott refused to do so. The defendant went to the back of the shop, opened a cash box and removed a bag of pound coins, around £50 worth."

At the time of the theft, Mabrouk was on bail after having a violent street confrontation with pal Stephen Wynne on June 30th.

The court heard Mabrouk was arrested later that day after he was seen disposing of a kitchen knife in bushes at the West Park. However the judge said it was accepted Mabrouk was not carrying a knife when he went to the barber shop.

Mabrouk, of Gainsborough Avene, South Shields, admitted theft, affray and having a bladed article.

Wynne, of Halstead Place, South Shields, admitted threatening with an offensive weapon and a separate charge of having a bladed article on a later date.

Both men were jailed for a total of 15 months each.

Victims of South Shields collision were elderly couple

The collision took place at this pedestrian crossing on Wenlock Road Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees News

Police have indicated that the two victims of a road traffic collision that happened in South Shields this morning were an elderly couple.

They were hit while using a pedestrian crossing on Wenlock Road near Simonside Metro. It is not known if the driver is aware that a collision took place.

The man, who was taken to the Royal Victoria Infirmary, is said to have life-threatening injuries. The woman is not thought to be seriously hurt and is expected to be discharged from South Tyneside General Hospital soon.

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Two hospitalised after being hit by van

Two pedestrians have been hospitalised after they were hit by a van on a pedestrian crossing in South Tyneside this morning. The driver failed to stop, though police say they may not be aware that a collision took place.

The incident happened at 9.30am today, on Wenlock Road, South Tyneside.

The two pedestrians - a man and woman were both injured. A passing motorist called the emergency services. The man has been taken to the RVI with a serious head injury and the woman to South Tyneside General Hospital.

The road was closed while the collision was dealt with and re-opened at 11.30am.

Police wish to trace the driver of a white van with red writing on that was seen to leave the area shortly after the collision. Police also want to speak to anyone else who was driving a van of a similar description in the area at the relevant time.

Teen targeted in South Shields gang attack over clothing

A teenager was attacked by an armed gang who singled him out because of his clothes as he walked home from a day out in South Shields

The 15-year-old was leaving South Shields with friends when a passing group started making comments about what he was wearing.

Newcastle Crown Court heard when the schoolboy stopped to ask why he was being verbally abused, he was subjected to brutal violence that left him bruised and bleeding.

When the victim's 16-year-old friend stepped in to try and stop the violence, he too was attacked.

At Newcastle Crown Court Colin Dunn, 20, of Westmorland Road, South Shields, was jailed for 10 months for his part in the violence.

The court heard Dunn, who admitted assault and common assault, has previous convictions for 38 offences, including robbery conspiracy and violence and has been assessed as posing a high risk of harm to the public.

He told police he had just a vague recollection of the violence he got involved in but said the victims must have done something to make him behave like that as it "wasn't in his nature" to assault people for no reason.

Vic Laffey, defending, said time behind bars will create an opportunity for Dunn to deal with his alcohol abuse.

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