Live updates

Newcastle lads cycle 3000 miles across USA for charity

Jonny Connop and Martin Kay are cycling for for the children of The Percy Hedley Primary school who have cerebral palsy Credit:
The map of their route Credit:

Two friends from Newcastle are cycling 3,000 miles across the USA from LA to New York to raise funds for a sensory room at the primary school site in Forest Hall in North Tyneside, Newcastle Upon-Tyne.

Jonny Connop and Martin Kay have undertaken the 'Pedal for Percy' challenge, which involves cycling the 3000 miles coast to coast in America in 30 days from L.A. to New York. So far, they are on day 15, exactly half way through their journey.

The boys are on day 15 of their journey Credit:
The boys are on day 15 of their journey Credit:

They hope to raise enough money to buy equipment for a new sensory room which will be required for the children of The Percy Hedley Primary school who have cerebral palsy. The school is moving premises and some of the older equipment will not be able to be moved.

The cycling chums set off each morning at 8am USA time, 7 hours behind the UK. They hope to finish on the 4th October in Manhattan New York.

To support the boys you can go to their website:


New statue for historic County Durham regiment

Hundreds of people - including veterans and serving soldiers - attended a dedication service this morning for a new statue marking the contribution of The Durham Light Infantry. The now defunct regiment recruited largely across the North East and was involved in many major conflicts, including the First and Second World Wars. The statue stands in the city's market place and was paid for entirely by donations.


North East emergency services remember 9/11 victims

Emergency services across the North East remember the lives lost on September 11th 2001.

First report published into MH17 plane crash

The first report has been published into the plane disaster in which two Newcastle United fans were killed.

Flight MH17 crashed in Ukraine in July. Liam Sweeney and John Alder were among 298 people who were killed.

Investigators say the plane was hit by a "large number of high energy objects", causing it to break apart in the air.

Julia Barthram reports:

Barry Sweeney reacts to report that MH17 crash was 'instantaneous'

A report compiled by Dutch crash investigators on flight MH17 has found the plane was punctured by a "large number of high-energy objects" which lead to it falling apart in the air.

298 people were killed in the disaster, including Newcastle United fans John Alder and Liam Sweeney who were travelling to support their team at the time.

Barry Sweeney, father of Liam, has spoken to ITV Tyne Tees following the release of the report, saying he is glad that Liam and John "didn't have a clue" when the plane broke apart.

He spoke of the family's relief that "Liam didn't feel anything" but says the end result of the report is irrelevant as he "still can't do anything about it."

Read More: MH17 downed by 'large number of high energy objects'

Load more updates