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Good evening. Welcome to NorthWest Tonight with
Roger Johnson. And Ranvir Singh.
Our top story: An 18-year-old is arrested on
suspicion of murder following the fire which killed four people in
Lancashire. It has emerged that the blaze
started in a wardrobe in the bungalow in Freckleton.
Drilling for gas - scientists say the process of fracturing rock is
unlikely to cause pollution. The high price of success - why top
sports people say pressure is leading to a rise in depression.
all got too much and I broke down on me dad. I never expected it.
One of the world's greatest Two of our sides go head-to-head in
a big final. Another big night for Manchester
City. Can Liverpool begin the process tonne of knocking them out
Detectives investigating a house fire in Lancashire which killed
four siblings have arrested an 18- year-old on suspicion of murder.
Reece Smith, his twin sisters Holly and Ella, and two-year-old Jordan
all died. The fire began in an attic bedroom at their home in
Freckleton on Saturday night. Naomi Cornwell is at the scene now. Naomi,
what have police said about this arrest today? The teenager who has
been arrested is 18 years old. He is from nearby and that tonight he
has been questioned on suspicion of the murder of 19-year-old Reece
Smith, his four-year-old twin stars and their youngest sibling. All
four died in an attic bedroom of the house behind me late on
Saturday night. All four, we now know, died as a result of breathing
in smoke. There have been reports suggesting that Reece Smith may
have been overcome by the smoke as he tried to rescue his younger sib
siblings and their mother was led from the house by firefighters that
night. We know that family and friends gathered here earlier that
evening to celebrate her birthday. Police have not named the teenager
who has been arrested today, but they have said he is not a member
of the family. The death of the four children was
shocking enough, people have been rather taken aback by the latest
twist today. What else have the police had to say about how the
fire started? Well, previously firefighters had
indicated that the suggestions were from forensics at the scene that
the fire had begun in or close to a wardrobe in an attic bedroom shared
by the three youngest children and today police confirmed. They know
the fire began inside that wardrobe. What is more, they say it has
become clear that was not an accident.
Everybody is shocked. This is a tragic incident, but the fact that
it could be caused deliberately or recklessly is a shock to them and
we give them all the support we can. It is my job to piece together what
happened and if there is criminality culpability to find out
who is responsible for it. Detectives say a number of people
were in the house at the time and they are still in the process of
interviewing all of those people to try to find out exactly what
happened here. Geologists have moved to allay
fears that the controversial process of drilling for shale gas
in Lancashire could cause pollution of water supplies. The British
Geological Survey says any risks associated with so-called
"fracking" appear low. But opponents living on the Fylde Coast
say they're not convinced and want it banned pending a full
investigation into environmental Since it started here, fracking has
attracted controversy. It involves injecting millions of gallons of
water, sand and some chemicals into the ground to free natural gas
trapped in shale rock. Last November, campaigners stormed a
drilling rig near Southport in protest. Part of the reason it is
controversial is the experience of of people in America, where some
claim it contaminated water supplies with methane. Now a
spokesman for the British geological survey says most
geologists are convinced it is unlikely that contamination would
occur. Sheer distance helps with groundwater, 40 to 50 meters deep,
while fracking occurs one to two miles down.
Jon Bailey lives close to sites sites prepared for fracking.
It was unlikely there would be no earth tremors, but there are two.
What would happen when there are 00 drills in operation -- 800 drills
in operation. We are concerned. Cuadrilla Resources suspended
drilling since the Earth quaction last year. -- earthquakes last year.
Cuadrilla say they are waiting for the go-ahead from Government before
they resume fracking. They say they welcome the comments from the
British geological survey. It is positive. They have looked at it
from a different aspect and arrived at the same conclusion so very
positive for the industry. Geologists say it is important
seismic activity is monitored The Government says there will be
enough money to extend high-speed to the north-west. The Transport
Minister, Norman Baker, was in Manchester earlier pledging
commitment to the second phase of HS2 due to be completed in 2033.
The �33 billion is a cushion for unanticipated excesses that come
through. I'm confident we will come in on budget or under budget.
December's severe weather saw a 75% boost in air freight to the Isle of
Man. Storms meant boats were unable to sail from the mainland leaving
some shops with empty shelves. The lack of ferry crossings means air
passenger numbers are up by 8,000 compared with December 2010.
A familiar family of a nurse in Lancashire who was stabbed to death
by an ex-partner while he was on bail have been told there will be a
change in the law. Jane Cluft was murdered as she walked home from
work. Her family say he should never have been allowed to walk
free. Jane lived in fear. Her ex-partner,
Jonathan Vass was on bail, charged with raping her. He went on to
murder Jane as she walked through the car park of Blackpool Victoria
Hospital. I feel that Jane would be alive
today if they had the right to appeal against the bail decision.
That decision to grant Jonathan Vass's bail cost Jane her life.
Statistics show between 50 and 60 people a year are being killed by
people who are out on bail for violent offences and it is just too
many. In 2009 the judge granted Jonathan
Vass bail. A the time the office representing judges said there was
no evidence presented that Jonathan Vass was likely to commit further
offences. Jane's family has managed to get a review of the law.
Jane was living in fear and she documented how much fear she lived
in. She documented that Jonathan Vass would kill her and you know,
that came true. She was right and yet the victim had no say
whatsoever within that bail decision. So this is why the
amendment is so important. Today, the Prime Minister, David
Cameron, expressed support for Jane's family.
Our sympathies go out to the family who suffered so appallingly. I
accept and the Government accepts, there should be a right of appeal
against crown court decisions allowing bail.
Jonathan Vass is serving a life sentence for Jane's family, finally
An American who supplied guns to the region's criminal underworld is
beginning a 10 year jail term. Steven Greenoe bought weapons in
the States then smuggled them into the UK via Manchester Airport.
Several were used in crimes here. He was caught following a joint
operation between British and American police, but not before he
managed to get more than 60 guns into the UK. He he described
himself as a security expert who protected the rich and famous,
including Madonna, but Steven Greenoe was a gun runner. He was
very much a Walter Mitty character. An American citizen who was
residing in this country. Greenoe bought guns in America
before smuggling them into the UK. He flew into Manchester Airport.
Those firearms have been used in fatal shootings. They have been
used in shootings where people have been injured. Stephen Cardwell was
the conduit through which Greenoe's weapons found buyers. Steven
Greenoe passed through the arrivalshall on several occasions
between February and July 2010. In all on his visits, he brought in
over 0 60 weaponsment we are told airport security has never been
tighter, so how was Greenoe able to transport his cargo through here
without being challenged. Security is a process that you go through
when you are leaving an apport rather than when you are arriving
into an airport. The guns should have been picked up by the
departure airport. Security staff once spotted guns in his luggage,
but he convinced them they were non firing.
The worrying feature of the case is over 50 of the weapons he brought
Still to come on North West Tonight:
The highs and lows of sport. Why top athletes could be more
prone to depression. And Titian on tour. One of the world's greatest
The idea of having directly elected mayors to run local councils has
been around for a while, but there are still none in the North West.
That might be about to change because Salford is holding a
referendum on the issue later this month. But what's the difference
between a council leader and a We are holding a referendum to deal
with the mayoral issue. So not everyone in Salford is
interested, but whoever does vote later this month will decide how
everyone else votes in future and these campaigners want a mayor.
the moment the current leader is only chosen by the ruling group.
What we want is the 16,000 voters - - 168 ,000 of Salford City to
choose a leader. Mayors are directly elected by
voters, not councillors, they are more powerful because it is more
difficult to block their decisions and they are in power for four
years whether they remain popular or not. The referendum is costing
the council about �200,000 and the existing leader says it is not
required. The fact that more people are come to go live in Salford, I
think we have achieved all that under the current system and I'm
suspicious, even though it would be nice if it was me of concentrating
all the powers in one person. But that's for voters to decide.
It is democratic because it leaves it up to the public who decide who
they want as a mayor. I think the councillors should know
who is the best person for the job really.
People will be watching this result with interest because in May, there
will be referendums in another eleven cities including Manchester
and Liverpool. Whatever happens here will give us an indication of
Clearly it was rain in Salford today!
He was dodging the rain drops! They were two of the most
successful sports stars in the region but behind their public
personas Andrew Flintoff and Ricky Hatton suffered huge lows. Both
have spoken honestly about them. Andrew Flintoff reveals his
problems and interviews the former World Boxing Champion about his
struggles in a documentary on BBC One tonight. Stuart Pollitt reports.
Their careers brought them success, wealth and adulation, but they
brought a down side for Andrew Flintoff and Ricky Hatton.
You experience some unbelievable highs and dramatic lows. You never
think the world could turn into depression.
The lowest point was during England's Ashes defeat.
We lost the Ashes, it was in Melbourneks and Christmas is meant
to be great, your family are over and it all got too much, I broke
down on me dad. I broke down. I was on the field and I just had
thoughts of retiring all the time. I just wasn't enjoying it.
I took me gloves off and I sat down on the steps of the ring and I put
a towel over my head and I started sobbing.
For scat For Hatton it was defeat that triggered it. You are under so
so much pressure, but realising me days were numbered and I had to
retire and it was a gradual process. It is estimated one in ten
sportsmen suffer a form of depression, but away from sport,
the figures are starker. One in four people will suffer from some
form of mental illness during their lives.
It can be triggered by different things. For me, it was probably the
cricket, but for other people, it is different.
The sportsmen hope by sharing their stories, it will encourage others
And you can catch that documentary on BBC One tonight at 10.45. With
us now is Elaine Dickson from the mental health charity Mind. Hello.
Hello. There they talked about external
pressure, expectations, the end of a career, what am I going to do
next as triggers, but is depression sometimes just in the brain? Is it
the right neurons aren't firing and a tablet will help? For a lot of
people an antidepressant can make a big difference, but we have got to
recognise the impact of lifestyle events such as unemployment,
redundancy, grief, that kind of thing.
Stewart, said within the broader population, it is more common than
amongst top sports people who get headlines for it. Is there a stigma
attached to it where people don't like to admit to it and talk about
it? The Time To Change Campaign has been good in trying to reduce the
stigma that's been attached to. That has encouraged people to talk
about it, not just celeb celebrities, but everybody as well.
It is interesting hearing those celebrities talk about it, you look
at it from the outside, great families and millions in the bank
and travelled the world. Is it my life to the outsiders looks perfect,
but I can't enjoy it? It is more difficult for the people at the top
of a sporting profession to admit to having a problem like depression.
As you say, everyone thinks they should be happy, they have loads of
money. It is a life we all dream of? But they are humans like the
rest of us and experience divorce, bereavement that we all do and they
are under pressure to succeed as well.
The first step to getting help, whoever you are, is to talk? Yes,
definitely. I mean our advice from Manchester MIND would be to talk to
somebody about it, talk to your family and friends about it and if
necessary, go and visit your doctor. Superb. I wish I had more time.
Thank you for coming in. Sport now, and Tony's at the Etihad
Stadium for the first leg of the Carling Cup semi-final between
Manchester City and Liverpool. It is no doubt getting exciting.
Yes, lots and reds and blues. Both sets of players arrived a few
minutes ago and and it will be a spicy affair bearing in mind
Roberto Mancini's comments about the Luis Suarez affair. I'll be
telling you about those in a moment, News from Everton who play at Spurs
tonight in the Premier League. go if you love the club, Bill.
You saddled us with debt. Tension in the blue half of
Merseyside. Tension in the red half because they are at Manchester City
tonight for the first leg of the Carling Cup semi-final. Eight days
ago, Liverpool were beaten 3-0 by Manchester City. It will be tougher
for City tonight. Not least because they have lost The Toure brothers
Yaya and Kolo are away at the Africa Cup of Nations, they're also
without their captain Vincent Kompany, who's banned for four
matches. Mancini talked about the racism affair. He says Liverpool's
Suarez should've quickly apologised to Patrice Evra. On the pitch you
can do something that you don't want to do because you are nervous
or you don't think on the pitch, but I don't know. I don't think
this. He said it was a mistake for
Liverpool to wear those T-shirts. Lots of talking points around this
game. Tonight, a number of players are
doubtful. How much sympathy do you have with Mancini? If you lose your
best players, it is difficult. He has a big enough squad to come out
and give Liverpool a game. That squad will be tested. Vincen
will be a big miss because he is a leader as well as his game.
important is this competition to Manchester City because they are
out of the Champions League and out of FA Cup? Yes, it is very
important. A trip to Wembley and you are into Europe. You know if
you win it and you know you have got the likes of facing Cardiff or
Crystal Palace. Kenny Dalglish never won this as a manager. Gerard
is playing tonne. Liverpool -- tonight.
It will be a test with Gerard back. I thought they played good football.
Tonight, you know, it will be difficult and I think there will
only be a goal either way in it. Thank you very much indeed.
If you want to watch the game tonight, it is live on BBC One.
There is a Match Of The Day special. If you want to listen to the game,
there is full match commentary on There is lots going on in the worth
west for football. A gymnast from Cost bee is hoping
for -- Crosby is hoping for a medal. Dan Purvis was the all-round top
scorer after performing on six pieces of apparatus at The O2. Team
GB just needed to finish in the top four, but Dan's points mean they
finished first. You may remember Amir Khan's
controversial defeat to Lamont Peterson. Well, the International
Boxing Federation now says Mustafa Ameen is not one of their officials.
He works for their Education Trust. The admission could strengthen
Amir's attempts to overturn the result. It would have been easier
if Amir knocked him out in the first place. Neither of these teams
can get knocked out tonne, it is the first leg of the Carling Cup.
If Liverpool get a great result and make it tough for Manchester City,
they started the season dreaming of winning four. If they go out of
this, they go down to won. A sobering thought.
We have had an e-mail for you. It is from Biker Nigel, it says,
"Could you wish Tony a happy birthday?". I tell you what, I
don't look bad for 60, do I? I have got half me own teeth if that
helps! Thank you Tony, have a lovely
birthday. Now a story about nudity, violence
and death. Not the usual stuff you expect towards the end of North
West Tonight, but we do have a good reason for bringing it you. All of
the above feature in one of the world's greatest Old Masters
paintings, and it's going on display in Liverpool this week.
It's a picture by the 16th century Venetian artist, Titian. Andy Gill
has been to the Walker Art Gallery for a look. A young prince chances
on the Roman goddess of hunting, Diana as she Bates after a hard day
in the field. Diana is not impressed and a nasty end awaits
the young man. This is the picture that's on display at the Walker Art
Gallery. Experts say it is an important work of art painted by
Titian. Titian is known for his energetic,
loose brush work, but his colours and particularly evident in this
painting are the the variety of reds that especialises in and also
a fascination with use for paint to create reflections. You have got
reflections in the stream and this fantastic crystal vase in the
centre which is reflecting light. It is one of a series of paintings,
a later work not on display here, shows him being torn into a stag
and being torn apart by his own dogs. The Duke of Sutherland let it
go for �1 million which is about a third of what it would have fetched
if it had gone to auction. You can see the painting at the
Good evening. Well, if you are looking forward to
a change in the weather, I think this forecast will suit you. High
pressure pushes its way in for the first time this winter so we will
see a difference in this this weather.
Dry and fine, but coldment if you have been driving on the motorways,
you will notice they had signs up saying strong winds were forecast.
The Met Office issued a warning for strong winds. For the rest of us,
yes it will be breezy. Now you are looking at a lot of cloud through
the night tonight and more of that dull, damp and drizzly weather
pushing in. The further north you are, the more of that you will see.
It becomes widespread as we head towards the early hours of the
morning. In term of your temperatures, your final mild night,
8 to 10 Celsius again. First thing tomorrow, there will be a lot of
cloud cover and the remnants of this weather front allowing drizzly
rain. The the changing wind direction will push that weather
out of the way and look at the bright weather starting to work its
way in. Late morning in parts of the Isle of Man and Cumbria and and
every else sees it coming in. Temperatures falling from 11
Celsius to 6 or 7 Celsius and you will notice the drop!
What? 6 or 7 Celsius. The sunshine will match your