Ambulance workers in one North East town have called off their picket line ahead of tomorrow's strike, following a stabbing that saw a teenage girl lose her life. 

Striking workers from the GBM Union will walk out across the North East tomorrow (February 6), but the planned picket line in Hexham has been cancelled as a mark of respect for 15-year-old Holly Newton. 

Holly, from Haltwhistle in Northumberland, died following an incident in Hexham last weekend, which left another 15-year-old boy in hospital. A 16-year-old boy has been charged with murder and attempted murder. 

The picket line has been called off, as it "wouldn't feel right" when the town is still grieving following Holly's death. 

Read more: Holly Newton Stabbing: Vigil held in Hexham after 15-year-old's death

A GMB Ambulance worker, based in Hexham, said: "It wouldn't feel right waving flags and protesting at a time when the whole town is in shock after the events of last week.

"All of mine and my colleagues’ thoughts are with Holly's family and loved ones."

On Friday, hundreds of mourners attended a vigil for Holly in Sele Park. The whole park was decorated in purple ribbons - the schoolgirl's favourite colour - and her family said the town had been "rocked to the core" by her death, 

Despite the picket line being called off, the strike will still go ahead in Hexham, with more than 750 GMB ambulance workers planning on walking out across the North East on Monday. 

Read more: North East Ambulance Service staff to strike again in February

Paramedics, Emergency Care Assistants, call handlers and other staff will stage pickets across the region

The industrial action coincides with strike action by nurses and picket lines in Bishop Auckland and Gateshead will see ambulances workers line up next to their nursing colleagues. 

Workers across the ambulance service voted to strike over the Government’s imposed four per cent pay award and are furious over the Government’s apparent attempts to ‘smear’ them over life and limb cover on strike days. 

Health and Social Care Secretary, Steve Barclay, called the strikes "regrettable."

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