STARS of the soap Emmerdale went out to bat for a North-East children's hospice yesterday.

The ITV show's cricket team played an XI from Northern Electric's training department in aid of the Butterwick Children's Hospice, Stockton.

Despite rain, the game at Durham City Cricket Club attracted about 100 onlookers and raised £1,800.

Hospice fundraiser Barbara Marr said: "It was chucking it down on and off, but they all enjoyed themselves, especially Chris Chittell, who was really urging them on."

Northern Electric won the match by 54 runs and Chris Chittell's wife, Caroline, was voted "man of the match".