Jurors in the rape trial of veteran broadcaster Stuart Hall were told today to focus on the evidence of the case rather than on anything they may have read, seen or heard about him.

The jury of eight women and four men was sworn in at Preston Crown Court to hear historical allegations that Hall, 84, raped and indecently assaulted two young girls.

He is charged with seven counts of rape against one complainant between 1976 and 1978.

Five of the rapes are said to have taken place when she was under the age of 16.

Hall is also accused of two counts of indecent assault against the woman within the same period.

In addition, he is charged with eight counts of rape and three indecent assaults against a second alleged victim between 1976 and 1981.

One of those alleged rapes is said to have taken place when the complainant was aged under 13.

Last year, Hall, from Wilmslow, Cheshire, pleaded guilty to 14 offences of indecent assault against 13 girls or young women at the same court and was jailed for 15 months.

The sentence was subsequently increased to 30 months by the Court of Appeal.