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Joe Willis

The Northern Echo: Photograph of the Author

Joe Willis LATEST

Top judge urges sex attack victims to come forward following launch of 'radical' video link

The Northern Echo: LINK: Beverley Stoker, manager of the sexual assault referral centre, who came up with the idea for the live link. Picture: SARAH CALDECOTT.

4:02am Saturday 10th October 2015

A SENIOR North-East judge has told victims of sexual assault there has never been a better time to tell police following the launch of a groundbreaking pilot scheme.

Live video link a 'radical' step forward for victims of sexual assault, says senior judge

The Northern Echo: RADICAL: Beverely Stoker, manager of the sexual assault referral centre, who came up with the idea for the live link, tests the equipment. Picture: SARAH CALDECOTT

4:02am Saturday 10th October 2015

THE criminal justice system has in the past put barriers in the way of sexual assault victims seeking justice, says one of the region's most senior judges.

Fewer people smoking in the North-East than ever before

The Northern Echo: Fewer people in the North-East are smoking than ever before, new figures show.

5:20pm Thursday 8th October 2015

NEW figures show the North-East has seen the biggest drop in smokers in the country - with fewer people in the region now smoking than ever before.

Missing Kindle prompts Virgin East Coast strike ballot

The Northern Echo:

8:18am Thursday 8th October 2015

RAIL union RMT t is to ballot nearly 1,400 members on Virgin East Coast over the sacking of a colleague dismissed after a Kindle went missing on a train.

Windlestone Hall owner calls on police to 'put up or shut up' after spending almost a year on bail

The Northern Echo: The owner of historic Windlestone Hall, near Bishop Auckland, County Durham, claims he has been the victim of a "witch-hunt".

4:02am Tuesday 6th October 2015

THE owner of historic Windlestone Hall claims he has been the victim of a "witch-hunt" by the authorities after buying the 30-bedroom mansion for just £241,000.

Always keep a good earwig story for a rainy day

The Northern Echo: RURAL: Rishi Sunak

5:08pm Friday 2nd October 2015

RISHI SUNAK'S new column in the North Yorkshire and Cleveland editions of the paper has excited some comment – not all of it positive – but readers should count themselves lucky that nobody in the office could find Katie Hopkins' mobile number. A column from her would certainly have provoked lots of letters.

Darlington burglar crashed into house after telling girlfriend he would kill them both

The Northern Echo:

9:10am Thursday 1st October 2015

A DARLINGTON man who crashed his girlfriend's car into a house telling her he was going to kill them both has been jailed.

Space for four passengers and no standing room - man turns car into Arriva bus for charity

The Northern Echo:

1:03pm Monday 28th September 2015

IT may not hold many passengers but it is much easier to park than Chris Atkison's usual wheels.

Driver fails breath test after Thornaby crash

The Northern Echo: ARREST: A motorist was arrested on suspicion of drink driving after a crash in Thornaby Road, Thornaby.

11:52am Monday 28th September 2015

A SUSPECTED drink driver was arrested after crashing through a Teesside traffic signal.

Yorkshire Dales communities to miss out on cheap fuel after error by blundering tax officials

The Northern Echo: DISCOUNT: Dale Head Garage in Hawes will be the only garage in Wensleydale qualifying for the fuel duty relief

4:02am Saturday 26th September 2015

RURAL communities in the Yorkshire Dales will no longer benefit from cheaper fuel after blundering tax officials withdrew a discount given to two garages in error.

£750,000 of unsold Tour de France merchandise contributed to £1m Welcome to Yorkshire losses

The Northern Echo: RACE: The first stage of the 2014 Tour de France passes through Muker, in Swaledale.

10:00am Saturday 26th September 2015

STAGING the Tour de France left Welcome to Yorkshire (WTY) with losses of more than £1m - including £750,000 worth of unsold merchandise, The Northern Echo can reveal.

Two accidents at same spot on either side of A19 carrigeway

The Northern Echo:

8:22am Friday 25th September 2015

TWO accidents near Northallerton in North Yorkshire this morning caused major delays on the A19.

Boys, cars and a pickle-loving earwig

The Northern Echo: ROAD ACCIDENT: Two officers from North Yorkshire Police knocked on the door at 4.30am.

6:56am Friday 25th September 2015

WE were awoken by knocking at 4.30am on Sunday morning. I could tell it was the police as I came down the stairs, with their fluorescent jackets visible through the glass panel on the door.

Leyburn risks being "destroyed" by new housing, councillor claims

The Northern Echo: WARNING: Cllr Bernard Borman says Leyburn, pictured, is at risk of being destroyed.

4:33pm Thursday 24th September 2015

A YORKSHIRE Dales market town is at risk of being "destroyed" by unwanted new housing, a community leader has claimed as plans are drawn up for another large development.

Chancellor's £3m donation to Chinese grassroots football a 'slap in the face' to struggling North-East teams

The Northern Echo: FUNDING: Chancellor George Osborne meets young apprentice footballers at Soong Ching Ling Football School in the city of Urumqi, north west China, where he announced a £3 million funding boost to train 5000 Chinese football coaches. Photo: Stefan Roussea

3:05pm Thursday 24th September 2015

THE Government's decision to spend £3m on grassroots football in China is a "slap in the face" for North-East community clubs struggling to survive, it it is claimed.

Man arrested after teenager found with "unexplained injuries" outside school

The Northern Echo:

2:00pm Monday 5th October 2015

A MAN has been arrested on suspicion of grievous bodily harm after a teenager suffered serious head and eye injuries in an unexplained incident outside a school.

Folk duo to perform charity concert in Wensleydale village hall

1:35pm Tuesday 22nd September 2015

CARPERBY Concerts will hold their second charity event of the year on Saturday (September 26) when Miranda Sykes and Rex Preston make a much requested return to the village institute.

Family's anger after Darlington Memorial Hospital twice wrongly diagnoses dying pensioner

The Northern Echo: FAILINGS: Maurice Wright, 79, from Ferryhill, County Durham, pictured in his hospital bed shortly before his death.

12:00am Tuesday 22nd September 2015

THE family of a pensioner whose illness was twice misdiagnosed say the "diabolical" mistakes made at Darlington Memorial Hospital mean they are still suffering two years after his death.

Bargains in Hawes and ghosts in Richmond

The Northern Echo:

8:17am Thursday 17th September 2015

IT'S been a big couple of weeks for Hawes. First Iveson's electronics emporium managed to give my dad a cracking deal on a fridge freezer - £10 pounds cheaper than anywhere on-line.

Pensioner seriously injured in Stanhope collision

The Northern Echo: INJURY: The Great North Air Ambulance helicopter at the scene of the collision.

8:22pm Sunday 13th September 2015

AN 83-year-old suffered serious head injuries in road accident on Sunday morning.

Labour preparing for Corbyn win as North-East party branches welcome new members

The Northern Echo: ELECTION: Jeremy Corbyn is expected to be announced as the Labour Party's new leader on Saturday.

6:00am Saturday 12th September 2015

JEREMY Corbyn is expected to be announced as the new Labour leader today (Saturday, September 12) after a campaign which has seen the party attract thousands of new North-East members.

Police commissioners welcome plans to oversee fire services

The Northern Echo: PLANS: North Yorkshire police and crime commissioner says she welcomes plans to give PCCs control over fire services.

3:27pm Friday 11th September 2015

GOVERNMENT plans for firefighters and police officers to both be overseen by police and crime commissioners have been welcomed by North-East and North Yorkshire PCCs.

War legends leave behind enduring mark today

The Northern Echo: A bagpiper on Sword beach at Normandy, France. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

12:23pm Friday 11th September 2015

WE took advantage of the extra week of school holidays to leave the Shire looking for sun, adventure and cheap supermarket booze to see us through the long, cold winter months.

Funding cuts 'no excuse' for failings within children's services at North-East councils, says Government

The Northern Echo: NO EXCUSE: The Government says funding cuts are no excuse for failings within Darlington Borough Council children's services unit.

4:23am Thursday 10th September 2015

FUNDING cuts are no excuse for councils putting vulnerable youngsters at risk, says the Government amid claims austerity measures have led to serious failings found within two North-East local authorities.

Mums-to-be urged not to drink any alcohol during pregnancy

The Northern Echo: WARNING: Balance launched its 049 campaign at James Cook University Hospital, Middlesbrough. Pictured, from left, are Mary Edwards from Balance, along with mums to be Laura Paterson, Leanne Kettlewell and Lauren Williams, who are joined by midwife consult

5:05am Wednesday 9th September 2015

A GROUP of mums-to-be are warning of the dangers of drinking during pregnancy and are urging women to avoid alcohol altogether for the full nine months.

'We will know if fracking causes earthquakes' say North-East experts

The Northern Echo: TESTS: Exploration drilling at a potential fracking site.

1:50am Wednesday 9th September 2015

NORTH-East experts say they would be able to tell if fracking for gas caused earthquakes.

Rugby club has 48hrs to raise £13,000 to pay for improvements

The Northern Echo: FUNDRAISING: U9s coach Steven Michael with young players who took part in a bag pack to help raise money for the club.

2:55pm Tuesday 8th September 2015

A COMMUNITY rugby club which needs to raise £13,000 in just 48 hours to pay for a revamp of its clubhouse has appealed for help.

Home rule for Yorkshire? No-one asked me...

The Northern Echo: DEVOLUTION: George Osborne has made it clear there will be no deal without regions agreeing to elect a mayor. Picture: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

2:23pm Friday 4th September 2015

AS I write, you read and the dog licks itself, somewhere in Yorkshire there's a politician and local authority officer discussing how Yorkshire will be run in the future.

Yvette Cooper: Britain needs a Labour government more than ever

The Northern Echo: CONTENDER: Labour party leadership candidate Yvette Cooper speaks at an event in London.

12:23pm Wednesday 2nd September 2015

The Northern Echo continues its coverage of the Labour leadership campaign with Yvette Cooper claiming the Government’s recent promises to the North of England have already been broken.

What would Lemmy do?

The Northern Echo: DINOSAUR REQUEST: What would Lemmy do?

7:46am Friday 28th August 2015

I WALKED out of the house yesterday to find a large, dead fish on the road. It looked like an over-sized goldfish, although it could have been something more exotic.

Yorkshire council leaders draw up rival devolution bids

The Northern Echo: TALKS: North Yorkshire County Council leader Carl Les says negotiations will go to the wire.

4:53pm Thursday 27th August 2015

COMPLEX negotiations are underway to agree the future governance of Yorkshire with rival bids set to battle it out for devolved powers and funding.

Colburn mum thanks kind-hearted community for help to replace son's stolen car

The Northern Echo:

4:02am Thursday 27th August 2015

A MOTHER says she has been overwhelmed by the kindness of friends and strangers who have helped her replace her son's stolen car.

Devolved skills funding 'essential' for region's economic development

The Northern Echo: OPPORTUITY: Apprentice Anthony Butler at SW Durham Training in Newton Aycliffe.

4:02am Wednesday 26th August 2015

As The Northern Echo continues its Power to the North series on the bid for greater powers, Joe Willis assesses the benefit to economic development of devolved skills funding.

250,000 people in North-East at risk of type 2 diabetes

The Northern Echo: RISK: A nurse gives a patient a diabetes test.

12:03am Wednesday 26th August 2015

ALMOST a quarter of a million people in the North-East are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes which can lead to blindness, amputations and a stroke, experts have warned.

Tractor fire causes delays for motorists in Richmond

The Northern Echo: BLAZE: A tractor fire caused delays for motorists in Richmond.

2:01pm Monday 24th August 2015

A TRACTOR fire closed roads in a North Yorkshire market town today (Monday, August 24).

Police notified after County Durham voters sent two postal packs

The Northern Echo: VOTING: The police and Electoral Commission have been notified after voters in County Durham receive two postal packs.

4:02am Saturday 22nd August 2015

THE police and Electoral Commission have been notified after voters in County Durham received two postal packs ahead of a local election.

York school has best A-level results in region

The Northern Echo: SUCCESS: Newcastle Utd manager Steve McClaren with son Josh, who collected his results at Yarm School.

4:02am Saturday 22nd August 2015

THE Mount School in York recorded the best A-level results in the region for a fee-paying school, a study found.

Dales artists take moorland artwork to London

The Northern Echo: ARTWORK: Judith Bromley with paintings boxed up ready for London exhibition.

3:00pm Friday 21st August 2015

TWO artists have taken their work capturing the sights and sounds of moorland in the Yorkshire Dales to the heart of the city.

Catterick Garrison junction upgrades must be welcomed

The Northern Echo:

12:59pm Friday 21st August 2015

A £1.6 MILLION scheme to improve traffic flow along the A6136 in the Catterick Garrison area was announced this week.

Volunteers wanted to keep Yorkshire Dales National Park in good shape

The Northern Echo: BEAUTY: A species-rich wildflower meadow in Dentdale.

12:55pm Friday 21st August 2015

VOLUNTEERS are needed to join the team helping to keep the Yorkshire Dales National Park in top shape.

Where have all the crayfish gone?

The Northern Echo: MISSING: Crayfish appear not to be as common in the River Use as they once were.

7:27am Friday 21st August 2015

ISN'T that just great. RAF Menwith Hill, in the posh bit of the Dales at the bottom, features on an Isis hit-list. They apparently want to attack it with nuclear and/or chemical weapons because it gathers intelligence for the US military.

Teenager cautioned after fly fisherman assaulted in Yorkshire Dales

The Northern Echo: ATTACK: The man suffered facial injuries in the incident on the banks of the River Ure, near Redmire, pictured.

4:08am Wednesday 19th August 2015

A TEENAGER has been cautioned after a fisherman was attacked while fly fishing in the Yorkshire Dales.

Dales councillors hot and bothered over shades of grey pub paint job

The Northern Echo: COMPLAINT: Councillors have complained about the colour of the King’s Head pub in Grove Square, Leyburn.

4:08am Wednesday 19th August 2015

A PUB'S new paintwork has left community leaders reaching for the rule book.

Serious failings by doctors 'compounded family's grief', watchdog finds

The Northern Echo:

7:10am Wednesday 19th August 2015

DOCTORS have been accused of "serious failings" after a misdiagnosis of a pensioner's lung condition was found to have compounded his family's grief.

Farmers threaten to step-up protests over milk prices as Ministers hold talks

The Northern Echo: PROTEST: Farmers buy milk at Asda in Stockton earlier this month. PIC: ITV Tyne Tees.

5:53pm Monday 17th August 2015

FARMERS in the region have warned supermarkets they will step up the protests if talks to increase the price they receive for their milk do not bring about change.

Jack and Amelia remain the region's most popular baby names

The Northern Echo: Oliver Cheshire and former X Factor star Amelia Lily are thought to have inspired people' choice of names for their babies.

5:47pm Monday 17th August 2015

JACK and Amelia were the most popular names given to babies born in the North-East in 2014.

Rabbit rescuer says road builders are 'big softies' after handing in baby bunnies

The Northern Echo: LUCKY SEVEN: Bunny Burrows in Richmond have rescued baby rabbits from the A1 roadworks. Erin Hutchinson (11) and Rhianna Bromley (16) with the rabbits. Picture: CHRIS BOOTH

7:14am Saturday 15th August 2015

BABY rabbits found on the site of a new motorway are looked bright-eyed and bushy-tailed after being handed in to an animal rescue centre.

North-East GP shortage means 7-day service is "undeliverable"

The Northern Echo:

12:07am Saturday 15th August 2015

A CHRONIC shortage of trainee GPs in the North-East means Government plans to introduce seven-day opening for doctors' surgeries are "undeliverable", the medics' union has warned.

Are apprenticeships just conning school leavers?

The Northern Echo: Students at Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College, in Darlington, collect their A-level results. Picture: CHRIS BOOTH

5:02pm Friday 14th August 2015

PEOPLE sometimes say to me "Joe, what on earth was the column about this week?"

Review: Amontola Indian Restaurant

The Northern Echo: REVIEW: Amontola Indian Restaurant in Richmond. Picture: TOM BANKS

4:58pm Friday 14th August 2015

IT was a Saturday evening, or it could have been a Tuesday lunchtime. Sarah wore white, linen trousers or perhaps they were blue jeans. I needed a stiff drink beforehand, yes I definitely needed a drink beforehand.

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