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Email: echo@nne.co.uk

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Stirling service of a student and a steam launch

The Northern Echo: SHILDON STORY: Sheila Dibnah with her new book and her late husband’s favourite engine at Locomotion

9:51am Thursday 17th April 2014

IT was brilliant to see Sheila Dibnah in The Northern Echo at Locomotion at Shildon (Echo, Apr 14). She was proclaiming the GNR Stirling Single No 1 engine was the favourite engine of her late husband, Fred. It has an 8ft diameter drive wheel and is pea green.

Council care homes

9:50am Thursday 17th April 2014

YESTERDAY, the Durham County Council cabinet made the decision to close its remaining residential homes.

Food banks

9:50am Thursday 17th April 2014

THE number of people using food banks in the last 12 months has risen to nearly one million (Echo, Apr 16). Forgive me if I’m out of touch, but I thought the economy was improving.

Railway heritage

9:50am Thursday 17th April 2014

I AM writing to support Barrie Lamb’s letter (HAS, Apr 15) concerning the future of Locomotion No 1 and Darlington’s Head of Steam railway museum.

Council contact

9:49am Thursday 17th April 2014

YOU printed a letter where the correspondent asked you not to print their name or address (HAS, Apr 15). The person states that they had contacted their local councillors and had not received a reply or acknowledgement.


9:49am Thursday 17th April 2014

I CAN never admit to being a fan or supporter of Liverpool FC, but I have always admired them and looked on them as a true English Premier League team. They have never been afreaid to include a smattering of Britiah and Irish talent in their time, and still do so today.

European elections

9:48am Thursday 17th April 2014

THE BBC has been showing the workings of the European Parliament. We need to get out of it asap. Hundreds of assorted bodies like battery hens pressing buttons with no debate, and this is the way 50 per cent of our laws are made?

Party faithful

9:47am Thursday 17th April 2014

IN answer to Adam Walker (HAS, Apr 12), I am sure that there is not one political party member who agrees with all of the policies of any party, whether it be Labour, Tory or any of the smaller parties.

Topping topped with Graffiti

The Northern Echo: AT THE SUMMIT: Josh Heslop and Charlotte Laidler up Roseberry

9:41am Wednesday 16th April 2014

WELL done Josh Heslop, 11, of Ingleby Barwick who climbed Roseberry Topping to raise money in memory of his late step-grandfather (Echo, Apr 14).

Barnett formula

9:40am Wednesday 16th April 2014

SO, the Scots are to be bribed to vote “no” in September’s independence referendum by raising the extra funding they get to £733 more per person, more than double the £361 extra they were getting in 2010-11 (Echo, Apr 14).


9:39am Wednesday 16th April 2014

HERE we go again, another round of shameless socialist hypocrisy blathering on about coal mines, again implying that every mine that closed only ever closed under a Conservative government.

Climate change

9:39am Wednesday 16th April 2014

The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change advises that it is still possible to keep global temperature rises to within two per cent of the preindustrial levels by the end of the century but it relies on measures being taken without delay.

Nigel Evans

9:37am Wednesday 16th April 2014

NIGEL EVANS MP, the former Deputy Speaker, makes the outrageous claim that because he has been cleared in a court of law of sexual offences that the Crown Prosecution Service should pay his legal costs (Echo, Apr 14).

Sunderland FC

9:37am Wednesday 16th April 2014

WHERE did it go wrong? The season from beginning to end has been a complete disaster. In my opinion, owner Ellis Short has a lot to answer for. Certainly, he is not a football man. We had one in Niall Quinn – a legend and freeman of the city who loves the club.

Horse racing

9:36am Wednesday 16th April 2014

IN response to Eric Schofield (HAS, Apr 10), there were no fatalities in this year’s Grand National but in a typical week at least three horses die on British racecourses and others die in training.


9:35am Wednesday 16th April 2014

IT was sad to see bikes, one with a vintage hand-built frame, in the skips on a recent visit to Darlington’s Whessoe Road recycling centre. They must have been destined for the waste metal crusher.

Council pensions

9:34am Wednesday 16th April 2014

TOWN hall pensions claimed by thousands of councillors are thankfully to be abolished from May. The number of elected representatives, including council leaders and mayors, who have climbed aboard this local government pensions gravy train has soared since the last Labour government introduced this publicly funded scheme in 2001.

Plastic soup

9:34am Wednesday 16th April 2014

HARRY MEAD’S column (Echo, Apr 9) entitled “The curse of the sea’s plastic soup” should send shivers down our spines. All the wildlife in our seas is under threat from plastic waste.

The loco's not for turning

The Northern Echo: ON THE MOVE: Locomotion No 1 in the Head of Steam museum

9:31am Tuesday 15th April 2014

THE suggestion that Locomotion No 1, the world’s first passenger engine, should be moved from its place in Darlington’s Head of Steam railway museum to either Bank Top station or the High Row is a non-starter. The Science Museum, which is its custodian and which is the parent of the national railway museums, would not allow it to happen.


9:30am Tuesday 15th April 2014

IT gives me no great pleasure to see that my prediction on Wednesday (HAS, Apr 9) was fulfilled by Friday.

Scottish vote

9:29am Tuesday 15th April 2014

THE first minister of Scotland, Alex Salmond, deputy first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, and finance minister, John Ramsey Swinney, are attacking the UK at every opportunity, trying to get a “yes” vote on September 18.

Special relationship

9:28am Tuesday 15th April 2014

IF anyone still believes in the special relationship we are supposed to have with the US, let them consider the following two cases:

Kingsway club

9:27am Tuesday 15th April 2014

YOUR article “Modellers find a new home – in the pub” (Echo, Apr 14) may be read to suggest that The Kingsway Club, in Bishop Auckland, had “folded”.

Parking wardens

9:27am Tuesday 15th April 2014

I WISH Darlington council would give its over-zealous parking wardens something better to do other than targeting law-abiding citizens.

Labour control

9:26am Tuesday 15th April 2014

IN the elections of May 2013, the electorate of Spennymoor and Tudhoe voted to retain Labour control and re-elect Labour councillors. A substantial group of respectable, intelligent, hardworking and extremely capable independent and BNP candidates were ignored.

Bishop Hospital

9:26am Tuesday 15th April 2014

I HAVE recently spent a few days at Bishop Auckland Hospital having a hip operation and have nothing but admiration for my treatment and care. The staff at the hospital and in particular ward 18 were professional and exceeded my expectations.

Hey, good looking

9:26am Tuesday 15th April 2014

DRIVING through the roadworks recently in Newport Road, Middlesbrough, I noticed a traffic sign which bears the single word “Lookers”. Does this mean that only physically attractive people are allowed into central Middlesbrough?

Where did it all go wrong for Gus Poyet

The Northern Echo: BLACK CATS BOSS: Gus Poyet faces an uphill struggle to keep Sunderland in the Premiership next season

11:24am Monday 14th April 2014

I READ Gus Poyet’s post match comments after Sunderland’s most recent defeat with mixed emotions ranging from resignation, through sheer frustration to absolute anger.

Wind Farm

11:24am Monday 14th April 2014

TIME and time again the Banks Group has tried to make people back its Windy Banks wind farm development and every time it has dramatically back fired.

Maria Miller

11:23am Monday 14th April 2014

DID former Culture Secretary Maria Miller jump or was she pushed? The timing of her resignation saved David Cameron from a testing meeting with the Conservative back bench 1922 Committee.


11:23am Monday 14th April 2014

RECENTLY, the BBC hosted a discussion on the best way to make an apology.

Government Record

11:22am Monday 14th April 2014

REGARDING the letter from Tom Brown criticising Government policies (HAS, Apr 1). He asks if they are in the same world as us, like many of your other critics, and manages to completely ignore the following measures taken in recent budgets to narrow the gap between the haves and the have nots: 1. They plan to raise the tax threshold above £10,000; 2. millions of people are getting an extra tax cut; 3. tycoon tax has been raised five times as much for the super rich; 4. stamp duty has increased to 70 per cent for multi-million pound homes; 5. tax cuts have saved the average worker £550 6. two million low paid workers have been lifted out of income tax; 7. a new tax on companies buying properties over £2m; 8. child benefit has been protected for middle class families.

Parking Charges

11:21am Monday 14th April 2014

I WOULD like to thank staff at the Friarage Hospital, in Northallerton, and my consultant, Mr White, for a successful operation. A big thank you.

Road Repairs

11:21am Monday 14th April 2014

ONCE again, Durham County Council has demonstrated an amazing grasp of both timing and co-ordination using tax payers’ money.

The Worker's Friend?

11:21am Monday 14th April 2014

THE Labour party was founded to represent the working class, which has changed for the worst.

Easter Card

11:20am Monday 14th April 2014

I FIND it difficult to believe the Rev Peter Mullen can’t find a genuine Easter card in London (Echo, Apr 9).

A polite word

11:19am Friday 11th April 2014

REGARDING Tony Kelly’s recent letter about good manners (HAS, Apr 4). While I understand Mr Kelly’s overall point concerning the Japanese people, I thought some remarks were very unfair to us Brits.

Fate of elderly in hands of Durham County Council

11:18am Friday 11th April 2014

NEXT week at Crook Civic Centre the fate of a number of elderly people will, once again, be in the hands of Durham County Council.

Doris always makes my day

11:17am Friday 11th April 2014

I TUNED into BBC Radio 2’s 90th birthday tribute to American singer and actress Doris Day to which columnist Harry Mead recently referred (Echo, Apr 2).

Return to core values a must for Co-op

11:06am Friday 11th April 2014

FOR as long as I can remember, the Co-op has been there in so many guises. Not just the convenience store, but as a way of life for many people. The place where the “divi” was an incentive to save.

Cashing in on reality TV

11:04am Friday 11th April 2014

JERMAINE JACKMAN was a very worthy winner of The Voice this year. For a young man of 19, he has a very powerful and mature voice and I think he is bound for stardom unlike some singers on other televised song contests. Some winners you never hear of again.

Anti-racism campaigner Blair Peach

11:16am Friday 11th April 2014

FOLLOWING the acquital of Nicky Jacobs over the murder of PC Keith Blakelock, Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley vowed: “We will not give up on bringing Keith’s killers to justice.” (Echo, Apr 10)

Memories of lambs playing and men in white overalls

11:01am Friday 11th April 2014

THIS morning, as I watched the lambs playing and aggravating their mothers, I found my mind going back to that awful spring of 2001 and the foot and mouth outbreak.

Gypsy site appeal win would be "positive discrimination"

10:56am Friday 11th April 2014

I WRITE regarding the recent planning appeal hearing regarding an application for two gypsy sites, located on the outskirts of Heighington (Echo, Apr 2).

Grand National

10:54am Friday 11th April 2014

I BET the bookies would like the Grand National to be run more often. That way the profit they make on the race would help offset the new tax they will have to pay.

Treasuring our heritage

The Northern Echo: BANK TOP: Locomotion No 1, and boys, at the station in 1933

10:27am Thursday 10th April 2014

SUSAN JALEEL suggested (HAS, Apr 3) that the Stockton and Darlington Railway’s Locomotion No 1 and Derwent should be returned to Bank Top Station “where they belong”.

Auckland Castle

10:24am Thursday 10th April 2014

I READ of Jonathan Ruffer’s plans for a historical theme park near Auckland Castle (Echo, Apr 3), and it thrilled me to see how enthusiastic everybody is about them in Bishop Auckland.

Crook's future

10:24am Thursday 10th April 2014

I AM totally in agreement with Eric Schofield (HAS, Apr 5) regarding the multi-screen cinema planned for St Helen Auckland. It is badly needed.

Regional assembly

10:23am Thursday 10th April 2014

OUR politicians tell us that a regional assembly will greatly benefit us all by representing the views of the entire region (HAS, Apr 8). Why is it that the same politicians are falling out among themselves as they struggle to set up such a group? If the benefits of working together are so obvious, why do we need an additional layer of government to make the politicians work together? Am I getting cynical in my old age or am I missing something here?

Grand National

10:23am Thursday 10th April 2014

THE Grand National is in many people’s opinion one of the greatest sporting spectacles in the world. I would like to send my commiserations to the pessimists and do-gooders, like your correspondent Alison Jermy (HAS, Apr 3) that there were no fatal falls to horses or injuries to jockeys for the second consecutive year.

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