CELEBRATIONS for Chinese new year will take place at Joseph Pease Place on Friday, January 31, from 1pm.

Students from Hummersknott School will perform a traditional dragon dance and students from Polam Hall will write calligraphy messages for visitors to their market stall.

Jenny Wong, subject leader for Mandarin at Hummersknott, said: “We want to wish everyone in Darlington a happy Chinese New Year. 2014 is the Year of the Horse. The horse is the seventh sign of the Chinese zodiac, which is made up of 12 animal signs.”

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CUTS MEETING: A public meeting to discuss the £3.5m of cuts that County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service must find by 2016/17 will be held next month. It will take place on Monday, February 17, at 6.30pm, at Darlington Fire Station, in St Cuthbert’s Way.

ART SHOW: Track Across Time, an exhibition of contemporary art, is being staged at the Head of Steam railway museum. It features work by Carolyn Corfield, Vera Hynes and Graeme Rowett and runs until March 30. Normal museum admission charges apply.

SCHOOL D-DAY: Darlington Borough Council’s planning committee will meet on Wednesday (January 29), at 1.30pm, to discuss controversial plans for an extension to Skerne Park Academy. The school wants to extend an existing building to provide three extra classrooms, as well as a sports hall and changing facilities. Residents of neighbouring Eden Crescent have objected, saying the views from the rear of their properties would be obscured. A decision on the application was deferred earlier this month, after the school failed to send a representative to the committee meeting.

MAYOR’S PLANS: Darlington mayor Charles Johnson will attend a Holocaust Memorial Day event, at the Dolphin Centre, at 1pm, on Monday (January 27).