• When the going gets tough

    When there is no alternative, you just have to leg it. One memorable image of the awful floods a couple of weeks ago was, above, at Lanchester, near Durham City, where surface water flooded Front Street, causing a number of businesses to close. Houses

  • Degrees of success for students

    At the age of 16, Dominic White left school with two 0-levels, determined not to return to education. More than 16 years later, he has come joint top of his year at the University of Teesside, achieving a first class BSc (Hons) degree in sport science

  • Memories are made of this

    AS befits an up-market new hotel and restaurant, the claims in the literature are as effusive as a testimonial on vellum. "Art deco atmosphere," it says. "Champagne and oyster bar, unashamed elegance, fine dining experience, gourmet cuisine, unique, unforgettable

  • Body find linked to pensioner

    A BODY found in a field is believed to be that of a pensioner missing for three months. DNA tests were being carried out last night to confirm if the body was that of Alzheimer's sufferer George Harding. The 83-year-old disappeared from his home in Geoffrey

  • Cigarettes seized in club raid

    CUSTOMS and Excise officers last night claimed a significant success in their war against smugglers after 13,000 cigarettes were recovered during a raid on a club car park. In a joint operation with Cleveland Police, ten customs officers raided the car

  • Reaching US election fatigue

    DO you care who wins - Gush or Bore? The BBC has been boring us and gushing us with reports on the American presidential election since last spring's primaries. Why? For no other reason than that this provides limitless opportunities for transatlantic

  • Death of former arts chief at 69

    A FORMER arts figurehead is being mourned after he died of cancer at the age of 69. Peter Lofthouse was chairman of the Darlington Society of Arts (DSA) until retiring from the post in March after four years due to his ill health. He was architect of

  • Domestic violence in the spotlight

    PUPILS from seven County Durham schools will spend this week devising a play to highlight the issue of domestic violence. The "play in a week" is one of a series of projects organised by North Durham Domestic Violence Forum. The event takes place in the

  • Police issue warning after burglars strike

    HOMEOWNERS have been warned to be on their guard after a string of burglaries in an area of north Durham. During the past two weeks, private homes in Brackenbeds Close in Pelton, and others in Ouston, near Chester-le-Street have been singled out by thieves

  • Police put crime-free shopping on wishlist

    POLICE horses wearing comic antlers launched an anti-Christmas crime initiative - and underlined a Yuletide message. Cleveland Police want Christmas shopping in Middlesbrough to be both safe and fun. They are stepping up both uniformed and undercover

  • Firm bucks trend in move that will generate more jobs

    A DEAL to safeguard the jobs of a major employer in an unemployment blackspot was announced yesterday. Stairlift manufacturer Bison Bede has announced an expansion plan which will see it open new premises in Consett. The company, which already employs

  • Firm fined over injury to worker's arm

    A FIRM that supplied a plastics press which almost severed a machine operator's arm has been fined £45,000 for negligence. It took firefighters an hour to dismantle the cutting machine and free 35-year-old Paul Dolan at the Presentation Plastics factory

  • It's the outdoor life for Bambis like me

    A TEESSIDE town was transformed into a Christmas card scene as the first skaters sampled the magic of an outdoor ice rink. With faces aglow, novices like myself shared the ice with expert skaters at Middlesbrough's newest and most spectacular attraction

  • Crater's return leaves couple in a hole

    FURIOUS Jean Driscoll is counting the cost after a huge crater appeared outside her home for the third time in as many years. She had driven over the spot just minutes before the ground gave way, to reveal a 20ft hole. Local government worker Jean, 45

  • Studios proposal angers residents

    A CONTROVERSIAL proposal to build artists' studios on a former gardeners' site is expected to win councillors' approval. A proposal has been submitted to develop studios, a gallery and public toilets on the Old Nursery Site, at Rose Walk, Saltburn. While

  • Church celebrates £100,000 revamp

    A FIVE-YEAR campaign to renovate one of Darlington's oldest Methodist churches has come to fruition. Worshippers at Cockerton Methodist Church raised more than £100,000 for the work. Although it could not be altered from the outside because it is in a

  • Anti-vice patrols plan by residents

    ANGRY members of the Asian community are to begin vigilante-style patrols to drive prostitutes from the streets. Although organisers insist they are not vigilantes, they will carry out regular shifts to move prostitutes on and discourage kerb crawlers

  • Film stars add sparkle to festive lights switch-on

    GLITTERING stars are to set Stockton alight this weekend, when they switch on the town's Christmas lights. Film sensations Jamie Bell, from Billingham - star of Billy Elliot - and Bobby Power, of There's Only One Jimmy Grimble fame, will bring a sparkle

  • Teenagers rape girl at rail station

    TWO teenage boys raped a 16-year-old girl after dragging her from a railway platform. The girl was waiting at the Metro station at Jarrow when her attackers, thought to be aged 15 or 16, grabbed her. They forced her up an embankment into bushes, opposite

  • Antiques restorer to pass on 'trade secrets'

    A FORMER grammar school master is to give a talk on the restoration of furniture at one of Teesside's "hidden gems". Ken Bowers is a nationally-renowned restorer of fine and antique furniture and has been responsible for the restoration of several pieces

  • Tree planting record bid

    THE residents of a County Durham village are being invited to pull on their wellies and take part in a record-breaking tree planting event on Saturday. About 150 birch, pines, oak, yew, hawthorn and blackthorns will be planted at the recreation ground

  • Firm fined over injury to worker's arm

    A FIRM that supplied a plastics press which almost severed a machine operator's arm has been fined £45,000 for negligence. It took firefighters an hour to dismantle the cutting machine and free 35-year-old Paul Dolan at the Presentation Plastics factory

  • Groups benefit from extra grant support

    A DOZEN Teesdale groups have benefited from cash assistance from the Middleton Plus group in the past ten months. As part of its project funded by the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund, Bishop Auckland College, County Durham Training and

  • Cathedral service celebrates 1,000 years

    A THOUSAND years of Durham county and diocese will be celebrated at a millennium service on Sunday. Durham's Lord Lieutenant, Sir Paul Nicholson, will lead one of the largest processions of the county's civic, clerical, academic and ceremonial figures

  • Villagers unveil millennium memento

    A PAIR of millennium stones to greet visitors to a village have been unveiled. The York stone blocks, 5ft high and weighing six tonnes, were dedicated at Neasham, near Darlington. They have been made by Shipley Quarry, Barnard Castle,and sited outside

  • Golf club raids

    Thieves have broken into two golf clubs in north-west Durham before escaping with hundreds of pounds from gaming machines. The first raid was at the South Moor club, Stanley, County Durham, on Saturday. The Hobson, near Burnopfield, was raided on Sunday

  • Dog watch scheme to be extended

    A DOG watch scheme, aimed at reducing the problem of fouling, is to be extended to all parishes in Richmondshire. Councillors approved the move after hearing that pilot schemes at Scorton, near Richmond, and Colburn, Catterick Garrison, were successful

  • Top meal-makers get starters order

    FOUR budding nutritionists dreamed up winning menus fit to feed an Olympic athlete. The quartet were the gold medal winners from hundreds of primary and special school pupils who entered the contest, coinciding with the climax of the Olympic Games. Voicing

  • Pat on the back for floods heroes

    EAST Durham council workers who manned pumps round the clock to keep flood waters at bay have been given an official pat on the back. On two occasions earlier this year several properties in Wingate were flooded, leaving residents and business owners

  • MP condemns record on yobs

    COUNCIL bosses on Teesside were last night condemned for their "dismal" record in dealing with noisy yobs and unruly neighbours. Ashok Kumar, Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, hit out after finding that only seven anti-social behaviour

  • Age limit on buying pets hailed

    ANIMAL welfare officers in the region have backed legislation which would make it illegal for pet shops to sell animals to unaccompanied children under 16. The Pet Animals (Amendment) Bill will be introduced in the House of Commons today, by Southend

  • Death of railwayman who became novelist

    A LONG-SERVING railwayman, who discovered a talent for writing in his 70s, has died at the age of 93. Tom Bellis lived in Shildon, County Durham, all of his life until he moved to Teesside six weeks before his death to be closer to his family. He worked

  • Cameras help to save lives in police focus against speeding

    LIVES are being saved in a camera-led crackdown on speed on roads across part of the North-East. It is understood that there were no speed-related deaths on Teesside's roads between April and September. Cleveland is one of only a handful of police force

  • School arts college bid stepped up

    A DARLINGTON school is stepping up its bid to gain arts college status. Haughton Community School has launched a week-long festival of African film, dance and animation. The Adpana Festival started yesterday and runs until Saturday. It will be open to

  • Doctor sacked for affair to fight for his job back

    A SURGEON who was sacked after having an affair with a patient has appealed against his dismissal, it was confirmed last night. Consultant gynaecologist Neil Hebblethwaite is attempting to win back his old job at the Friarage Hospital in Northallerton

  • Headteacher seeks another chance for RC school

    A HEADTEACHER is appealing for his closure-threatened school to be given another chance. Chris Griffiths, head of St Anthony's School, Middlesbrough, will attend a meeting of Middlesbrough Borough Council's cabinet today, which will take a step nearer

  • Job Search 2000

    MORE details about the jobs below are available from the Employment Service Direct on (0845) 606 0234. General operative, Seal Sands. £4ph, 7am to 3pm, Mon-Fri. Required for cleaning tasks. Experience preferred but not essential as training given. Aged

  • Job Search 2000

    MORE details about the jobs below are available from the Employment Service Direct on (0845) 606 0234. Bar person, Seaham. £3.70ph, 11hrs pw, Thurs 7-11pm, Sun tba. Age 18-plus. Experience not essential as full training given. Health and hygiene certificate

  • Government inspector to hear evidence on footpath campaign

    AN inspector calls in Richmond today - and his decision could seal the fate of the fight to save a popular riverside walk. The Swale has already undercut its north bank along a stretch of the Drummer Boy Walk, close to Easby Abbey, with sections falling

  • Band hopes for break

    A BAND is looking to the big time with the help of a New Deal for Musicians programme. Skeat, from Billingham, are training at Darlington's Circulation Records as part of the Employment Service scheme. Bass player Phil Saunders said: "We get free studio

  • Boro supporter is the most loyal by miles

    ARGUABLY Boro's biggest fan, Garry Thorburn is almost certainly the club's best-travelled. But the Teesside businessman, who has notched up more than 100,000 air miles since August flying back from work commitments in the United States no less than seven

  • BBC therapy benefits the Murton guinea pigs

    A three-month experiment to decide if footballers benefit from the appliance of science came to a conclusion at the weekend. The formula seemed to be working. Murton, second bottom last season in the Northern League second division, have been willing

  • MP seeks inquiry

    AN MP wants an investigation into the alleged misuse of funds by a development group. Ashok Kumar, MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, will meet Sir John Bourne, of the National Audit Office (NAO), to discuss allegations about the former Teesside

  • Grassroots sport to benefit from fund

    GREAT North Run founder Brendan Foster promotes what organisers hope will be another sporting success for the region tonight. The Olympian will launch the County Durham Foundation's new Sports Fund. Set up to back community-based sports clubs and activities

  • £6,000 boost for Katie Trust

    FUNDRAISERS in the North-East are celebrating following an abseil down the Tyne Bridge on Sunday. The event was organised by the Katie Trust, a Redcar-based charity which is raising money to fund a new research post at the regional cancer research unit

  • Care plans announced for Christmas

    SOCIAL services has announced its plans to ensure everyone in Darlington who needs help is catered for over Christmas and the New Year. Plans to be presented to cabinet next week outline a programme of care, which aim to upgrade services between December

  • Villagers support scheme to stop speeding at blackspot

    A COMPREHENSIVE road safety package aimed at slowing traffic through a North Yorkshire village, which is notorious for accidents, has been welcomed by residents. Skeeby has already been promised a lower speed limit - down to 30mph from 40mph - on a road

  • Neglect claim man 'an animal lover'

    A MAN who took home a foal to "try and save its life" appeared before magistrates yesterday charged with neglecting the animal. John Williamson, of St Mary's Close, Bishop Auckland, appeared before the town's magistrates' court, charged with failing to

  • Businesses rally to help brave tot

    A CAMPAIGN to give a brave little boy a fantastic Christmas is gathering pace with businesses coming forward to donate more than 20 prizes. The goods will be used in a raffle to raise funds for Cameron Murray, a 15-month-old County Durham youngster, who

  • Shop owner is a real high fries when it comes to tasting sucess

    A FISH and chip shop has tasted success by landing a top national award for standards in the industry. Morley's, at Cheveley Park, on the outskirts of Durham, won the Seafish Friers Quality Award following a tough inspection. Judges looked at the quality

  • Pupils back walk week

    A SCHEME to encourage children to walk to school has been given the thumbs-up in Darlington. Walk to School Day was celebrated at the beginning of last month, and schools in the town were asked for their thoughts on the event. Pupils from Dodmire Junior

  • Families protest at plans for mast

    VILLAGERS fear that plans to erect a mobile phone mast near their homes could pose a fatal health risk to their children. Mobile phone company One 2 One wants to put up the 41ft mast on land opposite an area where children play football, at West Cornforth

  • Off beat idea is a hit with cyclists

    POLICE are encouraging young people to get on their bikes, by using unclaimed property. Youths who attend the Offbeat Bike Club, which meets weekly at Gateshead East Police station, learn how to maintain and mend old cycles as well as enjoying exploring

  • Museums solve present problems

    PEOPLE looking for ideas for Christmas are being advised to try Stockton Borough Council's museums service. Visitors to museums and galleries can pick up scores of gift ideas, as well as a few special presents. The Green Dragon Museum, off Stockton High

  • Wine sales in the pink

    WINE warehouse chain Majestic yesterday brushed aside post-millennium blues to see revenues lift during the first six months of the year. Sales for the firm rose 6.6 per cent to £36.9m during the period to September 25, but higher distribution costs and

  • Man stabbed at cashpoint

    A MAN was stabbed in the back as he withdrew money from a cashpoint. The 54-year-old was in a stable condition in hospital following the attack in Crowhall Lane, Felling, Gateshead. The man was making a withdrawal from the machine at 8.15pm on Saturday

  • Sea-coaling under scrutiny

    COUNCILLORS in Hartlepool met yesterday to start a process which could see an agreement reached on sea-coaling. For decades, residents have complained that sea-coalers cause more harm than good as they make their collections from the town's beaches. Others

  • TSB opens customer centre

    SUNDERLAND Council chiefs are celebrating the opening of a high street bank's new customer contact centre. The 28,000 sq ft facility has been opened by Lloyds TSB at the Hylton Riverside Business Park, and has already recruited 80 people - another 420

  • Sentence 'not day too long' burglar told

    A SIX-YEAR jail term imposed on a Newcastle burglar who preyed on the elderly to feed his heroin addiction was not a day too long, London's Appeal Court ruled yesterday. Mr Justice Longmore said the sentence on 25-year-old Paul Paton, of Linden Avenue

  • Pupils make banner headlines

    PUPILS from a Darlington school have been put forward for the finals of the Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital national banner contest. The Gurney Pease Primary School choir achieved the feat with their eye-catching banner, showing the school's motif

  • Father jailed for child sex 20 years ago

    A PAEDOPHILE father and son were sentenced yesterday for child sex offences. William Rawlings, 55, of Egmont Road, Middlesbrough, was jailed for four years after a Teesside Crown Court jury convicted him of attempted rape, three offences of indecent assault

  • Music while you shop

    LIVE music will bring an extra touch of festive spirit to the traditional craft fairs held in Richmond Market Hall in the run-up to Christmas. Richmond Live, which promotes live entertainment in the town, is providing musicians and singers for the three

  • Mothers plead for addict sons to be locked up

    THE mothers of two teenage heroin addicts have pleaded for their sons to be locked up in time for Christmas. Both offenders, aged 17 and 18, spend up to £200 a week to pay for their drug habit, meeting the cost through shoplifting, burglary and street

  • Refuse collectors strike over hours wrangle

    REFUSE collectors began strike action yesterday following weeks of wrangling with Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council. They are unhappy with council plans to introduce a series of shift patterns, which would see them working in the evenings. A series

  • No happy ending for bridge swan

    A SWAN was struck by a lorry yesterday morning as it tried to fly over a bridge. The incident happened on the Princess Diana Bridge, Stockton, as the bird tried to gain height to fly over the bridge, but miscalculated and was struck by the vehicle. A

  • Wheelie bins on way

    WHEELIE bins are expected to be distributed throughout a town after they met with the approval of residents. A trial of the mobile refuse containers began in two areas of Middlesbrough in April, for six months. During its operation, a careful check was

  • Door opens to folk music talent

    A REGULAR showcase for folk music talent will give Chester-le-Street artistes a chance to shine. St Cuthbert's Social Club, in Lumley Terrace, will hold an open event every Saturday, in which musicians, singers and comics can strut their stuff in front

  • Dig deep for memories

    MEMORIES of a bygone age are needed for a project to celebrate a part of Hartlepool's heritage. Community Support Officer Angela Palliser wants to hear people's stories about the Burn Valley Gardens, for a project called Back to Our Roots. The aim is

  • Job Search 2000

    MORE details about the jobs below are available from the Employment Service Direct on (0845) 606 0234. Bricklayer/joiner, £4.50ph, full time, semi-skilled required for brickwork and joinery work. Ref; SPE 8605. Domestic plumber, Crook, 8am to 4.30pm Mon-Thurs

  • Job Search 2000

    MORE details about the jobs below are available from the Employment Service Direct on (0845) 606 0234. Accounts manager, York area. £15,000pa, full-time. Sales experience essential. Must have clean driving licence. Ref: NOE 12368. Manuscript preparer/