FIVE years ago this week, a North-East captain who stayed to finish her tour of duty in Afghanistan despite warnings of breast cancer prepared to run in the Darlington Race for Life.

Captain Angela Landrell, from Newton Aycliffe, was three weeks away from the end of her post treating injured soldiers when she found a lump in her breast later confirmed to be cancer. Despite doctor’s recommendations she opted to stay with her comrades in Helmand Province until her tour of duty was completed.

The 46-year-old said: "Everybody wanted me to come home, but because I went out there with everyone, I wanted to come home with them. I thought I'd finish my tour."

Captain Landrell underwent surgery and ran in the all-women’s 5k event to help the ongoing fight against cancers supported by her family.

Also that week, a campaign launched by North-East newspapers, called NEvolution, which aimed to secure powers and funding for the North-East, received backing by Lord Heseltine and former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

Lord Heseltine published his No Stone Unturned report eight months before, calling for local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) to bid for huge spending pots, worth £17.5bn a year, and control over skills budgets, infrastructure funds and job-creation schemes.

He said: "To secure change, it will require determination by not just newspapers, but by MPs, council leaders and industrialists.”

When questioned in the Commons, Mr Clegg said: "The more we can devolve power and control over money and decision making from Whitehall to the town hall, and from the town hall to local areas, the better.”

Darlington town centre marked 150 years of its historic market place with two days of festivities.

Traders wore Victorian dress while workshops were held in the market square including toy-cast painting, liquorice making, spectacle making and cloth dying.

And the first ox to be roasted in the market square since 1902 was unveiled after cooking for 24 hours in the market square.

Councillor Nick Wallis, Darlington Borough Council's cabinet member for leisure and local environment, said: "The market has stood the test of time and I hope everyone comes along and celebrates. Thanks to all who have prepared for the weekend – it's now down to everyone to join in."

One of the region's MPs caused consternation when she said female doctors are a burden on the NHS.

Anne McIntosh, Tory MP for Thirsk and Malton, said training female doctors who go on to have children and then work part-time places a tremendous strain on the health service.

During a Westminster Hall debate yesterday on the widely-criticised 111 urgent care helpline, Miss McIntosh said: "It's a controversial thing to say, but perhaps I as a woman can say this – 70 per cent of medical students currently are women and they are very well-educated and very well qualified.

"When they go into practice and then, in the normal course of events, will marry and have children, they often want to go part-time and it is obviously a tremendous burden training what effectively might be two GPs working part-time.

"I think that is something that is going to put a huge burden on the health service."

And the Teesside windfarm off the coast of Redcar was completed after engineers finished erecting all 27 turbines.

Eight of the turbines had already been providing electricity to the National Grid and the remaining were turned on during the summer of that year.

Christian Egal, EDF Energy Renewables chief executive, said: "As our first offshore scheme, we are delighted the new wind farm continues to make progress and will soon be producing electricity that will make an important contribution to the country's renewable energy targets.”