OUR recent story about a possible legal action against British American Tobacco, which you can read here, sparked memories of two factories which employed thousands of people in the region.

Tobacco giant Rothmans had plants at both Darlington and Spennymoor, until both closed in the early 2000s.

We delved into the archives and found a number of photographs from those days, featuring VIP visits, horse drawn vehicles and some remarkable haircuts.

We hope you enjoy looking at them.