MORE high-street brands are facing collapse and there have been hundreds more Covid cases in the region. Here are the key talking points from the last 24-hours.

  • How many new cases are there in the North-East and North Yorkshire?

A further 881 people have tested positive for Covid in the North-East and North Yorkshire.

The Government has said a further 521 people have died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 as of today, bringing the UK total to 57,551.

Figures from NHS England show a further 23 people are confirmed to have died with the virus in hospital in the region.

Also as of 9am today, there have been a further 16,022 lab-confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK.

It brings the total number of cases in the UK to 1,589,301. Click here for a breakdown of cases via local authority.

  • Retail giant Arcadia Group on the brink of collapse

The owners of Topshop is set to collapse within days, putting around 15,000 jobs at risk, according to reports, bringing worry to the rest of the retail sector. 

Sir Philip Green’s retail empire, which runs the Topshop, Dorothy Perkins and Burton brands, is expected to appoint administrators for Deloitte in the coming days.

A supervisor at a rival retail brand in the North-East, who did not want to be named, said the potential collapse was worrying for the whole sector. Click here for the full story.

  • The devastating impact of Covid on children with autism in the North-East

COVID has had a devastating impact on children and young people with autism, according to a North-East organisation, while one mum "broke down" trying to home-school.

Michelle Weston was at “wit's end” with her sons, one of which is autistic, during the first lockdown when schools closed.

Nathan has an Education, Health and Care Plan meaning he was able to stay in school during the first lockdown, but this did not happen as he was going from Nursery to Reception.

According to The North East Autism Society, many autistic people experience anxiety and distress when there is a change in routine.

For those who struggle with flexible thinking, learning at home is even more difficult. Read the full report here. 

  • Longer Christmas shopping hours at Dalton Park- Adidas, Next and M&S taking part

Dalton Park, near Murton, will reopen on Wednesday, December 2 and stores will be able to operate until 7pm every week day up to and including Wednesday, December 23. Those already signed up to take part include Adidas, Lindt, Molton Brown, Next Outlet and M&S Outlet.

Weekend trading hours will be 9.30am to 6pm on Saturdays and 10.30am to 4.30pm on Sundays, and on Christmas Eve the centre will be open from 9am until 4pm. Click here to read more.

  • Amazon workers in Durham and Darlington to get cash bonus

An online retailer has confirmed that workers in Durham and Darlington will receive a cash bonus for working through the Covid pandemic.

Amazon, which has two major warehouses in Bowburn, near Durham and at Symmetry Park, Darlington, said it was 'thanking' its workforce for their efforts.

Amazon workers in the region, who are employed between December 1 and December 31 will get between £150 if they are part-time, and £300 if they are full-time. Read more here.

  • Shadow Chancellor hears Darlington pub landlord's concerns

A pub landlord has spoken of the grave challenges being faced by the hospitality industry as he is ‘staring down the barrel of Christmas being cancelled’.

Dave Johnson, landlord of The Hole in the Wall pub in Darlington, expressed his concerns during an online meeting with Labour Shadow Chancellor Anneliese Dodds.

Ms Dodds has been virtually meeting with many in the hospitality trade to hear how they are coping during these turbulent times. Read more.