TEN years ago, this week, a kind-hearted girl recovering from a rare brain tumour sent a Christmas thank-you to some special friends.

Eight-year-old Naomi Savage spoke to The Northern Echo to thank all those who raised £31,000 for her Fight for Life Fund, set up in 2007 to finance research into brain tumours.

The youngster, from Romanby, near Northallerton, North Yorkshire, hoped the fund would help other children.

Naomi was diagnosed with the aggressive brain tumour, ependymoma, at the age of four.

After three brain operations and 28 rounds of intensive chemotherapy, she was told she was free of cancer.

“I want to thank all the people who raised money for my fund and who help children who are still sick in hospital, “ the youngster said.

Meanwhile, the RSPCA was working with Whitworth Hall, near Spennymoor, after at least eight deer perished after venturing onto the frozen water.

Horrified families contacted The Northern Echo after children, many of whom were visiting Santa’s grotto, saw the carcasses frozen in the ice.

The Northern Echo:

The RSPCA advised that food, water and shelter be provided away from the lake in an effort to dissuade the deer from going near it.

Days later, the measures taken to improve the situation were proven effective.

Meanwhile, a best-selling author joined campaigners in sub-zero temperatures to protest against planned library closures.

Mike Pannett was with members of a group set up to save the library in Easingwold, North Yorkshire, which was one of 24 earmarked for closure, as North Yorkshire County Council strived to save £2m from its library budget over four years in response to public sector cuts.

The Northern Echo:

People in Easingwold said the library was a focal point of community life, attracting 49,000 visitors every year.

Mr Pannett, who has written books about his experience as a police officer in rural North Yorkshire, had said: “It would be an absolute crying shame if Easingwold was to lose its library. It would be disgraceful.”

Meanwhile, the RSPB urged householders to spare a thought for birds such as the robin, top right, photographed in action in Spennymoor by photographer Keith Taylor.

The Northern Echo:

Mr Taylor said he used peanut butter mixed with wild bird food to attract the robin, two foods the RSPB recommended be used as feed - the charity also suggested using bacon and other fats to help birds through the harsh winter.