LOOKING back to the week of August 21 to August 27, five years ago...

A JOCKEY was lucky to be alive after breaking his neck in a horror fall in front of hundreds of racegoers at Redcar, on August 25, 2018.

Phillip Makin was on course to win the fourth race at Redcar on Saturday, August 25, 2018, when his horse fell in front of spectators in the main stand.

Read more: LOOKING BACK: The little girl praised for 999 call which saved her mum

Such was the high speed of the fall that witnesses feared the worst for Mr Makin – but the following day he tweeted concerned fans from his hospital bed, saying: “Bloody sore this morning, but I’ll live...”

Sadly, Mr Makin’s mount, Eyecatcher, had to be put to sleep after breaking his leg in the fall.

Mr Makin was knocked unconscious and was taken to The James Cook University Hospital, in Middlesbrough, where it emerged he had broken a bone in his neck.

The jockey, who had ridden 20 winners in the 2018 season, had to wear a neck brace for up to a month while he recovered from the accident.

However, he took to social media on Sunday, August 26, 2018, to let his followers know that he was okay.

He said: “Thanks to everyone for messages and well wishes. Bloody sore this morning but I’ll live, cost Eyecatcher his life unfortunately, thoughts with @crisfordracing, also thanks to the medical team who helped me.”

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The courage and determination of two County Durham girls who were caught up in the Manchester terrorist attack was recognised as they passed all of their GCSEs, in August 2018.

Millie Robson and Laura Anderson, of Newton Aycliffe, were wounded when a bomb was detonated at the end of an Ariana Grande concert in 2017, killing 22 people and injuring hundreds of others.

It was during the anniversary month of the Manchester Arena explosion earlier in 2018 that the youngsters sat their exams at Woodham Academy.

On Thursday, August 23, 2018, the girls returned to the school to find out that all of their hard work during a difficult time had paid off.

Marie Robson, Millie’s mother, said: “They passed all their GCSEs with A to C equivalent grades. Millie struggled in maths and thought she wouldn’t pass, but she did.

“For me, it’s testament to everything they’ve been through. They took the exams when it was the anniversary, and that’s the special part of it. I’m totally proud and relieved for Millie more than anything. They put the work in and got what they wanted out.”

A North-East born film director headed back to the UK for the world premiere of his latest movie starring Pierce Brosnan in August 2018.

Scott Mann, originally of Newton Aycliffe, flew to London from his current base in Los Angeles for the first showing of explosive action thriller Final Score.

Described as “Die Hard in a football stadium”, it is an independently funded British action movie which promised the production value and spectacle to rival Hollywood’s behemoths.

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It starred James Bond’s Brosnan and Guardian of the Galaxy and Avengers: Infinity War actor Dave Bautista.

Speaking of taking on the opportunity to work on the film, Mr Mann said: “The script had me intrigued. I read it and it was really good – far beyond my expectations.”

The County Durham filmmaker started out his career with short films and directed several British television programmes.