ARMED police have set up search stations on the region's roads as part of a Christmas crackdown on terrorism.

The move, part of a national campaign called Operation Floodgate, has seen officers stopping motorists on the area's main roads, including the A66 and the A19, in a bid to prevent any future IRA campaigns on the mainland.

Cleveland, County Durham and Tyne and Wear police forces are all taking part in the operation, which will run until the start of January.

Armed police officers have been stopping and searching vehicles throughout the North-East.

A spokesperson for Cleveland Police said: "Police forces throughout the UK are undertaking a series of checks at ports and in land locations. This includes high-profile policing.

"There have been a number of terrorist attacks in London and Birmingham. There is a real concern that the present series of terrorist crimes will continue, both in the capital and elsewhere in the country."