Tow Law have turned down a cheeky approach from Bromsgrove to switch their FA Vase tie next month.

The former Conference club contacted Lawyers at the weekend and offered to switch the tie.

But manager Graeme Forster said: "Bernard Fairbairn, our secretary, turned them down flat. He told me that he hadn't heard anything like it in his 40 years as secretary."

The incident is sure to strengthen Lawyers' resolve to win the tie at Ironworks Road on December 8.

Billingham Town have signed the former Hartlepool and Huddersfield winger Paul Dalton.

Dalton, who started his career in the Northern League at Brandon, made a dream move to Manchester United over a decade ago before continuing his career in the Football League.

He was freed by Dunston earlier this month, and he has now been snapped up by Town.

"He's a vastly experienced player, who is a great acquisition for us," said manager Alan Robinson.

Dunston are concerned about the condition of their pitch.

The First Division side played Bishop Auckland on Federation Park in the Durham Challenge Cup last Tuesday, but then they were forced to ask the league to reverse their scheduled home fixture against Thornaby to their opponents' ground because according to one official, it was "unplayable."

Billingham Synthonia's hearing at Durham FA regarding the dismissal of one of their spectators by referee Steve Sunley in the FA Vase last month, will be heard on Monday 3rd December. Synners have strongly protested their innocence, and are mystified how they can be charged by Durham FA after reading the referee's report.

Former Seaham Red Star manager Steve Smith has been placed on the transfer list at his own request by his present club, Shildon.

Smith joined Ray Gowan's side after quitting as manager of Seaham Red Star, but has lost his place recently.

Shildon have been approached by two interested clubs.

Willington youngster Andrew Dixon was involved in an unusual situation against Easington last week in the Durham Challenge Cup.

Dixon scored the winning penalty in the shootout to put Willington through to the next round of the Cup, even though he hadn't touched the ball in the whole of the previous two hours.

Willington secretary Bob Nichol said; "Our manager, David Styles, put him on in extra time, but he never touched the ball.

"The game went to a shootout, and he said that he would take the fifth penalty for us."

West Auckland manager Alan Oliver is facing up to life without striker Lee Ellison.

The former Darlington player was freed by Bishop Auckland last month, and had played a few times for West in the league.

And with Jonathan Milroy and Roy Allen also scoring goals up front, Oliver thought he had a forward line to rival any other.

However, Ellison has returned to one of his previous clubs, Barrow, in the UniBond League.

Meanwhile, West are looking ahead to their FA Vase third round tie against Nantwich next month, and have noticed that their opponents are under new management. Seaham born Nigel Gleghorn has taken over as manager.

Brandon striker Andy Burton could be out for longer than expected.

The former Middlesbrough player broke his leg at the start of the season, and is recovery is taking much longer than expected.

Esh Winning have been hit by the decision of striker Tony Halliday to return to Consett.

Halliday joined the Second Division promotion chasers during the summer, and was an immediate hit.

However, Consett approached him.

Bedlington joint manager Tony Lowery will be taking a look at FA Vase opponents Bridgnorth.

Bedlington, the team most fancied to do well in the competition, will take on the Midland Alliance outfit in a fortnight's time, but Lowery will make sure his preparations are right.

"We decided not to watch Eccleshill in the previous round, and we nearly regretted it," he said.

Whitley Bay manager Andy Gowens fully supports his club's decision to take promotion to the UniBond League if it comes along at the end of the season.

Whitley are the only ANL club to state their intentions - there are 15 from the other two feeder leagues - and Gowens said: "It's something the club wants to do," he said.

"We have a good structure at the club, and all the directors want to go back to the UniBond League if we can.

Whitley were relegated from the UniBond League two years ago, but since then have been taken over by a new owner and board of directors.

West Auckland midfielder Mark Wheldon has been placed on the transfer list at his own request after failing to hold a regular place in the side.

Chester-le-Street have signed midfielders Neil Crute from Bedlington and Jamie Elrington from South Shields Shildon's amazing 11-5 win over Washington Nissan on Saturday prompted some research into the record books. The 11 goal blast was Shildon's biggest victory since they beat Stanley United 11-1 in November 1953.

Former Premiership referee Alan Wilkie made an unexpected return to duty on Saturday at Durham City.

Wilkie was in the crowd for the First Division game against Newcastle Blue Star, and volunteered to run the line after linesman John Brampton pulled a muscle and was unable to continue. Wilkie is still heavily involved in the game as an assessor.

Second Division club Hebburn have been awarded a grant of £270,641 from Sport England to improve facilities at their ground.

The three games which were postponed because of floodlight failure a fortnight ago, must all be replayed. Chester-le-Street v Brandon, Easington v Crook and Prudhoe v Shotton. Ironically, Crook travelled to Easington on Tuesday night in the Craven Cup and won 4-2 without any mishaps with the lights.

Hebburn have been instructed to appear in front of the league on a charge of undesirable conduct following an incident concerning their chairman, Bill Laffey, at a recent game. Hebburn have already been fined £100 by Durham FA, £75 of which has been suspended.

Washington Nissan have also been charged following an incident regarding their assistant manager, Gary Lormor, as have Esh Winning for their manager, Barry Fleming.

The Wearside League have informed the league that North Shields would like to take promotion at the end of the season, as long as they finish in the top two, and their ground is up to standard. Shields left the league over a decade ago, but folded when they were in the Northern Counties East League. They were pipped for a possible promotion place last season by Washington Nissan.

The league have announced a new batch of Performance of the Week awards: 13th October Newcastle Blue Star for a 2-1 win at Whitley Bay, 20th October Bedlington for their 4-1 home win over Runcorn in the FA Cup, 27th October Evenwood for beating Spennymoor 2-1 in the Durham Challenge cup, 3rd November Horden for a 3-2 home win over Durham in the Durham Challenge Cup, and 10th November West Auckland for a 3-1 win at Harrogate RA in the FA Vase