Category: Local

BREAKING

Over a third of Durham children live in poverty

Yvonne Wancke

A new report from Magic Breakfast, children’s food charity, has shown that 36% of children in County Durham are living in poverty. These worrying figures also show that 14% were at risk of hunger in 2020. Magic Breakfast Magic Breakfast supports 37 schools in the region, and helps to feed over 5,000 children with healthy […]

Chi congratulates A-Level students in Newcastle after a difficult year

North East Bylines

Chi congratulates A-Level students in Newcastle after a difficult year Chi Onwurah, MP for Newcastle Central, gave her congratulations to A-level students who are receiving their results today. This comes after 18 months of disrupted learning and revised assessments. Record acceptance onto university courses A record number of students have been accepted on university courses […]

Inflation: the real cost of rising prices

Peter Benson

I renewed my household insurance on 31 July and it was a shock. The renewal price had jumped from £253.40 to £294.24, an increase of 16%.  My  attempt at negotiation failed: ”Mr Benson this is the final price after all the discounts”. Rising prices I have had so many prices rises in recent months. The car insurance […]

It will not be long now…

Harry Gallagher

It will not be long now until dandelions have strangled the black ground beneath them and no traces remain save for the props and the poison filling up the cavernous belly of the carcass slain by a fortyfaced dragon bent on revenge. It will not be long now until nobody is left who remembers the […]

The world in a weekend: parade in Billingham

North East Bylines

Who is up for a ‘mini’ Parade of Nations through Billingham Town Centre on Saturday 14 August? This is part of The World in a Weekend event being staged in the town from 13-15 August. The event is being organised by the Billingham International Folklore Festival of World Dance and supported Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council. The parade […]

Roundabout comes to Byker

North East Bylines

Throughout the summer Northern Stage has been inviting people to get Out on the Toon, with free outdoor events across the region to reconnect artists and audiences in their local neighbourhoods, and a pop-up outdoor theatre in Leazes Park offering free theatre, comedy, music and family shows.  Roundabout Now from 12-15 August, Paines Plough’s Roundabout comes to Harbottle Park […]

Telecommunications provider shows appreciation to Stockton MP, Matt Vickers

Scott Hunter

Matt Vickers, MP for Stockton South, has championed several causes in his time in office including tougher sentences for pet thieves and the protection of hedgehogs. Both undoubtedly worthy causes.  He appears to dislike international aid, asylum seekers and gypsies. So, there seems to be a ‘four legs good, two legs bad’ theme to his […]

Ben Houchen and the chamber of secrets

Scott Hunter

Tees Valley Mayor seeks to protect Teesside Airport from ‘rogue’ politicians like himself, as the airport operator departs Teesside Airport operator Esken Ltd, formerly Stobart Aviation, has jumped ship and pulled out of its contract with the airport company (TIAL). Now, in place of Esken Ltd, the airport is being operated directly by its own […]

Fishy tales: a whale of a time with ORCA on the DFDS ferry

Dr Jayne Hamilton

A previous article in North East Bylines showed us the fantastic work of ORCA [Organisation Cetacea] supported by DFDS on their ferry route from Newcastle to Ijmuiden. The wildlife programme run by Organization Cetacea [ORCA] on DFDS’ King Seaways ferry, certainly made many a business trip memorable for me. There is enough to do for […]

A sad day for Teesside: Redcar Blast Furnace demolished

Bobbie Bailey

Redcar Blast Furnace It is a sad day for Teesside that the Redcar Blast Furnace is being demolished today. The furnace as we envisaged would have been truly iconic. In our opinion, this is an act of cultural vandalism, a scorched earth policy designed to systematically destroy relics of industry.  For some, this structure represents […]

Sharon Hodgson, MP urges veterans to have their say

North East Bylines

Today former Shadow Minister for Veterans, Sharon Hodgson MP, is urging local veterans across the North East to participate in the Labour Party’s consultation with veterans. They are being encouraged to participate in a survey so that their voices can be heard. As Shadow Minister for Veterans, Sharon developed the consultation, which will help the […]

Covid, mass trauma and regional unity

Connor Lamb

I remember that in the process of writing my diary entries, I had to recall memories recessed in the back of my mind for over a year. We often don’t think of traumatic memories as ‘trauma’. I briefly addressed the concept of mass trauma at the very end of the diary, so now it’s time […]

Stobart pulls out of Teesside International Airport

Julia Mazza

Esken, the  company behind struģgling Stobart Aviation Ltd, has returned its quarter-share in Teesside International Airport for a “nominal” sum.  The aviation sector has been blindsided by Covid-19. However, Stobart Aviation Ltd posted losses of £53 million in the year to 29th February 2020 – before the first lockdown. Should the airport be sold before 25 […]

Flags for cash? Another U-turn from the government

Yvonne Wancke

Thousands of EU flags, notices and plaques are expected to pop up outside public buildings around the UK very soon. This is because the Westminster government is keen to receive eligible post Covid funding from the European Union. The Independent reports that: “Guidance issued to local authorities by the communities ministry this summer says the […]

Congratulations to new Fire Service recruits

North East Bylines

On Friday 23 July, twenty-three Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS) new recruits passed out in the sunshine on the parade ground of Service Headquarters at Barmston Mere Training Centre in Washington. Intensive training Over the past 13-weeks the new recruits, aged between 19 and 40 years old, have been experiencing an intensive […]

ORCA: protecting whales and dolphins

Emily Condley

ORCA is one of the UK’s leading whale and dolphin conservation charities dedicated to the long-term protection of whales, dolphins and porpoises (collectively known as cetaceans) and their habitats in UK and European waters. Founded in 2001, ORCA work to monitor vulnerable cetacean populations and help to protect threatened marine habitats. Working with governments, research […]

PART 1UPDATED

Consett Corona Photo Project: interview with George Ledger Part 1

Dylan Neri

On 23 March 2020, the Prime Minister delivered a very simple instruction to the British public: “you must stay at home.” Since this dependence day, and the introduction into popular discourse of the word ‘lockdown’, people have adapted to a host of alien measures and customs. Social distancing, mandated isolation, face cloths, PPE, and those […]

UPDATED

Dominic Cummings: made in the North East?

Julia Mazza

Cummings followed the KISS principle (Keep It Simple Stupid) with two easy, false arguments: the money spent on more politicians could be spent on doctors; and the Assembly would raise Council Tax. In hindsight it could be Brexit: The Prequel.

BREAKING

North East coalition urges Chancellor to reverse £20 UC cut

North East Bylines

A broad, cross-sector coalition of North East organisations has come together today (21 July 2021) to urge the Chancellor of the Exchequer to reverse the planned £20 a week cut to Universal Credit which will hit hundreds of thousands of low-income households across the region this autumn. Writing jointly to the Chancellor as organisations “committed […]

Education Committee Part 3: a widening learning gap?

Connor Lamb

The last time that we explored the education committee meeting led by Sir Kevan Collins, we explored the importance of parental involvement within education, the future of Ofsted and more about the education recovery package. This are a few of the highlights from the next twenty minutes. Further funding? Sir Kevan was asked if there […]

Ladyboys of Bangkok at Middlesbrough Theatre

Katie Maughan

The Ladyboys of Bangkok graced Middlesbrough Theatre on 12 July for an exciting night of music and glamour during their Flight of Fantasy 2021 tour. Due to social distancing, the show was split into multiple performances over a few nights. Audiences remained socially distanced and were required to wear masks. It was a different experience […]

Testing positive: a personal reflection

Peter Benson

I tested positive on Tuesday 13 July following a PCR test the previous day. However, I feel like I have dodged a bullet as so far, my symptoms have been relatively mild. I did a lateral flow test on Sunday 11 July just prior to the big England v Italy match and that was negative but I […]

Opinion

Freedom Day: free to do as I want?

Gareth Kearns

Savid Javid was pinged. We all know what that means, so it was necessary for him to inform recent associates, and it would be necessary for said associates to also isolate. This is a few days before ‘Freedom Day’. These have been the rules for us all. They’re terribly inconvenient, that’s true, but we are […]

Online learning: a view from an international student

Harry Kyaw

I’m an international student at INTO Newcastle University. I study International Foundation in Business and Management course right from my home country Myanmar (Burma). During the pandemic period, schools, universities and colleges were forced to close by law. The transition in delivering education has made the students to study from their home and teachers to […]

Unfair two-child limit hits 14,000 North East families

North East Bylines

Regional child poverty campaigners have renewed calls for an end to the government’s ‘two-child limit’, after figures published by the Department for Work and Pensions today (15 July 2021) show that almost 14,000 families – including at least 42,000 children – across the North East are now affected by the policy. The two-child limit The two-child limit […]

Little England, where charity begins at Conservativehome

Scott Hunter

A vote in the House of Commons yesterday reaffirmed the government’s commitment to reducing the UK’s overseas aid budget. This, it maintains is necessary on account of the unprecedented conditions arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.  Figures published today by the BBC show that, while overseas aid amounted to £14.5bn in 2019, it is projected to […]

Keep them poor, uneducated and hungry!

Peter Benson

I would like to hypothesis that the greatest success of this ten-year government is to keep the underclass in their place. That is as far away as possible from the elite. And poor, uneducated and hungry. We are run by the elite for the elite. Any other thoughts are pure fantasy. I think that it would […]

3 out of 10 key workers’ children in the North East live in poverty

Julie Ward

We used to think that poverty was something that mainly visited the unemployed, the homeless, those who were far from the labour market through a combination of bad luck and poor life chances. However the shocking phenomena of in-work poverty has been growing year on year even before the pandemic laid waste to the economic […]

JournalPART 4

Covid and me: a year of shielding

Peter Lathan

Day 369, Saturday, 6 March, 2021 : A most unwelcome anniversary of shielding    One year to the day since my self-isolation/shielding/incarceration/call it what you will began. Could anyone in early March 2020 have imagined that we would be in a third lockdown a whole twelve months later? Could anyone have conceived what lockdown would mean for […]

Newcastle’s Best Summer Ever, 2021: Kenton and beyond

Daisy Windsor

A £1.7M city programme of children’ summer activities will provide free healthy food and things to do during August. There are activities for children and young people from July 30 2021. Best Summer Ever 2021 The government funded programme (Holiday Activity Fund) known as the Best Summer Ever 2021 is being spearheaded by Newcastle Council […]