Category: Local

Supporting queer young people: legacy of Section 28

Connor Lamb

Stonewall conducted a survey regarding queerphobic bullying that found that 46% of queer students experienced queerphobic bullying in the North East, compared to 40% of students in London and 36% of students from the South East. This suggests that the North-South divide may come into play when it comes to queerphobia within schools.

EXCLUSIVE

Steve Bray, campaigner: first protest and what’s next

Yvonne Wancke

“This government has stripped away my rights, your rights, everybody’s rights. They have divided this nation…they’ve lied, they’ve cheated and nothing about this government is honest…In a modern day democracy that is frightening and we have to do everything we can to oppose it. “

The forgotten student part 4: after the rent strikes

Connor Lamb

A conversation I had with a friend ensued after they congratulated me after my first article in North East Bylines. This friend mentioned that their accommodation provider had refused to provide any financial support. An idea came after this conversation. Let’s see if any student who has studied in the North East this year actually benefitted from the rent strikes?

BREAKINGUPDATED

North East set to lose two MPs: is this ‘levelling up’?

Yvonne Wancke

The number of North East constituencies will be reduced from 29 to 17 if the government approves the plans. There are two constituencies which would be absorbed into others. These are North Tyneside and Houghton and Sunderland South. Interestingly both have Labour MPs. Mary Glindon represents North Tyneside and Bridget Philipson is MP for Houghton and Sunderland South.

The policing bill: protests continue in Newcastle

Ade JBones Van Vliet

For several times within the past five weeks, lively protests have taken place at Monument in Newcastle. A continuation of ongoing assemblies around the country, these protests are seen by the attendees as vital within both holding the government to account and for challenging exploitation and injustices both domestically and internationally.

Opinion

Northumbria should make all North Easterners proud

Will Sadler

One could argue, that just like ‘North of Tyne’, Northumbria just describes a place in relation to another. But there’s a crucial difference. The name ‘Northumbria’ is steeped in more than one thousand years of history, whereas I strongly suspect the name ‘North of Tyne’ was magicked out of thin air during a thought-shower session in an anonymous local authority boardroom.

Animating Hexham: stories and memories

North East Bylines

Inspired by Hexham’s heritage and funded by Historic England, Animating Hexham aims to discover stories and evoke memories of the town’s high streets and buildings collected by Northumberland Archives and Hexham Libraries to inspire animations and conversations.

Jamie Driscoll interview part 2: talking politics

Dylan Neri

“I joined the Labour Party in 1985, while the miners’ strike was going on…and my mum was a trade union representative… and went on to become the women’s officer for Cleveland Count Council, and the chair of the Refuge from Domestic Violence in Middlesbrough.”

Allegations have Ben Houchen hot under the collar

Scott Hunter

t begins to look as if Houchen has been a bit careless in his explanation, offering up the truth but not the whole truth. But then to be fair, the statement issued to the press is the work of his PR team. And his team has been less than fastidious in another respect here, which is the allegation that “this nonsense was first concocted by the Labour Party”.

Jamie Driscoll, North of Tyne Mayor interview: part 1

Dylan Neri

There is a real passion for the community and the region which permeates everything Mayor Driscoll says. It is clear that he sees the enfranchisement of the local communities and local businesses as the key aspect of his plans for the region.

Opinion

Writing a diary entry: 3 June 2021

Peter Lathan

You’d have thought that, as it now seems that we are emerging from the abyss of Covid-19 and the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel is perceptively brightening, and with the government aiming to loosen all restrictions on 21 June, my mind would be reacting with greater positivity, with a surge of energy, greater hope and optimism.

Opinion

The forgotten student experience: part 3

Connor Lamb

It’s pretty clear: the Higher Education sector is at a crossroads. At the end of both options is a complex intersection, with academic enrichment, student pastoral support, the financial implications of the pandemic and public perception all being controlled by a single traffic light

UPDATED

Middlesbrough controlled by Tory and Independent ‘coalition’

Julia Mazza

A new ruling coalition of Tories and Independents has taken over Middlesbrough Borough Council. The three Conservative councillors have joined forces with 13 representatives in the Middlesbrough Independent Group and the ten strong Middlesbrough Independent Councillors Association, together with two other ‘independent’ Independents.

Teesworks Heritage Taskforce: cancelling culture?

Scott Hunter

Now that the South Tees site is being redeveloped, a new task has emerged, which is deciding on the preservation of some of its most important structures. Redcar MP and co-chair of Teesworks Heritage Taskforce, Jacob Young, is committed to commemorating this region’s industrial heritage.

Hancock must apologise to long Covid patients

Carol Westall

Matt Hancock is under pressure to apologise to long Covid patients, after an investigation by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Coronavirus revealed that some are waiting over 100 days for treatment. Hancock must apologise.

Social media: an improvement on the letters page?

Peter Lathan

Now, however, we have the internet and the outlets open to them have multiplied enormously, for there are not only comment sections on every news story published by every media outlet but there are groups of all kinds which invite – nay, beg for! – contributions from Joe and Josephine Public

Amnesty International is sixty years old

Julie Ward

Beneson’s call to action was a heartfelt response to appalling abuse of power by state apparatus. He intended a simple year long campaign focused on ‘prisoners of conscience’. 60 years later the work of Amnesty International continues to be just as important

Opinion

Colonialism: how to resist and change

Bill Corcoran

I shout at the radio when someone says “north of Hadrian’s Wall” meaning Scotland, without knowing it goes along Shields Road; and associate themselves with the “civilised” invader, not the resisting Briton. I grimace when people think that we are Vikings “because we are north”; think we need their elocutionary education when we had electric light, proper mass transport, posh shops and high wages first. I end up swearing under my breath….

Poetry Corner

The Durham Dom

Kim Sanderson

One murky morn the Tories went
A-fishing’ in the sewer;
An’ catched a fish upon their heuk,
They thowt leuk’t very queer.

Party city: memorable moments in the Toon

Peter Benson

I enjoyed my scenic walking route to the hotel on the Gateshead quayside close to the Baltic. The shops pubs and restaurants were all busy and everywhere signs of life and vitality were evident. The scenes reminded me of pre- lockdown days.

BREAKINGUPDATED

Incompetent government in North Tyneside coronavirus row

Yvonne Wancke

We heard today that the government has identified eight areas which are now subject to new advice. This is due to the number of cases of the Indian variant locally. These areas include North Tyneside in which there have been 40 reported cases. The government has stated that people should not travel into or out of these areas. Additionally they have advised people not to meet indoors. At this point in time the government has denied a “lockdown by stealth”.

BREAKINGTheatre

Big panto takeover: North East and beyond

Peter Lathan

One of the biggest international producers of Musical Theatre, Crossroads Live which has offices in Los Angeles, London and Sydney, has announced the acquisition of Qdos Pantomimes.

MusicReview

South Shields singer, Jen Stevens: new single

Yvonne Wancke

Jen Stevens is a talented and perceptive singer and songwriter who has just released a new single, She sleeps, which features poetry by her late mother who died in 2012. Everything about the song, the lyrics and the production testifies to the truth that the ‘folk of Shields’ really are an amazing, special and artistic people.

Film premiere in the North East this week

North East Bylines

This week sees the North East premiere of a brand new film. The Constant Sea is the first page-to-screen project by Newcastle based writer and director, Margaret Frayne, who also features in the film. Film locations include Seaton Sluice and Newcastle.

Jesmond Community Festival in full swing!

Yvonne Wancke

“We’ve loved taking part in Jesmond Community Festival over the last five years. The children love getting the chance to perform so it’s disappointing that we sadly weren’t able to this year due to Covid-19. However we did manage to hold two brilliant open classes, one face to face at Jesmond Pool and one via zoom.”