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Black Cats struggling but this Sunderland ace is on course for a record-breaking season

Lewis Grabban is on course to break a dazzling goalscoring record in a season of gloom at Sunderland.
Sunderland AFC 2

Sunderland boss reveals why he had to rip up his game-plan for Aston Villa

Chris Coleman hopes to have more options available for the trip to Burton Albion.
Sunderland AFC 2
Sharif is on trial at Newcastle Crown Court.

Student accused of multiple rapes turned to drugs after uncle Tipu Sultan’s murder, court told

A high-flying student accused of being a serial sex attacker and drug dealer has told jurors his life spiralled out of control after his uncle was murdered.

Crime
England cricketer Joe Root with the Ashes trophy before heading to Australia for the new series.

When do the Ashes start, how can I watch them and who is going to win?

England's defence of cricket's Ashes begins overnight with the start of the first test in Australia.
Cricket
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The Budget at a glance: Key points on how the announcments will affect you

Chancellor Philip Hammond unveiled his Budget promising to invest in technology, provide further funding for devolved authorities, business and the NHS and to continue restoring the public finances.
Business
Do you recognise any of these men?

Police issue CCTV images after disorder at Sunderland AFC game

Police investigating disorder at a Sunderland pre-season friendly have released images of three men they want to trace.
Sunderland
Jeremy Corbyn

Jeremy Corbyn condemns Budget as 'record of failure with forecast of more to come'

Jeremy Corbyn predicted Philip Hammond's Budget will unravel within days, warning "misery" will continue for people across the country.
Politics
NHS

NHS handed additional £350million in Budget to cope with winter pressures

The "under pressure" NHS in England has been given an additional £350 million to cope with pressures over the coming winter.
Health
Bradley Lowery.

Bradley Lowery and Jeff Stelling honoured at JustGiving fundraising awards

The family of cancer battler Bradley Lowery and Sky Sports presenter Jeff Stelling have been honoured for their fund-raising efforts.
News
Artist's impression of how new Metro trains may look

Chancellor confirms £337million to replace Metro rolling stock

Chancellor Phillip Hammond made the announcement as part of his Budget speech today. The system has been plagued by an increasing number of break-downs in the last few years, with rolling stock now four decades old. The Government has confirmed it is investing £337 million of to overhaul the system, replacing the 40-year-old trains with a brand-new fleet. Nexus managing director Tobyn Hughes said: "The Government has recognised how vital Metro is to the economy and lives of people in North East England.  "We made a strong case for funding which enjoyed very widespread and active support from the business community as well as our passengers.  "This announcement allows us to begin the search for a train builder immediately, and see new Metrocars start to arrive little more than four years from now." But it will be a while yet before the replacement process is complete, with Nexus predicting the first new trains will not appear for another four years. It will issue a formal notice in January, inviting firms to tender for the contract, followed in April by a Pre-Qualification Questionnaire, enabling it to evaluate the suitability of the bidders in relation to their technical knowledge, experience, capability and financial and economic standing, before an invitation to negotiate to set out the terms of the tender process is issued in July. Tenders will be submitted and considered between June and September 2019 and a contract is expected to be issued in February 2020, with the first of the new rolling stock to be delivered late in 2021. Replacement of the entire fleet of 84 trains is expected to take another two to three years. People living across the North East will benefit from investments in housing, health, transport and technology, as the Chancellor today set out a Budget that will help build an economy fit for the future. Included in the first Autumn Budget, are investments to ensure economic growth is shared across all parts of the country, as the UK tackles its productivity challenge and bolsters its position as a world leader in high-tech industries. Other announcements for the North East in today's Budget include: *a North Tyne devolution deal including £600 million of extra funding. The new combined authority, which will be led by a directly-elected mayor, will choose how to spend this money on local priorities. An inclusive growth board will be set up to ensure all 815,000 people living and working in the area benefit from the economic growth this creates; *£59million for transport improvements to be determined by the Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen to connect people to jobs and make journeys quicker for everybody. Other towns and cities across the region  will be able to bid into an £840million fund to support transport projects in their area; *Newcastle will become home to a Tech Hub, supporting businesses and skills in the area to thrive and prosper. This is part of a national expansion of Tech City, and the region will receive a share of £21 million to support this; *the government will provide £5 million to help enable the South Tees Development Corporation to take ownership of the SSI Redcar Steelworks site, and will work with local partners to prepare the site for development; *an extra £4 million boost to spending on flood defences including in Northumberland. This builds on the £26 million recently invested in the Morpeth flood alleviation scheme, which was completed last year and protects more than 1,000 local homes and businesses. The Chancellor set out his Budget against a backdrop of strong economic growth across the region. There are more people in work in the North East than ever before, with an employment rate at a record high (72.7%). In the last year, the region has had the fastest productivity growth (+11.8 ppt) and rise in in household gross income (+3.9 ppt). As new technologies create new opportunities and better jobs, the Chancellor is clear everyone must benefit. The Budget includes a boost for skills to give people living across the North East the training they need to succeed and get the highly-paid jobs of the future. Mr Hammond, said: "Today’s Budget sets out how we will build an economy fit for the future through driving innovation, creating better paid jobs and building the homes this country needs. "The investments I have announced today back the North East with a significant cash boost for transport improvements to connect people to jobs and make journeys quicker for everybody right across the region." Since 2015, over £273 million has been committed to individual military charities and other good causes. This Budget’s award of £36million continues the provision of banking fines to Armed Forces and Emergency Services charities and other related good causes, and takes the total committed since 2012 to £773 million. Local charities in the North East receiving this funding will include Single Homeless Action Initiative In Durham  (SHAID), which will get £61,000 to support the provision of accommodation for Homeless Veterans in Durham.
News
Picture by PA

Budget live: £3billion extra pledged for Brexit

The Chancellor is delivering his Budget speech to the House of Commons.
Politics
The late Rodney Bewes, left, and James Bolam.

Sunderland Likely Lad James Bolam denies rift with late co-star Rodney Bewes

Sunderland-born television star James Bolam has denied there was ever a feud with late co-star Rodney Bewes.
News
Brian Buddle, former Head of Education and Welfare at Sunderland AFC.

Former Sunderland AFC academy head of education dies

One of the men who “laid the foundations” to make Sunderland AFC’s Academy of Light what it is today has died.

News
One of the shipyard paintings by Derek Copeland that is on display as part of the exhibition.

Art exhibition celebrates Sunderland neighbourhood’s culture

There’s still time to check out a pop-up gallery which celebrates Southwick’s colourful history.

News
Snow patrol leader singer Gary Lightbody.

November 22, 2003: Fourteen years since little-known Snow Patrol played Sunderland bar

They have played at some of the world's largest arenas and festivals and even made a brief appearance in television hit Game of Thrones.

News
Morpeth Harrier Laura Weightman, right, and Sunderland Harrier Linda Mudford, left, in action at the North Eastern Harrier League at Aykley Heads.

Weightman on target for Commonwealth Games after North Eastern Harrier League success

Laura Weightman showed she is heading in the right direction for next year’s Commonwealth Games after her superb performance in the North Eastern Harrier League at Aykley Heads on Saturday.

Athletics
Will you be shopping this Black Friday?

What offers are available at the Bridges this Black Friday?

It's almost time for one of the busiest days in the shopping calendar.
Business
Richard Ord: Proof Mrs Ord is no trophy wife

Richard Ord: Proof Mrs Ord is no trophy wife

I was lucky enough to holiday in Spain this year and so took the opportunity to visit the Nou Camp, home of Barcelona.

Opinion
Roger Shaw with Ramside Hall's new excavator

Ramside Hall tees up £200,000 investment

A Durham hotel is ploughing hundreds of thousands of pounds into holes in the ground.
News
Amanda Staveley

Newcastle United briefing: Takeover and injury updates, Alan Pardew set for managerial return

Mike Ashley is waiting on an improved offer for Newcastle United from Amanda Staveley.
Newcastle United 1
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