Protestors submit 9,000-strong petition over controversial waste-fuelled power plant in Washington

Protestors campaigning against plans for a controversial new power plant in Washington have seen their petition presented to council bosses.

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.
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.
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.
Seaham Hall Hotel.

Seaham Hall unveils £4million luxury lodge scheme

Seahm Hall Hotel has unveiled multi-million pound plans to boost its offering.

Sunderland Central MP Julie Elliott addresses the Westminster Hall debate

Sunderland’s City of Culture 2021 bid praised in Parliament

Sunderland’s bid to be named UK City of Culture 2021 has gone to Parliament.

The Old Bailey

Sunderland man appears at Old Bailey accused of encouraging terrorism

A Sunderland man accused of using Twitter to encourage terrorism and spread an ISIS call for attacks has appeared at the Old Bailey.
Pupils from Barmston Primary School with Michelle Tate from Groundwork and Coun Michael Mordey

New recycling rewards scheme launched in Sunderland

Being rewarded for recycling is child’s play.

Washington Concord Christmas lights switch on with deputy mayor Lynda Scanlan and consort SAFC legend Micky Horswill, Martha Finnigan, and Sun FM's Simon and Danni

Hundreds turn out for Concord switch-on

Hundreds of people turned out in Washington this evening for the big Concord Christmas lights switch-on.
Artist's impression of IAMP overhead view looking south to the River Wear

£300million IAMP development to create more than 5,000 jobs moves a step closer

Council bosses are being urged to give the greenlight to plans to help create more than 5,000 jobs and attract more than £300million of development.
The naming panel in the shdow of the New Wear Crossing

Panel choose shortlist of names for Sunderland’s New Wear Crossing

It’s almost time ... to name the bridge.

Protech City is helping make a difference to the lives of people in the Jakarta landfill

Company works to support world’s poorest children

A Peterlee firm is helping to transform life for some of the poorest people in the world.

Staff at Tombola take part in the firm's bush tucker trial.

Tombola staff are all tuckered out for I’m a Celeb launch

Staff at bingo giant tombola took part in their own bush tucker trial to mark the company’s sponsorship of ITV’s ‘I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!’.

Nicola Duke with parents David and Pat Pollard.

Seaham firm is looking to grow with new jobs in 2018

A Seaham electrical engineering company is targeting new markets after a period of sustained growth.

Chris Coleman is tipped to be the new Sunderland boss

Coleman's the man for former Cats stars

Former Sunderland AFC stars have welcomed the news Chris Coleman is set to be the club's new manager.
Penshaw Monument

Penshaw Monument to turn purple for pancreatic cancer awareness

Penshaw Monument is to be lit up in purple to raise awareness for pancreatic cancer month.

Oswald Street, Millfield. Picture from Google Images

Four arrests after report teenagers were threatened with a gun in Sunderland

Four men have been arrested after a group of youths was threatened with what is believed to be a gun in Sunderland.
Sunderland Civic Centre, where children's services are based.

Political rivals in war of words over ‘Question Time’ at Sunderland Council meetings

A war of words has broken out between rival political parties in Sunderland over the issue of voters being able to ask councillors questions face-to-face at civic meetings.

Red House Academy Remembrance morning in memory of Michael Tench

Schools pay tribute to fallen for Remembrance weekend

Schools across Sunderland and East Durham have been paying their own tribute to the fallen for Remembrance weekend.

Marty Jopson and the One Show crew at the New Wear Crossing

One Show role for New Wear Crossing

Sunderland’s magnificent New Wear Crossing will take a starring role on TV this week.

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