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  1. Yesterday
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    Airfield history commemorated

    A plaque has been unveiled at Northumberlandia to commemorate the former First World War airfield at Cramlington.
  3. Last week
  4. A former Cramlington police officer is still helping colleagues five years after retiring.
  5. Bot

    Clerk amazed by century-old cards

    A series of coincidences has led to the clerk of Cramlington Town Council connecting with his counterpart in the run-up to Armistice Day.
  6. Earlier
  7. The search is on for the north east’s newest young singing star.
  8. Hundreds of pounds has been banked to help a hospital unit.
  9. Budding singers are in with a chance to bag the Northumberland spotlight this Christmas and spread some festive cheer at the same time. The competition A Star is Born, which made its debut last year, is again out to find an up-and-coming talent to turn on the Christmas lights this November at Manor Walks shopping centre in Cramlington. The contest - won last year by 15-year-old Milly Melling from North Tyneside - is open to any aspiring singers aged between six and 17 who are up to taking part in a live audition for a chance to play a role in the annual switch-on and also win £500. Hosted by Cramlington Town Council and Heart FM, A Star is Born is open to entries - for individuals or groups - up until Sunday. Contestants will need to sing two songs, including a Christmas favourite, at a festive semi-final in Manor Walks' Centre Mall on November 17, where audience members also will have a chance to vote for their favourite act of the audition. Then three hopefuls will take part in the final of the competition the following week, ahead of the switch-on taking place on November 24.
  10. The next phase of the Universal Credit roll out will see the new benefit hit some North East towns this month. It's the latest step in the introduction of the new system which will see six benefits replaced by one. By early 2019, the whole country will have switched over but there are still some towns in our region yet to make the change. Below is a full run down of which towns will move over to universal credit, how it works and why it's controversial. The Nortumberland towns of Ashington , Berwick , Cramlington and Morpeth are the latest places in our region to start using the new benefit. From this week, everyone claiming one of the six benefits that Universal Credit replaced.
  11. Staff and children at a ‘pioneering’ primary school are celebrating their latest inspection report.
  12. Bot

    Roses for ruby anniversary

    A Cramlington club has celebrated the end of its ruby anniversary year in style.
  13. Grace Taylor and Matthew King never should have met. Grace, 14, from Cramlington and Matthew, 20, from North Yorkshire, wouldn't have come across each other if their young lives hadn't been blighted by serious illness. The pair were thrown together in the most difficult of circumstances: while both undergoing treatment at the RVI's teenage cancer unit. They formed a friendship and now Grace is hoping to raise money to help her pal "have a normal life" after he lost his leg to Ewing's Sarcoma. Matthew was rushed to hospital in Darlington in March last year at the age of 18, after breaking his leg in a small fall. Doctors couldn't see why the accident would have caused a serious break - before they discovered that Matt, who had been experiencing pain in his legs while playing football for several years, had a tumour so large they had no choice but to amputate his leg.
  14. Muffin Break, a café-bakery chain, will open its new store in Cramlington tomorrow.
  15. This adorable spaniel has been bringing comfort to elderly people across Northumberland. Martha is a 'special ambassador' at Home Instead Senior Care South East Northumberland and goes out with carers to visit clients. The adorable pooch was given a special mention in an inspection carried out by the Care Quality Commission after clients told them they loved meeting her. Home Instead specialises in caring for older people at home and was given an 'outstanding' rating by the CQC - a rating that is achieved by only 2% of inspected care providers. The business was set up 18 months ago by couple Guy and Carole Kirk and serves clients in Morpeth, Cramlington , Blyth and the surrounding area. Guy, of Morpeth, said: "We are humbled by the very many positive comments contained within the report and so proud of our team.
  16. A planning inspector has dismissed an appeal over a refused caravan storage facility in Cramlington, which was vigorously opposed by nearby residents.
  17. This is the moment a pervert was snared by paedophile hunters trying to meet a child for sex - just days after being released from prison. Luke Stoddart made contact with a decoy profile online and the conversation soon turned to filth. But he was oblivious to the fact the 'girl' he was messaging was actually a decoy set up by the vigilante group 'Geordie Chasers'. Now the 22-year-old, from Fern Avenue, Cramlington, is facing a prison sentence after pleading guilty to a string of child sex offences. South East Northumberland Magistrates' Court heard Stoddart was released from jail on October 5 after being locked up in September 2016 for attacking a 16-year-old and grooming a 15-year-old. But days later he was already trying to arrange to meet up with a 13-year-old for sex over Whatsapp.
  18. A man has appeared in court charged with a string of child pornography offences. Robert Taws, 28, of Barrasford Road, Cramlington, did not enter a plea to the eight charges when he appeared at South East Northumberland Magistrates' Court for a short hearing. Taws is charged with six counts of making indecent photographs / pseudo-photographs of a child. The indecent photograph charges relate to images and videos ranging from category A, the most serious, to category C. He is also charged with possession of a prohibited image of a child and possession of an extreme pornographic image involving dogs and horses. Prosecutor James Long gave a brief summary of the offences but no plea or comment was added by Taws' solicitor.
  19. An ex-cop who followed in his father's footsteps to patrol the streets is still keeping the public safe five years after his retirement - working as a police call handler. Graeme Thompson was just 20-years-old when he joined Northumbria Police as a police constable in South Tyneside in 1982. That saw him follow in the footsteps of his father Dennis who had worked as a detective in the west end of Newcastle before retiring in the 1970s. Over the next 30 years Graeme worked as a response officer in South Tyneside, Hebburn and Cramlington before joining the training department. The 59-year-old eventually retired in 2012 but - after a year away from Northumbria Police - decided he wasn't done protecting the public. He filled in an application to become a call handler and is now working in the Communications Centre in Ponteland passing on his experience to his colleagues. Now, as part of International Call Centre Week, Graeme has revealed that he loves policing because "every day is different" He said: "Sometimes I think to myself 'where has the time gone to'. I joined when I was 20-years-old and now I am on the wrong side of 55 but if I could do it all again I would. "I was in the retail trade but my father had been in the police force and family friends were in the police force so it seemed like the natural thing to do. "Thirty years down the line I have done my service. I have seen some nice things, I have seen some bad things and I have dealt with some horrible things. "I don't do golf and so when this job came up I decided to apply rather than just sit back during my retirement. I get a buzz from doing it and I enjoy it." Graeme said that one of the most challenging aspects of working as a call handler is keeping vulnerable people on the phone. He has answered tens of thousands of calls in the last five years and the most important thing for him is to "stay calm and keep control of the situation". "It can be very difficult when you get someone on the line who is very distressed, very upset, they could be very suicidal and speaking to you with a knife to their throat," said Graeme. "When I have calls like that I try to do my best to stay calm and keep control of the situation and keep control of the caller. "You don't want to let them get off the line, you want to keep them talking so that you can get the officers there so they can handle the situation. "It can be demanding to ask those pertinent questions when somebody is in such distress at the end of the phone but all we can do is deal with those jobs professionally. "Everyone does their best because you want an outcome where you can ultimately keep that person safe which is what it is all about. "I am proud of those successes. When you have stopped someone breaking into someone's house or if you have stopped someone from committing suicide then it does make you feel proud." ​ In the coming weeks, Northumbria Police will be sharing stories of some of the faces behind the uniform as part of a new feature called #ProudOfOurPeople. Graeme is the first in the line of a number of officers and staff proud to represent policing so watch this space for more stories to come. If you feel inspired to consider a career with Northumbria Police, you can visit http://careers.northumbria.police.uk/ to see our current vacancies.
  20. This is the moment a diver caught footage of a shark swimming by off the North East coastline. Raid master diver Lucy Harrison, 25, was diving at Blue Caps Reef, near the Farne Islands, when she spotted the creature in the distance on Saturday. It is unclear what species the shark is, but Lucy says other divers believe it is either a Porbeagle or Tope. Lucy, of Cramlington, who was out with the Deep Blue Pirate Dive Club, said: "I was just doing a dive and recording seals and I turned around and saw the shark. "When I came up to the surface I said there was a shark but they said I was being ridiculous and said 'no, no'." "I said I had it on video and when they saw it they were in disbelief."
  21. A woman and a child have been taken to hospital after a crash near Killingworth. Emergency services were called to the B1322 Backworth Lane, between Seghill and Killingworth, at 10.30am on Saturday. Two cars had been involved in a crash with five people reported to be inside the vehicles. Two fire crews from Tynemouth had to free a woman in her late 20s from one of the vehicles. She was placed on a spinal board stretcher and taken to Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital in Cramlington. A child was also taken to hospital after suffering "minor injuries".
  22. Bot

    Councils continue their partnership

    Cramlington Town Council and Northumberland County Council have agreed to continue a partnership arrangement for a further five years.
  23. Out of control Michael Henderson has finally paid the price for repeatedly breaching a ban on contacting his ex - including by sending flowers and wedding cake for her and their children. The persistent pest had been forbidden from going near the mother of his children under the terms of a restraining order after assaulting her. But he showed a total disregard for the court order as he struggled to come to terms with the end of their 15 year relationship. Having already been given a suspended prison sentence for five breaches of the ban, within days he was back at it again. Now the 32-year-old has been jailed for 19 months at Newcastle Crown Court . As he was locked up and banned from Cramlington, Northumberland , the victim said in a statement read to the court: "I believe he is out of control.
  24. The owners of global baby brand Tommee Tippee are cheering a strong year following moves into huge new markets – and brand new £2m headquarters. Mayborn Group, which employs 1,300 around the world, has published accounts for 2017 which pull together worldwide sales and profit for its entire group, including baby bottle products under the Tommee Tippee name and sleep brand Gro. The firm’s revenue jumped from £81.6m to £165.7m and like-for-like sales were up 10.1%, while operating profit also soared, from £8.5m to £13.9m. Profit for the financial year ended at £4.5m, up on the previous year’s £2.9m. Before its financial year end in December 2017, Mayborn entered the sleep category after snapping up the leading UK, Australia and New Zealand sleep brand Gro, which has since been launched internationally into Europe, Asia and the US. During the second quarter, and with support from its shareholder Shanghai Jahwa, the firm also launched into China, the world’s biggest baby market. After just a year, directors said it is making significant progress in becoming one of China’s leading juvenile brands with more than 3,000 distribution outlets in specialist mother and baby stores alone.
  25. A date has been set for the transition from Northumberland County Council' s troubled development company Arch to its successor, Advance Northumberland. In June, the local authority's cabinet approved the closure of Arch Corporate Holdings and the establishment of the replacement holding company, which "will not take unnecessary risks with taxpayers' money". Now, a report to councillors has set out the steps required to transfer the assets, liabilities and trading operations of Arch to Advance Northumberland , which is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, November 13. "The steps required are complex in order to comply with current tax legislation and involve the transfer of significant sums of money that will be reimbursed by a final dividend payment," the report explains. The process, which the cabinet is being asked to approve next Tuesday, will see the council buy £3.3m of additional shares in Advance Northumberland, which will be used to buy Arch's subsidiary companies. The council will also buy a further £0.9m of additional Advance shares to enable the new company to buy Arch's trade and assets "at a nominal value".
  26. A video production company has been given unique access by the Portuguese Navy to film the sinking of one of its warships to create an artificial reef.
  27. Bot

    Uni work is paying off

    A Cramlington company has teamed up with academics to access £1.2m in funding.
  28. Overnight urgent care is due to return to Hexham after closing in July due to "staffing pressures". The 24-hour urgent care centre at Hexham General Hospital has been suspended between 10pm and 8am for more than two months. But now the Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has announced that arrangements have been put in place to resume the 24-hour service. The unit closed its doors between 10pm and 8am on July 18, as a result of “staffing pressures”. The closure was initially set to last for “at least” four weeks, but health bosses pledged to keep the matter “under constant review”. The trust then said in August the closure would last “for an indeterminate period”.
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    • A plaque has been unveiled at Northumberlandia to commemorate the former First World War airfield at Cramlington.

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