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News from Peterlee, Seaham, Hordon, Easington, Hartlepool, Blackhall, Wingate and the wider East Durham area

National success for talented student barbers from East Durham College

National success for talented student barbers from East Durham College

A trio of talented student barbers from East Durham College are celebrating after success at this year’s City & Guilds National Student Barber of the Year competition. Elle Metcalfe won the silver medal, Jessica Filby won the bronze and Simone Morrow achieved the...

Easington care home receives ‘Good’ rating from CQC inspectors

Easington care home receives ‘Good’ rating from CQC inspectors

A care home in Easington is celebrating after receiving a ‘Good’ rating from the health and social care regulator. Birchwood Court Residential Care Home was awarded the rating by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) following an unannounced inspection. The Sanctuary Care...

Dalton Park sees an increase in sales and visitor numbers

Dalton Park sees an increase in sales and visitor numbers

Dalton Park Outlet Shopping has seen an increase in sales and visitor numbers, bucking the national trend of difficult trading for many of the UK’s retailers. Results for the whole of 2019 at Dalton Park, showed a like for like turnover increase of four per cent, with...

Peterlee and Seaham schools take part in out of this world challenge

Peterlee and Seaham schools take part in out of this world challenge

Ten County Durham schools were set the challenging task of pitching out-of-this-world business ideas in a foreign language, as part of a special space themed learning day. Working alongside astrophysicists from Durham University, the Year 10 pupils learned about zero...

People in Peterlee and Seaham urged to donate old and unwanted glasses

People in Peterlee and Seaham urged to donate old and unwanted glasses

People are being urged to donate their old, unwanted glasses to Vision Aid Overseas (VAO) which aims to improve the eye health of those less fortunate in the developing world. Specsavers in Seaham and Peterlee are collecting unwanted glasses and urging customers to...

Council receives Government recognition for its disability support

Council receives Government recognition for its disability support

Durham County Council has received government recognition for its inclusive approach in recruiting and retaining staff with a disability or health condition. Awarded by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP), the status of Level 3 Disability Confident Leader...

East Durham College nominated for prestigious national award

East Durham College nominated for prestigious national award

East Durham College is thrilled to announce that its Engage 14-16 programme has been shortlisted for an award at the Tes FE Awards 2020. The college has been nominated for the Contribution to the Local Community Award. This nomination comes after the Engage 14-16...

Peterlee man in the doghouse after failing to get his pet microchipped

Peterlee man in the doghouse after failing to get his pet microchipped

Failing to get his dog microchipped has left a County Durham man with a criminal conviction and financially worse off. Connor McKittrick, 38, from Surtees Road, Peterlee, will have to pay £170 following the prosecution brought by Durham County Council. McKittrick...

New leisure centre for Seaham approved as part of £63m council plans

New leisure centre for Seaham approved as part of £63m council plans

More modern, vibrant and innovative leisure services are promised for County Durham as part of £63 million plans approved. Members of Durham County Council’s Cabinet have given the green light to proposals which have been developed to ensure the authority’s leisure...

Dalton Park scoops top prize at national ‘loo’ awards

Dalton Park scoops top prize at national ‘loo’ awards

Dalton Park scooped up the gong for National Eco Friendly Toilets at the Loo of the Year Awards. The toilet facilities were praised following an independent, unannounced visit from judges. This is the 16th time that the outlet shopping centre has been recognised by...

Work starts on new £10.55m Horden Railway Station

Work starts on new £10.55m Horden Railway Station

A government minister has welcomed the start of work on a new railway station during a visit to County Durham today (Monday, 6 January). Transport Secretary Grant Shapps met with representatives from Durham County Council, Network Rail and the North East Local...

East Durham foodbank benefits from generous council donation

East Durham foodbank benefits from generous council donation

Generous council staff and elected members have donated thousands of festive treats to foodbanks across the county to help people in need this Christmas. Employees and councillors from Durham County Council donated throughout November to the appeal which asks them to...

Murton convenience store undergoes significant refurbishment

Murton convenience store undergoes significant refurbishment

A convenience store in Murton has undergone a significant refurbishment. G&E Murgatroyd, James Hall & Co.’s company owned stores division, is delighted to announce the completion of the project to drastically improve the shop. The store has been refurbished to...

£9.4m development of extra care apartments in Peterlee approved

£9.4m development of extra care apartments in Peterlee approved

A £9.4 million development to provide 71 extra care apartments in County Durham has received planning permission. The development on a former school site in Robson Avenue, Peterlee, was unanimously approved by Durham County Council’s Planning Committee. It will be...

Peterlee students pay tribute to iconic Apollo Pavilion sculpture

Peterlee students pay tribute to iconic Apollo Pavilion sculpture

Two student-led art projects designed to celebrate the anniversary of an iconic County Durham structure have culminated with shining success. Pupils from The Academy at Shotton Hall and Dene Academy in Peterlee have been working with artists throughout the year to...

Housing association awards over £75,000 to community groups

Housing association awards over £75,000 to community groups

A successful funding programme by one of the north east’s largest housing associations has now helped more than 150 community groups. In excess of £75,000 has been distributed to grassroots projects stretching from Easington to upper Weardale by believe housing’s...

Peterlee businessman gets festive to support regional charity

Peterlee businessman gets festive to support regional charity

A charity which supports adults and children with life threatening illnesses has been given an early Christmas present thanks to financial advice company Wealth of Advice. The company, which is based at Belmont in Durham, decided that rather than sending Christmas...

Ho ho ho as Peterlee shopping centre gears up for Christmas parade

Ho ho ho as Peterlee shopping centre gears up for Christmas parade

Families visiting the Peterlee shopping centre this weekend are in for a treat as it prepares to host its biggest yearly Christmas spectacular. Castle Dene Shopping Centre is bringing back their amazing Christmas Parade, which will feature an afternoon of festive...

County Durham prepares for winter as temperatures set to drop

County Durham prepares for winter as temperatures set to drop

With temperatures set to drop, preparations for winter 2019 are well underway in County Durham. Durham County Council is ready to keep the region moving this winter with a 76 strong fleet of gritters and snowblowers ready and waiting for the colder weather. There are...

Easington Colliery pupils design mocaic inspired by the coastal denes

Easington Colliery pupils design mocaic inspired by the coastal denes

A mosaic inspired by the coastal denes in County Durham has been designed by children from the east of the county. Pupils from Easington Colliery Primary School worked with local artist Angela Tomlinson to create the artwork, which represents their time learning about...

Easington MP Grahame Morris backs campaign to stop Asda sacking staff

Easington MP Grahame Morris backs campaign to stop Asda sacking staff

Easington MP Grahame Morris has written to Walmart, parent company of Asda, to ask them to rethink imposing Contract 6. As part of GMB’s campaign, nearly 4,000 people have emailed the Walmart CEO directly to demand Asda drop the threat to sack people and work with GMB...

£2.25m regeneration of Seaham’s heritage launches

£2.25m regeneration of Seaham’s heritage launches

A seaside town’s rich heritage will soon be enhanced following the launch of a £2.25 million regeneration project this week. Last month, Durham County Council announced it had secured a £1.6 million grant from The National Lottery Heritage Fund towards the three-year...

Unique art project to launch in Seaham this weekend

Unique art project to launch in Seaham this weekend

A unique arts project, “Shadows of War”, will be unveiled this Sunday, November 3, at the foot of Seaham’s ‘Tommy’ sculpture. “Shadows of War” was created by Dave McKenna, Founder of Seaham Remember Them Fund, in support of this year’s British Legion Poppy Appeal. The...

Demolition of eyesore Seaham building starts

Demolition of eyesore Seaham building starts

An eyesore building in the centre of Seaham is to be demolished. Durham County Council has begun work to knock down the Drive 2 Data building, formerly known as the Noah’s Ark public house, in the town’s North Railway Terrace. The council is taking the action after...

Praise for Peterlee care home following independent inspection

Praise for Peterlee care home following independent inspection

A Peterlee care home has received high praise following an independent assessment by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Inspectors visiting Bannatyne Lodge Care Home, on Manor Way, spoke to more than a dozen residents and relatives, observed staff and reviewed records...

Landlord fined for breaching licence for Easington Colliery property

Landlord fined for breaching licence for Easington Colliery property

A landlord has been ordered to pay more than £700 for breaching the terms of a licence for a property in a designated selective licensing area. Durham County Council brought the case against Stephen Lilley, of Howden Road, Hartlepool, after he failed to comply with...

Young people have their say on decision-making within their community

Young people have their say on decision-making within their community

Young people have gone online to encourage their peers to get involved in decision-making in their community. Members of the East Durham Rural Corridor Area Action Partnership (AAP) Youth Forum have presented details of an online project, designed to get their peers...

£1.4m road safety improvement scheme near Wingate is now complete

£1.4m road safety improvement scheme near Wingate is now complete

A £1.4 million scheme to improve safety at a busy County Durham road junction is now complete. Durham County Council has been working with Highways England on the initiative at the A19/A179/B1280 Sheraton junction, near South Wingate. The work has seen the...

Seaham set to receive £1.6m boost to restore town’s rich heritage

Seaham set to receive £1.6m boost to restore town’s rich heritage

A project which aims to restore and protect the rich heritage of a coastal County Durham town is set to receive a £1.6 million boost. Durham County Council has secured the £1.6 million from The National Lottery Heritage Fund for the Seaham Townscape Heritage Project....

School children visit Apollo Pavilion for art project inspiration

School children visit Apollo Pavilion for art project inspiration

Schoolchildren have been visiting a unique County Durham landmark for an art project, as part of its 50th anniversary celebrations. Students from The Academy at Shotton Hall at Peterlee were at the town’s Apollo Pavilion, for Playful Places, which is part of a year of...

Overloaded vehicle lands driver and his employer in court

Overloaded vehicle lands driver and his employer in court

A lorry driver and his employer are counting the cost after an overloaded vehicle was stopped while travelling through County Durham. William Arthur Monkhouse, of Cunningham Court, Sedgefield, and Eltel UK Limited have been now been fined and ordered to pay costs...

Haswell charity boss feels the need for speed

Haswell charity boss feels the need for speed

The chief executive of a local charity is taking part in a new local event that tests people’s skills and nerves. Hayley Hood, CEO of Haswell & District Mencap is representing the charity in the inaugural Soapbox Bogey Derby, organised by Peterlee Town Council....

Work starts on £6.9m affordable homes scheme in Murton

Work starts on £6.9m affordable homes scheme in Murton

Construction has begun on a £6.9m affordable home project that will bring much-needed new bungalows and family homes to Murton. A mix of wheelchair adaptable bungalows and three-bedroom houses is being built on a brown field site by believe housing. The County...

Thousands sign up for government-backed savings scheme

Thousands sign up for government-backed savings scheme

Over 132,000 people have signed up to the government-backed savings account Help to Save – depositing more than £31.4 million. The account offers working people on low incomes a 50 per cent bonus on what they save – rewarding them with 50p for every £1 they put away....

Horden resident one of seven prosecuted for failing to clear waste

Horden resident one of seven prosecuted for failing to clear waste

Failing to pay fixed penalties for ignoring requests to clear waste has left seven people a combined £5,000 worse off and with criminal convictions. Durham County Council has successfully prosecuted four men and three women who did not pay fixed penalties issued in...

The story of Peterlee and the Apollo Pavilion to be told at exhibition

The story of Peterlee and the Apollo Pavilion to be told at exhibition

The story of Peterlee and the Apollo Pavilion are the subject of a new exhibition. When the visionary artist Victor Pasmore took over the design of the emerging new town of Peterlee in 1955 he was told to “do what you like but don’t do what we have done before"....

MP Grahame Morris backs tumble dryer safety campaign

MP Grahame Morris backs tumble dryer safety campaign

Easington MP Grahame Morris has joined Electrical Safety First’s campaign to ensure constituents stay safe in their homes. “With 724 fires caused by tumble dryers in English homes last year and a major, ongoing tumble dryer recall, all of us need to check and use them...

Another year of success for East Durham College A Level students

Another year of success for East Durham College A Level students

East Durham College is thrilled to announce that A Level students at the college’s sixth form, ED6, have achieved 100 per cent pass rate in all subjects for students studying three subjects or more. ED6 Sixth Form, which is part of East Durham College’s Peterlee...

Blackhall shopkeeper prosecuted for possession of illegal tobacco

Blackhall shopkeeper prosecuted for possession of illegal tobacco

A County Durham shopkeeper found in possession of illicit tobacco worth thousands of pounds has been ordered to carry out 250 hours unpaid work. Balraj Singh Takhar, 49, owner of Lifestyle Express store at Blackhall Colliery, was also ordered to pay £585 having been...

Funding boost is blooming marvelous for voluntary group

Funding boost is blooming marvelous for voluntary group

Easington Village is in full flower this summer thanks to a local voluntary group and a little help from a leading housing association. Easington Village in Bloom Group have recently brightened the community with new planters and flowers, thanks to funding from...

East Durham youngsters to benefit from funding to tackle holiday hunger

East Durham youngsters to benefit from funding to tackle holiday hunger

Thousands of youngsters are set to benefit from a £150,000 funding pot aimed at combatting holiday hunger when children are not at school. Durham County Council’s Poverty Action Steering Group has been allocated the money from the Government’s New Burdens Funding...

MP urges East Durham charities to register for share of £3m funding pot

MP urges East Durham charities to register for share of £3m funding pot

Easington MP Grahame Morris is encouraging local charities and community groups to apply for funding from a pot of over £3 million that has been raised by players of People’s Postcode Lottery. Applications are open from Wednesday 31 July for two weeks until 14 August....

Wheatley Hill woman among three fined for dropping cigarette butts

Wheatley Hill woman among three fined for dropping cigarette butts

Failing to pay fixed penalties for discarding cigarettes has left three people hundreds of pounds worse off and with criminal convictions. Durham County Council issued £150 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) to two women and a man who dropped cigarette butts and made no...

Improvement works on 50 affordable homes in Horden nears completion

Improvement works on 50 affordable homes in Horden nears completion

Work to improve more than 50 affordable homes in Horden is nearing completion as part of a major investment in the area. Homes on the Ponyfields Estate are receiving new roofs and upgrades to walls as part of an extensive improvements to affordable homes in east...

Celebrations to mark Apollo’s 50th birthday

Celebrations to mark Apollo’s 50th birthday

Celebrations have been held to mark the Apollo Pavilion's 50th birthday. A free-of-charge musical extravaganza took place yesterday at the structure, on the town’s Sunny Blunts estate, featuring performances from Mr Wilson’s Second Liners and Oompah Brass, as part of...

Wheatley Hill pupils deliver valuable road safety sonnets

Wheatley Hill pupils deliver valuable road safety sonnets

Primary school pupils are helping their peers stay road savvy by becoming Junior Road Safety Officers (JRSO). The Junior Road Safety Officer (JRSO) scheme is a national road safety education project aimed at primary schools which encourages peer to peer education. The...

Story awarded contract to design and build Horden Railway Station

Story awarded contract to design and build Horden Railway Station

Story Contracting has been awarded a Network Rail contract to design and build a new railway station in County Durham. Following a bumper start to 2019 for the civil engineering company’s expanding rail division, Story has secured further contract success, being...

Easington MP calls for fair pay settlement for the Royal Fleet Auxiliary

Easington MP calls for fair pay settlement for the Royal Fleet Auxiliary

Easington MP Grahame Morris has called on Defence Ministers’ to lift the pay cap and deliver a fair pay settlement for the Royal Fleet Auxiliary. The Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) is a civilian crewed fleet, which carried out 64 per cent of the Royal Navy’s tasks. The...

£8m affordable housing project is underway in Peterlee

£8m affordable housing project is underway in Peterlee

Work is underway on an £8 million housing project that will provide much needed affordable housing in County Durham. The development, in Peterlee, involves Galliford Try Partnerships North and believe housing (formerly County Durham Housing Group) and will include...

Foodbank anticipating rise in demand as summer holidays loom

Foodbank anticipating rise in demand as summer holidays loom

Businesses are being urged to give their support to a local foodbank as the six weeks holidays approach. The East Durham FEED project has previously reported a sharp rise in demand for its services and is urging businesses to give their support over the summer...

Work starts on 40 affordable houses in Peterlee

Work starts on 40 affordable houses in Peterlee

Construction of more than 40 affordable homes on a brownfield site in Peterlee has been officially started. A mix of family houses and bungalows are being developed at Tamar Close and Teign Close, near the heart of Peterlee by believe housing. The County Durham-based...