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  1. What does tier 3 mean?

    So the North East is heading for tier thee when lockdown ends on Wednesday 2 December, but what does that mean for us all?

    Health Correspondent Laura Foster uses cake to explain what you can and can't do in the new system.

    Video content

    Video caption: After lockdown: What is the new three tier system?
  2. BreakingParts of North East to go into tier 3 after lockdown

    Parts of the North East will face the toughest local Covid restrictions after the end of the national lockdown, it has been confirmed.

    Middlesbrough, Hartlepool, Stockton, Redcar and Cleveland, Newcastle, Gateshead, Northumberland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Sunderland, County Durham and Darlington will all be placed under tier three rules, when lockdown ends on Wednesday.


    The news, while not unexpected, will come as a devastating blow to the hospitality industry – with pubs, bars, and restaurants having to stay shut.

    And, unlike some other parts of the country, spectators will not be allowed back into football stadiums or to other large events.

    Residents will still be banned from socialising indoors with anyone outside their household or social bubble, though people will be allowed to meet in groups of up to six in outdoor public spaces and non-essential shops will reopen.

    The system will be regularly reviewed and an area's tier level may change before Christmas - the first review is scheduled for 16 December.

    Shoppers wearing masks

    Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: "I know for those of you faced with tier 3 restrictions this will be a particularly difficult time but I want to reassure you that we’ll be supporting your areas with mass community testing and extra funding.

    “By following the rules together we can get out of these tough measures.”

  3. New ward created at RVI to treat seriously ill Covid patients

    A new intensive care ward for Covid-19 patients has been created at the RVI in Newcastle.

    It will be used to treat the most severely ill patients, including those who need a higher level of monitoring or critical care.

    It's been designed so each area of the ward can be isolated individually, and means staff can put on and take off their PPE after leaving the clinical area, which means it's a more comfortable way of working for them, hospital bosses say.

    Dr Sarah Platt, clinical lead for adult critical care, Rob Lees, senior project manager, Dr Ian Clement, clinical lead for adult critical care in a new bay on Ward 49
    Quote Message: Longer-term, this unit provides the RVI with a modern high-acuity medical ward for looking after the sickest medical patients.
    Quote Message: As the regional centre for critical care, it’s vital that we have this option to safely expand critical care beds when we need to." from Dr Ian Clement RVI's clinical lead for adult critical care
    Dr Ian ClementRVI's clinical lead for adult critical care
  4. Anniversary for Millennium Bridge

    Do you remember where you were when this happened 20 years ago today?

    Architect Jim Eyre, from WilkinsonEyre said: "I think it is the best known project we've done - I just loved doing something that so many people enjoy."

    View more on twitter
  5. Video content

    Video caption: Gateshead Millennium Bridge: The day the 'blinking eye' arrived

    On this day 20 years ago, one of the North East's best-known bridges was lifted into place.

  6. Metro worker assaulted in mask argument

    A Metro worker was pushed to the floor after "reminding" a passenger she was required to wear a face covering, police have said.

    Northumbria Police said the man was assaulted at Chichester Metro Station at about 07:40 BST on 19 October. The victim was uninjured but police have launched an investigation.

    They have released a CCTV image of a woman who was "in the station at the time and could have information that can assist with the investigation".

    Woman police want to speak to

    Metro operator Nexus said in a statement: “Assaults on staff will not be tolerated and we urge anyone with information about this incident to get in contact with the police.

    “Face coverings are mandatory on all modes of public transport, unless someone has a legitimate exemption. This rule is there to keep us all safe from Covid-19 while making essential journeys.

    “Our frontline staff have the right to go to work and not have to put up with incidents like this when they’re just doing their job.”

  7. Millennium Bridge 'has good recognition'

    BBC Look North

    North East and Cumbria

    It is 20 years since the Millennium Bridge was lifted into place on the River Tyne.

    The £22m structure was carried by one of the world's largest cranes in 2000.

    That same year it was featured on a first class stamp, and it has since become an iconic local landmark.

    Millennium Bridge

    Architect Jim Eyre said: "That bridge has good recognition.

    "I think it is the best known project we've done - I just loved doing something that so many people enjoy."

  8. Police operation nets dozens of weapons

    Northumbria Police say 127 people were arrested and 59 weapons seized as part of a week-long operation to clamp down on knife crime and violence in the community.

    Operation Sceptre saw a dozen early morning raids carried out across Tyneside recovering a number of firearms, other weapons, cash and a small cannabis farm.

    Officers were also deployed across Newcastle and Gateshead to conduct searches, looking for any knives or weapons hidden in bushes, parks or derelict buildings.

    Of the 59 weapons recovered – 33 were seized by officers and 26 were voluntarily handed over during visits with collectors and weapons enthusiasts.


    Assistant Chief Constable Neil Hutchison said: “Our stance on knife crime and serious violence is simple – it has absolutely no place in our region.

    “We have seen incidents of knife crime falling across the North East, but we are far from complacent and one incident is still one too many.

    “Thanks to our officers, 59 weapons ...can now be disposed of safely and will never be used to kill or seriously injure someone.".

  9. Police probe council finances

    James Harrison

    Local Democracy Reporter

    Police are probing finances at South Tyneside Council.

    Northumbria Police confirmed it was carrying out an investigation into the local authority after potential issues were reported, but officers have not commented on how long it has been going on for or whether they are focusing on a particular individual or department.

    A spokesman for the force said: “We can confirm there is an ongoing investigation after concerns of a financial nature were raised by South Tyneside Council (STC).”

    The Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) was prompted to ask Northumbria Police whether it was conducting a probe after it was passed correspondence related to inquiries carried out by the Information Commissioner’s Office.

    South Shields Town Hall

    According to this, a request for financial documents by independent councillor John Robertson was rejected under the terms of section 31 of the Freedom of Information Act.

    This allows public bodies to deny requests for information where they feel it could "prejudice the prevention or detection of crime by a Police Authority".

    Reacting to news of the police investigation, Mr Robertson, who is also the leader of the opposition at STC, said: “I hope if there is any wrong doing it is uncovered.”

    A borough council spokesman said: “We are aware that Northumbria Police are conducting an investigation. The council is supporting this and as such no further statements will be made whilst this is ongoing."