CAT BURGLAR: The mystery of disappearing cat food from a garden shed on Shaftoe Leazes was solved when two-year-old Berlie the cat was caught in the act of bringing home her ill gotten gains home through the window.

BUS STOP: Northumberland County Council put wholesale changes of school transport routes and operators into operation, causing chaos in the bus industry as drivers were laid off and contracts given to different operators.

RUN DOWN: A £3.6m scheme to bring up to 800 jobs to Haltwhistle was branded a flop, as the dilapidated condition of units at Hadrian Enterprise Park meant there was little chance of attracting businesses.

RAW DEAL: Vulnerable people in Northumberland were still getting a raw deal from Northumberland County Council, according to an independent report released by the audit committee.


WARD WOES: Health officials were proposing to scrap the children’s ward at Hexham General Hospital, meaning patients would have to travel to hospitals in Newcastle.

RETIREMENT HOME: Alan, a 13 hands high Dartmoor pony and one of the last pit ponies to leave Ellington Colliery, was enjoying his new retirement at Ryhill Farm in Slaley.

LUNAR LANDSCAPE: County councillors criticised government moves that could see a new rash of opencast developments in Northumberland, claiming the county would look like the “surface of the moon”.

PLANS BACKED: Plans to make nursery education available to everyone who needed it were backed by Northumberland County Council.


TREAT THAT: The Newcastle and Gateshead Water Company announced that water from the Gunnerton treatment works would have fluoride added for the first time.

FLOOD WARNING: The former MP for Hexham, Sir Rupert Speir, spoke out against plans to flood the North Tyne to form a reservoir. He suggested an alternative site above Tarset and The Combe.

LONG SERVICE: Mr Joseph Cullen, who had been chairman of Hexham Urban Council ten times, died at the age of 73.


FULL MONTY: General Montgomery – the nephew of a former Rector of Hexham, Canon E. Sidney Savage – sent a message wishing success to Hexham and District’s Salute the Soldier Campaign.

PUSH OFF: A member of Hexham Abbey’s congregation complained that to have people pushing a collecting plate in front of him whilst he was singing was “undignified.”

HAPPY FAMILY: An Acomb nursing sister, Miss Mary Hawkins, and her nephew, driver Edward Pattinson, met in Italy after three years of separation.


FISHY TALE: Sunday School children in Hexham performed Pearl the Fishermaiden –the story of a princess washed on to a beach and adopted by Daddy Whelk – in aid of the War Memorial Hospital.

PROMISED LAND: When members of the Mechanics’ Institute in Wark wanted to build ante-rooms on to the hall, the owner of the Black Bull gave them his adjoining land.

HARD KNOCKS: A player nicknamed “Knocks” scored one of the goals when Mickley played at home to Newbrough for the second time in a row.


ROTTEN LUCK: A polecat was found in a trap on Falstone Moors, the first to be captured for 40 years, but after several days there, it was not worth preserving.

TONGUE TIED: A runaway mule that bolted into Hexham’s shopping district was clobbered with a stick, then kept in place by a farmer by holding its tongue.

NOT YET: Lectures in Corbridge on the “impending” second coming of Christ drew very small audiences, the Courant reported.


CHEAP PRESS: Five years after launching, the Courant increased its size to be equal that of The Times, whilst costing a third of the price. The Courant claimed the paper occupied “the very foremost position of the free press movement which already possess such immense power for good”.

ENORMOUS EGG: A common duck belonging to Mr Armstrong, a paper maker in Allenwood, laid an egg weighing six ounces and measuring seven and half inches by nine inches.

LUCKY ESCAPE: An Acomb miner had a narrow escape from death when a rush off coal fell on him. The man was taken home, where he was found to have severely crushed legs.

RELIGIOUS RITE: The Bishop of Durham held confirmation at Hexham Abbey, and 72 young people from Hexham and the St John Lee Parish were given the sacred rite.