FIRST TIME: Allendale’s Violet Beaumont helped rewrite history when she became one of the first girls to sing as a chorister in Durham Cathedral.

AXE FALLS: Campaigners lost their fight to maintain day care centres for the elderly, after county councillors voted 32 to 11 to close every facility in Northumberland, including those in Hexham, Prudhoe, Haltwhistle, and Ponteland.

SPEEDING DISPUTE: A dispute broke out over whether the densely populated streets near Queen Elizabeth High School in Hexham needed a 20mph speed limit, with the town’s mayor calling it “an outrageous waste of public money.”

LION MAN: Craig Busch, better known as the Lion Man from Sky TV, flew from his big cat ranch in New Zealand to visit Bellingham residents Brian and Debbi English, with Debbi reportedly a huge fan of the show.


RED CARD: One of Hexham’s best known football referees, Raymond “Rogie” Lee, was given his marching orders by the local league for being too strict.

QUICKLY NOW!: Off-duty policeman Michael Keady copped more than he bargained for while rushing his pregnant wife Kathie to hospital, when their daughter Sian was born in the foot-well of the car just outside Ovingham Middle School.

FOOTBALL FAREWELL: Tynedale’s premier football club, Prudhoe Town, looked set to be forced out of existence, with bailiffs due to swoop demanding £6,500 worth of goods in lieu of unpaid VAT bills.

DODGY MOTOR: An unroadworthy but superficially face-lifted old banger was being used by Northumberland County Council to warn of the pitfalls of buying second hand cars.


GREAT WALL: Hadrian’s Wall was a bone of contention, with local councillors calling for a relaxation of government restrictions so that the Military Road could be improved and made safer. There was a preservation order safeguarding the Wall on stretches of the road.

A MINUTE: Hexham Urban Council refused a request that it made its minutes available in the local library, saying that the current arrangements for making council deliberations known were adequate.

POULTRY PLANT: Grimsby firm Ross Poultry announced that it intended to build a poultry-processing plant off Broomhouse Lane in Prudhoe within two years.


TOWN VISIT: Civil Defence northern regional commissioner Sir Arthur Lambert announced that he was to visit Hexham to thank local volunteers for their work over the past five years.

FAMILY REUNION: Two brothers from Haltwhistle, Richard and Willie Johnston, met for the first time in three and a half years while serving with the army in Italy.

LONG SERVICE: West Woodburn postman Matthew Henry Feathersone (61) was awarded the Imperial Service Medal in recognition of his 30 years’ service with the Post Office.


MUSICAL REVIVAL: It was agreed at a meeting held at Hexham Abbey Hotel that the Tynedale Musical Competitions, last held five years previously, be revived. It was also agreed that this event be renamed the Tynedale Musical Festival.

ROAD WIDENING: Hexham Urban Council gave the go-ahead to plans to have Hencotes widened.

CINEMA LICENCE: Haydon Bridge’s Haydon Hotel was granted a cinema licence at Hexham Petty Sessions.


BOARD MEETING: Haltwhistle Board of Guardians voted in favour of separate institutions being provided for “harmless lunatics and imbeciles” so that they could be given special training.

BEASTLY BEHAVIOUR: A Hexham labourer found guilty on two counts of drunk and disorderly conduct was fined 20 shillings at Hexham Petty Sessions. The court heard that “the defendant was mad with drink, and was using very disgusting language and roaring like a wild beast.”


THE SCIENCES: Haltwhistle man Mr TR Simpson announced plans to run a night school, giving “sublime delineations on the important laws of astronomy and gravitation, suitable to every individual.”

HUNT ACCIDENT: Captain Augustus H. Hunt of Birtley was staking a fence whilst fox-hunting, when his horse was caught by a branch and fell heavily on its side, causing the captain to break his collar bone. He was conveyed home by carriage and was progressing well.

MELANCHOLY SUICIDE: An inquest into the death of an Otterburn woman, who was found in the River Rede partially dressed and “quite dead” concluded that Miss Wallace “destroyed herself by drowning whilst labouring under temporary insanity”.