BOOTED OUT: Shocked residents of a sheltered accommodation complex in Corbridge – some in their 90s – were being turfed out of their homes by social landlord Milecastle Housing.

WILD FIND: Thompsons of Prudhoe machine operator John Rutherford was shocked when he unearthed a complete 8,000-year-old auroch skull at the company’s Haughton Strother quarry near Simonburn.

THROWN OUT: Inhabitants of Halton-Lea-Gate defeated plans for an opencast mining operation just 50 metres from their homes, after Northumberland County Council threw out the application to extract 140,000 tones of coal over a three-and-a-half-year period.

SLOW DOWN: One hundred and ninety students at Queen Elizabeth High School lay down on Whetstone Bridge Road as part of a road safety publicity event staged by charity Brake.


ACTION PLAN: Hospital chiefs unveiled an early Christmas present for the people of Tynedale – the promise of a brand new general hospital before the year 2000.

CHEAP TRIAL: The A69 west of Hexham was selected for a £320,000 full-scale trial of low-cost accident reducing measures – one of only four in the country.

IN RUINS: A decision by English Heritage to turn down a grant request to perform repairs to the important Grade I listed Elsdon Tower threatened to put a £200,000 restoration project in jeopardy.

NO CHAINS: The results of a survey on the controversial Tynedale District Draft Plan at Corbridge showed that the vast majority of villagers were against any development of the Chains Allotments.


COST CONCERN: Hexham councillors discussed the ways of reducing the amount the rural council paid out in bus service subsidies. Members of Hexham Rural Council expressed concern about the escalating cost, but decided to continue subsidising services to Blanchland and Morpeth.

ESTATE FIRM: North of England Wools became the first firm to be granted planning approval for a development on Hexham’s Haugh Lane Industrial Estate.

RENT RISES: Prudhoe Urban Council increased the rents on its 1,408 houses by between two and 10 shillings a week – a rise of up to 40 per cent.

HOTEL REOPENS: Haltwhistle’s oldest building, the Red Lion Hotel, was reopened as a cafe after having been closed for two years.


WRITTEN OFF: Hexham’s west-area committee guardians’ committee wrote off £10,583 worth of relief loan debts, some of which had been owing since 1921.

NEW CHURCH: A hut at Hexham Emergency Hospital was dedicated as a church by the Bishop of Newcastle, Noel Hudson. The new church was for the use of patients and hospital staff.

HALL PLANS: Corbridge Welcome Home Fund withdrew its offer to provide a social hall in the town, following the announcement that such a hall, the Corstopium Social Club and Institute, was already planned. Instead, it held a public meeting to decide how best to welcome back local armed forces members who had been serving overseas.

CENTRE PROPOSED: Stocksfield Welcome Home Committee voted in favour of having a £3,000 community centre built in the village.


FARMER’S MEETING: A conference on the sheep disease louping-ill held at Bellingham Town Hall attracted a large number of shepherds and farmers.

MP CHALLENGED: Hexham MP Douglas Clifton Brown was accused by the town’s Young Leaguers of not making his position on the local veto bill clear.


TEACHER CLEARED: A Haltwhistle Church School teacher was cleared of an alleged assault on a 14-year-old boy, whom he had caned for insubordination and not doing his homework.

NEW JOBS: Haydon Bridge miners made redundant by the closure of local lead mines found new work at Blackett Colliery.


HEXHAM SAUCE: A Courant correspondent praised chemist Dr J.H Hedley for his Hexham sauce. He wrote: “The sauce is warranted free from all deleterious ingredients and gives a delicious flavour to either meat, soups, or game.”

SUDDEN DEATH: A wandering salesman, known in Otterburn only as Sandy, died suddenly while taking tea and refreshments at Davy Shield near the village. The Courant reported that Sandy had been “ailing for some time.”

POLICE ASSAULT: A mason, Patrick O’Connor, was convicted of assaulting PC Chambers in Corbridge by striking him with a hammer. He was given the choice of a £2 fine and costs, or six weeks in prison, and went to jail.