A trip down memory lane at what made the headlines in years gone by.


DRUG FARM RAID: A cannabis farm which produced thousands of pounds worth of the drug was discovered by police in Hexham. Officers searched a house on West Read when they found 5.4 kilos of cannabis bush, which had been harvested and bagged, as well a cultivation equipment.

VERDICT ADJOURNED: A decision on a bid to erect a huge wind turbine at Hexham Racecourse was deferred. A late objection by the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty partnership meant the controversial application was taken off the agenda for that month's meeting of Northumberland County Council planning and environment committee.


CLOSE ELECTION RESULT: Tynedale's top politicians are taking stock of the future, it was reported, after the closest General Election result in Hexham this century. Only a 222-vote margin maintained Peter Atkinson's position as the MP.

CLOSURE FEARS: There were fears in the village of Greenhead that the church hall could close if it was not used more by the local community. A public meeting was to be held, the Courant reported.


INQUIRY WAIVED: A £1 million shops and flats development in Hexham's Back Row, off Market Place, was given the go-ahead after the Department of Environment decided against holding a public inquiry into it.

TOP-DOG TORIES: Conservative and independent councillors remained top dogs on Tynedale Council following 1987's district elections. The Conservatives picked up four seats, taking their tally to 16, and Labour and the Liberal/SDP alliance picked up one seat apiece, taking their respective tallies to nine and 12, leaving the remaining 10 seats in independent, and reportedly mostly pro-Tory, hands.

JOBS PLEDGE: Workers at Haltwhistle's Crown Paints factory were reassured that their jobs were safe following news that its parent company, Reed International, planned to sell it off.

ANNIVERSARY EVENT: Celebrations were held to mark the 25th anniversary of Fourstones paper mill's takeover by the late Czech paper mogul George Mandl.


LABOUR GAIN: At 1972's urban council elections, the Tories gained a hitherto Independent seat but lost one of its seats to Labour. This left the Tories with four seats, Labour with three and Independents with five.

BAILIFFS COMEBACK CALL: Prudhoe Urban Council's housing committee called for its controversial bailiffs, suspended six weeks earlier over claims that they had asked a nine-year-old boy to sign a distress warrant, to be reinstated. This call was prompted by an upsurge in rent arrears, which fell from £1,600 to £300 after the Gateshead bailiffs were brought in but then shot back up to £700 following their suspension.

HOUSING BID: Plans to build 120 new houses in Hexham, at Hackwood and Shaw's Park, were announced.

TRASH INITIATIVE: Prudhoe binmen began giving their customers plastic rubbish bags following a successful trial period, it was reported.


CLEANING UP ACT: Prudhoe Urban Council demanded that tenants taking up houses on its new Oaklands estate be tidier than their counterparts elsewhere in the town. No pigeon lofts, hen runs or junk left lying around would be tolerated, prospective tenants were told.

CUP CONQUEST: Haydon Bridge's football team beat Crookhill 1-0 at Hexham to win the Ryton and District League Challenge Cup.


CHANGING STATIONS: A Mr W. Fogg was appointed stationmaster at Gilsland railway station, replacing Mr W. Bell, who had retired. Mr Fogg, of Hexham, came to Gilsland from Velvet Hill, near Berwick, where he had held a similar post.

TELEPHONE ENTREATY: Stanhope Urban Council called for Weardale to be connected up to the telephone network, saying it was the only area of County Durham that wasn't.


OVERTURNED CART ORDEAL: Alston man John Lancaster Miller was trapped for an hour when his horse and cart overturned near the town.

SCHOOL GO-AHEAD: Northumberland county councillors approved plans for the provision of a £6,000 secondary school, capable of accommodating 150 pupils, at Hexham.

DAMAGES FOR BLACKSMITH: Hexham blacksmith Robert Henry Ward was awarded £30 damages at the town's county court after suing Hexham Urban Council over injuries a horse of his sustained when its foot became stuck in a defective gate in the town centre.

TENT TRAUMA: Two spectators were injured when a travelling circus's tent was blown down in Prudhoe. Some 150 people, mostly children, were in the tent at the time of this accident.


MISHAP AT MINE: George Henry Robson, a 12-year-old Hexham boy, was injured in an accident at Fallowfield mine, near Acomb, where he worked. One of his legs was broken when a wagon he had fallen down in front of ran over it.