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Newcastle City Council approves plans for £45 million refurbishment of the Civic Centre

Credit: Newcastle City Council

The cabinet of Newcastle City Council has approved plans to borrow £45 million to be spent on the refurbishment of the Civic Centre.

The council says improving the Grade II* listed Newcastle landmark would enhance it for future generations as well as creating a more efficient workplace for council staff.

It also claims energy savings, reduced maintenance bills and additional income will more than cover the costs of borrowing the money – including all interest charges on the loan.

The council says failing to invest in the building would cost taxpayers £35.3 million for basic repairs and maintenance to deal with the effects of wear and tear on the ageing structure.

Independent City Councillor Marc Donnelly, of Westerhope, said: "I am shocked and appalled at these proposals" and suggested the true cost would be near £90 million.


Teesside Anti-Austerity campaigners join London demonstration

Dozens gathered this morning to travel to the London march Credit: Teesside Peoples' Assembly

A group of campaigners from across Teesside who are opposed to the government's austerity measures are travelling to London today to join a national rally. The Teesside Peoples' Assembly against Austerity are calling for an end to austerity cuts. Coaches travelled from pick up points in Hartlepool and Middlesbrough at dawn this morning to head to the capital for this afternoon's demonstration.

The coaches will arrive in London this afternoon Credit: Teesside Peoples' Assembly
Coaches have travelled from Hartlepool and Middlesbrough Credit: Teesside Peoples' Assembly

Tata Steel goes to ACAS to try to solve dispute

Tata Steel UK goes to ACAS to try to solve pension dispute Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Tata Steel UK says it's approached the conciliation service ACAS to try to resolve a pension dispute wth its workforce.

The company has sites across the North East, at Hartlepool, Skinningrove, Lackenby, Darlington, York and Blaydon.

A one day strike is planned for later this month. Tata says it's facing a projected shortfall of more than £2 billion pounds this year. The Unite union says it's provoking the biggest crisis in the steel industry for a generation.


Prince Harry helps launch RWC 2015 trophy tour

Prince Harry helped mark the 100 days until the start of the Rugby World Cup at a launch event in London, ahead of its arrival in the North East.

The Webb Ellis Cup at Twickenham Stadium with Jonny Wilkinson and Prince Harry (right) as part of the 100 day Rugby World Cup Trophy Tour of the UK & Ireland. Credit: PA

Newcastle is hosting three matches this October and tourism experts hope the tournament could bring as much as £43 million into the region.

Prince Harry and Former England player Jonny Wilkinson with the Web Ellis Cup during the 100 days until the start of the 2015 Rugby World Cup event at Twickenham Stadium, London. Credit: PA

Prince Harry made a speech the Trophy Tour at Twickenham this morning, alongside England legend Jonny Wilkinson.

Prince Harry talks to school children at Twickenham as part of the 100 day Rugby World Cup Trophy Tour of the UK & Ireland. Credit: PA

The Webb Ellis Trophy is coming to the region at the end of next month as part of a nationwide tour.

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