Durham Police, which regularly carries out operations to find under-age drinkers, says those involved are getting younger:
Almost 40% of adults in the North East, around 813,000 people, drink more than the recommended daily alcohol limit.Read the full story ›
Officers in Cramlington and Blyth have been working to identify premises selling alcohol to children, to address concerns about young people drinking and causing anti-social behaviour.
The neighbourhood policing team and Northumberland County Council's Trading Standards officers have carried out a test purchase operation at a number of licensed premises in the areas.
A 14-year-old volunteer tried to buy alcohol from four off licenses in Blyth and four in Cramlington last week.
In all but one of the attempts the child was asked for ID and then refused sale - the store that sold the alcohol will be revisited.
The North East has topped the list of English regions for the number of hospital admissions due to alcohol-related conditionsRead the full story ›
Former England, Manchester United & Middlesbrough player Gary Pallister helped to demonstrate the effects of alcohol, with "beer goggles", which simulate some of the effects of being drunk:
He was at the launch of an anti-drink-drive campaign launched by Cleveland & Durham Police.
Figures put together for the NHS show that between 2012 and 2013, 67,000 people were admitted to North East hospitals with alcohol-related conditions - the equivalent of 185 every day.
When the figures are adjusted to take account of population differences, Middlesbrough has the highest rate of admissions in England, with South Tyneside, Sunderland and North Tyneside also in the top ten.
Those figures relate to the number of people suffering the effects of drinking too much in the long and short term, as well as falls, self harm and other injuries caused by drinking.
The North East has the highest rate of alcohol-related hospital admissions in England, according to new figures.
2.5% of people in the region were admitted to hospital for alcohol-related reasons in 2012-13. The statistics have been published by the Health and Social Care Information Centre.
The figure for Middlesbrough, at 3.28%, was the highest of any local authority area in England.
This is significantly above the national average figure of 1.89%. The South East had the lowest rate in England, at 1.5%.
Football fans are being reminded of the dangers of drink driving ahead of the start of this year's World Cup. The campaign has been launched, jointly, by Durham and Cleveland Police. The main focus is to warn people that they may still be over the legal limit the morning AFTER drinking alcohol.
If you are found to be over the limit the next day you will be dealt with and prosecuted for the offence just as if you had got behind the wheel when intoxicated at the time. Driving in this state could easily lead to a serious or fatal crash because the driver is still affected from last night's alcohol. Our message is simple - don't risk it.
Due to the time difference in Brazil, some matches will be shown as late as 11 o' clock at night. This could increase the chance of alcohol still being in a person's system. The message also applies to drugs.
The campaign will be officially launched by former England and Middlesbrough star Gary Pallister this afternoon. He'll be joined by players from Middlesbrough's Youth Academy and Hartlepool United.
Children as young as eleven are being referred to specialist drug and alcohol treatment services in the North East.
Figures obtained from Freedom of Information requests reveal Darlington, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough local councils have referred the youngest (who is eleven) in our region during the past three years.
An off-licence in Gateshead has had its alcohol licence revoked.
This comes after an underage volunteer was served alcohol there as part of a police operation.
The decision was made at a hearing at the Gateshead Civic Centre.
The Northumbria Police operation was triggered by reports of alcohol-related disruption in the area.