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New A1 stretch will 'cut journey times by 20 per cent'

Work on a new 2.5 mile section of the A1 between Leeming and Barton is expected to open to traffic on September 6.

Highways England Assistant Project Manager, Charlotte Wright Credit: Highways England

A 2.5 mile stretch of new road on the A1 is set to open in early September and should cut journey times by 20 per cent.

The A1 between Leeming and Barton carries between 59,000 to 69,000 vehicles per day.

The new section is part of a £380 million Highways England scheme to widen 12 miles of the A1 in North Yorkshire from dual carriageway to motorway.

Traffic will switch to the newly constructed northbound section from Sowber Hill to Catterick Central early on Tuesday 6 September (subject to weather conditions). Southbound traffic will then follow later in the week.

The Leeming to Barton scheme is the largest Highways England roads project under construction in the country.

Once completed, the scheme will complete the missing link of motorway between London and Newcastle, using the M1 and A1 (M), as well as improving journey times and increasing safety.

When the scheme is completed, journey times between Leeming and Barton are expected to be reduced by approximately 20 per cent.

This is a key milestone and once completed will allow us to access the old A1 as a working area to convert this to a local access road along with finishing our works at Catterick South junction and demolishing old bridges.

A total of three bridges will be demolished on the old section of the A1 - Catterick South, Tunstall and Manor House - as we move toward completing the project next year. When the scheme has completed drivers will benefit from an extra lane in each direction, improving journey times and tackling congestion.

– Highways England Assistant Project Manager Charlotte Wright

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Coxhoe X Factor singer's early fan base

Coxhoe teenager Samantha Lavery walked out of the audition room with four 'yes' votes from the celebrity judging panel.

Well, it wasn't just Nicole, Sharon, Louis and Simon who were impressed. Twitter users were very active in tweeting their adoration for the 16-year-old singer. Samantha has called the experience 'amazing and overwhelming'.

Samantha Lavery Credit: Emily Cromarty

I Am Team GB takes over Gateshead Stadium! Watch our report here:

Saturday 27th of August is officially I Am Team GB day across the UK.

Sports clubs who have signed up have been opening their doors for free to allow people to have a go at a sport they've never tried before or just to give getting fit a shot!

The main event was held at the Gateshead International Stadium.

Were you there?

Watch our report below and you might see some of the Olympians of the future!

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I Am Team GB in the North East - it's not too late to get involved!

Today is the official I Am Team GB event being held across the UK.

ITV and the National Lottery are hosting it, and it's designed to give YOU the chance to try your hand at a number of sports for free!

Sports clubs are opening their doors for free taster sessions with the main event in our region being held at the Gateshead International Stadium.

Take a look at some of the chatter on social media about it!

IAmTeamGB

Coxhoe teenager to feature on The X Factor

Local music fans spotted Coxhoe teenager Samantha Lavery, who looks just like former Geordie judge Cheryl, on an advert for The X Factor during Good Morning Britain this morning.

The X Factor returns on Saturday night and it looks like the North East will have an act in the mix!

Samantha Lavery Credit: Emily Cromarty
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