X-Factor judge Simon Cowell has given his verdict on Newcastle after the reality TV show held auditions in the city on Thursday.
Newcastle was fantastic. And so was the talent. Apart from a few exceptions!
As Cheryl Cole walked the red carpet in Gateshead before judging X Factor auditions, we asked her how much time she normally spends in the North East.
X Factor judge Cheryl Cole said she was glad to see auditions on Tyneside this year after local talent from Joe McElderry to James Arthur and Little Mix won the show. She never had chance to audition there herself.
The X Factor's celebrity judges were in town to see the best of the talent from open auditions in the North East.Read the full story ›
As Cheryl Cole made her return to the X Factor judging panel in the North East, we asked her what Simon Cowell said to convince her to do it.
Simon Cowell said he would not let his baby son Eric audition for the X Factor when he is older - unless he could sing.
He also said fatherhood had not changed his life dramatically - and he still works as many hours as ever.
Cheryl Cole has arrived to judge the X Factor auditions in the North East. She was greeted by fans on a red carpet outside the Sage Gateshead on the Quayside.
Just 37 acts will perform in front of the X Factor's celebrity judging panel in Gateshead, without an audience, in a stripped-back audition process.
Open auditions held already across the UK - including Gateshead and South Shields - have whittled down the number of contestants.
Those remaining will audition in a room at the Baltic art gallery in front of a returning Simon Cowell and Cheryl Cole, veteran Louis Walsh, and new judge Mel B.
In previous years, auditions have been in front of a large theatre audience, but this time, they will start in a small room, similar to the initial years of the show.
The X Factor's longest-serving judge, Louis Walsh, has arrived punctually at the North East auditions in Gateshead. He was greeted by fans lining a red carpet, which has been laid outside the Sage Gateshead on the Quayside.