Northumberland's long history of aluminium smelting has come to an end with the closure of the Alcan smelter at Lynemouth.
More than 500 people will lose their jobs by the end of the year, in what the GMB Union described as a "catastrophic" day for the region.
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In some wards of Newcastle, 47% of families are reported as living in poverty.
At Ayresome Primary school in Middlesbrough Lego is being used to teach children as soon as they start school.
A 39-year-old mother with epilepsy caused a three vehicle smash after suffering a fit when she should not have been driving.