Graham Kennedy of the Offshore Group Newcastle says the offshore market for wind turbines is buoyant and 6,000 will be needed in the next few years in the UK sector.
OGN in Wallsend has received a government grant to build a prototype of a new foundation for offshore wind turbines. It wants to build a new factory to mass produce them by 2014, bringing up to 1,000 new jobs.
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Police say they are treating a fire which almost destroyed a Grade II listed building in Hartlepool as arson.
Knife-wielding robbers broke into a couple's home, threatened the householders and then made off with their Christmas presents.
It happened as the teenager was walking to school this morning. Anyone who witnessed the incident is asked to contact police.