A decision over a 300 million pound development, which could create thousands of construction jobs, has been deferrred by councillors for further discussions to take place.
Developers want to build hundreds of homes at Allens West, the former Ministry of Defence land at Eaglescliffe. But people living nearby and those working there are objecting to the size of the project.
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Labour's Anna Turley said ministers should have stepped in to stop the "hard closure" from going ahead.
His Excellency Mr Ranjan Mathai visited the 197-year old HMS Trincomalee, which celebrates its bicentenary in 2017.
For the Dutch, today's report into the disaster that killed hundreds is a labour of love. Yet it is unlikely to prompt any real action.