The Countess of Wessex has been visiting the region.
As well as visiting community projects across Teesside and County Durham, she also officially re-opened Billingham Forum to mark its fifth decade in the town. It was originally opened by the Queen in the 1960s.
But today it was given another royal seal of approval after a multi-million pound revamp.
More top news
The MP for Newcastle Central, Chi Onwurah, has started the formal process to see Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein stripped of UK honour.
It comes as households already face a triple-whammy from airfares, fuel and electricity prices.
Firefighters are urging residents to be extra vigilant if using candles over the winter months and during the Hindu festival of Diwali.