Construction output in the North East fell by nine per cent last year, which was one of the biggest falls in the country. However, output also dropped in Scotland and the North West.
The Construction Skills Network said the shortage of private investment continued to hit the region, but it thinks the North East will recover quicker than the rest of the country.
One roofing company in Washington says it has had to adapt to survive.
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As many as 23% of North-East residents do not brush their teeth at least once a day, according to market research by Vital Statistics.