The region has received a £1.2 billion boost with the announcement of a new government contract to build trains.
270 carriages are to be manufactured by Hitachi Rail Europe at its new site in Newton Aycliffe.
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A former Premier League footballer has been cleared of raping a woman he met in a nightclub.
72-year-old Arthur Bierton from Thirsk was convicted at Teesside Crown Court of abusing two young girls in the 1980s and 90s.