As part of his Autumn Statement, Chancellor George Osborne has frozen business rate relief for small businesses.
And that business rate news will be welcome on our High Streets.
Gregg Easteal has been to visit two stores with contrasting takes on whether tills are really starting to ring louder again on our shopping streets.
More top news
£100,000 of vital maintenance work is being carried out on the Tees Barrage.
Alan Barnes, the Gateshead man given £330,135 by well-wishers after being mugged, plans to sell his home to move to the Shetland Islands.
Higher breakfast sales and a bigger range of healthier products helped it grow underlying profits by 51% in the first half of the year.