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
There are reports that the Mike Ashley era at Newcastle United will soon be over with the club reportedly close to agreeing a takeover.
Denise Welch has quit the Newcastle Times Square pantomime, Jack and the Beanstalk.
Comedian Peter Kay has cancelled his upcoming tour, citing "unforeseen family circumstances".