Votes have been counted after polling in three of our local council areas.
Sunderland was held by Labour, where UKIP failed to make the electoral breakthrough they were looking for, despite a strong showing in some wards.
Labour also held South Tyneside and Hartlepool.
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NFU Mutual has found the cost of rural crime in our region rose by a fifth last year, despite a decrease nationally.
The victim was walking her dog last month in an area known to locals as 'Black Bobby's Field'.