Company flying high

FIRST Choice Holidays posted a 6% rise in first-half revenues today after strong demand for long-haul destinations such as Mexico and Costa Rica.

Asda price cut causes concern

Asda has cut the price of a four-pint bottle by 15p when bought as part of its "Any 2 for £2" pledge as part of a wider milk promotion.

Woolies hopes for high street revival

Woolworths has boosted hopes of a long-awaited revival in its retail business after it said it had made a "solid start" to the year.

Asda goes all squishy on financial services

People get all `squishy' when they think of Asda, according to a Newcastle firm that has just helped the Yorkshire-based retail giant launch its new financial services product range.

Sausages deal

County Durham butchers Newboulds has landed a contract to supply 10 branches of supermarket chain Asda.

Fisherman is rescued

A fisherman was rescued yesterday after taking to a life raft when his catamaran sank almost three miles off the mouth of the River Tweed.

New deal for Newboulds

A TEES Valley company has landed a contract to supply ten Asda stores.

Here's a chaser for the rum!

A brew which was last bottled almost 50 years ago is about to make its comeback.

Luxurious whites

Pristine white cotton and linen, freshly laundered and pressed (and often starched), really has no substitute.

Fine local produce is part of the joy of visiting our region

There is increasing evidence that visitors to the North-East are seeking out local produce as part of the experience of coming to the region, says Frances Rowe - rural and environment manager at One NorthEast.

Stores to listen to shoppers

Two UK supermarket chains yesterday ruled out selling meat from animals fed on animal by-products if an EU-wide ban on the practice is lifted.

What's hot

Can you believe this outfit only costs £13.50? (excluding shoes).

Retail therapy

* Holiday essentials are creeping into the spring ranges, worth grabbing now in case there's nothing left by the time summer comes!

Wheelie bin fire spreads

A fire in a wheelie bin spread to the guttering of a house early hours yesterday.

How to put the wows into your eyebrows

The eyes may be the window to the soul, but the eyebrows are their frame.

Getting their maths right

The back-to-school price war is bursting in to life early this year with supermarket giant Asda launching a uniform costing less than a tenner.

People on the move

Phil Wrigley has been appointed operations director at the Lynemouth smelter of aluminium company Alcan.

Stock Watch

The London market edged into positive territory yesterday as takeover speculation gave blue-chips a late lift, rising 5.10 to 6570.5.

Friday

The Newcastle United takeover story rumbles on, and there is good news for Woolworths.

It's a wrap, says Asda

A supermarket chain is dropping a scheme which encouraged shoppers to leave excess packaging at stores.

Postcode Focus: NE23 - Cramlington

Much of Cramlington as we know it dates back to the 1960s and 70s after it was designated a new town.

It's a small world ...

A british sailor who lost his sails in a storm and went two days without food was rescued by a captain who turned out to be his neighbour.

Sainsbury's is pledged to increase sales

Sainsbury's pledged to grow sales by £3.5bn within three years as it unveiled the next step in its plan to make the supermarket chain "great again".

Fresh hope grows for a ravaged land

Thousands of new jobs and homes, a marina in a former coal town and an £18m shopping mall are all part of an ambitious vision to transform an area ravaged by industry and pit closures.

Blaze at bungalow

A bungalow in County Durham was damaged in a kitchen fire yesterday[WED].

Currys sales growth

Dsg International reassured on current trading today after seeing sales at its Currys electricals division grow 3% over the last financial year.

Car firm's £60m driving ambition

The North-East's largest independent used car supermarket is taking on two more sites in a bid to quadruple turnover to £60m in two years.

Asda pulling in the shoppers

The UK's second biggest supermarket Asda said its continued focus on cutting prices helped drive sales ahead for the fourth successive quarter.

Lifeline for pit town?

Traders in a former Northumberland pit town will get a major business boost from a proposed £60m investment aimed at transforming its shopping centre, it was claimed yesterday.

Safety move on beach

New water zone markers will be installed soon on Blyth beach to help avoid the risk of summer swimmers and bathers being injured by people using personal watercraft such as jet skis.

Rise in price paid to Arla Foods Milk Partnership members

Arla Foods UK plc has announced a further rise in the milk price paid to members of its dedicated milk supply group, Arla Foods Milk Partnership (AFMP).

Supermarket sweep

With today's go-faster culture, finding the time to shop for homeware can often fall to the bottom of our to-do lists.

Reuters in talks with Thomson

Reuters the UK news agency has confirmed it is in takeover talks with Canadian data company Thomson about a possible bid worth £8.8bn.

Tax credits accusation

The Government was accused by MPs yesterday of failing to tackle the "unacceptable" levels of fraud and error in the payment of tax credits.

Who ate all the pies? Asda's North customers

Pies made on South Tyneside have proved such a hit they will now reign supreme on the shelves of a supermarket giant, and make a big dent in food miles.

Plan raises hopes for jobs

Almost 1,000 jobs could be created in a former pit town by a £60m project aimed at revitalising its shopping centre, it was claimed last night.

Tesco voted most trusted

Tesco has been voted the most trusted food retailer brand in survey results published today.

Classic demise of a shopping centre

I'd like to suggest that any parish or town council contemplating planning permission for a supermarket comes to Gosforth and sees the High Street.

Newspaper man's hot story

Our region has long been rich in writing talent, a fact reinforced by the number of new publications from budding authors gracing the bookshelves.

How green is your trolley?

Our supermarket shopping choices affect more than just the content of our dinner plates.

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer