Diversions to bridges

One of the main approaches to the Tyne and Swing bridges has been closed for two days to allow for repair work on a leaking gas main.

One of the main approaches to the Tyne and Swing bridges has been closed for two days to allow for repair work on a leaking gas main.

The Bottle Bank in Gateshead was closed at midnight last night. Diversions have been put in place via Eastgate and Oakwellgate, while customers and staff at the Hilton Hotel are being given access from the bottom of Bottle Bank.

Date with Anna

AUTHOR Anna Ralph will be giving a talk about her new book at Washington Library next month.

The former Journal reporter, who recently wrote a novel called The Floating Island, will be speaking at on May 14 at 6pm.

The food show

AN art exhibition based on food will go on show at the Customs House in South Shields later this month.

Visual artist Jac Scott uses food and drink in her sculpture and film to explore the issue of food's role in life in her new exhibition called EAT, which will be at the Sandford Goudie Gallery at the Customs House from April 22 to May 20.

Tenant course

SPEEDING drivers will have to watch a `video nasty' in a new bid to reduce speed-related casualties.

From today, drivers caught speeding in a 30mph area in County Durham could be offered a speed awareness course at a cost of £90 instead of prosecution.

Although speeding motorists would normally receive a £60 fine - £30 less than the cost of the course - Chief Inspector Tim Wilson of Durham Police said he believed motorists would opt for the one-day course rather than incur three penalty points.

Lodge hits gold

A SELF catering lodge on the edge of the Northumberland National Park has won gold grading from the Green Tourism Business Scheme.

The Hytte at Bingfield, near Corbridge, has been designed to accommodate wheelchair-dependent people and their families. It is built entirely in wood with an insulating turf roof and a geothermal heating system. For bookings, ring (01434) 672321 or e-mail sgregory001@tiscali.co.uk.

Brand date

COMEDIAN Russell Brand has announced a concert at the Sunderland Empire on July 11.

Tickets priced at £18.50 go on sale at 10am tomorrow at the Sunderland Empire Box Office. Call 0870 602-1130.

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