Wheelie bin fire spreads

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

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

Firefighters attended the blaze at Castlegate, Berwick, at around 4am yesterday. The bin was destroyed in the fire while the guttering was extensively damaged before the fire was extinguished.

Free compost

Gateshead Council is giving away free bags of soil conditioner as a thank you to residents for recycling 22,000 tonnes of garden waste in the last four years.

Council staff will be giving away the free bags of composted green waste next Saturday at the waste and recycling centres on Cowen Road in Blaydon and Springwell Road, Wrekenton.

Hotel upgrade

A Wearside hotel is to get a £500,000 refurbishment which will create 24 new bedrooms and a new bar area.

The Queen Vic at Harbour View, Roker was recently bought by Wylam Leisure, which now plans to completely upgrade the seafront pub. The firm has also purchased a block of derelict flats at the corner of Harbour View which will become the new bedroom section.

Help to quit

Stop smoking services from the NHS now available at supermarkets in Newcastle.

Pharmacy staff are now offering advice and help at Asda at Gosforth and Benton and at Tesco at Kingston Park. They are trained by specialist advisers to provide NHS Stop Smoking Services.

Services on offer include nicotine replacement therapy. People should ask at the pharmacy counter for an appointment.

Recycling grant

The Co-op is giving a recycling group in Byker a steer in the right direction with a donation of £500.

Recycle Y'Bike trains people in bike mechanics so they can refurbish and recycle bicycles, some of which are sent to Africa while others are sold at a fair price. The Co-op grant is paying for mechanics to train 10 volunteers.

Cancer project

Women with ovarian cancer are being asked to take part in a research project at a North-East hospital.

The Eve Appeal charity is asking 2,000 women in the UK with the illness to take part in a study to identify genetic markers which cause the cancer. Gateshead's Queen Elizabeth Hospital is one of nine centres across the country carrying out the research.


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