Stokesley’s all set for a siege

1:49pm Friday 11th April 2014

STOKESLEY could be forgiven for feeling under siege at the moment; with plans for 226 homes on wooded farmland off Tanton Road threatening to deprive dog walkers and residents of a popular green space, a supermarket just outside the town threatening its unique High Street full of colourful, independent businesses and plans for 183 homes at White House Farm.

Is it a right to pick daffodils?

2:46pm Friday 4th April 2014

MOTHER’S Day raised something of a moral question for Spectator.

Civic affectation at its worst

11:51am Friday 28th March 2014

JOHN Williams was a respected former Labour leader of Darlington Borough Council. He died earlier this year after losing his battle with cancer.

More changes due at school

3:00pm Friday 21st March 2014

FINALLY, we have some news about what’s happening at Richmond School following the mass resignation of the governors last month.

Full steam ahead

Darlington and Stockton Times: Full steam ahead

3:03pm Friday 14th March 2014

THE good weather of the past week will no doubt have been a blessing for the Wensleydale Railway team working furiously to repair the landslip at Akebar in time for the Easter break.

Planning: it’s a complete mystery

10:18am Friday 7th March 2014

IT’S no wonder people are mystified by the planning process At Tuesday’s night’s Richmondshire District Council planning committee meeting, the vexed issue of whether Catterick’s mooted cinema should have five screens or seven was kicked around for more than an hour.

School situation so unsatisfactory

12:52pm Friday 28th February 2014

THE situation at Richmond School is deeply unsatisfactory for all concerned.

Doubling up

3:03pm Friday 21st February 2014

BUS subsidies are being cut in Stockton borough (as elsewhere) much to the frustration of users in Yarm and Eaglescliffe.

Fall-out can only end in tears

Darlington and Stockton Times: UNHAPPINESS: Ian Robertson

3:03pm Friday 21st February 2014

WHEN Ian Robertson arrived as the new head of Richmond School in 2009 he proudly declared he wanted it to be one of the best schools in the world.

Fame and films

2:44pm Friday 14th February 2014

TO Yarm School, courtesy of headmaster David Dunn, on Tuesday to see the opening night of the school production of Fame: the Musical.

Change is afoot at The Station

2:44pm Friday 14th February 2014

THERE are lots of changes afoot at The Station, Richmond’s unique community arts, food and business centre.

Door left open for Lib-Dems?

1:23pm Friday 7th February 2014

READERS will have to forgive Spectator for returning to a subject which has been touched on here before – last week no less – but which he feels is endlessly fascinating: Thirsk and Malton Conservative Association’s dumping of their MP Anne McIntosh and possibly also her rather healthy 11,281 majority.

Retail rumours

2:19pm Friday 31st January 2014

SPECTATOR hasn’t been able to nail either of these two rumours about trading in Darlington but apparently Argos, which has its branch in problematic Skinnergate, has suggested that lifting parking restrictions in the street might be key to its continued presence.

Grey areas among shades of blue

2:19pm Friday 31st January 2014

THE shenanigans in the Thirsk and Malton Conservative Association, which may result in the de-selection of sitting MP Anne McIntosh, pictured, have demonstrated the Tory Party’s enduring ability to indulge in pretty nasty internecine strife.

Mayor explains chain reaction

3:02pm Friday 24th January 2014

THE eagle-eyed observers of Richmond’s heritage may notice something a bit different about the mayor these days.

Ben’s parents still wait for justice

2:09pm Friday 17th January 2014

WE reported before Christmas the continuing battle by the Hyde family of Northallerton to obtain a satisfactory explanation of why things went so wrong, and, more importantly, who should be accountable, on the day their son, Ben, died with five military policemen colleagues in an Iraqi police station.

Pressure builds over poll selection fight

Darlington and Stockton Times: 2010 COUNT: Jenny Chapman and Edward Legard

2:12pm Friday 10th January 2014

THE flak is flying in advance of the selection battle in the safe Conservative seat of Thirsk and Malton. The sitting MP Anne McIntosh’s future will be decided by a ballot of Conservative association members later this month.

System sorted in time for change

12:00pm Monday 6th January 2014

MANY farmers have had a better Christmas than times past. For once, the main SPS subsidy payments arrived on time at the beginning of the month.

Aslice of TV life for baker Alex

1:03pm Friday 3rd January 2014

THE nation’s enthusiasm for all things to do with baking is undimmed. Following the surprising success of the BBC’s Great British Bake-Off, ITV is launching the second series of its own bread-related reality series next week.

Branching out to town’s past

Darlington and Stockton Times: PLAIN SPEAKING: Rosie Bergs’ picture of a Christmas tree

10:34am Friday 20th December 2013

THERE’S a rather special Christmas tree in Darlington this year. It is not in itself that remarkable but it represents a curious link with the town’s past.

Parks are braced for more cuts

12:32pm Friday 13th December 2013

THERE may be a whole lot of fresh trouble brewing for our national parks, Spectator understands.

Cobbles custodians

2:33pm Friday 6th December 2013

NORTH Yorkshire market towns have been warned.

Paul’s back where he belongs

2:32pm Friday 6th December 2013

BACK in the summer, Spectator challenged brewers Greene King to sue him over remarks made in an Eating Out review of the Bridgewater Arms at Winston.

Honoured to attend awards

12:53pm Friday 29th November 2013

ON Wednesday night in Durham, hundreds of people gathered in a marquee on Palace Green for the city’s eighth annual retail awards.

Barkers continue expansion

12:25pm Friday 22nd November 2013

TIME marches on at one of Northallerton’s venerable retailing institutions.

Great night for Herriot country

11:26am Friday 15th November 2013

WHAT a great night at Yorkshire’s tourism “Oscars”, the White Rose Awards, in Leeds on Monday.

Newstart for restaurant veteran?

12:38pm Friday 8th November 2013

MERCURIAL restaurateur Eugene McCoy is on the point of getting back in business, Spectator understands.

Still waiting

3:23pm Friday 25th October 2013

IT is now a year since the battle over where a motorway service area should be on the upgraded A1 motorway in North Yorkshire was settled in favour of the existing services at Leeming Bar.


3:22pm Friday 25th October 2013

THERE’S a head of steam building among Darlington’s commercial community about the state of the town centre.

Store owner’s licence to thrill

3:22pm Friday 25th October 2013

AMONG the honoured guests at last week’s opening of the new shoe department at Barkers of Northallerton was Maureen Carr.

It’s Doreen’s

3:32pm Friday 18th October 2013

At the Northallerton and District Butchers’ Association annual dinner on Monday night, Arthur Haigh and Son’s estimable black pudding was, as ever, on the menu as a starter, teamed up with some crispy onion rings and a little salad.

D&S in Baku

3:32pm Friday 18th October 2013

Further to last week’s note about copies of the D&S in far-flung corners of the world, Ian Alexander e-mails to say that the D&S accompanied him on a recent visit to Baku in Azerbaijan.

Longer wait for pub reopening

3:32pm Friday 18th October 2013

THE celebrated Black Bull dining pub at Moulton, between Richmond and Darlington, which was due to reopen before Christmas, is not now going to entertain its first diners until the new year.

D&S in India

4:04pm Friday 11th October 2013

Ellie Wade, raw materials buyer for the Northallertonbased vegetable oils specialists the Kerfoot Group, has been in touch about her recent work trip to India.

Fair is lined up for a return

4:01pm Friday 11th October 2013

FOLK in Northallerton may be wondering what happened to the September Fair, revived last year by Ryan Crow, a member of the family who have run the May fair in the town for many years.

Conviction needed for this idea

3:16pm Friday 4th October 2013

ASIGNIFICANT slice of Northallerton’s heritage could be at risk with the closure of the town’s jail.

Leisure sense

11:53am Friday 20th September 2013

Sir, – I wonder when someone in Hambleton District Council is going to get a grip of the shiny bottoms who call themselves directors, who are responsible for leisure centres throughout Hambleton. Notwithstanding the fact that we the taxpayers just recently gave them a substantial pay rise, they fail to come up with the goods, when under normal circumstances pay rises are awarded for increased productivity – not so in HDC it would seem – and to embellish their incompetence they blame Catterick Leisure Centre for the lack of customers using Bedale Leisure Centre.

Remember, remember...

2:14pm Friday 6th September 2013

IN times of austerity it doesn’t make sense to watch a pile of public money go up in smoke. So it is understandable that local authorities have stopped putting on large public fireworks displays.

Dogs need to come back home

2:14pm Friday 6th September 2013

DARLINGTON Dog Show is held next weekend and it has moved again – but not back home to Darlington.

Identity should be revealed

2:02pm Friday 23rd August 2013

MORE than a week since the news broke that the Rural Payments Agency is to close its office in Northallerton, we are still none the wiser about who owns the Alverton Court building in Crosby Road.

Local cricketers win a mention on national TV

Darlington and Stockton Times: PRAISE: Ian Botham talks to camera at Chester-le-Street

2:49pm Friday 16th August 2013

IAN ‘Beefy’ Botham gave his local cricket club a fine plug during this week’s coverage of the Ashes Test in Chester-le-Street.

Healthy appetite for good food

Darlington and Stockton Times: Chef Kenny Atkinson gives a cooking demonstration at Saltburn Food Festival

1:55pm Friday 9th August 2013

IT seems our appetite for top quality locally-produced food is not easily satiated, if the evidence of Saltburn’s first food festival last Sunday is anything to go by.

Percy’s Tweets are very low key

3:06pm Friday 2nd August 2013

THE wild peacock of Wensleydale I referred to last week is not wild at all it turns out. Indeed it has its own Twitter identity.

Restaurant will be missing star

Darlington and Stockton Times: MISSING: Eugene McCoy

3:11pm Friday 26th July 2013

THE Cleveland Tontine, one of North Yorkshire’s most cherished restaurants, re-opens next week after refurbishment.

£60 fine won’t stop rule breaks

Darlington and Stockton Times: CELEBRATION: Pam Royle and husband Mike Walker

3:50pm Friday 19th July 2013

SPECTATOR’S attention has been drawn to letters going out to parents and carers this month from North Yorkshire County Council about changes to the rules about taking children out of school.

Things are hotting up at show

1:54pm Friday 12th July 2013

CONTRASTS between this and last year’s Great Yorkshire Show could not have been more dramatic.

Councillors wary of the camera

3:37pm Friday 5th July 2013

WHILE councillors in Hambleton appear happy to embrace the digital age, some Richmondshire members are understood to have some misgivings.

Praise stops at free parking

Darlington and Stockton Times: RETIRING: Colonel Nick Millen

4:12pm Friday 21st June 2013

RICHMOND town councillors made their formal farewells to retiring Catterick Garrison commander Col Nick Millen OBE last Friday.

The Great puzzle of Ayton...

2:29pm Friday 14th June 2013

SPECTATOR’S musing last week on the great Great Ayton conundrum – North Yorkshire or Cleveland edition – has predictably prompted a speedy response, some of which you will see in this week’s letters, above.

Boundary review is questioned

4:22pm Friday 7th June 2013

RECENT changes to the D&S, introduced at the time of the price increase, appear to have gone down well if the sales figures are anything to go by.

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