HUNDREDS of people from the Darlington retail scene will gather for the town’s annual retail awards on Wednesday (December 12). A total of 13 awards will be presented in an Oscars-style ceremony at the Dolphin Centre, from 6.30pm. Among them will be the Shooting Star award, presented to a newcomer who has made a big impact. The evening will be compered by Peter Barron, editor of The Northern Echo.

TREE SHOW: A festival of decorated Christmas trees will be held at St Columba’s Church, in Clifton Road, Darlington, on December 14 to 16. It will run from 6pm to 7.30pm on December 14, from 10.30am to 4pm on Saturday (December 15) and from 2pm to 4pm on Sunday. Refreshments will be served. Admission is free. All are welcome.

PLANNING MEETING: Darlington Borough Council’s planning committee meets at 1.30pm on Wednesday (December 12), at the town hall. Members will debate plans for a holiday lodge in the former walled garden at Walworth.

R’N’B GIG: Nine Below Zero will perform at the Dolphin Centre, in Darlington, on Friday, December 21, at 7.30pm, as part of Darlington R’N’B Club’s Christmas party. Tickets cost £15. To book, call 01325-388410 or visit