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Council thanks revellers over pubs' reopening

Newcastle City Council has thanked revellers and licencees after city pubs reopened on Saturday.

It said it was pleased with how the process had gone.

Cabinet member for environment and regulatory service, Councillor John-Paul Stephenson said: “Around 50% of licenced businesses welcomed customers back, with some really quite innovative ideas for how to operate while keeping both staff and customers safe.

“We must thank the trade for working with us and for all the time and investment they put in to prepare for the return of what is a vital part of our economy."

Safety measures included protective screens, one-way systems and app and text message-based ordering systems.

Pub-goer has his temperature checked

Two North East Pret A Manger sites set to close

Pret A Manager in Newcastle's Grainger Street and the MetroCentre, Gateshead, have been earmarked to close, as part of plans announced by the coffee and sandwich chain.

It's thought around 1,000 jobs will go nationally due to a restructuring programme because of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Pret says it has decided to close some stores permanently after recent sales dived by 74% compared with the same period last year.

Pret sandwich bag

Tyneside museums and galleries set to reopen from end of July

Galleries and museums across the North East will be welcoming visitors again, as venues start to reopen at the end of the month.

Arbeia in South Shields and Segedunum Roman Fort in Wallsend will reopen on 27 July, followed by Newcastle's Laing Art Gallery on 10 August and the South Shields Museum and Art Gallery on 13 August.

The Discovery Museum and the Great North Museum will welcome visitors back on 1 September.

Visitors' experience will be very different, though, as some venues introduce ticketed timeslots and admit fewer people to make social distancing easier.

Arbeia, South Shields Roman Fortress.
Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

Andrew Mather death: Sunderland man pleads not guilty

Andrew Mather
Family Handout

A man charged with murdering 48-year-old Andrew Mather last month has pleaded not guilty.

Wayne Miller, 32, of Dene Street, Sunderland, was charged with the murder of Mr Mather, whose body was found in a house on Aintree Road on 3 June.

The trial is due to take place on 2 December.