LEGAL EAGLE: Drinking after a road accident

I was a driver involved in a road traffic collision. Before the Police arrived and to help calm my nerves I drank alcohol after the accident. The Police have now arrested me for and charged me with an offence of driving whilst under the influence of alcohol. Do I have a defence?

Opinion 1
A dog is treated by RSPCA staff after it was rescued from the puppy farm run by a man who was jailed for six months for animal cruelty offences.

We are tougher on litter louts than we are on those who abuse animals - it’s time to change

We like to think of ourselves as a nation of animal lovers, but the RSPCA’s cruelty statistics often tell a very different story.

Sugar in food and soft drinks can cause obesity and diabetes.

SHAPING UP: The dangers of sugar addiction

I’ve started watching a new TV series this week ... Lucky Man.

Health 1
The flower of salmonberry Pacific Rose. Picture by Lubera

GARDENING: Salmonberry fruit is ideal in small gardens

The oddly-named salmonberry is a brilliant way for those with small gardens to grow a decent fruit crop while not compromising on flowers and good looks.


FEELING GREAT: Focus on managing your stress

The other day I was out in Hartlepool town centre for a coffee, and overheard a conversation on the table next to me happening between two women with new borns, and it went like this:

Emotional abuse can be just as intimidating as physical abuse.

IAIN WRIGHT: Domestic abuse is not all about violence

Parliament is in recess this week, which gives MPs an opportunity to meet individuals and organisations in their constituencies. One of the meetings I have had this week is with staff and users of the Harbour service, designed to help victims of domestic abuse.

Decision makers must take reasonable steps to find out peoples views.

LEGAL EAGLE: What are ‘best interests’ in dementia decisions?

My elderly mother has dementia and has been assessed by social services as lacking capacity to make a decision about where she lives. I am told that a decision will be made in her ‘best interests’. What does this mean?

Marigold Indian Kushi. Picture by Suttons

GARDENING: There’s an Indian feel to this year’s marigolds

You’re going to find marigolds everywhere this year – not in the hideous, ’70s-style bedding rows with lobelia and alyssum, but think more tropical, Indian garland style.

Sir Winston Churchill defined the role of MPs

IAIN WRIGHT: Why I voted in favour of Article 50 Bill

Westminster this week has seen a lot of debate and discussion about Britain’s decision to leave the European Union, and the role of MPs in determining how they should vote on such an important matter.

A luxury massage is great for men and women.

FEELING GREAT: Give a healthy Valentine’s gift

With Valentines Day just around the corner, now would be the perfect time to start planning what you want to buy for your loved one – so by the time Valentines Day comes round, you’re not in trouble!

So sue me! An embarrassing photo of Isaac from the archives.

RICHARD ORD: Fight for the right to embarrass offspring

Our Isaac, 13, was sitting in the front room with his pal Henry watching TV. Perfect, I thought, his guard is down.

Breach of a Non Molestation Order is an arrestable criminal offence.

LEGAL EAGLE: How to apply for an injunction

My ex-partner and I separated 18 months ago. At first, the break up was amicable. However, I began a new relationship six months ago and my ex-partner has started to harass me. Initially I received threatening phone calls but he follows me to work in his car and he has been found hiding in my garden watching my house. He has even been to my work place and asked to speak to me. I’m terrified of what he will do next. I rang the police but no further action was taken. Can I take him to Court?

Energy bills are going up.

IAIN WRIGHT: Loyal energy customers should be rewarded

It has been a cold winter. According to the weather forecasts, February looks to be particularly chilly. At times like this, many people look at the temperature and weather and – it is not too much of an exaggeration to say – are frightened. They will be concerned that ongoing cold weather will mean thinking about having the heating on at a time when energy bills have risen and they cannot afford it. Even for those who may be in a good job, nobody wants to see their energy bills rise.


FEELING GREAT: You can train with a bad back

Lets talk about exercise and back pain. Last week I had a question asked by one of our patients, Jackie, 58, from Elwick, and it’s one that we get asked often (especially since the January gym rush!):

James Dean

RICHARD ORD: Rebel without a pair of sensible trousers

I noticed my son heading off to school in a pair of unflattering shorts the other day.

Fresh fruit and vegetables.

SHAPING UP: Fail to prepare and prepare to fail ...

Eating well does NOT happen by accident. It takes a little preparation to set yourself up for success.

Health 1
LEGAL EAGLE: Legal Aid unlikely for inquest

LEGAL EAGLE: Legal Aid unlikely for inquest

My grandmother was in hospital recovering from heart surgery. She seemed to be doing very well and we thought she was going to come out of hospital fairly soon. She had a good response to the operation. She then deteriorated very suddenly and sadly died. We have not really been told why there was such a change but we have been told that there is going to be an inquest. We are not really sure what this means and whether we need help from a solicitor. We are concerned about how we would pay for a solicitor to handle this for us.

Sticks of rhubarb.

GARDENING: Prepare to be patient when growing rhubarb

Greed is not good when it comes to rhubarb – you need a little patience.

Theresa May

IAIN WRIGHT: Why did PM waste time with appeal?

The Supreme Court this week ruled that the Government cannot start the process of the UK’s departure from the European Union without parliamentary approval.

Don't spend too much time focusing on how much you weigh.

FEELING GREAT: Do you dread stepping on scales?

In January, we’re overloaded with so many weight-loss messages that even the most confident of us can feel under pressure to lose weight, and those of us who may not even need to shift a few pounds question if they should be trying to or not.

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