GARDENING: Don’t prune your fruit trees in the wind or snow

Last season was a great year for apples – make sure this year is by winter pruning your apple and pear trees – but only if it’s not windy or snowing!

Never too late to get back on track

FEELING GREAT: Don’t beat yourself up this year

It’s that time of year again. Everyone is talking about New Year resolutions. The internet is covered with posts on New Year goals, and friends and family are asking everyone about what they want to stick to for 2017.

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt.

IAIN WRIGHT: Government must spend more on NHS

Our NHS is one again facing a winter crisis. A&E departments turned patients away more than 143 times between 1 December 2016 and 1 January 2017. In one day last month 15 hospitals ran out of beds with elderly patients languishing on trolleys in corridors, sometimes for over 24 hours. One third of hospitals have declared they need urgent help to deal with the number of patients coming through their doors.

A giant metal soldier towering just under six metres, made from scrap metal by blacksmith Martin Galbavy, for a private client to commemorate the First World War. Picture PA Wire

RICHARD ORD: How to get around the litter of the law

I’ve had less grief for missing a wedding anniversary than I have for missing bin collection day.

LEGAL EAGLE: The housing matters still covered by legal aid funding

LEGAL EAGLE: The housing matters still covered by legal aid funding

In 2012 a new law meant there were changes to the types of housing matters that legal advisors could assist clients with while being funded under legal aid.

Get fit in 2017.

SHAPING UP: Five tips on how to get a flat stomach in 2017

The Christmas and New Year celebrations are over now and a lot of people have set themselves fitness targets for 2017.

Gym equipment.

SHAPING UP: Five easily fixed workout mistakes

Stroll through any gym and you’ll notice many mistakes. Mistakes that waste time. Mistakes that put people in danger. And mistakes that are just plain crazy.

Health 1
President-elect Donald Trump

IAIN WRIGHT: World anxiously watching Donald Trump

Happy New Year! I wish everybody in Hartlepool a very peaceful, healthy and prosperous 2017. I hope that everybody was able to enjoy Christmas. 2016 was a monumental year that will be remembered for a long time- the decisions made in the past 12 months will reverberate in our own country and across the world.

Knee pain.

FEELING GREAT: Ease you knee pain during the cold weather

As we head into winter, there’s a chance that the same thing will happen to you as it does most people ... that being, your knee pain increases.

One lump or 22? War is declared on sugar lumps in 2017.

RICHARD ORD: No sweet start to New Year - official

Reviews of 2016 have been banned. Apparently nothing good happened.

Opinion 2
A time lapse of a red amaryllis opening.

GARDENING: Treat your Amaryllis like precious pot plant

I’ve had a bit of a take-it-or-leave-it attitude to Amaryllis (Hippeastrum) over the years – mainly due the very poor, gift-wrapped specimens that get trotted out in supermarkets and department stores at this time of year.

A family break-up.

LEGAL EAGLE: Family split leads to negotiation

My partner and I split up around seven months ago and we have two children. When we split up my partner decided that she would take the children to live with her and I reluctantly agreed because I thought it would be better for them to be with their Mam. Our relationship could be quite volatile and once during an argument my partner pushed me and I hit my head on a cupboard. I tried to arrange regular contact with the children every weekend as I work during the week. Sometimes my partner lets me see the children but she can be very fickle and only arranges contact when she feels like it. She texts me at the last minute cancelling contact, and I haven’t had contact with the children now for a month because she has continually cancelled on me. I am desperate to see the children. What can I do about this and can I get legal aid?

Massages are a great way to relieve stress.

FEELING GREAT: How to stick to your New Year resolutions

It’s that time of year again, and chances are that at some time in your life you’ve made a New Year’s Resolution – and then broken it.

Carrie Fisher at last years Star Wars premiere.

IAIN WRIGHT MP: Celebrity deaths stir memories of the past

This year has been a momentous and significant year for many reasons, but one is surely the number of famous people who have passed away over the past 12 months.

LEGAL EAGLE: Being detained against my will

LEGAL EAGLE: Being detained against my will

I have been sectioned under the Mental Health Act and now I am being kept in hospital against my will. Two doctors and a social worker turned up at my house and asked me a load of questions. They said they thought I needed help for my mental health but I told them there was nothing wrong with me. They would not listen to me and they brought me to hospital anyway. They said something about me being here for 28 days. Now that I am in hospital they are talking about giving me medication that I do not want. They say if I am not happy about being here I should have a tribunal but I am not sure whether to trust what they say. What should I do?

Opinion 1
Holly berries.

GARDENING: Holly, ivy and mistletoe aren’t the only Christmas plants

There are many plants that symbolise Christmas - holly, mistletoe and ivy being the obvious ones - but look much wider and you’ll find a host of others associated with the festive season worldwide.

Festive chart: Will the charity single for the Jo Cox Foundation be the Christmas Number One?

IAIN WRIGHT: Christmas is a time to cherish loved ones

It’s a couple of days before Christmas. It’s been a busy and eventful year and although there is still a lot of work to do I will enjoy the opportunity to spend some time with my family.

Take it easy!

FEELING GREAT: ‘Tis the season to stay on track!

Christmas is coming around fast, and it’s that time of year…

LEGAL EAGLE: Same-sex parents’ rights

LEGAL EAGLE: Same-sex parents’ rights

I have been in a relationship with my female partner for seven years and we have decided we want to try for a baby together. We have not entered into a civil partnership but have lived together for five years. I am going to carry the baby and we intend to visit a clinic for me to be inseminated. Starting a family together is something we both want and we are going to raise the child together as a family. I would like to know if my partner has any legal rights towards the baby and if not is there anything we can do so she can obtain them?

Opinion 2
A goldfinch at the seed.

GARDENING: Avoid lethal foods for birds in cold weather

In winter, life is tough for birds and a real cold snap can lead to death from starvation and exposure, as they don’t have enough fat layers to insulate them.

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