Dear Sir,

Regarding the letter about ‘Development at Middridge’ in last week’s Newton News, I would like to correct some points made by Great Aycliffe Town Councillor, Bob Fleming, regarding Middridge Parish.

Prior to 1983, Middridge was part of the Civil Parish of Shildon, and following the major reorganisation of local government in 1974, when Great Aycliffe Town Council (GATC) was first formed, Middridge was represented by two local Councillors on the new Shildon Town Council. Thus, despite any plans the Aycliffe Development Corporation may have had to include Middridge in Newton Aycliffe, in fact they have always been separate.

In the early 1980s, the then Sedgefield District Council encouraged and supported Middridge to become a Civil Parish, and eventually we were granted this status in 1983.

Since then Middridge has had its own Parish Council, completely separate from both its neighbours. Thus, the new houses being built along Middridge Road, which lie wholly within the Middridge Parish boundary, are definitely NOT part of Newton Aycliffe!

Nevertheless, the Parish Council do work in partnership with GATC, particularly as members of the Great Aycliffe & Middridge Area Action Partnership (GAMP).

Cllr. Harold Howe

Chair of Middridge Parish Council