We can confirm we have had further constructive discussions with government today and the North East is staying at High Alert Level 2.

Due to the combined efforts of our residents, businesses and communities since we introduced restrictions across the region on September 18, the public health data is showing signs of the number of Covid-19 cases stabilising.

We would like to thank every person in the region for the role they are playing in tackling this virus but, if we are to avoid further restrictions, then it is vital every single one of us follows the law and guidance. There is absolutely no room for complacency.

We are at a critical point and cannot afford to let the virus rip through our communities - we need everyone to do their bit.

We continue to engage with government about the need for crucial economic support as well as localised control of Test and Trace, but we welcome the fact we are being listened to and we are committed to ongoing, constructive dialogue.