The Teesside edition will concentrate on news from the boroughs of Stockton, Middlesbrough, Redcar and Cleveland and Hartlepool.
To mark the launch, editor Hannah Chapman visited the Butterwick Hospice in Stockton on Tees, to present a cheque for £3,000 on behalf of the Gannett Foundation, run by the Echo’s parent company.
The money will be used to buy a specialist floor standing hoist to help staff move patients safely.
Val Storey, clinical lead for adults at the hospice, said: “We are really grateful. The new hoist will allow our patients to be safely and comfortably transferred, in a timely manner with the dignity they deserve.”
The new equipment will replace an old hoist which is worn and difficult to source parts for when it breaks down. The hospice said having a new hoist will reduce waiting times for patients, allowing them to be moved safely and comfortably.
Hannah said: “The Northern Echo has been a huge supporter of the Butterwick Hospice for many years, and given the difficulties they have been experiencing, most recently with staffing shortages forcing the closure of the children’s unit, we are thrilled to be able to hand over £3,000 for this important piece of kit.”
“Butterwick, its supporters and committed volunteers are a shining example of what can be achieved when the people of Teesside work together.
“We are really excited to launch the new edition.”
“This is such an exciting time for Teesside, with a series of major projects in the pipeline which could bring massive economic boosts to the area.
“I regularly get asked by readers for more Teesside content, so taking the two things together, it seemed like a natural step to increase our coverage with this new edition. We’re also boosting our online offering, so readers can find out all the latest news and information.
“There is so much potential in the area, with Middlesbrough as the unofficial capital of Teesside, but also in the towns of Stockton, Yarm, Redcar and Saltburn, that we’re really looking forward to getting to the heart of the issues that matter in those communities.”