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This is East Midlands Today with Dominic Heale and me, Anne Davies.
Our top story tonight: Seven days to one of the biggest
strikes in decades. Workers from scores of different professions
prepare to walk out over planned pension changes.
Also, Kate and Gerry McCann accused the press of hampering the search
for their daughter. It is important to emphasise we have experienced
long-lasting damage as a result of the headlines and media coverage.
Past... Behind enemy lines. The soldiers targeting the Taliban's
bomb factories. You can hear the bullets come past year, and you can
hear the crack in your ear and see the dust on the floor. And you know
it was closer. How the royal wedding is helping to
save what is left of our lace Good evening. Welcome to
Wednesday's programme. With just a week to go before one of the
country's biggest public sector strikes, tonight we look at the
effect it could have here in the East Midlands.
Councils are warning schools are likely to close, disrupting lessons
for thousands of children, as the three main teaching unions support
the action. It's a national day of action by unions angry at
Government plans to change their pensions. Workers from a diverse
range of industries and professions are taking part. Senior civil
servants are joining probation officers and physiotherapists,
builders and railway workers, engineers and scientists in the
walk-out. In theory, in seven day's time, there could be almost three
million people on strike. Let's find out more from our
Political Editor John Hess who's in Westminster.
This proposed strike is over big changes to the pensions of many in
the public sector. But according to the Prime Minister today, the
planned stoppage a week today is "the height of irresponsibility".
I'll have political reaction shortly, but first union members in
Nottinghamshire have been on the streets of Mansfield to explain the
reasons for the strike. Here's Quentin Rayner. Can I talk to you
about the campaign? Dressed as greedy bankers, daylight Robbie --
daylight robbery was the theme and Mansfield's market place to drum up
support for the strike. Have you heard about it? Yes. It is a
national day of action. Thank you for your time. Unison is one of 28
unions backing the walk out by 3 million public sector workers and
they claim that people will have to work longer, receive more for their
pensions. In Mansfield, support was solid. These people need to sit and
live with that the common man and they will understand on why people
are actually standing for what they believe in because they live in a
different world to us. government is taking too many
liberties on the common people. It is as simple as that. What more can
you say on the matter? They are robbing us blind and it is time we
made a stand and said enough is enough. People have worked all
their lives. And just because they say so, those people in these suits,
everything has to change. What about people's lives and children
and families? Give them what they want. They deserve it. So they
should strike? 100%. Unison says the Pied is bodies and pensions in
both private and public sectors. have been out to council buildings
and the hospitals. We seem to be getting quite good signs there will
be picket lines at those venues. Those are places we don't normally
have to get lines. Unison maintains that a concrete offer by the
Government could avert the strike. Hundreds of schools will close for
the day as classroom staff and head teachers support the stoppage. Some
unions staging the first strike in their history. There is always a
knock-on for parents. We asked a group collecting their children
from a primary school in Leicester for their views.
I do agree with what the teachers are doing, definitely. I know it is
a really difficult decision for them because it is their pensions.
It shouldn't affect the children, though. There should be other
measures to accommodate their pay rises, but it shouldn't affect
kids' education. Teachers go through the system, go to
university, and it is a hard enough job as it is and at the end of I
think they do deserve a decent pension. I suppose they have got to
do what they have got to do. There have been too many cutbacks, so,
yes, not fairness. I will back the teachers. It is important for the
teachers to think about their pensions and their future. It is
good for them to stand up for their rights. A lot of parents will be
put out. A lot. A lot of parents have to work. So, I know that a lot
of mums and dads are going to find it difficult but the children are
not going to be bothered! So, what's the political reaction
here at Westminster? In the Commons, the issue of school closures and
child care was put to the Prime Minister by an East Midlands MP.
Will the Prime Minister acknowledged that one of the most
disruptive impact of next week's strikes will be our mums and dads
with children in school? Will my honourable friend join me in
encouraging parents to bring children into schools? The strike
will be harmful. Nobody wants the strike and it will be harmful to
ordinary people that will use public services. At the same time,
I think public service workers have a right to voice their opinion and
I think strike action isn't necessarily the way to do that.
They could be more canny and find a way to persuade the public to lobby
the government mac. My mother was the children's nurse for 40 years
so I do understand the pressures of a public sector job, so we are
still at the negotiating table and working through, and the government
might have made some sensible suggestions, and I am worried to
the disruption in error wash, and elderly people, its services are
not available. The Government says it's offered
concessions. The unions say those concessions don't address their
concerns on pensions. In this game of political poker, who's going to
blink first? Who knows.
Coming up later in the programme: Behind enemy lines in Afghanistan.
We get a troop's eye-view of the battle from soldiers targeting the
12 months after a schoolgirl was attacked in Nottingham, police have
renewed their appeal for witnesses. They're asking people to try and
remember what they were doing on November 23rd, 2010. Carolyn Moses
reports. A year ago today, several things
were happening. Catherine Middleton announced her wedding date. Chelsea
won a vital Champions League clash. Also, and eight-year-old girl was
attacked in Bulwell. One year on, officers hope to jog people's
memory by linking it to those events. This is CCTV footage of a
man seen at the Aaron -- in the area at the time. At 6:30pm,
Tuesday, 23rd November, the girl was led on to rocks street and then
Polly Park where she was assaulted, leaving her shocked and badly
bruised. But to local people remember? I do. The mums around
here have banned the kids from that Park. We just have to keep an eye
on them. We have to watch our kids more and they do not come out.
is horrible because my daughter could go and play on there. You
don't want your kids in an unsafe environment. Police believe that
somebody may have been protecting the attack at the time, but that
could now have changed. The key thing that it -- about anything
that goes on for more than a year, loyalties may have become different,
and it is important that if people are hesitant of coming forward,
they should understand that we are positive and we want to find the
person responsible because we want closure. Police brought in a
professional profiler to build up the picture of a man. They say he
is almost certainly local. The girl describes him as white, under 5 ft
9 and in his late teens, late -- early 20s. Police say it is vital
they catch shrimp before he strikes again. -- they catch him before he
strikes again. A police officer from Nottingham
has appeared before magistrates charged with rape. 46-year-old
Trevor Gray, seen here in the green and black coat and with his face
covered, is accused of rape, attempted rape and sexually
touching a 43-year-old woman in July. Nottinghamshire Police has
suspended the detective sergeant whilst an investigation is carried
out. He's due to appear at Derby crown court in December.
A man has been arrested in connection with an attack at a
Leicester pub which left two men injured. The victims both suffered
serious burns at the Rainbow and Dove pub on Charles Street a month
ago. One of them, Russell Banks, is still in hospital. A 21-year-old
man was arrested in London this morning. This is East Midlands
Today. Kate and Gerry McCann have
described how lies about Madeleine's disappearance and
stories implying that she was dead hampered the search for her. The
couple from Rothley in Leicestershire were giving evidence
at the Leveson Inquiry, which is looking into press standards. They
revealed that they felt violated and at times were hounded by
photographers. Helen Astle reports. We were desperately shouting out
internally, please stop what you are doing. He was stopping our
chances of finding her. Kate and Gerry McCann told of their
experiences of the media. At times, the couple felt the press had been
helpful, particularly when launching appeals, but there were
other times and many headlines which they felt were critical. Kate
recalls some of the lurid stories hitting the papers soon after their
daughter went missing, most notably that they had been involved in
their daughter's disappearance and they had hidden her body in their
hire car. A corpse in the car? I don't know how many times I read
body fluids in the car, but there were no body fluids. We were being
tried by the media. We were unable to defend present -- defend
ourselves of a stop Kate discovered that her personal diaries, written
weeks after Madeleine's disappearance and while they were
still in Portugal, had been published in the News of the World
without her consent. I felt totally violated. It was my only way of
communicating with Madeleine and, for me, there was no respect shown
for me as a grieving mother or as a human being or my daughter. They
describe how their children had been are terrified by photographer
is. There were several occasions when they would bang on the windows
with camera lenses. My children would say they are scared to.
important to emphasise that we have experienced long-lasting damage as
a result of the headlines and media coverage, including recent trips to
Holland and Spain where a taxi driver said, oh, you are the
parents are accused of killing your own daughter, what happens?
Throughout giving evidence, the couple said that legal action was
always a last resort, and the more important battle was binding
Madeleine. Four years on, the hunt continues.
Next, a soldier's eye-view of the heat of battle in Afghanistan. It's
from an elite unit of troops who were dropped behind enemy lines.
The Brigade Reconnaissance Force came under heavy gunfire as it
targeted Taliban bomb factories. Our Social Affairs Correspondent,
Jeremy Ball, reports. Flying into enemy territory and
ready for battle. All and a day's work for the Brigade Reconnaissance
Force. -- all in a day's work. These two guys spent the summer
going on missions like this one several times a week. You know they
are close when you can hear the crack. Getting shot at, farm at the
start, but when it keeps happening, it is like, you wonder when your
luck is going to run out. These helicopter assaults I used to reach
targets surrounded by improvised bombs. Sometimes, the enemy opened
fire before they touch down. There was times when we did get shot at
coming off the helicopter. Sometimes we would land on the
floor and wouldn't have contact all day. You could be stuck for an hour
All these pictures were filmed by All these pictures were filmed by
the Brigade Reconnaissance Force. The soldier had a camera on his
helmet. This is you, isn't it? is me. You have to make sure you
hit them! This is how they destroyed an enemy weapons factory.
We got a lot of weapons off the ground. A lot of drugs off the
ground. We found an explosive. That was blown up where it was found.
Tomorrow, they will be heading into much more hostile Territt -- much
less hostile territory as they marched through the streets of
Leicester to get a former -- a formal welcome home.
Police are investigating reports of gunshot in Nottingham. Officers
were called to Old Basford last night. They have search the area
and have not been able to confirm if shots were fired. They're going
to check images from year by security cameras.
Police in Leicester are marking copper gas pipes with SmartWater.
It comes after theft in the city. More than 20 houses in the Hinckley
area had live gas pipes and ripped out. Officers say that the thefts
are potentially life-threatening. Now then - remember the dress? No
one could forget that, the wedding of the year. Adorning that wedding
gown was lace made right here in the Midlands.
Apparently, she had requested English lace. She would not have
been spoiled for choice, as the once-proud lace-making industry has
dwindled to one factory. As part of our series on heritage,
we asked if there are still a market for the least that was once
famous around the world. This is the machine that Kate's
lace was made on and this was the man that made his - except he
didn't know it! I did not know until the following week and I
found out and it was great! That was put on the bride's train.
he did not know what was going to be used? Eyes sort of guest. -- I
guessed. It has been made like this for over a hundred years. But lace
has gone out of fashion and there is an uncertain future. That was
until the royal wedding. We had more business in the UK than we had
ever had before. Not a lot, but it was growing. It is late for the
bridal train for this year but we're expecting it to be busier
next year and the bridal market. One wedding dress designer is
getting ahead of the game. She's making gowns using original
Nottingham lace which was left over when one of the nearby factories
closed. So these would have been for ladies to put round the collar?
That's right, yes. We use it to create a living affect. -- a
layering effect. They are made with love, almost. Most places now
created outside Great Britain but the Nottingham legacy remains.
There will be, in parts of the world, Nottingham lace making
machines. Nottingham will still be on it could because it is pressed
into the metal. It has had a huge influence on the global industry.
Some designers choose to go back to where it originated. The recently
made lace for Ralph Lauren. How beautiful!
You might have had to dig out your eyes scrapers this morning to clean
your car windows. A but what about tomorrow, I hear
you say? And why this theatre has turned
I said at least wasn't, at the forefront of fashion, Natalie
The start with Derby County. They are said to sign Tamas Priskin on
loan from Ipswich. He has scored 32 goals in 163 games since coming to
England five years ago. Staying with that ball, and heartbreak for
Hinckley United as they crashed out of the FA Cup last night at
Tamworth. A stoppage time goal clinched the win for the Conference
Premier side and Hinckley are out and Tamworth into the second round.
Hard luck there. Boxing world champion Carl Froch
says he is in the best possible shape as he prepares for the
biggest fight of his career. The Nottingham boxer leaves for the
United States this week. For months, Carl Froch has been a
British boxer based in Sheffield, preparing. Now he is heading to the
States. A lion in great shape. I am physically and mentally prepared to
my optimum capabilities. I feel sharp and strong. I cannot see
anyone in the world living with me. I'm too big and strong for 12 stone.
I am a freak of nature. If not a freak, his walk-out have people-
watching in admiration. -- is working out sessions. We are going
at it for 12 rounds. May the best man win but I will do the business
on 17th December in freezing cold Atlantic City. For cities last time
in the UK before crossing. -- the He is the favourite going into the
fight. I am used to that anyway. has waited two-and-a-half years to
get his chance and it is not one he will give up easily.
Cycling now, and the lovely Lucy Garner from Leicestershire has been
shortlisted for the BBC Young Sports personality of the year. She
has already won the East Midlands award.
It has been a remarkable year for Lucy Garner. She has battled to a
superb gold at the cycling world championships in Copenhagen just
days after turning 17. She won the junior road race title with a
sprint finish after a crash earlier on. She was named on a shortlist of
10 for the BBC Young Sports personality of the year. It is
amazing, really, and it makes me feel really proud to be going up
against some of the top-class athletes in the country. Last week,
she won the BBC East Midlands Junior Sports personality of the
year and Loughborough. A I am very pleased for her, because she has
looked to work very hard. That is paying off. She is famous for her
nails, but it is not just those that sparkle. Everyone loves them.
It was the whole race itself, crashing in thinking that that was
it. Going for the Sprint and newly crashing again. When I crossed the
line, all the emotions came out and I could not believe that I had
actually done it. The 2012 Olympics are going to come too soon for Lucy,
but she is a great prospect for Rio de Janeiro and 2016.
Sparkly nails and a sparkly personality. All the chaps in their
studio were cooing over them, when Marks and now the tale of a top
show biz star who has arrived in Nottingham. She is the star of
legally blonde. And we've been to meet him - I mean,
Males, dog? He is one of the stars of legally blonde. The West End hit
musical has opened in Nottingham this week. It tells the story of a
homecoming queen who follows her ex-boyfriend to law school but this
means putting down the credit cards. Arguably the stars of the show at
the dogs. She plays a male character in the show! She kind of
get away with it. We are very acquainted now after spending a few
good months together. Has anything gone wrong? The opening night in
Liverpool, we had an incident with the job -- with the dog, let us
say! But they are trained very well. It is the job of Cindy to teach
that dogs their tricks. In the opening number, she has to run on
to Sophie, who plays Margot, and stop right in front of her and back
at her twice. They have to do a call-and-response routine and then
she jumped into her arms. Whoever said they should not work with
children and animals did not meet this dog!
She has been converted to dogs, I think! For the eagle-eyed among
stew, he is actually a chihuahua crossed with a terrier.
I had to send the wife out to scrape the eyes of our car this
We're starting to see Olla Christmas lights been turned on
across the region. -- all of our Christmas light been turned on.
There was a good turnout in Nottingham this evening. The light
looked quite spectacular to. -- quite spectacular, too. The weather
has been fluctuating with the We have the cloud starting to come
down again from the north overnight. It will thicken up at times. It
will produce a small amount of rain over the Peak District.
Temperatures not quite as low as last night, a minimum of seven
degrees Celsius tonight. A bit of a cloudy start first thing tomorrow
morning. It will become quite breezy as well tomorrow. Some
sunshine will continue into the afternoon. There will be a brisk,
south-westerly wind. A cold front will be working its way towards the
south-east. There is a very nasty area of low pressure affecting
parts of Scotland and the north of the country. But ourselves though,