05/01/2012 East Midlands Today


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This is East Midlands Today. Our top story tonight, the first big


storm of the year. Roads were closed and power supplies were cut


as high winds buffeted the region. There are relieved that it did it


hot -- did not hit anyone and it came at a time of Wight -- time of


night when there was little traffic. Or so a family's discussed as and


87-year-old woman was forced to lie here in the cold and wet for two


hours, waiting for an ambulance. Plus action stations - engineers


begin a military-style operation to replace a motorway flyover.


And making a big splash, the event Good evening. Welcome to tonight's


programme. We begin with the first big storm of the year to hit our


region. Severe winds sq caused major disruption today with gusts


of up to 60 mph. Hundreds of homes were left without power and


motorists were hard hit as trees and branches fell on to roads. Our


reporter Geeta Pendse is at the Highways Agency control room where


they have been monitoring the situation. Yes, the strong winds


have meant it has been a busy couple of days here Abbey Highways


Agency control room. All these screens might at the major routes


in our region and they had to deal with an overturned lorry this


morning and cars spinning on the carriageway. It seems more


disruption has occurred on minor routes with trees falling. Simon


hare has been looking at the polls scale of the clearance operation


across the region. It had stood tall for around 120 years. But for


much of today, this large beech tree lay blocking the A608 in


Derbyshire. It was simply operated by the strong winds in the early


hours of this morning. It was at a time of the night when there was


very little traffic so if it had been now, it would have been a


major disaster for somebody. If that tree had hit them, it would


have been deadly. But it also leads to a windfall of a different kind.


Somebody has got a benefit out of this. A lot of people are


collecting locks which will help them with their fuel bill and also


collecting money for Derbyshire Wish. And at Woodthorpe in


Nottingham, one family could not get out of their front door after a


tree fell in front of it. Electricity engineers have also


been busy restoring power to homes. Tonight, an estimated 500


households are still cut off in the The wider clear apple storm damage


is expected to last several days -- clear-up of storm damage. Lots of


trees across the whole of the county. It normally happens in the


North or south of the county. 30 odd trees fallen on the highway, a


dangerous situation. But at Chaddesden in Derby, the clean-up


of a different kind was required. The city council's new bags for


recycling cardboard were blamed for As we understand it, the majority


of incidents have now been cleared up. The advice of the Highways


Agency to drivers is to be prepared and tune into your local radio


station for any disruptions. just how strong was the strongest


gust? And can we expect a quieter time tonight?


We had many gusts in excess of 60 mph but the good news is things


seem to be settling down. I will Before that, friends and family of


and 87-year-old woman have described how she was left for


nearly two hours lying on the ground in the wet and cold awaiting


an ambulance. Elsie Hubbard broke her hip after falling in the back


garden. Her friends say it is disgusting she had to wait that


long. Elsie Hubbard is now recovering in


hospital. Be it is seven-year-old broker hip falling outside her home


in Leicestershire. She was lying on the concrete out here in the White.


Family friend John Straw found her. He immediately rang 999. We told


her help was on its way. In fact it was another two hours before the


ambulance took her. It was over an hour before a paramedic turned up.


It was cold and wet last Friday. Neighbours rushed round with duvets


and blankets, laid them over her to try to keep her warm. We were


trying to keep her dry but she was already wet because she had been on


wet ground exposed. She was getting cold. She says her treatment at the


Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham has been fantastic. But


filmed on a phone, she had strong words about her weight for an


ambulance. I was disgusted. You don't treat animals like that.


Midlands Ambulance Service told us a paramedic arrived after 53


minutes and an ambulance was dispatched within another 20


minutes. They said they were busy dealing with immediately life-


threatening incidents on that day but they were sorry for any


distress caused. Not good enough, says brother, Peter, who she lives


with. Ridiculous, isn't it? They reckon they do it within so many


minutes, it is all bunkum. It is disgraceful. This is and 87-year-


old woman who is vulnerable at the best of times. A great deal of


distress lying in the cold in a huge amount of pain. She has had an


operation and is now recovering well.


A firefighter had to be taken to hospital this morning along with


the man he had rescued from a burning building in Nottingham.


Crews were called to the three storey home in Carlton Road in


Sneinton. The firefighter has since been released and is expected to


return to duty. Day 39-year-old man arrested in connection with the


fire remains in police custody. More than �300,000 is to be spent


in Nottingham helping rough sleepers from Eastern Europe. The


homeless charity Framework received the money from the Government and


the City Council. So are -- staff say the problem has been rising


with one man dying in November. Cash will be spent on health


programmes and helping people to return to their own countries.


This weekend, a flyover which joins two of our major motorways is being


demolished. The Catthorpe Interchange, from tomorrow, where


the M6 meets the M1, is being closed for 36 hours. It will mean a


lengthy diversion. Preparing for the demolition -


above and by the side of two of England's busiest motorways. With a


new viaduct complete and already in use, this weekend, the race will be


on to remove the old one. This is in the old fast-lane of the M6. The


job now is to demolish the old viaduct and that is what will


happen over the next three days. Costing more than �20 million, the


new viaduct was needed because quite literally the old one was


falling down. For more than one decade, props like this have kept


its standing. Just under 5,000 tonnes of concrete were taken away


in the demolition waste and we have got about 10-12 machines excavating


the bridge during that time in a very co-ordinated operation. This


bridge demolition also on the M1 shows what will happen over the


weekend. Instead of blowing it up, contractors will nibble away at the


concrete until it has been completely removed. But the


demolition will mean a lengthy diversions for some drivers. There


diversions for some drivers. There of the closures of the M1


northbound between junctions 19 and 20 and southbound between junctions


19 and 18. Drivers wanting to join the M6 from the place for -- M1


Are you confident you can do it? Absolutely, we have got a good team


on board. It is meticulously planned. And if it is, both


motorway should be fully opened by We look next at the challenges


facing the NHS over it coming years. With the Government keen to push


through the biggest reforms in the history of the service, it is


likely that health will never be far from the headlines. There is


talk of the NHS budget being protected but the charges are huge.


The ageing population, the obesity problem and the concern that the


money is not keeping pace with The NHS is undergoing the biggest


reforms in its 64 year history. Way back in 1948, it had a budget of


�437 million. That works out at about �9 billion in today's money.


Over the next year, the budget to the front line in England will be


10 times that at �91 billion. But there's concern that funding is not


keeping up with demand. I have been to Derby and Derbyshire to see how


there's pressure there to make money got a lot further.


You could not miss the wind in Derby today and people also seemed


well aware of the winds of change sweeping the NHS. Many have their


own ideas of improvement this year. They should get rid of the middle


management would get everywhere in any government thing. Personally I


think a lot of people come over to be subsidised by the NHS in the UK.


I know it is not as good probably 12 months ago. I made a GP who


fears that with money tied, waiting lists will go up. Something has got


to give up. It's a question of which Park will give up first. I am


not sure what the answer is when money is tight across the whole


nation. This frontline GP in Darley Dale is one of those leading


radical change taking over the purse strings of the NHS. But with


financial pressure, is the timing of these changes terrible? Quite


the contrary. I think it makes us even more important that clinicians


are involved in the decisions for stops to James is the chief


executive of the Royal Derby Hospital, a 3% rise in funding lies


ahead in April but she doubts that will keep pace with demand. She has


to make the money go further. you look at a frail, elderly person,


they can pop in and out of hospital particularly if they live in a


nursing home. We are working to keep those patients in their normal


place of residence. The workforce in Derby hospitals is expected to


go down by 200. If nursing posts go because we are closing wards or


whatever, we hold vacancies so that we have got vacancies for those


nurses to go into. So the pressure is increasing and if winter gets


harsher, then it will be harder for the NHS to save money.


Staying with health, and a woman who spent years battling at an


eating disorder says doctors need to intervene in cases like her as


much earlier. Catherine Thomson from Derby had anorexia though


thankfully she is getting better. So much so that she is now 15 weeks


pregnant. Katherine said she only found the help she needed after she


lost several stone and was rushed to hospital.


Catherine Thomson A is on the rate to recovery. It was not always the


way. She spent the past seven years fighting food. Towards the end it


was going from a spoon of yoghurt to a smaller spin of yoghurt to a


teaspoon of sugar free jelly and and that became too much. I did not


eat for weeks. I could not sleep because of hunger pains and because


all my bones were sticking out. Catherine shared a staggering five


stones dropping from a healthy size 12 to smaller than a size six. But


she says she wished doctors had taken her condition was seriously


earlier will stop the went to the doctors and was based at the fobbed


off with go and eat some biscuits. My mind said was so controlling and


I think there's not enough help out there for people who are suffering


but might not be hugely overweight or underweight. In fact it was when


her trip to hospital after collapsing that she said she found


the help she needed. It came from consultants and an eating disorder


charity. I a lot of people have to hit critical points before they get


intervention. We are working to get training to NHS staff and


clinicians. We have been going into GPs' surgeries across the county.


Even now, 18 months on and pregnant, Catherine admits she still finds it


hard. The voices are still there and probably will always be there


to a certain extent and it gives me that extra help to battle them


every day. It is possible to recover, it is just hard. But you


A college is going ahead with a massive installation of solar


panels, even though the subsidy paid by Government for solar energy


is being cut. The project at Bilborough College in Nottingham is


one of the biggest in the country. Simon Ward reports.


It was a windy day to be making preparations to capture the power


of the sun but 400 solar panels are to be fitted to the Sports Centre


at Bilborough College. These students are studying environmental


issues and are fully behind the project. The majority of the energy


used here will be going towards the college and saving money and


obviously the more energy produced by the solar panels, the less


carbon emissions the colleges producing. We're running out of


things like oil and if we don't switch to swerve -- solar power and


wind power, we will struggle to keep up the lifestyle we got.


college would have got about 19p p Mirabella Tuesday but that is due


to be cut to around 13p by April although the government is facing a


legal challenge. It is hoped the solar panels will generate around


10 % of the energy needs of the sports hall and despite a


government trying to cut the subsidy, the colour -- the college


still feels it is worthwhile. the management team first look at


this, we were looking at the original tariffs but having done


that a lot of work on the long-term benefits, we feel it is clearly


worth doing. We have looked at the other drivers that make this


appealing to them. We did glimpse the Sun today but everybody at the


college is hoping to see more this year.


And now a tale about the philanthropy of philately, or how


the gift of more than a million used stamps has left charity


volunteers speechless. The stamps arrived packed into 24 sacks. The


money raised will be used to help soldiers in Afghanistan. As Carol


Hinds reports. Alex Wyndham and her aunt get to


grips with one of the biggest donations they have ever received.


A 10-year-old from Leicester was left speechless at the sight of 24


bags full of used stamps. When I walked in, I could not believe it.


We have found some old ones since 1973 and 1937. It could be worth


over �1,000. It is the biggest stamp donation I have ever seen.


Money raised by a stamp appeal helps the Leicester branch of the


support our soldiers at charity to send welfare parcels to those


serving in Afghanistan. I run a family support group for people


whose loved ones are away. There are 24 sacks and it will take


months to go through every single stamp. Mind you, any valuable ones


means more money to the charity. They have already found some


interesting stamps and the sax. Alex plans to boost the numbers she


collects this year with help from the public. I am making a box to


put some stamps in and giving it out to companies so they can


collect stamps. Anyone wanting any of the boxes of send stamps should


contact the charity's website. A lot of people will be doing that


now. Time for some sport and it's time to look at the transfer window.


Yes, it's January, so transfer talk is the order of the day. But Forest


manager Steve Cotterill says he wishes there wasn't a transfer


window at this point in the season. The Reds have already turned down


bids for several key players. never want to buy anybody in this


window because the price is inflated. If you want to do


anything, you want to sell them but you don't want to sell your best


players. I don't understand and the transfer window really. It puts


managers and the immense pressure. Meanwhile, Notts County are making


the most of the chance to boost their squad. Damion Stewart has


signed on loan until the end of the season. The defender has joined


from Bristol City and has 55 international caps with Jamaica.


The Leicester City manager, Nigel Pearson, has told us he's resigned


to losing Sol Bamba for this weekend's FA Cup tie with Forest.


Pearson would have liked to have played the defender, but the Ivory


Coast FA are insisting he joins them for a training squad ahead of


this month's Africa Cup of Nations. On to rugby and Leicester Tigers


take on Wasps this weekend. It's usually a clash between two of the


top teams, but this season, while the Tigers have climbed the table,


Wasps are still struggling. But one thing is the same, George Chuter


will be in the Leicester line-up after clocking up his 240th


Premiership game for the club. No- one in the division has played more


Premiership games. Jeremy Nicholas reports.


George is such a part of the Leicester team, it is easy to


forget he is a London boy. I'll always remember him from the


outside when I was at Saracens. We did not like Leicester but there


was always a respect about what they built appear. -- built at here.


Everybody has did Leicester because they were so successful. We were


bitter rivals at that time. I would have laughed in-your-face if you


had told me I'd be playing for Leicester to 12 years. He clocked


up his 240 of Premiership game for Leicester last week. To do it


consistently over a long time is hard to do and George has done that.


Does it make you feel good to have played so many games in the


Premiership? Just old. He will add to his tally this week against


Wasps. They will come appear full of fire. You have no idea what he's


talking about at any stage in his programme notes. He is a bizarre


man. As London 2012 draws ever closer,


time now for another look back at the last time we hosted the


Olympics. It was 64 years ago, but Kirsty Edwards has been to


Southwell to meet a former gymnast who remembers it well.


George may be 91 but he is still challenging himself as much as ever.


It is this kind of drive that saw him make the gymnastics team for


the 1948 London Olympics. It was awe-inspiring in one way. We had


not done it before and in those circumstances. I was doing


handstands and I used to do them on building boats and on my front gate


every day. I never fell off! These days, you'll find the elite


gymnasts practising in the gym under the watchful eye of coaches.


It is a world away from how George trained. It was freezing in the


winter in the gym. There was no heating. We went on the high bar


and my hands almost froze. We had coconut mats, like the doormats. In


the gym now, the gymnasts cannot work until they have 27 centimetres


of matting. Becky Downing has a great chance of making London 2012


and it will be different to the 1948 games. We were on the turf in


Wembley in the pouring rain. It was rather deflating. Did you go to


Beijing? Yes. Massive crowds and it was a phenomenal experience. The


whole atmosphere was amazing. is hoping that Becky will be


creating more amazing Olympic Mary -- memories.


Some things change but the sense of competitiveness remains the same.


Did you know that around one in five people, and that includes


adults and children, can't swim. Hopefully though, that number could


soon be dropping thanks to a new scheme aimed at getting more people


into the swimming pool. Today, local swimming stars, youngsters


and even our own trunks-clad reporter Paul Bradshaw, joined a


special training session in Leicester.


Learning from the professionals. These children and getting tips and


how to improve this winning technique. The event was in


preparation for the world's biggest fund-raising swim this spring.


great to have launches like this for the swimmer on. It creates a


lot of awareness and money for the charities. It gets kids involved at


the age. It is important to get everybody involved in swimming. It


is fantastic for East Midlands to get everybody involved. If we can


find the next great swimmer from Leicester, that would be fantastic.


With around one in five adults and children unable to swim, organises


a hoping this event will make a difference. It is a shameful


statistics but there are lots of plays -- things in place to change


that. Schools were men is important than trying to get centres to


increase adult swimming lessons but also to get children to encourage


their parents to come down as well. It is all for a good cause, raising


money for money Cury and Sport Relief. The summer fund will take


place on the 27th of 29th April, giving everybody the chance to take


the plunge. Were they Chancellor shot? I was


Were they Chancellor shot? I was It was the persistence of the


strong wins this morning causing all the damage. This photo was


taken this morning of fallen trees. The reason things are starting to


settle down is that we are seeing that area of low pressure pushing


away and those isobars getting further apart. Gradually, those


wins will ease. As we go through this evening, we do have a bit of


cloud around. But for most, it is a dry and clear night. The


temperatures will fall quite quickly, down to a minimum of one


degree Celsius. We do have some standing water on the ground and we


might see some icy patches. We still do have windy conditions


overnight but it won't be as guest beers what we've been having


recently. Tomorrow morning, a decent amount of sunshine and we


will notice the cloud bubbling up a bit as we go into the afternoon. It


should be mostly dry with a small chance of an occasional shower. The


winds are much lighter by the time we get a Friday afternoon. As we


going to Saturday, we will continue with these lighter winds and there


will be some sunshine around. Some cloud increase as we go through the


day and Sunday, a good deal of dry weather and a good deal of winter


sunshine. We are ending the week and a much quieter note. Looking at


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