The latest news, sport and weather for the East Midlands.
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This is East Midlands Today. The headlines: The dodgy hip that's got
a man banned from his allotment. The Council says are their's he is
a health and safety issue. -- Arthur's hip. After the Sun, the
snow. Not reassure's latest lottery winners revealed their number one
wish. -- Nottinghamshire. We get time together. Been together is the
most important thing. And why Sue is such a great advert for a local
swimming bath. Everyone should learn to swim. It is really good
Good evening. A pensioner from Nottinghamshire says he's
devastated after his local council has refused to rent him an
allotment, claiming his bad hip is a safety hazard. Arthur Martin has
been given just weeks to leave the site he's tended to for years. The
council say they don't want to see Mr Martin wheelchair bound, and
it's in his best interests. Helen Astle reports.
Arthur Martin has had his allotment in the squad for the last seven
years. He says it gave him a new lease of life after retirement.
only is it something to do manually, it exercises the mind a little bit.
You also have the company. months ago Parker had a hip
transplant. Since then, a friend has been helping him do the heavy
work. Last month, the town Council wrote to Arthur say they would not
be able to rent the a lot and to him because of health and safety
reasons. Have they got experience on the Council in health and
safety? Did they do a risk assessment? As far as I know, none
of this occurred. Just a letter out of the blue saying, clear your
allotment. We do not wish to see him wheelchair-bound. He is going
to be housebound if he is not careful. We do not want to see that.
Arthur is probably a couple of years older than me. I don't want
to see anybody of my age stuck in a wheelchair for the rest of their
lives. He has asked to get at consultants letter to say he is fit
to carry on working. He has refused. We decided that it would be in his
best interest to give up the allotment. I could take it up on
the grounds of discrimination against somebody who is disabled.
Which I would be perfectly within my right to do. After has now given
up tending to his allotment. He says it would be a sad day when he
leaves the site. -- it will be a sad day. Hundreds of homes in the
region are still without power this evening, after heavy snow blanketed
much of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire. The snow not only
caused power cuts to 9,000 houses, but also caused trouble on the
roads, which had a knock-on effect as teams struggled to reach
electricity lines to repair them. Extra repair teams are being
brought in, but it could still be later this evening before all home
have power restored. James Roberson reports.
What a difference a day makes. Yesterday the East Midlands had
been enjoying normal spring temperatures. Today, hundreds of
thousands walk up to find we do have returned with a vengeance. A
huge area was affected stretching from Mansfield in the North as far
south as Coalville in Leicestershire. This team of
engineers was one of dozens working flat out to restore electricity
suppliers. An estimated 9000 properties across North Derbyshire
and Nottinghamshire were without power by mid-morning. The wet snow
froze on power lines, the ice brought many down. In this area, a
residents lost surprise for hours. Everything was just off. I do not
know when it is going to get back on. We are still using the last of
our hot water. We have still not got a cup of tea today! Not only
the snow, but the win as well to people by surprise. I thought I was
going to be cut in my long today. I was taken by surprise. It brought
down our tree. Thankfully it blew that way. Train services were
disrupted, and buses and trucks struggled in treacherous conditions.
By 5pm on the about 2000 properties were still without electricity. --
only. Extra repair teams have been drafted in. It could be this
evening before all areas have their supply Trust Award.
-- supplies restored. Anna Church is in Derbyshire this evening. Is
it still snowing? No, it has stopped here. It is bitterly cold.
World temperatures recover for the Easter weekend? I will have the
answers later. Police investigating a plot to shut
Ratcliffe power station have been criticised for failing to hand over
papers about the undercover detective, Mark Kennedy. A high
profile climate trial in Nottingham collapsed when his role was
revealed. But today's report from the police watchdog cleared the
Nottinghamshire force of misconduct, putting some of the blame on the
Crown Prosecution Service. Jeremy Ball reports.
The raid that shook Britain's undercover policing system to the
core. This is the moment Mark Kennedy was arrested at their
school in Nottingham. He was posing as an environmental activist but he
was really an undercover detective. He was the one who told police. The
legal case against these protesters collapsed in a blaze of publicity
because Kennedy's role had not been disclosed to their lawyers. Today
the latest inquiry into what went wrong has been published. VIP PC --
the IPCC look into why Kennedy's statement and recordings were kept
secret. His transcript was not disclosed because of mistakes by
police. The CPS lawyer should have spotted that. He had been told
about Kennedy's evidence. I welcome the report that put to bed any
insinuation that the police hit or withheld any information. That is
absolutely not the case. The public should have full confidence in
their police to do what is required within the bands of the law.
bones. Mark Kennedy's investigation succeeded in spoiling the plot to
attack Ratcliffe power station. A scheme which lets the public raise
concerns about suspected paedophiles has been used to alert
12 families in Leicestershire in its first year. The Child Sex
Offender Disclosure Scheme is based on the campaign for Sarah's Law. It
allows people to ask police if someone in close contact with
children has a history of abuse. We've been sent these pictures this
afternoon of a wall that collapsed in Nottingham and damaged three
cars. It happened on High Church Street in New Basford. Police and
structural engineers were called to the scene. No-one was injured.
There are controversial plans to remove council staff from three car
parks in Nottingham. If the city council's plans go ahead, the
Broadmarsh, Fletcher Gate and Curzon Street car parks will no
longer be staffed during the day. The council says they will improve
CCTV in the car parks, but some people are worried it will affect
Next tonight, it seems that lady luck has found a new home in
Nottinghamshire. For the third time this year, a winning lottery ticket
has been bought in the county. Jim Emerton and his wife Maureen from
Carlton are the latest millionaires. So do they want fast cars, big
homes, expensive holidays? No, they just want to spend more time
together. Angelina Socci reports. Jim and Maureen Emerton thought it
was an elaborate April Fool's Day joke after checking their lottery
ticket on Sunday morning. After phoning up to double-check, they
realised it was no joke. There were �4.5 million richer. It is hard to
believe it. When you win it, you always plan for it. Imagine winning
the lottery. When you win it, you do not believe you Rock won it. --
you do not believe you have won it. He didn't believe me. Jim started
working at Toyota in Derby five weeks ago. Now he is planning to
retire to spend more time with his wife. The number one thing is we
get time together. Take away the house and the cars and everything,
being together is the most important thing. We hope to move to
Derbyshire. My daughter lives there. We hope to get closer to the grand
children and spend more time together and make easy instead of
commuting backwards and forwards. It is not the first time we have
been here. It is not even the second. Jim and Maureen Emerton at
the third couple from Nottinghamshire to win the jackpot
in recent months. It is unbelievable. Let's hope it
continues. Something in at the water, probably! The couple plan to
bring their family on holidays and celebrate with a cruise.
Next, how the East Midlands is benefitting from the phenomenal
growth of China. It's a rate of growth that's raised concerns about
industrial pollution. Well, one company from the region is helping
China to set up wind farms. With the third of his reports on the
region's growing exports to China, Mike O'Sullivan looks at how the
company's exploiting its giant new market.
This city in China is where the Nottingham company has set up its
main Chinese Office. The senior engineer showed me the bird's eye
view of the business district. Around 10 people worked at the
Romax Technology offers. They help with the delivery of designs for a
super efficient gearboxes for wind farms. China needed more wind farms.
Also, China meets high quality wind farms. The company took me on a
trip to see some of their work in action. This Briege is more than 30
kilometres long. You can see at huge offshore wind farm. The Disree
impressive. Big ears returning with suppliers from Romax Technology. --
big years. In Nottingham, this is the headquarters of Romax
Technology. About 100 people worker. The renewable energy market in
China is expected to increase by 20% per year. Exporting is helping
to create jobs at home. In the area we're working in, a lot of the
market is overseas. Therefore, if we expand overseas, of course we
are expanding our bases in the UK. This will create jobs, highly paid
jobs. In Shanghai, the China Britain Business Council told me
that companies that want to export to China cannot delay. Competition
every day is increasing from global competitors. At the same time,
domestic companies are getting stronger by the day. I would
encourage all companies to seriously look at China. The
opportunity is really quite big. One of the company's big customers
in China is this factory. It manufactures the gearboxes designed
by Romax Technology. This workshop makes a lot of deer. A mighty wind
farm machine waiting to be tested. Romax Technology has spent four
years building up its market in China, and is coming up with new
designs to stay ahead of competitors.
Mike O'Sullivan on our exports to China. But where else do well sell
to? The EU is our biggest export market for goods, contributing �8.5
billion - nearly half of all our foreign sales. But when you look at
individual countries, our biggest market is the USA. Last year, this
region sold �2.4 billion worth of goods to America. Germany's next on
the list, followed, perhaps surprisingly, by Belgium. You have
to go all the way down to Number 12 before you reach China. In fact, if
you add together our sales to the new emerging markets like China,
India and Brazil, it amounts to less than our total export sales to
If you look at the UK as a whole, 50% of our exports are still with
the EU. We need to start looking at those high growth economies such as
China, Indonesia, Turkey. We need to secure private sector growth and
to do that fairly quickly. Tapping into those high great economies
will help to do that. Last year, our biggest regional money spinner
by a huge margin was machinery and transport, bringing in more than
�11 billion. Our other manufactured goods raised �3.8 billion.
Everything else - food and drink, chemicals, fuels - came to �2.7
billion. And despite the economic picture at home, those exports are
growing. Exports generally from the East Midlands account for something
over a quarter of the country's GDP. Around about �18 billion of sales.
It is around about one in four jobs that depend on the fact we sell
goods and services overseas. That is a significant contribution. If
he did not export from the East Midlands, you might as well turn at
the lights and go away. Exporting is critical to the economy. And
growing it is extremely important, especially at the moment. The good
news is our regional exports hit a five-year high last year, and the
region's trade gap was cut by two thirds to around �326 million. UK
Trade and Investment says it's all that's kept us out of recession. So
it really does seem that for now, the only way is exports.
Businesses along the Grand Union Canal in Leicestershire say they're
concerned about plans to close an 11-mile stretch. A shortage of
water has led British Waterways to impose restrictions from today on
the opening hours between King's Lock and Kibworth. From 13 April
this stretch will be closed indefinitely. Some businesses are
worried about the knock-on effect the closure could have.
Researchers have found a way to turn eggshells into plastic and
medication. Scientists at the University of Leicester say they're
able to crush the eggshells and mix them with other plastics to make a
new recycled plastic. The protein in the shells could also be used
for things like face creams. It's hoped the new process will reduce
New proposals are on their way to the Education Secretary to plug a
controversial funding gap between our city and county schools. It's
aimed at changing the complex formula that pushes shire counties
in the East Midlands towards the bottom of the schools' league table
for funding. Here's our Political How come each pupil on that side of
the River Trent in Nottinghamshire get �1,000 per year less for their
education than on this side in the City of Nottingham? It is the same
funding formula that worries the politician who runs local authority
schools in Leicestershire. It affects his Kandy, too. He has been
asked by the Education Secretary to calculate the costs of a new
formula. We have never asked for a any authority to lose out. We have
asked for the Government to lower the range between the lowest and
the average. Somebody has to be at the bottom. I am comfortable if
Leicestershire is the lowest. Providing the current range has
been narrowed. He has been pressing the Government to change the
formula he says but county schools at a financial disadvantage. There
is influential political backing. Teachers' salaries at the same,
books cost the same, knees are the same. We have deprived areas in
Leicestershire. But we in our schools have their needs -- have
our needs. It is time that was recognised. The funding gap between
Leicestershire and the City of Leicester is nine under pounds per
pupil. There is a clear need for extra money from Leicester City. If
there is any more money to be handed out, it should go to those
authorities with the most need. That means Leicester City, not
Leicestershire County. This is a new battle between City and Council
for more support for schools. The Council feels it is winning its
case. It is now bouncing back to the Education Secretary for a final
go-ahead. Now the sport. It may have seemed
like winter out there today, but the county cricket season is due to
begin tomorrow. So what can we expect from our sides? Well, we'll
start our round-up in Division One. Nottinghamshire are the side with
the test venue, the money and the ability to attract the best players.
As Colin found out, they also have the most unusual marketing ideas.
Yes, this is cricket, in a car park with some of the leading lights
from Notts. The director of cricket is happy in the gloom. This season
he signed some of England's best talent. He likes playing long
innings, he likes batting for long periods of time. He also has the
adaptability to playing a limited overs. He is hugely ambitious.
for Taylor himself, England expects in the future but he is not feeling
the pressure. You hear people speaking but I have tried not to
let that take my mind off things. On my main focus is scoring runs
for Nottinghamshire and not getting too distracted. Thorn in the dark
this night. Do not believe the summer sun will be just as good.
am always optimistic in March. If you're not, you might as well give
up. Notts begin their campaign against Worcestershire at Trent
Bridge tomorrow. As for Leicestershire, they're at home to
Glamorgan in Division Two. It's fair to say they're a team who are
great at Twenty20 but tend to struggle in the championship.
Jeremy Nicholas has been to see them.
Can you believe the cricket season is here already? Well I can because
it is in my diary and I have been looking forward to it for weeks.
will be a bit chilly for later in the week. He we usually get a good
turnout. Playing Glamorgan on Thursday. I'm sure it will be cold.
The club museum is full of memories of great Leicestershire teams. But
bottom of Division Two last season, they have strengthened their squad.
We have signed three players. And we have one overseas for all forms
of cricket. In the days of Leicestershire legends, the county
always wore white. Nowadays they are better when they wear their
pyjamas. They are the reigning Twenty20 champions. We do, live. It
is a competition we have done very well in. We enjoy it. Quite an
achievement for a small county. Staying in Division Two, and
Derbyshire will be at home to Northants tomorrow. They've just
had a pre-season in the West Indies, where they managed wins against
Hampshire and a Barbados XI. So how are they expecting to do this
season? We sent Paul Bradshaw to find out.
The club is probably not many bookies favourites to challenge for
honours. But a solid pre-season and some choice acquisitions have got
the county ground buzzing. We have got Dave Wainwright as our
frontline spinner. What he has shown us in the pre-season, it is
going to be massive to have him to rely on. It is all about the three-
year plan. Allowing the young Scot to develop into county cricketers
without the pressure to win silverware. We have said to them as
management, Play fearless cricket. I think you'll see the best of them
without the weight of expectation. We have got a good seam attack,
decent spin bowling attack, and good youngsters. They bat really
well. We were just go out there and play good cricket. Not too much
expectation. A lot of chance to surprise people. Derbyshire play
Northants on Thursday. Cricket back tomorrow. Hopefully we will have a
decent weather forecast later. Now has this awful weather put you off
going outside? Well, not Sue Dixon from Derbyshire. Every day she gets
up and drives herself 20 minutes to the swimming pool. Not unusual, I
hear you say. But Sue is 100 years old. And unsurprisingly, she's
become a bit of an inspiration to Come Rana or shine, or even snow,
Sue Dixon never misses her weekly swimming session. For 30 years, she
has been taking the plunge at a pool. It is good exercise.
Everybody should learn to swim. It is really good exercise. You feel
much better when you have had a swim. Soon he's used to making
waves. At 100, she is one of the oldest people in the UK to hold a
full driving licence. Her fitness regime is an example to others.
is wonderful to have somebody like Sue coming here, just to give
inspiration to younger people. more mature swimmer's are inspired.
Brilliant, isn't dead? I hope I am still here at 100, let alone swim!
Fantastic. She is a wonderful lady. A lovely lady as well. If Sue can
make it at 100, I can jolly well make it as well. She is amazing.
It really is bitterly cold cure. Looking at the hills behind me, it
looks quite pretty covered in snow fall. As the saw earlier, we have
had some significant still in parts of the East Midlands. In Derbyshire,
on confirm reports of more than 20 centimetres of snow fall across the
higher ground. Mostly higher than 300 metres. In contrast, we had a
mix of mostly rain and sleet at lower levels. We have had a really
dry March. This rain is much needed. We had 37.4 million litres recorded
in the last 20 years errors. That will be welcomed by gardeners.
Bitterly cold at the moment. Things will improve the next couple of
days. Tonight it is then very cold. We am expecting to see a frost in
Why are we getting the unsettled weather? It is due to this low-
pressure sitting across the southern half of the UK. You will
be pleased to hear that this weather front will continue to make
its way south through the evening and overnight. It will give us a
try and to the night. Clear skies Mossley across the Derbyshire Peak
District. For all of us, a cold night. Possibly a couple of degrees
colder than freezing in rural spot. Frost lightly, and maybe some ice.
Tomorrow it will start cloudy. Afterwards, peace and sunshine in
the afternoon. Temperatures starting to recover but still quite
cold. Friday, starting dry and bright. Clouding over later. That