27/09/2013 East Midlands Today


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This is East Midlands Today with Dominic Heale and me, Anne Davies.


Tonight — the horrifying news that came in a late night phone call. He


said, have you heard anything? I said, "no—mac." He said, "your house


came on fire." In just moments, this man had lost his wife, daughter and


two sons. Also made, the pro—Minister tells us


that cash—strapped local councils should stop living. These cuts are


relatively modest, they can be done. Plus, a vigil for Christians killed


in a Pakistan suicide attack. And the world beating supercomputer


that is unlocking the secrets of the stars.


Good evening and welcome to Friday's programme. First tonight:


The father who lost his entire family in a house fire in Leicester


two weeks ago has described the moment he was told of the tragedy.


He's also revealed he can't bring himself to go and see the gutted


property. Dr Mohammed Taufiq al Sattar said


his faith is keeping him strong after the loss of his wife and three


children. Sarah Teale reports. It was a devastating fire which


engulfed the Taufiq al Sattar family home at Woodhill in Leicester, two


weeks ago. Dr Sattar was in Dublin, where he worked as a neurosurgeon,


When he was woken with a phone call from a friend. And he said, "Have


you heard anything?" I said "No". He said, "Your house came on fire". And


he said he hadn't seen anybody taken out from the house. As a


neurosurgeon, I know we deal with life and death everyday in life, as


well. So, yeah...it was on my mind, as well. Dr al Sattar has only


visited the family home once, since. Very painful. I have not seen my


house again. And I don't want to see it, as well. I don't want to go


inside, as well. His three children — daughter Zainab, 19, and sons


Bilal, 17, and Jamil, 15 — died along with Dr al Sattar's wife


Shehnila. A wonderful lady. She was very active. And she made so many


friends here in Leicester. When we came, first time in 2006, you can't


believe — we did not know any single person in Leicester. And now you can


see how the community is with us. Dr al Sattar says that support and his


faith have given him strength to cope. There are so many people who


have condolences — sympathy with yourself and with your family. Even


if they don't know you but they are there. This is what is giving me


comfort in my heart. 18—year—old Kemo Porter from Leicester has been


charged with murder. Seven other people are still being questioned by


police. Sarah Teale, East Midlands Today.


The Prime Minister has dismissed warnings from East Midlands councils


about town hall cuts. David Cameron describes a new round


of belt tightening on town halls as relatively modest and not impossible


to find. In an interview with our Political


Editor John Hess in Downing Street, the Prime Minister was responding to


the latest warnings from local politicians of dire consequences.


Well, I think there is a danger they are trying to play a blame game.


Look, everyone in this country, everyone watching this programme,


knows that we have a big budget deficit. We can't live beyond our


means. We've had to make cuts, cuts in central government and local


government. But actually, when you look at the cuts in local


government, the additional cuts they are being asked to make, they are


relatively modest. It can be done. And I would praise local councils in


what they have done so far to make efficiencies without hitting front


line services. They can go on doing that. You will be aware that even


the leader of Leicestershire has been to hold meetings with


Conservative MPs here saying, actually, even his authority can't


take any more cuts. I don't accept that. I think local councils have


shown you can find efficiencies. Things like the pay freeze we put in


place have made sure we are keeping people in work, providing good


services. But of course it's difficult. The cuts that are being


asked for are relatively modest, something like 2.3%. It's not


impossible to do. The Housing Federation says the East Midlands


has only built 43% of homes that the region needs. —— is only building.


It supported Ed Miliband's pledge for the additional homes by the end


of a Labour government. And yet, already we are hearing from


Conservative MPs in marginal seats saying, "Not in my backyard". Where


is this going to be sorted out? We are sorting it out because we are


reforming the planning system so these houses can be built. People


are absolutely right saying this has got to be determined locally and


planning authorities should make decisions. My view is that actually,


when you trust local councils, what you find is that if they are given


the choice, they do build the houses but try to make sure they are built


in a way that local people support. That is what we have put in place


and I am confident we will get the housing that we need. Finally, one


of your MPs described you as a disturbing cocktail of Alan


Partridge and John Wayne. How would you describe yourself? I get


described as a lot of things in this job but I hope I am a bit more John


Wayne than Alan Partridge. Prime Minister, thank you very much


indeed. Thank you. And you can see more of that


interview and hear from the MEP who accused him of being more like Alan


Partridge on the Sunday Politics for the East Midlands. That's on BBC One


from 11am. Coming up in the programme — for


sport it's a big weekend. The latest East Midlands derby is tomorrow.


It's Nottingham Forest vs Derby County and this time around there is


a bit of extra spice! For the 20,000 football fans were


going to pack into the ground here tomorrow, it will be bright, funny


and a little bit breezy. That continues across the East Midlands.


A vigil is being held this evening in Leicester to remember people


killed in a suicide attack on a Christian church in Pakistan.


More than 80 died in the bomb blast last Sunday, including five members


of the same family with relatives in Leicester.


Well our reporter, Eleanor Garnier, is outside the church where


tonight's service is being held. Have many people arrived yet? At


least 50 people have arrived for this evening's vigil at the Church


of the Resurrection, here in Leicester. The service started half


an hour ago but people are still arriving. People of all faiths were


invited for the service. The assistant bishop of Leicester is


also here to join in the prayers, readings and music. This double


suicide bombing happened thousands of miles away in Pakistan but the


pain and impact is being felt here in Leicester. My report contains


some distressing images. This area had been packed with


Christian worshippers when two suicide bombers blew themselves up.


Dozens of men, women and children were killed, among them the uncle


and cousins of this man. He moved to Leicester two years ago. I am very


upset because I lost my family. In Pakistan. When I saw in the news...


My heart was weeping. I think nobody is safe in Pakistan. The double


suicide bombing happened at the all Saints Church as hundreds of


worshippers left Sunday Mass. Now, prayers are being fed thousands of


miles away in Leicester to remember those who died. I think it is a


reminder for us to respect the human life and it is a reminder for us


coming together to reflect on the value of life. And also, coming


together, that we may pray that people do not do things, take the


lives of other people. As mourners come to terms with what has


happened, it is thought this attack is the worst on Pakistan's Christian


community in the history of the country.


Now, militants linked to the Pakistani Taliban have said they


carried out that attack at that church on Sunday. But, in fact,


today, there has been another blast, this time on a bus. We know that at


least 17 people have died. People who came for this evening's vigil


have told me that all those who died will be in their prayers.


Thank you very much. A once—prominent member of the


English Defence League is on the run after being found guilty of a


violent attempted robbery in Nottinghamshire. Guramit Singh


Kalirai was sentenced to six and a half years on Tuesday after a


Hucknall shopkeeper was tied up and threatened with a knife in May. Two


other men were also jailed. But Kalirai, a former EDL spokesman from


Bramcote, failed to turn up at Nottingham Crown Court. A warrant's


now been issued for his arrest. Senior councillors at Derbyshire


County Council could be in line for a 10% pay rise, just days after they


announced 16,000 jobs may have to go. —— 1600. The newly—elected


Labour leadership says it needs to save £157 million over five years.


It also wants to change the way its cabinet members' allowances are


structured. An independent panel's recommended paying a smaller number


of councillors more, to make up for extra work they'll have to do.


A new research centre which aims to come up with better treatments for


patients with breathing problems opened today. £8 million pounds has


been invested into the Leicester Respiratory Biomedical Research


Unit. —— £8 million has been invested. It's based at the


Glenfield Hospital and will look into conditions like Asthma and


Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease or COPD. We need to have


better drugs and this is a great facility for both studying new


medicines, testing them on patients, but also we have a lab which allows


us to come up with new ideas for different types of medicines which


might help patients. Police are making a direct appeal to


a missing teenager from Mansfield to return home. 14—year—old Ciaran


Sweeney ran away almost two weeks ago.


Despite being missing for all this time, officers believe he may not be


far away. Simon Ward reports from Mansfield.


The police are searching homes on this stage, trying to get


information about where the boy is. There have been numerous reported


sightings of the 14—year—old but none confirmed. Today, the police


spoke directly to him. If you are not wanting to go home for a


reason, don't want to face your mum, it is more important that we find


you and make sure you are safe. You can go to a police station. You


don't have to go home. You can speak to any of our uniformed staff


industry. Or even go into a major supermarket or some building like


that. It was almost two years ago that he ran across this Heath after


an argument with his mother. He was in such a hurry that he ran off


without any shoes. The police say someone in a house near here could


be sheltering him. It is most likely that he is in this area and that


somebody is helping him. That is what we are trying to appeal to


anybody who might know the whereabouts of the boy. Whether they


are looking after him themselves or think they might know someone who


is, we need to know and that he is safe. 's family and the police say


he is not in trouble, they just want him home. The focus is trying to


discover whether he is hiding in one of these houses.


A Government report says police in Derbyshire carry out too many


strip—searches in custody. Her Majesty's Inspectorate studied


stations in Derby and in the north of the county. It claims officers


couldn't always give convincing reasons for the searches and those


arrested were sometimes put in undignified safety clothing,


unnecessarily. It did praise their general treatment. The force says


the safety of those in custody is its main priority.


One of the region's busiest roads will see the start of weekly


overnight closures from this weekend. The A453 between the M1 and


Nottingham will be closed from 8pm on Saturday nights until 6am on


Sunday mornings, from now until March. It's part of the on—going


widening work. The Highways Agency has warned drivers to leave plenty


of time for their journeys — especially if travelling to East


Midlands Airport. If you are due to be travelling in


or out of Nottingham then be aware there are long delays on the A453.


Some power cables came down and blocked the road both ways. They


have been moved but congestion has still built up.


New figures on house prices show that the East Midlands is currently


one of the strongest performing regions in the UK. Prices rose on


average by more than 3% in the third quarter of this year, with the


average price of a home reaching nearly £162,000. According to the


Nationwide Building Society, Leicester was the strongest


performing area in the region, with annual price growth of 6%.


Derbyshire recorded 1%. You might have heard that there is a


massive super brain at work in the East millions. It's not Dom, it's


called Complexity. It's a huge super—computer in Leicester that's


putting Britain at the leading edge of space science.


It's even helping unravel the mystery of how the stars themselves


are created. Navtej Johal reports. The results from this machine have


drawn some of the brightest scientific minds in the country to


our part of the world. This £2 million supercomputer can handle


over 90 trillion operations per second. That means a task that would


take months on a desktop computer can be performed in a few days.


Physically, this supercomputer has been named Complexity. —— in a


fitting fashion. This is one of five supercomputers being used to throw


the UK to find out more about our galaxy. At this conference, hosted


by the University of Leicester team, everyone working on the project has


been brought together for the first team. You can see the posters


showing the results of what is coming out of the project at the


moment. These are at the cutting edge of what we understand of


astronomy and particle physics. This is the sign that the UK is really


leading the world in this. It is keeping the head. Leicester's


machine has been exploring black holes. It has always been thought


that black holes stop stars being created. But Ph.D. Student Martin


Bourne has been on the team whose findings could actually suggested


the opposite. We are finding that these can actually create stars. The


results that are coming out on the effect it has on the amenity is


amazing. Again, it is just showing how hard the people here are


working. The scientists say it is down to supercomputers like


Leicester's that the UK is able to make these new discoveries and stay


at the top of global scientific research.


Just how long would you be on the helpline is that crashed!


A long time! It must be chilly in our studio. There are many and


scarves. That is because —— except for me, I


am staying neutral. We have to special fans dressed up for the


occasion. The waiting is barely over. It's the biggest game of the


season for the fans — the East Midlands derby. Nottingham Forest


against Derby County is tomorrow at the city Ground. We are going to


have more from these men but first, Natalie Jackson has been in both


camps this week. The Derby, the biggest game of the


season. Steve it is massive, definitely massive. When it comes to


drama, passion, intrigue and plots and twists, trust me, this game


cannot be beaten. This is all about bragging rights. I think, over the


last number of games, Derby have managed to get their hands on the


bragging rights and we would like to turn that around. For many years, we


didn't get anything at all. It is nice to have given them some


happiness in that department. We wanted to go out there and give


it all to get the three points, to put any good performance and keep


good going. For the fans as well, you know. So that they have bragging


rights because it is important. I am pretty sure that Saturday will be


very different in the sense that it will be lots of blood and guts and


thunder. You know, really intense. This year, much will be made of the


relationship between the two managers. Davis formally took Derby


to the Premier League. Back in 2010, Billy accused Nigel of kneeing him


in the back of the leg during a touchline melee. The other has


always denied the allegation. I should cancel the men so I don't


think it will be a drink and a chat afterwords but out of respect for


the job that we do, we will she can. I agree with him, we certainly will


not be having a drink after the game but, as I said, we will do what we


have got to do with regards to respect for each other and the clubs


we are —— jobs were getting. —— jobs we are getting done.


No love lost between the managers, is there?! But they have both


emphasised they want the game played in the right kind of spirit and the


fans to keep it friendly too. Lets talk about it all then, with our


guests. In the Rams corner, Craig Ramage — a Derby boy who turned out


for his hometown club. And in the Reds corner, David Johnson — a


proper Forest hero who seems to spend half his life within yards of


the city Ground. What's the atmosphere like at these games,


then? It's amazing. I was brought up as a Derby fan so it was a little


bit extra special for me but the atmosphere, everything about it, I


think it is on par with a Merseyside and Manchester derby. It means that


much to the Derby people and Forest people. To you agree? Steve


much to the Derby people and Forest people. To you agree? It is a


fantastic atmosphere if you win. It is a long way back down the motorway


if you get beaten but obviously, it is a City Ground and lots of fans so


I am happy. What is your best memory? In 1990, I managed to score


against the red dogs! I was very happy about it. What Mike —— we beat


them and went on to the play—offs and did not get to the final but it


was a good year. Let's talk about what is going to


happen tomorrow. Forest have got the edge. Does that matter, the weight


of history? Not really. I think that Derby have come to the city ground


and done very well. In the last game, obviously. This year, Forest


have been bested. Some quality players. I don't think they could


have played at a better time, tomorrow. Derby have got these


recent games. They won five out of the last ten, only three wins for


Forest. We have been struggling at home but we are playing well, the


teams are coming at us and we can break on. It is a little bit


different. Finding them little holes that were causing them trouble.


Hopefully, we will get her own form sorted out but we have a great


chance tomorrow. Is the way for going to be enough for Derby? I


think the quality of the home team will get them through tomorrow. They


not a chance! I would be happy with the draw but I think we will get


ours in tomorrow. Thank you both for joining us. Derby are looking at


signing a couple of new players. News of that to come and Forest on


the vibe, the pear drops on signings also.


Of course, it is not all about Forest verses Derby, Leicester are


in stunning form at the moment. One player in particular is enjoying his


best form yet in a Foxes shirt. When striker Jamie Vardy joined last


season, he cost the club £1 million — a record fee for a non—league


player. His aim — to prove it's been money well spent.


He has gone from non—league to a team vying for the Premier League. I


mean, when they tell you you're not good enough, you think, that said,


it's not gone to happen. He did not play for a year but was persuaded to


return and it was the best decision of his life. His goal—scoring


exploits earned him a £1 million move to the Foxes. That price tag


and proving he was good enough to could stall. The physicality of the


players, the quality of the players. It was always going to be hard but


last year, me seeing what works and working hard in the off—season. I


think it helps when you aren't seeing on Twitter support from all


of the —— when you are getting abuse on Twitter. You have to prove


yourself. Scoring two goals already and the promise of more to come, can


he complete his fairy tale and be in the Premier League? It would be a


dream come true. We will just have to, hopefully it will happen and I


will have to pinch myself again! That was a great interview, really


interesting. Don't step away from the rest


because there is plenty more actually. There is more?


Also in action this weekend, Notts County at Carlisle. And the other


big local derby. Can't believe that Chesterfield versus Mansfield has


fallen on the same day as Forest v Derby. What a renewal of old


rivalries that is! Follow all the games on your BBC Local Radio


station. It's not all that's happening. Very quickly, here are


our four to watch. Leicester Tigers are off to Exeter


off the back of a home win in Newcastle. The Heineken cup looms.


The Panthers are looking in very good nick but Belfast are the next


visitors to the arena. Super featherweight level fights.


All the best to everyone taking part in the Robin Hood Marathon. We know


how much you put into it. They do us all proud.


Whatever you're doing, sporting wise, it is going to be.


We have to say, special good luck to John Hyslop, who you saw earlier, in


the marathon. He is running for a good cause. So


are others. Good luck. You will notice that they are in


pink! That is not unusual.


We will not give away things at that.


Let's have a look at the weather. Such a big sporting weekend and the


weather is coming up big time as well, I am pleased to say. With


plenty of sunny weather, that is what we got earlier also. The


temperatures got to around 18. Temperatures over the weekend are


looking pretty good. Staying dry also. A bit of a breezy time. As far


as this evening, I dare say it could even be barbecue weather, fingers


crossed! Going into the early hours of Saturday, under those clear


skies, that will mean that the temperatures will plummet. Pretty


much widespread across the East Midlands, doughnut around single


figures. That is your towns and cities at ten but really it is


definitely single figures. As for tomorrow, we are in a little pocket


of settled weather and that is very good news for us. As far as going


through to the football, that is the important thing, kick at the


ground, 1215. It will be dry and buy it and not too badly drawn. Here is


what it looks like on the radar. Plenty of bright and sunny weather


with a little bit of cloud creeping into parts of Leicestershire as we


make our way and the last part of this afternoon. —— the afternoon.


The temperatures are up to around 19 Celsius which is a touch more than


the average. If you can get yourself a little bit of an isolated sun


trap, it might get a little bit higher. Through into Sunday, I


mentioned it would be breezy throughout the weekend. It will be


noticeably more so on Sunday afternoon. It is the Robin Hood


Marathon in Nottingham. Looks like it will be a little bit of the cool


start after that cold night on Saturday. He will be pleased to hear


that it is bright, dry and sunny as well. I did mention that it would be


quite breezy. I hope that Breeze is behind you, rather than running into


it for your sake stop the low pressure is making its way in but it


will turn into drizzle as it gets the words of an East Midlands. It


stays dry, bright and settled in the can. Best of luck for the marathon.


All—rounder to yours for a barbecue! I am fixated. A good idea. Nice to


end on a nice weather forecast. Good luck to everybody. When Mike indeed.


We will see you this weekend. Goodbye.


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