The latest news, sport and weather for the East Midlands.
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And now the news for the East Midlands, I'm Dominic Heale. Good
evening. UK Coal has confirmed tonight that
the last remaining deep pit in the East Midlands is to shut next year.
The company is consulting with unions and employees about the
planned closure of Thoresby Colliery in Nottinghamshire, which has been
operating since the 1920s. Helen Astle reports.
It has been a sombre day today, the end of an era for deep coal mining
in Nottinghamshire. 600 people are employed here, the jobs are under
threat. 280 could go by the end of the year. It was last November the
Chancellor visited the site and there was hope it had a future. It
is a different story today. Falling prices and the strength of the pound
against the dollar are being blamed. I spoke to several people
who work here, no one on camera but they told me they are shocked and
saddened. They also say they have been given little information by UK
Coal as to what is happening and there listening to the radio for the
latest news. The site has been here since 1925, almost 90 years old. It
is the main employer. Many people have spent most of their lives here.
Today, they tell me they don't know what else they can do. The site will
close in the next 18 months. Earlier, I spoke to Andrew
Mackintosh of UK Coal who confirmed the closure and explained the
company's position. A very difficult day for all of us.
2000 employees, 600 in Thoresby and a sad day for Nottinghamshire. The
point about on how the situation is, we tried to keep employees
informed, today has been a crunch day weather news has come out with
competent `` about consultations. Consultations with unions and Andrew
Mackintosh from UK Coal speaking to me earlier from our Norwich studio.
Employees, what will you talk about? We will look at the discussions are
taking place at the moment involving a wide range of people to see if we
can get a package together to make sure we can close the coal mines
down safely. At the same time, to make sure employees and suppliers
get the appropriate treatment they expect from such a plan.
A lawyer has called for prosecutions over the death of an elderly care
home resident. 87`year`old Betty Arch, who had dementia, was offered
solid food despite not being able to swallow it. An inquest heard that
neglect at the home in Nottinghamshire contributed to her
death. The coroner said the case should act as a warning to other
care home owners. Rob Sissons reports.
Do not be fooled by the sign, this was not a quality provider. The
inquest heard staff were run ragged, mealtimes chaotic and the needs of
dementia patients not met. Betty Arch paid the ultimate price. Betty
Arch died alone, left unsupervised with sandwiches. She should not have
had solid food, it should have been mashed or pureed. The coroner said
the attitude was take it or leave it. Take it, sandwiches and
biscuits, risked Betty's life, leave it and she would go hungry. This was
the owner. The inquest was told she was asked for more staff but this
was ignored. The coroner said she controlled the purse strings and the
purse remained closed. Betty Arch's son left with his solicitor
demanding tougher action on care homes. Whilst nothing can bring
Betty back, the family hope lessons have been learnt by everyone
involved in the care of dementia patients and homes providing care
for these vulnerable residents will in future be much more closely and
effectively monitored. Tonight, Nottingham social services stressed
most of the 170 care homes they say are good or excellent but they do
have concerns about a handful. We have established a task force
which consists of professionals going in to work with those
identified homes to make sure they improve their quality of care.
The family don't understand why the facts that were produced at the
inquest should not form a prosecution by the Health and Safety
Executive. Clearly, these residents' lives were put in danger. Concluding
the case, the coroner said Betty Arch died from natural causes
contributed by neglect. The trust which runs Derby's
hospitals is warning services could be cut unless the Government
provides it with an emergency financial bail`out. It's currently
spending ?66,000 a day over its budget. It had already been left
with a ?9 million deficit from the last financial year. And it needs to
make savings of ?43 million during this year. Officials say that could
have an impact, but there aren't any plans to cut whole services or make
any redundancies. But in the short`term it's going to need a
financial bail`out. We need to ask the Department of
Health for some short`term specialist funding to cover the
extra costs we won't normally incur. That's so we can make sure we can
continue to deliver high`quality services for patients.
Soldiers from our largest local army regiment marched through Ashbourne
this afternoon. The Mercian's second battalion have served four gruelling
tours of duty in Afghanistan. This was the first of three "freedom
parades" in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire this week. Tomorrow
lunchtime they'll be marching through Mansfield Town centre.
That's your news. So, it's goodbye from me but with your weather now,
here's Anna Church. We are currently at moderate
pollution levels and it continues to rise. The risk of moderate to high
levels of air pollution is something to be aware of. Tonight, mostly dry
and very mild across the East Midlands. Fairly cloudy, some
showers across the North at the moment, some clearer skies in the
south of Leicestershire. Towards dawn, mist and fog forming in the
Peak District but a mild night, lows of eight Celsius. Cloud is quite
stubborn try morning, a misty and cloudy start. Any brightness in the
afternoon will be across the East and one or two showers starting to
push in. A good deal of dry weather. Temperatures, not too bad, a maximum
of 17 degrees. be dry. The air pollution has been
hitting the headlines today. For more information on that, here is my
colleague. Good evening. Very hazy skies in
London today and many other towns and cities across the UK. On
Thursday there is the chance of some pretty high pollution in the
south-east and East Anglia but by the time we get towards the end of
the week, we will see clearer Atlantique air coming in and we
should get rid of the Saharan dust which has been making services
grubby in the last few days. You can see the pattern across the
Atlantic. We also have a weather front.