28/06/2011 Midlands Today


28/06/2011

The latest news, sport and weather for the Midlands.


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Welcome to Midlands Today. They headlines: Cost of the strike,

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market traders say they will lose �5 million if there is a walkout on

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Thursday. Our customers will just come and not know what is going on,

:00:18.:00:24.

especially the people that come on a Thursday. He saved by the surgeon,

:00:24.:00:30.

the teenager who was stabbed to trying to protect as stranger.

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At the moment and I am feeling quite well. A bad day on the High

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Street as another famous name faces administration.

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And European speedway is most exciting rider on his new role in

:00:44.:00:54.
:00:54.:01:05.

Good evening. In less than 48 hours a strike by public sector workers

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will bring disruption right across the region. Members of the National

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Union of Teachers, The Association of Teachers and Lecturers and the

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Public and Commercial Services are striking against pension changes

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that will mean working longer and paying more.

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Passengers at Birmingham airport could face delays as customs and

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immigration officers walkout. Some courts are likely to close and

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driving Test could be cancelled. Meanwhile, traders at Birmingham

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wholesale markets say up to �5 million will be lost and tons of

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food wasted. If it is a separate dispute, but

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timed to coincide with the national strikes. Ben Godfrey has been

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finding out the impact could be devastating.

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It is thought 1000 traders use Birmingham wholesale market

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sourcing and then selling produce two businesses across the region,

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but the menu at your local restaurant could look lighter as

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strike action looms on Thursday. They have businesses to run and

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families to feed. Closing the market is not helping. We shall

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lose a day's work for no reason. surely they can put a skeleton

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staff on. This sprawling site is run by Birmingham City Sam --

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Birmingham City Council will also shut but Bullring 24 hours. That is

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because cleaners are to strike over pay and conditions and the so-

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called Birmingham contract. Trade union says staff are being

:02:36.:02:46.
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asked to sign agreements that break The authority says the contract is

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fair and necessary. The market closure well, according to traders,

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result and �5 million loss in trade. Workers are unhappy because wage

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still has to be paid. There will be impact around to the Bullring.

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There will be 100 lorries with no way to go. Birmingham City Council

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say they have given traders advance warning. Consider this, they are

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already mangoes from Pakistan, flowers from the Channel Island,

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Mead from Ireland and fish from Spain.

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Traders say they only had about this this morning. They are now

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expecting lines of banners at bringing food from around the world

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if the traders will not be about to sell. They say, he would want to

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eat it? In the last hour, traders have

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obtained an injunction to try to prevent the closure of the

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wholesale market. Birmingham City Council says it is seeking legal

:03:53.:03:59.

opinion about its position. The greatest impact of Thursdays

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strikes will be on schools. The picture is still developing, but so

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far this is how it looks. And Worcestershire, 100 schools are

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to close. Birmingham says at least 200

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schools will close. Staffordshire, the figure so far is

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14. Although that is certain to rise as more headteachers notify

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the local authority of closure plans.

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There was no sitting on the fence this morning amongst parents

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outside this Stoke-on-Trent school. They were either for or against

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says a strike in almost equal measure.

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You can understand them, but look at the holidays they have. I do

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know teachers and I think they need to strike. It is the biggest

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national teachers' strike in 25 years. Packmoor Primary is one of

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the dozen schools affected. I do find it quite disrupting to the

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children. I can't see the government taking a backward step

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on it. It is a deep thing, isn't it? Money. These were the scenes in

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Birmingham today. Dozens protesting ahead of the strikes and in no mood

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for compromise. I am here today because David Cameron is the head

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of the government that is attacking our public services need less sleep.

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We need to make sure there are enough jobs and pensions for people

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to have a sustainable life. If we don't stand up and make a stand, we

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do not have a say. A lecturer believes the strikes could go on

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for months. If the teachers have a pay freeze and inflation is 5%,

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many workers will have had a pay cut by 12%. I believe that anger

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and anxiety will mount up. The government would do well to take

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note of what is happening. That Fairfax School, the strike started

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two days early. Teachers here are angry at plans to turn it into an

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academy, but these are the scenes that will be replicated across the

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region on Thursday. The local government secretary,

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Eric Pickles, said there was no reason for the strikes to go ahead.

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It seems to me to be not a sensible or serious thing to do. The we are

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there to do something to correct unfairness in this country. We

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can't continue as we are, thank goodness people are living longer

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so people will have to retire a little bit later.

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Byron joined now by the newly elected President of UNISON. UNISON

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is not involved in thus strikes on Thursday, it is very likely it will

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be later. Do you think you'll have support? I do believe we will. The

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public can see for themselves that the services that they want could

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be eroded or disappear, that is not what they want. I feel that they do

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want to support us. Thousands of people in the private sector have

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had their pay frozen, cut, they have sinned pensions changed,

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surely there is not going to be that much sympathy for you?

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The thing is, in that way, the private sector it is not a right,

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is it? We would love to support them in the way that they will

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support us. Just because one group has been eroded, you do not want to

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do it to the next. We support the private sector in fighting to keep

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pensions in the same way that we have. As you know, the nation's

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finances are in a mess. The coalition has did do something or

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we could end up like Greece. There are alternatives. There is the

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Robin tax. There is tax on the bankers bonus. Nobody has talked

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about how those bankers are still getting their money than they we

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have paid into it. This is what it is about, the deficit we are having

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to pay and the bankers getting away with it. How conscious are you that

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some Labour MPs are saying to be cautious? There always is a case of

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that because they have to be mindful of having public opinion.

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And responsibility? Yes, in the same way that we are. We are not

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doing this lightly. It is the last resort. People going on strike at

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this moment are realising they are striking and not getting paid. They

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really strongly believe that the pension, which we have all paid

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into, is going to disappear. Thank you very much.

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We would like to hear what you think about the strikes. Do you

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sympathise? Or de you feel they should carry on working and face up

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to what the government calls economic reality?

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For the very latest information on school closures in your area, tune

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into your local radio station. Good to have you with this. Later

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on the programme: Hundreds of thousands of precious books and

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artifacts packed up as Birmingham library gets ready for its big blue.

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Before that, an update on a story we told you last month about a

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former policeman and his son who was stabbed outside their home.

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They try to protect a stranger who ran their for help.

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Martin Thompson described the ordeal while his son Edward made

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ill in hospital. 18 year-old Edward has been recovering well. Even

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though he nearly lost his life, he told our reporter he would do the

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same thing again. 18 year-old Edward Thompson looks

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like any ordinary teenager. It is hard to believe five weeks ago he

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was fighting for his life. Edward and his dad are having a quiet

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evening in when a youth sought refuge in their home.

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It was right between the shoulder blades.

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Minutes later both bad and son were stabbed. Edwards suffered the worst

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injuries. A punctured lung and four days in intensive care.

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I knew it was pretty serious because my dad could not stop

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talking to me. When he told me what happened he said I was close to

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death. It was such a shock. Martin was also stabbed in his side and

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spent two days in hospital. Ironically he did not suffer a

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scratch during 30 years as a policeman, but ended up being

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knifed outside his front door. doctors say it was a matter of

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inches. If it had gone a bit deeper or somewhere else, similar with me,

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if if it had not gone into the part it had, I do not think either of us

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would be here. The police have described this part of Birmingham

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as a good community. All the more shocking that a teenager nearly

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lost his life on his own doorstep. Edward has already had to cope with

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losing his mother to cancer last year. He plans to study drama. Even

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though this ordeal was a drama he could have done without, he says he

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would still do the same. If anyone knocks on your door with their life

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threatened, you will have the initiative to help them. Two people

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have been charged with attempted murder and will eventually appear

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in the Crown Court. Other news, the head teacher of a

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Coventry primary-school says the death of a four year-old pupil has

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come as a shock. The boy died while playing in a school playground at

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Grange Hurst School. Despite efforts to revive him, he was

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pronounced dead at hospital. The results of the post-mortem on not

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yet known. Plans for a casino near Birmingham

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have cleared another hurdle with the granting of a licence. It is

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expected to form part of a larger development near their NEC. The

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�120 million complex is expected to create 1000 jobs.

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It was a bad day on the High Street as another chain across the region

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warned it is about to call in the administrators.

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Many smaller shopkeepers say they are also finding it difficult to

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survive. Andy Newman reports from And this in a town which has had

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more than its fair share of ups and downs. Kidderminster suffered its

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first big hit in the late 1980s. Then it seemed to bounce back, but

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now, like many other traditional centres, it is feeling the squeeze.

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That will not be helped by the possible loss of another big name

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from a high-street. TJ Hughes is the latest national clubs chain to

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hit hard times. Its Kidderminster bad -- branch is one of the town's

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biggest stores. In will not help the town at all if it closes.

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a 33 years all retailing under his belt, he is one of the town's

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oldest shop keepers. The High Street in Kidderminster is very

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flat at the moment, there are a lot of empty shops, and there seemed to

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be shops closing every week. I think really that the people who

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own the property in Kidderminster, rather than leave them empty,

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should reduce the rent and let them. If John is one of Kidderminster's

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retailing veterans, Kevin is a new boy. He opened his shop just nine

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months ago, and so far, he has not drawn a single hounding wagers.

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has proven to be exceptionally difficult -- difficult. You just

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about cover your bills. I think I am one of the lucky ones, there are

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a lot out there that are not. Evidence of the unlucky ones is all

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around him. His shop is surrounded by vacant units, as Kidderminster

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tries to fight back. This Monday is a chance for local people to show

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their support for local, independent retailers. Based on

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:15:06.:15:06.

today's experience, they need it. Joan Cummins is in Walsall. Empty

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shops are a big issue there, aren't they?

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Yes, TJ Hughes behind me came in here 18 months ago, filling the gap

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that had been left by will works. The trouble here is that it has one

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of our highest rates of empty shops in the region. About 27 %, beaten

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only by West Bromwich. Adrian, you are from the council. Why is there

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such a problem? One of the reasons is that a number of shops are being

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redeveloped, because we did have prime mark and Co of coming back

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into the town centre. But we have also had invest when 4th -- from

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Marks and Spencers and Waterstone's. How about lowering the rents?

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would be great if business rates could be dealt with by the

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government to give an incentive for smaller retailers, and bigger ones

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as well. Tesco had just opened a few months ago, creating hundreds

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of jobs. That is what we need in this economy. A Walsall has more

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empty shops and other places. Is it on its knees? No, it is not fair to

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say that. But we do need a bit of a pick me up. We knew -- we do have

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our new hotel being built, that is a real shot in the armed. We have

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stopped traffic here tonight, showing that people do still come.

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You just have to want to be here. Still to come tonight:

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You may never have heard of him, but he's one of the biggest stars

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in one of the most dangerous sports...And also perhaps the

:16:51.:17:01.
:17:01.:17:04.

region's super commuter. Rare collection of children's books

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and games is carefully being prepared and packed ahead of a move

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to Birmingham's new library. The items are worth millions of pounds

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and will be an attraction as a new archive centre at the new library

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which opens in two years' time. Lindsay Doyle has been to see the

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:17:32.:17:37.

Take a close look, this unique collection of children's books and

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games is rarely seen. Hundreds of items, some dating back centuries,

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are being packed away at Birmingham Central Library so that

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conservation work can be carried out on them before they take pride

:17:49.:17:55.

of place at the new Library of Birmingham, which opens in 2013.

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will have storage that fits the value of these collections, and

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enables them to keep them for generations to come. The storage

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here is not that good. Conditions are not as good as we would like

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them to be. We keep everything as well as we can, but it will be much

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better in the new library. The new �188 million library in Centenary

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Square is likely to become a major cultural destinations. With 10

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levels, it will be connected to the Birmingham Rep, bringing together

:18:26.:18:30.

the written and spoken word through drama, poetry and performance. And

:18:30.:18:34.

archive centre will house many of the city's most valuable treasures,

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leaving millions of books, photographs and collections will be

:18:39.:18:46.

on show for the first time. Many of the gains in the collection are

:18:46.:18:50.

educational, such as this one, which points out stew children

:18:50.:18:54.

which professions were considered to be used well. The farmer, a

:18:54.:19:00.

butcher, the dance master and the poet are not thought to be so

:19:00.:19:04.

useful! I have a strong feeling that broadcasters would have been

:19:04.:19:08.

considered to be useless! It was donated by private collectors in

:19:08.:19:13.

the 1950s. It is amongst the first to be restored in order for it to

:19:13.:19:23.
:19:23.:19:24.

continue to bring to life that children of long ago.

:19:24.:19:30.

Birmingham City have begun to sell some of their star names. Cameron

:19:30.:19:34.

Jerome and Scott Dunn could be on their way out. They could be about

:19:34.:19:38.

to sell three players to help balance the books after relegation.

:19:38.:19:44.

Craig Gardner is close to sealing a �6 million move to Sunderland.

:19:44.:19:51.

Scott Stam and Cameron Jerome could both be moving to Stoke City.

:19:51.:19:55.

There could be a takeover on the cards at Coventry City. Joe Elliott,

:19:55.:20:00.

seen here on the left, has been asked to step down following an

:20:00.:20:03.

approach from for much vice chairman Gary Hoffman. The club say

:20:03.:20:08.

they have yet to receive a bid. 5,000 people have registered for

:20:08.:20:12.

this year's Birmingham have Marathon. From now on, it will be

:20:12.:20:16.

known as the Great Birmingham Run. It has a limit of 15,000 runners

:20:16.:20:23.

and will take place on 23rd October. Just four months ago, speedway fans

:20:23.:20:27.

feared that the Coventry Bees had been forced out of the Elite League.

:20:27.:20:31.

Then, a compromise was reached with the sport's Daventry -- governing

:20:31.:20:37.

bodies. Now, they have signed arguably the most exciting rider in

:20:37.:20:41.

Europe. Never seen before on the back lawn

:20:41.:20:48.

of a suburban semi-detached house in Coventry. At I am from Russia, I

:20:48.:20:53.

am riding for the Coventry Bees. One a Russian rider, one Polish

:20:53.:21:00.

mechanic, and one fast bike. People say that Emil Sayfutdinov is the

:21:00.:21:08.

rising star. He is a very good rider, he is aggressive and

:21:08.:21:13.

competitive, and maybe one day he will be the world's champion.

:21:14.:21:19.

he is enthusiastic, he is fast and he is good enough. Two have been in

:21:19.:21:23.

the Grand Prix and the senior league is just about as good as it

:21:23.:21:28.

can get. This is why he is such a big favourite. When the tapes go up,

:21:28.:21:33.

his will to win takes over, often with spectacular results. In

:21:33.:21:38.

Cardiff, this crash on the first bend proved costly. Much to his

:21:38.:21:43.

frustration, he was excluded and finished 4th. He looked very angry

:21:43.:21:50.

to be excluded. Yes, of course. But it is the referee's decision.

:21:50.:21:55.

Signing Emil Sayfutdinov was a real boost for the Coventry Bees. He is

:21:55.:22:00.

also pulling in the crowds all over Europe. On Sunday, he flew home to

:22:00.:22:04.

compete in Poland. But he came back for last night's League meeting in

:22:04.:22:14.
:22:14.:22:15.

Wolverhampton. That is a taste of his busy life in the fast line.

:22:15.:22:19.

Provided he does not lose his passport, he will make his home

:22:19.:22:29.
:22:29.:22:34.

debut for the Coventry Bees against King's Lynn on Friday night.

:22:34.:22:37.

Back now to our top story, the public sector strikes now less than

:22:37.:22:42.

48 hours away. Earlier we asked for your views and thanks to all of you

:22:42.:22:45.

who got in touch. Michael Collins says strikes are

:22:45.:22:47.

the only way to get people to listen.

:22:47.:22:50.

Steve Grimsley has no sympathy for the union's claim for pension

:22:50.:22:54.

rights from the taxpayer. Alan Henshaw emailed to say he

:22:54.:22:57.

supports the strikes: 'The working people of this country did not

:22:57.:23:01.

cause the financial crisis but they are being used as scapegoats'.

:23:01.:23:05.

And a final word from Mark Flowers. 'The strike over pensions by

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teachers and other public service workers is wrong. They should be

:23:09.:23:12.

glad that they have pensions at all'.$$NEWLINE A look at tonight's

:23:12.:23:22.
:23:22.:23:24.

main headlines: David Cameron addressed Conference leaders in

:23:24.:23:29.

Birmingham today, and appealed for the strike to be called off.

:23:29.:23:34.

What is the mood there? It really does depend on which

:23:34.:23:39.

council used be to. All the Conservative councillors are very

:23:39.:23:43.

positive and are toeing the line that David Cameron was talking

:23:43.:23:46.

about. But all that Labour councillors I had been speaking to

:23:46.:23:50.

were negative. If some of them were saying that David Cameron was a

:23:50.:23:55.

smoothing over the cracks in his policy, and saying that they have

:23:55.:24:01.

real sympathy for the workers he will be going on strike. I enjoyed

:24:01.:24:09.

by Philip Atkins. David Cameron was there talking about how this is

:24:09.:24:13.

essential, and that this is fair. But for a public sector workers,

:24:13.:24:16.

they are looking at working for a longer, paying more and getting

:24:17.:24:22.

less. Do you have sympathy with them? I have sympathy with people

:24:22.:24:29.

who are coming to terms with the fact that we are living longer, and

:24:29.:24:34.

that the cost of that pension is going to cost the country more. And

:24:34.:24:39.

then we have to think about how we get contributions, or whether we

:24:39.:24:43.

work longer. The discussion has to take place. And I think that is

:24:43.:24:50.

what the Prime Minister, it is the first time any Prime Minister has

:24:50.:24:53.

come to their local government conference. That is what he meant.

:24:53.:24:57.

There will be huge disruption. Should be government not give a bit

:24:57.:25:05.

of ground? No, I do not think so. Eight is to bigger question to duck.

:25:05.:25:12.

They could perhaps... I would make a plea that people think about the

:25:12.:25:22.
:25:22.:25:23.

effect of what they do. Nick Clegg takes the podium tomorrow.

:25:23.:25:28.

You can read more about Thursday's national strike day on our

:25:28.:25:36.

political editor Patrick Burns' political editor Patrick Burns'

:25:36.:25:43.

blog. Now, a look at the weather. The

:25:43.:25:50.

showers we have had over the last 24 hours have not been impressive.

:25:50.:25:53.

Not much rain later this week, and temperatures by the weekend should

:25:53.:25:59.

be rising, which is good news. The reason for this improvement is

:25:59.:26:03.

because there is high pressure moving in from the South West by

:26:03.:26:12.

Thursday. It will drop will winds in from be Warner place. Today, we

:26:12.:26:17.

will see any remaining showers dying away. The cloud will begin to

:26:17.:26:22.

break up and leave clear skies overnight. Temperatures dropping

:26:22.:26:25.

down to secure the -- single figures, around eight or nine

:26:25.:26:30.

degrees Celsius. Cooler tomorrow morning as well, but there will be

:26:30.:26:37.

a lot of sunshine. Cloud will move in during the afternoon, that will

:26:37.:26:44.

bring some showers as well. Temperatures rising to about 20

:26:44.:26:48.

degrees Celsius, there will still be sunshine between they showers.

:26:49.:26:54.

From Thursday on words, it starts to improve. Thursday may be a bit

:26:54.:27:00.

cloudy, but temperatures around 18 degrees Celsius. Gradually climbing

:27:00.:27:03.

to 22 degrees Celsius on Saturday, slightly above the average for the

:27:03.:27:13.
:27:13.:27:25.

A look at tonight's main headlines: A general strike in Greece turns

:27:25.:27:31.

violent. Demonstrators oppose plans to raise taxes and cut spending.

:27:31.:27:34.

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