25/08/2011 Midlands Today


25/08/2011

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In Midlands Today... Out of the violence and destruction - how the

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riots have brought communities closer together. They felt that he

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was feeling their pain, and that helped the community a lot. Record

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GCSE results, but more youngsters are not in education or work.

:00:30.:00:33.

want to make sure youngsters leave here with the best possible

:00:33.:00:40.

opportunities. Farmers are urged to be extra vigilant after a spate of

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bonfires. And the end of the road for a museum which tells the story

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of life on the buses. Good evening and welcome to Thursday's Midlands

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Today from the BBC. Tonight, a tribute to the three men who died

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in the Birmingham riots. The brother of two of those who died

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said he felt honoured that an historic football match between the

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national teams of India and Pakistan is being dedicated to

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their memory. It is expected that thousands of supporters will turn

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out for the game - their first meeting on British soil. All

:01:18.:01:21.

profits will go to a foundation to honour the murdered men. As Sarah

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Falkand reports, it is hoped the match can be held in the city where

:01:24.:01:34.
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the men lived and died. Three murdered men, soon to be honoured

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by thousands of football fans. has touched my heart already. I am

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going to be very emotional, because they are my brothers. I lost two

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brothers, but I have to keep strong for my mother and father. The Blue

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Tigers, India's national football team. Never before have they played

:01:58.:02:07.

the Greenshirts on British soil. a company, we have dedicated this

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match to their memory, pledging all profits from the match to a

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foundation, if and when this is set up by the families, or a charity of

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their choice. Today, we are witnessing an historical event in

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the making. A symbol of good well. The match was scheduled for one

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week on Saturday, but it has been postponed to allow the families to

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mourn. Both of the families and the television company involved say it

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would be more appropriate to have the memorial match here in

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Birmingham, the home of the three dead men. But at the moment the

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company said it is not in negotiation with either of the two

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football clubs in the city. Well, since the riots in Birmingham and

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elsewhere in the region, police have carried out a total of 534

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riot-related arrests. Of those, 164 people have so far been charged

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with crimes relating to the violence and looting - a figure

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that is certain to rise. But as our correspondent Peter Wilson reports,

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out of the violence and destruction, some communities are being brought

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Standing together, praying together, one man a Muslim the other a Sikh -

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they're also best friends. Tariq Jahan, a Muslim, has become a

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symbol of peace since the killing of his son Haroon and the two

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brothers Shahzad Ali and Abdul Musavir. Their deaths could have

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sparked yet more violence, but Tariq's words of peace quenched the

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thirst for revenge. But he only wants to thank others.

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To my brothers in the Sikh community, thank you, for the

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amount of support I have had. I probably will not get around to

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saying thank you to everyone. But anybody who is listening, you have

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given me a lot of courage and strength, and a thank you from the

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bottom of my heart. The Sikh and Muslim communities

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have often mistrusted each other, yet Sikhs now feel closer than ever

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before to the Muslim community. He speaks from his heart, please,

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don't do it. If somebody else does it, they will be wrong. It will not

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be the Government. He has got a good heart, I tell you that. Good

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heart, man. I have not seen a man like you in my life.

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During the riots, a Sikh religious channel leapt to prominence. Sangat

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TV was on everyone's lips. Their lightweight broadcasting equipment

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based on mobile phone signals meant they were live in the thick of the

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:04:55.:04:55.

action. Sangat TV's car one night gave a police officer a lift so

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that he could help catch alleged looters. But they are not hard-

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nosed journalists, and they are working for a channel whose message

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is one of peace and togetherness. The brothers, they saw that he was

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crying, and they felt that he was part of them, that he was feeling

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their pain. I think that helped the community a lot.

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One night, they gave a police officer a lift to help him catch

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alleged looters. They have got two, three, four guys...

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The stars of the channel are now mobbed on the streets of Handsworth.

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The service of mankind is of the true worship of God. If you're not

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willing to serve mankind, if you're not talking about peace and love

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and humility, well then, you need to sort yourself out.

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This month has been not only a month of violence but the month of

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Ramadan, a time when Muslims fast and pray. Tariq Jahan says just

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because the time of peace is ending, it is no reason for people to start

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fearing for the future. It is the month of Ramadan, once

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this is over, it will be Eid. Everybody will be celebrating. I

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cannot see my people going and causing any grief or trouble. I

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would say to my people, if they are listening, brothers, no more.

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Definitely no more. Tariq's daughter has been comforted

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by the fact that her brother died during Ramadan, seen as a blessing

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to the faithful. The Muslim who dies in this month

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will walk straight into paradise. This book was given to my father by

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someone in the crowd who came to pay respects. My brother, my mum,

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my dad, we need to have time to ourselves. Me and my dad are trying

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to be the rocks of the family. Out of so much pain, a lot of good

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appears to have emerged, and the silent majority have made

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themselves heard.But their much- anticipated match will now be in be

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in memory of three Birmingham men. And Peter is in the studio with us

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now. Peter, Tariq Jahan speaks very powerfully for peace. As a Muslim,

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he seems to have such an affinity with the Sikh religion - why is

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that? He is a Ferdy learned man. He was

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brought up in Slough and his family home was actually opposite a Sikh

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temple. He used to go in there and eat food, but he would also sit and

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listen to the prayers and the teachings, and he picked up a lot

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about the Sikh religion. Do you think there are still tensions on

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the streets? The police are still investigating, and it could go on

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for months or years. Their message tonight to the looters is that

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they're coming after them, however long it takes. But at the same time,

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Tariq Jahan said to me that he was very grateful to both the black and

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white communities. But I am getting calls from the black community,

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saying, we are often treated as troublemakers, but we were keeping

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our kids at home. We are fearful about our children's safety, and we

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do not want them to be depicted as troublemakers.

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Still to come tonight... The return of the humble sheep - how they're

:08:19.:08:29.
:08:29.:08:33.

helping the Malvern Hills look While 16-year-olds were celebrating

:08:33.:08:36.

improved GCSE results today, they may be masking the scale of the

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problem of young people finding work. 650,000 pupils have been

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getting their GCSE results. Pass rates are up for 23rd year running.

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But new figures show that so-called NEETs - that's young people not in

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education, employment or training - are up by 12,000 in a year in the

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region, to 117,000. Ben Sidwell has been looking at today's GCSE

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results and at the prospects for 16-year-olds entering a tough jobs

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Collecting their GCSE results at Nicholas Chamberlaine Technology

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College in Bedworth. For many of these pupils, it seems they have no

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option but to stay on in education. With high levels of youth

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unemployment, finding a job at 16 is very tough. Currently here in

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the Midlands there are over 125,000 young people not in education,

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employment or training. The we try to make sure that the

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children leave here with the doors open, with the most pathways open

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to them. But the economic situation is not good, it is difficult and it

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is more challenging than it has been in the past. I got nine A*s

:09:46.:09:56.
:09:56.:09:57.

overall. I got what I needed, so I'm happy. I'm just over the moon.

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For many, this is the biggest day in their school lives. Most have

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got the results they need. But what about those that haven't? Many of

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the pupils in Bedworth are relying on their grades to get into

:10:15.:10:19.

colleges. For those who haven't done as well as hoped, they face a

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worrying few weeks. I feel like I have done all right

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but I did not do as well as I wanted to do. For now I will have

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to do some of them again at the college. There will be that small

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minority that have not got the grades they want, or do not want to

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go into education, they just want to find a job. There are

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opportunities out there, there are apprenticeships and jobs, and we

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are here to help them. At Lyng Hall Specialist Sports

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College and Community School in Coventry, it's a similar story. All

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but a handful are staying on in education - a decision that could

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benefit them greatly in later life, according the the head teacher.

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My experience is that pupils who leave school now at 16, with just

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GCSEs, suffer a significant disadvantage in terms of getting

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work which leads to a meaningful career.

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Two people who are defiantly staying in education are Alexandra

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and Rebecca Morton, from Harborne in Birmingham. The twin sisters,

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who go to school at King Edward VI High School for Girls in Edgbaston,

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both got 11 A*s in their GCSEs. Just shock and excitement. Yes,

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we're just really happy. Both in Bedworth and Coventry, it's

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the best GCSE results the schools have ever had, giving these pupils

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a good start on their career path. What the future holds is now down

:11:46.:11:56.
:11:56.:11:58.

The specialist retailer Floors 2 Go has gone into administration for

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the second time in three years. 200 jobs are at risk with the closure

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of 53 stores, but another 35 have been sold, saving a further 162

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jobs. The company, which has its head office in Birmingham, is the

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UK's biggest wood flooring specialist. Managers at Birmingham

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airport say plans to restore passenger flights to Coventry could

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damage the region's air industry, rather than supporting its

:12:16.:12:21.

expansion. Proposals are now in place for a runway extension at

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Birmingham so the airport can offer longhaul flights to places like

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India and China. But chief executive Paul Kehoe says if the

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business has to deal with more competition in the shorthaul market,

:12:32.:12:42.
:12:42.:12:46.

its already-tight profit margins Five people have been injured after

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scaffolding collapsed this afternoon at a Shropshire school.

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It happened at the Abraham Darby Academy in Madeley near Telford at

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around 4.30pm. Some of the injured were taken to hospital by air

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ambulance. There's steal some noises coming

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from the building at the moment, employing that it might be moving

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still. A lot of people heard a loud crash and came out to find that the

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roof part was peeling away from the building and is hanging on on a

:13:20.:13:30.
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Emergency teams have been dealing with a spate of barn fires. In

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Staffordshire alone, crews have spent more than 80 hours in the

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last month putting out fires on farms. Investigators believe

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arsonists are responsible in many cases. They are warning farmers to

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be extra vigilant. Here's our Staffordshire reporter, Liz Copper.

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On this farm at Betley in North Staffordshire, barns were burned to

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the ground last month. Arsonists were responsible for setting alight

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800 large bails of hay. It is heartbreaking, in four hours,

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you see the season's work reduced to a total mess. It is a lifetime's

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work, putting these sheds up with my brother and my family, building

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the farm up. It is just absolutely... It knocks your feet

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from under you. It's not just in Staffordshire

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where there has been a problem. This is the scene of a fire which

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broke out yesterday near Dunley in north Worcestershire. Ten fire

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engines were needed to bring the flames under control. Crews are

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still there tonight. It can take hours, even days, to put these

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fires out. They burn so rapidly. And that's because hay being stored

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can ignite quickly - and smoulder slowly.

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It is difficult to put it out, because sometimes, the bails of hay

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are tightly stacked. The building's are liable to collapse as well. And

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obviously you have got the surrounding buildings to protect as

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well, and also machinery and equipment.

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Dealing with these attacks is costly - not just for farmers, but

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also for the fire service. They warn that arsonists are putting

:15:08.:15:18.
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Still to come... A big European night for Birmingham City. They've

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been waiting 50 years for this moment. Can Blues make dreams come

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true for 28,000 fans? It's calmer now but will it remain this way for

:15:26.:15:36.
:15:36.:15:41.

the bank holiday weekend? Join me A museum is to close after failing

:15:41.:15:44.

to buy its premises from Birmingham City Council. Aston Manor Road

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Transport Museum couldn't agree on a price for the Victorian tram shed

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which houses the museum. Our reporter Jackie Kabler is there now

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- Jackie, a sad day for all concerned there?

:15:57.:16:00.

It is sad. This is one of the beauty restored vehicles they have

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got here. This is a 1963 Coventry Daimler boss, one of the lovely old

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fashioned ones, with a platform at the back where the conductor used

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to stand. The museum gets 10,000 visitors a year, and it used to be

:16:13.:16:18.

subsidised by the council, until two years ago, when it had to start

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paying �43,000 a year rent. Negotiations began with the council

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to buy the building. Neither side could agree on exactly how much the

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building was what, and we have now got to the point where it looks

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like it is going to have to close. I'm joined by the chairman. It is

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really sad, but it just became not financially viable...

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The demands from the city for a commercial level of rent are

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unaffordable. They were in 1990, and they are today. This is why we

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have had the agreement up until now. We estimate that each visitor would

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need to pay �8 a head to meet the current is the city's aspirations.

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�8 a head, when the rest of the city's museums are free.

:17:05.:17:08.

council says it is very sad that he it has come to this. One councillor

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said, despite giving the trustees every chance to come up with a

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sustainable plan, they have not been able to do it. What will

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happen now? What do you want to happen? We certainly do not want to

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close. We would like to think that the city will reconsider their

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position, take account of the heritage, the community value and

:17:29.:17:34.

so on, all the things which are not perhaps accountable in pound notes.

:17:35.:17:44.
:17:45.:17:48.

But please consider that and keep Now they're two clubs with very

:17:48.:17:50.

little experience of European football, but that's all changing

:17:50.:17:54.

this season. In a moment we will be at Stoke City, but first, Nick

:17:54.:17:56.

Clitheroe is at Birmingham City, where they're expecting a full

:17:56.:18:04.

house. I should think the Up nicely, Nick?

:18:04.:18:07.

Absolutely, the Europa League may not have quite the glamour of the

:18:07.:18:11.

Champions League, but for Birmingham City fans, this is a

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very special occasion. You have got to go back to 1963 for the last

:18:14.:18:24.
:18:24.:18:27.

time they were in European competition. They've been waiting

:18:27.:18:30.

half a century, but these are the sights and sounds that mean big-

:18:30.:18:33.

time European football is coming to Birmingham City. The Portuguese

:18:33.:18:36.

side Nacional stand between Blues and a place in the group stages of

:18:36.:18:42.

the Europa League. It is difficult, Birmingham is a

:18:42.:18:46.

strong team. It is a typical English team. We work hard, we

:18:46.:18:51.

prepare hard for a typical English game, a more direct game, and

:18:51.:18:55.

physical. I thought we were quite strong over there, even with a

:18:56.:18:59.

slightly makeshift team, we did really well. Hopefully we are

:18:59.:19:03.

coming into the home game with the fans behind us. Hopefully we will

:19:03.:19:05.

get into the group stage. Nacional trained at St Andrews

:19:05.:19:08.

yesterday evening but an empty stadium will be little preparation

:19:08.:19:11.

for what awaits them tonight. Only 77 away fans are making the trip,

:19:11.:19:14.

but cheaper ticket prices have ensured the ground will be a noisy

:19:14.:19:22.

28,000 sell-out. Football people know what an

:19:22.:19:25.

intimidating place St Andrews can be when it is full, but we have got

:19:25.:19:28.

to give them something to cheer about. I would expect a very

:19:28.:19:31.

difficult game, it will be very tough.

:19:31.:19:34.

A goalless draw in the away leg should give Birmingham the upper

:19:34.:19:42.

hand tonight. Would you say Blues are favourites to go through, Nick?

:19:42.:19:46.

I think you have got to say that, after that goalless draw in the

:19:46.:19:50.

first leg. The booze hit the woodwork three times, but of course,

:19:50.:19:54.

they would have liked that away goal. If the visitors were to get a

:19:54.:19:58.

goal tonight, that would put the pressure on Birmingham, but yes, I

:19:58.:20:03.

would make them favourites, as the home team. Assuming they do make it,

:20:03.:20:07.

who could they be facing in the next stage? They could come up the

:20:07.:20:11.

likes -- against the likes of Atletico Madrid, Roma, or Parisse

:20:11.:20:15.

Air Asia man. So it could be a pretty good quality of opposition

:20:15.:20:25.
:20:25.:20:30.

A big night in Europe too for Stoke City. They take a single-goal lead

:20:30.:20:33.

into their second round Europa League game against Swiss opponents.

:20:33.:20:37.

Our reporter there is Laura May McMullan. Laura - a full house

:20:37.:20:43.

tonight? I don't think there will be many spare seats tonight. The

:20:43.:20:47.

fans has been flocking here in their droves. 24,000 seats have

:20:47.:20:51.

been sold so far. The manager has been urging the fans to get behind

:20:51.:20:56.

the team tonight, because he knows that FC Thun will not be a pushover.

:20:56.:21:01.

They're currently top of the Swiss League, and they have already

:21:02.:21:05.

beaten Palermo on away goals in the qualifying round. So everyone here

:21:05.:21:10.

tonight is hoping there will not be an upset.

:21:10.:21:13.

Stoke have a be a sofa cushion, will they have their full-strength

:21:13.:21:21.

side out tonight? Any fan will tell you, there are

:21:21.:21:24.

frustrations surrounding the Stoke squad at the moment, the manager

:21:24.:21:28.

saying he still needs some more signings. And there has been a

:21:28.:21:32.

major blow, the manager is without Matthew Etherington and Robert Huth,

:21:32.:21:36.

neither of whom will play tonight because they were booked last week.

:21:36.:21:40.

And team news just coming in, Rory Delap will not play, but Jermaine

:21:40.:21:44.

Pennant will. But another big boost to the team, Matthew Upson makes

:21:44.:21:51.

his home debut tonight. And he says he believes Stoke will be able to

:21:51.:21:57.

challenge in Europe. And both those matches are being

:21:57.:22:01.

covered in full on BBC local radio. BBC WM will have full commentary on

:22:01.:22:04.

the Blues game - live coverage begins at 7 o'clock. And BBC Radio

:22:04.:22:12.

Stoke will be at Stoke City's game against FC Thun. Some cricket news,

:22:12.:22:15.

Warwickshire still have a chance of winning the Championship. They have

:22:15.:22:25.
:22:25.:22:30.

A decline in wild flowers on the Malvern Hills has been reversed,

:22:30.:22:33.

after nine farmers agreed to start keeping sheep there again. The

:22:33.:22:35.

livestock were removed in 1992 after cases of sheep worrying. But

:22:35.:22:39.

that meant there were no animals left to eat the scrub. As Bob

:22:39.:22:41.

Hockenhull reports, their return has been a success in restoring the

:22:41.:22:49.

natural beauty of the landscape, For nearly 20 years, the hundreds

:22:49.:22:52.

of thousands of visitors coming to the Malverns wouldn't have noticed

:22:52.:22:56.

any sheep on the hills. The last farmer removed his flockin 1992 -

:22:56.:22:59.

fed up with dog attacks and accidents. But now the sheep are

:22:59.:23:06.

back. It is nice to have those farming

:23:06.:23:09.

family is back in and to have some younger farmers for the future as

:23:09.:23:11.

well. Nine farmers are being subsidised

:23:11.:23:14.

to bring the animals back. In their absence many wild flowers on this

:23:14.:23:17.

site of special scientific interest disappeared as invasive scrubland

:23:17.:23:27.
:23:27.:23:28.

took a hold. Over time, we have cleared some of the scrub and we

:23:28.:23:32.

have been able to increase the area of grassland, and the wild flowers

:23:32.:23:40.

have benefited. Where we clear, the sheep keep those areas opened.

:23:40.:23:44.

Here's perfect example of what this project is all about. The sheep

:23:44.:23:49.

will eat the scrub, allowing pretty flowers like these to thrive as

:23:49.:23:52.

they should do. For farmers like Matt Rouse, grazing sheep on the

:23:52.:23:59.

hills is a return to a centuries- old farming tradition.

:23:59.:24:03.

grandfather grazed up here, and for a time I worked for the

:24:03.:24:07.

organisation which runs the hills. So I take quite a bit of pride in

:24:07.:24:10.

seeing the difference the animals make. It's not all been plain

:24:10.:24:14.

sailing though. Already Matt has had 13 sheep killed by dogs and 30

:24:14.:24:20.

maimed. The dog owners are responsible for their dogs, I just

:24:20.:24:25.

have to pick the pieces up. It is not very pleasant, no. To deal with

:24:25.:24:28.

the problem, trainer Sue Harper is running classes to teach dogs not

:24:28.:24:32.

to chase sheep, and give owners the skills to control their pets. She's

:24:32.:24:34.

already trained more than 200 locals since the sheep were

:24:34.:24:44.
:24:44.:24:45.

returned to the hills. I think all dog owners should do it if they go

:24:45.:24:47.

walking near livestock, because it gives you the confidence to look

:24:47.:24:55.

after your dog. I never let people get over-confident, I never tell

:24:55.:24:58.

people you can go through a field of sheep without your dog on the

:24:58.:25:02.

lead. It is essential that people keep their dog on the lead. Because

:25:02.:25:04.

after all, it's important the livestock stays here, helping to

:25:05.:25:14.
:25:15.:25:27.

provide habitats where wildlife will thrive.

:25:27.:25:29.

The rain did eventually make an The rain did eventually make an

:25:30.:25:32.

impact today - but there's more on the way.

:25:32.:25:35.

But as far as the bank holiday weekend goes, it should become

:25:35.:25:38.

drier from Sunday onwards It's been quite a messy picture so far this

:25:38.:25:41.

week for the eastern half of the country, but our attention will

:25:41.:25:44.

soon turn to this area of high pressure that will be governing

:25:44.:25:47.

things by the second half of the weekend and take up quite prominent

:25:47.:25:57.
:25:57.:25:58.

position by next Tuesday - it all bodes well for then. But tonight,

:25:58.:26:02.

we can see a cluster of showers to the west and an area of rain

:26:02.:26:05.

swelling up from the south - we're caught in the middle and may see

:26:05.:26:15.
:26:15.:26:19.

bits of both later in the night. Temperatures will be dropping to

:26:19.:26:22.

their lowest point over the next few hours. Tomorrow morning, the

:26:22.:26:26.

rain starts to come a bit further west. But the showers will be

:26:26.:26:30.

pushing further east. During the afternoon they will become quite

:26:30.:26:33.

widespread. You can see from the darker colours, there are some

:26:33.:26:37.

fairly heavy downpours. In between, some sunshine, but it will be

:26:38.:26:47.

cooler tomorrow. As for tomorrow night, the showers come and go, but

:26:47.:26:51.

we still have a fairly heavy downpours in places. But the wind

:26:51.:26:56.

will be picking up, bringing more showers for Saturday. So, Saturday

:26:56.:27:00.

is looking fairly wet, but it does is looking fairly wet, but it does

:27:00.:27:07.

dry up from Sunday into Monday. Tonight's main headlines - Colonel

:27:07.:27:11.

Gaddafi issues another call to arms in a radio broadcast from a secret

:27:11.:27:15.

location. He tells his supporters to come out of their homes and kill

:27:15.:27:20.

rats. Here, in the wake of the riots, communities come together,

:27:20.:27:25.

united against violence and destruction. We can just tell you

:27:25.:27:29.

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