The latest news, sport and weather for the Midlands.
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Hello and welcome to Midlands Today with Nick Owen and Suzanne Virdee.
The headlines tonight: Police investigate claims doctors agreed
to carry out abortions on the grounds of the sex of unborn babies.
Searching for Tom who disappeared on the day he'd celebrated his 21st.
Worsening obesity amongst children - could computer games and lack of
sleep be to blame? And TC's the new top cat at
Molineux as Wolves' hunt for a I have nothing to be embarrassed
about, this club has nothing to be embarrassed about, it has
Good evening and welcome to Friday's Midlands Today from the
BBC. Tonight - police investigate an
abortion clinic following claims doctors agreed to carry out
terminations on the basis of the unborn babies' sex.
The Department of Health's also involved in the inquiry after the
Calthorpe Clinic in Edgbaston in Birmingham was issued with a
Warning Notice following an inspection. Our health
correspondent Michele Paduano has the details.
Outside the Calthorpe Clinic today, religious campaigners maintained a
vigil against abortion throughout Lent. For them, abortion due to sex
is just another wrong. It shows the mentality people have, that the
child is a product, it is something that would determine for ourselves
and we choose and to elect for ourselves rather than a gift to us.
That just shows how widespread this is now. Abortion is available on
demand. The Calthorpe Clinic in Birmingham was caught on camera
Henin and -- undercover investigation. This doctor was told
the baby wasn't wanted because it In a separate development, the gay
equality development has made two inspections following a tip-off. I
understand that the Department of Health has been informed. The
police have been asked to investigate all areas of concern.
If this has happened, not only is it a criminal act, but it entail
the professionals deliberately falsifying the reports, which
necessarily accompany any termination of pregnancy. It is a
shocking thing to have happened, we will follow it up urgently and
thoroughly. When scanning Beefeaters, staff are where the
agenda may be an issue, and do not routinely tell the mother the
baby's sex. Whilst we wouldn't actively looked to sex a baby, if
it is something that is easily seen, and the woman once the information,
it is not something we would deny at any time. The Calthorpe Clinic
says it is conducting its own internal investigation. It cannot
say any more at this stage. What happens to the clinic while these
investigations are under way? just wandered into the clinic and
spoken to the general manager. She insists it is business as usual. So
whatever has happened, it has not been so serious that they ever to
close anything down. This clinic has been in existence by the 40
years, deals with thousands of patients across the Midlands, both
in Birmingham and Wolverhampton and Stoke-on-Trent. The one thing we do
know is that the doctor himself has been suspended pending their
investigation. Early indications along these investigations could
take? There are three separate investigations. The care quality
commission, that could be over fairly quickly. They talk about a
report being out shortly, it could be weeks or months. With respect to
the police and General Medical Council investigations, if there is
substance to them, they could take considerable time to investigate.
It is usual that if there are to be charges, it could be years rather
the mumps. -- than months. A still to come, could a work experience
scheme ease the problem? The distraught family of a man who
went missing within hours of his twenty first birthday celebration
are tonight asking the public for help in finding him.
Tom Haddock had enjoyed a celebration family lunch at his
mother's home. He left for a night out with friends in Lichfield, but
apparently never arrived. Police are now combing the area and
appealing for information as to his whereabouts.
A specialist team of officers searched the canal near Fradley.
Tom Haddock has been missing since last Saturday, where he headed off
for a night out. At home, his family face an agonising wait.
is really hard, because your friends are contacting all the time,
and you just can't... He has never done this before. He would stay
over at a friend's house may be overnight and come back in the
morning, but he has never been gone for this long without contact. It
is not like him. A Facebook page is helping the search. Tom's family
say he had thoroughly enjoyed a lunch to celebrate his 21st. That
night it is it off to Lichfield, deciding against waiting for a taxi
at home. It looks like he didn't get there, looks like changed his
mind. I don't understand it, he was so determined to go to Lichfield.
He got Picts from friends saying it where they were there not stop --.
He was last seen here at Fradley junction on Saturday night, when he
spoke to a boat on and asked for directions to Bromley Hayes. It is
and how's walk along the canal towpath. The mystery doesn't end
there. His sister had a missed call at 10:30pm, and a friend received a
call at 2:30am, but was into noisy and atmosphere to hear it properly.
From the moment he has gone missing, I have had a dedicated search team,
both land and water search. Currently we have a water search in
the canal, by the specialist shallow water team. Tom was
planning another celebration near his father's home near Cheltenham
this weekend. I am really confused by these missing hours. If I knew
where he was, I could deal with it, but just not knowing where he is is
just destroying us. Tonight, police confirmed no evidence had been
found in the canal. The search is now widening.
And if you have any information, please call the new police 101
number. And the grieving family of a man
who was killed when his moped collided with a lorry in
Staffordshire have appealed for the driver to come forward. Benjamin
Warrington, who was 24, was driving along the A38 near Streethay early
on Tuesday morning when he was hit by a tipper truck which didn't stop.
Could anyone else was travelling on the road on Tuesday 21st February
at 525, who thinks they may have information, please contact the
investigation team. A special plea goes out of the lorry driver of the
HTV to come forward. Benjamin is in our thoughts and will be badly
missed. Hundreds of unpaid work experience placements are being
offered in Wolverhampton in a new attempt to tackle rising youth
unemployment. Despite the economic climate, local businesses are being
urged to find time and money to nurture the next generation of
workers. And time is pressing - with a sharp increase in the number
of 18-24 year olds out of work. Is Mr White House available?
After being unemployed for three months, Jess Williams took a gamble
on unpaid work experience - the 21- year-old impressed and landed a job
at Wolverhampton Homes. I felt that the whole experience really
benefited me. It led me to feel I am significant and I can make a
difference. It enabled me to gain all the skills I need to help me
gain employment. For the first time, businesses in Wolverhampton have
signed up to offer hundreds of eight-week work placements. And
this is why. Queues around the block at City jobs fairs, and the
busiest Jobcentres in the West Midlands. If you are aged between
18 and 24, chances are you know someone who is claiming jobseeker's
allowance. In Wolverhampton, around 15% of that age group to just that.
And that is twice the national average. So can unpaid work lift
Wolverhampton's 1 is? -- won his? This week, campaigners dubbed the
government's unpaid work scheme slave labour. Tesco have since
decided to offer pay. The government insists it is helping
people off benefit and into work. It is to give young people an
opportunity. The Labour MP behind a separate Wolverhampton scheme says
it is voluntary. No one has to take part in this. We are making
opportunities available for young people. We hope they will take part.
Here is a chance if you want to take one. This is not about press-
ganging people into doing something. Low Hill - one of the most deprived
parts of Wolverhampton - will be among the first areas to be
targeted. We see, unfortunately, in the homes we manage, many people
who have been without a job in some time, and in some cases their
parents have to. So it is ambition in the next year to target some of
these placements to our tenants's sons and daughters. Jess Williams
is lucky - not all work experience ends in a job. But a little goes a
long way in a city fearing a lost generation of workers.
As the Government continues to push through its health reforms, the BBC
Sunday Politics programme has discovered the NHS in this region
needs to save almost �2 billion by 2015.
It is because of the increasing elderly population, the rising
price of drugs and new technologies. Our reporter has this.
Here in the West Midlands, the NHS streets around 3 million people
every month. David Brooks is in New Cross Hospital in Wolverhampton for
a fairly routine hernia operation. But his -- it is not the first time
he has gone under the knife. I have had a cancer operation, heart
problems, I have had bowel problems which are came in for last year,
which I now continuing with the treatment, G two that. -- due to
that. That is going to be repaired. Who knows what will happen in the
future? At 60, Mr Brooks seems to have made plenty of use of the NHS,
but with the average age for men in the West Midlands now 77 and one in
81, the chances are he will lead the NHS in the future. The NHS, the
problem with it is because we are living longer, more of us are
needing expensive treatment and operations like these. But our
demand for better health care doesn't stop in the operating
theatre. There are around a dozen staff working in this laboratory,
making up cancer drugs like these, and they're not cheap. Add all the
cost and the fact there is less money in the coffers, and you get
the kind of pressure that means that by 2015, we need to save �1.8
billion from the health care budget in our region. I have noticed in
the last four or five years how technology and the advancement is
increasing, therefore the cost is increasing. We have got to be able
to find ways of saving money to be able to keep meeting that demand.
Health Wise, here in the West Midlands, we are living longer,
healthier lives, but financially, it seems the NHS is a victim of its
But we are joined by Patrick Burns. The first of all, how do these cuts
square with the government's promise to bring face the NHS?
Earth earth -- ring fence. They are having to produce these
huge amounts of money from within those existing budgets to foot the
bill for all these hi-tech, high cost of treatment that an ageing
population needs. It is really that they are victims of their run
success. This is coming at a time when the
government has got a fight on its hands with the health bill.
It is embroiled in the House of Lords, and we are hearing
speculation that some Liberal Democrat MPs are siding with Labour,
privately, saying that it should be dropped. On the wider front here,
help is one of those issues at the last election on which the
Conservatives regained the combatants of what we would
probably call Middle England, they won a 15 it seats in our part of
the country. What happens next? What
developments will there be in the next few days?
Fee the Royal College of Physicians is holding a meeting on Monday to
discuss whether or not they should come out against the proposals. I
will be talking to a Birmingham hospital consultant who has
triggered that meeting on Sunday. Sunday Politics is on Sunday on BBC
One. Hundreds of children are taking
part in the country's largest survey into how a computer games
and a lack of sleep on having an impact on childhood obesity.
One quarter of 11 year-olds in hour region are overweight. The charity
behind the study says many face a future of heart disease and
diabetes. It is the first lesson of the day,
and one which could help change the health of the nation's children.
Sixth-formers at Bordesley Green Girls' School in Birmingham
supervise younger pupils in the country's largest-ever study into
the effect of sleep deprivation on adolescence. It is linked to
obesity and how much technology is to blame.
We are no longer just interested in TV viewing, we are looking at
laptop and internet use, social networking, video gaming, reading,
music. The World Health Organisation
estimates the meet -- rate of the Beastie in children has tripled in
20 years. In the Midlands, one quarter of 11-year-olds are obese.
Sleep deprivation and obesity could be linked through a number of ways.
There is life style, a lack of sleep leading to a snacking and
unhealthy eating culture. There is also an interesting hormonal
factors, and we know there are certain hormones which change in
our bodies if we lack sleep, and they could also play a part.
These watches will be fitted to 800 children across Birmingham, which
they will wear for a week. It will monitor their sleep
patterns, for example, how often they wake up in the night. They
will also fill in this diary. I go to sleep at 9:30pm, and I
think I get a lot of sleep. I watch TV before I go to bed, and
I go on the laptop. It is an eye-opener for the
children themselves to see what factors affect their sleep.
They will be monitored for six years. If the links are confirmed,
researchers hope it will lead many to make lifestyle changes.
Still ahead, the countdown continues to the London Olympics,
and we are with young athletes at the Black Country Games.
And it has been a week of rising temperatures. Coleshill was the hot
spot yesterday, but what goes up I thought he would say that!
Find a see -- finally some news on a new manager at Wolves.
The search is finally over. At least until May. Mick McCarthy's
right back -- right hand Madhur Terry Connor has got the job until
the end of the season. Did has been a frustrating time for Taoiseach
fans, but today, chairman Steve Morgan insisted the club has
nothing to be embarrassed about. Wolves.
They have searched high and low to the north and the self-. The a
couple have turned them down. But finally they found the answer
on their own doorstep. We set out to find the right man,
and we believe we have. Certainly until the end of the season. He has
been in the Premier League for the last three seasons and was there a
few years ago, so we have a man with Premier League experience.
It is a great honour to be asked to look after the team for the
remainder of the season. We have unfinished business. We have done
two seasons where we have managed to survive, and we want to make it
three. If Terry Connor was almost
speechless, so were many Taoiseach fans, who wonder why some
candidates are not willing to run over hot coals to get the top job
at Molineux. -- Taoiseach. How frustrating is is that the
other people do not want the job? There have been a lot of untruths
spoken in the press over the last 10 days or so. They have been some
complete rubbish that has been printed.
How much the chief executive and chairman of argued to the contrary,
the efforts to recruit a new manager had appeared ham-fisted at
best to many supporters. But now, after 12 days of speculation, they
have finally chosen the sitting tenant all along.
I think the process we followed has been a really diligent,
professional approach in appointing what is, as Steve has said, a
really important appointment. I have nothing to be embarrassed
about, this club has got nothing to be embarrassed about. This club has
got everything to be proud about. We have handled things right and
proper all along. The players say that -- and Terry,
says he has not yet earned the right to be called gaffer. -- Terry
Connor. The internet has been alive with
comments from fans over the last few days. There has been a lot of
criticism. Lot of criticism on Facebook from
the Wolves fans. One person says they are a pathetic,
laughing stock and were in favour of sacking Mick McCarthy, but to do
it without a plan is a shocking. Andrew says it is a joke. No
leadership or direction, and he accuses the club of trying to do it
on the cheap. There is one from Christopher. He
says he does not want to judge Connor without giving him a chance,
and he will support him because he supports Taoiseach. -- Wolves.
The very best coverage of all our teams will be tomorrow on your BBC
local radio station. It starts at 2 o'clock.
One of the biggest motocross events of the year is being held in
Shropshire on Sunday. Riders from 15 countries will travel to
Hawkstone Park for the Hawk International event. Local riders
will be keen to make their mark. A these are days of nervous
excitement for Ray and Nathan, young riders facing a daunting test
on Sunday. Both have been British junior
champions, but they have got different reasons to be nervous.
23-year-old Ray Rowson is from Shrewsbury, but always seems to get
injured at Hawkstone Park. I have broken my back twice, my
wrist, my collarbone, everything, really. But I enjoy it, so I will
not stop. It does not would be off. 17-year-old Nathan Watson's concern
that is because this is his first season in the senior ranks.
It will be a big jump. I am used to racing 16 year-olds and 17 year-
olds, adding up to the professionals is a big step. They
are a lot rougher. The middle of riders have had some
early practice. 120 of the world's best riders will be here at the
weekend. It is recognised as the top
international in Europe, and it creates the biggest crowds, and the
top riders love coming to England, and Hawkstone Park.
Up to 7000 people are expected to come here on Sunday, just do not
expect a quiet day in the country. You are not stuck for motorsport in
Shropshire, because an institution that has been going for a quarter
of this century is ending this weekend. But it is Telford Ice
speedway. It has been going since 1986. The redevelopment of the ice
rink in Telford means it will no longer be suitable for speedway
racing, so catch it while you can. Earlier, are we highlighted child
obesity. Today in Walsall, the emphasis was on getting on people
into sport. More than 1100 youngsters took part in the Black
Country Games, part of the government's commitment to use
London 2012 as an inspiration to Over 1100 children up from 71
schools competing in 12 sporting activities. These are the Black
Country Games. I really enjoyed it, especially
coming out to play sport and playing sports that I love.
It has been brilliant, how many people there actually are.
I like bouncing the ball and catching it. That was the best
thing. From volleyball to netball, rugby
to running, just some of the sport taking place. These youngsters have
already battled their way past other schools to make the Games,
that they were aiming to be crowned the best in the Black Country.
It is about taking part had been inspired to take part in the school
games, but what a great year to do that in an Olympic year.
Last year, the Black Country was one of nine places to hold the
school games. But the success has meant that this year, There are now
49, giving every schoolchild in the country the opportunity to take
part. If they needed some inspiration, a
former Olympian and Commonwealth gold medal-winning swimmer Adam
Whitehead was there. I was very average at school, I was
not even that good at sport, but through hard work and determination,
things are possible. For the youngsters, medals to
represent their success. The winners will represent the Black
Country in regional and national finals.
I was watching cricket earlier. It is only about six weeks and still
the start of the season. -- until The weather has been a bit like
Springer this weekend. But it is still only late February. We will
see temperatures dropping a way through the next couple of days, so
I think to some things up, yes, it will feel cool, but there will be
some sunny spells. That cool where there is working in it from the
north. -- weather. Temperatures are still way above what we should be,
but behind the cold front, there is some colder air starting to work in.
That will be the case through this evening and tonight, so
temperatures could drop below enough for a touch of frost. But
further south we will hold on to the remnants of the weather front.
There may even be a bit of rain. We will lose the front of tomorrow
morning, and it will be a fairly pleasant day. There will be some
cloud floating around, however. Well the temperatures are as well
down on what they have been, they are still above average. There
could be some frost into Sunday, but Sunday is another fine day.
There is a bit more cloud in the afternoon. Temperatures again will
be good. If you off to the motocross event at Hawkstone Park
in Shropshire, it should be dry with some cloud by the afternoon.
You can see the dip in the temperatures through the weekend.
Watch what happens as we go into next week. They will start to rise
once again. It looks like by Tuesday, we could again sea
temperatures into the middle of the teens. It looks like only a
A 65-year-old a former businessman is on his way to America, the
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Police investigate claims doctors in Birmingham agree to carry out