10/09/2013 Midlands Today


10/09/2013

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Hello and welcome to Midlands Today. The headlines tonight: A huge boost

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for the region's economy as Jaguar Land Rover creates 1,700 new jobs at

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its Solihull plant. It will be the birth of a new generation of

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vehicles, brand—new architecture, it represents significant increase in

:00:21.:00:24.

employment here. We'll be looking at why that

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announcement could mean thousands more jobs for components companies.

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Safety over culture. A college says it won't drop a ban on students

:00:30.:00:36.

covering their faces. It's up to people if they want to wear red, I

:00:36.:00:39.

don't think the college should ban it. I think people should be able to

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do whatever they want, whenever they want.

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I'm on Cannock Chase in Staffordshire where volunteers have

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just a few weeks to uncover a page of First World War history that's

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right beneath my feet. As Staffordshire launches a Great

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War Trail in time for next year's commemorations, we'll be finding out

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how half a million men trained for the trenches right here. Very few

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people realised it was going to be a long war and the scale of the

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casualties took everyone by surprise, not just the Rogers, the

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Germans, the French, the Russians. And it's out with the sunshine, in

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with the rain. If you want the finer details — of course, I'll have those

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for you in the forecast later. Good evening. A vote of confidence

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tonight for the region's car industry with news of more jobs and

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massive investment at Jaguar Land Rover. The company's Indian owners

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Tata are ploughing another £1.5 billion into the luxury car maker.

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There'll be 1,700 new jobs, most of them at the Land Rover plant in

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Solihull. With cars selling as fast as JLR can make them, some industry

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experts predict production will double to 750,000 cars a year by

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2020. Here's our business correspondent Peter Plisner. This

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ruling 300 acre site at Solihull, it is already a busy factory with cars

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being made 24 hours a day. The it's going to get even busier with yet

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another action line. This time policing a new range of Jaguar

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models. This is one of them, a 4—wheel drive, unveiled last night

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at the Frankfurt motor show. The new vehicle will have an alimony body,

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it is technology the company plans to use on most new models from now

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on. It is part of an investment worth £1.5 billion. This is where

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some of the investment announced today is being spent. Currently

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under construction, this will become a new body shop for several Jaguar

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and Land Rover models, it is around 50,000 square feet, the same size as

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seven football pitches. We have a very skilled, motivated workforce.

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Even when we went to the recession, we knew that when the bounce back

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came, we knew we had to keep them ready to build cars. So when the

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boom came, we were ready to hit the ground running with good products.

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It's a remarkable turnaround. Four years ago the Indian owners Tata had

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plans to close this plant or its sister plant. But cry from emerging

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markets mean that instead it has announced plans for other plants.

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New jobs at stake your Land Rover means more implement of the region

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's automotive suppliers. This firm has expanded fast. The workload is

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increasing day by day, week on week. A lot of new models coming through,

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the quality is increasing. Meanwhile back at Solihull, employees like

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Wayne are delighted at the latest investment. It is surprising in the

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current market but not surprising in how well they are selling, as long

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as they continue to sell, we will continue to employ people. Can

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growth at Jaguar Land Rover last? Some analysts are warning against

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expending too far. They need to expand to compete but I think there

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is an level at which I would be unhappy to see them go beyond, and I

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would put them level at roundabout 10%. The construction that is under

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way means even more capacity at the cellar whole factory and there are

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predictions that our from all of the plants could more than double by the

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year 2020. Peter, they are not hanging around with this expansion,

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they? Know, construction is under way as you saw in my film. Tonight

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we are inside another plant here, it was opened last year to produce the

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range Rover sport and all new range Rover. Now the investment is £1.5

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billion, it is a massive investments, what is it mean for the

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region 's manufacturers? Is good news for the company but is it such

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good news for the supply chain? It's great news for the supply chain and

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it gives the confidence to begin to make those investments that are

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really needed to support Jaguar Land Rover to get vehicles out. It is all

:05:27.:05:33.

new technology here, does it mean companies will have to invest in new

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technology there and? Definitely, it means that companies who have been

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investing and growing their skills base are well ahead of the game and

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although we will be first in line, not just Jaguar Land Rover, it is

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other suppliers across the region. It's all based on predictions,

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projections on sales from the Far East, can it continue? We believe

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so, because it is premium brands of any type that are selling overseas.

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Demand in the UK is rising as well. Many thanks. Certainly good news

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here, and it would appear good news for the region 's manufacturers as

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well. Coming up later in the programme

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unearthed under Cannock Chase — the world war one relic depicting one of

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the most successful offensives of the Great War.

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A Birmingham college has defended a ban on students covering their

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faces. It comes after a Muslim student at Birmingham Metropolitan

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College complained that she wasn't allowed to wear her veil. The

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college says its policy was brought in for security reasons and has been

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in place for a number of years without complaint. Here's Cath

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Mackie. Rido Farah arrives at Birmingham

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Metropolitan College where's she's interested in enrolling on an

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English course. But she learns she won't be allowed to cover her face.

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It is unfair and it is wrong, because we'd education, but the

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education is what we need to learn. The college is one of the largest in

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the country — with 35,000 students across 11 sites. It's a cultural

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melting pot. They say they have a robust diversity and inclusion

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policy, but safety is a priority. So this isn't just about niqabs — the

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college say students can't wear anything which covers their face be

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it a hoodie or a cap. It's been the policy for ten years and they say

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it's working. We need to see their face. We have students from the age

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of 11 through to 19, we have a whole range of visitors coming into the

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organisation, we have patients who we care for. We need to know who is

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in the building from the safeguarding perspective. 99% of the

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time the person is who they say they are behind the veil. But it could be

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the 1% that they are not, so you see where I'm coming from. You

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sympathise with the college? Yes. I don't wear one but I don't do the

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college should and eight. If it is their religion, why should anybody

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stop it? It's perhaps a sign of the political times that the ban on

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niqabs is making headlines. France, Belgium and Italy have already

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banned the full face veil. Other countries are considering it. They

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have made a very informed choice to wear the niqab, and they should be

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allowed to do this. Without anybody else imposing what I believe is

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their Eurocentric values and beliefs. As for Rido, who's from

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Somalia, she'd like to be a teaching assistant. You would like to come

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here? Yes. If they stop it, I believe that I cannot go. The

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college say as yet, they've had no complaint from any student about the

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policy. Over to Nick now on Cannock Chase —

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the scene of some quite remarkable World War One finds. Yes, plans to

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mark the centenary of the start of the First World War in 1914 are well

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underway across the region. Every town and village has a story to

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tell, such was the nature of the conflict, but actually, I am on

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Cannock Chase right now in Staffordshire, as you gathered. It

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is really well known for its beta full scenery and the herds of deer

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running free —— beautiful scenery. But during World War I, half a

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million soldiers were based here, they trained here, they lived here.

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One of the towns is this one, where I am right now. As you look around,

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you will see teams of volunteers and archaeologists beavering away,

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trying to uncover lost relic of that time. It is an extraordinary 3—D

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model which stretches round this field and it was used to show

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soldiers the sort of terrain they would face when they went down to

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France and Flanders. Louise has been following their progress. Hidden for

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60 years, archaeologists and volunteers are carefully exposing an

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important part of Staffordshire 's history. It will help us tell the

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story of the site and of Cannock Chase 's role in the great War. That

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role is an important one. The model itself is crucial. It's the only

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surviving model in the country. 2—macro huge military training camps

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were based teacher in the First World War. This mock—up was built

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here after the successful battle in Nottingham 16. This is roughly the

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size of two tennis courts. It was used to train troops from the front

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line. Model is very detailed, you can still make out the trenches,

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roads and buildings. At some of it has been damaged over the years. It

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surprise winner of the volunteers who himself has recently served the

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Army. —— one of the volunteers. It would be a small pit, a few feet

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wide, but nothing on this sort of scale. The team are delighted at how

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much of the model survives. In areas where we know there was just as grey

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rather than a concrete surface, that was degraded so we have lost that.

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But at the moment in the areas we're looking at, we have incredible

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survival. The excavation is expected to take another three weeks. It will

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then be scanned and photographed in the smallest detail and reburied to

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preserve it for future generations. With now is an amateur historian who

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discovered this site in the first place. How did this actually happen?

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Purely by accident, walking the dog one Sunday morning, found it wasn't

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a stick, it was a bit of concrete, thought something wasn't quite

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right, I brought my friend with me as a member of the project, and with

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decks of this. And got into trouble! Yes, a cease and desist

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from the council. But we have been researching ever since. Once you

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start looking at trenches, because I have been interested in this since I

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was a child... Briefly describe that, some of the detail is

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incredible. These are some of the second reserve trenches, with the

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front over here, you have got some contour lines, if uses the thick

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area which turned and swirls round, that is like Trent railway, to bring

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munitions and food. You found it quite exciting? Absolutely.Here in

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Staffordshire, they will be making the most of marking the centenary of

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the start of the First World War was a great ball trail. —— with a Great

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War Trail. This was a conflict many thought would be the complete to end

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all wars because of the horrific number of casualties.

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Hundreds of thousands of soldiers were sent out from Staffordshire to

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fight in the trenches during the Great War. So it's fitting the

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county is now such a focal point for remembering their sacrifices. No

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body's forgotten here and we hope people will come from all around the

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world to remember the fallen. The National Memorial Arboretum at

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Alrewas is already home to striking tributes to First World War

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soldiers. Every year people from Australia and New Zealand come to

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Staffordshire to commemorate the Gallipoli campaign. This solitary

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tree is grown from an acorn found on the Somme battlefields. And this

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memorial represents the 306 soldiers shot at dawn for refusing to fight.

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It commemorates a group of men who would have been beyond the pale for

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many years. Now they are brought into the fold. These poignant

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memorials are to become part of an official Staffordshire First World

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War Trail to mark the conflict's centenary — linking areas of the

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county forever association with the period. Those in charge of the

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project say Cannock Chase alone has hundreds of war stories to tell.

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It's very peaceful here but it wouldn't have been during the war?

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It wouldn't, it would have been a hive of activity, troops practising

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for the Western front, digging trenches, throwing hand grenades,

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practising sniping skills. Half a million soldiers were trained on the

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Chase. Some of the best archeology. We're looking at imaginative ways

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tell the story. The trail will also take visitors to two cemeteries on

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the Chase — scores of New Zealanders stationed here died not in battle,

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but in the great influenza epidemic at the end of the war. German

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prisoners of war expecting to be freed watched in horror as the

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illness spread. As for the local men who made the ultimate sacrifice,

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their bravery is remembered at the Staffordshire Regiment Museum near

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Lichfield. Here, as part of the commemorations, they're planning to

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carry out mock recruitments in several towns as part of a living

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history project. They thought it was like an adventure, very few people

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realised it was going to be a long war. Our team would like to set up a

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recruiting stand in different towns, get people to recruit, sign

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at a station, have a metal call —— medical and show people what it was

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like. Nearly 100 years may have passed. The last soldiers have died.

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But what they did for county and country will live on during the

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coming centenary. All fascinating stuff, but the, to you in the

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studio. Back in the 1980s two roommates at

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Harvard University founded something called "City Year", It was a

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mentoring scheme built on the conviction that one person can make

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a difference. Today the same scheme was launched in Birmingham with the

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aim of tackling underachievement and poor motivation in schools. Holly

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Lewis reports. Hoping their enthusiasm will bear

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fruit. These 45 volunteers, all from the West Midlands will spend a year

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mentoring youngsters in five inner city Birmingham schools. Their job

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is to inspire children to stick with education and engender a love of

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learning by drawing along side them. One of schools is Parkfield

:17:08.:17:10.

Community in Saltley where graduate Andy Philpot is on the front line. I

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don't think there is anything more valuable all worthwhile than being

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that role model, that inspiration for other people. The teams spend

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one days a week training, learning skills to help them find work when

:17:25.:17:38.

they leave. But would so many have signed up if there were more job

:17:38.:17:41.

opportunities this year? I think it would still have appealed to me, it

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is about doing something for your community, it is good to try

:17:45.:17:48.

different things, do something you enjoy. The children have welcomed

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the volunteers but headteacher say they're no subsitute for qualified

:17:54.:17:57.

teachers and classroom assistants. I see them as enhancing everything we

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do here, they are not teaching, they are supporting the teaching and

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learning. If someone is lonely, they help me play with them. They help us

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with a question we are stuck on. They try to make everyone happy as

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well. The charity's is backed by President Obama and aims high. It's

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motto is 'give a year, change the world'.

:18:21.:18:26.

Four people have been arrested by officers policing the anti badger

:18:26.:18:29.

cull protests in Gloucestershire. A man and three women — aged between

:18:29.:18:33.

23 and 46 — are being held on suspicion of theft and aggravated

:18:33.:18:36.

trespass. Around 5,000 badgers are due to be shot over the next five

:18:36.:18:40.

weeks to try to stop the spread of TB from to cattle.

:18:40.:18:46.

More than 20,000 cricket fans will head for Edgbaston tomorrow, hoping

:18:46.:18:49.

that England can beat the weather, and Australia. But they're without

:18:49.:18:53.

several star names and one former England captain says disappointed

:18:53.:18:57.

fans should get their money back. Ian Winter reports. Grey skies over

:18:57.:19:07.

Edgbaston means a long, hot, is now a warm sporting memory. England were

:19:07.:19:12.

sizzling, but now they are in danger of this link to defeat. 1—0 down

:19:12.:19:18.

with three to play, the pressure is on to this experimental team. The

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reason is absolutely spot on, we have to look after our best players,

:19:23.:19:26.

while looking at the next generation coming through. Whilst England were

:19:26.:19:32.

preparing, Michael Vaughan was pedalling through Cannock Chase on a

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bike ride. A couple of weeks ago he ruffled a few feathers by tweeting

:19:36.:19:40.

that fans deserve their money back because too many of our Ashes heroes

:19:40.:19:45.

were absent. You have to be careful that people don't write tickets when

:19:45.:19:53.

you are not... It is like going to see one direction and a couple of

:19:53.:20:00.

them don't rock out. I think it is harsh, it said in haste from

:20:00.:20:05.

Michael. The big question, do the England fans think he was right? I

:20:05.:20:11.

would be devastated if I bought a ticket, you buy it months in advance

:20:11.:20:17.

and you want to see the top stars. I think it's good to see the new

:20:17.:20:20.

players commit said we miss out on some of the top players but we just

:20:20.:20:24.

have to work with what we have got. Michael Vaughan is startling to all

:20:24.:20:27.

the one—day international venues, raising money for charity. ——

:20:27.:20:33.

cycling. When he gets to Edgbaston, you might see the younger players

:20:33.:20:37.

grasp their own opportunity to shine against straight year. —— against

:20:37.:20:44.

Australia. That go back to Nick now. Yes, that's right, the

:20:44.:20:53.

volunteers are still working hard into the early evening, a bit of

:20:53.:21:00.

sunlight, one of the volunteers here is run. How is it going? We're

:21:00.:21:06.

preparing the ground so we can do the 3—D process. How are your knees?

:21:06.:21:15.

Not too bad unless I stand up! Some wonderful stuff is being laid out

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here, it has grown before my eyes. Stephen is the county archaeologist

:21:20.:21:24.

for Staffordshire. Why is this so important? It is unique in this

:21:24.:21:29.

country. There are no others we know of in the British Isles, even on the

:21:30.:21:34.

Western front, it's quite a rare survivor. The detail it is

:21:34.:21:41.

astonishing, what are we looking at? What we are studying —— —— ceiling

:21:41.:21:51.

is Messines, after years of this emotion. This is further out, we

:21:51.:22:01.

have the various defensive lines, the first second defensive line, and

:22:01.:22:04.

further out, the first defensive line. It was a very important

:22:04.:22:12.

battle? Absolutely, it is commemorating the New Zealanders but

:22:12.:22:18.

also acting as a training tool. There is a wealth of photographic

:22:18.:22:22.

material that still remains that remarkable time. One of my

:22:22.:22:27.

favourites is the officers' mess at Brocton Camp. Just a wooden hut,

:22:27.:22:30.

though they still managed to make it pretty civilised. But for the

:22:30.:22:35.

ordinary soldiers, what type of entertainment was available in the

:22:36.:22:39.

towns and cities when they could get away from training? Our arts

:22:39.:22:41.

reporter Satnam Rana has been investigating. It was the era of

:22:41.:22:52.

silent cinema.and during World War One American director DW Griffiths

:22:52.:22:56.

was rising to fame. Birth of a Nation was just one of the films

:22:56.:22:59.

shown here at Birmingham's Electric Cinema in 1916. This cinema was a

:22:59.:23:04.

single screen and it was a single story, so it was long and thin, the

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screen would have been small. It would've been quite dark, smoky.

:23:08.:23:15.

Uncomfortable. But it was here where many people found their escape. As

:23:15.:23:20.

war set in, cinema new rules would increasingly be used for propaganda.

:23:20.:23:28.

—— newsreels. Troops and civilians still craved the music hall

:23:28.:23:30.

artists.and this lady was leading the way. Billed as the'

:23:30.:23:43.

Staffordshire Cinderella,' Gertie Gitana was born Stoke—onTrent — she

:23:43.:23:47.

was the forces babe. She often entertained the war wounded in

:23:47.:23:52.

hospitals. War though, came with its challenges for those working in arts

:23:52.:23:58.

and entertainement. Sir Perry Jackson opened the Birmingham

:23:58.:24:04.

repertory Theatre in 1913. His vision was to serve the art rather

:24:04.:24:07.

than make it so they commercial purpose, so he wasn't trying to make

:24:07.:24:10.

a commercial profit from the work you did. It was part of a movement

:24:10.:24:16.

to make theatre more about political issues and social issues. But as war

:24:16.:24:26.

set in times were hard. Every Sunday actors that remained went to work at

:24:26.:24:29.

the Birmingham Aluminium Casting Company to make shell cases. And

:24:29.:24:33.

with most men away, Maud Gill became the first female stage manager. One

:24:33.:24:44.

constant though, was the pub. Today, the Pub standards that would have

:24:44.:24:48.

backed them. Dominoes, sing songs and regular points were drunk. The

:24:48.:24:55.

big curtailment was on alcohol and drinking, where Lloyd George seemed

:24:55.:24:59.

to feel that alcohol was as much of a danger as the Germans and the

:24:59.:25:02.

Austrians, so there was a restriction on the amount of hours

:25:02.:25:08.

pubs were opened, there was a solution on the beer so it wasn't so

:25:08.:25:11.

strong, there was a ban on people treating other people to be a! To

:25:11.:25:18.

stop and drinking rounds. As war progressed it was important to keep

:25:18.:25:20.

spirits through arts and entertainment.

:25:20.:25:30.

The sun has gone down now, it is a bit chilly, I wonder what the

:25:30.:25:32.

forecast is? If you got the sunshine, you were

:25:32.:25:41.

lucky but unfortunately, that is probably the best you will get this

:25:41.:25:47.

week. We have low pressure to the east and from tomorrow, we have this

:25:47.:25:51.

chain of systems toppling in one by one from the North—West. We have a

:25:51.:25:55.

warm sector which will lift the temperatures by Thursday, so by this

:25:56.:26:01.

stage, Thursday is looking at the warmest day of the week. I shouldn't

:26:01.:26:06.

get too excited because the temperatures will range from between

:26:06.:26:10.

18 to 20 only and it is going to be accompanied by Dell, damp weather.

:26:11.:26:16.

We have some cloud sitting above eastern parts of the region, which

:26:16.:26:19.

will slowly break up through the night. If we get any clearer spells,

:26:20.:26:24.

they could drop as low as eight or nine Celsius in the countryside.

:26:24.:26:32.

It's mostly dry overnight. Through the morning tomorrow, speck of

:26:32.:26:36.

sunshine or two in the South—East. Then the crowd begins to pile in

:26:36.:26:40.

from this first front, bringing in some mostly light rain. In the

:26:40.:26:49.

north, only 13, from that perspective, tomorrow night could

:26:49.:26:54.

quite warm. Temperatures will only drop by a degree or two. A lot of

:26:54.:26:59.

cloud and eventually it will dry up. As we look further ahead, for the

:26:59.:27:03.

rest of the week, Thursday will be the warmest day, a lot of cloud,

:27:03.:27:10.

rain later on in the day and it will turn heavier by Friday and cooler by

:27:10.:27:12.

that stage two. Michael Le Vell, the courage and

:27:12.:27:23.

straight actor, had been found not guilty of 12 rape and child abuse

:27:23.:27:28.

charges —— Coronation Street actor. We will be back at 10pm looking in

:27:28.:27:34.

more detail at what the Jaguar Land Rover announcement means for the

:27:34.:27:35.

region.

:27:35.:27:38.

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