11/09/2013 Midlands Today


11/09/2013

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Hello, welcome to Midlands Today with Joanne Malin and Nick Owen. The

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headlines tonight: Shock for the staff at Wolverhampton City Council

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— a thousand jobs must go. I am extremely angry we are in this

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position and I know the workforce shows that anger and sadness. On the

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day the latest jobless figures are released, we'll be assessing if

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growth is returning to the West Midlands. Also tonight: A six figure

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pay—out for a Stafford Hospital patient — after a botched caesarean

:00:31.:00:38.

left her with permanent injuries. I remembered the nurse asking the

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Doctor, what shall I do? He said, just give her a shot. She gave me a

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shot of morphine and that stopped me screaming. Remembering the glider

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pilots of World War II — as their bravery's finally recognised.

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Razor blades in their peaked caps — the story behind the Peaky Blinders

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— a new TV drama set in Birmingham. And if days like today are on the

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up, then you'd better be prepared. Keep in touch with the forecast

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later. Good evening, a thousand jobs are to be lost at Wolverhampton City

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council in the next 18 months. It's part of a range of measures to try

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to save nearly 89 million pounds. Workers were called to a series of

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special meetings today to hear the news. The announcement was made on

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the same day that new figures show that unemployment in the West

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Midlands is still higher than the national average. We'll have more on

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that later, but first BBC WM's Political Reporter Susana Mendonca,

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has the latest on the Wolverhampton job cuts.

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They piled into this building severance times today to find out

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how many of them the City Council plans to axe. The figure, 1000 jobs

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to go by 2015. How do you feel as somebody who might lose your job? It

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is gutting but we will have to wait and see. We did not realise it was

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so many. It is part of the way the government want things to go. The

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council are between a rock and hard place. For the people leading this

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meeting it was the news they did not want to hear but councils are facing

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difficult times. The man at the helm of that decision says his hands are

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tied because the City Council has to find £89 million in savings by 2019

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because of cuts in central government funding. We are talking

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about potentially 50 families in every ward in the city losing

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income. We have spent a lot of time in the last two or three years

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working with colleagues in Staffordshire to secure the inward

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investment of Jaguar Land Rover with 1400 new jobs. What we had to do

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here could negate that. But the local Conservative group says it is

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the Labour run council and not the government that is to blame. We were

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the first to freeze council tax without cutting anything and we have

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done that and saved money. Labour are back up to what they are good at

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doing, spending the money but not looking to see what the consequences

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are. The argument over spending versus cuts has seen protests across

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the Midlands. But unions have criticised the way Wolverhampton has

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dealt this blow. There has been no consultation on this at the council

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at all and the first the unions knew about this was from telephone calls

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from the council yesterday. There was more uncertainty ahead as staff

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still have a long way to find out which of them will go.

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So a worrying time for public sector workers, but a different story in

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some areas of the private sector, especially at companies in the

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automotive industry. But they're facing their own challenges, as they

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struggle to find enough skilled engineers to fill their job

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vacancies. Joanne Writtle reports. Specialised work to supply parts for

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the motor industry requires skilled engineers and therein lies the

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problem. There are not enough of them. Doug started this firm nearly

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30 years ago. The last six months he has had vacancies for three

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engineers and JLR announced yesterday they would create 1700

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jobs. It keeps us on our toes because we do not want to lose

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people to J L. We have to hang on to what we have got in way of labour.

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Fair is a skilled problem. As the economy recovers we need to make

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sure that it is not throttled via the lack of skilled people. This

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training company specialises in engineering. The number of

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apprentices they to cheer in Coventry and Redding —— Redditch has

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been rising to 90 annually. Buses here say the shortage is a national

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problem even though a maintenance engineer is paid around £40,000 a

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year and senior engineers up to 60,000. The skilled shortage is

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significant and growing. Not only is our industry having a real issue, it

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is ourselves having difficulty in recruiting young engineers. Rachel

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is rare then. Not only a woman engineer in a male world but now a

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trainer. Finding this job, I had my hand in the engineering environment

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as well as improving my skills. Drew decided against university opting

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for a four—year engineering apprenticeship. With employers

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looking to push and invest in more engineers, hopefully I can make a

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better career for myself. While some engineers may be lowered to small

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and firms, some in the industry say it could work in the opposite way

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also. Well, joining us now is our Business

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correspondent Peter Plisner. Let's start with the skills gap, Peter.

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Companies wanting to employ people, people looking for jobs.Surely

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people can be retrained or more young people encouraged down the

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engineering route with the lure of a good job? They can and lots of

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people are but less explain what the skills gap is. There are lots of

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older workers but they are not being replaced by younger people to learn

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those same skills. More young people are becoming engineers, there is no

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doubt about that, but it takes three or four years to train an apprentice

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and that is the time when we want have a skills gap. It is not always

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attractive to young people either. Things are improving but they are

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improving slowly. We still have one of the highest unemployment figures

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in the country. Is it as bad as it seems? 9.8% of the population out of

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work. It may be levelling off because the official figures suggest

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it is rising 7000 in the last quarter, but this data is gathered

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by a survey, there is a margin for error. The claimant count, the

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number of people claiming jobseeker's allowance, that felt

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this month. There are jobs being created but not everyone is skilled

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enough to take those jobs. We heard about the thousand jobs going at

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Wolverhampton council. Can the private sector take up the slack? It

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can but we are still seeing lots of jobs lost in the public sector.

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Yesterday, Jaguar Land Rover created 1700 jobs. But service sector is

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growing quite fast and that is a good area where some of these public

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sector workers could go. And the Sunday Politics will be discussing

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the skills gap and the job losses at Wolverhampton City Council with two

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of the city's MPs this coming Sunday.

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Coming up later in the programme The collapse of a re—cycling firm after

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a series of fires. A mother who was permanently harmed

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by Stafford Hospital in 2008 when the hospital was at its worst, has

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received a six figure payment for her injuries. Candi Kaya suffered

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major complications following a caesarean section. Staff failed to

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notice her bladder had been damaged by the operation. Here's our health

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correspondent, Michele Paduano. Since her injury in 2008, Candi Kaya

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has suffered severe depression. The trauma led to the break—up of her

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marriage. I am not the same person. I do not want to go out. Not just

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practically, it is like you cannot, my freedom has gone. During a

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Caesarian, Candy's bladder was ruptured. Her ongoing treatment has

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been tough on her family. Staff failed to notice the UN leaking.

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Twice she had part of her bowel removed and twice suffered blood

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clots. She was always tired and always needing the toilet and she

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was never the same. You miss your baby's babyhood. Stabbing pain

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one—minute, then it would be burning, then it would feel like

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there was a bomb going off inside my stomach. Stafford Hospital has

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admitted failure by solicitors say the hospital was slow to accept the

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extent of the issues. We were having to fight for issues that we felt

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were evident. The quality of care in the maternity unit at Stafford

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Hospital has never really been an issue and today its figures are as

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good as anywhere in the West Midlands. The Trust has apologised

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saying that following this case... Candy is trying to get her life

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back. She recognises the staff shortages and staff attitudes

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experienced why others at Stafford. Campaigners fighting the cull of

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badgers in Gloucestershire have accused the police of harassing

:11:42.:11:47.

them. Four arrests were made on Monday night and some protestors say

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they are being stopped for no reason, claiming officers are being

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heavy handed. But Gloucestershire police say they've received no

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formal complaints and say protestors should speak to liaison officers

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based in the cull zone. A Birmingham singer has been

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nominated for the Mercury music award. She is one of 12 finalists

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and has been nominated for her debut album, but she is up against tough

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competition included David Bowie. A Worcestershire —based recycling

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business has gone into administration. The administrators

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KPMG have confirmed Lawrence Skip hire is no longer trading. Linseed

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oil is that the company site. What has happened today? Today it has

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been confirmed that the administrators were called in last

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week. This long established company has dealt with waste from both the

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commercial and residential sector for many years but two fires in six

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months have meant they had become insolvent. KPMG have said they have

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had to make 24 employees redundant, H will be kept on in the

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short—term. They will also now deal with the sale of the site and are

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calling for enquiries. How did the company get into this situation?

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Fundamentally it was down to the fires. Two in six months. At the

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height of the fire, there were 80 firefighters here. That blaze was

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dealt with relatively quickly but a second problem occurred. It

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smouldered for weeks and weeks and huge stores of plastics and paper.

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Local residents had to keep doors and windows closed during the

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heatwave and the damage ran into hundreds and thousands of pounds,

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making it untenable for the company to continue, hence the insolvency.

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Workers at Wolverhampton City Council told 1000 jobs are to go.

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Your detailed weather forecast to come.

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They were notorious and violent gang ruling the streets of inner—city

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Birmingham 100 years ago. Now they are back on screen. And why it is

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Christmas already in one part of the Midlands, we meet the team gearing

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up for panto. A Birmingham consultant's beginning a hunger

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strike today to draw attention to the plight of the last British

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resident to be held in Guantanamo Bay.

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Dr David Nicholl says the man — Shaker Aamer — is not a threat to US

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or UK security and should be freed immediately. Kevin Reide reports.

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911, a day 12 years ago today when the world 's most powerful nation

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came under terrifying attack. Hijacked airliners were flown into

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high—profile targets. Nearly 3000 people were killed and it led to

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America's war on terror. Suspects were arrested all over the world

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including British resident Shaker Aamer. He is now at Guant?namo Bay

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but has never been charged and is on hunger strike. Now Birmingham

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consultant neurologist Dave to David Nicholl is joining him. I have

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written to my MP and both the US and UK governments have said for the

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last six years he can be released but he is still there. His five—day

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fast is purely symbolic and follows other protests like running the

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London Marathon dressed in an inmate 's suit. All of us think back on

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that day. Those are things Shaker Aamer is not able to do. His son was

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born while he was in captive. The protest is been supported by a

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former won tonne of Bay detainee Mozambique. He was arrested with a

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shocker, but released eight years ago. He has not been released

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because there is a belief shack was physically present when British

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intelligence agents and the Americans were all complicit and

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involved in his physical torture. They are quite concerned about that

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hitting the headlines again. Dr Nicholl insists patients will not be

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put at risk. He is off work for the last two days of his fast and

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hospitals say plans are in place to ensure his safety. The heroism of

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the wooden glider pilots of World War Two has been marked at the

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National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire.

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Hundreds of them took part in a series of operations to liberate

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Europe from the Nazis and now their contribution is being formally

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recognised. Liz Copper reports. An airborne arrival in tribute for the

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men who flew over a mini skies. This service honours the pilots. Among

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the congregation, 92—year—old Denzel Cooper. A veteran of D—day and are

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known. We loaded and unloaded the gliders after D—day 16 times and we

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were getting cheesed off with it. When an opportunity came to do an

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opportunity, they were there like a rocket. Worrying about what might

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happen just didn't exist. They were special people. Very obstinate and

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independent. Go for it. With total self—confidence. Gliders were made

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of wood and wire on armed. Often under fire, landings were dangerous

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and frequently fatal. Many of the glider pilots were volunteers and in

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the early years of the Second World War, some of the craft they flew

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were donated. Their mission is required immense bravery and that

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bravery was marked at today's ceremony. Nearly half the pilots

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died either in the course of training or in action. To put people

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down where they are required and then participate in the battle on

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the ground makes them a unique bunch of men. Baranowski of than 100 and

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70 glider pilots still alive. This tribute to ensure their skills and

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valour are still remembered. A brand new BBC drama series based

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on the exploits of a Birmingham gang around a hundred years ago starts

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tomorrow night. Peaky Blinders was partially filmed in the city and

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written by a local man. These are just some of the gang members known

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as the peaky blinders, who ruled Birmingham streets in the late 18

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hundredths. These details are sat in a museum at spa kill police station

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for over 100 years but the story of the mob has been resurrected by the

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BBC. The ruthless gang whose violent empire was built on protection

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rackets and illegal gambling got their name from sewing razor blades

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into the peak of their caps to inflict horrific injuries on their

:19:49.:20:01.

rivals. The peaky blinders is a chilling story of violence and

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terror. With us is the writer of the series, Stephen Knight. A rough old

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lot. How did you let your imagination get captured? My parents

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who grew up in small Heath told me little snapshots of life in those

:20:25.:20:31.

days in the 20s and my mum was a bookies run as a kid. It gave me an

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insight into a world, because all betting was illegal, so I lot of

:20:37.:20:43.

money was generated and it gave me an insight into a world where there

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was nothing written about it. It felt like a secret history and then

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when I research did, it was even more fascinating. My mother was

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about nine. They're rather lot of people who lived in poverty and

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gambling was a way of relieving the monotony. Those streets were

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dangerous places. They were. A gang ran a territory and as long as you

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were OK with the gang it was OK. You filmed some of it in Birmingham.

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Widely due go elsewhere? We use the Black Country Museum but the Second

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World War and the planners took away a lot of old Birmingham and we

:21:30.:21:35.

needed a streetwear of the code really take it over for a period of

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time, so we found somewhere in Liverpool. What about the accents in

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the film? How difficult were they for the actors to master? It was one

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of the things I wanted to get right because historically, the Birmingham

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accent is mangled and never done correctly. I took Killian who plays

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Tommy, he is the lead gangster. We went to a pub called the Galveston

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and we sat around with the people I grew up with and he recorded the

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conversation and he's worked and worked and got the hardness and the

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speed of the accident. There is almost a feel of a Western in it.

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There was an element of the wild West about those days. These men

:22:31.:22:42.

came back very damaged. There was a lawlessness for at least a decade

:22:42.:22:46.

after that and the sensibility of a Western is very appropriate. You can

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watch the first episode on BBC Two at nine o'clock tomorrow night.

:22:54.:22:57.

There are just 104 days left until Christmas.I've already started my

:22:57.:23:00.

shopping, but many of you may not have even thought about it yet. For

:23:00.:23:06.

some though, the festive season is already in full swing. Costumes need

:23:06.:23:10.

to be made for Pantomimes up and down the country and our Arts

:23:10.:23:13.

Reporter Satnam Rana has been to meet one team of busy sewing bees.

:23:13.:23:21.

It may be September but this Staffordshire costume maker has one

:23:21.:23:27.

thing on his mind. Christmas panto. Around May, when I have been

:23:27.:23:34.

designing for a while, I have been known to run round and seeing. Don

:23:34.:23:42.

is a task with designing 84 costumes for Snow White. This frock, the

:23:42.:23:50.

wicked Queen has to change into a horrible which so we are having to

:23:50.:23:57.

develop ways how we can transform her on stage. This is the first part

:23:57.:24:02.

of it. The second part we have not worked out yet but it will be lots

:24:03.:24:08.

of magic with silk. From designing costumes to sourcing fabric to

:24:08.:24:13.

sewing it all up. The work is carried out here in Cheadle. It also

:24:13.:24:26.

includes a hat for David Hasselhoff. And one for Jimmy wasn't and a cloak

:24:26.:24:36.

for John Barron men. We have a piece on this design which becomes this

:24:36.:24:44.

big. It is starting to come together. For ages it has been lots

:24:44.:24:50.

of little bits. Eventually we will have one big piece. All these

:24:50.:24:55.

questions will be ready by mid—November so while most of us

:24:55.:24:59.

robot before Christmas, John and his team will be putting down their

:24:59.:25:04.

needles until January when it all begins again.

:25:04.:25:15.

Onto cricket and the weather. It was not very good for the International

:25:15.:25:19.

at Edgbaston. Let's hope it will get better. That is the rescue one with

:25:19.:25:30.

one—day international. There is a clearance on the way and it will

:25:30.:25:35.

still be fairly warm. It was not one today but tonight, it will be warm.

:25:36.:25:42.

We have a frontal attack from quite a number of fronts over the next few

:25:42.:25:47.

days. This one clears through tonight then we have another coming

:25:47.:25:49.

on Thursday. days. This one clears through

:25:49.:25:53.

tonight then we have This low pressure dominates and by the

:25:53.:25:58.

weekend, a very intense area of low pressure starting to move in from

:25:58.:26:02.

off the Atlantic. This will bring in a very intense area of low pressure

:26:02.:26:05.

starting to move in from off the Atlantic. This will bring in strong

:26:05.:26:09.

winds. Very active over the next few days. Right now we have this cloud

:26:09.:26:15.

over us and this is packed with rain which will move south eastwards.

:26:15.:26:21.

Once it has, it will be much drier towards the tail end of tonight.

:26:21.:26:27.

Cloud around and a lot of debris from that rain and the moisture and

:26:27.:26:31.

warmth will mingle to give us hill fog. Temperatures only down on

:26:31.:26:44.

today. Down to 12 or 13 Celsius. For the morning tomorrow, that resource

:26:44.:26:50.

should fade away. There will be some affecting eastern parts but

:26:50.:26:53.

brightness breaking through the middle part of the morning. You can

:26:53.:26:59.

just start to see the first signs of the next band of rain moving in from

:26:59.:27:07.

the west. Temperatures will rise to 19 — 21 Celsius. Fairly humid.

:27:07.:27:13.

Continuing humid through the course of tomorrow night. The rain should

:27:13.:27:17.

clear and then we have some missed due to the moisture. Let's recap

:27:17.:27:25.

tonight 's top stories: The latest in the UK is recovering economy. The

:27:25.:27:30.

number of people out of work nationally falls again. But here

:27:30.:27:35.

1000 jobs are to go at Wolverhampton council as they try to save £89

:27:35.:27:43.

million. Thank you for watching. Goodbye.

:27:43.:27:44.

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