07/11/2013 Midlands Today


07/11/2013

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Hello and welcome to Midlands Today. The headlines tonight: Radical

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revamp on the roads: long term plans for a possible permanent closure of

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Birmingham's city centre tunnels. We are not ruling out anything. We are

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going into a discussion. We'll be finding out why planners think it

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could benefit Birmingham city centre. Also tonight: A week after

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she was abandoned, police return to the park where baby Jade was found

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and appeal for her mother to come forward. We saw this man stood by

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the house, by the front door. You could see he was up to no good.

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The cleaner who gave police a crucial tip off and put a convicted

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killer back behind bars. One of the world's top jazz

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musicians lends his name and his sax to help raise funds to fight cancer.

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And considering how things were looking yesterday, there could now

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be a better outcome for the weekend. Get the full details later.

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Good evening, The A38 tunnels in Birmingham city centre could be

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closed permanently as part of major transport reforms. It's just one

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idea being looked at as part of a 20 year plan looking at the future of

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travel across the city. Every day Birmingham residents make

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approximately 2.8 million journeys in and out of the city, but 250,000

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of those journeys are less than one mile long. There are also half a

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million journeys on public transport across the city every day. Peter

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Plisner reports on what these radical proposals could actually

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mean for the city and its commuters. This summer's closure of the A38

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tunnels for maintenance. Despite fears of gridlock, congestion wasn't

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a major issue. Now following that closure, the debate has started on

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the exact role of the tunnels ` which is some places are hindering

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development. From here, you get a good idea of what the role of the

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tunnels is. On this side, a derelict land is being occupied by a car

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park. The road is acting as a barrier to develop into the council

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wants it to change. At this morning's launch of a new 20`year

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vision for transport in Birmingham the future of the tunnels was being

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talked about. They are not ruling out anything. We're going into a

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discussion was three or four months and all these concerns will come out

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in that discussion. Consultants hired by the council to put today's

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report together maintain the it can be done. There is an urban motorway

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in San Francisco that used to carry more traffic than this road, about

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110,000 vehicles a day and one day they decided to close that and turn

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it into a fully pedestrianised environment. And San Francisco is

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one of the most successful cities in the world. The report also talks

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about big improvements to public transport which in some places will

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mean less road space for cars. Dual carriageways like this could be

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changed into routes like this featuring special public transport

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only lanes. This is not an anti`car policy, if I was a car driver in

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Birmingham ten years from now, and we had done nothing, I would be

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frustrated whatever the time of day I was seeking to come into

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Birmingham. Anti`car or not, the improvements have certainly gone

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down well with environmentalists. I would describe it as having a vision

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of transport that is good for people, for pedestrians, cyclists

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are that is refreshing and positive. The City Council will now launch a

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major consultation on the ideas put forward in the new transport vision

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and it promises to be a lively debate. And Peter's next to the A38

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tonight ` this will raise a few eyebrows! How can Birmingham

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function without its tunnels? I think the easy answer is it can't

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right now but it might not have too. This is one option being discussed

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will stop the fact is, this is more likely to become a through route,

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saw the junctions being removed. Masshouse Circus on the east side

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was raised to the ground 15 years ago, many people said we couldn't do

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without that, , but what we have seen since is that the

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developments. We also saw it again when the ballroom was built, and

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there we saw a roundabout is a plea and replaced by the shopping centre.

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We stopped driving is started shopping instead. Even the bus lanes

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will mean less space for cars? It has been dubbed anti`car, and bus

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lanes are controversial. The last Administration running Birmingham

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decided to remove some, what is also not in this report is road pricing,

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that will please a fair few drivers. It is not anti`car but through

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people. Clearly something has to be done, is a public transport looks

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like the answer? They want to get people onto public transport, onto

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their bikes and walking. Two roentgen 50,000 journeys every day

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by car of less than a mile, the sort of journeys that could be done on

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the bike or on foot `` 250,000 journeys.

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Well, we've been asking for your views on the 20 year plan ` thanks

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for your emails, tweets and Facebook messages.

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Coming up, never mind Silicon Valley, is more than being

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transferred into the UK 's very own Silicon Hill? `` Malvern.

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It's exactly a week since a new born baby was found in a bag in a park in

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Birmingham. Now West Midlands Police have released new pictures in the

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hope that they'll prompt her mother to come forward. Doctors say Jade

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would have died within hours, if she hadn't been found by a local man

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walking his dog. Giles Latcham reports.

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In the arms not of her mother, but of a nurse at Heartlands hospital in

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Birmingham, eight day old Jade, the baby left in a park. In that park in

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Stechford today, further efforts to find members of the public who may

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have seen something. Since Jade was found in these bushes, police have

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carried out extensive house`to`house enquiries, check with hospitals,

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medical centres and care homes and followed up missing persons

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enquiries as far afield as Manchester, but no avail. So if her

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mum is looking at these pictures, wondering what to do and doesn't

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want to contact the police, what would you say? You have a beautiful

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baby girl, she is doing really well, she has been lavished with toys, but

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you need to be with her, you are not in trouble, this is about getting

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you reunited with Jade and making sure you are safe and well. Safe and

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well, largely thanks to the dog Jade is named after, Jade the German

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shepherd was patrolling the park with her owners again a week after

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she found the newborn infant. She loves children. I think it is just a

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natural instinct. I do think every dog would do that, I think she has

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to be kind of special `` I don't think. I hope the baby comes forward

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today can be together. Doctors say had she not been found when she was

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she may well have died from the cold. Their concern is for mother as

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well as child. The baby is fine and in the couple of days, it is really

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for mum, she needs to have the same examination and care as the baby has

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had to make sure she is well. Jade was found wrapped in a plastic bag

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like this one ` police believe sightings of the bag could help the

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investigation. A DNA swab's been taken in the hope that identifies

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the parents of the baby in the bushes.

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Plans have been revealed for a ?36 million manufacturing training

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centre in Coventry. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

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will provide half of the funding for the project which will be built on

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vacant land at the current Technology site on Ansty Park.

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A Birmingham MP has called on the government to investigate how the

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Jobcentre in Sparkhill is being run. The Labour MP for Birmingham Hall

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Green Roger Godsiff has tabled an early day motion which puts on the

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record his concerns that "unusually high" numbers of people are having

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their benefits unfairly cut. The Lichfield MP asked the Transport

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Secretary today when plans will be drawn up to limit the effects the

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proposed High Speed rail link will have on the Staffordshire

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countryside. Michael Fabricant is particularly concerned about the

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scheme to build a 20 metre high viaduct to take the rail line over

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Lichfield. He says he never loses an opportunity to make his point about

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objection for this particular viaducts, it was part of a route

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realignment which was done to help mitigate the effect, they will be

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the opportunity once the bill is deposited for those affected to be

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able to petition the Select Committee wants the second reading

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has taken place. He'd been on the run for nearly two

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weeks, but Alan Giles is back behind bars tonight after he was found

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hiding in Alcester. The convicted murderer had been on the run from

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Hewell Prison in Redditch. He was finally spotted last night by a team

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of cleaners as they left work, who called the police to catch him.

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Lindsay Doyle reports. As every detective knows, good

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observation is key to solving a crime. As three cleaners were

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travelling home from work at Alcester Grammar School last night,

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they spotted a prisoner, who's been on the run for nearly two weeks ` in

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effect hiding behind a hedge. We saw a police car go down the end of the

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road, we have been joking about it, scaring each other, because we were

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worried. We thought, has he been caught? My friend said Timmy, let's

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follow police car. But we didn't need to, because we saw this man

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stood by a house, we could tell it was him. He was trying to hide. So

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we pulled up the road and phoned the police. Alan Giles, who's 56, walked

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out of an open section of Hewell Prison near Redditch, he was serving

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two life sentences for the kidnap and murder of sixteen year old Kevin

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Ricketts in 1995. They have done a great job, it's lovely they have

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gone out there in the community, big ego wide as ever, looking out for

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the safety of the community and for the students of the school where

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they work. This has been a town on Monday. It is known that Giles has

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connections here. He worked here on day release. No one from the shop

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wished to comment today. I thought he would be further away, I knew he

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had been working in the shop, I thought he would never come back

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here. They were terrified, especially to let the children out,

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I wouldn't let my now. I can imagine they are glad he has been caught.

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It's hard to think what the children are actually thinking, it's pretty

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scary. The end of his time on the run has made social media heroines

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of the cleaning ladies of Alcester Grammar School. I shall be giving

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them some badges and medals and probably police medals! At badge of

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honour indeed. More than 5,000 new jobs could be

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created as part of a large`scale regeneration of one of Britain's

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first so`called 'New Towns'. The centre of Telford in Shropshire is

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being remodelled at a cost of a quarter of a billion pounds ` with

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investment from the public and private sector. Hundreds of homes

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are also expected to be built over the next five years. Ben Godfrey

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reports. Regeneration was a dirty word.

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During the economic crash, private investment was hard to find ` and

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few councils had the nerve to pump taxpayers cash into large projects.

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That has changed ` this is 'Southwater' ` Telford's attempt at

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creating a thriving night time economy. We have used two major

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contracting groups from the told that area who have got, on average,

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170 men, within that there is 15% of local employment. It's costing ?250

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million. So far, public money's covered a tenth of the cost ` the

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remaining funding for a new cinema, library, restaurants and hotels

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comes from private investment. The Communities Secretary was on site `

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and on side. Backing Labour`run Telford and Wrekin Council ` which

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wants to create 5000 jobs, and further the town's retail and

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business footprint. If this was just pure public money, that would be a

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terrific waste. You want to involve people, you want to get people, get

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some private money in, because that is about the future. Telford has

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staked a claim to be the fastest growing town in the Midlands. It is

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this reckless and regeneration? It's not, industry brings more GDP in and

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we get some of that back into our funding. Through council tax for new

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homes, so we are going out of our way to get development here.

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Shoppers today broadly welcomed town centre development. This would be a

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lift for us. When it's finished, it will be a boost for the town. 50

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years after it became a new town, today, the talk is still of

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Telford's expansion. This is our top story tonight:

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Radical revamp on the roads: long term plans for a possible permanent

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closure of Birmingham's city centre tunnels. Your detailed weather

:15:12.:15:16.

forecast to come shortly from Shefali. Also in tonight's programme

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` ambitious plans to be announced later this evening for supporters to

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take over Worcester City Football Club and give it a new home. And

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restoring the tranquillity of a Shropshire canal ` all thanks to

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Lottery money. In recent years, the picturesque

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Worcestershire town of Malvern has become the base for a number of

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high`tech companies, including defence contractors Qinetiq and the

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internet security firm 3SDL. Now an innovation festival's taking place

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in the town and there are claims that Malvern is now the UK's cyber

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capital. Cath Mackie reports. Welcome to the future. A future that

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can be found in Malvern in Worcestershire. We are a software

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company, we supplied 50 companies `` countries all over the world. It is

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a garden gadget for clearing animal waste. At the Malvern innovation

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festival ` even still pictures can come to life ` by way of an app. We

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have developed this to enhance the user experience for visitors through

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to shopping fruity general information. In the auditorium,

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Professor Colin O'Halloran gives a lecture about software security. He

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works at a new business which solves software problems. They chose to

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base themselves in Malvern. There is a wealth of talent in the Malvern

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area which we can use but also draw upon the people in the University,

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further afield. The town has been a centre of scientific discovery for

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decades. Rumour has it that the word boffin was derived to describe the

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brain boxes working on defence projects here during the War. So

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innovation isn't a new word in Malvern. It is after all the place

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where radar was developed in the 1940s and later infra red and liquid

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crystal technologies. And's it's now recognised as the UK's very own

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cyber valley. Point is you cannot just stop, in order to be

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competitive, you have to keep innovating and it's what we're

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trying to encourage. There's been investment in superfast broadband

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for companies in the town but for more rural businesses, like Mike

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Gogan's, it's still a bone of contention. Just the other day, I

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had to send some files after Birmingham, and I used a data

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transfer system we have which is called the Royal mail, I posted

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them. That must be frustrating. We live in hope! So the lobbying

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continues to make sure Malvern remains cyber capital of the UK.

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When you want to raise money to help the fight against prostate cancer,

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it helps when you can call upon the world's best known jazz sax players.

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Courtney Pine has taken time out of his busy touring schedule to help an

:18:22.:18:25.

old friend and give out a stark message to black men. Michele

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Paduano has been finding out more. Meet John Hoo ` he says he's not a

:18:30.:18:33.

professional, he doesn't practice enough, but he toured for years with

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the late great saxophonist, Andy Hamilton.

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So when he decided to raise money for prostate cancer, who better to

:18:45.:18:54.

call than the legend, Courtney Pine. John is not an old boy, he is always

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young to me. When he picks up those ex, he always cuts through. `` those

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aches. He carriages musicians to play. For the past three years, John

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has been treated at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.

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Like many black men, his disease was discovered late. It was in my lymph

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nodes, I have got a permanent lake that doesn't perform very well. It's

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a serious problem. Men in the black community don't go to the doctor

:19:34.:19:35.

enough, particularly about their water works. It's roughly twice as

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likely to occur in men of African origin than of the Caucasian origin,

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it's a double whammy, increased risk and increased risk it will turn bad.

:19:53.:19:58.

Sunshine gives people the dim indeed, and with the UK climate,

:19:59.:20:10.

black men struggle to get enough vitamin B12 But there'll be plenty

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of sunshine tonight at the Bramall music building as jazz shines a

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spotlight on the disease. That concert is at 7:30pm this

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evening at the University of Birmingham.

:20:30.:20:32.

Worcester City Supporters Trust is meeting this evening to try to

:20:33.:20:35.

secure their club's long term future. Worcester City don't have a

:20:36.:20:38.

ground after leaving St George's Lane in April and at the moment are

:20:39.:20:42.

playing their home Games at Kidderminster. Dan Pallett's in

:20:43.:20:44.

Worcester now ahead of tonight's meeting. So Dan, tell us what's

:20:45.:20:51.

happening? I'm at Tudor Grange Academy ` the school is on the

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Bilford Road and it's in this part of the city where supporters hope to

:20:56.:20:58.

build a new community based stadium to bring Worcester City back to

:20:59.:21:01.

Worcester. Rob Crean is the secretary of the supporters trust.

:21:02.:21:07.

You told us about the plans in April, remind us what they are. Last

:21:08.:21:14.

time we spoke we were at the old ground, we had no home to go to, we

:21:15.:21:18.

are planning to ground share with Kidderminster, we thought we needed

:21:19.:21:24.

an alternative, to get the club surviving so we have looked to at a

:21:25.:21:28.

planning a patient in with the City Council to build a community`based

:21:29.:21:30.

stadium within the confines of the city. `` planning application. How

:21:31.:21:38.

big will it be and how can you pay for it? 4300, and in terms of how we

:21:39.:21:47.

pay for it, some will come from the sale of the ground, we hope to get

:21:48.:21:51.

some funding, we will talk about that at the meeting, about making

:21:52.:21:56.

the Constitution of the club different, encourage more funding

:21:57.:22:01.

and look for a community share off, try and raise shares to build the

:22:02.:22:08.

stadium. Getting fans to own the car, that's interesting, we saw the

:22:09.:22:13.

great crowds in April, over 4000 people, are people still caring and

:22:14.:22:17.

will you get the club through this period in Kidderminster? We have

:22:18.:22:24.

realised we can't exist ground sharing forever so we're trying to

:22:25.:22:27.

get a groundswell of opinion going, get people to support what we're

:22:28.:22:35.

doing. Suggestion making it a fan zone `` fan owned club, who think

:22:36.:22:39.

the more involvement we can get the more we can make it a success.

:22:40.:22:47.

Difficult times for Worcester City, but you can see the fans do care,

:22:48.:22:53.

that is maybe the way forward. Plans to restore a Shropshire canal

:22:54.:22:57.

have moved a step closer after the project was awarded money from the

:22:58.:23:01.

Lottery. The ?160,000 grant is a key step towards securing the ?3.7

:23:02.:23:03.

million needed to bring the Montgomery canal back to life.

:23:04.:23:10.

Joanne Writtle reports. The Montgomery Canal runs for 33

:23:11.:23:13.

miles between Shropshire and Wales and is more than 200 years old. This

:23:14.:23:22.

section's near Oswestry. 2000 narrow boats travel along this section of

:23:23.:23:25.

the canal every year. When they get to this section, they have to turn

:23:26.:23:28.

round and go back again. That's because only eight miles are

:23:29.:23:33.

navigable here. The rest's fallen into disrepair. Now the Canal and

:23:34.:23:38.

River Trust has secured ?160,000 of Heritage Lottery money. It paves the

:23:39.:23:43.

way for a larger bid of ?3.7 million to restore just over a mile. We want

:23:44.:23:53.

to increase the number of boats we have on the canal, and we also want

:23:54.:23:56.

to increase access for people who want to use the tow paths for

:23:57.:24:05.

recreational butties. `` activities. Once canals were crucial in England.

:24:06.:24:08.

This photograph shows the Montgomery Canal before large parts were ruined

:24:09.:24:15.

following a breach in 1936. For decades volunteers have worked to

:24:16.:24:19.

restore this canal. This section's expected to be finished next May.

:24:20.:24:25.

It's hoped it will link up with the stretch the Heritage Lottery Fund is

:24:26.:24:32.

set to pay for. I think it's fantastic, it means we can carry on

:24:33.:24:37.

to the net stage and carry on working slowly but surely so we can

:24:38.:24:43.

hopefully link up the whole canal. It's been under restoration for 40

:24:44.:24:47.

years now and we're probably only halfway through the process. As for

:24:48.:24:51.

boat owners like Tony and Christine Hesslegrave, they're delighted. How

:24:52.:24:55.

do you feel about the fact they are hoping to do the work? Looking

:24:56.:25:02.

forward to it very much, the sooner the better! He may have to wait,

:25:03.:25:07.

though. Work isn't expected to start until 2015.

:25:08.:25:09.

Much brighter weather`wise today than wet Wednesday. More of the same

:25:10.:25:11.

please, Shefali. I may be able to comply! It is

:25:12.:25:20.

looking quite good for the weekend. Generally it is going to be

:25:21.:25:25.

unsettled, it will also be breezy, if we concentrate on Sunday alone

:25:26.:25:31.

for Remembrance Day parades and services, compared with what I said

:25:32.:25:35.

yesterday, there has been a turnaround. It is now looking dry

:25:36.:25:38.

and sunny, crisp and cold, rather like today, the rain we were talking

:25:39.:25:45.

of yesterday will arrive later on in the day. Taking a closer look we

:25:46.:25:51.

have a lot of rain around us, just not across us in the next couple of

:25:52.:25:55.

days. Having said that, they will be some sharp splinters showers to the

:25:56.:26:01.

west and the South, these will affect us on Saturday. A ridge of

:26:02.:26:05.

high pressure builds for Sunday, that's when the rain arrives from

:26:06.:26:10.

the West, that's later on Sunday, through the course of the night.

:26:11.:26:15.

This evening, we still have some showers drifting up from the

:26:16.:26:20.

south`west. They should stay out of the region, for most of us it will

:26:21.:26:23.

be dry tonight, especially the further east you go. Towards the

:26:24.:26:30.

North`East, here you could see some patchy frost developing in right

:26:31.:26:36.

areas, but generally, those of around four to six Celsius. The

:26:37.:26:45.

showers will be developed `` defected to the North and the South,

:26:46.:26:52.

so it would be much like today. Temperatures up to about eight to 10

:26:53.:26:58.

Celsius, maybe a maximum of 11, with a moderate south`westerly breeze.

:26:59.:27:03.

During tomorrow night, we start to see the rain encroaching from the

:27:04.:27:09.

West. Perhaps longer bands of rain but they will split into showers

:27:10.:27:15.

during Saturday itself. Sunday will be dry.

:27:16.:27:20.

Tonight's headlines from the BBC: In the trial of three marines accused

:27:21.:27:25.

of killing an Afghan, the court hears a recording of them talking as

:27:26.:27:28.

the man was shot. A radical revamp of the roads is on

:27:29.:27:31.

the cards for Birmingham: plans announced for a possible permanent

:27:32.:27:34.

closure of the A38 city centre tunnels.

:27:35.:27:37.

That was the Midlands Today. I'll be back at ten o'clock discussing

:27:38.:27:40.

Birmingham's transport plans with an expert from the University of

:27:41.:27:42.

Birmingham. Have a great evening.

:27:43.:27:45.

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