The latest news, sport and weather for the Midlands.
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industry. We are back
Good evening. West Bromwich Albion say their striker Nicolas Anelka
will continue to play for the club despite his controversial goal
celebration on Saturday. Jewish groups around the world say they've
been offended by his gesture which they liken to a Nazi salute. But
Anelka continues to defend his actions.
Disgusting. Just one headline from many in the national newspapers.
West Bromwich Albion striker Nicolas Anelka is headline news. It's not
his football but his goal celebration. It's called the
quenelle and is the trademark of the controversial comedian Dieudonne.
Many consider it an inverted Nazi salute and jewish groups around the
world say they've been offended. Anything which is associated with
the Nazi party is something which he ought to know would have probably
put him in a concentration camp 70 years ago, rather than on a football
field and Anelka made the gesture after scoring at West Ham on
Saturday. That is the lesson he needs to learn. Perhaps we all need
to learn that from this Last night defending himself on a social
networking site. Incident as well. He wrote, I am not anti`semitic or
racist and I totally stand by my gesture. In a statement, he
continues to strongly deny any intention to cause offence. The club
say he will be available to play in the next few games. But there is no
sense of any apology. The club held a pre`match press conference today
but Anelka's gesture dominated despite the press officer's requests
to stick to the football. The club says it acknowledges it has been
absurd but it does and says `` say he says sorry. Can we move it on,
thank you? Nicholas is training as normal. He's been out there today,
training like you did last week. The football Association are continuing
their investigations but he could still face Newcastle united on New
Year's Day. One of the country's biggest plant
nurseries is calling for tighter controls on tree imports to combat
disease. Hundreds of thousands of saplings have been destroyed in the
Midlands this year, due to ash dieback.
The dead of winter. The aftermath of a deadly disease is evident. More
than 300 larch trees have been filed. The airborne disease was
found here in September. It is the furthest east it has spread to land
there is no guarantee it has been eradicated. When the Forestry
Commission comeback in the spring, we might find it has moved on from
this patch. It may have moved to the other trees within the site. 62
acres of bilberry have also been affected and precautionary member ``
measures are being taken. We could have a similar problem at Sutton
Park. What we have done is identified that there is a threat.
The Rangers there are all organising the rhododendrons being removed.
That is the most likely hosts the cheese. `` host species. Ash dieback
has also been a headache. This forest nurseries near Shropshire is
the biggest in the country. It has had to destroy 800,000 ash saplings.
The nursery's owner says a tighter control on imported trees is needed
to disease spreading. We should be introducing what the Australians do
and putting in warranties. You cannot tell by looking at the tree
whether or not it is hosting a disease because you may not see the
symptoms. In the soil, it's hard to detect. Inspection does not work.
The nursery is playing its own part in trying to combat disease by
establishing this orchard. The trees have been grafted with different
genetic characteristics. Scientists hope at least one will prove
resistant to Ash dieback. If these infections are not overcome, parts
of our landscape may look very different in years to come.
The man who was found dead at a house in Staffordshire at the
weekend has been named as 44`year`old Anthony Hughes. Police
were called to the house in Newcastle`under`Lyme on Saturday
night. Mr Hughes, died from head and facial injuries. Two men have been
charged with murder and were remanded in custody till later this
month. Three other men have been bailed pending further inquiries.
A university's becoming a world leader in developing diamond
technology. The University of Warwick has been awarded more than
?7 million to work with synthetic diamonds. The technology's already
in use in manufacturing. Scientists believe it could also be used in
treating cancers. Picture a diamond and many of us
will have this image. The classic sparkler. But think again. Here's
another physicist by the name of Newton. And he's about to give us a
sneak peak of something just as precious. You think of the silicon
chip. 50 years ago, people were developing silicon to be used with
electronic devices. We are now developing diamonds to deliver new
technologies, new capabilities. The University of Warwick is growing
synthetic diamonds not for shops, not for your finger. They're leading
the UK's research into diamond technology. Here is a piece of
synthetic diamond and here is a block of ice. Watch this because as
I pushed down not very hard at all, the heat is transmitting through my
fingers and literally carving the ice easily. Its thermal conductivity
is five times better than copper. Diamonds get used in everything from
drill bits to quantum computers, hip joints and optical windows.
Obviously, it's important to understand that characteristics of
the material. So these odd looking diamonds are grown in the lab and
have essentially the same chemical composition as mined natural
diamonds. It's hoped that by identifying the smallest of
molecular defects, they can apply it to all sorts of things, even
medicine. You have the ability not just to measure the temperature of a
patient but in principle, you can measure the temperature of a patient
but in principle, you can measure the temperatures of individual cells
and then decide which is a cancerous cell and then heated up to kill it.
This research will allow the university to recruit 60 new PhD
students, who'll share their findings with other UK universities.
So this isn't about the bling, synthetic diamonds are fast becoming
science's best friend. There've been howling winds and
lashing rain across the region today. In Kingstanding in Birmingham
this morning, a large tree was blown down, narrowly missing a house.
Firemen had to cut a route into the house, so that the three people
inside could be checked over by ambulance staff. No`one was injured.
So is there more stormy weather to come as we head for 2014? Here's
Shefali to tell us. Unfortunately yes. There are
currently numerous flood alerts in force but only one flood warning for
the river Severn at Tewkesbury. But of course with the ground so
saturated, it's not the best of situations to be in with the sort of
forecast we're looking at for the coming week The pattern unfolding
this week is one of rain. Heavy at times followed by heavy blustery
showers but for the time being at least it is dry out there and quite
calm with the skies clearing enough for a touch of frost in rural parts
initially before the cloud thickens up from the West later in the night.
It is looking quite wet for the morning. A narrow band of rain
spread secretly eastwards and that will leave us with much drier
conditions by the afternoon. Maybe even some sunshine. Again, quite
mild with highs of nine to 10 Celsius with moderate south`westerly
winds. As we welcome in the New Year tomorrow night, I'm afraid we have a
rash of lively showers developing. It could just start to quieten down
by about midnight but for New Year's Day, I'm afraid it is looking very
wet and quite windy. Showers by Thursday.
I will be back with our latest news just after 10:15pm. Goodbye.
Another day off strong winds, heavy rain and flooding. At least things
are quiet at the moment. The rain has cleared off and the wind is
lighter. There might be some ice in Scotland, but through the night the
wind picks up, lifting temperatures, but more heavy rain pushing in. The
rain band is not quite a significant us today, but it will leave surface
water flooding. Some heavy bursts clearing Northern Ireland by first
light. It reaches the east coast by the time we get to lunchtime, after
a few morning showers. The wind is falling lighter, easing down from
the gusty nature. A bit of sunshine through the afternoon. The
temperature is a bit higher than they should be at this stage of the
year. Some showers to finish the day in the West. They will push East on
a blustery wind. Some of you will end the year on a dry note. The
greatest chance of