20/03/2014 Midlands Today


20/03/2014

The latest news, sport and weather for the Midlands.


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That's all from the BBC News at Six, so it's goodbye from me

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Hello and welcome to Midlands Today. The headlines tonight: Counting the

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cost: 400 insurance claims from the region's farmers after the winter

:00:11.:00:17.

floods. I think it's safe to say that we have probably lost 25% of

:00:18.:00:21.

our yield potential through late trilling and waterlogging. We'll be

:00:22.:00:25.

reporting live from a farm hn Shropshire. Also tonight, R`ise your

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game: a call to headteachers from the best after secondary schools in

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Stoke`on`Trent are ranked along the worst in the country.

:00:34.:00:36.

The villagers angry over a ledieval law that makes them responshble for

:00:37.:00:41.

repairs to the local church. Life as a basketball star in

:00:42.:00:44.

Worcester after escaping thd civil war in Libya. It was 16 days, it was

:00:45.:00:53.

a living hell. I am a Christian man, I lost a lot of faith. And ht's the

:00:54.:00:58.

first day of spring ` reason enough you might think to be happy, so why

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is it then that I have bad news Good evening. As farmers struggle to

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recover after the extreme wdt weather and flooding, the l`rgest

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insurer of farms and rural properties has revealed it's dealing

:01:18.:01:20.

with an estimated two million pounds worth of claims across the West

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Midlands. NFU Mutual, which is based in Stratford upon Avon, is currently

:01:29.:01:31.

handling 431 cases in the rdgion, and says it could have to p`y out

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more than 90 million pounds across the UK ` almost as much as `fter the

:01:36.:01:41.

floods of 2007. But what about the impact on individual farms `ffected

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by the bad weather? David Gregory`Kumar's at a farm in

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Shropshire for us now. How have they been coping? All our farmers are

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coping, to an extent, and they are having very different experhences

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with this weather. But they are all having to deal with what is

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increasingly weird weather. There are still plenty of water about on

:02:09.:02:12.

this farm in Herefordshire, but nowhere near the levels thex have

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seen recently. At its height, it would have been up to our hdad

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level. As you can see from the floor, killed the crop completely.

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About 30 acres of land is ott of action because of flooding `t wet

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weather. In terms of crops that means they're ?15,000 down on any

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potential harvest. So they won't be growing anything on these fhelds for

:02:38.:02:42.

the next 12 months, but even if your farm wasn't directly affectdd by

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flooding and floodwater, all that wet weather is still having an

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impact on how you farm. We didn t have a very good year last xear and

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2007 was very wet, we are still playing catch up from this series of

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strange weather patterns, they have gone from very wet to very dry, very

:03:00.:03:06.

cold, very wet. We are used to our temperate climate and we haven't

:03:07.:03:09.

seen it. On this sheep farm near Worcester things are getting back to

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normal. The sheep are insidd because their usual grazing was swallowed up

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by the flood waters around the city. This lamb was a little tricky. But

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despite the rising waters and being kept inside far longer than usual

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lambing has been a success. Not that farmer Steve Page wasn't worried. A

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few sleepless nights before we started, but it's gone really well.

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We have had 500 lambs in ten days, it's gone very well, better than I

:03:40.:03:44.

thought. What farmers want now is a typical spring. Some April showers

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and a bit of warmth. So we `re now on another farm near Albrighton

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when lambing is underway, although this farm hasn't been affected by

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floodwaters, they have been dealing with wet weather so we will be

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talking about that later in the programme, and also new revdlations

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from Europe about what kind of identification tags you havd to put

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on your sheep. Farmers are worried about that because if they get it

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wrong, they could be in for a hefty fine. We will talk about th`t later.

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Coming up later in the programme: Upgrading the old grammar school as

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part of an ?8.5 million rev`mp of Coventry's Transport Museum.

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A leading head teacher's calling on Stoke`on`Trent to raise its

:04:37.:04:38.

educational aspirations. It follows an annual report by Ofsted which

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ranked the city as one of the worst areas in England for second`ry

:04:43.:04:47.

education. And another piecd of research has found there ard more

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people without formal qualifications in Stoke on Trent than almost

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anywhere else in the UK. Our Staffordshire reporter Liz Copper

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has been investigating what's being done to turn things around.

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This is St Joseph's College ` it's the only secondary school in Stoke

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on Trent rated as "outstandhng" by Ofsted. Today, the head teacher s

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holding interviews for the posts of head boy and head girl. She believes

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raising aspiration is the kdy to raising educational attainmdnt. The

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young people of Stoke`on`Trdnt are outstanding, amazing young people

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and what we have to do together everybody, people have to work

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together to be really aspir`tional and not be satisfied with sdcond

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best. Competition for places here is fierce, because of the school's

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reputation for excellence. But elsewhere it's a different picture.

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Ofsted's annual report said 34 per cent of pupils in Stoke on Trent go

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to a "good" school. The citx was ranked the third lowest loc`l

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authority in England. In separate research it was found 17 per cent of

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the population here had no skills ` a proportion ranking it sixty third

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out of sixty four cities. The question is, how can more schools in

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the city achieve the outstanding results seen here? St Joseph's has

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been praised for its wide r`nge of extra curricular activities,

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including music and drama. Hts staff are helping other schools achieve

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better results. In one local school, we had a number of our assistant

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head teachers working in thdre, the headteacher worked in there as well,

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coaching leaders directly in scenarios that were taking place

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live in schools. Pupils herd have a keen sense of the importancd of

:06:34.:06:39.

education for their city's future. How can the city progress if the

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younger pupils on learning the skills they need to get jobs later

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in life? It does worry me a bit because I think other peoplds in the

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city may not have the same chance as us and the opportunities. Pdople are

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going to not want to come to schools in Stoke because they think they're

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not good but that's not really true. The challenge is to raise standards

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across this city ` and work's already begun to improve pupils

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opportunities. Stoke on Trent City Council were unable to find a guest

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to talk to us about this issue but in a statement the Department for

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Education said: Birmingham City Council has been

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ordered to pay compensation to the mother of a child with spechal needs

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who didn't get the support she should have. A report from the Local

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Government Ombudsman found that in 2006 Childrens Services offdred her

:07:47.:07:50.

ten hours of Care a week, btt then failed to carry out a proper

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assessment until 2011. The council have now been instructed to give the

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family the support they are entitled to. The council will do this

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assessment, I hope in good time they will also make a payment of the

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family for the distress thex have been caused. I hope the council will

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learn lessons from this casd to make sure this doesn't happen to any

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other children in the futurd. Flowers have been laid at the spot

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where a teenager died in wh`t appeared to be a freak accident in

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Birmingham. 18`year`old Manny Edwards was running for a bts in

:08:18.:08:21.

Walkers Heath on Monday when he collided with the bus stop. CCTV

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pictures one of those guys who can bring the

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experience to the team. Worcester Wolves will be disappointed to end

:16:42.:16:44.

this season without at least one trophy.

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A truly amazing story. The young players love their club.

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grants have help them build. That grants have help them build. That

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rules at the time meant thex had to pay VAT on everything. From every

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?100,000 of funding that we get we have two hands back ?20,000 in VAT.

:17:37.:17:46.

They had little choice. The club raised more than ?300,000 to

:17:47.:17:51.

complete the work and build new changing rooms. We have got a good

:17:52.:18:08.

footballing round. The chairman is proud of what they achieved, but it

:18:09.:18:13.

was tough work. New regulathons allow similar clubs to get

:18:14.:18:21.

charitable status. Do not bd put off by the paperwork. It is all of us.

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It is substantial. Facilitids like this do not just happen. Wh`t a

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wonderful facility they havd ended up with.

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If we can help anybody avoid having to pay those bills it is a lassive

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saving. 250 cents per week use thesd

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pictures so it is worthwhild. `` 250 children per week use these football

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pitches. If you are planning to take part,

:19:11.:19:28.

good luck. Let us ahead back to our rural

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affairs correspondent. He h`s been finding out how our farmers are

:19:35.:19:38.

coping with what has been a difficult year. Sheep farmers are in

:19:39.:19:47.

the middle of lambing. The leeting was held last night to disctss the

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regulations which mean everx animal has to be fitted with an eldctronic

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tag by end of next month. Wd have to go with it. There is a lot of

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paperwork. The actual sheep movements will not be held tp if

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there are hiccups in the paperwork. The farmers can have confiddnce that

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their sheep will still move to the market. Consumers can still have

:20:18.:20:21.

confidence that the lamb will end up on there, `` on their plate. Some

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concern about the new regul`tions. Why have they been introducdd?

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What is the worry for sheep farmers? If you do not keep within

:20:36.:20:43.

the regulations you could bd inspected and if you get inspected

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and you get things wrong thdre is the possibility that they could

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reduce your subsidy claim bx up to 3%. You will be sticking with

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paperwork for now. Yes, but they are gradually moving to an electronic

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system. We have been talking about bad weather. Let us talk about good

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weather. This is last years he. When you get kids hay on July. `` when

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you get good hay in July. Good news. That is all from the lambing farm.

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But for now they would like some nice weather so they can turn the

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lambs out into the fields. Hf you've heard of the Birmingham Flatpack

:22:32.:22:34.

Festival, you could be thinking it's a celebration of self assembly

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wardrobes ` and kits with tdn screws missing and not nearly enough glue?

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When in reality it's an ecldctic mix of performances, exhibitions, walks

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and talks based loosely arotnd the idea of film, popping up at eleven

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venues around the city. And this year one of its main themes is

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Birmingham's relationship whth water. More now from our Arts

:22:50.:22:52.

Reporter Satnam Rana. The often secret, slippery world of

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the River Rae ` it may look like a man made drain but this is

:22:57.:22:59.

Birmingham's urban river revealed now in a series of films. For the

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last two years this audio vhsual artist has been wading throtgh the

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water to explore the river.David's installation is being show `t the

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Midlands Art Centre as part of the Flatpack Film Festival. It hs seldom

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seen. It has a subtle beautx all of its own.

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The film festival will take place in 38 venues across the city. Ht will

:23:29.:23:42.

host 100 and 30p. How does this fit into the overall strategy of events?

:23:43.:23:57.

You can go from our warehouse to add Church. Half our audiences from

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outside Birmingham. This is a scale model. You can see what it looks

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like. This historian will t`ke audiences on canal sidewalks. This

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is brilliant. It is worthy of the Romans. It comes 73 miles ptrely by

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Gravity. Birmingham is known as the landlocked city, but with its canals

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and urban river the Flatpack Film Festival will be reminding ts of our

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love affair with water. Let's find out whether therd's water

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in the weather as well then, Here's Shefali.

:25:07.:25:13.

in the weather as well then, Here's It is the official start of spring.

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Temperatures plummeting durhng the night. Also temperatures dipping

:25:26.:25:36.

during the day. It will also be quite windy during this perhod. Low

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pressure is situated to the North. That is why we are seeing whntry

:25:54.:26:00.

conditions developing. We h`ve got rain across the Eastern part of the

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region. That rain will clear away to East. Temperatures needing freezing

:26:14.:26:34.

in the countryside. Elsewhere should be frost free. A sunny start to the

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day tomorrow. The winds will be quite strong. There will be showers.

:26:43.:27:03.

More showers as we aired in two the weekend.

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Australia says it is followhng up new information on the misshng

:27:12.:27:16.

Malaysian plane. The American President wraps up the

:27:17.:27:22.

pressure on President Putin. Counting the cost on insurance

:27:23.:27:28.

claims after the winter floods. If you read of villagers after

:27:29.:27:34.

learning they will be chargdd for repairs to the Church because of a

:27:35.:27:40.

medieval law. Goodbye.

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