10/04/2014 Midlands Today


10/04/2014

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LineFromTo

Good evening. Fresh allegathons tonight in the row about Opdration

:00:00.:01:13.

Trojan Horse ` the alleged plot by radical Muslims to try to t`ke

:01:14.:01:19.

control of schools in Birmingham. The City Council has now ordered a

:01:20.:01:22.

recruitment freeze for school governors while it investig`tes the

:01:23.:01:25.

claims. Tonight a Muslim le`der for the city said the controversy is

:01:26.:01:27.

hugely damaging to communitx relations and risks putting back

:01:28.:01:30.

decades of work improving education standards. Here's our speci`l

:01:31.:01:31.

correspondent, Peter Wilson. Police staff this afternoon outside

:01:32.:01:43.

the gates of one of twelve schools named as being under investhgation

:01:44.:01:53.

by the City Council and Ofsted. Can we ask why you are outside today? It

:01:54.:02:00.

is a usual thing. Satley school today at the centre of yet lore

:02:01.:02:03.

allegations ` a parent with children there claims she was approached by

:02:04.:02:07.

Tahir Alam the man named in the so called Trojan plot document. She

:02:08.:02:18.

asked us to protect her identity. We had e`mails about the type of

:02:19.:02:23.

training being provided. And how to question and how to go about

:02:24.:02:28.

bringing about, in his eyes, positive change for Muslim children.

:02:29.:02:36.

Tahir Alam spoke on radio rdfuting the claims. I am tired of trying to

:02:37.:02:41.

respond to things which are completely anonymous...

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For six weeks Birmingham has been riven with allegations of Islamic

:02:49.:02:52.

takeovers influencing the ldadership of inner city schools. Now

:02:53.:02:58.

Birmingham City Council havd frozen the recruitment of any new school

:02:59.:03:02.

governors and say they've h`d a flood of new allegations to

:03:03.:03:13.

investigate. Amongst the nohse and allegations and counter clahms, what

:03:14.:03:19.

are our political leaders s`ying? There is a deafening silencd. The

:03:20.:03:23.

council will not comment until its own investigations are complete The

:03:24.:03:28.

chief executive has been quoted on an intranet site saying he believes

:03:29.:03:33.

the Trojan horse conspiracy is, in fact, a hoax. The Bahu Trust a

:03:34.:03:37.

respected Muslim charity and educational organisation consulted

:03:38.:03:40.

in the past by government mhnisters tonight expressed their angdr over

:03:41.:03:43.

what they see as a hugely d`maging controversy.

:03:44.:03:55.

It is a very extreme knee jdrk reaction to what is a discrddited

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document and, to my knowledge of history, we have never had `nything

:04:03.:04:04.

like it. Many schools now face being taken

:04:05.:04:07.

over by the educational watchdog Ofsted ` if real misdemeanotrs have

:04:08.:04:12.

been done then actions need. There's a stark warning tonight abott the

:04:13.:04:15.

impact this is already having on our communities. We are talking about

:04:16.:04:24.

hundreds of thousands of chhldren. These communities can be targeted

:04:25.:04:28.

heavy`handed knee jerk reactions from government and from st`te

:04:29.:04:35.

authorities will take place against those communities on the basis of

:04:36.:04:38.

unfounded allegations. The nervousness people feel, thd

:04:39.:04:43.

cynicism they hold which stops them engaging, not only in school but in

:04:44.:04:48.

other parts of society, will be reinforced by this action.

:04:49.:04:51.

The investigations continue so too do rumours and yet more alldgations.

:04:52.:04:54.

All concerned are now praying that hard evidence and the truth will

:04:55.:05:04.

emerge in good time. We're joined now by a governor of a

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school in Birmingham not affected by these allegations, Helen Br`din

:05:09.:05:15.

What do you make of this recruitment freeze? It is going to be dhfficult

:05:16.:05:22.

for many schools, the probldm is it is difficult to get people who want

:05:23.:05:25.

to support schools and be p`rt of the school as a governor and this

:05:26.:05:30.

means we cannot recruit at the moment with schools we all ready

:05:31.:05:35.

have too few governors to assist. What puts people off?

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I don't know. It is the timd and commitment. If you are a governor

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you have to give time and commitment and support the school. Not

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everybody can do that. This controversy about an alleged

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Muslim plot will not help the image of government. `` of governors. Are

:05:56.:06:00.

they tainted? I did think so. Overall, governors

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are trying to do a job for their schools and communities and they

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will continue to do so. This will not stop them.

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The council are concerned. To introduce any sort of freezd in any

:06:18.:06:21.

situation means some concerns are there but whether they are dealt

:06:22.:06:25.

with by local schools is a latter for the council to deal with.

:06:26.:06:31.

Why are governors so import`nt at a school?

:06:32.:06:34.

The governors have the strategic direction of the school at heart,

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they have to make sure the school is properly run, they ask the head and

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teachers what they are doing and keep the educational standards for

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children at a level that is outstanding if possible. Without

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that sort of commitment and consideration by those people who

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are often community minded, the schools would not have that support

:06:57.:06:59.

and the openness. Thank you. Coming up later hn the

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programme: As they prepare hn the spring sunshine, we'll be looking

:07:06.:07:07.

ahead to Gloucestershire's chances ahead of their first match this

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weekend. The mother of a 7`year`old girl from

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Birmingham is calling for a chemical found in hundreds of everyd`y

:07:19.:07:21.

products to be banned, after her daughter developed an allergy. The

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ingredient known as MI and hs found in cosmetics and cleaning products.

:07:25.:07:27.

Dermatologists believe as m`ny as one in five children could be

:07:28.:07:37.

allergic to it. Holly Lewis reports. We have to look on the backs of

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everything we buy ` including shampoo. Niamh McGroarty from Acocks

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Green has to check everything she puts near her skin for the chemical

:07:45.:07:50.

MI. If she comes into contact with it she quickly develops a p`inful

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rash. It is really sore and itchy. How about when you eat? I couldn't

:07:57.:08:03.

really open my mouth that mtch. Methylisothiazolinon or MI hs a

:08:04.:08:05.

preservative used to stop products going mouldy and has been

:08:06.:08:08.

increasingly used in cosmethcs and cleaning products since 2006. It is

:08:09.:08:17.

in washing powder so when wd go on holiday to Spain she would have to

:08:18.:08:21.

have her own sheets brought with me and I will have to check thd sun

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cream because it is in suncream and after sun. And Niamh's school have

:08:26.:08:31.

had to adapt too as MI is found in paints and glue. It is about looking

:08:32.:08:38.

at resources, what do we have that Niamh can use that she can't use

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which is a lot more than thd other way round. And ordering new things

:08:43.:08:48.

for her. Dermatologists havd expressed concern about the growing

:08:49.:08:52.

number of patients with the allergy. There's been a trend of increase in

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those patients we have seen coming in with allergies to MI. So, this

:08:56.:09:00.

has been between the years 2000 and more recently a doubling or triplet

:09:01.:09:09.

of the amount of patients. `` tripling.

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The European Commission has recently published guidelines saying all

:09:12.:09:14.

products which stay on the skin like moisturiser or suncream must be MI

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free. The amount in other products should be reduced. Most

:09:20.:09:23.

manufacturers have agreed to this but the reformulation process will

:09:24.:09:26.

take time and it will be a while before they are freely available.

:09:27.:09:31.

But Sheila says only an outright ban will help Niamh and other stfferers

:09:32.:09:33.

of this increasingly common allergy. Manufacturers, charities and media

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companies in the Midlands h`ve won a share of ?31 million in govdrnment

:09:46.:09:49.

funds to help create new jobs. Luxury car maker Aston Marthn is

:09:50.:09:52.

among eight companies who h`ve secured funding from the Regional

:09:53.:09:56.

Growth Fund. The others include newspaper publishers Trinitx Mirror

:09:57.:09:59.

Midlands and the charity Sense International which supports

:10:00.:10:06.

deaf`blind people. People objecting to the proposed HS2 railway line

:10:07.:10:09.

will be able to petition ag`inst the scheme formally from the 29th April.

:10:10.:10:16.

The government's announced that those affected by Phase One of the

:10:17.:10:19.

line from London to Birmingham will have until the 23rd May to submit

:10:20.:10:25.

their petitions. Police havd released images of a man thdy're

:10:26.:10:28.

trying to trace after a wom`n was stabbed in the back with a needle

:10:29.:10:32.

and syringe in Sandwell. The attack happened outside a bakery

:10:33.:10:35.

on Blackheath High Street on the 26th February. Officers say the

:10:36.:10:38.

woman was left distressed and had the anxiety of weeks of tests to

:10:39.:10:42.

make sure she hadn't sufferdd any lasting effects from the assault.

:10:43.:10:46.

Ambitious plans have gone on display for a new university for Hereford.

:10:47.:10:50.

The council's given its backing to a scheme which its supporters claim

:10:51.:10:53.

would transform the local economy and help create jobs as well as

:10:54.:10:57.

boosting tourism. Links are being forged with universities abroad

:10:58.:11:00.

although as yet there's no firm funding in place. Giles Latcham

:11:01.:11:10.

reports. What would make a difference in 2020... Students and

:11:11.:11:14.

sixth form college students coming up with ways of improving lhfe in

:11:15.:11:21.

Herefordshire and the big idea. My favourite was the universitx. I

:11:22.:11:24.

lived at home and commute so the fact they are building Hereford

:11:25.:11:30.

university would have benefhted me. There would be more trade and boost

:11:31.:11:34.

the economy. Part of the unhversity would be sited here south of

:11:35.:11:41.

Hereford. It would cater for 50 0 students and supporters say it would

:11:42.:11:46.

generate ?77 million a year for the economy. This will be developed for

:11:47.:11:52.

new businesses. The woman ldading the project says it is an

:11:53.:11:57.

opportunity to equip Hereford with science and engineering skills and

:11:58.:12:01.

changed the face of the economy We will be teaching science and

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engineering subjects in a w`y that focuses on global employability so

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something small, specialised, unique to Hereford but also relevant to the

:12:13.:12:16.

county, the country and the world. There would be no campus, classes

:12:17.:12:20.

and lectures taking place in buildings around the city. The

:12:21.:12:25.

council is considering offering up empty promises of its own to project

:12:26.:12:30.

it hopes will drive up standards across the board.

:12:31.:12:35.

We have found us up drifting below the average by 5% at GCSE and we

:12:36.:12:42.

have to close the gap. The university, what a great opportunity

:12:43.:12:46.

to say to you people have the ambition and we can deliver it for

:12:47.:12:50.

you on the doorstep. The hunt is on for funding from

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government and foreign investors and the business community. We have

:12:54.:13:01.

economic challenges in the city and demographic challenges with the loss

:13:02.:13:07.

of youngsters and by attracting and retaining them it would change the

:13:08.:13:12.

economy of the city dramatically. It is far from side and sealed but

:13:13.:13:16.

there was no fault in the albition to unroll the first students in just

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over three years' time. One of the project's long term supportdrs is

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the Conservative MP for Herdford and South Herefordshire, Jesse Norman. I

:13:28.:13:30.

spoke to him earlier today to find out how likely he thought it was

:13:31.:13:33.

that the new university would actually become a reality.

:13:34.:13:40.

I hope better than 50`50. It is early days. There's a tremendous

:13:41.:13:45.

body of support in Herefordshire for it and the council have been to

:13:46.:13:48.

refit coming on side to support it. We had a meeting with the mhnister

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last week and he is supporthve. I am hopeful it is looking good. Where

:13:58.:14:02.

will the money come from? The interesting thing about the change

:14:03.:14:08.

in tuition fees is that it leans these institutions are more self

:14:09.:14:12.

financing that they would h`ve been when you are waiting for a piece of

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government hand`out. That is a potential source of revenue and

:14:17.:14:22.

what's interesting is it is looking closely at how you can deliver

:14:23.:14:27.

better education at lower price points. It has had a lot of interest

:14:28.:14:33.

and support from other univdrsities around the country. That's because

:14:34.:14:36.

they can see there is something interesting going on in the way you

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tie together online, off`line, expert teaching and concerndd for

:14:40.:14:46.

the whole person and basic curriculum. It is an interesting set

:14:47.:14:53.

of ideas. How attractive is it to students

:14:54.:14:58.

coming to a comparatively slall city with a smaller reputation?

:14:59.:15:04.

I think there will be a lot of interest from local people `nd from

:15:05.:15:09.

people in the marshes because petrol prices are high and people `re not

:15:10.:15:12.

going away to study in the way they were. It is also true that there

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will be people who say it is the cathedral city, lots of beattiful

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things happening, new market developments opening at the moment

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and the effect the Herefordshire are potentially magnificent bec`use it

:15:31.:15:33.

is a real boost to the economy locally at it addresses the

:15:34.:15:37.

demographic issue of an agehng population which we have struggled

:15:38.:15:39.

with. Thank you. This is our top story

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tonight: Claims parents werd asked to promote "Islamic values" in a

:15:49.:15:51.

school at the centre of an investigation into an allegdd plot.

:15:52.:15:54.

Shefali will be here soon whth your detailed weather forecast to come

:15:55.:15:59.

shortly. Join me on the can`ls of Birmingham as they worked to clear

:16:00.:16:01.

decades of rubbish from the water. Preparations are underway in

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Stratford upon Avon and Covdntry ahead of the official state visit

:16:15.:16:17.

tomorrow of the Irish President In Coventry, Michael Higgins whll visit

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the cathedral before a lunch reception with the city's Lord

:16:21.:16:23.

Mayor. One of Coventry's best known Irishman is broadcaster Bob Brolly

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and he's been testing the w`ter before the big event.

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It's an exciting for these Coventry Irish Dancers ` they'll be

:16:31.:16:34.

performing for the Irish prdsident at the city's Guildhall tomorrow but

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for now it's all about making sure it goes smoothly. The president s

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already received the grandest of receptions with this banquet at

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Windsor Castle but in Coventry he'll meet the real grassroots

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communities. Mary McHugh's parents came over in the '60s. She's now an

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accomplished dance instructor. Are they nervous? Probably. As nervous

:17:02.:17:08.

as you? Yes, I am more nervous but they will be fine. They will enjoy

:17:09.:17:12.

it. It's a great opportunitx for the parents as well to see the children

:17:13.:17:17.

dance and great for the citx. His visit will also take in Str`tford

:17:18.:17:21.

where he'll tour the RSC and watch a performance before visiting

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Shakespeare's birthplace. The pinnacle of his visit to thhs area

:17:27.:17:30.

will be here in the ruins of the old Cathedral ` it's hoped he'll take

:17:31.:17:33.

with him Coventry's international message of peace and

:17:34.:17:40.

reconciliation.. What this place stands for is a recognition of the

:17:41.:17:43.

things that go wrong, we don't deny those. He talked about thosd all

:17:44.:17:49.

ready, movingly. Then that hs never the end of the story so we hope we

:17:50.:17:53.

will be encouraged for peacd and reconciliation back in Irel`nd.

:17:54.:17:59.

Meanwhile at another venue traditional Irish venue mushcians

:18:00.:18:01.

have also been preparing ` they too will perform for the Presiddnt. It

:18:02.:18:13.

is a proud moment. She has lived here for 60 `` 56 years. It is

:18:14.:18:23.

amazing to see, where can I get a glimpse of him? If they want to come

:18:24.:18:28.

to the steps of the cathedr`l from 12:30pm they will be given flags to

:18:29.:18:35.

wave as the president arrivds. The whole community can come and see

:18:36.:18:41.

from there. Ready! Off you go! The young one's may well be wondering

:18:42.:18:45.

what all the fuss is about ` but when they're a little older they'll

:18:46.:18:48.

probably realise they were here when history was being made. And there'll

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be much more about the Irish President's visit to the region on

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BBC Coventry and Warwickshire from six tomorrow morning. The cricket

:18:59.:19:03.

season's underway. Last week we looked at the prospects of

:19:04.:19:05.

Warwickshire and Worcestershire Dan's here now to tell us how

:19:06.:19:08.

Gloucestershire are trying to rebuild.

:19:09.:19:22.

Yes, on and off the pitch. They were a disappointment in four dax, one

:19:23.:19:25.

day and Twenty20 cricket last season. But captain Michael Klinger

:19:26.:19:28.

is confident a young squad will perform much better this sulmer

:19:29.:19:32.

Everyone loves a good crickdt tea. And at Gloucestershire the breakfast

:19:33.:19:35.

isn't bad either. But the prospect of swapping glassware for shlverware

:19:36.:19:38.

look distant. It's ten years since Gloucestershire's last trophy. Last

:19:39.:19:41.

season they were sixth in dhvision two of the county championship `

:19:42.:19:44.

that's bottom but three. And they didn't reach the knockout stages in

:19:45.:19:48.

either one day or Twenty20 cricket. But optimism remains. I would be

:19:49.:19:58.

disappointed if art ability in short format doesn't make the fin`l. I

:19:59.:20:02.

think as we saw with the improvements last year, there is a

:20:03.:20:07.

good chance we can press for top positions. And there is a plan. The

:20:08.:20:14.

development of their Bristol headquarters continues after the new

:20:15.:20:17.

pavilion was completed last August. Then they can build the teal. It

:20:18.:20:21.

should ensure international is coming here for years to cole. That

:20:22.:20:29.

provides revenue to reinvest. Given this group can stay together for

:20:30.:20:34.

three or four or five years, we will develop a strong team. The good

:20:35.:20:38.

thing is they're coming out of the academy, the majority and their own

:20:39.:20:44.

developer programme and it hs about resources, financially to bd able to

:20:45.:20:48.

keep them here otherwise we would lose them.

:20:49.:20:50.

Gloucestershire have plenty of room to improve. But they're detdrmined

:20:51.:20:57.

to start climbing the tables. It has been a staggered start. Yes.

:20:58.:21:00.

So Gloucester start at home to Hampshire, then Warwickshird are at

:21:01.:21:07.

home to Sussex on Sunday. The big names are there. Worcestershire

:21:08.:21:16.

already under way ` Captain Daryl Mitchell scored 172 not out in their

:21:17.:21:22.

opening drawn match at Hampshire. He is flying. This weekend thex are at

:21:23.:21:26.

home to Kent. Remarkable thdy have been playing cricket and a few weeks

:21:27.:21:32.

ago there was eight foot of water. I was there. Remarkable. Thdre is

:21:33.:21:36.

sand at one end but they should be OK.

:21:37.:21:40.

Let's talk about football. It is all about bringing thd

:21:41.:21:46.

campaign to bring Coventry City back to Coventry. The supporters say they

:21:47.:21:49.

might stand in the elections. They are trying to force all parties

:21:50.:21:53.

involved to get some way in the dispute. The club moved out in the

:21:54.:21:59.

summer and have been at Northampton ever since. OK, thank you. Now

:22:00.:22:09.

London might be the capital of Commerce but Birmingham's the

:22:10.:22:11.

capital when it comes to canals The Canal and River Trust which is

:22:12.:22:15.

now responsible for their upkeep looks after more than hundrdd miles

:22:16.:22:18.

of them around here, ` one of the most intricate networks anywhere in

:22:19.:22:22.

the world. But it all needs constant attention if it's to be kept running

:22:23.:22:25.

smoothly ` which is why a one million pounds dredging project is

:22:26.:22:28.

now nearing completion. Ben Sidwell reports.

:22:29.:22:30.

Clearing away decades of rubbish. From bricks to bottles, shopping

:22:31.:22:33.

trollies to sofas all kinds of waste has been thrown in Birmingh`m canals

:22:34.:22:43.

over the years. Let's show xou how big a problem it is. Mike whll get

:22:44.:22:48.

us to the tow path. Let's go for it. Even though it has a shallow bottom,

:22:49.:22:55.

as you can see, it is impossible. Which is why the Canal River Trust

:22:56.:22:59.

have spent the last four ye`rs and a million pounds making the chty's

:23:00.:23:05.

waterways navigable again. Birmingham is the canal caphtal of

:23:06.:23:08.

the UK, people flock to the centre so they have to get there and if we

:23:09.:23:13.

don't dredge, the boats can't get past. I don't want to imagine a

:23:14.:23:18.

canal without boats. It brings the canal to life.

:23:19.:23:21.

But there's an added problel and cost here in Birmingham. All the

:23:22.:23:24.

waste removed has been cont`minated by pollution from the city, meaning

:23:25.:23:28.

it can only be disposed of `t a specialist site around 100 liles

:23:29.:23:40.

away. It is a menace becausd sometimes he struggled to gdt

:23:41.:23:47.

moving. You can be stuck and getting out my be quite a job.

:23:48.:23:50.

Tony and Linda Sweeby, from Yorkshire, are just two of the

:23:51.:23:53.

thousands of canal tourists who ll benefit from the clear up. There is

:23:54.:24:00.

a lot of rubbish, sofas, shopping trolleys and a lots of plastic

:24:01.:24:04.

bottles. If they clear that, it will be more pleasant and it is `n

:24:05.:24:07.

attraction for tourists. The Canal River Trust say, due to

:24:08.:24:11.

cost, this round of dredging has only scraped the surface of the

:24:12.:24:14.

problem, with three quarters of the rubbish still below the watdr.

:24:15.:24:17.

However, for now at least, ht's a much clearer route for any barges

:24:18.:24:26.

heading to Brum. Outdoors whth the cricket, outdoors with the canals `

:24:27.:24:30.

is the weather up to scratch for it? Here's Shefali.

:24:31.:24:37.

I think so. Hitting four rather than six! Some decent weather on the way,

:24:38.:24:41.

any rain heading our way will be coming through in the night. A

:24:42.:24:46.

couple of friends over the next few days, this one tonight and the next

:24:47.:24:51.

one flicking through on Sattrday. On either side of the rain, thd skies

:24:52.:24:55.

might be clear and because of that we could get a of frost, perhaps a

:24:56.:25:03.

widespread frost with ground frost. Friday night could see that.

:25:04.:25:09.

Gardeners and farmers should be aware. Tonight, more cloud `fter

:25:10.:25:16.

clear skies because the first of these weather front pushing down

:25:17.:25:21.

moving south eastwards. Light patchy rain, high pressure is dominating

:25:22.:25:28.

killing off most of the rain. After that, we are back to clear skies,

:25:29.:25:33.

patchy cloud and under clear skies, patchy mist and fog. It has been a

:25:34.:25:40.

theme running through this week Temperatures only down to sdven or

:25:41.:25:44.

eight Celsius. We will narrowly avoid a frost tonight. A murky

:25:45.:25:50.

start, it will clear quicklx as the sun gets to work. Through the

:25:51.:25:57.

morning, we are looking at Sunshine taking temperatures up to 14

:25:58.:26:02.

Celsius, perhaps 15. That is coupled with a light northerly breeze and

:26:03.:26:09.

that is a cooler direction. The afternoon, some cloud, we start with

:26:10.:26:12.

predominantly clear skies tomorrow night because we haven't got any

:26:13.:26:19.

friends crossing us but temperatures falling to about four Celsits.

:26:20.:26:24.

Perhaps low in the countryshde. Frost is an issue tomorrow night and

:26:25.:26:29.

more widespread than recently. So, the weekend, it looks cloudx to

:26:30.:26:35.

start with on Saturday, Sunday is the best day of the weekend. Lots of

:26:36.:26:38.

sunshine. Tonight's headlines from thd BBC

:26:39.:26:41.

Nigel Evans, the former Deptty Speaker of the Commons, is found not

:26:42.:26:45.

guilty of rape and eight other sex abuse charges. Bright, beautiful and

:26:46.:26:48.

innocent ` the Hillsborough inquest hears a tribute from the parents of

:26:49.:26:54.

Sarah and Victoria Hicks. Claims parents were asked to promote

:26:55.:26:57.

'Islamic values' in a school at the centre of an investigation hnto an

:26:58.:27:01.

alleged plot. And calls for a chemical fotnd in

:27:02.:27:04.

hundreds of everyday products to be banned after a schoolgirl ddveloped

:27:05.:27:06.

an allergy. A family owned firm features in the

:27:07.:27:19.

new series tonight hosted bx Digby Jones starting on BBC Two tonight.

:27:20.:27:23.

The Birmingham `based Guru spent months working with the owndrs of

:27:24.:27:26.

Hereford furniture who have three local shops and employs 40 people.

:27:27.:27:34.

That was the Midlands Today. Another update in our late bulletin at ten `

:27:35.:27:38.

we'll be live in Coventry ahead of the Irish President's visit

:27:39.:27:41.

tomorrow. Have a good evening. Bye for now.

:27:42.:27:46.

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