10/01/2017 Midlands Today

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The headlines this evening... news teams where you are.


42 years on, special posthumous recognition for victims


Get's momentous to know that our city is behind us, a cross-party


It's a single award for all 21 victims as


With a record number of patients waiting on trolleys last week,


Stoke and Staffordshire hospitals are the worst in the country.


Coming soon: black top milk so dairy farmers can get a better


The farmer receives an absolute fair price, the


contracts are fair, it's a very transparent situation.


35 years ago, temperatures were colder here at RAF Shawbury


I'll be finding out why it was a record-breaking year.


Well, I'm not seeing anything that extreme for later this week


but now that we're one step closer to the arrival of snow -


More than 40 years after 21 people were killed


in the Birmingham pub bombings, the victims have been honoured


today by being given the Freedom of the City.


The title is usually given to organisations or people


who have served the city in an exceptional way.


The victims' families were at the Council House today


Here's our Special Correspondent, Peter Wilson.


The families whose loved ones died 42 years ago gathered


Over the years, the pub bomb campaigners often felt


Inside the grand Council chamber of Birmingham's Council House


The City Council confers on the 21 victims...


The granting of honorary freedom of the city is normally conferred


Since the Second World War, it's an honour which has usually


We thought it was an appropriate moment to start to do something


which says we will never in this city actually forget those 21


and that we stand with the families, the surviving families,


Nearly 200 people were injured, 21 lost their lives,


when two bombs exploded in crowded pubs in Birmingham in 1974.


Six Irish men were jailed, their wrongful convictions


Because of the controversy surrounding this case,


it has felt in the past as though the city wanted to forget


But today all of that is forgotten and everyone is describing


21 people were murdered 42 years ago and not only were they buried


but we believe the establishment has tried to keep their memories


and their names and their lives and deaths well and truly buried.


But today Birmingham City Council have confirmed that their names,


their lives and their deaths and their memories will


be for ever invented in the history of this city.


their lives and their deaths and their memories will be forever --


imbedded in the history of this city.


Birmingham now follows Liverpool who also bestowed the freedom


of the city on those who died in the Hillsborough disaster.


It was quite emotional, just seeing the councillors


all together backing our campaign, it was really quite emotional.


It brought a tear to my eye, to be honest.


What we really need now is all the MPs in the West


We have only got about four at the moment.


That would make all the difference, if we got the MPs behind us.


Today was the first time the city has granted


And Peter Wilson is here with me now.


An enormously significant landmark today, but the families' campaign


It certainly does and all three main political parties on the City


Council have given their backing to the families. The inquest into those


thefts reopens later this year but still the issue about -- inquest


into those deaths. But still be issue about the legal funding is at


a stand-off but what was interesting about today was this link with


Hillsborough, all the time the families saying we should be treated


the same as those families who were of course given legal funding. Thank


you. A record number of patients have


waited on trolleys in NHS hospitals in the first week of


the new year, according to data 485 patients waited


more than 12 hours. This time last year only 158


patients had waited that long. But one of the worst affected


for long trolley waits was the University Hospitals


of North Midlands NHS Trust. Last Tuesday, 38 out


of 138 cases in England happened in Stoke on Trent,


on Thursday they had 33 out of 71 cases and on Sunday


they had 20 of the 29 cases. Well our reporter Ben Sidwell


is outside the Royal Stoke University hospital tonight - Ben


why is the situation so bad there? Well, let us try and put this into


context if we can. Between April and September the entire five months,


just 43 people were left waiting for more than 12 hours on a trolley. As


you just mentioned, three days in January, 91. The Chief Executive of


the trust that runs this hospital says it is mainly due to the high


levels of ambulance Conde and his and the fact that patients who are


medically fit, there is nowhere for them to go. They cannot let people


out to get the people in they need to. That speak to Jan, the chief


expected of health watch the aperture, an organisation that


monitor health care here in Staffordshire. For you, this must be


worrying that numbers are going up and up here. Is is extremely


worrying and we are concerned about the pressures on the system and the


fact that people are experiencing these very long waits and it is


worrying for patients and families. We have reported on the sad death of


two people who were on trolleys will so many hours. Numbers going up


here. Is it sadly that it is inevitable that that will happen


here? I am not sure about inevitable but it is a risk. All the work we


have done has shown that things are managed here well and although there


are long waits the right decisions are made about which people to see


quickly and who can wait but the pressures do keep stacking up. He


staff do a brilliant job but they're -- there are always risks. We very


keen to hear about peopleexperiences. Everyone with an


experience can get touch. The problem will not go away soon and


what they are saying here is do not come to the 999 unless you have two.


Levels of violence at Hewell Prison in Worcestershire are "far


too high", according to its latest inspection report.


The prison has two parts - a closed jail which holds more


than a thousand male prisoners and an open section


In the six months between February and August this year,


last year, there were 49 fights involving prisoners


In addition, four prisoners have taken their own lives since the jail


The prison is overcrowded and that's a big problem.


It puts a great strain on all the resources that


Certainly Hewell has seen the number of staff cut in


recent years and that has undoubtedly had an effect.


It means prisoners spend longer in their


cells and that can lead to rising tension.


Two men have been taken to hospital following a fight


in Stoney Lane in Sparkbrook, Birmingham yesterday evening.


One was stabbed in the neck, another in the arm.


Three teenagers, two aged 17 and one aged 19,


have been arrested on suspicion of violent disorder.


Police are investigating an incident in Birmingham city centre


in which a group of Morris Dancers were accused of racism.


A video posted online shows a confrontation in which a man


repeatedly denounces the practice of some dancers having


One of the Morris Dancers has made a complaint


Birmingham Councillor Brigid Jones has confirmed that none


of the witnesses who gave evidence to Birmingham City Council's inquiry


into the Trojan Horse allegations will have their names


Lawyers acting for teachers facing disciplinary action as a result


of the allegations there was a hard line Islamic plot to takeover city


schools, are pressing for the names of witnesses in the Department


of Education's inquiry, to be made public.


A court's heard a mother of three was strangled by her jealous


ex-partner after embarking on a new relationship.


The body of 26-year-old Wendy Mann was found on her kitchen floor


Leroy Sterling, who's 63, denies murder and the attempted


Our Black Country reporter Ben Godfrey


Wendy Mann had three children with Leroy Sterling,


The court has heard today that Stirling, fuelled by jealousy over


her new relationship with a 53 old man, Trevor Tindale, went to her


flat in West Bromwich, grabbed her, dragged her across the floor and


strangled her. The court has heard today that one month before her


death, Mr Tindale was attacked by Mr Stirling and he was stabbed in the


neck and suffered fractures. Sterling denies murder and attempted


murder. He's been aided by a translator. What forensics evidence


has been presented to the court? A partial DNA profile the court has


heard, was found in blood under the fingernails of Wendy man belonging


to sterling. Also, DNA on a water beaker inside the kitchen. Images


have been shown to the jury today and the prosecution say they detail


the movements of sterling from the murder scene on the day in question


to his own home, where he is apparently carrying a large holdall


carrying children's clothes removed from Wendy's flat. Trevor Tindale


detailed the alleged attack on him. He suspect denied murder and


attempted murder. This trial is due to last a fortnight.


Another attempt to get dairy farmers a better deal has been launched


"Black top" milk is the idea of the Free Range Milk Marketing Board.


They want to offer shoppers milk with a distinctive black cap


which costs 25% more than a standard bottle


with the extra money going direct to farmers.


Our Rural Affairs Correspondent David Gregory-Kumar


was at the launch and he's with me now, so is that the


This is it, this is black cap milk. The people behind this idea hope


that shoppers will soon find this on sale alongside familiar green and


red milk. If Green is semi-skimmed, what does double milk contain? The


farmer receives a fair price. The contract are fair, it is a


transparent situation, which enables the to invest in the best cows,


health and welfare. It is a fair way of doing things. This is an


Australian supermarket milk aisle and look at all the different milk


brands. They all offer shoppers something different. Here we tend to


see just whole, semi and semi-skimmed milk so the experts say


we could have space him for a brand-new milk brand. But will


British shoppers want to pay more? We know that when consumers get the


value of something, they will value it because if you buy a drink in a


pub you don't buy the cheapest beer necessarily, you buy what you like


because you understand what it is and that is what we are doing here.


700 farmers have signed up to this scheme so far and the organisers


hope to push that number up to 1000 in the next few week. I have heard


rumours that things are looking up for dairy farmers with milk prices


increasing. Milk prices are on the rise in general. These are the


official figures in the milk price from the dairy in Warwickshire.


There are several different lines there, different ways to look at


that price but the trend is clear, since the summer last year we have


seen the start of a little bit of a recovery. Not back to levels last


seen in 2013 but going back up nevertheless. But look at the huge


volatility in that price. This is why we are seeing dairy farmers try


all fours of ideas, like black cap milk, to try and survive and even


make money in the dairy game in the face of a roller-coaster milk price.


Thank you. Thanks for joining us


on Midlands Today, this 42 years on, special posthumous


recognition for victims Definitely getting cooler,


but not as cold as it was 1982 was a record breaking


year for Shropshire. Cold winds from Siberia


and lots of snow lead to temperatures falling


to minus 26.1 Celsius, Shawbury ground to a halt,


I'll be speaking to one man We may not be seeing the extremes of


Siberian cold heading our way this week but there is an Arctic blast


and a warning for snow. Details in the upcoming forecast.


Now, it's not your usual kind of building to get a royal opening,


but her Royal Highness, Princess Anne was in Shropshire


today to officially open an incinerator.


The multi million pound project will provide enough electricity


to power thousands of local homes, and even has its own visitor centre.


A royal visit to officially open Shrewsbury's new incinerator.


Tens of thousands of tonnes of non-recyclable household


waste is being processed here to produce electricity.


Officials say the new plant is an important part of the county's


Only 5% of the total rubbish produced in Shropshire goes


into landfill and a few years ago it was 100% going into landfill,


The plant's taken four years to build at a cost of ?63 million.


It operates in a similar way to a coal or gas powered station.


The main difference is that it uses local waste as fuel.


This is where the waste is processed.


It's delivered here by truck, mixed together by these cranes


and then the cranes transport it to the furnace.


90,000 tonnes of waste can be processed here each year and that's


The process produces gas and dust, which are treated to clean them up.


There is not a single health issue with the gas here at all,


so I would live very easily near a plant like that one.


No problem, nothing to worry and don't take my word for it,


you know, the government and a lot of bodies are controlling


The recycling rate across Shropshire has been above the national average


for many years and with this plant now officially opened, it is hoped


Nicola Beckford, BBC Midlands Today, Shrewsbury.


Rugby Union and Wasps' James Haskell is unlikely to be fit to play


The England forward came back from a long injury lay off


on Sunday, but played for just 35 seconds against Leicester before


But Wasps have been praised for putting player welfare first.


He'd waited all season for this - it was over in a flash.


Just 35 seconds into his seasonal debut and James Haskell suffered


And now the England international looks unlikely to face Toulouse


in the Champions Cup on Saturday.


Probably unlikely that he is going to be fit for the weekend at real


Probably unlikely that he is going to be fit for the weekend but real


difficult way to come back obviously but it happens, you know,


but thankfully there is nothing that is going to keep him off


He's laughing and joking about it and he's always the first guy


to give everybody a little bit of stick so here's having


Concussion has been a huge topic in rugby in recent seasons.


Much of that has centred around Wales international George North.


Two years ago he played on after this incident.


Now, any player that loses consciousness


I think the fact that it is a topic and that it is being talked


about can only be a positive thing for us as players but also


for the game as a whole, right from grassroots to the top


The fact that we are talking about it, the fact that people


are having discussions about it surely means that this topic


is going to take some time but hopefully it will move


Solihul GP Dr Lou Lupoli has worked in rugby for 20 years


He says the sport has benefited from re-search into dementia


He says the sport has benefited from research into dementia


Initially there is a risk that having had a head injury


they are less able to make decisions about themselves so they are more


prone to injury and very rarely they may sustain a second head


injury, which can lead to some very catastrophic


So, Wasps must continue their fine form without Haskell.


The top of the premiership and top of the pool


Victory over Toulouse on Saturday and the whole squad will be heading


Firefighters have helped rescue a cat in Walsall.


But this time, it hadn't got stuck up a tree,


It had got stuck in the drainage hole of a communal rubbish bin.


Fire crews and staff from the RSPCA were called in after a member


of the public heard the kitten meowing in Glebe Street on Monday.


The animal was unhurt and has since been nicknamed Dusty.


Not stuck in a bin, but the Blue Rock thrush has been


spotted in the UK for the first time in ten years.


It's taken up residence in Stow on the Wold in Gloucestershire,


attracting hundreds of bird enthusiasts.


Trying to catch a glimpse of history in the making.


These bird-watchers have come from across the country,


all in a bid to see something rarely seen, the Blue Rock thrush.


It's just exactly that, it's the being here


That's like a lifetime tick, if you like.


It is a big adrenaline rush and it's an even bigger adrenaline rush


You know, the guy who found this must have thought, yes!


It's just the seventh confirmed sighting of this bird since 1985.


Bridget Jennings spotted it in her garden just before Christmas


but didn't initially realise its importance.


It looked like a blackbird crossed with a starling, but in the light,


it was a sort of bluey colour and we weren't quite


A picture was posted online and since then,


bird-watchers have been flocking from as far as Singapore.


You know, we didn't realise what a furore it was going to cause,


but with all the twitchers coming and everything, you know,


The appearance has even boosted a charity that


These volunteers have been keeping the bird-watchers fueled


with teas and coffees, raising ?2000 in donations.


No one knows exactly how long the Blue Rock


Experts believe it could stay until the spring.


This week temperatures in Moscow have plummeted to -25 Celsius.


It's hard to imagine it being that cold isn't it?


But actually 35 years ago it was even colder


In fact, it was colder than the South Pole.


Rebecca Wood has been looking into those record


breaking temperatures - she's at RAF Shawbury this


evening where things are, I should think, a little less


Yes, they certainly are. It is a little warmer but not very warm, I


am keeping my coat on! In December 1981 and January 1982 we were down


to minus 20. In Shawbury we drop to minus 20.2. Just a few miles down


the road, they got even colder and that is where I spent this morning.


The West Midlands was blanketed in snow.


Temperatures across the region widely fell to -20


And here at Harper Adams University in Shropshire, a record


It was this weather station where the mercury dropped to -26.1


Celsius and that's still the lowest recorded temperature in England.


Grounds manager Mark Wall remembers the moment


It was just another cold night and of course it wasn't until days


later when all the rest of the data was in from around the country that


actually here, Harper Adams, was the coldest spot in England


Although the official reading was made in Newport,


it was originally attributed to Shawbury, where at the RAF base,


That day, it was too cold to even go out


Everyone turned up for work and made their way to work


but they didn't go out in the aircraft that day.


The base has its own dedicated Met Office staff because not flying


Well, that's down to a series of circumstances.


A perfect storm, whereby you combine all the factors, you have cold air,


ideal cooling conditions, plenty of snow on the ground,


good local geography, so all those factors combined


with the period of cold weather leading up to that,


With heavy snow, travel across the region was virtually


impossible and even the river Avon froze.


There's snow forecast later this week and chilly northerly winds,


we're in for a cold snap, but perhaps not as chilly as 1982.


Thankfully we are a good 20 degrees higher than that at the moment. It


is hard to imagine how it would feel to be that cold but Ian Forshaw was


a lad based here back then. Take me back to 1982. What are your


memories? I can remember one thing, it was so cold that the cold water


pipes froze and they are about one metre underground so people had to


ask neighbours if their taps were working and borrow water from them.


I have heard about diesel in tanks being frozen as well. Some of the


vehicles, there were no additives so somewhere frozen. You took a photo


of recordings of the temperature being taken. They were wearing skis.


Was it really that bad question what the people at the RAF always have a


good sense of humour and one of the gentleman went to work on his


cross-country skis and then the Met office check the temperature. -26.1,


it was cold! Oh yes, very cold. I think for about a week people try to


hibernate more than anything to stay warm. Has anything at Shawbury match


that? In 2010 it was picturesque. It wasn't that temperature but we had a


heavy frost and the whole airfield, the trees around, were very


picturesque. We have some nice calendar pictures that we used


later. This is a Griffin helicopter and this is a Griffin door for all


those Harry Potter fans. I couldn't resist!


And hundreds of you have been sharing your memories of the snow


and cold weather from 1982 on our Facebook page -


thanks so much, here's a small selection of what you've


been telling us. Carol Simpson wrote...


"We were walking on top of 8-foot snowdrifts which had cars


I had to shout out of the window and ask someone to phone my dad


"We were without power and water for days.


It was like the good old days when families spent evenings


together gathered around the fire in one room, actually


So, things looking cooler in the next few days


but not -26 Celsius, I hope.


Today, in contrast, was very mild. We had highs of seven to nine


Celsius and we had variable amounts of cloud, producing an array of


colours, from lilac too great to blue as well. You might want to add


white to that to the time we get to Thursday because we have a warning


in place for the south of the region. This is for localised


snowfall and this is for Herefordshire, Worcestershire honour


Gloucestershire and Warwickshire. At the moment it looks as though it


will produce minor disruption but that could change into something


more substantial by the time you get to that stage. This is what is


causing it, we have two areas of concern, this Arctic blast drawing


in cold air from the Northwest and that is going to combine with an


area of rain and crossing the country and that is during the


course of Thursday. We have to watch the northern extent of this rain and


the southern extent that cold air leading down from that direction


from the Arctic. Things are on a knife edge, really, because it


depends on how they join together and up into one another as to how


much snow we will get. Winds are going to be gusty over the next few


days and it is as those winds drop out on Friday that we could see a


widespread frost. Two areas of concern over the next few days, the


snow in the southern half of the region and a heavy frost on Friday


night into Saturday. Let us take a look at this evening and overnight


and we have got quite a bit of cloud across us right now so it will be


mild tonight, temperatures only boarding to six or seven Celsius.


Dry initially but then we have a warm sector set of fronts moving in


from the West during the early hours and that will bring in light, patchy


rain. This is how we start the day tomorrow, a bit of rain in the


south-east, a few spots in the north of the region but it will be a


mainly dry day. We start to see those gusts kicking in late in the


day. The mildest temperature will be in the morning. Highs of nine


Celsius dropping to four or five. I'll be back at 10.30pm


with your late update. It's back... Let's get ready to


grumble. ..with more belligerence... Can you imagine anything more


diabolical? ..moaning... ..and nonsensical items...


Don't send me a curve-ball, Nigel.