26/01/2017 Midlands Today


26/01/2017

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The families of the victims of the Birmingham pub

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bombings will get legal aid because of a change in the law.

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You know, it is, it's marvellous, really.

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As long as nothing else is going to follow.

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We'll be speaking to Julie Hambleton from the

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Her sister Maxine died in the bombings.

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Two patients die in six weeks after being sent home from accident

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and emergency in Coventry - with aneurysms.

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She was really upset about how she had been treated.

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She told me they told her she was a time waster.

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A disaster waiting to happen - the military warn of a potential

:00:42.:00:44.

collision between its aircraft and a drone.

:00:45.:00:51.

We are at the school preparing to celebrate the life and career of the

:00:52.:00:58.

Black Country artist whose drawings were just Dandy.

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And after a bitterly cold day, you'd be forgiven for thinking prospects

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were bleak for the weekend, but it is warming up. Details later.

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The families of the victims of the Birmingham pub

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bombings have learnt today they are to get legal aid.

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Sir Oliver Heald QC, the Minister for Legal Aid, said this afternoon,

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"It would be a travesty for families to be denied justice,

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The Government has intervened in an apparent U-turn

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to remove legal barriers - which had previously

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It has been a hard-fought and often angry battle.

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In a moment I'll be talking to Julie Hambleton, who's led

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But first here's Carolle Forde Garcia.

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It's been a fight which has been long and bitter.

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Even as the families walked to the courts for a pre inquest

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hearing last November they had no legal funding and were at war

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If we do not have parity in legal funding, then that means to say that

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the scales of justice will be so unbalanced that the inquest will not

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be able to move forward. 42 years ago, people died and nearly

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200 were seriously injured when bombs exploded in crowded Birmingham

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pubs. Julie, whose sister Maxine was killed in the bombings, has led the

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campaign for justice. It has taken her all the way to Northern Ireland,

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to this Belfast law firm. The families believe only they could get

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the truth. We deal with daily issues such as

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intelligence, field investigations, misdirected investigations. An awful

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lot of those issues permeate a lot of killings and unresolved

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contentious killings in this jurisdiction. Those issues are at

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play in relation to the Birmingham pub inquest case.

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The Northern Ireland lawyers have worked for nothing.

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Up to today they didn't qualify for legal aid in england and Wales.

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In a statement, the Minister responsible for legal aid said:

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Bill lost his brother James in the bombings.

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Tonight, he gave a cautious response to the news.

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It's marvellous, really, as long as nothing else is going to follow,

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because we have got the inquest, and then we had the story with the

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money. Now we have got the money, is something else could come up?

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This week, the victims were granted the freedom of the city. Tomorrow

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the law will change, allowing the Northern Ireland lawyers to seek

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justice that the families have always thought to get. -- vote to

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get. I'm joined now by Julie Hambleton,

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whose sister Maxine was one of the 21 killed

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in the bombings in 1974. Good evening, good to see you. Your

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reaction to the news? We are cautiously optimistic. We are

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not going to move further forward until the ink is dry. However, if

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the promise is not fulfilled, the government will look pretty silly.

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But it does appear that the empty rhetoric has now become reality.

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How did you hear the news? I was telephoned at work its so

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Oliver Hill, they contacted me yesterday to see if I was available,

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and he was almost apologetic in his tone, but he did say that it was

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time for us to be given access to the funds, because we file into an

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unprecedented funding bubble. And as such, he wanted to try and help us,

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and to change the law accordingly to do so.

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When you received the phone call, what was your overriding emotion?

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Well, I am still cautious about the whole situation because, when Amber

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Rudd telephoned me in September, she said she fully supported our

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application for a legal aid, and we thought that was the door open, and

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nothing happened from there. Another barrier was built and the door did

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not open. So until the ink is dry, we will sit cautiously. However, we

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would hope that once the firm has filled the application in again,

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that the legal aid agency will be expeditious in their application to

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get it through and ready, so that we can be fairly and effectively

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legally represented at the forthcoming preliminary hearing on

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the 23rd of debris. And the family is not Iraq are

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severe and is has turned the empty rhetoric of the politicians into

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reality. It is quite an achievement, isn't it?

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Absolutely, and we have to thank our supporters, from local Brummies, the

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Birmingham mail, the BBC, ITV, supporters all over the country, in

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Ireland, and even the Lord Mayor, the council leader, everybody. The

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Birmingham Mail, everybody. We want to thank everybody out there.

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Without you, we would never, ever have got to where we are, and we

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thank each and every one of you. All the families are indebted to

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everyone, thank you. From the bottom of our hearts.

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Julie, thank you for coming in. Other news...

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Two patients have died in six weeks, after being sent home from accident

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and emergency in Coventry with a known condition.

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They both had an aortic aneurysm - a swelling of the body's

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main blood vessel - which if it bursts, can be fatal.

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Both families blame a crisis in the NHS for the death

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Our Health Correspondent, Michele Paduano,

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This was June Foxwell on holiday last March.

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She suffered from high blood pressure and breathing difficulties.

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But her family are still trying to come to terms

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She was sent home from A twice with a known aortic aneurysm.

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She collapsed 11 hours later after it burst.

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The aorta is the main vessel carrying blood from the heart.

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Sometimes the wall becomes weak and begins to bulge.

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If operated on, 96% of patients survive,

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She was really upset about how she had been treated.

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She told me they told her she was a time waster,

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and a malingerer, and as my dad has said earlier, that was not her.

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A post mortem report shows an ultrasound scan on August 22nd

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But after three days in hospital she was sent home.

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On August 30th, she was kept in A overnight, then sent home.

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She collapsed 11 hours later and died.

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University Hospital Coventry would not answer any detailed

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questions, said it was working with the coroner to address

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But the coroner has already held an inquest to a death that occurred

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six weeks before Mrs Foxwell's in remarkably similar circumstances.

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The father of Labour MP Toby Perkins died on July 15th after being put

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in a taxi and sent home from University Hospital.

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Four days earlier he had been sent home from the A department

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at Coventry and Warwickshire hospital with what a vascular

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surgeon described at my father's inquest as classical aneurysm

:09:12.:09:14.

Mr Perkins was shocked it could happen again.

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It is very worrying that the pressures that

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are on the national Health Service, and on the University Hospital

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in Coventry particularly in this case are such that the hospital

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are constantly having to make decisions about sending people home

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who really should be in a hospital bed.

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A couple for 39 years, they used to do everything together.

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But Dave is having to come to terms with life on his own.

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The military in Shropshire are warning it's only a matter

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of time before one of their low flying aircraft collides

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with a drone, causing a potential disaster.

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The skies above the Midlands are already busy -

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but planes and helicopters are increasingly being

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Our Special Correspondent Peter Wilson has been investigating.

:09:59.:10:04.

They have been flying here for 100 years.

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There's not much that scares these men and women,

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but the home of the defence helicopter flying school has

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We operate at heights below 500 feet, which is exactly where drone

:10:15.:10:20.

operators will be flying their toys, and it is only a matter of time,

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Drones, remote-controlled aircraft, can cost as little as ?50.

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30,000 were sold last Christmas by just one UK retailers.

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The helicopter crews in Shropshire have increasingly

:10:41.:10:42.

had to dodge the drones as they practice their

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We have had reported sightings in various parts of Shropshire,

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over Nesscliffe training area and over Telford.

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and, you know, drones are only supposed to be flown up to 400 feet.

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These viewings have been spotted up to 1800, 2000 feet.

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It is not only airfields that have seen near misses

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Prisons too, as criminals use the devices to fly

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The RAF has grave concerns about such flights,

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if they were to be operating over Her Majesty's

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Right opposite the main entrance to the prison is an airfield,

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Turnhill, and the helicopter relief landing ground.

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So concerned are the RAF about drones that they are saying

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to people living in Shropshire, if you see a drone

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At Harper Adams University in Shropshire, the next generation

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of drones are being developed for the farming industry.

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In the future, they may be used to spray crops.

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Already the drones are being used by farmers to survey their fields,

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and researchers are now working with the military to make sure

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that their drones can be seen by the helicopter crews.

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So, a cloudy day, lights work really well.

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On really bright sunlight days, you can't see lights too well,

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hence mirrors on the system here, the disco balls, allowing it to be

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visualised by flashing light from the strongest source

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More than 50 flights a day take off from Shawbury.

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The helicopter crews pray that they will not be the first

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The family of former Birmingham City footballer Denis Thwaites,

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who was killed in the Tunisia terror attack, have told an inquest that

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an "evil and twisted" ideology had torn apart their lives.

:12:40.:12:43.

Mr Thwaites, and his wife Elaine, were among 38 tourists who died

:12:44.:12:46.

Mr Thwaites, who was 70, played 87 times for Birmingham City from 1962

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A gang who groomed and raped teenage girls in coventry have been jailed

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The judge said the five men accused social media to exploit teenage

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girls. Marcus Woolcock and Zahid Chaudhary

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were told they would be expected to serve half of their respective

:13:16.:13:17.

sentences before being Waqaar Khan, Kadeem Bourne,

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and Kenan Kelly were told they would also be placed on the sex

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offenders register for life. Labour has named its candidate

:13:26.:13:29.

to fight the Stoke-on-Trent Central Gareth Snell is currently a

:13:30.:13:31.

councillor in Newcastle-under-Lyme, and will contest the seat vacated

:13:32.:13:34.

by Labour's Tristram Hunt. Mr Snell started his

:13:35.:13:37.

campaign with a visit to the Wade Ceramics factory,

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along with Shadow Brexit Secretary, Mr Snell said he now wanted the best

:13:40.:13:42.

outcome for the city. We accept the referendum outcome,

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and now it is our duty to make sure My focus will be getting the best

:13:54.:13:57.

deal for the Potteries. And I think it is important

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that the Labour Party now comes forward and supports the triggering

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of Article 50 because that's There's a full list of candidates

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on the BBC website. Thanks for joining us

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on Midlands Today. The families of the victims

:14:14.:14:14.

of the Birmingham pub bombings will get legal aid

:14:15.:14:18.

because of a change in the law. We'll have your detailed weather

:14:19.:14:23.

forecast from Shefali shortly. A big rise

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in production at Jaguar Land Rover, making it Britain's biggest car

:14:26.:14:29.

maker for the second year running. Firefighters are still tackling

:14:30.:14:41.

a huge fire at a derelict factory It started at a former paper

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manufacturers in the Fordhouses area At its height over a hundred

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firefighters were on site, as they worked to protect

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neighbouring businesses. Piled high with rolls of paper,

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it did not take long The intense heat burning

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through walls and ceilings. This was a substantial fire,

:15:04.:15:08.

really severe fire. At the height of the blaze we had

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20 fire appliances here. That was a total

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of 100 firefighters. A severe incident which has

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taken protracted time At the heart of an industrial

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estate, work went on through the And this is why getting it under

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control was so important. This is the side of the factory

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which was on fire, and this is the perimeter

:15:33.:15:36.

of Marston Aerospace, where last night the team

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on the night shift had If the fire had jumped just

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this short distance, By morning, the fire was under

:15:41.:15:44.

control, but still burning. The concern now, to find out

:15:45.:15:50.

if the chemicals contained in tanks By the afternoon, specialist teams

:15:51.:15:54.

working with the Environment Agency We've identified the chemicals,

:15:55.:16:02.

they are not harmful to human life. However, we don't want

:16:03.:16:08.

them entering the canal, We've also got a brook,

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which runs very close So we're trying contain the water

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on the site along with the chemicals and we are in the of putting

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the fire out. That work is expected

:16:20.:16:22.

to go on into the night. The owners of the site did not

:16:23.:16:25.

want to appear on camera, but told me this afternoon

:16:26.:16:28.

they are working closely with the Fire Service to provide

:16:29.:16:30.

as much information as possible Still quite a lot of activity going

:16:31.:16:53.

on this evening, around 40 firefighters still on the scene,

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working to put out the fire. You may be able to see a bit of a glow and

:16:57.:16:59.

smoke behind me, that is the fire still alight. Good news this

:17:00.:17:03.

evening, we are told that most of that is steam as opposed to smoke,

:17:04.:17:09.

which is good news for people living and working in the area who have

:17:10.:17:12.

been told to keep windows and doors closed for most of the day.

:17:13.:17:14.

Firefighters are actively trying to put out the fire in the centre of

:17:15.:17:19.

the building, they have been avoiding trying to do that for most

:17:20.:17:22.

of the day, not wanting to put warm water onto the situation, because of

:17:23.:17:25.

concerns about those chemicals. However, they have been allayed, and

:17:26.:17:29.

there is a plan in place. Much more work to do, to get the fire out, so

:17:30.:17:35.

that the hard job of investigating how this fire started can get

:17:36.:17:36.

underway. "An animal wouldn't be allowed

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to suffer like my son does." The words of the Mother

:17:40.:17:41.

of five-year-old Alfie He has a rare and severe

:17:42.:17:43.

form of epilepsy. Alfie has been hospitalised

:17:44.:17:48.

scores of times, His mother Hannah believes

:17:49.:17:50.

an alternative therapy, She's campaigning for

:17:51.:17:54.

the Government to legalise Five-year-old Alfie in Warwick

:17:55.:17:58.

Hospital just a few weeks ago. He is about to experience

:17:59.:18:11.

a mild seizure. He had 16 seizures in a row,

:18:12.:18:15.

which we had to treat, Alfie's mum, Hannah,

:18:16.:18:19.

who is from Kenilworth, Every seven to ten days,

:18:20.:18:24.

Alfie will experience It is because he has a very rare

:18:25.:18:29.

form of epilepsy, called TCDH 19. When he comes out of it,

:18:30.:18:38.

he is hysterical, crying, he must have a headache,

:18:39.:18:41.

he's frightened, he's confused, he can't talk properly

:18:42.:18:45.

because obviously his When Alfie was eight months old,

:18:46.:18:46.

he very nearly did not pull through. They basically put him to sleep

:18:47.:18:51.

on a life-support machine. It was just horrendous,

:18:52.:18:54.

it was just the worst. We went from being a happy family

:18:55.:18:58.

to that within hours, it was awful. It obviously really upsets me now

:18:59.:19:02.

just thinking about it, Since then, Alfie's been

:19:03.:19:05.

prescribed a series of drugs, He is being pumped full of drugs

:19:06.:19:10.

all the time that don't work, he is being held down

:19:11.:19:16.

against his will for these drugs to be put into him,

:19:17.:19:18.

and as far as I'm concerned You wouldn't allow an animal to go

:19:19.:19:22.

through what he goes through, Which is why she is now

:19:23.:19:26.

campaigning for cannabis oil, which has helped children like Alfie

:19:27.:19:30.

in other countries, to be If all these countries recognise

:19:31.:19:33.

this cannabis herb has this extraordinary medicinal value,

:19:34.:19:40.

surely we should move, But for people like the Deacons,

:19:41.:19:43.

it cannot be too soon, these children with severe childhood

:19:44.:19:49.

epilepsy, they need medication now, But the Conservative government

:19:50.:19:53.

is still saying it has no plans It argues that cannabis damages

:19:54.:19:58.

mental and physical health. Epilepsy is a very dangerous,

:19:59.:20:04.

dangerous illness that can kill you, and I have to have the right to use

:20:05.:20:07.

this for my son, and if that means I have to take him a broad then

:20:08.:20:12.

fine, but I will still fight for everyone to have

:20:13.:20:15.

the right to use this. In two weeks, she has got 1500

:20:16.:20:18.

signatures on a petition, which she plans to hand

:20:19.:20:22.

into the government later this year. One of the biggest employers

:20:23.:20:25.

in the West Midlands has reported a significant

:20:26.:20:38.

increase in production. Production is up 11%, with more than

:20:39.:20:50.

500,000 vehicles coming off the production lines at its two plants.

:20:51.:20:53.

It is welcome news for thousands of employees and the many companies

:20:54.:20:59.

which supply car parts. Our reporter reports on another bumpy year.

:21:00.:21:06.

Jaguar's first SUV has been a phenomenal success after it went on

:21:07.:21:08.

sale last year, along with new and refreshed models, which has helped

:21:09.:21:14.

Jaguar Land Rover retain its position as the UK's number one

:21:15.:21:18.

car-maker. It is a source of relief for the staff at Solihull.

:21:19.:21:23.

Everyone has been working hard, and it is picking up, and everyone has a

:21:24.:21:27.

bright future. Proud to work here and be part of

:21:28.:21:30.

the company. Solihull is one of three car

:21:31.:21:34.

manufacturing plants run by Jaguar Land Rover in the UK. The company

:21:35.:21:39.

said reduction has increased by more than 240% since the recession in

:21:40.:21:45.

2009, and in the past five years sales have doubled, and the number

:21:46.:21:51.

of jobs has more than tripled. We've invested ?3 billion per year

:21:52.:21:54.

on new factories, new products, new technologies. And therefore we have

:21:55.:21:58.

a business plan that is delivering the sort of production figures you

:21:59.:22:01.

have heard today, and the sales figures.

:22:02.:22:06.

80% of the cars made here are exported and many are being sold in

:22:07.:22:09.

EU countries will stop what does Jaguar Land Rover want as we move

:22:10.:22:16.

towards Brexit? We have been a beneficiary of what

:22:17.:22:19.

has been in place with the EU for a long time. We hope the government

:22:20.:22:22.

can negotiate an ongoing, tariff free environment. Additionally,

:22:23.:22:28.

still secure the best people from Europe and the UK to work for Jaguar

:22:29.:22:33.

Land Rover. If conditions are right the company

:22:34.:22:36.

wants to expand further with a new factory near Coventry. With new

:22:37.:22:41.

models, production could rise to another million cars per year by the

:22:42.:22:46.

end of the decade. Millions of us chuckled at his

:22:47.:22:51.

drawings as children, yet few if any could name him. That is interchange

:22:52.:22:55.

in the Black Country, where this comic artist lived all his life. He

:22:56.:23:02.

was commemorated and his contribution to legendary

:23:03.:23:05.

publications like the Dandy remembered.

:23:06.:23:11.

A very special guest on my show, you are here further especial reason to

:23:12.:23:15.

talk about your dad. Many others grew up with Charlie

:23:16.:23:22.

Griggs. But we never knew it. It was an expose of cigar!

:23:23.:23:24.

I could nip upstairs and watched dad drawing, that was part of life for

:23:25.:23:36.

me. It was great. Johnny drew tens of thousands of

:23:37.:23:41.

strips from desperate Dan to Corky the cat. Many of them on the Dandy's

:23:42.:23:47.

front cover, read by 2 million children per week.

:23:48.:23:54.

During his heyday, millions of people must have seen his work. It

:23:55.:23:59.

brought a lot of joy to people, I think, and that is nice.

:24:00.:24:09.

OK, tell you what, see if you can score a goal against me?

:24:10.:24:13.

Charlie grew up in Langley in the 1930s. Thanks to a campaign begun by

:24:14.:24:19.

a Black Country radio personality, a commemorative plaque is to be placed

:24:20.:24:23.

at his old school. He had the opportunity to move, he

:24:24.:24:26.

could have moved up north, but he chose to stay in his room and draw

:24:27.:24:32.

his cartoons, because he loved the Black Country so much.

:24:33.:24:36.

The Dundee -based publishers would not allow artists to sign their

:24:37.:24:43.

work, making recognition for Charlie at his old school all these years on

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all the more important. It is a real source of inspiration

:24:50.:24:52.

for these children to say, he is a local hero.

:24:53.:24:56.

He did a nice line in seaside postcards as well, which did bear

:24:57.:25:01.

his signature. But in truth he was a modest man who did not crave the

:25:02.:25:03.

live late. -- limelight. I bet that brought memories flooding

:25:04.:25:13.

back for many of you. The weather got rarely above freezing, so are we

:25:14.:25:23.

in a more chilled mood? Yes, another cold and raw night.

:25:24.:25:30.

There may be clouds glowing with iridescent colours. But the pictures

:25:31.:25:37.

of the neon lights in Birmingham earlier this morning. Otherwise it

:25:38.:25:42.

was dull and drab. But at least it was dry. We had snow around, and it

:25:43.:25:49.

was very cold, temperatures barely got above freezing. With the wind

:25:50.:25:53.

chill, more like -6 in parts of the region. So these were the high

:25:54.:25:59.

temperatures from today, and if we take a look at them, -1 at Churchill

:26:00.:26:07.

offered, and 0 degrees in Birmingham, so not very good at all.

:26:08.:26:10.

But this is how it is looking over the coming days, milder conditions

:26:11.:26:13.

heading in as winds they are around to the south-westerly. As they do

:26:14.:26:18.

so, they will draw in rain from the West, coming in for a later

:26:19.:26:22.

tomorrow. But also into Sunday as well. We will have to see how far

:26:23.:26:28.

north as area of rain gets, but the best day out of the weekend will be

:26:29.:26:30.

Saturday, where we have gotten sunshine. Turning milder, there will

:26:31.:26:36.

be spells of rain around as well, but some brightness on the cards as

:26:37.:26:40.

well. But let's take a look at this evening. Some fair spells developing

:26:41.:26:46.

right now, when temperatures will plummet to below freezing, so

:26:47.:26:51.

looking at -2, minus three Celsius, without much of a wind. It may feel

:26:52.:26:56.

a touch milder than it was today, but we have got mist and a little

:26:57.:27:01.

bit of fog in the odd sheltered hollow. But otherwise, a bit of

:27:02.:27:07.

cloud starting to fill in later tonight, giving us a cloudy start.

:27:08.:27:14.

That mist will start to lift, and we will get them as a brightness coming

:27:15.:27:18.

through. Then the cloud thickens up from the South West, bringing in

:27:19.:27:21.

this light, patchy rain, and that will continue its journey

:27:22.:27:24.

north-eastward during the course of tomorrow night. Temperatures

:27:25.:27:30.

tomorrow, 45 Celsius, much better than today, could be into 7-8.

:27:31.:27:37.

Thank you. On tomorrow's Midlands Today, we will be catching up with

:27:38.:27:42.

the big garden bird watch. That's all from me, I will be back at

:27:43.:27:46.

10:30pm. Have a good night.

:27:47.:27:49.