23/01/2017 Midlands Today


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23/01/2017

The latest news, sport and weather for the Midlands.


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The Midlands could rival London for business output -

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that's the encouraging message from the Chancellor, Philip Hammond,

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on the day the Government launched its industrial strategy

:00:12.:00:13.

The Prime Minister is already committed to growing the Midlands

:00:14.:00:20.

economy by ?34 billion by 2030 and creating an extra 300,000 jobs

:00:21.:00:23.

Today she shared her plans for how to make it happen.

:00:24.:00:33.

Here's our business correspondent, Peter Plisner.

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With the post-Brexit warning sirens still sounding and business

:00:36.:00:38.

still cautious about the long-term impact of leaving the EU, today's

:00:39.:00:47.

industrial strategy couldn't have come at a better time.

:00:48.:00:57.

It is designed to help small businesses like this,

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which makes warning lights and klaxons, plan for the future.

:01:00.:01:01.

Vic, who is in charge of dispatches, is due to retire in a

:01:02.:01:04.

few years' time, but even he thinks it is the right way forward.

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I've only four years to go before I retire, but long-term,

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for my kids and grandkids, obviously it is important.

:01:11.:01:12.

Here, directly or indirectly, they supply goods to most

:01:13.:01:14.

of the sectors being supported by this new industrial strategy,

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and hopefully that will mean further expansion in the future

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The new strategy aims to encourage growth by focusing

:01:20.:01:26.

on investments in science, upgrading infrastructure and helping

:01:27.:01:30.

increase both exports and inward investments.

:01:31.:01:32.

But up in the board room, the company's commercial director

:01:33.:01:38.

What is important for us is to make sure

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that it has got crossbench support with Labour,

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and it doesn't change every four years when we get a new Government.

:01:47.:01:49.

We want investments lasting ten, 15 years.

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Unless we can plan for that, anything less than

:01:52.:01:53.

Elsewhere, this leading businesswomen, whose

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firm makes equipment for the construction

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industry, whilst welcoming the strategy, is worried that today

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there was no mention of the Midlands Engine.

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There is such a great industry in the Midlands.

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We've got huge construction projects, huge manufacturing,

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so let's hope they haven't forgotten about us.

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Nearly 10% of the UK's small and medium-sized

:02:19.:02:20.

businesses are based in the West Midlands,

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and the success of the new strategy will be measured in part

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More importantly, how many jobs they will

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Joan Cummins is at the Manufacturing Technology Centre in Coventry.

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Is the Midlands right to be nervous that it's been overlooked?

:02:39.:02:48.

Businesses are always nervous until everything

:02:49.:02:51.

is signed on the dotted line, but today the Chancellor,

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We will be announcing our Midlands Engine strategy in due

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course, and we will be setting out how we're going to

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approach in the Midlands that we're already working on in the

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In the Midlands area, there are 11 million people,

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and if we can get that area operating as an effective

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marketplace, it will rival and even exceed the power of London.

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I am joined by the chief executive of this centre, Clive Hickman. Are

:03:31.:03:37.

you nervous at the Midlands engine may be overlooked? I don't think it

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will be. It think it was clear in the Green paper that was issued

:03:42.:03:45.

today that the Midlands engine structure he will follow closely

:03:46.:03:49.

behind the Northern powerhouse strategy. What will that actually

:03:50.:03:55.

mean for us? It gives us a great opportunity, us working together to

:03:56.:04:01.

improve productivity and growth in the Midlands. What we want to know

:04:02.:04:05.

about is jobs. Will we see them or is it high in the sky? I think there

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will be more jobs. The improvement in productivity and economy growth

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will lead to more jobs. We all want to see more jobs. We understand the

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Government started -- strategy will be published in the next few months

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and we will know exactly how much will be plowed here into the

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Midlands. Back to you. Thank you. 100 rural communities are to benefit

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from life-saving medical equipment. The Four Acres Trust

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is offering funding to help pay for defibrillators,

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which can shock the heart back Ambulance crews were called to deal

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with 14,000 cardiac arrests in the West Midlands last year,

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with survival rates at just 8%. Ian Hough knows he is lucky

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to be alive, but there His story, dramatised

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in a video, has a happy ending because when he collapsed

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with a cardiac arrest, first-aiders were on hand,

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equipped with a defibrillator It means I can still carry

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on with life as normal. There is nothing different that I do

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now that I didn't do prior Yeah, they are just

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a fantastic bit of kit. Ambulance crews and first

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responders have them, too. But in remote areas,

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it can take a lot longer To have a distributor

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in the community, available 24/7, -- defibrillator, to be

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able to train people an awareness session of how

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to a defibrillator is A rural charity is putting up

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?50,000 and asking communities to raise the same again to pay

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for 100 new defibrillators. To some extent they are reliant

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on first responders getting to an incident first, and

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the ambulance arrives a little bit later, hopefully not too much later,

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and that is why we are backing Ian is into the sixth year

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of his extra lease of life, and should a crisis arise again,

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his boat club is now properly The Midlands Canal Network

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is looking for more volunteers They've been part of life on our

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waterways for hundreds of years. But they're in short supply,

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so a campaign has been launched to find people who can help keep

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the tradition alive. Nestled in the heart of Worcester,

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the canals have been an integral Jo is one of a band of volunteer

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lock keepers whose job it It is about helping people, talking

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to people and helping them find out what is happening in the area. You

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have people who don't know the area, where is the best curry house or the

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best morning, but just generally chatting to be but walking through.

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This is where the canal network meets the river.

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It is also one area where new volunteers are needed.

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This is the first 58 locks across the stretch of the canal.

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There are currently 40 volunteer lock keepers here, but

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they're hoping to double that number to enhance more people's journey

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They get a briefing, but if you're new to it

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Knowing there is a volunteer lock keeper

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there to be supportive when you need it.

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The days of industty might be gone, now the canaled prosperity

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comes from a different type of trade.

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This cafe relies on the canal, and the owners know what an

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important role the lock keepers play.

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The tourist industry is very important to Worcester,

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so they are helping with

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that and it helps with the economics of the area.

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A profession steeped in history and heritage, anyone who

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would like to volunteer and try their hand at

:08:36.:08:41.

Six army reservists from the Midlands have completed

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a 1,100 mile journey across Antarctica,

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a feat only ever achieved by a handful of people.

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The team called Spear 17, are raising money

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They finished their expedition in 66 days.

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Their journey on foot took them via the South Pole.

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I'll leave you with the weather forecast from Shefali Oza.

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Thank you very much. Good evening. Today's fog was not the only thing

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getting a lot of you talking. It was also this evening's fiery sunset

:09:18.:09:21.

which gradually started to fizzle out towards the end of the day. This

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is how the rest of the week is looking. Cold, frosty and foggy,

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mostly dry and then milder by the weekend. As far as the fog is

:09:31.:09:35.

concerned for tonight, we have a warning in place for that for dense

:09:36.:09:39.

freezing fog which could be quite widespread. If we look at it on the

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chart, it is like a big ball of cotton wool, developing very quickly

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and we have a widespread frost as temperatures dipped to minus four

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Celsius here in the Southwest. That is how you start the day, on a

:09:53.:09:57.

foggy, frosty note. Tricky driving conditions around, take care. That

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will gradually lift, we will see pleasant spells of sunshine in the

:10:03.:10:08.

afternoon. Temperatures ranging from 5-7 C. Tomorrow night we do not have

:10:09.:10:12.

as much fog because we have more cloud. That is going to keep

:10:13.:10:16.

temperatures above freezing, so we do not have frost either, working

:10:17.:10:20.

both ways. It will be a mild night, not as cold as today, temperatures

:10:21.:10:24.

for most listeners down to around one or two Celsius, but as we head

:10:25.:10:29.

into Wednesday, it means it will be a cloudy start to the day and that

:10:30.:10:33.

cloud starts to break up, revealing some decent spells of sunshine by

:10:34.:10:36.

the time we get to the afternoon. Temperatures ranging from around six

:10:37.:10:40.

- seven agree Celsius. Looking ahead, it is the southerly

:10:41.:10:46.

southeasterly breeze that will introduce colder air by the time we

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get to Thursday. It looks as though it will be a westerly on the

:10:50.:10:52.

surface, but it's originating from the South East and it means we will

:10:53.:10:56.

see more in the way of the sunshine, so Thursday is the best day for

:10:57.:11:00.

sunshine, cloudy or on Friday with spots of rain.

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For the weekend we will have dry weather with sunny spells and it

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will be a little bit milder. Good evening. We are continuing to

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see huge righty in the weather. Getting the detail right is proving

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to be a challenge. This was in Pembrokeshire and other parts of the

:11:24.:11:28.

UK were gloomy throughout the day. The fog is thickening up right now.

:11:29.:11:33.

Particularly pool on the M5 in south-west England. Very foggy

:11:34.:11:41.

across parts of the West Country. This fog is tending to spread its

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way further

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