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Summary

  1. Redditch MP Karen Lumley will not contest next election
  2. Hereford submits City of Culture bid
  3. 2015 voter turnout in Wyre Forest among worst in region
  4. Call for return of hospital campaign banner on town hall
  5. Updates on Friday 28 April 2017

Live Reporting

By Caroline Gall

All times stated are UK

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Severe accident: M42 Worcestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M42 Worcestershire northbound severe accident, between J1 for A38 and J2 for A441 Alvechurch.

M42 Worcestershire - One lane closed and slow traffic on M42 northbound between J1, A38 (Bromsgrove) and J2, A441 (Alvechurch), because of an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe accident: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe accident, between J8 for M50 and J7 for A44 Worcester.

M5 Worcestershire - Two lanes closed on M5 northbound between J8 M50 and J7, A44 (Worcester), because of an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe disruption, between J5 for A38 Droitwich and J4A for M42.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane closed on M5 northbound between J5, A38 (Droitwich) and J4a M42, because of a broken down vehicle. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Moeen Ali

Moeen Ali hits 90 as Worcestershire make it back-to-back One-Day Cup wins with a 42-run victory over Leicestershire.

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Severe accident: M42 Worcestershire northbound

BBC News Travel

M42 Worcestershire northbound severe accident, at J2 for A441 Alvechurch.

M42 Worcestershire - M42 in Bromsgrove entry slip road blocked northbound at J2, A441 (Alvechurch), because of an accident. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Karen Lumley

Conservative MP Karen Lumley unseated former Labour Home Secretary Jacqui Smith in 2010.

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Callum Cartlidge

The march was led by the parents of Callum Cartlidge, eight, who died after suffering a cardiac arrest.

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Our live coverage across the day

We'll be back with our usual mix of news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Tuesday, but keep an eye out here for more updates this evening. 

BreakingRedditch MP Karen Lumley to step down

Redditch MP Karen Lumley is to step down at the next election due to ill health, she has announced.

The Conservative had an operation in October and suffered a relapse at the beginning of the year, which forced her to stay away from Westminster. 

In a statement, she said it had been a "huge honour" to represent the town that had been her home for the last 20 years and was "immensely grateful" to all those she had met during that time.

Karen Lumley
BBC

There is nothing more important or rewarding than helping people, however I need to be fully fit to be able to undertake the job properly."

Karen Lumley

First West Mercia officers get body cameras

A £1m investment in body-worn video cameras for West Mercia officers will help victims, prevent crimes and reduce complaints against police, John Campion, crime commissioner says.

Forty six officers in Malvern were the first to get the new kit earlier this month, with colleagues in Telford next before the remainder of the force.

Mr Campion said he'd seen them in use and expects the cameras - first introduced to police a decade ago - to provide increased transparency and reassure the public.

A camera
BBC

The cameras can dramatically reduce the number of complaints against officers, Cambridge University researched has found.

Complaints by members of the public against 2,000 officers across four UK forces and two US police departments, fell by 93% over 12 months compared with the year before.

On Midlands Today from 18:30: Conviction for the surgeon who 'played God'

Nick Owen

Presenter, BBC Midlands Today

On Midlands Today this evening, more on the news that a breast surgeon who carried out "completely unnecessary" operations has been convicted of intentionally wounding patients. 

Ian Paterson
SWNS

Ian Paterson, 59, carried out "extensive, life-changing operations for no medically-justifiable reason".

We'll have full reaction from 18:30 on BBC One.

Keep up-to-date with county cricket developments

Now the 2017 county cricket season is upon us, you can keep up-to-date with the latest signings, moves and speculation.

Go here for all the information on Worcestershire as the season progresses - hot on the heels of their One-Day Cup victory yesterday over Nottinghamshire at New Road.

Alex Hales
Rex Features

Made your mind up about who to vote for?

Elliott Webb and Toni McDonald

Breakfast presenters, BBC Hereford & Worcester

Worcestershire's County Council elections are less than a week away, but is your mind made up?

To give you a better idea of what the parties are promising, we've recorded brief manifestos and interviews with the main parties standing.

For a full list of candidates in your area, click here.

Football: Nail-biting weekend for Worcester City

Phil Maiden

Reporter, BBC Hereford & Worcester

It's a huge weekend for Worcester City fans as they wait to find out if the club will be relegated from the National League North. 

City need at least a draw against champions AFC Fylde to have any chance of survival, but if nearest rivals Gainsborough win they will be down. 

Worcester City ground
BBC

The team currently play in Bromsgrove after moving out of St George's Lane, its home for 108 years, in April 2013.  

Seats, signs and the turf from the pitch at the former stadium were subsequently offered for sale to fans.

Has Hereford got what it takes to be the UK's City of Culture?

It's deadline time to put in a pitch to be the 2021 City of Culture - and Hereford is one of 11 contenders.

The council says it would put on a year-long party of "amazing events and festivals in our communities for everyone to access", and would ensure every town, village and hamlet is included in its plans.

But are the county's rolling hills and abundant hedgerows making it stand out against other cities for the wrong or the right reasons?

Read what the BBC's Nick Higham discovered when he visited to find out more.

There's also be more on tonight's Midlands Today at 18:30 with Abigail Appleton, a member of the bid team, and representatives from other cities taking part.

Herefordshire countryside
Google

BBC Weather Watchers: Sunny Worcester

Mikesnapper took this picture of Worcester this afternoon. 

If you have a taken a photo of where you live and want to share it, then become a BBC Weather Watchersor If you'd like to get in touch you can emailtweet us on @bbchw or message via Facebook

Worcester
Mikesnapper

Rugby: Warriors hoping to improve on 'embarrassing' season

BBC Sport

Gary Gold, new director of rugby at Worcester Warriors, will be hoping his team can keep up their recent good run of form that's kept them in the Premiership.

He admits Newcastle isn't "an easy place to go" but he doesn't want "so much good" to go to waste.

Worcester Warriors
Getty Images

"I know the big thing was staying up this season, but 11th is still a bit embarrassing and we have an atrocious away record too," he says.

"Newcastle is not an easy place to go. I know that from first-hand experience. The job they have done up there is incredible and they are always going to be competitive at Kingston Park."

Kick-off is at 20:00 tonight - listen to BBC local radio or get live text commentary on the BBC Sport website.

Your pictures: Picturesque Severn Stoke

Here's a beautiful photo of Severn Stoke today, taken by Weather Watcher J at Severn Ridge.

If you want to send in a photo of where you are then you can emailtweet us on @bbchw or message via Facebook

Severn Stoke
J at Severn Ridge

On Midlands Today from 13:30: The rise in tool thefts from vans

Nicola Beckford

Reporter, BBC Midlands Today

On Midlands Today this lunchtime, we'll hear how the number of incidents of tools being stolen from vans in the Midlands has almost doubled in the last three years, a BBC investigation's found. 

Tool thefts
West Midlands Police

It's thought criminals are buying locksmith tools from the internet and using them to get into vans.

We'll have more from 13:30 on BBC One.

Call for hospital protest banner to be replaced

Phil Maiden

Reporter, BBC Hereford & Worcester

People in Redditch say a sign on the side of the town hall, which had a message of support for the local hospital, should be replaced.

Banner
BBC

It's believed the banner, which read "'Say No To Cuts At The Alex" was taken down so the council wouldn't appear to be taking political sides so close to elections. 

The banner has been in place since 2012. 

We have approached Redditch Borough Council for comment, but haven't heard anything back yet.

Canines to flock to Crufts qualifier

More than 8,000 dogs will be on show at the Three Counties Showground in Malvern this weekend, all competing for a place at next year's Crufts.

The West of England Ladies Kennel Society Championship Dog Show judges pets on fitness, health and temperament. 

A dog
BBC

Organiser Helen Wayman says: "There'll about about 8,500 dogs and hopefully they're bringing their owners so we're expecting about 4,500 people."

Four treated in two-car crash

Four people have been treated by paramedics following a crash between two cars near Leominster in Herefordshire. 

It happened at just after 5:30 at Stretford Bridge - one woman had to be released from a car by firefighters. 

None of the four people needed hospital treatment, West Midlands Ambulance Service said.

Will Hereford be the UK's City of Culture in 2021?

It's in the running with 11 other towns and cities around the country which must submit their bids by this Sunday.

To be successful, the 2021 winner will have to prove its bid is centred around heritage, and that it will build on existing investment it gets from the lottery fund.  

The chosen place will succeed Hull, which is the City of Culture for this year.

Here's what the city council says about its pitch: "Our bid is unique because it’s for all of Herefordshire, not just Hereford City itself – every town, village and hamlet in the county is included, and the programme has something for residents of all ages, backgrounds and locations." 

Hereford
Other

The city is up against: Perth, Paisley, Stoke-on-Trent, Sunderland, Coventry, Warrington, Portsmouth, Wells, Swansea and the smallest city in Britain, St Davids.

The shortlist will be announced in July and the winning city named in December.

Large increase in tool thefts

Alex Seftel

Journalist

Figures obtained by the BBC suggest a van is broken into and tools are stolen, every 25 minutes across the UK. 

Reports of this kind of crime have risen by almost 75% in the last two years alone.

Nearly 700 incidents have been reported across the West Mercia Police area in the last 12 months, up from less than 500 two years ago.

Rugby: Warriors make four changes

BBC Hereford and Worcester

Worcester Warriors have made four changes to their starting line-up for tonight's trip to Newcastle Falcons.

Winger Bryce Heem returns from suspension in place of Josh Adams, with the Welshman missing due to a thigh injury. 

Warriors also welcome back Wynand Olivier to the starting line-up in the centre with Jackson Willison out with a hamstring problem. 

Donncha O'Callaghan is rested and is replaced by Chris Vui in the second row, meaning Dewald Potgieter is recalled to the starting line-up in the back row.

Val Rapava Ruskin also returns to the side in place of Ryan Bower at loosehead prop. 

View more on twitter

Worcestershire Rapids win opening one-day cup game

There was a win for Worcestershire Rapids in the opening game of the Royal London One-Day Cup yesterday.

Visitors Nottinghamshire made 273-6 from their 50 overs, before the heavens opened, limiting play for most of the afternoon.

When play did resume after 17:15, Worcestershire faced a target of 168 from 22 overs and eventually finished 169-5 with a couple of overs to spare.

Ross Whiteley
Getty Images

Joe Clarke hit a rapid 40 off 26 and Ross Whiteley made a sometimes brutal 41 of 19 to take the match away from Nottinghamshire. Whiteley's innings included 18 off one Samit Patel over.

Jake Ball the pick of the visitors' bowlers with 2-42.

The power of non-voters

Daniel Wainwright

Data unit - English regions

Non-voters would play a pivotal role in the general election if they were to use their vote, analysis suggests.

The number of non-voters exceeded the number of votes cast for the winning party in more than half of UK constituencies in 2015.

In Wyre Forest, 27,967 failed to vote (including spoiled ballots), compared with 22,394 who voted for the current MP, Conservative Mark Garnier.

Map
BBC

The Electoral Reform Society said many people felt their vote did not count.  

See the figures for your constituency on this interactive map

Video: What's the weather doing today?

Charlie Slater

BBC Weather presenter

A generally dry day with occasional sunny spells and the risk of a couple of isolated showers - highs of 12C (54F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Welcome to our live updates for the day

Welcome to Herefordshire and Worcestershire Live on Friday morning. 

We'll be bringing you all the news, sport, travel and weather as it happens. 

If you'd like to get in touch you can emailtweet us on @bbchw or message via Facebook.

Michael Lumb's century was his ninth in limited-over cricket

Worcestershire beat Nottinghamshire in a rain-hit match at New Road after Michael Lumb's century for the visitors.

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Our live coverage across the day

Live updates for Herefordshire and Worcestershire have finished for the day but local stories will be added automatically through the night.  

Eastham Bridge collapsed

The first driver across is a man who reversed a school minibus off moments before the collapse.

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Children's hospice receives grant

A Worcester children's hospice is to receive another grant of £1m from NHS England. 

The grant to Acorns, which supports life-limited and life-threatened children and their families, represents 10% of its running costs. 

The hospice receives a further 20% from other NHS sources, with the vast majority coming from public donations. 

Woman sexually assaulted in Hereford

A woman in her 20s has been sexually assaulted while walking in Hereford. 

Police say a man inappropriately touched her while she was heading along St Martin's Street towards the river at around 19:00 last night. 

The police are appealing for witnesses. 

St Martin's street
Google

Anti-cuts banner taken down by council

Jerry Chester

BBC News Online

Campaigners against cuts to the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch say they're furious the borough council has taken down a banner in support of the campaign from the side of the town hall. 

The sign, which was put up in 2012 with the backing of council leader Bill Hartnett, read: "Say No to Cuts at the Alex". 

Banner
BBC

It's understood the decision was made because of the upcoming elections, with the council not wanting to appear to be taking sides.