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  1. News, sport, travel and weather updates to resume at 08:00 on Friday
  2. Updates on Thursday 26 May 2016

Live Reporting

By Andy Giddings

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Our live coverage across the day

Live updates for Shropshire have finished for the day but we'll be back from 08:00 Friday with the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

Weather: A dry, mild night for Shropshire

BBC Weather

It's been a cloudy day today, but some of that should clear overnight and it will be relatively mild too - around 10C (50F).

This photo was taken at Kinnersley this afternoon by one of our BBC Weather Watchers.

Can you see the Wrekin?

Referendum campaigners get Telford poster warning

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

Campaigners in the EU referendum are being warned not to put up posters on council-owned property in Telford.

And Telford and Wrekin Council is threatening to bill them for the cost of removing the posters.

EU referendum

The authority says a number of election posters were defaced with offensive symbols or language in the run-up to the European elections two years ago.

Exam regulator clamps down on re-marks

BBC News Education

England's exams regulator is clamping down on the "unfair advantage" gained by some schools which seek high numbers of GCSE and A-level re-marks.

Ofqual is changing its system this summer, so that new marks can only be issued if a "marking error" is found.


Their research shows independent schools seek twice as many GCSE reviews as comprehensive schools request.

But Chris King, chairman of the independent schools body the HMC, called the proposals "unfair".

Ambulance trust one of only two not to buy in from the private sector

The West Midlands Ambulance Service is one of only two trusts in the country which hasn't spent any money paying for private ambulances

Overall, the NHS is spending three times as much money on private ambulances for 999 calls compared to four years ago. 


The BBC has discovered ambulance trusts across England spent at least £66m last year on private vehicles to cope with the rising number of emergency calls.  

ONS predictions of big growth in elderly population

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

It's fairly well known that Shropshire has an ageing population, but today's figures from the Office of National Statistics are eye-opening.

Today, there is only one local authority in the Midlands with more than a quarter of the population over the age of 65 (that's Malvern Hills), but in eight years time there will be seven - including the Shropshire Council area.

Old people

And while the population of the West Midlands is projected to increase by 5.9% in that time, the elderly population is predicted to rise by 17.4%.

Wrekin MP urges people to boycott Newport circus

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

Wrekin MP Mark Pritchard, who has campaigned for the rights of circus animals in the past, is urging people to boycott Jolly's circus in Newport.

Jolly's say they've been regularly inspected by Defra and have all the necessary licenses for keeping wild animals.

Mark Pritchard

But protestors say they shouldn't be using performing animals "in the name of entertainment" and say it is "giving the town a bad name".

I hope local people will protest peacefully and vote with their feet by boycotting the circus."

Mark PritchardMP for the Wrekin

Plans for 100-bedroom hotel in Telford

Plans for a 100-bedroom hotel, costing £12m, have been unveiled.

Southwater Event Group (SEG), which owns the International Centre, also wants to build a multi-storey car park on the site of the ice-rink car park, and a new restaurant and bar.

Artists impression of hotel in Telford
Southwater Events Group

SEG Chief Executive Tom Gray said that by increasing the number of hotel rooms and parking spaces, it could hold multiple events at the International Centre more easily in the future.

Work could start later this year and the company claims it could create up to 100 jobs.

Headlines: Telford hotel planned; MP urges circus boycott; Hinstock man gets big littering fine

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

These are our top stories this evening:

- 100-bedroom hotel planned for Telford

- Wrekin MP urges people to boycott Newport circus

- Hinstock man ordered to pay more than £600 for dropping parking ticket

Medals stolen from Oswestry home

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

An elderly woman has had her son's army medals stolen from her home in Oswestry.

The thieves forced their way through the front door of her house on College Road on Tuesday.

One of the medals was later found in a nearby garden.

College Road

Hunt on for illegal anglers

The Environment Agency is patrolling the banks of the Severn in Shrewsbury today, on the hunt for illegal anglers.

View more on twitter

Headlines: Rugby club accuses animal rights activists of bullying; Hinstock man gets big littering fine

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

Here's another look at our top stories:

- Rugby club accuses animal rights activists of bullying its sponsors

- Hinstock man gets big littering fine after dropping parking ticket

- Port Vale striker signs for Shrewsbury

Parking fine turns out expensive for Hinstock man

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

A simple parking fine has ended up being very expensive for a 59-year-old from Hinstock.

When Paul Timmis was issued the parking ticket in Newport back in December, he dropped it in the street... and was given a fixed penalty notice for littering by a passing community support officer.

Parking fine
Getty Images

He didn't pay and Telford magistrates have now ordered him to pay £635.75 in fines and costs.

Staff 'told not to take action against probation breaches'

Probation officers are being told not to take action against offenders who breach sentence terms, because their companies risk being fined, a watchdog in England and Wales has said.

Since 2015, private probation groups have received payments linked to offenders meeting sentence conditions.

Wall being cleaned
Getty Images

This may have deterred staff from taking action against people breaching community orders, inspectors found.    

The government said it was addressing issues raised in the report.

Tom Bradshaw out of Euros

BBC Sport

Wales striker Tom Bradshaw has been ruled out of Euro 2016 due to a calf injury

The Shrewsbury-born and former Town striker made his international debut against Ukraine earlier this year. 

Tom Bradshaw
Getty Images

Outgoing council leader praises Telford team

Outgoing Telford and Wrekin Council leader Kuldip Sahota has paid tribute to his fellow councillors and authority staff in his final blog post.

Mr Sahota, set to be replaced as leader by Shaun Davies, cited the survival of MOD Donnington and the redevelopment of Southwater as among the greatest achievements during his tenure.

Kuldip Sahota

Animal rights activists accused of bullying rugby club sponsors

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

Two companies have ended their sponsorship of Newport Rugby Club following protests about it allowing a circus to use its land, the club says.

Club Chairman Steve Murphy says he's been to visit Jolly's Circus and was satisfied the animals on the site are "healthy and contented" and the circus says it has been regularly inspected by Defra and has all the necessary licences.

Mr Murphy has accused animal rights activists of abusing the club and its sponsors, but the protestors say their demonstrations are peaceful and they are just reflecting public anger.

Mr Murphy says he is happy for the public to make up their own mind and "vote with their feet".

Football: Shrewsbury set to sign Port Vale striker

James Bond

Sports Producer, BBC Shropshire

Shrewsbury Town are set to sign Port Vale forward Louis Dodds, the BBC understands. 

The 29-year-old will join on a free transfer at the end of his contract with the Potteries club.

Louis Dodds
Getty Images

Dodds has made over 300 appearances since signing for Vale eight years ago.

Report due on future of Shrewsbury pool

Shropshire Star

A report outlining the future of Shrewsbury’s swimming pool will be considered by Shropshire Council’s cabinet in six weeks' time.

Shropshire poker player off to Vegas

A Shropshire poker player is jetting off to play in a tournament in Las Vegas this morning.

Karen Gallagher, from Cleobury Mortimer usually plays at the town's Old Lion pub as part of her local poker league.

Poker chips

She won a place in the VEGAS100 tournament after beating rivals in a regional competition in Walsall.

Ofsted success for Derwen college

Derwen College in Gobowen has been rated outstanding by Ofsed for the third time in a row.

It was given the news after their latest inspection last month.

The college's Chief Executive described the news as "unbelievably wonderful".

Derwen College

Headlines: 'Legal high' ban welcomed by victim's sister; memorial for ex-SAS soldier

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

These are our top stories this lunchtime:

- Telford woman who lost brother to 'legal highs' welcomes ban

- Memorial service for former SAS soldier

- Shrewsbury Town sign midfielder

A quarter of people to be 65 or over within 10 years

Mark Elliott

Reporter, BBC Shropshire

The ageing population is causing a huge amount of concern for local authorities all over the country, but the age of residents in Shropshire Council's patch could provide more problems than most.

The Office for National Statistics predicts that 27% of people in the area will be 65 or over by 2024.


NHS 'must get a grip on hospital discharge delays'

Nick Triggle

Health Correspondent

The NHS in England must get a grip on the delays patients face in being released from hospital, as the problem causes unnecessary harm and wastes money, the National Audit Office says.

A report by the watchdog estimated the delays were costing £820m a year.


It warned they also put older patients at risk because they lose mobility during extended stays.

It comes after delays hit record levels this winter because of a lack of support available in the community.

Weather: Clouds clearing up this afternoon

Charlie Slater

BBC Weather presenter

It's going to stay cloudy for the rest of the day, but it should clear up a little this afternoon, with some sun peaking through.

Watch: Springwatch presenters preview the new series

A new three-week series of BBC Springwatch starts next Monday and the presenters have been talking about their highlights.

Here we have Chris Packham, Iolo Williams and Martin Hughes-Games.

Watch: Telford woman reacts to legal high ban

Faith Page

Reporter, BBC Shropshire

A government ban on legal highs comes into force today, following a number of deaths, including Telford bricklayer Jamie Penn.

The 29-year-old died two years ago after taking a drug known as 4-4DMAR. 

Since then, four others in the county have also lost their lives after taking so-called legal highs and Jamie's sister Charlotte Delo from Hadley has been campaigning ever since she lost her brother.

BBC Weather Watchers: Another grey start to the day

BBC Weather Watchers

It's been a cold and grey start to the day and that's reflected in the photos we're being sent by the BBC Weather Watchers this morning.

This one was taken at Norton-in-Hales.

Betton Bear

The forecast is a little better for this afternoon though and we're still getting beautiful photos like this one, taken at Myddle.

Len Ticular

School balloon turns up in the Netherlands

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

A weather balloon that was launched from a school in Shrewsbury last week has turned up in the Netherlands.

Coleham Primary fitted a tracker to it, but quickly lost contact and despite an appeal across the Midlands, nothing turned up.

Woman with box
Ruth Wichers

Now they've been contacted by Ruth Wichers, who spotted it washed up a beach on the Dutch island of Schiermonnikoog.

Tom Larkham, a teacher at the school is hoping the video and stills cameras fitted to the balloon are still working and is expecting it to be posted back this week.

Headlines: Memorial service for ex-SAS soldier; growing elderly population; Shrewsbury sign midfielder

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

Here's another look at our top stories this morning:

- Memorial service for former SAS soldier

- Over 65s set to make up a quarter of population in Shropshire Council area by 2024

- Shrewsbury Town sign midfielder Deegan

Football: Deegan signs for Shrewsbury Town

Mark Elliott

Reporter, BBC Shropshire

Shrewsbury Town have signed the former Southend midfielder Gary Deegan on a two-year deal.

Gary Deegan
Getty Images

The 28-year-old, from Dublin, has previously played for Coventry City and Hibernian.

He’s a defensive midfield player that can sit in front of the centre backs, protect them and he’s also a great leader, a winner and a great character."

Micky MellonShrewsbury Town manager

Ice Hockey: Polish netminder spoke to ex-Tigers before Telford move

Andy Giddings

BBC Local Live

Polish international netminder Ondrej Raszka says he spoke to ex-Tigers Vladimir Kutny and Jaroslav Kruzik, before signing with Telford this week.

The 26-year-old, who has spent his career playing in Poland and the Czech Republic, also said he wants to win more caps for his country while playing here.

Ondrej Raszka
W. Buszta

Raszka had an impressive goals-conceded record in the Polish top flight and Tigers head coach Tom Watkins has described him as "the most important signing we will make this summer". 

I spoke to Vladimir Kutny and Jarsolav Kruzic about the people at Telford, and they only had good things to say. That made my decision to join the Tigers even easier."

Ondrej RaszkaTigers netminder

Memorial service for former SAS soldier

A memorial service is being held today for a former SAS soldier from Shrewsbury, who was honoured for his role in a hostage rescue in the 1970s.

Barry Davies helped storm a hijacked Lufthansa plane at Mogadishu Airport in 1977.

Barry Davies

He served with the regiment for two decades and died last last month at the age of 71.

Headlines: One in four people in Shropshire to be over 65 within a decade, Town sign midfielder Deegan

Mark Elliott

Reporter, BBC Shropshire

The top stories in Shropshire this morning:

- New figures suggest that by 2024, a quarter of people living in the Shropshire Council area will be 65 or over

- A memorial service will be held today for a former SAS soldier from Shrewsbury, who was honoured for his role in a hostage rescue in the 1970s

- Shrewsbury Town sign former Southend midfielder Gary Deegan

Watch: Weather forecast for the West Midlands

A dull and cloudy start to the day with drizzle on and off. However, the cloud will start to thin and break this afternoon allowing for some brighter weather for a time

Highs of 16C (61F).

Weather for the West Midlands.

Good Morning from BBC Shropshire

Mark Elliott

Reporter, BBC Shropshire

Between now and 18:00 we'll bring you all the Shropshire news, sport, travel and weather.

Please get in touch if you have a story or pictures you'd like to share with the rest of Shropshire. 

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