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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Football

Unbeaten Shrewsbury rescue a point at struggling Plymouth, thanks to Shaun Whalley's 20-yard equaliser.

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Hundreds of knives handed in to the police

Hundreds of knives and other bladed weapons have been handed in to police stations across Shropshire, Herefordshire and Worcestershire over the past four weeks.

West Mercia Police launched a "knife surrender" scheme on 18 September and it is due to come to an end on Monday.

Knives
West Mercia Police

More than 250 bladed weapons have been handed into stations in Shropshire alone, including the ones pictured here.

Knives
West Mercia Police

Once the collection is complete, the knives will be passed on to an artist at the British Ironworks Centre near Oswestry, who plans to turn it into a plinth for his giant knife angel sculpture.

Watch: Latest weather for the West Midlands

Rebecca Wood

BBC Midlands Today

Patchy rain will ease this evening. It should remain cloudy, but dry, in most places overnight.

It will be a mild and rather muggy night for all, while remaining breezy - 15C (59F).

West Midlands weather

Stones painted in memory of fallen soldiers

Telford primary school children are painting over 500 rocks to remember fallen soldiers.

The stones have been decorated by pupils at Newdale Primary School with poppy designs and will each carry the name of a Shropshire soldier.

They are being sponsored to raise money for The Royal British Legion and will be hidden for people to find and return them.

They will eventually form a permanent rockery memorial on the school grounds.

Rocks painted in memory of fallen soldiers

Investigation into fatal crash

An investigation is under way into a crash in Shropshire which claimed the life of a motorcyclist in his 70s yesterday.

He collided with a van on the B4176 near Stableford at 12:17 and paramedics declared him dead at the scene.

Crash scene
Google

The van driver, who was in his 40s, was also hurt, but his injuries aren't said to be life-threatening.

Ice hockey: Cup action for Blaze and Tigers

Both Coventry Blaze and Telford Tigers are in cup action this weekend, while Solihull Barons have a league match against Hull Pirates.

Coventry travel to Buckinghamshire tomorrow to take on Elite League newcomers Milton Keynes Lightning in the challenge cup, and then host Cardiff Devils the following day.

Tigers ice hockey
Steve Brodie

Telford Tigers have home and away fixtures against Swindon Wildcats in the NIHL Autumn Cup.

Solihull Barons are still looking for their first win of the NIHL North season and are without a head coach after Dan McKriel decided to step down in the week.

Schoolgirls arrested over assault allegations

Two girls have been arrested on suspicion of GBH after a report of an assault on a pupil at the Telford Langley School.

West Mercia Police says officers are working with the school.

Telford Langley School
Telford Langley School
Stan Buckles and Dunstan Dowling

Superstition tells us today should be a disaster but these people say Friday 13th is their lucky day.

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Spending on youth activities could be cut

Faith Page

Reporter, BBC Shropshire

Council spending on youth clubs and other activities could be cut in many of Shropshire's towns and villages.

Out of the 18 areas which currently get funding from Shropshire Council, just six will remain, in Shrewsbury, Bridgnorth, Oswestry, Ludlow, Whitchurch and Market Drayton.

Shropshire Council
BBC

The council says it appreciates the policy could have a detrimental affect on young people especially if it means youth clubs having to close.

The plans haven't yet been approved and there will be a period of consultation.

Veteran speaks out over support centre closure plan

A veteran who says he's getting his life back, after receiving support from the military charity Combat Stress, is campaigning against plans to close its residential centre in Newport.

Combat Stress says it's responding to increased demand by offering people care in their own homes instead, but Peter Neale says this won't be as good.

Soldiers in Afghanistan
PA

Mr Neale said one of the advantages of the residential centre was that it allowed veterans to support each other.

He has been getting care at Audley Court for nearly 20 years and set up a Facebook page, opposing the closure.

The staff are phenomenal, they make you feel welcome, you feel you can talk to them about anything. With the other veterans there, we support each other. It's like being back in battalion."

Peter NealeVeteran
Friday 13th on a calendar

Jennifer Meierhans

BBC News Online

Why do people think Friday 13th is unlucky? Take a look at the psychology behind the superstition.

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In the papers: Fatal brain bleed missed

Shropshire Star

These are some of the stories featured on the Shropshire Star website today:

Protest over loss of military mental health services

Army veterans are planning to demonstrate against a military charity's plans to scale back its services in Shropshire today.

Combat Stress says some jobs could be lost, as it looks to stop providing residential care at its Audley Court site in Newport.

Audley Court
Combat Stress

The charity's Chief Executive Sue Freeth says it wants to offer an outpatient service in the new year.

M54-M6 link road consultation ends

A consultation ends today on plans to build a new link road between the M54, M6 and M6 Toll.

Highways England says the current direct link on the A460 through Featherstone and Shareshill suffers "significant congestion and high accident rates".

It says a new route would "relieve traffic congestion on the A460, A449 and A5, providing more reliable journey times".

M6 Toll
BBC

Highways England said the new road would also help grow the local economies in Telford, Shrewsbury, Wolverhampton, Cannock and Tamworth.

Three alternative routes have been proposed, bypassing Featherstone and Shareshill, and it's the last chance to have your say.

Land targeted by poachers

BBC Midlands Today

A large rural estate in Shropshire has been repeatedly targeted by poachers.

Dozens of deer and hares have been taken from the estate, which lies between Shrewsbury and Telford, in the last few months.

Land
BBC

The wild deer have been hunted by dogs or shot with rifles.

Police say the number taken suggests they have a commercial outlet to sell venison to. Crops have also been damaged by the poachers driving through them.

Watch: Latest weather forecast

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

Some wet and windy weather on the way today, but temperatures are staying high for this time of year.

Highs of 20C (68F) with more warm weather expected over the weekend.

West Midlands weather

Primary school children get balance bike lessons

Les Walton

BBC News

Primary school children in Shropshire are being offered balance bike lessons, to help them get to grips with riding a bicycle at a young age.

Shropshire Council has paid for the bikes and helmets and is aiming the classes at pupils in reception, year one and year two.

The children get four 45-minute sessions, in which they are taught to get on and off the bikes, push off, control the bikes and come to a stop.

Primary school children get balance bike lessons

Weather: A mild night and warm temperatures forecast tomorrow

Shefali Oza

BBC Midlands Today

We're forecast a mild night with temperatures as high as 15C (59F) in places. That's going to continue tomorrow and they could rise up to 18C (64F).

It's going to remain overcast though.

Weather forecast for the West Midlands on Thursday 12 October

Kittens found dumped in cardboard box

Two kittens have been found, abandoned in a cardboard box in a children's playground in Shropshire.

The RSPCA said a dog walker spotted them at the park in Morda.

Kittens
RSPCA

The charity says both are black, around five months old and appear to be in good health.

It is absolutely unthinkable why anyone would deem it acceptable to dump two defenceless young kittens in a cardboard box like this."

Phil LewisRSPCA inspector

Nine skip lorries destroyed in suspected arson attack

A fire that destroyed nine skip hire vehicles at an industrial estate in Shropshire is believed to have been started deliberately.

Police have been called in to investigate the fire, which started at the Shifnal Industrial Estate on Lamledge Lane at 01:50 on Saturday.

Fire engine
BBC

Detectives say two people in dark clothing were seen in the area on that night.

Severn Valley Railway looks to raise £700k

The Severn Valley Railway appeal to raise £2.5m for improvements to its Bridgnorth station is still £700,000 short of its target, with just 19 days to go.

Last November it started collecting the money, by offering people the chance to buy £1 shares.

Severn Valley Railway work
Severn Valley Railway

The money will be used to pay for alterations to the station house, which include a new bar and toilet block.

Work on the project started at the end of last year.

'Golden hello' for rural GPs

BBC News Health

Newly qualified GPs are to be offered a one-off payment of £20,000 if they start their careers in areas that struggle to attract family doctors.

The £4m scheme, to be announced by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, aims to boost the numbers of doctors in rural and coastal areas of England.

Stethoscope
PA

Mr Hunt said it would help "reduce the pressure" on practices in those areas.

The Royal College of GPs backed the plan, saying there was a "serious shortage" of family doctors.

Fire service takeover plans submitted

Plans which involve the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner taking control of the fire services in Shropshire, Herefordshire and Worcestershire have been submitted to the government, despite protests from the existing fire authorities.

John Campion says this would save millions of pounds and improve collaboration between the police and fire service.

John Campion
West Mercia PCC

Fire authorities and councils in the three counties have cast doubt on his money-saving claims and argued that there was good collaboration already.

The Home Office will now be asked to make a decision on the proposals.

Firefighters take out-of-service fire engines to Romania

A group of Shropshire firefighters are on their way to Transylvania, to deliver five out-of-service fire engines to the fire service in Romania.

It's been organised by a local charity, Operation Sabre, and also involved firefighters from Wales, Manchester, Merseyside and Bavaria.

Fire engines
Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service

The team are due to take five days travelling almost 2,000 miles across nine countries to reach Romania, where they will also train volunteer firefighters from remote villages.

It's the 14th time the charity has organised one of these aid missions.

In the papers: Path sealed off for police inquiry

Shropshire Star

Here are three stories on the Shropshire Star website:

Your comments: Praise for ambulance service TV series

The BBC TV series Ambulance comes to an end tonight and it's been winning a lot of praise on the BBC Midlands Facebook page.

The documentary shows the work done by paramedics and call-centre staff in the region and Pat Burford wrote: "Fantastic programme, all those people are worth their weight in gold."

And Amanda Henry added: "Watching this programme opened up my eyes as to what they do."

BBC Ambulance series
BBC

Simon Pilkington also enjoyed the series and commented: "Probably one of the best programmes in a very long time. The public takes these people for granted far too often."

And Pat Bayton says the programme has improved her understanding of the work they do, writing: "Had to use the ambulance a few weeks ago. Was panicking cos it took the ages. I can understand why after watching this brilliant programme."

Authors and illustrators donate to flood-hit school

Andy Giddings

BBC News

Children's authors and illustrators have been donating copies of their books to a Shropshire primary school which had its library damaged by water.

St Andrew's Primary School, in Shifnal, estimates it lost books worth £5,000 when a pipe burst last weekend.

Mop and bucket at school
BBC

The general public have also been donating books to the school.

An online fundraising appeal has raised £1,500 in just two days.

Watch: Your 50-second weather forecast

Charlie Slater

BBC Weather presenter

A bright and sunny start to the day with plenty of blue sky around.

Cloud building this afternoon but staying dry with highs of 16C (61F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

College launches 'seventh form'

A new "seventh form" is being launched by Telford College of Arts and Technology to address the gap between education and business.

It will allow students the chance to take traditional A-levels while allowing them to work with local firms and explore alternatives to university.

TCAT
BBC

About a third of the students, roughly 700, are expected to join the seventh form next September as TCAT merges with New College.

Fly-tipping fines bring in thousands

Councils in the West Midlands have issued more than £30,000 in fines to fly-tippers in the last year, according to figures given to the Press Association.

Flytipped rubbish
BBC

Local authorities were given new powers in 2016 to issue fixed penalty notices of up to £400 a time to people caught dumping waste illegally.

In some cases offenders can be jailed for the crime, which is estimated to cost councils in England £50m a year to clean up.

Countryside group 'dismayed' by housing proposals

Andy Giddings

BBC News

Plans to allow nearly 29,000 homes to be built in Shropshire over the next 20 years have been criticised by the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE).

It said house building of this scale would be "unacceptable" and the Shropshire Council proposals would not provide homes in the areas where they were most needed.

House building
PA

And the CPRE said the way the authority had come up with this proposed target was "highly questionable", adding, "there is not the evidence to support the figure".

To say that CPRE Shropshire is disappointed by Shropshire Council’s housing recommendations would be a gross understatement. We are concerned that its 20-year plans are about the numbers and growth game and not about providing the houses that are really needed in the right places

Charles GreenCPRE

Watch the latest weather forecast for the West Midlands

Shefali Oza

BBC Midlands Today

The odd shower is possible this evening, but overnight it will stay dry with clear spells and lighter winds.

It will turn chilly for many, with some patchy mist and fog possible - lows of 6C (43F).

Latest weather forecast for the West Midlands

Just for Pets out of the dog house and bought out

Struggling pet chain Just for Pets has been rescued from the administrators by a supply firm.

Buyer Pedigree Wholesale, which supplies pet, aquatic and garden centre products to shops, plans to keep 200 jobs, but said seven of the 25 Just for Pets stores would close, including three in the Midlands - Evesham, Burton-upon-Trent and Yardley.

Jest for Pets
Google

The future of the Worcestershire-based pet retail chain was uncertain but now 18 stores across the country will continue operations including Coventry, Telford, Wolverhampton and Worcester.

Blindness charity working with village church

A village church near Shrewsbury is teaming up with the Royal National Institute of Blind People to offer maps, models and books for people with visual impairments.

St Lucia's in Upton Magna is one of only two in the country to be named after patron saint of people with eyesight problems.

St Lucia
BBC

A grant of £8,500 from the Heritage Lottery Fund will be used to pay for the additions.

The church is also planning to bid for £204,300 at a later date, to pay for repairs to the 12th Century building.

In the papers: Whitchurch Herald

Whitchurch Herald

The Whitchurch Herald is out today and it includes:

- Shropshire Council is seeking approval for a plan that will see an extra 10,000 homes built in the county by 2036

- The last surviving Spitfire ace to have fought over Malta described the bombing horrors the nation endured

- Big crowds packed into Whitchurch at the weekend for the Blackberry Fair

Whitchurch Herald
Whitchurch Herald

Judas Priest estate up for sale

A stately home owned by the former Judas Priest guitarist KK Downing is looking for new owners after the companies operating it went into administration.

Administrators FRP Advisory said that "after years of successful management" Astbury Hall and its golf course had fallen victim to "tougher economic times within the wider corporate hospitality market".

KK Downing
Getty Images

The 18-hole course is set within the 300-acre estate.

The administrators will keep the hall and golf club running until new owners can be found.

New season at racecourse

James Bond

Sports Producer, BBC Shropshire

It's the first meeting of the new jump season at Ludlow racecourse this afternoon, with the clerk of the course, Simon Sherwood, saying entries are up this year.

He also said work had been going on behind the scenes to repair fences, repaint railings and add a new water jump.

Ludlow racecourse
BBC

There are seven races on the card today, with the first at 14:10.

Numerically, we are very, very chuffed with our runners. I think we've got 10 or 12 more runners than last year and we've got four Irish horses that have come over on the ferry."

Simon SherwoodClerk of Ludlow racecourse

In the papers: Shropshire Star

Shropshire Star

Three stories from the Shropshire Star this morning:

Joe Leach

Worcestershire captain Joe Leach signs a new three-year contract with the County Championship Division Two winners.

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