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  1. Updates on Wednesday 30 March 2016
  2. News, sport, travel and weather updates to resume at 08:00 on Thursday

Live Reporting

By Allen Cook

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Our live coverage across the day

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

Watch: Tonight's weather for the West Midlands

Sara Thornton

BBC Weather

A cold and frosty night, with patchy fog developing.

Lows of 0C (32F).

Tonight on BBC Midlands Today: The girl scared to leave home after Staffordshire attack

Sarah Falkland

BBC Midlands Today

This evening on Midlands Today, I've been speaking to Bethany Gallimore, aged 14, who was filmed being beaten and stamped on by a girl gang in Staffordshire.

The video shows one of the girls kicking Bethany in the head

That footage was posted on Facebook and shared more than 5,000 times.

Tonight on Midlands Today you'll hear from Bethany and her mother Denise, on BBC One from 18:30.

Football: Bardsley says Stoke City have sights on Europe

Matt Sandoz

Stoke City commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

Stoke City's Phil Bardsley says the squad are determined to qualify for the Europa League this season. 

Phil Bardsley
Getty Images

They return to action on Saturday after a two-week international break with a home game against Swansea

Bardsley says playing in Europe next season is their main target.

It's still on, we've had a good campaign, we don't want that to dwindle out. We want to make sure we finish as high as possible. The last couple of seasons we have finished ninth and we want to look beyond that this year.

Phil BardsleyStoke City player

Laptop scam catches third victim

Lucy King

News Editor, BBC Radio Stoke

A third person from Stoke-on-Trent has been duped in the past few days by a conman pretending to sell computers and phones, according to police.

Marsh Street car park

Staffordshire Police say the latest case happened yesterday and started with a man being offered a laptop and phone for sale on Marsh Street car park, Hanley 

He arranged to hand over cash for the rucksack today but, when he opened it, it turned out to contain a bottle of cola and some cardboard. 

The force says two students have already fallen victim to a similar scam this month.

Dog owner finds corned beef 'stuffed with a tablet'

Sarah Robertson

Producer, BBC Radio Stoke

Pieces of corned beef stuffed with tablets have been found by a dog owner at their house in Penkridge, police say.

Cherrybrook Drive

Staffordshire Police say the resident saw their pet come in from the garden on Cherrybrook Drive with something in her mouth. 

Writing on Facebook, Claire Smith warned other dog owners in Penkridge to watch out for mysterious food appearing in their gardens.

News: Attack on girl posted on Facebook; laptop scam gets third victim; dog owner warns over mystery food

Chris King

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

The main headlines this afternoon for Staffordshire and Cheshire include:

- A teenager was filmed being beaten and stamped on by a girl gang in Staffordshire - before the footage was posted on Facebook and shared more than 5,000 times

- A third person from Stoke-on-Trent has been duped in the past few days by a conman pretending to sell computers and phones, according to police 

- Pieces of corned beef stuffed with tablets have been found by a dog owner at their house in Penkridge, police say  

Your pictures: A moody Cheshire morning and a Sutton landscape

Allen Cook

BBC Local Live

Here are some more of the pictures you've been kind enough to send in of Staffordshire and Cheshire.

Charles Taylor tweeted this to @BBCRadioStoke saying it was a "moody winter morning fishing" from near Jodrell, Cheshire.

Moody winter morning fishing
Charles Taylor

While this landscape from Sutton in Staffordshire was shared with me on Instagram by Ed De Quincey.

If you want to share a picture from across the area of any subject, you can get it to me by email as well as Twitter and Instagram.

Landscape in Sutton, Staffordshire
Ed De Quincey

Kidsgrove bullies film girl attack and post on Facebook

Rebecca Woods

BBC News Online, Journalist

A teenager was filmed being beaten and stamped on by a girl gang in Staffordshire - before the footage was posted on Facebook and shared more than 5,000 times.  

Bethany Gallimore

Bethany Gallimore, aged 14, said she was scared to leave home after the attack in Kidsgrove.

Her mother Denise said she was left "physically sick" after seeing her daughter covered in blood - and then watching the brutal video hours later.

Staffordshire Police said three teenagers had been arrested.

Travel: Two vehicle crash on M6 near Crewe

BBC Travel

A lane is blocked on the M6 northbound between junctions 16 and 17 in Cheshire because of an accident involving two vehicles.

Watch: Tonight and tomorrow's weather for Stoke and Staffordshire

Sara Thornton

BBC Weather

You can also get the latest weather forecast for Staffordshire or Cheshire at any time on the BBC website.

Teenagers arrested after attack on girl

Chris King

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

Three teenagers have been arrested after a girl was attacked in Kidsgrove on Sunday night. 

Junction of Whitehall Avenue and Bourne Road in Kidsgrove

It happened in the Bourne Road and Whitehall Avenue area, Staffordshire Police say. 

The teenagers, two aged 16 and one 13-year-old, have all been arrested on suspicion of assault.

Repair work carried out on Stafford park aviary

Jack Dowling

Journalist, BBC Radio Stoke

Work to repair the timbers of a 1950s aviary in a Stafford park has started today.

One of the birds inside the aviary

The borough council say the site in Victoria Park is home to more than 100 birds including golden pheasants, cockatiels and finches.

The authority says the birds will remain on the site while the work is carried out.

Mum 'surprised' by mural tribute to junior Leek Town footballer

Ros Chimes

Reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

The mother of a Leek footballer, who died from cardiac arrest aged 17, says she was pleasantly surprised when a secretive graffiti artist created a mural of her son.

The mural
Nicola Everill

Jordan Burndred, from Biddulph, suffered multiple cardiac arrests on holiday in Turkey in September and died 10 days later in hospital. 

A football stand was named in Jordan's honour at Knypersley Victoria FC.

His mother, Nicolla Everill approached Professor Pigment asking for his portrait to be painted at the stand. The mural suddenly appeared (just before Christmas) and she says it is generous gestures from the community such as this that keep her going.

People urged to back £3m Staffordshire environmental bid

Lichfield Mercury

People in Lichfield and Burntwood are being urged to get behind a major environmental funding bid which could see millions of pounds ploughed into transforming Staffordshire's Trent Valley.

Staffordshire Wildlife Trust (inset) and a picture from the Central Rivers Initiative
Lichfield Mercury

News: Student death 'not suspicious'; one GP visit carried out by health firm given £165,000; horse rescued after stuck 'upside down'

Chris King

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

The main headlines this afternoon include:

- The death of a 20-year-old man, found dead at his Stoke-on-Trent home last week, is not being treated as suspicious by police

- NHS England says it's going to try to reduce costs after it gave more than £165,000 to a healthcare company in the West Midlands that, over five months, ended up carrying out just one GP visit and 18 phone consultations

- A horse had to be rescued today by the fire service in Handforth, Cheshire, after getting stuck in a stable and ending up "upside down"

BBC Weather Watcher pictures: Blossom in Gnosall and blue skies over cathedral

BBC Weather Watchers

Our BBC Weather Watchers are a great team of volunteers who take pictures of the weather where they are.

In Staffordshire, JR has shared this photo from Gnosall.

Tree in blossom in Gnosall

Then in Lichfield, user Officialmaggot took this picture showing blue skies over the cathedral.

If you want to be a BBC Weather Watcher you can head to the website and sign up.

Blue skies over Lichfield Cathedral

Horse rescued after getting stuck 'upside down' in Cheshire

Lamont Howie

Reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

A horse had to be rescued today by the fire service in Handforth, Cheshire, after getting stuck in a stable and ending up "upside down". 

Whisky Mac with firefighters
Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service

Cheshire Fire and Rescue says the 30-year-old animal, called Whisky Mac, was put back on his feet by its specialist animal rescue team and a vet cared for him throughout.

Man with epilepsy says he was 'failed' by NHS service

Pete Morgan

Presenter, BBC Radio Stoke

A man from the Staffordshire Moorlands has criticised the local NHS 11 after delays in getting hold of important anti-epilepsy mediation.

Chris Maguire (pictured, right) told BBC Radio Stoke he needed to get his prescription over the bank holiday weekend, but he and his wife Sarah say the service took three days to sort it out.

Sarah and Chris Maguire (left and right) with BBC Radio Stoke's Pete Morgan

Staffordshire Doctors Urgent Care delivers the 111 service and says it is "premature to comment" on the case until its own comprehensive review has been completed. But it says it wants them to get in touch to fully investigate their concerns.

I said this is an emergency and he (a doctor on the 111 service) replied 'well it is your emergency, it's not mine'."

Sarah Maguire

Councillors spring into action to approve plans for trampoline park

Tamworth Herald

Proposals to reject an application for a new trampoline park in Tamworth have taken a turn, flip and somersault for the better.

Plans for the site
Tamworth Herald

NHS spends thousands on one GP visit and 18 phone consultations

Michele Paduano

Health correspondent, BBC Midlands Today

NHS England says it's going to try to reduce costs after it gave more than £165,000 to a healthcare company in the West Midlands that, over five months, ended up carrying out just one GP visit and 18 phone consultations.   

NHS sign

The NHS says Primecare was given the contract after local GPs - with the exception of those in Herefordshire - weren't interested in providing the service. 

Primecare said it was NHS England's decision to pay the money for the contract up front. 

Our aim is to implement a new, local model of service from 1 April, to reduce our costs.

David WilliamsNHS England

Pictures: River bursts its banks in Stafford park

Emma Thomas

Journalist, BBC Radio Stoke

I've been in Victoria Park in Stafford today and while there I saw the impact of the recent heavy rain we've had this week.

The River Sow has flooded the footpath which runs along either side of the water way, forcing its closure.

The flooded River Sow in Victoria Park
The flooded River Sow in Victoria Park

On BBC Midlands Today this lunchtime: Battle to put out recycling site blaze

BBC Midlands Today

Pictures of the blaze grabbed attention across the region yesterday and, this lunchtime, we'll hear how efforts are continuing to put out a major fire at a scrap yard in Birmingham

At its height yesterday more than a hundred firefighters were called to the recycling plant in Saltley. 

Tune in for the latest from Midlands Today on BBC One from 13:30.

Student's death 'not treated as suspicious'

Lee Thomas

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

The family of a 20-year-old man who was found dead at his Stoke-on-Trent home last week say his death has "torn a gaping hole in the heart of our family". 

Cauldon road on Thursday

Staffordshire Police say David Peters, a student at Staffordshire University, was discovered at a house on Cauldon Road, Shelton on Thursday morning.

The force says his death isn't being treated as suspicious. Last week, it said his death was believed to be as a result of ingesting an unknown substance.

His family have said in a statement he was a "really talented swordsman", who became a national champion and represented Great Britain in European Championships.

News: Council could take in more refugees; tiles return to medieval priory

Chris King

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

The main headlines this lunchtime for Staffordshire and Cheshire include:

- More Syrian refugees could be resettled in Staffordshire, the county council's suggested, than the 50 it has committed to help so far  

- Work has started to reinstate hundreds of Victorian tiles to the floor of the medieval undercroft at Norton Priory in Cheshire

Travel: Crash on A53 in Newcastle-under-Lyme

BBC Travel

There's been an accident on the A53 Whitmore Road in Whitmore, Newcastle-under-Lyme which is blocking it at the Lymes Road junction.

Football: Port Vale striker says he's playing for new contract

Lee Blakeman

Port Vale commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

Port Vale's top scorer AJ Leitch-Smith says he wants to play as much as possible for the remainder of the season, to try and earn a new contract. 

AJ Leitch-Smith
Getty Images

His current deal runs out in the summer - and he's missed much of the last month with a hamstring injury.

Hopefully I can string a few good performances together now in the last six games, get a few goals."

AJ Leitch-SmithPort Vale striker

Residents call for government to step in over rugby club plans

James Bovill

Political reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

The government has been asked to intervene over plans to relocate Stafford Rugby Club near to Doxey Marshes.

Stafford Rugby Club

Residents angry about the plans have asked Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Greg Clark to "call in" the latest planning application, requesting him to take it out of the hands of the borough council.

The government says it will only consider whether intervention is appropriate if planning permission is granted this afternoon by the authority.

Stafford street names to remember residents

Express and Star

War heroes, businessmen and religious figures from Stafford are set to have streets named after them alongside a tribute to tragic council worker Stewart Staples under plans.

Watch: This afternoon's weather forecast for Stoke and Staffordshire

Kaye Forster

Weather Presenter

Staffordshire and Cheshire's weather forecast can also be found on the BBC website.

Watch: Crewe striker calls his debut 'dream come true'

Graham McGarry

Crewe Alexandra commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

The Crewe Alexandra striker Daniel Udoh has told me that making his debut for the side was a "dream come true".

The teenager signed from non-league side Ilkeston earlier this month.

Travel: Accident reported on A534 in Crewe

BBC Travel

There's been a crash on the A534 Nantwich Road in Crewe, say police.

Keep up-to-date with the latest from BBC Travel.

View more on twitter

Historic tiles return to Cheshire priory floor

North West Today

Work has started to reinstate hundreds of Victorian tiles to the floor of the medieval undercroft at Norton Priory in Cheshire.

The undercroft at Norton Priory

The tiles were lifted last year, for essential repairs to the floor beneath. 

The priory, which dates back to the 12th Century, is the largest excavated monastic site in Europe.  

Council leaders agree on Stoke's new city director

James Bovill

Political reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

Council leaders have agreed on who they want to take on the new controversial role of city director of Stoke-on-Trent City Council - the current Head of Paid Services David Sidaway.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council headquarters

The city director replaces the role of chief executive which was scrapped by the coalition administration last year. 

The appointment's expected to be confirmed by the full council later this week. 

Police hunt two robbers who targeted Nantwich woman

Nantwich News

A woman was attacked by two robbers as she walked home from a Nantwich pub.  

Police tape
Nantwich News

Football: Burton Albion boss plays down crowd impact on home form

Andrew Aloia

BBC Sport Online

Burton Albion boss Nigel Clough says home support will have little bearing as the League One leaders attempt to get back to winning ways.

Nigel Clough
Getty Images

Burton only took one point from two games over Easter, and are only one point clear after defeat at Millwall.

When asked about the importance of having a big crowd behind them for Bury's visit on Saturday, he responded: "It doesn't matter what crowd. It just matters that we win - any how, any way, we get three points at home."