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Summary

  1. Updates on Thursday 28 April 2016
  2. News, sport, travel and weather updates to resume at 08:00 on Friday

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 Friday with the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

Football: Burton's Beavon soldiers on through pain barrier

Owen Bradley

BBC Radio Derby Sport

There's never a good time to be carrying an injury but that's what Burton Albion striker Stuart Beavon is having to contend with as the club prepares to add another impressive chapter to its history.

The Brewers need four points to guarantee automatic promotion to the Championship.

Stuart Beavon
Getty Images

Beavon has been carrying a knee injury, but is expected to get through their remaining games at home to Gillingham and at Doncaster.

Charity expecting dozens to use new women's refuge

Emma Thomas

Journalist, BBC Radio Stoke

A charity running a new women's refuge in Stafford says it expects to house up to 100 women and families each year.

A woman with her head in her hands
PA

The 12-apartment site is managed by Staffordshire Women's Aid

The new site's opened as figures from the county council reveal the authority received 240 referrals for emergency accommodation for domestic violence victims in the last year. 

Burglars net tools worth £20,000 in factory break-in

Jack Dowling

Journalist, BBC Radio Stoke

Tools worth around £20,000 and a van have been stolen from a Staffordshire factory, police say. 

Teddesley Road in Acton Trussell
Google

Staffordshire Police say the break-in happened during the early hours of this morning at the site on Teddesley Road in Acton Trussell.

They say offenders forced their way in and took a "large quantity" of hand tools from storage cabinets before leaving in a stolen van.

Football: Majority of Crewe Alexandra fans 'understand', says manager

Ged Scott

BBC Sport

Crewe Alexandra manager Steve Davis says the vast majority of the club's fans accept he has "one of the toughest jobs in the Football League".  

At four-and-a-half years, Crewe Alexandra boss Steve Davis is the sixth longest-serving manager in English football
PA

Davis will appear at a fans' forum at Gresty Road on Thursday evening and expects a proportion of those attending to be angry about relegation.

They can take their anger out on me if that's what they want to do, as they've done at times this season. But I've spoken to a lot since we got relegated and there's real support

Steve DavisCrewe Alexandra manager

'World's oldest dog show' heading to Stafford

Sarah Robertson

Producer, BBC Radio Stoke

A dog show described by organisers as the world's oldest and one of the UK's largest is on its way to Staffordshire next week. 

One of the rare British breeds which will be on show: the Cardigan Corgi
Diane Pearce Collection/The Kennel Club Picture Library

Birmingham Dog Show Society's championship show will feature more than 10,000 dogs and starts at Stafford County Showground next Thursday 

News: Stoke MPs criticise Livingstone comments; legal action considered on allotments; £20,000 worth of tools stolen

Lee Thomas

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

These are among our top stories this evening

- A second Staffordshire Labour MP has criticised Ken Livingstone for comments he made while defending an MP at the centre of an "anti-Semitism" row  

- Legal action could be taken against groups who run three allotment sites in Crewe - amid claims they've been collecting rent from plot holders without lawful authority

- Tools worth around £20,000 and a van have been stolen from a Staffordshire factory, police say

Travel: Lorry break down on M6 exit slip road near Sandbach

BBC Travel

A lane is blocked on the M6 exit slip road southbound at junction 17, the turn off for Sandbach - a lorry has broken down.

Watch: Tonight and tomorrow's Stoke and Staffordshire weather

Rebecca Wood

BBC Midlands Today

You can use the BBC website to get a latest weather forecast at any time.

Some probation staff monitoring more than 70 cases at a time

BBC News England

Some probation staff monitoring offenders in England and Wales are handling more than 70 cases at a time.

The figure is contained in a National Audit Office report about the government's reforms to the probation system, introduced in 2014.

C Wing at Wormwood Scrubs
PA

It says high workloads have "reduced" the supervision and training staff receive and the service they provide.

The Ministry of Justice said the new probation system was "continually improving".

Watch: From Congleton to New York - with the help of BBC Introducing

Rob Adcock

BBC Introducing presenter, BBC Radio Stoke

It was 29 April 2009 when Adam French first came into BBC Radio Stoke. 

Since then he’s toured Africa, played the BBC Introducing stage at Reading and Leeds festival and had countless plays on BBC Radio 1. 

After recently signing a record deal with Virgin EMI, he was booked to play in LA and New York. For BBC Introducing from Stoke, I went to meet him in NYC.  

Council considering legal action over allotment concerns

Phil McCann

Political reporter, Cheshire

Legal action could be taken against groups who run three allotment sites in Crewe - amid claims they've been collecting rent from plot holders without lawful authority.

Usual Crewe site of town council meetings
Crewe Town Council

The town council says associations running three sites don't have permission to levy fees. 

Councillors meet next week to discuss whether to take back control of the land.

Your pictures: Sunshine on Cannock and Tamworth field at sunset

Allen Cook

BBC Local Live

Some wonderful pictures using the sun in different ways now - both sent in by people from across Staffordshire and Cheshire.

Firstly this one from Lee Ogram, taken in Cannock Chase.

Cannock Chase
Lee Ogram

Then there's this sunset from Clive Fisher, who's a regular sender of photos from Tamworth.

You can get a picture of the area to me on email, tweet @BBCRadioStoke or use Instagram.

Tamworth sunset
Clive Fisher

University and police announce partnership

Staffordshire University and Staffordshire Police are launching a new partnership today to give students an insight into the world of forensics.

The joint project will allow students to join officers on cases, making use of their newly learned skills in the real world. 

Forensic scientist
Paul Gilham / Getty Images

The analysis of finger prints, DNA, shoe marks and digital data recovery are some of the techniques being taught at the Science Centre on Leek Road, Stoke-on-Trent.

Prof Andrew Jackson, from the university, said it would "equip the forensic professionals of the future with the technology and skills needed in the 21st Century".

Staffordshire beauty spot gets snow coating

The dusting of snow across Staffordshire this morning spread across the Roaches beauty spot, by the look of these photos from the county's wildlife trust.

View more on twitter

Second Stoke Labour MP attacks Ken Livingstone in 'anti-Semitism' row

James Bovill

Political reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

A second Staffordshire Labour MP has criticised Ken Livingstone for comments he made while defending an MP at the centre of an "anti-Semitism" row.

The ex-London mayor said Bradford MP Naz Shah's comments on social media were not anti-Semitic. 

Mr Livingstone has now been suspended by the Labour Party over the comments and will be investigated for "bringing the party into disrepute". 

The Stoke Central MP Tristram Hunt tweeted that Mr Livingstone's remarks were "despicable" and the Stoke North Labour MP Ruth Smeeth then put on Twitter that "Ken Livingstone's comments are reprehensible".

Football: Muniesa admits 'not good enough' in last two games

Matt Sandoz

Stoke City commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

Stoke City defender Marc Muniesa admits his place in the team may be under threat with the return of Erik Pieters from suspension. 

Marc Muniesa
Getty Images

Muniesa has started the last two games at left-back - in those matches the Potters have conceded eight goals. 

The Spaniard says he realises he may get overlooked for this weekend's game at home to Sunderland.

I feel that I've done well but not enough because when you concede eight goals in two games it's not good enough. But I don't know what the gaffer is thinking, I just have to be ready."

Marc MuniesaStoke City defender

News: Stoke MP attacks Ken Livingstone; man accused of murder in court; obesity scheme 'worth every penny'

Lee Thomas

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

The main headlines this afternoon:

- Stoke-on-Trent MP Tristram Hunt has attacked Labour colleague Ken Livingstone for his defence of an MP accused of making "anti-Semitic" comments

- A man accused of murdering a woman, found stabbed at a house in Staffordshire over the weekend, has appeared in court this morning

- A man who lost four stone (25kg) through a Stoke-on-Trent City Council scheme to tackle obesity says it is  "worth every penny"

Why people are celebrating Ed Balls Day

BBC News UK

In case you wondered what was going on on Twitter today: Happy Ed Balls Day! Who knew that five years ago, a Twitter fail would still be remembered. So what is it all about?

Ed Balls
Edballsmp/Twitter

On 28 April 2011 Ed Balls, who was shadow chancellor at the time, was urged by his aide to search Twitter for articles mentioning his name, but instead of doing a search he tweeted his own name in error.

So on 28 April, Twitter rejoices in the madness and celebrates Ed Balls.

At the time of writing, the hashtag #EdBallsDay has been the top trend in the UK and has been used more than 10,000 times.

BBC Weather Watcher pictures: Snowy scenes in Staffordshire

Monica Rimmer

Journalist, BBC Radio Stoke

There's a wintry theme to today's BBC Weather Watchers photos we've picked out - starting with this one from EiEi in Leek

Snowy Leek
EiEi

Then this snowy picture was uploaded by user Absolute Shower in Alstonefield, Staffordshire.

You can become a BBC Weather Watcher by signing up on the website.

Snowy Alstonefield
Absolute Shower

BBC to quiz recruits on family background

Victoria Lindrea

BBC Entertainment and Arts reporter

Staff joining the BBC will be asked about their socio-economic background, as part of a bid to increase diversity at the corporation.

Candidates will be asked if they were entitled to free school meals, and if their parents attended university.

BBC logo
PA

Anonymised job applications will also be extended for core roles.

The plans come after the BBC faced pressure from ministers to increase numbers of staff from under-represented backgrounds.

Football: Striker tipping Port Vale to 'kick on' next season

Lee Blakeman

Port Vale commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

Port Vale striker Theo Robinson says he believes their strong end to the season will give the team something to build on in the next one.

Theo Robinson
Port Vale FC

At one stage the Vale were play-off contenders but look to have fallen just short of a place in the top six. 

However after winning their last three games, Robinson says promotion is a serious target for the next campaign. 

Since I've come through the door we've been so close to getting there and we've been playing well so hopefully next season, whoever is here, hopefully the players can kick on."

Theo RobinsonPort Vale striker

Obesity help scheme 'worth every penny'

Laura Mcmullan

Reporter, BBC Midlands Today

A man who lost four stone through a Stoke-on-Trent City Council scheme to tackle obesity says it is  "worth every penny".

That's despite figures showing only a quarter of the 17,500 people who signed up to the authority's Lifestyle Programme over seven years lost weight.

However results are "not as bad as it appears", the council claims.

Andrew Canes
BBC

Andrew Canes lost four stone (25kg) in three months through the fitness programme.

I found out I had a liver that wasn't functioning properly because of the weight gain. So, that was my motivation."

Andrew Canes

This lunchtime on BBC Midlands Today: A new marathon and the church risking the wrath of God

BBC Midlands Today

On Midlands Today this lunchtime we'll look at how Birmingham is to join London, New York and other major cities by staging it's own marathon.

The start line of the Great Birmingham Run 2015
BBC

And we'll feature the Midlands clergyman who is risking the wrath of God by staging the screening of a film originally branded blasphemous and anti-Christian. 

All those stories and more on BBC One from 13:30.

Yellow weather warning for snow for Cheshire

People in Cheshire are being warned there could be snow in the county tomorrow, in a yellow weather alert from the Met Office.

The yellow weather warning runs from 05:00 tomorrow morning until 10:00 later that day.

View more on twitter

Hunt attacks Livingstone in 'anti-Semitism' row

BBC News UK

Stoke-on-Trent MP Tristram Hunt has attacked Labour colleague Ken Livingstone for his defence of an MP accused of making "anti-Semitic" comments.

Mr Livingstone said Bradford MP Naz Shah's comments were not anti-Semitic.  

Ken Livingstone
PA

Tristram Hunt said on Twitter: "Ken Livingstone's comments this morning were despicable - he should be suspended from the Party immediately." 

Ms Shah apologised to the House of Commons for posting message on Facebook before she became an MP about Israel.

News: Murder accused appears in court; Hunt attacks Livingstone in 'anti-Semitism' row; police Taser use revealed

Lee Thomas

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

This afternoon's main stories include:

- A man accused of murdering a woman, found stabbed at a house in Staffordshire over the weekend, has appeared in court this morning

- The Stoke-on-Trent Labour MP Tristram Hunt has rounded on Ken Livingstone after he defended an MP suspended over "anti-Semitic" comments on social media

- Police in Staffordshire used Tasers twice as many times as their colleagues in Cheshire last year, new figures reveal

Man charged with murdering Fay Daniels appears in court

Chris King

Reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

A man accused of murdering a woman, found stabbed at a house in Staffordshire over the weekend, has appeared in court this morning.

Fay Daniels
Staffordshire Police

Fay Daniels, 30, from Victoria Street was found at a property on Victoria Street, in Chesterton, at about 15:30 on Sunday. 

Phillip Barlow, 36, also from Victoria Street, will next appear at Stafford Crown Court next month when he's expected to enter a plea.

Travel: Crash on Main Street in Hollington, Staffordshire

BBC Travel

There's been an accident on Main Street in Hollington, Staffordshire, near to the Paradise Nurseries junction.

Watch: This afternoon's weather for Stoke and Staffordshire

Charlie Slater

BBC Weather presenter

You can also get a latest weather forecast at any time from the BBC Weather website.

Watch: Nuisance neighbour victim criticises council

James Bovill

Political reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

A mother from Stoke-on-Trent who complained about nuisance neighbours says a council scheme set up to tackle the problem did nothing to help.

The Selective Licensing Scheme was set up in 2011 to crack down on irresponsible private landlords and anti-social tenants in four areas of the city. 

But Lois Courtney says, even though two sets of neighbours were abusive, the authority didn't intervene. 

The city council says landlords in a selective licensing area, found to be in breach of their licence conditions, could be prosecuted.  

Police use of Tasers falls in Staffordshire

Lucy King

News Editor, BBC Radio Stoke

Police in Staffordshire used Tasers twice as many times as their colleagues in Cheshire last year. 

Taser
PA

Figures from the Home Office show they were deployed 140 times in Cheshire last year - but only actually fired in 10% of those cases. 

In Staffordshire they were pulled on 285 occasions and fired 34 times. 

In comparison to 2015, Taser usage in Staffordshire has fallen by nearly a quarter compared with 390 times they were deployed in 2014.

Your pictures: Spotted by deer and Staffordshire sunrise

Allen Cook

BBC Local Live

I think these deer might have spotted Villager Jim - he shared this great photo he took in the Peak District and it's a fantastic wildlife shot.

Deer in the Peak District
Villager Jim

Meanwhile this lovely picture of a sunrise has come from Duncan Richardson who took it in north Staffordshire.

I think it's great when you send in a photo so if you have one to share you can do that on email, tweet @BBCRadioStoke or use Instagram.

Sunrise
Duncan Richardson

News: Five-year high on domestic violence cases; council criticised by nuisance neighbour victim; police and university team up

Lee Blakeman

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

These are among our top stories this morning:

- Domestic violence offences in Stoke-on-Trent are at their highest for five years, according to figures from Staffordshire Police

- A mother from Stoke-on-Trent, who complained about nuisance neighbours, says a council scheme set up to tackle the problem did nothing to help 

- Staffordshire University and Staffordshire Police are launching a new partnership today to give students an insight into the world of forensics