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Summary

  1. Rise in asylum seekers and refugees seeking region's Red Cross help
  2. Stroke ward's future under review in Stafford
  3. Necklace stolen while 'woman asked for directions' in Burton
  4. Updates on Tuesday 7 June 2016

Live Reporting

By Allen Cook

All times stated are UK

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Flash flooding in Kinver, Staffordshire

There was flash flooding near Kinver yesterday, according to Staffordshire Police, who tweeted this picture.

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Picture: Flying Scotsman in Crewe visit

Lamont Howie

Reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

It's a special day for rail history fans in Cheshire today - the Flying Scotsman is in Crewe.

The famous steam train's spent the night in the town at the heritage centre for "servicing purposes".  

Barrie Sayers was among those who paid a visit yesterday and he shared this picture - we'll have more as the Flying Scotsman leaves the area later today.

The Flying Scotsman
Barrie Sayers

The weather for the West Midlands

The weather for the West Midlands.

Our live coverage across the day

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

Man conned by bogus workmen in Burton

Alice Bentley

Journalist, BBC Radio Stoke

An 80-year-old man has been conned out of money by three bogus workmen.

The trio turned up at the pensioner's house in Burton Street, Tutbury on Friday, according to Staffordshire Police, and told him they could repair a water leak on his house.

Burton Street, Tutbury
Google

The force said the men claimed to be with real workmen who were at a neighbouring address and the victim went to the bank to get them money. 

But when they asked for a second amount, bank staff became suspicious and called police who found the three men had gone.

This evening on BBC Midlands Today: Refugees' Red Cross help, 'driverless pods' and cider

Nick Owen

Presenter, BBC Midlands Today

This evening on Midlands Today we'll have more on the British Red Cross in the West Midlands reporting a rise in the number of asylum seekers and refugees asking for their help. 

Refugee camp
BBC

Also on the programme, we'll see what "driverless pods" are and how the story of cider's being told in part of the region. 

All on BBC Midlands Today from 18:30 on BBC One.

Heavy showers could continue into Wednesday

You're being warned the forecast heavy showers could continue into tomorrow morning.

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Picture: Flying Scotsman arrives in Cheshire

The Flying Scotsman passed through Sandbach station before arriving in Crewe this evening, according to local police.

The famous steam train's spending the night in Crewe at the heritage centre for "servicing purposes".

View more on twitter

Stroke ward's future under review in Stafford

Lee Thomas

News Editor, BBC Radio Stoke

The future of a stroke rehab ward at Stafford's County Hospital is under review, according to NHS managers. 

Stafford Hospital County Hospital
BBC

The University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust says some stroke patients are spending too long in hospital beds and it wants to provide more care in people's homes. 

The Trust says it's about to discuss possible changes with staff, patients and health commissioners.

News: Refugees' Red Cross help; review of stroke ward's future; necklace stolen as woman gave directions

Jack Dowling

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

Our evening headlines for Staffordshire and Cheshire include:

- The number of asylum seekers and refugees using the British Red Cross in the West Midlands has risen by more than 60% in the last year   

- The future of a stroke rehab ward at Stafford's County Hospital is under review, according to NHS managers

- A 65-year-old woman's had a gold necklace stolen while being asked for directions in Burton, police say

Your pictures: Mow Cop folly and Cheddleton woodland

Allen Cook

BBC Local Live

Chris Eptlett took this stunning picture of Mow Cop Castle folly on the Staffordshire/Cheshire border.

Mow Cop
Chris Eptlett

While this woodland shot's come from Lee Price who took it in the Cheddleton area of Staffordshire.

You can send in a picture of the area on email,tweet it to @BBCRadioStoke or use Instagram (add #bbcstoke to the tag so we can find it.)

Cheddleton woodland
Lee Price

Travel: Crash blocks A500 lane in Stoke-on-Trent

BBC Travel

A lane is blocked on the A500 D Road southbound in Stoke-on-Trent between Wolstanton Retail Park and Basford Roundabout, because of a collision involving a car and a lorry.

Congestion is back to the Talke roundabout.

Necklace stolen while 'woman asked for directions'

Euan Duncan

BBC Local Live

A 65-year-old woman's had a gold necklace stolen while being asked for directions in Burton, police say. 

Westfield Road, Burton
Google

Staffordshire Police say she was walking along Dover Road and Westfield Road when three people in a car waved her down.

Officers say after the conversation, the woman found her £800 crucifix necklace had been taken while she was distracted.

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

Lucy Martin

BBC Weather

If you want to get a weather forecast at another time, the BBC Weather website has the latest.

This content only works in the UK.

Rise of 60% in asylum seekers and refugees seeking region's Red Cross help

Sian Grzeszczyk

Staffordshire Reporter, BBC Midlands Today

The number of asylum seekers and refugees using the British Red Cross in the West Midlands has risen by more than 60% in the last year. 

Refugee camp
BBC

In the first part of 2015 the charity supported what it describes as 255 "destitute individuals" - this year that's risen to 420. 

On its website, the Red Cross says it offers to help refugees and asylum seekers "access essential services and adapt to life in a new country".

I'll have more this evening on Midlands Today from 18:30 on BBC One.

Latest: Region's Red Cross sees rise in refugees seeking help; cost of Congleton bypass goes past £90m; Flying Scotsman visits Crewe

Jack Dowling

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

This afternoon's Staffordshire and Cheshire headlines include:

- The number of asylum seekers and refugees using the British Red Cross in the West Midlands has risen by more than 60% in the last year 

- Congleton's bypass is now expected to cost more than £90m, up nearly a fifth on previous predictions

- The Flying Scotsman is due to arrive in Crewe this afternoon

Rubbish on fire in Norton Canes area of Staffordshire

A pile of rubbish, which was dumped, is on fire near Newlands Lane, Norton Canes this afternoon.

Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service says it has a crew from Cannock tackling the blaze.

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Historic England seeks public help on 'missing history'

Rumeana Jahangir

Reporter, BBC News Online

People are being asked to "chronicle the nation's missing history" by sharing details of key sites, which include a Cheshire tombstone. 

This content only works in the UK.

Historic England said it wanted people to help "unlock the secrets".

"We want people and community groups across England to share their knowledge and pictures, so we can record important facts about places," a spokesperson said.

In Cheshire, there's interest in Marianna Lawton, who erected a tombstone to Bullie the Bullfinch in the county in 1853 after allegedly teaching the bird to sing God Save the Queen.

Watch: Cheshire RSPCA caring for orphaned gull chicks

Two orphaned herring gull chicks are being cared for by the RSPCA at its Stapeley Grange centre in Nantwich.

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Travel: Accident shuts Ripon Road in Stoke-on-Trent

BBC Travel

Ripon Road in Blurton, Stoke-on-Trent is shut both ways between the Pembridge Road junction and the A5035 Trentham Road junction, because of an accident.

Mystery Stoke graffiti artist reveals his identity

Max Mallen

Presenter, BBC Radio Stoke

A graffiti artist from Stoke-on-Trent who has kept his identity secret for the last three years has revealed who he is.  

Andy Evans, centre, alongside BBC Radio Stoke's Max Mallen, left, and Pete Morgan
BBC

Andy Evans, 21, (pictured, centre, along with me and Pete Morgan) had used the pseudonym Professor Pigment but declared his real name at a documentary premiere at Staffordshire University last night. 

The documentary, which is about his graffiti, shows the impact he's had on the lives of people in Staffordshire.  

Bed-blocking delays may continue for 'up to five years'

BBC News Health

Delays in releasing elderly patients from hospital could continue for up to five years, NHS England boss Simon Stevens has warned.  

So-called bed-blocking is estimated to cost the service about £820m a year.  

Staff pushing a trolley through hospital
Getty Images

A recent report by the National Audit Office said delays in discharging patients from hospitals in England had risen by nearly a third over two years.

East Cheshire NHS Trust is among the trusts most affected by bed-blocking.  

Mr Stevens told MPs the number of blocked beds would not be reaching zero any time soon because of social care pressures.

Cheshire bypass cost rises to £90m

Phil McCann

Cheshire Political Reporter, BBC News

Congleton's bypass is now expected to cost more than £90m, up nearly a fifth on previous predictions. 

Congleton's High Street
Google

Cheshire East Council says it is going to commit to contributing £40m to top up government funding for the Congleton Link Road, but it's hoped some cash will come from housing developers.

Construction is due to start in 2018.

Famous Flying Scotsman due for Crewe visit

Lamont Howie

Reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

The Flying Scotsman is due to arrive in Crewe this afternoon

The famous steam locomotive is heading to the town's heritage centre for a service stop. 

Here it is in action....

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It's due in at around 17:00 and will stay overnight to be topped up with water and coal. 

Latest: Cheshire bypass cost rises to £90m; 'greener' ambulance fleet; Crewe gets Flying Scotsman visit

Jack Dowling

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

If you're just checking in with us, here are the stories we're looking at to start this afternoon:

- Congleton's bypass is now expected to cost more than £90m, up nearly a fifth on previous predictions  

A £21m contract has been awarded for 220 new "greener" ambulances 

 - The Flying Scotsman steam locomotive is due to arrive in Crewe this afternoon

This lunchtime on Midlands Today: Rise in refugees using region's Red Cross

BBC Midlands Today

This lunchtime on Midlands Today we'll be hearing how the number of asylum seekers and refugees using the British Red Cross in the West Midlands has risen. 

We'll also look at "driverless pods" being made by a regional firm and have your latest weather forecast. 

All that and more from 13:30 on BBC One.  

One of the driverless pods
RDM Group

Staffordshire's ambulance services spending £21m on new vehicles

Chris King

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

A £21m contract has been awarded for 220 new "greener" ambulances for West Midlands Ambulance Service. 

Ambulance
West Midlands Ambulance Service

The service says it's given O&H Vehicle Conversions the deal to renew its fleet over the next four years. 

It says the new ambulances will be more fuel efficient and could potentially have solar panels.

Watch: This afternoon's Stoke and Staffordshire weather forecast

Lucy Martin

BBC Weather

You can also keep up to date with forecasts for Staffordshire and Cheshire by visiting the BBC Weather website.

This content only works in the UK.

Council freezing spending on non-essential adult social care

James Bovill

Staffordshire Political Reporter, BBC News

Staffordshire County Council says non-essential spending on adult social care "is being frozen" after the NHS withdrew £15m of funding.

The clinical commissioning groups which pay for NHS services are supposed to contribute £16.9m a year to community health care in the county. But bosses say the NHS has to focus on hospital care instead, so £15m a year has been withdrawn.   

Elderly person holding a walking stick
BBC

The council plans to ask the government for the shortfall, and the North Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group says it'll continue to work with the council to work out how to best use their services.

We are focusing in on essential spending and any spending that might not be necessary right now is being frozen."

Councillor Alan WhiteCabinet Member for Health, Care and Wellbeing

Your pictures: An insect at rest and Tamworth flies the flag

Allen Cook

BBC Local Live

This little insect, perched on a flower at Trentham Gardens, was taken by Jon Kelso who emailed it to me.

A bee at Trentham Gardens
Jon Kelso

While Marie Suddaby shared this picture she took in Tamworth.

I'll keep putting up as many of your photos as possible, just keep sending them in by email, tweeting them to @BBCRadioStoke or using Instagram with the tag #bbcstoke.

Tamworth
Marie Suddaby

Football: Devitt rejects Crewe to join Carlisle

Graham McGarry

Crewe Alexandra commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

Morecambe winger Jamie Devitt has turned down Crewe Alexandra to join fellow League Two side Carlisle United.

Jamie Devitt
Getty Images

The 25-year-old has signed a two-year deal, having spent 18 months at the Globe Arena.  

The Irishman held talks with Alex boss Steve Davis, who had hoped to make him his second signing of the summer, but he opted for Cumbria instead.  

Travel: Slip road lane shut on M6 at Stafford junction

BBC Travel

A lane is shut on the M6 exit slip road northbound at junction 14, the Stafford North turn-off, because of a broken-down vehicle.

Latest: NHS pulls £15m from social care budget; homeless helpers face eviction; Kuqi in line for Vale manager's job

Chris King

Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

This morning's top stories for Staffordshire and Cheshire include:

- Staffordshire County Council says non-essential spending on adult social care "is being frozen" after the NHS withdrew £15m of funding   

- A couple who help homeless people in Stoke-on-Trent have told BBC Radio Stoke they are facing eviction from their house in the next 24 hours

- Former Finland striker Shefki Kuqi is the leading contender for the manager's job at League One side Port Vale, reports BBC Radio Stoke