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Video: Is the hot weather set to stay?

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It will be an unsettled night with some heavy showers and thunderstorms heading north with lows of 17C (63F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Listen now: Being a gay dad

BBC Radio 4

David Gregory-Kumar is a BBC Midlands Today journalist, and he's also a gay dad.

David Gregory Kumar
BBC

Across three editions of the BBC Radio 4 series One to One he is exploring different aspects of gay parenting.

In this episode he meets Chris Hurlston whose children were carried by surrogate mothers, one from India and the other from Nepal.

They also talk about the challenges of raising a daughter, and the protests against teaching LGBT equality in Birmingham where they both live.

Warm weather brings threat of thunderstorms

Scattered thunderstorms moving north tonight through the West Midlands could lead to some power cuts and travel delays, the Met Office is warning.

Although some places will miss the thunderstorms altogether, where they do occur there is the potential for frequent lightning, hail and gusty winds.

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Severe disruption: M6 West Midlands northbound

BBC News Travel

M6 West Midlands northbound severe disruption, from J6 for A38 to J7 for A34 Birmingham Road.

M6 West Midlands - One lane closed and queues on M6 northbound from J6 A38(M) Aston Expressway Spaghetti Junction to J7, A34 (Great Barr), because of a break down.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Speed restriction due to heat

Speed restrictions have been put in place on Chiltern Railways services due to the heat.

Travellers are being warned journeys are expected to take longer than normal.

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Value of city’s parks and open spaces calculated at £11bn

The parks and green spaces in Birmingham have a value of £11bn, a report has concluded.

The value of Birmingham's parks graphic
Birmingham City Council

An academic study, led by Birmingham City Council and the Consultancy for Environmental Economics & Policy, reached the conclusion.

The total health benefits of parks and allotments have been valued at nearly £4.1bn.

Nearly 7,300 council-managed allotments are estimated to produce 2.9 tonnes of food each year with a value of approximately £4.3m, the report said.

Councillor John O’Shea, cabinet member for street scene and parks at the authority, said: "What this report does is methodically look at what value they bring from a health, well-being and economic perspective, with staggering positive conclusions."

Warnings issued as temperatures set to break 30C

The health service is warning people to stay hydrated and use sunscreen during the hot weather expected this week.

The south of England will see the hottest temperatures, but in the West Midlands we're still likely to see it reach 30C in the next few days and even higher in some areas.

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The NHS is advising those who are more vulnerable such as the very young and the elderly, to avoid being exposed to the sun for long periods.

Severe accident: M6 West Midlands southbound

BBC News Travel

M6 West Midlands southbound severe accident, from J7 for A34 Birmingham Road to J6 for A38.

M6 West Midlands - One lane closed and queues on M6 southbound from J7, A34 (Great Barr) to J6 A38(M) Aston Expressway Spaghetti Junction, because of an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe delays on M6 southbound

BBC News Travel

There's seven miles of queuing traffic on the M6 southbound in the West Midlands.

One lane is closed from J9 to J8 after an oil spillage from an earlier broken down tanker.

Emergency repairs are taking place.

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Firefighters remain at derelict factory fire

Firefighters are continuing to damp down a fire at a derelict factory in Birmingham.

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At its height more than 70 firefighters tackled the blaze in Winson Green, where recycling material was understood to be alight.

Crews are continuing to damp down the fire and tackle any hot spots, said the fire service.

Structural engineers have been called in as the building suffered a partial collapse on Monday.

Drone footage of fire at derelict factory in Winson Green

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

Any cloud should clear leaving a sunny and very warm day with highs of 31C (88F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Severe disruption: M6 West Midlands southbound

BBC News Travel

M6 West Midlands southbound severe disruption, at J9 for A461 Wood Green Road.

M6 West Midlands - M6 lane closed on exit slip road southbound at J9, A461 (Wednesbury), because of a break down.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe accident: M6 West Midlands southbound

BBC News Travel

M6 West Midlands southbound severe accident, from J9 for A461 Wood Green Road to J8 for M5.

M6 West Midlands - One lane closed and it's slow on M6 southbound from J9, A461 (Wednesbury) to J8 M5, because of an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Your photos: A day of blue skies

BBC Weather Watchers

A blue sky start to the week for much of the West Midlands today, as BBC Weather Watchers have reported plenty of sunshine across the region.

These three are from users Poetic Verse in Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire, RantingRose in Birmingham and Graham's Vista in Grendon, Warwickshire:

Burton upon Trent
Poetic Verse
Birmingham
RantingRose
Grendon
Graham's Vista

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

It will be a dry night turning misty in places with lows of 13C (55F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Work starts on police Commonwealth Games HQ

Work has started on a new control suite, which will be the base for police operations for Birmingham's Commonwealth Games in 2022.

West Midlands Police
BBC

The new centre, scheduled to be completed by the end of 2020, will also be a base for the force's firearms operations unit.

Ch Supt Dave Sturman said: “The games will be the largest operation in the force’s history and this new Event Control Suite will provide the world class facilities we need to deliver a safe and successful event for the region."

The new centre is also part of the force's programme to save £5m a year through disposing of underused buildings.

Severe accident: M6 West Midlands southbound

BBC News Travel

M6 West Midlands southbound severe accident, from J7 for A34 Birmingham Road to J6 for A38.

M6 West Midlands - One lane closed and it's slow on M6 southbound from J7, A34 (Great Barr) to J6 A38(M) Aston Expressway Spaghetti Junction, because of an accident.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Rail delays due to train fault

A fault on a train between Birmingham New Street and Wolverhampton is delaying rail services.

Tickets are being accepted on local bus services.

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Roads outside schools could be closed

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Some of the stories filed by our Local Democracy Reporting Service today include:

  • A pilot to close roads outside schools is recommended to be trialled in Coventry.
  • A furious council chief has warned a Walsall graffiti vandal that the next ‘tag’ they will be involved in will be one worn around the ankle.
  • Plans to celebrate diversity and ethnic minority communities and their contribution to Sandwell will still go ahead despite it being temporarily withdrawn.

Gun found dumped in bag

A gun has been found dumped in a bag in Birmingham by a member of the public, police say.

Gun
West Midlands Police

The revolver has been sent for testing to see if it's been used in a crime, police said, after it would found in a bag in Bordesley Green.

Drugs
West Midlands Police

In a separate incident, drugs with an estimated street value of £72,000 were found in a parked car in Alum Rock.

What's thought to be heroin was seized after officers forced their way into the car, acting on intelligence.

Fire crews remain at derelict factory fire

Firefighters are still at a derelict factory in Birmingham where a fire broke out on Saturday.

Drone footage of fire at derelict factory in Winson Green

At its height, more than 70 firefighters tackled the blaze, in Winson Green, understood to involve recycling material.

Station commander Jason Holt said pockets of fire were still flaring up at the site, which has now partially collapsed.

Structural engineers from Birmingham City Council are expected at the site today, he said.

A fire investigation is also ongoing, he added.

'Unavailable' staff delaying rail service

Rail services are being disrupted between Birmingham and Worcester due to a member of staff being "unavailable", said West Midlands Railway.

Ticket acceptance is in place for local bus routes.

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Drone footage of fire at derelict factory in Winson Green
Smoke could be seen across Birmingham on Saturday after a fire broke out at a derelict factory.

Severe disruption: M6 West Midlands northbound

BBC News Travel

M6 West Midlands northbound severe disruption, from J6 for A38 to J7 for A34 Birmingham Road.

M6 West Midlands - One lane closed on M6 northbound from J6 A38(M) Aston Expressway Spaghetti Junction to J7, A34 (Great Barr), because of a break down. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: M5 West Midlands southbound

BBC News Travel

M5 West Midlands southbound severe disruption, from J1 for A41 Birmingham Road West Bromwich to J2 for A4123 Wolverhampton Road Oldbury.

M5 West Midlands - One lane closed on M5 southbound from J1, A41 (West Bromwich) to J2, A4123 (Oldbury), because of a broken down motorbike. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: A457 West Midlands both ways

BBC News Travel

A457 West Midlands both ways severe disruption, from Aberdeen Street to College Street.

A457 West Midlands - A457 Dudley Road in Winson Green closed in both directions from the Aberdeen Street junction to the College Street junction. Traffic is coping well.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: M6 West Midlands southbound

BBC News Travel

M6 West Midlands southbound severe disruption, from M5 J1 West Bromwich.

M6 West Midlands - M6 lane closed on exit slip road to M5 and it's heavy southbound from M5 J1, West Bromwich, because of a break down.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Severe disruption: M6 West Midlands southbound

BBC News Travel

M6 West Midlands southbound severe disruption, at J8 for M5.

M6 West Midlands - One lane closed and it's slow on M6 southbound at J8 M5, because of a break down.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Weather: Rain forecast this weekend

Rebecca Wood

BBC Midlands Today

If you were planning a barbeque this weekend, you might want to wait until Sunday, because we're forecast rain tomorrow.

It's looking a lot better next week though.

Weather forecast for the West Midlands

New provider found for special school bus service

A new provider has been found to run minibuses to special schools in Birmingham.

The city council says it has awarded the contract to West Midlands Accessible Transport Ltd, a subsidiary of National Express, and the service will start in September.

Special needs bus
BBC

A new provider has been needed since the previous main provider, ATG, went into administration in March.

West Coast Main Line rail passengers face disruption

Rail passengers using the West Coast Main Line through the West Midlands can expect major disruption, because of engineering work which is due to start tomorrow.

For the next 16 days Network Rail is upgrading track, cabling, overhead lines and signalling at the Acton Grange junction between Crewe and Preston.

Railway track
Network Rail

Trains will be diverted during the £27m project, with replacement buses also running.

A full list of services affected is available on the Network Rail website, alongside details of replacement buses.

Police pay rise 'could cost 37 officers'

Thirty seven police officers could be lost from the West Midlands force unless the government funds the pay rise it's set to announce, says the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC).

Police officer
West Midlands Police

The armed forces will get a 2.9% rise, teachers and school staff 2.75%, police officers, dentists and consultants 2.5%, senior civil servants 2%, the Times said.

It is thought the rise will come from existing budgets.

PCC David Jamieson said the estimated pay rise could leave the force needing to spend a further £1.8m from its current budget.

Since I’ve been commissioner I’ve had to watch as the number of police officers plummet and crime rises. Whilst I welcome any plans to pay our hard working officers a salary which they all fully deserve, I am very concerned that there are no plans to fund the pay rise."

David JamiesonWest Midlands Police and Crime Commi

NHS pensions row 'could cost equivalent of 60 consultants'

The chief executive of an NHS trust in the West Midlands says that he expects to lose the work equivalent to that done by 60 consultants, as doctors reduce the amount of overtime they do.

Surgery
PA Media

Consultants have begun refusing to work beyond their planned hours after receiving unexpected tax bills, following new pension rules in 2016.

The government has indicated it will come up with new proposals in an attempt to resolve the dispute, which has led to increased waiting times for routine surgery.

Currently we've probably lost in the region of, the equivalent of, ten consultants. But the way things are going we could easily lose the equivalent of sixty consultants in terms of overtime lost, and that's a lot of patients whose care will be delayed.

Dr David RossirChief Executive, University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust

Thousands expected at 'Europe's largest' Mela

Thousands of people are expected at the Sandwell & Birmingham Mela this weekend for what claims to be the biggest Asian music festival in Europe.

The annual event, now in it's ninth year, takes place at Victoria Park, Smethwick on Saturday and Sunday.

Mela
Sandwell Council

The event showcases some of the best in pop, folk, and classical music from across the globe as well as dance acts and arts activities.

The event showcases the West Midlands "at its diverse, lively and open best", said Sandwell Council's leader Yvonne Davies.

There will be road closures in the area for the duration of the festival, with drivers being warned to allow extra time for journeys.

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Plans for flood plain homes to be decided

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Here are three more of the stories written by the Local Democracy Reporters today:

  • A bid to reopen a pub called the Moonshine Inn in Birmingham has been rejected by councillors over concerns about noise, nuisance. One neighbour also objected to its name, because Moonshine is the term used for a high-strength illegally distilled alcohol.
  • A plan to build 62 affordable homes near a floodplain near Worcester, which were rejected once over flooding fears, will go before council planners again next week.
  • Concerns have been raised about the lack of sprinklers included in the plans to refurbish Wolverhampton's Civic Halls.