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England, United Kingdom

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Video: What's the weekend weather got in store?

Rebecca Wood

BBC Midlands Today

It will be a cloudy night with some patchy rain and lows of 8C (46F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Police cleared over chase that ended in fatal crash

An inquiry has concluded police were not for blame for a crash that killed a young woman in Birmingham last July.

Sarah Giles (pictured below) died and her boyfriend was seriously injured when Branden Daniels lost control of a stolen Audi A3 and crashed into their vehicle.

He had been pursued by West Midlands Police officers, but the Independent Office for Police Conduct said the chase had been "authorised, proportionate and carried out in accordance with local and national policy".

Sarah Giles
West Midlands Police

The IOPC also said: "The police officers drove a safe distance behind the stolen vehicle and ultimately it was the manner in which the Audi was driven which led to such tragic consequences."

Rail delays expected until 15:00 as line blocked

BBC News Travel

An incident between Birmingham Moor Street and Solihull, which is blocking the railway lines, is expected to cause disruption until 15:00.

The incident is affecting Chiltern Raildways, Cross Country and West Midlands Railway services.

Tickets are being accepted on other services and some bus routes.

View more on twitter

Knife offenders 'don't have anything to lose'

The Chief Constable of West Midlands Police says the £7m extra funding his force has been given by the government to tackle knife crime will help, but won't solve the problem.

Knife crime West Midlands
BBC

Figures published by the police showed in the year up to September in the West Midlands force area there were 3,108 offences recorded, a rise of 19% on the year before and almost double the number recorded in 2013.

Dave Thompson said some offenders "didn't have anything to lose" and were "not thinking about the consequences" of their actions.

"There's got to be a dread of detection, a dread of the consequences, but you know I've looked at some of the cases we had, cases where really the likelihood of the offender being caught is obvious and yet, you know, the incident results in a murder.

"Perhaps because they don't think they have anything to lose and don't live a life where they think anymore further than the immediate."

'Children should visit dentist when first milk teeth appear'

Just 3% of children visit the dentist before their first birthday which shows a "lack of understanding" about oral health, a new study has found.

The figures rise to 12% by the age of two, University of Birmingham researchers said.

Dental check-up
PA

Most children miss out on dental appointments in the first few years of their lives, the report in the Community Dental Health journal reports.

It's recommended parents take their children to the dentist when their first milk teeth appear, with regular check-ups to follow.

Dr John Morris from the university said: "Poor oral health can cause pain and infection, which can affect eating, sleeping, socialising and learning, yet worryingly our research suggests that there is a widespread lack of understanding of the importance of taking children to the dentist before their first birthday."

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

It will be a cool day with lots of cloud and highs of 16C (61F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Shefali Oza

BBC Midlands Today

It will be a cloudy night with some light showers and lows of 6C (43F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

2019 European elections: How many new MEPs might you get?

BBC News

Half of the existing MEPs in the West Midlands are not contesting the upcoming European Parliament elections.

European parliament
Getty Images

There are 72 UK MEPs currently serving, with one seat vacant. Of those, 43 are seeking re-election and there are 548 other new candidates.

That means at least 30 of those elected from 23-26 May might either never take their seats or serve only a few months if the UK leaves the European Union by the end of October.

Here are some facts and figures about the choice voters have about who represents them in Brussels and Strasbourg.

Government invests further £28m in Coventry electric car tech

The Government has given a further £28m to an electric car battery development centre in Coventry.

Electric vehicle
BBC

Business Secretary Greg Clark is set to announce the funding for the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre, which is on top of an £80m initial investment.

West Midlands mayor Andy Street said the centre was a "major coup" for the city and the wider West Midlands.

The cash is part of the Local Industrial Strategy to boost the region's economy.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

After a fine start it will a dry sunny day with some cloud and highs of 17C (63F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Residents to make way for high-rise revamps

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Carl Jackson

Hundreds of residents are expected be evicted from their homes in Birmingham in the next few years, to make way for council regeneration projects.

One of the tower blocks to be demolished in Druids Heath
Google

The city council's cabinet backed the move with about 1,500 homes in the city set to be cleared in the next decade as part of a 10-year plan by the local authority.

Councillors said residents in Druids Heath affected by a £43m revamp - which will see five high-rises demolished and three tower blocks revamped - would be the first to benefit.

However, with the policy only providing "principles", opposition councillors questioned how it would be implemented and whether enough new homes would be built to rehouse people.

The local authority's housing boss, Councillor Sharon Thompson, said there would always be some scenarios that have to be dealt with on a "case by case basis".

More dry weather on the way tonight

Shefali Oza

BBC Midlands Today

The dry, fine weather's set to continue tonight in the West Midlands - here's the full forecast for the night and tomorrow:

Shefali Oza

To get a latest forecast for your area at any other time, head to the BBC Weather website.

Another dry, sunny day

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

Any early patches of mist should soon clear away leaving a dry and fine, sunny day.

Here's the full forecast for the West Midlands for Wednesday:

Alex Hamilton

You can get a latest forecast for your part of the region at any other time by going to the BBC Weather website.

Council budget underspend revealed

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Carl Jackson

Birmingham City Council has managed to underspend on its budget after a year of dire financial warnings.

Birmingham council house
BBC

Despite the achievement, critics accused the Labour administration of using savings in adult social care to prop up the waste service which exceeded its own budget by millions of pounds following two industrial disputes.

In 2018/19 the council underspent on its £855.2m net revenue budget by £5.9m, a report discussed by cabinet this morning revealed.

It also managed to reduce the amount of reserves used from an anticipated £30.5m to £20.6m.

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It will be a dry night with mainly clear skies and lows of 3C (37F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Man arrested in human trafficking investigation

A man has been arrested in connection with a major investigation into human trafficking for the purposes of sexual exploitation.

He was detained at an address in the West Midlands and is being questioned by officers from the National Crime Agency.

A number of other properties are being searched in the West Midlands, west London and Northamptonshire areas.

The operations are being conducted with the support of Immigration Enforcement, West Midlands Police, Metropolitan Police and Northamptonshire Police.

Boy hit by ambulance responding to 999 call

A teenage boy suffered potentially serious injuries when he was hit by an ambulance responding to an emergency call.

Ambulance
BBC

It happened in Lichfield Street, Walsall, just after 17:30 on Monday.

The teenager was treated at the scene before being airlifted to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.

No-one in the ambulance was injured, though they were badly shaken.

The ambulance service will be working with collision investigators to establish what happened, the West Midlands trust said.

Council set to decide plans for new Islamic girls’ school

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Carl Jackson

Birmingham City Council's set to approve spending more than £25m to develop a new Islamic girls’ secondary school.

Entrance to  Al-Hijrah in Bordesley
Google

The cabinet's meeting today to pass the business case for a temporary school at Clifton Road, Balsall Heath, and a permanent facility at Hob Moor Road in Small Heath.

The school's needed with secondary years set to be axed by this September at council-funded Al-Hijrah in Bordesley due to its illegal segregation of girls and boys.

A report, going before the cabinet today, admits the time-scale to deliver both developments is 'challenging' but the proposed opening of the permanent school is 2021.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It will be a dry fine day with sunshine and highs of 19C (66F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It will be a dry night with largely clear skies and lows of 2C (36F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands
Horse owner angry over Velo Birmingham mare and foal deaths
Their owner says road closures meant a vet could not reach the animals in time.

Firearm documentary wins Bafta TV award

A documentary tracing the history of a firearm set against a backdrop of escalating gang violence in Birmingham has won a Bafta.

Gun No 6 won for the best single documentary.

West Midlands Police tweeted congratulations to producer Zac Beattie.

View more on twitter

The documentary tells of how the firearm, used in various incidents across the city, was passed around many people in six years.

The programme is still available to watch on the BBC iPlayer.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

After a chilly start it will be a dry and fine day with warm sunshine and highs of 18C (43F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

It will be a mostly cloudy day with some patchy rain and highs of 14C (57F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Shefali Oza

BBC Midlands Today

It will be a cloudy night with some showers but turning drier with lows of 5C (41F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Tributes paid to soldier killed in anti-poaching operation

Tributes have been paid in Parliament to a soldier who was killed by an elephant during an anti-poaching operation.

Matthew Talbot
MOD

Mathew Talbot, 22, of the 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards, was on patrol in Liwonde National Park on 5 May when he was charged by the animal.

His commanding officer, Lt Col Ed Launders, described Guardsman Talbot, who was from the West Midlands, as "determined and big-hearted".

Michael Gove
BBC

Environment Secretary Michael Gove told the Commons that Gdsm Talbot was doing highly important work.

He was a distinguished 22-year-old young soldier who was fighting to preserve the natural world and our sympathies go to his family, friends and colleagues.

Michael GoveEnvironment Secretary

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

It will be a cloudy day with showers and top temperatures of 13C (55F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Showers tonight in your weather forecast

Shefali Oza

BBC Midlands Today

Cloudy at times tonight and a scattering of showers forecast, Here's the full weather forecast for the West Midlands:

Shefali Oza

You can get a latest forecast for your area at any other time by heading to the BBC Weather website.

Police given £7.6m to tackle violent crime

BBC WM

West Midlands Police has been given an extra £7.6m by the government to tackle serious violence.

Tent in Wolverhampton after shooting on Monday
BBC

The Home Office has today revealed how it's distributed the last of a £100m fund it announced in March after a rise in violent crime.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid said he wanted the police forces to take "urgent action" such as having more officers on duty in the worst-affected areas.

It comes after shootings in Wolverhampton and Birmingham this week and a string of stabbings since January in the West Midlands area.

The latest Office of National Statistics figures show West Midlands Police recorded 24 gun offences per 100,000 residents in the force area in 2017-2018, more than double the average for England and Wales.

Work due to start on Commonwealth Games' village

BBC WM

Work's due to begin today on the athletes' village for the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

Artist's impression of the village
Birmingham City Council

The Games Village in Perry Barr will include about 1,000 homes, dining areas, transport and services to accommodate up to 6,500 athletes and officials.

After the games, the accommodation - a mix of apartments and town houses - is due to be converted to homes for sale and rent, including social and affordable housing.

The city council says school children have been invited to the official launch this afternoon, along with athletes and members of the local community.

Birmingham bins boss resigns after three months

Allen Cook

BBC News

A councillor's stepping down from being in charge of Birmingham's bins after three months in the role.

Bin bags piled up
BBC

Councillor Brett O'Reilly's confirmed he'll stand down as cabinet member in charge of waste and recycling at the Labour group's AGM this weekend.

A strike this year saw a series of walkouts start in February over "secret payments" made to non-striking GMB staff after a dispute in 2017.

In March, the city council said it had agreed to pay £3,500 to each worker, resolving the dispute.

Mr O'Reilly took on the role in February but said he is leaving to spend more time with his family - however he still intends to continue as councillor for the Longbridge and West Heath Ward.

Numbers show fall in number of GPs in West Midlands

BBC News Health

The number of GPs in the West Midlands has dropped by more than 100 over two years, the BBC can reveal.

The NHS is seeing the first sustained fall in GP numbers in the UK for 50 years across the UK.

A generic photo of a GP
Getty Images

An analysis by the Nuffield Trust shows the number of GPs per 100,000 people has fallen from nearly 65 in 2014 to 60 last year.

In the West Midlands, the data shows there were 101 fewer GPs in 2018 compared to 2016, a fall of 2.8%. There were 58.1 GPs per 100,000 people in the region last year.

The last time numbers fell like this was in the late 1960s and it comes at a time when the population is ageing and demands on GPs are rising.

Patient groups said it was causing real difficulties in making appointments.

NHS bosses maintain that steps are being taken to improve access, with more GPs being trained and extra support staff recruited to work alongside them.

Prince writes to soldier's family after elephant death

BBC Midlands Today

The Duke of Cambridge is writing to the family of a British soldier who was killed by an elephant during a counter-poaching operation in Malawi.

Mathew Talbot
MOD

Kensington Palace said Prince William wanted to pass on his condolences to the family of Mathew Talbot, 22, of the 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards, who was from the West Midlands.

The patrol of armed British army soldiers and African Park Rangers was walking through tall grass - up to 7ft (2.1m) high - when they disturbed an unseen herd of elephants.

One of them charged at Gdsm Talbot. He died soon after from his injuries. No-one else on the patrol was hurt.