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Summary

  1. Updates for Tuesday 9 December 2014
  2. More news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Wednesday

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Post update

    Local Live has finished for the day. We'll be back with more news, sport, travel and weather updates from 08:00 on Wednesday.

  2. Coming up on TV

    Mary Rhodes

    Presenter, BBC Midlands Today

    The entire West Midlands Police force remains on a high level of terror alert.

    It comes as it received a credible threat that's understood to have involved a kidnap and murder plot.

    Security's been increased at police stations and officers are being told not to wear their uniforms while off duty. Ben Sidwell reports for Midlands Today and you can watch the full story on BBC One at 18:30.

  3. 'Can happen pretty much anywhere'

    The chairman of the Police Federation for England and Wales, Steve White, says all officers should remain vigilant.

    He said: "The kind of information that was received by West Midlands yesterday effectively paints a picture of, it could happen anywhere at any time as opposed to a specific geographic area.

    "Last night was specific but the point is, this isn't something that is just aligned to the Metropolitan or London or necessarily large urban areas, it can happen pretty much anywhere."

  4. 'Less credible' threat was a call

    Ben Sidwell

    Reporter, BBC Midlands Today

    Dr Steve Hewitt, a senior lecturer in counter-terrorism, said: "It's less credible [the threat was phoned in].

    "Obviously if you are planning an attack, you are not going to tip off who you are going to attack.

    "I think this is the nature of modern terrorism - police are quite good at detecting quite large plots but it's almost impossible to stop one or two individuals from doing something, especially if they are not on the radar."

  5. Threat taken 'extremely seriously'

    Alex Homer

    BBC Local Live

    Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth had said before this afternoon's arrest that the force was taking the threat "extremely seriously", but there was no increased risk to the public.

    Officers were urged to take extra precautions, including not wearing uniform during journeys to and from work.

  6. Arrests should give public relief

    BBC WM

    Former counter-terror officer David Lowe said the public should be reassured by the number of arrests in the past few months, that allegations of any terror-related offences were taken seriously.

    He said: "It should give relief to everyone that work is being done."

  7. Threat doesn't stop police work

    Midlands Today

    "They are obviously investigating this as a matter of urgency and they are obviously keen to stress police are out there right now doing their job," said Jack Dromey MP.

  8. News on the hour

    Rob Mayor

    Journalist, BBC WM

    Our news editor Chris Blakemore will be live from West Midlands Police headquarters reporting on the threat to an officer.

    Listen live to our 17:00 bulletin.

  9. 'Right to be cautious'

    Midlands Today

    We have interviewed Jack Dromey, Erdington Labour MP and shadow policing minister, on the reported threat to a police officer.

    Jack Dromey MP

    He said the West Midlands force was keen to stress to the public there was no new threat to them, but it was "right to be cautious to protect brave policemen and women going to work."

  10. Police targets 'symbolic'

    Ben Sidwell

    Reporter, BBC Midlands Today

    Dr Steve Hewitt, a senior lecturer in UK and US counter-terrorism at the University of Birmingham, said police may have been targeted because of the symbolism involved.

    Dr Steve Hewitt

    He said: "When you have had a number of counter-terrorism arrests in the West Midlands, going back not just months but years, if an attack occurred it would be amplified by the media and social media."

  11. News on the hour

    Rob Mayor

    Journalist, BBC WM

    At 16:00 we will hear from a retired West Midlands Police officer of 26 years who says danger comes with the job, but the public can help.

    Jenny Harris spoke to us after an anonymous threat to kidnap and kill another officer.

    Tune into our bulletin.

  12. Watch: Officers warned

    Ben Sidwell

    Reporter, BBC Midlands Today

    West Midlands Police said it was "business as usual" after receiving an anonymous warning over officers' safety.

    The BBC understands a threat to kidnap and murder a serving West Midlands police officer led to a security alert being issued to staff.

    Garry Forsyth

    Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth has confirmed the anonymous threat is being investigated by its counter-terrorism unit.

  13. 'Very positive step'

    The Perry Barr MP says: "If the community has any information about any of this I would suggest that they get to the police and pick up the phone and try and inform the police as much as they can."

    Khalid Mahmood

    Mr Mahmood adds: "They have taken a very positive step to try and deal with it and we just need to be aware of what's happening."

  14. 'People need to co-operate'

    A Birmingham MP is calling on the local community to report information to the police after the West Midlands force said it was investigating a possible threat to kidnap and murder one of its officers.

    The Labour MP for Perry Barr, Khalid Mahmood

    The Labour MP for Perry Barr Khalid Mahmood tells BBC News that people need to co-operate with the police to counter the threat.

  15. 'Dial 101 with security concerns'

    West Midlands Police tweets: Anyone with any security concerns should call us on 101, or 999 in an emergency. Full update and video here: ow.ly/FB9Cx

  16. News on the hour

    BBC WM

    In the 15:00 news bulletin: West Midlands Police step up security after a threat was apparently made to kidnap and murder one of its officers.

    Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth insists there's no reason to believe the public are at risk.

  17. Officers busy in Birmingham

    Phil Mackie

    News Correspondent

    Birmingham is basically chocka from 9am to 9pm every day at the moment. It's hard to park, it's a struggle to get on and off the trains because it's so busy.

    BBC's Phil Mackie

    There are many uniformed people - whether they be community support officers or officers on the beat - trying to manage crowds.

    Police reiterate that this is a specific threat and they are taking it very, very seriously to try and get to the bottom of it and find the person that has made that threat.

  18. Police warned before

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    Mr Forsyth also said Monday night's briefing was a "reiteration of a message given to officers in October and November".

    Officers have been urged to take extra precautions, including not wearing uniform during journeys to and from work.

    West Midlands Police said it had "implemented additional security measures" after obtaining the information, but the force declined to confirm the exact nature of the threat.

  19. Officers kept back over warning

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth said during the press briefing the information "relating to police officers and staff" was received yesterday but he did not go into further detail about the nature of what was said, nor by whom.

    He said he took the decision to brief staff and officers and that involved retaining some of those on a late shift and bringing in night shift officers earlier.

  20. 'Business as usual'

    Deputy Chief Constable Dave Thompson says: "We are and have not deviated from our business as usual."

  21. News on the hour

    BBC WM

    In the 14:00 news bulletin: West Midlands Police has stepped up security after a threat was apparently made to kidnap and murder one of its officers.

  22. Not first threat of this nature

    Dominic Casciani

    Home affairs correspondent, BBC News

    This is not the first time Birmingham has seen a possible threat of this nature because six years ago a man from the city admitted planning to kidnap and kill a soldier.

    In October this year, police were warned they faced a heightened risk amid allegations of a plot to target officers in London - allegations that are yet to be proven in court. Read more.

  23. Anti-terror police lead inquiry

    Tom Richardson

    BBC News Online

    West Midlands Police has confirmed it is treating the threat against its officers as a terror investigation.

    A spokeswoman said officers from its counter-terror unit were "continuing to assess the information" received by the force.

  24. Anonymous information

    Additional security measures have been implemented by police serving the West Midlands after anonymous information relating to the safety of officers and staff was divulged, the Walsall Advertiser reports.

  25. Support appreciated

    Brum Theft Team tweets: All of your support is very much appreciated! #ThankYou

  26. Coming up on TV

    Sarah Falkland

    BBC Midlands Today presenter

    Our reporter Ben Sidwell will be live with a terrorism expert this lunchtime outside Aqua House talking about the threat to kidnap and kill an officer.

    We'll have the latest updates on what the threat to our police force means on BBC One in the Midlands from 13:30.

  27. News on the hour

    BBC WM

    In the 13:00 news bulletin: Security's been increased at West Midlands police stations and officers are being told not to wear their uniforms while off duty.

  28. 'It's business as usual'

    Midlands Today

    "There is no threat to the public" - the message from West Midlands Police.

    Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth

    Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth tells BBC Midlands Today "it's business as usual".

    He adds: "There is an ongoing investigation with officers from our counter terrorism unit and we will see what the outcome of that investigation is."

  29. Backdrop to police threat

    This threat to kidnap and kill a police officer comes after the UK's terror threat level was raised from "substantial" to "severe" in August in response to conflicts in Iraq and Syria.

    Theresa May

    The new alert level rates the risk of an attack on the UK "highly likely", although Home Secretary Theresa May said at the time that there was no evidence to suggest one was "imminent".

  30. 'Officers accept risks'

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    Mr Forsyth told me officers habitually put themselves at risk to protect the public.

    He said: "Officers will be concerned but it's fair to say as well we have excellent officers who put their lives in danger to protect the public every day.

    Steve Hermon interviews Garry Forsyth

    "That's something we accept in our roles and will continue to do as part of our day-to-day business."

  31. News on the hour

    Chris Blakemore

    News editor, BBC WM

    We will hear more from Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth in our 12:00 bulletin.

  32. Anti-terrorist hotline

    Birmingham Updates

    It's probably nothing, but ...

    West Midlands Police contact
  33. 'Never been a public risk'

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    Garry Forsyth said: "This is subject to an ongoing investigation by officers in our counter-terrorism unit. We have given officers a briefing to ensure their ongoing safety.

    "The information we received was specific to police officers and staff. There's no threat to the public and there never has been at any time."

  34. 'Messages of support'

    West Midlands Police tweets: Thanks for all your messages of support this morning. Normal patrols continue today. Full details here: ow.ly/FAvmL

  35. Business as usual: Police chief

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    "It's business as usual."

    Garry Forsyth

    That was Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth's message at a press briefing about the security alert, which the BBC understands was a threat to kidnap and kill a serving officer.

  36. Would not confirm threat to kill

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    At a press conference held minutes ago, West Midlands Police would neither confirm nor deny there was a threat to kidnap and kill an officer.

  37. Extra precautions in Birmingham

    Phil Mackie

    News Correspondent

    The force is trying to reassure people that this is a specific threat against police officers and not members of the public.

    Birmingham Christmas Market

    Police are taking this threat very seriously. They are taking extra precautions at a time when not just Birmingham but every city in the West Midlands is absolutely heaving every day because of Christmas shopping and the Birmingham Christmas market.

    Watch more on the BBC News Channel.

  38. Analysis: Specific threat to police

    Phil Mackie

    News Correspondent

    The national security level remains severe, meaning a terrorist attack is highly likely.

    Birmingham Central Police Station

    But because of the specific nature of this alert, West Midlands Police is taking it extremely seriously.

    At the moment we don't know the nature of the threat. This is not something the public should feel extra worried about; this a threat made directly against West Midlands Police officers.

  39. City scene of failed plot

    Robin Brant

    Political Correspondent, BBC News

    Police in and around Birmingham are on special alert after an anonymous call threatening an attack on officers.

    Birmingham was the scene of a 2007 failed plot to kidnap and behead a British soldier.

    The West Midlands threat comes after five men were charged in October with plotting to kill police officers or soldiers on the streets of London. Read more on Twitter.

  40. 'Threat to police and staff'

    Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth has so far confirmed that information received related "to the safety of West Midlands Police officers and police staff".

    ACC Garry Forsyth

    "We have taken the opportunity to remind all employees of the need to be vigilant. Our priority remains serving our communities and protecting them from harm," he said.

    "Officers remain on patrol and our staff continue to respond to calls for service as usual."

  41. News on the hour

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    We understand a threat has been made to kidnap and murder a serving West Midlands Police officer.

    We're hoping to hear from the force live on this in the next hour. Tune in.

  42. 'No increased risk for public'

    Phil Mackie

    News Correspondent

    Officers have been urged to take extra security precautions, including not wearing uniforms while travelling to and from work.

    Security has been stepped up at stations across the West Midlands.

    Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth said West Midlands Police was taking the threat "extremely seriously", but there was nothing to suggest an increased risk to the public.

  43. BreakingPost update

    Phil Mackie

    News Correspondent

    A threat has been made to kidnap and murder a serving West Midlands Police officer, the BBC understands.

    Staff were briefed last night after the force received an anonymous call.

  44. Firefighters strike again

    BBC WM

    West Midlands firefighters walked out for another 24 hours from 09:00 this morning as part of a long-running dispute over pensions.

    The fire service is asking people to take extra care as the cold weather brings new fire risks. Two thirds of fatal fires involving heaters are caused by furniture or clothing being too close.

  45. Primary school closes again

    Jerry Chester

    BBC News, North West

    A primary school in the West Midlands has been forced to close for a second time because of hazardous smoke from a fire at an industrial unit.

    The fire on the Middlemore Industrial Estate in Smethwick broke out last Wednesday.

    Smethwick fire

    Wattville Primary School said a change of wind direction meant hazardous smoke and fumes were being blown across the school grounds.

  46. News on the hour

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    West Midlands Police has increased security following an anonymous tip-off that's reported to have included a threat to kidnap or kill an officer.

    We'll hear from the region's police and crime commissioner David Jamieson in our 10:00 bulletin.

  47. Second city status 'at risk'

    Alex Homer

    BBC Local Live

    Sir Bob Kerslake said: "A stronger Birmingham matters most to those who live and work there, but it is also a matter of national importance.

    "Birmingham's economy has underperformed - not just compared to London but to Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Sheffield."

  48. How council could improve

    David Lumb

    BBC News, West Midlands

    Sir Bob's review made 11 recommendations to the Labour-run council. The first of which was that the secretary of state should appoint an independent improvement panel to work with it to "provide the robust challenge and support the council requires".

    The authority said it recognised and accepted the broad thrust of the document's recommendations.

    Sir Bob Kerslake

    The council's children's services department has been in special measures since 2009 and Ofsted's Chief Inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw has suggested the local authority be separated up.

    The Kerslake report made clear it did not think the council is too big or should be completely broken up.

  49. BreakingBreaking News

    David Lumb

    BBC News, West Midlands

    An independent panel should be set up to oversee improvements at Birmingham City Council, a review has found.

    The study was commissioned after a series of reports focused on the council during an inquiry into the so-called Trojan Horse letter.

    Led by Sir Bob Kerslake, the report also called for the council to review a new voting system and devolution model.

  50. News on the hour

    Steve Hermon

    Journalist, BBC WM

    At 09:00 we will hear from Sir Albert Bore, Labour leader of Birmingham City Council, as the findings of a much-anticipated government report into its shortcomings are released.

    More on this in our bulletin.

  51. Where does Christmas go wrong?

    Jenny Scott

    BBC News Online

    A fortnight ago, the Magical Journey in Sutton Coldfield reopened for business after originally closing under the weight of customer complaints.

    But the Christmas-themed visitor attraction, created with the help of Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, is far from the first British winter wonderland to feel a distinct chill from the public.

    Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen posing with elves at the Magical Journey

    Are our expectations too high, or does British bonhomie pale in comparison to Christmas in other countries?

  52. Club face cup expulsion

    A Derbyshire football club face expulsion from the FA Cup after fielding an ineligible player on loan from Wolves.

    On-loan Wolves defender Georg Margreitter

    Defender Georg Margreitter featured in the 1-0 win at MK Dons without written permission from his parent club.

    Chesterfield FC were handed a potential trip to Scunthorpe or Worcester City in Monday's third-round draw. But their place is in jeopardy and the League One club have until 17:00 on Thursday to respond to the charge.

  53. Police warned over 'threat'

    West Midlands Police has put its officers and staff on alert after receiving an anonymous warning over their safety.

    The force said it had "implemented additional security measures" after obtaining the information.

  54. Rain arriving later

    Sara Blizzard

    Weather Presenter, BBC Midlands Today

    After a frosty but bright start cloud will thicken, bringing outbreaks of rain arriving this afternoon.

    Sara Blizzard reads the forecast

    Meanwhile the wind will have increased, reaching gusts of 40 to 50mph.

    It will feel cold with the wind, with a maximum temperature of 10C (50F). More information about the outlook later in the week is here.

  55. Delays in Oldbury

    Alex Homer

    BBC Local Live

    A traffic light failure on the A4123 Wolverhampton Road in Oldbury is causing delays and very slow traffic on Birchley island.

    Congestion is back to Tividale, warns BBC Travel.

  56. Good morning

    Alex Homer

    BBC Local Live

    I'm back in the BBC WM newsroom bringing you today's news, sport, travel and weather.

    Tell us your thoughts about our updates during the day over email, Twitter or Facebook and send us your pictures.