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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

  1. Our live updates across the day

    Andy Giddings

    BBC News

    We’ll be back with more updates on the coronavirus situation in the West Midlands from 08:00 tomorrow.

  2. Your photos: A sunny day at home

    BBC Weather Watchers

    For obvious reasons, a lot of the photos from the BBC Weather Watchers today have been taken at home or in the garden.

    But it looks like it’s been a beautiful spring day around the region.

    These photos were taken at Barlaston in Staffordshire and Dawley in Shropshire.

    Barlaston
    Dawley
  3. Children's play areas close but parks stay open

    Local Democracy Reporting Service

    Tom Davis

    Children’s playgrounds and outdoor gyms across Coventry parks have been closed as of today.

    Memorial Park

    The move has been made following government curbs to halt the spread of Covid-19.

    Parks, however, remain open, although residents have been urged to not gather in groups and keep the required two-metre distance from others.

  4. Food and farming show cancelled

    July's Newport Show has been cancelled because of the coronavirus.

    The annual event was set for 11 July, but the organising committee said: “We discussed postponing or holding a different scale of event, but the decision was that there are still too many unknown factors to make these feasible options at this time.”

    Newport Show

    John Gough, president of Newport Show, said: “It’s very sad to not be holding the event this year but as one of many farmers on the organising committee our focus at this critical time is to concentrate on producing food to feed and support the nation.”

    The Newport Show is due to return on 10 July 2021.

  5. Cinema closed but will 'be back'

    New restrictions announced by the government last night are now in force.

    These pictures show the scene inside Birmingham's Mailbox shopping centre earlier.

    Stores are closed and walkways locked, with some businesses shuttered.

    The cinema there is also deserted but with a message promising "we'll be back".

    Video content

    Video caption: City centre empties under new restrictions
  6. A further four coronavirus deaths in the West Midlands

    A further four coronavirus deaths have been confirmed in the West Midlands today, taking the total to 42.

    Two were in the care of Dudley Group NHS Trust, one was being treated by University Hospitals Birmingham, and the other by the Worcester Acute Hospitals Trust.

    NHS England said all of those who died today were those in "vulnerable groups".

    The hospitals with the greatest numbers of deaths were in London.

  7. MP getting calls from worried small businesses

    The Ludlow MP Philip Dunne has said the majority of calls he's receiving are from the self-employed who are worried about "putting food on the table".

    He said he accepts they're not getting as much help as larger businesses, but he's confident the chancellor is looking at what else can be put in place.

  8. Medical students 'step into the breach'

    Medical students are helping to keep open a Warwickshire GP practice.

    Student

    Dr James Gill got in touch via Twitter to tell us his surgery was in danger of closing last night after the last receptionists went into coronavirus quarantine.

    Student

    But students from Warwick Medical School had "stepped up to fill the breach" and the practice could open as normal.

  9. Video content

    Video caption: Coronavirus: Dancer choreographs way around outbreak

    Ballet teacher Laura Tye swaps her studio for online lessons to keep business afloat.

  10. Incredulous police deal with barbecue crowd

    Police in Coventry said they had to intervene when more than 20 people were found having a barbecue together.

    New measures have introduced a ban on public gatherings of more than two people.

    BBQ

    Foleshill Police tweeted officers had "unbelievably" had to disperse the large get-together.

    They added: "Please listen to government advice else this will get worse and last longer."

  11. Ambulance: ‘Don’t call 999 for a check-over’

    West Midlands Ambulance Service has reminded people that they shouldn’t call 999 for a coronavirus “check-over” if they can’t get through to the 111 NHS phone line.

    It’s also tweeted this advice on how to cope with the stress of being stuck at home.

    View more on twitter
  12. Video content

    Video caption: Coronavirus: 'Singing man of Northfield' cheering people up online

    Arthur Cook, 92, and his daughter have been sharing videos of him singing on social media.

  13. Aston Martin suspends all UK production

    Aston Martin has temporarily suspended all manufacturing operations at its UK plants "in line with government instructions," it has been announced.

    Aston Martin

    The suspension will come into force tonight, the Warwickshire-based company says.

    A statement read: "The period of manufacturing suspension is initially planned to Monday 20 April 2020, however, the business will continue to review the situation and will look to resume operations as soon as it is reasonable to do so."

  14. Round-the-world couple isolating in Istanbul

    A Shropshire couple who embarked on a round-the-world trip in their campervan are self-isolating in Istanbul.

    Chris and Marianne Fisher from Telford, Shropshire, sold all their possessions and have been travelling in their van since May 2018, but began a round-the-globe trip in January this year.

    They arrived in Turkey early last week, but have remained on a campsite after borders closed.

    Chris and Marriane Fisher

    Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab says Britons going abroad should return to the UK as soon as possible because international travel is becoming more difficult, but the couple will stay where they are.

    "The message was 'come home' to all people travelling on holiday, but we are actually living in our home, and that currently is Istanbul for the duration of our visa," Mrs Fisher said.

    Mr Fisher added: "If we flew back, we would have to find somewhere to leave our van, be in close proximity to people on aeroplanes and in airports, then get public transport to somewhere, but we don't have anywhere to go, we can't stay with relatives because they are elderly.

    "We think it helps the situation to stay where we are."

  15. When is a store ‘essential’?

    There appears to be some confusion over what counts as an “essential” store.

    You can find out more about what the government considers "essential" retail here, including a list of non-food suppliers you're still permitted to visit.

    Home and hardware shops, plus pet stores, are among them, but according to the Dobbies garden centres on the outskirts of Shrewsbury and Telford, they also should count.

    Both have opened this morning, and an email sent to customers said they considered themselves essential.

    Dobbies

    They also said that sales of essential items made up 70% of their business.

  16. Police to 'target' most 'problematic' rule-breakers

    Police officers will "move to enforce" stricter measures introduced by the government if people fail to heed them, says the West Midlands Police chief.

    Dave Thompson

    Chief Constable Dave Thompson said the force was already receiving many calls on potential breaches of the arrangements, although he did not share detail on how government direction was being ignored.

    "We would ask you to trust that we will target the most problematic behaviour," he said.

    "This will only work if people make sensible choices and observe what they are being told."