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Summary

  1. Updates on Thursday 25 February 2016
  2. News, sport, travel and weather updates to resume at 08:00 on Friday

Live Reporting

By Jerry Chester

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Our live coverage across the day

    Live updates for Herefordshire and Worcestershire have finished for the day but we'll be back from 08:00 on Friday with the latest news, sport, travel and weather.

  2. Watch: Council leader on Midlands Today talking about Worcester City's long wait for a new stadium

    Mary Rhodes

    Presenter, BBC Midlands Today

    Midlands Today is looking at Worcester City's three-year wait for a new stadium, and will be talking to the new leader of the city council about it. See what he says on BBC One at 18:30.

    View more on twitter
  3. Redditch company has tagging contract ended by government

    A company based in Redditch has had a contract to develop a new form of tag for offenders ended by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ).

    The government had asked Steatite Ltd to develop the bespoke tags for offenders released for jail in a £23.2m deal that was heralded by then Justice Secretary Chris Grayling as better value for money than previous contracts.

    However, in a u-turn, the MoJ said developing bespoke tags had proved "challenging" and it would instead use "off-the-shelf technology which is already available". 

    Labour said the move "beggars belief" and called on ministers to reveal how much the scrapped process has cost the taxpayer.

    Ankle tag
  4. Court told of 'Formula 1' conman's 'personality disorders'

    A conman, jailed for two years after pretending to be the Mercedes Formula 1 team's chief operations officer to defraud hotels in north Worcestershire, "suffers from a variety of personality disorders", a court has heard.

    Stuart Howatson, of Fisher Road, Bishops Itchington, Warwickshire, was sentenced at Coventry Crown Court for 12 counts of fraud and a theft during 2014.

    Stuart Howatson

    His lawyer, Nick Devine, told the court: "Mr Howatson suffers from a variety of personality disorders that have manifested themselves quite clearly in his behaviour throughout this series of offences." 

    Passing sentence, Recorder Sweeting told Howatson he had "carried off the deception with a great deal of persuasive skill".

  5. Weather video: Dry and clear night with some frost

    Shefali Oza

    BBC Midlands Today

    It will be a dry evening and night with variable amounts of cloud allowing some clear intervals to develop. A frost will form in many areas. Lows of 2C (36F)

    Video content

    Video caption: Weather for the West Midlands
  6. Plans to use £500,000 to 'revitalise' part of town centre approved

    An investment of £500,000 to "revitalise" the Worcester Street area of Kidderminster were approved by Wyre Forest District Council last night.

    Worcester Street, Kidderminster

    The investment will be matched by Worcestershire County Council, who will contribute a further £500,000.

    Quote Message: Our plans for Worcester Street will help even more positive things happen in the area and we feel offers residents excellent value for money.” from Councillor Marcus Hart Leader, Wyre Forest District Council
    Councillor Marcus HartLeader, Wyre Forest District Council
  7. Latest: 'Formula 1 boss' conman jailed; plans to build 28,000 houses approved; council tax bills go up in Wyre Forest

    BBC Hereford and Worcester

    Here are some of the main stories we are looking at in Herefordshire and Worcestershire:

    - 'Formula 1 boss' conman jailed for defrauding hotels

    - Plans to build more than 28,000 homes approved by three councils

    - Council tax bills will rise by at least 3% across Wyre Forest

  8. Travel: No gritting tonight in Worcestershire

    Temperatures are dropping but there's already "residual" salt on roads, Worcestershire County Council says.

    View more on twitter
  9. Your pictures: The Hive in spring sunshine

    Jerry Chester

    BBC News Online

    Pam Norris describes The Hive in Worcester as "a beautiful building" - and she's certainly caught it against a bight blue sky.

    I'd love to feature your pictures of Herefordshire and Worcestershire - you can emailtweet us on @bbchw or message via Facebook.

    The Hive
  10. Dean Ryan eady to 'fight' Wasps over academy boundaries

    BBC Sport

    Worcester Warriors will not give up the current boundaries of their academy network "without a fight", says the Premiership club's director of rugby Dean Ryan.

    Reports claim the boundaries may be under threat when Wasps complete their relocation to Coventry this summer.

    Sixways
  11. 'Formula 1 boss' conman jailed

    A conman who posed as the Mercedes Formula 1 team's chief operations officer to dupe hotel staff in Worcestershire has been jailed for two years.

    Stuart Howatson, of Fisher Road, Bishops Itchington, Warwickshire, even donned liveried clothing to adopt a glamorous and powerful false persona.

    Coventry Crown Court heard that the 37-year-old committed 12 counts of fraud and a theft during 2014, obtaining several free stays at hotels in north Worcestershire as well as £1,500 from a hotel guest who fell for a bogus job offer.

  12. Latest: 'Formula 1 boss' conman jailed; grave space shortage risk; TV gardener helps make memorial to woman killed on a level crossing

    BBC Hereford and Worcester

    Here are some of the main stories we are looking at in Herefordshire and Worcestershire:

    - A conman pretending to have a senior position on the Mercedes F1 team to defraud hotels has been jailed

    - There's as little as three years left of burial space remaining in parts of Herefordshire and Worcestershire

    - TV gardener Monty Don has helped a garden in memory a woman killed on a level crossing

  13. Council tax bills to rise in Wyre Forest

    Council tax bills are to rise by "at least 3%" in Wyre Forest, despite the district council deciding to freeze the level it sets.

    Council Tax form

    Wyre Forest District Council says bills will rise because Worcestershire County Council, Hereford & Worcester Fire Authority and the Police and Crime Commissioner for West Mercia are all asking local residents to pay more.

    Most householders will see bills rise by 3% to 3.1%, the council says, although in Kidderminster bills will rise by 4.7% as residents pay the first precept issued by the newly created Kidderminster Town Council.

    The average Band D bill in Wyre Forest will increase from £1,562.76 to £1,623.25.

  14. Video: The search for fresh burial sites

    Carson Wishart

    Journalist, BBC Hereford and Worcester

    I met up with a councillor to talk about the fact that some areas of Herefordshire and Worcestershire have only enough burial space to last until 2019.

    Video content

    Video caption: Some areas have only enough burial space to last until 2019
  15. South Worcestershire Development Plan: Main development sites elsewhere in Worcestershire

    - Kilbury Drive, east of Worcester

    - Gwillam’s Farm, north of Worcester

    - Swinesherd Way, south east of Worcester

    - Worcester Six business park, next to M5 Junction 6, with 16 hectares of employment

    Building site

    - Pershore: About 695 homes at an urban extension to the north of the town, off Station Road; an employment site of five hectares to the north east, off Wyre Road

    - Droitwich: 740 homes and 3.5 hectares of employment land at Copcut Lane and 765 homes and a 200-unit extra care facility at Yew Tree Hill

    - Evesham: 500 homes in the Cheltenham Road urban extension; 200 homes at Abbey Road; 400 homes south of Pershore Road

    - Newland, Malvern: 800 homes and 10 hectares of employment land

    -Tenbury Wells: 162 homes on four sites

    - Upton-upon-Severn: 138 homes on two sites