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Summary

  1. Badger cull set to be extended
  2. Police promise more officers on streets over Christmas
  3. A38 reopens after being closed by collapsed sewer
  4. Updates from Friday 16 December

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe disruption, between J5 for A38 Droitwich and J4A for M42.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane closed on M5 northbound between J5, A38 (Droitwich) and J4a M42, because of a broken down vehicle.

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Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire southbound

BBC Travel

M5 Worcestershire southbound severe disruption, between J8 for M50 and J9 for A46.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane closed on M5 southbound between J8 M50 and J9, A46 (Tewkesbury), because of a broken down vehicle.

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Severe disruption: A38 Worcestershire both ways

BBC Travel

A38 Worcestershire both ways severe disruption, between Brookend Lane and Pixham Ferry Lane.

A38 Worcestershire - A38 Main Road in Kempsey closed in both directions between the Brookend Lane junction and the Pixham Ferry Lane junction.

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Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe disruption, at J5 for A38 Droitwich affecting Ford Lane.

M5 Worcestershire - M5 entry slip road closed and queuing traffic northbound at J5, A38 (Droitwich), because of a broken down vehicle. Congestion on A38 to the Ford Lane junction.

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Our live coverage across the day

We'll be back with our usual mix of news, sport, travel and weather from 08:00 on Monday.

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Rebecca Wood

BBC Midlands Today

A cloudy frost-free night with some fog over the hills and lows of 7C (45F).

Rebecca Wood with the West Midlands weather forecast.

The Commandery receives £5k award towards Civil War exhibition

Worcester's Commandery museum has been awarded £5,400 to help develop next summer's programme of events.

The money, from the Friends of Worcester Museums, follows a £500,000 award from the city council and Heritage Lottery Fund last month to fund renovation work and new exhibition spaces.

The latest award is expected to go towards a new exhibition titled Worcester's Civil War Story.

Friends of Worcester City Museums
Friends of Worcester City Museums

On Midlands Today from 18:30: City prison disturbance

Nicola Beckford

Reporter, BBC Midlands Today

On Midlands Today this evening we'll have the latest on a disturbance at HMP Birmingham. 

Emergency vehicles outside prison
PA

Trouble flared earlier today and has spread to four wings of the prison. 

We'll have the latest from 18:30 on BBC One.

Worcestershire's Hastings could be back in action later in season

Worcestershire County Cricket Club have started a search for a new overseas player for the start of the 2017 season after Australian John Hastings was ruled out with an ankle injury

The all-rounder is set to undergo surgery after suffering "a significant patella tendon injury" while playing for Victoria in the Sheffield Shield last week.

Worcestershire Director of Cricket Steven Rhodes said he expected Hastings to be out of action until about halfway through the season, due to surgery and rehab.

John Hastings
Getty Images

John was also desperate to do well during the early part of our season but hopefully he will make an impact during the second half of the season should the operation go well."

Steve RhodesWorcestershire Director of Cricket

Badger cull set to be extended

A badger cull trial covering parts of Herefordshire could be extended under government plans.

More than 600 badgers were killed in Herefordshire in 2016.

In all, more than 10,800 badgers were killed this year across at patch that also took in Gloucestershire, Somerset, Dorset, Cornwall and Devon, according to official figures. 

Badger
Thinkstock

Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom is proposing to allow continued "strictly licensed" culls in order to stabilise the badger population in a bid to control the spread of bovine TB.

Last year more than 28,000 cattle were slaughtered in England to control the disease, with the West Country and counties bordering Wales at the highest risk of TB infections in livestock. 

Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe disruption, between J7 for A44 Worcester and J6 for A449.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane blocked and queuing traffic on M5 northbound between J7, A44 (Worcester) and J6, A449 (Worcester).

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Latest: Extra police on patrol over Christmas; over 250 apprenticeships to be created; Moeen 120 not out for England

Our headlines this evening:

- Police promise extra officers in town centres for Christmas party fortnight

- Over 250 apprenticeships to be created in Herefordshire

- Worcestershire's Moeen Ali ends the day 120 not out against India

Why do people buy old telephone boxes?

Worcester man Steve Spill explains why he has spent £1,500 putting an old red phone box in his back garden.

After 10 years of wanting one of the iconic red kiosks, he managed to secure it in September.  

It was something of a bargain. The oldest red phone boxes can sell for upwards of £15,000 when fully restored.  

A Worcester man explains his love for red phone boxes

Severe disruption: M5 Worcestershire northbound

BBC Travel

M5 Worcestershire northbound severe disruption, between J6 for A449 and J5 for A38 Droitwich.

M5 Worcestershire - One lane blocked and heavy traffic on M5 northbound between J6, A449 (Worcester) and J5, A38 (Droitwich), because of a broken down vehicle. In the roadworks area.

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Severe accident: M42 Worcestershire northbound

BBC Travel

M42 Worcestershire northbound severe accident, between J1 for A38 and J2 for A441 Alvechurch.

M42 Worcestershire - One lane blocked and slow traffic on M42 northbound between J1, A38 (Bromsgrove) and J2, A441 (Alvechurch), because of an accident.

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Over 250 apprenticeships to be created

More than 260 apprenticeships will be created in Herefordshire as part of a new regional training centre in the county. 

Herefordshire and Ludlow College, along with Herefordshire & Worcestershire Training Association has been given more than £450,000 by the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership.

Herefordshire and Ludlow College
Google

The money will also be used to support 225 businesses.

Unlucky Perch helps young photographer scoop two prizes

A 12-year-old photographer from Worcester has won not only his age group category at the RSPCA's Young Photographer Awards, but also the runner-up prize.

Unlucky Perch
Magnus McLeod

Magnus McLeod picked up the top award for his image of a bearded tit doing the splits while perching between two reeds - titled Unlucky Perch.

His image of a damsel fly was named runner-up in the under 12s category.

Damselfly
Magnus McLeod

Latest: Road reopens after sewer collapse; 250 apprenticeships; and Christmas trees for hire

Alistair Binney

Reporter, BBC Hereford & Worcester

Here's a recap of some of our headlining stories today:

  • A38 through Kempsey reopens after work to repair collapsed sewer
  • Over 250 apprenticeships to be created in Herefordshire
  • Worcester shop offering Christmas trees for hire

Moeen Ali ends unbeaten on 120 in Chennai

BBC Sport

Worcestershire's Moeen Ali finished day one of the fifth and final Test unbeaten on 120.

He shared a 146 run stand with Joe Root to give England the better of the action in Chennai.

When Root was given out caught behind on review, Moeen added 86 with Jonny Bairstow (49) as England reached 284-4.

India already have an unassailable 3-0 lead in the series.

Moeen Ali
Reuters

Drink warning from police ahead of party season

As well as putting extra officers out on the streets over Christmas, the police are using social media to spread messages about drink-related crime.

They're trying to discourage people from getting drunk before they go out, warning that those who do are statistically more likely to get involve in violence or injure themselves.

Drunk woman
Getty Images

The police are also tweeting a number of other Christmas messages, including security advice for your Christmas presents.

Police gear up for busy festive period

West Mercia Police say the number of officers on the beat in towns around Herefordshire and Worcestershire will be up by at least 20% between now and the new year.

And there will be an even bigger effort over this weekend and the next with lots of people expected to go out partying - the number of police in major towns will be up by over 30%.

Drinks
Getty Images

Between 18 December last year and the start of the new year, the force say they responded to 1,005 violent crimes in the West Mercia area and that 46% of them were alcohol-related.

And they say this is always the busiest time of the year for them.

Your photos: Bredon Hill

Regular contributor Paul Wilde took these beautiful views on Bredon Hill on Wednesday morning.  

We'd love to feature your photos on the live page - email ustweet us on @bbchw or message via Facebook

Bredon Hill
Paul Wilde
Bredon Hill
Paul Wilde

On Midlands Today from 13:30: The future of ploughing and a double award-winner

BBC Midlands Today

On Midlands Today from 13:30 on BBC One we'll be looking at how farmers in the region are abandoning traditional ploughing techniques.  

Jake Freestone on a field with David Gregory-Kumar
BBC

The reason we're looking at this is, in a post-Brexit world, there's uncertainty about what could happen with farm subsidies - which could make some traditional crops unattractive. 

Plus we'll meet one of only four people who have won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award twice.

Newport Gwent Dragons v Worcester Warriors

Newport Gwent Dragons host Worcester tonight in their return European Challenge Cup Pool 3 game after Saturday's first leg saw Warriors win 33-20 at Sixways

Flanker Marco Mama returns for Worcester as one of three changes made by backs coach Sam Vesty, who is overseeing Warriors' European campaign.

Mama will make his first appearance since September, while Ryan Bower and Mike Daniels are restored to the front row.

Despite taking until a minute before half-time to take the lead for the first time, Warriors' pack dominated the meeting at Sixways and they have named seven forwards on the replacements bench alongside teenage back Jamie Shillcock.

Tavis Knoyle
Huw Evans Picture Agency

There will be full commentary on the game on BBC Hereford & Worcester from 19:00 tonight.    

Retired doctor criticised for scope of charity work

A tribunal has found that a retired Worcestershire doctor should have maintained his medical licence for charity work.

David Baxter-Smith worked for a charity that gave prostate cancer advice and testing for groups across the Midlands.

A tribunal panel heard much of the work involved giving talks to groups, but also included offering advice and providing his direct phone number in case men wanted to discuss the results of tests.

No decision's yet been taken on whether he should face sanctions.

Weather: A cloudy afternoon across the two counties

Charlie Slater

BBC Weather presenter

We're forecast a cloudy afternoon across Herefordshire and Worcestershire, with temperatures reaching 10C (50F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

'Improved' weather sees temperatures of -25C

Lou Rudd said the south pole expedition team had enjoyed better weather on Thursday than recent days.

He said the team had suffered due to the "relentless pace", but were within 10 to 12 days of reaching the south pole, which he described as "absolutely amazing".

Lou Rudd
Lou Rudd

We pretty much walked through a blizzard all day yesterday. But today the wind backed right off. We got a little bit of sunshine and a bit of overcast, and temperatures ranging from -20 to -25 which we’re quite comfortable in."

Lou Rudd

South pole team reach new milestone

A group of army reservists skiing across the south pole say they've hit a new milestone. 

The leader of the group, Lou Rudd, wrote in his latest blog post that they managed a new team best on Thursday - skiing a distance of 18 nautical miles in 10 hours. 

They're raising funds for sold ABF The Soldiers Charity, in memory of former Herefordshire soldier Henry Worsley (pictured below), who died whilst attempting the same route in January.

The group recently spoke to Henry's wife Joanna on a satellite phone, who has arrived in Union Glacier in Antarctica. 

Henry Worsley
Henry Worsley

Future of raceway in danger over noise row

Worcester News

A popular motor racing track could be facing closure due to concerns over "excessive noise".

John Hastings

Worcestershire look to sign a new overseas player after Australia all-rounder John Hastings suffered a knee injury.

Read more

Latest: Lorry driver in hospital; road reopens after sewer collapse; Moeen Ali passes test landmark

Phil Maiden

Reporter, BBC Hereford & Worcester

Some of our headlining stories include: 

  • A lorry driver who was involved in serious crash on the M5 last night is in a 'stable' condition in hospital
  • Road through Kempsey reopens after a week of work to repair a collapsed sewer
  • Worcestershire's Moeen Ali passes 1,000 test runs for the year

Moeen reaches 1,000 Test runs for the year

It's been a good year for Worcestershire's Moeen.

View more on twitter

Moeen reaches century

BBC Sport

It's been a good day in Chennai for England and Moeen Ali in particular.

The Worcestershire man's just reaced his fifth century, after being dropped on 0.

It is his second hundred of the series and it came from 203 balls with a single off Mishra.

Follow all the action here.

Moeen Ali
AP

Fans were quick to offer their congratulations:

Rob Zabrocky: Watching Moeen Ali bat like this is like watching an artist. Beautiful strokes, beautiful balance. 

Geoff Shaw: Well done Moeen Ali - great century. 

Altaf Shaikh: Great birthday gift, thanks Moeen Ali.

Bowser: MOOOOEEEENNNN! What a man. 

England are currently 275-4.

Fundraiser embarks on trans-Atlantic rowing challenge

BBC Hereford and Worcester

A Worcestershire man who has already raised more than £400,000 in memory of his late brother, has set off on a trans-Atlantic rowing challenge today.

Harry Wentworth-Stanley's older brother, James, killed himself at the Broadway family home 10 years ago. 

James Wentworth-Stanley
Wentworth-Stanley family

Harry and three friends will row 3,000 miles from La Gomera in the Canary Islands and aim to reach their final destination of Antigua within 40 days.

They're trying to raise money for a new crisis centre to help prevent suicide.

You can track their journey here. 

A38 reopens after sewer works

The A38 through Kempsey reopens today after being closed since Monday evening due to a collapsed sewer. 

Severn Trent say they'll need to return in the new year to complete the works.

Temporary traffic lights will be in place until Sunday while the new road surface sets.