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  1. Updates on Thursday 11 February 2016
  2. News, sport, travel and weather updates to resume at 08:00 on Friday

Live Reporting

By Allen Cook

All times stated are UK

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  1. Football: Bojan praises Stoke City manager over his new deal

    Matt Sandoz

    Stoke City commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

    The Stoke City forward Bojan Krkic has singled out the club's manager Mark Hughes as the reason he's today signed a new deal with the Potters. 

    Stoke playmaker Bojan

    The 25-year-old Spain international joined the Potters from Barcelona for an undisclosed fee in July 2014.

    He's now signed a new four-and-a-half-year contract with the Premier League club.

    Quote Message: Mark Hughes convinced me to come to Stoke, he has helped me and showed his trust in me from the beginning. He followed closely the recovery process from my injury and there is no doubt I have signed an extension of my contract thanks to him." from Bojan Krkic Stoke City forward
    Bojan KrkicStoke City forward

    Bojan signs new contract with Stoke

    Stoke playmaker Bojan

    Stoke City forward Bojan Krkic signs a new four-and-a-half-year contract with the Premier League club.

    Read more
  2. Watchdog investigation 'ongoing' into police after Stoke killing

    Alice Rosenthal

    Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

    Staffordshire Police is continuing to be investigated by a watchdog over its response to what became a murder inquiry in Stoke-on-Trent, the force says. 

    Norasab Hussain, 33, was found dead at his Bromley Court flat in Hanley last year.   

    His partner Sophie Butler, 20, admitted manslaughter today and is due to be sentenced on Monday.

    Sophie Butler

    Staffordshire Police say after the death, a referral was made to the Independent Police Complaints Commission to review the circumstances around their response to the incident.

  3. Ex-Dovegate prisoner: Drugs were readily available

    Dave Wade

    BBC Local Live

    More now on Dovegate prison, which has been subject of a damning report.

    Legal highs are widespread and linked to other problems, including debt, bullying and violence, according to inspectors.

    A selection of legal highs spread out

    Ex-prisoner Paul Burke has told BBC Radio Derby his time there was "horrendous".

    "When I came in I got into reception and before I was booked in and changed into prison clothes I was offered drugs," he said.

    "Every drug you can think about is readily available."

  4. BreakingFootball: Stoke City's Bojan signs new contract with Potters

    Some good news for Stoke City fans this afternoon - Spanish star Bojan's signed a contract extension with the Potters until 2020.

    View more on twitter
  5. Four courts in Staffordshire and east Cheshire to close

    Stephanie Barnard

    BBC Local Live

    Four courts in Staffordshire and east Cheshire are to close, the Justice Minister has announced.

    Stafford Magistrates' Court

    In a written statement, Shailesh Vara says work will either move to an alternative HM Courts & Tribunals Service site, or a decision has been taken to establish a suitable alternative.

    Courts to close include:

    - Macclesfield County Court 

    - Macclesfield Magistrates' Court 

    - Burton-upon-Trent Magistrates' Court 

    - Stafford Magistrates' Court

    Quote Message: As part of this modernisation, the court and tribunal estate has to be updated. Many of the current 460 court buildings are underused: last year 48% of all courts and tribunals were empty for at least half their available hearing time." from Shailesh Vara Justice Minister
    Shailesh VaraJustice Minister
  6. Football: Crewe 'tougher to beat' says stand-in skipper

    Graham McGarry

    Crewe Alexandra commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

    Crewe Alexandra's stand-in skipper David Fox says the team still has a lot of work to do to steer clear of relegation, but have proven more resilient in recent matches.

    David Fox

    A four-match unbeaten sequence has taken the Alex to within four points off safety

    But Fox told BBC Radio Stoke they need to keep the run going. 

    Quote Message: There's lots of room for improvement, we're not under that sort of illusion that we have cracked it and here we go. But we know that we're getting a bit more tougher to beat and when you're like that, you can win games." from David Fox Crewe Alexandra player
    David FoxCrewe Alexandra player
  7. Coming up on BBC Midlands Today: Energy crops for Midlands farmers

    BBC Midlands Today

    On Midlands Today this lunchtime we'll be looking at why a lot of Midland farmers are turning to harvest energy alongside crops to boost their income. 

    Solar panels on a few fields

    We've discovered an explosion in solar farms in the region, but has the boom just turned into bust? 

    There'll be more on BBC One this lunchtime from 13:30.

  8. Help promised after Rugeley Power Station closure

    Emma Thomas

    Journalist, BBC Radio Stoke

    The Government is promising to do all it can to help workers facing redundancy with the closure of Rugeley Power Station.

    Rugeley power station

    About 150 jobs are set to go when the site shuts down this summer after 46 years of operation.

    Britain has decided to close all coal-fired power stations over the next decade in an effort to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

    Quote Message: I will actively engage with Michael Fabricant and with his colleague to make sure that we do what we can for the people who have lost their jobs." from Amber Rudd Energy Secretary
    Amber RuddEnergy Secretary
  9. BreakingWoman admits killing man in Stoke-on-Trent

    Allen Cook

    BBC Local Live

    A woman's pleaded guilty today to killing her partner in Stoke-on-Trent. 

    Sophie Butler, 20, of Bromley Court, Hanley, admitted the manslaughter of 33-year-old Norasab Hussain.

    She is expected to be sentenced on 15 February at Leicester Crown Court.

  10. News: Major drug problem at prison says report; body found on walking route; Anna Watkins pulls out of Rio Olympics

    Alice Rosenthal

    Newsreader, BBC Radio Stoke

    The top stories for Staffordshire and Cheshire include

    - An independent report has found major problems with substance abuse in Dovegate Prison, near Uttoxeter  

    - The body of a 60-year-old man has been found on a popular walking route near Alsager, police say

    - An Olympic rowing gold medallist from Staffordshire has abandoned her attempt to qualify for the games in Rio this summer

  11. Cheshire care home inspected after missing resident found dead

    Lamont Howie

    Reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

    A Cheshire care home has been inspected following the death of one its residents who went missing.

    Brookfield House

    Dementia sufferer Roy Tomlinson, 83, was found dead a week after he disappeared from Brookfield House in Nantwich. 

    The Care Quality Commission hasn't yet published the findings of its visit but says it's helping the police investigation into the death.

    Astley Care, which runs the home, says it was saddened by the tragedy and will conduct its own inquiry.

  12. ​New fleet of bin lorries to collect waste and recycling

    Lichfield Mercury

    A new fleet of recycling, waste collecting and street cleaning vehicles serving Lichfield and Burntwood has 'bin' brought into service.

    From left: Gary Brownridge, Cllr Iain Eadie and Nigel Harris
  13. Football: Training ground improvements will boost Stoke City says boss

    Matt Sandoz

    Stoke City commentator, BBC Radio Stoke

    This summer's training ground development will help Stoke City compete with top sides in the transfer market, according to the club's chief executive. 

    Clayton Wood entrance

    The Potters have already begun work to the club's multimillion-pound Clayton Wood facility and Tony Scholes says the improvements will help attract top players. 

    Quote Message: It's quite evident that when we're bringing agents or the player's mother or father down there before the player himself that it does have a very positive impact on them and the same for players - you've got to give them the very best facilities that you can." from Tony Scholes Stoke City's chief executive
    Tony ScholesStoke City's chief executive
  14. Watch: Weather for Stoke and Staffordshire this afternoon

    Charlie Slater

    BBC Weather presenter

    Staffordshire and Cheshire's latest weather forecast can also be found on the BBC website.

    Video content

    Video caption: Latest weather for the West Midlands
  15. Man still 'critical' after being hit by car

    John Acres

    BBC Radio Stoke

    A 35-year-old man remains in a critical condition today after being hit by a car in Hanley.  

    Video content

    Video caption: Man suffers serious injuries after being hit by car in Stoke-on-Trent.

    Staffordshire Police were called out yesterday afternoon to the crash at the junction of Potteries Way and Bucknall New Road. 

    Officers say the man suffered serious head and leg injuries while the driver of the car had minor injuries.

  16. Watch: Fund set up to improve maths in Stoke

    James Bovill

    Political reporter, BBC Radio Stoke

    A £1m fund has been set up to help attract more top maths teachers to Stoke-on-Trent. 

    The city council says new graduates will be offered cash to move and the city's existing maths teachers will be given more training.   

    Rhiannon Bedford is a new maths teacher at Birches Head Academy and demonstrates how they approach maths problems.  

    Video content

    Video caption: Million pound spend to try and improve maths in Stoke.

    Stoke-on-Trent is in the bottom five areas in the country for its GCSE results - in the latest government figures released last month, 48% of children got five or more at A star to C, including English and maths. 

    Ofsted said the city needs to fund high quality maths training, create more opportunities to share best practice across the city and attract high quality graduates.  

  17. 'Major substance problems' at prison

    Dave Wade

    BBC Local Live

    An independent report has found major problems with substance abuse in Dovegate Prison, near Uttoxeter. 

    The report by HM Inspectorate of Prisons identifies that the use of psychoactive substances, or legal highs, is widespread, linking it to debt, bullying and violence within the prison

    HMP Dovegate

    Serco which runs the prison has declined to comment.   

  18. On BBC Radio Stoke today: Adult colouring books and why they're bestsellers

    Perry Spiller

    Presenter, BBC Radio Stoke

    Among our topics today, I'm talking about adult colouring books which are topping best seller lists and flying off the shelves

    Well, myself and producer Matt put the pen(cil) to paper to test them out and see if they relaxed me:

    View more on twitter