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Flood risk warning as heavy rain returns

Parts of the West Midlands could face flooding as heavy rain moves across the region.

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for between 12:00 and midnight.

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The Met Office said the wet weather will move northwards across much of England on Monday, with the heaviest rain forecast for the afternoon and evening.

Flood alerts have been issued in Warwickshire, Herefordshire and Shropshire.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

It will be increasingly wet with heavy rain and highs of 13C (55F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Schools funding news welcomed

Seven councils in the West Midlands are among a group of 42 across the country campaigning for fairer funding in schools.

The F40 group includes some of the lowest funded local authorities in England and says it wants "fairness and equal opportunities in education for all children, regardless of where they live".

Graphic
BBC

The F40 group includes:

  • Cheshire East Council
  • Herefordshire Council
  • Shropshire Council
  • Solhull Metropolitan Borough Council
  • Staffordshire County Council
  • Warwickshire County Council
  • Worcestershire County Council

Responding to today's news, Shropshire Council said it was "generally pleased with the settlement" and acknowledged it came at a time when schools "have been experiencing challenges in balancing their budgets".

“Shropshire’s schools have not been well funded and so we would hope this is a fairer settlement in relative funding terms with those schools in other areas, who have historically attracted higher levels of funding per pupil," Ed Potter, cabinet member for children’s services, said.

The F40 group has previously said while it recognised that those schools with pupils with higher additional needs should receive more funding, "the way this is applied across the country is inconsistent and unfair".

Graphic
BBC

West Midlands to get an extra £175m for schools

Schools in the West Midlands will receive an extra £175m over the next three years, but it is the second-lowest increase in funding per-pupil in the country.

The figures are laid out in the government's provisional spending plans and the West Midlands will see an average increase of 3.6% per pupil by 2020-21.

Only London is expected to see a lower per-pupil increase with 3.2%.

Cash
Getty Images

The spending plans will increase the total budget for the region to £3.97bn by 2020-21.

The prime minister has promised to boost spending in UK schools by £14bn over the coming three financial years.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It will be a windy day with showery rain and highs of 13C (55F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It will be a breezy night with some showers and lows of 12C (54F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Funding group wants £3.8m back if road scheme scrapped

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Herefordshire Council will be asked to repay £3.8m it's already spent on the southern link road project, if it decides to scrap it.

The coalition-run local authority is reviewing the need for the road and also for the Hereford bypass - it has put both schemes on hold while that is carried out.

Hereford council
Google

The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership said it would seek to claim the money back if the roadworks don't go ahead and said the council has to provide an update on its review by 31 October.

The council said it hoped to make a decision before the end of the year.

Charity rugby match for Oscar Saxelby-Lee

West Mercia Police beat Warwickshire Police by 45-5 in last night's charity rugby match at Sixways.

Oscar Saxelby-Lee
Family handout

A crowd of just over 2,000 turned up to help raise money for the Oscar Saxelby-Lee appeal.

The five-year-old from Worcester, who's battling an aggressive form of leukemia, is currently having more tests to see whether he's well enough to travel to Singapore for potentially life-saving treatment

An appeal has raised almost £563,000.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

After a bright start it will be a cloudy day with some showers and highs of 15C (59F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Fire authority backs closer alliance

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Shropshire's fire authority has voted in favour of a closer alliance with the Hereford and Worcester Fire Service.

The two fire services have been sharing fire control, risk management and computer systems for the past year, but plan to share procurement in the future.

Fire engine door
BBC

Hereford and Worcester Fire Authority will discuss the proposal when it meets next Tuesday.

Shropshire's fire authority wanted to stress it didn't see this as a merger.

Dry night for the West Midlands

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

We're in for a dry night in the West Midlands and it'll be quite breezy:

Alex Hamilton

Get a latest forecast for your area at any other time by heading to the BBC Weather website.

Police force hopes to get more recruitment funding

West Mercia Police is expecting the Home Office will announce funding for more officers, on top of the extra 93 the force has been allocated today.

Last month, West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said he hoped to eventually get between 300 and 360 as a result of a pledge by the chancellor of £750m to fund 20,000 police officers across the UK.

John Campion
West Mercia PCC

Sajid Javid's promise included £45m to hire 2,000 police by March next year and the West Mercia PCC's office said these extra 93 officers were seen as part of that first tranche of spending.

It hopes further announcements will bring it closer to that aim of 300-360 extra officers.

Last autumn, West Mercia Police announced it was recruiting an extra 100 officers and in February it confirmed it would hire another 115 on top of that.

All 215 of those recruits should have started work by December this year.

Fire services could form alliance

BBC Shropshire

Plans for two fire services to enter a formal alliance are going to be discussed later.

Sign for Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service
BBC

Shropshire's fire brigade has had a loose partnership with their neighbours in Herefordshire and Worcestershire since autumn last year.

It's so far focused on IT resource-sharing as well as risk management planning.

Now, Shropshire's fire authority's being asked to approve a draft agreement to formalise the arrangement and commit both services to closer collaboration in the future.

The Hereford and Worcester fire authority is due to meet to discuss the proposals later this month.

New officer targets set for police forces

BBC Midlands Today

Police forces across the West Midlands will be able to recruit 590 new officers in the first year of a government pledge to hire an extra 20,000 by 2022.

Police cars
BBC

The Home Office has set out recruitment targets for the first year with West Midlands Police given the biggest of 366.

Warwickshire will be able to hire an extra 41, Staffordshire 90 and West Mercia 93.

Home Office figures show that forces in England and Wales lost 20,564 officers between March 2010 and March 2019.

Boris Johnson pledged the extra 20,000 officers earlier this year although the College of Policing at the time warned of "logistical challenges", partly because of concerns of a lack of instructors for training.

A breezy day ahead

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

After a damp start in places, today should stay mainly dry but breezy.

Alex Hamilton

You can keep up-to-date with the latest weather forecast for your area at any other time by going to the BBC Weather website.

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It should be a mainly dry night with the odd shower and lows of 11C (52F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Force failing to record nearly one in 10 reported crimes

West Mercia Police has been criticised for failing to record more than 8,900 of the crimes reported to it each year.

That figure amounts to just under 10% of the crimes reported to the force going unrecorded, a study by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services says.

Police car
BBC

The force was also found to be failing to record more than 4,200 reports of violent crime.

Inspectors have told West Mercia to immediately improve how it records violent crimes, particularly harassment, stalking, domestic abuse, coercive and controlling behaviour and modern slavery.

The force says it accepts that it still has more work to do and recognises it doesn’t always make the correct crime-recording decisions.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

After a fine start blustery showers will move in with highs of 10C (50F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

Rain will gradually clear leaving a dry night with lows of 12C (54F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

End of police alliance 'could cost millions'

BBC Shropshire

The breaking up of an alliance between two police forces could end up costing taxpayers millions of pounds, according to one of the men who helped set it up.

Police car for Warwickshire and West Mercia Police forces
BBC

The forces have been sharing services since 2012, but West Mercia Police wants to pull out, saying it is subsidising Warwickshire Police, which it denies.

The alliance was due to end tomorrow, but Warwickshire Police sought Home Office intervention, saying it had not had enough time to split services.

Over the weekend, the Home Office told the pair to stay in the alliance for three more months to ensure vital services are maintained.

Barrie Sheldon was deputy police and crime commissioner for West Mercia for four years from 2012.

There's going to be hundreds of thousands of pounds, if not millions, spent on legal fees and the potential of millions of pounds being paid out to put Warwickshire Police back into a state where they can get back to becoming a viable force."

Barrie SheldonFormer deputy police and crime commissioner, West Mercia Police

Video: What's the weather got in store?

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

After a cloudy start rain will spread from the west leading to a wet and windy afternoon with highs of 15C (59F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Video: What's the weekend weather got in store?

Rebecca Wood

BBC Midlands Today

It should be a dry night with some clear intervals and lows of 9C (48F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Police forces split: Warwickshire 'saddened' over Home Office request

Warwickshire Police said it was "saddened" to request the Home Office step in to help agree its break-up plans with the West Mercia force.

The two forces have been in talks since the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion and Chief Constable Anthony Bangham announced they wanted to end their strategic alliance by 8 October.

West Mercia said negotiations have now ended without an agreement.

Police officers
PA Media

The Warwickshire force has now written to the government and asked it to require West Mercia to continue to collaborate with them "across joint business areas" past the split deadline.

A joint statement from Chief Constable Martin Jelley and Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Seccombe said: "We are saddened that it should have ever been necessary to make this request to the Home Secretary.

"Throughout the last 12 months of negotiations with West Mercia, we have remained focused on achieving an orderly separation which protects the interests of our communities and our workforce.

"We have made multiple offers to this effect, which have been refused on each occasion by West Mercia."

The Home Office has been approached for a comment.

Flooding 'could worsen over the weekend'

The Environment Agency says flooding across the West Midlands could worsen this weekend, with more heavy ran expected.

It still has two flood warnings in Shropshire and a number of flood alerts across Shropshire, Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Staffordshire.

River Severn
WanderLass

The agency said river levels have been slowly falling since the rain earlier this week, but they remain high.

BreakingHome Office could intervene in police break-up row

The Home Office might have to step in help the West Mercia and Warwickshire police forces agree their break-up plans.

The two forces have been in talks since the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, John Campion and the Chief Constable, Anthony Bangham, announced they wanted to end their strategic alliance. West Mercia said negotiations have now ended without an agreement.

Police logos
BBC

In a statement, the West Mercia force said: "We now anticipate intervention from the Home Office in the coming days to allow further time for Warwickshire to transition to a standalone model."

The force said it also understands a High Court injunction is being applied for by Warwickshire to try to prevent the termination of the current alliance arrangements.

"We cannot simply accept the continuation of the current arrangement, which sees West Mercia significantly subsidising a neighbouring force," the statement added.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Rich Davis

BBC Weather presenter

It will be a cloudy day with some rain and highs of 15C (59F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Council seeks retrospective permission for Shirehall work

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Plans for repair work on Hereford's Shirehall have been referred to the culture secretary after concerns were raised the rules hadn't been followed.

Work began on the grade II listed building without planning permission and ward councillor Jeremy Milln said: "We need to demonstrate by example. We cannot expect others who care for listed buildings in this county to do so in an exemplary manner unless we are prepared to do so ourselves."

Shirehall
Google

Herefordshire Council said it had started the work after part of a ceiling collapsed and believed it was acceptable after taking advice from specialists.

But it has now applied for retrospective planning permission and permission to continue with the scheme.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

After a dry, bright start it will be a cloudy day with some rain later and highs of 13C (55F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands

Weather: Rainy weather to return later this week

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

Enjoy this dry spell while you can, because the rain clouds are returning tomorrow afternoon.

Here's the forecast:

BBC Weather Watchers

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Alex Hamilton

BBC Weather

After yesterday's rain and floods, today looks set to be a little more settled.

A ridge of high pressure means it is going to be a little more sunny, but it will feel chilly.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

High demand of calls in West Mercia area

Heavy rain has meant West Mercia Police has been receiving a high number of calls.

Non-urgent calls can be dealt with via the website.

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West Mercia covers Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Shropshire.

Flood warnings and alerts in place

Predictions of heavy rain throughout the day have triggered flood warnings and alerts across the West Midlands.

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for rain until 20:00 today.

View more on twitter

'No risk to public' from police alliance split

West Mercia Police has refuted claims that communities will be at risk when its strategic alliance with the Warwickshire force comes to an end in October.

Police officers
PA Media

The Police and Crime Commissioner for the West Midlands force, David Jamieson, said he had "real concerns" over the change.

In a joint statement, the Police and Crime Commissioner and chief constable for West Mercia say: "There is absolutely no risk to public safety for the communities served by our force.

"West Mercia is fully prepared to operate as a standalone force if necessary."

Flood warnings and alerts issued

PCC offers to mediate over split in force alliance

The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) says criminals will be "the only winners" as the alliance between the Warwickshire and West Mercia forces comes to an end.

West Mercia and Warwickshire Police
BBC

There had already been criticism over West Mercia Police's decision to dissolve the partnership, set to go through in October.

HM Inspector of Constabulary, Wendy Williams, said there was "no certainty" how Warwickshire would provide services without the support of West Mercia."

Now David Jamieson, PCC for the neighbouring West Midlands force, has offered to act as a mediator between the pair, citing "real concerns" over the change.

Weather warning for rain issued

Heavy and persistent rain could cause travel problems later, said the Met Office.

Weather map
Met office

It has issued a yellow warning for rain from 15:00 today until 15:00 on Tuesday.

It could cause localised flooding and cause disruption to roads.

Video: Your 50-second weather forecast

Anna Church

Weather Presenter

After a dry start rain will move in later with the risk of thunder and highs of 12C (54F).

Latest weather for the West Midlands