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Weather: A warm and sunny Friday

BBC Weather

Plenty of sunshine around and it will be mainly dry and fine with just the chance of a few showers this afternoon. High: 28C (82F).

Codsall
BBC Weather Watcher Sue Snaps
This morning in Codsall, Staffordshire

Warm and muggy tonight with any lingering showers clearing away to leave it dry with clear spells. Low: 16C (61F).

You can get a latest forecast for your area at any time by going to the BBC Weather website.

Weather: A dry and warm Thursday

BBC Weather

Today's going to be very warm and mainly dry with just the chance of the odd shower this morning. High: 25C/77F.

This morning in Moreton on Lugg, Herefordshire
BBC Weather Watcher Mightyship
This morning in Moreton on Lugg, Herefordshire

It will stay dry tonight with clear spells, feeling humid and mild with a low of 15C/59F.

Keep up-to-date on the forecast for your area by going to the BBC Weather website.

Guard of honour at funeral of special constable

A funeral has been held today for a special constable who died months after he was hit by a car.

Special Constable Resham Singh Nahal pictured in 2017 at Pride with Chief Constable Dave Thompson
West Midlands Police

Resham Singh Nahal (left) was hit by a car while attending the scene of a separate collision in Oldbury, on 8 November.

Last month, West Midlands Chief Constable Dave Thompson confirmed his death and the force said tests would determine if his death related to the injuries he suffered on duty.

West Midlands Ambulance Service said Mr Nahal was also part of its Patient Transport Service and colleagues formed a guard of honour at Perry Barr Crematorium.

Colleagues at the funeral
West Midlands Ambulance Service

Coronavirus: How many cases are there in your area?

The number of people testing positive for coronavirus in Sandwell has fallen, according to new figures.

A test sample is held at a COVID-19 testing centre
Reuters

The borough was named as an area of concern by Public Health England last month after a rise in cases.

But data from Public Health England shows there were 66 new cases in the week up to 31 July. Figures for the seven days to 24 July showed 96 cases.

That means 20.2 people tested positive for every for every 100,000 population (up to 31 July), down from 29.3 a week earlier.

Here are the rate of infections (per 100,000 people) for all local authorities in the West Midlands - for the seven days up to 31 July, compared with the previous week.

  • Birmingham down to 12.7 from from 13.4
  • Bromsgrove down to 6.1 from 7.1
  • Cheshire East up to 6.6 from 1.3
  • Coventry up to 14.7 from 8.7
  • Dudley up to 4.7 from 3.4
  • East Staffordshire up to 9.3 from 8.4
  • Herefordshire remains at 5.7
  • Lichfield up to 6.7 from 2.9
  • Newcastle-under-Lyme up to 7.0 from 3.1
  • North Warwickshire is down to 6.2 from 9.3
  • Nuneaton and Bedworth up to 17.8 from 8.5
  • Redditch remains at 1.2
  • Rugby up to 6.5 from 1.9
  • Sandwell down to 20.2 from 29.3
  • Shropshire up to 6.2 from 5.0
  • Solihull up to 7.0 from 4.2
  • South Staffordshire down to 3.6 from 6.2
  • Staffordshire Moorlands up to 6.1 from 1.0
  • Stoke-on-Trent down to 3.1 from 4.3
  • Stratford-on-Avon up to 3.1 from 0.8
  • Tamworth up to 2.6 from 1.3
  • Telford and Wrekin remains at 3.9
  • Walsall remains at 8.1
  • Warwick remains at 4.2
  • Wolverhampton up to 16.8 from 14.5
  • Worcester down to 3.9 from 7.9
  • Wychavon down to 4.7 from 7.9

Shopping centre to get £5m for redevelopment

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Six projects in Shropshire and Herefordshire have been awarded grants totaling £14m by the government.

They've benefited from the same Getting Building Fund as eight projects in Birmingham and Coventry and include £5m for Shropshire Council to spend on redeveloping the Pride Hill shopping centre.

Pride Hill
BBC

The other five grants are:

  • £1m for a project to create new wetlands along the River Lugg
  • £3m to improve Hereford city centre
  • £1m to develop campus facilities for NMITE at Skylon Park
  • £2.38m for a project to create new healthcare and residential units in Wellington
  • £1m for a Wrekin Housing Group project retrofitting homes with zero carbon technology to tackle fuel poverty

Flooded road repairs cost more than £9m

It will cost £9.1m pounds to repair Herefordshire's roads after the February floods, Herefordshire Council has estimated.

The authority is proposing to borrow more than £4m, but said it it has had no specific government funding to fix roads including the B4224 to Fownhope, the A438 at Whitney on Wye and the Holme Lacy Causeway.

Flooded road
BBC

The council is going to consider using cash allocated for pothole repairs and general road maintenance, plus loans, to fund the work.

Weather: Mainly dry and sunny today

BBC Weather

Monday will be mainly dry with sunny spells although there could be some more cloud around this afternoon with a few light showers. High: 19C/66F.

Leek this morning
Tammys Pics
This morning near Leek, Staffordshire

Then although there'll be some patchy cloud with the odd shower tonight, it will generally turn dry with clear spells through the night. Low: 8C/46F.

You can keep up-to-date on the latest forecast for your area by going to the BBC Weather website.

How hot is it going to get today?

BBC Weather

It will be a dry and hot day for most of the West Midlands with plenty of sunshine.

Later in the afternoon, some patchy cloud will build up, with the small chance of catching a sharp shower but temperatures could reach 32°C (90°F).

This was the scene in Eckington, Worcestershire, this morning and taken by BBC Weather Watcher Jo.

Eckington
BBC Weather Watchers/Jo
Paramedic on struggle to recover mentally from stabbing
Deena Evans and her colleague Michael Hipgrave were stabbed while attending a patient in Wolverhampton.

Free hospital parking to come to an end

Free parking at hospitals in Herefordshire comes to an end on Saturday.

It will affect the car parks at the County Hospital in Hereford as well as the community hospitals in Bromyard, Leominster and Ross-on-Wye.

County Hospital car park
Google

The free car parking was introduced at the start of coronavirus lockdown in March.

Weather: Sunshine and showers

BBC Weather

A mix of sunny spells and showers today. Cool and breezy with a high of 17C/63F.

Knowle, Solihull this morning
BBC Weather Watchers/Dammo
Knowle, Solihull this morning

Then any remaining showers will die out through tonight with clear spells appearing later on. Low: 11C/52F.

Get an up-to-date forecast for your area at any time by going to the BBC Weather website.

Weather: Showers all day

BBC Weather

There'll be outbreaks of showers today, with gusty winds, and the rain could be heavy at times with a small chance of thunder and lightning. High: 21C/70F.

Rain in Bromyard, Herefordshire, this morning
Mrs Baggins
Rain in Bromyard, Herefordshire, this morning

Windy this evening with a few showers before turning largely dry and clear overnight. Low: 11C/52F.

You can keep up-to-date on the forecast for your area by going to the BBC Weather website.

Probe into racism towards footballer continues

BBC Sport

An investigation into racist abuse on social media targeted at teenage footballer Jude Bellingham is now being handled by West Mercia Police.

Jude Bellingham
PA Media

The 17-year-old played his final game for Birmingham City on Wednesday as he is moving to German giants Borussia Dortmund.

Bellingham described the post on Twitter as "disgusting" and added: "Times have to change. More has to be done."

The comments were first reported to West Midlands Police but passed to West Mercia Police as it said the teenager was from north Worcestershire.

Coronavirus: How many cases are there in your area?

The number of people testing positive for coronavirus in Sandwell has risen again, according to new figures.

The data from Public Health England shows there were 86 new cases in the week up to 20 July. Figures for the seven days to 19 July showed 76 cases.

That means 26.3 people tested positive for every for every 100,000 population (up to 20 July), up from 12.2 a week earlier.

Dr Lisa McNally, the Director of Public Health for Sandwell, said on Monday it hadn't yet reached the stage where a local lockdown was needed, but she was monitoring the rise.

Infection rate slide
Reuters

Here are the rate of infections (per 100,000 people) for all local authorities in the West Midlands - for the seven days up to 20 July, compared with the previous week.

  • Birmingham up to 12.9 from from 7.0
  • Bromsgrove up to 5.1 from 4.1
  • Cheshire East down to 3.9 from 4.2
  • Coventry up to 7.4 from 2.5
  • Dudley down to 0.9 from 2.2
  • East Staffordshire down to 15.2 from 29.5
  • Herefordshire down to 16.1 from 43.7
  • Lichfield up to 4.8 from 3.8
  • Newcastle-under-Lyme down to 2.3 from 5.4
  • North Warwickshire is up to 9.3 from 1.5
  • Nuneaton and Bedworth up to 10.9 from 10.1
  • Redditch up to 3.5 from 0.0
  • Rugby down to 3.7 from 10.3
  • Sandwell up to 26.3 from 12.1
  • Shropshire down to 0.9 from 3.4
  • Solihull down to 5.1 from 7.9
  • South Staffordshire stays the same at 2.7
  • Staffordshire Moorlands down to 0.0 from 4.1
  • Stoke-on-Trent down to 2.7 from 9.0
  • Stratford-on-Avon down to 0.0 from 5.5
  • Tamworth down to 2.6 from 3.9
  • Telford and Wrekin stays the same at 7.3
  • Walsall down to 8.8 from 11.3
  • Warwick up to 2.1 from 1.4
  • Wolverhampton up to 5.7 from 4.2
  • Worcester up to 4.9 from 2.9
  • Wychavon down from 1.6 from 4.7

What's the weather got in store?

BBC Weather

It will be a largely dry day with areas of cloud and the chance of some showers with highs of 23°C (73°F).

This was the view in Bromyard, Herefordshire, earlier taken by BBC Weather Watcher Mrs Baggins.

Bromyard
BBC Weather Watchers/Mrs Baggins

Review of parking charges

A county-wide review of parking charges is going to be carried out by Herefordshire Council.

It could lead to to revised charges and the council said that could include no evening charges, or cheaper rates at car parks which are further from town centres.

Parking machine
BBC

Charges in council-run car parks will resume on Saturday, after a month of free parking to encourage people to visit towns and city centre.

Weather: Sunny spells giving way to rain

BBC Weather

Some sunny spells this morning but it will soon turn pretty cloudy with some patchy, light rain forecast for this afternoon. A breezy day with a high of 19C/66F.

Barnt Green, Worcestershire this morning
OutwithArchie
Barnt Green, Worcestershire this morning

Any lingering rain will fizzle out through this evening, leaving a dry, fairly cloudy night with just a few clear spells. Low: 13C/55F.

You can keep up-to-date on the latest forecast for your area by going to the BBC Weather website.

Coronavirus cases rise further in Sandwell

Earlier this week, we reported there had been a big rise in the number of positive Covid-19 cases in Sandwell.

The latest government figures show the situation there has got even worse.

The number of positive tests are up from up from 28 a week, to 75 for the seven days up to 18 July.

Sandwell
BBC

That takes the rate per 100,000 people to 22.9, still some way off the current hot spot in Blackburn and Darwen which has a rate of 79.2.

Dr Lisa McNally, the Director of Public Health for Sandwell, said on Monday it hadn't yet reached the stage where a local lockdown was needed, but she was monitoring the rise.

In Herefordshire, where there was an outbreak at a farm in Mathon, the picture is looking more promising.

The number of cases dropped from 71 last week to 47 this week (seven days up to 18 July).

Farm at Mathon
BBC

Motorway bridge repairs close to completion

Roadworks on the M50 will be gone by the middle of next month, Highways England has said.

A long section of the motorway has been reduced to one lane with a 50mph speed limit since last year to allow repairs to three bridges.

m50
Google

The Queens Arms Bridge reopened last week, Bury Court will be fully open this week, and the work on Pendock Bridge is set to be completed after that.

A number of overnight and weekend closures are planned to allow the work to be finished.

Can we expect more sunshine today?

BBC Weather

After a dry and sunny start some cloud will build later with top temperatures of 20C (68F).

It was a lovely start to the morning in Upton upon Severn as captured here by BBC Weather Watcher Dee.

Upton upon Severn
BBC Weather Watchers/Dee

Coronavirus cases continue to fall in West Midlands

Allen Cook

BBC News

Cases of coronavirus infections in the West Midlands are continuing to decline and the region's infection rate remains low, according to health officials.

However, spikes in Herefordshire, almost entirely connected with an outbreak on a farm, and in East Staffordshire saw those areas picked out as areas of interest.

Sign to Covid-19 test centre
AFP/Getty Images

The latest figures show there were two deaths reported in local hospitals today and the University Hospitals Birmingham said it now had 73 coronavirus patients compared with 180 four weeks ago.

At the latest West Midlands weekly briefing, the Covid-19 regional covenor, Clive Wright, said the local reproduction or R number was 0.7-0.9, lower than the national figure.

He added there was currently a low level of infections across the region and Stoke-on-Trent had the highest rate regionally, but is still about 10% of the rate in Leicester, which remains under a strict lockdown.

Two areas in the West Midlands have seen a rise in new cases in the past week compared to the previous seven days.

Herefordshire's cases per 100,000 rose from 3.1 in the week to 6 July to 43.2 for the following week during which 93 workers tested positive at a farm in the county.

There was also a big rise in the East Staffordshire area, from 7.6 cases per 100,000 to 28.7. By comparison, Leicester's cases fell from 127.0 per 100,000 to 101.1

Coronavirus: How many cases are there in your area?

The number of people testing positive for coronavirus across the West Midlands is rising in a few areas, but dropping on the whole, new figures show.

The data from Public Health England shows the number of positive tests (in hospitals and the wider community) for every 100,000 population in the week up to 12 July.

Herefordshire's figures are up from 2.1 to 37.0, with 71 new cases recorded in the week linked to an outbreak on a farm near Worcester.

Covid-19 test
Reuters

The local authority figures in alphabetical order are:

  • Birmingham 6.5 up from 6.1
  • Bromsgrove remains the same at 4.1
  • Cheshire East down to 3.2 from 6.0
  • Coventry 2.7 down from 4.1
  • Dudley 1.9 down from 3.1
  • East Staffordshire up to 28.7 from 7.6
  • Herefordshire up to 37.0 from 2.1
  • Lichfield remains the same at 3.8
  • Newcastle-under-Lyme down to 6.2 from 11.6
  • North Warwickshire is down to 0.0 from 3.1
  • Nuneaton and Bedworth up to 12.4 from 8.5
  • Redditch down to 0.0 from 3.5
  • Rugby up to 11.2 from 8.4
  • Sandwell up to 7.9 from 4.3
  • Shropshire down to 3.7 from 7.2
  • Solihull up to 4.7 from 3.7
  • South Staffordshire up to 2.7 from 0.0
  • Staffordshire Moorlands up to 6.1 from 5.1
  • Stoke-on-Trent down to 10.9 from 12.1
  • Stratford-on-Avon up to 4.7 from 3.9
  • Tamworth down to 5.2 from 6.5
  • Telford and Wrekin up to 6.7 from 3.4
  • Walsall up to 8.8 from 4.2
  • Warwick remains the same at 0.7
  • Wolverhampton down to 3.4 from 5.3
  • Worcester down to 2.9 from 4.9
  • Wychavon up to 5.5 from 1.6

By comparison in Leicester, the rate has dropped from 127.2 in the seven days to July 5 to 104.4.

It was 143.6 in the seven days to June 28.

What's the weather got in store?

BBC Weather

It will be a largely fine and dry day with lots of cloud around but also some hazy sunshine breaking through. Highs of 22°C (72°F).

Wolverhampton
BBC Weather Watchers/Les at Large

Weather: Getting warmer on Thursday

BBC Weather

It should be mainly cloudy and dry tonight as well as feeling milder than in recent days, with a low of 13C (55F).

Burton-upon-Trent this afternoon
Poetic Verse
Burton-upon-Trent on Wednesday afternoon

Then it will get warmer on Thursday with some sunny spells and a high of 21C (70F).

Keep up-to-date with the forecast where you live by going to the BBC Weather website.

Weather: Early rain set to clear away

BBC Weather

A soggy start to Wednesday but the rain should soon clear away to leave us with a mainly dry day with some sunshine around this afternoon. High: 17C (63F).

Church Stretton, Shropshire
BBC Weather Watcher Peter Steggles
Church Stretton, Shropshire

Staying mainly cloudy and dry tonight with a low of 13C (55F).

You can get a latest forecast for your area at any time by going to the BBC Weather website.

Your photos: Comet spotted in night sky

BBC Weather Watchers

Comet Neowise has been spotted by BBC Weather Watchers across the West Midlands as it heads past Earth.

It was discovered in late March and became one of the few comets in the 21st Century that can be seen with the naked eye as it approached the sun.

The comet will be closest to the Earth on 23 July but will still be about 64 million miles (103 million km) away.

These were captured in Burnhill Green, Staffordshire by Th3Edge; in Pattingham near Wolverhampton by Sonny Intervals and in Ledbury, Herefordshire by Fluff.

Burnhill Green
Th3Edge
Pattingham
Sonny Intervals
Ledbury
Fluff

'No risk to public' from coronavirus outbreak at farm

Health officials in Herefordshire say there's no risk to the general public after 73 people working at a vegetable-picking and packing farm tested positive for coronavirus.

Farm
BBC

A S Green and Co has gone into lockdown after the test results, with up to 200 staff self-isolating there.

Herefordshire's director of public health, Karen Wright, says there are no concerns about the farm's food - mainly beans & broccoli - which is sold to supermarkets, and they're not expecting to shut down any shops or public sites.

Food and other essential supplies are being delivered to the farm, where the workers have been segregated into the mobile homes they live in. Herefordshire Council, which has organised the supply of deliveries, believes the outbreak is "contained" on the farm.

Weather: Thick grey cloud and some rain later

BBC Weather

We're forecast thick grey cloud today, with the possibility of some rain later.

And that rain is expected to continue overnight and into tomorrow, but the weather should improve by the end of the week.

Grey clouds and horse
Peter Steggles

What's the weather got in store?

BBC Weather

After a dry start rain will gradually move in, becoming heavy at times, with highs of 17C (63F).

It was a lovely start to the day in Crewe, where BBC Weather Watcher AlexG595 captured this image of sunrise.

Crewe
BBC Weather Watchers/AlexG595

What's the weather got in store?

BBC Weather

It will be a windy day with sunny spells but also scattered showers with highs of 19C (66F).

This was the scene in Warwick earlier taken by BBC Weather Watcher Ryan Lewis.

Warwick
BBC Weather Watchers/Ryan Lewis

'Don't drink three months worth of alcohol'

A paramedic for West Midlands Ambulance Service has warned people as the pubs reopen, not to "drink three months' worth of alcohol in one night".

He told his Twitter followers: "You don't want to end up in an ambulance like this one".

View more on twitter

Dates revealed for reopening of council play areas

Allen Cook

BBC News

Families will be able to use some council-run outdoor play areas and gym equipment across the West Midlands from tomorrow but not every place is working to the same deadline.

Play equipment
Lichfield District Council

Several local authorities have said on their websites or social media their play areas will be available from Saturday and they include:

But some councils have said their outdoor play areas will only start to be available from next week:

While Cannock Chase District Council said its play areas and outdoor gym equipment would remain out of use until all risk assessments have been carried out and signs put up.

Both Bromsgrove District Council and Redditch Borough Council said their play areas would stay shut over the weekend while work continues to make them safe but didn't reveal a reopening date.

We'll update for other local authorities as and when we get the information.

Play area
Warwick District Council