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The Hobbit: First book on Library of Birmingham shelves

Sir Albert Bore places The Hobbit on the shelves of the Library of Birmingham. Credit: Four Colman Getty.

The Hobbit has become the first book to be placed on the shelves of the Library of Birmingham.

The book, J.R.R. Tolkien’s much-loved 1937 children’s fantasy tale, was placed on the shelf by Sir Albert Bore, Leader of Birmingham City Council, to mark the imminent handover of the building by Carillion, the Library of Birmingham’s construction partner, to Birmingham City Council.

£189m Library of Birmingham handed to council

An artists impression of the 'Book Wall' Credit: Mecanoo Architects

The new Library of Birmingham will be officially handed over from the builders to the council today.

Leader of Birmingham City Council Sir Albert Bore will place the first book inside the £190 million building.

It's going to be Birmingham author JRR Tolkein's The Hobbit. The library will open to the public in September.

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Council leader on council tax freeze

Birmingham City Council will not increase council tax this year despite it still needing to save a hundred million pounds of government cuts.

The council says it'll start charging to collect garden waste. People will have to pay £35 a year to have their garden rubbish collected.

The council says the cuts are too harsh and the government hasn't listened.

Social services watchdog statement on Birmingham City Council investigation

A spokesperson from the Health and Care Professions Council has issued this comment in relation to the investigation of Birmingham City Council's social services department following the death of mother-of-three Natasha Trevis.

We are aware of concerns about a social worker at Birmingham City Council

and are looking into what action, if any, we need to take. We have a duty

of confidentiality to all parties involved so it would not be appropriate

for us to comment further.

– Spokesperson, Health and Care Professions Council

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Birmingham City Council statement on Social Services probe

The Health & Care Professions Council is investigating Birmingham City Council's social services department after claims a social worker let slip a mother had aborted her unborn child days before her partner brutally murdered her.

Junior Saleem Oakes was sentenced to life on Monday for the murder of Natasha Trevis.

A Birmingham City Council spokesperson said:

"We are aware of this allegation and can confirm internal enquiries were undertaken in accordance with Birmingham City Council's policies and procedures. Following this investigation no evidence was found which would require further action against the social worker involved. "In addition the Health Care Professions Council, as the regulatory body for Social Workers, has been notified and we are engaging with their subsequent enquiries. Consequently it would not be appropriate to comment further until those enquiries are completed. "

Heated Commons debate over Birmingham City Council cuts

A heated debate in the commons took place today when Communities Secretary Eric Pickles criticised Birmingham City Council for increasing costs of around £10 million per year.

John Hemming MP for Birmingham Yardley raised the question if it was fair that council tax payers should pay an increase of 24% as he said some Birmingham City Council staff will be receiving a 70% wage increase.

Eric Pickles called the increase "an outrage".

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