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Passport workers strike over ongoing backlog crisis

Thousands of passport workers are striking today as the Summer holidays get underway.
Thousands of passport workers are striking today as the Summer holidays get underway. Credit: Edward Smith/EMPICS Entertainment

Thousands of passport workers are striking today as the Summer holidays get underway.

They have taken the action in a bid to end staffing shortages which have caused an ongoing backlog crisis, with holiday-goers left waiting for their renewed passports.

It could affect holiday plans for families across the Midlands.

A new recruitment drive is underway but many of the posts being advertised are not permanent jobs and are only likely to replace 8% of staff needed. The Passport Office has cut hundreds of staff since 2010 but the agency only agreed to meet the union to seriously discuss jobs after recent media and political scrutiny.

– Public and Commercial Services union

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1 and a half hour delays on M6 due to motorway closure

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J17/16 M6SB - The Bridge Inspector is on scene and will advise when it is safe to pass.

There are 1 and a half hour delays on the M6 southbound following reports of a piece of an unsafe bridge falling onto the road.

It's affecting traffic between junctions 19 and 18 after the road was shut earlier this morning.

It's expected to re-open from 10.30am.

M6 closure after reports of bridge falling onto road

Part of the M6 remains shut this morning following reports that a piece of an unsafe bridge collapsed onto the motorway.

It happened between J17 and 16 on the Southbound carriageway.

The bridge is between Manor Rd and Reynolds Lane, near to Sandbach services.

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Part of M6 motorway closed after piece of bridge falls onto road - no ETA for re-opening http://t.co/0Dlun8kCF2 http://t.co/qSVbfiuDsv

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AMAZING VIDEO: Lightning striking BT tower and storm pictures

Viewers have been sending in their photos of this weekends wild weather.

A combination of sunny spells and severe storms made up the conditions across the Midlands.

The BT Tower in Birmingham was hit by lightning and a petrol station roof collapsed in Leicestershire following the torrential weather.

Here are just a few of the moments you captured on camera...

Four Oaks
Four Oaks Credit: Rachel Slater
Petrol station roof collapses on two cars in Leicestershire
Petrol station roof collapses on two cars in Leicestershire Credit: Caters news agency
Taken in the early hours in Leicester
Taken in the early hours in Leicester Credit: Brendan harris

Midlands issued with 3 Flood Warnings and 20 Alerts

Three Flood Warnings
Table showing Flood Warnings and Alerts for the Midlands Credit: Environment Agency

To see if your area is one of these at risk from rising waters, click here.

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Service back to normal as firefighters strike ends

This mornings fire strike across the Midlands has now concluded.

Firefighters walked out for two hours between the hours of 6am and 8am as the row with Government over pay and conditions continues.

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18th July Strike Action is now over and normal fire cover has resumed across Herefordshire and Worcestershire

Advice ahead of heatwave set to hit the Midlands

Temperatures in our region could rise to more than 30 degrees
Temperatures in our region could rise to more than 30 degrees Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

People are being warned to look after the vulnerable as temperatures in our region could rise to more than 30 degrees over the next couple of days.

It comes after the The Met Office issued a heatwave alert for the East Midlands.

The advice is to drink plenty of water and keep out of the sun.

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