A comprehensive preview to the weekend's Championship action, with all four of our Midland's teams vying for points.
An in-depth preview to the weekend's Premier League fixtures for all our Midlands teams.
Midlands online retailers are preparing for the biggest day for online shopping today, also known as Cyber Monday. Here's some key figures.
Key stats from Ofsted report for West Midlands:
- 74% of primary schools are good or outstanding compared with a national average of 78%.
- In 10 out of the 14 local authorities, over a quarter of primary pupils attend a school that is not yet good.
- 51% of colleges were judged as good or better against 72% nationally.
Key stats from Ofsted report for East Midlands:
- In two thirds of local authorities the number of good and outstanding schools has risen or maintained high levels.
- The proportion of good or outstanding primary schools has increased from 65% to 77%.
- A third of further education and skills provision needs improvement or is satisfactory.
The Midlands has the lowest proportion of inadequate secondary schools in the country, according to schools watchdog Ofsted.
'Good' or 'Outstanding' awards have been given to 74% of Midlands schools. In Coventry, it means 7,000 more pupils are going to a good primary school compared to last year, but the report says the city's primary schools are still among the bottom-performing in the country.
National Express West Midlands has announced its Christmas and New Year services, which includes late night services to shopping centres such as Merry Hill.
Christmas bus services start on Thursday 19 December when extra late night services will be provided to Merry Hill, running until midnight.
The late night shopper services will run until midnight Monday 23 December.
Saturday timetables with some extra early buses will run:
Monday 23rd DecemberChristmas EveFriday 27th DecemberMonday 30th DecemberTuesday 31st December. Normal timetables will apply over the weekend between Christmas and New Year.
There are no buses on Christmas Day.
On Boxing Day, Sunday timetables will apply on all routes until approximately 6.30pm with many key routes running until their normal end of service at around 11.30pm.
New Year’s Day buses will operate Sunday timetables with normal services resuming on Thursday 2 January 2014.
Two of the most famous number one Christmas songs turn 40 this year and both were recorded by Midlands bands.
'I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday' by Wizzard and 'Merry Xmas Everybody' by Slade are entering their fourth decade.
A section of the Custom House station struts which have been manufactured in Nottinghamshire and will now be transported down to London where along with other sections it will be assembled on site.
The Transport Secretary and Derbyshire MP Patrick McLoughlin has visited the Laing O'Rourke plant where a new railway is being made before it is transported to London.
A jigsaw-style new railway is being made at Laing O'Rourke's plant in Worksop before it is transported 165miles to East London and assembled to form Crossrail's new Custom House Station.
Up to 275 people at the site are currently working to provide sections of the Custom House station for London's £14.8bn Crossrail project.
The Transport Secretary, Patrick McLoughlin MP, and the Chief Executive of Crossrail, Andrew Wolstenholme, will visit the Midlands today to urge companies to get involved in the business opportunities that will arise in Crossrail's supply chain over the coming years.
The £100 million Laing O'Rourke plant is constructing large sections of Crossrail's new Custom House station before transporting them to East London where they will be assembled.
It is estimated that Crossrail and its supply chain will generate at least 75,000 business opportunities.
Small Business Saturday is taking place across the Midlands today. The government initiative is designed to boost help and the profile of small businesses.
In Derby the City Council will be trying to raise awareness of the positive impact of small businesses on the city and their role in making jobs in the city.