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Arrests in connection with 69 house burglaries

Four people have been arrested in connection with almost 70 burglaries at homes across the Black Country, Shropshire and Staffordshire.

One hundred police officers from three police forces carried out a series of raids early this morning at nine properties. Three man in their twenties were arrested from a travellers' site on Oak Lane in Kingswinford. A 48-year-old man was arrested at a property on Wolverhampton Road in Heath Town.

Police believe homes are being targeted for Asian gold.

Something fishy going on: piranhas found in Telford sewers

Residents had been complaining of a fishy smell from their drains in Telford
A number of fish were found after residents complained of a fishy smell from their drains in Telford Credit: Severn Trent Water

Residents in Telford who complained about a fishy smell coming from their drains have been told it was caused by dead piranhas, which had likely been flushed down the toilet.

Severn Trent Water says, when it investigated the sewers in Madeley, it also found a number of other dead fish.

It is not the first time sewers in Shropshire have been blocked by odd items - in January sewers in Ditton Priors, near Bridgnorth, were found to be blocked by piles of pants that had been flushed down the toilet.

Sue Fulford, customer operations manager for Severn Trent Water said: "The drains that take waste water away from your home are only a few inches wide and are only meant to take water, toilet roll and human waste.

"Toilet roll is meant to break down when it gets wet so it washes easily through the system."


Two people killed in separate tragedies on the road

Two people have died in separate crashed across the Midlands this afternoon.

A motorcyclist was knocked of their bike after crashing with a HGV in Bromfield Road, Ludlow,

Shropshire, at around 2.30pm.

Paramedics and the Midlands Air Ambulance attended but nothing could be done, and they were declared dead at the scene.

Two people have died in separate crashes this afternoon
Two people have died in separate crashes this afternoon Credit: West Midlands Ambulance Service

Just under an hour later, a lorry crashed off the A429 in Wellesbourne, Warwickshire, overturning and landing on its side in a copse of trees.

The driver was also declared dead at the scene.

Council leader' delight as new £10m museum opens

Council leaders in Shropshire have welcomed the launch of the new £10 million Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery.

The museum opens its doors today after an extensive regeneration project.

Councillor Steve Charmley, tourism chief for Shropshire County Council, said it would be the "jewel in the crown" of the county.

I'm delighted that the new Museum and Art Gallery will be open to the public so that they can see for themselves the result of our work to restore this unique collection of buildings, as well as the wonderful collection of items that will be on display - many for the first time.

We look forward to welcoming visitors from near and far to what will be a real cultural attraction and a real highlight on Shropshire's tourism map.

By hosting the Visitor Information Centre, the Museum and Art Gallery will also be a point of arrival for visitors to Shrewsbury and Shropshire and will be a real jewel in the crown for the town and for the county.

A large number of highly skilled people have worked incredibly hard over a long period to make the new Museum and Art Gallery a reality.

The work has been painstaking and often hard, but the results are stunning and I really do hope people will be impressed with what they see and what we have done.

– Councillor Steve Charmley, Shropshire County Council


Father hopes new inquest will reveal how his daughter died

The parents of a young army recruit who died during training at a barracks linked to bullying allegation have welcomed a new inquest into her death.

Private Cheryl James was found with gunshot wounds at the Deepcut Barracks in Surrey nearly 20 years ago.

She was one of four young soldiers who died there between 1995 and 2002, sparking allegations of abuse.

Cheryl's father, Des James from Oswestry, hopes a jury will find out exactly how his daughter died.


Profile of Deepcut four

Pte James Collinson and Pte Cheryl James Credit: Press Association Images

Private James Collinson

Aged 17, from Perth, Scotland. Pte Collinson was found with a single gunshot wound through his chin in March 2002.

Private Cheryl James

Age 18, from Llangollen, north Wales. Pte James was found dead with a bullet through her forehead, in November 1995.

Pte Sean Benton and Pte Geoff Gray Credit: Press Association Images

Private Sean Benton

Aged 20, from Hastings in East Sussex. Pte Benton was found dead with five gunshot wounds while on guard in June 1995.

Private Geoff Gray

Aged 17, from Seaham in County Durham. Pte Gray was found dead with two gunshot wounds to his head while on guard duty in September 2001.


Parents 'delighted' at Deepcut inquest ruling

The family of Cheryl James say they are relieved at the Attorney General's decision to allow them permission to apply for a fresh inquest into the death of their daughter.

Pte James was one of four soldiers who died at Deepcut barracks in Surrey between 1995 and 2002.

We're relieved and delighted by the Attorney General's decision.

It's truly an emotional day - it's been a long and painful process, with so many hurdles, but we never considered giving up.

Cheryl had her whole life in front of her; when our young people lose their lives serving their country, not only do they deserve a full and independent investigation into their deaths, it must be their absolute right.

We may now finally achieve a meaningful inquiry into her death and we hope it brings about real change for future recruits.

– Des and Doreen James, parents of Pte James
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