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Houses evacuated after Oswestry gas leak

A 'large cordon' has been put in place and houses have been evacuated after a gas leak in Oswestry.

West Mercia Police have warned people to avoid the area around Church Street.


Police release new image of missing Shropshire girl

The 15-year-old's home town is Shropshire. Credit: West Mercia Police

Police have released a new image of Bonnie Rose Clark who went missing during a trip to Birmingham on Monday 16th February.

The 15-year-old was last seen near Brindley Place.

She is 5 feet 9 inches tall, with a ponytail, and was last seen wearing a black jacket and pale blue jeans.

Read more: Appeal to find girl missing during trip to Birmingham

HMIC release report into West Mercia Police's child protection work

West Mercia Police Credit: David Jones/PA Archive/Press Association Images

An inspection into West Mercia Police's child protection work has criticised the force's 'weak' responses to child sexual exploitation.

In a report published this morning, HM Inspectorate of Constabulary praised officers' rigorous supervision of registered sex offenders, but said complex investigations were often poorly planned.

The watchdog carried out the inspection in November last year as part of a rolling programme of reports into police forces in England and Wales.

HMIC inspected West Mercia Police's child protection work Credit: PA

In a summary of their findings, inspectors said that they were impressed by:

  • The force's 'clear commitment' to improving services for vulnerable people and children.
  • Quick response times to allegations about child abuse.
  • The sensitivity and skill shown by the specialist teams who question very young children, or children with learning difficulties.
  • The force's rigorous supervision of registered sex offenders.

Inspectors were concerned to find:

  • Investigations were poorly planned or insufficiently thorough in difficult or complex cases.
  • Recognising and responding to child sexual exploitation was weak.
  • Too many children were being unnecessarily held in police custody overnight.
  • In cases that were allocated to non-specialist teams, enquiries and investigations were undertaken by insufficiently skilled and knowledgeable staff.
Drusilla Sharpling Credit: PA/PA Wire/Press Association Images

“West Mercia Police is clearly committed to improving child protection services and has invested in new structures, specialist teams and resources to improve the timeliness of investigations.”

“Despite this commitment, West Mercia Police needs to improve in a number of areas. We found that the initial response to child protection issues was sometimes slow, and that investigations were not always of the highest quality. We also found that there were significant delays in some investigations, which can have a negative impact on the child. The force also needs to make sure staff who undertake child protection work are sufficiently skilled.

“I encourage West Mercia Police to act on our recommendations as a matter of urgency, and have asked that within six weeks it provides us with an action plan to demonstrate how it will take forward these recommendations.”

– HM Inspector of Constabulary Drusilla Sharpling


Appeal to find girl missing during trip to Birmingham

Police are appealing for help to find a girl who's gone missing during a trip to Birmingham.

Bonnie Rose Clarke went missing in Birmingham yesterday Credit: West Midlands Police

Officers believe Bonnie Rose Clarke may be trying to get back home to Shropshire, and are asking people to keep an eye out for her on buses and trains.

The 15-year-old was last seen near Brindley Place. She is 5 feet 9 inches tall, with a ponytail, and wearing a black jacket and pale blue jeans.

Police warning after sharp rise in Telford burglaries

Burglaries are on the rise in Telford Credit: Julian Stratenschulte/DPA/Press Association Images

Police are warning residents to be vigilant after a sharp rise in burglaries in Telford.

Twelve burglaries have been reported to police in the Hadley and Leegomery areas since the beginning of this year. Ten of those were 'sneak in' burglaries - that means that the homeowners were in when the offenders walked in through unlocked doors.

Jewellery, purses, designer luggage, mobile phones, game consoles and tablets were amongst the possessions which were taken.

“Our message to the public is to keep all doors and windows locked when they are unattended. Ensure they are locked before going to bed at night and also in the morning after letting your pets outside.

“We do not want to panic the public but urging them to be vigilant, as this is a repetitive theme and the offenders are taking full advantage."

– Detective Sergeant Jonathan Taylor, of Proactive CID in Telford

TRAINS: Delays of up to 50 minutes between Shrewsbury & Crewe

There are travel delays of up to 50 minutes for anyone travelling on the Arriva Trains Wales service southbound between Crewe and Shrewsbury.

This is due to an earlier broken down train at Whitchurch in Shropshire.

The lines have re-opened but services are still subject to knock on delays.

There's no estimate for when a normal service will resume.

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