Live updates

Rare wild rose found in grounds of Tutbury Castle

A rare type of wild rose may have been growing unnoticed in the grounds of a castle in Staffordshire since the 16th century Credit: Joe Giddens/PA Wire/Press Association Images

A rare type of wild rose may have been growing unnoticed in the grounds of a castle in Staffordshire since the 16th century, curators at the site have said.

The discovery at Tutbury Castle, once the place of imprisonment for Mary, Queen of Scots, was made on the banks of a moat during a flora survey.

It is hoped the pale pink rose - only the second of its type found in Staffordshire since 1878 - may now be named after the partially-ruined castle, which welcomes thousands of visitors each year.

The hybrid of dog rose and sweet briar has leaves which smell of apples.

"The rose provides a beautiful and unexpected link with our ancestors".

"It is funny to think how many people have walked past it over hundreds of years and not known it was there."

– Castle curator Lesley Smith


First apprentice graduation ceremony held in Stafford

The first Apprenticeship Graduation Ceremony will take place in Stafford later.

More than 150 apprentices from across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent will celebrate the completion of their training at the county's first ever Apprenticeship Graduation Ceremony.

It is also hoped that the event will raise the profile of apprenticeships.

Credit: PA Wire

Cllr Ben Adams, Cabinet Member for Learning and Skills at Staffordshire County Council said:

"We want local employers to recognise the fantastic contributions that apprenticeships can bring to their companies and our local economy.

"Apprenticeships play just as important a role as graduates in growing our economy and it's about time that apprentices got the recognition they deserve."

150 fish deaths "linked" to lorry fire which melted M6

The lorry fire near Stafford on the M6 Southbound Credit: CPMG Twitter

The Environment Agency is carrying out water tests over chemical spill fears after 150 fish deaths in the River Penk near Stafford. It's after a lorry fire which closed the M6 yesterday, in which more than 600 square metres of the road's tarmac melted.

The M6 was closed southbound from Junction 13 yesterday for Stafford South, causing queues of more than five miles while repairs were carried out.

Environment experts say they fear pollutants may have seeped from the motorway into local watercourses.

The Environment Agency urged people to stay out of the River Penk while investigations continue. They said the substance was still "unknown" and they are continuing to monitor the situation.

Drivers risking injury by reversing at junction 14 on M6

Central Motorway Police Group are urging drivers to take care on the M6 whilst delays are clearing.

They have said people are risking injury and damage to their vehicles by reversing at junction 14 of the M6.

However, the motorway is now open and starting to move so are calling on all motorists to remain calm and wait for the delays to clear.

  1. National

M6 reopens after massive lorry fire melts road

The aftermath of the lorry fire which closed the M6. Credit: PA

The M6 has reopened following a massive lorry fire which melted part of the road.

Drivers endured hours of misery queues after the motorway was shut for most of the day.

All three lanes were reopened shortly after 5.20pm according to Highways England, nearly 16 hours after the initial fire broke out.

A statement on its website said: "The M6 southbound between junction 13 (Stafford south) and junction 12 (Cannock) has fully re-opened after an earlier severe HGV fire and subsequent extensive resurfacing work. All lanes are now running."

Read more: Huge lorry fire closes busy motorway as road melts


Lorry fire has damaged over 600 square metres of road

The lorry fire has caused 640 square metres of damage to the road. Credit: Highways Agency Twitter

Highways England have shared a picture of the current scene on the M6, after a lorry fire caused one of the busiest stretches of motorway in the region to close.

They said that the fire had caused 640 square metres of damage to the road and were working "as hard as they can" to clear the wreckage.

Staffordshire Police say they are currently working to open at least one lane by 6:00pm this evening.

Police & emergency services working hard to clear M6 delays

Load more updates