Archive for December, 2011


POTENTIALLY “deadly” drivers with as many as 20 points are driving on West Midland streets after magistrates allowed them to keep their licences.

Figures released by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) under the Freedom of Information Act reveal that two drivers in the West Midlands have amassed 20 points.

In total there are 295 motorists who live in the region with 12 points or more still being allowed behind the wheel – in spite of guidance to courts that only under “exceptional” circumstances should they be allowed to continue.

Also on the roads alongside law-abiding drivers are eight with 19 points, three with 18, five with 17 and 34 with 16.

The total has sparked fears from safety groups who say allowing motorists who “flout the law” and continue in spite of amassing horrific records could result in tragedy.

Road safety charity Brake said failing to ban “selfish and potentially deadly” drivers was outrageous.

The worst postcodes in the Midlands for sheer numbers of people with points on their licences are leafy B74, which includes millionaire’s choice Little Aston with 3,124 drivers, B77 Wilnecote in Tamworth with 3,850 and B90 in Shirley, Solihull with 3,624.

The two drivers with 20 points live in Lea Hall, Birmingham, and Redditch. The survey includes Birmingham and surrounding areas such as Sandwell, Tamworth and Henley-in-Arden.

Brake spokesman Richard Coteau said: “It is outrageous these individuals, who rack up offence after offence are allowed to continue driving, causing enormous risk to the public.

“Drivers who repeatedly flout traffic laws have shown complete disregard for the lives of other road users.

“They have had ample opportunity to desist breaking the law before reaching 12 points and facing disqualification.

“It’s time for the Government to get tough with these selfish, irresponsible and potentially deadly drivers, and put a stop to their illegal and dangerous driving before it results in a devastating crash.”

The DVLA revealed that in the B postcode region on November 19 there were 812 drivers disqualified after totting up 12 or more penalty points.

Under the totting up procedure, should a driver receive 12 points over a three-year period court guidelines say an automatic disqualification of six months should be imposed. Only if the court accepts a submission of “exceptional hardship”, either financially or personally, can such a ban be overturned.

But in the B postcode region there is a total of 295 motorists still able to use their vehicles after accumulating 12 points or more.

Nationally, official figures show there are 10,072 motorists who should have been banned but managed to persuade the courts they should be able to keep their licence.

With three points generally handed out for speeding offences, in the B postcode area there are 2,749 motorists on the brink of facing a battle to avoid disqualification on nine points, with 219 on 10, and 131 on 11.

Andy Gilbert, chair of West Midlands Police Federation, said: “Sentences for all offences should be effective in order to protect the public and as a deterrent effect to prevent further offences.”

Andy Goldby, director of underwriting and pricing at Direct Line, said: “It seems exceptional hardship isn’t that exceptional after all. Someone who has accumulated more than 12 points on their licence has shown a complete disrespect for the law.

“It sends out an entirely wrong message that these individuals are still allowed to drive. Drivers with points on their licence are statistically more likely to have a collision and the likelihood increases with the more points they have.’’

It comes after the number of drink drivers in the West Midlands have increased and The Police Christmas Crackdown and warnings to drivers to leave the car at home during nights out seems to of failed.

JD Wetherspoon pubs in Redditch will be selling beer at 1992 prices from January 3rd- 11th

RESIDENTS can enjoy a January sale with a difference at two pubs in Redditch.

The Rising Sun in Alcester Street and The Royal Enfield in Unicorn Hill will each be serving pints of beer at 1992 prices.

A pint of Greene King Ruddles Best Bitter will be £1.29, a pint of Carlsberg will be £1.99, a bottle of Beck’s £1.29 and a cup of coffee 79p.

James Doughty, manager of The Rising Sun, said: “I am sure my customers will welcome the reduction in prices, especially at the start of the year.

“Department stores and shops hold their sales in January and I believe that given the choice of a trip to a sale at the shops or a sale at The Rising Sun, most people would prefer a visit to the pub.”

The sale runs from Tuesday, January 3 until Wednesday January 11th

In March 1993  draught bitter was 132 pence per pint and draught lager was selling at 149 pence per pint.

Not quite 1992 prices but the price drop will be welcomed by customers at a time when 7 independent pubs close in the UK everyday.

It comes after the number of drink drivers in the West Midlands have increased and The Police Christmas Crackdown and warnings to drivers to leave the car at home during nights out seems to of failed.

£100,000 Bill After Sub-Station Near Redditch Broken Into

Police are appealing for witnesses after thieves stole a large quantity of copper from an electricity sub-station near Redditch over Christmas.

It happened at the National Grid sub-station in Astwood Lane, Feckenham, between 5pm on Christmas Eve, Saturday 24th December, and 4.35pm on Thursday 29th December.

Thieves had dug under the electric fence. Once inside the compound they targeted a large number of electrical components on the site and removed copper cable, causing damage to the remaining cable.

The cost of replacing all the cable as a result is believed to be in the region of £100,000.

PC Steve Woodman of West Mercia Police said: “It is extremely dangerous to break into sub stations and the thieves risked their lives.

“The sub station is in a rural area but someone may have seen something suspicious over the Christmas period and we urge them to contact us. We believe the thieves would have had a vehicle parked in Rock Hill Lane while they carried out the theft.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact PC Woodman on 0300 333 3000 quoting incident 426-s-291211 or ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Family sees man’s chainsaw deathSouth Yorkshire Police say the the death of 62-year-old Peter Conway is not being treated as suspicious

South Yorkshire Police say the the death of 62-year-old Peter Conway is not being treated as suspicious

A man bled to death in front of his wife and 14-year-old daughter after he accidentally cut his throat with a chainsaw, according to reports.

Police confirmed an inquest had been opened and adjourned into the death of 62-year-old Peter Conway, who died on December 23 in Brierley, South Yorkshire.

He is believed to have stumbled in his back garden while testing the saw, which he was going to lend to a friend.

His wife, Joanne Eland, and daughter, Trudy, looked on in horror as he slipped on to the blade.

A South Yorkshire Police spokeswoman said the incident was not being treated as suspicious.

Mr Conway’s wife and daughter ran to help him but he could not survive his terrible injuries, which included a severed artery in his throat.

His wife told reporters: “Trudy’s coping better than me, she’s been a rock. I don’t think it has really hit her.

“I don’t know why his friend wanted the chainsaw but if anyone wanted something from Peter he had to do it straight away.”

Mr Conway, who also had two grown-up children from a previous relationship, was a loving father who liked to help others.

Just two weeks before the accident the emphysema and bronchitis sufferer had left hospital. When he was in good health he had climbed Ben Nevis.

The cost of staff suspended on full pay in Midlands Councils
The first report in our Midlands Councils’ Spending Uncovered series revealed that millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money was spent on flights.
This second report exposes how much these same Local Authorities have spent paying the salaries of employees suspended on full pay.
Local Authorities have to ensure that investigations involving suspensions are not only dealt with properly, but also as quickly as possible. Long drawn out periods of suspension
are hugely expensive to taxpayers both in terms of salaries paid and also in legal fees.Our
report highlights the lengths of suspension and the total salary paid to employees
throughout councils in the Midlands since April 2009

Worcestershire County Council had 46 members of staff for a total of  3,858  days the average length of days was 84 at a total cost of £281,98 the council refused to say why it had suspended staff.

Redditch Borough Council  had 3 members of staff suspended for a total of 311 days and the average length of days was 104 at a total  cost of £25,465 Gross misconduct was the reason given for staff being suspended.

The details of your council can be found here


applicants will not be expected to be an accredited Bikeability Cycle Instructor as training will be provided. Good communication skills, especially children aged 8 and above, the ability to supervise both adults and children, and be confident cyclists.

1) Most children can ride a bike at 8 years old ?

2) Bizarrely they plan to train the people providing the training ?

Worcestershire County Council employ Cycle Instructors who deliver Bikeability National Standard Cycle Training across the County. Instructors are employed on zero hours contracts which means working flexibly only when work is available and predominantly during school term time. Although desirable, applicants will not be expected to be an accredited Bikeability Cycle Instructor as training will be provided. Applicants will have good communication skills, especially with children aged 8 and above, the ability to supervise both adults and children, and be confident cyclists. You will have the ability to teach groups, maintain discipline and inspire confidence. The hourly rate of pay available will be awarded based on skills and previous experience and will be between £8.23 per hour and £9.16 per hour. Successful applicants are subject to Enhanced CRB Disclosure

Reference Number ES252

Job Title Cycle Instructor (20 Posts)

Salary £8.00 – £9.16, Hours N/A,
Contract Type Permanent, Location Worcestershire

Closing Date Saturday, December 12, 2015

View Cycle Instructor Job Application Details

Cycle Instructor Job Details

Reference ES252

As and when required
£8.23 – £9.16 per hour

Enquiries/ Forms: Apply on line at or please phone (01905) 765765
Closing Date: This is a rolling vacancy
Interview Date: tcb

  • CycleScheme
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Man sentenced for Wembley killing

A Redditch man who admitted killing a Wales football fan outside Wembley Stadium will be sentenced at the Old Bailey.

Ian Mytton, 41, of Gately Close, Redditch, pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of father-of-three Michael Dye last month.

Mr Dye, a Cardiff City fan, died from head injuries inflicted before a crucial Euro 2012 qualifier between England and Wales on September 6.

The 44-year-old was taken to Northwick Park Hospital after suffering a fractured skull on a concourse next to the stadium, in north-west London, but died shortly after his arrival.

Mr Dye, known to many as Mikey, worked for Cardiff council’s highways department.

The long-time Bluebirds fan wrote about his team on the Cardiff City Forum internet site.

A Facebook page called RIP MIKE DYE set up after his death has 10,122 followers.

One tribute, from Paul Hill, read: “A true gent and a man of honour, a father and family man, sadly missed but well remembered, this man gave his all in life and was cheated out of it … never forgotten mike RIP. XX2”.

Hewell Road swimming pool to close and replaced by pool heated by the Crematorium

branded “sick and eerie”

Swimmers will be able to use the pool heated by the Crematorium at the new £6.5m Abbey Stadium branded as “sick and  eerie by residents and Funeral Directors.
Above (exclusive picture by (©  All rights reserved.)   the new swimming pool at the new £6.5m Abbey Stadium branded as “sick and  eerie” by residents and Funeral Directors.

A Worcestershire swimming pool will close at the end of January after 110 years of service.

Hewell Road swimming pool, in Redditch, will open for the final time on 29 January.

Swimmers will be able to use the pool heated by the Local Crematorium at the new £6.5m Abbey Stadium which is set to open in February 2012.

Redditch Borough Council is urging people to come and have a last look around the facility before it closes for good.

Carole Gandy, leader of the council, said: “The Hewell Road facility dates back more than 100 years and was used as the public baths for Redditch residents. It has been sincerely valued by our communities.

“We have written to local interest groups so they can take photographs of this much-loved building which will always have a place in Redditch’s history.”

10 Creepiest Abandoned Morgues on Earth

Worcestershire NHS Bosses send staff on two day training course to cut sick leave

Last month the trust spent £1,196,000 on temporary staff, a big increase from October when the figure was £808,000 Because of the Norovirus .

HOSPITAL Bosses in Worcestershire could save £2 million a year if they cut staff sickness levels by just half of one per cent.

A self-care programme for 86 staff has already saved NHS hospital bosses in Worcestershire £130,000 in two years by helping them cut their number of sick days.

The two-day course, managed internally, helps staff at Worcestershire Royal Hospital in Worcester look at issues such as their lifestyle, diet and balancing work with their other commitments and responsibilities to reduce the number of days they take off sick.

When a doctor, nurse or healthcare assistant is off sick it costs Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust both sick pay and paying expensive bank and agency staff to cover shifts.

On average for this year, 4.1 per cent of WAH NHS Trust’s 5,500 staff are off sick at any one time, within the NHS average and an improvement on the rate of sickness in 2007 which was about five per cent.

Liz Preece, an occupational therapist who works for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, gave a presentation at Worcester-shire Royal Hospital.

She said: “We know from the research that individuals who have high levels of short term sickness absence are likely to continue with that pattern of absence.

“The biggest single predictor of sickness absence is a previous history of sickness absence.”

Since April the trust has been forced to sack 12 staff on long term sickness although some staff are suspended from work on medical grounds if they have symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting which can spread to patients and lead to ward closures. This has happened recently at the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch because of norovirus.

Last month the trust spent £1,196,000 on temporary staff, a big increase from October when the figure was £808,000.

The rising costs are partly to cover staff sickness but also to cover unfilled vacancies and to staff the increased number of beds opened over the winter to deal with increased patient numbers.

Of this £1,196,000, £445,000 was spent on temporary nursing and £691,000 on medical agency and locum costs.

Bev Edgar, interim director of director of human resources, said: “I think the danger is that we think all temporary spending isn’t good and that isn’t the case at all.

“The purpose of a flexible workforce is to have people on hand at a time when we need the right resources, for example reopening a ward or where we have had to close wards because of infection.”

Mrs Edgar said “the foot came off the pedal” in terms of recruiting staff but that there was now rolling advertising for both nurses and healthcare assistants.

She added: “We have put some pressure back on recruitment and nursing teams to get those posts filled as quickly as possible.”

Store chain D2 Jeans has collapsed into administration, making 200 staff redundant and jeopardising hundreds more jobs.

Administrators closed 19 stores and laid off the shop workers as the Dundonald, Ayrshire-based firm became the first notable post-Christmas retail casualty.

The remaining 28 stores are being run as a going concern while administrators seek a buyer for parts or all of the business in the hope of saving the jobs of hundreds more employees.

BDO LLP administrator James Stephen said: “It is unfortunate that the economic climate and extremely difficult trading conditions have significantly affected the retail sector.

“However, we are hopeful of securing a sale of all or part of the business and will continue to trade the business while this is explored.”

It is the second time in two years that the chain, originally set up by Scottish entrepreneur Sir Tom Hunter, has gone into administration.

Last time, it was understood that around 500 jobs were saved as its management struck a deal to buy more than 40 of its stores out of administration. But around 32 stores – employing more than 300 staff – were not included in the rescue deal.

A spokeswoman for BDO said she was unable to say which of the firm’s stores had been closed today.

According to the company’s website, which is no longer fully functioning, D2 operates stores across the UK. These include Sheffield, Redditch, Taunton, South Wirral, Bicester, Banbury, Rochdale, King’s Lynn, Gloucester, Barnstaple, Penzance, Truro, Newquay and Cambridge in England.

In Scotland it has stores in Paisley, East Kilbride, Falkirk, Livingston, Coatbridge, Hamilton, Dunfermline, Glenrothes, Irvine, Ayr and four in Glasgow.

its Redditch store has closed.