An attempt by Birmingham City Council to stop mobile phone masts being sited close to schools and hospitals could be declared illegal.

The Government Office for the West Midlands has lodged an objection to the council's telecommunications policy, which it says is out of step with national planning guidelines.

There should be no no-go areas for masts, according to the Government.

GOWM's decision could lead to formal intervention by Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott, forcing the council to backtrack.


Relatives of a Warwickshire-born casino worker caught up in Hurricane Katrina said they feared he may have been killed in the disaster.

Mike Healy, aged 48, who lives in Bay St Louis in Mississippi, has not made contact with his family since the hurricane struck.

His sister Susan Betteridge, aged 52, from Broom, near Stratford-Upon-Avon, is now planning to fly out to the United States to try and track him down.


City education officials are urging volunteers to come forward and fill more than 1,000 school governor vacancies in Birmingham.

The School Governors' One Stop Shop - SGOSS - has been working in partnership with Birmingham LEA to find willing members of the public and match them with schools in the region that are in desperate need of new governors.

The organisations have been contacting local businesses and are running a bus advertising campaign throughout Birmingham.


An elderly couple who lost touch when their fledgling teenage romance was scuppered by a cinema mix-up are to marry after their love was rekindled in a sheltered housing complex.

George Thompson and Beryl Brace, both now 76, first met when they were 18 but lost touch after a series of brief encounters in the late 1940s.

They went their separate ways after a misunderstanding about which cinema they were supposed to meet at, leaving them both believing they had been "stood up".


Arachnophobes in the West Midlands are being given an opportunity to overcome their fear of spiders at a series of special events.

The arachnophobia workshops are being trialled at Dudley Zoological Gardens' Discovery Centre with the help of local spider experts.

During the two-hour sessions, visitors are encouraged to learn about the eight-legged creatures through relaxed, informal discussions.

"This is a new format we are trailing and feel confident that it will be a big success and become a regular event", said marketing manager Julia Lockett.

More on these stories on Tuesday's Birmingham Post