A BUNGLING Cradley Heath raider who was masked and armed with a machete when he carried out two "frightening" robberies at newsagents shops in Brierley Hill and Quarry Bank has been locked up for four years.

Read more here.

THE Merry Hill branch of HMV is to close, it has been confirmed.

The branch is one of 27 unprofitable stores to close around the country, following the retailer being acquired out of administration by Canadian retailer Sunrise Records.

Read the full story here.

KNIFE crime in the West Midlands has risen by nearly 20 per cent in the last 12 months, latest figures show.

Read more on the worrying figures here.

WYRE Forest District Council will apply for funding to 'transform' the eastern side of Kidderminster town centre to potentially include new homes, offices or a public open space.

The council's Overview and Scrutiny Committee will discuss the final phase of the Lion Fields transformation on Thursday (February 7), following a market assessment of the area surrounding the Bromsgrove Street car park.

Read more on the plans here.

CONCERNED councillors from Bromsgrove are asking for an increase in police protection for residents in Charford and Rock Hill.

Councillors Michael Thompson, Chris Bloore and Sean Shannon have formally written to Sgt David King of West Mercia police, asking to see more officers on the streets.

The move follows an increase crime and anti-social behaviour in the area, which they say includes boy racers, vandalism, and used condoms being thrown in to people's gardens.

Read more about their concerns here.

THIEVES have broken into a housing development site in Redditch and stolen hundreds of pounds worth of equipment.

Read more on the theft here.