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the Birstall post Y O U R


MAY 2010


No. 322

College investment FUNDING HAS been secured for a new £4.8million building at Longslade College which is set to open next year. The Palmer-Tomkinson Centre (pictured below) will be used by students throughout the day and open for use by the community in the evenings, weekends and school holidays. Plans for the centre were first announced in May 2008 but were put on hold due to the onset of the recession and the difficulties facing the Learning and Skills Council, the main source of funding. Now the Young People’s Learning Agency have provided £3.47million with the other funding partners, the Palmer Tomkinson-Trust, Jelsons and Longslade, bringing the total to £4.8million. The new two storey building will provide: • a new sixth form centre for the college

with spaces for teaching an additional 175 students • high quality multi-purpose facilities for media, technology, performance, health and fitness and vocational subjects • a refurbished all weather sports pitch and multi use games area, subject to additional funding being found • a facility to provide partnership teaching, particularly for Diploma pro-

gramm es • a quality building for use by the wider community in the South Charnwood area, with sports areas, changing rooms, exhibition areas, main hall, stage and Continued on page 3

Pic: (l-r) Student Advisor at DMU Kirstey Wilkinson, Kieran Mistry, DMU School Liason Officer Jamie Bradford and Andy Reed MP

High achievers OUTSTANDING STUDENTS from Longslade College were presented with awards in March. Leavers from last summer were invited to collect their A level certificates and meet up with friends they hadn’t seen since June. Awards for achievement were presented by Continued on page 2

the birstall post MAY 2010

the trophies in time for this evening so these awards will be presented for the first time in January 2011.” She added: “In the year of the college’s 50th anniversary, we are establishing a Former Student Association and Andy Reed MP, who attended Longslade some years ago, was invited to speak about his memories of the school. He is happy to become a founder member of the group and there will be information, later in the year, for other past students wishing to sign up.”

Brass band appeal SYSTON BAND is looking for new players. Do you play a brass instrument or percussion? Did you used to play and would like to give it another go? Would you like to learn to play a brass instrument? Spokeswoman Lynsey Scott said: “Syston Band is a friendly 4th section band. We play at a range of concerts throughout the year and are looking for new players to fill various vacancies in the main band. We also have a Training Band with players of a wide range of ages and abilities and new members are always welcome.” Instruments are available on loan and tuition can be arranged if you would like to start to learn a brass instrument. Lynsey added: “As well as brass instruments the bands are always looking for percussionists: we have full kit available.” The band meet upstairs at the Syston Working Men’s Club, Brookside, Syston on Monday evenings. Training Band is 7-8pm and Main Band from 8-10pm. If you would like to learn more then please contact Gina on 07946 435855 or email Alternatively call in on a Monday practice night.

Arrows indicate location of new crossing

New crossing A NEW pedestrian crossing will be built across Loughborough Road later this month. The County Birstall Dental Practice Council are installing the crossing in the centre of the A6/Greengate Lane/Sibson Road junction. The work will be carried out by developers Jelson at no cost to the County Council in the week beginning May 24. A guardrail will be constructed on the central reservation as a safety measure. A County Council spokesman The Firs said: “After work Dental Practice was completed in November 2009 New Pedestrian Crossings along Loughborough Road between Bentley Road and Tempest Road, and the Greengate Lane/Sibson Road junction a safety audit was carried out by consultants acting on behalf of Jelson, developers of the Hallam Fields site. “In line with the report’s recommendations, a pedestrian crossing is being designed for the junction and will be located across Loughborough Road between Greengate Lane and Sibson Road. Minor kerb alterations and signing and lining are included but there are no other major modifications.”


Rebecca Cockram – Exceptional Commitment and Effort in Food Technology Rio Overton – Outstanding Achievement in Music Robin Smith – Excellence in Graphics Sarah Al – Sayed – Excellence in Geography Sarah Al – Sayed – Excellence in Science Sasha Marni – Outstanding Achievement in Business Studies Tiffany Ager – Outstanding Achievement in Economics Longslade Community College and De Montfort University enjoy a mutually beneficial partnership and the university has provided an annual award of £250 for the Most Outstanding Academic Achievement. This went to Kieran Mistry for his work in Mathematics. Kieran is now studying Maths at Warwick University. He said: “I’m very shocked but very happy to receive this award. The money will come in handy as I’m skint at the moment.” Longslade’s Melody Mitchell said: “The Edith Murphy Trust has also donated funds to allow us to buy trophies for notable achievement in a wide range of other subjects. However, there was insufficient time to organise


former Longslade student Loughborough MP Andy Reed to: Alex Mee – Superb Contribution to Film Studies Amy Statham – Excellence in English Anna Harbott – Outstanding Commitment and Achievement in Textiles Ben Peach- Waller – Outstanding Achievement in PE National Diploma Chris Dawson – Excellence in Resistant Materials Emma Purcell – Outstanding Achievement in Food Technology Emma Tanner – Excellent Achievement in Photography Faye Williams – Outstanding Achievement in Art James Hissett – Excellence in Photography Jamie Skilling – Excellence in Photography Joanne Benbow – Excellence in English Joe O’Neill – Excellence and Innovative Design in Textiles Kieran Mistry – Excellence in Mathematics Kieran Mistry – Excellence in Science Lewis Ballard – Excellence in Resistant Materials Nicola Holt – Excellence in Biology


Continued from page 1



Bowls open morning

Vote for park

BIRSTALL BOWLING Club is holding an open morning on Saturday May 8 between 10am and 12noon for anyone who is interested in playing bowls. This takes place at the club on School Lane playing fields. All you need is a pair of flat shoes or trainers, the other equipment will be provided and experienced club members will be on hand to offer advice and assistance if required. There are friendly, league and cup matches during the season for both men and ladies, and there are several mixed games on Sundays. The club also has a good social side with a well stocked bar at reasonable prices. For further details, ladies can contact Diane on 2675457 or Jan on 2122578 while men can call Grahame on 2673000 or Andy on 2677969. More information about the club can also be seen on the website

FANS OF Watermead Country Park are reminded that the race is on to see if the park will win the Warburton’s ‘Britain’s Best Picnic Site’ Awards. Leicestershire residents and visitors alike are being encouraged to vote for the popular beauty spot, helping the park to victory over close rivals Wollaton Hall and Chatsworth House in the process. The national awards are part of ‘celebrations’ for National Bread Week, and people have until the end of May to cast their vote. Lesley Pendelton, Leicestershire County Council Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport, said: “We all know that Watermead is the best thing since sliced bread, being nominated in the Warburton’s awards gives us a chance to let everyone in the country know too!” Vote for Watermead online at

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Continued from page 1 teaching spaces available for hire • 170 car parking spaces. The Palmer-Tomkinson Centre will be built on the current ‘hard play area’. Co-Principal at Longslade Mike Griffiths said: “We are thrilled at Longslade to say that we have access to around £4.8million to build most if not all of the Palmer-Tomkinson Centre and artificial pitches. Work has been going on over the past month with the Palmer-Tomkinson Trust and the local authority to ensure that most of the work is completed within the next 12 months. There is no doubt it will be open to students for full use from September 2011.” The Centre was originally planned in 2001, as part of the Section 106 planning agree-

NHW news

& crime report Reporting Crime and Antisocial Behaviour Many times we hear complaints about crime and antisocial behaviour in Birstall. Very often this is chat between friends and neighbours. When asked if they have reported the incident to the police the answer is often “no, because the police are not doing anything about it, so what is the point?” There is every point in reporting crime and antisocial behaviour, if it is not reported the police cannot be expected to do anything about it. They need to be informed to take action! If you are the victim of crime or witness a crime then please report it. You owe it to yourself and your community to do so. Antisocial behaviour covers a wide area, including: graffiti & vandalism. There are many other examples of antisocial behaviour, if you have any concerns please contact the antisocial behaviour team at Charnwood Borough Council on 01509 634920/634533 or call the police, non emergency incidents 2222222. In emergencies, if life is in danger or a crime is being committed, please call 999. The next Saturday Advice Shop is May

ments associated with Hallam Fields. Developers Jelson and the Palmer Tomkinson Trust agreed to provide “a multi purpose flexible building for recreational, educational and community uses” at Longslade, and to upgrade the all weather pitch area adjacent to Wanlip Lane. Charles Palmer Tomkinson, a local landowner who owned the fields sold to Jelsons for the Hallam Fields Development, and the Palmer Tomkinson Trust has remained committed to providing a high quality facility in terms of design and content and are funding the project beyond the amounts in the original agreement. The building will be managed by Longslade College which has seen a 25 per cent increase in student numbers in recent years.

Stylist Cable reaches box final A STYLIST at Birstall’s Shapes Professional Hair Care has reached the finals of the Miss Leicester competition.

15 at the old Parish Council Offices, opposite the garden centre. From Karen Lewin, Birstall & Wanlip Neighbourhood Watch Crime Report : March 9 to April 4, 2010 Burglary dwelling 5 (includes 2 attempted burglary offences), burglary non-dwelling 16, assault 3, criminal damage 6 (1 person arrested and charged), theft of motor vehicle 2, theft from motor vehicle 6 (2 persons arrested and charged), theft cycle 1. Update ref criminal damage incident in Dec 2009 : 6 offences detected; 2 persons charged to court; 2 young people received final warnings; 2 young people subject to restorative justice outcomes. Birstall Crime Figures for year 2009/10 (year 2008/09 figure in brackets) Total crime 764 (781), violent crime 132 (133), burglary dwelling 70 (72), burglary non-dwelling 62 (116), theft of motor vehicle 13 (11), theft from motor vehicle 50 (70), theft cycle 14 (23), theft other 113 (131), damage 225 (161) • Watermead Country Park experienced the highest number of vehicle crimes of all the county parks covered by Charnwood Local Policing Unit over the summer period last year. The principal method of entry was to smash the door window. Items such as handbags, mobile phones, sat navs and car radios were stolen. Crimes were mostly committed during the afternoon. The Police say they will conduct an operation this year to continue the reduction of autocrime offences at ‘beauty spot’ car parks, but are urging motorists to remove valuables from their car.

Pic: Miss Leicester finalist Pixi Stevens

Pixi Stevens (18) is hoping to win the event, held on June 4, and go through to the Miss England competition. Pixi, from Fosse Park, has been working at Shapes for only a month but the Birstall Road salon will be supporting her on the day and has organised a free prize draw to celebrate. Shapes are offering five free cut and finishes with Pixi – to enter send your name, address and phone number to 291 Birstall Road or email before May 31. The June issue of

THE BIRSTALL POST will be published on May 29. The copy deadline is May 14.

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CHARNWOOD BOROUGH Council has formed a partnership with Virgin Media to help tackle graffiti across the Borough. The deal will provide the Borough Council with resources to help keep media boxes clean. Media boxes are the square metal boxes found on many streets and pavements that are often seen as blank canvasses by graffiti vandals. The partnership will see the Council and Virgin Media work together to, identify and prosecute graffiti vandals and reduce incidents of graffiti. Councillor Hilary Fryer, Lead Member for the Environment for Charnwood Borough Council, said: “This partnership will provide us with resources and support to help us tackle graffiti in our area. Graffiti spoils neighbourhoods, town and villages and we devote a lot of Council time and money cleaning up after an inconsiderate few. “This partnership with Virgin Media will allow us to clean up more graffiti and identify the people responsible.” Neal Walshe, spokesman for Virgin Media said: “We are delighted to be working with Charnwood Borough Council to combat the antisocial menace of graffiti. We are confident that our joint efforts will result in a significant improvement in the local environment.” To report graffiti to the council, please contact: 01509 634563 or email

MOTOR REPAIRS Welding to MOT standards MOT & Mechanical Repairs Servicing

THE SUCCESS of Birstall’s Youth Drop-in Café has been recognised with grants totalling £18,500 being awarded to the Parish Council run project.




Drop-in’s cash boost youth workers and Parish Council Deputy Clerk Sue Coulson to put together a £64,000 funding application for a skate park, multi-use games area, youth shelter and funding needed for youth worker salaries to open the drop-in for an additional evening. Leicestershire Youth Bank considered the application and invited the young people to present Pic (l-r): Ryan Stevenson, Deputy Clerk Sue Coulson, Shane Ward, Elliott their case before a panel of judges on Porter and Senior Youth Worker Helen McNulty April. They agreed to and is open on Fridays from 7-9pm. It is award £7850 for a youth shelter and attended by around 40 young people and £10,650 to fund three part-time youth workstaffed by youth workers and volunteers. ers to open the drop-in café on an additional In March drop-in users worked with the evening during the week.


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Pic: Cllr Mike Preston, Leader of the Council & Cllr Hilary Fryer, Lead Member for Environment


the birstall post MAY 2010

The June issue of

THE BIRSTALL POST will be published on May 29. The copy deadline is May 14.

Anniversary celebrations LONGSLADE COLLEGE is celebrating its 50th birthday with a party.




( 2675658 Proprietor RMS Gibbon

Longslade is appealing to readers for pics like these for an exhibition planned to help mark the college’s 50th birthday Pics: (below) Two photos from the Leicester Advertiser, Jan 1972; (right) a 1983 photo of (back, l-r) Trevor Stratford, Andy Smith, Dave Harmer, Morrison Frew (front, l-r) Elaine Diggle, June Raynor, Geoff Parker, Melody Mitchell

The event will be hosted at Longslade on Saturday September 25 from 7pm until midnight with a formal welcome. Tickets are £20 and include a welcome drink and food from an extensive buffet. Go to or call Jane Hill on 0116 2670807 for more information and to book your place. • Do you have any photographs of Longslade you could share? If you have any photos or memorabilia such as school uniforms, school magazines etc, the College would like to borrow them, make copies, and include them in displays both in school and the local community. Items can be brought to Longslade reception.

Free training AN AWARD winning personal trainer is offering a free eight week training programme. Joe Hanney from the new Results Weight Loss Fitness and Lifestyle Coaching Gym in Thurmaston is offering the free training to women taking part in this year’s Race for Life in July. Joe said: “Whether you want to walk, jog or run I will devise a bespoke programme for you.” The training starts on Saturday May 15 and includes complimentary membership of the gym, nutrition clinic and running technique clinic. For more information call 0844 844 2471 or visit

D. Upton Garden Services All aspects of garden work undertaken

Park lights plans dropped

Driveways • Patios Blockpaving • Gravelling Turfing • Fencing Slabbing • Mowing Hedgetrimming etc

PLANS TO erect 5m high lighting columns on a pedestrian/cycle route through Watermead Country Park have been withdrawn. The County Council withdrew their plans after concerns were raised about the harm the lights would have on wildlife, trees and their impact on antisocial behaviour. Bill Carter, Countryside Manager at Leicestershire County Council, said that the Council needed to consider what measures it could propose to mitigate the impact of the various issues raised and was “considering its position”. He said that submitting a revised application was not a priority at this stage. The lighting was a part of the Connect2 programme of improvements to the park.

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Visit gardens in the Elmfield/Oakfield Avenue, Fielding Road area of Birstall Birstall Methodist Church’s


Loyal Tigers fan A LOYAL Tigers fan from Birstall was given VIP treatment when he received a special invitation to the Leicester v Bath match on April 3. The Leicester club wanted to recognise Walter Cockerill’s longstanding support of the Tigers – he first attended a game at the Welford Road ground in 1927. Walter (89), a retired headteacher who lives on Elmfield Avenue, said: “My father was a keen supporter – my grandmother lived opposite the ground – and he would take me quite a lot to matches. And I’ve carried on going!” Walter had been a season ticket holder until a couple of years ago when he felt getting to matches was proving too difficult. He said: “I felt very proud to receive the invitation to the Bath match and it was a wonderful day. My wife Sheila and I were greeted by Peter Wheeler and we sat in the magnificent stand where we had our lunch at a table near the entrance to the small terrace where we sat to watch the match. We met all sorts of people there who came over to us to say hello, there was Lord Digby Jones, David Mathews and Dan Hipkiss. “At half time an announcement was made on the public address about us and everyone clapped. In fact it was such an occasion for us that watching the match took second place!” The Tigers won the game 43-20.

Salon’s pics chosen IMAGES FROM a photo shoot organised by a Birstall hairdressing salon will be used in a national advertising campaign.

Saturday and Sunday 12th and 13th June 2010 2.00pm – 5.30pm Adults £3.00 in advance £3.50 on the day Accompanied children free

Garden Tombola, Plant Stall, Children’s Treasure Hunt Refreshments, Ices, Raffle In aid of the Alzheimer’s Society and Church Funds Sponsored by Birstall Garden Centre

New aviary PALLATT BROS. Ltd Corgi Gas Reg. Installers

HIGH FLYING artists from the Charnwood area are being invited to put pencil to paper and design a new aviary for Loughborough’s Queen’s Park. Charnwood Borough Council wants to replace the existing aviary which has stood for more than 20 years with a new one on the same site. The winner will scoop a £1000 cash prize and will work with an architect to design the structure. Initially the council is looking for artistic sketches of what could be the new building which will house birds such as zebra finches, cockatiels, parakeets and budgerigars. The selected designs will go out to public consultation. Shortlisted designs that go on public display as more detailed A2 designs will be awarded £500 each. Initial designs on A3 size that are commended by the shortlisting panel but are not shortlisted will be awarded £50. The deadline for entries is Monday May 31, 2010. Designs should be on A3 paper and addressed to: Colin Bailey, Green Spaces Development Manager, Charnwood Borough Council, Council Offices, Southfield Road, Loughborough LE11 2TU. Applicants are asked to include a brief covering letter that includes their full contact details. For more information, contact Colin Bailey on 01509 632530 or email:

Pic: The Davies & Greenwood photo chosen by Clynol

The photos, from Davies & Greenwood on Sibson Road, will be used by Clynol when they launch their 10-minute-colour product this summer. Darren Davies said: “At Davies & Greenwood we have our own photographic team made up of myself, Mitchell Coyston and Jayde Oates, to produce images for us to use in advertising and editorial. We are very excited that Clynol will be using one of our images.” The photos were taken at a photo shoot in London, styled by the Davies & Greenwood team using professional models. Images from the shoot have also been published in Hairdressers’ Journal and Hair Now.



Opticare’s retinal camera A RETINAL camera at a Birstall opticians has proved effective at improving eye care.

Winter season tennis BIRSTALL WATERMEAD Tennis Club members were determined not to let the winter weather affect their activities – even during the worst conditions. Players preparing to take part in one of the club’s annual Winter Team Shield matches went down a couple of hours early to sweep snow off the courts. The competition proved popular this year, with six teams of four playing doubles against each other on Sunday afternoons. The undefeated winning team was captained by teenager Connor Winterton and supported by Carole Vincent, Rachel Chalmers and Julian Dacie. Margaret Pritchard proved a worthy stand-in for Julian in their final match. Now with the winter thankfully behind us, all thoughts have turned to the summer leagues, with opening matches scheduled for the beginning of May for both the men’s and the ladies’ teams. This summer the club is fielding four men’s teams, two ladies’ teams,

two mixed teams and a men’s veteran team. On the social side, the club is holding a Bacon Butty tournament on Sunday May 16 and a Strawberry Lunch event on Sunday June 20. This year, the club championships will start on August 28, culminating in Finals Day, Saturday, September 11. So it’s fingers crossed for a dry and hot summer! For anyone interested in joining the club, there are open events on Wednesday June 9 and Sunday June 13. For full details see the Birstall Post noticeboard. From Birstall Watermead Tennis Club

Pic: Winning winter shield team (l-r) Rachel Chalmers, Carole Vincent, Connor Winterton and Margaret Pritchard

Watermead Holiday high jinks run RUNNERS AND walkers of all abilities are being invited to take part in a charity run around Watermead County Park this July. The Rotary Club of the Wreake Valley has organised the ‘Watermead Challenge 2010’ to raise funds for the Richard Engelgardt Trust fund, St John Ambulance and youth groups and clubs local to Syston/Birstall. Richard Engelgardt is a player with Birstall Rugby Club who became wheelchair bound after an injury when a scrum collapsed. The run, which has been licensed by UK Athletics as an official event, has been designed to suit entrants of all abilities, with a five mile run twice around King Lear’s Lake and three times around John Merrick’s Lake and shorter three mile run/walk event. Entrance fees are £9 for the five mile run (affiliated runners £7) and £6 for the three mile run/walk (affiliated £4). A spokesman said: “Once you have entered you can get sponsorship for us, for your own cause or simply enjoy the experience!” The event takes place on Wednesday July 14 at 7pm at the Park’s north entrance, near the Hope & Anchor inn. Entry forms are available at

Book sales SALES OF a Birstall author’s autobiography have raised £300 for the County Air Ambulance service. 103 year old George Higgs of Saltersgate Drive published his book ‘Born Too Soon’, in 2009.

HATS next production is the comedy ‘A Fish Out of Water’ in May which will help raise funds for a one year old girl from Syston who is blind. Proceeds from a raffle will go to a fund that will pay for treatment in China for Alarna Jai, who has Septo Optic Dysplasia. ‘A Fish Out of Water’ by Derek Benfield is an exotic comedy set on the Italian Riviera where the peaceful atmosphere of a sun drenched hotel is shattered by the arrival of Agatha Hepworth, an outspoken widow and her timid sister, Fiona. Performances are at Highcliffe School, Greengate Lane, Birstall on Thursday, Friday & Saturday, May 13,14,15 at 7.30pm (doors open each evening at 7pm) Tickets are £5 (£4 concessions) and can be obtained by phoning the Box Office on 0116 212 8757 or 07757 854 719 or by email at HATS will be putting on a pantomime at the end of November and would love to welcome new members who would like to perform or help backstage. They are looking for young people, in particular, and, as always, men of any age! Readings and auditions will start after the spring play towards the end of May. If you are interested, please contact HATS on the above phone numbers, or by email, for more information Pic: Alarna Jai

The camera, installed at Opticare on Loughborough Road five years ago, takes a high resolution photo of the back of the eye – the retina – allowing many abnormalities to be identified. Many patients have been urgently referred to hospital eye specialists following an examination of their retinas at Opticare – one was Mrs Linda Cavers of Saltersgate Drive. She said: “I was experiencing impaired vision like that coloured glow you get after someone has just taken a flash photo of you, and went to see my optometrist, Mr Shah at Opticare. The retinal photograph showed a swelling on the optic nerve and I was immediately referred to hospital. “The specialist said I was lucky the problem had been identified as I could have lost my sight in one eye if it had gone un-noticed.” Linda’s optic nerve has returned to normal after she was put on a low fat diet, the problem having been identified as raised cholesterol in her blood.

Pics: a patient having a photo taken of their retina and (below) a healthy retina (left) and an abnormal retina

Co-owner Optometrist Mr Paresh Patel said: “All of our patients have retinal photographs taken at no extra charge as part of their routine eye test as and when required. The procedure is simple, the patient places their head on a chin rest and looks at a target while a flash photo is taken of each eye.”

The retinal camera allows the optician to make a detailed check for glaucoma, diabetes, age related macular degeneration as well as other conditions. • Opticare, 665 Loughborough Road, Birstall, 0116 2677855


the birstall post MAY 2010


The Birstall Post welcomes your views and opinions on any subject. Letters, which must include your name and address, (though not necessarily for publication) can be posted to: The Birstall Post, Longslade College, Wanlip Lane, Birstall, Leicester LE4 4GH, or handed in at Birstall library or email:

Not interested I cycle most Sundays round Watermead Park. I have seen the new climbing frame and the raised bank in the form of a reptile on the Thurmaston side of King Lear’s Lake. I would imagine these items would be of no interest to 99% of people who use the park. If the park management have money to burn I would suggest they spend money on solving the flooding that takes place when there is a lot of rain. On Sunday April 4 the path from Birstall to the wooden bridge, leading on to King Lear’s Lake was under a foot of water for about 80 yards distance. This happens not too often but cuts off people who want to use the bridge. This would be a better use of resources. Name & address supplied

Plaque I am hoping to have a plaque made in memory of the late Mr Eric Moore to be placed on a seat at Watermead Park. If anyone would like to make a donation towards

this, please contact me on Leicester 2671527. Mrs A Davis

Natalie Herbert We wish to inform all residents of Birstall village of the very sad and sudden death of our youngest daughter Natalie aged 25 who attended Highcliffe County Primary School, Stonehill High School and Longslade Community College respectively. Natalie passed away suddenly on Sunday April 11, her cause of sudden death is still being investigated. Chris, Judy and Cristie Herbert of Heathgate Close, Birstall

Birch the yobs Monday Aril 19, and another large, plate glass, shop window on Sibson Road has been smashed over the weekend. When are the authorities going to grasp the nettle and do something about this? People have suggested more CCTV cameras. The effectiveness of these is questionable. A certain fact is that they are very expensive. Another proposal is more police constables on the beat. More? We rarely see the ones we have now and do you think that the yobs will carry out damage and graffiti in full view of a policeman? They will wait until he has gone and then vandalise the area. Another certain fact is that this idea will be even more expensive. Forget ASBOs and ankle tags, these are the equivalent of medals and worn with pride. May I, respectfully, advocate a different approach. Purchase a bundle of birch twigs, approximate cost ‘fifty bob’, very cheap but very, very effective. When a culprit is apprehended these twigs should be smitten across his back, five times on the first day of the next six months. Do not carry out the whole punishment on one occasion, let the criminal (that is what he is) know what is in front of him for the next few months. They will not behave in a manner which will result in a similar punishment and nor will their peers. J B Hill

Pool friends I am the treasurer and member of the Friends of Birstall swimming pool and I would like to let you know that this club needs more swimmers to carry on. Come and support this group and the swimming pool itself. Call me on 0116 2671625 or contact Birstall Swimming Pool. Lesley Moore

Park problems I would like to respond to the article in the April Birstall Post regarding the dog ban vote. As a responsible dog owner I feel I am, along with the majority of dog owners, being discriminated against. The majority of dog walkers are responsible and are being penalised by the council. I feel that if you ban dogs from the park altogether all you are doing is moving the problem instead of solving it. We all understand the dog mess is unhealthy but the irresponsible dog walkers will just mess somewhere else. We need the dog warden back on the park and toughening up on the minority who are messing our parks. Fining the people, name and shaming them would be a better idea. I also would like to bring to your attention the footballers that feel that it is acceptable behaviour to urinate on the trees and bushes, this is disgusting considering there are toilets for them to use within the park. There are also children playing in the park surely this is just as disgusting as people not cleaning up after their dogs, both are disgusting and unacceptable behaviour. If we are to keep our parks and its facilities these issues need to be addressed and dealt with head on and in a positive way which would remove this form of antisocial behaviour. The condition of the park (before the hardworking park workers start) is a mess there are broken glass bottles, cans, clothes that have been discarded and put there by people who have little respect for our park. I feel that it is always the dog walkers getting the blame for the condition of the park. It is time to deal with the problem not bury our head in the sand and pick blame. Anita (name & address supplied)

Bill Sheridan After a short illness Bill sadly passed away at home on January 30, 2010. Ann and family would like to thank everyone for their support and kindness throughout Bill’s illness. Thank you to those who attended his funeral and particularly those who donated in his memory to Cancer Research UK. The many cards and kind words have been of great comfort and very gratefully received. Thank you all. Ann Sheridan

Thanks Many sincere thanks to neighbours and friends in Broadgate Close for their loving concern, interest and helpful support that we received during the degenerative illness suffered by my late wife Ann. A acknowledge the generous donation made towards the Parkinson’s Disease Society of over £80. The residents of Broadgate Close have demonstrated over the years what neighbourliness and community living is all about. I remain a happy and contented resident. Roger Shephard

Dog fouling This problem would probably be better described as "some results of irresponsible, anti-social behaviour by a minority of dog

owners”. These are people who flout the law and whose attitude is ' my dog didn't do that', 'Anyway I won't get caught' and 'the weather will get rid of it'. Well, they are totally wrong. It is a criminal offence not to clean up after your dog. And who are these people? Surprisingly, included are pleasant mature ladies chatting and walking in Harrowgate park on a sunny afternoon, unaware that their free-ranging dogs some 50 metres behind have stopped to do a poo. When this was politely pointed out to them, there were several responses." Which dog?" "Where is it?" “My dog usually does it at home". "And there's a big pile over there, I don't know who left that!" Fortunately, one of the ladies picked up immediately using a plastic poo bag and hopefully disposed of it in the council provided bin. I took the opportunity to remind them that the Parish Council was in discussion over a possible ban on dogs in the village parks. On another day I spoke to a fully aware and responsible owner who says that she picks up dog poo after other people have ignored their own responsibility! Not surprisingly, all three ladies are fearful of such a ban. Probably not-bothered by a possible ban are two men who exercise their dogs in School Lane park in the dark. One has been observed by a Birstall resident at 5am. From a street parked car a dog is released into the park while the owner sits in his car. The dog returns several minutes later having accomplished his mission. Apparently, this is a regular practice. If only the observer could provide the car registration information, it would be very helpful! Another recent observation was a man playing ball with his dog at heavy rain. The dog repeatedly ran some distance in the darkness and it is unlikely that the owner could see if his dog had indulged in another activity! These two examples alone show the difficulty of policing the nuisance. Dog ownership is a privilege and public access to parkland is also a privilege. Maybe I'm talking from a moral high ground but ( no apology ) the law requires dog faeces to be removed immediately by the owner of a dog "caught short" and failure to do so and not having the means of removal or disposing of the bagged material as litter are offences. Yes! some people hang the bag of poo in a hedge or on a post, close to a provided disposal bin, even in Bradgate Park on a beautiful Sunday afternoon! Where is their social responsibility? It is time for prosecutions, and naming and shaming. However, I say “No” to a total dog ban and “Yes " to dog bans for the hours of darkness via a change in the byelaws. We already fence and gate the very small children's play areas to exclude dogs. (But the children and their carers don't always close the gate!) A dog ban would penalise and alienate the majority of law abiders when the law dodgers are the real problem. Over-reaction to a perceived problem by introducing a drastic measure doesn't always solve the problem: the underlying causes need to be addressed. I firmly believe that Birstall Parish Council needs to take action, other than make polite requests. May I suggest that a key requirement is the installation of highly visible and durable signage at all our park entrances. Signs need to refer to Charnwood Borough Council “Dog Fouling of Land Act 2005” and “Clean Neighbourhood and Environment Act 1996" which carry a maximum fine of £1000. The park byelaws need to be boldly displayed. Many people are unaware of these regulations and the fines which result from failure to comply. Perhaps the Council should consider yet again the services of an effective dog warden, and lobby the Borough Council to enforce the Dog Fouling Act. The Park poo problem is no worse now than in the past 15 years but it is totally unacceptable. And of course, public footpaths and lanes in our otherwise pleasant village are blighted by people who don't poo pick. Perhaps you know who they are? Please provide details to the Parish Council office, to help secure convictions. As regards Toxicara canis infection which can cause serious eye problems, again a balanced view of the risk of infection needs to be taken. It is true that the eggs of the causative parasite can remain viable in soil for many years so it is highly probable that soil tests would show their presence. However, we must be mindful that foxes, feral cats besides dogs, visit the park. All of these carnivores can carry the parasitic worm in their guts. Of this group it is only the domestic dog which is regularly "wormed" to eliminate the parasite by vets and/or the owner. (It would be interesting, at least, to know if rats and badgers also host this parasite). So, smelly and unpleasant as is the end product of any high protein diet, most dogs do not carry the infection! It is very easy to react emotively when reading of any individu-


al with serious health problems attributed to Toxicara infection. Of course, many outdoor sports e.g. Rugby and Football involve falls, body skids, and skin abrasions / cuts. These sportsmen are at risk from many kinds of infection and it is extremely unfortunate if various long term health problems result from their chosen sport. The council's "Estate Team" (Groundsmen) sometimes have very unpleasant encounters with dog poo and machinery although I'm sure that they take avoidance action and use appropriate personal protection equipment. Birstall's parks are maintained to a high standard by constant work and expertise. Respect should be shown to the team: do not leave dog poo in their workplace! In my childhood days and later as the father of outdoor-active boys, I can recall dealing with nasty dog poo on shoes, pushchairs and bicycle wheels. Simple, but thorough 'Dettol' cleaning of these items plus scrubbing fingernails and "a good wash" ensured that we all stayed fresh smelling and healthy. As a teenager my weekend and holiday job, for four years, was kennel assistant at a Leicestershire boarding kennel/cattery. In the 'old' August holiday fortnight we had about 250 dogs and 150 cats to feed, exercise and keep clean. I and my fellow kennel boys picked piles of poo. We remain healthy: it's all down to education and proper hygiene. Dog walking in a park is a healthy and sociable activity and takes people away from their usual environment, away from the streets and traffic. The exercise helps tackle obesity! Dogs are also social animals and like to meet their own kind. Such encounters prompt the owners to chat to each other. Most dog owners are very nice people. For some residents a walk in the park with their pet dog is one of life's pleasures and often gives regular release from an otherwise lonely life. Most dog owners encourage their pet to poo at home but sometimes on a walk, dog instincts take over and accidents happen. To the many who pick-up, “Thank you". And to those who don't pick-up, you’ve committed a crime. Think again! To any person who thinks poo pick-up is beneath them (literally!) and spoils a macho image, be a real man, comply with the law and your social responsibility. Birstall's parks and streets are not a dogs' lavatory for irresponsible owners. Perhaps these people and the criminal damagers, bottle smashers, litter louts, graffiti specialists and tree vandals are the ones to ban from our parks. Friendly and properly controlled dogs deserve a lifetime of ' Free Parking ' space! Gerald Hardington Concerned Resident and Councillor, Greengate Ward.

Humps I am extremely dismayed and angry that our once beautiful village of Birstall is being gradually converted into a sink estate parody by the increasing number of inverted potholes ie road humps, especially on one of the main routes in to Birstall. I feel that the risk to life and limb is significantly increased by the slowing of ambulances and fire engines into the village and the money spent is a travesty considering the number of uneven and potholed back roads in the older parts of Birstall. I understand that only the residents of Birstall Road were consulted, but I believe it affects all Birstall residents that live on this side of the A6, and we should have all been able to have expressed our opinions. I believe what has transpired is just the council’s underhanded way of forcing through an unpopular policy, which is in fact typical of the present government, in that if someone does not conform to their view or does something wrong they make everyone pay. Mr M Joyce

Noticeboard all details printed free Loughborough Farmers Market 2nd Wednesday of the month Devonshire Square, Loughborough Between 9am and 2.30pm Next market May 12

Thurs/Fri/Sat, May 13/14/15 at 7.30pm Highcliffe Primary School, Greengate Lane, Birstall Tickets £5. £4 concessions, disc for group booking Tel: 0116 2128757 or 07757854719 or email A play that will give you everything from a quiet chuckle to a raucous belly laugh Don’t delay book today! •••

A Concert by Terry’s Old Gold

Featuring a wide variety of local produce including a variety of meats both cured and rare breed, sausage, bacon; fruit pies and savoury pastries; a wide range of vegetables inc organic; plants & flowers; herbs, handmade natural soaps & body care products; honey & beeswax products; chutneys, pickles, jams and preserves; wholemeal flour & muesli; eggs & cheeses; bread, cakes. And fruit juices along with seasonal products, brought to you by knowledgeable and friendly traders.

hosted by The Thursday Group at Methodist Church Hall, Wanlip Lane on Thursday June 10 at 7.30pm Tickets £5 inc refreshments, there will also be a raffle All proceeds to the Air Ambulance Tel: June 2675615 or Pat 2675128 for tickets, or pay at the door •••

For possible stall reservations or further information, please call our Markets & Fairs Team at Charnwood Borough Council on 01509 634624 or email: Or log on to •••

Friends of Birstall Swimming Pool

Belgrave Bowling Club Thurcaston Road (off Abbey Lane), Leicester Come and Try – Open Day Sunday May 9 from 2pm We would like to welcome people of all ages to come and give bowls a try Bowles, help and coaching provided All you need are flat shoes or trainers Club membership is free for the first year for all first time members and existing bowlers who may want a change and joining us first time We are one of the few clubs in the county with two greens, thus allowing competitive or casual bowling for all members throughout the week If you are interested, please come along – we would love to see you! Refreshments provided For more information contact: Steve Ramsden 0116 2870787, Janice Felmingham 0116 2674234 •••

Day of Talents

Needs adult swimmers to join them on Fridays from 12.30-1.30pm £2 first visit contact Lesley 0116 2671625 •••

Birstall Watermead Tennis Club Open Evening Wednesday June 9 From 5.30-9pm And Open Morning Sunday June 13 From 10am-1pm At Co-op Sports & Social Club Birstall Road, Birstall Half-price membership on the day to new members All welcome to attend •••

Used Postage stamps wanted in aid of Guide Dogs for the Blind 18 Rose Tree Avenue, Birstall ••• Leicester Host Lions Club Invite you and your friends to see the magnificent bluebells

Saturday June 19 9am – 5pm St James the Great, Church Hill It is hoped that the day will be filled with music, readings, handbell ringing etc & that many different arts & crafts will be on display. Refreshments available throughout the day Participants can either be sponsored of make a personal donation and proceeds will be for children’s charities. Please contact Cynthia Coltman 2673558, Jane Scott 2673761 or Laura Gregory 2125942 to offer your talents or for further details ••• Breathe Easy – Glenfield British Lung Foundation Support Network

Come and walk among Glorious Bluebells

Bric-a-brac sale

Comedy Quiz Party

Glenfield Hospital Wednesday June 9 ••• Highcliffe Amateur Theatrical Society presents

An evening of comedy, a quiz and live music Saturday June 5 at 7.30pm At Birstall Village Hall Tickets £7 inc refreshments from Roy Page 2673297 or Jane Scott 2673761 Dressing as a comedy character would add to the fun but it’s not compulsory

Fish Out of Water a comedy by Derek Benfield

in a Woodland Setting All in the beautiful gardens of Mr & Mrs Cedric Murray 240 Markfield Lane, Markfield on Sunday May 9 11am to 3.30pm Various refreshments all day All proceeds in aid of charities Admission adults £1 at the gate Children 50p (under 5 free) ••• St James Church, Birstall Invite you to a

If you enjoy TV or radio please come along and join us •••

Birstall Royal British Legion Members Notice May 1 : Lucy Foreman F/V May 8: Sam Bailey F/V May 15 : Wicked Jack M/V May 22 : Paul Oliver M/V May 29 : Sharna F/V Dancing every Sat night with live entertainment Free meat raffle. Bingo and not forgetting ‘Open the Box’ Bingo every Tuesday night starting at 9.30pm Quiz nights Sunday May 14 & 28 starting at 9pm Acoustic night Sunday May 21 at 8pm Food available every Sat 12-2pm Kitchen closed Saturday May 15 ••• Loughborough Lions

Annual Charity Carnival Sunday May 16 from 12noon at Southfields Park Please note the new date – after 33 years we have moved from May Day to a new date This is a family fun day with numerous attractions including various stalls, a refreshment tent, owls, dog agility – bring your own dog to join in Children-friendly stalls and Armstrongs Fair rides for smaller children & bouncy castle etc Also a car boot For info please ring Ann on 01509 232422 or Jenny 01509 550656 ••• Birstall Methodist Women’s Group

Coffee Morning June 5, 10am to 12noon At the Methodist Coffee Shop, Wanlip Lane Various stalls including plants, tombola, books, cakes/pastries and raffle All proceeds to our projects: Special Needs and A.D.A.P.T (Support for Prem Babies) • ••

contact Daphne on 2675721 or 07971721927 •••

A Showdown in Arrowhead Creek a musical adventure The Quorn Phoenix Entertainers Quorn Village Hall Friday May 14, Saturday May 15 7.30pm, £6, £3 children Tickets: 01509 412150 We supply the music, you bring along your own drinks •••

Raise the Roof For LOROS and Rainbows An evening of popular musical classics with Singing for Fun – and plenty of opportunity for audience participation Friday May 28 at 7.45pm St James the Great, Birstall and Saturday May 29 at 7.30pm With Ailsa Gillies-Loach (flute) Ratcliffe College Chapel Free admission – retiring collection

Continued on page 8


A Reliable & Friendly Service Fencing + Turfing + Patios Tree Work + Paving Block Paving + Features FULL DESIGN SERVICE

All Work Done to Your Requirements to the Highest Standards

Birstall Badminton Club is looking for league standard badminton players Wednesday nights at Beaumont Leys School from 7.30pm Contact David Michael 2677004 for more information •••

Samaritans Purse Shoebox Appeal Sat June 12 at the Methodist Church Hall, 10am to 12noon Coffee Morning for the shoe box appeal including cake stall, tombola and other delights We sent 500 Christmas boxes last year to impoverished children in Eastern Europe Help us do the same this year •••

St Theresa’s Social Group A day out at the Shrewsbury Flower Show on August 14 Cost including coach travel and entrance fee £34, concessions £32 12 hrs of non-stop entertainment including military bands, freefall teams, celebrity chefs, the Hairy Bikers and many many more


Call me on 2673200


Estimates Free



the birstall post MAY 2010

Continued from page 7 ••• Charnwood Conservative Association

Spring Fair at the Rothley Centre Saturday May 22. 10am to noon Raffle, tombola, plants, books, produce stalls, games etc Rt Hon Stephen Dorrell MP will be attending •••

Rothley Bowling Club Mountsorrel Lane, Rothley (rear of library) A very warm welcome is extended to everyone to join us at our

Chummy Evenings which will be held from 5.30pm onwards on Wed May 19, Wed June 23, Wed July 21, Wed Aug 11 Everyone welcome (old, young, male, female, novices or experienced) All equipment provided – just wear flat soled shoes Come and ‘have a go’ and see what bowling is all about at a very friendly club Further details from Club Secretary Mrs Carole Law 0116 2990178, email: the


Come and listen to

Monthly Health Walks

Baroness Cox

Enjoy tea & coffee afterwards A short walk every day is a great way to keep fit! Meet at Birstall library 1.30pm, £1 per walk May 10, June 7, July 5, Aug 2 & Sep 6 For more information call Matt at Charnwood BC on 01509 632535 •••

on Wednesday June 16 at 7.30pm A Light in the Darkness The Privilege of Making a Difference In St James the Great Church Hall, Birstall •••

Mini Movers Free sessions for children 0-5 and their parents Birstall Sports Pavilion School Lane Playing Fieldss Every Thursday 10-11am Runs from April 15 to July 15 The sessions are free for people to attend and based around physical activity and fun. We have a range of different equipment that we bring with us to each session that is suitable for all ages, including baby toys, parachute games, balls & catchers and building blocks For more info please contact Linda or Sue on 01509 634673 •••

UPVC PROPERTY ENHANCEMENT UPVC Facias, Soffits, Cladding & Guttering Supplied & Fitted

UPVC Cleaning Service Bring all your UPVC back to new

I specialise in conservatory cleaning I have a roof access system which enables me to get up close to all parts of the roof

Ring Steve on

0116 2673277

Birstall Parish Council Annual General Meeting Monday May 10, 7pm Birstall Village Hall There will be an opportunity for residents to raise any issues of concern during the Public Session •••

Projections from the Past Digitising Glass Lantern Slides Come and view some of the gems from our extensive lantern slide collection; learn more about the history of the lantern slide and the importance and advantages of digitisation Leicestershire Record Office, Wigston Magna Monday April 19 to Friday, May 14 during normal opening hours Free admission ••• Age Concern

Coast to Coast Charity Walk June 2010 Birstall furniture shop driver Adam Collin and two of his biking buddies, Andy Grewcock and Andy Gulley are attempting to complete the famous Wainwright’s long distance Coast to Coast walk starting on June 5 at St Bees and ending in Robin Hoods Bay 10 days later This is a 194 mile walk and is usually completed in 14 days! Money raised from this walk will enable Age Concern to provide essential services Please either pop directly into the shop to make a donation or send all sponsorship money to Age Concern Leicester Shire and Rutland, Lansdowne House, 113 Princess Road East, Leicester LE1 7LA by August 15, 2010. Please make cheques payable to Age Concern Leicester Shire & Rutland Thank you

••• ArtSpace

Art and Good Coffee Do you like art? Loughborough ArtSpace is putting on ‘Art and Good Coffee’, a One Day Art Fair with real coffee and cakes at the Rothley Centre, Mountsorrel Lane, Rothley on Saturday May 8, 10am to 4pm Entrance free If you want to view and perhaps buy high quality contemporary art and taste good coffee too, this is the place for you. Loughborough ArtSpace was formed by local artists in 1997. There are currently 16 members – painters, printmakers, sculptors, photographers, mixed media, digital and video artists. ••• Birstall Methodist Church Women’s Monday Group

Enjoy flowers BIRSTALL FLOWER Club is now well into the 2010 calendar.

Open Gardens Saturday May 15. From 10am to 2pm 3&5 Goscote Hall Road, Birstall Entrance £2.50 includes coffee/tea & cake Proceeds in aid of this year’s charities: ADAPT, Premature baby support & Birstall Special Needs Playgroup Limited wheelchair access •••

Girlguiding Birstall Takes Over Belgrave Hall Saturday May 9, 1-3.30pm at Belgrave Hall Museum and Gardens, Church Road LE4 5PE A fun family afternoon with activities, crafts, trails, refreshments and cake stall Try the circus skills badge and enjoy a campfire sing song from past and present All welcome, members may wear promise badge or uniform Free entry to museum, £2 for activities Fundraising event in aid of Birstall Guide HQ building fund ••• Thurcaston & Cropston Parish Council

Film Presentations ‘Looking for Eric’ Friday May 14 (116 mins) This happy British film was the gala presentation at the Cannes and the Sydney Film Festivals. It displays escape from the trials of modern life through support for friends and shows that we are stronger in a team, rather than as individuals. The life of a football fanatic postman reaches crisis point when his ex-wife, Lily, whom he had abandoned, comes back on the scene and his son befriends a group of gangsters. The famous footballer, Eric Cantona, encourages him to organise his friends, thus his whole family becomes happily re-united. Thurcaston & Cropston Parish Council will be showing this film at Thurcaston Memorial Hall. Starting at 7.30pm, tickets cost £4, concessions £3.50. Price includes refreshments and a lucky prize draw. Advance tickets can be purchased via the parish office 0116 2367626 or at the door

••• Charnwood Active Together

Dance Classes: Jazz Dance, Lindy Hop (jive) and Salsa Sessions aimed at beginners Each session costs £2.50 or £10 for 5 sessions Details: Matt 01509 632535 •••

Watermead Challenge 2010 A charity 5 mile run and 3 mile run or walk In aid of Richard Engelgardt Trust fund, St John Ambulance, local youth groups/clubs Challenge yourself, enjoy the local countryside views and fresh air Open to affiliated and non affiliated runners Measured route Get sponsorship for us or your own causes or simply enjoy the experience! Wednesday July 14 at 7pm At Watermead Country Park, Syston, Leicester LE7 1PD (north entrance) Presented by The Rotary Club of the Wreake Valley Trust Fund Charity no.001119549 Entry details at •••

CLASH (Community Leicester Arthritis Self-Help) Arthtiris Awareness Week (May 24-28) JOINT events at Leicester Royal Infirmary & Highcross Management Suite Come along to meet your local: Rheumatology Consultants: Arumugam Moorthy & Ash Samanta –Early Intervention Service Managers: Cathrina Tierney-Reed (Locality General Manager & Michelle Beasley (Project Service Manager ) – Personalised Care Plans CLASH – Local support & patient experience 6-7.30pm Monday May 24 at LRI venue TBC 6-7.30pm Wednesday May 26 at Highcross Management Suite Weather permitting there will be a yoga demonstration at 7.10pm led by Zoe Martin (specialist yoga tutor) For specific enquiries or directions, please email Chris Thomas: or tel: 0795484402

Pic: Chairman Carole Cottam congratulating a raffle winner at the March meeting

We started the year with our AGM and Big Picnic, which was very well attended. February saw Jackie O’Hare giving a demonstration entitled ‘Anything Goes’. The March demonstration entitled ‘Colours of My Mind’ was given by Pauline Fowler, who entertained us with lots of chat and plenty of beautiful flowers. The lovely arrangements were raffled off at the end of the evening. We are now looking forward to more demonstrations and lots of trips out including gardens at Cropston, Barkby and a day out in Derbyshire. Our membership now exceeds 80, most of whom attend all of our meetings. If you are looking for a friendly club to join with demonstrations, where you can just sit back and enjoy, or workshops where you can learn more about the art of flower arranging, then phone our chairman, Carole Cottam (0116 2674339) or our secretary Sylvia Simes (0116 2674206) for more information, or come along to our next meeting at the Village Hall on Wednesday May 26 at 7pm where we shall be happy to see you. From Birstall Flower Club

Charity walk

A FORMER Birstall Parish Council Chairman is planning a charity walk along the D-Day Normandy beaches. Nigel Coleman will be joined by 14 friends, all raising money for Help for Heroes, the charity that helps wounded servicemen and women. Nigel said: “When I turned 40 a couple of years ago I decided I wanted to do something as a bit of a landmark project, but I didn’t know quite what. I am the wrong shape for marathon running, and then last year while watching the last official commemorations of the WWII Normandy Landings I had an idea that I would like to do a walk around that area to raise money for Help the Heroes. Doing this would, in my mind pay tribute to two generations.” The 26 mile walk will start at Arromanche, then the route follows the coastline to the River Orne and Pegasus Bridge. Nigel and his friends, whose ages range from 25 to 78, will be splitting the walk over two days, June 4 and 5, and it will coincide with commemorations held at Pegasus Bridge. To sponsor Nigel go to: or call him on 2201610

Cricket ANOTHER SUMMER of cricket is upon us, and all the teams at the club are hoping for success this season. The under 13s, managed by Chris Hopkins and Kev Jordan, are setting high standards at a young age, and the under 17s managed by Hamish Carnan the junior co-ordinator, are now in the top age league. They may be punching above their weight but a win or two is what Hamish and the lads are looking for, and with the help of young bowling coach Prad Snood I’m sure they will succeed. The Reserves, captained by Stephen Findlay, have on paper a stronger team this year and are looking for a top 4 finish. First team senior league winners under Dave Sharpe’s first year as captain will take some beating, so holding on to their title will be hard, as every team wants to beat the champions. Good luck Dave. The club wishes to thank Rob Frizzell for again sponsoring the junior section, his help is gratefully appreciated. Thanks Frizzy! On the running of the club I would like to thank everyone for their effort last season, because for the second season in succession we have made the club financially stable. There are two many names to mention but you know who you are and give yourselves a pat on the back. From Stephen Findley


State Pension Increase but not for Top-Ups The Chancellor has announced that from April this year the basic state pension will rise by £2.40 per week (ie a rise of 2.5%). Unfortunately this increase will not apply to vital top-up payments such as SERPS (State Earning Related Pension), the State Second Pensions (S2P) Graduated Pension and Deferred Basic Pension payments Pension Credit Assessment Financial experts calculate that savings rates have dropped to 0.72% yet the government assumes that pensioners with savings over £10,000 receive interest of 10.4% when calculating whether they are eligible for Pension Credit. As the Age Concern Factsheet No.48 – Pension Credit; explains: Your capital will not affect your Pension Credit unless it is over £10,000 in which case every £500 or part of £500 over that amount is assume to give you a weekly income of £1 (referred to as ‘assumed income’). This applies to you regardless of whether you are single or in a couple. Where is there a savings account which will give a pensioner 10.4% interest on £500 capital? TV Licence Fee from April 1, 2010 From April 1 the cost of a colour TV licence will be £145.50 (up from £142.50) and a black and white licence will be £49 (up from £48) Those aged 75 and over continue to be eligible for a free licence. For more information about TV licensing, visit the Directgov website. Big Knit 2009 We have now concluded the Big Knit 2009 campaign which raised a fantastic total of £215,000 for Age Concern and Help the Aged. Dormant Bank Accounts Are You Entitled to Some of the Estimated £5bn held in Dormant Accounts? Dormant accounts are created when a bank and a customer ‘lose touch with each other’, in the words of the British Bankers’ Association (BBA). This basically means that the account has fallen into disuse, with no

INFO new transactions occurring except those initiated by the bank itself (charges, interest payments etc), and the bank has been unable to contact the account holder over a period of time. After a set period of account inactivity, usually a year, the bank will write to the account holder asking if they want to keep the account open. If no reply is received within a time of a few eeeksweeks or months, depending on the individual bank, then the account;saccounts status will be changed to ‘dormant’. Why does an Account go Dormant? Banks will make an account dormant for a variety of reasons. The main one is to stop statements, chequebooks, and other materials being sent to anaan dddressaddress that may no longer be correct. This would risk identity theft by possibly giving fraudsters access to sensitive information, as well as being an unneccesaryunnecessary administration expense for the bank in question. What Happens to the Funds in a Dormant Account? Even when an account is dormant, the funds it contains will still be kept track of by the bank, and any interest that would normally be earned will still apply,. The money used to be kept indefinitely, but in December 2005 the government announced plans to appropriate the contents of accounts which have been officially dormant for 15 years or more, and pass the funds on to ‘good causes’ such as youth organisations and the like. Banks, however, stress that every effort will be made to trace the rightful account owner before this happens. How to Reclaim Dormant Funds It is estimated that at least £5bn is lying in

Parish Council notes THE ANNUAL Parish meeting of Birstall Parish Council was held on April 12. The meeting received reports from the Chairman, County and Borough councillors. During the public session, a resident raised her concerns about the lack of security at the Greengate Lane allotment site and asked the Council how they intended to bring it up to the same level as the Worcester Avenue and Meadow Lane sites. It was agreed that the Council considers the matter at the next meeting of the Estates & Recreation committee. John Kitchen, the Chairman of Birstall Allotment Society, asked why the Council refused to meet with representatives of the Society to discuss self management of the allotments. In reply, Mr Kitchen was told that issue had been discussed at meetings of the Estates & Recreation Committee and at full Council meetings, all of which were open to the public, and that the council had decided that self management would not be in the financial interests of ratepayers. A meeting would be agreed to if a realistic proposal was made. Mr Kitchen said they had made no detailed proposals but had just been seeking a discussion to explore the possibilities, and that as our democratically elected representatives, he felt that a request to meet with councillors should be granted. Mr Kitchen asked why the Council had taken the view that the Allotment Society could not be relied upon to act impartially were it to be granted self-management. Clerk Steve Blackburn said: “Far too many allotment holders have told us they do not regard Birstall Allotment society as proper people to run the allotments.” The Annual Meeting was followed by the May meeting of the full council. Sgt Andy Moscrop presented the month’s crime figures and the figures for 2009/10 compared to 2008/09, which had increased from 764 to 781. In 2009/10, 17.4 per cent of crimes had been detected. Borough Cllr Helena Edwards suggested that a delegation of councillors attend a meeting of the Allotment Society to discuss self-management. The council agreed but comment was made that council representatives would not be able to make any decisions at that meeting but would bring the matter back for discussion by the Council. Mr Kitchen agreed to notify the Council of a date for the meeting. Deputy Clerk Sue Coulson reported on the funding application made for the council’s drop-in café for young people in the pavilion. The Council praised the Deputy Clerk for her work on this project.


It was reported that, despite efforts by the Clerk, there had been no progress on obtaining proposals to improve the CCTV coverage in Birstall and that these would be put before the council when they became available. On dog fouling, the Clerk was requested to obtain the costs of providing a dog warden service. The costs of obtaining new signage are being obtained now, it was reported, and subject to the Council’s agreement, the new signs would be erected at each entrance to Birstall’s playing fields. The signs will explain dog owner’s responsibilities and the penalties. The Council agreed to make a donation of £100 to the CVS for the production of advice booklets for older people, and £100 to the owner of the Cedar tree on Roman Road for work necessary to preserve the tree. It was reported that Leicester City Council are monitoring the travellers camped on Greengate Lane and that one of the caravan owners has been asked to leave. Councillors reported on the complaints they had been receiving from residents about the Birstall Road traffic calming measures: that they are dangerous, polluting, noisy and not visible enough. Following a legal challenge by Birstall Allotment Society that the Council’s intention to triple the rent for second plots from January 1, 2011 was unreasonable, the Council has agreed that holders of second plots will be charged at the standard rate of £22 per year. The Parish Council want to reduce the waiting list for allotments and have requested that second plots be given up voluntarily. The date of the next meeting is Monday May 10 at 7pm in Birstall Village Hall. Residents can speak on any issue during the Public Session.


THE CANDIDATES for the Charnwood constituency in the General Election 2010 are: Stephen Dorrell (Conservative), Cathy Duffy (British National Party), Eric Goodyer (Labour), Miles Storier (UK Independence Party) and Robin Webber-Jones (Liberal Democrat) The 2005 result was as follows (number of votes cast, share of vote): Conservative 23,571 (46.6%), Labour 14,762 (29.2%), Lib Dem 9057 (17.9%), BNP 1737 (3.4%), UKIP 1489 (2.9%). Turnout 66.4% Stephen Dorrell (Con) was elected in 2005 with a majority of 8,809

dormant accounts, and while many accounts will contain only pennies, some will inevitable contain substantial amounts. If you think you may be entitled to money held in such an account, for example after the death of a relative, then you can make a claim by filling out a form available from the BBA. Along with details of the account in question, if known, you’ll have to give details of how you intend to prove your identity and grounds for claiming. For more information go to or write to: The Dormant Account Unit, British Bankers’ Association, Pinners Hall, 105-108 Old Broad Street, London EC2N 1EX Tel: 020 7216 8909 Age Concern’s Seasons Restaurant is now open in Clarence House, 46 Humberstone Gate, Leicester. A wide selection of hot and cold food and drinks are available and the opening times are Monday to Friday 9am-3pm and Saturday 9am-2pm. Everyone is welcome to come in and enjoy the newly refurbished and relaxed surroundings. Money Back on Energy Bills The Government is working with energy suppliers on a data sharing initiative to help tackle fuel poverty. The Energy Rebate Scheme will benefit poorer older pensioners by giving them a one-off rebate in 2010 of £80 on electricity bills. To be eligible a person must, on March 26, 2010 (qualifying date) be: • receiving a pension credit – guarantee credit only (no savings credit element) • aged 70 or over (or live with a partner who is) • living in a household where either they, or their partner, are responsible for the electricity bill The Government will write to eligible customers around the time that rebates are expected to begin in June 2010 with information on the scheme and provide assurance that the rebate is on its way. People will NOT need to make a claim in most cases, the rebate will be paid automatically. Where it is not possible to pay the rebate automatically customers will be contacted with further details on eligibility and how they can receive their rebate. As well as helping vulnerable older people with fuel bills in 2010, the scheme will pilot data-sharing as a possible approach to delivering the mandated social price support scheme from 2011. Under this scheme energy suppliers will target the support they give with fuel costs to vulnerable groups. Consultation on this scheme is expected in 2010. Further details on the Energy Rebate Scheme will be available at From Jex Woods

APPLICATION FOR VARIATION OF PREMISES LICENCE NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN That Birstall Parish Council has applied for a license to use the premises known as School Lane Playing Field, Birstall for the purpose of Regulated Entertainment (Live Music, Recorded Music, Boxing Display and Performances of Dance)for the Birstall Gala 2010: 26th & 27th June 2010 Dated 1 May 2010 Any objections or representations in respect of the application should be made in writing to the Deputy Partnership & Customer Services, Charnwood Borough Council, Council Offices, Southfield Road, Loughborough, LE11 2TX. Representations/objections must be received by 29 May 2010 The applicant will be supplied with copies of any objections. A record of the application can be inspected at the Council Offices at the aforementioned address during normal office hours. It is an offence to knowingly or recklessly make a false statement in or in connection with an application. Any person found guilty of such an offence shall be liable on summary conviction to a maximum find in the sum of £5,000.00

Easter bonnet parade ACORN UNDER Fives held an Easter bonnet parade on the last day of the spring term to raise funds for the group and to introduce the children to the reception teacher at Highcliffe Primary School. Finley Rogers in third place. Many children decorated hats and wore The organisers would like to thank everythem as they paraded them around the playone who attended the event which raised ground. The competition was judged by Matt Fisher £120. This will be spent on small imaginative play equipment for the children such as a who is a reception teacher and Foundation castle and fantasy figures. Stage co-ordinator at Highcliffe Primary School. He was helped by two children in his Pic: teacher Matt Fisher with (l-r): Finley class – Priyanka Oedera and Finley McManus. McManus, Aaron Ghandi, Finley Rogers The winners were George Saunders in first (front), George Saunders, Priyanka Oedplace, Aaron Ghandi in second place and era

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The June issue of THE BIRSTALL POST will be published on May 29. The copy deadline is May 14.

the birstall post MAY 2010

Small Ads Small ads are 25p for the first 16 words. 17-32 words: 50p. Enclosing payment, post your ad to us or hand it in (inside an envelope) at Birstall library. Trade/business rates for small ads are 25p a word. You are liable for the trade/business rate if you are offering a service for which you are asking for payment, or if you are advertising new goods for sale. All text will be printed bold. Box outline £1 extra. Max 50 words. Phone numbers count as one word.

AIRPORT CARS Birstall. Airports, Seaports, Long Distance, Courier. Tel: 0777 1984806

Church news Garden Trail Passports Garden Trail Passports will be on Sale later in May, for the 2010 trail which this year takes place in the afternoons of Saturday & Sunday June 12 & 13. This year we are grateful to those friends in the Elmfield and Oakfield area of our village who have kindly opened their gardens. Do remember it is cheaper to buy your passport in advance. Sunday Evening Worship There are three Sundays in May when there is no evening worship at the Birstall Methodist Church. On May 16 there is a Joint Service at Syston Methodist Church. On May 23 which is Pentecost Sunday, a Joint service takes place at Trinity Methodist church on Narborough Road, and finally on May 30 the joint worship is much closer top home as we are invited to share with friends at St James for Taize style worship. (Taize is meditative worship in the Celtic style) Edward Is Off To The Chase! Rev Edward Sakwe finishes his time with Leicester North Circuit in August. He is then to move, with Esther and the family to a Methodist Church in Cannock Chase, somewhere near Rugely. At the same time Rev Ian Mason will retire. We shall miss both of them and their families. However we shall be welcoming Rev Dave Warnock who is currently Methodist Minister in Raunds, Northamptonshire. Rev Rachel Parkinson remains minister at Birstall. These changes mean the ministers in the eight churches that make up Leicester North Circuit reduce from three to two. From Tony Moore, Birstall Methodist Church Easter and after There were many highpoints of the Easter celebrations this year, even though St. James and Wanlip churches are currently without a Rector in charge of the parish. We are very thankful that there are such fine priests as Colin Rushforth, Robin Martin and Sheila Skidmore living in the parish, and able to support our curate, Stephen Crofts. The strength of our Churches Together activities: the Lent course we took part in together, the shared Passover Supper and the open-air service on Good Friday were all signs of our Christian unity in Birstall and Wanlip. Not least was

the success of the Cossington Voices’ performance of Olivet to Calvary, the proceeds of which have enabled £500 to be sent to the two children’s homes which we support in Bethany, in strife-ridden Palestine. Filling the gap The search for James Shakespeare’s successor as rector starts in earnest this month as the church council has been asked by the Bishop of Leicester to compile a ‘parish profile’ as a preliminary to advertising the post (nothing happens very quickly in the church of England!). In the meantime of course, services and social events go on as planned. Pentecost (what used to be called Whit Sunday) is on May 23 this year. Between the two May bank holidays, between May 17 and 21, around 40 people will be travelling to Scarborough for the very popular annual parish holiday at Cober Hill, in the village of Cloughton. For your entertainment Amongst other events this month is a visit from Anne Hughes’ choir who are ‘raising the roof’ for LOROS in a concert of popular music, at 8pm on Friday May 28 at St James. Looking a little further ahead, on Saturday June 5 there is to be an evening of fun at 7.30pm in the Village Hall with a comedy quiz for all (based on radio and TV) interspersed with music from a live band, and with refreshments provided. Tickets cost £7 and can be obtained from Jane on 2673761 or Roy on 2677376. Also being planned is another Silent Auction (for church funds) for which offers of quality goods or services (eg a meal, an evening’s baby-sitting, a car-trip to a place of interest etc), are invited. If you can help, please contact Joan on 2672010 or Jane on 2673761. From Beryl McHugh, Parish Churches

Planning P/10/0814/2: 28 Clarke Grove – erection of detached garage to front of dwelling P/10/0771/2: 13 Birchtree Ave – erection of single storey extension to rear of dwelling P/10/0767/2: Unit 3, 121 Sibson Road – variation of Condition 7 to allow Unit 3 to be open from 7am until 11pm P/10/0684/2: 38 Birstall Road – erection of first floor extension to rear of dwelling P/10/0627/2: 43 Park Road – erection of a 2 storey extension to front and rear of dwelling. Replace and raising the roof height

TELEPHONE EXTENSION Sockets fitted by exBT engineer. Cable, BT and digital TV. Over 25 yrs experience. John 2675132 AMLI DESIGN Architectural Consultancy. Plans drawn and submitted. Extensions, conversions, new build. David Ives B.Sc.(Hons) FBEng MCIOB 0116 2674395/07974807111 EARN £400-£600 per month part-time delivering and collecting catalogues 18+ Call 0116 2986894 RUNNER BEANS: seeds for cultivation 40 for £1, for bean bags etc 1000 for £2. Plants 15 for £2. Also exercise rowing machine £20 ono 0116 2921619 TO LET in Syston. 2300 sq.ft workshop & warehouse, additional offices, kitchen & 2 toilets. Good sized private yard for very secure parking. Tel: 0116 2921678/0776 4567953 to view and discuss terms MATHS TUITION, A Level & GCSE in Birstall. Phone 07737352932 FRENCH/SPANISH speakers wanted. Primary school and nurseries need you to teach children in clubs after-school or during school day, flexible hours, term time only. Training and course material provided. Competitive rates of pay. Please call: 0116 2711 844

The June issue of

THE BIRSTALL POST will be published on May 29. The copy deadline is May 14.

Vixens reach final

A GIRLS football team from Birstall reached the final of the County Cup. Birstall United Vixens under 13 Girls Football team played reigning champions Leicester City Ladies on March 28 at Holmes Park in Whetstone, losing 3-0. They began their journey to the final in September with as 6-1 victory over Asfordby Gems. In the next round they ran out 5-3 winners against Oadby and Wigston Starlets, which included a contender for goal of the season from Bayley Kay – a first time volley from her own half. The semi-final took place on Valentine’s Day but there was no love lost in a hard fought battle against Oadby and Wigston Snipers. Vixens triumphed 2-1, with a brace of goals from Emily Gunn. Club spokesman Phil Hughes said: “So, on a foul, wintry night, with the rain horizontal, Birstall went to Whetstone to face reigning champions and cup holders, Leicester City Ladies. The warmth inside, and live Champions League football didn’t dissuade a healthy contingent of Birstall supporters cheering the side on. “Unfortunately, they could not quite bring the cup home, but put up a brave and dogged performance against a team that have swept all before them over the last few years. “At one point, abandonment due to the weather looked like Birstall’s only hope of salvation, but alas this was not to happen. Overall a 3-0 defeat was a highly creditable performance by Birstall, and they fully deserved their medals at the end of the game. Better luck next year girls.”

Bin smells banished A BIRSTALL businessman has come up with a product to keep your wheelie bin smelling fresh this summer. Simon MacLean of Macenviro Pest and Vermin Control says: “After moving to Birstall in 2006, I was a little surprised to find we only get our waste bins emptied fortnightly. Needless to say during the summer months I noticed a large increase in the amount of flies and maggots around the bins. Being a director of Macenviro I took it upon myself to find a hassle free, cost effective way of stopping insects invading my bins. I believe I have done just that, with Bintrol.” Bintrol are low cost, biodegradable, easy to use strips that clip to the inside of the wheelie bin. Over two weeks it slowly releases an insecticide that kills insects in the bin and leaves a pleasant fragrance, and then is emptied with the rest of the waste. Bintrol is only £2.49 per strip with free p&p. for your insect free bin visit or call 0845 226 0246 (local rate)

Maggots, Fly’s, Wasps In Your Bin? If so here is the solution! Bintrol Insect Control Strips Bintrol slow release insect control is designed to freshen and protect your wheelie bin from Insects. Lasts 2 weeks ideal for fortnightly bin collections. £2.49 each with FREE P&P Or our summer special of 10 Bintrol strips with FREE P&P Only £23.00 Call 0845 2260246 or buy on line macenviro Pest & Vermin Control


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Birstall Post May 2010 (322)  

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Birstall Post May 2010 (322)  

Birstall Post May 2010 (322)