Page 1

the Birstall post Y O U R


MARCH 2013


No. 356

Artistic students A MURAL and a photo collage now decorate a wall in Birstall Youth Centre thanks to the efforts of six Longslade students. Amy Chand, Lauren Godfrey, Harry Morrissey, Continued on back page

Wanlip bypass proposed PLANS FOR a new Wanlip bypass road that will increase traffic along Wanlip Lane feature in a report commissioned by Charnwood Borough Council. Charnwood is preparing its Local Plan that will set out its strategy for delivering new homes and jobs – it has identified a site designated as ‘North Birstall’, for 1500 new homes and 15 hectares of employment land. The site, close to the old Bentley’s Roses, is located within the parish of Wanlip. Charnwood commissioned a report into the effects the development will have on local traffic and what new roads and Continued on page 2

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Site of 1500 planned dwellings: North Birstall’s ‘Broadnook Garden Suburb’

Map: red lines and circles indicate location of new roads and roundabouts

Continued from page 1 other measures would be necessary to mitigate the impact of the development. The report suggests: • a new signalised roundabout on the A6 north of the A46 interchange near the North Birstall development • a new link road from the new roundabout to the Wanlip junction to the South East. This will take the route of the old bridleway that runs from the entrance of the Severn Trent Water Treatment works to the A6. • a new Wanlip bypass that will continue this road across fields to the junction of Wanlip Lane and Rectory Road at Corner Woods. • a new roundabout to the west of the A6 connected to the new North Birstall development and the old A6 by a dual carriageway, and to a re-aligned old A6 route • at A46 interchange, a ‘bus bridge’ over the junction carrying buses from the A6 to the North Birstall site. This is a bus priority link running through the junction, not a bridge. The report states: “The mitigation package associated with North Birstall provides a bypass to the A6/A46 junction and results in congestion relief along the A6. However, it also causes an increase in traffic along Wanlip Lane.” The report estimates an additional 500+ vehicle movements an hour along Wanlip Lane at the morning and evening rush hour. Vehicle movements along Rectory Road are expected to reduce significantly as a result of the bypass. The Chairman of Wanlip Parish Meeting Pauline Harrison, told the Birstall Post: “The concept of a ‘Wanlip By-pass’ might at first appear quite attractive as a way of eliminating much of the traffic from the A46, which currently uses Rectory Road as a rat-run through the village, en route to Leicester via the heart of Birstall. “However, in reality, this proposal and the thinking behind it, to alleviate the pressure on the A6 from the proposed new 1,500 dwellings on the north-west quadrant of the parish of Wanlip, mislead-

ingly referred to as North Birstall, would potentially lead to a massive increase in the traffic passing unacceptably close to parts of the village. And, furthermore, the whole community would be seriously affected by being forced to join this dramatic increase in traffic at either end of the proposed by-pass. “As a community we wish to stay as a standalone village. This bypass will split the village and be a significant loss of amenity to those houses that back onto it – why should they suffer for the whole village? “I am also worried that once the road is built there will be infill development right up to it. Wanlip has had so much development around it we feel like saying, enough is enough.” Birstall Parish Council Clerk Steve Blackburn said: “The proposed scheme would take traffic out of Wanlip village, so is to be welcomed for that reason, but Birstall residents may be concerned that a link from the A6 near Rothley might create a ‘rat run’ along the new road and then into Birstall via Wanlip Lane. “Many residents are likely to consider that the proposed cost of £9million might be better spent on a new school at Hallam Fields”. A Charnwood Borough Council spokesperson said: “The Transport Modelling Study will help us assess how traffic will be affected by new homes and land development and will also indicate how effective public transport and other highway work will be in reducing that impact. “There are some proposed measures included in the study but these will need to be scrutinised and refined through the planning process before being implemented. “The Council has not yet seen any detailed plans and these will be subject to approval through the Transport Assessment process. It is too early at this stage to release detailed design information about schemes, particularly when a lot more work still needs to be undertaken.” The estimated cost of the proposed highway changes is between £6million £9.3million.


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Poor performance in league tables LONGSLADE COLLEGE is “very disappointed” with its 2012 GCSE results which place it second from bottom in the performance tables for county schools. 39% of students achieved five or more A* to C grades in their GCSEs, including English and Maths. The county average was 56.9% and the average for schools in England was 59.4% Leicestershire’s top performing school was Beauchamp College, in Oadby, with 74%. Longslade’s GCSE performance places it in the bottom six per cent of all secondary schools in England. 195 English schools failed to reach the government’s ‘floor target’ of 40%. Longslade’s Principal Liz Hall said: “We are obviously very disappointed with out headline GCSE results. However, the marking of the WJEC English language papers had a significant impact upon our GCSE English results. “I am very pleased for our young people that since the English Language in November retake, results have im-

proved, although this is not reflected in the performance tables.” She added: “English Literature results remained on an upward trend with 67% achieving A* to C grades. We were also pleased to see maths results improving following a range of targeted strategies to support students.” In 2011, 45% of students hit the GCSE target, placing the school second from bottom in Leicestershire. In 2010 it was 43% which was the lowest result

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Birstall gala BIRSTALL GALA will be held in 2013 on the School Lane playing field over the weekend of Saturday/Sunday, June 29/30.

Chinese New Year THE CHILDREN at childminders Half Pints on Loughborough Road enjoyed themselves celebrating Chinese New Year: painting snakes, making dragons and eating noodles with chopsticks wearing the Chinese hats they had made.


for county schools. The schools A level results for 2012 saw students actioning a point score of 604, third from bottom out of 20 county schools. The average point score for English schools in the state sector is 736. Ms Hall said: “For post 16 results, at A2 97% of students passed A2 courses and 23 out of 29 subjects achieved a 100% pass rate. This represents a 13% increase from 2011. There was significant improvement at all levels at AS in comparison to 2011. The percentage pass rate at A-E increased from 80% to 82% with % A+B grades increased from 21% to 29% and % A+B+C rate increased from 42% to 50%. “In university applications, 88% of students who applied successfully gained a place. Of the 12% who were not successful, one student has gained a place at a local FE college, three students gained employment, one student applied through the clearing process and five students decided to remain at Longslade for further study.” To help improve performance Longslade has been working with Leicestershire’s top performing state school. Liz Hall said: “We are working hard to ensure our students have access to high quality teaching. As part of this we have worked in partnership with Beauchamp College in developing teaching and learning strategies. Beauchamp are recognised by the National College for Leadership for their partnership work.” Longslade has 1169 pupils aged 1418 on the school roll. 11.5% of pupils have a Statement of Special Educational Needs. 6.6% of pupils are eligible for free school meals. It’s last Ofsted inspection was in 2009 when it was rated ‘Good’.

Organised by Birstall Parish Council, stalls run by local clubs and businesses are a feature of the weekend’s entertainment. Deputy Clerk Sue Coulson said: “Once again, by popular demand, we will be accepting bookings for stalls for both the Saturday and Sunday, in fact bookings are already being taken. “In previous years we have had over 70 private and charity stalls, and so if you or your organisation would like to have a stall, stand or some space to promote your business or charity please contact the Parish Council offices for the appropriate forms and any further information you may require by telephoning: 0116 2676191 or email: admin@birstllpc,” You can also download the forms from: ala.html



MAR 2013

Party to give Oliver Skilled players are futsal champions time of his life THE FAMILY of a ten year old boy with a terminal illness are holding a fundraising party to make their last months together special.

THE BIRSTALL United Juniors Under 10 Foxes have won the Leicestershire & Rutland County FA Youth Futsal Development League.

Oliver Brown from Birstall was diagnosed with leukaemia when he was three and a half years old. Oliver, who has Down’s Syndrome, has astonished doctors more than once over the years on how he has survived both the cancer and the side effects of his treatment. But in December 2012 he went back into hospital after feeling ill and being unable to walk. He had more chemotherapy before doctors told his parents Catherine and James the

The league took place over 6 weekends at Judgemeadow Community College and the Foxes won 5 out of their 6 games to come top of the group on goal difference. Futsal is an exciting, fast-paced small sided football game that is widely played across the world and is officially recognised by both UEFA and FIFA. The nature of the game places a large emphasis on technical skill and ability in situations of high pressure. Iain Sands, head coach of the futsal team, said: “It’s been a really beneficial and enjoyable experience for the boys. Playing a different format of the game at a greater pace and with a heavier ball

has tested their technical skills to the maximum and made them more comfortable and confident on the ball. They will now be able to transfer these new skills into the mini-soccer, 7v7 games that they play week in, week out in Division 2 of the Leicester & District Mutual League.”

Pic: Oliver (right) with his brother Ethan

devastating news that there was no more effective treatment for Oliver. Mum Catherine said: “We are going to lose our beautiful, brave and very precious son, brother and grandson. “We want Oliver to have quality of life and have as many of his hopes, dreams and wishes fulfilled. Oliver has been through so much since his first diagnosis in 2006 when he was three and a half years old. “He’s suffered so much at the hands of this devastating disease and anything we can do to put a smile on his face we will. We have begun to make a happy

memory wish list for Oliver, and any money raised will go towards literally giving Oliver the time of his life.” Oliver’s fundraising party is being held at Birstall Social Club on Saturday March 30 from 1-3.30pm. Tickets are now on sale at £3 per child, £1 per adult. There will be a mini-disco, games, face painting, nail painting, a raffle and a sweet stall. For tickets or if you would like to donate call Paula 07934 551563 or Kelly 07926 108790 or email:


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Birstall panto frolics THE METHODIST Men’s pantomime this year was Cinderella and it featured a number of new faces in the cast. The age range of the pantomime cast continues to extend, usually at the older end. This year the cast were nearly all below retiring age, and several not even half that age, but this year there were two very young ‘apprentices’, Luke Allan and Alexander Kerchey, who played the two mice who took Cinderella in her carriage to the Ball.

This fairy tale followed its well-known story line, but as usual the pantomime fitted in all sorts of extras, including an Olympic Flame, complete with an advert

for Birstall Running Club and Gok Wan who appeared to dress Cinderella ready for the ball. ‘Be My Guest’ was the most outstanding of the several musical numbers, nearly all of which were new songs for this annual week of fun in Birstall. Pics above (clockwise from top): the ensemble on stage; Billy Loach playing Dandini; Fairy Godmother played by Mike Allan; Richard Kilby as Baron Hardup; Richard Tinley as Baroness Hardup; (inset) Neil Parkinson carrying the Olympic torch. Pics left (from bottom): (l-r) Buttons Played by James Moore, Bodgitt played by Vic Dolby and Skarper played by Peter Barratt; Ugly sisters Adie Robinson (left) & Michael Kerchey; Cinderella played by Isaak Harrison, with Peter Barratt (left) & Alan Chapman (right)


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Boxing show

ORGANISERS OF a charity boxing show on March 10 are hoping to raise £2000. The event, at Birstall Social Club from 11am, will feature sparring demonstrations, exhibition fights in a full sized boxing ring, skipping routines and a boxing pads exhibition. An auction of sporty memorabilia is planned for 1pm and includes a signed Wayne Rooney shirt as well as gloves signed by Frank Bruno and Joe Frazier. Exhibition fights begin at 3pm with the day finishing at 6pm. The event is raising money for Alex’s Wish, a charity set up by the parents of Alex Hallam from Rothley, who has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. It aims to help finance research into the disease and has raised £40,000 since it started two years ago. Tickets are £3.50 and can be bought on the door, at Carl Gunns’ gym Pic: Alex or Birstall Working Men’s with his mum Emma Club.

Alzheimer’s disease: promising research A FORMER Longslade student’s research into Alzheimer’s disease has attracted international attention. Dr Jo Rushworth (29) is a lab manager and research scientist at the university of Leeds and was part of a team whose research showed that extracts of red wine and green tea can block one of the first steps in Alzheimer’s disease. Jo Rushworth (née Humphrey) was first author on the scientific article which appeared last month in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. The research attracted attention in newspapers around the world and featured on the Today programme on Radio 4. Jo completed Pic: Dr Jo Rushworth her A levels in

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The CPA, which helps the public to identify safe reliable contractors to carry out home improvements, awarded its 5 year Membership Achievement Award to CWC. Membership of the CPA means that customers have their deposits and guarantee underwritten by the organisation. Mandy Manning from CWC said: “We put the interests of the customer first and we won’t compromise on our attention to detail or the quality of the materials we use. “Everything is carefully project managed by us personally and we do everything we can to ensure the work we do enhances your home.”

Biology and Chemistry at Longslade Community College in 2001. She then studied Biochemistry at the University of Leeds, which included a research year in Paris and a national research scholarship in Norwich. Jo then became a secondary school Chemistry teacher for several years, before returning to academia to do a PhD, with the aim of becoming a lecturer. Jo said: “I was so lucky that I was inspired by my A level teachers, Miss Kirkham in Biology and Mr Reed in Chemistry during my time at Longslade. Their passion and enthusiasm for science was infectious and I wouldn’t be where I am today without their influence.” Jo spent the last four years researching Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia, which affects over 800,000 people in the UK. Dementia is a general term for degenerative brain diseases which affect memory, thinking and the ability to do everyday things. “A common misconception about Alzheimer’s disease is that it’s just a normal part of getting old” said Jo. “Actually, Alzheimer’s disease can be cured with research science, just like any other illness – we need to fully understand what causes the disease and then a suitable drug can be developed.” Alzheimer’s disease is brought on when harmful clumps – called amyloid – build up in the brain. These clumps latch on to brain cells, causing them to misfire and eventually die off, causing the brain to shrink. In Jo’s early-stage lab experiments as part of her PhD, she used natural extracts of red wine and green tea to alter the shape of the poisonous amyloidal clumps and found that they could no longer harm human brain cells grown in a dish. Jo hopes that this research could eventually offer hope to people suffering with Alzheimer’s disease. “Green tea and red wine themselves may not contain enough of the beneficial substances (EGCG and resveratrol, respectively) to have any effect, but the next steps in this research would be to alter chemically these molecules to help higher amounts to build up in the brain. This will take time” said Jo “One in three of us is predicted to die with some form of dementia, because the population is ageing and we don’t yet have a cure. Alzheimer’s is a very distressing disease, both for the person suffering and for their families and carers. We need more research funding to combat dementia.”


Parish Council notes A FULL meeting of Birstall Parish Council was held on February 11. Birstall has a new Police Community Support Officer, PCSO 6148 Charlotte White. The number of burglaries in Birstall rose slightly in January. A number of arrests have been made, three burglars were arrested in Wanlip and charged. Theft from stores rose in January, with thieves targeting meat. One arrest has been made so far and another arrest will be made this week. The Council agreed to make no comments about a planning application for a tattoo studio at 115 Sibson Road (formerly Krustys). It was reported that a recent incident on School Lane may result in a claim against the County Council, because of stones placed on the verges by residents. The County Council has not yet decided whether to remove the stones. The Council agreed to provide Birstall Bowling Club with £1575, half the cost of a new fence for the eastern boundary of the green. The existing hedge will be removed. Councillors paid tribute to the late Kathleen Grundy, a former Parish Councillor who died in January. It was reported that a proposal to introduce a 40mph speed limit on a short section of Greengate Lane near the A6 junction has been withdrawn. Following a request from an allotment tenant, the council is researching the legalities of keeping chickens and livestock on Birstall’s allotments. It was reported that the Estates Team and members of the public are reporting large amounts of dog waste on the School Lane playing field, and there have been requests for a dog ban. It was agreed to research the costs of employing a litter picker and a dog warden able to issue on the spot fines. It was agreed to employ Lustram Cleaning to clean the Stonehill Avenue public toilets three times a week at a cost of £69. • A meeting of Birstall Parish Council’s Management and Policy committee was held on January 14. Members discussed the complaint made by Deputy Clerk Sue Coulson against the chairman, Cllr Pat Cleere. Cllr Cleere said he felt unable to accept the complaints made and tendered his resignation from the chair and the council. Cllr Tony fowler felt the matter could have been resolved with an apology. Cllr Ann Marshall stated that she understood the reason for the complaint regarding the conduct of the meeting but felt that emotional issues on both sides had clouded the issue. Cllr Fowler felt saddened at the decision but understood that Mrs Coulson had felt threatened by meetings held behind her back and that there was an unwillingness by Cllr Cleere to apologise for the conduct of the meeting, although this had come later. The committee accepted the resignation with regret.

PICTURED ARE the ladies from Birstall quilters presenting a cheque for £920 to Adrian Walker from LOROS. The group raised the money with various fundraising events over the last year.

Burglar New sports facilities jailed at Longslade

WORK ON a new artificial turf football pitch at Longslade is to start this spring after the college and its partners successfully secured grant funding. The full size 3G pitch can be split into three seven a side pitches and will be located behind the Palmer-Tomkinson Centre. Longslade formed a partnership with football clubs Birstall United and Syston Town Juniors to successfully bid for grant funding from the Football Foundation. Further funding for the £500,000 pitch has come from the Edith Murphy Foundation, The Palmer-Tomkinson Trust, Charnwood Borough Council, Longslade College and Stonehill school. Longslade Principal Liz Hall said: “The football pitches will provide much needed training and playing facilities for local clubs and community groups as well as our students.” The football pitch will be used by the college and other schools during the day and will be available to hire at weekends, during school holidays, and in the evening. Ms Hall added: “The initial plans for the Palmer-Tomkinson Centre always included sports facilities and we are delighted that Phase 2 of the project is on the way. We hope the 3G pitch will be the first part of sporting developments on the site.” Longslade plans to create three tennis courts on the site next to the 3G pitch and during its construction the ground will be prepared for them. Funding has yet to be secured for the tennis courts. For enquiries about the pitch contact Longslade 2670807,

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A BURGLAR who broke into a house on Whiles Lane in September stealing jewellery and cash totalling £1600 has been sent to prison. Liam Evans (17) appeared at Leicester Crown Court where he confessed to 17 other offences, including 14 house burglaries, two counts of wounding and possession of a knife. On September 10, 2012 he stole two crates of beer from a shop in Humberstone. A shop employee was slashed in the throat with a knife by Evans, who also wounded the neck of a Police Constable who attended the scene. Evans, who has 65 offences on his criminal record, was sentenced to five years detention.




Kathleen Grundy remembered

Junior tennis players in competition

KATHLEEN GRUNDY, a good friend and colleague of many in Birstall, has died at the age of 81 years.

WE'VE BEEN experiencing bitterly cold weather lately but things are really hotting up at Birstall Watermead Tennis Club - and it's the youngsters who are leading the way.

Kath was a Birstall girl living here for most of life and always working for the community. She was a widow, Tom her husband was a Police Officer, and they had 3 children, Angela, David, and the late Janet. They had married at St James, the Church which she continued to belong to throughout her life. She was a County Councillor, a Parish Councillor from 1988-2011 when she retired because of her health as she hated missing meetings. Also she was a trustee for Burley Houses and the Hannah Clarke parcel distribution. She was a governor at both Highcliffe and Stonehill Schools. Kathleen was a member of the Conservative Party and belonged to Birstall Conservative Group. At the Parish Council Kath was a keen member of the Gala Committee, and worked hard at the gala selling raffle tickets or doing whatever was required. She started her career after leaving school as a secretary at Riverside School where she worked from the age of 1417 years, from there she moved to the Leicestershire Education Office. In 1966 she joined the staff at the Leicestershire Rural Community Council until 1997 when she retired, but she continued to work as a voluntary worker organising competitions. In Birstall she was a guide officer always being interested in the young people in Birstall. When the Youth Workers at the Youth Café were told, they wished to add their thoughts and this is what they said: “Kath was a regular visitor to the Youth Café on a Friday evening and offered her services to the

Pic: Kathleen Grundy

youth workers, often at the kitchen sink doing the washing up and then serving in the tuck shop. “She demonstrated her patience by teaching a small group of 15-16 year old girls how to knit and we had quite a laugh at some of the weird and wonderful scarfs that were appearing around the youth café. She loved to feel that she was part of the team and we loved to have her there.” She will be sadly missed by all of us who had the pleasure to work with her and by the young people that she spent time with.” Kathleen will be missed by many people around the village. From Mary Allen

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For the first time in the club's history, an Under 8's team has been fielded in the Leicestershire League, with the children competing over two days at Loughborough University. The team comprised Barney Sutton, Ajay Burton-Pyatt, Kyan Gohil, Khush Sharma and Jayde Patterson. “It was a great first experience of match play for the children and one that they all thoroughly enjoyed. Barney Sutton isn't in the photo as he wasn't able to play that day. But congratulations to all five of five who did the club proud” said a club spokesman. The club's annual Winter Team Shield for senior members is taking place on Sunday afternoons and a junior version of the event is taking place on Saturday afternoons, seeing 16 youngsters competing in teams of four. The players have been defying everything the winter elements have thrown at them - with the aid of several extra layers of clothing! Meanewhile Cardio Tennis is keeping people fit at the club, with a session running on Thursday evenings from 8pm-9pm and a new daytime session starting in March, on Thursdays from 1.45pm-2.45pm. “It's a great way to get

fit and have fun, and you don't need to be able to play tennis! In a 60-minute session you can expect to burn 600 calories. So why not come along - your first session is free” said the spokesman. Junior coaching is taking place on Monday and Saturday afternoons. For more details on membership, coaching or how to get into tennis, contact Laura Morley on 07742249807.

Birstall clubs AROUND TWENTY local clubs and societies have signed up for April’s showcase weekend, when visitors will be able to see what’s on offer from Birstall’s many groups and organisations. Held on April 5 – 7 at St James church on Church Hill, the event is being organised by Debbie and Andrew Shephard. Debbie said: “In addition to the stands there will be regular displays and demonstrations from the groups attending. A full programme will be issued before Easter, so look out for one coming through your door, and posters will be in the shops around the village. “The Church’s Bell ringers will kick the event off at 4:30pm on the Friday afternoon to welcome those who wish to pop in after work. Come and browse the stands and take the opportunity to find out more about the activities that go on in and around the village. “The church normally has a rehearsal night for the Gospel choir on Fridays so you can sit and watch with a cup of tea or join in if you wish.” There will be a cafe open throughout the event where homemade cakes and sandwiches will be available along with tea, coffee and soft drinks Saturday will open at 10.30am and close at 5pm and Sunday at 11am and close at 4pm Contact Debbie Shephard at St. James the Great Church. Church Hill 0116 2671797


NHW news

& crime report Thieves not welcome here! Now that spring is in the air it is an opportune time to think about security outside your front door and within the boundaries of your property. Ideally, you need to create an environment which provides both a physical and psychological boundary beyond which an offender should feel uncomfortable. It sounds a daunting task but really with just a few practical measures you can ensure that you have tightened up the security of your property. A strong Neighbourhood Watch scheme in your area is obviously one of the best methods of home security and in Birstall we are lucky enough to have a very strong NHW community. A strong bond with your neighbours will have a detrimental effect on any potential burglaries or robberies in your area so take advantage of this and make sure that you allow for easy surveillance from people who are passing your property. At the front of the property keep perimeter fencing or planting low and keep your home free from shrubs and trees that block the view of windows. You don’t want to have a broken window that a neighbour or passing police officer cannot see from the street. Prickly planting at the perimeter of your property will help to deter entry but do try to keep any shrubbery at least two feet away from the house. Also, keep shrubbery less than two feet in height and tree limbs above seven feet as this will allow for your home to be seen from the street. Remember to check that foliage is not blocking any

Police arrest burglars A MAN and a woman have been arrested following a spate of burglaries in Cropston and Rothley. The male admitted to four burglaries and was charged and remanded in custody. The woman was released on bail pending further enquiries. Earlier in January a second male was arrested, described by Police as a prolific burglar in the Charnwood area. In addition to this the Police have arrested a man and charged him with burgling a home on Swithland Lane, Rothley on January 1 where jewellery and computers worth £5000 were taken. This man has been charged with nine home burglaries, three business burglaries and theft from a car.

effective surveillance system you may have installed. Simple path or driveway alarms can be used to alert you to a visitor. For example, pebble surfaces can deter offenders as the stones crunch both when driven over or on footfall. Any side gate should be at least six feet high and lockable. Many burglaries take place during the day while residents are at work so any burglar will not want to waste time trying to gain access in broad daylight. The key, therefore, is to make your place look like a difficult challenge so that a burglar is put off and moves on to an easier target. Thieves prefer an easy route, usually the door, so it is worth considering upgrading your doors to good solid doors that cannot be easily kicked open. It is also worth upgrading your locks on both windows and doors if you are not certain how secure they might be. Keep your windows from opening more than six inches, ideally by installing replacement windows that include this as a built-in feature. So spend a little time this spring looking at the outside of your property, securing your property and making your

home less of a target More information at: email: tel: 0116 267 6397 Crime Figures January 2013 Assaults 6, burglary 9, burglary nondwelling 8, damage 5, damage to motor vehicle 2, drugs 1, fraud 5, theft 4, theft cycle 2, theft from motor vehicle 1, theft of motor vehicle 2, theft stores 8. Burglaries have risen in January despite the bad weather. There have been several arrests made. On Tuesday February 5 three suspected burglars were chased by Police and the Force helicopter. They were stopped and arrested in the area of Wanlip Lane. Shop thefts have also risen but the beat team have enquiries in hand and arrests are now being made. One male was charged with several shop thefts on January 25. Further work is ongoing with the shops to improve their security and the layout of their stores. From PC 688 Des Hearnshaw - Beacon Officer

Forum funding VOLUNTARY AND community groups can learn how they can obtain up to £15,000 of funding at the next meeting of the Bradgate, Rothley, Mountsorrel and Birstall Area Forum. Run by Leicestershire County Council, the forum meeting will take place on Thursday March 21 at Woodhouse Eaves Village Hall, at 6.30pm. Topics will include an update on the Mountsorrel Railway Project. The meetings are open to the public. For more details go to:

Band promise “awesome night” LOCAL BAND 8 Miles High will be performing at Stonehill school this April. Together since 2009, the band members are Harry Clarke (guitar), Oli Kidd-Martin (lead guitar and vocals), Josh Pears (bass) and Elliott Schlaphoff (drums). Citing bands such as Greenday and Blink 182 as influences, 8 Miles High have performed at The Old Plough, Syston Social Club, Quorn Football Club and Birstall Gala. Their concert at Stonehill is on Saturday April 13 at 7pm, tickets £2. “If people enjoy great music performed by great bands then it will be an awesome night!” said guitarist Harry Clarke. Search Facebook and Youtube for 8mileshighband





Tigers v Toulouse match. On the Saturday we visited the Plough to watch the rugby on TV. The Landlord and staff went out of their way to make them welcome as did the players from Birstall RFC, we had a great night, with them sampling cultural foods (scratchings and real ales).

Thanks A few lines about a ‘lovely lady’ Paula Clifford who raised a terrific amount for our charity Gunns’ Gym here in Birstall. She was fantastic, with all her helpers they did a great job. Thanks Paula. Carl Gunns on behalf of Gunns’ Gym

Muddy verges 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:

Irritating In reply to Helena Edwards February letter, far from being ‘pleased and amused’ and at risk of being dubbed a killjoy, I find the sight of the tree festooned with knitting totally irritating. Surely the KGB members would be better occupied making garments, shawls, blankets etc to help needy folk sleeping rough or in refugee camps. A tree is a work of art in its own right and is not in the least enhanced by draping it with knitted artefacts however cleverly made. Cynthia Coltman

Pic: the happy visitors

On the following Monday we were at work and I phoned my friends- they replied in Franglais, we are in the 'pubbe' not the Plough, then the bar person explained that they were in the Stamford. After we had left the pub we went into Bains chip shop where they were again made extremely welcome and given cultural food (pickled eggs and onions). I was so proud that they were treated so well by the people of Birstall and also in Leicester Our thanks to all who were involved in making their stay memorableKev Curtis P.S.Tigers also won.

Bus shelter Thanks

Friendly welcome I have lived in Birstall for just over a year and we are very happy living in the village and the community. Recently I had friends stay in the local Ibis. My friends came over for the

I would like to thank all my customers I used to deliver to on the Gates estate, all of you have been so kind and friendly to me over the years. Thank you Reuben Fox (Postman)

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I saw in the Parish Council notes of last month’s Birstall Post that the council are contacting Charnwood Borough Council about the state of the grass verges on Wanlip Lane, caused by people parking on them. They are suggesting bollards as a possible solution. Is the Parish Council also concerned about the state of grass verges on other roads caused by people parking their cars on them. Take a look at Wanlip Avenue, Lambourne Road, Bramley road and Orchard Road for a few examples. If it is illegal to park on grass verges, why not hand out a few parking tickets, or consider changing the verges into parking bays, by putting down a hard surface. More and more households have multiple cars, and it is not going to change. People need to park somewhere. I am not a car owner, but hate to see the muddy churned up verges. Name & address supplied


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Reading in the Birstall Post about bus shelters, the lady complaining about the scruffiness of them. She should think herself lucky to have a bus shelter at all. We in Wanlip Lane have none at all. This winter I have suffered severely with an illness due to standing in the wet cold weather waiting for a bus which did not arrive.

I have written to the Council concerning having bus shelters along this route but have had no answer. Miss V M Reynolds

Hate crime The Leicester Hate Crime Project is Britain’s most comprehensive study of hate crime victimisation. Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, the two-year project is exploring the experiences of victims of hate crime – people who have been victimised simply because of who they are. We want to hear from anyone who has suffered from hate crime, and this includes those who have been singled out because of their identity or because they were seen as especially vulnerable or somehow ‘different’ in the eyes of the person who targeted them. Throughout the duration of the project we will be working closely with criminal justice agencies and other service providers so we can collectively challenge hate and prejudice in Leicester. We hope that you will join us in making sure that this project makes a real difference to understanding the experiences and needs of hate crime victims and providing them with the sort of help they need and deserve. This website has been designed so that you can interact with the project on many different levels. Using the panel of tabs, you can find all the information you need about the project, the research team and how you can get involved in the study. If you’d like to take part in the research then there will be the opportunity to fill out the online survey at Harvey Watson

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will be published on Mar 30. The copy deadline is Mar 15.


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The April issue of

Greenacres, The Sidings, Leicester, LE4 3BR (off Redhill Roundabout) Telephone 01509 633870 / 077785 12275 Email: Facebook: Greenacres • Twitter: @TheSidingsLE3 This event is in conjunction with Great Central Railways Easter Vintage Festival


Noticeboard all details printed free Mountsorrel Methodist Church Sunday Night @ Eight

Organ Recital on Sunday March 17 at 8pm By Father Simon Lumby of St Aidans, New Parks Admission free Donations for Development Fund Buffet from 7.30pm

Soar Valley Trampoline Club Monday and Wednesday evenings at Soar Valley College Trampolining is great fun and an excellent way to keep fit! Sessions are for children aged 6 and upwards Visit our website for further details at or contact Annette by email: or tel: 01664 840079

Mini-Market & Table-Top Sale on Saturday April 20 from 10am to 1pm at Birstall Methodist Church Tables at £10 each Tel: 2672606 Home-Start Charnwood

Are you a parent or a grandparent? Can you spare 3-4 hrs a week to help a family? Do you want to make a difference? Come with us on a journey Train to be a family support volunteer Next free training course: Start: April 11 Location: Loughborough Duration: 6 weeks, every Thursday, 9.30am to 2.30pm A pre-course interview is required Travel expenses will be paid Tel: 01509 239786 enquiries The Soar Valley Model Railway Club present their popular, 2 day club Open Day’s

Model Railway Show Sat/Sun April 6 & 7 Martins High School Anstey Link Road, Anstey Leics LE7 7EB All the Club’s Layouts Thomas the Tank engine & friends For the youngsters and Rainbows A great school holiday outing whatever the weather for enthusiasts and families alike Come and join us

Raffle win a brand new ‘00’ City of Leicester Locomotive Plus other great prizes Model Railway Trade Stands Refreshments and free car parking Open from Saturday 10am to 4pm, Sunday 10am to 4pm Adults 33, OAPS £2.50, Child £1, Family Ticket £7.50 Enqs. Visit our website for more details

via the parish office, 0116 2367626 or at the door

Film Presentations

Birstall & District Local History Society

From Thurcaston & Cropston Parish Council ‘Hope Springs’ Friday March 8 (100 mins) This joyful romantic comedy drama is about Kay, played by Meryl Streep, and her plodding husband, striving to re-ignite their relationship with greater imagination and connection to one another. How does their therapy in the village of Great Hope Springs work out? ‘The Lady’ Friday April 12 (145 mins) This is an extraordinary true story of Aung San Su Kyi and her husband Michael Aris. We watch the peaceful quest of the woman who is at the heart of Burma’s democracy movement. This film depicts devotion and human understanding within a dangerously hostile regime. ‘Quartet’ will be shown on Friday May 10 Thurcaston and Cropston Parish Council will be showing these films at Thurcaston Memorial Hall. Starting at 7.30pm, tickets cost £4.50 and concessions are £4. The price includes refreshments and a lucky prize draw. Advance tickets can be purchased

Coffee Shop Saturday April 27 from 10am to 12noon Birstall Methodist Church Wanlip Lane, Birstall Raffle, tombola & lots more Money raised in aid of LOROS. Reg Charity No.506120

The next meeting will take place on Thursday March 14 at 7.30pm Birstall Village Hall, Birstall Road, Birstall The talk for this month will be ‘Making Tracks – the Laying of Leicester Railways’ Speaker: Brian Johnson All visitors are very welcome

Richard III Exhibition Visitors can find out more about one of the most exciting archaeological discoveries of recent years with the opening of an exhibition at Leicester’s medieval Guildhall. The Exhibition has been developed by Leicester Arts & Museum Service to introduce the remarkable story behind the discovery of the body of King Richard III. The exhibition will allow visitors the chance to explore the historical and scientific evidence that has been gathered from the Greyfriars site. Friday Feb 8 – Saturday Aug 31 11am to 4.30pm admission free


Christian Aid Week from May 12-18 If you can spare a few hours of your time on a house-to-house collection in aid of the poorest people in the world, please ring Mary on 2675154 You will not need to walk a long way, some of the rounds are quite small.

Birstall Flower Club A Date with Bond Claire Bond Wednesday March 27 at 7.15pm Birstall Village Hall Visitors very welcome Sylvia Simes 2674206

Birstall Royal British Legion March 2: Noel Gee (M/V) March 9: Evonne Rivers (F/V) March 16: Tracey Hye (F/V) March 23: Mick Knight (M/V) March 30: Paul Ravell (M/V) Dancing every Sat night with live entertainment Bingo, free beer raffle and not forgetting Open the Box Every Tuesday night Bingo starting at 9.15pm Quiz nights: Sunday March 10 & 31 starting at 9pm Acoustic night Sunday March 17 at 8pm Rock & Roll nights Wednesday March 6 & 20 Food available every Saturday 122pm Wakes catered for

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Open Bank Holiday Monday April 1, 12-3pm OGM Wednesday March 20, 7.30pm

Carers need to be mature, responsible, at home for part of each day and ideally with transport

Inter Care would like to invite local people to come and enjoy our

Charity Quiz at the Dog and Gun Pub, Chapel Street, Syston on Tuesday March 12 from 7pm For only £6 per person you can enjoy 5 rounds of questions, a light ploughman’s supper and the chance to win team prizes We encourage teams of 4 and advance bookings due to limited availability Inter Care is a small Syston charity All proceeds raised will help Inter Care to recycle quality medicines, reducing NHS disposal costs and prevent medicines going to landfill We donate aid to 121 health units in Africa to help treat and save lives. For every £1 donated we send £4 worth of aid. For information please call 0116 2695925 today or visit

St James Day Centre 200 Club Winners for February 1st – Mrs Jane Scott 2nd – Mrs Betty Allcock 3rd – Miss Emily Ball 4th – Miss Sheila Noble

Leicester Hedgehog Rescue Are inviting like minded souls to join their active team in this area and give Mother Nature a bit of help Advertise in

The birstall post 47 x 59mm £26 • 47 x 120mm £44 98 x 59mm £44 • 98 x 120mm £78

1) Decide what size you want 2) Send us a sketch of your ad 3) We design, publish This Siz & send e you the Wednes bill days


CALL 2674213 for an advertising rate card, or view online at The prices above exclude VAT

All equipment and training will be provided with a level of care geared to suit yourself For more information please ring Colleen: Leic 2207844

2013 Greenlight Festival Saturday March 16, 11am – 6pm Queens Building, De Montfort University Musical acts, fashion show, art gallery, circus skills, meditation, vegetarian food A friends of the Earth hosted debate about the Energy Bill

St Theresa’s Flower Festival Friday May 3, 11am to 3pm Saturday, 10am to 4pm Sunday, 11am to 3pm Teas & Coffee will be available all days, on Saturday there will be some stalls to browse, also hot soup being served at lunch time Please come and view the beautiful displays St Theresa’s Church, Birstall

Elizabeth Qualified Mobile Hairdresser Appointments available weekdays, evenings & weekends

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CLASH Drop-in Sessions for people with Arthritis and other Musculoskeltel conditions - held every Monday, 10am to 12noon, at the Peepul Centre, Orchardson Ave, Leicester LE4 6DP Sessions are free – please contact Karen: 07963221570/2006clashkm@gm E-learning – Are you interested in learning basic computer skills and how to safely use the internet? If so come along and join us at Palmer Tomkinson Centre, Longslade College, Birstall. Sessions are free and held on Thursdays from 3.30-4.30pm, dates of sessions are March 7,14 & 21. Please contact Conrad on 07919 844629/ Wednesday March 13 – Chronic pain and Arthritis, Dr B Collett, Consultant in pain and medicine UHL and chair of the chronic pain coalition (CPCC) Meeting held at Palmer Tomkinson Centre, Longslade Community College 7-9pm Are you retired and have

Computer Skills that you can use in the community to support local people to ‘get online’? CLASH ( would like to hear from you Please contact Chris on 07751072612 to discuss this further Friends of Chernobyl’s Children

Families & helpers needed for children’s respite holidays. Since 1995, Friends of Chernobyl’s Children have been bringing needy youngsters to the UK for 4-week respite holidays from the difficult conditions they endure in their homeland of Belarus With the help and support of a small but dedicated team of volunteers, and the generosity of local people, the charity places the children with volunteer host families and provided a 4-week activity programme that gives the kids not only the chance to play, learn and laugh, but also to make lasting friendships and enjoy experiences that they would never have the opportunity to discover at home. We would be interested to hear

from local families who would be willing to get involved with the charity this summer, with a view to hosting a child in their own home next year In addition to host families, we are also seeking the following volunteers:• trustees and volunteers who can help us with the day-to-day running of the charity throughout the year • volunteers, minibus and car drivers to assist us in running a 4week programme of activities for a group of approx 15 children in August 2013 This is a great opportunity to get involved with a charity where you can make a real difference. For more information, please contact our Volunteers Co-ordinator, Rachel Taylor on 07896 817037, email or contact our Group Co-ordinator, John Buckby on 01455 285799, email For more info about the charity, visit the West Leics page of our national website at

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Raj joins team PODIATRIST RAJ Singhadia has joined the team at Footmedics on Sibson Road. Raj has been practising for 23 years and graduated from the University of Northampton. He joins receptionist Anna and podiatrist Rasminder Palahey who has been practising for 15 years and is a graduate of the University of Brighton. Footmedics offers a full range of podiatry services including biomechanics and gait analysis, prescription orthotics, and treatments for soft tissue and joint pain including steroid injections. A luxury range of organic, vegan products are used on all patients.

Cheerleaders train at Longslade A CHEERLEADING school that trains at Longslade College is looking for new members. The Dynamite School of Cheer trains every Tuesday evening, with classes for age groups 4½-8, 9-12 and 12+ Principal Amy Owen said: “We aim


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to give young people a fit and healthy start in life in a fun safe environment. We offer yearly themed shows, competitions and achievement schemes.” In January, the cheerleaders trav-

elled through the snow to a competition in Blackpool where they came second. “It was a great weekend away and an amazing team bonding experience for all the girls who went” said Amy. For more information call Amy 07921 768 or email

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to go on with our weekly indoor Bootcamp training sessions Try something new that will redefine you! Where: Birstall, Longslade Community College Sports Hall When: Thursday 7-8pm For more information and to book a place call

Lewis 07725818587 • Tom 07796332930 or visit the website -

Plea for information on war graves RESEARCHERS PREPARING a booklet on war graves in Belgrave cemetery are appealing for help.

Rothley Ivanhoe Tennis Club Open Day, Saturday 16th March, 12 - 2pm followed by social play and junior coaching

50% off adult membership plus coaching vouchers if you join on the day

Spokeswoman for the Friends of Belgrave Cemetery Dorothy Marshall said: “We are putting together information for a booklet about Commonwealth War Graves of the Great War 1914-18 that are in this lovely old Victorian resting place, in time for the centenary commemoration of the beginning of the Great War in 2014. “If you have relatives who lost their lives in this war who are either buried or recorded here and you have memories or old photographs of them which you would be prepared to share with others, the Friends would be very pleased to hear from you.” The idea of the booklet is to give information details of the layout of the graves which will make it easier to find their resting places and to celebrate the

Friendly local tennis club with lots of playing opportunities (social and competitive) and coaching for juniors and adults. Six courts (3 floodlit) located behind the library at the side of the school in Rothley. For more information call the membership line

The April issue of

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lives of this lost generation of young people. “The booklet will follow on from a previous ‘Friends’ 2008 publication ‘Soldiers of Belgrave Remembered’ which used information provided by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. This time we are endeavouring to uncover the personal stories that lie behind the names” added Dorothy. “If you gave information or photos for the previous publication we would still like to hear from you again to obtain permission to use the photographs once more. Of course, the Friends aren’t expecting huge amounts of information, but even a little about the sacrifice these soldiers made will being them back to life for the younger generation and also for genealogists of the future.” If you think you can help, please contact Dorothy on 0116 2672018. If you haven’t visited the cemetery before it is at the Red Hill flyover; approach from down Red Hill Way and turn left into cemetery gates just before the A6 turning towards Loughborough. There is usually a member at the site every Sunday morning between 10am and 12noon. Further information can be obtained on


will be published on Mar 30. The copy deadline is Mar 15.




Student seeks old classmates

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The April issue of

THE BIRSTALL POST will be published on Mar 30. The copy deadline is Mar 15.

Cricket Corner BIRSTALL VILLAGE Cricket Club is in early preparation for the 2013 season. The club committee has been meeting over the off season to look at moving the club forward by building a new score box, making further improvements to a good wicket, finishing off the work on the training nets and much more. We are still looking for any new players for the senior team to please contact Andy Merry 07708473308 for more details. We are also looking for a Junior Coordinator to help with our junior under 15 teams. Anyone who is interested please also contact Andy on the number above. Pre season nets training has started! Training is every Tuesday evening from 7-8pm at The Cricket Academy, Freemans Common, Leicester. All new and current players welcome! Date for your diary: BVCC Presentation night with quiz! Saturday April 13 at Birstall United Football Club. Keep up to date with all the latest news on our website: From Joshua Saye

ONE OF the first students to attend Longslade school when it opened in 1962 is trying to get in touch with his old class mates. Mike Cooke (65) now lives in Market Bosworth and attended Stonehill School before moving on to Longslade. “I grew up in Thurcaston and cycled to and from Birstall each day along Greengate lane, passing over the Great Central Railway bridge” says Mike. “If the local steam train calling at Belgrave and Birstall had passed under the bridge it was time to pedal faster or be late for school. “In the cold winter of 1962/63 I remember cross country runs over frozen fields. During the bad winter our class went roller skating at Granby Halls instead of outdoor PE, which was a real treat, trying to stay upright to Bobby Vee’s The Night has Thousand Eyes.” Anyone in Mr Langman’s class with Mike can contact him on 01455 293264.

COMMUNITY SUPPORT WORKERS URGENTLY REQUIRED For work in and around the Birstall area of Leicestershire Full & Part Time Hours Available Experience preferred but not essential as we provide full free training with the opportunity of gaining a Diploma in Health & Social Care. Must have own transport £7.50-£8.54 per hour. Immediate starts. If this sounds like the position for you then please call Debra Matthews on 01162 696247


Reservoirs are full SEVERN TRENT Water says its water resources are in “a good position” with reservoirs at an average of 94% full. David Essex, water strategy manager for Severn Trent said: “While our sandstone groundwater supplies are below normal for this time of year, this is to be expected following the prolonged dry period we saw during 2011/12. Groundwater levels have been recovering since summer 2012 and we expect that to continue over the winter. We do not anticipate any of our groundwater sources being at risk next year.” Even though the summer and autumn have been unusually wet, this time last year much of England was in sight of a severe drought. Seven water companies in the south east had to announce hosepipe bans and water restrictions. In the Severn Trent region there were no water restrictions and the company managed its way through the driest 18 month period for 100 years, with a combination of innovative engineering solutions as well as working closely with its customers. Mr Essex added: “The autumn and winter period when our sources would normally recharge has been very wet, which has helped to bring our water sources into a good position. Our groundwater sources are recharging nicely, our plans are in place and we are confident that we are in a good position to provide our customers with a continuous supply of water throughout the coming year.”

Chocolate the prize for woollen egg hunters THE KNITTING Guerillas of Birstall are inviting readers to take part in their annual wooly egg hunt this month – the first prize is a giant chocolate Easter egg. Trout Mask from the KGB said: “Once again you are invited to seek out and

Helena Edwards letter in the Birstall Post last month. Thank you so much for putting pen to paper - it made us smile. “After so much work was put into the creation of the tree by volunteers, the KGB is keen to keep it current and fresh. As winter turns to spring you may find that the tree begins to bloom. Watch

Pic:Last years winner, Luke

out for the changes and make sure that if you are a mum you pop along on Mother's Day when we will have a surprise for the hard working mums of Birstall.” Join the community of KGB chatter via facebook: or follow the blog

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photograph woolly eggs around Birstall. Please leave the eggs in place, but send your photos to Entries close at midnight on April 1and the winner of a large chocolate Easter egg will be drawn at random on April 6.” This years event will be supported by printers Flexpress Ltd and the band Dodgy. If you would like to make a wooly egg for the event, which can be knitted, crocheted, woven or felted, drop them off at Birstall Methodist Church, Wanlip Lane (c/o David Bark) or Ruby Tuesdays, The Meadway, Birstall. Alternately you can arrange pick up by emailing Eggs cannot be returned. Trout Mask added: “Over the past month, the KGB tree next to Greengate Medical Centre seems to be getting a bit of a following, and intelligence tells us that it has been renamed by a fan as the ‘Purple Myrtle Tree’. We love this, and we were also utterly delighted to read

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Church news MARCH BRINGS a promise of Spring at last (we hope!) and by the end of the month Easter has arrived. The Table Talk meetings in Lent, which started on Tuesday evenings in February at the different churches, continue on March 5 at the Methodist church, on the 12th at St Theresa’s and on Wednesday 20 at St James. All are at 7.30pm and are open to anyone to join in or listen to informal discussions on faith and belief – just turn up. In Holy Week, half hour meditations will take

The yearly climax of the church’s year, Jesus’s rising from the dead, culminates on Easter Sunday, with an early vigil at Wanlip at 6am, followed by communion at 7am. Then at St. James there will be a Celebration of Easter (with Communion) at 10am, with refreshments after the service. In the evening there will be a festal evensong at Wanlip at 6pm. The demise of the much lamented churches’ magazine, Contact, has given added importance to the Link magazine produced quarterly for the two Anglican churches. Most of the people on the Electoral Roll (the list of church members) already receive a copy, but if you do not

Pic: Children baking at Wanlip Church Hall

place at 7.30pm; Monday at St James, Tuesday at St. Theresa’s and Wednesday at the Methodist Church. As usual, the churches will be having a walk of witness through the village on Good Friday morning, starting near Barclay’s Bank at 10am. Easter is always an exciting time for children and even we adults find the signs of new life –and the chocolate - a cheering lift after the gloom of winter.

receive one or would like to contribute to the home-produced Link, contact Noreen Talbot on 2672756. News of past members, reports on church trips, events, articles on topics that would interest others, poems, reviews, puzzles etc, etc. are all welcome. The Spring edition is already under way, but the summer edition will be out on June 1 with the theme “All things green”, so please send your ideas in.

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A very successful morning for children was held at Wanlip on Shrove Tuesday during half-term, when baking and crafts were tried out. The youngsters heard a short story about a baby in Africa who had been rescued form starvation by Save the Children and realised how lucky they were to have enough food to eat. Another event is being planned for April, involving trips by canal boat and “arty” activities. More details will be found on the churches’ website: From Beryl McHugh, Parish Churches

Lay Witness Weekend Many weeks of planning are leading to our weekend of “Sharing God’s Love”. This is a weekend led by a team of visitors from different parts of the UK. The weekend will have a gentle and low key approach and is for the whole church family to join in. The event begins with a meal on Friday evening, March 15 at 6.30 followed by a ‘Sharing Expectations’ session. On Saturday 16 there will be discussion groups in various homes, with further sessions at church starting at 5pm, again including a meal. There is no cost, but in order to help with arrangements it is helpful to ‘book’ those session/s which you wish to attend through the weekend. It will conclude with a service led by the Lay Witness Team on Sunday morning. It will be a very special experience. If you need more information contact Roger Wilson 2675973 or Rev Rachel Parkinson 2671804. Messy Church This will run on two Saturdays in March, March 2 from 4pm to 6pm and on March 27 from 10.30 to 12.30pm. Messy Church is open to families to join together, with an opportunity through activities, a lot of fun, and friendship to introduce Jesus through story, song, prayer, games, activities, and some food! Coffee Shop in Town Hall Square The coffee shop at the Methodist church here in Birstall is frequently mentioned in these pages. There is another coffee shop set up last year at the Methodist Church in Bishop Street, in the City Centre. It is open from 8am to 3pm and they do offer light snacks too. Easter Easter falls, this year, at the end of March. This Christian Festival remembers the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his Resurrection. There will be a Shared Service on Maunday Thursday at St James which includes Holy Communion. On Good Friday starting at 10am there will be a Witness Procession, following the the Cross, which is also arranged by ‘Churches Together in Birstall’. Rev Dave Warnock leads our Easter Day service at 10.30am From Tony Moore



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Report As I am writing this we are looking forward to a special visit on February 24 by Roop Lal Ram, a missionary whom we support. He will take the morning service and, after a ‘faith lunch’, we will see some slides and hear news of how the Lord is bringing people to Himself in Northern India and about our brothers and sisters in Christ in that region. Easter As we approach this central festival of the Christian faith, you are invited to join one of our free six-week courses, which examine basic Christian beliefs such as the nature and character of God, the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ, how a person becomes a Christian and how do we know that what we say is true. There is an opportunity for questions and discussion in an informal setting and the sessions are suitable for individuals of any denomination or religion (or none). Please contact the number given below to register an interest and preference for day(s). Services Our services up to March 24 will be held in the Community Room at Highcliffe Primary School (LE4 3DL) from 10.45am but we are not able to use the premises over the school holiday period, so please ring for venues for Easter Day (31st March) and for April 7. On Good Friday ( March 29), there is a service at Melbourne Hall (Leicester) at 11am and many evangelical churches join together at Holywell Free Church in Berkeley Road, Loughborough (LE11 3SJ) at 7.45pm when the speaker is to be John Tindall (Birmingham). You will be most welcome to join with us at any of these services. We wish you every blessing this Easter. Further information Please ring 0116 2214883. From Anne Taylor, Birstall Independent Baptist Church

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Planning applications P/13/0118/2: 156 Birstall Road erection of extension to rear of dwelling P/13/0207/2: Nether Hall Lane – trimming of 1 beech tree and 1 silver birch tree (Tree Preservation Order) P/13/0163/2: Birstall Fisheries, 1 Sibson Road –variation of condition 2 of application P/09/0365/2 to vary opening hours P/13/0078/2: 3A Park Road – retrospective application for dormer windows and roof lights to dwelling P/13/0094/2: 115 Sibson Road – change of use from retail (Class A1) to tattoo studio (Sui-Generis) P/13/00075/2: 10 Cliffe Road – retention of pergola at top of garden with addition of screening and retention of wooden structure attached to rear of dwelling


Lucky escape A SWAN that was almost killed by a crossbow bolt now has cygnets of its own and returns each winter to Watermead Country Park. In 2007 a swan was reported as having been shot in the head with a crossbow, with the bolt still lodged in her head at the base of the bill. The first rescue attempts failed but Watermead Swan volunteer Julie agreed with the RSPCC to take a slower approach. She said: “I tried to build up trust with her and get her to come out with the other swans. Every day I went down and she came closer and closer and spent more time with me. “When she did eventually come out on the grass it was impossible as all the other swans were in the way. All of a sudden they moved and I was able to catch her.” Julie carried the swan to Birstall vet John Borrajo on Sibson Road where the arrow was removed, and

it was back in the park within the hour. “It was a miracle she survived the attack” said Julie. “It shattered her confidence but one day I saw her in the car park being fed out of a car window. It made me smile as I knew she’d at long last found her confidence again.” The swan paired with another at Watermead. Julie said: “One of the happiest times for me was the day I went for a walk and saw a very happy sight before my

eyes. She had little cygnets. I spent many happy days on a hot sunny bank watching a miracle before my eyes. “Now I always keep a very close eye open for her and I last saw her before Christmas – she always come straight over to say hello.” Pics: Julie with the swan after it was treated by a vet; (left) the swan with the bolt lodged in its head & (far left) with her cygnets

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Charity cycle ride through Charnwood TAKE PART in a charity cycle ride from Rothley and help to raise money for Alex’s wish. The Charnwood Forest Cycle ride takes place on Sunday April 28 and is a 20 mile circular route starting and finishing in Rothley. Alex’s wish is a charity dedicated to finding a cure for the muscle wasting condition Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. It was set up by Andy and Emma Hallam from Rothley whose son Alex was diagnosed in 2010 when he was 3. Emma said: “To date we have raised £20k towards research and trials but we hope to raise more in the coming months. Our son has this terrible condition and we have taken the step towards

Market investment LOUGHBOROUGH MARKET is set for a £150,000 makeover. Charnwood Borough Council plans to invest the money on new stalls, electrical infrastructure and improving the appearance of the historic market. Charnwood says the one-off investment is possible following a better than expected financial settlement from the Government.

helping scientists and researchers fund new trials. As a result, we hope to make a difference to all the children living with this condition with a view to delaying the symptoms by several years to buy time for a cure to come along. “We would like to thank everyone who takes part, to our event organiser Rachel Porritt and helpers and to our event sponsors – Bradleys Superstore and The Woodman’s Stroke in Rothley – this means 100% of all money raised will go direct towards our aim. “I took part in this event last year despite the horrendous weather conditions and thoroughly enjoyed it – although it was a challenge! It’s a fantastic route and a great way to get fit and do something for a worthwhile cause.” There will be free refreshments, home made cakes, sandwiches and drinks for all cyclists at the finish line. Children aged 14-18 can take part in the cycle ride but must be accompanied by an adult, children under 14 can take part in craft and games activities. For more details on how to take part and obtain entry forms, please visit, call Emma on 07903 349475 or email:

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WI making birthday plans TWENTY THREE ladies attended Birstall and Wanlip WI’s first meeting of the year on February 4. This was the day that we discovered that the bones in the car park were indeed those of Richard III so several ladies were absent in order to watch the documentary on television. Indeed our speaker Adrian Lane, Senior Riverside

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Officer for Leicester City Council admitted that he wondered if any of us would turn up! His enthusiastic talk on the history and ongoing development of Leicester’s Riverside tied in nicely with the announcement as it had finally been disproved that the King’s bones had been thrown in the River Soar after the Battle of Bosworth. It was good to learn that through their hard work there are otters living once again in Leicestershire’s cleaner rivers. Plans for our 95th birthday celebrations in June are taking shape as we plan to dress in the costume of 1918 and enjoy a meal at the Platform Café by Leicester North Station. We have a trip organized to see Hot Stuff at the Curve in May and an August coach outing to Spalding. These are activities we organize for our own group but there are lots more opportunities for craft days, meals and outings across the Leicester and Rutland Federation. Jane Glover won the competition cup this month with “Something from the Riverbank’. Our next meeting will be on March 4.

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As usual we meet at 7.15pm at Highcliffe School and our speaker will be John Stirling who is Carer for the Queen’s Donkeys and he will talk to us about the Ultimate Companions of Honour. From Birstall & Wanlip WI

Allotments THERE ARE vacant allotment plots on Birstall’s Meadow Lane allotments. If you are interested and would like to put your name forward for the vacant plots or to be put on the waiting list for the future, please contact: Birstall Parish Council, Council Offices, Birstall Road, Birstall, Leicester LE4 4DH. Tel: 2676191 or email:

Birstall flower club BIRSTALL FLOWER Club offers an insight into how impressive flower arrangements are made. We meet once a month – on the fourth Wednesday of the month. A demonstrator from the National Association of the Flower Arrangers Society visits our club, bringing with them unusual and sometimes exotic flowers and accessories. They then demonstrate 5 to 6 arrangements, to the amazement of the audience. A raffle is run by the club at each meeting and the prizes are the flower arrangements that have been demonstrated during the evening. You do not have to bring anything with you. All you have to do is turn up, watch, enjoy and hopefully win an amazing prize of flowers. As a club, we also run flower arranging workshops, evening outings to local ‘open’ gardens and coach trip outings to gardens outside Leicestershire. We run plant sales, and fund raising activities for our chosen charity. Our Open Evening in November is the highlight of our calendar and is always well supported – for the last 2 years, we have had a waiting list for tickets. If you are interested, the cost of this

most enjoyable evening is only £5. Please telephone Sylvia Simes on 0116 2674206 or simply turn up at Birstall Village Hall at 7pm on the 4th Wednesday of any month February through to October. We look forward to meeting you and are confident that you will enjoy your evening. If you do, why not consider joining. Your £5 fee will be refunded if you join on the same evening. Full membership if £30. From Mary Linnett, Birstall Flower Club

Council tax freeze COUNCIL TAX has been frozen for the third year in a row in Charnwood. Charnwood Borough Council has announced it will not increase Council Tax for 2013/14. The freeze was announced in the Council’s budget, submitted to Cabinet on Thursday February 14, which also included plans for an extra £930,000 towards major projects. Projects budgeted for 2013/14 include: • £500,000 to Loughborough University to fund a bid for a Science

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and Enterprise Park on their land which could see local jobs created • £200,000 towards funding high speed broadband in rural areas • £150,000 refurbishment of Loughborough Market, including new market stalls and electrical infrastructure, to further enhance the reputation of Loughborough as a shopping destination • £80,000 for improved access to Wards End Loughborough through Bleach Yard plus improved street furniture, including benches, for the Loughborough Inner Relief Road In total the council has pledged to spend more than £2million in 2013/14 on these types of capital projects across the borough. In total the Council has pledged to spend more than £2million in 2013/14 on these types of capital projects across the borough. Investment in the council’s housing stock will continue, with the Council spending £14.8million on property improvements next year.



Managing your money – don’t end up like Emmerdale’s Edna Birch

Age UK’s top tips on managing your money and how to seek help if you have debts As Edna Birch in ITV’s Emmerdale struggles to cope financially, Age UK is encouraging older people not to suffer in silence with money worries and to seek advice. Stopping work in later life is something that many of us look forward to, but if the choice is not entirely our own – like Edna – or if we haven’t put enough money aside, then financial matters can spiral out of control. It is important to consider how we will afford to live on our pension and whether we are claiming all the benefits that are available. Everything comes with a cost so it is important to make our money work for us as effectively as possible. Age UK’s Head of Information and Advice, Lucy Harmer, shares her top tips on managing money and how to go about seeking help with money worries: • Speak up: If you’re finding it hard to cope financially then don’t suffer in silence. If you’re aged 60 or over, you could be entitled to benefits that you haven’t been able to claim before. These can help you keep your independence and improve your standard of living. • Get a benefits check: Contact your local Age UK to get a benefits check to make sure you’re claiming all the money you’re entitled to. You can find your nearest Age UK by calling Age UK Advice on 0800 169 65 65 or visiting As well as giving you a benefits check, your local Age UK can help you fill in any claim forms to maximise your chances of making a successful claim. You can also use Age UK’s online benefits calculator at • Help with keeping warm this winter: If you are struggling to keep warm this winter there are measures you can take to help keep your home warm and bills down. You may be eligible for help with the financial costs of implementing these measures and assistance with your heating costs. Call Age UK Advice free on 0800 169 65 65 or visit, where you can also order a free copy of the ‘Winter wrapped up’ guide with a free thermometer. • Seek help: If you have debts then it’s never too early or too late to seek help. There are organisations to help you who will be sympathetic and understanding. Don’t borrow more money to pay off your debts and don’t pay for debt advice. Get free advice from your local Citizens Advice Bureau, National Debtline (tel: 0808 800 4000) or StepChange (tel: 0800 138 1111).

• Prioritise any debts: ‘Priority bills’ are the ones for which non-payment could lead to serious trouble. For example, if you don’t pay your mortgage, your home could be repossessed. Or if you don’t pay your gas or electricity bills,

your energy supply could be cut off. Don’t panic if you’re behind on any of these bills. Contact one of the agencies above for help with prioritising your debts. • Work out a household budget: In the longer term, once you’ve claimed any benefits you may be entitled to, work out a household budget and ensure your outgoings match your income. Review your spending and think carefully about whether there are any non-essential items you could cut out. Be realistic and don’t cut back on essentials like food and heating. Age UK’s free guide Managing your money has information on balancing your budget, as well as budgeting worksheets to fill out. Call 0800 169 6565 for a free copy or download it from To find out more about how Age UK can help call Age UK Advice for free on 0800 169 6565, visit or speak to your local Age UK.

Lets (not) talk about sex In a poll for Age UK of people aged over 65, over a quarter (28%) felt they couldn’t talk to their partner about sex, and over two thirds (69%) have never sought sexual health advice. People aged over 65+ have spoken openly about attitudes to sex as we get older, revealing a desire to remain sexually active – but a lack understanding about where to go for advice. The online poll for Age UK was commissioned to highlight the role of sex and sexual health in later life, helping to dispel some of the stereotypes and taboos around older people and sexual relationships. With a quarter (24%) of those polled stating that age hasn’t affected their sex lives, the survey shows that sex remains important, whatever your age. The survey highlights the extent to which sex remains an important part of our later years, with almost two thirds (62%) of over-65s in the survey saying that they are currently enjoying a fulfilling sex life. What’s more, a wish to keep the


spark alive came through in the findings, as one in eight (12%) said they would like to try new things with their partner and just under one in five (18%) wanting to be more sexually active. 8% of those who took part in the survey were keen to embark on a new sexual relationship. Despite this desire for a fulfilling sex life in later life, the survey revealed that many of the older generation find it difficult to talk to partners or health workers about sex. Over a quarter (28%) feel they can’t talk to their partner, with women finding it harder to disclose their feelings than men. Reasons behind the silence included embarrassment and not knowing how to initiate the conversation. Time for a check-up It’s a myth that sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are only a problem for younger people. According to a study by the Health Protection Agency, there has recently been an increase in the number of over-45s affected by STIs.

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However, the Age UK research shows that the reluctance to speak out also applies when it comes to finding out about sexual health. Over two thirds of over-65s (69%) in the survey admit they have never sought any type of sexual health advice. The findings also revealed: Three quarters (76%) of over-65s do not currently seek sexual health advice Just one in seven (14%) have sought sexual advice in the last 20 years Almost half (46%) of those in later life feel they don’t need any sexual health advice, rising to 54% of women The poll found that the most likely source of sexual health information is a nurse or doctor, with 17% of those polled turning to their healthcare professional for help. Commenting on the survey, Lucy Harmer, Head of Information and Advice at Age UK, said: 'Our research shows that having a healthy sex life is important to us regardless of our age. However, we also found that many older people may find it hard to speak up about sex, be it to their partner, friends or healthcare professionals. 'Age UK is keen to increase awareness of the importance of seeking out information and advice on sex - whatever your age. Some people’s knowledge will be based on guidance received when they were first sexually active a number of years ago and it’s vital that those in later life have access to relevant, upto-date information.' Where can people find out more information? Age UK offers free, friendly, and impartial advice to people in later life, their friends, family and carers. Contact Age UK Advice free on 0800 169 65 65 to find out more about maintaining a healthy sex life, including information on how to speak to people about sex, staying safe and making sex more comfortable as we age. Lucy Harmer continued: “The changes that many people face as we age, such as the menopause or finding our joints become less supple, don’t necessarily mean our sex life has to stop. The right information and advice will help people in later life to keep sexually active and healthy for as long as desired.”

0116 2676252



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An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is still required if you are selling or renting out your house. Call David Jackson on 0781 5519490 to arrange your EPC



Birstall BAG’s cancer corner Worried about a family history of Cancer? Birstall BAG’s would like to provide a little insight into genetics and cancer. Many people worry about getting cancer. Sometimes, people think they have a higher risk of developing it because there is a history of cancer in their family. Cancer is a common illness. More than 1 in 3 people in the UK will get cancer during their lives. Most people who get cancer are over 65. It is relatively rare for young people (under 50) to get cancer. People sometimes think that several cases of cancer in their family may be connected, and that they have inherited an increased risk of developing cancer. But only a minority of cancers (5–10%, or less than 10 out of 100 cases) are clearly linked to an inherited gene change. The organs and tissues of the body are made up of tiny building blocks

called cells. Every cell contains all the biological information we inherit from our parents. This information is stored in our genes in the centre (nucleus) of every cell. Genes carry the biological information we inherit from our parents. They affect the way our bodies grow, work and look. Many people think that because they have one or two relatives with cancer, this means a cancer gene is present in their family. But this is not usually the case. It’s only likely that a cancer gene is present in your family if: • A close relative has had two different types of cancer, not one cancer that has spread. Your close relatives are your parents, children, brothers and sisters. They are also sometimes called your first degree relatives. • There are two or more close relatives on the same side of your family

(your mother’s side or your father’s side) with the same type of cancer or with particular types of cancer that are sometimes connected. Cancers that are sometimes connected include breast and ovarian cancer, and bowel and womb (uterus) cancer. • Cancers occur in family members under the age of 60. If any of these apply to your family and you’re worried about your own risk of developing cancer, you may want to talk to your GP. If they think there’s a chance you may have an increased risk of developing cancer because of your family history, they will talk to you about being referred to a genetic counsellor, family cancer clinic or a cancer specialist. For more information: nformation/Causesriskfactors/Genetics/Ca ncergenetics/Specificconditions/Ifyouare worried.aspx Macmillan Cancer Support free phone help line 0808 808 000 Monday – Friday 9am-8pm. University Hospitals of Leicester Cancer Information Centre on 0116 258 6189. To reflect the interest and support of the local community Birstall BAG's seeks to be inclusive of all cancers and the group welcome villagers to support the many events they organise each year within the local community. For more information on the funds we have raised, projects we support and forthcoming events see Birstall BAG’s continue to fund the Birstall Time Out Group held the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month at the Village Hall.

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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.

TELEPHONE EXTENSION Sockets fitted by ex-BT 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 FOR SALE Nest of 3 tables with marquetry tops from Italy 1 is musical highly polished £45. PUSHCHAIR Maclaren’s navy fold flat £10. Chicco baby trainer Ergo Gym from birth to 9 months as brand new £15. Rocking horse sit in type very colourful suit child 9 months to 3 yrs old as new £10. Picture frames new & used suit artist. Tel: 07874 187895 BUILDING PLANS drawn and submitted for Local Authority approval. Free quotations. Quorn Plan Services 01509 413332 WHEELCHAIR top quality lightweight aluminium. Folds to fit into car. Used only once. £30. 07973 309987 TRIWALKER £15. Various other disabled aids all under £5. 07973 309987 DISABLED person’s chair. ‘Lloyd loom’ style £15. 07973 309987 CODELOCKS 500 series. Push button external door lock with fitting kit. Boxed & unused. £25. 07973 309987

Continued from page 1 Tyrrell Brady, Luke Hartwell and Stella Hale all decided to do the artwork for the ‘Community Project’ element of their Prince’s Trust Award. Two boards were painted by Amy, Stella, Lauren and Harry, depicting their likes and interests while Tyrrell and Luke created a photo collage on the theme ‘Life at Longslade’. Prince’s Trust Instructor Jayne Yeates said: “We are extremely proud of all the students involved and their finished project looks fantastic on the wall within the Youth Centre”. Advertise in

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Birstall Post (356) March 2013  

Birstall Post Mar 2013

Birstall Post (356) March 2013  

Birstall Post Mar 2013