Ilkeston Life Newspaper November 2017

Page 1

30p where sold

NOVEMBER 2017 A community publication for Ilkeston and surrounding area

Windy and wet—but the Fair is enjoyed by thousands People from near and far rolled up to enjoy the fun of Ilkeston’s annual Fair. The 765th event was opened in the traditional way with the reading of the 1252 charter in front of the town hall, then the ringing of the bells by the Mayor, Cllr Mary Hopkinson. Despite ‘Storm Brian,’ the Showmen did good business as crowds enjoyed the rides, sideshows and food stalls over four days.

Community fights to save Hazelwood A

public meeting at Ilkeston Library is the next step in the fight to save Hazelwood. The care home on Skeavington’s Lane, Cotmanhay is threatened with closure by the Conservative-led Derbyshire County Council. Local Labour councillors and Action4Cotmanhay are backing the campaign to keep the well respected home for elderly people open. Thousands of people have signed petitions at shops, a school, local events and online. DCC are consulting with the local community on the possible closure of the home, which is in need of repair and refurbishment. Ilkeston South county councillor John Frudd told us: “It’s disgusting they’re proposing to close it. This is due to a change in administration at the County Council from Labour to the Tories. We did not have Hazelwood down for closure and had no intention of doing so. The community are really behind this and really want to see it kept open. The comments from everyone show how caring the staff are and so helping towards the residents.” Julie Diana posted on Facebook: “With an ageing population it's essential we keep such homes open at all costs. Nobody has a bad word to say about this home. People of Ilkeston need to get fully behind this campaign and fight its closure all the way - after all, we'll all get old one day and perhaps require such care.”

The consultation meeting takes place at the library on Thursday 2nd November between 10am and 1pm. Local plumber and Action4Cotmanhay event organiser John Allen says the group is urging people to go along and have their say. “I’m pleased people are pulling together on this. We don’t want to lose Hazelwood. It’s a precious part of our community.” Earlier, Erewash MP Maggie Throup said “When Labour left office in May, Derbyshire was left with a social care bombshell. DCC face some tough decisions over the next five years to rectify Labour’s failings whilst in office. As Erewash MP, I will continue to do everything in my power to ensure Erewash residents remain well provided for.”


Independent Fresh Entertaining


f you don’t get a copy through your door, Ilkeston Life is available online and from various outlets including newsagents, shops, cafes, Post Offices and supermarkets in our growing circulation area. Besides Ilkeston, we are currently supplying: KIRK HALLAM COTMANHAY SHIPLEY VIEW HALLAM FIELDS LARKLANDS STANTON-BY-DALE DALE ABBEY WEST HALLAM STANLEY



We also give free copies to Ilkeston Hospital, nursing and care homes, doctors waiting rooms, schools, etc. and mail out copies to subscribers.

Editorial office: 1 Bath Street, Ilkeston, DE7 8AH Tel: 07539 808390 Editor: Robert Attewell Deputy Editor: Paul Opiah Staff feature writer: Patricia Spencer Staff photographer: John Shelton Advertising: Christine Chell Paul Opiah sales Webmaster: Adam Newton © Copyright 2017 The material in Ilkeston Life is protected by copyright. If you wish to reproduce anything, please contact the editor. While every care is taken to be accurate, we are only human and mistakes do occur occasionally. If you are unhappy with any of the content in the paper, please contact the editor in the first place. We accept news and information from correspondents in good faith and cannot be held responsible for inaccuracies. We try not to include stories which may cause distress to anyone. If you have a view on any of the articles, please write and let us know. Your letters are always welcome, but we reserve the right to withhold or edit. Anonymous letters will only be printed in exceptional circumstances.

COPY DEADLINE The deadline for adverts and editorial Is always the 15th for following month’s paper (unless by prior arrangement). Send to us by email if possible. We prefer to receive images as jpegs.

Email us: sales@ilkeston or Ilkeston Life is registered with the British Library. ISSN 2515-1231 Current circulation: 10,000 copies

Syd Meehan… stories over a cuppa


yd Meehan was born and lived in a block of flats in Kentish Town, in London until they got bombed. He came from a big family. He had seven siblings, but two of the boys died when they were only six years old. One was hit by an ambulance when he was coming out of school, and the other died of meningitis after being swung round by his legs and hitting his head on Swains Lane cemetery fence. When they got bombed he remembers his sister was pregnant, and she got very upset when they were trying to dig out the bodies. They used to go down to the underground for protection, sleeping down there when the bombing was at its worst. They used to have good sing-song though and people would be down there serving food and drinks. Syd’s eldest sister Betty was a big help looking after the younger ones as his mum was run off her feet. Betty died in Brighton only a few months ago. Syd joined up in 1944 towards the end of the war, when he was eighteen. He was a sapper in the Royal Engineers in Brentwood, in Essex, and then he went on to Aldershot for six weeks training on how to build bridges and lift mines. This was his main occupation for the rest of the war. He then went to Isle of Arran, Scotland practising his craft. His next port of call was Newark, where he was simply waiting to go abroad. Then he went on to Norwich were his fitness was tested by doing, ten mile runs with two miles in full kit. Finally, he was posted abroad to, Salerno, Naples and Trieste in Italy to do the work he had been

trained to do. Syd was in Italy when the patriots came down from the hills thinking they were safe, but the German’s shot them down and strung them up in trees. His travels then took him to Egypt to Port Said, Ismailia, Palestine and Gaza. At that time the Palestinians were trying to get out and the Jewish people were trying to get in. the opposite of the position now. Syd then went on a course to become a Staff Sergeant, he passed and they sent him back to Egypt, to Port Said, Ismailia and Eritrea. He then travelled for twelve days on the ship Ascanius to Mombasa where he and his comrades lived in tents in the Voli jungle and had to keep a wary eye out for the Mau Mau. They were there for six months. It is here, that Sid thinks sowed the seeds of the skin cancer he had later on in life. He used to sunbathe on the beach under the smouldering heat of the sun. He also had to keep a wary eye out for the ladies in Mombasa, as another soldier’s wife took a fancy to him and wanted to stay with him when her husband was leaving. Syd declined her kind offer! As you can see by the photo, he was a very handsome man. On board ship the men had to sleep in hammocks. Syd woke up one morning and went to look for his friend who he found on deck. When he asked him what he was doing, his friend replied, “I’m waiting for the next bus.” They were in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. Syd’s travels continued to Tanganyika back to Kenya, Egypt Port Said then back to the U.K. to be demobbed in 1948.

What the Dickens! You may have already guessed that Ilkeston Theatre Company's family panto this year, “Bah, Humbug!” is based on the classic tale “A Christmas Carol”. Paul Ensor plays the miserly Scrooge, who doesn't like Christmas, and prefers to spend time counting all his money. However, this year, things are about to change. Scrooge is visited by three ghosts. These are the excitable Christmas Past (newcomer Justine Haywood), Christmas Present (not that sort of present - played by Becks Harrison-Mace) and the gloomy Christmas Past (Tracey Dean). They are accompanied by the fairly hopeless, sweetmunching ghost of Scrooge's old associate, Jacob Marley (Steve Walton). The spirits are hoping Scrooge will become more cheerful and also fall in love with his former sweetheart, Belle. This is quite a challenge, as Belle (played by Ben Mills) isn't the most gorgeous or eligible women in town. Belle has her own troubles as she can't afford to run her orphanage any more. Two bizarre characters Cadgit (Jacqueline Dixon) and Beggit (Marilyn Keates) offer to help raise money by singing carols, but unfortunately, to paraphrase Simon Cowell,

Syd was working on the Festival Of Britain when he met his wife Isabelle, he was introduced to her by a relative who was in the radio engineers at the time. His regiment went to work in Plymouth and Syd and Isabelle got married in 1950. Isabelle was an army nurse and looked after Roahl Dahl in hospital. She was the first thing he saw when he woke up. Isabelle’s Nurse’s Uniform is on show in the Erewash Museum. Isabelle was a Bridge Master and she went on a trip to Tunisia to play in a tournament. When a friend knocked on the door she sang, “Who’s that knocking on my door.” When the friend came into the room she explained that this was the beginning of a song. It later irritated her that she could not remember the rest of the song, so she wrote to Roy Hudd who sent her all 14 verses of it. The song was first popularised around 1929. When Syd was stationed in Newark he and some of his friends ordered two fish and chips, which was all they could afford at the time. He gave them extra. Many years later Syd and Isabelle went back to the shop in Newark and told the man behind the counter he had gone back to pay his debt. The man was the son of the guy who had given them the fish n chips. They had a good laugh about it. How did Syd end up in Ilkeston? Isabelle’s sister married an Ilkeston man and they came here to stay with them for a holiday. When they got back home Syd asked if she would like to come and live in Ilkeston to be with her sister. She said yes, so Syd got a job working for Wimpey’s and stayed with them for 35 years.

they make noises like nothing you have ever heard. Hopefully Belle will find a rich philanthropist to help her out. As this is panto, you can expect some minor tweaks to the original novel, so don't be surprised to discover that Tiny Tim isn't the timid little victim on crutches, but a very naughty boy (played with relish by Penny Courtney) who delights in stealing and playing tricks on people. And I'm certain Dickens didn't have Scrooge singing a Victorian rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody”. The panto is in the large marquee, Seven Oaks Inn, Stanton-by-Dale, Ilkeston DE7 4QU on the following dates: Friday 1st December, 7.30pm Saturday 2nd December, 7.30pm Sunday 3rd December, 5pm Friday 8th December, 7.30pm Saturday 9th December, 2.30pm Saturday 9th December, 8pm – Festive dinner & Show £36/£25 pre-book only. Tickets on sale now at the Seven Oaks, are all priced at £9. Group discounts are also available. Our gardening correspondent Steve Walton is playing Jacob Marley.

November 2017


by Patricia Spencer

I first met Syd a few weeks ago in the U Choose cafe. He was telling us about a lovely trip to a Royal British Legion Hotel. He was saying he wished he had booked for a fortnight instead of only a week. It sounded wonderful. I am sure Syd will not mind me telling you he is now 91 years of age. He and Isabelle were married for 65 happy years. Syd has been part of many organisations in Ilkeston over the year, including the Round Table and is well known in the town. He was Chairman of the Donkey Derby that was mentioned in last month’s paper. My last question was to ask him if he had done any fighting in the war. He said no, he always carried a weapon but fortunately he never had to use it.

For further information or to book tickets please contact the Seven Oaks on 0115 932 3189. Email:

New Stanton tribute at museum E rewash MP Maggie Throup cut the ribbon to open an expanded and updated exhibition celebrating the history of Stanton Ironworks at Ilkeston’s Erewash Museum Museum. For a long time the museum has had a ‘Stanton room’ but it has been refreshed and features all-new displays and historic objects and materials linked to the site. Today’s ‘Stanton’ managing director Paul Minchin spoke of the company’s long association with the Ilkeston area. “It has been around for 150 years and at its height employed 12,000 people. Almost every family had someone who worked at Stanton.” The Mayor of Erewash, Cllr Mary Hopkinson, her husband Peter and other dignitaries were present at the opening. Several had first hand experience of working at the Stanton-by-Dale production site or offices. Ms Throup revealed that she and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn do have something in common: they are both ‘drain spotters’. Like many ex-Stanton folk, they can’t resist looking down at grates, covers and other products to see the maker’s name—very often Stanton. The new look exhibition opened to the public on Friday 22nd September in the existing Stanton Gallery and is seen as a tribute to the ironworks, the role it played throughout its life and to the generations of local people who worked at the site. Current site owner Saint-Gobain PAM UK Ltd has funded the Stanton Gallery exhibition and worked together with Erewash Museum, which is committed to ensuring the industrial heritage of the site is properly recorded and acknowledged. The new display includes a dedicated family friendly

area. Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says: “We have no doubt this will be an incredibly popular exhibition in our Stanton Gallery at the museum. It was important to us to have the history of Stanton Ironworks brought to life and equally important that it is done so in Erewash, on the doorstep of this site that has a rich history and evokes memories for the many families whose members and ancestors worked there. The new look Stanton Gallery is a must-see. “Be sure to visit the museum for this excellent display, and have a look around at what else is on offer too – including the tearoom and Hayloft area.” The gallery charts the history of Stanton Ironworks and its development from the late 18th century onwards as well as the lives of those who worked at the site. The Ironworks became one of the biggest individual employers in the area and played an important role in the production of armaments in both world wars. During World War II, the male workers were conscripted into the military, meaning women made up the vast proportion of the workforce. In 1985, the business was acquired by the French company which later became SaintGobain Pipelines, which still owns the site. Production stopped in May 2007; the company is now a fabricator and finisher rather than a maker of spun iron pipes, employing around 200 men and women in its workshops, stockground and offices.

Colour photographs by John Shelton (top to bottom): Erewash MP Maggie Throup cuts the ribbon to open the new Stanton exhibition. The Stanton site’s Managing Director Paul Minchin and Maggie Throup pose beside an ironworks mural. Paul puts together the museum’s Stanton jigsaw puzzle. The Mayor Cllr Mary Hopkinson and husband Peter take a break in the old stable tea room. Black and white photograph: A trio a women employed at Stanton during the war after a large number of men had been conscripted into the military.

November 2017


Have your say Letters to the


Email: Post: The Editor, Ilkeston Life, 1 Bath Street, Ilkeston, Derbyshire DE7 8AH

Back on 14th June, I had the privilege of taking a coach full of people to the National Memorial Arboretum (thanks to the funding from the Big Kirk Hallam Lottery Fund).

tional coalitions. Those who gave their lives are remembered here, there are over 16,000 names on it. Every year new memorials are added, some as our armed services merge or relocated, others in respect of more recent Like many on the coach, I’d never been conflicts. In 2010 the Basra Memorial there before, and again like most others, I Wall was unveiled, to remember the 178 was moved. I cannot recommend strongly UK Service personnel and one MOD civilenough for other people to visit the centre ian who lost their lives on combat operaand its grounds. Our day started at the tions in Iraq. It also lists the members of centre in the new ‘Millennium Chapel of the Coalition Forces who were killed while Peace and Forgiveness’ with the daily Act under the UK command during the six of Remembrance which is observed daily years of conflict. The original memorial at 11 am. was actually built in Basra in 2006 and As the land train took us for a tour around stood outside the front of the Headquarters the grounds, I was staggered by the numof the Multi-National Division. Following ber of memorials, the Arboretum is home the end of the operations the Basra Memoto over 300 thought-provoking memorials, rial Wall was brought back to the UK and each with a story to be discovered. The rebuilt, and now has a permanent home at memorials were diverse, rich in symbolism the Arboretum. and represented so many different groups, And of course, for every single memorial organisations and societies. it’s not just Service Personnel who’ve The Armed Forces Memorial, dedicated in made the sacrifice. Behind every name on the presence of Her Majesty the Queen on the Memorials are the wives, husbands, 12 October 2007 is a stunning piece of partners, parents, children and colleagues architecture comprising a 43 metre diame- who loved them and who live with the pain ter stone structure with two curved walls and consequences of their loss every and two straight walls. Since the end of day. For myself, on Remembrance SunWorld War II the men and women of the day it is not just a matter of duty, but rather Armed Forces, often supported by the Roy- it is a huge privilege to say ‘we will real Fleet Auxiliary and the Merchant Navy, member them’. have taken part in more than 50 operations and conflicts across the world, often as part Rev Christine French of United Nations, NATO or other interna- Priest in Charge, All Saints, Kirk Hallam.

My Fair memories My earliest memories are from the late 1940s, with the start of “Fair Week”. Our regular bus stops were moved away from the Market Place area to Albert Street, and the Fair People`s residential caravans appeared on nearby parking areas. The anticipation was heightened, as the rides and stalls were constructed, so that shops became hidden behind these colourful attractions. I remember my parents taking me to find the Little Wheel, tucked away, between the Town Hall and the Scala cinema. then there would be attempts to win a Goldfish. One such prize lived on with our family, in bowls of ever increasing sizes, for 21 years! A favourite stall of my mother`s was the “Indicator”, where you sat around the edge, having bought a ticket printed with celebrity names, such as Mae West . A light then travelled behind a raised board bearing all the possible names sold. If the light stopped at a name on your ticket, you won a prize. The accompanying aromas of hot onions, mingled with warm sweetness from toffee apples, together with the sounds of the throbbing electricity generators, and music from the rides, were all part of the experience. Perhaps “endure” would be the right word

for my experience of walking down Bath Street, bound for East Street, through a packed throng of people. You would be rewarded though, by more rides (Swingboats), and side shows with extraordinary exhibits. The year 1952 remains in my mind particularly, as we were allowed out from Kensington Junior School on the Thursday, to attend the official Opening Ceremony. This was the 700th Anniversary of the granting of the Charter for the Fair. Hundreds gathered in front of the Town Hall, to witness the opening, by the Mayor, at 12 noon. By the mid/late 1950s, the time had come to enjoy the thrills of the Fair unaccompanied by parents. By now, my friends and I had graduated to the Big Wheel! We also queued for rides on the Waltzer, where we hoped the man in charge would give our car an extra push, to spin even faster! This phase was also where it began to matter whose company you were in, as you made your way around the bright lights and exciting rides. How romantic it all seemed! Margaret Dawson (Nee Booth).


Relatives of two local fallen soldiers sought

Get in touch with your views —

Reflection on a trip to the National Memorial Arboretum

November 2017

Can anyone help find the relatives of two brave local lads whose graves I photographed in Italy? They fought and died in the Battle of Monte Cassino in 1944. (Editor’s note: Unfortunately the pictures were too dark to show the engraving. I have substituted a Google picture of the cemetery with Montecassino Abbey on the hill in the distance.) The grave stones marked the resting places of Private W A Henson and Trooper J Fieldhouse, and the inscrip-

tions were as follows: Private W. A. Henson, 4987326. The Sherwood Foresters, 2nd December 1943, Age 36. Monte Cassino. Trooper J. Fieldhouse, 7887312. 1st Derbyshire Yeomanry Royal Armoured Corps, 25th May 1944, Age 24. Monte Cassino. I would be grateful for any information about these two brave local lads. Please let me know via the paper. Ilkeston Life reader

Will you be spending Christmas without a loved one? Will there be somebody missing from your Christmas this year?

breathe in the peace. The service will be at the United Reformed Church - the Green Spire church at Is it hard even to think of celebrating? Are you not looking forward to Christmas the top of Wharncliffe Road -at 3.30 pm on Saturday 2nd December. at all? Does the thought of all that fuss and bother There will be a cuppa afterwards if you feel like staying for a chat, but that's entirejust make you feel like ignoring it all? ly up to you. If that's you, and you'd rather it was all over and done with and you could get back We just want to help you through this difto quiet grieving, you might like to consid- ficult time. However long ago it is since you lost your loved one, and even if you er coming to our Christmas without a Loved One service. It will be short (about never normally go to any church, you are half an hour), reflective and peaceful. You welcome. Ruth Allen won't need to do anything, or sing - just

They could have worded it better—part 2 rectly in both instances: the letter ‘i’ is placed before ‘e’ instead of the other way round. 2. Genie is a name but in the second paragraph it is shown as genie rather than Whilst I am now pleased to see common sense has now prevailed and this has now Genie. 3. In the third paragraph the word ‘of’ is been amended to read ‘Derbyshire missing after ‘disposed’. Conc’ (Concession) I am less pleased to note that YourBus has struck again! 4. The last line says ‘We apologise for any inconvenience cause’. Quite, but All their buses now bear a large poster which is a notice to all Genie card holders should this not be ‘caused’? – see attached picture. At the very least, spellcheck could have been used. You would think someone would have proof-read this before going to print but You expect to see these basic errors in apparently not. English when abroad but not here at home. As a result it is littered with the most basic Regards, grammatical errors. Rob Stevenson 1. The word ‘received’ is spelt incor-

I wrote previously in the letters page regarding the description of Gold Card users on their bus tickets as ‘Derbyshire Elderly’.

Community get-together Action4Cotmahay, a group striving to improve life for residents in Cotmanhay, holds ‘Community Afternoons’ on the last Thursday of every month at the Children’s Centre on Beauvale Drive from 1 till 3.30pm. Attendees can meet group workers, local councillors and an East Midlands Housing officer, and enjoy excellent food served by the volunteers at great prices. All Cotmahay folk are welcome to come along.

John Allen, Cotmanhay

Local traders— wish your valued customers a

Merry Christmas with an announcement in next month’s

Ilkeston Life

November 2017


Please don’t close Hazelwood I was absolutely appalled to hear that Hazelwood Care Home was under threat of closure. We have already lost Hillcrest at Kirk Hallam, what are they thinking! Hazelwood is a really lovely Care Home. It may need some work, but its staff and manager keep it looking lovely. It would be well worth the money put aside for refurbishing. My mother-in-law had to go in there when it became dangerous for her to stay in her own home. She did not want to go at first but soon settled down and was very happy there for about eighteen months until she passed away. The staff could not have cared for and looked after her better. They spoil their

guests rotten. She died on Christmas Day 2015, and again we know she could not have been better cared for when she became ill a few days before. We cannot allow our care homes to be closed without a fight. We are talking about people’s lives and people’s jobs. I have seen ladies and men who have played up and did not want to stay in the first week of being there. But by the time a fortnight has gone by they are quite happy in their new home. I believe under the labour administration, money had been put aside for work to be done at Hazelwood. This is where the money should be spent!

Patricia Spencer, Ilkeston

Swing band coming to Kirk Hallam

Donate your old spectacles glasses gathering dust in a drawer or cupboard. “When donated to the Lions, these glasses can be recycled and give someone else who We are a collection point for old spectacles is less fortunate within our community the and hearing aids so when you are in shopgift of sight. I would like to congratulate ping next, pop along to the customer serthe Ilkeston Lions for spearheading this vice desk and bring your old spectacles and campaign and would urge local residents to hearing aids. donate.” This scheme sees nearly a third of million The Lions are a charity service organisation pairs of used glasses collected, sorted and who are currently looking for more volundistributed to clinics and eye camps across teers for fundraising locally and nationally. the world. The carnival is a big project to plan and The project also raises financial support for needs support from the local community too through volunteering. For more inforeye related projects at home and overseas mation about the Lions and ways that you by recycling scrap metal from spectacles can support your community contact unfit for use. or Maggie Throup MP came to the Ilkeston store recently and said: “I am delighted to support the Ilkeston Lions glasses recycle Angie Young programme. Tesco Ilkeston Community Champion “In almost every home there is a pair of

Ilkeston Tesco Extra are pleased to be working with the Ilkeston Lions on one of their projects.

College letter stirred memories I was very interested in the letter in from Celia Turner (nee Booth) in October’s Ilkeston Life on “mucking about at Ilkeston College”. I was on the same course and some of those names were very familiar. I was then Janet Fletcher. Fortunately, I’d been given a place on the course by Mr. Simpkin after being turned down for a job at Stanton because of my disability.

As a pupil at Cavendish School, being placed with Grammar School students wasn’t easy so there was no ‘mucking about‘ for me! I will be forever grateful for the opportunity, passing my exams at College and Stanton and also, as far as I know, being the only Cavendish pupil to get my GCE in Music. Regards,

Serving boxer is still going strong

Anyone want to join a samba band?

I see from your article in the September issue of the Ilkeston Life paper, Ilkeston Fair in the 1950s, that there is a reference to boxing booths. This is what my friend Joe Usher was involved in, and he was good. He joined the British Army towards the end of the war, and served in India and the Far East. He became the middleweight boxing champion for his regiment, which was the Iniskillen Fusiliers, and although he will be 91 this year he is still a force to be reckoned with.

John Wright, Nottingham

Janet Rooney, Ilkeston

I'm planning on setting up a community music group. I'm hoping to buy some samba drums, deliver tuition, and create a couple of groups. Anyone interested? The drums will be bought out of my own pocket but just to help a little I've set up a go fund me page. Normally these things don't sit all that well with me, but I thought why shouldn't I jump on the bandwagon! I'd be grateful of a share of the link if you are able. https:// Contact me at or phone 07841 755155.

Ben Henderson, Hallam Fields

Santa Claus is coming to town next month and he has a special delivery – Kal’s Kats will also be in town on Thursday 28th December performing at the Kirk Hallam Social Club.

Not only does the band provide great music, they are able to demonstrate dance steps for those who want to participate in authentic vintage dances. If you are looking for an event between Kal’s Kats are a nine piece vintage jump, Christmas and New Year and would like to burn off a few Christmas calories the jive and swing band and are not to be band would be delighted if you would join missed. The band is based in Derbyshire us at our annual St Nic’s Christmas and has a close affiliation with Kirk Swingout on 28th December at Kirk Hallam where they rehearse every Hallam Social Club. Wednesday. This will be a fun and very entertaining Throughout the year Kal’s Kats perform night, one that you won’t want to miss. nationwide specialising in vintage events particularly 1940’s weekends, Great Gats- Tickets £7.50 and can be reserved by conby events, Prohibition Nights and new to tacting Sylvia on 07778 744410 or Marie the scene Peaky Blinder events. on 07719 644911 The band which includes male and female Please visit or Kal’s vocalists, a brass section and rhythm sec- Kats Facebook page for more details. tion are all outstanding musicians and pro- Regards vide a high quality act together with great showmanship from the band frontman Mr Sylvia Luke, Chesterfield Kal Vaikla.

November 2017


Adele tribute singer thrills children at Chaucer School


atie Markham, recognised as the top Adele tribute act in the UK, dropped in and sang for pupils at Chaucer Junior School, Ilkeston. Kerry Wheatley, gardening club leader and community ambassador, said she was quite surprised that Katie agreed to come and perform after she contacted her via social media, where they are friends. She said: “The children loved her. She was incredible and a lovely lady too.” The children danced and sang along with her and were able to ask her questions. Katie’s songs included Skyfall from the popular James Bond film and Rolling in the Deep. Her challenge to the children was: Go for your dreams. Katie made her visit while on her UK ’Someone Like You’ tour.

Vandals damage bridge at award winning local nature reserve


riends of Straw’s Bridge report that the railway arch, which is such a feature of the site and part of the area’s industrial and transport heritage, has been deliberately damaged. Large heavy stones from the bridge’s parapet have been pushed onto the path below. Erewash Borough Council has informed Network Rail, the owners of the bridge, and CCTV cameras have been installed on site. That was the bad news but the good news is that Straw’s Bridge Local Nature Reserve was judged Best Wildflower and Conservation Area in this year’s Erewash in Bloom. The annual bat walk on 14th August was a great success thanks to the Derbyshire Bat Group…and the bats! Local naturalist Jim Steele reports that elms planted around the site are doing well and further plantings are planned. In early October a pair of adult great crested grebes were still on the main pond with their two offspring. Jeff Wynch

Car wash fund raiser


wenty people connected with the 1st Sitwell (Horsley Woodhouse) Scout Group were lovin’ it as they washed cars at Ilkeston’s McDonald’s restaurant. Scouts, leaders, parents and support group members joined in and raised £122 in two hours which will be shared between Ronald McDonald house charities the scouts’ roof fund. Ian Britton, GSL of the 1st Sitwell said: “We would like to thank all who attended and had their car washed plus a big thank you to Ilkeston McDonald’s for their invite. “The money we raised will go towards a new roof for our scout hut—a replacement roof is becoming an urgent need.” A Bonfire Night with fireworks and food in the village on Saturday 4th November will also add to the fund. Picture on page 17.

Local Church News

Ken Johnson, Associate Priest, St Giles Church, Sandiacre. Stanton Road Cemetery. A short commemoration service will be held in the Stanton Road Cemetery, Ilkeston at 11.45am on 7th November. It will be supported by the Ilkeston Branch of the Royal British Legion and will remember the fallen soldiers from the Ilkeston Methodist Church at St Antwo World Wars, especially with redrews, Wilmot Street will host a Prespect to the five war graves in this Christmas Market on Saturday 18th cemetery.” November, 9.30am to 12 midday. Ilkeston United Reformed Church is There will be plenty of stalls and rehaving a Christmas service specially for freshments. bereaved people—see Letters page. The church is having ‘Jesus said, I am the Light of the world’ as its Christmas St Giles Church, Sandiacre. An organ recital by David S Butterworth will take theme this year and there will be lanplace on Saturday afternoon 4th Noterns, candles, and lit-up Christmas vember in aid of the church’s organ trees on display for visitors to enjoy maintenance fund. Tickets (£6.50) or ads the season nears. All are welinformation can be obtained by ringcome. ing 0115 939 7163. The occasion St John’s on Nottingham Road, Ilkeston is holding a Service of Thanksgiving marks the 40th anniversary of the and Remembrance of those who have Nigel church organ. Doors open at 3 for a 3.30 start. departed this life on Sunday 5th NoA Christmas Market follows on Saturvember at 3pm. During this service day 18th November , 11am till 2 pm in candles will be lit in memory of those the church hall with cakes, preserves, who have died. It will be led by Rev


pickles, cards, tombola, etc. greatly appreciated. We look forward to their visit to support Karen. West Hallam Methodist November Story Café is planned for Friday 10th You can begin to ease yourself into November at 7.30pm. The guest artist Christmas on Monday 4th December this month will be Karen Chambers at 10.30am with Carols and Coffee. An supported by Jean & Dave Richards. informal gathering particularly with the elderly and those who find it diffiKaren Chambers was brought up in a cult to get out on winter evenings in Christian home and has always loved Local church news, events and Jesus. Aged 19 she went to the Royal mind, but everyone welcome. The Christian comment café style event will last about an hour Northern College of Music in Manchesand there is no charge. The Mayor of ter to study singing. By the end of the past church events for a display. AnyErewash, Councillor Mary Hopkinson third year it was clear that a career in one who can add to the collection is has kindly accepted our invitation to opera wasn't for her, she just really asked to get in touch with Jenny Mills. attend. John Moorley. wanted to sing for the Lord and raise a The church has a Christmas flower family without interruption from a life Ilkeston Holy Trinity Church members arranging workshop on Tuesday 28th of touring. Since then it has been her celebrate their Dedication Anniversary November, 6.30pm (£7.50 charge— privilege to not only minister in Weekend on 18th and 19th November flowers provided, just bring scissors). churches but to have been a worship and are looking for photographs of leader in two churches, currently at the People’s Church in Bestwood. Jean and Dave Richards were our guest Working with God to transform lives and communities artists in May and brought very popular music which was

The Diary of a Vicarage Cat November is a strange month for most humans. I do enjoy observing their behaviour and I’ve notice November has a different feel to other months, it’s a feeling rather unique to November. There is a special service in the first week of November, it’s not on a Sunday but in the middle of the week, and some of the children from the Primary Schools come, not all the children but about a dozen, and there are some men in uniforms, with lots of colourful gold braid on their jackets and they bring a flag too. I love flags, chasing them as they wave through the air, but this flag is not a joyful fluttering flag but rather a sombre stiff flag. Then they carry the flag into the Church and leave it on the Altar, while they have a short service. Next they all go outside again, and walk around the church yard. Interestingly, the children, in pairs then put little wooden crosses, with red poppies on them, into the soil in front of some graves, not every grave, just a few. I’ve noticed it’s the same few graves every year. I can’t help but wonder why? What’s so special about these graves and the people laid to rest there for all eternity? I don’t think they were rich or famous, as the head stones are rather simple and plain, but also elegant too.

November 2017

Now there is another special service in November, this one is on Sunday morning. Again some of the people who come wear very smart uniforms and there are more of the sombre flags. It seems very important to people to remember the names on the War Memorial in Church. Everyone stands, although I’m deaf, I know they are all silent for two minutes as no-one’s lips move, not at all, until the musician puts the bugle to her lips and then when she stops they talk again. What did these people give or do many, many years ago, that today is still so important that they are remembered with such strong emotions, I often see a tear in my guardian’s eye as she reads the names out. What happened to these people? I’m still not sure, but like others grateful they did what they did, because we have the freedom to remember them, every year without fail, we will remember them. Bye for now – Florence.

All Saints Church, Kirk Hallam Christmas Craft Fayre and Auction

Saturday 2nd December From 10.30am to 2.30pm At the Community Centre, Kenilworth Drive, Kirk Hallam. Lots of stalls—cakes, crafts, games, Clothes, books. Auctioning lots of prizes at 12 noon Christmas theme donations welcomed 3pm: Big Kirk Hallam ‘Big Thank You’ Presentations

Messy Church

Christingle Service Sunday 10th December, 11am with Brownies, Beavers, Cubs, Scouts All welcome to join in the fun Collection for the Children’s Society

Carols by Candlelight 6pm, Sunday 17th December Traditional Service of Carols and readings

Tree of Light Memorial Service 7.30pm, Wednesday 6th December

A short service to remember those who we love but separated by death. To have a shining star on our tree and a dedication in our Book of Remembrance please complete the details below. IN MEMORY OF

……………………………………………………………... Words of dedication ……………………………………………………………… ……………………………………………………………... Enclose donation if desired: £………. If you are a UK tax payer you may wish to allow us to claim back the tax on your donation, in which case please complete the Gift Aid details below. Kirk Hallam Parochial Church Council XN5703

Full Name ……………………………………………. Address ………………………………………………. ……………………………………………………………… …………………………………………………………….. Postcode …………………………………………… Signature …………………………………………..

For further information contact Rev’d Christine on 0115 783 1793, email Follow us on Facebook and check us out at

Date ………………………………………………….. As a UK tax payer I acknowledge that I must have paid an amount of income tax or capital gains tax equal to the deduction from this donation.

Church but not as you know it Activities, music and a simple meal for you and your children

Saturday 11th November: Ilkeston URC (Green Spire) 4 – 5.30pm

A PICTURE FROM THE PAST showing dignitaries at an Ilkeston Methodist Circuit Rally held at the Central Methodist Church, Bath Street (where Wilko now stands). According to a note on the photograph, the four people standing forward on the front row (left to right) are the Rev Trevor Dale, the Rev Ellerton, Mayoress Elsie Blount and Mayor George Blount. Between and just behind the Mayor and Mayoress is thought to be Mrs Ellerton, wife of Rev Ellerton. The picture was taken around 1955.

Saturday 28th October: Sandiacre Methodist Church, Butt St. 4 5.30pm Subject: Jesus the Light of the world. Saturday 25th November: Sandiacre Methodist Church, Butt St. 4 – 5.30pm : Subject: Preparing for Christmas.

Next Ilkeston URC Toddlers Service: Friday 3rd November, 10 am.

Hidden I thought I was dreaming on that day long ago Virtually stumbling into a world I didn’t know The day was hot and sultry been walking for miles Approaching a patch of brambles beside an old broken style. Stumbling through the brambles I fell head over heels After picking myself up a strange world was revealed I’d landed in a leafy dell beneath a canopy of trees Hidden from all sunlight and any passing breeze. . This curious damp world was unlike any other Where mosses and lichens displayed vibrant colours A strong musky smell of rotting wood hung in the air As the temperature plummeted out of the suns constant glare. A sudden movement was then seen out the corner of my eye Slowly focusing through the murk a small bird I did spy Watching him with interest flit from shrub to tree Then wondering what the bird must have thought about me. The bird quickly became anxious as his partner arrived With a beak full of insects to my great surprise Then the sound of hungry chicks broke the silence in the air Still anxious to feed them, flew to his nest hiding there. Like a spotlight on the stage a beam of sunlight broke through

Do you enjoy writing creatively? Lots of local people do, so why not share your poetry, stories, songs, sketches, limericks, memoirs, humour, etc., with other Ilkeston Life readers? Preferably send by email to Alternatively, drop in/post to The Editor, Ilkeston Life, 1 Bath Street, Ilkeston, Derbyshire DE7 8AH. We look forward to hearing from you.

Thomas Hosker

The Front Revisited

The tension was rising, time drawing near, the men checked their rifles once more. Then thought of their homes and their loved ones, with feelings no heart could ignore. They thought of the time they enlisted, their dreams of glory and fame. But now here they were in the trenches, and this was not why they came. A shrill whistle blew, and over the top, each man in his own private hell. The men came up by the thousand, and soon by the thousand they fell. The generals watched from the hillside, and made use of their men as mere pawns. They looked on as their men went on dying, the blood staining red through the corn. How do we replace these young lions of eighteen or twenty or more? Theirs was such life in the making, simply lost to one shot in the war. Fathers, husbands and sons, all are gone, leaving behind desolation. They left bright and cheerful, not knowing, that soon they’d be grieved by the nation. A terrible silence has fallen, the bugler


Your Space

Lighting a corner of the dell like a bolt from the blue It felt like a sign telling me it’s time I should leave From this strange world hidden, beneath a canopy of trees.

The First of July, a bright balmy day, the barrage was lifting at last. For the waiting men of two armies, the fateful die had been cast. 1916, a good summer, the flowers rose in full bloom. A smile was on thousands of faces, they knew not of their impending doom.

November 2017

plays the Last Post. He sheds a tear as he’s playing, thinking of friends he has lost. The peace of the dead has found them, they no longer feel any pain, And those who are left pray to God, it should NEVER happen again.

Through Derby peaks the Normans marched, They could not believe their luck, There stood a little man with little hair Shouting ‘EY UP ME DUCK.!’

T. F. Russell 1986

One Lost Soldier

Andrew Trigg

He wandered through the ‘No-mans-land’, Knowing not the place, he was lost. Separated by chance from his Unit, Ilkeston is ‘Great’ Learning, too late, to his cost. A place that all must rate Staggering on through hill and dale, A market town that's well renowned An eerie silence seemed to be there, Who shout out, ‘Ey Up Mate’! No bullets or shells whistling by, It's known as ‘Ilson’ to its flock No explosions rending the air. A name that's always stuck, As he limped on, others came into view, The residents are down to earth He shouted, but no sound came. Their favourite word is ‘duck’. Running, but getting no nearer, Wondering what was to blame, A cinema and many pubs, surround the He remembered a lesson, market square, The fashion sense is quite unique, the style Learned from his youth, Pinch yourself, and if you feel no pain, is not much hair. A closely knit community, it's always been You are not dreaming, maybe you’re dead! He tried it, again and again. the same, Just on that, an Angel appeared, The pets and humans all alike, all carry a And said, “Soldier, you’re dead, nickname. Come with me now, to Heaven, Boff, Biff and Shob all live close to me, Where your Citation will be read.” They've lived in Ilson all their lives, a John Wright bond they cannot free.

Simply The Best


Looking at the local and national performing arts scene, past and present. 1. ROCKS N FROCKS are a local band I’ve known for a few years now in one form or another having emerged from a conglomeration of Ronnie and the Rockets and The Elderly Brothers. I thought a catch up was overdue so I was happy to accept an invitation to sit in on one of their recent rehearsal sessions at the Royal Oak in Watnall. The current line up is drummer Paul (who’s experience includes spells with The Swinging Blue Jeans) Guitarists Phil and Kevin, and bassist Paul Miller, all being topped up front by vocalists Sandra and Jill. And what a revelation they were. Evolving from an outfit playing the occasional charity gig they are now a very tight and talented unit

indeed in great demand for all sorts of private and public functions and gigs specialising in good old fifties and sixties rock and roll and pop music. You can contact them for information via email at 2. The afore mentioned Paul Miller is also one the leading lights of the Friends of Bennerley Viaduct, a group dedicated to the restoration and preservation of one of our well known local landmarks. They’re putting on a very interesting evening to raise funds at the Gate Inn Awsworth on Saturday November 11. CHRIS NIXON is a singer, musician and teller of tales, some of which are actually true !..his songs are a mixture of traditional folk music, social history, music hall and humour gathered over some fifty years and accompanied on guitar, banjo, squeezebox and bouzouki. He’s performed at venues from folk clubs and festivals to the Royal Festival Hall. “A funny kind of evening” is just that…a journey from the beginnings of industry and songs that come from those beginnings to literally the end of Bennerley Viaduct with some of the railway songs written in the sixties. Further information from: friendsof-

Dallimore School up for an award 3. ELLIE MARIE (Tatham) is a young lady I came across at a recent concert in aid the S.O.B.S. charity at the Flamsteed Centre. Specialising in Musical Theatre she studied that for 5 years at the University of Gloucestershire and recently started to gig under her stage name of Ellie Marie. This is alongside her many other activities which include an acting role at Screamfest on the Adventure Farm at Burton and a song and dance dep. role for vintage harmony group “The Daisey Belles” who tour all over the country. Add this to touring in a mini pantomime specially tailored for residential homes and day centres, and performances at the N.E.C. Birmingham and you have a very busy girl indeed. From what I’ve seen that’s not going to get any less so in the future. Contact Ellie on 07799 394 760 or email: 4. SUE WOOLLARD and ROB GIBSON are familiar faces at many live events around our area and feature prominently in an ever expanding programme of music and entertainment at the Bridge Inn Cotmanhay including Open Mic sessions every other Sunday and the last Thursdays in the

November 2017


Rocks n Frocks (above) and month. An interesting current adEllie Marie dition is a project to establish the Bridge Inn Choir with a view to performances aiding charities and good causes. For information on all this and more it’s: 5. Finally this month a quick mention of a recent event at the Old Kings Head. Belper. Playing to an appreciative and packed house Linda Woodroffe’s “So Long Farewell” has received critical acclaim from several quarters and Linda is now looking at putting on the production elsewhere. If you’re interested and have a or ble venue in mind contact her on (0115) 930 6534.

gold award for Modeshift Stars at an assemDallimore Primary and Nursery School in Kirk Hallam has reached the regional final bly. In the picture are Lucy and Rob Bounds of a competition to encourage schools to from the award scheme. demonstrate excellence in supporting cycling, walking and other forms of sustainable travel. Dallimore’s PE co-ordinator Lucy Haywood said: “Throughout the past couple of years we have done a range of activities from a bike club to taking part in a clean air day. “We were nominated because of all the hard work we have put in to promote active travel whilst the school has been undergoing major development. “I know we are up against stiff competition from counties such as Leicestershire, Warwickshire, Staffordshire and Nottinghamshire. It's quite an achievement to get this far as we are one of only two schools in Derbyshire to be nominated. “The children have really engaged with the project, which makes our selection as a finalist exciting and pleasing.” The school was recently presented with a

NEXT MONTH—Those who loved the Clare Smith articles will be pleased to know that we have a special piece by her cousin coming up.

November 2017


Lest we forget Ilkeston man served on HMS Hurricane and HMS Eskimo


eorge Kenneth Holmes, known to everyone as Ken was born on Wentworth Street, Ilkeston in 1920 to Florrie and Albert Holmes, he had a elder brother Gordon and later a sister Barbara. At the outbreak of war in 1939 Ken joined the Royal Navy and after training at the gunnery school, served initially on HMS Hurricane until she was torpedoed by a German U-Boat. The ship was so badly damaged with the loss of some of the crew that she had to be sunk by accompanying Royal Navy destroyers. Surviving this experience, Ken went on to join HMS Eskimo where his role was that of ships gun layer. He served on HMS Eskimo until the end of the war. On the eve of D day in 1944 Ken and his ship were dispatched along with other destroyers in the flotilla to protect the approaches to the landing beaches of Normandy from the threat of enemy ships and U-Boats and they were soon sent to intercept a flotilla of four German destroyers. They engaged the destroyers, one

of which was torpedoed and blown up; another was driven ashore in flames. The other two escaped albeit badly damaged. In a later engagement they participated in the sinking of a U- Boat, and engaging other enemy warships. Ken said, “We, along with a Canadian destroyer, had hunted the U Boat for hours, we had been depth charging them, and knew they were sitting on the bottom. We just kept sailing around in circles, knowing he would have to surface eventually, and he did, right slap bang along side of us, this enormous submarine popped up, it was unbelievable he was so close.” “The conning tower and escape hatch popped open and men poured out jumping into the sea, three German sailors raced across their deck toward their gun and had to be stopped, what their intention was we didn’t know, but my mess mate who was the Oerlicon gunner who stopped them, was very upset afterwards, they died needlessly, the sub sank within minutes, they had scuttled it.” More than140 Germans were rescued from the water.

HMS Eskimo crew members. Ken (circled) commented on some of the young men in the photo; he recalls that they had only recently joined this their first ship, and looked as if they had only just left school. He said the country was really scraping what was left in the barrel,. “We had lost so many, and so many were serving, we were getting desperate for men.“

Following D-day HMS Eskimo was sent to the Pacific to aid the ongoing war against the Japanese. HMS Eskimo was in South Africa when the war officially ended and the locals treated Ken and his shipmates as heroes.

We've got a dog called Minton that eats shuttlecocks. Bad Minton! John Allen

Ken Holmes, now 97 years of age, is stoic about his wartime service. “I enjoyed my time in the Navy, even though at times it was frightening and downright dangerous. ‘We were just ordinary sailors, the same as thousands of others, doing our duty for the country.”

Ken described sailing back home at the end of the war as “Nothing short of a nice cruise” now that the hostilities had ended. He recalls, ”You could not go anywhere on board without tripping over Christmas puddings, and tins of fruit that had been given to us by the

were heroes, we were just ordinary sailors the same as thousands of others doing our duty for the country.” Ken said “Eskimo was a happy ship, and very efficient , She was the country’s most modern destroyer, a Tribal Class destroyer, very fast and very well armed. The Captain and First Lieutenant who is always referred to as Jimmy in the navy and who is responsible for discipline in the ship were both gentlemen and very fair, unlike the First Lieutenant in HMS Hurricane who was a right tartar.” Although Ken toyed with the notion of staying on in the Royal Navy he decided against it as he was due to be married. He was demobbed in 1945, and married his wife Betty Taylor in 1946. They were married for 56 years before Betty sadly passed away in 2002 After leaving the Navy, Ken worked as a ganger for British Railways until his retirement and was responsible for the track from Shipley Boat to Bennerley. Ken has recently been informed by the Ministry of Defense that he is to be awarded the Legion d’Honneur by the French government to honour him for his part in the liberation of France. Ken’s niece, Betty O’Neill who is generous people of South Africa, the daughter of Ken’s late brother for the children and old folk of says, “Even at the age of 97 Ken is Great Britain. There were literally very stoic and always remains hundreds of them stowed anycheerful. He hasn’t been in the where there was a space.” best of health lately but he has been well supported by all of his Ken said “I enjoyed my time in the Navy, even though at times it late wife’s family.” was frightening and downright Ken was delighted to see in the dangerous. When we were torpe- September edition of Ilkeston Life, doed in Hurricane with a number the report on Tommy Wells who of the crew killed the shock of the had just turned one hundred years torpedo hitting us was terrific, I of age. He said “Tommy is my thought this is it my number is cousin; his mum and my dad were up.” brother and sister, I’m so pleased he is still going strong.” Ken said “I was no hero, and I didn’t know any who were, using that word willy-nilly nowadays, Michael O’Neill detracts from the many, who really

Bonfire Night in the fifties Loui adds best club boxer award to all his other successes

L Bonfire night at home circa 1950 he fifth of November or Bonfire Night T was a completely different affair to today’s celebrations. Health and safety was

would be a big fire being prepared on the nearby Potters playing field or ‘Ashes’ as it was called. There was also another big one at the Junction. All the children from each area would raid any fires they could to enhance their own. So bonfires were guarded as well as they could be. School meant that many were left unguarded throughout the day but truants (who obviously thought it well worth the risk of the cane at school next day if returning to school without a note from their parents) would take advantage of the lack of guards and pillage other gangs’ fires. Really bad boys would also delight in setting fire to a completed fire and some bigger boys apparently stayed with them all night although I never knew anyone who was allowed to do so. Even when the weather was not so good or it was raining on the night, the bonfire would somehow manage to be lit. The streets hung with smoke the following day, especially with all the coal fires helping to clog the atmosphere. Every Bonfire night our family had to go through the same ritual, even though there was a giant fire all ready for lighting a couple of hundred yards away. We would stand in our little yard whilst Dad would prepare the display. He bought the same fireworks every year: one packet of sparklers, two Volcanoes and the star of the show, a large Catherine Wheel. With a big lump hammer in one hand and firework in the other, the pin would be tapped gently through the firework into the coalhouse door, often resulting in a black fingernail or bent pin. The fuse would be lit and everyone held their breath because it never went the way it was supposed to. The Catherine Wheel would smolder, splutter, turn slowly a couple of times and then fly off at high speed among us - scattering us all. Dad would curse and Mam and Mama would laugh and say “Gordon you’re useless!” And that would be the end of the display… well, after the last sparkler was waved around it was (Dad didn’t believe in spending a lot on fireworks!) and we were finally free to go to the proper bonfire on ‘Johnnie’s’. Sadly, Hallowe’en seems to have taken over as the biggest autumnal celebration in the country now. Even though we still celebrate November the fifth, it is nothing compared to the excitement the children felt in the runup years ago. However, common sense (and Health and Safety) make it better that such times are consigned to history!

non- existent and streets often had their own bonfire night with fires in the street. There were no cars then but fires were often lit only yards away from the terraced houses. I personally never saw bonfires in streets; we were lucky - we had ‘Johnnie’s’ playing field or Wash Meadow as it is officially named now, which was located at the bottom of Blake Street where I lived so I never went anywhere else. Most families had their own celebration in their back yard. Family and friends would get together and let off a few pretty fireworks and if they had a garden, they enjoyed a bonfire. There were no official celebrations unlike today but Guy Fawkes night was a really big deal to forties and fifties children. In the runup to the big night the kids involved in the bonfire, (ours was a big one on Johnnies, so there were lots!) would be out scavenging bits of wood, rubbish and old furniture which neighbours would take the opportunity to get rid of. It would all be dragged to the fire and stacked up until it became a mountain, and finally the guy would be sat on top. Children would be busy making guys, usually a pair of trousers, a shirt and a coat stuffed with paper and a mask. It would then be place on a trolley or old pram, and towed to a good site where plenty of people passed. A big notice would be placed around the guy’s neck with ‘SPARE A PENNY FOR THE GUY’ written on. In some cases, a smaller sibling would be sat on the trolley with a large coat and a mask on with the notice around his neck, until that is he would get fed up and usually go home in tears. People were surprisingly generous, many recalling their own younger days perhaps, and would throw a copper or two into the collection box and the money would usually be spent on fireworks. Boys would often fill their pockets with penny bangers called ‘Little Demons’ and ‘Atom Bombs’. They would then throw them at each other like grenades. They made terrific bangs when they exploded. An even better ‘sport’ was to throw one of these or a ‘Jumping Jack’ into a crowd of girls, causing much squealing and stampeding in all directions. Strange as it may seem with such shenanigans going on, I don’t recall anyone getting hurt. Thankfully, we are careful about making children aware of the Firework Code now. Painting and narrative by Betty O’Neill Bonfire ‘raids’ were commonplace; there

oui Hemstock was presented with the Bill Morley cup for the outstanding boxer of the season at the recent Trinity Amateur Boxing Club awards night at the Gladstone Lodge. The 18-year-old had an outstanding season, winning and defending the East Midland light welter weight belt and also winning his second East Midland title en route to the national quarter final of the England Boxing Youth

Championships. Club co-founder Danny Rafferty snr as usual made the presentation of this trophy for a 25th year following the donation of the trophy by the family of late Trinity ABC supporter Bill Morley. The club has an evening of boxing coming up at the Festival Inn, Trowell on Friday 10th November when many Trinity boxers will be taking part. Another awards night picture on the back page.

November 2017


Troy has a winning eye for design A creative six-year-old from Ilkeston has his eyes on the prize after winning a charity competition to design a pair of glasses. Troy Francis, who goes to Cotmanhay Infant School, fought off tough competition to clinch one of five prizes up for grabs in the national competition organised by Scrivens Opticians & Hearing Care. Youngsters were encouraged to submit their imaginative designs with all proceeds from the £1 entry fee going to Alzheimer’s Society. Corinne Meakin, branch manager at Scrivens on Bath Street, Ilkeston, said: “Alzheimer’s Society is our chosen charity and this was a fun way to engage children and raise awareness of its work. Troy did a great job with his design and is a worthy


everyone! The editor asked me if I’d like to choose my five all-time favourite songs and say a bit about myself for this page, so here goes. My five favourite songs… well I like a mixture of different genres. If I had to name one it would have to be Ed Sheeran and Shape of You. I also like the Kaiser Chiefs a lot. I love their songs Ruby and I Predict a Riot. I used to love the song Dancing in the Moonlight by Toploader. And I adore DNCE’s songs Cake by the Ocean and Body Moves. Oo, that’s six I’ve mentioned, not to worry, I also enjoy my disco and club classics. I'm a bubbly character studying music at Confetti Institute of Creative Technologies in Nottingham. I'm 19 years of age. I love all things music, mainly the technical sides of music. I present a radio show every Wednesday on YMCA Digital, an internet based radio station broadcasting live from the old Trent FM building at Castle Gate. I'm a very passionate radio personality who loves to make and produce music for jingles and adverts as well as being into drama— I’m a member of Ilkeston Youth Theatre and have been in a number of shows. I have always wanted from a young age to work in music so having the opportunity to study at Confetti is brilliant. Thanks to the amazing staff I am now a very

Acorn Corner

November 2017


Students speak of once-in-a-lifetime trip to Nepal

For younger readers winner.” Troy was presented with the complete collection of Harry Potter books and a fun model of his design. Mum, Sherrie Foulger said: "Troy was absolutely made up when he heard he had won because he loves colouring and crafts and is always making things. He is a Harry Potter fan too so I can read the books to him until he is old enough to read them for himself.” Scrivens Opticians & Hearing Care is a family run business which was established in 1938. It has 177 stores in England and Wales, with 1,000 employees. Photo: Scrivens Ilkeston manager Corinne Meakin and winner Troy

eaching, volunteer work and a trek were T just some of the activities experienced by Saint John Houghton Catholic Voluntary Academy students during a once-in-alifetime World Challenge trip. Twenty Year 10 and 11 students spent two weeks in Nepal over the summer along with three members of staff. Each student had to raise £2,690 to fund the trip and to do this they held events, took part in charity runs and made and sold Christmas decorations. Libby Wilton, 15, said she has some incredible memories of the trip. She said: “The reason I signed up to go was because it was something totally different and I’d never done anything like that before. I’ve

the school out there were excited and a bit confused when they saw the laptop as they don’t have them in their school. I think when we came home we realised how lucky we are and how happy the children are out there, they were always smiling.” James Wheldon, Product Design teacher who lead the trip, said it was an amazing experience. He said: “The expedition did not disappoint. We spent many hours preparing for two weeks in the Himalayas which we soon found out would be one of the most humbling environments available for the human eyes. “All the students were absolutely amazing, taking in every opportunity to experience the culture, mix with the local community and

done things in a group but never on that scale. The first thing we did was work in a school where we put lights in and built a wall around it so that it was safe. The trek was hard as we were walking for eight hours a day for five days. It was also quite emotional as a lot of people didn’t think they would be able to achieve it. The whole trip was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience and it was probably the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done.” Ellie Chadburn-Tennyson, 16, said the trip had given her a different perspective. She said: “I had my hair cut short to raise money to buy a laptop to give to the school. Half of the money raised also went to the Teenage Cancer Trust. I think the teachers in

selflessly put themselves forward for all work needed to improve the lives of the young people and educators at the village school, that we were lucky to spend some time with. We had three days building an exterior wall, painting fences and working in the classrooms of a local village school. “Following this was our expedition to the Annapurna Range, arguably one of the most stunning environments in the world. Six days saw a full range of weather conditions. Blistering sunshine, altitude, full scale humidity and monsoon weather.” Mr Wheldon is already planning the school’s next World Challenge trip to Swaziland in 2019.


Thomas William Marshall bright and very talented individual with an amazing career ahead of me. From a young age I have always wanted to set up and run my own radio station, and with a lot of hard work my dream could come true! I currently live in Heanor with my mum Catherine, dad Dave and brother Oscar. We all read the Ilkeston life paper and think it's amazing!  Would you like to appear in ‘This is Me’ and talk about your favourite music and other interests? Get in touch! Email

The way we were

These three photographs showing his grandfather Councillor George Blount have been supplied to us by Alan Rigby. They were taken during his grandfather’s mayoral year, 1955-56. Above: A scene at Granby Junior School, Ilkeston, possibly a Christmas

party. A number of the children have been identified on our Facebook page. Top right: The Mayor (left, accompanied by his daughter Muriel James) takes his traditional ride on the dodgems after opening the Ilkeston Charter Fair. The other dodgem is driven by Cllr Harry Fisher. Right: Remembrance Service at the

Cenotaph, Ilkeston Market Place, 11th November 1955. A dark, wet day but people have turned out in force to honour the War dead. In the photograph are the Mayor Cllr George Blount, daughter Muriel James (acting mayoress while Mrs Elsie Blount was in hospital), Jack Yates the Town Clerk and Mr Laurence the Mace Bearer.

November 2017


November 2017


Workers’ pedal-pushing power produces pounds to give sick children holidays


orkers' pedal-pushing pow- The distance from the factory to er produces pounds to give Skegness was 103 miles, but one worker Anthony Fowkes (43), went sick children holidays. Ten employees from an Ilkeston firm swapped work clothes for cycling shorts and helmets to take part in a charity bike ride for a local good cause. The cyclists, from Dales Fabrications, which designs and makes aluminium building products, got on their bikes and made their way to the Lincolnshire seaside resort of Skegness. And their pedal-pushing power raised a minimum in sponsorship of £2,500, including a donation from the company, for Ben's Den. This is the second time this year that workers from the company have raised money – previously it was £1,200 – for the charity that was set up in memory of Ben Parker who passed away in 2003 after a three-year battle with leukaemia, diagnosed when he was just 10. The money will go towards the upkeep of caravans at Mablethorpe used to support the families of children fighting leukaemia or cancer by giving them much-needed quality time away from hospital. Karl Prosser, managing director of Dales Fabrications, on Crompton Road, said: “Most of the employees have had bikes from the Government's cycle-to-work scheme. So this ride was combining the idea of green travel with leisure and the added benefit for charity.

extra miles by cycling to the start from his home in Allenton, Derby. “People were cycling at their own pace, but I was doubling back to make sure everyone was OK,” he said. Four others, including Karl, though joining the spirit of the ride, did a shorter distance of 30 miles from Boston. He explained: “Some were not experienced or fit enough to do the whole journey. One, Nicola Chambers, an organiser along with Rebecca Cross, had just returned from maternity leave!” One of those, 18-year-old Tia Bexon from Ilkeston, said: ”I was nervous doing it because I had not ridden for four years before practising for it. “I wanted to take part because the charity is close to my heart as my brother Ryan died of leukaemia 12 years ago, the day before his first birthday.” Ben's dad Darren, on behalf of the charity, praised the “fantastic effort” of the cyclists. “In July I cycled to Skegness myself as part of a fund-raiser and I know what an effort it was. “Such is the demand for our help that, sadly, we were turning away families before the summer break, but now we have purchased a fourth caravan to cope with requests.” Dales, which has 40 employees, is

celebrating 40 years in business. “This charity ride reflects the good team ethos that we enjoy at the company, and we would also like to add particular thanks to those that gave valuable support to the riders, and also to the significant number

of people that turned up to cheer us over the finish line in Skegness,” Karl added. Pictured (left to right) on arriving at Skegness, are: Colin Dales, Kelly Bexon, Jhyrl Francis, Anthony Fowkes, Karl Prosser, Adam

Vintage Fair brings in £500 for SOBS


Vintage Fair selling retro clothes, jewellery, bags, picture frames, cards, cakes and sweets raised £500 for Survivors Of Bereavement by Suicide. The event at Ilkeston’s Flamsteed Centre, Albert Street on 23rd September also had The Little Vintage Beauty Parlour in attendance, offering vintage makeovers. In the evening a fundraising concert with local female vocalist Ellie Tatham and a duo called Laid Back was held. The whole event made just over £500 for SOBS and more importantly, raised awareness that the group is therefor anyone who has lost someone to suicide. Pictured right are Saturday Girl Sisters Tallia (10) and Lilah (7) and below some of the things you could buy on the day.

Shaw, Rebecca Cross, Tia Bexon, Darren Barker, Nicola Chambers. Anyone who wishes to donate to the charity can do so online at crowdfunding/darrenbecant Kevin Palmer

November 2017


New food bank campaign begins


trugglers’ champion Alannah Biggs has kicked off her 2017 campaign to get Ilkeston Food Bank well stocked for Christmas. Once again she is appealing to local folk to donate items of non-perishable food and other household essentials to help people in need over the Christmas period. This year Alannah has recruited more helpers and arranged more drop off points where parcels can be left. They are then taken to the Arena Foodbank on Belfield Street, bottom of town. In 2015, 200 donations were collected. In 2016 the number went up to 950. And last year an amazing 5,800 donations were made as local people took the campaign to heart. “We are going to have to go some to beat that, but we’re going to try,” says the Shipley View nurse. “Through the campaign we want to make people aware of the food bank and what the

wonderful people there do for our community. It’s sad that a service like this is needed but we can all do our bit to help those who rely on it, especially at Christmas time.” There are drop-off places all over the local area including Shipley View, West Hallam, Kirk Hallam, Hallam Fields, Cotmanhay and Stapleford. Alannah is particularly pleased to welcome to the scheme Hogarths Gin Bar and the Stute Rugby Club; also The Humble Rutland Café who are offering a free brew to people who drop off donations there. Details can be found on the Christmas 2017 Foodbank Collection Facebook page. Or you can take your gift direct to the Area Foodbank near Ilkeston Tesco. Food items most required are: UHT milk, tinned spaghetti, soup, meatballs, tuna, rice pudding, fruit, custard; also toilet rolls, soap, shower gels, sanitary products, kitchen rolls, washing up liquid, bottled water, etc. A full list can be found on the Facebook page.

Agency's first client says ‘You’re hired’ once again Ilkeston based Poppy-PR has proved its relationships are built to last by once again joining forces with its first ever client. The PR agency, founded by Tina Clough (32, pixtured), originally carried out a full PR campaign for IPS Estates back in 2010, and has just secured a contract to once again engage with the firm based on South Street, Ilkeston. Managing director at IPS Estates, Richard Jones, said: “When we originally founded IPS Estates, we decided to engage the services of Poppy-PR to help increase our business awareness in the marketplace. This proved to be very successful with speaking engagements being secured by the team, both locally and nationally on the subject of being a landlord. This then kept us very busy as a business. “Six years on from this, following new legislation and the tax changes that affect buy-tolet landlords, we have made many changes to the business, which will be announced very soon. Engaging the services of Poppy-PR once again was the natural choice for us, given our success and results when founding the business.” Tina Clough, managing director at Poppy-PR,

said: “We held a very special business networking event in aid of Macmillan at the end of last month, and we were delighted that Richard and his new business partner Adam were able to attend. “What struck me was that the work we carried out some six years ago, was still generating business for the firm, and that Google listings still featured some of our original stories. It is always awful when a client leaves to try other marketing activities, but what a fantastic turn of events that Richard and the team have chosen to use us once again!” The agency based on Bath Street has had a whirlwind of a year, after fully taking over its previously shared premises, hiring a new PR manager and securing contracts in the North West for the very first time.

Sandiacre Probus Club

Canals and followed the trail along the now disused Nottingham Canal, then on to AwsSpeaker Robert Mee gave an illustrated talk worth/Trowell and Attenborough Nature Reentitled ‘Erewash Valley Trail History’ at the serve before returning via way of the Erewash September monthly meeting. Canal back to Langley Mill. It included little known details of the area. His Robert explained the history of these canals talk commenced at the Great Northern or which were built to carry coal. The Erewash Langley Mill Basin which served as the junc- Canal is now the only one navigable and was tion of the Cromford/Erewash/Nottingham used commercially for the last time in 1952,

the canal having opened in 1791. Originally it was illegal to cycle on the canal towpaths but since 2009 there has been a 30 mile trail for walkers and cyclists. For an excellent whistlestop tour and history of the trail Robert was thanked by Maurice Wilkes stating that he enjoys cycling along the route. Maureen Dumelow


November 2017


Part two



lf Trussell of Ilkeston was a grocer’s assistant and captain of the NCU affiliated Ilkeston Racing Cyclists’ Club’s Racing Section when Britain declared war on Germany on 4th August, 1914. On 5th of September he enlisted in the army, but he was not leaving cycling behind; in fact Alf and men like him were invited to offer their cycling skills to the war effort by posters and newspaper adverts encouraging them to “Cycle for the King”. Alf volunteered for the North Midland Division Cyclist Company, a Territorial Force which had not, until now, required its men to serve overseas. For newly enlisted men there was no option. The part played by cycling in the armed forces is not well known, but it goes back to about 1875 when the Italian army began using cyclists on “ordinaries” to carry messages. The invention and development of the “safety” in the mid 1880’s allowed cyclists to be deployed rapidly and even secretly, not only as despatch riders but also for reconnaissance, guerrilla action, medical and ambulance duties, patrols and the duties of sappers. Military bikes, sometimes of the folding type, were designed to carry a rifle mounted on the frame and ready to use within three seconds. For Alf and others like him this was a very different machine from the lightweight, stripped down track bike they were used to. The first cyclist corps in England was the 26th Middlesex, formed in 1888. By 1906 there were 50 Cyclist Companies, later regrouped into battalions. The creation of the Territorial Force in 1908 added another nine, and at the outbreak of war there were fourteen cycle battalions. The North Midland Division, as the name suggests, was recruited locally, but was based in the Luton area from November 1914, attached to the 1st Battalion the Bedfordshire Regiment. The commanding officer of the Cyclist Company was a young Second Lieutenant from Nottingham called Albert Ball.

Frustrated by his role training recruits he paid for private flying lessons and applied to join the Royal Flying Corps, which he did in January 1916. In May 1917, aged 20, he was killed in action, with 44 confirmed victories in the air to his name, the fourth highest of any of the RFC’s flying “aces”. He was awarded the DSO and two bars, the Military Cross and a posthumous Victoria Cross. The photograph of soldiers with their bikes was probably taken in Bedfordshire during training. I have come across a number of other photographs of the North Midland Division Cyclist Company taken by Albert Heath of Clay Cross, some of them definitely taken in Bedfordshire. Perhaps he had had a contract with the Division for group photos and portraits. Because this one is in Rick Shelton’s collection there is a strong possibility that Alf is in the picture. Private 211047 A. Trussell was sent to France on 18th February, 1915. The regiment had already taken part in a number of battles the previous year, including the First Battle of Ypres. Alf arrived in time to be involved in the Second Battle of Ypres in April and May where, according to the account on the regiment’s website, “they fought at Hill 60 during the initial capture and subsequent defence that saw them lose so heavily they had to be rebuilt twice during the fighting.” The rest of the war was spent on the Western Front apart from a short period in Italy: “After spells holding new portions of the Western Front taken over from the French on the Somme and at Arras, the battalion were heavily engaged in the Battles of the Somme, 1916, at Arras and the Third Battle of Ypres in 1917, before moving to the Italian Front in December 1917. Their division was rushed back to France in April 1918 in response to the German Spring Offensive and remained on the Western Front until the end of hostilities in November.” The regiment did not actually return to Bedford until April, 1919, alt-

West Hallam Amateur Gardening Society Rob Cole and his wife Diane from Meadow Farm, Worcester were the guest speakers at our September meeting. The subject was 'Garden Styles' and Rob was not afraid to share his opinion whether be favourable or not. He had brought slides of examples of gardens he had visited in this country and also New Zealand. Rob had a list of 22 different styles, which included 'Chocolate Box' featuring thatch cottages and colour planting. Then came the classical which was based on Monet's style, also colour themed which showed that flowers are not always needed, foliage can also have a stunning impact. The example of a clipped (not topiary) garden was a cloud-pruned Bonsai. The cottage garden was different from the chocolate box because there was no thatched roof in sight but included flowers such as hollyhocks, foxgloves and

hough Trussell’s record shows that he was discharged on the 20th March. Alf Trussell was awarded the Victory Medal, the British War Medal and the Silver War Badge (no. B288864) which was issued to service personnel who had been honourably discharged due to wounds or sickness during the war. It was to be worn on the right lapel of civilian dress, not on the uniform, and each badge was uniquely numbered on the reverse. In Alf’s case the effects of gas caused breathing difficulties for the rest of his life and he could not work indoors. This must be why he became a Co-op milkman, a job he kept until his death aged 60 from cancer of the liver and the colon. His discharge papers read as follows: “Reason for discharge: Paragraph 392 of King’s Regulations (xvia). Surplus to military requirements (having suffered impairment since entry into the service.)” This sounds more like a description of a bike beyond repair than of a young man who had volunteered to serve his country and who did so for five years at the cost of his long term health. He never appeared on the race track again although there are photographs of him at Manor Ground events wearing a suit and tie. Alf Trussell married Hannah Chris-

delphinium. The formal garden showed symmetry in the planting and was very impressive. The colourful garden is self-explanatory and the garden with gravel beds which featured aloes and grasses. The lush garden showed plenty of greenery, topiary, a bridge and a monument, all very grand and the current fashion 'prairie' has been inspired by the Dutch nurseryman Piet Oudolf who uses a 12 colour palette; very lovely but when the slide of a loose garden was shown there was a murmur of approval from the audience obviously everyone’s favourite. It was certainly an impressive and inspirational variety of designs. Yet another enjoyable evening at West Hallam Amateur Gardening Society. The next meeting is on November 20th

when Danny Wells will speak on The English and Gardening. Julia Shearer

AWARD St Wilfrid’s, West Hallam has won an award for 'Best New Project' in our area of the Church of England's Derby Diocese. It was awarded for News Chat, which comes with the simple premise – meeting in the local pub, the Punch Bowl in West Hallam, (before official opening hours and so limited to tea and coffee) and sharing in conversation about what’s happening in the news. Gill Turner-Callis told us: “It may seem like a simple idea but it’s now attracting 20 people at a time and still growing. The people who come are from all walks of life and all faiths or none. The tone is very much every voice and opinion matters, and the Church is growing as relationships develop.”

tian from Burton upon Trent on 29th April, 1920, and they went on to have two children, Harry and Chrissy (Rick Shelton’s mother). He died on 25th June, 1949 at 33 Middleton Road and was buried at All Saints, Kirk Hallam. Alf’s return from duty probably happened with little fanfare, although a “Tea and Social for Returned Soldiers” was held at the Primitive Methodist Church on Nottingham Road on Monday 14th April, 1919. No soldiers’ names are given in the Advertiser article, but I like to think that Alf was there, patiently enduring the speeches by Mr W. Prentice (President) and the Revd. Jacob White, before “sitting down to a substantial tea”.

Photos: Top: The North Midland Cyclist Company. Centre: Private Alfred Trussell. Lower pic: Raleigh military cycle.: I would like to thank two people for their help in producing these two articles about Alf Trussell: Rick Shelton for the photographs of his grandfather and John Hall for his valuable research. The photograph of the race at the Manor Ground in last month’s article is of the NCU District half mile, with Trussell in third place.

Local Walking Groups Where they are going this month

Ilkeston Rambling Club Further information about Ilkeston Rambling Club from Jim Cresswell, 07747 419380. Thursday 9th November: Programme Meeting at The Poacher, South Street, 7.45pm. Sunday 12th November: Walk to be announced. Sunday 26th November: An eight-mile walk starting from Darley Bridge and taking lunch at Two Dales. Leader: Clive Unwin. Club badges available at £1 each.

Long Eaton Rambling Club Full details can be found on the web site above or alternatively you can phone John for more information on 0115 849 5813 Sunday 5th November - Quarndon Circular, 9 miles. Meet 9.00am Long Eaton Town Hall. Sunday 12th November - Kingston on Soar Circular, 9 miles. Meet 9.00am Long Eaton Town Hall. Thursday 16th November - Kirkby in Ashfield Circular, 7 miles. Meet 9.30am West Park Leisure Centre. Sunday 19th November - Kirk Ireton Circular, 9 miles. Meet 9.00am Long Eaton Town Hall. Sunday 26th November - Lickpenny Lane Circular, 9 miles Meet 9.00am Long Eaton Town Hall. All walks meet in Long Eaton to car share to keep travel costs to a minimum. Many more events and activities are organised throughout the year, including day trips out, weekends away and holidays. So come and join our friendly club on one of our forthcoming walks.

What a good idea! The TimeSwap knitting group which meets every week in the Smoothie café on Bath Street have been knitting together since March this year and have made dozens of ‘twiddle muffs’ which we are about to present to Derby Hospital and Making Space. These are muffs which can be used by folk with dementia as they twiddle with their fingers and often scratch their own skin or rip their clothes or the sofa arm. They have worked really hard and done a fabulous thing for others. Jo Perkins, Erewash TimeSwap Project Officer.


Debbie’s charity cake stall for Macmillan A cake sale and raffle raised money for Macmillan nurses at Ilkeston Tesco store. The effort was organised by Debbie Marriott of the bakery department. The charity is close to Debbie’s heart as she lost her mother, who also worked at the store, to cancer. Carl Derbyshire of the Tesco Ilkeston community team said: “Colleagues baked cakes for the sale and the store also donated some amazing raffle prizes including a laptop, jet washer, Xbox and PlayStation accessories and a variety of alcohol. The event raised £716 for Macmillan, which we are really proud of.” Photo shows Debbie manning the stall, along with trolley and car park colleague Ryan Instone.

Erewash Ramblers More about Erewash Ramblers from Yvonne Ashby on 0115 930 4054. Thursday 2nd November. 10.30am. 6 miles. Bradgate Park. Meet at Swithland Wood South Car Park (honesty box). SK537117, LE12 8TN. Leader Steve Tunstall. Saturday 4th November. 10.30am. 7 miles. Ticknall and Hartshorne. Meet at Ticknall Village Hall. SK352242, DE73 7JX. Leader Brian Bennett. Monday 6th November. 10.30am. 7 miles. Kelstedge & Spitewinter. Meet at Ashover Parish Hall. SK351632, S45 0AD. Leaders Brian and Yvonne Ashby. Wednesday 8th November. 10.30am. Short walk. Allestree Park. Meet Woodlands car park. SK340403. Leader Alan Brown. Sunday 12th November. 10.00am. 8 miles. Hartington, Pilsbury, and the Upper Dove. Meet village centre SK127603. Leaders Jacqui & Royce Drew. (07592 263284) The Village Lock-up at Wednesday 15th November: Ticknall - it’s still there Evening Social, 7.30pm. “Derby’s White Chapel” - presentation by Jane Whitaker. West Hallam Village Hall. Thursday 16th November. 10.30am. 6 miles. Cromford, Bow Wood, Black Rocks. Meet at Cromford Meadows car park, P&D. 2 steep climbs. SK300571, DE4 3RQ (nearest). Leader Alan Brown. Saturday 18th November. 10.30am. 5½ miles. Ockbrook/Dale Abbey circular. Meet at Queens Head, Ockbrook. SK421357, DE72 3RA. Leader Christine Johnstone. Monday 20th November. 10.30am. 7 miles. High Peak Trail. Monyash & Flagg. Meet at Hurdlow car park. SK128659, SK17 9QJ (nearest). Leader Marilyn Brown. Wednesday 22nd November. 10.30am. Short walk Risley. Meet Risley Park Inn. SK458356. Leader Brian Bennett. Sunday 26th November. 10.00am, 8 miles. Smalley & Horsley Castle. Meet at Stainsby Hall Cricket Club, Off Dobholes Lane. SK404446, DE7 6EL (nearest). Leader Robert Mee. Thursday 30th November. 10.30am. 6½ miles. Lawrence’s ‘Country of my Heart’. Meet at Greasley Church layby (B600). SK490472, NG16 2AB. Leader Alan Brown.

November 2017

Bucket-fulls of fun Some of the young people from the 1st Sitwell (Horsley Woodhouse) Scout group with Paul Evans from Ilkeston’s McDonald’s restaurant at their car washing day last month. See Car wash fund raiser on page 6.


Apart from our Stanley events, we have been able to give away £1,300 during October. This was shared among Margaret Stephenson’s German Shepherd Dog Rescue in Stanley, Derwent Valley Donkey Sanctuary in Cromford, the Animal Accident Rescue in Nottingham, Lesley Robinson’s Wildlife Rescue in Ilkeston and Carole Hopewell’s Rabbit Rescue Centre in Mapperley. Carole has sadly lost 10 of her rabbits recently to the RHD type 2 virus. This virulent decease is decimating the rabbit population. Rabbits can seem perfectly healthy one day, and then be found dead next morning. Carole advises all pet rabbit owners to get their pets vaccinated ASAP, and also against myxomatosis which is still a real risk to all rabbits. Christmas Afternnoon Tea, Stanley Village Hall November 18th 2pm - 4pm Our last event proved very popular and so we are planning fun and games to be included in our Christmas Fair, we shall have Hook-a-Bag, Adopt a Teddy, Spin the Bottle and other games, as well as Christmas gifts, Bric-aBrac, jigsaws and book sales. The cakes and preserves will include Christmas fare, and admission is £1-00 to include unlimited drinks. (Children admitted free of charge). The event is in aid of “Guardian Angels”, a recue Centre for cage birds and injured wild birds. Rebecca Blagg from the Centre will be joining us for the afternoon. German Shepherd Rescue, Open Day Saturday November 25th 10-30am – 4pm Margaret Stephenson is planning for the next open day at the Shelter at King’s Corner. (DE21 4RG – just beyond Stanley Village). As always there will be vast quantities of clothes, books, Bric-a-Brac, furniture, pet equipment and much, much more. Arrive early for the best bargains. Barbara Goodchild For more information about WHAC visit our website:

The Probus Club of Ilkeston The October meeting was well attended with one more new member joining, and we all wish him many enjoyable meetings at our Club. The presentation this month was provided Graham Hayes. The Arena Church once again provided us with a delicious meal, served by their professional and amiable staff. Graham’s talk was entitled ‘Above us the Waves’, the story of submarine warfare from 1900 to 1945. He began with the first submarine built in 1620, and he highlighted all the major advances up to the First World War. The UK Admiralty apparently were very slow to appreciate the advantages of the submarines and they were initially misused up until a disaster in July 1914 when three elderly cruisers were sunk by the German u boat U-9. By the end of World War 1 Germany had sunk 369 allied ships. Graham spoke very knowledgeably on a number of famous submarine encounters during World War 2, as well as live on board a submarine during battle and when carrying out their daily routines. Very close bonds were formed by the 15 crew who had little fear of death as they each relied on one another for survival. The Probus Club of Ilkeston is open to all retired / partly retired men who have a professional background and business men who would like to meet once a month and for other organised events during the year. If you wish to learn more, please contact Michael Slater, our Secretary, on 0115 932 6185 or email David Jones

Long Eaton Probus Club The speaker on this occasion saw the return of Paul Newsham, who on a previous occasion gave the members a talk on Biometrics. This time is talk was Biometrics 2, another very interesting talk on the forensics that the police employed in their efforts to catch the criminals. Paul told the members many interesting facts relating to this very interesting subject, telling the members that whoever it is, will always leave some evidence behind that they were at the scene. After President Jeff had thanked Paul for his very entertaining talk, the members remained behind to celebrate the 90th birthday of club member John Hampson (pictured) with a piece of birthday cake and a glass of wine. Terence Brown

EREWASH IN BLOOM WINNERS 2017 Best Front Garden 1st 2nd 3rd


Mrs C. Holloway, Poplar Road, Breaston Mr B. Pinfield, Holland Meadow, Long Eaton Mr Emanuele Maxia, Anson Walk, Ilkeston

Best Hanging Baskets and Planters 1st (joint)


2nd 3rd


Mr Ken Young, Blandford Avenue, Long Eaton Mark, Jill and Paul Prentice, Harrington Street, Sawley Mrs S. Hainsworth, Beech Croft, Breadsall Village Ms Tina White, Brick Kiln Lane, Morley

Best Rear Garden (medium to large) 1st 2nd 3rd


Mark, Jill and Paul Prentice, Harrington Street, Sawley Mr Ken Young, Blandford Avenue, Long Eaton Mr Cook, Chestnut Grove, Sandiacre

Best Rear Garden (Small) 1st (joint) Mrs Jean Whitwell, Pimlico, Ilkeston Mrs S. Hainsworth, Beech Croft, Breadsall Village 2nd Mark Gatley, Wirksworth Road, Kirk Hallam 3rd David Mayo, Newbery Avenue, Long Eaton

Best Wildlife/Environmental Garden 1st 2nd 3rd


Mark, Jill and Paul Prentice, Harrington Street, Sawley Mr Nigel Downes, Wharncliffe Road, Ilkeston Mr M Bilbie, St Vincent Close, Long Eaton

Best Street, Community Area or Friends Group 1st 2nd (joint)


3rd (Joint)


Coach and Horses, Draycott Three Trees Community Garden. EPHA House sheltered accommodation, Ilkeston Long Eaton Railway Station Community Improvements, Sawley Artemis Hostel P3, Long Eaton Heanor Road Community Allotment, Ilkeston

Best Allotment Site 1st 2nd (joint)




Far Lane Allotment Association, Borrowash Sandiacre and Risley Gardenholders Association Shacklecross Allotments, Borrowash Elm Street Allotments, Borrowash

Pubs, Restaurants and Hotels 1st (joint) Carpenters Arms, Dale Abbey The Stanhope Arms, Stanton by Dale 2nd (joint) Chequers Inn, Breaston Spanish Bar, Ilkeston 3rd (joint) The General Havelock, Ilkeston Seven Oaks Inn, Stanton by Dale

Business, Commercial and Places of Worship 1st 2nd 3rd


Brooklands Court, Long Eaton Bramble Lodge, West Hallam Friends of St Mary’s Churchyard, Ilkeston

Best School Garden 1st 2nd (joint)


3rd (Joint)


Chaucer Junior School, Ilkeston Parklands Infant School, Long Eaton Granby Junior School, Ilkeston Morley Primary School Ladywood Primary School, Kirk Hallam

Tallest Sunflower (under 16s) 1st 2nd 3rd


Ladywood Primary School, Kirk Hallam Luca Rowbottom, St Alban’s Close, West Hallam Parklands Infant School, Long Eaton


County Councillor John Frudd Member for Ilkeston South will be holding a Members Surgery on Saturday 11th November 2017 10am—12 noon At Ilkeston Town Hall, Ilkeston, DE7 5RP

November 2017


Life in the Garden By Steve Walton

Hello fellow gardeners… Welcome to November’s Life in the Garden. With the dark nights now upon us, tut tut!, our gardens are starting to hibernate. The winter is a great time to reflect on the year and to start that all important planning for next year. Remember, please do keep on getting in touch whether its to ask a question, share a news story or a send a photo of your garden at its best to Clear up fallen leaves - especially from lawns, ponds and beds because as they start to rot they can cause disease. Continue to plant spring bulbs especially Tulips Plant out winter bedding in pots and flowerbeds such as Pansies and Viloas Cover brassicas with netting if pigeons are starting to be a problem Put out bird food to encourage winter birds into the garden

Visit to The Trentham Estate

Join me Gardener Steve on Saturday 11th November for a day trip to The Trentham Estate, Stoke-On-Trent. Trentham Gardens are formal Italianate gardens, part of an English landscape park. The gardens are set within a large area of woodland. Together these currently cover some 300 acres. The gardens were designed as a serpentine park by Capability Brown from 1758 onwards. This is an award winning garden which in 2013 won the Enjoy Staffordshire Tourism Gold Award, in both 2015 and 2016 we were awarded a Gold Accolade by Visit England and in September 2010, the Gardens won one of the most prestigious European gardening awards, for the “Restoration, Enhancement or Development of a Historic Park or Garden”. What matters most of all is what our visitors think and we’re delighted that they voted us BBC Countryfile’s Garden of the Year 2015. The contemporary revival of the famous Italian Gardens was led by renowned designer and multi-Chelsea gold-medal winner Tom Stuart -Smith. During the winter months, beautiful seed heads with strong structure and texture are left and are glistenening frosty jewels. As well as the gardens there is Trentham Garden centre and a shopping village with over 70 timber lodges housing amazing Shops, Cafés and Restaurants so plenty to do come rain or shine this will be a great day out and I am sure there will be a little Christmas spirit in the air too! With a full day ahead of you, your day starts off with a Breakfast roll and a hot drink from the Seven Oaks Inn, Stanton By Dale which is where the coach will depart and it will be £20.00 per person this includes breakfast, coach travel to Trentham but does NOT include entrance to the garden as this will be optional to the individual on the day. For more information or to book your place, You can call the booking line on 07413 408751 or email or myself at places are limited and very popular so early booking is advised. Me and the Blue Skies The Limit crew look forward to hearing from you soon.

Treetops Hospice Garden Update

The volunteer gardeners at Treetops Hospice Care are already busy planting more spring bulbs ready for their next National Garden Scheme open gardens day which is on Saturday 24th March 2018, from 11am to 3pm. In early spring the grounds are always

a riot of colour with literally 1000’s of daffodils in bloom with many other spring flowers too the hospice looks a picture throughout its 12 acre site of woodland and gardens. The development and planting of the grounds has always taken into consideration the needs and fundraising activities of the hospice. A raised wheelchair walkway enables guests to access some woodland areas, and there is also a 20 minute circular walk on bark chipped paths and raised walkways. The weeks leading up to Christmas are always full of fundraising events, and this year the volunteer gardeners are having a plant & bulbs and a homemade produce stall at the Christmas market at Treetops Hospice Care in Risley on Sunday 19th November, from 10am to 4pm.

Our day trip to Nesss Botanic Gardens and BBC Garden Party

It was an early start on Saturday 16th September for our day trip to Ness Botanic Gardens in Cheshire after our usual hearty breakfast we set on our way over to the Wirral and we were certainly following the better weather!. Ness Gardens were designed by Arthur Kilpin Bulley a Liverpool cotton merchant, he began to create the garden in 1898, which laid the foundations of one of the major botanic gardens in the United Kingdom. After his death, Bulley's daughter Lois presented the Gardens to the University of Liverpool in 1948. The gardens had lots of late summer colour, the highlights for me were the perennial beds mixed with the beautiful ornamental grasses, carpets of Colchicum and Cyclamen and the stunning fruits on the Cornus Kousa, on the whole plenty to see and a wide variety of different plants. Our day trip was not only to see the wonderful botanic gardens but we were to join in with the 70th anniversary celebrations of the BBC Radio 4’s Gardeners Question Time with some of our party sitting in to listen to one of the live recordings of the programme where the celebrity panel of James Wong, Pippa Greenwood, Bunny Guinness and Bob Flowerdew all had gardening questions put to them from the ten people that were picked from the audience. It was interesting to hear different answers and ideas from the panel and was great to take a behind the scenes look at how the programme was made. Other events around the gardens were also taking place such as a plant and food fair featuring over 50 nurseries and food producers, gardening & food demonstrations, guided walks and talks throughout the day. It was then everybody back on board the coach many with a plant or two, and off on our journey back home to the Seven Oaks. It was a great day which was enjoyed by all—a very nice garden and well worth a visit. Thanks again go to Ryan, Kelly and the team at the Seven Oaks Inn for our super breakfast and to Alex our driver at Goldstar Travel, Stapleford, for our brilliant safe journey.



Family and Personal Announcements




Margaret and Mick

Fuse Box Upgrades Sockets, Lights, Showers, etc. 18 years with EMEB Part P Registered Free Quotes


2nd November. Congratulations and all best wishes on your Diamond Wedding Anniversary. Lots of love from all the family.


John Riley The family of John Riley would like to give a big thank you to all friends and neighbours for their lovely cards, flowers, and messages of sympathy and support they received on the sad loss of John. A special thank you to those who attended John’s funeral service and for the generous donations to The British Heart Foundation. The kindness from everyone has been a great comfort to the family. God Bless You All.

Tel. 0115 944 4128 Mob. 07723 016702 Small Jobs Welcome Your Local Electrician MOTOR SERVICES

November 2017



Marion Marsland

WANTED SUBBUTEO Football and Rugby teams and accessories wanted by local collector (retirement hobby). Jeff Gould, tel. 01332 348491 or 07969 674791 or email


June Hatter Passed away at the QMC on 6th October 2017, aged 71 years. Will be sadly missed by all the family.

Barry Richardson 83 years. A retired railway man, amateur football referee and former Stapleford lad. The final whistle blew 12th October 2017. Till we meet again. R.A.S.C. Marlene, Anthony, LindseyJayne and Justin plus partners Grandchildren and Great Grandchildren xxx Any further enquiries to be made to The Co-operative Funeralcare, 57 Lower Stanton Road, Ilkeston. Derbyshire. DE7 4LR

John Shortose

Have a happy birthday Marion, from all at Died on the 4th October at Ilkeston HospiLime Towers. tal. A lovely gentleman loved and missed by all his family. Margaret, Helen, Diane and families.



Share the anniversary of someone special in your community newspaper


Monyash Community Centre, Cotmanhay For young pensioners—open Monday afternoons between 12 noon and 4pm. New club members always welcome to join in with bingo sessions and trips out.

Please contact Eleanor on 07934 998451 ELECTRICAL


(This is not the same advert as last month)

You are reading this page and so are your customers...

Talk to Paul on 07539 808390


November 2017


The horror that was Passchendaele By Danny Corns


asschendaele just like the Somme, were words that were unknown to people this side of the Channel just over a hundred years ago. Those two words will live in Britain’s overseas military history alongside D Day, Dunkirk, The Crimea, Waterloo and Trafalgar for ever. Passchendaele was just a quiet Flanders village along with the Somme, a little known river in northern France, but by the time of the Armistice on the 11th of November 1918, millions of allied and German servicemen, along with many from various parts of the world along with civilians had lost their lives in what was arguably the most futile war in history, at least for the numbers killed and maimed. The village of Passchendaele had become famous for all the wrong reasons.

REG CORNS Reg Corns was my uncle, my dad’s second eldest of three brothers born in Riddings in 1896. The family moved to Hallam Fields in the later part of the 1890s following the iron trade to work at Stanton Ironworks in the foundries. Upon losing his wife Kate Townsend shortly after arriving at 2 Mitchell Terrace, Grandad Albert Corns married Marian Jane Randle, a widow with one son, Noel. In those days, kids needed a mam and dad. The husband was the breadwinner with the wife bringing up the family. They finally moved to Crompton Street and went on to have eight more children making a total of fourteen people living in a two-bedroom house with a small box room, parlour, living room and scullery. The midden was at the end of the yard; this was not unusual in those days. Uncle Reg enlisted in the RFA (the Royal Field Artillery) as soon as he was 18 years of age in 1914. He signed on at the Travellers Rest pub on White Lion Square, known jokingly as the War Office. This is where new recruits joined the forces. Reg was badly injured in France and slowly recovered from his injuries at Netley Military Hospital, Southampton before returning to the front line in Belgium. He was killed at Passchendaele on the 13th of August, leaving behind a young wife and a new baby son who he saw only once. He is buried in the New Irish Farm Cemetery, St Jean, Les-Ypres, alongside his mates. He was one of the first to be buried there.

of my workmates (by then in their fifties or sixties) had fought in the Great War and because of my Uncle Reg I asked questions about their experiences. Not many would open up but Bill Lloyd was himself born in Riddings and knew Reg Corns. He told me a few things but probably not the worst as I was only 15. Although growing up in World War Two, I was somewhat hardened to hearing bad news and men’s experiences, after all I had spent nights in air raid shelters listening to German bombers flying overhead as we fully expected Stanton Ironworks to be bombed. However, Bill did mention that during a lull in the fighting the officer in charge decided the men needed ‘de-lousing’. The troops, fifty at a time, were marched to the nearest village, ordered to strip off in the village square, then hosed down with cold water, much to the delight of the village ladies. Then they shook out their uniforms and returned to their trenches, hopefully lice-free. Another workmate told me a similar story that when he arrived home after demob in his mud encrusted uniform; his wife made him strip off in the back yard and de-loused him with cold water and finally placed him in a bath of hot water, suitably lice-free, she hoped.

BOB BOWLEY Bob was the Fitting Shop crane driver. Before the First World War he had been a regular soldier and was the Army’s Sprint Champion. Although he never opened up about the War, he told me about the Powderhall Sprint Championships that took place every New Year’s Day in Glasgow. This was over a distance of one hundred yards and open to the best runners in the country. That was all he was prepared to say about Army life and the War itself. I believe Bob won the championship before WW1.

ALBERT CUTTS Albert was Furnace Foreman at Stanton and my neighbour on Crompton Street. His son was Graham Cutts, a fine local sportsman and school teacher at Gladstone Boys School. Albert was a Sergeant Major during WW1 and I believe had been a regular soldier and served in India prior to the War. Sergeant Majors were vital in the trenches. Their job was to keep up the discipline and the morale of the troops and were often the first to go over the top. When learning to swim as an 8year-old, Albert slung me in the Erewash Canal at Stanton and said “Do the doggy, it will come natural to you.” It never did and put

BILL LLOYD When I started work at Stanton in January 1951, aged 15, a number

Reg Corns, France, May 1916

me off swimming for ever. He did nual tradition and will also be the same to his daughter Iris and attended by the local British Leit had the same effect on her. gion with a local priest. The commemoration will start at 10am on MABEL Thursday 9th November. EveryWhen I used to visit my old school one will be welcome. teacher in a nursing home over 30 Anyone wishing to find out more years ago, I got talking to her about local servicemen during about her life. She told me she WW1 might be interested in obhad been a nurse in Flanders and taining the Ilkeston Local History Belgium during World War One Society’s publication ‘Off to War’ when only 18 years of age. She written by Grant Shaw. said it was a terrible experience but refuse to elaborate. I wish now that she had let me record her memories.


All over by Christmas 1914

A band was boldly playing This lovely War Memorial was As we marched off to war cast in bronze in the Brass Shop at Cobbles rang as our boots went Stanton Ironworks in 1920, declang We stiffened every jaw signed and made by the highly skilled moulders and patternmak- We swelled our chests and swung our arms ers of Stanton and erected in Whether we came from towns or 1921 at the top of Crompton farms Street. It contained the names It will all be over by Christmas of the 27 men of Hallam Fields lads killed in the First World War. Alt- That's the story we were told hough not a pals battalion they all All be over by Christmas knew each other and grew up The lies that we were sold. together. They all went to Hallam The music in the trenches Fields School on School Lane and Was of a different kind attended St Bartholomew’s Rat - a - tat - tat of machine guns Church at the top of Crompton Moans of gassed and blind Street. They were all members of Counterpoint of artillery the CLB (Church Lads Brigade) and Roll calls for the lost received military training, as I did. Cries and screams of wounded Counting, counting up the cost They all work at Stanton Ironworks and lived within half a mile All be over by Christmas Counting up the cost. of each other. The band was playing the Dead Due to vandalism, the memorial March was moved from the top of As we trudged home from war Crompton Street in 1980 to a qui- No girls were waving handkeret corner of the Stanton Institute chiefs sports ground. It was rededicated But there were tears galore by the Rev Arthur Robertson of St A mournful, haunting melody Mary’s in a ceremony attended by For those they'd see no more Mr Atkin, Chief Executive of Stan- It was all over by Christmas ton Ironworks and many residents For those we'll see, no more, no and family members of those who more All over by were killed. Christmas In 1991 on a Sunday afternoon For those we'll see the memorial was stolen, along no more. with many others in the area. John White Fortunately, I had photographs so the Chairman of the Stanton Sports Association and Stanton Manager Peter Hodgson arranged Tune in to your local radio station for another to be made at the Staveley foundries as Stanton had closed by then. It is certainly a good one but not quite as elaborate as the original. As part of the Armistice Day Remembrance, the pupils of Hallam Fields School will be laying crosses at the memorial, along with a Great songs just for Erewash wreath. This has become an an-

November 2017


‘Don’t worry about trivialities’ – Sound advice from Ilkeston’s Len Wright, as he celebrates his 100th birthday on the 3rd November. By Mr One-and-Three-quarters (who was christened by Len and Dorothy)


en Wright is as bright as a button, with the mind and memory of a man of much younger years. Len was born in Burton-on-Trent on the 3rd November, 1917, while the First World War was still raging, the son of Alice and Albert, a brewery labourer. Len grew up in Burton with his brother Raymond. His mother’s family were from Newmarket, where the grain was grown which was transported once a year to Burton to be turned into beer. As he celebrates his 100th birthday Len revealed to your correspondent his secret to a long healthy life – good wine and a good woman! He learned how to enjoy red wine and Grappa during two wartime years in Northern Italy and met his wife Dorothy, ‘late in life’, in 1956, they have been married 60 years. Len passed his Grammar school exams, but like many working-class children of his generation, his family could not afford the fees and so Len attended the Central School, Burton. His favourite subjects were science and geography and he played a lot of sport, mainly as a rugby three-quarter and a passable batsman at cricket. Sport continued to play an important part in his life, tennis, skiing and he took up ten-pin bowling at 97! Len started work as an office boy at a chartered accountant, but the job was poorly paid at 15/- (75p) a week and from that he had to pay to take accountancy exams. He soon moved to Pirelli, again in the accounts department, studied at night-school, passed his exams and learned to touch type. Len has never been idle and he clearly likes a challenge. In the 1930s with a friend he built a two-man kayak from scratch using plans supplied by the Boy Scout Association. Len recalled that the canvas skin came from Greenock and the wood from Burton Joinery works. The boat was constructed in a backyard before being put on a wheelbarrow and hauled to the River Trent, where an amused local farmer, let them store it. Later they even added a sail. I asked Len if they ever fished from the boat, but judging by the look he gave me, fishing was far too sedentary an occupation for this man of action. At the outbreak of the war the boat was presented to the local scouts. Having witnessed the horrors of the trench warfare of World War One in the threepenny back row seats of the local cinema, Len volunteered in 1939 for clerical work in the Royal Army Service Corps. Len was with the British Expeditionary Force in Brittany and he made his way back to Weymouth from St. Malo, aboard a merchant cargo ship, five weeks after Dunkirk. His next foray abroad in 1942 was on a troop ship leaving Liverpool, travelling on the North Atlantic, turning south, docking at Freetown, going round the Cape, entering the Indian Ocean and reaching Deolali transit camp, known to the troops as ‘Doolally’. After a few weeks he was off to the Middle East and based south of Cairo, where he was transferred to the Intelligence Corps, helping in the interrogation of East European soldiers who had deserted from Rommel’s Afrika Korps. Len said that a surprising amount of valuable information was obtained in this way. German prisoners were also able to receive private mail, which was another source of intelligence for the censors. Entitled to two weeks leave, Len hitchhiked to the Sinai Desert, to Palestine and to bed and breakfast accommodation run by a German nurse in Tel Aviv. Len visited Jerusalem where he remembers watching worshippers standing at the Wailing Wall, then on to Damascus and Beirut. To him Lebanon was the most beautiful – much of that beauty to be

destroyed years later when it also became a warzone. In 1944 Len sailed to Southern Italy and Taranto having reached the dizzy heights of Corporal. Based in Naples, Len found the Italian people warm, friendly and helpful. He visited a bar run by a man called Salvatore who lived above the premises with his wife, known as ‘mama’. They invited Len for a meal and touched by their hospitality he bought a Hugo language guide to teach himself Italian. He still speaks Italian more than 70 years later. Len visited other places in Italy, including Milan and at one time camped on the Monza racetrack. In January 1946 he returned to ‘Blighty’ and started working at a Burton brewery, before changing direction somewhat and spending some time with the unusual occupation of building tennis courts! In 1950 Len moved to Ilkeston and in September 1956 met his future wife Dorothy at a Loscoe Miners’ Welfare Dance. Dorothy had visited Italy and so they had a shared interest. A whirlwind romance resulted in marriage on April 13th 1957. The couple moved in with Dorothy’s mother in Loscoe, with Len working for the Ilkeston Electricity Board at Toll Bar House, White Lion Square, in the expenditure department. In 1962, encouraged by a neighbour he took up skiing and became a member of the Derby Ski Club. In the bitterly cold and hard winter of 1962 he helped build a ski-lift in Belper. Len got the skiing bug and spent some ten years holidaying in the Pyrenees, Austria and the Italian Alps, he even managed to encourage Dorothy to join him on one occasion, driving to Italy in his Moggy Minor, though she didn’t try skiing. For domestic holidays Len and Dorothy used to go camping at Harlech, before purchasing a small holiday home which they kept for 27 years. Never idle throughout his life, after retiring Len spent a number of years with a small group of retired men who would go rambling every Wednesday morning, before age caught up with them. In later life Len’s sight has failed and Len and Dorothy are involved with the Blind Veteran’s Association, formerly known as St. Dunstans, and the organisation in turn has been a great help to them. Len has kept fit throughout his life, swimming twice a week at Victoria Pool, Ilkeston and Highfields Lido. He last went swimming in 2013 on a holiday to South West Italy. He has spent many hours, scaling Britain’s highest hills and occasional mountains and walking over dales as well as continuing to play sport. Len and Dorothy moved into their house in June 1960 and turned an empty farmer’s field into a showpiece garden, testament to another of Len’s skills. Len has occupied his remaining spare time with various other pursuits and the walls of his home illustrate his undoubted ability as an amateur oil, acrylic and watercolour artist and former member of the Ilkeston Art Club. Len and Dorothy have always been blessed with good neighbours and they in turn have a reputation for their hospitality. Len’s tastes are simple, his mum told Dorothy his favourite food was carrots. Len still has a very healthy appetite with a dislike of ice cream, but a particular liking for tomato and basil soup. With carrots and tomatoes playing such an important part in his life it is no surprise that red is Len’s favourite colour. It was a real joy to meet a man of 99 and his spring chicken wife of 91, who both have such a joy of life. As I said goodbye I asked Len if he had a message for the people of Ilkeston, ‘yes’, he said, ‘Don’t Worry about trivialities.’ Many Happy Returns Len!

Dorothy and Len Wright

Christine has plans for her ‘little haven’ pub


andlady Christine Pond took over the Bridge Inn in Cotmanhay in February this year and opened on 4th March, turning it into a restaurant as well as a bar. She has an extensive menu, which includes Gluten free and Vegan meals, plus she always has four or five extra meals on her Specials Board. I look forward to trying her gluten free meals as I find it very difficult to find anywhere local that can offer me a good choice of gluten free food. Christine had a restaurant in Battle in Hastings for a while where she trained under a five star chef for three years so should really know her business. All Christine’s menu choices are on her website including her Christmas menu which will be available from the 1st November to the 28th January, excluding Christmas day. Having left the trade in 2014 she took a break from the trade but decided she would like to get back into catering and use her chef skills once more, and so ended up in Ilkeston, which was completely unknown territory for her when she arrived. Christine has grown to love living by the Erewash Canal in Cotmanhay, which she says is a little haven and that Cotmanhay people have been warm and friendly and made her feel at home. She wants to do her bit to make the pub friendly, attractive and a comfortable place for people to come with their families. To that end she has plans to completely landscape the outdoor space, and provide new playground equipment for the children and this month will see the second round of refurbishments inside The Bridge Inn with new

toilets and new furniture for the restaurant. There are five moorings at the Bridge which are free to use for two weeks at a time and Christine would like to encourage more use of these by putting in outside toilet facilities, a sluice and water and electric points. She also hopes to encourage the boaters on the canal to stop for a meal or a drink. Christine has a full programme of events coming up over the next few months with live music every week from November through to Christmas and karaoke and keyboard karaoke (singing along to a live musician). She would also like to form a Bridge Inn Choir and cabaret club to put on performances to raise money for local charities. Anyone interested in joining should attend rehearsals which will be held at the pub on Wednesday’s at 7 o’clock. Christine is also putting on a Bonfire celebration on Saturday 4th November. There will be over a £1,000 worth of fireworks and the entrance is FREE. Fire lighting is at 6.30pm with Hot Dogs, Burgers, etc., available to purchase. Christine can cater for weddings and Wakes for up to 50 at the moment with plans to do bigger events in a marquee in the garden next year. Sounds to me as though she is a force to be reckoned with. I and the staff at the Ilkeston Life wish her the very best with it all. People interested in any of the above can contact her on her website. Christine also has a Facebook page: The Bridge Inn—Cotmanhay.

Patricia Spencer

November 2017


Radio team take a bow

Listeners got a chance to see the faces behind the radio voices when Erewash Sound put on a concert at the Duchess Theatre, Long Eaton. The variety show staged by presenters, behind the scenes workers and local performers who have been featured on the airwaves raised £550 for the Treetop Hospice in Risley. Inset: singer Emily Gent. FOR THE RECORD… These ‘78’ sleeves came from once popular music and electrical appliance shops in Ilkeston. Images supplied by David Heath-


Reflections of a vet Earlier this year my husband and I had a baby girl. Not long before she was born, a dog owner told me “you’ll have to think about this and make these decisions soon” when I was talking to her about her dog’s booster vaccinations. This did get me thinking - but not about whether our daughter would be having vaccinations. Far from it - there was absolutely no doubt for either my husband or I as to whether our little girl would receive vaccinations as per the NHS guidelines. We didn’t need to discuss it, we both knew that she would get the vaccinations as advised in order to give her the best possible start in life. What this brief conversation made me ponder was rather how the public perceive medical information and research, and how so many people don’t know how to critically appraise a source. One of the least enjoyable subjects during my years at vet school was “Epidemiology”. This is “the branch of medicine which deals with the incidence, distribution, and possible control of diseases and other factors relating to health” (thank you, Google). Studying statistics is not something that I have ever enjoyed, but the big thing that I took away from this course was how to assess statements, results or research, and determine whether the conclusions are actually valid. This includes looking at whether data supports the stated conclusion, as well as looking critically at how a study was carried out and so being able to appraise whether it achieved its aims. Why am I talking about what sounds like an esoteric area of statistical medicine? Well, I believe that it is something that more people should be aware of. Not necessarily so that they can trawl through research papers, but more so that they can be more critical of information that they are given, and be able to weight that information according to its provenance. Doctors (both human-medical and veterinary) are often confronted by patients or clients with concerns about safety, particularly of vaccinations. These concerns may well be valid -

certainly no one wants to take unnecessary risks, particularly with the health of their children. Quite often, though, the advice of these healthcare professionals seems to be given less weight than anecdotal reports on social media, which are typically lacking in actual evidence and long on rhetoric. Now, I don’t think that we should go back to a culture where everyone assumes that “doctor knows best” and no one questions any information. Professionally I find it incredibly important (and also very rewarding) to be able to educate my clients in order to assist them in making the right decisions for them and their pets. I do, however, have issue when a professional has been looking up all the most recent research and published information for a case, and contacted the leading experts in the field, only to be told by the client that they value the advice of “someone on a forum” rather than these learned professionals. Of course, being able to critically appraise information isn’t confined to healthcare. In this age of social media, we hear so many reports of “news” reports or scare stories being shared that actually have no accurate basis - viral posts about certain religious groups trying to outlaw Christmas, or the selling of poppies, for example, which is perpetuated by hate groups in order to cause unrest. And of course there has been the supposedly new issue of “fake news”, which is two-edged firstly we have actual news being reported that is being denied in certain countries, and then invented or inflated stories being publicised to boost an ego. It does rather terrify me when one of the most powerful people in the world is perpetuating myths about childhood vaccinations that were debunked several years ago (and are also medically illogical). Let’s face it, information is more readily accessible than ever before, but perhaps we need to temper this with a renewal of common sense and being more critical of where information is coming from. This applies to all areas of life. (For anyone that is interested, a good starting point is Ben Goldacre’s book “Bad Science”. It’s very accessible and quite funny too!)

Kieran Lee leads a guided walk.

TV news feature prompts big response The bid for the development stage of the Bennerley Viaduct project has now been submitted by Sustrans and a response from the Heritage Lottery Fund is expected on December 12th. Projects of this size are complex and bids do not always succeed at the first attempt, but if public support is anything to go by it has a great chance. Public backing carries a lot of weight in these bids and the Friends have been overwhelmed by the positive response to the project. There has been a massive vote of support from people at a number of local events over the summer. Membership of the Friends group has taken off in a big way, volunteers turn up in numbers for workdays and the guided walks on and around the viaduct have been over-subscribed. When the recent feature on East Midlands Today was put on Facebook it received over twenty thousand hits. Equipment, photographic displays and a gazebo funded by a community grant from Erewash Borough Council have made a big contribution to the Friends’ efforts to engage the public in this project. The HLF funded Bennerley Viaduct exhibition, which started

its journey last summer at the Erewash Museum, has been seen by thousands as it toured a variety of venues in the area including Shipley Country Park, the Cantelupe Centre and the Ilkeston Tesco store. The exhibition can now be seen at Armstrong’s Mill, Ilkeston. The Friends are grateful for all of those opportunities to display the exhibition. There has been talk of restoring the viaduct for the last forty years but no viable project has ever come out of it. Now there is a realistic chance of succeeding the Friends are determined to maintain the momentum over the coming months. The next general meeting of the Friends is on Monday, 20th November at 7pm at the Gate Inn, Awsworth. Workdays will be held on Saturday 4th November and Saturday 2nd December. Find out more about the project and how you can help on Facebook or by visiting Kieran Lee, the Sustrans Community Development Officer, can be contacted on 07823 536 941 or

Bright sparks from the Electricity Board

This photograph was taken at the EMEB Sports and Social Club, High Lane East, West Hallam at the Annual Meeting of Employees and Retired Employees, about 1975. The entertainment was provided by some of the employees. The men in the picture are Jack Brewster, ?, ?, Rex Mason, Malcolm Baddeley and Dennis Dodson. The women: Margaret Hoyes, Sylvia Throw, Betty Chadwick, Jean Paxton, Valerie Smedley and Sandra Smith. The song they were singing was ’Three Wheels on my Wagon’. - Margaret.

November 2017


An Ilkestonian in Nigeria

My ten weeks in Kwali by Adam Slater


t was my 21st birthday weekend but instead of going ‘up town’ for drinks after playing cricket, I was in a very different market town – Kwali in central Nigeria, bumping my way along its pot-holed streets looking for my lodgings. After completing University, I had decided to join the International Citizen Service (ICS), a scheme that allows 18 to 24 year olds to do voluntary charity work overseas. Probably because I have a Nigerian grandfather, I was sent to Africa's most populous country and as the car pulled up outside a corrugated iron covered house with goats, chickens and stray dogs camped outside, the words, ‘it seemed like a good idea at the time’ kept flashing through my mind. The 12 British volunteers on the trip were partnered with young Nigerians all working for Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) and given the remit, “Get children back to school through inclusive neighbourhood spaces”. This meant putting on hour long lessons twice a week to encourage children’s interest in school. Alongside this, the group put on events called Community Action

Days that ranged from a spelling bee to a family planning lesson to a fashion show. My Nigerian ‘counterpart’ was called Miracle and we were being housed by Steve, a local teacher, whose home consisted of a living room, and a bedroom. The kitchen was a small extension outside and the toilet was a hole in the ground. But despite the discomforts, and contracting malaria at an early stage, the warmth of those living in the neighbourhood more than compensated. The children, especially, were delighted by everything we laid on for them and it was impossible to walk to our office without being mobbed by youngsters shouting Oyinbo! (their word for foreigner) and wanting a hug. The cultural differences came thick and fast during my 10 weeks. Electricity was limited. Steve, who taught art, said there were up to 80 children in his classes. It also seemed strange to think a town no bigger than Ilkeston could have its own King or Etsu, who had numerous Chiefs under him. The Etsu’s most impressive display occurred on a Friday when he would leave his ‘palace’ to attend Friday prayers at the mosque accompanied by a convoy of cars.

Armed police in 4X4s, intelligence services and men dressed in long red robes carrying long leather whips who wouldn’t look out of place in Game of Thrones, would all make up the security in an impressive sight to behold. Another huge difference was the Nigerian attitude to religion. The country is half Muslim, half Christian but all take it very seriously. A simple 'thank you' would be met with the correction, 'Thank God'

Viaduct clean up boosted by local firm

and Steve, my teacher host, had a sermon for his ringtone. At the more extreme end of the scale, one medical doctor I interviewed had given up his profession to train to be a pastor in the hope he could heal people through his religious powers given to him by God. There may not be much physical evidence to show for the work we all did but such an assessment misses the unseen things we did

Shopping ‘blind’ World Sight Day—12th October Ilkeston Lions joined with Sight Support Derbyshire on Ilkeston Market Place last month to put on a display of information of work being done to help with sight problems around the world. And to demonstrate what it was like to be sight impaired. The Mayor of Erewash Councillor Mary Hopkinson and the Lions District Governor Ste-

The Sustrans project to restore and reopen Bennerley Viaduct was given a further boost by Ward Recycling who provided a skip free of charge to enable volunteers to begin removing fly-tipped material which has been left underneath the viaduct. Sustrans, the environmental transport charity are working with local groups, organisations and businesses to bring the historic viaduct back into use as the centrepiece of the area’s walking and cycling routes. Part of the project involves enhancing the land underneath the viaduct by removing fly-tipped material and creating a diverse range of wildlife habitats. Volunteers and the Friends of Bennerley Viaduct have been actively supporting the Sustrans project by transforming the underside of the viaduct and creating a much more welcoming environment. James Balfour, Finance director of Ward Recycling commented “Ward Recycling always look to support local ventures and so we were more than happy to supply free waste disposal containers for the clean up on this project. We commend the Friends of Bennerley Viaduct and all the volunteers on their hard work and wish them the best of luck in getting the viaduct reopened.” Sustrans Community Officer Kieran Lee said, “As the interest in the project grows, visitors from all over the country are coming to see this viaduct which is the longest

achieve - instilling confidence in young girls, getting children excited about education and the huge amount of laughter and smiles we brought to the community. My experience in Nigeria with ICS/VSO was challenging but ultimately extremely satisfying and I would recommend it to everyone. Photo: Adam’s community action day. He put on a workshop for the children outside Steve's house and received a thank you from the Chief of the area.

phen Green kindly agreed to wear specially made masks to give the effect of blindness. They were then escorted around the market by local Lions Joe Prati and Suzanne Birch only able to identify items by smell or touch. They were shocked at how difficult it was. The words used at the end of the exercise were ‘terrifiying‘ and ‘extremely disorientating’. See also Donate your old spectacles, page 5.

It’s written in the stars

Many see the Big Wheel as the centrepiece of Ilkeston Fair, the ever-returning ride next to the Town Hall. Nigel Bentley has captured it perfectly in this photograph with another constant image, St Mary’s church in the background. wrought iron viaduct in the United Kingdom. We welcome the support of Ward Recycling in helping us make a start with the removal of fly-tipped material and unwanted debris. We are creating an area where: a range of events will be held; families can enjoy picnics; school children can learn about their local environment and visitors can appreciate the wonders of Bennerley Viaduct and the rich heritage of the Erewash Valley.”

Localised to Ilkeston area Aries ~ March 20th - April 19th You can be impulsive when dealing with others, and seem fierce or harsh. Your short fuse is not your best friend, Aries! Taurus ~ April 20th – May 20th Your loyal, loving and down to earth nature looks to be a creative mood this month. Could re-designing the garden be on your agenda? Gemini ~ May 21st – June 20th. Using Your skilled, analytical mind to sort out the bad apples of life, could be a very valuable asset this month, Gemini. Using it to help others is highly commendable. Cancer ~ June 21st – July 21st Your natural flair for sensing and understanding the feelings and emotions of others could be of great help in a particular situation. Leo ~ July 22nd – August 22nd Your leadership qualities look set to be in the spotlight this month, Leo. It may seem to be a burden, at times, but the joy and recognition you receive can more than make up for it. Virgo ~ August 23rd – September 22nd Long term plans and projects need your detailed brain power to ensure success. Could be a slog to work out ~ but should certainly seem worth it.

Libra ~ September 23rd – October 22nd Your sense of discrimination in practical matters, combined with clear headed minds of others, looks like a winning combination. Good luck Libra! Scorpio ~ October 23rd – November 21st Looks like you’re in demand as a group leader, with people seeking you out for help with their problems. You are a natural guide they can trust. Sagittarius ~ Nov. 22nd – December 20th Your painstaking efforts could well result in finding new and better ways to organise new developments and improve conditions. Capricorn ~ December 21st – January 19th Your ability to get beneath the surface gloss, and down to the essential roots of a situation, could be well used this month. Aquarius ~ January 20th – February 17th Important matters relating to money and material goods could well be occupying your thoughts this month. Could the approach of Christmas be anything to do with it? Pisces ~ February 18th – March 19th Imaginative ideas of a non - material, spiritual or mystical nature seem to occupy your mind right now. Real facts and figures seem to be taking a back seat at the moment. Richard Servante

Sport Matchman reports

THE ENTERTAINERS Goals a-plenty as Robins climb up the table Sat 30 Sep ’17 - Midland Football League Div One

Ilkeston Town 1 Leicester Road 3 Despite taking an early lead Ilkeston suffered an unwanted defeat to their promotion chasing rivals. Montel Gibson gave them a dream start with a third minute goal but the visitors recovered quickly from the set back. Nuno Gomes, the games outstanding player, scored a sublime equaliser on 23 minutes. His perfectly placed shot hit the underside of the bar before bouncing high into the net leaving Deakin helpless. Ilkeston were struggling to create openings against a competent Leicester Road defence and half time arrived with the visitors looking the more likely to score again. Two minutes into the second half Gomes put Leicester Road ahead. Ilkeston responded with a superb effort from Gibson which was brilliantly turned round the post by Leicester Road keeper Will Highland. Sadly, despite having lots of possession that was the nearest Ilkeston came to pulling a goal back. Leicester Road were always dangerous on the break and after Gomes was denied a penalty, Callum Earls made it 3-1 on 75 minutes to wrap up the game. Tue 03 Oct ’17 - Midland Football League Div One

Ilkeston Town 4 Brocton 1 Ilkeston were shocked to go a goal behind against their lowly opponents when Hartshorn scored on 16 minutes. Ilkeston’s passes were going astray and Brocton were growing in confidence. Ilkeston’s best effort was a Jamie Walker shot that hit a post but Brocton went in at half time leading one nil. Manager Steve Chettle was far from happy and sent the team out early for the second half. The equaliser came on the hour and it arrived via a set piece header from Charlie Jemson. Five minutes later Bennett won another corner for Ilkeston and this time it was prodded home by Lavell White to give Ilkeston the lead.

Brocton missed an easy chance to level, then a lobbed effort by White for Ilkeston bounced on the crossbar. The result remained in doubt until the 87th minute when Tim Hopkinson scored at the second attempt after the keeper had blocked his first shot. In added time Jordan Wheatley made it four. His shot hit the post and then the keeper before going in. Wheatley celebrated his strike but officially it was an own goal. Sat 07 Oct ’17 - Midland Football League Div One

Studley 3 Ilkeston Town 1 Ilkeston travelled to second placed Studley looking for their first away success. They dominated the first half but only had a 40th minute goal by Montel Gibson to show. This was partly due to missed chances and partly due to an inspired performance from Ryan Young the Studley keeper. Ilkeston’s slender lead was undone after just seven minutes of the second half when a defensive mistake gifted Studley an equaliser. Three minutes later Ilkeston captain Martin Lench received a red card for an over zealous challenge and from being well in control Ilkeston were now up against it. On 63 minutes Studley were awarded a penalty from which they took the lead. Despite being a man short Ilkeston fought back and regained the initiative. Studley were forced back but always looked dangerous on the break as Ilkeston pushed players forward in search of an equaliser which would not come. To complete a miserable afternoon Studley scored again in added time from a breakaway to make it 3-1. an early lead when Callum Smith scored after just five minutes with a good run and finish after being fed by Elliott Hodgett-Young. Smith gave a repeat performance on 35 minutes after being put through this time by Jamie Walker. Mickleover almost struck back immediately when Lamina did well to get a shot in under pressure but it was too high. Immediately after the restart Smith was denied a hat trick when Ashley Warner saved but Alex Marshall followed up to make it three on 47 minutes. Mickleover pulled one back eight minutes later through George Teeney. There was almost a bizarre own goal on 78 minutes when Mickleover defender Oliver Lonsdale smashed the ball against his own crossbar when trying to clear. Tim Hopkinson made it 4-1 on 86 minutes when he scrambled the ball in following a corner and a fumble by goalkeeper Warner. Then in added time Hopkinson struck again to complete the scoring.

November 2017


pulled a goal back on 56 minutes. It was an untidy goal from Ilkeston’s point of view but they went straight up the other end and restored their two goal advantage through Callum Smith. Three minutes later it was 4-1 when Alex Marshall scored his second. As Ilkeston were coasting to victory, a misjudgement by keeper Jake Wood on 77 minutes allowed Jamie Barrett to pull another goal back for Chelmsley when a high bounce deceived Wood and left Barrett with a tap in. Sat 21 Oct ’17 - Midland Football League Div One

Littleton 1 Ilkeston Town 5

On a windy day in Worcestershire, Littleton were blown away as Ilkeston hit five in the first half. Littleton’s keeper Jack Hartopp fell awkwardly early on and needed lengthy treatment. He was then beaten on 12 minutes when Alex Marshall turned in Chris Shaw’s free kick. Ilkeston scored a second goal from a free kick when Tom Marshall found the top corner after 20 minutes. Four minutes later Sat 14 Oct ’17 - Midland Football League Div One Alex Marshall broke free and made it 3-0 and Ilkeston Town 4 Chelmsley Town 2 Ilkeston scored again from a free kick on the Ex-Ilkeston and Newcastle United legend half hour. Shaw’s kick may have got a deflecJohn Tudor was guest of honour and led out tion on it’s way in. David Edwards got one the teams. Not for the first time this season, back for Littleton but Ilkeston were to restore the visiting keeper stood between Ilkeston their advantage before half time. A cross and a hat full of goals. Early on he took his from the left was headed on by Alex Marshall eye off a back pass and had to retrieve the and then expertly despatched by Montel Gibsituation but that was to be his only error as son. The second half saw a much improved he produced a string of outstanding saves. Littleton but they then had a defender sent off The first half was all Ilkeston. Tom Marshall after picking up two yellow cards in quick hit the bar twice before Ilkeston finally got succession. Ilkeston continued to dominate the break through from a Jamie Walker penal- the game and make chances but there were to ty on 30 minutes. Five minutes later it was be no more goals and the Robins saw out the two when Alex Marshall’s header crept in. game to record their first away victory. Chelmsley came out for the second half looking more determined and Adam Keeley

Trinity honours its outstanding boxers

Tue 10 Oct ’17 - Derbyshire Senior Cup 1st Round

Ilkeston Town 5 Mickleover RBL 1 Ilkeston cruised through to the second round of the Derbyshire Senior Cup at the expense of Mickleover Royal British Legion and will now face Dronfield Town at home. They took

HOME THOUGHTS FROM THE TRENCHES World War 1 experiences in letters from the battle fronts read by John Scargill’s Players with music by the Greenwood Ensemble and Singers and Pigeon Pie

St Wilfrid’s Church, Friday 10th November, 7.30pm FREE tickets from Alan 0115 932 1729 or Ruth 07531 441256 Donations to Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal

30p where sold

Ilkeston's Trinity Boxing Club held its annual presentation evening at the Gladstone Lodge. Outstanding boxer award went to East Midland champion Loui Hemstock (front of picture). Other award winners left to right: Charlie Wilson, Bobby Parkes, Alex Testro, Paddy McCann, Joe Henshaw, Kyle Hughes .