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April 2018

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LOCAL

The White Horse, Birstall Duck Race, Mayday Monday 7th May

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The White Horse, Birstall Duck Race planning is in full swing and is set to be a great family day out. The event starts at 12 noon on Mayday Monday 7th May with the Duck Race beginning at 2pm.

SALES TEAM SARAH TAYLOR T: 0800 6446 150 E: sarah@openboxpromotions.co.uk

The 10th Annual White Horse Duck race is in aid of Riverside Schools PTA’s fund for their School Pool. The Duck race will be part of the fundraising activities to mend and repair the Riverside pool, which is used by the school and community, and repairs are estimated to cost around £15,000.

DAWN HARRIS T: 0800 6446 150 E: dawn@openboxpromotions.co.uk

DISTRIBUTION MANAGER ANDREW LEWIS M: 07504 634 838 E: andy@openboxpromotions.co.uk

There will be lots of activities to entertain the kids such as a cake stall, tuck shop, book stall and traditional games such as, hook at duck and the Ducky Derby, a trio of tombola’s, bottle, chocolate and a teddy tombola for the children. A bouncy castle, kindly donated by Kaine’s castles, face painter, a tattoo and nail bar and duck memorabilia. There will also be Duck related crafts inside the Pub provided by Acorn Under 5 preschool. Riverside School have asked both Hallam Fields and Highcliffe PTA’s to join in the event and they may have stalls too.

PUBLISHED BY OPEN BOX PROMOTIONS LTD T: 0800 6446 150 E: sales@openboxpromotions.co.uk W: www.openboxpromotions.co.uk Open Box Promotions Ltd, 42 Forest Rise, Kirby Muxloe, Leicester, LE9 2HQ

Riverside is well known for their infamous ‘hook a bag’ game and children from all 3 schools can take part. “The children really enjoy decorating the bags (this time there will be a duck theme) they then put in a few sweets or toys and bring them back to school. We’ll have a big stall on the day and often the children aim to ‘hook’ their own bags!” said Leah Russell, head of Riverside PTA.

PRINTED BY NORWOOD PRESS T: 01530 262020 E: info@norwoodpress.co.uk W: www.norwoodpress.co.uk Norwood Press, Unit 1, Moore Road, South Leicester Industrial Estate, Ellistown, LE67 1EU

If anyone would like to decorate and fill a bag, these will be given out at Hallam fields, Highcliffe and Riverside Primary schools or please pop in to the White Horse to collect one.

NEXT ISSUE OUT DELIVERY DATE:

Deadline and delivery dates are subject to change depending on how far we are ahead or behind.

Charlotte Foy of the White Horse said “This year’s Duck race will have a great variety of stalls, activities and games to keep the children entertained as well as a few drinks and BBQ for the grown ups! The White Horse would also like to thank all those who have generously donated prizes or their skills to make the event happen, particularly Paddle Plus who collect all the racing Ducks back in safely each year”

The views and opinions expressed in this magazine are those of the original advertisers & contributors and do not necessarily represent Your Local or Open Box Promotions Ltd. Open Box Promotions Ltd reserves the right to amend or refuse to publish articles or adverts submitted for publication.

‘Webster’ the Duck Race mascot will be in various places around the village to sell Ducks ahead of the Duck Race day, already confirmed are Riverside school on the 13th April, Highcliffe on 20th April and of course there will be loads of Ducks to buy on the day itself!

Wednesday 16th May 2018

DEADLINE DATE:

Wednesday 9th May 2018

Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of information in this magazine, but no liability can be accepted for loss or inconvenience caused as a result of error or omission. To see full terms & conditions visit www.openboxpromotions.co.uk/terms

Any donations of prizes or cakes, teddies or other items for stalls would still be welcome, please contact Leah Russell at Riverside Primary School or give us a call and leave a message for Charlotte at the White Horse on 0116 2671038.

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3


NEWTON TEES OFF FOR 2018

Birstall Food Hub opens

Former Leicester Tigers winger Mick Newton is the new Men’s Captain at Birstall Golf Club, with Christine Hyde being installed as the new Ladies Captain five years since she previously filled the role.

Birstall Food Hub (formerly known as Birstall Food Parcel Collection Point) opened on 27 March 2018 at the Methodist Church, Wanlip Lane. Having recruited over 20 local volunteers to staff the project, carried out training and written procedures and rotas, we have finally turned the idea into reality.

Newton played for Tigers for six seasons, the highpoint being appearing in their first John Player Cup Final victory – over Moseley in 1979. He then moved on to join and captain Syston RFC. He has been a member at Birstall G C for 12 year and predicts a bright year for the club: “The course is looking excellent. The greens staff have done a remarkable job this winter and I think we’ll all enjoy playing this year”. He lives in Park Road, Birstall and – having just retired after over 40 years working for BT – expects to have plenty of time to follow the club’s teams. Christine – a retired school bursar who lives in Rothley - steps into the role for a second time and says the club is ideal for new members and people taking the sport up for the first time: “It is such a friendly place; everybody is very welcoming”. Birstall will again play host to the Midlands Professional Golfers Association when it hosts a major Pro-Am at the course on Wednesday 23rd May.

There are various ways in which people can access the service: •

Referral by professionals such as GPs or Social Workers

Self-referral by using the dedicated mobile phone number 07305093791 by Sunday evening for collection on the following Tuesday

Self-referral by a personal visit to our base on a Tuesday morning when the Food Hub is active between 10:00 and 11:30.

If anyone visits from Wednesday to Friday they can use a facility to request a food parcel for the following Tuesday Without prior notice we will only be able to supply a limited amount of food on a Tuesday as we are not a food bank. The food parcels are supplied from the Soar Valley Community Food Project at Rothley Baptist Church; they are made up to meet our order based on requests received by each Sunday evening. We will always try to carry a small additional stock. People wishing to use the service will receive a warm welcome. They will need to register personal details with us and give us information about their circumstances so that we can appreciate their need. We hope that people will accept the hospitality we offer in the Coffee Shop and stay for a drink and chat. The Food Hub will need to hold a small amount of cash in order to purchase food items such as fresh milk and bread. A fund raising coffee morning is planned on Saturday 2 June from 10:00 – 12:00 at Birstall Methodist Coffee Shop. Peter Molesdale and Gill Chester

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funding opportunities such as grants and charity opportunities.

Shop Local Birstall A new Retailers association has been set up in Birstall Who are Birstall Business Co-operative? We established ourselves in November 2017 and are now a group of 37 Birstall businesses. We meet monthly, and follow up with fortnightly progress reports. The group now comprises 37 local business’s Namely, Acorn Lettings, Anglo American Car Hire, Bespoke Avenue, Beautylicious, Birstall Body Art, Birstall Dog Grooming, Birstall Pet Suppliers, Butlin Property Services, Café On The Corner, Do My Hair, Filigree Heart, Glenwood Interiors, Henry Smith & Hamylton, KM Vehicles, Lambourne Café, LOROS, Lotus Hair and Beauty, MDW Fireplaces, Nalas Elephant, New World Florist, Psigns Midlands, Ravi Kapadia Photography, Rose Tinted Photos, RT’s Café, Shortt & Lunn Hair, Silly Prices, Supacare, The Posy Powl, TJ Cycles, The White Horse, Woodside RSPCA Charity and Wool Obsession, NTL computers, Beautilicious, Sleeping petals and Birstall Fruit and Veg shop, VapeHQ and GD Beauty. The Members of the Co-operative can be identified by a poster in the shop windows What are Birstall Business Co-operative trying to achieve? Our aim is to work together to promote the retail businesses in Birstall and to work with the wider community to improve the shopping experience for Birstall residents. We would like to see businesses thrive in Birstall, and this would avoid further empty shops within the village, which is continually

an issue for local residents. Our main promotional campaign is Shop Local Birstall. This is headed up by a community Facebook page with nearly 500 followers (gained in just 4 months), and a poster campaign in the shop windows. Our main improvement project is monitored CCTV along Sibson Road, to aid in crime prevention and crime reduction measures. Furthermore, the group is now looking into registering as a non for Profit organisation as it is now firmly established. The groups intention is to encourage local business’s to work together to support each other. One of these areas is to improve communication. As well as the informal meetings each month at the White Horse which give the business’s chance to network, there is also a social media link between the members which facilitates any day to day matters. The new Facebook page ‘shop local Birstall’ already has nearly 500 followers. This page is incredibly useful for anyone shopping in Birstall to find out what is happening in the village and is the place to get information about all the latest promotions and offers available. Look out for the forthcoming Spring Offers. The CCTV project continues to be a major focus for the group. The business’s are actively taking advice to improve security and limit the risk of break in. The group is also looking to fund the installation of CCTV themselves by pledging money and pursuing

BOWLS OPEN DAYS Our club has two Open Days this seaon; 6-8pm Friday 11th May and 24pm Sunday 13th May. If you have ever facied having a go at bowls, come along to our club in its beautiful setting and see what we have to offer. Whatever your age or ability, I am sure you will get a very friendly welcome. All equipment is provided; just bring flat shoes. You will find bowls is a fascinating game that takes a moment to appreciate but a lifetime to master. They always say that taking up a new activity is good for you. So is being outside. And so is gentle exercise. Bowls offers all of these in abundance and in a relaxed friendly setting too. After all the rain we have had, we need a reminder of perfect bowling weather. This picture is from last year's Open Day. St Margaret's Co-operative Bowls Club, Co-op Sports Ground, Birstall Road, Birstall LE4 4DE. More details at www.smcbc.com or ring Don on 0116 2873783 or Sam on 0116 2677372

6

Shona Rattray commented “Having CCTV along the Sibson Road shopping area is a priority for Birstall Business Co-Operative. After spending time consulting with the local Police team, Charnwood CCTV monitoring Team Leader, and a security contractor, we now have a plan for how we could implement a monitored CCTV system that would give coverage to approximately 50 Birstall businesses, and could be monitored by Charnwood. There is clearly a cost attached to all of this, and funding is being investigated to make this achievable. We will keep you updated on our progress.” The Parish Council Members have listened to the wishes of the business’s and the proposal sought by the Co-operative. Charnwood Borough Council were extremely pro-active and had already investigated ways that they may be able to support the project. The Co-operative have set up a working group and intend to implement the project in the next 12 months. Other matters discussed at the latest meeting, were to offer a late night opening evening and to improve signage to the Main Edith Murphy and the Crossways car parks in the village to encourage more people to shop locally and to attract customers from other villages to Birstall . The next meeting will be on the 24th April at the White Horse. For all the latest offers and information, please follow Shop Local Birstall Facebook page.

Travel Talk Presentation Why not become an armchair traveller for the evening Sue Ablett will be presenting another of her illustrated talks. This time on Japan – Land of the Rising Sun Friday May 11th at 7.30pm Wanlip Community Hall, Church Road Wanlip LE7 4PJ Tickets £4 including refreshments Payable on the door

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On your marks, get set, go for the fifth Joe’s Jog!

ST. JAMES MONDAY GROUP MEETINGS

FAMILIES and young children are invited to join a charity mile-long fun run to support the work of the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust (JHMT).

"We are the St. James Monday Group and we meet on the 2nd Monday of every month in the Day Centre rooms of the Village Hall, School Lane, at 7.30 p.m. We always like to see and meet new faces, and you would be very welcome.

Joe’s Jog, now in its fifth year, will take place before the Mattioli Woods Rothley 10k running event which takes place in the Leicestershire village on Tuesday 12 June. The inclusive and family-friendly fun run gives families and children aged seven and over the chance to be part of the Rothley 10k evening. Joe was 14 when he collapsed and died suddenly while out jogging near his Rothley home. He was a victim of SADS – sudden arrhythmic death syndrome – a heart condition which can strike anyone at any time, particularly otherwise fit and healthy young people. Since Joe’s death, the JHMT continues to raise awareness of SADS and sudden heart deaths. The charity provides free CPR training, helps to fund community defibrillators and campaigns for better understanding of SADS. The JHMT also runs the Inspire Awards, a small grants scheme that helps inspire young people to fulfill their potential – something which the victims of SADS are cruelly denied. Steve Humphries, chair of the JHMT, said: “This is another chance for more families to stride out together at JHMT’s annual fun run, which helps bring the community together in memory of Joe and helps to raise vital funds for JHMT's ongoing work to reduce the incidence of sudden arrhythmic death syndrome (SADS) in young people. “Nearly 250 runners took part last year and there was such a great community spirit. There was a real buzz to the evening and everyone had a fabulous time. We are hoping for a huge turnout as the event is becoming more popular every year.” The event will start at 6.15pm. Advance entry costs £5 for adults and £3 for children (minimum age 7). On-the-day entry costs £10 for adults and £6 for children. All funds raised from Joe’s Jog will go towards JHMT’s vital work to create a heart safe community for all. To take part in Joe’s Jog, enter online at: http://jhmt.org.uk/joes-jog To find out more about the Trust’s work, to get involved as a volunteer, or to learn how to apply for the Inspire Awards or CPR training for your sports club, visit www.jhmt.org.uk

On May 14th we will be having a short service in St. James Church, which will introduce the Charity we have chosen to sponsor this year. This is the Baldwin Trust, which has two narrow boats for outings. The boats are rather elderly now, and the Trust is aiming to replace them in time. In the meantime, they are hoping to equip the boats they have with defibrillators, and this is what we will be working to achieve with them. A representative from the Baldwin Trust is coming to tell us more about their work and the boats. It would be lovely to meet you, either in the Day Centre or in the Church. To use the vernacular - "See ya!""

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Monthly Report from Councillor Renata Jones By the time you read this, I hope you have had a great break, whether you celebrate Easter, Passover, anything else, or just having time off with family, friends, or to yourself.

Planning I know, I know, there’s always something happening in planning! So I do hope you don’t bore of me sharing further planning related news. As I write a consultation is nearly closing, for a wholistic strategic growth plan for all of Leicester city and our county of Leicestershire, and all boroughs within. Plan factors for new builds needed to 2050. Some confusion surrounding this plan has caused quite a stir. Whilst this plan covers borough, district, and unitary authority areas, Charnwood as a borough is on target to current quota of new development, in the region of 30k new homes. Leicester city could lag 10k new homes behind, siting a number of concerns, including, as that authority is rumoured to claim, a lack of land to develop upon. There’s also talk within this plan of up to 10k homes along the ‘A46 corridor’. Perhaps understandably this has alarmed residents in Birstall, Wanlip, Syston, Queniborough, and more. Within Charnwood borough council’s (CBC’s) core strategy, there’s already provision for 1,650 homes potentially at Broadnook, which many regard as more than plentiful for our area. To many this sounded like an additional 10k developments, along the A46. Shock and indeed horror for many. Especially as not too far away, along the Queniborough by-pass, there seems to have had a sudden spate of ad-hoc planning applications lately, a couple of hundred homes a time. I clarified my suspicions regards this rumour, by quizzing our planning officers at our last overview scrutiny group (OSG) committee. A46 corridor as referred to in current draft strategic growth plan, refers to a new road. Confusing I know, as the A46 exists. However the old, old, old roman A46 road which existed since I was a child, was extended in my youth, with the ‘Leicester western by-pass’, connecting the A46 to the M1. To add confusion, this was also then called the A46. No, don’t really want to say exactly when, as they say a lady never reveals her age! Why am I telling you all this? Because in the strategic growth plan, there’s another potential extension, connecting the A46 to the M1 again, but swinging around the other side of our city centre, from roughly Queniborough around via Harborough to the

10

M1. That would be called the ‘Leicester eastern by-pass’, and of course, to add further confusion, also, the A46. It could potentially make the A46 Leicestershire’s third ring road, in my humble opinion. What does all this mean? Well it means a potential 10k houses referred to in the draft strategic growth plan, facilitated by ‘A46 corridor’, refers to new builds along the sides of new road potentially to be. That new road being the potential Leicester eastern by-pass, not our existing roads. Hope that helps any of you with concerns you breath a slight sign of relief. Breaking news! Consultation related to strategic growth plan has been extended to 10 May! Find out more and have your say at: www.llstrategicgrowthplan.org.uk

New homelessness strategy I’m pleased to read a new homelessness strategy has been finalised by Charnwood borough council (CBC). What I’ve heard as this has progressed through various scrutiny levels I’ve been involved in, is what this new policy aims to achieve. This new strategy seeks to reduce the number of nights out before being housed, previously no more than one night out, now should be none, no first night out, with new strategy now in place.

New village signs in Wanlip Well done to villagers of Wanlip who through parish meetings and volunteer efforts have cleaned up and put up an impressive array of new signs. They look great in my humble opinion. All involved should be very proud of what you have achieved.

Council tax New bills have gone out, and unfortunately, there seems to be increases all around. A little known fact is that while most pay their annual bill over 10 months, in 10 instalments, that situation can be changed on request. If you are perhaps struggling to make repayments given recent increases, you might find it easier to request a change to pay in 12 months of instalments, increasing term, but essentially reducing the cost per month. There’s also a slight discount if you live alone, on application. See https://www.charnwood. gov.uk/pages/counciltax for further information, or email council.tax@charnwood.gov.uk .

Brown bins From 1 May 2018, annual costs of a garden

waste bin and collection service is increasing to £40 or £45 a year, based on how you pay. It sounds a lot to some, I know. However our authority is still one of the cheaper schemes when compared with some in operation in other council areas nationally. To find out more visit: https://www.charnwood.gov .uk/pages/gardenwaste.

Potential new grant scheme Cabinet are set to discuss allocating a small discretionary sum to each councillor. Their meeting to discuss this is on 12 April. I get to have a say in OSG on 9 April. You can go watch any council meetings live, usually held in Loughborough’s council offices or nearby chambers, or listen to any meeting online after on CBCs website. Subject to this award, I’ve already been approached, and asked to donate any share I may have a say in allocating, towards joint efforts for increased CCTV in Birstall and Wanlip. Whilst I’d potentially like to support this, I want to be sure by consultation with yourselves, that this is how you would like this money to be spent too. So please do get in touch, and let me know if this is how you’d like this money to be spent. Or if not, other projects you think would be a worthy local cause for such funding. Email me on the usual address, see below, with ‘new grant’ followed by ‘yes’ or ‘no’ for CCTV in the subject line. Pop any alternative suggestions in email body copy. At the end of the day, it’s tax payers money we’ll be spending, so whilst I’m glad I’ll potentially have a direct say, I want to be sure you get to have a say too.

Meetings I attended an overview scrutiny group (OSG) committee meeting in March. We covered the strategic growth plan and I quizzed our planners about it, along the lines detailed in the ‘planning’ news item in this report. You can hear related meeting recording in full at: https://www.charnwood.gov.uk/ committees/overview_scrutiny_group.

Floods It rained, and rained, and rained. And then the met office forecast snow. And then we got the warmer wind, so got yet more rain. It reached a point where I was looking around to see if any resident was building an ark! I retweeted as much related information as I could. Thankfully, as I write this report, waters seem to be receding, and local rivers normalising. Our nearest and most active flood warden on Twitter seems to be @tinaonions, flood warden for Sileby. So if you are worried about flooding in the future, you may find it worth following her, or myself, or both, on Twitter. My handle on there is @cllrrenatajones for any of you who don’t already know or follow. For flood alerts you can also follow @riverlevelsuk on Twitter.

Surgery I attended our surgery this month, only to find building locked and that my fellow councillor colleagues weren’t there! Where surgeries fall around Christmas and Easter holidays, such mix ups can unfortunately happen. We often

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find at such times low or zero attendance be of assistance. As councillors are not email, you can write to me at the council   via democratic     route for resident   from residents, so have discussed not running  officers, services. Full address necessarily the best calls in  these at those times. Sometimes when there to do so is: an emergency situation. However there are   Cllr  Renata  Jones,  has been such a mix up in terms of access members room, c/o numbers you can call at CBC in emergencies.      before, I’ve sat outside the venue and ran our democratic services, Charnwood borough Such numbers are listed in full on:          surgery from the bench outside sitting under council, council offices, Southfields road, https://www.charnwood.gov.uk/pages/      the big tree! However without another Loughborough, Leicestershire, LE11 2TX. emergencycontactdetails       councillor present, we’ve been advised by As this report is republished in local news, and Mobile phone is down those in the know at CBC continuing on isn’t you may not have access if you’re   internet    Not sure if I’ve told you before, but out best practice against council health and reading this, I’ve copied an extract of key council don’t provide councillors with a safety policies. particular numbers at CBC for you below:  Also, on   that  mobile phone for the job. As councillors, we       during normal    had a lot  of rain,  Saturday, we high winds,  ‘For housing emergencies actually act more independently of council snow forecasts, and amber weather warnings office hours* call the main switchboard on officers, AKA staff. There’s method in that from the met office. So perhaps running an al 01509 263151 or contact the service you madness, in that we are, otherwiseseemingly   fresco surgery wouldn’t have been healthy  require. For council housing emergencies as councillors, kept impartial through such        for myself or our visiting residents! If you came only contact: 01509 634567. For Lifeline working pattern   distinctions. It doesmean  we   looking for us and found the door shut and emergencies telephone: 01509 643970. *The can’t be contacted via council call centres felt disappointed, I can only apologise. We council’s normal office hours are Monday to either. I’d refrained for a while in getting a usually run these on the last Saturday of each Thursday 8.30am to 5.00 pm and Friday   phone  line,  as  not advised            by council as best, month. you can contact me in 8.30am to 4.30pm. and       Emergency    planning      However    however in response to requests for contact writing at any time, email or post. general enquiries, Monday – Friday 8.30am – via such a route, I’d previously invested in a 01509 634911.’     5.00pm          Get in touch personal mobile for resident enquiries. If you’re on email, you can write to me any However unfortunately it has stopped Until next time,            time on: Cllr.renata.jones@charnwood.gov working. Council advises it is not best practice .uk. If you’re emailing a department at CBC, for councillors to advertise phone numbers. As Regards, Renata      and a resident in my ward, do also feel free much as I don’t mind responding to phone   Renata          Jones BA (Hons) to CC me so I can enquiries, having a number to do so, we’re         into  your correspondence,    Cllr.renata.jones@charnwood.gov.uk support you in any way I can. If you’re not on  told, can cause more confusion than it can   

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Highcliffe Amateur Theatrical Society Spring Play 2018 Many of our regular audience members will be aware of our imminent move from our long standing venue at Highcliffe Primary School due to the school building shortly due to be rebuilt. We have been able to secure a new local venue for our Spring Play, which will enable us to continue to offer you the enjoyable performances that you have come to expect. We have had many years of tremendous support from the local community (and those living further away too) and we want to ensure that we are easily accessible for you to continue to support us. It would be wonderful to see the familiar faces in our audience, and hopefully our move will bring in additional audience members who, I am sure, will want to return for years to come. The details of this productions new venue can be found at the end of this article. This year’s Spring Play “What a Mix Up” will incorporate 2 one-act comedies. Both of these plays are “by arrangement with Lazy Bee Scripts” Two Weddings and a Conference: by Karen Doling - A double-booked wedding reception at a hotel causes havoc for the brides, grooms, manager, receptionist and the attendees of a conference that is supposed to be happening at the same time! However, it soon transpires that the double booking is not the only coincidence they will have to deal with! Does this compare to any wedding you have ever been to? B & B: by Bob Tucker - It’s opening week for the Bay View Bed and Breakfast, but the owners aren’t getting the idyllic escape from the rat race they hoped for. Guests are leaving as fast as they arrive and the demands are almost as bizarre as the pets and habits of the ones who try to stay! And does this compare to any B & B you have ever stayed in? Venue: Birstall Social Club, 16-18 Wanlip Lane, Birstall LE4 4JS - Dates: Thursday 17th and Friday 18th May 7.30pm. (Doors open at 7.00pm) Tickets: £6.00 adults £5.00 concession. £20.00 for family tickets (2 adults and 2 children) Discount for group bookings of 10 or more people (price available at time of booking). Tickets available from the box office: 0116 2216019 or 07963 432020 or by email at hatstickets@hotmail.com. 

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Changes to Garden Waste Charge The garden waste collection provided by Charnwood Borough Council will cost £40 per year from May 1, 2018. The Council says the service provides excellent value for money and it plans to freeze the cost for the next two years. The Council says the charge is in line with many other authorities and the increase is necessary to make up for a shortfall of funding from other sources and ensure the quality of service is maintained. Cllr Leigh Harper-Davies, lead member for the performance of major contracts, said: “The garden waste scheme is a high-quality service and an extremely popular one with over 34,000 subscriptions. “However, in order to maintain that quality and make up for shortfalls in our funding, we believe it necessary to increase the charge.

HATS Unsung Hero Award Following on from our fantastic success at the 2017 Pantomime Alliance Leicestershire Awards, HATS are continuing to be recognised. This year, the 2018 Pantomime Alliance Leicestershire Awards took place at Winstanley Community College on March 24th. A total of 19 Amateur Dramatics Groups took part in this fantastic celebration of the British Tradition of Pantomimes. Compere John Bale, from the Little Theatre, did a tremendous job, not only in presenting the awards but by keeping the audience entertained with his wit and good humour.

“We accept the increase for 2018 is larger than in previous years but these are challenging times for local government funding.

HATS very own Ady Barnacle was presented with an Unsung Hero Award. Ady was nominated by HATS Secretary Jenny Garner. Although Ady is not a member of HATS, he is a valuable member of our team. Ady is someone we can always rely on to commit to both our Pantomime and our Spring Play, and to ensure that our sound and lighting is perfected and runs smoothly.

“In 2015 we lost a significant amount of funding when the county council withdrew recycling credits worth around £300,000 a year which was used to help cover the costs of the service.

Jenny Garner said “Ady offers his time, expertise, dedication and commitment to the group for every production. Something he has done for many, many, years. Without him, we would be lost. This nomination is our way of saying thank you to him”

“We’ve had to increase the charge since then to help make up that shortfall and cover increases in the costs of providing the service.

In addition to Ady’s award, HATS also received 2 nominations in different categories. Our first nomination was in the Special Recognition Category for the quality of our props. This award was made possible by our props group member Phill Walton. He did a fantastic job of researching, sourcing and making the necessary props for our cast. The turkey looked good enough to eat. A well deserved nomination.

“There are further challenges ahead as recycling credits which contribute to the general household recycling service are being withdrawn by the county council this year, a loss of £500,000 to the borough council. Despite this we will still offer free bulky waste collections to Charnwood residents while many other authorities charge £15 or more. “And while we are fortunate to be very financially stable, we need to manage our finances carefully and sensibly. “Garden waste collection is not a service we have to provide, nor do people have to subscribe, but we do believe it is an excellent service, value for money and one people want.” The new charge will come into effect on May 1 so anyone subscribing for the first time before then can take advantage of the existing charge of £28. Existing subscribers will be informed directly about the new charge two weeks before their subscription ends. To sign up for the garden waste service, visit www.charnwood.gov.uk/gardenwaste

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Our second nomination was in the Comedy Category. This was for the comedy duo of Geek and Gonk, played by Sue Withers and Jo Murray. They played 2 comedy cowboys, a bit stupid and a lot of fun, “oh yes they were”. Again, a well deserved nomination. So, onwards now to our next production which will be on May 17th and May 18th, at our new venue, Birstall Social Club. Watch out for the details.

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The new season has started at Birstall Bowling Club The new season has started at Birstall Bowling Club and members will now be focussing on the outdoor game following an indoor season during the winter. New members are always welcome and coaching is available for bowlers who have never played the game before. For more information, please visit the website www.birstallbowlingclub.co.uk or contact Steve on 07870 327568 or Diane on 0116 2676245. This year’s presidents, Diane King and Rick Everitt have chosen Birstall BAGS as their charity for the year. Various events will be taking place throughout the season to raise money for the very worthwhile local charity. Birstall BAGS, launched in 1998, is a charity committed to supporting the local community in Birstall and surrounding areas through cancer awareness initiatives and the funding of equipment and services for the benefit of people living in the community with cancer. Money is raised from donations and local community events and challenges. For more information please visit their website www.birstallbags.co.uk The club has donated £50.00 to Visually Impaired Bowls England (VIBE). VIBE was originally formed in 1975 to provide, or to assist in the provision of, facilities to encourage visually impaired persons to play the game of bowls so that their conditions of life may be improved. The organisation is run by volunteers who are responsible for organising bowls tournaments throughout England and is the official body for selecting teams to represent England in international events. In 2021 VIBE will be sendinga team to the Gold Coast, Australia, to compete in the IBBA World Blind Bowls Championships. In many other sports, international competition is paid for but, for VIBE members it has always been the case that individuals have had to pay for the privilege of representing their country. Each team member for Australia will be looking at something in the order of £3500.00.They are hoping to raise as much money as possible in the next three years to help with the costs, and Birstall - who have had several visually impaired bowlers at the club over the years, including Sue Smith who has represented the British Isles team – have promised to donate £50.00 for each of the next three years to assist with the fundraising. More information can be found at www.vibowlsengland.org.uk

Watermead Challenge 2018 Wreake Valley and Syston Rotary Clubs are holding the eighth Watermead Challenge charity run at Watermead Country Park on Tuesday 3rd July 2018. The fairly flat three and five mile course around the park’s attractive lakes offers experienced and novice runners the opportunity to set a personal best time. Full details of how to enter can be found at www.wreakevalleyrotary.org.uk. Chris Battye, Race Director commented: “last year we had nearly five hundred entries for this popular event. This year’s proceeds will be shared amongst three charities: Dementia UK, Leicestershire Childrens Holiday Centre and HCPT pilgrimage holidays. Venue restrictions mean numbers are limited to 500. Please enter early to avoid disappointment.”

Annual Bluebell Walk in Martinshaw Woods, Ratby Come and join the 4th annual Bluebell Walk in Martinshaw Woods Ratby on Sunday May 13th at 11 am. Car parking available at Markfield Road, Ratby LE6 0LS Besides admiring the bluebells you will be helping to raise money for Canine Partners, a charity which trains dogs to assist people with various physical disabilities. The dogs help people in many ways, for instance by opening and closing doors. retrieving dropped items, unloading washing machines, taking card and cash from ATM machines and other everyday tasks. The charity receives no government funding, and relies on donations, so the money raised will help create more canine partnerships, transforming the lives of people with disabilities including wounded servicemen and women, The cost is £4 for adults, £2 for children or £10 for a family ticket. There will also be the opportunity to take part in a raffle, children’s quiz or buy some goodies from the canine partner merchandise table. A toilet is provided. Two walks are planned, one about 3 miles, (shortcuts are available) and another shorter walk suitable for wheelchairs & pushchairs. Dogs are welcome on leads.

We look forward to seeing you, everyone welcome. If you require any more information contact Kathleen on 0116 2876684

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