Your favourite park could win award

Vote for your favourite park in Erewash and show how much the UK loves parks.
 
The experts have had their say and in July West Park, Long Eaton, Ilkeston’s Victoria Park and Pioneer Meadows Local Nature Reserve, along with Straw’s Bridge Local Nature Reserve were all given a prestigious Green Flag Award. Victoria Park was also honoured with a Green Heritage Award, which is granted to a Green Flag site that is deemed to be of local or national historic interest.
 
The Award Scheme is asking the nation to have its say and decide which parks and green spaces should receive the People’s Choice Award for being the UK’s favourites.
 
Whether you enjoy visiting a park or green space to play football, walk the dog, exercise or simply get away from the hustle and bustle, if you think your favourite deserves to be in the top 10 People’s Choice then cast your vote.
 
All you have to do is go to www.greenflagaward.org find your park on the winners map and click the voting button. Once you’ve registered your vote, why not encourage others to get involved too through social media using the hashtag #PeoplesChoice.
 
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
 
“We have four Green Flag Parks in the borough and they are all something to be proud of. We hope people in Erewash show their passion for our parks and take a few minutes to go online to cast their vote.”
 
Voting opens 1 September and closes 30 September, with the top 10 sites being announced on 16 October. 

Harvest Moon festival lights the way

This year’s popular Harvest Moon Festival, part of the Erewash Festival of Light, will take place on Saturday 29 September at Kirk Hallam Lake in Godfrey Drive. Organised by Erewash Borough Council’s Arts Development team, in partnership with the Harvest Moon Group, the free event is on between 4pm-7.30pm with the lantern procession at 7pm.
 
Activities include face painting, natural mosaics, creating bird feeders out of recycled materials, a Cool Science stall, Erewash Museum activities, St Catherine’s Church activities and the Calidoscopio Carnival Drummers, an energetic drumming group who play Brazilian and fusion grooves.
 
Local arts organisation Avago Crafts will be making lanterns with pupils from Dallimore and Ladywood Primary Schools at the start of the autumn term which will be completed in time for the event. You are encouraged to make and bring your own lanterns - but please avoid using glass or real candles. 
 
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Leisure and Culture, says:
 
“The annual festival is a stunning sight to behold, and a fantastic example of community involvement. The lantern procession around the lake looks incredible as the light starts to fade, so join us down there with your families, friends and your colourful lanterns!”

Fair way forward

A request to extend the annual Ilkeston Charter Fair by one day, allowing rides and stalls to open on the Sunday of fair week, is to be discussed by Erewash borough councillors.
 
Members of Council Executive meet on Tuesday (4th September) to decide if a required consultation should take place on the proposal, which has been put forward by The Showman’s Guild.
 
This year’s Fair will run as usual from Wednesday 17 October from 6pm-11pm, then Thursday, Friday and Saturday 12noon-11pm. The Showman’s Guild claims a number of fairs across the country have extended operating days to Sundays and they would like to see this happen in Ilkeston.
 
However, a report going to Council Executive confirms that the historic nature of Ilkeston Fair and the granting of the royal Charter in 1252 means there is a legal process that has to be followed – the council cannot decide to simply add an additional day to the Charter Fair.
 
Councillors will hear how a failure by the council to follow this process and obtain the required order from the Home Secretary to extend the fair by one day could result in the historic Charter being repealed and taken away from the town. 
 
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
 
“The granting of the Charter for Ilkeston Fair is a piece of history, something which makes the annual fair so very special – including the reading of the original Charter at the ceremonial opening of this traditional street fair. There is a legal path laid down for any request to extend the opening days and this must be followed - we cannot put the Charter at risk.
 
“However, before we take any steps to obtain the necessary order from the Home Secretary we need to look first at carrying out a full consultation – which is also a legal requirement – to establish views on this proposal.”
 
If councillors decide to go ahead with consultation, the results of that will then be taken to a future Council Executive meeting for consideration.
 
The meeting of Council Executive is at Long Eaton Town Hall on Tuesday 4 September at 10.30am.

Flag will honour the brave

Erewash Borough Council will fly the Red Ensign above Ilkeston and Long Eaton town halls on Monday 3 September to honour the brave comrades of the Merchant Navy who helped keep the UK afloat during both World Wars.
 
The flag will be flying to mark Merchant Navy Day and to back the Seafarers UK campaign to see the Red Ensign - the Merchant Navy’s official flag – flown on civic buildings and landmark flagpoles across the UK.
 
The Merchant Navy was a reserved occupation, with merchant seamen not permitted to join the armed forces during the World Wars. The crews made an essential contribution to the war effort, with thousands losing their lives as they faced danger at sea to keep the country’s vital supply lines open.
 
The Mayor of Erewash, Councillor Chris Corbett, says:
 
“We are very proud that here in Erewash we fly the Red Ensign from our town halls every year to mark this special day. It is important that we honour the role played by merchant seafarers, especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice during war.”
 
As well as honouring the brave comrades who perished and those who served their country during war, Merchant Navy Day also celebrates the modern day merchant seafarers who are responsible for 95% of the UK's imports, including half the food we eat, a large proportion of the fuel we burn and many products and goods we take for granted.
 
The local branches of the Royal British Legion will hold short services at 10.55am at the Ilkeston and Long Easton war memorials to commemorate the day.
 

Protecting heritage  

Popular tourist hotspot Trent Lock looks set to be granted conservation area status, ensuring its heritage and history is properly protected.
 
A meeting of Erewash Borough Council’s Executive next week is expected to give the green light to the proposal for the site following a public consultation earlier this year in which 94% of those that responded agreed that it should become a conservation area.
 
The Sawley site is a popular leisure destination for residents, visitors to the borough, waterways enthusiasts and those who enjoy walking and boating. It has a choice of places to eat and drink and has a rich industrial, architectural and navigational history.
 
It is at the confluence of three late 18th Century waterways – the Loughborough Navigation (1778), the Erewash Canal (1779) and the Trent Navigation (1787) and conservation area status would also recognise the rarity value of a group of buildings at Trent Lock that date back to these waterways.
 
The historic interest of Trent Lock is reflected in its inclusion in key gazetteers of industrial archaeology.  The Canal & River Trust has also described it as one of the ‘particular highlights’ of the Erewash Canal and a site with ‘high heritage values’ – saying the lock chamber, the former Erewash Navigation Inn building and the former toll booths are all ‘significant’ features.
 
Councillor Michael Powell, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Regeneration and Planning, says:
 
“We have always recognised the importance of protecting our borough’s heritage and the role that we can play to ensure this happens is one we take very seriously. This is another clear example of our commitment to preserving our history and heritage and we are delighted that the public support this proposal for Trent Lock.
 
“We thank everyone for their interest and the organisations that were also involved in our consultation, like the Canals & Rivers Trust and the Erewash Canal Preservation Society.”
 
The meeting of the Council Executive is at Long Eaton Town Hall on Tuesday 4 September at 10.30am.