Local landscapes in new display

Landscape artworks based on the industrial archaeology of the area around Ilkeston and Shipley are at the centre of a new ‘Painting Local Light’ exhibition by local artist John Shiels which opens at Erewash Museum’s Lally Gallery on Saturday 21 January.

John has been painting full time for just over a year, having spent the previous 30 years as an art teacher. Born in Ilkeston, he lived and worked around the country before returning to his roots and moving back to his home town.
The inspiration for his paintings comes from local sites where, he says, ‘the ghosts of past industries are everywhere as nature struggles to reclaim the landscape’.
His exhibition will run until Saturday 25 February and John will be painting in the gallery during the first week of his exhibition.
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
“We are delighted to be able to showcase this collection of work, which we know will delight anyone with an interest in art and the local area. This is the first new exhibition in 2017 and is a great one to launch what will be a busy year for our award winning museum.”
Erewash Museum is in Ilkeston town centre, a short walk from the Market Place. Opening hours are Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 10am-4pm, and Monday to Saturday during school holidays.  Admission is free. Contact 0115 907 1141, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or visit the Facebook page /erewashmuseum

Check in for a healthy 2017

Free health checks for Erewash residents will be on offer at Erewash Borough Council’s leisure centres throughout this year as part of the drive for healthier lifestyles.
The comprehensive 30-minute health checks will rotate around the council’s four leisure centres on Mondays, with the first appointments available for residents on Monday 9 January at West Park Leisure Centre in Long Eaton.
The health checks will be carried out by fully trained staff and include heart health, blood pressure, waist to hip ratio, body compositional analysis, height and weight, and a healthy lifestyle questionnaire. Optional cholesterol and glucose tests are also on offer.
Customers will be given personal feedback and lifestyle recommendations such as physical activity, stopping smoking, weight management, alcohol awareness and emotional wellbeing. All health checks are strictly private and confidential to the customer. 
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
“It’s a new year and this is a great opportunity for residents to make a new start to improve their health and lifestyles. The key aim of these checks is to help residents be more aware of the state of their health and the things they can do to improve their lifestyle.
“Many serious health conditions can often be prevented if caught early so booking in for a health check will be one of the best resolutions many of us make. Just 30 minutes of your time could help save your life.”
Six 30 minute evening appointments will be available at the leisure centres. For details of the dates visit www.erewash.gov.uk/healthchecks or to make a booking, residents should contact the leisure centres – West Park Leisure Centre, Long Eaton, 0115 946 1400; Victoria Park Leisure Centre, Ilkeston, 0115 944 0400; Rutland Sports Park, Ilkeston, 0115 930 2033; and Friesland Sports Centre, Sandiacre, 0115 949 0400

Christmas Carol Service

The traditional Christmas Carol Service will again take place in Ilkeston Market Place on Christmas Eve from 7pm to ensure a perfect seasonal get-together for all the family. 
The service is always a popular event as people gather around the Christmas tree in the Market Place to sing some favourite carols, accompanied by the Salvation Army Band. The 30 minute event marks the countdown to Christmas and will also feature a short service by the Mayor’s Chaplain the Reverend Gill Callis-Turner with members of Ilkeston Methodist Church - while Santa also hopes to make an appearance despite his busy schedule!
The Mayor of Erewash, Councillor Abey Stevenson, will attend the event and a collection will be held in aid of his chosen charities.
Councillor Stevenson hopes to welcome as many residents as possible to the annual Christmas Carol Service: 
“This annual Carol Service is a heart-warming and traditional way for people of all ages to gather in the centre of the town and start the real countdown to the big day. It is always wonderfully atmospheric and I look forward to seeing everyone there.”

Mayor’s Christmas message

On behalf of the members and officers of Erewash Borough Council, I would like to offer my sincere greetings to all residents and wish you all the very best at this special time of year.
It is a great privilege to serve as Mayor and I am very proud and honoured to have been chosen for this civic role.  Over the last seven months I have met hundreds of wonderful people who visit, work or live in Erewash – and I look forward to meeting many more over the coming months until the end of my Civic Year in May 2017.

There is so much to be proud of in our borough and I have been immensely impressed by the wealth of talent within Erewash – talent that is demonstrated in every walk of life from those involved in the theatre, music and arts organisations through to those people who are involved in caring and supporting the less fortunate in our society.  
I have seen at first hand the service given to the community by the armies of volunteers who work selflessly all year round to help others. These are wonderful people involved in community groups and charities ranging from the League of Friends of Ilkeston Hospital and the local Royal British Legion branches through to the Rotary and Lions Clubs, Local History Groups, Cadet Force Units and those involved in Guiding and Scouting movements.
There are also the groups within every church in the borough which do so much good in their local communities.  Then there are our arts and environmental groups, those who support people with disabilities and all who work in or for our schools.  
There are too many groups and people to mention by name, but I know you are out there working daily to support and help people in the borough or raising money for charities.  It is this collective contribution that makes Erewash such a wonderful community and my heartfelt admiration goes out to you all.
We know, of course, that some people will not be with their loved ones this Christmas and to them we send our special good wishes.  We particularly think of those serving in the armed forces across the world and their families here at home, especially those who serve with our local Regiment, the Mercians.  We take time to think of those who have given their lives in the service of their country and, of course, everyone who is without a loved one through bereavement. 
Special thanks are due to all those people who will be working over the Christmas period in the emergency services, hospitals, power stations and all other essential services.  Your invaluable efforts are much appreciated. 
I would like to invite you to join us at the Christmas Carol Service which is being held on the Ilkeston Market Place on Christmas Eve from 7pm.  It will be a great time to celebrate this time of year and share the spirit of togetherness that this time of year brings.  
I will end by wishing you all a Christmas that is safe, warm and comfortable. Please take care if you are travelling and I hope you enjoy spending time with family and friends.  Season’s greetings and a happy, healthy and peaceful New Year to you all.
Councillor Abey Stevenson
Mayor of Erewash 2016-2017

Entrepreneur takes helm at partnership that helped him start up his business

An entrepreneur who started his business with help from enterprise agency Erewash Partnership has become its new chairman.
Ian Hopkinson, director of  Derwent Analytics and Harlequin BPI, based on the Manners Industrial Estate, Ilkeston, has taken over from Simon Woods, managing director of educational equipment manufacturer TecQuipment.
Simon, whose company is based in Bonsall Street, Long Eaton, had been chairman for six years.
Ian was employed for 17 years as a chemist, mainly at Celanese in Spondon. He recognised that the process he worked in was a shrinking market and that new technology was changing the situation, so he explored the possibilities and opportunities of setting up his own business, which he did 16 years ago.
“I leaned heavily on the Partnership because I needed skills to run Derwent Analytics that I did not have,” he said.  “They encouraged me and were very helpful.”
Initially, the company made solutions using chemical reactions that were used in everything from kidney dialysis machines to a wide range of industrial uses.
In 2009 Ian's company hit the headlines by producing a solution that meant every time somebody in the UK drank a fizzy drink made by Coca Cola it had been tested by know-how from Derwent Analytics to make sure it was the real thing.
Derwent Analytics later made solutions to clean cosmetic contact lenses and then diversified into other products, creating spin-off company Harlequin BPI in 2012.
The company, which now manufactures and develops health care products such as eye and ear drops and vapour rubs for supermarkets under their own brands and has started exporting to Europe has a multi-million pound annual turnover and 23 employees, in addition to seven at Derwent Analytics.
In July it unveiled a £400,000 investment in building and equipment enabling it to make more than three million bottles of different products, more than doubling capacity.
“It's a great accolade to become chairman of the Partnership,” said Ian, a board member for seven years.
“As a businessman I have become more successful than I thought with the honour of leading a progressive economic regeneration agency.”
Partnership chief executive Ian Viles said the board was delighted that having helped Ian, particularly in his early days, he had become chair and was putting something back in.”
“His business has grown and become a classic example of the spirit of enterprise that the Partnership promotes and encourages,” he said.
Ian said TecQuipment had been a stalwart supporter of the Partnership since it began 22 years ago and Simon had followed this tradition.
“Simon has been a pillar of strength and stability during difficult and challenging economic circumstances.
“We have been fortunate to benefit from his knowledge and wisdom and he hands over the leadership to another safe pair of hands.”
He added that Simon was heavily involved in the Partnership's move to new headquarters at Bridge House, Long Eaton, and refurbishing the former offices at The Old Police Station in Ilkeston which set a good example of local philanthropy and continued the agency's strong presence in the town.