Time is ticking . . . 

Erewash Borough Council has issued a final reminder to local residents that if they are not already registered that they must register by Friday 12 April to have a right to vote in next month’s elections.
 
With less than two weeks to go to the register deadline, the council’s elections team is continuing to register hundreds of people who are getting in touch or going online to confirm their details.
 
Anyone old enough to vote who is not on the council’s Register of Electors by the deadline day will not be able to vote in the Borough and Parish elections taking place on Thursday 2 May.
 
It is quick and easy to register online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

Easter ‘eggs-travanganza’ at the museum!

Visitors will be hopping with excitement at the Easter line-up of events at Erewash Museum this April half-term.
 
The Easter holidays kick off with a week of fun-filled crafts and activities from Monday 15 to Friday 19 April between 11am-3pm. There will also be a daily Easter-themed treasure hunt trail around the museum for everyone to take part in and enjoy. 
 
On Wednesday 17 April, the good times carry on rolling when the big Easter Party takes place from 4pm-6pm. This ticketed event will include a disco, games, music and, of course, plenty of Easter fun!  Tickets are on sale now from the museum gift shop at £3 per child including prizes. Food is not included in the price but the Old Stables Tearoom will be open serving treats and drinks.
 
The fun continues on Saturday 20 April and Tuesday 23 – 26 April between 11am-3pm when the museum brings back the hugely popular Blocks and Bricks Week, offering lots of building fun with every child’s favorite construction toy. There will be Lego crafts, trails around the museum and plenty of Lego for play.  

Funding bid for Long Eaton

Erewash Borough Council is to bid for substantial government funding for three projects that will help reduce the impact of HS2 on Long Eaton.
 
The council has confirmed its bid will be submitted by the 22 March deadline and will ask for a slice of the government’s newly-launched £675m Future High Streets Fund – with most awards expected to be in the £5m-£10m range, although the maximum amount is £25m.
 
Local authorities can bid for only one town and to qualify the town centre must be facing a significant challenge, with the council also demonstrating a strong vision on how it can transform the town.
 
The council has made it clear that the proposed high speed rail line through Long Eaton will have serious consequences and at the end of last year it approved its Mitigation Plan, a hard-hitting package of measures it wants HS2 Ltd to put in place to help the town. 
 
The new Future High Streets Fund is seen as a way that the government can pay for some of those measures and so the council is specifically bidding for:
 
• A new west facing chord from the High Level Line allowing the Low Level Line to be closed. This would enable the line of HS2 to be altered to reduce the number of residential and business demolitions; remove the need for level crossings in the town, improve access and reduce congestion. It would also release space to expand existing business parks providing new employment opportunities.
 
• An improvement to Long Eaton Green to prevent the frequent grid-lock there, improve the reliability of bus journeys, create better pedestrian crossings and form a feature gateway to the town.
 
• The physical regeneration of run-down parts of the town.
 
Councillor Michael Powell, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Regeneration and Planning, says:
 
“Looking at the criteria for the current funding round, we believe a bid for Long Eaton has a realistic chance of success. We are putting our full weight behind this bid to gain what we hope would be substantial funding towards these three key projects. Alongside this, we have already given a forthright and clear message to HS2 that we are fighting for, and want, the best possible deal for our communities here in Erewash. They have seen all the measures we want in place and are well aware of the work that has been put in by this council to look at ways of reducing the impact on Long Eaton.”
 
Some of the funding available as part of the Future High Streets Fund has been ring-fenced for heritage-style projects and the council also plans to apply for money at a later date for a heritage-related regeneration project in Ilkeston.
 

Go mad for science!           

It’s time to fire up your imagination, don the white coat and goggles, and dive into the wacky and wonderful world that is the Mad Science Day being held at Erewash Museum on Saturday 16 March as part of British Science Week 2019.
 
Cool Science will be on hand wowing both young and old with their fun experiments, delivering exciting and educational scientific knowledge, plus the museum will be chock-full with displays and fascinating facts throughout the day. The event is aimed at children aged 5-16. 
 
Admission is £1.50 for children aged 5 and over, but little ones are very welcome with free admission. 
 
Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Leisure and Culture, Councillor Mike Wallis, says: 
 
“What a brilliantly fun way to learn about the world! The museum will be transformed into a haven of creativeness and fun while youngsters learn all about how science works.”
 
Erewash Museum is located 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

Top Honour for Herbert

A Long Eaton war veteran who served with the Royal Navy during World War Two - laying smoke trails to hide boats from the enemy’s sight - has been awarded France’s highest honour, the Legion D’Honneur.
 
Great grandfather Herbert Thorpe, 95, joined the navy at the age of 18. He was part of a crew of 21 on board Motor Torpedo Boat V 696 which laid a smoke path for the armada in the course of the D-Day landings so the Germans couldn’t see the vessels approaching French shores. 
 
Mr Thorpe, known as Bert, served four years with the coastal forces and was part of Operation Overlord. He said: “There were five boats in total, we more or less took the armada across on D-Day. We protected the Minesweepers, which turned back half way and left us to it. I mainly served on torpedoes - we were called the pirates of the navy.
 
He recalls: “The skipper would start counting to ten and all of a sudden the two battle wagons opened up. Our job was to protect the fleet. I could fire every gun, every torpedo, everything.
 
The Legion D'Honneur Medal is the highest French order of merit for military and civil merits. There are five grades of the medal and Mr Thorpe has received the top one – The Knight. It recognises his military engagement and steadfast involvement in the Liberation of France during the Second World War. 
 
He will be presented with the honour by Monsieur Jean-Claude LaFontaine, the Honorary Consul for the East Midlands, at a special ceremony at Long Eaton Town Hall at 10.30am on February 28.
 
Councillor Chris Corbett, Mayor of Erewash, said: 
 
    “Mr Thorpe received the medal in the post with a letter. Councillor John Sewell is a friend of Mr Thorpe’s and when he found out he had received the medal he went about organising an official presentation to recognise his bravery and the role he played in the liberation of France. It will be an honour to see Mr Thorpe officially presented with the Legion D’Honneur.”
 
After the war Mr Thorpe went on to work for a gas company and was also a professional dancer with his late wife, Irene. 
 
He said: “When the war finished I got a job and signed my papers to go back to the navy but was persuaded by my mother not to go back, so that was that.”
 
A letter from the French Embassy to Mr Thorpe, states: “We owe our freedom and security to your dedication, because you were ready to risk your life.”