On your marks . . .  it’s the Bloom judges!

Both Ilkeston and Long Eaton’s flower power and bedding displays have been judged in the Large Town Category of the annual East Midlands in Bloom awards – with residents now keeping their fingers crossed for success when the results are announced in September. 
Erewash Borough Council hosted visits by the regional judges over the last week and were given guided tours of both towns to see floral displays provided by Erewash Borough Council and to meet schoolchildren, artists, local residents and the Friends groups which support the Bloom initiative.
Places visited in the Ilkeston area included Straw’s Bridge Local Nature Reserve, Clarksfield Community Allotments, Victoria Park, Stanton Road Cemetery and the General Havelock public house, which has entered the Business in Bloom category.
In Long Eaton the tour included visits to the library grounds, Wilsthorpe Road allotments, West Park, the ReVive Shop Project to meet local artists and the Penneyfields estate to look at residents’ gardens.
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
“Both our towns look absolutely stunning again this summer and we are very grateful for all the compliments and lovely comments we receive from residents who love our summertime displays.
“We are very proud of them and it is a credit to the hard work that is put in by our teams – but we also send our heartfelt thanks to those businesses and individuals in the community who also join in by providing their own wonderful displays. Together we help ensure a colourful, clean and welcoming look for residents and visitors. Our success in this prestigious competition over the years has been outstanding and we hope for more success in 2017.”
Residents in Draycott again hope to win an award as a community entry – while Breaston in Bloom volunteers and residents hope to scoop an award with their first entry into the competition. 
Results of the East Midlands in Bloom 2017 competition will be announced at an awards ceremony in Boston, Lincolnshire on Wednesday 13 September.

It’s the anniversary Triathlon!

There is still time to enter this summer’s Erewash Triathlon – one of the borough’s biggest and most popular events on the sporting calendar.
The 2017 Triathlon celebrates its 10th anniversary and takes place on Sunday 20 August at West Park in Long Eaton, with hundreds of competitors from across the country expected to once again descend on the town for the popular event.
Anyone aged 15 years and over can enter the event, which is popular with people of all abilities from the complete novice through to seasoned triathletes.
The Erewash Triathlon starts with a 400m swim in the West Park Leisure Centre pool followed by a 16km bike before competitors complete the event with a 5km run within West Park. 
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
“The triathlon as a sport continues to grow in popularity across the world and so we are delighted to be celebrating the 10th anniversary of our very own Erewash Triathlon. This sporting event provides fun as well as serious competition and is always a brilliant
family-friendly experience for competitors and spectators alike.”
Erewash Borough Council is once again working with Stuweb Race Timing Solutions to stage this year’s triathlon.
Triathletes can register now online at www.erewashtri.com

Organisers and exhibitors revving up for town's popular transport extravaganza 

PREPARATIONS are well advanced for a popular heritage and classic vehicle show that has become an established  part of Ilkeston's annual social calendar.

The fifth show organised by enterprise agency Erewash Partnership will bring the sights and sounds of yesteryear to the town's historic Market Place next month.
The free show, which attracts exhibitors and spectators from a wide area, and appeals to family members of all ages, will take place on Sunday August 13 in the square and surrounding areas from 10am-4pm.
Last year's event attracted around 7,000 visitors and so this year the Partnership has catered for expansion of the exhibitors' area to include the whole of Pimlico car park to make the show even bigger and better.
So far participants have booked in more than 200 exhibits and organisers expect this to rise to almost 300, beating previous totals.
The oldest exhibit entered is more than 110 years old. The 1904 car was made by the American Brennan Motor Manufacturing Company which qualifies it for Bonham's London-Brighton veteran car run, where it is a regular participant. 
So far more than 16 classic lorries have been entered, along with classic and sports cars, motor-bikes, buses - reminiscent of the days when services operated by Trent, Barton, and Midland General ran to and from the Market Place – and steam engines.
Owners are not just keen to show their gleaming pride and joy, but also hoping to win prizes sponsored by various firms, mainly from the motor trade. New headline sponsors include the Porsche Centre Nottingham, and Vauxhall Repair Centre, Ilkeston.
Ilkeston car dealership Ron Brooks will again be awarding a prize for the car of the show, and the there is also an Erewash Mayor's award for an exhibit of their personal choice. 
Last year a number of people attended in appropriate period dress to match their vehicles, so the Partnership has decided to embrace this idea and award a prize for the best dressed owner. This is sponsored by new Bath Street shop Fabulous Things.
Two special attractions will make their fourth appearance – characters from the Star Wars film in the guise of 501st Legion UK Garrison will storm the area, much to the delight of younger visitors, and mystery man The UKG Stig will also be present.
There will also be a craft fair, music from Ilkeston Brass and St Mary's Church will be open. The event gives local businesses nearby an opportunity to open up, and two charities Ilkeston Hospital League of Friends and Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance will benefit.
Partnership chief executive Ian Viles said: “We are delighted to again be hosting this show which has become a firm favourite in Ilkeston and for people from miles around.”
Roads around the Market Place will be closed to normal traffic as vehicles start to arrive. Closures will be in place from 5.30am – 6.30pm on Sunday. Bath Street from East Street to the Market Place, Wharncliffe Road from Albert Street and South Street from Coronation Street, plus Pimlico between New Lawn Road and Burns Street are the affected routes. Parking in Erewash Borough Council car parks is free on Sundays.

Funding help for rural communities

Four rural community projects in Erewash look set to share a funding payout of nearly £32,500 as part of Erewash Borough Council’s Rural Community Grants Scheme.
Councillors at a meeting of the Council Executive next week (Tuesday 11 July) are expected to approve the grants, the third round of payouts since the scheme was launched in October 2015.
The council – which invested £250,000 in total for the scheme to run over four years until 2019 – wants to provide funding support for projects that help residents living in the borough’s rural communities. Voluntary and community organisations are encouraged to apply for a grant and to work with their local Parish Council to get them to endorse and to apply for support on their behalf.
The green light is expected to be given next week for the following grants:
£9,744 to Draycott for the installation of ramps for a mini BMX track and linking pathway at the Millennium Green for older children and teenagers to encourage young people to be active.
£2,600 to Little Eaton for help towards a new stone wall to enhance the planting scheme at Croft Corner community green space.
£10,000 to West Hallam towards an extension to the village’s Cricket Club pavilion to enhance the facilities.
£10,000 to Stanley and Stanley Common towards a £31,695 fundraising drive to install a kitchenette, hand and pot washing facilities and an accessible toilet and baby changing area within St Andrew’s Church vestry.
Councillor Carol Hart, Leader of Erewash Borough Council, says:
“We value the work done by Parish Councils in our borough as well as the local groups within those communities – and we are particularly grateful for their hard work during what are financially challenging times. To show our support we are delighted to be running this Rural Grants Scheme, the major investment we have set aside for it is a clear demonstration of our on-going commitment to the parish areas and those who live there.”
Councillors are also expected to ‘support in principle’ an application for £25,000 from Derby and Sandiacre Canal Trust supported by Sandiacre Parish Council towards a £55,000 project to restore the lock adjacent to Lock Lane. There are insufficient funds left in the 22016/17 round of grants and the application will go forward to the 2017/18 round for consideration.
In addition, three of the four applications expected to get approval next week hope to raise further funds themselves to meet the total cost of the projects.

Grants galore for Erewash groups

More than 60 community groups and arts and sports organisations in Erewash were handed a share of a bumper payout of nearly £70,000 over the last financial year.
A report going to a meeting of Erewash Borough Council’s Executive next week lists the many groups that were helped by the money thanks to the council’s Community and Voluntary Small Grants Scheme.
Organisations supporting older people, groups and charities large and small – ranging from Scout and Sea Scouts to walking groups – sports and arts groups and playschemes in the borough were all successful in bids for a small grant.
The scheme offers the chance for groups to apply for up to £2,000 for projects and services that help Erewash residents.
Councillor Gerri Hickton, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Community Engagement, says:
“This report to Council Executive gives a clear demonstration of our continued commitment to helping the many, many kind-hearted people that we have in our borough in the work they do every day to provide, through their community groups, a whole range of services and support for residents of all ages.
“We will continue to reach out to the community through this scheme and we will work hard, in particular, to reach those groups which have not applied before – we’re here to help with your projects, so get in touch.”
The next deadline for grant applications is 12.30pm on Monday 24 July. Full details of the scheme and how to apply for a grant are available at www.erewash.gov.uk – click on the ‘Community and Living’ tab and the link to ‘Grants’. 
Anyone needed help or advice on completing the application form can contact the council’s Community Engagement Officer Colin Handley via email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on 0115 907 2244.