Litter culprits be warned!

Litterbugs and pet owners who fail to pick up after their dogs are being warned they will be prosecuted if they are caught offending and then fail to pay the Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) fine.
 
The hard-hitting message comes from Erewash Borough Council as it continues its crackdown on environmental crime and follows three successful prosecutions last month – while a further three court cases are due to take place over the next couple of weeks.
 
Two local residents have been taken to court by the council after they failed to pay their fines when they were spotted throwing their cigarette ends onto the pavement – while a third was also prosecuted for non-payment of his fine for failing to pick up after his two dogs.
 
All three were issued with Fixed Penalty Notices when they were seen by Neighbourhood Wardens and must now pay court fines and costs totalling hundreds of pounds. All three cases were heard at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates Court:
  • Kirsty Taylor, of Balmoral Road, Borrowash, dropped a cigarette end and left it on the pavement on Derby Road, Long Eaton.  No FPN payment was received and the court fined her £220, with a victim surcharge of £30 and ordered her to pay the council’s full costs of £127 – a total bill of £377.
  • James Whitworth (32), of Critchley Street, Ilkeston, dropped and left his cigarette end on Bath Street, Ilkeston. He failed to pay his FPN and was fined £220 and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £30 and the council’s full costs of £127.50 – a total bill of £377.50.
  • Isaac Stack (20), of Blackwell Close, Ilkeston, was issued with two FPNs when he failed to pick up after his two dogs fouled land at Cotmanhay Pavilion Open Space.  No payment was received and he must now pay a total court bill of £597.50 – a fine of £220 for each offence, a victim surcharge of £30 and the council’s full costs of £127.50.  
Councillor Garry Hickton, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Environment, says:
 
“These cases show that we won’t hesitate to take action against offenders. They may have hoped to avoid punishment, but the fines and costs awarded demonstrate the court’s support for our work. If people don’t want to be out of pocket, the solution is simple – dispose of waste responsibly.
 
“Littering of any kind is not acceptable and will not be tolerated. It brings down the appeal of our towns and local communities and is dangerous and unhealthy. Much of the waste carelessly thrown out, particularly cigarette ends, does not rot down for a very long time. Clean-up costs, of course, are met through Council Tax so dropping litter, fly-tipping or leaving dog mess makes no sense at all and is a mindless thing to do. We need the public to take a responsible approach to disposing of their waste.”
 
Over the last quarter, the council issued an increased number of 44 FPNs for litter offences compared to 31 in the same period last year. In the year to date there have been 170 issued compared to 109 at the same point in 2016. Fly-tipping cases have dropped in the year to date, with 116 instances compared to 208 in the same period last year.
 
The council appeals to the public to help the crackdown on environmental crime by reporting offenders and supplying information through the council’s confidential PRIDE-line number 0115 850 8383 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Tee-off for charity

Golf players are being urged to hit the greens and tee-off for a Charity Golf Day hosted by the Mayor of Erewash, Councillor Mary Hopkinson, to raise funds for her chosen charities.
 
Teams of keen golfers are needed for the special sporting day on Friday 27 April at the Erewash Valley Golf Club in Stanton by Dale, when all proceeds will go to Alzheimer’s charities, Sight Support Derbyshire, Ben’s Den and The Canaan Trust.
 
The event will be a four person team Stableford Competition off 3/4 handicap with the best two scores at each hole to count and there will be a handicap limit of 24 (men) and 36 (women). The Mayor will start everyone off at the first hole, with the first team teeing-off at 10.30am.
 
Councillor Mary Hopkinson, the Mayor of Erewash, says:
 
“I hope as many people as possible will join us for what will be a competitive and fun day that will also raise money for charities that are very close to my heart.”
 
The entry fee for the event is £160 per team, which includes refreshments from 9.30am and a two course hot meal after play. Businesses can also support the charity day by sponsoring a hole for £50.00.  Full publicity will be given.
 
Entry forms and more details are available from the Civic Support Office at Ilkeston Town Hall, telephone 0115 907 1115 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by contacting Mike Ronan on 
07918 621588.

Relaunched ‘Teen Gym’ 

Erewash Borough Council has extended its Health Club gym membership scheme to enable more young people to make use of the gym facilities at its leisure centres.
 
The relaunched Teen Gym membership is available now for 11-15-year-olds – previously it was just for 14-15-year-olds.
 
The move comes after staff completed the necessary training to permit the younger age group into the gym and is part of the council’s on-going drive to encourage more young people to take up a healthier lifestyle.
 
Membership is £15 a month, with no joining fee and includes an induction and their own plan. It covers the use of the gym at supervised sessions or with an adult aged 18+ who has had an induction – while it also includes swimming and group exercise classes at all sites
 
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
 
“We are delighted to be able to extend our health club membership and look forward to welcoming more young people to enjoy our fitness facilities. Research published on the Sport England website shows that 11-15 is a vital age range for creating an exercise habit for life.”
 
The new Teen Gym Membership for 11-15 year olds is available direct from 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 Sandiacre Friesland Sports Centre, 0115 949 0400.
 

Ringing in the Chinese New Year

Music, dance and a heart-warming lantern procession are among the highlights when the Year of the Dog is celebrated in colourful style during Chinese New Year festivities on Saturday 17 February.
 
Drop-in family lantern making workshops will be running at Erewash Museum between 12.30pm and 5pm where, for £1.50 per person, people can make their own lanterns to take along to the early evening parade.
 
The Year of the Dog celebrations will begin at 5.30pm when the lantern procession will set off from the museum to the nearby Ilkeston Market Place. The parade will also feature a special processional dog lantern made by local artist Ann Levett and adults with learning disabilities from the Outlook Day Centre in Long Eaton.
 
A one-hour New Year knees-up in the Market Place will include Dragon Dancing by pupils from Hallam Fields Junior School, Lion Dancing from Seven Star Praying Mantis Kung Fu and Chinese music and song from professional musician Ling Peng.
 
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
 
“Whether you want to make lanterns and join in the procession or simply want to go along to watch the fun, our Chinese New Year celebration will be a memorable family event. So join us to welcome the Year of the Dog!”
 
Organised by Erewash Borough Council’s Arts Development Team, the Chinese New Year celebration is the final event in the council’s Festival of Light programme – a series of events to mark traditional and culturally diverse celebrations from September through to February each year. These feature Harvest Moon, Diwali, the Erewash Bonfire and Fireworks display, Christmas Lights switch on events and Winter Solstice.
 

A chance to be worldly wise!

Youngsters can enjoy an action-packed week at Erewash Museum for February’s half term holiday with celebration activities inspired by the classic adventure tale Around the World in Eighty Days.
 
Egyptian hieroglyphs, cowboys, Vikings and military displays will feature in the whistle-stop world tour between Monday 19 February and Saturday 24 February. The activities are all free and run between 11am-3pm.
 
Parents can put dates in their diaries for daily themed activities:
 
• Monday 19 February – visit Viking England and take part in Viking crafts and activities inspired by the invasion of Anglo Saxon England.
• Tuesday 20 February – an ancient Egyptians theme with interactive displays and the chance to learn how to write your name in hieroglyphs.
• Wednesday 21 February – the tour moves to India and a day of Indian-themed crafts.
• Thursday 22 February – back to Victorian England for the day, including the chance to see military equipment of the time.
• Friday 23 February – it’s the Wild West and a time to find out more about life for settlers and meet some real cowboys!
• Saturday 24 February – the holiday activities end with the Silk Route and the chance to experience what life was like for people and those who traded with ancient China.
 
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
 
“This journey around the world means parents can bring their children to our museum every day of the school holiday – we’ll keep them thoroughly entertained with a wide range of activities and learning!”