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Achievement Awards nominations open

Finalists and their guests will be invited to the prestigious evening ceremony at the Marriott Hotel on Thursday 03 October, which celebrates and honours all of the finalists. £750 of prize money will be available in each category.

For more information on each category and to nominate visit www.blaby.gov.uk/awards <http://www.blaby.gov.uk/awards>. To request a paper copy e-mail public.relations@blaby.gov.uk <mailto:public.relations@blaby.gov.uk> or call 0116 272 7577.
Residents are being urged to nominate
 
their inspirational local heroes and
 
community groups with the launch of Blaby
 
District Council’s Outstanding
 
Achievement Awards.

Now in their sixteenth year, friends, family
 
and workmates can put forward individuals
 
and groups who they think deserve
 
recognition for making a difference in their
 
community. Nominations close at midnight
 
on Sunday 11 August 2019 and can be
 
submitted in one of four categories:
Good Friend/Good Neighbour -
 
Sponsored by Aggregate Industries
Volunteer of the Year - Sponsored
 
by Leicester Marriott Hotel
Young Achiever of the Year -
 
Sponsored by Ford & Slater
Best Community
 
Group/Achievement - Sponsored by
 
Fosse

Four fined for dog identification offences

Residents are being urged to comply with the law to ensure their dog can get back to them, following fines given to four residents by Leicester Magistrates’ Court.

The Control of Dogs Order (1992) makes it the law for a dog to wear a collar bearing the name and address (including postcode) of the owner engraved or written on it, or engraved on a tag. If stray dogs reported to the Council cannot be identified, they are picked up by the Dog Warden and taken to the kennel. The stray dogs service cost Blaby District Council over £20,000 in the last financial year.

Four residents were recently fined at Leicester Magistrates’ Court after their dogs were picked up as strays in the district because they did not have proper identification. Carys Archer of Glenfield and Lance Bellingham of Enderby pleaded guilty and we fined £440 each, with £140 costs and a £44 victim surcharge.
Two other residents also failed to comply with notices requesting updates to microchip information, which is an offence under the Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015. Joanne Seager of Elmesthorpe was fined £440, with £210 costs and a £44 victim surcharge, while Agne Baneviciute of Narborough was fined £660 and ordered to pay £85 costs and a £66 victim surcharge. Neither entered a plea for either offence at Leicester Magistrates’ Court.

For more information about dogs, including dog law, visit www.blaby.gov.uk/dogs <http://www.blaby.gov.uk/dogs>.
 
Shouldn’t BDC be taking a more proactive approach to informing its residents given the size and location of this development? I have found no mention in the News section of the BDC website or in the Councils email newsletters. We may not all live adjacent to a development but we all live in a district that is fast becoming over populated, congested and losing its green space.

Other warehousing developments have been approved at Magna Park, Lutterworth and at Junction 1 of the M69. A further 400,000 square feet of warehousing at Leicester Commercial Park on Leicester Lane stands vacant. Do we really need more warehousing adjacent to an extended Fosse Park, 4500 houses at New Lubbesthorpe and the Everards Brewery Complex? Isn’t it time that our elected representatives many who stood on a promise of protecting open spaces and areas of separation between settlements at the recent local elections took a wider view?

Wouldn’t it be refreshing if the land at St Johns could become an open space with trees, walkways and cycleways connecting with the Everards Brewery development providing access from Enderby and beyond across the Soar Valley to the Great Central Way, across Aylestone Meadows and into the City. Providing a safe and healthy option for getting into Leicester. It would take vision and determination but if implemented we could all breathe a little easier both literally and metaphorically.

Who knows if the St Johns development will be approved but with only 43 individuals objecting against not a single objection from the multitude of organisations consulted I know where my money would be!

In contrast a news article on the BDC website (11th March) headed ‘Councillors raise concerns over Hinckley Rail Freight Interchange’ reports objections from the Leader of BDC to a proposed development at Junction 2 of the M69. And the difference to St Johns is…..??
In the meantime be mindful of what might be coming to a ‘Green Wedge’ near you.

From ‘Green Wedge’ to ‘Golden Triangle’, where next?

The 'Letters' section of The Journal regularly raises issues of planning and what seems to be the relentless march of development throughout Blaby District. Letters are almost exclusively from local residents who are often a lone voice, the wider community not being aware of the plans until the window to raise objections has passed.

I recently became aware of the major commercial development proposed for the land between the B114 at St Johns and the M1 Motorway. The development would cover all of the fields between the Foxhunter Roundabout and Leicester Lane. This land is the only remaining green space that provides any separation between the urban area of Leicester and St Johns, Enderby and Narborough.

I decided to look at the processes being followed that designated this greenfield land as suitable for development.

There are numerous documents on the Blaby District Council website under ‘Local Plan’. Two are key, the Local Plan Core Strategy and a Local Plan Delivery Document. The Core Strategy was adopted by BDC in February 2013 and includes a diagram on Page 99 which shows the area identified for development at St Johns as a ‘Green Wedge’. Page 80 describes the purpose and strategy behind Green Wedges in Policy CS16. The subsequent Local Plan Delivery Document was adopted by BDC in February 2019. In those six years the land in question had been re-designated from ‘Green Wedge’ to ‘Golden Triangle’. Section SA3 on Page 12 of Local Plan Delivery Document provides the detail.

Ten days after the the Local Plan Delivery Document was adopted by BDC on 4th February 2019 a detailed Planning Application consisting of 83 documents was submitted by the owner and developer of the land at St Johns to BDC.

BDC is only obliged to write to residents with properties directly bordering the proposed development. Very few properties share a boundary with this site which is the likely reason for so few objections. An article in the Leicester Mercury on the 24th May states that no official bodies including Enderby and Narborough Parish Councils have objected to the development; yet again the residents find themselves as a lone voice.

 
The Council has awarded hundreds of thousands of pounds through the Community Grants scheme since the initiative launched over a decade ago. Local mental health support group Blaby Mind Matters received a grant last year to help pay for room hire costs.

Community Grant applications can now be completed online. For more information, including terms and conditions, application deadlines and how to apply, visit www.blaby.gov.uk/communitygrants <http://www.blaby.gov.uk/communitygrants>, email grants@blaby.gov.uk <mailto:grants@blaby.gov.uk> or call 0116 2727566.
Community groups and sports clubs across the District of Blaby are being encouraged to apply to the Council’s Community Grants scheme to help with their projects.

£90,000 is available during 2019/20. Even more funding has been made available thanks to the money raised through the Love Blaby Lottery and a £2,000 contribution from Everyone Active. A wide range of grants are available from £500 to £4,000 for both revenue costs, such as equipment hire and marketing, and capital projects, including building refurbishments.

Most grants are awarded quarterly and the next deadline is looming, closing on Thursday 06 June. Three more application rounds will take place, with deadlines in September, November and February 2020. Youth Grant applications for up to £500 can be made at any time.

Thousands in funding available

Hello, I’m Kim Richardson, local Councillor and Chairman of The Commbus Project, a registered charity (1117153) which provides a community bus service in this part of south west Leicestershire. I was proud to be elected Chairman of Commbus earlier this year. I’ve lived in Littlethorpe for all of my adult life, I’ve raised my family here, and I’ve served as a Parish Councillor for 30 years. So I really feel a part of where I live and know that so many organisations which serve the local community depend upon local people to ‘step up’ and run them.

I’ve known about Commbus since it started in 1994, and began driving for them two years ago. I have been very impressed by the volunteers who run the office and who work as bus drivers and escorts. In fact, Commbus is run entirely by local volunteers who give up their time every week to enable us to do what we do. We are supported by Leicestershire County Council, Blaby District Council and Narborough Parish Council.

Commbus began 25 years ago with a single Renault Master minibus. Today we have a fleet of 3 modern Mercedes Sprinter buses, taking elderly passengers and those with limited mobility, who find it difficult to access local public transport, on regular shopping journeys to Blaby, Beaumont Leys, Fosse Park, Hinckley, Leicester, and Lutterworth. We also provide special outings to towns and venues around the region. Commbus covers Countesthorpe, Blaby, Glen Parva, Whetstone, Cosby, Littlethorpe, Narborough, St. Johns, Enderby, Huncote, Croft, Stoney Stanton, Sapcote and Sharnford.

Our buses are equipped for wheelchair access and manned by trained drivers and escorts to help you. You are picked up from home and taken back to your door at the end of the trip … all this at subsidised fares!

There will be someone near you who uses Commbus and who will tell you all about it, or you can call the office on weekday mornings on 0116 286 6116 or email commbus5863@gmail.com and we’ll tell you what’s available where you live.
Come and give us a try!

COMMBUS IS HERE FOR YOU

We’re looking for volunteer host families who can offer a stable, loving temporary home for children whose lives are still affected by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

Friends of Chernobyl’s Children (West Leicestershire) is a registered charity that supports Belarusian children from disadvantaged social backgrounds who are still affected by the Chernobyl disaster.

Every year we bring children from the most badly affected parts of Belarus to the UK for a month of recuperative care. During the visit, the children stay with a host family and undertake a programme of organised activities that gives them plenty of fresh air, friendship, essential health checks and above all the fun they so desperately need.

We’re on the lookout for enthusiastic, committed families who can provide a stable, loving home for a vulnerable child that will be placed in their care for four weeks. Host families will need to have their own transport and ideally live within 30 minutes of the charity’s day centre, which is currently in Markfield.

John Buckby, Group Co-ordinator for Friends of Chernobyl’s Children (West Leics) said: “Hosting a child is an incredibly rewarding experience and these visits do really change the lives of the children and the host families and volunteers that support them.

“The next visit is planned for the summer of 2020 but there is lots of organising before then, so it’s vital that we have host families in place by September 2019 to ensure we can commit to bringing these children, so desperately in need of our help, over to the UK.”

If you think you can help, either as a host family or as a volunteer supporting the visits you can find more information on our website www.focc-westleics.org.uk or get in touch with our Group Co-ordinator, John Buckby, on 01455 285799 / 07738 324947 or by email at john.evolution@btinternet.com.

Could you change a child’s life in 2020?

Enderby
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