Bid to be part of business rates pilot

Erewash borough councillors are expected to rubber-stamp a decision to include the council in a bid for Derbyshire to become a trial area for a 100% rates retention pilot in 2018/19.
A report going to the meeting of Council Executive on Tuesday (5 December) confirms that Erewash Borough Council is part of the Derbyshire Rates Pool – along with all the county’s local authorities – which is hoping to be chosen as a business rates pilot area by the government.
The move comes after the government announced it was expanding the five current 100% pilots which started in April this year. Confirmation of the successful applications could be released next month.
Councillor Wayne Major, Erewash Borough Council’s Deputy Leader and Lead Member for Resources, says:
“If the bid to be a 100% pilot area is successful, there is the chance to retain a significant amount of additional rates next year within Derbyshire – possibly in the region of £21m if projections are met.
“These are financially challenging times and with council budgets continuing to be under pressure, it is a sensible move. Tapping into a key source of income such as business rates will be a vital part of being able to balance future budgets.”
Under the 100% pilot programme, the retained money would be split between the councils and 30% of each authority’s gain ring-fenced to support economic regeneration in the county. The Derby and Derbyshire Authorities Joint Committee for Economic Prosperity would make the approvals on funding for individual projects.
The government has agreed a ‘no detriment’ clause for the 2018/19 pilots which will guarantee that those taking part will not be worse off as a result.
The meeting of Council Executive is on Tuesday 5 December at 10.30am at Long Eaton Town Hall.

Festive scenes at the museum

The award winning Erewash Museum will be transformed into a Winter Wonderland of seasonal celebration during December leading up to the Christmas break.
The three-week festive wonderland will see the stables area of the museum’s historic Dalby House home decked out with all things Christmas, creating a magical scene where children can take part in a themed activity trail until Saturday 23 December.
Visitors can drop in to see the displays between 10am and 4pm on each of the museum’s usual opening days.
As part of the celebration the museum hosts its popular Christmas Fayre on Saturday 2 December between 11am-3pm when visitors have a chance to pick up gifts from a range of craft stalls. Santa will also be visiting and there is a chance to meet some reindeer. Admission is £1.50 for children over the age of 2 – free admission for adults (16 and over) and babies. 
Father Christmas will return for three Santa Saturdays, on 9th, 16th and 23rd December when he will be in residence in The Stables between 10.30am-3.30pm. Children can visit him for £2.50, which includes a present to take home.
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
“We love to deck out the halls of Erewash Museum every December and we know the whole wonderland and Christmas celebration is very popular with families.  It’s a magical time and gives families a chance to get together and enjoy some festive fun in the lead up to the big day.”
Erewash Museum is situated 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. 
For all the latest news from Erewash Museum, including events and activities, residents can check out the Facebook page  or the website

Lawrence country at museum

Erewash Museum has secured a fascinating D. H. Lawrence exhibition for its Lally Gallery – a major coup for the awardwinning museum team.
 ‘D.H. Lawrence’s The White Peacock – The Real Places’ has been secured on loan from the author’s birthplace museum in Eastwood and opens on Saturday 2 December.
Fans of the internationally renowned Eastwood author will be able to discover the real life locations which inspired Lawrence to write his first novel The White Peacock, which was first published in 1911.
The White Peacock, which was set in the countryside surrounding Lawrence’s hometown, shows his passion and knowledge of the area and how he used real local locations in his fiction from the outset – something he would continue to do throughout his writing career.
The exhibition – which runs until 13 January - features photographs of key locations that appear in the novel alongside quotations from the novel relating to each site.
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
“We know a lot of people will be very excited that this exhibition is coming to Erewash Museum. What a wonderful opportunity to see photographs of the very local landscapes that inspired Lawrence alongside extracts from his first novel. We’re delighted to have this on loan and expect it to be very popular.”

Youngsters to sing out for community

Pupils from five Ilkeston schools will be part of a first ‘feelgood’ Singathon in the town’s award-winning Victoria Park, giving the chance for the young people to connect through the power of music on the newly restored bandstand.
The magical morning that will see the school choirs perform for the local community will be on Wednesday 29 November between 10.45am and 11.45am and is the first event of its kind in the park – while they will all join together to perform the premiere of a newly-written ‘Song for Derbyshire’.
The school choirs from Dallimore, Granby and Chaucer primary schools, Cotmanhay junior school and Ormiston Academy will each sing their own winter and Christmas songs before the new song is performed, which has charming words about the county and an inspiring message that children should be ‘the best they can be’.
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
“This will be a wonderful event, hearing the sound of our school choirs singing some seasonal songs – and what better setting than on the stunning Victorian bandstand in this lovely park. A finale of all five choirs performing the Song for Derbyshire is certain to be very moving and a memorable moment.”
Community Ranger Helen Mitchem, who continues to organise a whole range of activities in the park for local residents, has organised the event. The children’s families, local residents and park visitors are all welcome to listen to the voices of the choirs, which will be heard across the park and will signal the start of the festive period.
The event will be another landmark for Victoria Park, which has recently seen all its key features restored thanks to a £740,800 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Big Lottery Fund.

Ilkeston Christmas Lights switch-on 2017

Seasonal sights, Santa, fairground fun and festive songs . . .  just some of the family entertainment lined up for the usual Christmas Lights switch-on event in Ilkeston on Friday 1 December.
The Mayor of Erewash, Councillor Mary Hopkinson, will ‘light up’ the town to officially launch the Christmas season, during a fab and free night of fun for people of all ages.  
The celebration event will take place between 5.30pm-8.30pm in Ilkeston town centre, with the Mayor switching on the lights at 7pm after which the sky will explode in a riot of colour as fireworks add to the magical festivities.
There will be traditional music and songs with Johnny Victory along with performances from Ilkeston Brass Band – while the festive fun will also include a Christmas Market and ‘reindeer walkabout’ characters.   
Erewash Museum also joins the free festivities with a fun Dickensian theme to celebrate Victorian Christmas traditions and customs. 
A cook will be demonstrating a range of recipes and foods that were traditional to a Victorian Christmas.  Visitors to the Museum will also be entertained by a beautiful Winter Fairy as she thrills the audience with her skilful contact juggling, as well as holding audiences spellbound with her stunning costume that literally lights up. 
The Museum will be open during the evening giving visitors the opportunity to see exhibitions or purchase Christmas gifts from its shop, while the Old Stable Tea Room will be serving refreshments. A traditional hot chestnut seller will be in the museum grounds with an old favourite.
Councillor Mike Wallis, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Culture and Leisure, says:
“As the countdown to Christmas 2017 is underway we look forward to another night of light, music and entertainment.  This event is a firm family favourite that brings everyone together to welcome the festive season and a great opportunity for us to celebrate all that our town has to offer.”