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Tuesday, 24 May 2016

The ‘Nantwich Film Festival

Reporter Jonathan White, Wistaston

Nantwich held its inaugural film festival from Friday 20th to Sunday 22nd May 2016. The ‘Nantwich Film Festival’ - http://www.nantwichfilmfestival.co.uk/ - featured five independent and foreign language films and took place at Nantwich Civic Hall, the club’s regular venue.

The festival was opened by MP for Crewe and Nantwich Edward Timpson and Nantwich Mayor Councillor Andrew Martin, along with Mike Tilley and Roger Hinde from the Nantwich Film Festival.

The Care2Save Charitable Trust - https://www.care2save.co.uk/ - sold tickets to win a brand new Bentley Continental GT V8, with the proceeds going to St Luke’s (Cheshire) Hospice.

Presenter Stuart Mackay interviewed members of the Nantwich Film Club, the MP and the Mayor for a future broadcast on his popular ‘At The Movies’ show on The Cat 107.9 FM community radio station, http://thisisthecat.com/index.php/the-purrfect-afternoon-at-the-movies/

The opening night film was the Oscar-nominated romantic drama ‘Brooklyn’. The other films shown at the festival were Australian-made ‘The Rocket’ set in Laos, Jordanian coming-of-age story ‘Theeb’, ‘The Visitor’ exploring the relationship and bond between a retired professor and the illegal immigrants he befriends, and the festival ended with Film Club favourite and Oscar-winner ‘Cinema Paradiso’ in its full directors cut.

The winning entry from the South Cheshire College short film competition was shown on the final evening, prior to ‘Cinema Paradiso’. ‘The Journey Of A Heart’ - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TbGJEcJWEiM - was produced by students Chole Moles, Ben Goff and Josh Sawtell, who are all enrolled on the Media BTEC Extended Diploma - Level 3 course at South Cheshire College. They received an engraved trophy and individual certificates from Film Club chairman Mike Tilley, who kindly visited the college in order to present the prizes and give a congratulatory speech.

It is hoped that the Nantwich Film Festival will become an annual event and was supported by Nantwich Town Council http://www.nantwichtowncouncil.gov.uk/ and headline sponsor ROI Ltd http://www.roiltd.co.uk/ who are one of the top sales and marketing agencies in the UK, working with twenty of the world’s largest automotive brands.

A representative from Nantwich Film Club said, "We love a good film so what could be better than a festival of film? We're a band of enthusiasts who want to share that enthusiasm by bringing film to the community of Nantwich. We have been in existence now for five years. Our audience has loyally supported us until now, at long last, we are able to celebrate with a whole weekend of film. We are so excited that we are already talking about next year!"

Nantwich Film Club is a volunteer organisation which runs and screens independent, classic and foreign language films on the second Monday of each month at Nantwich Civic Hall on their 5.7m (224”) screen. Entry is £5 and is open to all. There’s no membership and no obligation to be at every film. All showings begin promptly at 7:45pm with the Civic Hall bar open for refreshments from 7pm. Come and enjoy the Big Screen experience and meet other film enthusiasts.

Please visit their website http://nantwichfilmclub.co.uk/ , Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/nantwichfilmclub/ , and Twitter page https://twitter.com/filmnantwich for further details.

 

Care2Save - Andy Thomson and Pat Giannoni - volunteers for  St Lukes Cheshire Hospice

l-r Roger Hinde - MP Edward Timpson - Mayor Andrew Martin  - Mike Tilley

Try out simple lifestyle tips with 100 days to go until the Tour of Britain

 

It’s just over 100 days to go before the Tour of Britain comes to Cheshire East – a great reason for everyone to get in the best shape they can for Tuesday, 6 September.

Cheshire East Council supports Public Health England’s ground-breaking ‘One You’ campaign encouraging all residents to make a few small lifestyle changes to enjoy this great event on its arrival 100 days from this Saturday.

So, as these tremendous athletes get ready for a challenging cycle route, why not see what new habits you can put in place to make a difference to your life. It doesn’t have to be much – just enough for you to get more out of life and enjoy your summer.

Eat well: start with a healthy breakfast and ensure you have at least five portions of fruit and vegetables each day.

Move more: being active is really good for your body, mind and health – and there are lots of easy ways you and your family can get moving. This could simply be a walk around the block or taking the stairs instead of using the lift. Every little effort you make will help.

Councillor Paul Bates, Cheshire East Council Cabinet member for communities and health, said: “Everyone in the Borough should be rightly proud that the Tour of Britain is coming to Cheshire East but we don’t want it to end there.

“Knowing that there will be hundreds of dedicated professional cyclists coming through our towns and villages needs to be a starting point rather than the end of the journey. So get out there, do your bit and enjoy a fabulous summer!”

In order to keep healthy, it’s also important to take a moment to check your health and get advice on keeping yourself healthy and active.

Dr Heather Grimbaldeston, Director of Public Health for Cheshire East, said: “In our increasingly busy lives, it is sometimes difficult to find time to think about our overall health, especially when it doesn’t always appear that there might be a specific reason to do so.

“We realise that this is the case and so we are doing more to signpost people towards information and resources that could be very beneficial to them.”

For example, if you’re aged 40-74, and don’t have a pre-existing health condition you’ll be invited every five years for an NHS health check - your free midlife MOT. This can spot the early signs of health conditions, such as high blood pressure.

Many of us nowadays have stressful lives. There's no quick fix cure for stress, but there are simple things you can do to help improve your mental wellbeing.

Why not go for a bike ride by arranging some fun Tour of Britain-themed activities with friends? Then on the day, make plans to spectate on the route and soak up the atmosphere?

Even small changes can improve how you feel. So, why not start today to see how you can make time in the lead up to the Tour of Britain, on the day and beyond?

Connecting Cheshire races ahead to major superfast broadband milestone for local communities

 

Connecting Cheshire has reached a major milestone in its delivery of high-speed fibre broadband to communities across the county.

The multi-million-pound partnership has just installed its landmark 500th fibre broadband cabinet.

It is the seventh to be installed in Sandbach. It means that more than 690 homes and businesses in the market town can now access the high-speed network – thanks to the programme backed by local authorities, including Cheshire East Council, and BT.

Demand for fibre broadband has been really strong, with around 30,000 homes and businesses taking up the service so far in the Connecting Cheshire area, with more orders being placed every day. This means Connecting Cheshire has one of the highest take up rates in the UK.

To date, the programme has brought fibre broadband within reach of 85,000 homes and businesses in Cheshire and, when combined with BT’s commercial roll-out of the new technology, more than 96 per cent of homes and businesses across the historic county are now able to access fibre broadband.

One Sandbach business already benefitting from the fast speeds is award-winning cake company, Lois’s Little Cake Company.

Owner Debbie Fenton said: “Having superfast broadband at my new shop in Sandbach has made a big difference. I can now manage our website and social media much more easily and offer customers free wi-fi too – so faster broadband really is the icing on the cake!”

Councillor Peter Groves, Cheshire East Council Cabinet member for finance and assets, said: “Reaching this milestone of 500 cabinets has been a tremendous achievement for the Connecting Cheshire project.

“Coupled with the strong take-up by consumers, it demonstrates that many more homes and businesses are now benefiting from faster broadband across every aspect of their lives, not only for work, but also education, training and entertainment.”

Mike Blackburn, BT North West regional director, said: “High-speed fibre broadband helps to ensure that businesses thrive and don’t just survive and helps keep communities connected. Whatever you do online you can do it better with fibre broadband.

“Across Cheshire, BT has made fibre available to tens of thousands of local households and businesses through its own commercial programme and its investment in Connecting Cheshire.

“The highly-successful Connecting Cheshire partnership has worked very hard to reach this significant milestone today and continues to make strong progress.”

To check availability in your area you can visit the Connecting Cheshire website and enter a postcode or a telephone number via www.connectingcheshire.org.uk/check-availability

Connection to fibre broadband does not happen automatically and people must contact their service provider (there are more than 140 of them offering fibre broadband services across the UK) to place an order.

The Connecting Cheshire project was launched in April 2013 and is a partnership of four councils – Cheshire East, Cheshire West and Chester, Halton and Warrington – and BT.

Its first phase, £28.5m roll-out has been funded by £13.6m from the European Development Fund, £9m from BT, £4m from BDUK with £1.85m provided jointly from the councils. A £6m phase two project will reach a further 10,000 premises by summer 2017.

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Wistaston Singers performed a fund-raising concert

Reporter Jonathan White, Wistaston

Wistaston Singers performed a fund-raising concert on the evening of Saturday 21st May 2016 at St Mary's Church Hall, Church Lane, Wistaston.

Phil Houghton was the Musical Director and also introduced each song and soloist. Treona Holden was the Accompanist for the evening.

Chris White sang and played the ukulele to ‘Trail of the Lonesome Pine’ (Laurel & Hardy), ‘Little Stick of Blackpool Rock’ (Formby) and ‘Keep The Home Fires Burning’ (Novello). Fred Allman sang ‘The Gasman Cometh’ (Flanders & Swan).

The choir sang ‘42nd Street’ (Warren), a ‘Mamma Mia’ compilation (Huff), ‘As Long As I Have Music’ (Besig), ‘Morte Christe’ (Jones), ‘Rule Britannia’ (Arne), a ‘Les Miserables’ compilation (Schonberg), ‘Flying Free’ (Besig), an ‘Oliver’ compilation (Bart) and ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight’ (John).

The audience were invited to join in, with the lyrics projected onto a large screen, to ‘A Nightingale Sang In Berkley Square’ (Sherwin), ‘Keep The Home Fires Burning’ (Novello), with a rousing ‘Jerusalem’ (Blake) to finish the concert.

Fifty people were in the audience. Refreshments were served during the interval. There was also a prize raffle drawn during the interval by Wistaston Rose Queen Rachel Astbury, assisted by Ken Sambrook (Treasurer, Crewe & South Cheshire Local Group of Diabetes UK).

The £383 raised from the concert will be split between the Crewe & South Cheshire Local Group of Diabetes UK and Wistaston Rose Queen Rachel Astbury’s chosen charity Macmillan Cancer Support.

Musical Director Phil Houghton said, “We were delighted to sing at St Mary's Church Hall and thank them for their hospitality. It was an evening that was enjoyed by all and we thank everyone for their support.”

Wistaston Singers next two concerts are:

-Saturday 18th June 2016, 7pm, St Andrews Church, Bedford Street, Crewe.

-Saturday 16th July 2016, 3pm, St Stephens Methodist Church, Gainsborough Road, Crewe.

Wistaston Singers were originally formed by members of the choir at St Mary's Parish Church, Wistaston in May 2000 and now number over forty members singing four-part harmony music. The choir perform a variety and eclectic choice of music ranging from choral church music and anthems, Gilbert and Sullivan items, music from the shows, music from modern composers such as John Rutter encompassing from the 15th century to the 20th century. They perform up to five concerts a year at various venues in south Cheshire. The choir is also available to perform at weddings in the area. The choir rehearse weekly in the parish rooms of St Mary's Church, Nantwich on a Wednesday evening from 7:30pm to 9:30pm. New members are welcome and further details may be obtained from Choir Secretary Jill Oakes, Tel: 01270 662940 and email:jillandjohnoakes@uwclub.net

Wistaston Singers in Concert at St Mary's Church Hall

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Life Sciences Fund invests £3m into clinical trials to combat infections

 

The Greater Manchester and Cheshire Life Sciences Fund has raised £3m to help develop a fungal infection medicine at Alderley Park.

The money will fund clinical trials on patients and drug development by Blueberry Therapeutics, based at Alderley Park.

The investment will support progress of its innovative treatment for fungal nail infection (onychomycosis) and associated athlete’s foot (tinea pedis).

The fund is the result of collaboration between Cheshire East Council, Cheshire and Warrington Enterprise Partnership, Greater Manchester Combined Authority, and Manchester Science Partnerships. The fund is managed by Catapult Ventures.

The market for fungal treatments is worth more than £2bn annually and Blueberry’s innovative treatment has the promise of being a more effective and ‘better-tolerated’ therapy than existing products in the market. Blueberry is also in discussions with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to help speed up approval of the treatment.

John Ridden, CEO of Blueberry Therapeutics, said: “We’re delighted to have secured this funding, which will enable us to move our lead programme to treat onychomycosis with associated tinea pedis into human clinical trials with the ambition of moving into phase three trials early in 2017.

“The investment from dedicated life-science funds in the UK and US is a significant step in the growth of Blueberry and opens up a range of exciting opportunities in topical (body surface) therapies.”

Cheshire East Councillor Peter Groves, Life Science Fund board member, said: “We were attracted to Blueberry by the exceptional experience of its management team and its compelling preclinical data for this well -differentiated and novel treatment. We look forward to working together with Blueberry's board and co-investors to help the company fulfil its ambition.

“This is the third investment to date the fund has made and I am delighted to see the fund helping more businesses based at Alderley Park, which is the largest life sciences campus of its kind in the UK.”

Onychomycosis is the most common disease of the nails and constitutes about half of all nail abnormalities.

Cheshire Fire And Rescue Service May 2016 E-Newsletter

Subject: Cheshire Fire And Rescue Service May 2016 E-Newsletter - Firelink


This is a message sent via Neighbourhood Watch. This information has been sent on behalf of Cheshire Fire & Rescue Service

(Please do not reply or forward this email directly; please use the Reply, Share buttons at the bottom of this message)

Message sent by

Ashley Lawton (Cheshire Fire , Administrator, Cheshire Fire)

Welcome to the May edition of the Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service e-Newsletter.


Want to know if your home is fire-safe?

Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service has launched its first ever app, called Risk Rater, which allows residents to risk assess their homes.

The app includes a short questionnaire to assess fire safety in the home, and then the user receives a personalised fire safety plan - with advice on how to prevent fires in their home.

The Risk Rater app can be downloaded free from the Google Play Store or the App Store, or you can visit our website to complete the questionnaire online.

Find out more - Want to know if your home is fire-safe?


Boat safety advice

The number of boat fires on our coastal and inland waters is relatively low. However, when they do occur, they quite often have devastating consequences.

Due to the remote location of moorings, the fire and rescue service can experience difficulties in gaining access to an incident. On many occasions, these incidents result in the total destruction of the boat and to surrounding property.

Please use the link below to view some simple advice to ensure your boating activities are safe and enjoyable.

Find out more - Boat safety advice


Caravan and camping safety advice

Holiday season is upon us and many people will be getting ready to take out their caravans or camping equipment.  Make sure your holidays are full of fun and not ruined by poor preparation.

Find out more - Caravan safety advice

Find out more - Camping safety advice


What do you think about our website?

We would love to know what you think about our website. Please take the time to complete a short survey about our website, to help us improve and develop it.

Let us know what you think about our website


Are you looking for an apprenticeship like no other?

If you are enthusiastic, committed to learning new skills, dedicated to delivering an excellent service to the community and keen to step into a vocation like no other then a career as an apprentice within Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service might be for you!

This is your opportunity to join one of the country’s leading fire and rescue services as a Firefighter and Community Safety (FCS) Apprentice. We are currently looking to appoint 12 apprentices to this dynamic programme.

Find out more - Are you looking for an apprenticeship like no other?


Unlock new skills - become a fire cadet at Alsager Fire Station

The newest fire station in Cheshire is now recruiting for the county's newest fire cadet unit and is looking for young people to get involved and make a difference.

A special 'taster' event is being held on Tuesday 24th May from 6.30pm to 8.30pm at Alsager Fire Station for young people aged between 12 and 17 years of age to unlock new skills and experience the exciting and unique opportunity to be part of Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service.

Find out more - Unlock new skills - become a fire cadet at Alsager Fire Station


Fire Station open days

Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service fire stations will be holding free fire station open days over the next few months.

Find out more - Fire Station open days

Find out about your local fire station - where it is, what open days or special events they are holding and how to get in contact with them.

Find out more - Your local fire station


Biker Down courses

If you were the first on the scene of an collision involving a biker, would you know what to do? Would you know who is most at risk, how to protect the area or whether you should remove the helmet of a downed rider?

Actions taken in the first few moments after a collision can be crucial in minimising injuries and can make a real difference to the lives of those involved, but there can be some uncertainty about what to do in these situations.

We are holding a number of Biker Down training courses this year. For dates and details please visit our website.

Find out more - Biker Down

Soldiers Off The Street

reporter  Jonathan White, Wistaston

The Hop Pole on Wistaston Road in Crewe held a fundraising event on Saturday 14th May 2016.

The event was to raise money for the charity 'Soldiers Off The Street' - http://www.soldiersoffthestreet.org/ - which supports ex-service personnel whose lives have been affected by homelessness.

The Hop Pole hosted a range of talented musical acts during the afternoon and evening which included The Start, Benbidderlee, James, Junker, Dirty Clide, Ed, The Burts, Chimps On Deathrow, Grey Skies, and Wizard Sleeve. The musicians and the sound engineer all gave their time for free.

Food for the participants and guests was kindly donated by Warburtons baker, Chatwins bakers and confectioners, Longman's family butchers, Wayne Walker quality meat sales, Macro, and The Co-operative Food (Gateway Crewe).

There was also a raffle and tombola with prizes generously donated by The Co-operative Food and the local community, which were all gratefully received.

Regular customer Val kindly agreed to have her head shaved, which raised approximately £300.

Friend and customer of the Hop Pole - Debi Kay - has agreed to grow her hair for the next 12 months and has already raised £800.

In total, £2,800 is expected to be raised through the event and associated activities.

Jackie and Russell, landlords of the Hop Hole for eight years, said, "We would like to thank everyone for their generous support. Every penny raised will help to integrate ex-service personnel back into civilian life”.

Ed - Eddie Ogle and Eddy Roberts - perform at The Hop  Pole

Monday, 16 May 2016

Cheshire Mums Cruise into Relaxation

 

Mums from across South Cheshire took a break from normal life by cruising the canal in a day’s retreat organised by Motherwell CIC.

A group of ten Mums met at Church Minshull Aqueduct Marina to board their hired barge for a day of relaxation and pampering.

Motherwell CIC work with Mums across the region to support women in their mothering journey, with a focus on health and wellbeing.

On a beautiful sunny Sunday, they cruised towards and stopped at The Barbridge Inn on Chester Road, for a bite to eat and relaxing walk. Some of the Mums then received a combination of reflexology and Indian Head Massages during the journey back to Church Minshull.

The spring event was one of many health and wellbeing days aimed at supporting Mums in taking time to concentrate on themselves.

In a daily role where their time can very often be spent on other family members and sometimes alongside work commitments, the focused health and wellbeing days allow women in similar positions to unwind together.

Co-Founder of Motherwell CIC, Angelita Woosnam, said: “Our barge day was such a success. The weather was absolutely gorgeous giving a chance for Mums in the area to get a real break from the demands of a regular day.

“We held a similar retreat day last year and are very proud to have welcomed people that day who now volunteer for Motherwell CIC, having made the full circle of giving something back to a group that has supported them.”

Cheryl Bromont from Wistaston said: “We had such a lovely day on the barge, chilling, chatting and eating!

“The time I spend with Motherwell is time for me, away from everything else. The group has encouraged me to reassess how I spend my time and bring me back down to earth and think about how I need to spend more time on ‘me’.

“The organisers at Motherwell do an amazing job! They are all so welcoming. On the barge, to start with, not everybody knew each other, but the benefit is that by the end, we have shared opinions and experiences and have a network of people to join for the next event.”

Upcoming well-being events that are open to Mums across South Cheshire are the monthly Sparkle and Shine Wellbeing Days held in both Crewe and Winsford.

The Glitter Ball is a chance for Mums to pamper themselves and dress up for a buffet meal and disco to be held at Crewe Alexandra Football Club on Saturday September 10th.

Tickets for this all-women event can be purchased at £25 per person. All money raised from The Glitter Ball and Barge Retreat Day will be put back into the Post-Natal element of Motherwell CIC.

12

If you are interested in being part of any of these events, please contact Kate Blakemore on 07734868325 or email motherwellcic@gmail.co.uk

Halloween fundraising

Reporter Jonathan White, Crewe

A Halloween fundraising event at a house in Crewe last year and contributions from Costa Coffee raised over £1,000 for the charity Marie Curie - https://www.mariecurie.org.uk/ .

 

Richard and James Stack present the cheque to Chris  Barratt

Richard and James Stack dressed up their garden on Holland Street into zones consisting of a spooky living room and a gravestone garden. Decorations included witches, skeletons, ghouls and an alleyway lined with pumpkins, along with a video screen showing Disney’s movie, 'Hocus Pocus'.

They were both able to gather additional funds through their respective workplaces. Richard works at South Cheshire College and James works at Costa Coffee on Market Street in Crewe. Staff donated generously to Richard, whilst James raised further money via the Crewe shop and six other Costa Coffee shops within the SY Coffee franchise.

The cheque presentation for £1,298.70 took place outside Costa Coffee on Market Street in mid-May this year.

Richard and James said, "We would like to thank Marie Curie, The Cat 107.9 FM community radio, South Cheshire College and Costa Coffee for their generous support. We would also like to give a big thanks to our volunteers and members of the public for supporting our event."

Chris Barratt, Chairman of the South Cheshire Fundraising Group said, "We were delighted when Richard and James offered their tremendous support to our fund-raising. At the outset, we had no idea how the funds would grow and we are, of course, staggered by the final total. At a time when Marie Curie is attempting to provide nursing care to more and more people suffering from terminal illnesses our group is extremely grateful for all the help that members of the community can give."

Marbury Merry Days’

Reporter Jonathan White, Crewe

The 37th annual ‘Marbury Merry Days’ - http://marburymerrydays.co.uk/ - two-day traditional country fair took place on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th May 2016.

The fair is organised by St. Michael & All Angels Parochial Church Council and takes places every May in the field adjacent to St. Michael & All Angels Parish Church and Marbury Big Mere, located 3 miles from Wrenbury (near Nantwich) in Cheshire.

The main attraction this year was the Extreme Mountain Bike Show featuring two riders who demonstrated their skills and bravery over a variety of equipment in the main ring.

Other attractions and events included an craft & gift fair, trade stands, vintage motor cycles, classic cars, vintage tractors, stalls and tombola, grand draw, cake stall, refreshments, ice cream, children’s activity area, Pinxton Puppets show, helicopter (Saturday), model aircraft flying display, canoeing on the Mere, dog & terrier racing, classic car & motorcycle parade, morris dancing (Saturday), GLOs Dance & Cheer Troupe (Saturday), Whitchurch Dog Display Team (Sunday) and Fun Dog Show (Sunday). Attractions inside St. Michael's & All Angels Parish Church included a children’s colouring competition, a spinning demonstration, organ music and floral decorations.

The weather stayed dry and warm and hundreds of people attended the event over the weekend.

All proceeds go towards the upkeep of the St. Michael & All Angels Parish Church in Marbury.

I have uploaded my photos to a Flickr album: https://www.flickr.com/photos/jonathanawhite/albums/72157665983338673

Next years ‘Marbury Merry Days’ will take place on Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th May 2017.

Dog & terrier racing - Staffordshire Bull Terrier Stanley  leads the raceExtreme Mountain Bike Show and St Michael & All Angels  Parish ChurchWhitchurch Dog Display Team

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Apple ID/iCloud Phishing Scam

Subject: Apple ID/iCloud Phishing Scam


This is a message sent via Neighbourhood Watch. This information has been sent on behalf of Action Fraud (National Fraud Intelligence Bureau)

(Please do not reply directly to this email, please use the Reply button at the bottom of this message)

Message sent by

Action Fraud (Action Fraud, Administrator, National)

Fraudsters are sending phishing texts and e-mail messages to members of the public, claiming to be from Apple. The messages typically state that the recipient’s iCloud or iTunes account is out of date and that they need to follow a link to avoid account suspension. Once the link has been followed, victims are prompted for personal information, such as their bank account details.
Protect Yourself:

  • Don’t open web links contained in unsolicited texts or e-mails.
  • Never provide your personal information to a third party from an unsolicited communication.
  • If you have provided personal information and you are concerned that your identity may be compromised consider Cifas Protection Registration which can be found here: https://www.cifas.org.uk/protective_registration_form.
  • If you receive what you believe to be a phishing message purporting to be from Apple, report it to reportphishing@apple.com

If you, or anyone you know, have been affected by this fraud or any other scam, report it to Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk.

A fundraising Spring Walk

Reporter  Jonathan White, Wistaston, Cheshire
A fundraising Spring Walk took place from Wybunbury, Cheshire on Saturday 7th May 2016.
This annual walk is in aid of the charity Marie Curie - http://www.mariecurie.org.uk - and was led by Chris Barratt, Chairman of the South Cheshire Fundraising Group for Marie Curie.
Julie Molyneux, Cheshire East Council Countryside Ranger Service, assisted and gave advice relating to the varied flora and fauna along the six mile circular walk.
The walk took place in gloriously sunny weather and was enjoyed by twelve participants, who gave a donation to Chris for Marie Curie at the end of the walk.
Chris Barratt, Chairman of the South Cheshire Fundraising Group for Marie Curie said, "We had a very enjoyable walk in the beautiful countryside surrounding Wybunbury and, at the same time, raised nearly £100 for the charity. Next year's walk in the Bickerton area is already being planned!"
For information relating to Cheshire East Council Countryside Ranger Service events, please phone 01625 383700 or visit http://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/leisure,_culture_and_tourism/ranger_service/ranger_events/ranger_events.aspx
Chris Barratt leads the walk






Thursday, 5 May 2016

NanoCon

Reporter Jonathan White, Crewe

'NanoCon' comic-con returned to the Nantwich Civic Hall on Bank Holiday Monday 2nd May 2016 after the success of the inaugural event last November.

The main hall featured a collectors market of stalls, selling a whole host of collectable merchandise, hand-made goods and artwork, and ample autograph/photo opportunities with stars of TV and the movies. Cars’ Lightning McQueen made a popular return and numerous superheroes were seen around the venue including Spider-Man, Captain America and Iron Man. A cosplay competition to find the best child costume and best adult costume had participants dressed as characters from The Walking Dead, Shadowhunters, Harry Potter, Batman, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Star Wars.

The Peggy Killick Suite upstairs included an informative question and answer session with 6 ft 7 in actor Spencer Wilding whose roles have included Doctor Who, Guardians of the Galaxy and who is rumoured to be playing Darth Vader in forthcoming Star Wars film, Rogue One. He was joined by actor Martin Ballantyne who has appeared in two Harry Potter movies and alongside the late Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight and five-time world champion kickboxer and actor Lee Charles who appeared with Spencer in the movie Green Street 3: Never Back Down.

The event was attended hundreds of sci-fi lovers and TV/movie fans and in an official capacity by Nantwich Mayor, Councillor Andrew Martin and Mayoress Linda Martin.

The next NanoCon will be later this year on Saturday 5th November 2016. Please visit https://www.facebook.com/NANOCON2015 for further information.

Cosplay competition (1)Cosplay competition (2)

Star Wars Day

Reporter J White

Not such a long time ago in a galaxy not so far, far away… a games shop celebrated ‘Star Wars Day’.

The ‘Star Wars Day’ event took place on Wednesday May 4th 2016 at Watchtower Games - http://www.watchtowergames.co.uk/ - at Unit 10, Brierley Business Centre on Mirion Street in Crewe.

The force was strong in the games premises and participants were encouraged to come dressed as characters from the epic space movies. They took part in the Star Wars-related board games, ‘Star Wars Armada’ and ‘Star Wars Imperial Assault’.

Role players were dressed as Jedi Knights, storm troopers, and even Darth Vader made an appearance!

The date was chosen for a pun on the catchphrase "May the Force be with you" which is changed annually to "May the Fourth be with you" and celebrated by thousands of Star Wars fans around the world.

Watchtower Games was established in 2015 and sells a wide-range of role playing games, board games, card games, and table top war games. The company focuses on Star Wars and other sci-fi and fantasy themes but we cater for historical gamers and modellers alike.

Organiser and co-owner Adam Turner said, “It's always a great time at Watchtower Games. We hold events on a daily basis and our customers always make it special and our star wars fans are certainly no exception. It was great to see everyone having so much fun today. It's days like this that make me so proud of the store and the fantastic community that we have here. We have something here for everyone at Unit 10, so why not come on down and take a look - you never know you may even bump in to Darth Vader!”

Watchtower Games - Darth Vader attempts to seduce  opponents to the dark side (1)Watchtower Games - Star Wars-themed board game

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

New leader confirms commitment to Crewe

 

New Cheshire East Council Leader Rachel Bailey has underlined her commitment to continuing the major investment that has been taking place in Crewe.

Since the purchase of the Royal Arcade last year, the town has seen further investment in two new major projects.

The £15m Crewe Lifestyle Centre opened earlier this month with an eight-lane 25m pool and a world-class fitness suite, together with an outstanding library.

Crewe Engineering and Design University Technical College, on West Street, which opens in September, will attract the best engineering talent to help meet the job demand from major employers such as Bentley Motors.

Councillor Bailey said: “The opening of the lifestyle centre is a hugely positive move in Crewe. Combining physical health and wellbeing in this way with improving education has tremendous benefits to all residents.

“We also want to see a busy, vibrant town centre and an environment that will be attractive and welcoming to shoppers and businesses.

“Crewe UTC will be a terrific asset to the town when it opens in September. There is a great demand for young engineers in Crewe and right across the Borough.

“With HS2 adding to the already very strong demand for the next generation of engineers, it is extremely important that we ensure that young people growing up in Cheshire East realise that there are fantastic career opportunities available on their doorstep.”

Massive investment is also continuing in Crewe’s road and transport systems as the Council seeks to revive the town’s status as a focal network point. The Crewe Green Link Road was opened by Transport Minister Patrick McLoughlin just before Christmas and the Manchester Bridge is due to fully re-open in the town next month.

Cllr Bailey said: “The benefits of HS2 and a strategic transport hub at Crewe will bring will be absolutely transformational for the local, regional and national economy and great news for jobs, business and growth in Cheshire East and the wider region.

“It is already raising the profile of Crewe on the national and international stage and the Council is working with a range of prospective developers and investors, who understand the prospects of Crewe and want to share in its future success.

“The people of Crewe can be in no doubt that this Council is fully committed to driving forward an ambitious scheme for redevelopment, regeneration and economic growth in the town.

“We have started on an exciting journey for Crewe and are committed to seeing it through to the end.”

Council backs plans to expand two Crewe primary schools to accommodate growing numbers

 

Cheshire East Council is to press ahead with the expansion of two primary schools in Crewe to relieve pressure on space.

Monks Coppenhall Community Primary and Hungerford Primary Academy will be able to increase their school capacity thanks to a combination of funding including Section 106 developer funding and capital funding through the Department for Education.

The programme will see an increase of 420 more primary pupil places by September 2017, providing 60 more reception class places.

The two schools, whose governors and academy trusts have put forward the proposals, will have a total number of 630 places per school.

The additional places will meet local needs created by population growth and new housing developments in the area.

A consultation process took place between the Council and the governing bodies and trusts of the two schools, together with Wistaston Academy Trust, whose proposal was not supported on this occasion.

Pupils at all three schools also took part in the consultation exercise.

Cheshire East Council has a statutory duty to ensure there are sufficient school places for children in the Borough and, in an analysis of the latest pupil forecast, the Council identified a need for more places in the Crewe area. 

Following a detailed analysis and consultation with 14 schools, the two schools in the north of the town were identified to meet the impact of approved new housing developments in this area.

Councillor Liz Durham, Cabinet member for children and families, said:  “In Cheshire East we believe in delivering the best education to give our young people the best chance of succeeding in later life.

“I wholeheartedly support these proposals to ensure that we have sufficient school places to meet local need.  These two school expansions are one part of a bigger picture.

“We are planning for the future to ensure that all children and young people in Cheshire East can access an excellent education. 

“Cheshire East has great school admission results with 95 per cent of parents getting their first choice secondary school and 89 per cent getting their first choice primary school.

“With more than 150 schools in Cheshire East, managing the demand for places is no easy task. I thank the teams who have engaged with the local community in Crewe and worked with developers over the past 12 months to get us here today. 

“We can now proceed full steam ahead, with funding secured from developers and the Department for Education.  We will of course, continue to engage with the community as the plans take shape and I look forward to seeing the new classrooms in operation next year.”

Rhian Futcher, headteacher of Hungerford Primary Academy, said: “The children made some touching consultation responses saying that they love our school and would welcome more pupils. The expansion will enhance the provision for existing children, as well as adding diversity, experience and expertise through new staff, children and families.”

Pamela Simpson, headteacher of Monks Coppenhall Community Primary, said:  “This is very good news for our outstanding school.  All the governors, staff and children are looking forward to the exciting times ahead.”

Monday, 2 May 2016

The Lost Carnival adventure begins

 

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Queen’s Park, Crewe, Cheshire 28, 29 & 30 May 4-9.30pm. £12 (under 3s free)

The secrets of The Lost Carnival have now started to be revealed at www.thelostcarnival.org.ukChoose your friends, choose your foes, as The Battle of the Carnivals begins.

Over a century after the mysterious Lost Carnival disappeared, The Lost Carnival will appear at Queen’s Park in Crewe this May. For three short nights only, families will step into a world unlike any other in this large-scale outdoor immersive theatre experience from award-winning producers Wild Rumpus (Just So Festival) and So It Is (Bury Met, Ramsbottom Festival), brought to life by theatre partner LAS Theatre.

The Battle of the Carnivals is a story beyond your wildest imagination. Meet The Birds and The Ingénues - two rival carnival families battling for supremacy.  Expect spellbinding theatre and enthralling installations, circus, music, visual trickery and sideshows.

Start listening to the fictional radio documentary podcasts by sleuth Arthur Bird at www.thelostcarnival.org.uk. Follow the story and use the podcasts and clues to uncover the carnival’s mysteries. Tell Arthur what you think on The Lost Carnival Facebook page to help influence the drama and investigation in advance and at the live event.

The Birds and the Ingénues, have been scouring the world to recruit some incredible performers who will join them as they battle to be crowned the most glorious carnival ever. It's time to pin your colours to the mast. #teamingénue or #teambird?  Browse their family albums, get costume ideas, make a choice who to support and help decide the most incredible contest in carnival history at www.thelostcarnival.org.uk.

The Birds exude mystery and swagger, dark glamour and intoxicating performance. They are out to clear their name after being accused of sabotage at the 2015 Lost Carnival in Bury. Encounter the charismatic leader of The Bird Carnival, Sergei Bird, their glittering star and aerial gymnast Anastasiya Abramovich  and the mischevious Maks Mager the magician at the event. Also performing for #teambird are incredible circus artist and trampoline acrobat Max Calaf Seve, master multi-tasker Rimski on his unique bicycle piano and La Sibylle, a curious female prophetess.

The Ingénues seem to be the heroes of the story with sequins, sparkle and colourful shine aplenty. Look out for Popo Ingénue, the Ingénue Carnival’s inspirational and adventurous leader, Strongman Ivor Pavlov and the impeccable Clare V’oyant at the event. Also performing for #teamingénue are Pif Paf Theatre with Planetary -  3 travellers on their spinning planet forged from 80 metres of steel pipe - plus unforgettable aerial tree-top performance and ground acrobatics from Whispering Woods.

Getting the entire carnival crowd going will be the infectious Voodoo Love Orchestra with their big band sounds, plus many other intriguing acts. Show your support for The Birds or The Ingénues throughout the evening (they will need your help) and witness a thrilling culmination if you dare.

David Agnew, Producer of The Lost Carnival and Director of So It Is says “We can’t wait to step into the unforgettable world of the Lost Carnival in Crewe this May and welcome audiences for an evening of adventure as two of the greatest carnivals of all time battle for your affections. The Birds and the Ingénues need your family to decide who you will support. Share with your family and friends which carnival family you think should reign supreme using #teambird #teamingenue and #thelostcarnival. We are now counting down the days to find out who will win The Battle of the Carnivals.” 

Keep your ears to the ground for more news in May … all we can reveal is get your dancing shoes ready.

Sign up online for your family to become Carnivalistas - enjoy unique experiences at each Lost Carnival event and support The Lost Carnival to do good work in the communities that it touches.

Start the adventure now. Buy tickets, choose which family you will support, follow the podcast, intriguing clues, secret messages, dressing up and reading inspiration. Sign up to the newsletter at www.thelostcarnival.org.uk and follow The Lost Carnival on Facebook and twitter #thelostcarnival.

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Whispering Woods - performing at The Lost Carnival