Local & National News on all things community and/or out doors (and some in)
2 March 2012

Parks & Open Spaces

Share your stories about Delapre Abbey
Northampton Borough Council
Two history students from the University of Northampton are keen to hear people's stories and memories of Delapre Abbey for an oral history project they are undertaking as part of their studies.

The pair will be at Delapre Abbey tearooms on Sunday 4 March from 11am to 2pm and would like to hear fr... more

Northampton Borough Council to debate future of gasometers
Paul Varnsverry
Liberal Democrats at Northampton Borough Council have submitted a motion which will see all 45 councillors provided with an opportunity to debate and decide on future uses for Northampton’s historic gasometers.

The town’s two remaining gasometers are scheduled to be demolished and the site cleared... more

Historic remains of Northampton’s former castle may feature in regeneration project
Chronicle & Echo
Plans to create a ‘heritage gateway’ using the remains of Northampton Castle have attracted a high level of support.

The Chronicle & Echo reported last month that a business proposal was being put together that would include bringing to the surface some of the underground remains of the 12th centu... more

New Umbrella Fair Webs site
Umbrella Fair Organisation
All you need to know about this years Umbrella Fair on the Racecourse - 18 & 19 August. Donate - Perform - Get Involved... more
Time to enter park art exhibition
Northampton Borough Council
Entry forms for the ever-popular open-air art exhibition at Abington Park are now available from Northampton Museum and Art Gallery.... more
GreenSTAT is a visitor survey system, which records users’ views of their local parks and green spaces.
For the first time, public opinion of parks and green spaces will be available, either for the local green space service or individual parks.

This information will enable those who are responsible for parks and green space provision to manage their parks and green spaces in line with what the loca... more

England’s coastal path is no quick fix
Walk Magazine
I want to see more people accessing and walking in our wonderful countryside. I know the value such activity has for our health, for our economy and for the spiritual uplift and well-being that come from being out in our countryside. I have walked parts of the South West Coast Path and Norfolk Coast Path and marvelled at the spectacular landscape and wonderful wildlife. As the Opposition Spokesman... more


Designs on a greener future for communities
The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) has partnered with national charity Groundwork to celebrate both charities’ work to get local communities gardening and involve more people in transforming neighbourhoods.

In a unique effort to mobilise people from all walks of life to get involved in making their streets, parks and neighbourhoods greener places to live, the RHS and Groundwork have devised a... more

Giving communities more power to make a change for the better
Northampton Borough Council
Next week there will be a chance to find out how communities from across our town can get organised and form recognised councils and committees to represent their area.

Two events have been set up by Northampton Borough Council to help explain how areas of the town could set up a community or pari... more

Would you benefit from having a parish or community council in your local area?
Northampton Borough Council
From 6 February 2012 we are launching a review of how local communities are governed. We will be asking non-parished communities whether they would like to see a parish or community council in their area. Based on responses from local people we will help to set up new Parish or Community Councils wh... more
The Edible Bus Stop
A simple yet creative gardening project called The Edible Bus Stop transforms a public transit area that used to be full of trash, and brings and entire community together.... more


How can we transform neighbourhoods in Britain together?
It has been over a year since our last GeoVation challenge and we are delighted to launch our new challenge ‘How can we transform neighbourhoods in Britain together?’. Following the successful format of the previous challenges we are calling for innovative ideas to help people help each other in the... more

Health & Sport

Why health professionals should be involved in supporting patients in exercise and physical activity as part of their clinical interventions
Excercise Works
The UK, USA, Asia, Australia and many developing countries are facing the biggest public health epidemic of non communicable diseases (NCDs) the world has ever seen. Non communicable diseases such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity will kill over 36 million people each year, and will cos... more
Obesity in England: why is it increasing?
The Guardian
26.2% of the male population in England to said to be clinically obese according to the lastest Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet report published today by the National Health Service (NHS).

That's over 26% of men in England whose body mass index is greater than 30 kg/m2, and an increase of 13 p... more

Rural cyclists beware
The Guardian
Given the dangers of cycling in cities (Lower speed limit in towns would increase cycling – poll, 20 February), one might think cycling in the countryside would be safer. But recent research commissioned by the Department for Transport states almost half of cycling fatalities in the UK occur on rural roads, where the risk of being killed while cycling is up to 10 times higher than the UK average.<... more

Children & Young People

Make children the cornerstone of urban decision-making, urges Unicef
The Guardian
Unicef has urged governments to put children at the heart of urban planning – and to improve services for all – since the majority of the world's children will grow up in towns or cities rather than in rural areas.

In its report, The State of the World's Children 2012: Children in an Urban World, ... more

Forest play aids nursery children's mediation skills
A trial of outdoor learning in the woods designed to promote independent play in nursery children led to them learning to solve disputes themselves.

The Pontycymer Nursery youngsters were part of a test project in Bridgend.

The children were encouraged to play together and with materials such as... more


Nene Valley gains Nature Improvement Area Award
Natural England
Also see Chronicle & Echo Report

The Nene Valley NIA, covering an area of 41,350 hectares in the centre of England, contains a fragmented ecological network of statutory and non-statutory sites, including the Upper Nene Valley Gravel Pits SPA/SSSI (40% of units in favourable condition).

There are many pressures on the NIA, locate... more

The Chron investigates what happens to your food waste after it is collected?
Chronicle & Echo
We all know that we should recycle, but recycling food waste in particular can make a huge difference to our planet.

Food waste accounts for around 30 per cent of the refuse sent to landfill in Northamptonshire.

Now that the bins are in place in Northampton and Daventry, all the food that goes i... more

Oliver Letwin: environmental rules could be 'great deal simpler'
The Guardian
Minister leading the 'red tape challenge' acknowledges for the first time his desire to cut thousands of pages of green regulations and guidance, but claims every single regulation is necessary

Cabinet office minister Oliver Letwin revealed on Tuesday that he thinks environmental guidance and regulation could be a "great deal simpler". That fits pretty closely with ... more

That’s one way to mow the lawns! Farmer allows his 'urban' sheep to graze among flats and houses
Mail on Line
Mowing the lawn is never the most enjoyable of tasks.

But luckily for these residents, they have access to a constant supply of volunteers dedicated to the cause.

Happily munching away, these shee... more

Can British wildlife cope with drought?
Wildlife will suffer if the current drought conditions in the southern and eastern parts of England continue into spring, some experts fear. So which animals and plants will be hit hardest if there is no significant rainfall in the next two months?

"It's this time of year when the weather starts w... more


The Queens's Diamond Jubilee Volunteering Award
The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Volunteering Award for 2012 is an award to recognise national volunteer organisations, as well as organisations which have been and will continue to work with volunteers as part of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Award is recognition by the Queen of the organisation... more

Training & Courses

Training Days for Community Involvement in Heritage
Civic Voice
To support local heritage groups in strengthening their local communities, English Heritage has funded a checklist full of advice and information which local groups can work through to come up with solutions to help them increase and diversify membership in their local area.

As a way of introducin... more

Disability Talent Identification Workshop
Northampton Borough Council
Northamptonshire Football Association and Northamptonshire Sport in partnership with The FA areoffering a free CPD workshop to all those who could be involved in the identification of talentedfootballers.

The workshop is part of The FA commitment to enhancing knowledge of disability football withi... more