Business Leaders Cheer Fresh Lease Of Life For Old Building By Creating New Offices

A new business centre at a prestigious building in Ilkeston town centre was officially opened on Friday 18th September.
 
Erewash Business Centre, set in The Old Police Station, Wharncliffe Road, was opened by local MP Maggie Throup.
 
The building lay empty and vandalised after police moved out until the former Ilkeston Co-op refurbished it. Enterprise agency Erewash Partnership took over the management in 2004 and used it as headquarters until last year when the building was closed and the Partnership moved to Bridge House on Derby Road, Long Eaton.
 
The building was bought from the Co-op by the Lester Point Pension Trust, which is solely-owned by Simon Woods, chairman of Erewash Partnership and managing director of education equipment manufacturer TecQuipment of Long Eaton.
 
The Trust paid for refurbishment of the1906 red brick building. This included new windows on three sides, replacement boiler and heating system, energy-efficient LED lighting, new carpets and redecoration. 
 
As well as 16 high quality offices – ranging from 15 – 35 sq metres – there is a conference room and large car park. Offices will be let on flexible terms through the Partnership which will use one for start-up advice and mentoring.  
 
Maggie told guests that earlier in the week she had spoken to Business Secretary Savid Jahid about the scheme and he sent his congratulations.
 
When she heard the premises were going to close she was concerned there would be another derelict building in Ilkeston.  Then along came a knight in shining armour in the form of Simon Woods.
 
“It's fantastic that somebody like Simon has put his trust and confidence in the people of Erewash and the businesses of Erewash,” she said. “We need more like Simon.”
 
He replied that he was passionate about the area, local businesses and the Partnership. “I'm proud that I am able to put something back into the local community,” he said.
 
Ian Viles, chief executive of the Partnership, which in the last financial year helped 97 businesses set up, said the centre would add to the variety of facilities for firms in the town and would complement its own business centre, Castledine House on Heanor Road.
 
“It is the first time we have worked with the private sector on such a scheme and such a prestigious building,” he added.
 
Other business leaders praised the initiative. Chris Hobson, East Midlands Chamber policy director, said it was great to see an important building have a new lease of life.
 
“We know that business growth and the economy in Erewash is strong and as a result there's demand for this type of premises. I look forward to seeing businesses come and use this space and add to the vibrancy of the Ilkeston business community and town centre.
 
Dawn Whiteley, chief executive of the National Enterprise Network, a membership body for organisations supporting enterprise, said the Partnership had done great work over 21 years.
 
“This centre is a beautiful facility and will be a beacon for enterprise in the town,” she said.
 

Enterprise Agency Erewash Partnership Will Hold Its Third Annual Heritage And Classic Vehicle Show On Sunday 16 August Bringing The Sights And Sounds From Yesteryear To Ilkeston's Historic Market Place

So far more than 150 vehicles have been registered from across the Midlands to enter the free show, which has been a popular draw for family members of all ages over the last two years.
 
But the Partnership is expecting the number of entrants to reach around 200 to make it bigger than its predecessors.
 
As with last year the oldest exhibit booked in so far is a 1924 Model T Ford. Others include a 1958 Alvis Saladin armoured car and a 1954 Shelvoke & Drewry lorry formerly used by Mansfield Corporation which will make its first public outing in six years.
Nottingham Area Bus Society will bring old Barton, Trent and Midland General buses that ran services from the Market Place in years gone by.
 
Colson Transport, of Heanor, will show off a lorry which competes in truck races.
 
Ilkeston car dealership Ron Brooks Toyota is again awarding the prize for car of the show.
 
New sponsors include Trentbarton (prize for best bus) Larklands Body and Paint (best paint), and Long Eaton educational equipment manufacturer TecQuipment giving a perpetual trophy they have designed and made for the best historic sports car.
 
Ilkeston MOT firm G & VA Pitts sponsor the prize for best commercial vehicle, and the Mayor's Award will be presented by the Deputy Mayor of Erewash, Councillor Abey Stevenson.
 
Other main sponsors and supporters include Erewash Borough Council and insurance firm Routen Chaplin.
 
While older folk may be wallowing in nostalgia there will be attractions for youngsters. Following their success last year characters from Star Wars in the form of the 501st Legion UK Garrison will be taking the area by storm, the Bat-Pod will be on display and even mystery man The UKG Stig will put in an appearance.
 
There will a craft fair, models and retro gifts. Ilkeston Brass will be performing, and local station Erewash Sound also entertaining. There will be refreshments in the form of barbecue, a hog roast, and a cakes from Staceys Bakery.
 
Partnership chief executive Ian Viles: “We have had great support for sponsors and others and intend to put on a super show with something for all the family to enjoy.”
 
The event takes place between 10am-4pm.
 
Roads around the Market Place will be closed to normal traffic as vehicles start to arrive. The closures will be in place from 5.30am to 6.30pm on Sunday 16 August.

Scheme To Combat Crime In Town Centres Is Boosted By Digital Upgrade To Equipment

A scheme to help retailers in Ilkeston and Long Eaton combat crime and keep their customers safe has been upgraded using the latest digital technology.

Enterprise agency Erewash Partnership set up the innovative Radio Link scheme in 1999.  Now it has been upgraded from analogue to state-of-the-art digital equipment to make the town centres more secure.

The scheme involves shops, the police, town centre wardens and is linked to closed circuit television. Regular meetings are held with those taking part to share information and experiences.

It has a two-fold purpose. Participating businesses can alert others to any criminal or anti-social activity in an area and hopefully prevent more trouble. It can also be used to alert traders about lost children so that they can be quickly re-united with parents/carers to ease a stressful situation.

Partnership member Zycomm  Electronics of Ripley has supplied the latest digital two-way radios (walkie-talkies) and new digital base stations in each town.

Managing director Ruth Nixon said “We have worked closely with the Partnership to ensure that the new equipment has been programmed and configured with its requirements and to provide coverage in both Long Eaton and Ilkeston.”

The new equipment provides better reception to enhance radio network security and give better reception in all areas. The radios have special features, including text messaging, emergency button, and caller display.

The new equipment cost many thousands of pounds and has been shared between the Partnership for Long Eaton and the borough council for Ilkeston.

Councillor Chris Corbett, leader of Erewash Borough Council, said the authority was delighted to fund the improvements to the scheme in Ilkeston.

“We feel that the system makes a real difference to the viability of the shops in the town centre by helping fight crime and anti-social behaviour,” he said. “We want people to feel safe so that they are willing to shop locally.”

Partnership chief executive Ian Viles said: “We know from the feedback from both retailers and police just how effective this scheme has been over the years in combating crime.

“We are grateful for the technical input from Zycomm and for the continued support from the council.”