Students storm Highcross in bid for bargains

A happy student

A happy student

Thousands of students flocked to one of Leicester’s biggest shopping centres for a student ‘lock-in’ this week.

Students from across the county packed into the Highcross shopping centre on Tuesday evening to make the most of a number of discount deals.

Many of the centre’s hundred plus stores were offering savings of 20 and 30 per cent among other deals. There were also a number of DJs performing live to entertain the large crowds.

Jordan Kent, a third year Accounting and Business Management student, said: “It was a new experience for me so I was intrigued to see what it had to offer. I was surprised by how busy it was but that just added to the atmosphere, which I enjoyed.

“Maybe if I was to go again I would plan ahead what I wanted to buy. The discounts were a bit hit and miss, with some shops offering good discounts and others offering no better than a normal day. I was very disappointed that some shops, especially Next, were closed.”

Rebecca Robson, Vice President Welfare and Community at De Montfort Students’ Union, said: “I went in my first year [as a student] but didn’t really get anything out of it. I went back this year with a clear idea of what I was going to get.

“I went primarily for the Superdry discount of 20 per cent because they never give a discount – lots of stores were offering more discount than usual but Topshop didn’t take part at all. I didn’t even bother going in – why waste time when I can shop there anytime for the same price?”

Others were also disappointed with some of the discounts on offer. Nick Rees, a first year Media Production student, said: “To summarise my experience in one word is ‘underwhelmed’. The discounts were no bigger than their standard NUS discount so it was a huge waste of time.

“I did buy an Xbox game, which was £44.99. With my ‘discount’, it came to £41.99. I saved a grand total of £3!”

Jonathan Whitney 

Famous Continental market returns to Leicester


Leicester’s traditional continental market will be open for business this weekend in the city centre.

The market, which is an annual event, is being held on Gallowtree Gate, Humberstone Gate and East Gates, surrounding the clock tower as it continues to grow year-on-year in the city.

Rasmus Perrin, who owns his own traditional Greek meat stall, said: “We all really enjoy coming to Leicester every year but that is the same for wherever we go.”

All of the stalls, which vary between foods and delicacies from different countries, to flower stalls and antique stalls, will travel from city to city during the weeks and months before the busy Christmas period.

Mr Perrin continued: “It is very busy for us but very enjoyable, also. You meet a lot of nice people and that is always good to see.”

Mr Perrin originates from Thessaloniki, Greece, but immigrated to England more than eight years ago to sell his meat produce at continental markets such as this one.

There are stalls available selling a variety of foods from many countries from all over the world, including Poland, Germany, Italy, Russia and Jamaica.

But the market is not just about food. There are stalls selling traditional Dutch flowers, antiques from Russia which include the famous Russian dolls, and a traditional German watering hole selling sizeable tankards of German beer.

This is the fourth time the continental market has visited Leicester, and is set to become a bi-annual event from 2015.

The market will be open on Saturday from 9am until 6pm and on Sunday from 10am until 4pm before moving onto Bolton next week.

Sam Smith

Leicester holds Charity football match


Clare Atkinson

A number of Celebrities and former Leicester City players took part in a charity football match in Leicester on Sunday, October 12.

Actor Danny Dyer and comedian Jack Whitehall captained the teams at the King Power Stadium to raise funds for the Foxes foundation.

Jack Glenny, who travelled from London for the event, said: “It was a thoroughly enjoyable day and it was for a good cause.”

Mr Glenny was there to support his friend, former Big Brother winner, Sam Evans, who was playing alongside Hollywood stars as well as soap actors, musicians and comedians.

Around 5,000 supporters turned up to see the stars in action and were rewarded with an entertaining match that finished 5-5.

Mr Glenny added: “My favourite part of the day was seeing Jack Whitehall because I have a weird crush on him.

“Also seeing Ian Beale in the flesh was something rather special.”

X Factor winner Sam Bailey managed to get on the score sheet in front of her home crowd while Danny Dyer, TOWIE’s Dan Osbourne and MC Harvey, who scored a hat trick, also put their names in the record books.

Actor Stephen Graham got the final goal late on in the game to get a draw for his team and ensure that everyone went home happy.

The money raised from the event will be split between charities supported by the Foxes Foundation.

They include Leicester Hospitals Charity, Leicestershire Autistic Society, Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research, Leicester & Rutland Branch and the Rainbows Hospice for Children & Young People.

Leicester libraries get back online week campaign


People across Leicester are being urged to be more computer-friendly and use the internet as Get Online Week sees Leicestershire libraries offer a helping hand.

A national Get Online Week began on Monday, October 13 and events have been scheduled across Leicestershire with local libraries getting behind the scheme.

Librarian Jerry Daniel, of Leicester Central Library, said: “It’s about getting people to come in and use our free computers.

“We want to give them a starter and try to boost our figures.”

The campaign is now in its eighth year and aims to help over 50,000 people give the internet a go as well as focusing on the benefits of getting online, including keeping in touch, finding work, saving money, staying healthy, following hobbies and having fun.

Julie Thomas, a senior library assistant at New Parks Library Leicester, said: “We run ‘Go Online’ and it provides basic online information for people who have never used a computer before.

“The sessions are aimed to encourage people to get online, including information on using the mouse and keyboard, as well as internet safety.”

Yesterday saw Beaumont Leys Library show Leicestershire residents how to scan pictures, documents and also attach them to an email.

Today, Leicester Central Library are teaching the basics of how to use Microsoft Word and New Parks Library is hosting a free drop-in session aimed at the needs of the individual and will cover many areas.

The official week finishes on Sunday, October 19 and there are many events that beginners can attend across Leicestershire.

For more information on what Leicester libraries have to offer visit

Sam Morris

Spiritual bazaar visits Leicester


Chanelle Laoudi

A spiritual bazaar has opened up people’s minds in the heart of Leicester this week.

The annual award-winning continental market brings together traders from all over the world to Gallowtree Gate and Humberstone Gate in the centre of town.

Shoppers can enjoy this spectacle from Wednesday, October 15 to Sunday, October 19.

One browser, Miss Mollie Turner, a student at De Montfort University, said: “I think it’s a good thing that shops like this open people’s minds up a bit to other ideas.

“They’re handy when you need a bit of something for reassurance or a little bit of something to lift your mate’s spirits a bit.

“I will forever support independent businesses because they don’t always get the publicity they need, so I think it’s a great idea.”

The owner of the spiritual stall, Mr Ronald Olarte, said: “I travel all around Europe, Germany, Austria, Italy, everywhere.”

The self-proclaimed ‘china man’ sells an array of dreamcatchers, jewellery and healing crystals: apache tears; jade; garnet; turquoise; rose quartz; tiger eye; amethyst and moon stones.

Handing out flyers detailing information on each of the crystals’ powers, one reads ‘amethyst is an extremely powerful and protective stone, with a high spiritual vibration’.

Another says, the ‘apache tears (obsidian) are excellent for absorbing negative energy and for protecting the aura. It grounds and cleanses the Earth’s chakra’.

Passing on a free crystal to anyone visiting his stall, he adds: “I started this business over 20 years ago”.

The stall will form part of the continental market, which will be open from 9am to 5.30pm on Wednesday, October 15 to Saturday, October 18 and from 10am to 5pm on Sunday, October 19.

For more information on Mr Olarte or his products visit