Homeless figures disputed by Leicester charity


Jacob Jarvis

Official figures stating 13 people slept on the streets in Leicester last week may be too low, according to a homeless charity.

Although this figure might be correct in the city centre, there might be more people without shelter in other areas of Leicester, according to Emmaus.

Matthew Anthony Taylor, business manager of Emmaus Leicestershire & Rutland, said: “Most people sleeping rough would tend to avoid the city centre as they are afraid of being attacked.

“You’re likely to find a lot of homeless people sleeping in allotments and gardens.

“The weather situation has probably lowered the number too, as obviously people want to get off the streets. In July the number would probably be double.”

Leicester City Council provides 131 bed spaces for single people or childless couples and 60 family units in council-run accommodation for people who find themselves homeless.

However, Mr Taylor does not feel that this provides a lasting solution to the problem.

He said: “Temporary accommodation doesn’t solve the problem. It doesn’t establish people’s needs properly.

“If you’re homeless and you’re an alcoholic or a drug addict you need a purpose. You need a reason to wake up in the morning and not to pursue your habit.

“At Emmaus we provide 16 people with beds as well as giving them a job and the motivation to work.”

Action Homeless, another Leicestershire-based homeless charity, also said people sleeping rough must be provided with more long-term help.

Funding manager for Action Homeless Eilidh Kennedy, said: “Putting a roof over someone’s head is just step one.

“We then try to look at what led the person to becoming homeless and settle them so that they don’t become homeless again.”

The charity also runs a ‘no second night out’ campaign in partnership with the council where they try to make sure anyone who finds themselves sleeping rough does not have to do so for longer than one night.

To find out more about Emmaus Leicestershire and Rutland, visit

For more information on Action Homeless, visit actionhomeless.org.uk/.

Brides to be invited to plan their dream day at Leicester wedding fair


Zoë Conville

A wedding fair with a twist is returning to Leicester this Sunday, November 9.

CK Flowers is hosting their second wedding at The Guildhall, on Guildhall Lane, following the popularity of their spring event.

The wedding fair aims to offer a diverse range of glamorous gowns, crafty cakes and both vintage and contemporary wedding dresses.

Carolann Keith, from CK Flowers, said: “We have had so much positive feedback after the spring fair. There’ll be a relaxed environment and it’s more personal than just getting a card and looking at photos.

“The spring fair was really successful, it was the first time we’d done it and around 380 people attended. The idea was to organise it in a lovely space that wasn’t attached to a hotel.”

The wedding fair is free to attend and will be running from 11am until 3.30pm.

More than 25 businesses will be attending the event including The Belmont Hotel, Leicester Wedding Network and The Enchanted Bakery.

Guests will be greeted with a glass of champagne and will be entertained by a live string quartet.

Carolann added: “We have a wide variety of exhibitors and even though we have for example, two cake stalls and two photographers they’re very different. There’s a lot of variety.

“We have a magician who will be going around performing tricks for the brides and grooms. There’ll be wedding hair and make-up demonstrations too.”

Carolann is keen for both new and established businesses to attend her wedding fairs.

She said: “We do give six spaces to brand new businesses at a reduced cost. Our standard price is £125 but new businesses can pay between £50 and £85 up to three or four times.

“It’s all about the exposure. I was a new business at one point. I had to save up £200 to exhibit at a wedding fair once, so I’m very passionate about that.

“Half of the spaces for our next fair on Sunday, April 12 next year have already been filled.”

To register for the event visit ckflowers.com or for more information on how to become an exhibitor at the fair call 07816593632.

Production manager inspires University Students

Terry unveiling the plaque

Terry unveiling the plaque

Farah Suleman

British film industry guru Terry Bamber unveiled the plaque and officially opened The Leicester Media School at De Montfort University this afternoon.

The lecture theatre roared with the sound of applause as Mr Bamber was welcomed to deliver his speech on the History of British Cinema.

He kick-started the session with some words of wisdom: “I want to teach youngsters that your career offers many job opportunities.”

He directed his advice to the students in the room, who he referred to as the next generation of directors, producers, journalists and actors.

“You need that lucky break in order to get somewhere. We can all make a film on a smart phone, but we are all in the film industry to make a living. This is your livelihood.”

He warned students to have a plan B: “have a backup to your career, it won’t always go the way you want it to.”

Mr Bamber told his audience of film industry professors, producers and students of his own emergence into the industry as well as some of his family members.

He comes from a family of film industry fanatics, his father and two of his uncles all worked in television.

He said; “I remember my father having to work 14 hour days, 6 days a week. Things have changed, and a lot is still changing.”

Mr Bamber’s vast industry knowledge has come from serving numerous roles within the film industry such as being a runner, a junior artist actor and now an assistant director/production manager.

He has worked on the likes of 101 Dalmatians, Tomb Raider, several James Bond movies and a recent Bollywood production, Raa One.

His jobs have taken him to numerous locations and met many renowned names within the industry, “I have seen the sunrise in places like Rajasthan and Fiji.”

He enthused his audience of the wonderful life he has enjoyed: “Film making is a crazy crazy way of making a living.”

He has managed to make his mark within the industry and continues to inspire students as well as those looking to make it big in the British film world.

“When you capture a moment, that moment lives forever.”

Black panther spotted near Coalville

1911129_410508865768031_6022030033205038320_oEXCLUSIVE By Harry Bourne

Another sighting of the Leicestershire ‘black beast’ has emerged.

The mysterious creature was spotted in Coalville on October 25 by a security guard, according to the Rutland and Leicestershire Panther Watch.

It follows on from reports that the big cat had been seen twice in two days in early September in the nearby area of Lubenham. A man had seen the beast crossing the same road on the Sunday and Monday evening claiming: “It was definitely a panther, I recognised the tail.”

Sightings of the ‘dog-sized cat’ have been recorded in the Leicestershire countryside mainly around Market Harborough from the mid 1990s.

People have been cited as seeing the creature around Arthingworth, Kibworth and East Farndon.

Of the reports made over the years, about 80 have come from police officers. In 2009, a school girl and her mother saw “a feline creature about the size of a Labrador”.

On average a black panther would survive for 12 years in the wild, but have been known to survive for as long as 23 years.