Human fertiliser used in allotments

By Sam ColemanUnknown

Human excrement is to be recycled as fertiliser and used on the allotment sites of Belgrave Allotment Society in Leicester.

Funds have been requested from Leicester City Council for an eco toilet at one of the three sites, at the cost of £400.

A decision will be made at Rushey Mead Community Meeting tonight (Monday).

Belgrave Allotment Society is the biggest in the city, with five sites across the city, which has 490 plots and 340 members in total.

Compost toilets are used across the other Belgrave sites and the eco toilet is simply a smaller version of this.

“It isn’t just a hole in the ground,” said treasurer Steve Challis.

He added: “The toilets are not connected to water or sewage pipes, so after 18 months when it has degraded, the manure is used to fertilise the plants.

“Traditionally men would just pee on the crops to fertilise them but now there are lots of ladies and kids so other methods need to be used.”

Mr Challis himself has three plots, at a total of 1000 square yards and described his role as the treasurer as “basically a full time job.”

There has been a steady increase in allotment tenants within Leicester, with 24 societies and 42 sites across the city, making about 3000 plots in total.

The majority of allotment owners grow fresh fruit and veg or flowers, with many growing enough fruit to last them through the winter when frozen or made into jam.

The decision on whether the requested funds will be given will take place during the Rushey Mead Community Meeting tonight (Monday March 7) at 6.30pm in Highfield Rangers Sports Club, in Gleneagles Avenue.

BT and UEFA deal short-sighted says DMU expert

By Connor Watson

The broadcast deal between BT Sport and UEFA are too short-sighted, according to a media sports expert in Leicester.

The deal doesn’t look far enough ahead, says Paul Smith, Senior Lecturer of Media and Communications at De Montfort University.

BT bought the exclusive live broadcasting rights for £897m, which means they have the rights to show all 350 fixtures from both the Champions and Europa League.

Mr Smith said: “The biggest problem is that they need to look at a balance between free to view and pay to view.

“This deal is only a three year contract but if it keeps up like this then football fans will start to lose interest and in 10 to 15 years it may fall out of favour.

“Even some high profile matches have seen a drop in viewership when behind a pay wall and this will spark problems for sponsors and the money EUFA can get for them.”

BT has that as part of the deal they will show at least one match for each British team every season.

The rights will run for three years and start for the 2015/16 season. Previously they have been split between Sky Sports and ITV.

DMU’s Blood Spot Analysis Research Group call for volunteers to test ‘life saving’ finger-prick test

By Luke Cowley


A new blood test is to be tested on volunteers who have been prescribed heart disease medications, which aims to save the lives of patients.

It is hoped the test will also save the NHS millions of pounds.

The novel finger-prick test was developed by researchers at De Montfort University in Leicester, and can be carried out in clinics or at home.

The test identifies the amount of therapeutic drugs in a 5mm diameter sampling of a heart disease patient’s blood.

Dr Graham Lawson, of DMU’s Pharmacy Practice Research Group said: “In general, around 40% of patients do not take their drugs correctly.

“Our volunteers can help better that – this test will help save millions of pounds while allowing doctors to optimise treatment for their patients.”

Heart disease is very common in the UK and remains one of the biggest killers.

Cardiovascular disease, which includes circulatory and heart disease, causes more than 155,000 deaths per year in the UK.

Furthermore, it is estimated that unused or wasted medicines cost around £4bn every year.

unnamed-3Drs Sangeeta Tanna and Graham Lawson at De Montfort University conducted the research and development of this test.

The first finger-prick sessions will be carried out on Wednesday March 9 and Thursday 10.

So far, about a dozen people have volunteered for the life-saving treatment.

Dr Sangeeta Tanna said: “We’re hoping to get as many volunteers as we can get. The more the better!”




Don’t miss the Festival of Ideas.

By William Bartholomew

De Montfort University is holding the new festival of ideas event from today till next Tuesday.


The weeks events was kicked off by the event titled ‘Impact in India’ a talk by students and lecturers acting as a taster for DMU square mile for their work in the country.


Tomorrow’s event will be starting tomorrow at one o’clock in the Queens building on the De Montfort University campus and will be a lecture from Jean Williams, Professor of sports history and culture and the lecture will be on Female Swimmers and tennis players and their impact on their fields.


“If you are active in sport or have an interest in pioneering sports women, this is a lecture for you,” Says the DMU events website.


The Closing talk of the Festival of ideas will be in Hugh Aston building back on the De Montfort University campus at six o’clock and will be a talk by Rusi Jaspal, professor of psychology and sexual health and Deputy Director at the Mary Seacole Centre at De Montfort university.


The Talk will be focused titled “I want to be who I am” and will be based around the changes in the choices people have about their identity in the modern age.


If you wish to attend any of the lectures book online, you can by going to the address below.

Principle DMU lecturer weighs in on EU referendum

By Lauren Dewfall



‘Public will vote to stay in the EU at the up and coming referendum’, predicts De Montfort University politics lecturer Alistair Jones.


The referendum, which is set to take place on 23 June, will decide whether Britain should stay part of the European Union.


Mr Jones said: “At the way it stands now, I suspect the vote will be close, but ultimately people will vote yes to staying in the EU.”


The referendum comes after Prime Minister David Cameron agreed a package of changes to the UK’s membership of the EU during two days of intensive talks with state leaders in February.


Mr Jones said: “If we do vote to stay in the EU things will largely stay the same. There will be small changes but most of the public won’t notice any difference.”


The agreed package included child benefit payments for migrant workers with children overseas to be recalculated based on the cost of living in their home countries.


Mr Jones also added: “We can’t predict what the changes will be if we leave the EU either, its an open race in the sense that two thirds will vote either way and a third of voters don’t know how they will vote.”


The topic will be discussed in a panel debate with DMU academics as part of the university’s Festival of Ideas. The debate will be held in the university’s Hugh Aston building on Thursday 10 March at 1pm.