Derbyshire news in brief

• ‘Safe places’ for people with learning disabilities are set to launch in Chesterfield, Shirebrook and Ripley.

The locations will serve as a refuge for disabled people who feel scared, threatened or are in trouble while out and about. Such schemes already exist in other parts of Derbyshire but a rollout to Chesterfield, Shirebrook and Ripley is being made possible thanks to a £22,394 grant from Derbyshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Alan Charles. The project is being delivered by national charity MacIntyre, which supports children, young people and adults with a learning disability.

Alison Wright, training and development co-ordinator for MacIntyre, said: “People with a learning disability can feel daunted by a lone trip into town. This grant will enable us to quickly boost the number of safe places we have across Derbyshire and people will feel reassured that they can seek help should they ever need it.” Mr Charles said he was proud to support the scheme and added that the ‘safe places’ would protect those who feel vulnerable to crime. The locations of the ‘safe places’ will be decided after a consultation. For more information about MacIntyre, visit

• A leading Chesterfield business has become the headline sponsor of one of the town’s biggest events.

The PK Group, in Sheepbridge, has agreed a three-year deal expected to be worth £100,000 with the Chesterfield and Derbyshire Marathon operated by the Kids ‘n’ Cancer charity, one of the country’s leading organisations in supporting families and patients to access proton therapy treatment, which is not currently available in the UK. “This is fantastic news for the event and the profile of the charity,” said Mike Hyman, co-founder of Chesterfield-based Kids ‘n’ Cancer. We had a terrific launch last year and with the backing of the PK Group over the next three we can really push on and make the marathon, the half marathon and the fun run a significant date on the calendar for runners and charity fundraisers alike. We are looking forward to another great day this year and we will be announcing full details very shortly,” added Mr Hyman. To sign up for the marathon, visit

• More than 2,000 housebound patients with complicated medical conditions across Derbyshire will receive a home visit from a pharmacist during 2015. The scheme has been made possible thanks to a six-figure investment from NHS England and will run until the end of the year. John Sargeant, chairman of Community Pharmacy Derbyshire, said: “We really welcome this scheme. It means we can tap into the much underused knowledge of pharmacists who are seen by many as the people in white coats behind the counter. The pharmacist is a university educated registered health professional with five years’ training and this knowledge should be shared.”

• Rural areas of Derbyshire could benefit from grants of at least £2,500 to create more jobs. Derbyshire Economic Partnership – backed by Derbyshire County Council – has secured £1.7million from the European Union through the Government’s Rural Development Programme for England. Businesses and community groups in rural areas of Derbyshire will be able to bid for funding from June. For more information, contact Amanda Brown on 01629 538475 or 07971 314619 or email [email protected]

• Entrepreneurial Chesterfield College students have raised nearly £320 for Ashgate Hospicecare. Two teams of students took to Chesterfield market to sell products they had created. One team, LU Mugs, made cups with a Mother’s Day theme. The other team, i-wear Baby Grows, made eye-catching clothes for tots. LU Mugs won the competition, raising £230 for the charity. Holly Thompson, captain of LU Mugs, said: “It was great fun selling on the market and seeing the project through from having an idea to raising a good amount of money for Ashgate Hospicecare.”

• An organisation is in the running for a £25,000 cash boost. Langwith-based Rhubarb Farm, which provides work placements and training and volunteering opportunities for people with long-term health and social needs, hopes to clinch the funding from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust and its Enterprising Communities Programme. Jennie Street, managing director of Rhubarb Farm, said: “We are so pleased to have been shortlisted for this award.”

• A mum has lost her locks – raising £800 for the neonatal unit at Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham. Helen Ayre, of Wessington, had about nine inches of her hair cut off. It will be given to the Little Princess Trust, which provides real-hair wigs to children who have lost their own hair through cancer treatment. Medics at the medical centre tried to save her son, Jack, who sadly died in 2006.

• Ancient treasures will be showcased at Creswell Crags. The exhibition will display many important prehistoric artefacts, including the Swanscombe skull which is one of the earliest pieces of human remains to be found in Britain. The fascinating event, which will be held in the visitor centre, launched on Saturday and will run until June 7.

• A charity tombola, raffle and cake sale will raise money for a charity supporting children with special needs in Derbyshire. The fundraiser will take place at the Original Factory Shop, in Market Place, Bolsover, between 9am and 6pm on Saturday, March 28. Proceeds will aid the Tiny Tim Trust, which is based in Chesterfield.

• Scores of boats will be cruising along Chesterfield Canal next year. The Chesterfield Canal Trust has been chosen to host the Inland Waterways Association National Trailboat Festival at Staveley town basin during the 2016 spring bank holiday. Councillor Dean Collins, Derbyshire County Council’s highways chief, said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming the boating community to Derbyshire.”