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January 2009

The Cartoon History of Arnside...

Friday, January 30, 2009 - 15:18: Arnside Educational Institute will be one stop on a tour of The Cartoon History of Here in April, a live-action cartoon created by Yorkshire poet, broadcaster and comedian, Ian McMillan and several times Cartoonist of the Year, Tony Husband.

Taxi driver's licensing appeal rejected

Friday, January 30, 2009 - 14:52: Magistrates have upheld a decision by Lancaster City Council’s Licensing Regulatory Committee to revoke a taxi driver’s licence after he letting down the tyres of a policeman’s fast response vehicle.

Lancaster MEP Brands Cannabis Law Change "Ludicrous"

Thursday, January 29, 2009 - 14:08: The government's decision to upgrade cannabis to 'Class B' status has been branded as ludicrous by a Liberal Democrat MEP. North West MEP Chris Davies said the change took no account of evidence, ignored the advice of expert advisors, and risked ruining the lives of thousands of young people.

Link Road Funding Agreed but Bypass Still Not Definite

Wednesday, January 28, 2009 - 17:00: Last Updated 29 January 2009 The Government this week granted the controversial Heysham M6 Link Road “Programme Entry” status in its bid to secure funding -- but no money has been earmarked for congestion relief in Lancaster and Morecambe and the scheme may still not get the go ahead if its costs rise significantly.

Happy Birthday, Juicafe!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009 - 14:27: This weekend sees Juicafe, Lancaster’s smoothie and Milkshake cafe on Lower Damside Street, celebrate its second birthday. The cafe will be running special offers all weekend... and look out for the escaped banana in the city centre!

Campaign Group Delight at Canal Corridor Plan Inquiry

Tuesday, January 27, 2009 - 12:20: News that plans for the development of Lancaster's Canal Corridor will go to public inquiry have been met with delight by campaign group It's Our City . Folowing calls from both local people and national organisations, the Secretary of State has decided to hold a public inquiry into the Centros plans earlier this month (see news story).

Public's views sought on Conservation Areas

Tuesday, January 27, 2009 - 11:59: Brookhouse. Photo by Glyn Shentall. Used with kind permission. © All rights reserved. Lancaster City Council has begun an assessment of its 37 conservation areas, beginning with those in Bolton-le-Sands, Brookhouse, Halton, Hornby, Slyne, Warton and Wray.

It's National Rabbit Week!

Friday, January 23, 2009 - 12:10: National Rabbit Week starts tomorrow (24th) and the Hutches Crutches Pet Centre in Bolton-le-Sands has been in touch to let us know they will be running a number of free demonstrations in store promoting rabbit welfare. Take your rabbit along for free claw clipping, dietary advice and learn how to check for potential health problems (Please phone the centre on 727600 to make an appointment).

"Winter Vomiting" Advice Re-Issued

Friday, January 23, 2009 - 11:25: The Health Protection Agency (HPA) North West has repeated its plea to people with norovirus infection (winter vomiting) not to attend GP surgeries or hospital Accident and Emergency Units, to avoid the risk of passing on infection to more vulnerable patients.

Cash Boost for University of Cumbria

Friday, January 23, 2009 - 11:07: It's just been announced that Britain’s newest academic centre for learning, the University of Cumbria, has secured £26m over the next eight years, bringing hundreds of new jobs to the region. The UoC has campuses and sites in Ambleside and Lancaster (formerly St. Martins College) and elsewhere.

Get your hands on some special spuds!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009 - 16:02: We can all name our favourite potato-based feasts – hot salty chips, fluffy steaming baked spuds, or the first fresh salad ‘taters’ of the year. But how many varieties of the humble potato could you name?

Honorary Alderman Dies

Wednesday, January 21, 2009 - 15:54: Honorary Alderman Arthur Briggs MBE, who was 101, has died. Mr Briggs, was elected to represent the Bolton-le-Sands ward in 1973 and served until 2003.passed away on Monday (January 19) morning. He was 101. Over the years he served on a number of committees and was mayor in 1987/88.

Welcome Stories Reveal Lancaster's diverse community

Wednesday, January 21, 2009 - 15:42: A new web site, Welcome Stories, has just gone live, detailing stories from local people about their experiences of 'welcome and belonging' in the Lancaster and Morecambe District.

What Secrets are Our MPs Hiding?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009 - 15:03: Update: The Guardian reported today that Gordon Brown announced the withdrawal of a plan to keep details of MPs' expenses secret at Prime Minister's Question Time, following the collapse overnight of a bipartisan agreement between the prime minister and David Cameron. On the 16th May 2008, the High Court ruled that MPs' expenses must be published under the Freedom of Information Act.

Council "Wastes Money" on Centros Inquiry

Tuesday, January 20, 2009 - 22:57: Green councillors have condemned Lancaster City Council's proposal to spend £100,000 on the Centros public inquiry into the canal corridor development (see news story) at a time when the Council is trying to save £1.7 million in next year's budget.

In Review: Vivid Arts at Lancaster Library

Tuesday, January 20, 2009 - 20:55: It was very dark and very, very wet and miserable at 7pm last Saturday, 17th January 2009. A truly wretched evening. And I had no idea what to do. Should I play chess with my computer? Go to the pub and listen to some bore droning on about football/ his play station/ how things were better in the past?

Standing Up To Hatred

Tuesday, January 20, 2009 - 14:52: This year's local Holocaust Memorial Day Candle-lighting Commemoration will take place on Thursday 29th January 2009 at 6.30pm in the Peace Garden, Lancaster Town Hall. This year the theme of the event is “Stand Up To Hatred”.

Sainsbury's Expansion Proposed

Monday, January 19, 2009 - 14:35: Above: What the revamped Sainsbury's store would look like from the car park. Image courtesy Sainsbury's. (Updated 23/1/09): Sainsbury’s has begun a public consultation event to ask for views on a proposed extension to their Cable Street store in Lancaster which the supermarket chains says could bring over 20 new jobs, as well as a better range of goods.

Hornby High Plans Under Review

Monday, January 19, 2009 - 13:49: New proposals to close Hornby High School, which are being fought by locals, will be discussed by Lancaster City Council’s Overview and Scrutiny committee later this month. The renewed proposals to close the school come just a year after the County decided not to proceed with plans to close it and Skerton High, after fierce opposition from parents and staff.

Uni Gets Student Thumbs Up

Friday, January 16, 2009 - 12:19: Lancaster University has climbed 10 places in the Times Higher Education’s annual rankings of student satisfaction.

In Review: Billy Liar

Friday, January 16, 2009 - 08:33: Andrew James Buckley as Billy Fisher by Keith Waterhouse and Willis Hall directed by Simran Babra performed by University of Cumbria Final-Year Drama Students review by Jane Sunderland Based on Keith Waterhouse’s novel of 1959, Billy Liar is the story of one day in the life of Billy Fisher (Andrew James Buckley), a bright but bored and immature young clerk, who indulges in fantasies, produces...

Canal Corridor Plans Go To Public Enquiry

Wednesday, January 14, 2009 - 21:01: The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Hazel Blears has decided that Lancaster City Council’s resolution to grant planning permission for the controversial Canal Corridor North planning application, which centres on a major shopping development, will be tested at a public inquiry.

£20m funding package for Northwest tourism industry

Wednesday, January 14, 2009 - 08:01: The Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) today announced a £20.6 million funding package for the region’s tourism industry, which will ensure that the region’s five sub-regional tourist boards are in a strong position to support tourism businesses during the current economic climate.

Dukes Season Launch (Tuesday Jan. 13, 2009)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009 - 21:11: In an informal, upbeat early-evening launch, Dukes Director Joe Sumsion and new Producer Julie Brown tempted us all with snippets of what we could look forward to in Winter, Spring and Summer of 2009 - both touring and 'home grown' work.

Spring Season At The Nuffield

Tuesday, January 13, 2009 - 14:15: Following up on our Free Theatre Tickets Story, the Spring Season at the Lancaster University's Nuffield Theatre features a number of Nuffield commissions and co-productions, including exciting new project from Sonia Hughes (Weeding Cane).

Free Theatre Tickets For Young People

Tuesday, January 13, 2009 - 13:19: The Nuffield Theatre at Lancaster University and The Dukes in Lancaster have been awarded £30,000 to fund 6000 free theatre tickets for young people. The tickets for a range of live shows will be available for young people under 26 over a two year period. The scheme, which starts this February, is aimed at attracting younger audiences to the theatre.

Platform hopes to pack 'em in!

Monday, January 12, 2009 - 22:32: The new Platform Spring and Summer 2009 brochure is now available and packed with details of the exciting and varied programme of concerts and events on offer at the popular Morecambe venue over the next few months. The first show, comedian Jason Manford has already sold out and the Promenade Concert Orchestra Viennese Concert on Sunday, 25 January looks set to follow suit.

Poetry, Pose and Paddy Garrigan at Spotlight

Monday, January 12, 2009 - 14:11: Music from top Lancaster performer Paddy Garrigan will round out this month's Spotlight Club performance event at the Yorkshire House on Friday (16th January), which kicks off with its usual opne mic session to which all comers are invited to particpate on a first come, first imelighted basis.

Local MEP in Gaza

Monday, January 12, 2009 - 10:29: North West MEP Chris Davies has become the first British politician to enter the Gaza Strip since Israel began its attacks and has called for action to be taken to stop Israel’s attack on the territory.

Phone Mast Upgrade for The Priory?

Monday, January 12, 2009 - 10:11: (with thanks to Max): Lancaster City Council has received a planning application to upgrade the controversial telephone mast on the Priory on Castle Hill. The phone mast (disguised as a flagpole) saw opposition when it was first put up a few years ago. Now they want to upgrade it.

Sabbat at The Dukes

Monday, January 12, 2009 - 00:54: A new play based on the story of the Lancashire Witches is set to open at Lancaster's The Dukes this month. Sabbat, which opens on Thursday 29 January, attempts to unravel the mysteries behind one of England’s most famous legal trials and imagines the events leading up to the execution of the witches at Lancaster Castle in 1612.

In Review: Candle Light Baroque with the Lancashire Sinfonietta

Monday, January 12, 2009 - 00:40: It has been a quarter of century since the CD was unleashed onto the world and what a difference it has made. No longer does the music lover need to stand up to change the record halfway through a symphony. No longer are delicate moments disrupted by crackling and hissing.

Glazed over Gaza

Friday, January 9, 2009 - 14:57:

Cycle Path Closure Condemned

Wednesday, January 7, 2009 - 16:24: (Updated 8/1/09): The cycle path between Sylvester Street and Carr House Lane in Lancaster is to be closed for two months from 10th January to allow works to take place on the land between the path and railway. There are no plans by the contractor for a diversionary route to be put in place, which has provoked outraged from local cyclists.

Lancastrians Continue Pressure over Gaza

Wednesday, January 7, 2009 - 16:16: After 40 people gathered on Saturday to hold a silent vigil in solidarity with the people of Gaza (see news story), protestors are keeping up the pressure on MPs and government to take action over the conflict. 100s of leaflets were given out at the vigil urging people to contact our MP, Ben Wallace, to demand an immediate ceasefire and to join the boycott of Israel.

Wassailing Tradition Returns to Lancaster

Wednesday, January 7, 2009 - 10:18: The Fairfield Association will be hosting a traditional Wassailing event later this month, in the Fairfield Community Orchard at the end of Sunnyside Lane in Lancaster.

Be carbon monoxide aware and win a free alarm

Monday, January 5, 2009 - 15:58: Lancaster City Council is raising awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide with a simple-to-enter competition and a chance to win a free carbon monoxide alarm for your home. Carbon monoxide is known as the silent killer. It is invisible, tasteless and odourless and can strike people in their own homes often producing flu-like symptoms such as headaches and drowsiness.

New Bill Worry for Lancaster City Council?

Monday, January 5, 2009 - 15:38: One of the firms contracted to collect local kerbside recycling, Lancaster-based Envirofirst, is considering billing local authorities to store 3,000-4,000 tons of waste. The charges would include local councils who use the company's services.

Lancaster Light Notes: 5 January 2009

Monday, January 5, 2009 - 15:31: • An investigation is underway after five people were forced to flee a Lancashire house fire. The blaze broke out at the property on Keswick Road in Lancaster just after 12.05am on Sunday. The Lancashire Eveing Post reports five adults inside the house managed to escape but were left suffering smoke inhalation.

Lancaster Protest over Gaza Terror

Monday, January 5, 2009 - 15:14: Lancastrians gathered in Market Square on Saturday (3rd January) in an impromptu protest opposing Israeli action in Gaza. IndyMedia reports the protest was attended by local people of many different backgrounds, and united local Jews, Muslims, Christians, Socialists, anarchists, Greens, Trades Unionists, Gays, working people, students and Saturday shoppers!

Credit Crunch Hits Local Pets

Monday, January 5, 2009 - 14:28: As owners count the cost of the day-to-day upkeep and see insurance premiums and vet's bills rise, thousands of families are saying goodbye to their four-legged family members. Sky News reports that The Dog's Trust, the largest dog welfare charity in the UK, have twice as many pets on their waiting list to be rehomed than this time last year.

Travels With A Camera back at The Platform

Sunday, January 4, 2009 - 10:33: A new series of Travels with a Camera slide shows by photographer Peter Logan will start at the Platform on Monday, 12 January. All the shows are on Mondays and start at 7.00pm. As usual, Peter has chosen a varied range of destinations, and he'll soon be travelling again -- this time to Antarctica.