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WHAT’S ON? | St Michael’s Hospice – Run Hereford this Sunday

St Michael’s Hospice are gearing up for Run Hereford this Sunday.

Online entries for RUN Hereford 2019 have now closed. There will be limited places available to buy on the day at Hereford Livestock Centre, on a first come first served basis, from 8.30am.

5K Route – https://www.strava.com/routes/17949008

10K Route – https://www.strava.com/routes/17948716

Half Marathon Route – https://www.strava.com/routes/17953723

Facebook Event Link – https://www.facebook.com/events/772713953107887/?ti=ia

NEWS | Residents share anger after discovery of needles

Local residents have shared their anger on a local community clean up page on Facebook after a large amount of needles were discovered in a cricket pavilion in Hereford.

The needles were found in the cricket pavilion on Widemarsh Common. This area has seen an increase in anti-social behaviour in recent years.

The needles were safely disposed of after being reported.

NEWS | Electrician sentenced to a 12 month community order and ordered to pay fines for fly tipping

NEWS | Electrician sentenced to a 12 month community order and ordered to pay fines for fly tipping and other waste disposal offences.

A Hereford electrician has been fined for illegally disposing of waste in a case taken to Hereford Magistrates’ Court by Herefordshire Council’s Community Protection Team.

Mr James Dennis Smith (26) of The Bines, Clehonger was sentenced on Wednesday 24 April 2019 after pleading guilty to three charges in total; one charge of fly tipping, one charge for not being a licenced waste carrier and one charge for failing in his duty of care to transfer waste legally to an authorised person on a previous occasion. He was sentenced to a 12 month community order, 150 hours reduced to 100 hours of unpaid work, a fine of £680 and ordered to pay costs of £635.84 plus a £30 victim surcharge.

At the hearing on Tuesday 2 April, the court heard that Mr Smith responded to a Facebook request to remove what transpired to be three van loads full of house renovation waste, mainly bricks. He was paid £300 to remove the waste from the Hereford home in September 2018. A Madley landowner subsequently found the waste fly tipped in their field a few days later.

Further investigations revealed that Mr Smith had transported the waste without a waste carriers licence and that he did not have any duty of care records to show where the waste was collected from and taken to for the previous two years.

The maximum penalty for fly tipping is a £50,000 fine and/ or 5 years imprisonment.

The Community Protection Team will investigate fly tipping cases that are reported via the Herefordshire Council website or by calling 01432 261761.

For further information visit www.herefordshire.gov.uk/flytipping

FILM | Endgame is a bold and breath-taking conclusion to the first age of The Avengers says Lewis Pearce

After the jaw-dropping ending to Infinity War last April, we have all spent the last twelve months speculating and theorising on how the Avengers can bounce back from the wrath and destruction of the mighty Thanos (Josh Brolin). Excitement was already extraordinary for Infinity War, so once the film exceeded expectations, it meant that Endgame came with unprecedented levels of anticipation. This was the conclusion to an eleven year saga and is hands down the biggest cinema release of the century.

Endgame is a stunning cinematic experience. This is audacious and riveting viewing from beginning to end, never going the way you think it will. Within the first twenty minutes, everything you’re expecting from the movie will have evaporated, and the twists and turns do not stop there. It’s not perfect, as at times it can get a bit convoluted, but the action is as impressive and destructive as you hope and they put a strong focus on the characters and the mission, which really helps elevate the film.

I’m so glad Marvel altered the original title of ‘Infinity War Part 2’ as this certainly creates its own story as a new Avengers movie. The majority of the film centres on our original six heroes from 2012’s Avengers Assemble and is all the better for it. This is the culmination to their remarkable journey.

It’s difficult to even remotely talk about the plot without entering spoilers, and its best enjoyed knowing as little as possible going in. All I’d say is that the film takes up a three part structure of sorts. Part one is slow but important, sure to not please every viewer with its pacing but I found it handled the grief our heroes are suffering from very well. Part two is where the story finally kicks in and is a ton of fun, whilst the third act is the finale we all craved and desired. These final two hours are where the film picks up significantly, taking the franchise to all new heights with some of the most pleasurable and epic sequences you’re ever likely to see on the big screen.

However, it is not better than Infinity War. I thought Infinity was a better made movie and the ending was so unexpected and shocking that it will stay with me forever. Endgame is still a fantastic film, but it isn’t as tightly wielded as its predecessor. I also thought Infinity was one of Marvel’s funniest movies to date, whilst here the joke rate is far less successful. There are still plenty of hilarious moments (Rocket, Hulk and Ant-Man especially) but sometimes it feels miscalculated, particularly how they handle Thor.

Everyone has their moments in the spotlight, with Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye and Paul Rudd’s Ant-Man used especially well, but the film belongs to Robert Downey Jr’s Iron Man and Chris Evans’ Captain America. They’ve always been the big stars, stealing each film they’re in with charm and likeability, and here they are at their strongest yet. The emotion these two go through and the determination to put things right is moving and potent.

Above all else, this is a highly satisfying conclusion. This is for all the fans that have been there from the beginning, with an abundance of fan-service moments throughout which will have you throwing a fist in the air. Big credit must go to directors Anthony & Joe Russo and screenwriters Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely, who as a four have now given us Endgame, Infinity War, Civil War and The Winter Soldier, by far my top four favourite movies within the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe. They have delivered exhilarating action, characters we’re emotionally invested in and the climax to cinema’s greatest crossover event.

With the constant throwbacks and references to previous films, this is crowd-pleasing entertainment at its finest and a fitting tribute to the MCU as a whole. Newcomers may struggle, but then again who by now is new to this unbelievable and unforgettable franchise?

Verdict: Although easy to nit-pick, this is one of the most brave, ambitious and thrilling superhero movies you’re ever likely to see. Endgame is a lot to process, but it’s the near-perfect finale to this Infinity Stones Saga.
Best Moment: Captain America uses a weapon which isn’t his shield
Rating: 8.5/10

PLANNING | Plans submitted for leisure facility in Eign Gate

A planning application has been submitted to Herefordshire Council to turn the former Pound Stretcher unit in Eign Gate, Hereford, into a leisure facility that will include the following:

Laser Tag
Mini Bowling
Soft Play
Mini Golf
Arcades

The unit has been vacant since 2017 and Herefordshire Council’s planning department are believed to be backing the plans.

It is hoped that facilities like this will bring more families into the city centre.

NEWS | Hereford Debenhams to remain open

Debenhams has named 22 of the 50 stores it plans to close as part of a plan by new owners to revive the department store chain and thankfully the Hereford store looks set to remain open.

The retailer says the store closures will start next year and 1,200 staff will be affected by the first phase.

Debenhams stores expected to close in 2020:

Altrincham
Ashford
Birmingham Fort
Canterbury
Chatham
Eastbourne
Folkestone
Great Yarmouth
Guildford
Kirkcaldy
Orpington
Slough
Southport
Southsea
Staines
Stockton
Walton
Wandsworth
Welwyn Garden City
Wimbledon
Witney
Wolverhampton

NEWS | Have you paid for your fuel?

Police have signed up the first fuel station in Herefordshire to the We Don’t Buy Crime – ‘have you paid for your fuel?’ scheme.

The Esso station on The Homend (A438) in Ledbury has signed up to the scheme, that is funded by the Police Crime Commissioner (PCC) in hopes that it will help stop the number of people driving off without paying for fuel.

We’re aware the impact people who make off without paying for their fuel has on fuel stations and that while it may be the case that in some instances people simply forget and drive off unintentionally there are also occasions where we know it has been a deliberate act with those who do it often involved in wider serious and organised crime and exploitation.

Officers have successfully worked closely with fuel stations in Telford and South Shropshire to sign up to the ‘have you paid for your fuel?’ scheme to display stickers on fuel pumps and signs in key locations on the forecourt. The signs and stickers ask motorists if they have paid for their fuel and remind them they are being watched; and that the fuel station is working with police to prevent the number of people driving off without paying for their fuel.

Sgt Ram Aston said: “We are excited to launch the We Don’t Buy Crime – ‘Have you paid for your fuel?’ scheme in our first petrol station in Herefordshire. The scheme was launched in Telford nearly six months ago and we have had great success with working with the staff at fuel stations to reduce the number of people driving off without paying for fuel.

“As part of this work we are working with the staff at the Ledbury fuel station to not just help prevent the number of people making off without paying but also help staff spot the signs someone may be vulnerable or exploited and encourage them that, if they have any suspicions at all, or if a car leaves without paying for fuel, to contact police on 101.

He continued: “We have a number of other Herefordshire and Worcestershire fuel stations interested in the scheme and hope to sign these up over the next few weeks.”

Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said: “Initiatives that work to prevent crime from happening in the first place are invaluable. That is why I welcome the ‘Have you paid for your fuel?’ scheme in tackling an issue that has been plaguing fuel stations across West Mercia.

“I was pleased to support officers in displaying this signage, as well as delivering important messages about how the staff can play a key role in helping the police by being the eyes and ears within the community.”

We are also working closely with the associated business in proximity to fuel stations, such as coffee shops, snack bars, cafes and hotels. We are educating and upskilling their staff to be aware of the signs that are contributing to the thefts such as the grooming of young and vulnerable people, organised crime, human trafficking and modern slavery. This is not just part of our determined effort to disrupt theft and organised crime but also a wraparound service to reduce vulnerability and help to protect staff who are can also become victims of assault and intimidation.

It is key to West Mercia Police that we provide a high level of service to both our business and rural communities and make it clear to all criminals they will be spotted and dealt with in our force area

We Don’t Buy Crime is West Mercia Police’s response to serious acquisitive crime and the associated harm it causes all under the broader Protect campaign to tackle serious and organised crime.

Issued: 11.25am, Thursday 25 April, MC, Corp Communications

MAY FAIR | Hereford & Leominster prepare for the May Fair

The Hereford May Fair is almost 900 years old, while the Leominster Fair can be traced back to the 17th century, and both events attract thousands of residents and visitors every year.

The Hereford May Fair takes place on the first Tuesday to Thursday following the May Day bank holiday.

In 2019:

Tuesday 7 May, from 3.45pm (opening ceremony on Cathedral Close from 3.30pm)

Wednesday 8 May, from 12noon.

Thursday 9 May, from 12noon.

Dean Deakin, Chairman of the South Wales and Northern Ireland Section of The Showman’s Guild, said:

“Once again we are proud to present Hereford’s annual May Fair arriving Bank Holiday Monday 6 May when we start setting up from 6pm. A warm welcome awaits when you join us at this historic and impressive traditional fun fair. Showmen from all over the UK will provide excitement, fun and laughter from riding the heart-stopping white knuckle rides to bumper to bumper fun, not forgetting the thrills of the children and traditional rides. From rides to stalls we have it all, including some new attractions for 2019!”

The Leominster May Fair takes place on the Thursday to the Saturday before the May Day bank holiday. In 2019:

Thursday 2 May, from 4pm

Friday 3 May, from 12noon

Saturday 4 May, from 12noon

There will be a series of road closures to enable the Fairs to be held safely, and the council would like to thank drivers in advance for their patience and consideration during the period of the fair.

Any queries in relation to road closures should be directed to Herefordshire Council on 01432 261800 or please use our online form to contact us via www.herefordshire.gov.uk/contactus

Hereford

The roads to be closed to traffic will be:

Commercial Street
High Town
St. Peters Street
St. Owen Street
Broad Street (below junction of West Street and East Street)
King Street and Bridge Street

Some parking/loading/unloading areas will also be closed in Union Street and in the streets mentioned above. Closure times will be from 5pm on Monday 6 May through to 7am on Friday 10 May.

In addition, Widemarsh Street (from its junction with Blueschool/Newmarket Street) and High Street will be closed to traffic from 4.30pm to 11pm on the evenings of 7, 8 and 9 May. This will make High Street a safer pedestrian area for fair goers.

All of these streets will be accessible to emergency vehicles.

Advance warning signs will be on all routes leading towards the city centre advising of the closures.

As in previous years, diversion routes will not be signposted as, with so many possible permutations, such signing would be too confusing for motorists, especially visitors to the city.

All of the other city centre roads will operate as near normal as possible.

All of Gwynne Street will be two-way and motorists are asked to take extra care if using this route

There may also be additional congestion for traffic using St Martins Street for access onto the A49 during the period of the fair.

Herefordshire Council urges drivers to be patient and considerate on the roads during the period of the fair.

Leominster

The roads to be closed to traffic will be:

Broad Street from its junction with Burgess Street/Church Street to its junction with New Street
Corn Square
Victoria Street from its junction with High Street to Corn Square
Corn Street from its junction with High Street to Corn Square

All between 6pm approximately on Wednesday 1 May 2019 to 8am approximately on Sunday 5 May 2019.

COMMUNITY | Hereford FC pledges commitment to support county’s armed forces

Hereford Football Club became the 42nd Herefordshire organisation to sign the Armed Forces Covenant last Saturday (20 April 2019).

Together with a partnership of public, private and voluntary sector organisations and military charities, Herefordshire Council works with the armed forces to help and support current and former service personnel and their families. Through the Armed Forces Covenant, the council encourages Herefordshire businesses, community groups and individuals to pledge their commitment and support to armed forces personnel and their families, as well as reservists and veterans.

A moving ceremony took place at half time during Hereford FC’s penultimate home match of the season against AFC Telford. An Army bugle sounded the call to mark the signing of the Covenant while the Ross and Monmouth Sea Cadets formed a guard of honour on the Edgar Street pitch.

The pledges were signed by Hereford FC Community Director Andrew Graham and by County Colonel of The Rifles, Colonel Andy Taylor.

The Chairman of Herefordshire Council said:

“Herefordshire Council would like to warmly welcome Hereford FC to the ‘Covenant family’. Their pledge demonstrates that Hereford FC is committed to supporting service personnel and their families and treating them with fairness and respect.”

Hereford FC Chairman Ken Kinnersley said:

“The principles that underscore the Armed Forces Covenant are recognised and fully supported by Hereford FC. Many people have heard about the Covenant but may not know just how much great work goes on to support those men and women who are still serving – as well as our reservists, and the many who have retired or had to leave the service with life changing injuries. As Chairman of Hereford FC I am very pleased that, as Director, Andrew Graham continues his work to build our credentials as a community football club and that we have established this very important link with our armed forces.”

WHAT’S ON? | A bird’s eye view of Herefordshire’s past

The work of pioneering aerial photographer Donovan C Wilson is to be celebrated in an exhibition at Herefordshire Archive and Records Centre.

Donovan was one of Hereford’s foremost photographers from the 1950s until the 1970s but had an extra string to his bow that his competitors lacked. Building on his enthusiasm for flying gliders, and with the assistance of a former Spitfire pilot, he used a special ex-RAF camera to capture aerial views of Herefordshire and the West of England.

The resulting images are remarkably clear and detailed and open a window on the county’s recent past. Senior Archivist for Herefordshire Council, Rhys Griffith, said:

“Donovan’s images are a hauntingly vivid record of Herefordshire from above. They let us gaze on a world that is within living memory and yet changed almost beyond recognition.”

Volunteers at HARC have painstakingly digitized nearly 3,500 negatives and have selected a number of these to feature in the exhibition. They include views of Hereford railway station in the age of steam, the building of Greyfriars Bridge and a busy streetscape of Leominster in the 1950s.

The free exhibition will also include a digital touch table which will allow the images to be looked at in great detail. The exhibitions runs from 30 April until 28 June, 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday.

Keep up-to-date with all Herefordshire Archive events on Facebook @herefordshirearchives

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