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Cases dealt with at Leicester Magistrates' Court

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Cases dealt with at Leicester Magistrates' Court include:

Carl Mann (43), of Brading Road, off Groby Road, Leicester, admitted failing to comply with a community requirement of a suspended sentence order made by Leicester Magistrates Court on February 21. He was ordered to carry out 21 more hours of unpaid work, making a total requirement of 121 hours.

Raj Patel (43), of Northdene Road, West Knighton, Leicester, admitted failing to comply with the requirements of a community order made by Leicester Magistrates' Court on October 26, 2011, when he attended programme sessions while intoxicated on June 18, and July 23. He was ordered to carry out 21 more hours of unpaid work, making a total requirement of 81 hours.

Abdul Aziz Ali (50), of Rowsley Avenue, Evington, Leicester, was convicted of driving while using a mobile phone in Narborough Road, Leicester, on December 5. He was fined £200, ordered to pay costs of £150 and a victim surcharge of £15.

His driving licence was endorsed with three points.

Richard Massey (26), of Pithiviers Close, Ashby, was convicted of failing to stop at a red light in High Street, Coalville, on January 4.

He was fined £150, ordered to pay costs of £75, a victim surcharge of £15. His driving licence was endorsed with three points.

Lukasz Kwiatkowski (28), of Overpark Avenue, Braunstone, Leicester, pleaded guilty to using a car with a tyre which had exposed ply or cord, in Hinckley Road, Leicester, on April 1. He was fined £170, ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £15, costs of £60, and his licence was endorsed with three points.

Robert Dominik (23), of Tetuan Road, Newfoundpool, Leicester, pleaded guilty to driving without insurance on the M1 northbound at Shepshed, on April 7.

He was fined £230, ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £15 and costs of £60. His driving licence was endorsed with six points.

Great Glen teenager Tristan's trying to win place at royal gala

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He may have supported McFly on tour but Tristan Maxted says he is still nervous about his latest musical venture.

The teenager, from Great Glen, has made it through to the regional final of a national competition to perform at a royal gala in November for the Queen's Jubilee.

He is heading to Birmingham this Sunday to perform Coldplay's Fix You – along with friend Elliot Buchanan – as part of the Diamond Kids competition.

They will be up against acts including magicians, acrobats and dancers.

Tristan, 15, said: "I'm always a bit nervous before I perform, but I think it's good to have a few nerves.

"I know the adrenalin will kick in when I get on the stage and I think we could be in with a good chance.

"We've been practising and now just have to go out there and do it."

The pair, who attend Robert Smyth Academy, in Market Harborough, submitted a recording of their duet via YouTube and have been whittled down from more than 1,000 under-18s to get this far.

The competition has been organised by children's newspaper First News and is being judged by the likes of Yvie Burnett – a voice coach to the stars on X Factor and Britain's Got Talent.

Tristan, who has a mini-recording studio at home, is no stranger to being in the limelight.

He has performed on John Barrowman's Tonight's The Night TV show with his band, My Kid Brother, with McFly on backing vocals.

It was this which led him to support the band at the Hammersmith Apollo.

He started learning music when he was six and said his family – particularly his mum, a teaching assistant who also teaches guitar – had been a big influence.

It will be the first big performance for Elliot, 15, who can be seen playing the piano in their YouTube video.

He said: "I've performed with Tristan at school concerts but this is something totally different.

"I'm definitely feeling nervous but I've got lots of my immediate family and friends coming on Sunday, so there will be plenty of people cheering us on."

Two acts will be chosen from the regional final to go to London and show off their talent to a member of the royal family at the Savoy Theatre on November 4.

The audience will also be able to vote for the regional winners.

Nicky Cox, editor of First News, said: "We had an impressive panel of experts who chose the acts to perform at Birmingham, including talent scout and choreographer Arlene Phillips and Nigel Wright, musical director for the X Factor.

"We can't wait for the live show."

Tickets to the event, which takes place at the New Alexandra Theatre, are available from its box office.

Watch the video by searching for Tristan Maxted at:

www.youtube.com

Great Glen teenager Tristan's trying to win place at royal gala

Richard III dig: What Leicester pupils think about the Greyfriars discovery

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News of the possible finding of Richard III's skeleton has spread around the world. But has it excited pupils at King Richard III Infants' School in the city? Peter Warzynski asked youngsters in year two.

Peter Warzynski: Right, what can you tell me about King Richard III?

Bewar, seven: "He died when he was fighting in Bosworth."

Naima, six: "I know that he was born in 1452. He was born on October 2."

Kamran, six: "I know he died at the Battle of Bosworth and he had a funny body and his arm was taller than the other arm and he had a muscle on top of his spine.

"Why was there a muscle on top of his spine?"

PW: "Err... I don't know."

Kamran: "They dug him up and he's at Leicester University college.

"They want a sample of his bones and they want a sample of his relative's bones, too."

Petra, six: "He lived for two years."

Arley, six: "I've seen a picture of him. He has a funny face, he has a funny hat and he had funny eyes, funny nose..."

Kya, six: "Ha ha... you're silly."

Arley: "He had funny ears and if he lived forever they would be bigger than an elephant's ears, because they would grow until he dies."

PW: "Does anyone know anything else about him? How did he die?"

Petra: "He fell off a bridge and hit his head and then died. I think he floated down the river."

Ihsan, seven: "When he was killed, they built a car park over him and forgot where he was."

Bewar: "That was very silly. Why did they do that?"

Olive, six: "I know he was the last king killed in battle – my mummy told me."

Naima: "He was the last King of York that was killed. York was the capital of England, now it's London."

PW: "Wow, I'm very impressed. Can anyone beat that?"

Kamran: "The head of the arrow shot into his back, then he fell on to a rock next to a bridge and then just died.

PW: "How do you know that, Kamran?"

Kamran: "It's simple, I just know it's true."

PW: "What does everyone think about King Richard, was he a nice man?"

Bewar: "No. Yes. I think he killed the princes."

Ihsan: "There were two boys who were going to be king and Richard killed them."

Olive: "You don't know if he killed them."

Kamran: "They could have killed themselves."

Olive: "People said he wasn't a very nice man because he killed those two boys, but you don't know if that's true – they might have just run away."

Ihsan: "I know that King Richard left them in a top, top room."

Kya: "A tower."

Ihsan: "Yes, a tower."

PW: "That's right, they were princes – Edward IV's sons."

Ihsan: "Richard killed them because he wanted to be king."

Kamran: "Edward was King Richard's brother and when he was poorly he died."

Arley: "My auntie had a heart attack."

Olive: "My granddad had yellow eyes but he got better."

PW: "Okay, let me ask you where you think the bones should be buried? Do you think they should stay in Leicester?"

Petra: "They should put them in a museum, but you need to wash them first so they're really clean."

Olive: "Yeah, we don't want them to break."

Petra: "We should keep them here (Leicester) because King Richard III school is here.

"They built the school after he died."

Kamran: "I went to a museum once in France and they had a cabinet and it had fire in it, and then on the wall they hung a giant squid. It was amazing."

PW: "Giant squid? Right, I think we'll leave it there. Thank you all very much – you've been great."

RELATED ARTICLES: Richard III dig: The King is slain, read all about it! Richard III dig: Victorian builders 'were within inches of Greyfriars skeleton' Richard III dig: King's remains 'will stay in Leicester' Should Richard III be laid to rest in Leicester? (POLL) Richard III dig: Eyes of world on Leicester as Greyfriars skeleton find revealed Skeleton with 'battle injuries' found by Richard III dig team in Leicester Human remains found in search for King Richard III at Leicester car park Medieval dig confirms site of old church 'Lost garden' unearthed in Richard III dig at Leicester car park Is King buried in Leicester car park? Dig to search for Richard III's remains

Richard III dig: What Leicester pupils think about the Greyfriars discovery

Leicester Tigers hit hard by double whammy

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Leicester Tigers have suffered a double injury blow ahead of Saturday's big Aviva Premiership showdown against champions Harlequins.

Skipper Geordan Murphy is out for a month with the knee injury he picked up against Saracens at Wembley last Saturday.

He will now be facing a race against time to be fit for the start of the club's Heineken Cup campaign against Toulouse in mid-October.

New signing Miles Benjamin is likely to miss the rest of the year with a neck injury he sustained in A League game away at Northampton a fortnight ago.

The former Worcester man was making his debut for the club during the game at Franklin's Gardens after recovering from a pre-season toe operation.

"Geordan has a bruised knee and will be (out for) three or four weeks," said Cockerill.

"That's disappointing for him but that is the game we play. We just have to get on with it.

"Unfortunately, Miles suffered a pretty nasty injury to his neck against Northampton in the A League two weeks ago which has resulted in a spinal injury.

"He will be potentially out for the three to four months.

"The injuries are disappointing and you don't want them, but that will give opportunities for someone else to come into the side and perform.

"The season will be about the squad, and the club has always been about the squad and the sum of the parts rather than the individual.

"Yet again, that will be tested earlier than we would have liked."

The timing of the injuries, with champions Harlequins arriving at Welford Road on Saturday, is hardly helpful to Cockerill.

Leicester are already missing key figures like Tom Croft, Ben Youngs and Louis Deacon to long-term injury, but Cockerill said he is confident in the depth at the club.

"We have Niall Morris and Adam Thompstone fit, and there's also Matt Smith and Dan Bowden, so we have some good options around in the backs," he said.

"Croft and Youngs are doing very well with their recovery, and Louis Deacon is close to resuming full training. Mat Tait and Ed Slater will hopefully be fit for next week, and there is an A League game on the Monday which they could play in."

Leicester Tigers hit hard by double whammy

Patients transferred as rust is found on hospital machinery at St Luke's Hospital, in Market Harborough

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Endoscopy appointments have been suspended at a new hospital unit after rust patches were found on a decontamination machine.

Rust developed on steel parts of casing surrounding the machine, which decontaminates endoscopy equipment after use at St Luke's Hospital, in Market Harborough.

So far, between 10 and 12 patients have been redirected to units in Melton, Hinckley or Loughborough hospitals while the problem is looked at.

Jo Furley, spokeswoman for the unit service, which is provided by Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Trust, said there was no risk to patients..

"Patients who have had endoscopies recently need not worry," she said. "The rust is on the external casing and not on any of the equipment we use with patients.

"This is a precautionary measure and we apologise for any inconvenience to patients while the service is temporarily out of action.

"We felt it was important to resolve the issue quickly and that has meant asking the makers of the machinery to come in and help us identify why this has happened and make good the rust problems. "Our priority is to reopen the service as quickly as possible.

"Patient safety comes first and while there is no suggestion patients have been put at risk in any way, we have a duty to ensure our equipment is of the highest possible calibre."

An endoscopy involves a tiny fibre-optic camera being inserted into a person's body through the mouth to investigate problems in their bladder, intestine and stomach.

Health campaigner Phil Knowles, from nearby East Langton, applauded the primary care trust for taking action to ensure patients were protected.

However, he added: "I have to ask questions about why a unit which has been open for such little time is already experiencing such problems.

"I have been told it could be shut for up to 11 weeks."

The NHS trust could not tell the Mercury for how long the sessions were expected to be disrupted. A spokesman said they would have a "clearer timescale" once manufacturers had investigated the problem.

The prefabricated hospital unit, which houses the endoscopy service, has been dogged with problems.

It was built in the United Arab Emirates and should have opened in Market Harborough in the summer of 2010.

But problems with design, damage en route, importing the parts for the building and construction saw original contractor Modcon UK sacked last spring.

JH Hallam Contracts took over and completed the unit, which opened in January.

It provides minor operations, scans and other tests for day patients.

Patients transferred as rust   is  found on hospital machinery at St Luke's Hospital, in Market Harborough

Leicester Tigers close to sealing a deal for back-rower Michael Noone

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Leicester Tigers are "finalising a deal" to bring former Leinster and Doncaster Knights back-rower Michael Noone to the club.

The 22-year-old impressed during an A League outing for the club against Newcastle nine days ago, and Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill said he was hopeful that Noone would stay until at least the end of the season.

If any deal is completed, he will become the third back-rower to sign for the club in as many months after Brett Deacon and Richard Thorpe joined from Gloucester and London Irish respectively.

Tigers are also hoping to sign former Bourgoin back-rower, South African Wessel Joost.

The search for new resources has come about after flankers Ben Woods and Craig Newby were forced into retirement due to injury.

Noone is 22 years old and arrives from Doncaster having learnt his trade at Leinster.

He has represented Ireland under-20s, is 6ft 3in and weighs more than 17 stones.

He can play right across the back-row but looks more blindside flanker or No.8 than openside flanker.

"Michael played for the second team last Monday and did very well," said Cockerill.

"We are finalising a contract for him for the rest of the season.

"He is a raw, young player with a lot of physicality and a real edge about him.

"There is a lot of talent that comes out of Ireland and there is not a lot of room at the table for all of those guys in their own country.

"He can play across the back-row and can carry the ball well.

"There is a glint in his eye that you get from some of the Irish boys that you meet and he is dead keen to get the opportunity and has shown some raw ability.

"We need to find the right people to replace the people that have left the club and, at this point, Noone will be a good signing for us."

If Noone puts pen to paper at Leicester, he will be the latest in a long list of Irishmen with roots near Dublin to have played for the club.

Niall Morris and Geordan Murphy are still here, while the likes of Johne Murphy, Leo Cullen, Shane Jennings and Frank Murphy were all part of the squad that blossomed under the leadership of Pat Howard.

Northampton expect their England full-back Ben Foden to be sidelined "for a number of weeks" after he was injured during last Friday's Aviva Premiership victory over Bath.

Foden will see a specialist today, but his immediate prospects of playing do not look good after damaging ankle ligaments.

Leicester Tigers close to sealing a deal for back-rower Michael Noone

Man arrested after sex attack in sandwich shop in Charles Street, Leicester

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A man has been arrested after a woman was sexually assaulted in a sandwich shop in Charles Street, Leicester. A man entered the Subway shop at 6.05am on Friday, August 17, and approached a member of staff asking to use the toilet. She asked him to leave as the shop was not open, which he did but as she went to lock the door behind him he came back in and used the bathroom. He then sexually assaulted the woman in a store room. A 22-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the incident and remains in police custody.

Athletics: Leicestershire Secondary Schools' Cross-Country League

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There were many promising performances at the first Leicestershire Secondary Schools' Cross-Country League meeting of the season, at Groby Community College.

Eleanor Hare, of Humphrey Perkins, took the honours in the year seven girls' race, coming home half-a-minute ahead of De Lisle's Hannah Seager.

Jack Douglas, of Loughborough Grammar, marked his debut in the league with victory in the year seven boys' race, ahead of Brookvale's Chris Nealon.

Last year's year seven girls champion, Francesca Green, finished second in the junior girls' race, with Caitlin Roper, of Lutterworth High School, first top the line.

The largest field for a number of years, 95, competed in the junior boys' age group, with Ben Dijkstra, of Humphrey Perkins, leading them home.

In the intermediate age group, Hannah Cox celebrated a victory on her home course, while Euan Makepeace took victory in the boys' race.

Many schools made Promising starts to their pursuit of team titles.

Loughborough Grammar will be hoping they can defend the junior boys' title, and their convincing victory on Saturday makes them the team to beat.

They also had further reason to celebrate with victory in the intermediate boys age group.

The next league race is on Saturday, October 6, at Rutland Water, 10.30am start.

Results:

Year 7 girls: 1, Eleanor Hare (Humphrey Perkins); 2, Hannah Seager (De Lisle); 3, Jasmine Stevens (De Lisle).

Year 7 girls team: 1, De Lisle; 2, Lutterworth High; 3, Manor High.

Year 7 boys: 1, Jack Douglas (Loughborough Grammar); 2, Chris Nealon (Brookvale High); 3, Ben Rouse (Loughborough Grammar).

Year 7 boys team: 1, Loughborough Grammar; 2, Brookvale High; 3, De Lisle.

Junior girls: 1, Caitlin Roper (Lutterworth High); 2, Francesca Green (Loughborough High); 3, Jordan Waine (Thomas Estley).

Junior girls: 1, Loughborough High; 2, Kibworth High; 3, Manor High.

Junior boys: 1, Ben Dijkstra (Humphrey Perkins); 2, Isaac Akers (Welland Park); 3, Pascal Bouttier-Butler (Brookvale High).

Junior boys team: 1, Loughborough Grammar; 2, Thomas Estley & Brookvale High.

Inter girls: 1, Hannah Cox (Groby); 2, Helena Keenan (Beauchamp College); 3, Beth Ellis (Robert Smyth Academy).

Inter girls team: 1, Robert Smyth Academy; 2, Lutterworth College; 3, Beauchamp College.

Inter boys: 1, Euan Makepeace (Rawlins); 2, Cameron Hart (Ratcliffe College); 3, James Owen (Lutterworth College).

Inter boys team: 1, Lutterworh College; 2, De Lisle A; 3, Beauchamp College.

Senior girls: 1, Jasmin Southam (Melton Vale Post 16 Centre); 2, April Beeby (Countesthorpe); 3, Rachel Borrows (Guthlaxton).

Senior boys: 1, Jonny Monk (Beauchamp College); 2, Matt Kirby (Wyggeston & QEI College); 3, Chris Parkes-Bowen (Beauchamp College).

Senior boys team: 1, Wyggeston & QEI College; 2, Beauchamp College; 3, Loughborough Grammar.

Body parts killing: Man in court accused of ex-boxer Shaun Cummins' murder

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The case of a 28-year-old man charged with the murder of ex-boxer Shaun Cummins, whose body parts were found in a freezer, has been adjourned.

Thomas Dunkley appeared at Leicester Crown Court yesterday via a CCTV link from the prison in Welford Road.

No plea was entered and no application for bail was made.

Victoria Rose, prosecuting, said the results of a post-mortem examination were so far inconclusive.

She said: "The body parts had to be thawed before an autopsy could take place."

Mr Cummins's body was found at his bungalow in Marriott Road, in Leicester's Saffron Lane estate, last Wednesday.

He is believed to have died sometime after Saturday, September 1.

The former boxer was left paralysed in a motorbike accident in 2004.

Dunkley was arrested in Wakefield and charged with murder on Friday.

Judge Michael Pert QC adjourned today's hearing for seven days, for a preliminary hearing and for a possible trial date to be identified.

He told Dunkley he was to remain on remand in custody in the meantime.

Leicester Mercury clarification - Wednesday, September 19, 2012

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In today's Leicester Mercury, pages 8 and 45 were incorrect. They were pages mistakenly reprinted from Tuesday's edition. Our apologies for this error which we are taking steps to ensure does not happen again.

Cycling: Lucy Garner aims to show a clean pair of heels in world title defence

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Lucy Garner turns 18 tomorrow, but thoughts of celebrating the landmark occasion are firmly on hold.

Uppermost in the Cosby girl's mind is her defence of the world junior road race title she won so dramatically in Copenhagen 12 months ago.

On Friday, the rainbow jersey goes on the line in the Netherlands against the world's best young riders.

Confidence should not be in short supply for the Node4-Giordana sprinter, who has enjoyed another stunning season which has already brought her half a dozen major titles, including European gold on the road a month ago.

Garner, a member of British Cycling's Olympic development programme, is well aware of the unpredictability of road racing.

She knows that she has to be in the form of her life to have a chance of repeating her day of Danish glory.

That form has been rock-solid in 2012, earning 13 wins to date on the road and track with in excess of 20 top-three finishes at home and abroad.

No stone has been left unturned in her preparations to tackle a hilly course which hardly suits her fast-finishing style, and last week the 'Cosby Express' stuck it out on a BC training camp in Wales.

"The last day was really tough," she said. "We only did about an hour's riding but we went up a climb that is like the hills we will face in Holland.

"We did that twice. Through the week my legs weren't feeling quite how I wanted but, on that day, I think the efforts I had been putting in for the past few weeks paid off. I felt a lot more confident going up the hill."

She has continued to put in the miles on local roads this week before leaving for Valkenburg today.

"I've been doing the same kind of efforts I have been putting in for the last few weeks, but not quite as many," she added. "It's been a case of early nights and lots of rest, too."

Tomorrow will bring a first look at the championship course and then thoughts turn to race action and the key final hours before the afternoon start.

"It is quite a short race, one of the shortest I've done this year, so I'll probably do a bit more of a warm-up because it is going to be hard straight from the off with of the type of course it is," said the national circuit race champion.

"I might even go for a spin in the morning. On the day, before a race, I still like to talk to people. Some riders like to have their earphones in all morning.

"I leave it to 15 minutes before heading for my warm-up. I always listen to Eminem's 'Lose Yourself' – that is when I get in the zone."

How the race pans out is anybody's guess, but ODP coach Matt Winston acknowledged that the five-strong GB squad face a testing day.

"We have a couple of scenarios that we will be working towards and hoping for a steadier race up the climbs, as from the top of the last hill it is 1.5km to the finish," he said.

"If Lucy manages to get over that last climb in the lead group then we will be looking to set it up for her to defend her title with a sprint for the line.

"If the race is hard with lots of attacks, it will be a race for the climbers and has the potential to finish in very small groups."

One thing is for sure – Garner will give her all in defending the jersey.

Then one way or another, there will be good cause to celebrate afterwards.

Cycling: Lucy Garner aims to show a clean pair of heels in world title defence

Thurnby Lodge Community Centre protests 'intimidating' visitors

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People using a community centre have complained to police that they feel intimidated by a continuing protest.

Groups of demonstrators have been gathering outside Thurnby Lodge Community Centre most evenings for the past two months to object to plans to let a Muslim prayer group take over a disused Scout hut.

At a police beat surgery on Monday, attended by more than 20 people, officers were asked to do something about the protesters.

Officers said they would continue to patrol outside the centre – which is also a police station – but could not end the demonstrations because the group had a right to peaceful protest.

Up to 400 people at a time have been expressing anger about proposals for the former Scout hut in Nursery Road, which is likely to become a community centre operated by Islamic charity As-Salaam Trust.

The trust currently meets at the community centre next door. The protestors want Leicester City Council, which owns the building, to use the hut as a venue for the whole community.

While police said there had been no "major policing incidents", many estate residents who have not taken sides in the Scout hut issue said they were disturbed by the long-running protests.

One member of a Friday night bingo group said numbers had dropped from about 30 to 20 since the protests began.

She said: "Our Friday night group's on the point of closing because of this. People in their 70s, 80s and 90s aren't reassured just because the police are there."

Another woman at the meeting said: "We don't want to be involved and feel pestered by them."

A 46-year-old man at the meeting said: "The protesters are there every day.

"We appreciate what the police are doing but people are frightened about what's going on and groups in the centre are not getting as many people.

"People coming in who don't want anything to do with it are being asked why they don't join in the protest."

Pc Susan Oakes told the meeting: "This has been going on for some time and there haven't been any major policing incidents. I know it's intimidating for someone who's 70 or 80 who has to go past the protest but the numbers of protesters are dwindling and the situation has been handled maturely. The police don't have any power to move them anywhere else and it's a peaceful protest.

"Some comments have been made on both sides but we don't want to be going in and arresting people when feelings are high. That's not in the best interests of the community as a whole."

Maxine Williams, the manager of the Stirrup Cup pub on the estate, who has been helping to organise the protests, said: "I wouldn't have thought it would put people off using the centre – the protesters are mostly older people and families.

"There are some younger lads who are more boisterous and are shouting at cars asking them to toot their horns to show support but I wouldn't say they were intimidating."

Thurnby Lodge Community Centre protests 'intimidating' visitors

Switch of owner at Leicester City to reap big benefits

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Leicester City chairman Aiyawatt Raksriaksorn believes changing the club's ownership, so it will be directly controlled by King Power International, will prepare the club for life in the Premier League.

City have been transferred from under the ownership of Asia Football Investments, which is run by the Raksriaksorn family, to becoming a key part of King Power International Company Limited, which is run by City chairman Vichai Raksriaksorn.

King Power International is the parent and holding company of the King Power Group of companies, ranked among the top-10 duty free operators worldwide, and has received numerous global industry awards for its operations.

The group's core businesses in Thailand include airport and airline retail shops, hotel, theatre, downtown duty free malls in Bangkok and Pattaya, and sports.

Prior to this announcement, Leicester City had been wholly owned by the Raksriaksorn Family through Asia Football Investments, a Singapore-based company.

"Bringing Leicester City under the direct ownership of King Power International, the Raksriaksorn family have underlined their long-term commitment to Leicester City, its fans and its business partners to achieving lasting, sustainable success for Leicester City," a club spokesman said.

There is no change in the board or management of the club, and the takeover has been fully approved by the Football League.

"This is all part of our plan to fund and deliver a programme of long-term, sustainable success for the football club," said Aiyawatt Raksriaksorn.

"We are delighted to bring Leicester City directly under the ownership of King Power International, where it will be established as a core part of the group's overall interests.

"The last two years have been an incredible experience and we firmly believe we have the key elements in place, both on and off the pitch, to take Leicester City back to the Premier League.

"I would like to personally thank the Leicester City fans, and the people of Leicestershire, for the amazing support they have already shown us in the early stages of our long-term vision for the club, and look forward to success."

Switch of owner at Leicester City to reap big benefits

Burnley expecting toughest of tests against Leicester City

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Burnley boss Eddie Howe is convinced Leicester City will soon fire up their promotion challenge.

Howe brings his Clarets side to the King Power Stadium tonight looking for their first away win of the season, but they have been buoyed by their impressive demolition of Peterborough on Saturday.

However, he believes his side will experience one of the sternest tests they will face all season against Nigel Pearson's men.

"I think this will be one of our toughest away games this season, so it's a good test for us," said Howe.

"Leicester have spent some money, they've got a really good group of players and they're rightly one of the favourites to go up.

"But they're on the same points as us – both teams really want the points.

"They're an open and attacking side, having watched them against Wolves.

"I think we've shown in our away games, even though we were defeated in them, we're more than capable of getting a result.

"I think the onus will be on the home side to take the game to us, but I think we've got to do the basics right. If we do that with our attacking players, I'm sure we'll score goals."

Burnley have injury concerns over talisman striker Martin Paterson.

Paterson has struggled with recurring hamstring injuries of late and suffered a grade one tear after the recent win against Bolton, forcing him to withdraw from international duty with Northern Ireland.

He made his comeback as a substitute against Brighton and Howe will be keen to make sure he starts tonight as Burnley are unbeaten in the last 14 league games that Paterson has started.

But Burnley have in-form striker Charlie Austin to call upon.

Austin has scored six goals this season in all competitions, and bagged a hat-trick against Posh in the 5-2 victory.

Burnley expecting toughest of tests against Leicester City

Nigel Pearson confident his Leicester City side will preserve home record

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Leicester City manager Nigel Pearson admits there will be added pressure on his side tonight when they face Burnley at the King Power Stadium, but he insists confidence is still high within his camp.

City entertain a Clarets side that has been lifted by their 5-2 win against Peterborough on Saturday.

City, on the other hand, suffered their third consecutive away defeat on Sunday at Wolves.

City still boast a 100 per cent league record on home soil without conceding a goal, but Pearson admitted their away form places even more importance on ensuring the King Power Stadium becomes a fortress.

However, he said City were still in confident mood ahead of the game, and the visit of Hull on Sunday.

"The players are still in good spirits," said Pearson. "We have missed a couple of opportunities, there is no doubt about that, but we are still very positive in our mindset.

"I have watched the Peterborough game and it was a very open game. They certainly played with a high tempo so we will certainly have to ensure our performance is right.

"We have two homes games in a week and we will be looking to maintain our home form.

"It is never easy when you lose away from home because it puts that added pressure on your home form.

"We have to get back to playing near our best again."

Although City paid the price for two poorly-defended set-pieces at Wolves, Pearson said there was no fundamental problem in his side's defending.

He has also backed his side to hit the goal trail soon, after creating but failing to take a number of good chances in recent games.

"I am not sure they (defensive errors) have been happening on a regular basis," he said. "That is not the case.

"Sunday's mistakes were ones I would expect us to avoid, but they have not been happening on a regular basis.

"In a couple of games in particular we have not helped ourselves, such as the Charlton and the Wolves games. Apart from that, it has not been the case in the league. But we will work on that.

"I am confident that we will start taking our chances. The frustrating thing is we haven't taken them, but we continue to cause teams a lot of problems and create a lot of chances.

"But, of course, it is about winning, and not about playing nice football and losing. We have to get back to being more efficient."

Midfielder Andy King has been ruled out with a hamstring injury, so Matty James is expected to replace him, while Anthony Knockaert and Sean St Ledger are vying for starts.

Nigel Pearson confident his Leicester City side will preserve home record

Family in shock after car crashes into home in Jacklin Drive, Rushey Mead, Leicester

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A family have described the moment a car veered off the road, ploughed through their garden wall and embedded itself in the front of their home.

The Trivedi family were yesterday surveying the damage to their home in Jacklin Drive, Rushey Mead, Leicester – and compared the sound of the impact to a grenade exploding.

A Toyota, which remained at the scene yesterday, left the road and smashed through the garden wall at noon on Saturday.

Its momentum carried it a further 20ft and it hit the house's porch, which was destroyed.

The driver was not hurt and will not face police action.

Dr Nikunj Trivedi, a homeopathist, was treating a client at the time, while his wife and son, 50-year-old Amita and Parth, 18, were closest to the impact, in the front room.

Dr Trivedi, 53, said: "We getting over the shock slowly. It has been very traumatic.

"I was concerned about my wife and my son because they were in the front room near to the spot where the car crashed.

"Fortunately, they were not hurt but they were very shocked – we all were.

"The house filled with dust and fumes.

"I was with a patient and I heard a very loud bang. It was as if the roof of the house was being torn off.

"The car had smashed through our wall and kept going until it hit the porch, which has been destroyed.

"Luckily, there were no children playing in the street at the time or any of my family or clients outside the house.

"I can't bear to think about what might have happened if anyone had got in its way.

"We are all very grateful it has not turned out to be as bad as it might have been."

He said the family was waiting to hear whether there was any significant structural damage to the house.

Parth, who is about to leave home to go to university, said: "I was in the front room having my lunch when there was a loud bang, like a grenade had exploded.

"We went upstairs to look out to see what had happened and the car was there stuck into the front of the house.

"We couldn't believe it. The porch was completely destroyed, there was a big gap in the wall and there was debris everywhere.

"Fortunately the driver wasn't injured, although she did seem to be in a state of shock."

A Leicestershire Police spokeswoman said the family and the motorist had exchanged insurance details and that no police investigation was taking place.

Family    in shock  after car crashes into home in  Jacklin Drive, Rushey Mead, Leicester

Loan deals are not a priority for Leicester City boss Nigel Pearson

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Nigel Pearson is not actively looking to bolster his Leicester City squad with loan signings.

The City boss said he was happy with the quality of his squad, despite a disappointing start to the campaign.

He is confident he has the players who can ensure a promotion challenge, although he would not completely rule out any deals.

City were yesterday linked with a loan move for Stoke striker Kenwyne Jones, who has fallen down the pecking order at the Britannia Stadium.

"I am not necessarily looking to bring anyone in," said Pearson.

"I think we have the players in the squad who can make us successful, and we have been quite fortunate with injuries also.

"But I would not rule out bringing in players if we needed to."

City received an injury boost yesterday when scans revealed that Andy King's hamstring injury, which forced him off in the first half of Sunday's 2-1 defeat to Wolves at Molineux, is not as bad as first feared.

The Wales international will definitely miss tonight's visit of Burnley (7.45) and is a major doubt for Sunday's clash against Hull at the King Power Stadium, but Pearson said King would not be out for as long as they initially thought.

Defender Zak Whitbread could also be involved in the squad for the visit of the Clarets, while midfielder Richie Wellens is on course to return in the next couple of weeks after undergoing knee surgery last season.

"The scan results (on King) were better than expected, but we'll see how he goes in the next couple of days," said Pearson.

"I think we will have him back sooner rather than later. I suppose one of the positives from Sunday was that, although we lost him to an injury, we caught it quickly enough.

"Matty James went on and did a good job so we have some good cover. Neil Danns will also come into the squad.

"You have to deal with injuries sometimes but, hopefully, it will not be a long-term one.

"Zak and Richie are coming along well and they will both be back in contention very soon. That is good news for us.

"We have been a little bit unfortunate with some of our results and Sunday's game was frustrating, but we do feel there are a lot of positives in our performances, and with players becoming available now it gives us a shot in the arm."

Loan deals are not a priority for Leicester City boss Nigel Pearson

Leicester kebab shop blast 'was like a scene from action film'

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An explosion which destroyed a kebab shop in a botched insurance job was like "something out of an action movie".

Witnesses to the blast, which demolished Kams Grill, in Narborough Road, Leicester, described how a huge ball of flame blew fragments of metal, rubble and shards of glass towards them.

Fiaz Ansari, a chef at the restaurant, was killed as he tried to burn the place down to make an insurance claim.

Leicester Crown Court was told the 41-year-old father-of-two had doused the premises in petrol, intending to set it alight and fraudulently claim up to £250,000 in insurance.

Many eyewitnesses, whose statements were read out in court yesterday, said they felt lucky to be alive. One, Callum Price, said: "There was a loud bang and flames came out the whole of the building.

"It was like something out of an action movie, with glass and debris scattered everywhere, along with bricks and rubbish. It was very shocking to be so close. I thought it was a bomb or a gas explosion."

He said the building was reduced to burning rubble.

The court heard Mr Ansari recruited employee Shahbaaz Khan and friend Mehwish Yasin, both 25, to help him. They deny Mr Ansari's manslaughter and reckless arson, on August 29 last year.

The defendants said they thought it would only be a "small fire" to justify the insurance claim.

Nathaniel Powers and his mother, Pauline Clacey – who suffered nightmares and post-traumatic shock – were five metres from the restaurant and takeaway when it blew up, at 2.22am.

Mr Powers said: "I heard what sounded like a hissing, then there was an intense bang, shaking the ground.

"The force from the blast pushed us backwards. I felt a wave of heat and two metal objects were propelled across the road."

Mrs Clacey said: "I heard a loud bang and a flash lit up the night sky.

"The ground shook and I could see glass everywhere. I was trembling in shock. I feel very lucky to be alive."

People outside the Looking Glass bar, in Braunstone Gate, suffered minor cuts from "a shower of glass".

Nearby properties were damaged. A Polish delicatessen next door lost £20,000 worth of stock.

A taxi was hit by flying debris. The driver, Zuber Hafeji, said his two women passengers were terrified by the blast.

Khan, a bread-maker at the grill, was seen fleeing from the scene of the blast by a neighbour.

He had been dropped off at the scene with Mr Ansari – with whom he shared an apartment in Abbey Park Road, Leicester – by Yasin.

Yasin, who lived in nearby Cranmer Street, waited in the car for their return.

Khan said he saw Mr Ansari pouring petrol and waited in a nearby alley for him.

Adrienne Lucking, prosecuting, said the neighbour, Daniel Smith, peered over a wall and saw a man running in the alley.

She said: "As Khan passed him he looked up, wearing some form of disguise. The eyes were wide open as if in shock."

Another neighbour, Michelle Barber, told the jury she saw a man – Khan – running along Cranmer Street, holding what appeared to be a tight roll of money. He got into a silver car, driven by Yasin, who drove off.

Mrs Lucking said Ansari was involved with previous failed business ventures and had failed to repay a £42,000 loan from 2006.

He took out £250,000 business interruption cover a few weeks before the explosion at the leased premises.

The trial continues.

Leicester kebab shop blast   'was like a scene from   action film'

Étoile Lusitana: a new type of footballing story

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In the space of 2 months I went from knowing little about Étoile Lusitana to working for them.

Étoile Lusitana are a football club which are based in Dakar, Senegal. They were officially opened in 2008 by José Mourinho, who continues to have strong links with the team. The club is owned 80% by Portuguese, and 20% by Senegalese investors. The main goal of the club is to identify and train young Senegalese talents, making it possible for these players to be transferred to top European football teams in the future.

Unlike many other clubs in the footballing world at the moment, Étoile do not have wealthy foreign owners, and have a fully self-sufficient business model. The initial start-up money was used to invest in a small team of coaches and to provide basic training facilities, whilst also allowing the management to tour Senegal in order to discover the best young footballing talent Senegal has to offer. This money was also used to provide travel to some of the top European football tournaments – something which they are keen to increase participation in. They then generate funds in order to sustain this activity by selling their youth players to top European teams, who identify them at said tournaments.

This is obviously mutually beneficial: the players get a shot at 'the big time', for many of whom this may be their best opportunity to get out of the poverty which some suffer from in Senegal; for the club, they generate funds from these sales to allow them to develop and grow.

I came into contact with Étoile through a friend of mine, whose father helps run a youth football tournament in Northern Ireland: the Milk Cup. I had been over once before to help look after an English club, but this time it was different. I was going to be helping Étoile get around and help organise meals and transportation to matches and training. I was initially paired with Étoile due to the fact that I am fluent in French, language having been a slight barrier when they attended in the past. Étoile enter the 'Premier' section of the tournament, for those players aged under 16. This was in fact their third appearance at the tournament, taking everyone by surprise in 2010 when they beat Bolton Wanderers in the final, in a tournament which included Manchester United.

In the following two tournaments, they repeated similar feats and achievements, finishing in the top 5 (of the 20 entrants) on each occasion, beating established clubs such as Athletico Del Pinto, CSKA Moscow and Porto.

Witnessing other teams and players of 'bigger' European clubs, I was struck by how humble the players from Étoile were. They knew that this was their big chance to be noticed by a scout and invited to a trial. The football they were playing was also incredibly sophisticated; following the Barcelona blueprint, Étoile would always play from the back and their game is very focused around pass and move, which was a joy to watch, and difficult to miss given their unmistakable bright pink home shirt.

They've had several successes too. Since their conception, three of their players have moved to Benfica in Portugal, two to the French league and Ibrahima Mbay was signed by Inter Milan in 2010 and now is a first team player. One of their former goalkeepers was also selected in the Senegalese 2012 Olympic squad. Of the current crop of players, following the Milk Cup and an earlier tournament in Italy, several players went on trials and could be signing for top clubs in the very near future.

This project and the warmth of the players and managers alike, led me to getting in touch with them again after the tournament, as I was very eager to get involved in their project and help in any way I could. They were delighted and I have since been working with them to develop their project, raising awareness and searching for new and exciting tournaments and opportunities which will help give their players and the club more time in the limelight to highlight what incredible work they are doing.

They have all the usual methods of communication at their disposal: Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, which would be well worth a follow in order to find out more and keep up-to-date with all the new exciting developments for both club and players.

It was a refreshing change to see how football can really make a difference and be used in this way, a mile away from the current trend for prima donna footballers on six-figure salaries, with which I, and many others, are becoming increasingly disenchanted.

Étoile Lusitana: a new type of footballing story

HELPING HANDS NEEDED FOR LOCAL FURNITURE RE-USE!

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If you want to give something back to the community and have some spare time, then volunteering is for you. The REACT furniture re-use project in Coalville needs volunteers to help in their furniture warehouse and with their furniture delivery service.

 

The REACT project based behind the Marlene Reid Centre in Coalville, is based around furniture re-use. Any funds raised from selling the re-used furniture is returned to the project to fund training for the long term unemployed. 10 million items of furniture are thrown away in the UK every year and four million children in the UK live in households that cannot afford to replace worn out or broken furniture.

 

In 2011 the REACT project reused 4336 items of furniture saving more than 100 tons from land fill.  The charity needs volunteers to help in the warehouse with the furniture that is donated by the local community. REACT provide delivery of re-used furniture for a nominal charge and for anyone in North West Leicestershire on means tested benefits, delivery is completely free. They need more volunteer delivery drivers and assistants to help get the furniture to the people who need it.

Being a volunteer offers lots of flexibility – anyone can volunteer as much or as little time as they want, work on a regular basis or be as flexible as they need to be; any time on any day of the week would be very much appreciated. Lesley, a volunteer with the MRC says, "I love knowing I am supporting The Marlene Reid Centre because I know that one day I might need to use some of the services they provide and when I volunteer I go home thinking I did something good and that makes it all really worthwhile".

 

So if you think this is the thing for you and you do have any time to spare call Lorraine Harrison on 01530 512454 or email react@mrc.uk.net to become a volunteer and get involved with MRC.

 

HELPING HANDS NEEDED FOR LOCAL FURNITURE RE-USE!

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