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Harborough District News.

News and features from Harborough District Council -  February 2024


Phil Knowles
Leader of Harborough District Council

Welcome to our latest residents' newsletter bringing you a wide range of information from across our services and covering all corners of our district. I hope you find it interesting and informative.

Councils, emergency services, NHS, Environment Agency, and other partners are continuing to work together to support communities in getting back to normal after the recent storms and unprecedented rainfall. If you or your business were affected by flooding please reach out to find the help and support available.

As a district council we recognise that we can't get out to everywhere in need during severe weather events so we are now working with our valued Parish Councils in providing localised stores of sandbags which can be accessed locally and quickly in times of need. If you would like to help out by becoming a Flood Warden please get in touch.

We have a number of consultations open at the moment and I encourage you to review these and take this opportunity to share your thoughts and feedback with us. We do analyse the results and take into consideration the constructive comments which then feed into our plans. Your views do make a difference.

We are pleased to announce the Garden Waste service is now open for subscriptions. You can sign up quickly and easily online any time of day or night!

We have been pleased to announce that Everyone Active will continue to manage Harborough Leisure Centre and Lutterworth Sports Centre for the next 15 years and this has been supported by £6 million of capital investments into the facilities. 

Finally, we welcome a number of Leicester Comedy Festival acts to the Harborough district this month with a range of stand-up and sketches for everyone to enjoy. You can buy tickets online for The Big Weekend.

Have fun and thank you for taking the time to keep informed about what is happening in the district.


Flood Recovery Support for Households and Businesses


Flood-hit householders and businesses can now apply for Government cash to help them get back on their feet after Storm Henk.

Around 650 homes were flooded across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland in early January 2024, with 70 roads closed and over 100 incidents attended by Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service.

The Government announced payments for communities affected by flooding. The support is being made available through a scheme called the Flood Recovery Framework.

If your property suffered flood damage between 2 - 12 January 2024 that grant is being administered by the local authority.

People are encouraged to apply for the funding which includes up to £500 for flooded homes, reduced Council Tax and business rates and business recovery grants.

Find flood support

Find support with Green Living Leicestershire - Home Upgrade Grant


£6.8m of grant funding to help the most inefficient and expensive to heat households in the county reduce their energy bills is available in Leicester and Leicestershire.

The Home Upgrade Grant is administered by the County Council's Warm Homes service together with YES Energy Solutions and can provide homeowners and private tenants with fully funded energy efficiency measures improving the warmth and comfort of homes, whilst also reducing energy bills, carbon emissions and levels of fuel poverty across the county.

The scheme supports households that do not have mains gas as a primary heating system such as those with electric, heating oil, LPG or solid fuel heating. Households that only use gas for cooking or secondary room heating can still apply.

Eligibility criteria includes households within priority neighbourhood areas and more widely, households with an income of £31,000 or less per year or in receipt of means tested benefits, with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of D,E,F or G (D or E in private rental). It will prioritise the most energy inefficient households and runs to end of March 2025.

Find out more

Have your say on a new Local Plan for the Harborough district


The first public consultation in the preparation of the district’s new local plan, the ‘Issues and Options’ consultation is open until 27 February 2024.

Residents can read the consultation document and submit their comments online, using the council’s dedicated local plan consultation web page.

In-person events are also taking place at locations across the district where residents have the chance to hear more about the issues and options and ask questions.  

  • 6 February: Lutterworth, Wycliffe Rooms, 3.30pm - 7.30pm

  • 7 February: Broughton Astley, Broughton Astley Village Hall, 3.30pm - 7.30pm

  • 13 February: Kibworth, Old Grammar School, Main Hall, 3.30pm - 7.30pm

Responses received during the consultation will be used to inform the next stage of preparing the new local plan. Once adopted, the new local plan will set out planning policies in the Harborough district up to 2041. It will make sure development meets strategic priorities for housing, employment, the environment, community facilities, transport and other infrastructure needed to support development.

You can find out more by clicking the button below.

Read more

Subscriptions now open


The Garden Waste collection subscription service is now open! 

As part of service improvements you no longer need an account or password to sign up to the service and recurring payments are no longer taken automatically.

To get the best value for your subscription please ensure you sign up by 22 March 2024, before the 2024/2025 collection season begins in April 2024.

You can put grass cuttings, leaves, flowers, weeds, twigs and small branches in your green wheeled bin which is collected fortnightly from the kerbside outside your home.

Read more & subscribe today!

The Big Weekend is coming! 


Leicester Comedy Festival is running from 7 - 25 February 2024.

It's one of the biggest and longest running comedy festivals in the UK, and has been supporting and nurturing emerging British talent for the past 30 years!

Being an open access festival means that anyone can pay a fee to put on an event – and the festival encourages people from all stages of their career to come and take part.

There are some fabulous events taking place across the Harborough district during The Big Weekend, with some events sold out already!

A stand-up comedy set specifically aimed at children age 6+ is coming to Harborough Market Hall on Sunday 18 February from 2pm - 3pm.

It's an hour of swear-free fun and children (and adults) are welcome to get up, walk around, heckle the acts, join in the giggles, or sit & watch quietly - whatever suits you best!

Wheelchair accessible. Please feel welcome to bring your own ear defenders for a quieter experience.

Don't miss out - bag your tickets today!

Find tickets

New vehicle to visit rural communities in Harborough district


Pictured: Cllr Phil Knowles, Leader of Harborough District Council and Rupert Matthews, Police and Crime Commissioner for Leicestershire.

The Community Safety Partnership now has a new Community Safety Vehicle based at Harborough District Council and funded by the Police and Crime Commissioner.

This welfare vehicle will be used in the coming months to increase engagement with residents across the district especially those in more rural areas. It provides a warm dry space with a table and chairs for meeting with the community.

Usage will include:

•    Local Police officers running beat surgeries in locations that don’t have a village hall.
•    Community Safety team attending antisocial behaviour hotspots to increase visibility and be available for residents to speak to us.
•    Raising awareness of seasonal campaigns and any emerging crimes
•    Attending community events
•    Use by all the Community Safety Partners – including, Police, Fire Service and Turning Point.
•    Joint events with our Health and Wellbeing Team at the Council

If you see us out and about please do come and speak to us and let us know your concerns.

If you would like us to visit your area, please email: with an outline of your issues and when would be a good time to visit.

Steady Steps and Steady Steps+ classes in Harborough district 


Steady Steps is a 24 week exercise programme designed to help individuals increase their strength and balance and therefore reduces the likelihood of falling.

The programme is a self-referral and is tailored to those who have previously fallen or worry about falling and is designed to help improve balance and stability. Delivered by Level 4 specialised Postural Stability Instructors.

The 24 week programme includes:

•    Tailored seated and standing exercises
•    Floor exercises (if appropriate)
•    Strength exercises using bands, balls, light weights and techniques for getting down and up from the floor

People are eligible for the Steady Steps programme if they are aged over 65, are at risk of falling (e.g. have a high fear or falling or poor balance) or have fallen less than three times in the past 12 months.

We currently deliver Steady Steps in Market Harborough, Lutterworth, Kibworth, and Fleckney. Other courses are planned for other areas of the district.

We also deliver Steady Steps+ classes for those who feel comfortable undertaking both standing and seated based exercise with little support. This is also a great way for those who have completed the 24 week Steady Steps class to continue their progression and stay active.

All Steady Steps+ sessions are £4.50 per session. They also take place in the Steady Steps venues with the addition of Hallaton.

For more information please contact:

Find information about older adult activites

Have your say on the district’s important heritage assets


People are being invited to have their say on two conservation and heritage consultations that have launched.

Residents can review the Conservation Area Appraisal for Great Easton and the addition of nine new entries to the Local List of Non-Designated Heritage Assets.

The two consultations launched on 16 January and run until 27 February 2024.

The Conservation Area Appraisal for Great Easton defines and records the facts that give Great Easton conservation area its special interest and justify its designation. This will help improve understanding of the historic importance of the area, how this has shaped its unique character and how it can guide its future development. The appraisal will help inform the consideration of relevant planning applications, conservation area and listed building consents as appropriate.

The consultation on the Local List of Non-Designated Heritage Assets outlines nine new nominations to add to the Local List. Local heritage lists play an essential role in building and reinforcing a sense of local character and distinctiveness in the historic environment, as part of the wider range of designation. They enable the significance of any building or site on the list to be better taken into account in planning applications affecting the building or site or its setting. A local heritage list can therefore support the Local Plan and inform a proactive strategy for the historic environment.

The nine proposed additions to add to the Local List of Non-Designated Heritage Assets are as follows:

  • Auburn Place, Bitteswell Road, Lutterworth

  • Engineering Factory, Fairfield Road, Market Harborough

  • Former Barclays Bank, High Street, Market Harborough

  • Former HSBC, High Street, Market Harborough

  • Former NatWest, St Mary’s Road, Market Harborough

  • Former Station, Kibworth Beauchamp

  • Husbands Bosworth Airfield, Sibbertoft Road, Husbands Bosworth

  • Tollgate Cottage, Lutterworth Road, Bitteswell

  • Village Shop, Springbank, Medbourne

Find out more

JUST campaign supports women in finding fun activities


The JUST campaign is a physical activity initiative aimed at empowering South Leicestershire women to be more active! 

Over 130 ladies in Harborough district have already signed up in the first couple of weeks! There are a huge range of exercise and activities classes available online or in person which you can try for FREE!

The programme is running until 17 March 2024 and it's a fabulous chance to find an activity you love, make some new friends, and have fun!

Check out the timetable and sign up now!

Find out more

Review our budget proposals 


Residents and businesses are encouraged to have their say on the council’s draft budget proposals for 2024/25. 

We have set out our priorities to make savings and continue to deliver effective public services.  

Like many local authorities and households across the country, we are facing unprecedented financial challenges. These challenges include the continued uncertainty over government funding, inflation increases and the rise in living costs for residents. 

The proposed draft budget is balanced over the medium term, the council predicts a £7.2 million budget gap from 2025/26 and it is anticipated that the authority will need to use its reserves in later years.  

There is no increase in green waste charges or car parking fees for residents.  

Resources have been allocated for the production of the new Local Plan 2020-2041 to ensure Harborough district is protected from speculative development.

A budget of £1.1 million has been allocated to produce the Local Plan but to ensure it is ready to meet the government’s June 2025 deadline an additional estimated budget of £1.9 million will be required.  

The consultation will close at 9am on 12 February 2024.

Read more and take the survey

Job support for all this February


Whatever stage you are at in your career, you can find support at our Job Club and Job Fairs.

These free events offer visitors a chance to speak directly with professional career advisers who can help you create a CV, give you tips on how to prepare for an interview, help you find local job vacancies and more!

Also find free training courses to help you upskill into your next role, and apprenticeship positions across Harborough district which allow you to earn and learn at the same time.

We have a range of employers who attend these events and are actively looking for new staff. You could even have an informal interview and find a new job there and then! 

You don't need an appointment and everyone is welcome, whether you are already employed, are unemployed, are considering a return to work, or just checking out what's on offer.

Lutterworth Job Fair: Friday 2 February 2024: between 1pm - 3pm.

Harborough Job Fair: Wednesday 7 February 2024: 12pm - 2:30pm with a quiet time from 2pm - 2:30pm for people who prefer a quieter environment.

If you're a local employer looking for fresh talent for your workforce get in touch today and register your interest at these, or future events in Harborough district! Email:

Find out more

Arriva and Stagecoach work together to boost bus use locally

Bus companies Arriva and Stagecoach have joined forces to introduce a simpler, more coordinated, more reliable timetable for buses between Leicester and Market Harborough.

Tickets will be accepted by either operator on two routes, which means passengers won’t have to worry about which service comes first.

The Arriva X3 bus and the Stagecoach X7 bus routes will accept tickets from either operator.
Routes X3 and X7 will now give a bus up to every 30 minutes between Market Harborough and Leicester Monday to Saturday, with X7 continuing to provide an hourly service on Sundays.

Passengers will able to use any valid Arriva or Stagecoach adult or child/young person day, week, or 4-week ticket for travel on either the Stagecoach route X7 or the Arriva X3.

Student Term and Academic Year products will continue to be valid onboard the buses of the operator issuing the ticket.

What treasures are hidden in your attic? 

Harborough Innovation Centre

Help to Grow Management Programme


Registration for the Help to Grow Management programme with Leicester Castle Business School is now open.

Offering a mix of online and in-person sessions with the in-person sessions taking place at the Harborough Innovation Centre.

The fully funded Help to Grow: Management Course will help you boost the performance and resilience of your business. Designed and delivered by entrepreneurs and industry experts at world-class business schools, this leadership course will provide time away from the challenges of running a business to invest in your leadership, and to learn how to take your business to the next level.

Find out more

Dates for your diary

Find more events across Harborough district
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