Ilkeston - Controversy At The Rec
w/e 10 November 2002

In Tatters

Hoardings publicising the redevelopment of Ilkeston's Rutland Recreation Ground were severely damaged by the recent gales and the signs lay in tatters near the main entrance. Many local people are opposed to the scheme and hope that the Council's plans will suffer a similar fate. (The flames of the controversy over the development were further fuelled when it was revealed that the hoarding had been erected without planning permission).

But work on the project has begun and many areas of the Rec are fenced off. A temporary compound on the far left of this picture houses a myriad of earth moving machinery and other equipment. The Pavilion is surrounded by a barricade to prevent access as is the terracing which is being ripped up. On the right the fencing that surrounded the tennis courts has been removed as preliminary work is carried out ready for an indoor tennis centre.
Now You See It, ...

I was surprised to find that the cricket scoreboard had been demolished too. The small picture insert was taken in April 2002 and a larger version and another view of the Rec may be seen in "This Sporting Life".
Raised Pathway

A raised pathway separates the cricket ground - once the venue for First Class County Cricket matches - from the lower rec which housed football pitches and in the not too distant past, a six hole pitch and putt golf course. A sign on the fence prohibited children from playing!

Where soccer once was played on lush green grass, now only mud, wheel tracks and a temporary makeshift road can be seen. The green swathe beyond the mud is the nine hole Pewit Municipal Golf Course. The controversial development plans include an eighteen hole course.

The tower in the distance is for training purposes at the town's Fire Station. I am not sure whether the branch in the foreground is a result of the gales or whether it was a victim of the heavy machinery working nearby but it is a sad sight lying as it does near the West End Drive entrance.

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