Highs and lows hit the headlines in town as we look back at 2015

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, MP, takes to the controls of the demolition vehicle at the site of the new train station during his visit to Ilkeston on Friday.

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, MP, takes to the controls of the demolition vehicle at the site of the new train station during his visit to Ilkeston on Friday.

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Another year has passed and still no train station or Stanton development, but 2015 hasn’t been all bad for the town with a host of new businesses opening up. Here, we take a look back at the last 12 months.

The year began with news of more delays for the train station which was due to be open in December 2013. New planning permission was granted after an altered application by Derbyshire County Council including shorter platforms, a smaller car park and a single entrance and exit to the car park.

Meanwhile, supermarket giant Morrisons opened its store in the town creating 200 jobs.

February saw the tragic death of Will Page who was killed when a metal gate barrier smashed through the windscreen of the van he was driving as he was leaving a garage at Digby Street in Ilkeston.

The building of Ilkeston’s long-awaited railway station finally got under way in March with Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin signalling the start of work and telling ‘Tiser readers he expected trains to be running within a year.

April saw the end of an aid era when a huge shipment of aid was sent from West Hallam to Honduras in central America for the last time. Around 150 volunteers helped the Children of Honduras Trust charity load much-needed goods for the 41st and final time.

In May, it was revealed that the enquiry office at Ilkeston Police Station was to close in September, meaning anyone wanting to report a crime or contact the police has to call 101 or use the Derbyshire Police website.

The landmark Co-op building was closed to the public for good when the food hall and Post Office shut in June.

Plans for 2,000 new homes at Stanton were withdrawn in July. The application for the development at the former ironworks site was pulled, with French firm SaintGobain PAM saying it felt it had no choice because the plans would be turned down.

The Bangkok bombing hit the national headlines in August and an Ilkeston schoolboy had a lucky escape having left the city just hours before a bomb exploded at a tourist hotspot - killing at least 20 people. Richard Stanley told the ‘Tiser his son Benjamin had been with his mother in the Thai capital just hours before the attack.

Dog owners were on high alert in September after German Shepherd, Ivy, was shot while on a walk in Shipley Country Park. She suffered serious leg injuries.

In October, staff at Ormiston broke the news that after a review of sixth form provisions due to a reduction in sixth form funding, the academy was forced to make the ‘difficult but necessary decision’ to close its sixth form from September 2016.

A new steering group to help produce a key planning document that will drive the development of the Stanton site was formed in November. The council wants to produce a Supplementary Planning Document for Stanton to clarify important issues and set out further policy for the site.

And December saw the news that work on the old Woolworths would soon be under way, as the Arena Church announced plans to transform the abandoned store into a community asset.