Category: Northampton & Earls Barton

100 Nature Activities for Families Launched in Time for Summer

After months of Covid-19 lockdown, followed by the arrival of the summer holidays, you might be feeling like you are running out of ideas for how to keep your family entertained. To help you out, the environmental charity PECT has launched more than 100 downloadable nature activities and resources to entertain, inspire and educate children.

 100 nature activities for families launched in time for summer

“We wanted to help support families during this unprecedented time by offering free activities that can be done at home, using only simple everyday household or recycled items,” explains PECT’s Operations Director Stuart Dawks. “Our Nature’s School resources aim to bring families together to enjoy, appreciate and protect their time together, while discovering more about the natural environment.”


Families can pick and choose the activities they want to take part in. The idea is that if children learn more about the natural wonders of the world we live in, then they will develop a desire to help protect and preserve it too. Our local environment is sometimes an unexplored resource, often overlooked for its wealth of possibilities, and not always appreciated or looked after as it should be.

100 nature activities for families launched in time for summer

The 100 activities and resources, which are available online, include everything from nature identification sheets, instructions for creating a Bee Hotel, tips on how to grow from food waste, a guide to creating a Leaf Lantern, and many more!


Nature’s School is not just for families – schools, charities and other organisations can also benefit from these resources and use them to create new ways of delivering the curriculum and learning objectives.

100 nature activities for families launched in time for summer

PECT has a vision for creating sustainable places, where the natural environment is protected, communities are involved in their area, health and wellbeing is improved, and resource use doesn’t compromise the needs of others, now and into the future.


To access the resources, simply visit or find PECT on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter by searching for ‘Sustainable PECT’.



Talking with The Henry Allen Trust

The Henry Allen Trust are doing an interview sent to us by Helen at Nene Local Magazine who is seeing how local businesses and charities have been fairing during the pandemic ….

Nene Local – So tell us what you do at the Henry Allen Trust?

The Henry Allen Trust is a registered charity who provide support to children and families battling childhood cancer. Henry was just 2 when he was diagnosed with Stage 4 High Risk MYCN amplified Neuroblastoma. Henry’s last wish was to help other children and their families battling childhood cancer. Team Henry support children and their families battling childhood cancer by providing information and advice, emotional and financial support and granting treats and wishes, creating magical memories. Team Henry support hospitals and hospices by providing care packs and support along with working alongside hospitals to improve their policies and procedures in paediatric oncology.

the henry allen trust

Dawn Allen and Deborah Stockwell-Riddy out delivering isolation packages plus the BWN Christmas networking event.

Nene Local – Has your charity survived the pandemic?

Team Henry and our supporters have been amazing throughout the pandemic, ensuring The Henry Allen Trust survives and can continue our vital work.

Nene Local – Have you changed what you do – tell us how?

Due to the Pandemic, Team Henry have had to cancel fundraising events, including our biggest annual event, THAT Family Fun Day. We have an amazing team of runners, who have had their races cancelled and because of this, sponsorship has also declined. We have had to find new ways to fundraise and have taken our fundraising virtually. We have set up virtual challenges, including Just Do It June, to celebrate Henry’s 11th birthday we asked our supporters to complete a different challenge every day or if they were feeling adventurous, Run, Walk or cycle 111 miles throughout June. They could do this to spread awareness or for sponsorship. The uptake was amazing, and we loved seeing everyone’s videos and pictures of them completing the challenges. There has also been a virtual quiz night held for us and a virtual combatathon too. Both events raised much needed funds for the trust with the Quiz raising almost £800 and the combatathon raising over £715.

Nene Local – Have you learned any new skills during lockdown?

Throughout the pandemic we have taken all our meetings online, mostly via Zoom which has been a new learning experience for us, like many others have too. Team Henry have also had to alter the way we deliver to hospitals and all our families ensuring we are following and adhering to all government guidance.

Nene local – Are these going to benefit your charity?

Learning new skills is always a benefit and we can use these skills to help improve our working practices going forward.

Nene Local – Have you learned any personal lessons in lockdown?

That no matter what challenges we face, we can adapt and continue supporting families, hospitals and hospices.

Nene Local – What changes (if any?) will you be making to your life or charity as things get back to normal?

Anything that will ensure Henry’s legacy continues and Team Henry can continue supporting families and children battling childhood cancer as well as the hospitals and hospices.

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Lockdown Sees New Business Launch in Northamptonshire

A Northamptonshire businesswoman has used the COVID-19 lockdown to rethink, reshape and launch a new business.


Tamara Holland, based in Mawsley, Northamptonshire, has officially launched her new marketing business Dot & Stripe last month.

Dot & Stripe - Tamara Holland

Dot & Stripe – Tamara Holland

Tamara said: “I had been doing some freelance marketing work for a leading children’s franchise for some time, which I could easily fit around the family. But I knew that I needed to take my knowledge and passion for helping small businesses with their marketing further.


“I did ask myself ‘Who sets up a business in a global pandemic and lockdown?’ But being based at home has allowed me the time to focus on getting my business set up. Online networking has allowed me to easily connect with other businesses and this has inspired me to be creative and launch my company.”


Tamara, who has juggled her lockdown start-up with family life, added: “Now more than ever, small businesses need to filter what marketing will bring them the most value, and most of the time they just need to understand the basic but essential aspects to help grow their business and that’s where I can help.”


Dot & Stripe provides straightforward and jargon-free marketing support to start-ups and small businesses, through online (and eventually face to face) workshops on several marketing topics such as content marketing such as blogging and social media and marketing tools like Canva, email marketing, and social media scheduling.


Tamara has also joined fellow Northamptonshire company Pilkington Communications, which specialises in PR and social media.


Jessica Pilkington, Director of Pilkington Communications, said: “Tamara’s creative and dedicated approach is a perfect fit with all we do – supporting and promoting businesses, not just during the coronavirus crisis but also as we move forward, post lockdown, to enable  businesses throughout the UK to strive to survive, expand and thrive. We are delighted to welcome her on board and also wish her well with her own business launch.”

Enterprise Centre East Northants Celebrates Major Milestone

Construction on the flagship Enterprise Centre East Northants has been underway since summer 2019, and this week East Northamptonshire Council celebrated a major milestone – officially receiving the keys to the centre.


Leader of East Northamptonshire Council, Cllr Steven North and Chairman of the Enterprise Centre Working Party, Cllr Glenvil Greenwood-Smith, marked this moment at the site on Monday (8 June) with representatives from ASHE construction, SEMLEP and BizSpace attending a handover the key ceremony.


Leader of East Northamptonshire Council, Cllr Steven North, said:

“We have been working with our partners to deliver this flagship project since last summer, and we are delighted to see the hard work of all those involved come to fruition as we celebrate this major milestone.


“We would like to thank ASHE for all their hard work as we officially receive the keys for the buildings and transfer the day to day operation to BizSpace.


“We look forward to opening the centre this summer, and working with local enterprises over the coming  years to not only succeed in their fields, but to also lead and drive economic recovery across our district.”


Business Development Director at ASHE Construction, Andrew Morris, said: “We are delighted to have been involved in the realisation of this fantastic project. Now, more than ever, flexible workspaces such as these will offer start ups and established companies environments in which they can grow and work differently.

ECEN key handover 3

“Whilst new businesses might see this as a first step into an office/workshop environment, more established businesses may see these premises as an opportunity to maximise their new ways of flexible working between employees homes and an established office set up. Whoever they maybe these buildings offer the very best accommodation in which they can nurture and grow their operations.”


Lucinda Young, SEMLEP Local Growth Fund Manager said “Enterprise Centre East Northants will undoubtedly have an important role in helping local businesses to grasp opportunities as we respond to current economic challenges.


“Having worked so closely to the team delivering the Centre, I’m really proud to be here today celebrating this important milestone with them.”


Khalid Aziz, Marketing Director at BizSpace, said: “SMEs make an important contribution to the economy of East Northamptonshire and the Enterprise Centre marks a significant step for the area. These uncertain times emphasise the need for flexible workspace and this centre can accommodate the region’s SMEs and entrepreneurs as they sculpt their businesses to a new working culture, in a safe and secure space.”


ASHE construction has been constructing the offices and studios, completing the project on the 2 June whilst continuing to work safely throughout the pandemic following government guidance and carrying out regular risk assessments. ENC is working with Total Project Integration (TPI) and R H Partnership Architects to deliver the £8 million project. ENC, which is funding the project, received £1.695 million support from the SEMLEP’s Local Growth Fund in order to deliver the centre as part of Enterprising East Northants, the council’s economic plan for sustainable job creation and business growth.


To register your interest or for more information please call: 0808 1787 060 or visit:

ECEN key handover 3