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No Appeal over Judicial Review

Sefton Council has taken the difficult decision not to appeal the Judicial Review decision relating to the A5036 Port Access Road.

Unfortunately last month Sefton Council lost its legal fight to order Highways England (HE) to re-consult on proposals to build a dual carriageway through Rimrose Valley Country Park which in their view would improve access to the Port of Liverpool.

Mr Justice Kerr ruled that he would not order Highways England to re-consult and include the tunnel option for the proposed Port Access route through Rimrose Valley.

A letter has just been sent to Highways England informing them Sefton Council will not make an appeal about this particular decision and the Council will now only follow its statutory duties on the matter and will not co-operate further with HE.

Cllr Ian Maher, Labour leader at Sefton Council, said: “This was a difficult decision for us as we still firmly believe Highways England should engage with our communities on a tunnel option.

“We also believe Highways England should try much harder to find a better solution which would not have such a detrimental impact on the health and wellbeing of our residents.

“Not only will their plans deprive us of a much loved urban green space, it will also by Highways England’s own admission have a negative impact on vehicle pollution which goes against the Government’s own agenda to improve air quality.

“One of our major considerations for not appealing was the statement in court by Highways England’s legal Counsel that we would be able to object later in the process by advocating for the tunnel as a less environmentally damaging alternative.

“So, while we will not appeal this particular judgement, we will be watching carefully the actions of Highways England throughout the statutory consultation stage to ensure that it is conducted in such a way that all affected communities can have their say on Highways England’s disastrous plan. In no way is it a closed matter and we will continue to fight for the benefit of our communities.

“If the process moves through to the Examination Phase we will be making appropriate representations on behalf of our communities regarding the significant adverse impacts the current preferred option has on everyone who lives and works in the area.

“We will continue to comply with our statutory responsibilities in this process and will always look after and advocate for the interests of our residents. However, we will not otherwise co-operate with Highways England in a scheme which, in our view, will leave all our communities much worse off.”

 

Getting ready for your new trains – Next phases of Merseyrail network platform upgrades announced

Information about the next three phases of platform upgrades to prepare the Merseyrail network for the arrival of new, state of the art trains in 2020 is now available to help people plan their journeys.

Network Rail is just days away from completing works for Phase 2 at Bank Hall station on the Southport line.

Upgrades involve altering the height and width of station platforms and realigning track. This is vital to ensure the new trains’ sliding step can meet the platform edge, providing better access for all passengers.

Phases

There are 11 phases of work scheduled until June 2019. During each phase, some stations will be temporarily closed however high quality, rail replacement buses will keep passengers moving.

A summary of the next three phases are below and passengers are advised that further information including timetables is available at Merseyrail stations and on the Merseyrail website.

Phase 3: Wirral loop line: James St, Moorfields, Lime St, Liverpool Central stations, from 27 December 2018 – 2 January 2019

Commercial buses and the Mersey Ferries may be a good cross-river option.

Phase 4: Kirkby line: Kirkby, Fazakerley and Rice Lane stations, from 5 – 13 January.

Phase 5: Hunts Cross line: Brunswick to Hunts Cross, starting with one day of work on 19 January, then 21 -26 January 2019.

Sandhills to Hunts Cross (including Liverpool Central), from 20 and 27 January 2019

More information about Phases 6 to 11 including rail replacement bus services and alternative travel options will be available a few weeks before the start of each phase.

Key advice:

  • Check before you travel, especially during the Christmas period as timetables may change.
  • Plan ahead – use journey planners.
  • Leave more time for your journey.
  • Consider avoiding travelling at peak times where possible.
  • Consider your options –including commercial buses and the Mersey Ferries.

These vital works need to happen to ensure that station platforms across the Merseyrail network are compatible with the new trains and their ground breaking, sliding step technology that will provide unassisted access for all.

This will mean that wheelchair users can board the train without a ramp and passengers with prams and cycles can get on and off the train with ease. This technology represents a pioneering approach for the UK.

Merseytravel, Merseyrail and Network Rail have worked collaboratively on this project and significant planning work has been carried out to minimise the time needed to complete these important works and reduce disruption to passengers.

Businesses and organisations are advised to think about what they may need to put in place to support staff and customers.

Check out the animation to find out more about the works and the new trains.

Free bus services on Christmas Day

Merseytravel is once again offering free bus services on Christmas Day, to help people make hospital visits or to spend time with their friends and family.

Buses will operate a limited service from around 12 noon until around 6pm on routes serving hospitals across Merseyside.

Councillor Liam Robinson, Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Transport Portfolio Holder, said: “We are one of a very few areas that operate services on Christmas Day, which can be a lifeline for people who would otherwise not be able to see their loved ones in hospital on this very special day.

“Although these services are provided primarily for hospital visiting, anyone who can use them to visit friends and family along the routes is very welcome to do so.”

Christmas Day Services are listed below:

10A between Queen Square Bus Station, Page Moss, Whiston Hospital and St Helens Bus Station.

12A between Queen Square Bus Station, Stockbridge Village and Huyton Bus Station.

21A between Liverpool ONE Bus Station, Walton Vale, Black Bull and Kirkby Bus Station and Kirkby Tower Hill.

44 Between Formby Duke Street, Southport Hospital Town Lane and Crossens Rufford Road.

62A between Crosby Islington, Bootle The Strand Stanley Road and Aintree University Hospital.

102 Between Broadgreen Hospital, Alder Hey Hospital, Croxteth Park Stand Farm and Aintree University Hospital.

201 between Queen Square Bus Station, Royal Liverpool Hospital and Speke Morrisons Bus Facility.

410 between New Brighton Kings Parade, Woodside Bus Station and Clatterbridge Hospital.

H1 between Mill Park Clifton Avenue, Arrowe Park Hospital and New Brighton Kings Parade

St Helens Bus Station.

H2/3 between Whiston Hospital and St Helens Bus Station.

No other bus services will operate. No trains will operate. Mersey Ferries will not operate.

For further information check Merseytravel Christmas & New Year Transport Guide, www.merseytravel.gov.uk/travel-updates or ring Customer Services on 0151 330 1000.

Call for views about same day healthcare in south Sefton

NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is inviting people to give their views and experiences about using and choosing different urgent care services when they need immediate or same day health advice or treatment.

The commissioner, which plans and buys the majority of healthcare for south Sefton residents, is encouraging people to get involved as part of a review of ‘urgent care’ services.

Urgent care includes services for physical and mental health problems ranging from pharmacies, GP practices, GP out of hours services, the NHS 111 phone line and website, walk-in centres, accident and emergency (A&E) departments and 999.

Between mid-December 2018 and January 2019 the CCG is asking people to complete a questionnaire about these services for adults, children and young people. The information gathered will be used to help develop proposals for how urgent care could look in the future.

Dr Craig Gillespie, GP and acting chair for NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “From our conversations with residents over the past few years we know that some find the current range of urgent care services difficult to choose from and confusing. Sometimes when people don’t know which service to choose they use accident and emergency, which puts extra pressure on hospitals, and means that people might have to wait longer for their treatment.

“This review is the first step towards making sure that our services really meet local needs, so we are encouraging as many people and NHS staff as possible to get involved and tell us what it’s like to use or work in these services and how they could be better and easier to choose from in the future.”

The review will also consider how new NHS national guidelines for urgent care services and the introduction of ‘Urgent Treatment Centres’ might be put into place in south Sefton.

NHS South Sefton CCG is carrying out its review with partners across north Merseyside as patients often use urgent care services across this wider area. So, the CCG is also encouraging residents in Southport and Formby who use urgent care services in north Merseyside to complete a survey.

Visit the NHS South Sefton CCG website to complete an online questionnaire or find out more www.southseftonccg.nhs.uk.

Healthwatch Sefton is helping us to make the questionnaire available to anyone who may find it difficult to take part online. So, for help to complete a questionnaire, request a paper version, or for another format call Freephone 0800 206 1304, email info@healthwatchsefton.co.uk or text 07434 810 438.

Dear Santa – Live at The Atkinson

Dear Santa, the festive family show brings to life the book from the author of the well-loved children’s book DEAR ZOO, Rod Campbell.

It comes to The Atkinson on Wednesday 12 December until Saturday 19 December.

Santa is determined to deliver the most fantastic Christmas present to our little hero Sarah. But he doesn’t get it right straight away! With the help of his cheeky Elf, he finally settles on something ‘perfect’, just in time for Christmas Eve.

All the ingredients of Rod Campbell’s ingeniously simple and charming style are brought to life on stage, plus a whole lot more… with music, laughter and plenty of audience participation.

Plus.. you can meet Santa himself and after the show and each child will receive a small gift!

A perfect introduction to theatre for those aged 2 to 7 years old, DEAR SANTA is a Christmas present children and parents alike will never forget. 55 minutes.

Watch the Dear Santa trailer: https://youtu.be/Jf9I8DTMhnk

Ticket are £12.50 / £45 family – to book call Box Office on 01704 53333 or by book online at https://www.theatkinson.co.uk/events/dear-santa/

*School price: £10.50 per pupil / teacher’s go free.

*Available to book in at Box Office and over the phone 01704 533 333 only.

Then in February half term, as part of Kidsfest we bring you the Rod Campbell classic – Dear Zoo. Thursday 19 – Wednesday 22 February.  Want to know more visit https://www.theatkinson.co.uk/events/kidsfest-2019/

Visit the website theatkinson.co.uk and join our mailing list to keep up to date with the full programme of events coming to the venue soon.

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