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Aquathlon heads back to Southport!

Sefton Council’s Active Workforce team are excited to bring it’s successful Aquathlon challenge back to Southport – and it’s open for everyone.

On Sunday, September 9, the Aquathlon event will consist of a 250m swim at Dunes Splashworld, followed by a 2.5km run around Victoria Park.

The race will start in waves from 9am onwards and costs just £15 per entry. Active Workforce members pay a reduced rate of £10. Participants can also complete the event as a relay team of two, with one person completing the swim and the other completing the run.  

To register your place call the team on 0151 934 2079 or email active.workforce@sefton.gov.uk. Payments can be taken securely over the phone with credit or debit card details or alternatively at Dunes leisure centre reception.

Huge donation set to boost Formby Pool

Formby Pool is set to benefit from an injection of almost £1 million thanks to a donation from the Freshfield Foundation.

The Formby Pool Trust (FPT) and Sefton Council can now announce that the donation will fund an extension of the facility which will include brand new studio space, a larger gym and overflow car park.

This will facilitate an increase in the volume and variety of classes available, while extending the footprint of the gym to allow for 13 pieces of additional equipment. This includes Technogym resistance and cardiovascular equipment, the same equipment used by athletes during the Olympic and Paralympic Games for the last two decades.

Work commenced on Monday 20th August with the new facilities planned to be opened to members and the community in Spring 2019.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said:

“This is an incredible opportunity for the community in Formby and shows the true value of partnership work.

“This donation is set to open up a host of prospects for centre users and the wider Formby community who will all benefit from increased facilities, state of the art equipment and improved timetables and is a win win for all parties.”

Patrick Moores from the Freshfield Foundation, stated:

“We are delighted to give £920k to Formby Land Trust for the construction of the extension and the overflow car park.

“The gift is in recognition of the great job that FPT supported by Sefton Council has been doing in the last few years. The gift is also intended to help the pool to become more profitable and to reduce the financial support needed from Sefton Council.”

Dympna Edwards, Chairman of Formby Pool Trust, added:

“Our aim has always been to provide an outstanding environmentally and economically sustainable high-quality leisure facility, accessible and affordable to all, that improves local people’s health, wellbeing and quality of life.

“We warmly welcome this generous donation from the Freshfield Foundation and investment by Formby Land Trust in improving local facilities and services for the benefit of local people.”

David Kiernan, Head of Operations at FTP, said:

“The exciting project concerns a single storey extension to the southern end of the existing building to incorporate a purpose-built fitness studio, extension to the gym, and provision for additional overflow car parking.

“We’re looking forward to being able to offer more to our supporters. It is an opportunity to maximise our impact on the health and wellbeing of the community and to achieve its long-term objectives.”

Help put good mental health on the map in Sefton

Sefton Council is inviting residents and groups to share their favourite places to promote positive mental wellbeing as part of its 30 Days of Sefton in Mind campaign.

 We want to know which parts of Sefton have a positive influence on your mental health. This could be activities at one of our leisure centres, your favourite part of the coast or a maybe a special place that puts your mind at ease.

 The aim is to create a positive mental health map of Sefton, showing the places where people go to feel better and in turn help reduce the social isolation that can often be a symptom of depression.

 To get involved and help create the map, tell us about your favourite place and tweet it along with a photograph to @SeftonCouncil using the hashtag #30DaysofSeftonInMind or alternatively email to communications@sefton.gov.uk.

 Whether its somewhere you go to exercise, your favourite place to spend time with your family or even a quiet place you like to go for some alone time, we want to know about the happiest places in Sefton.  We also want local groups to promote what they do to help promote positive mental wellbeing.

 The 30 Days of Sefton in Mind campaign covers the 30 days that fall between World Suicide Prevention Day (September 10) and World Mental Health Day (October 10). The campaign aims to use this 30 period to promote positive mental health across the borough and signpost residents to the many services available to them.

 The campaign is led by Sefton Council and supported by Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust, North West Boroughs Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), NHS Southport and Formby CCG and Sefton Council for Voluntary Service.

 Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said:

“Last year the 30 Days of Sefton in Mind was hugely successful with over 100, 000 people viewing the campaign on social media.

 “Poor mental health can present itself in many different ways and for that reason the methods people use to deal with it can be very different. Unfortunately, social isolation and depression often come hand in hand, we hope that by creating a positive mental health map, we can signpost not only to services, but also to locations that can truly promote a positive state of mind.” 

Merseyside Police weekend of action tackling gun and gang crime in Sefton

Merseyside Police is increasing police resources in South Sefton this weekend, following a rise in tensions between criminal factions, which has resulted in increased violent incidents including firearms discharges.

We have today arrested a man in connection with the most recent of these incidents, in which a 25-year-old man received a serious leg injury after being shot outside his home on Cambridge Road, Bootle on Wednesday night.

An 18-year-old man from Kirkdale was today arrested on suspicion of possession of a firearm in connection with this offence. He has been taken to a police station for questioning by officers.

All weekend, local policing officers will be supported by Matrix officers, intelligence and response staff, and Sefton Council. Members of the public will see our officers carrying out search warrants, open land searches and stop searches as part of this activity. We will be patrolling around key locations in South Sefton and carrying out checks in licenced premises.

A Section 60 order will be in place over the weekend which allows officers to stop and search people in the area, to prevent and detect the carrying of offensive weapons.

Other recent incidents include unconfirmed shootings in Monfa Road, Bootle on Sunday, 12 August and in Hornby Road on Saturday, 18 August.

Over the past six weeks, significant ongoing work has been carried out by local officers, including 20 search warrants, 57 arrests, 377 stop and searches, resulting in the seizure of 20 stolen motorbikes and other items including a handgun (pictured) recovered from a communal garden in Empire Road, Bootle.

We have also received funding from Sefton Council for drugs wipes, to be used when testing suspected drug drivers in the area, and for officers to carry out work on people wanted on recalls to prison.

Active Sefton will also continue their ‘Park Nights’ free sport and activities for young people next week, including Zorb football and climbing, in Bowersdale Park (Tuesday); Derby Park (Wednesday), Marian Square Gardens (Thursday) and North Park (Friday).

Sefton Local Policing Chief Inspector Jerry Harris said: 

“There will be significant resources in place and activity across South Sefton this weekend as a response to these serious incidents, which we are relentless in investigating, working alongside Sefton Council, housing agencies and local community groups.

“We completely understand the impact that serious crime has on the vast majority of law-abiding members of these communities. If residents see this increase in activity, I want to reassure them that we will keep working with you to disrupt and apprehend those people who bring intimidation, threat and harm to your doorstep.

“Key to any success that we have is information from those communities affected, so I would urge anyone with information about where guns or other weapons are being stored, or who is involved in incidents, to come forward, either directly to police or through the independent charity Crimestoppers.

“Sadly, those who are involved in the supply or drugs and other crime will often resort to using firearms and violence to protect this illegal trade, or to resolve petty disputes. We will never tolerate these reckless actions, and are relentless in our resolve to remove those people and their weapons from our streets.

“No-one should have to put up with drug dealing and the associated crime it brings. We will continue to work together with our communities to improve the quality of life in our neighbourhood and make those communities stronger.”

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said:

“We want Sefton residents to feel as safe as possible within their communities and able to access support when it is needed.

“The extra police resources this weekend will be a step towards a better peace of mind for those who have been concerned by recent events.”

Anyone with information on issues affecting your community is asked to contact our social media desk @MerPolCC, call 101 or you can call the independent charity @CrimestoppersUK anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Tips for looking after your health in Sefton this bank holiday

However you are planning to enjoy the long weekend, the local NHS has some useful information for how to take care of yourself in case of illness or injury.

Debbie Fagan, chief nurse for NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said:

“Most minor illnesses and ailments can be effectively treated at home with a well stocked medicine cabinet at any time of year but remember to store things like painkillers and antihistamines safely and out of the reach of young children. Your local pharmacist will be happy to advise you about the over the counter preparations that can help.”

She added:

“If you’re out and about over the bank holiday weekend, you could add a small first aid kit to your bag or the boot of the car, just in case. Drinking plenty of water and protecting yourself from the sun are also simple ways to take care of yourself.”

Although GP practices will not be open on Monday 27 August, some local pharmacies will be open if you do need help unexpectedly. Pharmacists can give advice and suggest treatments for a range of minor illnesses and injuries. With no appointment necessary, you can get back to enjoying your weekend rather than waiting to see a GP.

You can visit the CCG websites to see which pharmacies will be open this bank holiday:

You can also find details of other services that can help if you’re unwell, including walk in centres and NHS 111, which is available anytime and for free by calling 111 and also now available online at www.111.nhs.uk.

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