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Local Projects to benefit from £100k following the 146th Open

Local community projects and initiatives in Sefton are set to benefit from legacy funding following the successful staging of The 146th Open at Royal Birkdale.

L-R: Aspiring Instructor Steph Todd, Cllrs Marion Atkinson and Ian Moncur, along with Philip Russell, Assistant Director – Sustainability for the R&A at Birkdale Common

Record crowds flocked to the famous Southport links last year to watch the world’s greatest golfers and The R&A has agreed to provide a six-figure sum from the proceeds of the Championship to Sefton Council in order to support three major projects.

The legacy projects include:

  • £40K towards improving ‘green’ tourism and connectivity on Southport Pier for more people to enjoy. This will include new RSPB telescopes on the oldest cast iron constructed pier in the country to view wildlife and terrestrial and underwater webcams and television screens to view other marine life. A new access point on the pier will also be constructed.
  • £40K to the Aspiring Instructors training pathway scheme – this provides customised training opportunities in the leisure and sports sector for residents not in work. The Aspiring Instructors scheme is run in partnership with Sefton@Work and the Council’s Leisure team creating training and potential job opportunities within the sector. It is hoped the new programme funded by The R&A would help 25 new starters on the scheme.

The remaining £20K will go towards improvements on Birkdale Common which was integral to hosting The 146th Open. Money will go towards a new noticeboard, an accessible boardwalk ramp, new signage and boundary improvements.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said:

“While the superb Championship may seem like a distant memory, this money kindly donated by The R&A will go a long way to preserving the legacy of one of the world’s greatest sporting events.

“The funding clearly aligns with our 2030 Vision and our objectives of building resilient communities across the borough. It links with improving our tourism offer, employment opportunities and ensuring those communities impacted by the Open will benefit.

“All three schemes will play their part in remembering what was truly a great sporting spectacle here in Sefton and we look forward to the Championship returning soon.

“After the Championship, The R&A revealed crowds at Royal Birkdale reached 235,000, which is the highest figure ever for an Open held outside of St Andrews, Scotland.

“Hopefully every single one of them will have amazing lasting memories of the event and further memories will be created through the legacy funding as well.”

Johnnie Cole-Hamilton, Executive Director – Championships at The R&A, added:

“We are committed to ensuring that the communities in which The Open is staged benefit from the success of the Championship.

“We are pleased to be supporting Sefton Council’s plans to invest in initiatives which benefit the surrounding environment and people living in the local community. We look forward to hearing about the positive progress of each initiative.”

Private Landlords need new licences from March 1

Private Landlords across Sefton are being reminded they will need to apply for a licence to rent out their property from March 1.

From this date, Sefton Council requires landlords of private rented properties in some parts of the borough to apply for a housing licence.

If you are a private landlord in Sefton and haven’t already, you need to check whether you will need a licence to rent out your property and if so, apply for one.

If your property is in the Bootle (L20, L21) area you may need a Selective Licence.

If your property is in Seaforth (L21), Waterloo (L22), Brighton-le-Sands (L23) or Southport (PR8, PR9) AND it is a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) you may need an Additional (HMO) licence.

A full list of all streets affected along with further details of the schemes, licensing conditions and fees are available on sefton.gov.uk.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member Communities and Housing, said: “I would strongly advise landlords to check whether their properties need a licence and, if so, to apply for one as soon as possible.

“This is a new scheme for Sefton and landlords will need to have applied for a licence by the beginning of September.

“A rigorous enforcement regime will commence after this date and landlords found to be operating unlicensed property will face tough penalties. New staff have been recruited to operate and enforce the schemes which will be funded through the licence fees. The team will also include a new apprentice.
If a property falls within either the Selective or Additional (HMO) licensing areas and is licensable under the Mandatory scheme landlords will not need to also apply for either a Selective or Additional (HMO) licence.

Landlords will be required to meet a range of licence conditions, and show that they have appropriate management arrangements in place.

It is an offence, which can result in fines of any amount, if the landlord or person in control of the property
• fails to apply for a licence for a licensable property, or
• allows a property to be occupied by more people than is permitted under the licence
• breaches any of the licence conditions

If you are a landlord, a person managing a property within the areas of the designation you are advised to check whether your property will require a licence and ensure that you apply for one per property.

You can check if you need a housing licence, which type of licence you need and apply for a housing licence at www.housinglicensing.sefton.gov.uk.

Year of the Volunteer: Families

Each month the Year of the Volunteer campaign focuses on a special theme, with February being dedicated to those who give up their time to work with families and children.

We’ve been catching up with a number of volunteer organisations and individuals who regularly spend hundreds of hours each month to help families, whether it be by giving emotional support, respite, entertaining young children or just having a cup of tea and a chat.

Volunteers make a real difference in Sefton. They touch people’s lives in so many different ways, providing comfort and support, fostering community development, and actively helping to keep Sefton clean, green and beautiful

Check out our feature videos below with the Sefton Home Libraries team and HomeStart Southport & Formby

HomeStart Southport & Formby

Sefton Libraries Home Visits

For more information on how to volunteer or to get involved in the Year of the Volunteer campaign, click here

Deadline nears for £115,000 community fund applications

The deadline is looming for organisations who want a share of £115,000 to help make Merseyside a cleaner and greener place.

The funding has been made available for Merseyside and Halton community and voluntary groups, schools, faith groups and not-for-profit organisations, who can reduce household waste, encourage recycling and resource re-use and prevent carbon emissions. The projects will also have to demonstrate wider positive impacts on the environment, health and education.

Successful applicants can be awarded up to £25,000 for schemes which operate across all six districts in Merseyside and Halton, and £8,000 for projects which work solely at one local authority level.

The money is coming from the Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority and Veolia Community Fund 2018/19.

The deadline for submission of Expressions of Interest is Wednesday 28th February 2018.

The impact of last year’s Fund saw 10 projects deliver 23 full time equivalent jobs (created or safeguarded), participation by 136 volunteers, 25,970 people directly engaged, 1345 tonnes of waste material diverted from landfill and £134,500 of equivalent landfill costs avoided.

Chairperson of Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority (MRWA), Councillor Graham Morgan, said: “We’ve made this money available for new and existing projects which can have an impact on their local community and make Merseyside and Halton a cleaner and greener place for us all to live and work.”

This year bids must tackle one or more of the four priority household waste materials which have been identified by MRWA as key, namely Food, Plastics, Textiles and Furniture.

Interested groups should complete and submit an Expression of Interest with MRWA. If applicants are shortlisted then they will be asked to fill in a more detailed Community Fund entry. Projects will have ten months to deliver their schemes and will be expected to get started by June.

Organisations interested in this year’s Community Fund can:

– Download the Expression of Interest Form and Guidance at www.merseysidewda.gov.uk/waste-strategy/community-fund/community-fund-201819/

– Contact the Authority by Email: communityfund2018-19@merseysidewda.gov.uk / Tel: 0151 255 1444

Meeting called over Chapel Lane trees

Sefton Council have called for a meeting with tree experts to discuss independent inspection findings regarding trees in Chapel Lane, Formby.

A spokesman for Sefton Council said: “As promised, we agreed with Formby Parish Council and local councillors to defer the tree removal works planned in Formby Village to give an opportunity for them to commission an independent inspection into the condition of the trees.

“While we remain very concerned about the health and safety risks associated with these trees, we want to ensure the views of local communities are heard and that we take a balanced view without compromising the safety of pedestrians and road users. 

“We have now received the full report and while there is agreement on three out of the five trees, there are still issues in respect of the other two trees and we are seeking clarity on a couple of key points, particularly on the assessment of the health and safety risk, which remains a priority for us.

“To ensure we reach a mutually agreeable sustainable solution, we would like the opportunity for our own internal tree experts and the author of the report to come together to discuss some aspects in more detail.  We are currently waiting for this to be arranged.

“Once this conversation has taken place, the Council will provide a detailed assessment of the report and determine its decision in relation to these two trees.

“No work will commence on any tree until 5th March 2018 at the earliest to allow for discussions to take place.”

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