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Trading Standards catch Crosby rogue businessman

Sefton Council has welcomed the successful prosecution of a rogue trader from Crosby.

Daniel Howarth of Crosby Property Maintenance plead guilty to four offences under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations act and one offence under the Consumer Rights Act at South Sefton Magistrates Court.

Offences including the unauthorised use of a ‘Gas Safe’ logo on his website and forging building certificates supposedly from Sefton Council saying his work at a property complied with regulations.

Howarth tried to pass Crosby Property Maintenance off as being ‘Gas Safe’ (previously Corgi) registered as well as approved by the National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contracting (NICEIC).

When challenged about works he carried out at two different properties, he produced fake building certificates, claiming to be from the Local Authority, confirming that building work had been assessed by qualified building control officers and deemed to be safe.

In reality the works were unsafe and homeowners were faced with a bill for further remedial works in order to comply with Building Regulations.

During an investigation into complaints against Crosby Property Maintenance, Howarth gave false information to Sefton’s Trading Standards officers.

He was fined £1505 and ordered to pay costs of £1031.50, totalling £2536.50.

Cllr Paulette Lappin, Sefton Council’s Cabinet member for Regulation and Compliance, said: “This case goes to show the absolute importance of double checking who is working on your property.

“A full list of Gas Safe and NICIEIC approved contractors are available via their respective websites.

“Victims of this rogue trader are still counting the costs of his forgery and we are pleased that our Trading Standards team have managed to bring him to justice.

“We urge residents to remain vigilant and if they suspect a rogue trader is operating in the area to get in touch and we can investigate. Residents should always be on their guard against bogus workers and we need the public’s help to catch rogue traders.”

To search for an approved trader in your area you can also visit www.buywithconfidence.gov.uk.

Gabrielle to headline Ladies Day at 2018 Grand National

Aintree Racecourse is pleased to announce Gabrielle will be headlining Ladies Day at the Randox Health Grand National Festival on Friday April 13.

Gabrielle will be performing in the Aintree Pavilion from 17:30, after the days racing, singing some of her chart topping hits including ‘Dreams’, ‘Rise’, ‘Out Of Reach’ and Give Me A Little More Time’.

Gabrielle’s career got off to an incredible start in 1993 when she broke the record for the highest chart debut by a female with the single ‘Dreams’. A 23-year-old club singer from Brockley, South London, she was the archetypal outsider. Following her dreams Gabrielle launched her career wearing an eyepatch that made her visually striking a voice that made her distinctive – and her differences contributed to her becoming Britain’s most successful soul singer.

In 2000, Gabrielle notably returned to the charts with the hit single Rise, which featured a Bob Dylan sample of ‘Knocking on Heavens Door’ and again reached the number one spot. The multi-platinum album ‘Rise’ followed in the same footsteps and topped the charts at number one.

In an industry where longevity is becoming increasingly rare, the hits have been unstoppable: ‘Give Me A Little More Time’, ‘If You Ever’, ‘When A Woman’, ‘Sunshine’ and ‘Out Of Reach’ which she wrote for the soundtrack of Bridget Jones’ Diary. Then there are the multi-platinum albums; ‘Gabrielle’ ‘Rise’ and ‘Dreams Can Come True’. Gabrielle will be performing songs from all of her multi-platinum albums on Ladies Day.

Gabrielle said “I can’t wait to perform at Aintree’s unique Ladies Day, Liverpool is one of my favourite cities. I am looking forward to seeing everyone dressed up and dancing to all of my songs after a great day of racing.”

In 2013, Gabrielle released a seventh album with the iconic Island records. A double album of all her greatest hits, some of her favourite album tracks and seven brand new songs. With the new songs came a new sound, the album titled Now and Always 20 Years of Dreaming also includes a new version of the classic Dreams re produced and re-recorded by Naughty Boy.

2014 saw Gabrielle go on her first UK tour since 2008, The Now and Always tour was a huge success and Gabrielle felt re connected with her fans, at every show she could be seen taking selfies from the stage with audience members.
Over the years, Gabrielle has picked up a number of prestigious awards including
Brit Awards for Best Newcomer and Best Female Vocalist, MOBOs for Best Single and Best Album, an Ivor Novello for Outstanding Song Collection and Gabrielle appeared with not just one but two albums in the official UK 100 records of the decade.

Gabrielle is currently recording a new studio album, her first in eleven years which will be released in 2018.

John Baker, Managing Director of Aintree Racecourse said: “We are delighted to have such a talented and globally recognised female artist headlining Ladies Day of the Randox Health Grand National Festival.

“Gabrielle has a superb collection of hits and we are excited for her to put on a great show for the crowds at Ladies Day.

“Ticket sales are 2,000 ahead of last year so we are in a fantastic position. I would recommend racegoers to buy early to avoid any disappointment.”

“We look forward to announcing further exciting acts in our Randox Health Grand National music line-up soon.”

Tickets for the 2018 Randox Health Grand National Festival are available to purchase at www.randoxhealthgrandnational.co.uk or by calling 0344 579 3001. Racegoers can also buy tickets directly from the sales office at Aintree Racecourse. Hospitality packages are currently available to purchase, please call 0151 522 2911 for more information.

Have your say on changes to Sefton’s gambling & licensing policies

Sefton Council wants to hear residents’ views on its revised Licensing and Gambling policies which will come into effect later this year.

The local authority is responsible for regulating pubs, clubs, late night takeaways, gambling and gaming premises and activities, including casinos, bingo premises, betting shops and gaming machine arcades across the borough.

The policies can be viewed here 

Under regulations, Sefton Council is required to publish a policy statement which forms the basis for deciding any applications submitted. The authority is now consulting on a revision to its existing policy and is asking people to give their views and opinions on both policies by April 2, 2018.

The Gambling Act of 2005 has three objectives: Preventing gambling from being a source of crime, ensuring that gambling is conducted in a fair and open way and protecting children and other vulnerable persons from being harmed or exploited by gambling.

The Licensing Act of 2003 has four objectives: ensuring public safety, the prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm.

Cllr John Kelly, Sefton’s Council’s Chair of Licensing & Regulatory Committee said:

“We are consulting with operators and businesses in both the licensed and gambling trades but we also want the views of local residents.

“Any opinions on either trade, including on how we can meet each Act’s objectives are welcome and people can write or email us.

“Both draft revised policies is currently available in local libraries and on the Sefton Council website.”

People wanting to register their views should send them in writing to: Kevin Coady, Senior Licencing Officer, Magdalen House, 30 Trinity Road, Bootle, L20 3NJ or email: licensing@sefton.gov.uk.

Countdown is on for 2018 Aintree Grand National!

With ten weeks to go until the 2018 Randox Health Grand National Festival, Aintree Racecourse announces that all grandstand areas and Festival Zone tickets for Grand National Day are sold out with only Steeplechase tickets still available for Saturday April 14.

This announcement comes one month sooner than last year which shows the demand and the ‘feel good factor’ for the greatest horserace in the world.

All grandstand and Festival Zone tickets are sold out, but Steeplechase tickets can still be bought through randoxhealthgrandnational.co.uk for £29.

Aside from Grand National Day, tickets are still available for the 2018 Randox Health Grand National Festival on Grand National Thursday – A Day for Champions, Thursday April 12; and Ladies Day, Friday April 13. Limited grandstand seats and terraces are still available for both days but are selling fast.

For Grand National Thursday, tickets are available from £29 for Festival Zone and hospitality places are available from £125 plus VAT. For Ladies Day, tickets are available from £43 and hospitality from £179 plus VAT. Racegoers can purchase by visiting randoxhealthgrandnational.co.uk or by calling 0344 579 3001.

John Baker, Managing Director of Aintree Racecourse, said:

“We are delighted with the sales on Grand National Day and we are ahead on ticket sales over the three days compared to this time last year, which is excellent. I’d urge racegoers to get their tickets quickly for both Grand National Thursday and Ladies Day so they don’t miss out.

“We’re all excited about the Festival and are working extremely hard to provide racegoers with the best possible experience over the three days. We’ve listened to customers and are continuing to improve many areas including toilets and seating across the site. It’s not just about selling tickets, we want racegoers to really enjoy themselves at one of the best horseracing Festivals in the world.

“With the quality of horses being entered into the Grand National race as well as across the Festival, it’s three days of fun and top class racing that’s not to be missed.”

Tickets for the 2018 Randox Health Grand National Festival are available to purchase at www.randoxhealthgrandnational.co.uk or by calling 0344 579 3001. Racegoers can also buy tickets directly from the sales office at Aintree Racecourse.

New changes for Private Rented Landlords & Tenants

From March 1, 2018 landlords who privately rent out their properties will be required to obtain a new licence from Sefton Council if their properties are located within selected areas in the borough.

Sefton Council approved the implementation of two new housing licensing schemes in September, 2017 in separate areas of the borough. Both schemes will run until the end of February 2023.

Click here to find out more and apply

Sefton designated an area of Bootle as being subject to Selective licensing, (all privately rented properties) and has designated parts of Seaforth, Waterloo, Brighton-le-Sands and Southport as being subject to Additional licensing.

Additional licensing requires all houses defined as a house in multiple occupation (HMO) to apply for a housing licence.  Mandatory licensing for larger HMO properties is currently a national requirement.

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

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.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member Communities and Housing, said: “We have areas where many properties currently fail to meet the required homes standard, which can have a terrible impact on the health and welfare of their tenants and their wider communities.

“The schemes we have introduced aim to reduce that by making sure private landlords meet satisfactory standards of tenancy and property management.

“But it is also about tenants behaving in a way that does not blight or impact on their community and shows respect for their neighbours.

“If you are a landlord renting a property in any of the designated areas, you must check whether your property will need a licence from March 1, 2018.”

Landlords can apply for a reduced fee for either applying within the first 3 months of the scheme, being accredited or when a Sefton accredited managing agent is appointed by the landlord to be the licence holder. Further details of the reduced fees are available on the Council’s website.

Further details of Sefton’s property (and managing agent) accreditation schemes are available on www.sefton.gov.uk/housing. Early application for property accreditation is encouraged.

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