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Sefton is booming with business say local firms

Representatives from Sefton Council visited two local businesses to hear all about their thriving ventures and future growth.

Success stories and plans for expansion were discussed when Sefton Council visited two borough-based businesses.

 Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, was joined by officers from Invest Sefton on guided tours of Churchill Sheds based in Netherton and Jack Hodson Limited – a family-owned business established in 1966 now trading in Aintree.

Churchill Sheds began trading as a partnership in February 2016, and employs 4 staff and casual labour at peak periods. They manufacture purpose-built sheds, industrial barns, office units and workshops for businesses, the hospitality sector and rural producers.

Under the Business Growth Programme InvestSefton has supported with locating and bidding for public contracts, registration on The Chest and Contracts Finder portals, and using the Planning Portal to source work. The business is also being supported with developing a Social Value and Sustainability policy to help with bidding for contracts.

Jack Hodson Ltd is the ‘go to’ national supplier of security-related electronics for police vehicles, and participates in frameworks for the fitting of cameras, lightbars and security measures to marked and unmarked police vehicles. The business works for a number of police regions in the UK in England and Wales, and has won market share from its competitors. The business employs 25 staff, and turnover is £1.5million, which is expected to increase in the coming year creating more jobs, due to contracts won.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said: “I really enjoy getting out and seeing at first hand how local businesses are thriving and moving forward.

“Churchill Sheds is an excellent example of how a business can expand by constantly looking to develop new products and to consistent high standards. I am delighted that that InvestSefton has been able to assist them with their sales and marketing and their plans to grow the business further.

“The same goes for Jack Hodson Ltd who has recently relocated to Aintree Business Park, Ormskirk Road following more than 30 years in Berry St, Bootle, due to increased workload. The business has been supported by InvestSefton and Sefton@Work for a number of years, and is currently being assisted under the Sefton Business Growth Programme.

“Success stories like these show how Sefton really is open for business.”

Jack Hodson Ltd’s Financial Director, Peter Edward-Hodson and Technical Director, John Hodson, said: “Our recent relocation to larger, bespoke premises has required a major capital investment. However, the benefits achieved will allow us to streamline our operations, and grow our business.”

Ian Williams, Churchill Sheds managing Director, added: ”Our business is going from strength-to-strength, and we have a lot of interest in our workshops and barns. The help provided by InvestSefton has been invaluable.”

The Sefton Good Dog Code: What You Need To Know

The Sefton Good Dog Code is an informative campaign which encourages good and responsible dog ownership in the borough. 

For more information about these rules and to learn more about the Good Dog Code, visit www.sefton.gov.uk/thegooddogcode

Posters, leaflets and interactive smartphone adverts are going up in parks and public areas around Sefton following the launch of the Good Dog Code and the recent Public Space Protection Order. 

Local residents and dog lovers have worked alongside Sefton in the creation of the Code, which tells residents to clean up after their pets, respect those who don’t like dogs, follow the rules and ensure their dog is socialized before it mingles with other dogs. 

Cllr Paulette Lappin, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regulation and Compliance, said: “The code was jointly put together by ourselves and residents to promote responsible dog ownership.

“Along with the poster and flyers, we’ll be placing QR codes around our parks, coastal areas and cemeteries which links to the online version of the Good Dog Code.

“There are plenty of ways you can be a responsible dog owner, from making sure you clean up after your pets to respecting none-dog lovers.

“Unfortunately some dog owners are not responsible and have no regard for their community. For these few, legislation is tough on them.

“Enforcement action such as fixed penalties and possible court action can be taken against these dog owners.”

Lyn Hilton the founder of local volunteer group ‘Sefton Dogs’ added: “What began as a campaign to ensure that our dogs could enjoy off lead experience at the beach and on our local nature reserves changed into a volunteer movement which aims for a friendly, informed and responsible approach to dog ownership in Sefton. 

“I am proud to say that since June of this year members of Sefton Dogs have been working closely with Sefton Council, attending promotional events, advising on publicity materials and building up a bank of helpful information online.”

Since July, Sefton has had a Public Space Protection Order across the borough with informs dog owners about certain rules which must be followed. 

Who’s In Court: Woman hit with £860 fine for dumping waste

A 23-year-old woman has been fined a total of £860.55 for dumping a wooden crate full of waste in Bootle.

Hannah Williams, of Lathom Road, Bootle was found guilty in her absence at South Sefton Magistrates Court on March 13 of leaving the household waste in Claremont Close, Bootle in August last year.

Magistrates fined Williams £500 with £310.55 in costs and a £50 victim surcharge.

In separate hearings on March 13 at South Sefton Magistrates Court, three dog owners were fined for failing to get their pets micro-chipped.

Stephanie Lewin, 28, of Lytham Road, Southport was found guilty in her absence and fined a total of £222.

Paul Carney, 29, of Galsworthy Walk, Bootle was also fined £222 in his absence.

Claire Garner, of Worcester Road, Bootle appeared before Magistrates and was fined a total of £100.

Littering cases were also heard on March 13, with four people being fined over £900 for not keeping Sefton clean, green and beautiful.

Chris Graham, 60, of Hayes Lane, Altrincham was found guilty in absence and fined a total of £322.

Lauren Gill, 31, of Mount Pleasant, Waterloo entered a guilty plea by post and was fined £260.

John Perry Forsyth, 58, of Merrilocks Road, Blundellsands was found guilty in absence and fined a total of £322.

A spokesman for Sefton Council said: “We welcome the outcome of these cases.

“People need to think twice before committing an offence, whatever it may be, and court cases like these highlight what can happen if you are caught.”

Meet The Buyer is a resounding success

More than 50 delegates from businesses across Sefton attended a ‘Meet the Buyer’ event organised by InvestSefton’s Business Growth Programme team.

The aim of the event was to give companies across the borough, particularly smaller contractors and suppliers, the chance to learn about a prestigious new mental health facility being built on the site of the old Southport Infirmary. The new facility will have 44 en-suite bedrooms, treatment rooms, a café and gardens.

Buyers and commissioners were in attendance from Merseycare NHS Foundation Trust and Farrans Heron Joint Venture (FHJV), who have been commissioned to build the centre later this year.

A broad range of businesses were present, with more than 30 types of products and services on offer, including building trades, electrical wholesale, locksmiths and a Southport-based low energy lighting manufacturer.

During the first half of the event businesses learned about the work packages to be let, FHJV’s supplier registration processes, and opportunities including collaborative bidding. There was also information on free support available from the Business Growth Programme and Sefton@Work.

The second part of the event comprised an ‘Ask the Buyer’ Q&A session, followed by meetings with the buyers. The event was rounded off with a business-to-business networking session, with collaborations forged on the day.

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

“We are delighted to be working with FJHV on this new important development and have already seen some local businesses firming up meetings with the contractor to potentially win new contracts.

“The event, organised by InvestSefton, gave smaller local businesses the chance to meet up and try and secure new work within the borough benefiting everyone involved.

“This is another example of how Sefton Council act as enablers and facilitators for businesses in our borough and it aligns with our 2030 vision of helping to build resilient communities and businesses.

“Feedback from the day was excellent with 88% of respondents saying they were interested in collaborative working and collaborative bidding with other Sefton companies in the future.”

Year of the Volunteer: Food banks & Anti-poverty

March is the Year of the Volunteer’s Anti-Poverty and Food Banks month.

Each month the Year of the Volunteer campaign focuses on a special theme, with March being dedicated to those who give up their time to help those who find themselves in difficult circumstances.

We’ve been catching up with a number of volunteer organisations and individuals, including South Sefton Foodbank and Lakeside Foodbank, Southport, who regularly spend hundreds of hours each month to help families and those in need of emergency food supplies.

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 video from South Sefton foodbank below. You can volunteer with them here

 

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