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Hightown Surgery

Sefton Council is strongly opposing NHS England’s decision to close Hightown village surgery.

 NHS England has just announced that the surgery, which serves Sefton residents, will shut later in the year with Sefton Council now calling on the decision to be reversed.

 A special Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting is now scheduled for March 22 as Sefton Council believes NHS England has not followed the right process or engaged with the public properly about this.

 Cllr Ian Maher, Labour Leader at Sefton Council, said: “We as a Council are dismayed and extremely disappointed at the way NHS England has handled this matter.

 “The closure decision was made and then communicated to residents in advance of any meaningful dialogue with the community and ourselves and taken without any reference to the statutory role of the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

 “This really exposes wider concerns about the willingness of the NHS to engage with the Council on significant matters affecting health services in Sefton and the apparent lack of any strategic commissioning approach to the provision of primary care to Sefton communities.

 “Our ultimate concern is the safety and wellbeing of our communities and we would again request NHS England to review this decision and keep the surgery open while a meaningful engagement takes place.

 “This is going to be extremely difficult as the closure decision has already been made, patients notified and allocated to new practices. The last thing we want is patients being confused about the process – something NHS England should be ashamed of.

 “As a result we are arranging a special Overview and Scrutiny Committee to consider this matter and to seek assurance from NHS England and the CCG that the health and wellbeing of the people of Hightown has been paramount in this decision.

 “We have written to NHS England expressing all of our concerns and hope they react and respond in the way that betters the communities we serve.”

Rave reviews for Sefton’s pool parties

Be Active’s ‘wave rave’ pool parties entertained hundreds of Sefton’s young people and families during February half term.

 The wave raves are part of the new swim offer heading to Sefton that will see a major revamp of pool time-tables, the sessions on offer and vast improvements to changing facilities at Dunes Splash World, Southport and Meadows Leisure Centre, Maghull.

 More than 250 people from across Sefton enjoyed coloured pools, disco lights, music, floats and water cannons at Bootle Leisure Centre (BLC), Meadows Leisure Centre and Dunes Splash World.

 As a result of the huge success, the wave raves will be made a regular event across the three centres with those interested invited to book a place in advance to avoid disappointment.

 Brand new lighting and sound systems installed across the three centres have paved the way for a new era of pool based activities including wave raves, calm waters and a variety of sessions suited to all ages and abilities.

 Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “We have been blown away by the success of the wave raves with pools reaching capacity at BLC and Meadows!

 “The feedback from attendees has been incredible and I’m so happy that young people and families throughout the borough have found an activity that they can enjoy while keeping active at the same time.”

 Rave reviews of the parties have been sent back to the organisers. One happy resident said: “I would just like to say thanks again for the two brilliant wave rave pool sessions that my family experienced.

 “The floats were amazing and every child was encouraged to use the equipment and they were supervised in a safe, friendly environment.”

 There are more rave waves planned in Be Active’s Easter half term line-up. Call the Active sports team on 0151 934 4799 for more information or to book you place.

 In addition, wave raves will take place on the last Friday of every month at BLC and Meadows. Contact the centres for more information or to book a place at the next session.

Sefton Council encourages residents to crack down on smoky vehicles

Sefton Council is asking residents to work with them to help reduce the air pollution caused by taxis, HGVs and buses.

 Traffic places a considerable threat on the quality of Sefton’s air, so if vehicles are polluting more than they should be, they are causing a serious threat to the environment.

 Sefton Council wants to wants to enlist the support of communities to make sure that vehicles which are producing excessive smoke are reported to the appropriate authorities so that the fault can be rectified.

 Residents can report overly-polluting taxis to Sefton Council’s licensing team by making a note of the taxi driver number which usually appears on a small plate above the license plate and should have the Sefton Council logo on it. Taxis can be reported online at

 Smoky HGVs and buses can be reported to the driver and vehicles standards agency (DVSA) online via or by calling the DVSA on 0300 123 9000 (select option 7).

The information required is:

  • Type of Vehicle (HGV heavy goods vehicle or PSV public service vehicle)
  • Vehicle Registration Mark
  • Company Name (if apparent)
  • Road Name/Number where vehicle seen
  • Date & Time of sighting

 Well maintained vehicles should produce very little smoke from exhausts except when they are starting up, accelerating hard or climbing steep hills. However, some vehicles emit dense plumes of smoke and may not meet legal emission standards.

 These vehicles will undoubtedly create higher levels of pollutants which in turn can have an adverse effect on people’s health and the surrounding environment.

 Cllr Paulette Lapin, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regulation and Compliance, said: “We don’t want vehicles that emit plumes of smoke to be welcome on Sefton’s roads. Our taxi licensing team will review any vehicles that are reported to them to ensure they have an up to date MOT.

 “We are working hard to keep Sefton’s air clean and in the past few years, the council has implemented a number of measures to reduce pollution across the borough resulting in improvements in air quality”.

 Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “Air pollution can have major health consequences and micro-pollutants such as PM 2.5s are small enough to travel into the respiratory system.

 “With many Sefton roads providing a route to the docks, HGV traffic can be high and if these are releasing excessive fumes they can have a detrimental effect on people’s health and the environment. By reporting smoky HGVs and buses to the DVSA, we can all help to protect Sefton’s air.”

Sefton residents urged to ‘keep warm, keep well’

NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS South Sefton CCG have joined Sefton Council in encouraging people in Sefton to ‘keep warm, keep well’ over the next few days as severe low temperatures and a bitterly cold wind are forecast from now until the weekend.

The Met Office has issued severe weather warnings across the North West and although Sefton isn’t currently expected to see any snow over the coming days, that doesn’t lower the risk from freezing cold temperatures.

People over the age of 65, pregnant women, people with a long-term health condition and very young children are amongst those who most at risk from the cold weather. The NHS offers advice on how to keep you and your family well at home including:

  • heating your home to at least 18C (65F)
  • draw curtains at dusk and keep doors closed to block out draughts
  • get a flu jab, if you haven’t already had one
  • wear several layers of clothes to maintain body heat
  • have at least one hot meal a day and have hot drinks regularly
  • keep moving and active
  • seek advice from a pharmacist if you are feeling unwell, even if it’s just a cough or cold
  • check in on older neighbours or relatives to make sure they are safe and well

Debbie Fagan, chief nurse at the CCGs, said: “This week looks like it could be one of the coldest we’ve had for some time so it is important for people to prepare. It can be difficult to stay warm in these kind of temperatures and if you know someone who needs help, please do take the time to look in on them over the next few days.”

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “With temperatures predicted to drop below zero this week, it’s important for residents to make sure that they are prepared for the cold.

“If you’re in good health and able to get about please check in on elderly relatives, neighbours or those who may be living with dementia to ensure they are warm enough and have everything they need at home.”

For more advice on how to ‘keep warm, keep well’, please visit the NHS Choices website:

Nominations now open for Sefton Citizen’s For Good scheme

Nominations are now being accepted for the third round of a major scheme that recognises Sefton residents who make a difference to life in their local communities.

Citizens 4 Good was successfully launched last summer as a joint initiative by Sefton CVS and the Mayor of Sefton’s office.

The scheme aims to highlight the good deeds, support and kindness that local people show to other members of their community.

Nominations can be made by anyone who thinks a particular person deserves to be recognised, including friends, neighbours, work colleagues, schools, community organisations and local councillors.

The process is quick and simple, using a short nomination form available via the Sefton 4 Good website.

Mike Howlett, Sefton CVS Volunteer and Citizenship Lead, commented:

“Since last August we have celebrated 27 Citizens 4 Good in Sefton, and the programme has proved to be very popular.

“However, we know there are plenty more people out there who deserve recognition. We want to encourage people to nominate any Sefton residents they know who have made a difference to their community.”

Shortlisted nominees will be invited to a special celebration event where they will be presented with a certificate recognising their good works by the Mayor of Sefton, Councillor Dave Robinson.

Councillor Robinson said: “We have been delighted with the response to Citizens 4 Good so far and look forward to hearing about even more Sefton residents having a positive impact in their neighbourhoods.”

The deadline for nominations is Wednesday 14th March with the celebration event taking place on Wednesday 28th March in Bootle.

For further information about Citizens 4 Good ring Sefton CVS on 0151 920 0726 or email

To make a nomination visit to download the appropriate form.

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