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Get your skates on – Southport is well and truly set for Christmas!

Southport is well and truly set for Christmas!

Southport’s amazing new 60 foot digital Christmas tree is lit, the town centre streets are lined with decorations and the  open-air ice skating rink is now  frozen and ready for skaters!

The ice skating rink in the Town Hall gardens is set to open today (December 7) and is organised as part of a partnership  between Southport BID and Sefton Council and will be at the heart of the town’s Christmas activity.

Winter chalets will be selling festive food and drink in the gardens and the tree’s amazing light show can be viewed from  both the outside and inside of the impressive structure.

Visitors and residents can skate beneath the tree from as little as £4.50 and enjoy a magical Christmas experience,  making  memories with friends and family.

Throughout the festive period businesses across Southport will host various themed events including lunch with Santa,  grottos and the ‘Dear Santa’ production at The Atkinson.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member, Regeneration and Skills, said: “The skating rink is back due to its popularity last year. It really puts Southport on the map as a leading Christmas destination and gives both  residents and visitors a wonderful festive experience when in the town.

“As well as supporting local businesses by shopping whilst here, visitors can also enjoy seasonal fare in the town’s restaurants and bars.

“Local businesses really benefit from the increased footfall to the town throughout December and the skating rink, Christmas tree and food and drink chalets make the Town Hall gardens the hub of Christmas.

“We are also actively encouraging local schools to get involved by offering a discount for group bookings.”

Hugh Evans, Southport BID CEO also added “The BID funded ice rink last year was hugely popular and we are extremely pleased to be bringing it back in partnership with Sefton Council.

“We wanted to make Christmas a great season in Southport, starting with the switch on. Centred around the new tree and its light display which we have entirely funded, the open-air rink will be something new for Southport and provide a real draw to the town centre in the build up to Christmas.”

You can book a skating session in advance by visiting www.visitsouthport.com. Tickets can also be bought on the day but are on a first come first served basis so it’s best to buy as early as possible online.

 

Important information to help rough sleepers in cold winter months

Sefton Council has a range of services for rough sleepers throughout the borough which are available all year round.

Services, run by Light For Life, are at hand as we to try and reduce the number of people sleeping rough in Sefton, especially during the colder winter months.

This is especially important during the cold winter months between December 2018 and February 2019.

Light For Life’s winter shelter, which will open as weather conditions dictate, will be offered at Southport Eco Centre and will be open from 10pm to 7am with light refreshments and a warm, dry, safe environment for people to access.

As part of this service, outreach teams will proactively seek out rough sleepers and encourage them to access the night shelter.

If you are concerned about someone’s wellbeing, please direct them to the Shelter or to the sit up services available all year round.

The help of the public is always appreciated and to report an incident of rough sleeping in Sefton please call the Rough Sleeper Outreach Team via Light for Life on 01704 501256 or 07918 746042 outside normal office hours and weekends.

Alternatively, email housing.options@sefton.gov.uk and provide details of the location and any description of the person. We will acknowledge your email and give you a response to your report.

Sefton Council also commission Sefton Supported Housing Group to provide a Homeless Sit Up service.

These services are available nightly and you can book in between 8pm to 9pm. and it promises a safe, warm and caring environment where service users will be given a mat and sleeping bag.

There are also shower facilities and hot food & drinks until 8am the next morning.

Services are provided at BOSCO House, Merton Road, Bootle (0151 944 1818) or New Start, Leyland Road, Southport, (01704 547 741).

Veterans in Sefton have also been commissioned to provide support to people who are currently serving or who have served in the Armed Forces, both regular and reservists, their families and dependents, who are homeless or threatened with homelessness.

ViS are based at The Brunswick Youth and Community Centre in Bootle.

For any further information call 0151 257 6371 or attend the ‘NAAFI Break’, Wednesdays 10.30am – 12.pm.

Crosby parkrun celebrates 3rd birthday

Volunteers from Crosby parkrun celebrated last weekend (Saturday, November 17) to mark the event’s third birthday.

Initially launched by Sefton Council’s Active Sefton, the parkrun hosts free weekly 5k runs that are open to the entire community. The event relies entirely on the support of volunteers and the Crosby parkrun has a team of volunteers to thank for helping it to reach it’s third year.

Crosby parkrun is one of 578 in the country and has held 156 events since its launch in 2015. Events take place every Saturday by Crosby Leisure Centre at 9am.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “Happy birthday to Crosby parkrun and thank you to all of the volunteers who make sure these events happen each week.

“As we approach the end of Sefton’s Year of the Volunteer, it’s so important for us to celebrate groups that support events like the parkrun that allow Sefton residents to get involved in great activities at no cost to themselves.”

Jan Mullin, Event Director of Crosby parkrun, has given up her time to commit herself every Saturday since the event began. She added: “We have gone from strength to strength over the 3 years and this week we saw over 200 people take part.

“Crosby parkrun has a great inclusive team of volunteers from across the community including pensioners and young people who are still at school. There are many different roles which need to be covered each week and we would welcome anyone who would like to get involved!

“We’re so happy we can offer this opportunity for people, every week we experience so much positive feedback and hear so many positive stories. We like to think we create an approachable community down here at Crosby parkrun where everyone feels welcome.”

Sefton is also home to the Southport parkrun which takes place every Saturday at 9am in Hesketh Park.

If anyone would like to join the team of volunteers at Crosby parkrun or Southport parkrun, please email crosbyoffice@parkrun.com or southportoffice@parkrun.com

Anybody interested in taking part in a parkrun can register online here: https://www.parkrun.org.uk/register/

Meet the Sefton mums pushing their way back into shape

New mums in Sefton are bouncing back into fitness with the help of Active Sefton’s Active Buggies.

Active Buggies is an energising fitness class that helps new mums kick start weight-loss, feel fabulous and meet like-minded mums. The best thing is that there’s no childcare needed and children of all ages can attend.

The buggy friendly classes make the most of prams as exercise aids with mums jogging, squatting and lunging their way back into shape.

Mums are invited to join the classes following their six week doctor’s check and the first session is free.

Led by Active Sefton’s trained fitness instructors, classes are tailored to meet specific fitness goals with alternate activities offered to meet different abilities.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “It can be so difficult for new mums to juggle their new arrival with keeping fit and healthy.

“I’m so happy that there are classes like Active Buggies available in Sefton that can help women feel confident and make those first steps back into fitness.”

Kate Wilkie takes part in the sessions held at Dunes Southport. She said: “This is an awesome class! The instructor is so passionate about exercise that you can’t help but enjoy it. I really like that she’s a mum herself so she understands the challenges we face as new mums and never makes a big deal out of a meltdown or emergency nappy change!”

Anne-Marie Watson attended the classes following the birth of her first child and couldn’t wait to return after baby number two. She added: “This is a great class tailored for new mums and the best thing is that it’s child friendly.

“It has allowed me to meet other mums who are on a mission to gain confidence and get back to their healthy lifestyles. I love it!”

Classes are held at Litherland Sports Park, Meadows Leisure Centre, Crosby Lakeside, and Dunes Splash World. The full schedule is available online at https://www.sefton.gov.uk/activebuggies.

Watch this short video to find out more about what the sessions offer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gA6vdaAVyqk

For more information contact the Active Sports team on 0151 288 6286 or request to join the Facebook group ‘Active Buggies’

Combined Authority Establishes Task Force to Tackle Poor Air Quality

At its meeting on Friday (16/11/18), the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority voted to establish a new Air Quality Task Force.

Made up of elected representatives from the city region’s six local authorities, as well as representatives from organisations across the city region, the Air Quality Task Force will work to raise awareness of the issue and make recommendations to progress action to tackle poor air quality.

The work of the task force will also help to deliver Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram’s broader environmental pledge to make the city region the greenest in the UK.

Speaking about the new task force, Steve Rotheram said: “Poor air quality is a national public health crisis which is shortening the lives of people across our city region, and disproportionately affecting the old and the young, those who are already sick, and our most deprived communities.

“That is why we have established this Air Quality Task Force, to raise the profile of this issue and help us, as a Combined Authority, to improve air quality in our city region.

“I have previously called on central government to take action in this area but we are determined to do all that we can as a city region to help clean up the air that we all breathe.”

Councillor Liam Robinson, Portfolio Holder for Transport and Air Quality, said: “We are already taking action, through practical measures, such as making it easier to walk and cycle safely, helping schools with travel planning and rolling out low-carbon vehicle technology, such as more car charging points.

“However there is more that we can do, particularly around transport, as nitrogen dioxide from vehicles is the main pollutant affecting people’s health.

“While we will do everything in our power to tackle air pollution we also need action from central government through measures such as vehicle scrappage schemes and funding for behaviour change programmes.”

The new Air Quality Task Force builds on recommendations made by the Combined Authority’s Overview and Scrutiny committee, accepted by the Combined Authority earlier in the year.

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