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Children from Sefton get involved in anti-bullying awareness workshops

This week, November 12 – 16, is National Anti-Bullying week focusing on the theme of Respect. During the week, the Bullybusters team will be completing workshops and assemblies around schools in Liverpool, Sefton and Knowsley. Conferences will also be held for secondary school children to attend and get involved in the education and awareness regarding anti-bullying.

The theme of this year’s national anti-bullying week is to ‘Choose Respect’, as respecting yourself and others both face to face and online is a vital message for young people.

‘Respect for me is one of the most important qualities to have and show. If we can’t respect ourselves then how are we supposed to respect others. I feel it is something we should all have and work on daily, not only learning to love and respect ourselves but also showing this to fellow peers and professionals.’ – Fran

The Bullybusters team work hard all year round to spread the anti-bullying message and help young people affected by bullying. The work they carry out within schools around Liverpool, Sefton and Knowsley is recognised and praised by school children, teachers, governors, parents and carers.

Bullybusters offer lessons, assemblies and workshops for young people and parents in primary and secondary schools, as well as providing anti-bullying peer mentor training for children to appropriately act upon issues of bullying within their peer group. As well as this, Bullybusters also provide a free and confidential helpline service for young people, parents or teachers available 3pm – 6pm weekdays. For anyone being affected by bullying, or know someone who is, they can call the helpline on 0800 169 6928.

Volunteers brave the cold to explore Sefton’s Sand Dunes

Wintry showers didn’t put off a team of green fingered volunteers, as they explored Sefton’s sand dunes last week.

 The Gems in The Dunes, series of talks and walks, ran a training day all about Bryophytes, the smallest plants on the borough’s coast.

The session took place at Ainsdale Discovery Centre on Thursday November 1.

 Green Sefton’s Land Management Unit Apprentices, also went along as an early part of their training. They are spending the next 2 years with Sefton Council, working towards an NVQ II in Horticulture, through Myerscough College.

 In the morning attendees learnt the theory behind Bryophyte conservation and were given training on how to survey Bryophytes including Bryums and Petalworts. The day also included lessons on identification, life cycle and habitat requirements.

 Afterwards the group donned their warm waterproofs and took a field trip to Birkdale to see the plants in their natural habitat.

 For more information about future training call 01704 571 575 or email gems-in-the-dunes@arc-trust.org.

A consultation on the proposed closure of Sand Dunes Nursery School has ended

A consultation regarding the closure of Sand Dunes Nursery School, Seaforth has now ended.

Following a request from the governing body of Sand Dunes, a statutory consultation process on the proposal to close the Nursery School, was agreed in July.

Sand Dunes Nursery School has been struggling financially for a number of years. Sefton Council and the school had explored every available option before Sand Dunes formally proposed the closure.

The consultation was the first part of a 5-stage statutory process Sefton Council must follow. During this time, it was critical that all those affected could express their views and opinions.

The consultation which was originally planned for 8 weeks, was extended to a period of 9 weeks, to allow enough time for people to submit their comments and ran from July – October.

Meetings were also held with staff, governors, and parents/carers of pupils at the school.  A consultation document and forms were handed into the school and collected. Comments could also be submitted by email, via Sefton Council’s website, by letter or via the Sand Dunes Facebook page.

At its meeting on 1 November, Cabinet considered a report on the outcome of the consultation process.  There was a huge amount of support for Sand Dunes but no viable options to address the financial shortfall came forward and Cabinet agreed to publish the statutory notice.

Cabinet are also asked to agree to continue exploring alternatives with the school and to report on this and any representations received to the public notice in the new year.

Cllr John Joseph Kelly, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding, said: “Sand Dunes Nursery has been a crucial part of the community for many years. This has been demonstrated with anonline petition which has had more than 900 signatures.

“I understand that this is a difficult time for all those involved and want to thank everyone who took the time to tell us how they felt through the consultation.

“It is extremely regrettable that the governors at Sand Dunes Nursery school have had no alternative but to request a formal consultation to close, because it is no longer financially viable.

“We will now consider the responses to the statutory consultation process and will continue to make sure the community are continually updated throughout this difficult and emotive process.”

Young Liverpool City Region boxers fly to Louisville as part of Cultural Exchange

Metro Mayor Boxing

A group of six young boxers, representing all six of the local authorities which make up the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, are jetting off to Louisville today, as part of the next stage of a sporting and musical exchange between the Liverpool City Region and Louisville, Kentucky.

 The exchange celebrates and strengthens cultural links between the Liverpool City Region and Louisville, Kentucky, exemplified by the iconic photograph of The Beatles meeting Muhammad Ali on 18 February 1964.

 In the first part of the exchange, Carly Johnson, an up and coming singer from Louisville, travelled to the Liverpool City Region to play gigs at the legendary Cavern Club and the influential Liverpool Sound City festival.

 Now, the young boxers, aged between 15 and 17,  will travel to Louisville to train at the TKO gym and visit the Muhammad Ali Centre, whose mission is to preserve and share the legacy and ideals of Muhammad Ali, to promote respect, hope, and understanding, and to inspire adults and children everywhere to be as great as they can be.

 Talking about the exchange, Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram said: “In The Beatles and Muhammad Ali, Liverpool City Region and Louisville produced two of the biggest cultural icons of the 20th century.

“More than half a century on from the famous photo that brought these icons together, we are determined to build on those links to create a strong cultural and sporting partnership that will bring our two regions together, paving the way for future cultural and commercial collaborations.”

 Greg Fischer Mayor, Louisville Metro Region, said: “This exchange builds on the Transatlantic connection that Louisville and Liverpool established through the meeting of world-changing artists and a barrier-breaking athlete.

“The Champ and the Fab Four were committed to making the world a better, more compassionate place —  a common bond that’s always worth celebrating.”

 The young boxers have been brought together by the Amateur Boxing Association, which will also provide two coaches to lead the Liverpool City Region team.  

 Paul King, of the Merseyside and Cheshire Amateur Boxing Association, said: “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for these talented young boxers as they represent the Liverpool City Region.  They are really excited at the prospect of training in Ali’s home town and visiting the Muhammad Ali Centre, as well as going into local schools to meet young people from Louisville.  In addition to the benefits to the individual young people, this sort of exchange will also help to build bonds between our two areas.”

Counterfeit One Direction perfume case ends in successful prosecution

A recent court case involving counterfeit goods seized in Sefton was only ever going to end in one direction, thanks to the dedicated work of the local authority’s Trading Standards team.

Sefton has welcomed the successful prosecution of a Formby man after he plead guilty to the manufacture and possession of counterfeit goods potentially worth around £1million.

In 2016, Sefton Council’s Trading Standards team seized vast quantities of materials and packaging capable of producing approximately 2000 Jo Malone candles and 80,000 bottles for One Direction perfume, from an industrial premises in Formby.

It was thought the goods were destined for car boot sales up and down the country in the lead up to Christmas.

Christopher Costello, aged 48, was arrested in connection with the offences and pleaded guilty to four offences at Sefton Magistrates Court on September 17.

He was sentenced to 9 weeks custody, to be suspended for 12 months, and has been made to carry out 100 hours unpaid work.

He will also have to pay £715 in costs and victim surcharge.

Cllr Paulette Lappin, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services, said: “I am delighted at the outcome of this case and would like to thank our hard working Trading Standards team who have worked tirelessly from start to finish on this investigation.

“Importantly, this not just about inferior quality merchandise but also about public safety and making sure that the products you purchase are safe.

“We continue to warn the public to be wary of any potential counterfeit goods as there have been serious safety concerns with candles and perfume in the past.”

Anyone who suspects the manufacture or sale of counterfeit goods should call the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 04 05 06.

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