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Quarter of a million meals sold in Southport Market’s first year

More than a quarter of a million tasty treats have been served up during Southport Market’s first year of operation.

As the hugely popular venue turns one year old this week, Southport Market’s traders have been tallying up the successes of their first 12 months in business.

Statistics show that 279,400 dishes from around the world have been served up since the Market launched and that over 94,000 thirst-quenching pints have been poured.

Since opening on Thursday 22 July 2021 following a huge refurbishment, the new-look Southport Market on King Street has revitalised the town’s market quarter. This has resulted in new businesses opportunities and investment to the surrounding area.

Southport Market has also been hailed by a number of campaigners for its impressive accessibility provisions – the Market boasts a bespoke Changing Places space which is a fully accessible toilet and changing facility for people with disability needs, as well as multiple points of access for wheelchair users and families with prams.

To celebrate this landmark achievement Southport Market will be holding an all-day Birthday Bonanza throughout Friday 22 July with live music, bouncy castles, soft-play, DJs and a sing-along!

Southport Market’s incredible first year in numbers

• 279,470 dishes served
• 94,588 pints of beer sold
• 9,564 burritos stuffed (Hector’s Mexicana)
• 11,249 Greek gyros wrapped (Pitamu)
• 10,477 portions of poutine created (Down & Oot)
• 22,663 pizza bases fired (600 Degrees Pizza)
• 15,000 portions of French fries topped (Allotment)

Sweeter treats are also available at the Market in the form of baked goods from Cake Corner and fresh ice cream, multiple toppings from Conehead. And for those preferring to buy something high-quality to eat at home, there’s family-run Blackhurst Butchers who have been at Southport Market for nearly 60 years.

As well as being home to food and drink outlets Southport Market also hosts free Thursday evening music events and a weekly, local crafts market that is also held on Thursdays. And, its Extravaganza Room will soon be available to hire for events and parties.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said: “Firstly, I want to say a huge thank you to our staff, our traders and everyone who has visited Southport Market in the last year.

“From the moment we announced our plans to transform the former market into a food & drink hall and community space it was clear there was a real desire and demand for a venue like this in Southport.

“Not only has Southport Market been a success in its own right but it has helped to boost the market quarter area of the town centre and we have seen dozens of new businesses and enterprising traders gravitate towards this hub of excitement.

“It’s not just about the food either – the Market itself and accompanying events space have been a welcome home for a host of different community groups, economic forums, conventions and more.

“This is a very exciting time for Sefton and Southport, and we continue to look at all opportunities for regeneration to benefit our communities.”

Ross Perkins of Canadian themed Down & Oot said: “Since opening Down & Oot last July we are really proud of the business that we have grown.

“We have brought new and exciting cuisine to Southport and our speciality Canadian poutine has been a huge hit.”

Dan Johnson of 600 Degrees Pizza added: “Our unit in Southport Market has allowed us to build on our growing brand and we have seen plenty of regular customers come through our doors to get their pizza fix which is really satisfying as a small business and we appreciate all of the loyalty.”

Southport Market’s First Birthday Bonanza begins from 1oam with family fun sessions running until 4pm. From 5pm popular local DJ Mark Pickup and soul sensation Dave Broe will continue the party atmosphere into the night with live music and more.

Southport Market is open 10am to 10pm Wednesdays and Thursdays, 10 am to 11pm Fridays and Saturdays and from 10 am to 6pm on Sundays.

All the details about the Market are at


‘Stay out of the sun as much as you can’ warns Sefton’s Director of Public Health

While temperatures in the North West may not be forecast to reach the extreme 40°C that have caused the Met Office to issue the first ever Red warning for exceptional heat today, Sefton Council is still urging people to be careful and prepare for the heat.

We expect temperatures to rise above 30 C and people can develop health problems such as heat exhaustions and heatstroke, especially if they are either young or older or if they have an underlying health condition.

During hot and sunny weather, we also need to remember to protect ourselves from the harmful effects of UV light.

Sustained exposure to the sun even at lower temperature can cause a number of health problems such as heat exhaustion and heatstroke and everyone is vulnerable the harmful effects of UV light if unprotected. 

Margaret Jones, Sefton Council’s Director of Public Health said: “While I can fully understand that many people thoughts will turn to visiting the coast, what we need to remember is that on the beach, we are fully exposed to the effects of the sun and heat, especially if we are not prepared.  

“It is important to stay out of the Sun as much as possible during the hottest part of the day. While it is so sunny if we do go out, we should wear sunscreen and a hat and try and stay in the shade.

“We should try and keep cool this could be indoors or outdoors in the shade.

“If you do want to go out, staying local in areas such as parks where trees and shelters can provide shade will be cooler and much more suitable for young children and elderly people who can succumb to the potentially dangerous effects of heat and dehydration very quickly.”

Useful links

Supporting vulnerable people before and during a heatwave: for health and social care professionals – GOV.UK (

Looking after children and those in early years settings during heatwaves: for teachers and professionals – GOV.UK (

Beat the heat: keep cool at home checklist – GOV.UK (

Heat Exhaustion is where people become very hot and start to lose water or salt from their body. Symptoms include weakness, faintness, headache, muscle cramps, feeling sick, heavy sweating and intense thirst.

Heatstroke is where the body is no longer able to cool itself and a person’s body temperature becomes dangerously high. Heatstroke is less common, but more serious and untreated, it can cause confusion, seizures and loss of consciousness.

Margaret continued:  “The best way to look after ourselves during what the Government has called ‘a national emergency’ is to stay out of the extreme heat, ensure we cool ourselves down, keep our environment cool or find somewhere else that is cool, this could be indoors or outside in the shade.”

People can find out more information on keeping cool during the hot weather, and how to keep others safe at 

Anyone who does go to the coast needs to remember that with no shelter or shade, sand temperatures can rise very quickly, creating a very uncomfortable and challenging surface to walk or stand on. 

Margaret Jones continued:  “If you are determined to go the beach, use factor 30 or above sun cream and lots of it and make sure children are protected and not exposed too much, as sunburn can do long-term damage.  

“Take plenty of drinks and ensure you keep hydrated because heat exhaustion and heatstroke can creep up on you and think about taking regular trips to somewhere off the beach where you can find some shade.”

Sefton and its partners coast teams will be on duty over the coming days, and they can provide some first aid. With ambulance services currently at full stretch, people needing more thorough emergency treatment may find themselves facing a long wait for assistance.

People visiting the Sefton coast this weekend are asked to dispose of litter carefully in bins, or if they are full, to take litter home with them as some items such as glass in strong sunshine can cause fires, like a magnifying glass. 

Also, migrating birds are returning so people are asked not to disturb these incredible travellers as they rest on the shoreline and to dogs under control.


‘Always smiling’ tributes paid to Cllr Gordon Friel

Sefton Council is saddened to learn of the passing of sitting council member Cllr Gordon Friel.

Cllr Friel, who served on Sefton Council since being elected to represent Lincare Ward in 1994, sadly passed away at the age of 69 yesterday (Monday, July 11th)

He was a well known face among the local authority and served on both the Licensing and Planning committees during his time representing Sefton.

Cllr Friel also resprented the borough on the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Transport Committee.

In a tribute today, Cllr John Fairclough, deputy leader of Sefton Council, said: “A respected councillor Gordon was first elected in May 1994 and has faithfully represented Linacre ward for the last 28 years.

“Gordon was a former union convener (rep) at the Jacobs factory in Aintree and has faithfully represented Linacre ward for the last 28 years. Gordon represented the interest of Sefton residents on boards and in many other roles during his time as an elected member.

“For the last ten years he was a member of Merseytravel’s combined authority transport committee. More recently he was deputy portfolio holder for the Liverpool City region combined authority transport committee.

“He will be sadly missed by both colleagues officers and those who knew him. Are thoughts are with his family at this time.

“I will remember Gordon as always smiling.”

Our thoughts are with Cllr Friel’s family at this difficult time.

Sandway Homes launch first Ainsdale show homes

A show home at the Sandy Brook developmentSefton Council’s own housing company has hit a major milestone with the official launch of its first walk-in showhome at its flagship Ainsdale development.

Children from local primary school Kew Woods joined dignitaries to celebrate the launch of Sandway Homes’ flagship housing development at Sandybrook, Ainsdale recently.

Sandway is the local authority’s wholly owned housing company which is currently working on delivering 141 homes across three sites in the Borough, many of which will be affordable housing for local families.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, was joined by the Mayor of Sefton Cllr Clare Carragher and pupils from Kings Meadow Primary School to cut the ribbon on Sandybrook’s stunning on site showhome.

The three show homes at Meadow Lane are open between 10am and 3pm, Friday, Saturday and Sunday and by appointment on Monday to Thursday.  The showhome at the Hey Farm Gardens development is to view by appointment. 

You can find out more  about the Sandy Brook development and arrange a visit to the showhome here.

The event was also attended by Sandway’s partners including Homes England, Main Contractor Barnfield and Together Housing Association, who have acquired 15 affordable homes at the Ainsdale scheme.

The development is located on land next to Ainsdale’s Meadow Lane on the former site of St. John Stone R.C. Primary School.

It takes its name from the adjacent Sandy Brook, one of three watercourses which forms part of the Three Pools Waterway

Cllr Hardy welcomed the launch, saying: “This is a key milestone in Sandway Homes and Sefton Council’s journey into the housing sector and ultimately we aim to have 11,000 new, high-quality homes across the borough by 2030.

“Today’s launch event reaffirms Sefton Council’s commitment to redeveloping brownfield land sites into housing opportunities for our communities and we are keen to ensure a significant amount of these new homes are affordable housing for those trying to get onto the property ladder.

“By delivering attractive, high quality homes housing across the borough, these developments can only enhance Sefton’s quality of place and community.

For further information please contact

Arthur’s Bridge opened in memory of much loved ‘lollipop man’

A bridge in Sefton has been locally renamed after a much loved ‘lollipop man,’ who spent 23 years making sure schoolchildren crossed it safely.

Arthur Snellgrove, a long time welcoming face for thousands of pupils at St Benedict’s Primary in Netherton, died peacefully at home in early January, 2022.

Every morning and afternoon a smiling Arthur would greet hundreds of schoolchildren as they crossed the canal swing bridge on St Oswald’s Lane, Netherton.

Now that same bridge has been officially locally renamed ‘Arthur’s Bridge’ in honour of the Sefton Council school crossing patrolman.

Arthur’s daughters Julie and Trisha were joined by dozens of friends, neighbours, schoolchildren and officers from both Sefton Council and the Canal & River Trust for the unveiling of two plaques, which will now adorn the swing bridge.

Julie said: “I want to thank everyone for this beautiful tribute. Arthur loved everyone and everyone loved him back.

“It’s such an honour that Sefton Council, the Canal & River Trust and the community have done this for us.

“My dad would have been so made up if he was here today to see this.

“He was an amazing man and an amazing dad who would do anything for anyone and he is sorely missed by all of us.”

A spokesperson for Sefton Council said: “Arthur started on his lollipop patrol in September of 1999 and without fail made the trip between his home and St Benedict’s School for the next 23 years, four times a day.

“Not only will he be greatly missed by his family, friends and colleagues but there are generations of families in South Sefton who will fondly remember Arthur as the ever-smiling face of St Benedict’s.

“We are delighted to have been able to work with the Canal & River Trust and the community to ensure Arthur’s legacy lives on with ‘Arthur’s Bridge.’

“There are parents in Sefton who Arthur will have helped cross this bridge safely back when they were in primary school and they will have since waved their children off to start their school day knowingly confidently that they were in Arthur’s safe hands.

“He was ever present with a wave and a smile to parents, children and motorists and was extremely popular with all who knew him.

“Even at the young age of 87 he would ride his bike back and forth to his crossing from home four times a day!”

As well as serving as a Sefton School Crossing Patrolman for 23 years, Arthur was a local celebrity in his beloved hometown.

Chosen as the main guest of honour at the Netherton Activity Centre to kickstart a dazzling fireworks display in 2019, Arthur proved he was just the right man to make Sefton sparkle again and again.

Later that same year, for the Sefton Borough of Culture celebrations, Arthur, with his trusty lollipop, officially switched on the Parabolic Light Cloud Installation in front of huge crowds.

He sadly passed away peacefully at home in January, 2022.

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