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WATCH: Sefton schoolchildren hailed for anti-scrambler bike project

Sefton schoolchildren have been rewarded for their involvement in an anti-scrambler bike education project during the Autumn term of 2018.

Now in its fourth year, the project was set up by Constable Alan Thompson from Bootle Neighbourhood team, with help from Sefton Council, Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, and aims to highlight the impact off-road bikes have on local communities in Sefton.

The four schools involved are:
St Oswalds Primary School, Netherton
The Grange Primary School, Bootle
Hatton Hill Primary School, Bootle
Lander Road Primary School, Litherland

Early in 2018, Year 5 pupils at the schools received education on the dangers of off-road bikes and impact they cause in their communities. Assemblies have been given to each of the primary schools from Merseyside Police, Sefton Council Anti-Social Behaviour Unit and Alder Hey Hospital.

Once the pupils returned to school to begin their Year 6 studies, they each designed and filmed a 90-second video. They also took part in activities including an activity day at Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre and the re-enactment of a crash involving a scrambler bike at Croxteth Community Fire Station.

The 16 winners of the video competition were presented their certificates by Rachel Brown-Finnis, BT Sports analyst and former Liverpool, Everton and England goalkeeper and Ian Snodin, broadcaster, pundit and former Everton midfielder, before the grand unveiling of the top-secret children’s prize, a ski trip to Scotland.

Their videos will also be used in a publicity campaign in the Sefton area.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “We are constantly amazed at our fabulous Sefton school pupils who have worked so hard on this project

“We know scrambler bikes are a blight on our communities and through this initiative we want to make sure important messages about the risks and dangers of using them are learnt.

“It is also another great example of partnership working and engaging with our communities to make Sefton a safer place for everyone.”

Merseyside Police Assistant Chief Constable Ian Critchley said: “This brilliant scheme has been running for four years and represents the very best in partnership work which takes place across Sefton and the force. The children have worked hard and had some fun along the way, and the lesson they have learnt will be passed on to their friends, families and communities.

“It is so important that future generations understand why off-road bikes are so dangerous, to road users, the environment and the riders themselves. We recognise the impact that the anti-social and criminal use of bikes has on residents of these and other areas.”

Thousands benefit from InvestSefton business support

InvestSefton, Sefton Council’s enterprise, business support and inward investment service, continues to support local enterprises and has engaged with more than 2,200 individual businesses.

InvestSefton is one of the Liverpool City Region growth hubs working alongside the Local Enterprise Partnership, other local authorities, Chambers of Commerce and The Women’s Organisation. It is part of current UK Government funded activities delivered locally by Local Enterprise Partnerships.

Robert Andrews (Director), Peter Oxspring (MD), Julie Swarbrick Invest Sefton, Peter Dowd MP, Cllr Marion Atkinson and Gary Brine, Hardy production manager

InvestSefton is also about to confirm the second phase of its European funded initiative-the Business Growth Programme which has already assisted over 255 businesses including 45 new enterprises in the borough.

Sefton residents and entrepreneurs seeking to start their own business have a managed referral to the Enterprise Hub which sits alongside the ERDF Business Growth Programme and provides a range of 1:1 and mentoring support.

Some 140 start ups have been referred to the Enterprise Hub for further support and InvestSefton has begun to supplement this work through the introduction of business clinics held every Tuesday at The Atkinson, Southport.

InvestSefton also supports the offer of subsidised commercial assistance through New Markets with 54 referrals into this Liverpool City Region wide programme. The team works closely with the Council’s Sefton@work service which helps support Sefton residents into new employment opportunities arising from business growth and new inward investment in the borough.

Businesses are supported in a variety of ways from expert 1:1 advice and guidance from the team’s nationally accredited Advisers to demand led events and workshops.

Kristina Swift of Invest Sefton pictured with Kevin Murphy of Venue Rent a Space

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Growth and Housing, said: “We are very proud of all the excellent work in helping and supporting local businesses through InvestSefton and Sefton@Work.
“Our mantra is very much about being open for business and the fact so many enterprises are contacting us for help and assistance is testament to this.
“Business enquiries through Sefton Growth Hub continue to rise with the same mix of firms from a range of industry sectors seeking advice, guidance and more intensive support and we really hope this continues.”

InvestSefton is able to provide a wide range of assistance at no cost to business. Areas of support can include:
• Access to finance
• Finding new business sites and premises
• Business planning, cashflow and cost reduction
• Dealing with council services more easily and effectively
• Winning new business from public sector contracts

For more information on the wide range of services available via InvestSefton please visit www.investsefton.com, email info@investsefton.com or call 0151 934 3452.

Appeal for information following robbery of bike from teenage boy in Southport

Detectives are appealing for information following the robbery of a bike from a teenage boy in Southport in January.

At 3.45pm on Wednesday 30 January, a 14-year-old boy was cycling through Southport Cemetery on Duke Street when he was approached by an unknown person who punched him and forced him from the bike, before stealing it.

The suspect is described as wearing dark clothing with a hood up. Enquiries are ongoing.

The bike is a Cannondale mountain bike with a sprayed black frame and yellow shock absorber. Since the image was taken, the handlebars are now gold in colour, and the seat is now black and gold.

Detective Inspector Yoseph Al-Ramadhan said: “For a young teenager to be threatened and assaulted in broad daylight and have his property stolen is absolutely appalling and I’m sure people within the local community share our disgust and outrage.

“Did you see this incident or have any CCTV or dashcam footage of the suspect making off? Have you been offered or seen for sale a similar Cannondale mountain bike in recent days, or seen anyone riding it in the area?

“Come forward and we will take positive action on all information received to identify the person responsible and bring them to justice.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact the social media desk @MerPolCC, call 101 with reference 19100030365 or the independent charity @CrimestoppersUK anonymously, on 0800 555 111. You can also use their online form at: https://crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information/give-information.

Labour North West bring conference to Southport

Labour North West will be hosting their annual Regional Conference in Southport later this year.

The conference is an opportunity for top politicians and party members to spend the weekend debating and discussing the big issues of the day.

Southport Theatre and Convention Centre (STCC) is a great venue that provides the perfect setting to host such a large delegation.

The annual event gets bigger and better every year and Labour North West expect over 600 visitors to attend the event which runs over a weekend in November.

Cllr Ian Maher, Labour Leader of Sefton Council, said: “The fact the Labour NW Regional Conference is being held in Southport this year is great news for the town and the whole borough.

“The Southport Theatre & Convention Centre offers superb modern facilities within a stunning setting overlooking the Marine Lake and is the ideal choice for an event of this calibre.

“Southport itself has a wealth of attractions for the conference delegates should they have any free time including some fabulous bars and restaurants and lots of independent retailers.

“Hosting an event like this also brings immense economic benefit to the area and with around 600 delegates expected to attend, it will generate around half a million pounds for the local economy. We are very proud to be chosen to host such a conference and look forward to welcoming everyone in a few months’ time.”

Hundreds attend Southport BID investment meeting

Over 100 local businesses, regional property agents, investors, and other stakeholders with an interest in taking Southport forward were brought together last week by Southport BID.

Southport has been hit hard, not helped by recent announcements of further store closures, and the town will take time to recover. However, the event was designed to focus on the positives, the investment that’s already happened, and the millions of pounds that could potentially come to the town from funding applications already in the pipeline and from private sector investors.

Speakers at the event included the Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram, and members of his investment team; Sarah Kemp, Executive Director, Sefton Council; Caroline Baker from property specialists Cushman Wakefield; Dr Steve Millington from The BID Foundation; and Agsteribbe from Bliss Investments.

Rob Uffendell, Chair of the BID, says:

“It’s clear that Southport, our town, is experiencing the same sort of issues that are facing many other towns and cities across the country. So, we’re not alone in having to face up to some really significant challenges.

“Our speakers consistently highlighted the big advantages that helps set us apart from our competitors. Our reputation as a significant coastal destination is increasing year on year (as demonstrated by the annual rise in visitor numbers). We have some unique assets in our town.

“We’ve already seen a lot of investment in our town. And we have dedicated partners from both the private and public sector who are determined to get things done.

“There is evidence from around the UK that those areas with BIDs in place are more successful in attracting external funding because it demonstrates a strong partnership between the private and public sectors and a willingness to work together”.

Delegates raised the issue of parking and the need for more flexibility in setting tariffs. Improving east – west transport links and doing more to increase residential living in the town centre were also highlighted.

Rob Uffendell continued: “Southport was described as a speciality town with plenty of opportunities for development.

“Attracting investment is hard work as was made clear by our speakers. All of them were clear on one thing: there are huge opportunities for this town but to get it right we need to demonstrate confidence and pride in what we have.

“That said, many of the solutions raised at the event have been talked about for years. If we’re going to take this town forward and make things happen, it’s time for action and not words”.

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