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Sefton’s Town Halls to light up in tribute to Her Majesty

Both Southport and Bootle Town Hall will light up in tribute to Queen Elizabeth II.

The civic buildings will be illuminated from dusk on Monday, September 12th and remain illuminated for eight nights – this is to mark the UK wide period of mourning for Her Majesty’s state funeral on September 19.

Southport and Bootle Town Halls join a host of other iconic buildings across the Liverpool City Region, which will be illuminated in a regal purple.

The illumination follows the official and historic Reading of the Proclamations, carried out by the Mayor of Sefton Cllr Clare Carragher, outside Southport and Bootle Town Halls on Sunday which proclaimed the passing of the crown to King Charles III.

Books of condolence are available at Bootle Town Hall and the Atkinson, Southport for people to sign and remember Her Majesty. Books of Condolence will be collated and archived.

An online book of remembrance has also been made available by Buckingham Palace and will soon be available via the Sefton Council website www.sefton.gov.uk.

For Sefton residents who cannot access the online book of remembrance, printed Condolence Cards will be available from all Sefton Libraries and Family Wellbeing Centres. These can be filled in by hand and either returned to one of the libraries or family wellbeing centres or can be posted back to either Southport or Bootle Town Halls. These cards will be collated and stored in Council archives.

Areas outside Bootle Town Hall and the Town Hall Gardens on Lord Street, Southport have been designated as places where residents can leave floral tributes in memory of Her Majesty.

During the mourning period and state funeral, some of the Mayor of Sefton’s engagements may be cancelled as a mark of respect. Other engagements during this period may begin with a period of silence to honour the Queen’s passing.

Floral tributes at both Southport and Bootle will remain in place until after the state funeral. Residents are asked to remove all plastic packaging before laying flowers. These will then be sensitively collected and disposed of in an appropriate fashion.

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Les Transformations de Southport scheme’s first phase all set to commence

Les Transformations De Southport scheme’s first phase is all set to ‘commence’ after a £2.5 million business case for the proposals was approved by government.

Set to support Southport’s return to the grandeur of Victorian England, “Les Transformations de Southport” focuses on improving physical connections and routes across the town centre.

It will also see also new public event spaces at the heart of what was the country’s second most popular tourist destination.

Phase One

Phase One of Les Transformations De Southport involves:

Market Street

  • Creation of a traffic free section on Market Street alongside the market, from the junction of King Street.
  • Increased space for additional footfall and event hosting provision.
  • Conversion of the existing carriageway to a new paved surface that will provide level access for pedestrians as well as service vehicles.
  • New tree planting and raised floral planters.
  • New street lighting.
  • Maintaining traffic provision from Market Street to Princes Street with a new two-way section.

King Street

  • Introduction of a new one way traffic flow arrangement on King Street, from Eastbank Street to the junction with Market Street.
  • Widening of the pavement to provide more space for pedestrians and for use by businesses.

Eastbank Street

  • Improved pedestrian crossing provision.
  • Introduction of a 20mph speed limit along Eastbank Street from the junction with Virginia Street to the junction with Lord Street.
  • Provision of a new, wider paved surface along sections of both sides of Eastbank Street.
  • Installation of raised planters to enhance the street environment

Chapel Street

  • Upgrades to street furniture.
  • Investigation into potential improved lighting.
  • Working with station property owners to encourage further improvements.

Consultation

A public consultation held earlier this year showed a very positive response from residents and visitors to the proposals.

However, Sefton Council is keen to ensure anyone affected by the works is kept closely informed and that any potential issues are addressed to minimise disruption.

The Council has written to residents and businesses in the area to keep them up to speed with Phase One of the project’s progression. The Council will also be consulting further with businesses and other stakeholders in the Market Street area to ensure that any issues that they have are identified and can be addressed as part of the design process.

Early 2023

Work is expected to start on the changes to Market Street, King Street, Eastbank Street and Chapel Street in early 2023.

The future phases of the project are being developed and will be delivered as funding becomes available.

Emperor Napoleon III

Emperor Napoleon III

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said: “We all know the famous story that, while living in exile in Southport in 1838, Prince Louis Napoleon, later Emperor Napoleon III, was so inspired by the grandeur of Lord Street that he ordered Baron Haussmann to model the reconstruction of Paris on it.

“Les Transformations de Paris made the French capital the “Southport of the South”. Les Transformations de Southport will ensure we again fulfil the potential of our public realm spaces

“When we first carried out our extensive Les Transformations De Southport consultation, the need for maintenance of existing infrastructure to create safe spaces accessible for all emerged strongly as priorities and we received strong and broad support to press ahead with a series of improvements.

“Phase One of those improvements will focus on the areas around Market Street, King Street and Eastbank Street, which has already seen a huge uplift in footfall thanks to the addition of the incredible Southport Market revamp.

“These works are a key next step in the delivery of Southport Town Deal and complement the exciting projects of the Marine Lake Events Centre and the Enterprise Arcade.

“Sefton Council and our partners on the Town Deal Board want to see Southport transformed into a thriving, vibrant visitor destination.

“We want to give people a reason to visit and stay for longer.

“We believe that projects and attractions such as these, along with the recently completed Southport Market, will act as a catalyst for emerging private sector investment across the town centre and will create a genuinely unique visitor experience and will only serve to strengthen our visitor economy.

“We’re putting Southport back on the map. Vive la Southport!”

Find out more about Southport.

More than 56 MILES of new decking planned for Southport Pier refurbishment

More than 56 miles of decking boards will be used on the refurbishment of Southport Pier, the same distance as travelling from the resort to Stoke!

Southport’s 160-year-old Grade II listed Pier could be set for the significant upgrade in the coming months if up to £3 million for new decking is approved.

Charlie Chaplin

Since its construction in 1860, Southport Pier has been the focal point of the town’s seaside heritage. It has been visited by Charlie Chaplin, stopped at by steamers and was used as a base for searchlights during the Second World War.

And over those 160-plus years exposed to corrosive rain, wind and salt spray, Southport’s pier has, like all traditional seaside piers, required numerous repair and refurbishment.

At their meeting next week, Sefton Council’s Cabinet will be asked to provisionally approve up to £3 million to replace the wooden decking along the Pier’s whole 1.1km length. If agreed, the work could begin in late 2022.

Southport to Stoke

Such is the scale of the planned works, more than 56 miles of decking boards will be used in the refurbishment, which is the same distance as the crow flies from Southport to Stoke. 

Once approved at Cabinet, full council approval for the works will then need to be sought prior to any works being undertaken.

Constant effects of nature

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration & Skills, said: “Like many incredible open-air coastal structures, Southport Pier is affected by the constant powerful effects of nature.

“That plus the wear from the many thousands of people who enjoy walking along Britain’s second longest pier means large-scale works like we are proposing are needed to preserve the structure for generations of the future to enjoy.”

Repairs to the Pier date back to as early as 1890 and during its long history it has fallen victim to incredibly powerful storm damage, boat crashes and numerous fires in the 19th and 20th century. In 2018, extensive repairs and repainting works were carried out by Sefton Council to the Pier’s steelwork to combat corrosion from the sea. 

Iconic

Cllr Atkinson added:  “By replacing the decking boards in their entirety, we are protecting the structure for generations to come.

“Southport’s iconic pier is by no means cheap to look after but it is cherished by all of us in Sefton and by the town’s many visitors so I don’t think anyone could argue against providing it with this vital care.”

You can find out more about the highlights of a visit to Southport here. 

Global events firm picked for Marine Lake Events Centre

Major steps are being taken in the delivery of the state of the art Marine Lake Events Centre in Southport, as Sefton Council identify ASM Global, the world’s leading venue management company and producer of live experiences as the preferred operating partner.

The new Centre will be complemented by the UK’s first light, water and sound show in the town’s Marine Lake.

A report published today (Tuesday, August 23) to Sefton Council’s Cabinet will ask members to approve the lease agreement between the local authority and ASM Global, as well as seeking approval to borrow £19.7m of funding to be added to contributions from the Town Deal (£31.7m) and the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (£17.7m) towards the project.

This vital stage in the Marine Lake Events Centre (MLEC) and Water & Lights Show project follows a series of landmarks for the scheme – most recently the submission of a detailed planning application and comprehensive business case.

Investigatory works on the existing Southport Theatre and Convention Centre site and the Upper Promenade, have also started to allow for an assessment of the land’s underground conditions to progress the design further.

Marine Lake Events Centre joins ASM Global’s network of more than 350 venues around the world, which host 20,000 events, and welcome 165 million guests every year.

ASM Global has been identified by the local authority as the recommended partner to manage, operate and programme the new entertainment and conference venue along with The Water and Light Show in the resort.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said: “By awarding preferred bidder status to ASM Global we are once again showing our ambition, determination and passion towards delivering the incredible MLEC project.

“We are doing everything to ensure the end goal is a fully flexible, scalable cultural space capable of staging concerts, stand-up comedy, family shows, musical theatre, conferences, exhibitions that is the envy of other towns and cities.

“ASM Global operate 350 venues across five continents and share in the ambitions of Sefton Council and the Southport Town Deal in making MLEC a soaring success. Our borough, our town and the council will benefit from the wealth of experience and knowledge the team at ASM Global can bring to the table.

“Within the UK they operate 12 venues ranging from a 600-capacity seaside theatre in Whitley Bay to the 40,000 sqm exhibition centre of Olympia London and AO Arena in Manchester.

“The MLEC, together with the Light Fantastic, is forecast to attract more than half a million visitors to Southport year on year and generating an annual £18 million for the local economy and I am delighted that Sefton Council is once again leading the way in exciting projects like this.”

ASM European Executive Vice President, Chris Bray comments: ”ASM Global is delighted to partner with Sefton Council to deliver the Marine Lake Events Centre and welcome the venue into the ASM Global family. Southport has a rich history of events and culture and we are pleased to engage in this long-term partnership and what’s set to be a visionary and game-changing project for Southport and the Sefton region”

“The combination of a high quality, flexible venue and the Light Fantastic is a unique offer, in a stunning location, which will create an outstanding leisure, events and cultural destination for both residents and visitors. There has already been excellent progress in securing funding, developing the initial designs and submitting the planning application, and we are excited to now join the project team and share our wealth of experience of designing, developing and relaunching venues.”

“We look forward to delivering a busy concert and entertainment programme alongside a wide range of conference and business events that will provide a great meeting place and platform for the region.”

Nick Russell, Director at consultancy firm IPW said: “The Marine Lake Events Centre will create a cornerstone to the regeneration of Southport calling upon the former successes in both entertainment and conferencing in the town to create a new hub for business, theatre and events. During a very competitive process our team has selected ASM Global as the preferred operator for the project. Their worldwide experience will ensure the operating success of the venue as they have done in many venues across the country.

“We look forward to working with them to finalise the scheme and secure MLECs development for the town and the city region.”

The cabinet report also confirmed that Sefton Council is in ongoing discussions with a number of public sources such as Arts Council England, aiming to identify additional funding streams to support the project.

As part of the local authority’s robust assessment of capital costs for the project, £19.7m of funding will need to allocated to the MLEC project, which will currently be contributed by Sefton Council.

Details of next week’s meeting can be found here.

Sefton launches mobile app for building sector

Sefton Council is helping builders to quickly have their work quickly assessed and approved by building control officers with the introduction of a new mobile app.

Constructors and developers will be able to use the new Inspection Request mobile app to arrange specialist site inspections from Sefton Council’s Building Control officers.

Sefton Council have teamed up with the Local Authority Building Control (LABC) agency to be included on the app.

Cllr Daren Veidman, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning & Building Control, said: “We are always looking at innovative ways of working which to help those in the development and construction sectors carry out their work and be assessed promptly.

“The LABC Inspection Request app is free and allows developers and constructors to quickly request a site inspection from a Sefton Council building control specialist.

“Using the app to supplement the previous telephone-based system means our customer service support teams will be able to focus more time on dealing with issues or queries from local residents and businesses.”

Members of the construction sector can download the app by searching for ‘LABC inspection request’ in either the iPhone App Store or via Google Play store on Android.

Alternatively appointments can still be made via telephone by calling 0345 140 0845

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