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HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, 1921 – 2021

Image of HRH Duke of Edinburgh to commemorate his passing
Image of HRH Duke of Edinburgh to commemorate his passing

Sefton Council has expressed great sadness at death of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh. As a mark of respect, all flags at Council buildings are lowered to half-mast as Sefton pays tribute to The Duke of Edinburgh.

Mayor of Sefton, Cllr June Burns said: “Sefton Council sends its deepest condolences to Her Majesty The Queen following the passing of HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

“We can remember the Duke of Edinburgh fondly and look back at the many occasions he visited our wonderful borough with Her Majesty The Queen. From their early visits to Bootle and Crosby in October 1954, to a stop off in Southport and Altcar Training Camp in 1985; I’m sure so many people will remember these visits to Sefton with great fondness and contentment.

“Whilst national restrictions remain in place we would ask Sefton Residents to stay safe by laying floral tributes at home, or in their own gardens during this time.”

An online book of condolence has been set up at royal.uk

Sefton Council is following palace guidance that rather than flowers, the Royal Family would prefer charity donations to one of the Duke of Edinburgh’s many patronages.

Southport Air Show Cancellation

The 2021 Southport Air Show will not take place this year due to continued uncertainty over large scale events.

Anyone who has already purchased a ticket for the show, which was due to take place in July, will automatically receive a full refund within ten working days.

Sefton Council has made the difficult decision to cancel the popular Southport Air Show, despite months of hard work and planning by the authority’s Tourism team and partners.

While this decision has not been taken lightly, we know that thousands of people visit to see our air show and Sefton Council continues to put the safety and wellbeing of our communities and visitors first throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Owing to the large scale of planning and preparations required for an event as large as Southport Air Show, work began in late 2020 with the aim of delivering the spectacular and jaw dropping weekend of aerial displays that is an icon of Southport’s events calendar.

A number of factors have been considered in the decision, including safety of visitors and staff as well as the availability and quality of aircraft available.

A spokesperson for Sefton Council said: “The decision to cancel The Air Show has not been taken lightly.

“Keeping our visitors, communities, staff and partners safe remains paramount and is just one of a number of factors being at the forefront of this decision.

“At this time there is no certainty that the event would be allowed to take place on the scale that such an iconic event deserves.

“We have also taken the decision to delay the Southport Food & Drink Festival until later this year and will confirm a new date as soon as we can.

“While this is disappointing news to us all, we continue to do everything we can to bring incredible and amazing events back to our borough and we are working hard towards hosting the British Musical Fireworks Championship (September 24 to September 26) and a rearranged Southport Food and Drink Festival at Victoria Park, Southport.”

Southport and Sefton has 22 miles of coastline, with cultural highlights that include Anthony Gormley’s Another Place, the most independent eateries and restaurants outside London, plus a brand new food and drink market and lots of outdoor space for you to enjoy safely this summer.

To find out more about visiting Southport or Visit Southport’s current situation with coronavirus (Covid-19) visit www.visitsouthport.com

Twice-weekly rapid COVID test kits available from Friday 9th April

Photo of Home Testing Kit components
Home Testing Kit

From Friday 9th April, people in England will be able to access twice-weekly rapid tests for coronavirus.

Margaret Jones, Sefton Council’s Director of Public Health is encouraging everyone who is going to a work environment or who will be returning to their workplace to take up this offer.

Prevent the spread

She said: “Rapid tests are tests for people without the coronavirus symptoms of a new persistent cough, a high temperature or a loss of sense of taste or smell and they usually provide a result in around 30 minutes.

“One in three people with coronavirus show no symptoms, which means they can accidentally spread it without knowing.

“Taking a rapid testing twice a week will find those invisible cases and help prevent the spread of infection.”

Checking

Rapid coronavirus testing involves taking a throat & nasal swab, dropping the sample into the container supplied and then checking the result after 20 to 30 minutes.

Rapid test kits can be collected from Bootle Town Hall and Splash World in Southport from 8am-8pm seven days a week. No appointments are needed.

Kits can also be collected from walk-through Local Test Centres opposite Bootle Town Hall and at Crosby Library Car Park, Netherton Activity Centre and Southport Town Hall between 2.30pm and 8pm, seven days a week. No appointments are needed.

Kits an also be ordered online.

Assisted testing

People can also choose to have assisted testing at one of Sefton’s SMART test sites, which are also open 8am to 8pm seven days a week and located at Bootle Leisure Centre, Splash World in Southport and at Aintree Racecourse although this centre is closed and will re-open on Monday 12th April.

Find out more about testing in Sefton. 

Positive

Anyone who gets a positive result from a rapid test must self-isolate for 10 days and immediately book a PCR test by calling 119 or visiting www.nhs.uk/coronavirus .

Eligible people who test positive are entitled to the £500 Test and Trace Support Payment in the same way as a regular swab test through NHS Test and Trace.

Vaccinations

As well as getting regular rapid tests Margaret Jones is encouraging anyone who is offered a vaccination to go along and get a jab to protect themselves and those around them.

She said: “Tens of thousands of people across Sefton, including me, have already had their first vaccination and many will have had their second too, but it is important that all of us take the opportunity to get our jab when it is offered.

“Infection rates in Sefton have dropped significantly but vaccination is the best way for to protect ourselves and those around us and underpins our way out of lockdown and a return to the more normal ways of life we all want to see.”

Find out more about vaccinations and who is eligible for a jab.   

Call for carers to book COVID-19 jab

As the COVID-19 vaccination programme continues to make good progress, GPs in Sefton are reminding unpaid carers to get registered and come forward for their vaccine.

Some unpaid carers may not receive an invitation for their vaccination if their carer status is not known to the NHS so it’s important to ensure they are registered with Sefton Carers Centre who can help with this.

Sefton Carers Centre will register unpaid carers and provide them with a letter as proof of their status. Unpaid carers will need the letter before booking their vaccination through their GP practice.

Carers eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine include anyone who is a main carer of someone who receives Carer’s Allowance or who is at high risk from coronavirus from a condition.

This includes:

  • Children with severe neuro-disabilities (you will be informed by your GP)
  • Those who are designated Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (advised to shield)
  • Adults with underlying health conditions
  • Those who need care because of advanced age.

Fiona Taylor, chief officer for NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “Getting the vaccine is the best way to protect those who you are caring for and yourself from coronavirus. The life-saving vaccine is safe and effective.

“If you are a carer, please register with Sefton Carers Centre as soon as possible. This will ensure that anyone eligible for the vaccination isn’t missed and we can continue to protect our local community and the most vulnerable.”

Vicky Keeley, chief executive officer at Sefton Carers Centre added: “Unpaid carers have been under increasing demands and stress as the pandemic continues. The vaccination programme is vital to protect vulnerable people and carers.

“Sefton Carers Centre provides a range of free support, advice, and activities for all unpaid carers on their journey of care. Carers registered with us will receive a letter confirming their caring status as evidence for the vaccination programme. Free personal protective equipment can also be accessed via Sefton Council until 21 June 2021.

“We would encourage anyone aged 16 and over in a caring role to register with us and then speak with their GP to make sure that they get vaccinated.”

To register as an unpaid carer with the Sefton Carers Centre, please call 0151 288 6060.

If you are an unpaid carer and provide care to someone outside of your household, you can order Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) free of charge from Sefton Council until 21 June 2021. To order email EmergencyPPE@sefton.gov.uk and make sure you clearly mark your email as “Carers PPE” or call 0345 140 0845. For more information, visit Sefton Council’s website.

For more information about the Covid-19 vaccination visit: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/coronavirus-vaccine/

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the European Medicines Agency and the World Health Organisation have all been absolutely clear that the vaccines are safe and effective, and people should go and get their COVID-19 vaccine when asked to do so.

NHS South Sefton CCG and NHS Southport and Formby CCG have been responsible for buying or ‘commissioning’ the majority of local health services since 1 April 2013, when primary care trusts were abolished.

NHS South Sefton CCG brings together 30 member GP practices covering an area from Bootle in the south, Hightown in the north and Maghull to the east.

NHS Southport and Formby CCG’s membership are made up of 19 GP practices.

For more information visit: southportformbyccg.nhs.uk / southseftonccg.nhs.uk or follow us on Twitter @NHSSFCCG / @NHSSSCCG

Watch out for the tide – beach safety advice from Southport Lifeboat

Southport Offshore Rescue Trust (often known as Southport Lifeboat) has launched a new tidal safety campaign – #ItsBehindYou – to remind beach visitors of the need to be on the lookout for tides when enjoying Sefton’s beaches.

The Trust was called upon countless times during last year’s busy summer season to rescue cut-off beachgoers. In anticipation of another busy spring and summer, the safety campaign has been instigated to ensure everyone knows about the dangers of becoming cut-off by the incoming tide. 

Southport Lifeboat banner 2Banners with a special QR code have been placed along the Ainsdale and Southport coastline. When scanned, the code takes the beach user to Southport Lifeboat’s website which contains the day’s tidal information, information on the #ItsBehindYou campaign, along with further coastal safety advice.

What is the #ItsBehindYou campaign? What does it aim to do?

Many people are unaware of the movement of nearshore waters. While it may appear that waves undergo a simple cycle; it can in fact create dangers for beachgoers.

#ItsBehindYou aims to inform the public about the basics of tidal phenomena and encourages beach visitors to check the tide times each and every time they visit the coast. Those visiting the Borough’s beaches are also urged to be aware of their surroundings and ultimately to check behind them to identify whether they are at risk of becoming cut-off.

Southport Lifeboat banner 1Why is this important?

Sefton has shelf seas that lead to large tidal ranges – one of the largest tidal ranges in the world, in fact. The northwest’s coastline is unique. Its apparent flat profile is deceiving. Upon closer inspection, the beach is riddled with raised sandbanks, micro-channels, rills and gullies. It is the difference in beach elevation that means people become cut-off. Why? Because as the tide rises, it fills the areas of lowest elevation first, which may be behind you.  As this water joins to another channel, or the waterline further up the beach, you have become cut-off.

In am emergency, call 999 and ask for the Coastguard

If anyone ever finds themselves cut-off, or notices someone in difficulty, call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

More information about Sefton’s beaches can be found on the Sefton Council website. Always plan ahead when you visit the coast and follow important information from the Lifeguards and Coastguard to ensure you enjoy your time their safely.

 

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