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British Masters 2019: Pictures & videos from the tournament

Professional golfers Matthew Baldwin and Oliver Wilson chipped in to help budding golfers improve their skills through free coaching sessions at Southport Muni.

The golfers, who are in the resort for the British Masters tournament at Hillside Golf Club, kindly gave up their time to offer the sessions as part of Sefton Council’s Festival of Golf.

Matthew, who started his career playing at Southport Golf Links, was joined by Oliver Wilson, who starred in the 2008 Ryder Cup, offering top tips to stars of the future.

They started on the putting practice and then shared advice and tactics on the driving range and chipping onto the green.

For more information on Sefton Council’s Festival of Golf click here

Team tackling youth crime are committed to delivering high-quality services following inspection

Sefton Council’s team for tackling youth crime has demonstrated that they are committed to delivering high-quality services and are putting in place more robust systems to support this ambition.

During a routine inspection of Sefton Youth Offending Team (YOT) in February, the HM Inspectorate of Probation rated the local authority as being ‘Requires improvement’, recognising that Sefton YOT has areas of strength, including a skilled and dedicated workforce supporting young people to turn away from crime.

They acknowledged that the workforce wants the best for those they work with and that the YOT makes effective use of local resources to meet the needs of children and young people and their families.

The YOT were highlighted for being at the forefront of positive training initiative including on topics such as desistance, AssetPlus and child exploitation.

Inspectors recognised that the Council is going through a period of reorganisation, which will affect many services including the YOT, and are recommending that YOT needs to gain a deeper understanding of the children and young people that it works with.

Sefton’s YOT has already developed an improvement plan and will look at ways to address the key recommendations highlighted during the routine inspection.

They will be putting in place a number of actions that will focus on opportunities to prevent children and young people coming to the attention of the YOT in the first place through the early intervention and prevention agenda.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton’s Cabinet Member for Communities, said: “We recognise that we have areas that we need to focus on but, despite reducing funding from Government, we have some real key strengths which we’re going to build on to ensure that we can make improvements and deliver a more effective youth offending service.

“We have a committed workforce that wants to do the best for our children across the borough, and we believe that by focusing our efforts on offering the right support, in the right ways and at an earlier stage will help deter young people coming into the system.

“Our early intervention and prevention model is new and still bedding in but we believe that we have the building blocks in place to develop a better approach that will help us improve positive outcomes and life chances for our young people communities.

“We will now work with partners to fully address the findings of this report, building on our areas of good practice whilst focusing on the key areas for improvement.”

The full report is available at

Cyber Champions enlisted in schools to spread word about internet crime

Merseyside Police has enlisted the help of a team of teenage ’Cyber Champions’ in schools across Merseyside to help spread the word about internet crime.

An event will be held Wednesday May 8, at Merseyside Police HQ to launch the scheme, attended by school pupils and the latest Cyber Champions who are being trained to educate fellow students on cybercrime.

The initiative promotes digital literacy and e-safety and is supported by professional services company KPMG. Similar initiatives have been adopted in other areas of the country where thousands of children, parents and senior citizens have participated in workshops.

PCSOs have already been joined by specialists from KPMG, visiting schools across Merseyside to carry out workshops for children and their parents and guardians about staying safe online. Each school then designates their own ‘Cyber Champions’.

As well as helping other pupils, the role gives the Cyber Champions a sense of responsibility and the opportunity to develop their own interpersonal skills, and gain knowledge in cyber security – crucial skills valued by future employers.

Reports of cybercrime have increased by more than 80% in the last three years in Merseyside – from April 2016 to March 2017 there were 2,586 cybercrimes reported, from April 2017 to March 2018 there were 3,474 and in the last 12 months, from April 2018 to March 2019, there were 4,744.

Detective Chief Inspector Helen Bennett, from Merseyside Police’s Digital Forensics Team, said: “We know that reports of cybercrime have increased in recent years. This is in part due to increased awareness of the issue but the rise in use of apps and social media platforms means that there are more ways than ever for criminals to try to exploit people on the internet.

“That is why it is so important to ensure young people are equipped to avoid becoming the next victim.

This is a great initiative and is a win-win for all involved. The young Cyber Champions themselves get to develop skills that will set them in really good stead for the future; their fellow pupils will get the knowledge to prevent themselves from becoming victims of cybercrime; and we as a police force have seen some really important messages spread widely by an enthusiastic group of young volunteers.

“By engaging with schools we will also hear about any trends about youngsters that our Cyber Crime officers might need to keep an eye on.”

DCI Bennett added: “In the workshops, we discuss the different online channels, social media platforms and smart phone apps that young people use. And as the children themselves are often up to speed with the latest emerging trends and new apps, they are very well placed to identify any issues and causes for concern.

“The workshops are interactive and show some videos about the information children should avoid putting online as part of their digital footprint, and how to stay safe.

“We also broach important topics like cyber bullying, age restrictions for gaming and social media sites, security and privacy settings followed by sharing some further sources of support.”

Charlie Caldwell, from Carmel College, has just been made a Cyber Champion.

He said: “I am really looking forward to becoming a Cyber Security Champion as it will provide me with future opportunities.

“With this contribution to helping children stay safe online it will show my future employers that I am committed and willing to step outside of my comfort zone.

“Many people will recognise this as a very great achievement which can help me when seeking a job in an IT or even Business region. Helping children staying safe online provides me with comfort, that we can prevent children from facing any difficulties or security issues online in the future.”

Johnny Lau, from Carmel College, who has also recently been made a Cyber Champion said: “I was delighted that this opportunity was given. I think it’s a good opportunity with today’s social climate for people to know how to be safe.”

If you are interested in children at your school becoming Cyber Champions, please email:

Southport Festival welcomes the legends of Soul at the Waterfront

Iconic British band Soul II Soul head to Southport to headline the 2019 Southport Festival.

On Friday 10 May the band that had huge successes with the hits Keep On Movin’ (which sold over a million copies in the US alone) and the UK number one single ‘Back To Life (However Do You Want Me)’ perform in the beautiful surroundings of the Floral Hall Ballroom.

The double Grammy Award winning and five-time Brit Award nominated band progressed from being one of the leaders of the 1980’s warehouse scene to pioneering British black music around the world and securing commercial success for themselves and the huge number of artists they have influenced.

As well as selling 10 million albums worldwide, the main man Jazzie B was awarded an OBE for services to music in 2008, as well as winning an Ivor Novello Award for Inspiration, as “the man who gave British black music a soul of its own”.

Tickets are £27 and available online at, by calling Box Office on 01704 500036 or over the counter Monday -Saturday 11am – 4pm.

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Check out what else is happening around the town over the Southport Festival weekend 10-12 May at

Pip is the pawfect friend at Tudor Bank

In recent years Sefton has seen an increase in people experiencing loneliness within certain groups.

The negative effects of loneliness are well known – as well as creating a sense of isolation and confinement it can, in some cases, lead to depression and other health problems.

This year, Sefton Council and its partners are celebrating the ‘Year of Friendship’, which aims to combat loneliness across the borough and help people connect.

It’s well documented that pets provide great companionship, helping people feel less alone and providing people with a range of physical, emotional and psychological benefits.

Sadly, not every pet owner is able to continue to care for their pets when their circumstances change. For people moving in to nursing homes, this can be especially distressing with many owners forced to find new homes for their animals.

However, a nursing home in Southport is offering a solution to the problem. Tudor Bank Nursing Home allows residents to live alongside their pets to ensure they remain together and their friendship continues.

Joan, a resident at Tudor Bank Nursing Home, fondly refers to her Bichon Frise dog, Pip, as her “everything”. Loved by all the residents, Pip brings smiles, laughter and fun, helping both residents and staff feel at home.

Nursing home staff are also allowed to bring their own animals to work. Karen Stephens, Team Leader at Tudor Bank Nursing Home, said: “I think pets are so important in helping the residents socialise, exercise and take part in activities. It also gives them something to think about and look after.

“Pip has made such a difference to people going out for a walk. We had a gentleman here that used to take her out, and he used to hold her outside the shops when the staff went in. When we came out he’d be surrounded by women so he’d say Pip was a ‘babe magnet’!”

Mary Pagent, a Nurse at Tudor Bank Nursing Home said, said “I think Pip makes a difference to everyone who comes here. It puts families at ease when they walk through the door and are greeted by Pip.

“Care homes are meant to be homes, and that’s a sense the animals provide. Over the years we’ve had cats, dogs, rabbits, and we even have a Guinea pig. I think the animals just make a huge difference to everybody”

To find out more about opportunities to make friends in Sefton, visit

Video produced by Sefton Council

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