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‘Self care doesn’t mean doing it alone’, say Sefton healthcare and community leaders

Sefton’s health and community leaders are using Self Care Week (15-21 November) to offer advice and highlight the support available to help residents take better care of their health and wellbeing.

Margaret Jones, Director of Public Health at Sefton Council, said:

“Self Care Week is about encouraging people to take steps to prevent illness, adopt healthier choices, manage minor ailments and look after their health and wellbeing. Self Care Week is a perfect time to think about the changes we can make to help us take better care of ourselves and our families. Self-care doesn’t mean you should do it alone – lots of support is available!”

Susanne Lynch MBE, head of medicines management at NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said:

“Knowing what to do and where to go for help is an important part of practising self care. Remember, it isn’t just your GP practice that can help, your local pharmacists are also health experts who can help with all sorts of conditions and treatments. Anyone can access expert advice and buy a range of medicines for minor illnesses over the counter from a local pharmacy, without needing a prescription from their GP.

“In addition, Care at the Chemist is a scheme for patients registered with a GP in Sefton, which enables pharmacists to provide any medicines they recommend for a range of minor conditions, which will be free of charge to patients who do not pay prescription charges.”

Active Sefton is a Sefton Council run initiative that provides services designed to improve physical health and mental wellbeing.

Natalie Ashworth, locality team manager from Active Sefton, said:

“We can provide free NHS health checks which are aimed at picking up early signs of conditions that can then be prevented such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and kidney disease and helping people live longer, healthier lives.

“We also run services aimed at providing people with the opportunity to live more active and healthy lifestyles and support for older people who may be at risk of a fall, to reduce their risk and maintain their independence. Speak to your GP practice about these services or call 0151 934 2352 for more information”

Support with being active and meeting people is also provided through Living Well Sefton, which is a free service led by Sefton CVS, helping people with issues affecting their health and wellbeing.

Gemma Boardman, programme manager at Living Well Sefton, said:

“Living Well Sefton supports Sefton residents to make small changes to their lives that can have a big impact on their wellbeing. From walking groups to lunch clubs, our mentors can provide in-depth support by working out how physically active you want to be and assess your wellbeing by tailoring a plan just for you.”

If you’re feeling anxious, depressed or simply need someone to talk to, there is plenty of help available. If you’re registered with a GP in Sefton, Talking Matters is a free, confidential service to help deal with common mental health difficulties. Call them on 0300 303 2708 or go to

For practical tips and expert advice to improve your mental health, you can also visit There’s also a free, confidential, 24/7 text message support service run by Mersey Care, for anyone who is feeling overwhelmed or is struggling to cope. Text HEAL to 85258.”

The NHS website also has a host of information on symptoms, conditions and treatments. If you do need medical advice and aren’t sure where to go, use NHS 111 online at  or call 111 for assistance in getting the medical help you need.

A huge range of information on local services and support for improving physical and mental health, as well as easy to follow online self care guides for common conditions is available online from:

Statement: Orrell Mount 3G pitch works postponed

Cllr Ian Maher, Leader of Sefton Council, has today (Friday, November 12th) announced that work to create brand new 3G pitches on Orrell Mount in Bootle will be temporarily paused in order to continue open dialogue with local community groups.

Throughout the planning application process for the hugely beneficial scheme residents, members of the community and a number of sports organisations were consulted on the plans, which received wide reaching support.

Proposals were approved and work was due to be undertaken on site this week. These works however have now been put on hold following a recent public demonstration.

Cllr Maher said: “While we have continued to engage with the community around Orrell Mount, recent demonstrations on site have indicated there is still more dialogue to be had.

“Our initial consultations led Sefton to revamp, tweak and add in certain elements to the scheme in order to best benefit surrounding residents and address concerns raised, which is why we were confident that a schedule of works could begin in earnest.

“It was never our intention to close the park off while these works took place and this drastic decision was only taken at the eleventh hour in order to keep both the public and contractors safe after it became clear demonstrations could lead to a health and safety issue.

“After a significant amount of discussion between Cabinet, ward members and officers, we have unanimously agreed to temporarily halt all works and reopen the park as a sign of good faith, while we seek to continue further constructive dialogue and consultation with residents.

“We all want to find a solution which allows this hugely beneficial scheme to become a reality and we will now await the findings of this additional consultation before any further potential progression is made.”

Orrell Mount Playing Fields will now fully reopen, however a small number of playground improvement and maintenance works will still be taking place within the grounds.


Orrell Mount fields temporarily closed as fantastic 3G pitch works get underway

Earlier this year Sefton Council announced that it had been successful in a bid for £780,000 funding from the Football Foundation to create brand new and much needed all weather 3G pitches at Orrell Mount.

Alongside around £350,000 direct investment from the Council, this welcome additional funding allows the Council to undertake work to replace the existing grass pitch and to install new changing facilities on the site – ultimately benefitting local people all year round.

A spokesperson for Sefton Council said: “We are aware of misinformation which has been shared online about the scheme and we have reiterated that key facilities will remain and even be improved, including dog walking facilities and a fully refurbished children’s playground.”

Local Sefton former professional footballer Jamie Carragher’s 23 Foundation will be running the new facility, to maximise its potential and nurture a new generation of future sporting stars

They will provide a managed programme which supports partner club growth and offers a range of recreational football activities to people of all ages, backgrounds, genders and abilities to deliver the FA strategic outcomes.

Full backing has been given to the scheme by the Liverpool County FA, local grassroots football teams such as Northfield Juniors and many members of the community.

Tony Smith, Football Development Manager at the Liverpool County FA, added: “There is a huge shortfall of match play on 3G pitches and having this facility in the heart of the community will not only develop better grassroots players but also develop better social outcomes to combat obesity, improve health and wellbeing, while also tackling anti-social behaviour.”

Rachel Stevenson, Welfare Officer for Bootle’s Northfield Junior’s Football Club, said the team can’t wait to play on the pitch.

She said: “Historically in the winter months we have found real difficulties and challenges to get our kids access to proper training facilities.

“This will be our first opportunity to keep players within the local community and allow them to train closer to their homes.

“We are a registered charity so this scheme will also allow us to keep our costs down and allow us to pass this back on to our members so our football remains completely inclusive to everyone in the local community.”

A Sefton Council spokesperson reiterated these comments, adding: “Any surplus made from operating the facility will be put back in to the community.

“Throughout this process to provide significantly improved health and wellbeing provisions for football players of all abilities and ages, Sefton Council has endeavoured to work closely with members of the local community and has acted on some of the concerns expressed.”

Despite these promises, a pocket of public opposition to the plans has remained and owing to the ongoing actions of these demonstrators, Sefton Council have reluctantly taken the decision to temporarily close Orrell Mount park to the public.

A council spokesperson confirmed: “This decision has not been taken lightly, however we need to ensure the ongoing safety of both demonstrators and our contractors.

“This closure will remain in place until works to install a 3G pitch, lighting and community safety provisions have been completed.”

Sefton Health Director’s ‘book-a-booster’ reminder

Margaret Jones, Director of Public Health in Sefton
Margaret Jones, Sefton Council’s Director of Public Health

Margaret Jones, Sefton Council’s Director of Public Health is urging people across the Borough to book their COVID-19 booster jab, if they are eligible for it in the next month.

Booster jabs are available to people who have had their first and second COVID-19 vaccinations from six months after the date of their second jab.


Anyone who has had their first and second vaccinations and is within a month of being eligible for their booster jab can now book their appointment at or by calling 119.

Anyone who had their second vaccination six months ago or longer, can also use the or call 119 to find a walk-in coronavirus vaccination site where they can get a booster jab.


Margaret Jones said: “While first and second vaccinations are still providing people with good levels of protection from the virus, a booster dose can give people longer-term protection against getting seriously ill from COVID-19.

“Most people will be offered a booster dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine, which may be different from their previous jabs, but they remain safe and effective.”

Best protection

Mrs Jones also urged anyone who has yet to get their first or second jab, to do so as soon as possible. She said: “The NHS reporting that is seeing 14 times as many Covid patients as this time last year and warning that the number of young people being admitted to hospital for COVID is on the rise.

“Vaccination is still the best protection against coronavirus whatever your age and I would urge anyone eligible to get their first or second jab to get them as soon as possible. Just visit or call 119 today.


Swab Squad Locations: 8th – 14th November 2021

Our Swab Squads are out across Sefton over the coming week, providing free lateral flow testing, collection of home testing kits and vaccination information and advice.
  • Monday 8th November – Asda Aintree – 08:30am until 16:30pm
  • Tuesday 9th November – Blundellsands Station – 08:30am until 16:30pm
  • Wednesday 10th November – Asda Aintree – 08:30am until 16:30pm
  • Thursday 11th November – Waterloo Town Hall – 08:30am until 16:30pm
  • Friday 12th November – St Leonards – 08:30am until 16:30pm
  • Saturday 13th November – Blundellsands Station – 08:30am until 16:30pm
  • Sunday 14th November – Blundellsands Station – 08:30am until 16:30pm

Vaccination clinics

Whether you need your first, second or booster jab, there are lots of places to get your vaccination across Sefton. Anyone in Sefton aged 18 and over, can find a walk-in vaccination site or book a vaccination appointment at or by calling 119 free. And those over 16 are also eligible and can book their first vaccine online or go to a walk-in session.

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