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Southport market staff take a well deserved break after 6 months of non-stop success

Southport Market staff and traders will take a well-earned break later this month following six months of non-stop work serving an international array of foods and drink.

The popular King Street venue will close temporarily from Monday, January 17th to Wednesday, February 2nd. As well as giving the teams some much-needed respite it will allow contractors to add finishing touches and refurbishments to the market space.

The break It follows the busiest period yet of Southport Market’s opening year. Tens of thousands of customers celebrated Christmas in style with festive film showings, visits to Santa’s grotto, stunning decorations and a delectable array of dishes and drinks.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said: “In its first six months of operation, the new Southport Market has surpassed all expectations.

“We knew from detailed research prior to launch that the venue would be a success, but we could not have predicted just how popular it has been with our residents and tourists.

“It is down entirely to the dedication, hard work and talent of our traders, bar staff and Sefton Council’s tourism team, who have worked non-stop since July 2021 and I am sure everyone will agree they have earned a short rest.

“This temporary closure will also allow us to put the finishing touches and additional final refurbishments to the venue and we look forward to welcoming our wonderful customers back in February.”

Following its reopening on Wednesday, February 2nd, customers will be treated to a brand new calendar of incredible events including weekly live music, open mic nights, artisan markets and an Easter extravaganza.

People can find out more about Southport Market and keep up to date with the latest events at the venue by visiting .


Sefton Council is making homes cheaper, warmer, greener

Free energy efficiency measures such as loft and cavity wall insulation may be available free to people living in poorly insulated homes in Sefton thanks to a new scheme being introduced by the Council.

The retrofit scheme will make homes cheaper to heat, more energy efficient and better for the planet. It will also help keep properties warmer in winter and cooler in summer.

Grants are available to privately-owned properties with an Energy Performance Certificate rating of D, E, F or G. To qualify, Sefton residents must have a household income below £30,000 and/or receive a qualifying benefit.

If the home is owned by a private or social landlord, the landlord will need to contribute to the cost of the works, but the property could still be eligible for some of the cost to be covered by the scheme.

People can check if they are eligible for the Cheaper, Warmer, Greener Retrofit Scheme, using the form at


Cllr Paulette Lappin, Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services said:

“This scheme is a fantastic opportunity for households in Sefton to get free energy efficiency measures to make their homes cheaper to run, warmer in winter and greener for the planet. Plus, there are huge benefits to physical and financial health.

“The Council is working to make Sefton net zero carbon by 2030 in response to the climate emergency. We are working on our own emissions and taking advantage of this scheme will help our residents to join us in making this a Borough-wide initiative by cutting their own domestic emissions.

“I would urge anyone who meets the eligibility criteria to apply for this retrofit scheme. It’s open to homeowners and tenants, it’s free and there are benefits for us all.”


The funding has come from The Department of Business Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) as part of the Government’s post COVID-19 response and Climate Change targets.

People can find out more at

New service for Sefton Parents and Families with babies

Smiling woman and babyMersey Care has secured funding from Sefton Council for a 12-month pilot of the Building Attachments and Bonds Service (BABS) to enhance its early years support for children and families.

BABS is a new Parent Infant Mental Health Service in Sefton supporting vulnerable families while mum is pregnant and in the early weeks after the baby is born. It will offer specialist, therapeutic support to families in Sefton to help them build good bonds and attachment with their baby.

Important relationship

Consultant Clinical Psychologist and BABS Lead Dr Lisa Marsland Hall said: “In BABS we believe that relationships are everything and that the most important relationship is between parent and child. We need to support our vulnerable families in the community to build good bonds and attachment and invest well in the parent infant relationship.

“Most parents want to be the best possible parent they can be to their baby, but life is hard for many families and sadly things get in the way.  We want to support parents to separate out their own past parenting experience, issues and struggles from their relationship with their baby so they can be the parent they want to be to their baby.”

BABS offers therapy and support, for pregnant women, new parents and partners, who struggle with their emotional wellbeing, other vulnerabilities, and who have concerns about their bonding and relationship with their baby. Sessions may take place in the family home or in the local Family or Wellbeing Hubs in the community.

Increased risk

Professor Joe Rafferty CBE, Chief Executive at Mersey Care, said: “Adverse experiences in childhood are associated with an increased risk of health and social problems later.

“One in every two adults in England is thought to have suffered at least one adverse childhood experience. Early help will offer support to our families in Sefton to help them focus on staying healthy, happy and independent.”

Parent-infant bond

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “Providing this very early support to cement the parent-infant bond where it is needed can provide life-long benefits and opportunities, so I am delighted that Sefton Council has been able to support this service.”

More information about the new service can found via GPs, midwives, health visitors and any other multi-agency professional, who can all refer through to BABS.

In addition to the clinical support provided to families, specialist parent infant mental health training and consultation to multi-agency professionals locally is also provided.

Parents can call the service on 07787 277 524 or email

Omicron not mild – especially if you’re not jabbed, warn Sefton Health Chiefs

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

Margaret Jones, Sefton Council’s Director of Public Health has reiterated the importance of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

She also warned that without full protection the Omicron variant can still make some people seriously ill, despite it having been described as ‘mild’ by some commentators.


Margaret Jones said: “The news that fewer people are being made seriously ill by Omicron and that the government is considering reducing the time infected people are required to self-isolate is being interpreted by some as the now-prominent variant being mild.

“However, unless you are fully vaccinated, which means two jabs and a booster, you are not fully protected and could end up having a stay in hospital, which surely none of us wants.”

The Government is reporting that monitoring shows protection for those aged 65 and over remains at about 90% around three months after their third dose booster. Having only two doses means protection against serious illness drops to around 70% after three months and to 50% after six months.

Huge disruption

Mrs Jones added: “While we still need to be wearing face coverings and maintaining social distance while out and about, vaccination is the single best way we can help prevent the huge disruption that is being caused to medical, transport and other services, while at the same time protecting ourselves and those around us.”

Hospitals in Cheshire and Merseyside currently have extremely high levels of bed occupancy and are seeing a huge rise in demand for their services.

The majority of people being admitted to hospital with COVID-19 have either not had their booster, or have not had the full course of the vaccine.

Highest rates

Fiona Taylor, chief officer at NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “As Sefton is seeing some of the highest rates of COVID-19 infections in the country, it is vital that we get boosted to get protected.”

“Even if you have recently had COVID-19, you still need to get your booster jab. The vaccine is designed to give you stronger immunity than having the illness.”

Book now

If you are eligible for your booster jab, you can call 119 or visit the NHS website to book an appointment or find a walk-in vaccination site that is offering booster jabs at

Booster jabs are also available from local vaccination sites in Sefton, which are taking bookings by telephone for anyone eligible. People can contact the local vaccination sites to get booked in:

  • Seaforth Village Surgery, 20 Seaforth Rd, L21 3TA: call 07979 938 229
  • Netherton Health Centre, Magdalen Square, L30 5SP: call 0151 247 6413
  • Southport Centre for Health and Wellbeing, 44-46 Hoghton Street, PR9 0PQ: call 01704 395830

People can also find out more about local vaccination sites in Sefton by visiting: or

Reminder: The deadline to apply for a Primary School place for September 2022 is 15 January 2022

If you require a place for your child starting Primary School in Sefton for the first time in September 2022 the deadline to apply is Saturday 15 January 2022.

Applications can be made online via the Citizens Portal. For information and advice please see the following information:

For more information please visit the Sefton Council website.

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