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Macmillan to hold family fun day

Southport and Formby Macmillan Cancer Information Centre is doing something a bit different this summer to support children and young people whose lives are affected by cancer, with a free family fun event on Saturday 22 June.

Taking place from 1pm – 4pm at The Salvation Army, Shakespeare Street, Southport and Formby residents are invited to come along. 

As well as some entertaining and free activities, the event is a chance for the team from the Macmillan Centre to raise awareness of the support available to children, whether they have a close relative who has had cancer, is undergoing treatment, or has passed away.

The afternoon will give children, parents and carers the opportunity to speak to relevant professionals such as Child Bereavement UK, Access Sefton, Parenting 2000, Sefton Carers and Queenscourt Hospice. 

Tanya Mulvey, Macmillan Information and Support Centre manager at the centre, said: “We wanted to do something specifically for children so that they can have access to the help that they might need whether they have lost someone to cancer or have a relative who has cancer. There will be  craft activities, a dance workshop, mindfulness and yoga for all the family to relax and enjoy.  The event will be opened at 1pm by a special guest from Starkidz.

“We’ve also been given a signed football from Everton Football Club which will be up for a prize in our free raffle draw on the day. Myself and colleagues from the centre will also be available on the day to talk to adults about the practical and emotional support we can offer.”

Dr Graeme Allan, Macmillan GP and NHS Southport and Formby CCG cancer clinical lead, said: “It’s so important that families and carers are aware of the help they can access for their children which is the main reason for planning this event. We hope everyone who attends has an enjoyable day and that the information and resources provided will be useful, either now or in the future.

“We are hoping that as well as giving children and their families the chance to see how they can get support it will also raise awareness of the centre in Southport for those affected by cancer.”

Refreshments will be provided for adults and there will be party food for children on the day. Parents / guardians are asked to stay with the children during the afternoon. Booking is essential, to book your place please call the centre on 01704 533024 or email sfccg.macmillancic@nhs.net.

Set up by Macmillan Cancer Support, NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and St Marks Medical Centre, Southport and Formby Macmillan Information & Support Centre is located on 20 Stanley Street. Those affected by cancer, whether it be them directly or a friend or family member are invited to pop in anytime for a chat or you can visit: www.southportmacmillancentre.org.uk

Sefton leads the way in protecting Heritage At Risk sites

Sefton Council is leading the way in protecting the borough’s most culturally and historically important sites for generations to come.

Working closely with English Heritage and other partners, the local authority has created a proactive and contemporary approach to taking care of Sefton’s Heritage At Risk sites.

This approach led to the creation of a dedicated Sefton Heritage At Risk Officer and, although originally planned as only a temporary position, approval has now been received to make it a permanent fixture of the local authority.

Stuart Barnes, Sefton Council’s Head of Economic Growth and Housing, oversaw the creation of the role and outlined the authority’s ambitions to better manage the borough’s incredible heritage sites.

Stuart said: “We really stepped outside the ‘planning box’ in our bid to protect our Heritage At Risk sites.

“Firstly we had to address what could be done to keep our assets from the ‘At Risk’ register. What were the root causes and could potential problems be headed off before sites became at risk?

“We know heritage assets are important to our communities, providing a historical context to neighbourhoods and townscapes.

“But due to increasing pressures on resources it was necessary to look at different ways of tackling risk, which is why we created the Heritage At Risk officer’s position.

“The wide scope of the role allows us to focus on innovative partnership work, improved community understanding and exploring possible future savings and funding streams.

“Our work has been so beneficial that Southport, one of our key heritage sites, was chosen as a pilot project for Historic England’s national ‘Heritage Action Zone’ scheme.

“This led to a number of fantastic initiatives including the Southport Development Framework, the Lord Street Verandah Project and community led Heritage Trails.”

“A number of key buildings and spaces within Sefton – listed buildings and other buildings in conservation areas – have been targeted for intervention, investment and re-use.

“This is a complex, large scale and long term project, particularly so with the resources at our disposal, but nevertheless is a key priority for Sefton Council”.

Daniel Longman, Sefton’s dedicated Heritage At Risk Officer, added: “My role is to make sure our heritage sites are at the forefront of any work we do while continuing to encourage community resilience.

“I put a lot of focus into working closely with our communities and partners, using our combined knowledge to identify future projects, potential ‘At Risk’ sites and finding new funding streams.

“We want our communities and visitors to be better informed of the history and character and value of the borough and this has a positive knock-on effect on tourism, the economy and housing.”

Sefton Council is now working alongside partners and community groups in the delivery of the Southport Townscape Heritage Project, with the explicit aim of enhancing the quality and strength of the linkages between the town centre and the seafront.

It will focus on historic properties between Lord Street and the Promenade and aims to complement the previous HLF restoration of King’s Gardens and the recent £2m award from the Coastal Communities funds for the pier.

Bootle Bucks back Sefton’s Year Of Friendship campaign

A football club in Sefton, created solely to encourage youngsters with disabilities to get into the sport, is backing a council led campaign to celebrate the importance of mental and physical well-being.

May marks Sefton’s Year Of Friendship’s ‘Active’ month, where the local authority celebrates community groups, teams, individuals and organisations who promote healthy bodies, minds and flourishing friendships through keeping fit, playing sport and more.

Sefton Council’s campaign is being supported by a number of groups and organisations across the borough, including Bootle Bucks Inclusion Football Club, who have been leading the way in inclusive sporting events since 2018.

John Rice, Chairman of Bootle Bucks Inclusion FC, said: “We started the team in April 2018 with a view of giving a handful of kids with a disability an opportunity to play football.

“Since then Bootle Bucks Inclusion FC has really blossomed into a huge event. Now we have up to 70 kids every Saturday turning up to play football.

“But it’s not only football and fitness, it’s friendships that the children have made. They all stay over at each other’s houses, going out for days out and more!

“The parents are meeting up as well outside of football so what started out as just a footballing idea has really turned into a massive family now really which is absolutely fantastic.”

To find out more about Sefton Council’s Year Of Friendship visit www.mysefton.co.uk.
More information about Bootle Bucks Inclusion FC can be found on twitter via www.twitter.com/inclusionbucks.

Rogue landlords warned of risks following Southport court case

Sefton Council is warning rogue landlords they will be prosecuted for failing to follow legislation on licensing a house or Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs).

It comes after a Southport landlord, Michelle Ball of Shellfield Road, was recently fined £5,000 for not licensing a HMO on Manchester Road, also in the resort.

Ball, 54, was originally fined £7,500 but this was reduced to £5,000 following her guilty plea and she was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £170 with costs of £1,466.42. She also pleaded guilty to failing to supply gas and electric certificates for the property.

It followed a court case at Sefton Magistrates brought about by Sefton Council’s Housing Standards Team.

A property must be licensed under the mandatory licensing scheme if it has:

• 5 or more occupants (who comprise two or more separate family units or ‘Households’)
• Shared amenities such as bathroom, kitchen, or toilet facilities or where all the units of accommodation are not fully self-contained (i.e. although a kitchen, bathroom or WC are provided for the tenant’s use elsewhere in the building, they are not actually situated within their unit of accommodation.)
Sefton also operate a selective licensing scheme in the Bootle area, which requires all privately rented properties to have a licence; and 2 Additional HMO Licensing schemes in Southport and Seaforth/Waterloo that require all types of HMO to have a licence.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “Licensing and HMO legislation is put in place to help protect tenants and also serves to ensure landlords comply with all rules and regulations.

“Everyone across the borough should feel confident when renting a property and it’s important that we send a clear message to the small number of landlords who compromise the safety of their tenants.

“Let this court case be a lesson to landlords who try to avoid getting a licence – hefty fines will be imposed by the courts and we will always act to protect our residents.”

For more information on HMO licensing and Selective Licensing, visit sefton.gov.uk

Take care of yourself during the May bank holiday

As people make plans for the May bank holiday weekend the NHS in Sefton is encouraging you to also be prepared in case of any accidents or minor ailments.

Health professionals from NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS South Sefton CCG suggest making sure you have all the necessary supplies and information just in case. 

GP practices will be closed on the bank holiday Monday (27 May) but there are several other ways for you to access medical help during this time, if you need it.    

Being aware of how to treat minor ailments such as burns, cuts and coughs and ensuring you have all the supplies to do so means you can get back to enjoying the bank holiday quicker. 

Susanne Lynch, head of medicines management at NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG said: “One of the ways to take care of yourself this bank holiday weekend is to make sure your medicine cabinet is well stocked for minor illnesses such as coughs, colds and sore throats. As GP practices won’t be open as much as usual, self-care is the best way to deal with any common health concerns you may have during the long weekend.

“If you need any further advice, I would recommend calling NHS 111 or visiting your local pharmacy. Both of these services are excellent options for dealing with any non-urgent medical concerns.”

Most pharmacies have private consultation rooms where they can advise you on self-care treatments and give you advice on your medication. Pharmacists can also advise you check your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose, amongst many other things.

You can call NHS111 to speak with a highly trained adviser who will assess your symptoms and immediately direct you to the best medical care for you. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.

You can also visit 111.nhs.uk to get medical advice on where and when to get help.   

If you do need an appointment there are now extended GP appointments of an evening or weekend across Sefton. These appointments can be booked in advance via the GP practice you are registered with or by calling 111. 

Jan Leonard, Director of Place at the CCGs in Sefton, said: “The extended access GP service launched last October in Sefton and has been popular ever since. Open 365 days a year the service is really useful over bank holidays and weekends. You can book an appointment via your GP practice or NHS 111 can book an appointment with your nearest service as long as you are registered with a GP practice in Sefton.”

You can find the pharmacy opening times for each CCG area here:

South Sefton: https://www.southseftonccg.nhs.uk/your-health-and-services/may-and-august-bank-holiday-opening-times-for-pharmacies/

Southport and Formby: https://www.southportandformbyccg.nhs.uk/your-health-and-services/may-and-august-bank-holiday-opening-times-for-pharmacies/

For more information on how to treat minor medical concerns visit the Self Care Forum and the NHS website.

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