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Sefton’s Aintree Racecourse SMART COVID-19 test centre closed from Wednesday to Sunday

Sefton Council’s SMART coronavirus testing centre at Aintree Racecourse will be closed from Wednesday 7th to Sunday 11th April. This is while the course’s Grand National meeting takes place.

The Borough’s two other SMART testing centres, at Bootle Leisure Centre and Splash World in Southport, will be open as normal from 8am to 8pm every day.

SMART tests are for key workers and those with caring commitments during the current lockdown. They can provide a result in around 30 minutes and can help prevent the accidental spread of coronavirus by people not showing symptoms. No appointments are necessary.

Anyone who gets a positive SMART test result or who develops the coronavirus symptoms  – a new persistent cough, high temperature or a loss of sense of taste or smell – should immediately book a PCR test at a local test site. Local test sites are located opposite Bootle Town Hall, at Crosby Library car park, Southport Town Hall and Netherton Activity Centre. Tests can be booked by calling 119 or visiting

Find out more about testing in Sefton. 

Polling station staff required for 2021 Sefton elections

Do you know of somebody who would like to work at a Sefton Polling Station?

Sefton has 132 polling stations in operation on polling day.  Polling station staff work inside the station and are responsible for the conduct of the ballot and making sure that procedure for voting are followed.

The elections team are looking to appoint staff to work in Sefton Polling Stations for the Combined Elections on Thursday 6th May 2021.

There are a number of positions available such as Poll Clerks, staff to meet and greet electors on arrival at the polling station and staff to be on stand by for election day.  The hours of work will be 6am – 10pm.

Staff will be expected to undertake Lateral Flow test before commencing work.

If you are interested in any of the above positions, please email

Sefton Council is looking for volunteers who can support children and young people in making their voices heard

Are you passionate about improving the lives of children and young people in care?

Could you support a young person to have their say in decisions made about them, help them to understand their rights and challenge anything they are unhappy with.

If you could spare a couple of hours a month to volunteer as an Independent Advocate, we would love to hear from you.

The purpose of our independent advocacy is to:

  • Assist and support children and young people to speak out/speak up for themselves
  • Ensure that the young person’s voice is heard and listened to.
  • Help children and young people to understand decisions that have been made about their care
  • Assist children and young people to understand their rights and the services that are available to them.

As a volunteer, you will receive:

  • Initial training including Independent Advocacy, Safeguarding and Children’s Social Care
  • Ongoing supervision and support
  • Access to free specialist training relevant to your role
  • Reimbursement of expenses (including travel)
  • Skills and Experience to assist with future job opportunities

Our Independent Advocates will usually support young people at appointments / meetings during office hours, therefore we particularly welcome interest from volunteers who are available midweek (any days Mon-Fri).

For more information Contact Cheryl Yates, Independent Visiting and Advocacy Officer: 0151 934 4167 / 0771843282

New campaign reminds people isolating in Sefton they are not alone

From Good Friday, people across Sefton are being reminded that having to isolate, due to COVID-19, doesn’t mean they are ‘isolated’.

Sefton Council has developed a campaign on the theme of Isolating, not isolated. Posters and social media messages will encourage people to contact the Council on 0345 140 0845 or visit to find out about the support available.

Help can include financial support, priority delivery slots for grocery shopping or access to local foodbanks. Support with mental health as people deal with loneliness and boredom, and support with caring responsibilities can also be available.

*Tanya Wilcock, Sefton Council’s Head of Communities said: “Self-isolation is when we are legally required not to leave our home because we have or might have coronavirus. It is important in helping to stop us spreading the virus to others.

“Anyone who is struggling with having to self-isolate should contact the Council to find out about the range of support we and our partners in the voluntary sector can provide.

“They just need to call our support service on 0345 140 0845 and choose option 3 when they get through. This will make sure they can speak to a member of the team as quickly as possible.”

People can also find 10 tips on how to self-isolate for 10 days on Sefton Council’s website.

Subjects covered include planning your food and shopping deliveries, financial support, medical contacts and advice and first aid kit and pharmacy deliveries. There are also tips on caring for others, looking after your physical and mental wellbeing, stopping the spread of the virus at home, cleaning plans for if someone tests positive and arrangements for pet care.

*Tanya Wilcock was Head of Communities at time article was published, but has since left Sefton Council

Sefton Libraries’ funding for Bootle Blitz commemorations

Sefton Libraries have been awarded £9,400 in grant funding to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Bootle Blitz.

The funding has been awarded by the National Lottery Heritage Grant after a successful application in December 2020, which focused on local, community-based projects.

The focus of the commemorations will be a previously unseen manuscript from Major George Salt, Bootle’s Air Raid precaution officer. In the text, he records the pre-war planning and night by night details of the Blitz.

Sefton Libraries will work with the Bootle Library Local History Group as well as children from Bedford Primary School to transform the manuscript into a published work featuring unseen wartime photographs from the Stewart Bale Collection.

The Bootle Blitz was a significant part of Bootle’s history that has been overlooked in the past. This funding will help shine a spotlight on the events that took place.

Over eight days in May 1941, Bootle became one of the most bombed towns in the country. Over 1,000 people were killed and 80% of the houses damaged or destroyed.

The funding will also be used to create a walking trail of former bombed sites. It will feature stories of the bravery and heroism displayed at each spot. The trail will also talk people through the recovery of Bootle after these tragic events.

The Bootle Blitz commemorations will also form part of Remembrance Day 2021 events in November.

People can find more details about Sefton War Memorials and Commemorations at the Sefton War Memorials website.

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