Over 90 cubic metres of concrete has been used to create the foundations of the new driving range at Sefton Council’s Bootle Golf Course.
Weighing 200 tons – the equivalent of up to 100 African elephants or approaching 4½ million golf balls – the concrete platform will provide the base for the new driving range’s 10-bay shed.
Work on the £240,000 development by contractors Davies Building & Maintenance started in March. New fencing has been erected and preparatory groundwork has been carried out.
The new driving range will include practice facilities and a dedicated coaching bay and will enhance Sefton Council’s popular Bootle Golf Course. Golfers will be able to get more practise using the fully-floodlit facility during the evenings and winter months when it’s not possible to play on the course.
Future phases of the site’s development will include seeding the outfield and construction of the main shed.
Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “I’m pleased to see work progressing and this solid base being laid for our new driving range, which when completed will provide Sefton’s golfers with a firm foundation for their game.
“Practise facilities were one of the things local people told us they wanted to see when we consulted them, and the new driving range will help attract new players and make golf more accessible to all.”
Peter Davies, MD of Davies Building & Maintenance said: “Having worked for Sefton over the last 20 years, we are looking forward to completing another exciting project for the local community”.
Since they re-opened in line with national lockdown easing in April, Green Sefton’s Bootle and Southport courses have been busy. Almost 13,000 golfers have taken advantage of a second year of frozen green fees, which mean adult prices start from just £13.
Also, an additional 90 under-16s signed up for junior memberships, which give them a year’s free play at the Council’s Bootle and Southport courses.
Over 60s can play for £9 Monday to Friday and a round for young people aged up to 16 is just £8.
Contract prices, which provide 12 months’ play, have also been frozen and start from just £110.
Steve Martlew, Interim Head of Communities for Sefton Council sends a message about how the Council is helping to drive positive changes to race equality across the borough.
Today marks one year since the murder of George Floyd which sparked protests around the world and a commitment among many individuals and organisations to acknowledge and understand racism and stand in solidarity against it.
Sefton Council is committed to equality and social inclusion as an employer, service provider and as a partner both locally and regionally. We recognise it has an important role to play in tackling race injustice and inequality and driving forward positive change.
We are currently developing a declaration of intent which shows our commitment to ensuring we promote equality within our organisation and across the borough. The declaration outlines priorities and ambitions highlighting how we hope to achieve this.
We continue to offer a comprehensive mandatory Equality and Diversity training programme. This includes Equality and Diversity Awareness, Equality and Diversity for Managers as well as Unconscious Bias. It’s so important we do this training as it helps us to reflect on our own experiences and biases and it encourages us to be a fully inclusive workforce.
Sefton is also proud to be part of a programme led by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, which will brings together leaders from Merseyside Councils, community organisations, businesses and the public sector, to tackle systemic injustice and inequality and drive forward positive change for the city region’s Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities. The programme will enable partners to collaborate on a plan of action to improve on issues such as workforce diversity, learning development opportunities, business support and Black History projects.
The murder of George Floyd and Black Lives Matters showed us that changes need to be made and we will continue to work with our partners including the Liverpool City Region’s race equality team to look at strategies and projects which will help us eliminate bias, discrimination and injustice.
New ‘night-time ambassadors’ supporting Borough’s busy hospitality sector’s safety
Night-Time Ambassadors took to Sefton’s streets for the first time on Friday 21st May to support businesses in the Borough’s busy hospitality sector.
The first weekend since the latest COVID-19 lockdown lifting, which includes a return to seated indoor drinking and dining, saw the Council’s five, two-person teams out and about.
Funded through the Council’s Public Health Service, their role is to provide landlords, owners and managers with advice on how to comply with the latest coronavirus restrictions. These include the need for customers to remain seated while eating and drinking and the requirement for everyone to be signed in using the COVID app QR Code process.
Over the first weekend they managed to visit around 700 businesses, the vast majority and which welcomed the initiative. The Ambassadors reported that the overall level of compliance was good and that they were able to provide advice at a small number of premises that weren’t aware of all requirements.
Over the coming weekends, Sefton Council’s Night-Time Ambassadors will be visiting pubs, bars and restaurants, cafés and take-aways between 12 noon and 10pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
Cllr Paulette Lappin, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services said: “The lockdown relaxation introduced last week represents a huge change in what people can and can’t do, particularly in relation to Sefton’s busy hospitality sector.
“With many people keen to take advantage of the changes, which include being able to eat and drink indoors while seated, at pubs, bars and restaurants, this weekend, we are keen to provide support in helping those businesses manage the revised restrictions and requirements. Which is where our Night-Time Ambassadors come in.
“Over this first weekend, the teams managed to visit around 700 premises, received a good reception and reported back that once again the Borough’s businesses have stepped up and are implementing the required restrictions.
“Between 12 noon and 10pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, they will be out visiting a range of premises, offering advice and information to managers, landlords and owners.”
To ensure they are easily identifiable by managers and customers, all 10 will be wearing high-viz showing they are ‘Night-Time Ambassadors’. Each of the staff, who are licensed employees of leading Merseyside security provider Logika Security Limited, have been trained by Sefton Council.
As well as visiting businesses to provide support, the Ambassadors will discuss any breaches of the coronavirus requirements they see, to try and help resolve the situation and ensure the safety of customers and staff.
Initially, the Night-Time Ambassadors are focusing on those parts of Sefton, where there are concentrations of hospitality venues, but they will aim to visit establishments of various type and sizes right across the Borough.
Cllr Lappin continued: “Although the recent relaxation measures represented a major change in restrictions, which we’re all keen to enjoy, it’s important that we remember the COVID-19 virus, including the variant first identified in India, is still definitely with us across Sefton.
“Businesses in the hospitality sector need to make sure they have the measures in place to protect their customers and their staff. And we, as customers, drinkers and diners, all need to do our bit by making sure we follow the restrictions that are in place to keep us, our friends and families safe.”
Mark Patrickson, Director of Logika Security Limited said: “I am pleased that we have been able to work with Sefton Council and that our employees are providing this valuable service to help create an environment where people can enjoy themselves while also staying safe.”
Construction work on Sandy Brook, the first development by the Sefton Council’s wholly-owned housing development company, Sandway Homes Ltd, is now underway.
With support from Homes England, main contractors, Barnfield Construction Limited, have cleared the site and started piling work for the foundations of the development’s 48 high-quality, two, three & four-bed homes.
The development is located on land next to Ainsdale’s Meadow Lane on the former site of St. John Stone R.C. Primary School. It takes its name from the adjacent Sandy Brook, one of three watercourses which forms part of the Three Pools Waterway. This waterway forms a natural boundary between Sefton and West Lancashire a scenic backdrop, with views across rural meadow and farmland.
Sandy Brook is the first of the Sandway Homes developments to reach construction stage. The properties, which are a mix of detached and semi-detached, are named after wild birds that can be seen locally. Styles include the Peregrine, Kingfisher, Sandpiper, Sanderling, Curlew, Lapwing, Wagtail and Skylark.
The majority of these homes will be for sale on the open market and all commercial returns from Sandway Homes developments will be returned to the Council for reinvestment in the Borough.
Established in 2018, Sandway Homes directly supports Sefton Council’s Vision 2030 commitment to creating 11,000 new, high-quality homes across the Borough by 2030. Vision 2030 was drawn up by key stakeholders including local residents in 2016. Sandway’s aim is to develop the types of high-quality, mixed-tenure housing that commercial developers might not consider, in line with the Council’s housing policy commitments and Vision 2030. This includes social housing and affordable homes. Another site is now in development, Hey Farm Gardens at nearby Crossens, for which Sandway Homes has obtained planning permission for 30, two, three and 4-bed homes.
Sandway is also planning a development at Sefton Grange, on the edge of Netherton, comprising of two, three and 4-bed homes and one and 2-bed apartments. While the majority of these will be for sale on the open market, Sefton Grange will also provide Sefton Council with its first new rented housing since its stock transfer in 2006, in the form of nine apartments.
Cllr Ian Maher, Leader of Sefton Council, said: “I am delighted to see our ambitious commitment to creating housing that will give high-quality living choices to local residents actually taking shape on site.
“By establishing Sandway Homes, we are ethically and sustainably creating people-centred homes that will provide more housing choice across Sefton.
“Plus, any funds generated will be used to support other Sefton Council developments and services.”
Place and communities
Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “Sandway Homes and Sefton Council are fully aligned in our commitment to providing people with a choice of new homes while at the same time minimising any disruption or inconvenience to existing local residents.
“By delivering attractive, high-quality homes across the Borough, including social and affordable housing, these developments can only enhance Sefton’s quality of Place and Communities.”
Sandway’s Managing Director, Christian Rogers, said: “Sandway Homes is an exciting new venture that strikes just the right balance between achieving strong commercial performance whilst directly supporting the Borough’s strategic objectives for new quality housing and the creation of resilient communities with quality housing that meets the highest ethical and environmental standards.”
Sandway’s Main Contractor, Barnfield Construction is part of the Barnfield Group who are a North West-based, family-owned firm established over 45 years ago. Barnfield are employing a number of Sefton construction workers for the Sandy Brook project. Barnfield are accredited Ambassadors of the Considerate Constructors Scheme and are committed to uphold the values of Sandway Homes and Sefton Council.
Tim Webber MBE, Managing Director and Chairman of the Barnfield Group said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Sandway Homes and Sefton Council on the Meadow Lane development. We have many development partnerships with councils in the North West, where we have a successful track record of delivering high quality homes, proven to benefit local areas. We look forward to working on other local schemes together in the near future.”
Council staff, foster carers and their families braved the elements yesterday (Thurs 20th May) and embarked on a mission to encourage anyone who is thinking about setting sail on a new life, to become a foster carer for Sefton Council.
As part of Sefton’s Foster Care Fortnight celebrations, members of the fostering community climbed on board the ‘Pride of Sefton’ to spread the message that the Council needs more local people to give a loving and stable home to vulnerable children from the Borough.
Lisa Cummings Service Manager for Sefton’s Fostering Service said:
“Nothing stopped us celebrating Foster Carer Fortnight on the ‘Pride of Sefton’ today. The weather was wild but we she still wanted to get out in the community and spread the word. Thank you to Sovini who helped us by donating today’s sailing and to the ‘Pride of Sefton’ crew who did an amazing job.
“Fostering is not just about these two weeks. All year round we want to show our carers that we value them and send a message for people to come on board with our amazing team and support network and become a foster carer for Sefton”
Taking in the beautiful sights of Liverpool’s waterways, foster carers Sue and Derek said:
“Coming out in this awful weather proved just how much fostering means to us because it doesn’t matter what the weather or the situation, you just want to get out there and spread the message that these children need our help.”
“Anyone who has given fostering even the slightest consideration should really go for it because it’s changed the world for us.”
Dave is a Placement Support Worker at Sefton and was also part of the crew who regularly takes children who are fostered for days out on ‘The Pride of Sefton’. He said:
“I’m so glad that we can use the ‘Pride of Sefton’ as part of our recruitment campaign. People all around can see our sign and our details so it’s another way of getting the word out there.
“The boat has so many uses as the children love it when we bring them on and sail down the river and in and out of the locks. Bringing them together allows them to speak to other children who are in a similar situation as them. This helps to build their confidence while they’re having fun.”
Sefton Council is committed to offering support to its carers every step of the way. This includes specialist and peer support, training and a financial package.