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Exciting proposals revealed for transformation of Southport Market

Exciting new plans are being developed to potentially transform Southport Market into a unique food and drink offer with flexible events and market space.

Impressive images have just been released charting how the King Street market could look like in the future.

While no final decisions have yet been made, Sefton Council is starting the process by talking to current stall holders about the exciting plans with the view of moving things forward through the usual formal process.

Sefton remains totally committed to ensuring Southport Market continues to operate and makes a positive contribution to the local economy as well as becoming a key visitor destination.

For this to happen, the Council believes the current operating model needs to be adapted to meet changing consumer and businesses demands, and are looking at options on how to build on the previous investment that will potentially deliver:

• Enhanced hot food and drink offer
• Self-contained food retail units
• Flexible market and events space

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said: “We really value Southport Market but sadly it has become evident that many factors are making trading conditions extremely difficult and occupancy levels continue to fall.

“While we have been actively promoting it and trying to secure new traders along with other initiatives to help deliver a long term sustainable future for the market, this has sadly not worked.

“As a result and building on our former investment at the market, new plans are being developed to potentially transform the building into a unique offer that will only benefit the town and the wider borough.

“Nothing is set in stone and as we develop further plans over the coming weeks and months we will ensure existing traders are fully kept up to date and consulted on any final plans.

“While we totally understand how trading conditions have been difficult in the market for many months, we remain committed to supporting traders throughout this exciting process and will continue to do so.”

Blackhurst’s butchers have been in the market for 40 years.

Owner, Tony Blackhurst, said: “Having seen the market change over a number of years I am really excited to see the latest plans and look forward to Blackhurst’s butchers playing a key role in the market’s transformation. Blackhurt’s butchers along with the other market traders remain open and we look forward to seeing you soon.”

Anyone who may have an interest in the market’s exciting future plans, please contact tourism@sefton.gov.uk

Southport Half Marathon 2019: Travel and General Advice

This Sunday (June 30) Southport town centre will host to the 2019 Southport Half Marathon with hundreds of runners taking part 

This means the town will be exceptionally busy throughout the build up and duration of the marathon.

The route is 13 miles in total, starting at Victoria Park and incorporating Lord Street, Hesketh Park, Fleetwood Road, Marine Drive, the Promenade, Kings Gardens & Rotten Row.

In order to keep runners safe, road closures will be in place for the duration of the event, starting from 8.30am.

Roads will reopen to general traffic as the route is completed and the final closures are expected to be lifted around 1pm.

Southport Beach Car Park will be closed to the public during the morning to help facilitate the event and staff from Green Sefton will be assisting on the day. We hope to have the beach reopen for public parking from 1pm.

We’re working with organisers to help keep our beautiful borough clean and tidy and reduce the amount of litter which results from large scale events.

There will be four drop zones clearly signed at the water stations. Littering outside of these zones will result in a disqualification from the race.

Temperatures this weekend are expected to be between 18-26°c so regardless of if you’re running, cheering on a loved one or enjoying anywhere in our beautiful borough, please stay hydrated and apply sun-cream.

Everyone is welcome to come and watch the Half Marathon. The best and safest places to watch are around Victoria Park and the Marine Lake Café in King’s Gardens.

Don’t be offended if race marshals ask you to move. It’s to keep both you & runners safe!

Take full advantage of public transport to get here but if you’re driving, here’s some helpful routes:

East: Follow A570 Southport
South: Follow A565 North (Formby By-Pass)
North: Follow A59 South and then A565 into Southport

All participants and spectators are encouraged to park on Esplanade Car Park at the Eco Centre from 7am.

This offers the most convenient access to the venue and will cause the least disruption to our residents and businesses in the area.

We hope you enjoy your time in #MySefton, stay safe and good luck!

Sefton backs Redbox project to help young women in need

Sefton Council is lending its full support to the Red Box project to help young women across the borough with their periods.

Schools and family wellbeing centres in Sefton benefit from regular donations of ‘red boxes’ filled with gifted period products to help young girls to tackle period poverty.

Bootle Town Hall is the latest location to become a designated donation point for sanitary products and Sefton Council is working with the Sefton Red Box Project to set up more over the coming months.

Residents are encouraged to donate various items to the scheme, including pads, tampons, underwear, deodorants, pants and sanitary bags to a drop off box, which will then be distributed to those most in need.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “This vital service means that young women don’t have to go home in an emergency and can easily access products free from embarrassment.

“We know that feedback to the Red Box project has been incredible, with our schools saying the packages are warmly welcomed and well used.

“More so the boxes are actually having a positive impact on attendance. 

“It fills me with pride to see our wonderful communities coming together to make so many generous donations to the Red Box project and I hope this goes a long way to overcoming any stigmas people may have. We all need to work together to tackle the issue of period poverty.”

Mandy Smith, who started the Sefton Red Box project, added: “We are a community based, not-for-profit initiative. I started the Sefton project in January after reading about the effects of period poverty on our young women. As a mum I knew I that I had to help in some way.

“Since February, we have placed 70 boxes into schools, including all secondary schools, colleges and specialist schools across the borough.”

To find out more about Red Box Sefton or to get involved email redboxproject.sefton@gmail.com.

Second bid submitted for Heritage Lottery funding

Sefton Council has submitted a second round bid for National Lottery Heritage Funding (NLHF) for a major project in Southport town centre.

The Southport Townscape Heritage Project aims to enhance the quality and strength of the linkages between the town centre and the seafront so that the two become more integrated.

The project aims to increase the levels of economic activity within a target area and reduce the number of vacant and underused properties.

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

The total combined funding pot is £2.47 million including a request of £1.62m from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The second round is very competitive and is open to bids nationally and Sefton will find out in September 2019 if they are successful.

Cllr Daren Veidman, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning and Building Control, said: “Since we submitted our first round bid, a lot of work has been undertaken to fully develop the project including the adoption of the Conservation Area Management Plan, discussions with building owners, building property surveys and valuations, further public consultation and workshops with project partners.

“If approved we really believe the money will enhance the links between Lord Street and the Promenade reducing the vacant and poorly maintained properties and greatly increasing economic activity in these areas.

“The project also aims to increase local knowledge and appreciation of Southport’s rich heritage and inspire future generations featuring specialist educational courses on traditional building methods, the innovative use of digital technology, as well as a mix of complementary heritage-focused activities.”

If successful the project will be delivered over the next 5 years up until 2024.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, added: “The overall project aims to carry out essential conservation work, involving structural and external repair of historic buildings, the reinstatement of authentic architectural features and works to bring vacant floor space in historic buildings back into use.

“Lord Street and the Promenade conservation areas provide a rich and nationally significant collection of historic buildings and landscaping. We firmly believe preserving this heritage for residents, businesses and visitors alike will contribute greatly to the town’s economy while providing a strong sense of identity, local pride and community value.

“It runs along the recent King’s Gardens improvements, the Pier restoration, the Lord Street verandah project and other key developments in the resort.”

To keep up to date with the project and find out more information on Southport’s Heritage, follow us on Twitter @SouthportTHP and Facebook www.facebook.com/groups/southportthp

Offering learning opportunities to refugees living across the borough

As part of Refugee Week (June 17 – 23), Sefton Council is highlighting the excellent work it does to support refugees through further education. 

A number of courses are offered to refugees living in the borough which support them on their journey of learning English and also helps them integrate into our communities.

Classes are accessed through the Council’s Sefton Community Learning Service, which provides educational courses to communities across the borough. The service offers high quality adult learning programmes to help people make positive changes, support personal development and help communities thrive.

Celebrating Refugee Week also ties in with Sefton’s Year of Friendship with the Council focusing on ‘learning’ across the borough throughout June. 

Sefton Community Learning Service has provided education to a number of refugees in the borough.

These learners began their journey without English speaking skills and have progressed rapidly through the levels. They have now enrolled on other courses designed to improve their Mathematics and ICT skills.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Labour Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, said: “Developing communications skills has given refugee learners in Sefton independence and confidence. This has allowed them to meet new friends and increased their chances of gaining work experience and employment.

“Learners say they feel welcomed and believe tutors have not only supported them with their English skills but with all aspects of UK life and British values.”

Debbie Parkes, Curriculum Manager-ESOL and Education and Training, said: “We have been involved with the Syrian Resettlement Programme for over 2 years now and continue to welcome new students to our classes. The refugees arrived in this country with little or no understanding of the English language and culture. They have faced many challenges whilst in this country and have required help in adjusting to the area and life in England. In some cases, learning again has been a whole new experience.

“They have adapted well and can now communicate in the English language and make themselves understood. I feel privileged to have the refugees learning here at Sefton Community Learning Service”.

If you would like to know more about our refugee programme or any other courses at the Sefton Community Learning Service, please contact us on 0151 934 4546.

https://www.sefton.gov.uk/schools-learning/community-learning.aspx

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