Sunday Snippets, 15 October 2023

Welcome to “Sunday Snippets” a weekly feature from Birkenhead News. It is a round-up of the important local news stories you may have missed over the last seven days. Click or tap on each story to read the full article.

Teacher’s 30km charity run in Spain to save Woodchurch Leisure Centre

A teacher from Wirral will be running 30km in the Spanish heat to raise money for a cause helping his community back home.

Lewis Graham will be doing the run on 21 October from Malaga in southern Spain to the nearby city of Fuengirola to help raise money to save the Woodchurch Leisure Centre from demolition. He grew up in Upton but now lives in Spain.

The leisure centre was closed down in 2022 as part of Wirral Council’s budget cuts that year and was earmarked for demolition. However after thousands signed petitions, it was proposed to look at moving the centre into community hands.

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News ideas for New Brighton – Have Your Say on town’s future

A new lido, hotels, and other major developments could build on the significant investment New Brighton has enjoyed in recent years with fresh ideas to develop the resort for the future.

Consultation is now underway and people are being asked to give their views on a detailed series of suggestions being put forward in a masterplan for the Marine Promenade area, which stretches from Rowson Street to the Floral Pavilion.

The masterplan will provide a framework to help guide future development and the aim is to reignite the momentum of the resort following the £80 million of private investment in the Marine Point leisure and retail facility in 2011. This led to a resurgence in the town and a renewed enthusiasm for visitors over the last decade.

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Glenda Jackson awarded Wirral’s highest honour

Wirral Council has given the late Glenda Jackson the borough’s highest honour.

Glenda Jackson, an Oscar-winning actress and Labour MP for 23 years, died peacefully following a brief illness on 15 June 2023 at the age of 87. The star was born in Birkenhead and her family later moved to Hoylake in west Wirral as a child.

At a meeting of all councillors on 9 October, Wirral Council unanimously gave the late actress the title of the Freedom of the Borough posthumously, the highest honour it can give. This was following a unanimous recommendation by the council’s regulatory committee.

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Introducing RNLI New Brighton’s newest volunteer helm

On Wednesday 11 October, Tom McGinn officially qualified as volunteer helm, fully trained to take command of the Atlantic 85 B class lifeboat.

Tom joined the RNLI New Brighton as a volunteer crew member at 19 years old and has been with the crew for five years and five months.

During this time he has attended regular training exercises covering technical competence and safe operating procedures, covering everything from boat-handling, search and rescue, navigation, to radar training, radio communications, and casualty care.

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Miller’s Quay development scoops prestigious property award

Miller’s Quay, the £130m residential development at Wirral Waters, has won a major industry award for what the judges described as a ‘transformational’ project for Wirral. 

At Insider’s Liverpool City Region Property Awards 2023, which took place on 12 October at the Titanic Hotel, judges recognised the most significant property deals and developments within the city region, as well as the businesses behind them. 

The award for Development of the Year went to Miller’s Quay, the Peel Waters team at Wirral Waters and its partners – Pension Insurance Corporation plc (PIC), GRAHAM, and Wirral Council. 

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Clatterbridge operating theatres were closed due to ‘suspected mouse’

An NHS hospital trust in Wirral has confirmed four operating theatres closed for several days due to “a suspected mouse.”

The operating theatres at Clatterbridge Hospital were closed for several days due to an environmental issue and “operations were temporarily suspended whilst appropriate deep cleaning and environmental measures were taken.”

A photo sent to the LDRS claimed to show a rodent caught inside the hospital. The hospital trust spokesperson confirmed the environmental issue was due to “a suspected mouse.”

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Seacombe’s regeneration plans revealed in Town Hall Quarter Masterplan

Ambitious proposals are being put forward to transform and revitalise a central part of the Seacombe area.

Based around the Grade II* listed Wallasey Town Hall the proposals are contained within the new Wallasey Town Hall Quarter Masterplan and aim to bring social and economic regeneration along the Seacombe River Corridor and attract new investment into the area.

The Masterplan being put forward for public consultation outlines possible options including a remodelled area around Wallasey Town Hall with a centralised plaza in front of the historic building.

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Williamson photography exhibition gives a glimpse into homelessness

Birkenhead’s Williamson Art Gallery & Museum is to host Outsiders, a documentary photography project by Marc Davenant.

With Outsiders, Davenant aimed to capture a snapshot of homelessness in modern Britain over a six-year period.

The project was done in partnership with the charity Shelter and included environmental portraiture together with personal testimony from participants. The national project covered locations in London, Manchester, Glasgow, Newcastle, Brighton, Kent, Hertfordshire, and Norwich.

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Wirral Growth Company delivers phase one of Birkenhead regeneration

The first phase of Birkenhead town centre’s regeneration, two energy-efficient office buildings, were handed over to Wirral Council this week.

The handover was from Wirral Growth Company, a 50:50 joint venture partnership between Wirral Council and the national urban regeneration specialist and place-maker Muse which aims to provide local communities with new opportunities and revitalise the built environment through regeneration.

In addition to the scheduled delivery of these buildings, Wirral Growth Company, working with partner Morgan Sindall Construction, has already enabled significant social impact through its Employment & Skills Plan as evidenced by the figures achieved against its target Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), some of which have been exceeded by more than 200%.

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Letters to the Editor: More consistency in 20mph roads

“Reading all the comments about the 20mph speed limits around Wirral, I wonder how much thought has gone into this roll-out.”

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Council will not pause roll out of 20mph limits

Wirral Council will not be pausing its rollout of 20mph limits across the borough.

A motion had been put forward by the local authority’s Conservative group calling for a review of the policy for residential areas and a pause on the rollout of limits except around schools.

This was decisively rejected by the three other parties on the council who argued the public had been asking for the council to tackle road safety concerns and it was too early for a review.

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Wirral takeaways offer thoughts on single-use plastic ban

Takeaways gave their thoughts after the government brought in a ban on several plastic items used in their billions.

The ban, brought in on 1 October, means no business including takeaways can sell single-use plastic cutlery, balloon sticks, polystyrene cups, and food containers. Supplies of single-use plastic plays, trays and bowls have also been restricted.

The government has brought the ban in to help reduce plastic pollution and cited research showing 2.7bn items of plastic cutlery and 721m plastic plates are used every year. Only 10% of these are recycled.

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Plans for 36 bed HMO in Seacombe rejected

Wirral’s council leader said police were once called to a site that could have become a 36-bed house of multiple occupation (HMO).

Cllr Paul Stuart was speaking against a proposal to build a 36-bed HMO on St Paul’s Road in Seacombe. The HMO was proposed at the old Jacksons Furniture on St Paul’s Road with the old building demolished.

The plans were unanimously rejected by Wirral Council’s planning committee on 11 October. This was due to the number of HMOs in the plans which councillors argued would be in breach of current council planning policy that states no more than 20% of housing are HMOs in an area.

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School zone 20mph sign vandalised

Near a school, the 20mph zone sign has been in place for seven years and has recently been vandalised.

The sign is situated on Alton Road in Birkenhead near Birkenhead High School Academy and was vandalised sometime before 4 October. It has been in place since 2016 according to Oxton councillor Allan Brame.

The vandalism follows reports of similar incidents across the Wirral as its council looks to roll out new 20mph speed limits in residential areas. It is currently finishing off a rollout of the first phase on 1,700 roads while moving forward with a second phase on more roads.

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Warriors on the podium in road relays

In recent weeks the road running season has been in full swing, starting with the NW road relay Championships at Heaton Park, Manchester in mid-September.

Then it was onto the Northern Road relays in Birkenhead Park at the end of September, and culminating in the National road relay finals in Sutton Park Birmingham on Saturday 7 October.

A consistent theme throughout all three rounds of the road relay Championships has been the success of the inclusive philosophy of the Warriors.

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Tranmere defeated at Crewe

Tranmere Rovers suffered a 2-0 defeat against Crewe Alexandra on Saturday afternoon.

Crewe started the game with an early opportunity as Shilow Tracey, cutting inside from the left, saw Tranmere keeper, Luke McGee, make a characteristically robust save.

The home team took the lead in the 11th minute as Mickey Demetriou skillfully headed in from a free-kick.

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Wirral Police weekly news round-up

This is the Birkenhead News weekly round-up of police activity in and around Wirral during the last seven days.

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What’s On? Guide

Visit our “What’s On?” guide for Wirral and the surrounding areas in the coming weeks.

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