Sunday Snippets, 25 June 2023

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

Woman who couldn’t find her buried son for 53 years helps reunite dozens of other families

A woman who couldn’t find where her son was buried for 53 years has helped to reunite dozens of other families.

Gina Jacobs, who lives in Greasby, gave birth to her son Robert in February 1969 but he was stillborn. She never saw the baby, while her husband was told to collect Robert from the hospital and leave him at the cemetery.

In the 20th century, stillborn babies were taken to cemeteries across Wirral and buried in “mass graves” or at the foot of someone being buried that day.

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Peaky Blinders returns to filming location Port Sunlight in new exhibition

This summer, a special exhibition of costumes worn in the iconic TV drama Peaky Blinders is coming to Port Sunlight, which was famously used as a filming location in the show.

The award-winning TV series, Peaky Blinders, first aired in 2013 and follows the exploits of a family-led criminal gang headed by Tommy Shelby in Birmingham amidst the aftermath of the First World War. It has since become a huge cultural phenomenon and has drawn fans from across the world.

Port Sunlight locations featured in the show included Park Road and the Dell park, where stars such as Cillian Murphy and Helen McCrory filmed several pivotal scenes which featured in the second and third series.

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Wirral starts its own Repair Café

On Sunday 2 July, the Wirral Deen Centre in Birkenhead is opening its doors for the first session of the Wirral Repair Café.

From 2 pm to 4pm, volunteer repair experts will be available at the Wirral Deen Centre (371-375 Borough Road, Birkenhead CH42 0HA) to help make repairs free of charge (though donations are welcome).

People visiting the Repair Café can bring along their broken items from home: toasters, lamps, hair dryers, clothes, bikes, toys, crockery… anything that is broken can be tackled and more than likely can be repaired. Wirral Repair Café specialists almost always have the know-how.

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Community group finds temporary Vale Park public toilets in bad state

A seaside town’s community group has slammed the disgusting state of their public toilets.

Last weekend, the toilets in Vale Park in New Brighton were left smeared with used toilet paper and faeces. The portable toilets are temporary replacements after the park’s toilet building was destroyed in a 2021 storm depriving the park and wider area of public toilet facilities.

Since then there have been calls for new toilets to be built and the New Brighton Coastal Community was “absolutely delighted” when funding and a developer was approved.

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Young Wirral film and TV star performs alongside Idris Elba and Bill Nighy

Wirral’s very own Lucia Aliu (aged 7), is set to star in the new AppleTV series Hijack, produced by and starring Idris Elba and also in feature film Role Play, starring Bill Nighy and Kaley Cuoco.

Lucia is represented by London and MediaCity UK based talent agency, Scream Management. Born in Liverpool, before moving to Wirral, she is a pupil at Great Meols Primary and is currently training at Stagecoach Wirral, auditioning for the agency in 2021, at the age of 6.

She has since been cast in high-profile TV shows, commercials, and feature films (including the recent commercial for Duracell).

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Wirral Council plan to shake up car parking has taken the next step

Plans by Wirral Council to shake up car parking have taken their next step.

Councillors on an environment and transport committee unanimously agreed to move to the next stage in developing a parking strategy. The strategy will now go out to another public consultation to get feedback on some new proposals put forward.

This includes the introduction of “smart mobility hubs” featuring e-bikes and scooters, charges for workplace car parks, more controlled parking zones, as well as new tariffs for car parks.

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West Kirby pupils sow wildflower meadow at Marine Lake Health and Wellbeing Centre

On Wednesday 21 June, pupils from West Kirby Primary School helped to sow a wildflower meadow at Marine Lake and Wellbeing Centre to complement the surrounding area and attract pollinating insects, especially bumblebees and other wildlife.

Working with W J Wilkinson & Sons (Landscaping) Ltd, 45 pupils and teaching staff from West Kirby Primary School, joined forces with local people to plant wildflower seeds in the prepared grassed area adjacent to the centre.

The children got involved with sowing wildflower seeds whilst learning about the benefits that the meadow will bring to the local environment. As well as enhancing the environment, it also adds a splash of colour to the area.

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Wirral artist to exhibit sublime watercolours at Williamson Art Gallery & Museum 

Rob Davies is a Wirral-based artist who paints large-scale watercolour landscapes that explore and question the mundanity of everyday life.

His works are subversive, eclectic and surprising. They are grounded in reality as a starting point but certain objects, narratives and compositions pivot towards the fantastic and imagined.  

Davies’ initial inspiration is the notion of a romantic “sublime”. His artworks are eclectic, but mainly combine elements from semi-industrial and semi-wild environments into landscapes that hover somewhere between real locations and science fiction. 

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Council plans to spend £86m on regeneration this year

Nearly £86m is planned to be spent on the regeneration in Wirral over the next year.

Wirral Council said it expects to spend £85.7m between April 2023 to March 2024 according to a regeneration committee report. This is to be followed by an expected £17.1m in the next financial year and £2.5m the year after that.

The money is going towards various projects that seek to radically change parts of the Wirral over the next two decades as part of Wirral Council’s ambitious regeneration plans.

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Claire Bear run in Birkenhead Park raises over £16,000 for Claire House

Over 300 people took part in the very first Claire Bear 3K in Birkenhead Park last weekend, raising thousands for Claire House Children’s Hospice.

The event encouraged local children to run or walk 3K with their friends and families and to support their local children’s hospice. Every child got a medal on the finish line and also met Claire Bear.

Event Fundraiser Mark Pearson said, “It was a fantastic day with a great turnout and it was brilliant to see so many children enjoying the event, high-fiving Claire Bear and fundraising to support other children in their community.

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Wirral Council’s vision for Hind Street Urban Village

Wirral Council plans to deliver 1,600 new homes to create an entirely new neighbourhood by 2035.

The Hind Street Urban Village is an ambitious plan to create new shops, a primary school, hotels, and new public spaces alongside the new homes in what is currently derelict industrial land behind Birkenhead Central Station.

The project is part of the local authority’s plans to completely change Birkenhead removing two flyovers that currently lead to the Birkenhead Tunnel and Borough Road. It will also run alongside the edge of the proposed Dock Branch park.

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Wirral’s Freedom Dance Studios crowned Elite Champions for second year

Freedom Dance Studios attended ‘Calling U Out Championships’ held between 9 and 11 June 2023 and for the second year running have been crowned Elite Champions.

Freedom Dance Studios have proudly brought home 103 trophies and medals from Championships, which was all achieved by just 26 of their dancers who are aged 5 – 18 years old.

Freedom Dance Studios has had even more amazing news since returning from their championship weekend. They have just won and been awarded ‘2023 Best Dance Studio in Wirral’ by Quality Business Awards.

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Wirral Police weekly news round-up

This is the weekly round-up of police activity in and around Wirral during the previous 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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