Sunday Snippets, 28 April 2024

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.

Tributes paid from across the political divide for former Birkenhead MP Frank Field

Tributes have poured in from across the political divide to former Birkenhead MP Frank Field who has died.

The former Labour Minister and crossbench peer represented the Wirral constituency from 1979 until 2019 before entering the House of Lords in 2020. He was a hugely influential figure in Parliament but a statement read out in the House of Lords on behalf of Lord Field of Birkenhead in 2021 revealed he was terminally ill and had spent time in a hospice.

His family shared a statement confirming he died following a period of illness highlighting his work on child poverty, modern slavery and welfare reform. He helped set up the Number Seven café in Birkenhead which offers advice and discounted food to people who are struggling.

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Contract awarded as council plans to repair hundreds of roads

More than £7m is to be spent improving hundreds of roads, pavements and bridges across Wirral this year.

Wirral Council has given a four year £1.3m contract to Rhino Asphalt Solutions Ltd, a specialist highways maintenance business, to treat road surfaces across the borough. This will run alongside the local authority’s in-house team as the amount of roads fixed in the borough is set to double.

The contract follows an agreement by councillors in March to spend a total budget of £7.2m over the next financial year to tackle potholes and other issues with the road. A total of 376 roads are expected to be treated using a £6.4m budget boosted by a £1.3m UK government pothole fund. An additional £745,000 will be spent on bridge maintenance.

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Blu the cat’s ‘purrfect’ return home after seven months

A heartwarming tale of a lost cat’s journey home has unfolded at Bidston Recycling Centre.

The staff at the facility played a pivotal role in reuniting a beloved feline companion with his owner after a seven-month separation.

The cat, 16-year-old Blu, had been missing since October 2023 and was found over five miles away from his home by Ian, Tony, and Hayley, who work at the Bidston Recycling Centre where Veolia manages the recycling and waste from homes across Wirral.

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Major improvement schemes set to begin in Birkenhead town centre

Two major highway improvement schemes in Birkenhead town centre are to begin shortly.

Both schemes are designed to make the areas more attractive and improve accessibility and safety for all road users, including cyclists and pedestrians.

Funded from a combination of sources, including the UK government’s Future High Street Fund (FHSF) and Liverpool City Region Combined Authority’s Active Travel fund, the programmes will complement the wider Birkenhead regeneration plans that are already underway in the town.

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Imperial War Museums opens exhibition of work by Birkenhead-born conflict photographer, Tim Hetherington

This Spring, Imperial War Museums (IWM) opens its first exhibition of work by celebrated photojournalist, filmmaker, and humanitarian, Tim Hetherington, following IWM’s acquisition of his full archive from the Tim Hetherington Trust in 2017.

Tim Hetherington was born in Birkenhead in 1970 and was killed while covering the front lines in the besieged city of Misrata, Libya, during the 2011 Libyan civil war.

Opening at IWM London on the 13th anniversary of Hetherington’s death, Storyteller: Photography by Tim Hetherington showcases photography, films, and personal objects from across Hetherington’s career.

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Mowgli’s dog show for Claire House returns

A dog show organised by Mowgli Steet Food is returning this summer to support Claire House Children’s Hospice.

Organisers of the Mowgli Dog Show are gearing up for this year’s show – and your pooch can be at the heart of it when the gates open on 1 and 2 June.

Tickets are now on sale for the two-day event, which raises vital funds for seriously and terminally ill children and their families.

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Birkenhead Park awaits the world’s arrival

Organisers of this year’s Borough of Culture programme for Wirral never promised residents and visitors the Earth but – in a manner of speaking – that is just what they are delivering.

The Earth in this case is artist Luke Jerram’s iconic ‘Gaia’ exhibition, a three-dimensional representation of our planet, which is coming to Birkenhead Park for three days towards the end of May.

Measuring seven metres in diameter and created from NASA imagery of the Earth’s surface, through ‘Gaia’, Luke is providing everyone with the opportunity to examine our planet close up, floating in three dimensions.

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Family pay tribute to man who sadly died in Heswall collision

Police have confirmed that Jaymie Rajan Tank, 28, has sadly died following a road traffic collision on Village Road in Heswall on Sunday, 21 April.

Emergency services were contacted just after 1.30pm following a report of a collision involving a disabled man in a wheelchair, a pedestrian, and a grey Fiat Punto. The car also collided into three parked vehicles and a building.

Jaymie was taken to hospital following the collision but sadly died late on Sunday evening. His next of kin have been informed and are being supported by specially trained officers.

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Wallasey Town Hall annexes demolished ahead of plans for homes

Two ‘ugly’ annexes to historic Wallasey Town Hall have now been demolished ahead of plans for new homes.

Demolition work started on the north and south annexes for Wallasey Town Hall on 5 February, with diggers getting to work on the South annexe first. Work is expected to take 20 weeks and photos from the site now show the south annexe completely cleared while just rubble remains where the north annexe once stood.

The demolition is the first step in plans to regenerate the area around Wallasey Town Hall and is being funded by £2.3m from the second round of Brownfield Land Release Fund.

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Former Emmerdale Star Richard Shelton is Frank Sinatra at the Floral Pavilion

Following a sell-out run at the Jermyn Street Theatre in London’s West End with his solo show Sinatra: RAW, Richard Shelton brings a brand-new show to the UK this Spring.

Frank Sinatra: The Retirement Concert will play at the Floral Pavilion, New Brighton, on Thursday, 2 May.

In June 1971, at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Hollywood, at the age of 55, Frank Sinatra announced he was retiring, bringing to an end his 36-year career in show business. His retirement concert was a milestone in music history and saw the passing of an icon and a golden era.

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Motorcyclists raise over £1,000 for RNLI in memory of fellow bikers

There was a special meet up of motorbikes and lifeboats at Hoylake Lifeboat Station on Sunday, 21 April, as the riders of a local motorcycle group, BXB/Bretton Motorcycles, presented an incredible donation of £1,045 to the RNLI.

The motorcycle group raises funds for good causes each year at its charity Christmas biker party, which was started over 23 years ago by Paul Sinkinson.

In recent years, the party has raised funds in memory of Paul’s best friend Lee Brooker. Lee helped organise the events, which have since been renamed BXB Brooker’s Xmas Bash – Lee’s wife Althea has also stepped into his boots in supporting the planning. This year’s fundraising efforts also remembered a fellow biker, Terry.

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Disappointment for Tranmere in final game of season

Tranmere Rovers suffered a 4-1 loss against Accrington Stanley in their last match of the 2023/24 season.

Rovers secured an early advantage within two minutes as Rob Apter earned a free kick near the edge of the penalty area. Regan Hendry set up Luke Norris, who powerfully struck the ball past Radek Vitek.

However, Accrington swiftly responded just two minutes later, with Lewis Shipley finding the net from a corner.

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Wirral Police weekly news round-up

This is the Birkenhead News weekly round-up of police and crime news 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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