Sunday Snippets for week ending 3 October 2021

Welcome to “Sunday Snippets” a weekly feature from birkenhead.news. It is a round-up of our most popular good news stories from the last seven days. Click on each story to read the full article.

Prenton woman’s cycle challenge to raise awareness of Mitochondrial Diseases

In 2010 Prenton woman Faye Wylie started her own support group called Leigh Network. The group supports and brings together families affected by Mitochondrial Diseases. As Mitochondrial Diseases are generally life-limiting, most of the people who receive support are extremely ill and so benefit hugely from the work Faye does.

Fay says, “I myself have a Mitochondrial Disease called Leigh’s Syndrome. I was diagnosed at 12 and over the years it has affected my mobility, speech and sight.

“I started Leigh Network because for me and my family there was very little support or information available. We had lost my baby brother to a Mitochondrial illness when he was just 19 months old. There was little more information available almost a decade later and I felt very isolated.”

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New transport attraction for Birkenhead

National Museums Liverpool (NML) has shared news of its development of a new transport heritage attraction, as part of Birkenhead’s successful Town Deal funding bid from Government.

The Town Deal, which saw Wirral Council being awarded £25m for a range of transformative regeneration projects in Birkenhead, will allow NML to create the new 5000 square metre attraction as part of regeneration plans for an 800m stretch of the former Dock Branch Railway line, which runs through the heart of Birkenhead Town Centre.

The Transport Shed (working title) will be central to the new Dock Branch Park; a unique urban parkland developed on the site of the now disused Dock Branch Railway Line, one of the world’s first rail freight lines opened in 1847. It will display items from NML’s 250-strong transport collection – one of the best in the UK – ensuring that these incredible examples of transport engineering are given a worthy home that has public accessibility and display at its heart.

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Santerre painting on clear display at Lady Lever Art Gallery

After being conserved, the only Lady Lever Art Gallery artwork from the 18th century depicting a person of colour takes new and prominent position in the gallery 

The Lady Lever Art Gallery is placing a painting featuring an enslaved African person at the front and centre of its displays. The oil painting of Catherine-Marie Legendre, painted about 1705 and attributed to Jean Baptiste Santerre (1658-1717), is the only item in the gallery’s collection, from the 18th century, to depict a person of colour. Following a period in conservation, the painting will be on display from 1 October 2021 in a new and more prominent place on the gallery, inviting comment from the public.  

The painting will be displayed with a label which asks: “Does this portrait belong on the walls of the gallery today? Does its display help us tell and understand the history of slavery? Or does it continue to honour someone who benefitted from the slave trade? In light of recent international events, we want to know what our visitors think. We are displaying the portrait to be transparent with visitors and begin this conversation. You can share your thoughts with us by emailing [email protected] ” 

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Sun shines on return of Mersey Tunnel 10k during milestone year

The BTR Mersey Tunnel 10K returned on Sunday (26 September) after a break of almost two-and-a-half years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The event is the only time throughout the year when people can make their way through the Kingsway Tunnel on foot – making it one of the most unique running events in the country.

Fondly known locally as the ‘new tunnel’, it’s also a milestone year for the tunnel – June marked the 50th anniversary since it was officially opened by The Queen in 1971.

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The Across Mersey Swim – 28 years of adventure swimming

This year’s annual Across Mersey Swim saw record numbers of swimmers taking part. Since its humble beginnings in 1993, the award-winning Across Mersey Swim remains an iconic part of the river’s history.

This year’s event was organised by Liam Hanlon, the managing director of Knowsley-based The Forshaw Group and event director for Tri-4-life. The swim was supported by Liverpool Heartbeat, Wirral Life magazine, Love Lane Brewery and Alfa Advance, bringing a new energy to the community and charity festival-feel of this great swim.

Around 180 swimmers completed the showcase event, which bridges the city regions of Liverpool and Wirral across the mighty river. The event has been recognised as an outstanding contribution to leisure and tourism in the area, raising the international profile of the River Mersey and the communities that surround it.

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Metro Mayor pumps £6m into Liverpool City Region Growth Fund

A growth fund that helped businesses grow during the pandemic is to receive a £6million cash injection to deal with increased demand following lockdown.

The £20m Flexible Growth Fund was launched in January 2020 to help kickstart investment across the Liverpool City Region (LCR) in projects which create jobs and reinvigorate the economy.

Despite businesses focusing on survival during the Covid crisis, the fund has been able to boost growth, including five projects in Sefton, Wirral, Knowsley and Liverpool which used £13.1m of investment to expand, creating a total of 95 new jobs and safeguarding another 89.

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Byrne Avenue Baths celebrate Phase 1 reopening

Byrne Avenue Baths in Rock Ferry held a launch event last Friday to celebrate Phase 1 of the reopening plans. The event was attended by local residents, MPs, local councillors and people associated with the Byrne Avenue Trust.

Ben Harrison, Chair of the Byrne Avenue Trust, opened the event by saying, “This is a fantastic facility for the community. The journey over the 12 years was, ‘Let’s not let this building disappear!’ We didn’t want to spend the rest of our lives driving past Byrne Avenue looking at a block of flats.” And of that simple thought, the project to save Byrne Avenue Baths and bring it back into public use was born.

The Trust’s motivation is so that “thousands more kids can use this facility in the future”, Ben said. “Positivity always wins!”

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Open Day for World-Leading Physiotherapy Facility in Wirral

A new 3,500 sq ft purpose-built physiotherapy facility, boasting state-of-the-art technology will be officially unveiled at an open day on Friday 15 October in Bromborough.

Developed by Wirral-based couple, Chris and Jennifer Wynne, founders of The Rehab Physio, this centre of excellence offers robotics and virtual reality for intensive rehabilitation treatment programmes following neurological and catastrophic injury, whilst providing regular/focused physio to complement its intensive programmes.

The Rehab Physio’s £400k investment in ground-breaking rehabilitation equipment will enable the facility to offer a truly intensive programme of treatment. Traditionally, this has not been possible due to a shortage of therapists and the practical implications of achieving thousands of repetitions without the help of robotics.

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LCR Connect – Delivering ultrafast digital infrastructure

Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram has officially launched LCR Connect – a 212km full-fibre, ultrafast, gigabit-capable network spanning the Liverpool City Region.

LCR Connect will help make the Liverpool City Region the most digitally connected area in the UK and ultimately lead to a £1 billion boost to the local economy.

Work has now begun on a 212km full-fibre, gigabit-capable network infrastructure, capable of delivering speeds of 1,000mbps and beyond, that will help position the city region at the head of the next digital revolution.

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Tranmere climb to eighth following victory over Crawley

Tranmere Rovers climbed their way to eighth place in League Two as they beat Crawley Town at Prenton Park this Saturday.

Stand-in Captain Peter Clarke bagged two headers that heard Prenton Park roar in delight and ensuring that Rovers took all three points.

Tranmere’s Callum McManaman had an early attempt on goal, with only two minutes on the clock, but his shot went just over the bar. Shortly afterwards, Sam Ashford rattled the top left corner of the crossbar for Crawley.

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