Maghull – Green Lane tree down

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This huge tree came down around 4.15pm last Thursday afternoon, so I am told and it seems from chatting to a resident living nearby that rotted roots may have been the cause.

It was one of those trees that looked fine, indeed I must have walked under it hundreds of times over the years right back to when I took my daughter to Green Park School. The tree was much older than anyone reading this posting and it is rather sad to see it down.

Fortunately no one was hurt although a property in Green Link seems to have suffered some damage.

Maghull Hornby Festival goes well and goes Down Under!

The first thing to say is a big thank you to the organising committee for an excellent 5 days of festivities from 15th to 19th May – a good job well done and hopefully to be repeated year on year.

Secondly, thanks to the Aintree and Maghull Champion for their excellent coverage. I must admit that in these days of sound bite news I feared a single photo and a few lines but the paper and of course their ace local reporter Jim (The News Hound) Sharpe did the festival proud.

But what about Down Under? Well this goes back some time to when out of the blue an Australian chap called Glenn Ball contacted me after reading about the Frank Hornby Trust from a posting on this web site. He was in the process of researching an article for The Australian Hornby Collector magazine and together with my chums at the Trust we furnished him with information and photos about Frank Hornby and the activities of the Trust.

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Then a few weeks ago a large envelope arrived from Australia and inside was the March edition of the magazine which Glenn edits. And a good read it has been too but it still surprises me to pick it up and see photo’s that I took of our previous exhibitions at Maghull Town Hall published in an Australian magazine.

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In return I have sent Glenn a copy of the Maghull Hornby Festival’s commemorative booklet together with cuttings from the Champion.

So that’s how the Maghull Hornby Festival has gone Down Under.

Launch of Maghull’s Frank Hornby Festival

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Together with BBC North West News I went to Maghull Town Hall for the launch of Maghull’s Frank Hornby Festival last night and enjoyable it was too.

The photo shows the cast of a play put together by St Andrews Players all about the life of Frank Hornby the famous Maghull toy maker.

Those who know local characters will spot Cllr. Bruce Hubbard amongst the cast – he played the Dad of a little girl having a birthday on 15th May. The play was written very much for children and has been doing the rounds of schools, Brownies etc.

Maghull’s Vicar, Nick Wells, gave a speech as Chairman of the Festival Committee as did Frank Hornby Trust Chairman Les French. The Vicar mused on why model railways are such a big thing with the clergy and this made me think because as an atheist they are a big thing with me too.

Let’s hope that the planned community events over the 5 day festival are a great success as a small band of decicated folk have put in a great deal of effort.

Closure of Lydiate Ambulance Station – Why did Labour sit on the information and say nothing until Lib Dems made it public?

The proposed closure of Maghull Ambulance Station, with the ambulance based there being moved to Buckley Hill Fire Station, is a concern to us all and that is why Cllr. Andrew Blackburn and I made the issue public via the Champion newspaper (24th April) and this blog site.

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But hang on a minute, Labour run Sefton Council knew about this closure at least as long ago as the 12th March (some 6 weeks previously) when they were written to by the North West Ambulance Trust.

On that basis why did it have to take us opposition Lib Dem councillors to ferret out the information and make it public? Why did Labour sit on the information? Why indeed. What’s more it seems that the comrades are now scuttling around raising a petition against the closure that they did nothing about at all until we, with the Champion’s help, put it in the public domain.

That’s not community leadership dear comrades it’s band wagon jumping.

Lower Alt Wind Farm – latest news

A group of over 60 people met in Ince Blundell on 9th May due to big concerns in that small rural community that I used to represent some 10 or more years ago when I was first a Molyneux Ward Councillor and Ince Blundell Parish was then in that ward of Sefton.

The wind farm will, should it gain planning permission, be on land that is a part of West Lancashire, not Sefton, because of the somewhat odd drawing of local government boundaries in 1974 when Sefton Borough was created.

I have already made clear my own views which are that nothing should be constructed on the high grade (best and most versatile to give it is recognised title) agricultural land that is what the proposed site is made up of.

I hear that there are suggestions of concerned people engaging professional legal/planning advice as they take forward their concerns and objections about this wind farm plan.

The petition against the proposed development that a mentioned in a previous posting is available to sign in Edie Pope’s Church View Farm Shop on Southport Road, Lydiate.

Animals in Need, Melling – Their fight to regain a pitch for their fund-raising stall in Maghull Shopping Centre goes on.

Since the owners of the northern half of Maghull’s shopping Centre gave the charity notice to quit their regular pitch a few weeks ago the charity have gamely been fighting to find another site for their stall.

And they are well thought of too as 5 letters in the last three week’s editions of the Aintree & Maghull Champion, backing the charity, show.

I have been into bat for the charity discussing options with Sefton Council officers and liaising with the charity but so far a sustainable solution has not been found.

The Westway battle ground where the Animals in Need charity want to pitch their regular fund raising stalls.

The Westway battle ground where the Animals in Need charity want to pitch their regular fund raising stalls.

There are still two options on the table but one, using a small area of land owned by Sefton Council, seems to be an uphill struggle as I am told that as soon as the charity makes a bid for the site the managing agents of the northern side of the Shipping Centre are likely to register objections on behalf of their shopkeeper tenants. The other option, gaining permission from the other major land owner, remains a possibility but nothing has been heard from that land owner.

You could have put money on local residents rising up to support the charity when they were told to hop it but even I have been taken aback by how many people have mentioned this issue to me.

It looks like this battle is going to rumble on with those who are holding the charity at arms length gaining nothing good from their stance. Come on, taking on a British animal charity was always going to create a storm.