Maghull – Whatever happened to the £250,000 that Maghull Town Council was sat on?

First, a bit of history to put this matter in its correct historical context. My posting of 7th December 2014 refers – see link below:-

tonyrobertson.mycouncillor.org.uk/2014/12/07/maghull-town-council-now-what-about-that-new-play-equipment/

Well we have moved on to February 2016 since then and little or nothing has seemingly happened despite the big promises of 2014. No bandstand (but folks living in Liverpool Road South and Brendale Avenue are probably grateful for that I guess), no big investment is new play equipment across Maghull’s parks and no progress on the plant heritage centre.

Maghull Town Hall

This latter project, when I got to the bottom of it, always struck me as being of some considerable merit. It was being put forward by a local resident who is an award winning plant expert. I understand that, some 18 months or more on, the chap was still awaiting a definitive answer as to whether his proposals will be supported or not.

As a bit more context the cash, just shy of £250,000, is called Section 106 money and you have probably picked up from the link to my previous posting above that it came from those ‘planning gain’ negotiations going back to 2008.

So the £250,000 question is, why has this large pot of money, meant for environmental improvements in Maghull seemingly been all but forgotten about? Yes, projects like the proposed KGV Park bandstand are controversial and potentially unwelcome but my point is, why has the money been sat in the bank when big promises were made by Labour-run Maghull Town Council about what it would be spent on back in 2014?

When will we hear of this money again?

Frank Hornby – Just what did happen to the Hornby empire when it was broken up?

The amazing thing about Frank Hornby and his products is that many of them are still in production although the ownership of the companies involved in their manufacture is now spread far and wide.

rsz_a_meccano_masterpiece

Take Meccano, it has been produced by a French owned company for many years now – see link below to Meccano UK:-

www.meccano.com/uk/

And what about Hornby Trains – still going ‘strong’ as a OO gauge model railway producing company – see the link below:-

www.hornby.com/uk-en/

And what brought this to mind? My old chum and former Maghull resident Roy Connell (now a valued associate researcher for this blog site) spotted this newspaper report on the fortunes of the Hornby Company:-

www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/11577673/Hornby-back-in-profit-for-first-time-since-Olympic-debacle.html

And for those interested in what happened to Dinky Toys this link to a very detailed Wikipedia page will be of interest:-

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dinky_Toys

Toy production has always be a volatile part of the economy with trends coming and going regularly. Produce the wrong toy that does not prove particularly popular and a company can be in all sorts of trouble.

The Frank Hornby Trust is dedicated to preserving and displaying the life and works of Frank Hornby who is by far the famous former resident of Maghull on Merseyside, UK. Displays of Hornby products are available for the public to view in the Frank Hornby Room at Meadows Leisure Centre, Maghull. I would however urge all potential visitors to call the Leisure first before setting out as the room is multi-use and is not always available to view the Hornby display cases. The staff at the Leisure Centre should be able to tell you when viewing is possible.

The most magnificent tree in Maghull?

The other day my old chum and former Maghull councillor Roy Connell said that he thought the Copper Beech tree in a garden at the junction of Liverpool Road South and Ormonde Avenue was probably the the most magnificent tree in the Town.

Of course Roy has form when it comes to trees as it was he, as this blog site has mentioned before, who got trees planted on the vast traffic island in Maghull’s Green Lane (see link below) which will forever more be know as Roy’s Roundabout!

tonyrobertson.mycouncillor.org.uk/2014/04/26/roys-roundabout-in-bloom/

So I went to have a look and you know Roy is right it is a magnificent tree:-

rsz_a_magnificent_beech_tree_-_the_meadows_maghull

It’s funny I have lived in Maghull since I was 10 and within half a mile of this tree for 14 years yet the joy of this magnificent tree was a part of the backdrop of Maghull that I took for granted and hardly noticed.

Roy Connell now lives in exile in Ainsdale.

The photo above is amongst my Flickr shots at:-
www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/

Roy’s Roundabout in Bloom

Roy’s Roundabout is at the junction of Westway and Green Lane in Maghull and in recent days it has been looking wonderful with all the trees in blossom.

rsz_roys_roundabout

Click to enlarge the photo which is amongst my Flickr shots at:-
www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/

I have mentioned this roundabout once before on this blog site – on 27th November 2010 – and the Roy it was ‘nick named’ after responded to that posting. This is what he said:-

Yes I campaigned for the trees and the daffodils. When they come up in Spring they are a great display, but the money came from the Mayor’s Charity fund who’s theme of the year was ‘plant more trees’. The Mayor for that year was Cllr Maureen Fearn.

From memory it was David Bamber [a former Mayor of Maghull] who coined the phrase ‘Roy’s Roundabout’ in his weekly mayoral column for one of the local newspapers .

Sefton & Maghull Station – Cheshire Lines Southport Extension Railway

rsz_sefton_&_maghull_station_1966

My understanding is that this photo, which is looking northwards towards Southport, was taken around 1966. I came to live on Sefton Lane, Maghull in December 1968 at the age of 10 and recall the remains of the platforms being there but the station buildings had by then been demolished if memory serves.

You could not easily replicate this photo for a ‘then and now’ shot as virtually nothing looks the same now. The bridge parapets have been taken away and the void beneath them filled in so that all that is left is a mound that Sefton Lane travels over. The track bed and station site has a factory on it. The former Koters factory which you can see behind the station buildings in the photo, was extended onto the site many years ago. Koters, a company that made wax bread wrappers, has long gone itself with the factory serving other purposes these days.

North of the old bridge the track bed is intact and is the Cheshire Lines Path, part of the Trans Pennine Trail. My old mate former Maghull councillor Roy Connell often cycles it from his new home in Ainsdale back to Maghull where he used to live.