Maghull – Former Town Mayor Jane Day RIP

I am sorry to have to report that former Maghull Town Councillor and indeed Town Mayor Jane Day has died.

Back in September 2017 I posted about Jane leaving Maghull to live nearer to her daughter and the book we produced to mark her many years involvement in the local community. Here’s a link to that posting:-

tonyrobertson.mycouncillor.org.uk/2017/09/03/jane-day-leaving-maghull-after-50-years/

An amusing incident Jane got me involved with was to do with her fire alarm at her house on Liverpool Road South (she later moved to Mayhall Court on Westway before her move down south in 2017) which had gone off and Jane could not make it stop. She called me and I went to her house and unscrewed it from the hall ceiling. I was expecting to find a battery to remove but it was one where the battery was built in and not removable. We ended up in Jane’s back yard with me bashing hell out of the damn thing until it finally stopped. We were both doubled up laughing at the situation and how stubborn the alarm was.

RIP Jane day, I will miss you and your at times wicked sense of humour.

Maghull – Bob’s Field, Bobby’s Wood or Bobbies Wood?

The photo above is of a piece of public land (maintained by Maghull Town Council but owned by Sefton Council) at the junction of Liverpool Road South and Northway (A59). If you know of it you may refer to it by one of the names at the head of this posting, but which is right and why?

I have always known of it as Bobby’s Wood but that’s just because someone told me it’s name many years ago. I never questioned it nor did I know it seeming had a very similar name (but with a different spelling) or indeed yet another name.

I guess community given names like this grow over time and if there’s more than one version doing the rounds then unless a formal title is given to the land by say a council, which then puts up a plaque/sign to that effect, then the differing names will perpetuate.

Anyway in one of my other lives, as a Maghull in Bloom volunteer, I wrote a posting for the Maghull in Bloom News Facebook Page (which was copied to the Official Maghull Community Page) recently regarding a volunteer/community activity taking place on this piece of land today Saturday 20th October.

The list of former Mayors

The posting led to this exchange with between former Town Mayor (1984/85) Maghull Rhona Simon and myself (see photo of former Mayor’s board in Maghull TH above):-

Rhona Simon – In the fifties, this area was known as Bob’s field, don’t know where Bobbie’s wood came from! I climbed my first tree there!

Tony Robertson – I wondered that too. Someone mentioned a connection to me about the Police hence Bobbies.

Rhona Simon – There was a horse called Bob that was kept in that field, hence the name. Someone else out there must remember him!

So now we know it’s name is actually Bob’s Field or at a push Bob’s Wood, it has nothing to do with Policemen or women of a previous generation.

Thanks for setting the record straight Rhona

Note: click on the photos to enlarge them

Maghull – Merrick Stott – A life well lived

Long time Maghull resident and former Maghull Town Mayor, Councillor Merrick Stott has sadly passed away at the ripe old age of 93.

Merrick had lived on Melling Lane in Maghull for as long as I had known him, he was a regular attender at St. George’s RC Church and had been a bank manager prior to his retirement I understand.

He was always smartly dressed and rarely seen without his suit on, you might call him an old fashioned gentleman.

He was elected to serve on Maghull Town Council in May 1987, was Town Mayor in 1990/91 and was Chair of the Policy and Resources Committee. It fell to Merrick to uncover a loss of money within the Council which ended up with the Police being involved back in the late 1980’s, but as a former bank manager it was no surprise that he picked up on the matter.

Whilst Merrick could look rather formal he actually had a rather good sense of humour and two incidents come to mind that make me smile when I recall them. On one occasion he was canvassing for the Lib Dems somewhere in Maghull and a door opened to reveal a young lady with a little towel covering her up and nothing else! Always the gentleman Merrick did not flinch and carried on with his doorstep conversation as though nothing had happened. On another occasion there was a slight misunderstanding between Merrick and I. I thought he had told me he was a naturist when in fact he had told me he was a naturalist. Well having commented on Merrick of all people being a naturist the misunderstanding got back to him. Fortunately he thought the misunderstanding was hilarious.

Merrick spent some time on the Management Committee of the former Stafford Moreton Youth Club and he was also involved in the running of Melling Tithe Barn. And with his environmental interests taking the lead he worked up the project to replant many trees within Balls Wood during the late 1980’s/early 1990’s. Those trees are now fully established and a tribute to Merrick.

A nice and decent man was Merrick Stott and my best wishes to his family at this difficult time.

And here are some additional comments from George Barnes paying a lovely tribute to Merrick:-

Thank you Tony, for the fitting and lovely personal tribute to the Late Merrick Stott, an ‘unsung hero’ of local & civic service. Merrick had many interests and supported many good causes; he was ever ready to give his time and professionalism for the benefit of others. Always self-effacing, he had an acute mind in matters financial as Tony points out. Very well-read – nothing ‘light’, and well-informed. Back in the day, he was involved in Scouting within St.George’s parish. He co-founded the Stroke Club which met at Christopher Taylor House, was for many years a Foundation Governor of St.George’s Primary School and very much involved with the Late John Hoople in the Melling Arts Association. He was a keen gardener, kept bees at one time, very interested in Environmental matters. We cannot mention Merrick without Marie to whom he was married for over 50 years; and well-known in Maghull in her own right. They were rightly proud of their three sons and 10 grand-children – always supportive and interested in their careers , achievements and travels. All who knew Merrick acknowledge their loss with deepest sympathy but with the conviction that Merrick contributed much without wanting fuss or praise. May he rest in peace.

Jane Day – Leaving Maghull after 50+ years

Jane Day will be known to many people as a former friendly helpful local councillor, as Mayor of Maghull (2002/2003), as a leading light of Maghull Folk Club and as a member of Lord Street Parade choir.

Jane has been a friend of mine for 20 years or more and when she recently announced that she was moving down to Ware in Hertfordshire to be near her daughter I thought something had to be done to mark her many years involvement in the local community. And it transpired that another friend, Andrew Blackburn, was having similar thoughts.

After a bit of thought we decided to put together a book filled with photos of Jane and her life and times in the Maghull area. Between us and with the help of Roy and Beth Connell we got together a selection of photographs and Andrew set to putting together the book via the web site of a company that specialise in such one off hardback books.

The result of Andrew’s hard work (front cover displayed below) was presented to Jane at her Mayhall Court flat a few of days ago and to say that she was shocked, surprised and delighted would be putting it mildly.

Here’s hoping for many happy times in Ware with your daughter and grandchildren Jane. We will miss you.

Maghull Wind Orchestra Fundraise for Woodlands Hospice

Maghull Wind Orchestra put on a concert at Maghull Town Hall on 28th October to help the Mayor of Maghull raise money for her charity Woodlands Hospice.

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The concert was Halloween themed and many of those in this large and excellent orchestra dressed up for the occasion.

These photos are not particularly good as the light levels were very low but have a look at Phil their conductor dressed as a pumpkin! Cllr. Jen Robertson can also been seen with her cat ears amongst witches and a skeleton.

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Lydiate – Scarecrow Festival at Church View Farm

www.osadvertiser.co.uk/news/local-news/west-lancashires-first-ever-scarecrow-7915088

Mm, the link above to the Ormskirk Advertiser, says it was in West Lancs but Lydiate is firmly in Merseyside, however, the story makes for some good background to what has happened and why over the past weekend.

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Edie Pope, a Lydiate Parish Councillor and well known local farm shop proprietor, certainly put on a show with many people, groups and schools bringing their own scarecrows for display with a Halloween theme. And it drew massive crowds throughout the weekend with cars having to be parked in the field next door to the display.

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It was all in a good cause – Woodlands Hospice – and Edie had the support of Maghull’s Mayor Joan Deegan, a fellow fund raiser for Woodlands, who judged the scarecrow competition.

The photos above and some others from the festival are amongst my Flickr shots at:-
www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/

Click on the photos to enlarge them.