I’ve blogged about the The Dell and the trees growing in it previously but the issue came back to mind today following a significant bow of one of the trees breaking off and blocking Liverpool Road North. This very situation (a tree falling) has been what a local resident has been asking Sefton Council to deal with back at least as far as February of this year as my last posting on the subject makes reference to – see link below:-
The photo at the head of this posting shows the scene earlier today as the tree surgeons were dealing with the consequences of the large bow breaking off. I had a brief chat with one of the workmen and if I understood him correctly he seemed to think more of the trees needed to be checked out. Let’s hope the joint land owners NHS & Sefton Council do get an inspection done.
I love trees but they do need to maintained. The Dell is a lovely green oasis at the heart of Maghull’s shopping area.
NHS, Maghull in Bloom and project partners meet at The Dell – 31st Jan 2014
I’ve blogged about this prominent piece of land at the heart of Maghull a couple of times before in 2011 and 2014 – here are links to those postings:-
What I did not do was to follow up on the last posting but contact from a Lydiate resident recently has reminded me to do so. The resident was talking to me as they are of the view that some of the tree branches overhanging Liverpool Road North may well be a danger to pedestrians and vehicles on the highway. In short Sefton Council has been informed and they have undertaken, I understand, to sort things out whilst holding the line that the land on which the trees are growing does not belong to the Council. On that basis the trees must be growing on the part of the site owned by the NHS.
Hare and Hounds in background
Readers who have read my links above will note that I make reference in those previous postings to The Dell belonging to the NHS. But that is only partly the case, indeed my present understanding is that a small part of The Dell actually belongs to Sefton Council. That part is a narrow strip along the Liverpool Road North boundary (possibly just the stone wall?) and a small section of the site around the Liverpool Road North/Westway corner. Interestingly, the Council also owns the grassed areas fronting the Health Center site on Westway. I say all this as I’ve seen copies of the Land Registry documents detailing it.
Going back to the attempt by Maghull in Bloom to take over the management of the land in 2014, one of the issues which caused the volunteers to call a halt to the project was the split ownership. As their volunteers were relying on a successful Lottery bid to fund the proposed works the project went no further as the Lottery would, I understand, be reluctant about investing in a site with split ownership.
Previous tree works being carried out in 2013
I wonder if there will be a 3rd attempt to get this green lung at the heart of Maghull managed in the long term?
Here are 3 photos; do you have any idea where they were taken?
The first two are of the same place, just differing angles – It’s The Dell in Maghull at the busy junction of Liverpool Road North and Westway across the road from the Hare and Hounds Pub. If you were there at this time of year, when the trees are in full leaf, it would only be the drone of the traffic that would give away the fact that this is not in the middle of the countryside.
Maghull in Bloom volunteers working with offenders from Melling’s Kennet Prison are presently undertaking long-term ecological work at The Dell.
The 3rd photo is off a section of the Leeds Liverpool Canal right in the heart of Bootle Village and next to the Strand Shopping Centre. The shot was taken from the bridge that takes Stanley Road over the canal where taxi’s and buses predominate.
It just goes to show that in urban town centres a little oasis of green can make all the difference.
Click on any of the photos to enlarge them.
These photos are amongst my Flickr shots at:-
NHS, Maghull in Bloom and project partners meet at the Dell – 31st Jan 2014
An interesting site meeting took place last Friday in Maghull’s Dell. The Dell is an important green lung within the Town and it probably has some historical significance too according to my good friend John Hill, a Maghull in Bloom volunteer. A cross is likely to have been on the site so I am told.
The site meting was attended by a representative of the NHS Property Company who own the Dell. My understanding being that when the NHS purchased the site on which Maghull Health stands around 1970 (following the campaigning of former local GP Reg Yorke) the Dell came as part of the deal.
It has never been well maintained with the NHS doing essential maintenance only, which is hardy surprising when their priority is the health of the nation.
Some 20 years ago, as I think I have previously recorded on this blog site, Maghull Town Council tried to encourage the NHS to pass it over to them on a long lease so that it could be sympathetically landscaped and properly maintained. A deal was not then possible despite my best efforts at the time. However, times change and the NHS are responding positively to the latest approach by Maghull’s highly successful ‘In Bloom’ volunteer group, hence the site meeting.
More news when I have it, but it looks like something positive could well be happening in the not too distant future all being well. If it does Melling’s Kennet Prison may well be a partner in the project. Watch this space….
Cllr. Jen Robertson spotted this recently and discussed with me what we can do to try to get it cut back.
The land from which the overgrowth emanates is called The Dell and it is owned by the NHS as it forms part of the grounds of Maghull Health Centre. Recent NHS reorganisation required a bit of detective work to be undertaken to find out whom the responsible NHS official may be who can get the work done. We hope we have found the right person and this photo has been sent to them with a request for urgent cutting back of the offending overgrowth.
Separately, Maghull in Bloom volunteers are offering their services to the NHS to help maintain this dell (as I have posted about previously) and a response is awaited.
UPDATE – Still no progress in the NHS cutting back their overgrowth so another reminder sent 1/11/13.
The Maghull in Bloom volunteers want to tackle a wooded glade right in the heart of Maghull at the junction of Westway and Liverpool Road North, across the road from the Hare and Hounds Pub. It is not well maintained or regularly litter picked which is a shame as it could look really nice. Many years ago Maghull Town Council offered to take it over and properly maintain it so the owners (the NHS) could save a few bob and the Town would look better. The offer was effectively turned down.
The land has belong to the NHS for 30 years or more (it abuts their Maghull Health Centre) but strangely they are saying, at least at a local level, that it is not/no longer their responsibility. I assume this odd response is due to the many reorganisations of the NHS under the previous and indeed current Government and that whomever is responsible for the land has got lost in a filing cabinet somewhere.
I am on the case trying to get the NHS to say whom we should now be speaking to and hope it will not be too long before we have an answer. After all if the NHS have volunteers knocking at their door you would like to think they would be very keen to engage with them.
Here are a couple of shots of the Dell:-
Hare and Hounds in background
Litter due to lack of maintenance
As an aside I also show (below) a shot of a bench that was installed in the nearby shopping centre by the volunteers in remembrance of one of their number who died not so long ago. If I told you that the Borough Council had raised concerns that it may be causing an obstruction I think, like me, you would think that maybe the Council should find something else to worry about!