August 28, 2015

Ending the scourge of pointless road signs

A new taskforce and consultation are announced to obliterate pointless road signs.

Sir Alan Duncan to lead taskforce tackling the overuse of road signs
Proposals for remove by dates on works signs
The next steps towards obliterating pointless road signs were announced by the Department for Transport today (28 August 2015). A taskforce overseen by Sir Alan Duncan MP will tackle the overuse of traffic signs while a consultation proposes a range of new measures including:

ensuring road signs that are used far longer than needed have a remove by date
making sure traffic signs are visible on unlit roads
stopping temporary message signs from being cluttered with adverts and distracting logos
The taskforce forms part of the governments ongoing work to make roads safer and navigation easier for motorists, scrap unnecessary red tape, and declutter roads.

Transport Secretary Patrick Mcloughlin said:

Useless traffic signs blight our landscape, waste taxpayers cash and can be a dangerous distraction to drivers.

We are restoring common sense to Britains roads while ensuring drivers have the information they need to get about safely. We have already made much progress but Sir Alan Duncans new taskforce is an important step towards striking the right balance.

Research carried out by the Department in 2013 to inform the Traffic Signs Policy Review (PDF, 1500KB) showed that the number of traffic signs has doubled in the last 20 years. Sir Alan Duncan MPs taskforce will make practical suggestions for removing clutter and ask whether some signs can be removed altogether. It will also look at what can be done to change the culture within local authorities to reduce signing and consider the factors that lead to sign clutter.

Britain is renowned for having one of the best traffic signing systems in the world but the 2002 legislation that underpins it is now widely viewed as out of date, meaning some signs are either confusing, redundant, or both.

Sir Alan Duncan said:

I have been campaigning on this issue for twenty years. I am delighted to lead this initiative. The UK has erected thousands of road signs which are completely unnecessary, such as traffic light warning signs when you can see the lights themselves. We are going to look at how we might get rid of whole categories of unnecessary signs and improve the look of our roads and streets.

To enable local authorities to make a difference without having to wait for new regulation, DfT has already relaxed requirements for design and placing of some signs, and new robust advice has been published to helped local authorities declutter roads.

For the last 3 years DfT has also sponsored the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation Reducing Sign Clutter award, to highlight and reward good practice by local authorities.

The taskforce will begin work soon and present its recommendations to government by December 2015. The consultation will close on 6 October 2015 and DfT will respond in due course.

Click here to view comments on this story

August 28, 2015

Southport Sign Andy Bishop

Experienced centre forward Andy Bishop signed for Southport. The ex York City, Bury and Wrexham striker signs from AFC Halifax after Paul Carden targeted the 32 year old to lead the Port line. Bishop is poised to make his Port debut at Barrow on Saturday.

Paul Carden said "Andy is exactly what I've been looking for, we talked in the summer and now after five matches Andy is with us. Andy adds a great deal to our squad in terms of playing ability and experience. He will hold the ball up, get others playing and he scores goals. We talked to AFC Halifax through Neil Aspin and their Chairman. This deal has taken all week so I am very pleased to have got it completed before the Bank Holiday fixtures."

Andy Bishop joined his new team mates in training on Thursday morning having completed all the paperwork at the Merseyrail Community Stadium.

Bishop's playing record includes 40 appearances and 7 goals at Kidderminster after being an apprentice at Walsall. He scored 33 goals in 78 appearances at York City and 69 goals in 236 appearances for Bury before making 81 appearances for Wrexham scoring 16 goals. He has four England C Caps between 2004-06.

Click here to view comments on this story

August 28, 2015

Flag hoisting to say thank you to seafarers

On Merchant Navy Day, 3 September, West Lancashire Borough Council will fly the Red Ensign to raise awareness of the UK's dependence on Merchant Navy seafarers.

The Red Ensign flag will be hoisted on the flagstaff outside the Council Offices at 52 Derby Street, Ormskirk, at 10am. The ceremony will be attended by the Deputy Mayor, Cllr Liz Savage; Council Leader Cllr Ian Moran; Armed Forces Champion Cllr Terry Devine; the Mayor's Chaplain, Anne Kazich, and senior Council officers.

The Council is supporting a nationwide call from the Seafarers UK charity and the Merchant Navy Association for the Merchant Navy's official flag to be flown on public buildings and landmark flagstaffs.

The charity's president, HRH The Earl of Wessex, has endorsed the campaign, saying: 'On this Merchant Navy Day, I very much hope you will support this campaign to remember the sacrifices, salute the courage and support the future of the often unsung personnel of our Merchant Navy.'

The Deputy Mayor said: "I am delighted that this Council has been given the opportunity to recognise the Merchant Navy by flying the Red Ensign. The UK owes a debt of gratitude to the seafarers and the flag raising is an opportunity for us all to pay tribute to the work that they do."

As an 'island nation' the UK relies on Merchant Navy seafarers for 95% of imports, including half the food we eat. The UK has the largest ports industry in Europe. 75% of our exports (by volume) are shipped from UK ports, some of which are supporting the campaign by encouraging visiting ships to sound their horns at 10am on 3 September. Visit

National Campaign PR Contact

Nick Harvey, Campaigns Manager, Seafarers UK, phone 020 7932 5969, mobile 07910 593588, email

Click here to view comments on this story

August 28, 2015

Tory hopefuls for 2016 elections

West Lancashire Conservatives have announced their candidates for two Ormskirk wards for the 2016 local elections.

Thomas Burton, a school teacher from Aughton, has been chosen to fight for the Derby ward in May's local elections. Thomas who has lived in the Derby ward for several years wishes to represent the views and opinions of people on the Borough Council.

Thomas told QLocal: "During the coming months, I aim to speak to people who live and work within the Derby ward and listen to their views and opinions on how we can make Ormskirk a better place for all.

Edward, 35, an ex Ormskirk Grammar School and Edge Hill University student, works as a support worker for adults with learning difficulties and has, for many years, volunteered on holidays for children with diabetes. He is also a charity director for a group supporting adults with disabilities to participate in sports.

Edward, a qualified teacher, said: "I am delighted to have been chosen as the Conservative candidate for Knowsley Ward, and am looking forward to meeting residents over the months ahead and tackling any issues that crop up.

Click here to view comments on this story

August 28, 2015

The Knights of St Columba Annual Sposored Family Bike Ride

"The Southport Knights of St Columba are holding our Annual Sponsored Family Bike Ride on Sunday 13th Sept, r egistration is from 12 noon and the ride starts from 1pm from Moor Lane, Woodvale, PR8 3PA. This is not a race or a competitive event but a leisurely family event.

The route takes you approximately 13 miles along mostly flat, traffic free cycle paths (Cheshire lines & Mersey Path, national cycle network - route 62) from Moor Lane, Woodvale to Sefton Lane, Maghull and back again.

Marshalls will be stationed along the route and support will be provided for cyclists along the way. Refreshments will also be provided at the half way point and on completion of the ride.
For further info and a sponsorship form please visit our facebook page"
Who are the knights of St Columba?

The Knights of Saint Columba is a Catholic fraternal service organisation and the largest of its kind in Britain.

Founded in Glasgow in 1919, it is named in honour of Saint Columba, a Christian missionary from Ireland who helped to introduce Christianity to people in Northern Britain. We are dedicated to the principles of Charity, Unity and Fraternity and have more than 4,000 members in over 300 Councils across England, Scotland and Wales. Membership is limited to practising Catholic men aged 16 or older.
Last year the Southport Knights of St Columba raised over 6000 for local, national and international charities.

Click here to view comments on this story

August 27, 2015

Wellness Service – help us design a new service

Many things influence and affect the health of people including their lifestyle. Eating well, smoking, drinking alcohol, getting enough exercise and feeling happy all impact on health.

At the moment people go to different services to get help for separate lifestyle issues such as Stop Smoking or Weight Management, for example, however, often people want help with more than one issue and may benefit from going to a single service that can help with different things.

The Council are proposing a more joined up approach which makes it easier for people to get the right support and help and the aim is to have one Wellness Service which will help people live healthier and happier lives by providing support and encouragement to achieve healthy lifestyles.

We would welcome your views on how we can make this happen in a way that suits you best.

Your views

To help us design a new Wellness Service, we need help from the people the service is intending to support. We are keen to understand:

What services and health issues are people interested in and how would they prefer to access these services
People's experience and opinion about current services
About you - this will help us know that we've heard the views of a range of different people in different areas in Sefton
We want to use your views to help us to make Seftons Integrated Wellness Service right for the people of Sefton and it would help us if you could complete the questions in the survey.

Click here to view comments on this story

August 27, 2015

Richard O’Brien’s Musical Extravaganza The Rocky Horror Show Live at The Atkinson

See Richard OBriens musical extravaganza The Rocky Horror Show Live streamed live to The Atkinson on Thursday 17 September.

Comedy legend Stephen Fry, Great British Bake Off host Mel Giedroyc and Spice Girl Emma Bunton are the first celebrities to be announced as special guest stars in the Gala Charity Performance of The Rocky Horror Show Live at Londons Playhouse Theatre on Thursday 17 September, which will be broadcast live to cinemas across the UK and Europe.

They will join the creator of The Rocky Horror Show, Richard OBrien, on stage for one night only as all four of them take their turn performing the role of The Narrator. This Gala performance, in aid of Amnesty International, is the highlight of 11 special performances of The Rocky Horror Show at The Playhouse from 11th 19th September, all starring Richard OBrien. Tickets for these shows were in such high demand that they sold out in less than 72 hours.

Sir Howard Panter said: We are thrilled with the unprecedented demand for this special production of the Rocky Horror Show. This will be the worlds opportunity to see stars like Stephen Fry, Mel Giedroyc and Emma Bunton up on stage along with the shows creator Richard OBrien in what promises to be an unmissable cinema event.

Stephen Fry said: Ive been a devoted fan of The Rocky Horror Show for most of my life and I have been proud to support the incredible work of Amnesty International for just as long, so to be joining Richard and the cast on stage for this special evening is a dream come true.
Emma Bunton: I am so excited about being involved in the legendary Rocky Horror Show. Richard OBrien has written something that is a huge part of British culture. Im looking forward to shaking my tush to the Time Warp!

The Rocky Horror Company and Picturehouse Entertainment present The Ambassador Theatre Group production of the show which will be directed by Christopher Luscombe and produced by Howard Panter for Ambassador Theatre Group. These special London performances precede a nationwide UK tour of The Rocky Horror Show, which opens at the Theatre Royal Brighton on 17 December 2015.

Panto for grown-ups colourful, in your face, relentlessly energetic and high on audience participation The Times
Hard to think of another musical quite as unique as this. Christopher Luscombes affectionate production feels like a genuine blast from the past Mail on Sunday
As delightfully naughty as ever! Daily Telegraph
So fast, so funny, so sexy Daily Mail
The Rocky Horror Show Live starts at 6.45pm on Thursday 17 September and tickets are 10. They are available online at, by calling the Box Office on 01704 533333 or over the counter during The Atkinson opening hours.

Please be advised that this is a live screening of the show and not a live theatre event.

*Please be advised that there is a 2.50 booking fee for telephone and online sales and from 1 September the fee will change to 1 per ticket across all sales.

Click here to view comments on this story