Wartime Plans Finally Realised?

Highways England are finally consulting the public on their plans for the Port of Liverpool access scheme.

I use the word 'finally' because one of the routes was first drawn up during World War 2. At least, that's what I heard, when I was a Sefton Councillor in the 1980s.

According to my informant, a Labour member of the then Merseyside County Council and former member of Bootle Borough Council, he first knew of these plans immediately after the war ended. So after all that time, the plans have come forward.

There are two options illustrated below. The Rimrose Valley option, the one I heard about, is shown first. Select each image, in turn, to see it in greater detail.

Rimrose Valley Option Live

New Docks Road Option A

It's going to prove interesting to see in what way, either of these two schemes, will affect residents in Formby travelling into Liverpool, or further South on a daily basis.

Here's how Highways England introduce the scheme options on their website.

In December 2014 Highways England was asked by the government, as part of the Road Investment Strategy, to look at ways to improve road access to the Port of Liverpool.

The Port of Liverpool makes a significant contribution to the regional economy and is an important source of employment for the local community.

The port is already the busiest in the North West and with the recently opened deep-water container berth, Liverpool2, it is set to become even busier.

This is great news for jobs and the regional economy but this growth depends on freight being able to access the port. The A5036 is the main road linking the port to the motorway network. This road is already congested and has a poor safety record; this situation is forecast to worsen as the area is developed.

This road-based solution is part of a much wider set of proposals across Merseyside and the North West. The Liverpool City Region Combined Authority is working with a range of partners to deliver transport measures that will improve port access and increase capacity by rail, road and water. More information is available on their website.

You can find further information and details of the options in the consultation brochure.

For the full details see the links below:

Source: https://highwaysengland.citizenspace.com/he/a5036-port-of-liverpool-access-scheme/

Consultation Survey Link: https://highwaysengland.citizenspace.com/he/a5036-port-of-liverpool-access-scheme/consultation/intro/


Sefton Cycle Chat

Are you a keen cyclist? Would you like to use a bike more often? Have you any ideas on how to improve the life of cyclists?

Cycles liveCyclists of all ages and abilities are asked to attend the first Sefton 'Cycle Chat' of the year.

The group meets on a regular basis and looks at the biking opportunities available throughout the borough.

For 2017, the first meeting takes place at the new venue of MeCycle, Station Road, Ainsdale on Tuesday, January 31 from 6.30pm.

Anyone keen on cycling or looking to find out more about events and initiatives is invited to pop along and share their views.

Previously known as the Cycle Forum, we have revamped the meeting a bit are now looking to appeal to more cyclist of all ages and abilities.
(Jean Hunt, from Sefton Council's Travel Awareness Road Safety team)

(Source: Sefton News 17 January)

 Please Note: MeCycle is a smaller venue so numbers are limited and to book a place please call 0345 140 0845 or email: cycling@sefton.gov.uk


Are Formby's Bus Services up for change?

Could there be disruption to Formby local bus services?

Merseytravel LivePeople in Sefton have the opportunity to comment on proposals to make the town’s bus network simpler and clearer from next Monday (January 16).

Proposals will be available for view and comment online at www.merseytravel.gov.uk/busreview from 9 am on Monday, January 16 until 5 pm on Thursday, January 26.

There will be three drop-in events where members of the public can speak to Merseytravel staff about the proposals and give their feedback. These will take place on the following days:

  • Friday, January 20, 10 am to 3 pm – Maghull Library
  • Monday, January 23, 10 am to 2 pm – Southport railway station
  • Thursday, January 26, 9 am to 4 pm – Bootle Strand

This follows events across Sefton in September and October which saw over 1200 people attend and more than 800 offer their feedback on their frequency and pattern of bus use, including those services publically funded by Merseytravel, and what might make them use buses more......Full story

(Source: http://www.merseytravel.gov.uk/about-us/Pages/Sefton-Bus-Review.aspx#)


Daily Road and Streets Works Updates

Sefton Council Road and Street works Daily Updates Service

Do you know that Sefton Council posts up-to-date details of road and street works throughout Sefton on a daily basis?

Streetworks Sefton Service Live

Roadworks.org is the most comprehensive source of up-to-date information about roadworks, road closures and diversions, traffic incidents and other disruptions affecting the UK road network. To find out how your local authority can participate please visit www.elgin.org.uk

Source: https://www.sefton.gov.uk/parking,-roads-travel/road-and-street-works.aspx

Climate Change Effects on Formby

Climate Change: Are we running out of choices?

At a time of huge political uncertainty and apparent rapid change in public discourse I just wanted to remind you all of the recently agreed International Climate Change Accord.

From the Formby perspective it may seem unimportant but sometimes we need to be reminded we are a coastal town. 

I found this animation illustrating the likely impact on our local coastline. It shows a variety of outcomes as the temperature climbs. I've simply added the 2-degree outcome, but visit the link provided to watch the full range of change calculated by the scientists involved.

(Click on the map to get a closer view)

Sea Level Rise at 2 Degrees Live


This map shows sea levels locked in by different amounts of carbon pollution, according to recent scientific research. If we burn enough fossil fuels to heat the planet by 4°C—continuing a path of unchecked pollution—we could drown coastal cities worldwide. If we make a rapid transition to a global clean energy economy and achieve the main goal of the Paris Agreement, limiting warming to 2°C, some cities will be saved. If we go faster and further to achieve the most ambitious Paris goal, 1.5°C, the outlook improves dramatically. Still, it is sobering to map the challenges following after 1°C of warming, a level we have just passed.

According to Climate Central’s analysis, 470 to 760 million people (central finding, 627 million) live on land that would be condemned by 4°C warming. The number drops by more than half for 2°C, and more than half again for 1.5°C.

These two efforts evaluate how much warming we can currently expect in light of the national pledges made at Paris and the policies developed since then.

(Source: http://sealevel.climatecentral.org/)

Note by the Map Producers:

Climate Central’s Program on Sea Level Rise strives to provide accurate, clear and granular information about sea level rise and coastal flood hazards both locally and globally, today and tomorrow. Anchored in rigorous primary research, our work distinguishes itself by its user-friendly maps and tools, extensive datasets, and high-quality visual presentation. The program dedicates its efforts to helping citizens, communities, businesses, organizations, and governments at every level to understand the consequences of different carbon pathways and to navigate the shifting waters of our warming world.

(Source of the map: https://www.beforetheflood.com/explore/the-crisis/sea-level-rise/)

The map suggests that long-term plans for more houses may be at risk and that if Fracking began in the area surrounding Formby it too, would be susceptible to interruption, to say the least.

The A565 would also be badly affected as well. Finally, to remind you, this image only illustrates the 2 Degree effect.


Armistice Day

In 2016 Armistice Day falls on the Friday before Remembrance Sunday.

At the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month. The Two Minute Silence is observed on Armistice Day, the day which marks the end of the First World War.

Armistice Day 11 November 2016 Live

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.
They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted;
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England's foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;
As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain;
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Laurence Binyon - September 1914


Sefton Council's Local Plan

The Planning Inspectors hearings have concluded and Sefton Council is now waiting for the final conclusions.

Formby Local Plan Map LiveSefton Council's Local Plan is a step closer to adoption after the last hearings took place last week.

The Local Plan looks to shape the future of Sefton meeting assessed housing and employment needs until 2030.

An independent Inspector has just concluded a further two days of hearings in relation to 4 sites in Formby – land North and South of Formby Industrial Estate, Shorrocks Hill site and land at Liverpool Road.

The Inspector heard evidence from site owners, Sefton Council, Formby Parish Council, local residents and other interested parties at a hearing in Bootle Town Hall.

This marks a significant milestone in the progress of the Local Plan as the Inspector indicated these are the last hearings. He is due to issue his final report by the end of December and the Local Plan should be approved in 2017.

Cllr Daren Veidman, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member Planning and Building Control, said: "The hearing marks an important milestone in a lengthy process of helping Sefton gear up for the challenge of meeting needs for new homes and businesses over the next 15 years.

"The Inspector has heard much evidence from many people and we now look forward to receiving his report and completing the Local Plan.

"As soon as we hear from the inspector we will of course let people know the outcome as we look to the future."


Merseytravel Planned Changes Published

Merseytravel Have Published the Latest Planned Changes.

Here's what's changing between 23 - 29 October 2016:

There are no planned changes to bus services this week

There are no planned changes to bus services this week

St Helens
There are no planned changes to bus services this week

There are no planned changes to bus services this week 

See what's changing in the future by visiting our Future Bus Services page on our website.

You can download all current and future bus timetables here.

Buses are sometimes diverted due to road works or events. We show all planned diversions and explain how your services are affected on the Travel Updates page of our website.

Wirral Line:
On Sunday 23 October a rail replacement bus will run between Hamilton Square & New Brighton; and Hamilton Square & Bidston.

Wirral Track Renewal 2017

Travel information and advice is now available to help you plan your journeys during six months of work on Merseyrail’s Wirral loop line between January and June 2017.

Network Rail will be replacing the most challenging sections of concrete-based track in the ‘loop’ – originally laid in the 1970s, while making the most of the opportunity to carry out other work, including replacing conventional track under the riverbed.

The work, which would also support a new Merseyrail fleet on the network from the early 2020s, is part of a £340m investment in the Liverpool City Region’s rail network over the next three years.

Information and advice is now available at merseytravel.gov.uk

Northern Line:
From Monday to Friday the 0606 from Sandhills to Hunts Cross will terminate at Liverpool South Parkway and the 0636 from Hunts Cross will now start at Liverpool South Parkway at 0639.

On Saturday 29 October the 0553 from Sandhills to Hunts Cross will terminate at Liverpool South Parkway and the 0706 from Hunts Cross will now start at Liverpool South Parkway at 0709.

Please allow additional time when planning your journeys. For more information on the above changes, visit

City Line:
From Monday 24 to Thursday 27 October the 2309 Manchester Victoria to Liverpool Lime Street service, and the 2319 Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Victoria service will be replaced by buses.

Please allow additional time when planning your journeys. For more information on the above changes, visitnorthernrailway.co.uk

There are no planned Mersey Tunnels closures this week


Minibus Drivers Needed in Formby

Formby care home Freshfields is looking for volunteer minibus drivers to help residents stay involved in their local community. 

Freshfields is run by Leonard Cheshire Disability, and is home to residents with physical disabilities. They are currently looking for volunteer drivers with Sunday availability to support two of their residents to attend a local church. Both residents are wheelchair users, necessitating the use of a minibus to get them to and from the church.

The role would involve providing support every 2 or 3 weeks, supporting residents into the minibus, driving them to and helping them into the church before bringing them home again. The round trip would take no more than two hours.

MiniBus Live

Sefton Bus Network Review Meeting in Formby

Local Cllr Denise Dutton has just published the following notice.

There is an opportunity to express your views about the Sefton Buses Review being conducted by Merseytravel. The event starts at 10.30am in Formby Library tomorrow.

Merseytravel have previously stated the following (extract) about the review, there's more detail on the Merseytravel website.

Residents have the chance to give their views on bus services in Sefton as part of an on-going review of the whole Liverpool City Region bus network.

Working as part of the Bus Alliance, a formal partnership with operators Arriva and Stagecoach, Merseytravel is looking to create a simpler, clearer, and where possible, more direct network that can help encourage more people to take the bus.

Historically bus routes have been considered on a piecemeal basis and the idea is to consider the commercial network and the supported network – that which relies on public subsidy via Merseytravel – as a whole for the first time, to ensure it best reflects current working and living patterns and new developments and how they are served.

(Source: Sefton Bus Review announcement)

Sefton Bus Review Live