Dad tees off fundraising thank you for Matt’s spinal injury care 

A fundraising festival of golf is a father’s thank you for the NHS treatment his son received following a life-changing road accident.

Matt Sullivan was 18 in 2005 when his spinal cord was badly injured in the crash, leaving him with a high degree of paralysis and limited hand dexterity 

He spent nine months in rehabilitation at the North West Regional Spinal Injuries Centre at Southport and Formby District General Hospital, north of Liverpool.

Matt Sullivan (2)Now 32, Matt is a successful wheelchair rugby player with Leicester Tigers WR – winners of the sport’s Super Series Division One in 2018 and 2019. He was also among players selected for the Great Britain Wheelchair Rugby squad in the 2012 Paralympics in London.

He still visits Southport twice a year for continuing care and lives independently in his own specially-adapted apartment at Spinningfields in Manchester city centre.

As a thank you for the care Matt receives, dad John is using his year as captain at Bramall Park Golf Club, near Stockport, Cheshire, to fundraise for the spinal injuries centre.


John, speaking from the family home at nearby Hazel Grove, said:

John and Matt SullivanMatt lives a very active life despite his physical disability – and that’s thanks to the care of the staff at Southport. Their support and his determination during his rehabilitation helped him find the strength of character to become the man he has.

“As this year’s club men's captain, me and my family have the opportunity to say thank you to Southport and for the emotional and well-being aspect of care they gave us.”

Events are taking place throughout the year but the blue riband event will be the Captain’s Golf Day and Dinner, a four-ball amateur team competition, on 18 October at Bramall Park. The club is also celebrating its 125th anniversary this year.

Entry is £300 per team which includes the competition, refreshments and the evening fundraising gala dinner. Entry is limited to members of recognised golf clubs with a handicap maximum of 28 for men and 36 for women. There are prizes for the top three placed teams plus individual hole prizes, a post-golf dinner, raffle and charity auction.

The three-course dinner package is available to purchase individually or in tables at £50 per person. For more information, email or follow John @Cpt1894 on Twitter.

Donations can also be made through a dedicated Just Giving page.

Emily Hoban, manager of the North West Regional Spinal Injuries Centre, said:

“Suffering a spinal cord injury is a life-changing event but Matt’s story and achievements show it’s no bar to having a full, active and fulfilling life.

“We’re thrilled John has chosen us as his charity in Bramall Park’s 125th anniversary year. It’s fantastic recognition of the work our team of skilled professionals do. The funds raised will help us do even more for people like Matt who use the centre.”


Sefton 'Pay it Forward' Event

"You don't pay love back; you pay it forward."

Pay it Forward Image
Pay it forward is an expression for describing the beneficiary of a good deed repaying it to others instead of to the original benefactor. The concept is old, but the phrase may have been coined by Lily Hardy Hammond in her 1916 book In the Garden of Delight.

“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”
Winston S. Churchill

The Pay it Forward Movement and Foundation was founded in the USA helping start a ripple effect of kindness acts around the world. The newly appointed president of the foundation, Charley Johnson, had an idea for encouraging kindness acts by having a Pay it Forward Bracelet that could be worn as a reminder.

Since then, over a million 'Pay it Forward' bracelets have been distributed in over 100 countries sparking acts of kindness. Few bracelets remain with their original recipients, however, as they circulate in the spirit of the reciprocal or generalized altruism.

Read more

In the spirit of the day, Sefton CVS are asking individuals and organisations to take part in and organise events across the weekend from Thursday, April 25 – Sunday, April 28.

Activities may include:

  • A community meal
  • Sowing a Wildflower meadow
  • Giving books away
  • Giving away planters and bulbs
  • A free music concert
  • Giving away bunches of flowers
  • Buying a coffee for a stranger
  • Free cakes in the cafe
  • Free car wash
  • Paying for someone’s parking

For lot's, more ideas have a look at this list of 45 ideas - Let’s continue with some really beautiful and selfless ways you can pay it forward. Enjoy the following pay it forward ideas!

45 ideas for pay it forward

“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.”
Charles Dickens



Formby and Little Altcar Parish Council Elections 2019

Eagle-eyed voters will notice the significance of this year's local elections for Parish Councillors.

Polling Station 2Formby Parish Council and Little Altcar Parish Council will eventually become a ‘Grouped Council’

The following extract from the Little Altcar PC website explains it clearly  [Note: Formby Parish Council website and their Facebook have been inactive for months]

Following the last parish council meeting the Clerk has been exploring alternative options for the amalgamation of the 2 parishes and a Grouping Order would appear to provide a way forward without the necessity of obtaining over 2000 signatures"

The extract continues with the following:

Using the Law: Grouped Parishes

A more formal way of enlarging resources through partnership is by grouping a number of adjacent parishes. Provision for this exists in the 1972 Local Government Act. A grouped parish is a way of pooling resources whilst preserving the identity of each of the individual parishes or settlements within it. It is also a way of avoiding the hassle of a boundary review.

Under the 1972 Act, a group of parishes can apply to a principal authority (the District in a three-tier area) for a grouping order. The order must name the group and must provide for the separate representation on the council of each parish on the council. It is as if each constituent parish were a ward in a principal authority’s area, with representation on the Council. Units which previously had no council can be added to the group, also with representation. A group cannot be formed without consent of an electors’ meeting in each of the parishes or units concerned. A group may apply to the principle authority for a dissolution order or for a single unit or parish to be separated from the group, again with the consent of an electors’ meeting.

Extract from LGIU and SLCC publication “Parish and Town Clustering” Sept 2006

(Source Little Altcar Parish Council Website, accessed 9th April 2019)

According to Sefton Council, the Grouping Order is likely to be made later this year. So for the time being each Parish Council in Formby is a separate entity.

I'm intrigued regarding the eventual governance structure. Formby PC consists of 15 members [Note the odd number] and Little Altcar PC has 7 members. But if all 22 members are de facto members of the principal body then voting could become an issue. I suspect that the new Council may form an executive body with representation from each of the wards. But who knows?

Watch this space!

In my next post, I have a closer look at the range of candidates standing for election and how, apart from two unaffiliated independents, all the others are linked with Political Parties.


Bike & Go offers fun-seekers cut-price day out this April

Bike and Go with Friends 2Groups of friends looking for an alternative way to see the local sights are being invited to enjoy a half-price day out, courtesy of Bike & Go.

The bike hire scheme, which offers bike hire facilities from 22 participating train stations across the Merseyrail network, is running a special deal for groups of people who want to experience a different kind of sight-seeing trip this spring, with half-price subscription and a ‘rent two, get two free’ offer.

The offer means that those signing up before April 30th, 2019, will pay just £5, rather than the usual £10 subscription fee. In addition, for the duration of the offer period, they will be able to rent out four bikes for the price of two – a saving of £7.60 for each 24-hour period for which the bikes are hired.

Those watching the pennies over the Easter period will be particularly delighted by the deal, with the total price of a new subscription and bike hire for four people working out at just over £3 per person.

And Bike & Go are hoping that locals and visitors to the region alike will use the cost-effective deal to tour the area and take in the sights from a different viewpoint.

Suzanne Grant, Director of Bike & Go said:

“Cycling is a lovely way to get out into the fresh air and socialise with friends, and now that spring is here there’s no better way to see the attractions on offer in the region.

“This April, we want to encourage people to take to two wheels and enjoy the numerous physical and mental health benefits that cycling can bring, while having a great day out in the process. We have adjusted our prices to make the experience accessible to as many people as possible.”

Studies have shown that cycling with friends or a partner boosts cyclists’ pedal power, with Strava’s 2018 Year in Review report revealing that group riders average a 52% increase in mileage compared to those who cycled alone.

It also brings out cyclists’ competitive streak, with a Kansas State University study showing that people who worked out with someone they thought was better than them increased their intensity and time spent exercising by 200%.

Those wishing to take advantage of the offer can head to one of the 22 participating train stations across the Merseyrail network, including Liverpool Central, Moorfields, Aigburth, Southport, Ormskirk and West Kirby. There are also bike hire facilities at Seacombe Ferry Terminal and Leasowe Castle, in addition to a further 49 participating train stations across much of the North West, North East and Yorkshire, East and South East of England, and Scotland.

To hire a Bike & Go bike, users simply need to register their card details online, which they can do via smartphones, tablets, or at home, and pay the annual subscription fee, priced at £5 during the offer period.

To claim the half-price subscription, users should select the ‘Bike 19’ promotion option when completing the online form, and enter promotion code ‘bike’.

They will then receive a user number via email which will allow immediate bike hire – usually charged at just £3.80 per 24 hours up to a maximum of 72 hours - while they wait for their Bike & Go membership card. When hiring the bikes, subscribers should simply ask staff for four bikes instead of two, then cycle off to enjoy a healthy day out with their friends.


Parish Council April Meeting

Formby Library
Formby Parish Council meets at Formby Library tonight for the last meeting before the local elections. This Parish will be dissolved and replaced by re-elected or new members at the May Meeting

Notice of Meeting
All members of the Council are hereby summoned to attend the next Ordinary Meeting of the Parish Council,
which will be held at Formby Library, Duke Street, Formby, on Tuesday 2 April 2019 at 7pm
Claire Jenkins
Clerk to Formby Parish Council


1.0 To receive Apologies

2.0 To Receive Declarations of Interest

3.0 There will be no Public Forum at this meeting as the Parish Council are in the period of Purdah (that is
the pre-election period)

4.0 Previous Minutes

4.1 To consider and approve the Minutes of the Ordinary Meeting held on 5 March 2019.

5.0 Matters of Report from Previous Meeting – for information only

5.1 Direction Request to Secretary of State and Sefton Council minute reference 112.2 refers

6.0 Planning Applications – (Sefton’s weekly list email, also available on Sefton Council’s website).

6.1 To note current position on Formby Development Sites in Sefton’s Local Plan.

7.0 To discuss and resolve the following:

7.1 To consider the Community Fund Application for Formby Floodwatch Group for £500 to purchase dip
monitors for installation at selected areas around Formby to provide monitoring information and develop an
alert procedure.
7.2 To approve the quote for the Bite System to improve the health of the 4 horse chestnut trees on Chapel
Lane at a cost of £440 plus vat. (Environment minutes refer)
7.3 To consider the Community Fund Application for Formby Sports and Social Bowls Club for £1,400 (or
amount to be agreed) to provide fencing following the demolishing of the Royal British Legion Club – this
building formally provided a perimeter wall.
7.4 To undertake a review of the Risk Management Arrangements for the Parish Council

8.0 To authorise Payments (enclosed)

9.0 To receive the following reports – enclosed for information only

Clerk’s report
Environment Minutes
Finance and General Purposes Group minutes

10.0 Date of the Annual Meeting is Tuesday 14 May 2019 to be held in the Meeting Room, Formby Library,
to follow the Annual Parish Meeting to be held at 7pm.

Members of the press and public are welcome to attend

For the agenda complete with sub-committee group meetings see: