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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 130

Date:- 20 December 2003

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Letter for Editor...  Peeling the sprouts

"Dear Southport and Mersey Reporter Group,

Peeling the sprouts isn't everyone's idea of fun at Christmas, but Lucy has been looking forward to it all year. Last Christmas, she wasn't at home watching her children open presents and cooking lunch. Lucy was in hospital unable to move or speak having just emerged from a coma following a serious stroke. 

She was referred to the Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability, a national medical charity. Here the UK's leading experts on assessing neurological injuries discovered the extent of Lucy's brain injury and prescribed a specialist rehabilitation programme to help her achieve optimum independence.

A skilled therapy team helped Lucy set rehabilitation objectives. One of them was quite unique:- "I wanted to be home for Christmas and needed goals that helped my movement, coordination, and independence. Peeling the sprouts for Christmas lunch became my number one objective!"

Regaining the abilities and life skills Lucy had once taken for granted was a long process. Staff helped her communicate with her family, walk with a frame and relearn basic skills like cooking and shopping. Gradually the Royal Hospital helped Lucy rebuild her life. So this Christmas she will be at home, proudly peeling the sprouts and wrapping presents. 

There are 250 patients at the Royal Hospital. Staff concentrate on abilities, not disability, so patients and families can look forward to a future where ability, independence, and quality of life is maximised. Your generosity can help people get back on their feet. So I'd like you to consider supporting the hospital this Christmas. 

The hospital is a charity, not part of the NHS, so without your support, this extraordinary work simply cannot go on. Just £10 can part-fund a specialist rehabilitation session to help rebuild a life.

I hope you'll enjoy your festive season as much as Lucy and her family.

Thanks and with the season's best wishes,

June Whitfield CBE, Actress & supporter, Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability, West Hill, London."

Ocean Colour Scene have announced Damon Minchella, the band’s bass player since the beginning, has left the band. 

THE band’s manager, Chris Cradock, issued a statement through OCS's official website, “For the last four gigs in Ireland, Damon was missing from the line up, the reason being that after the gig at Castlebar he decided that he no longer wanted to be part of Ocean Colour Scene, evidently this was not a hasty decision but something he had been considering for some time. He returned home the next day, and the lads continued the tour without him. Fourteen years is a long time, but OCS goes ‘Marching On’.” 

The band will be joined on bass by Mani of Stone Roses and Primal Scream fame at their gig at Cardiff Millennium Stadium on 20th December. Ocean Colour Scene will release their new single, Golden Gate Bridge, on 29th December 2003 and their latest album, North Atlantic Drift is out now – both through Sanctuary.

The band will support The Stereophonics at Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium on 20th December along with Feeder and Adam Masterson.

Letters To Editor....  Xmas Lights

"THE Champion contained an article indicating they had been inundated with congratulatory calls about the coloured lights.

What did they expect? This is what the people of Southport have been waiting for ever since the campaign started.

There was never, ever, a good reason not to install coloured lights in the beginning, and that has been the point of my constant criticism ever since, the money was wasted on the insipid white lights, now scrapped.

Of course the ‘Christmas Group’ will say these LED’s were not available at the time of the original installation. Not true. Xenon coloured lamps, with a guaranteed 10 year life were demonstrated to the Champion Editor before any installation was started, LED’s were also shown at that time.

I hope the ‘Christmas Group’ feel suitability chastened, also having wasted all that hard earned money, on a second rate system, that people didn’t want and is now in the bin.

I don’t like saying I told you so, but I did.

No chance of the incompetents paying the money back I suppose, so it could be fed into the new, long term system.
Southport Team Line Up:- Dickinson, Williams, Mortimer, Jones, Fitzhenry, Pickford, Baker, Price, Daly, Ashcroft, Mulvaney 

Bradford Team Line Up:- Boswell, Smith, Serrant, Colllins, Stansfield, Crossley, Walsh, Benn, Hayward, Maxwell, Quinn.

JLT (full name and Address Supplied.)

Letters to editor... "goodwill to all men,"

"Dear Sir...  Even in the midst of the season of "goodwill to all men," that Christmas spirit doesn't extend to the animal kingdom, and on Boxing Day a determined minority will be out hunting foxes and killing them with packs of dogs. As full-time hunt monitors for the International Fund for Animal Welfare, that day will also find us in the field, supporting the campaign for a ban.

The evidence that we have gathered over the years has proved vital in exposing the terrible cruelty of hunting a wild animal with dogs. During 2003 we have seen our goal drawing tantalisingly close as yet again MPs voted overwhelmingly in favour of a ban. Assurances have been made by Ministers and by the Prime Minister himself that the issue will be resolved during this Parliament, but we will not rest easy until legislation to outlaw hunting finally reaches the statute books. 

By this time next year, the fate of hunting will be sealed. We urge all the many people in favour of a ban to take time over Christmas or the New Year to write to Tony Blair, asking him for a clear indication of when the Hunting Bill will be reintroduced and an end to the appalling cruelty of hunting with dogs brought even closer. 

Kevin Hill and Peter White, Hunt monitors, International Fund for Animal Welfare."

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