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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 141

Date:- 28 February 2004

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MUCH needed repair work to a Birkenhead church has thrilled parishioners thanks to a grant from environmental company that utilises landfill tax credits to enhance community causes.

Woodchurch Methodist church was built in the 1950’s to provide a place of worship for the people living on the Woodchurch Estate on the outskirts of Birkenhead. 

More recently the church has been conducting the ‘Pemberton’ project from its premises – outreach work in the local community. To enable the project to continue and for the church to remain open, essential maintenance work is needed. Biffaward funding in excess of £50,000 will allow full disabled access to be provided to the building and the copper roof to be replaced.

The copper roof of the building was badly damaged beyond repair, resulting in the interior ceiling also being damaged from water encroachment. The building also needs to be upgraded to meet disability access requirements. It is hoped that all work will be completed by summer.

During the last five years the church has developed a thriving programme of activities for the local community including: educational classes, healthy eating programmes, family groups, crèche as well as Pathways partnership meetings, children’s parties, keep fit, dancing, weight watchers, housing office meetings and a base for a Credit Union.

Martin Bettington, Chairman of Biffaward, Said:- “Woodchurch Methodist Church carries out vital work within the community and it is essential that the building is maintained in order for this valuable work to continue. Biffaward is pleased to be able to award this grant which will ensure the church can remain open to all.”

Watchdog’s Stop Now campaign bites in Liverpool 
Report by Karl Brookes (energywatch)

THE independent gas and electricity consumer watchdog, energywatch North West has hailed a fall in energy mis-selling complaints as a success for its Stop Now campaign. 

Tim Whittle, Liverpool Area Manager for energywatch North West, said:- “We welcome the industry progress made to end doorstep mis-selling. After two years of our Stop Now campaign, the industry has, to its credit, realised that these practices don’t do anyone any favours.” 

Whittle added:- “However, too many consumers are still complaining to us that they have been tricked or pressurized into signing a contract. There is a long way to go before we can say that the unscrupulous energy salesmen won’t call again.”

energywatch North West wants the industry to agree automatic compensation for consumers who are tricked by energy salesmen on the doorstep.

Whittle added:- “We need financial penalties when unscrupulous salesmen cheat or intimidate consumers into signing new contracts. In addition, companies need to be paying the full £250 in mis-selling cases where a consumer’s signature has been forged.”

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