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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 216

Date:- 29 August 2005

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Calling All Budding Artists

PHONAK, the Cheshire-based hearing instrument manufacturer is inviting budding young artists to show off their talent in a national calendar design competition.

Phonak is looking for design entries from 5 to 16 years old with hearing difficulties based on the theme 'What I want to be when I grow up' for it's 2006 calendar. Last year the annual competition attracted over 500 entries, with twelve winners having their artwork published on the 2005 calendar. The potential Picasso's will also receive £50 worth of vouchers of their choice and their school will be given £50 of Forest Book shop vouchers.

Jan Metzdorff, Managing Director of Phonak UK explains:- "This is a great opportunity to celebrate the artistic achievements of children. It gives them a chance to express themselves and to have their talent acknowledged by having it published on the calendar. It's also great for our customers and associates as they receive colourful and professional illustrations to brighten up the office - we've even had requests for extra copies so staff can take them home!"

Entries can be either drawings or paintings but must be no larger than A3 and each one must be accompanied by an entry form. These are available from Nicki or Mike on 0800 9800747.

The closing date for entries is 30th September 2005 and everyone submitting a design will receive a small gift from Phonak. Please send entries to Phonak UK, Cygnet Court, Lakeside, Warrington, Cheshire, WA1 1PP clearly marked 'Calendar Competition'.

£4.7 million boost for Aintree Racecourse and Equestrian Centre

A major scheme that is set to transform Aintree Racecourse was today strengthened by the announcement of a £4.7 million contribution from the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA). The £35 million scheme, which culminates in an equestrian centre of international standards, a parade ring and two new grandstands, is the first major redevelopment of the course for over 100 years.

The development of Aintree International Equestrian Centre will provide a unique facility, combining a subsidised riding school for local communities with an international standard show centre that is expected to attract major equestrian competitions and events. The parade ring, Winner’s and Unsaddling Enclosure, will be relocated to ensure the theatrical part of race day activity enjoys a more central location and will include a new Weighing Room and Stable complex. The 2 new permanent grandstands will replace and enhance the temporary facilities currently used during the John Smith’s Grand National - one of the regions major tourist attractions.

Overall, the improved facilities and new equestrian centre are expected to attract an additional 11,200 visitors to the region every year contributing to an increase of £1.2 million in annual tourist spend, which will provide a significant boost to the tourism industry.

Steven Broomhead, NWDA Chief Executive, said:- “Aintree Racecourse is one of the Northwest’s major tourism assets, attracting 200,000 visitors to the region every year. The new facilities will significantly improve the race goers’ experience, enhancing the existing tourism offer. The new international equestrian centre is particularly exciting, as no other such venue exists in the North of England. This new facility is set to attract international events and will make a significant contribution to the regional economy.”

Charles Barnett, Aintree Racecourse Managing Director, said:- “The John Smith's Grand National is broadcast to over 600 million people worldwide and is an ideal platform on which to showcase Aintree and England’s Northwest to the rest of the world. We believe this new development will provide some of the best racecourse facilities in the world, encompassing the fantastic opportunities that lie ahead for the Northwest region. In addition to the new Grandstand and Weighing Room Complex, the unique equestrian centre will provide a platform for Aintree to develop other world-class equestrian events.”

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