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Issue:- 29 July 2009


THE fight to save Sefton’s red squirrels was given a further boost recently when 60 local enthusiasts came together with leading academics and practitioners to plan a campaign of action for the coming years.

The event, on 18 July 2009, was chaired by the National Trust’s Andrew Brockbank and hosted by St. Michael’s High School in Crosby. St. Michael’s were awarded ‘Champion School’ status at the event in recognition of their commitment to red squirrel conservation work in the area. Sally Orritt from Save our Squirrels presented the certificate to Trisha Tarpey, the lead teacher for the project at St. Michael’s. Sally said:- "It’s fantastic that St. Michael’s are able to collapse their timetable to run focus project weeks. Our work together is really going to give children opportunities to think, learn and take their own ideas forward." Trisha Tarpey spoke of how the curriculum and children’s learning is enriched from hands-on squirrel activities and themes, both inside and outside of school.

The day was organised by the Lancashire Wildlife Trust, the national Save Our Squirrels campaign and the National Trust, and marked the formal launch of the new partnership, funded by the Prince of Wales’s charity the Red Squirrel Survival Trust, which aims to prevent any further outbreaks of the squirrelpox disease which has severely depleted local red squirrel populations.

Representing RSST, Craig Shuttleworth drew upon the success of his work in removing grey squirrels from Anglesey and the island’s successful recolonisation by red squirrels to argue that grey squirrel control is essential if reds are to survive. He applauded the new Merseyside initiative, describing it as “the flagship project for the rest of the country”, stressing the importance of the involvement of the local community.

Julian Chantrey, a veterinary pathologist at Liverpool University who has been carrying out post-mortems on Sefton’s red squirrels for many years, outlined his research on the squirrelpox virus and how it is spread from grey to red squirrels. He stressed that although this was an uncommon event, once inside the red squirrel population the disease spreads rapidly with catastrophic results. He announced that the University, together with the National Trust, is about to embark on a four year research project into the spread of the disease in Sefton.

David Everest from the Veterinary Laboratories Agency in Weybridge presented the results of his research into adenovirus, another red squirrel disease, but emphasised that squirrelpox remains the main threat.

Fiona Whitfield of the Lancashire Wildlife Trust placed the Merseyside campaign in the national context, summarising the recent review of the national red squirrel conservation strategy. This review has proposed various options for increasing efforts to control the spread of grey squirrels in the north of England. She emphasised the importance of public input in choosing the best way forward.

Following the event Jean and Alan Toms, long standing local volunteers, sent this note of thanks:- "We were both wondering before the event, "Where do we go from here?" but now the way forward is clear, it was good to learn that the monitoring makes a valuable contribution to the bigger picture. Good too to hear of the work in schools - we have always said that if, as a result, only one child per class is enthused for the long term then it is worthwhile."

So, the day’s events served to reassure everyone that Sefton’s red squirrels can be brought back from the brink and to renew enthusiasm for the continuing partnership between members of the public, conservation organisations and researchers.

“Peel Leisure Appoint General Manager of Their Hampton by Hilton Hotel at Liverpool John Lennon Airport”

PEEL Leisure has appointed Teresa Hatton to run its Hampton by Hilton Hotel at Liverpool John Lennon Airport.

Teresa joins Peel Leisure from morethanhotels where she was Operations Director. She brings with her 13 years industry experience having also worked for Bass Hotels and Forte.

The new Hampton by Hilton Hotel is situated opposite the terminal building and is due to open in autumn of this year. Delivering a level of service and comfort that is unparalleled in the economy hotels market sector the hotel has 160 air conditioned guest rooms with facilities including complimentary high-speed internet access and pay movies.

All room rates include a complimentary On the House™ hot buffet breakfast and guests have free use of the hotel’s gym.

The hotel is equipped to host small meetings for up to 30 delegates in its three naturally-lit meeting rooms and there is ample on-site parking.

Teresa Hatton, General Manager of the Hampton by Hilton at Liverpool John Lennon Airport said:- “I am delighted to be opening this Hampton by Hilton and developing this new brand in the United Kingdom. It is also good to give a boost to the local economy by providing 50 new jobs.”

Peter de la Perrelle, Director of Peel Leisure said:- “I am delighted to welcome Teresa to the Peel team. She brings a wealth of operational experience gained from all sectors within the industry and she joins us at an exciting time as we open only the second Hampton by Hilton in the UK. This hotel will be Peel Leisure’s second airport hotel, following on from the successful opening of the Ramada Encore at Robin Hood Airport Doncaster Sheffield in autumn last year.”


MERSEYSIDE Police Detectives are investigating following a serious assault on Breck Road, Anfield in the early hours of Friday, 24 July 2009.

Officers were called at around 12.15am to reports of an assault. A 23 year old man and 24 year old female passenger were travelling in blue Jeep Cherokee on Breck Road towards the city centre. At the junction of Belmont Road and Oakfield Road, the driver of the Jeep was assaulted by around seven men who were thought to be travelling in two separate cars, a Mondeo and Subaru.

The man has been taken to hospital where his condition is described as serious.

At this early stage of the investigation, officers believe this to be a targeted attack but the motive is still unclear.

Officers have since recovered all three cars that are believed to be involved in the incident. All are being forensically examined.

Officers have stepped up patrols in the area and house to house enquiries are on-going. CCTV opportunities are also being sought.

Anyone who witnessed this incident, or who has any information is asked to contact St Annes Street CID on 0151 777 4064 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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