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10 February 2009
Health campaigners welcome government concessions on TV product
health campaigners Our Life welcomed reports that the government has
watered down its plans to allow products to be marketed through
TV producers will now not be allowed to feature any branded alcohol, junk food or gambling in programmes.
Commenting on the proposals, Our Life chief executive Dr Alison
Giles said:- “We are disappointed that the government is going
ahead with product placement, but we are delighted with the decision
to restrict its use. This is in no doubt due to the pressure exerted
on ministers by campaigners – including those in the North West –
who are particularly concerned where it may influence children.”
Although the government had stated the proposals would not include
children’s TV, it is widely acknowledged that children watch TV
outside the hours of children’s programming and that they are
particularly susceptible to marketing of food high in fat, sugar or
In a recent poll of 1,000 parents across the North West, Our Life
► 87.5% of respondents agreed that children are aware of advertising
► 88.1% indicated that children often refer to products they have
seen on television
► 85% indicated that children often ask for products they have seen
► 67% feel pressured into buying products that their children have
seen on television.
“These measures should now ensure our children are less
exposed to marketing for junk food as well as promotions which will
glamorise alcohol,” Dr Giles said.
ROAD BRIDGE CLOSES FOR MAJOR UPGRADE
started on a £1.1m joint project between Network Rail and Sefton
Council to strengthen the road-over-rail bridge on St Lukes Road in
The bridge is a three-span structure carrying the A5267 at a skewed
angle over the Southport to Wigan railway line.
This is a major route on the east side of Southport that carries
nearly 19,000 vehicles per day, of which just over 450 are HGVs.
The bridge has been assessed as part of a programme looking at all
1,000 road-over-rail bridges in the North West to determine whether
they meet current vehicle weight loading criteria. Such bridges have
to be capable of carrying HGVs weighing up to 40 tonnes.
Network Rail’s route director Jo Kaye, said:- “The structure
is not unsafe. It simply means that as standards are updated, some
structures need to be either strengthened or demolished and rebuilt
with modern materials to bring them up to date.”
If the work is not carried out, it will mean a permanent weight
restriction will have to be imposed by the highway authority. This
would restrict the movement of HGVs over the bridge but could also
mean that buses and some emergency vehicles such as ambulances and
fire & rescue vehicles may not be able to use it.
The existing bridge deck on one span will be demolished and replaced
using pre-cast beams.; an additional supporting pier will be
constructed between the railway tracks to effectively split the main
span into two smaller spans; work will be carried out underneath the
footpaths to strengthen them to be able to withstand an accidental
mounting of the pavement by an HGV.
To carry out the work, St Lukes Road will be closed until mid-April,
and local diversions have been put in place. A temporary pedestrian
footbridge is in position adjacent to the existing bridge.
The cost of the work is being split, with Sefton council providing
85% of the funds and Network Rail paying the remaining 15%. The work
is being carried out by Network Rail’s contractor J Murphy & Sons.
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