Southport Reporter (R) Online Nespaper for Merseyside

Read our Tracking & Cookie Usage Policy


Terms and Conditions

Southport and  Mersey Reporter -  Your free online newspaper service covering the Merseyside region - (Greater Liverpool).
Covering the news in and around Merseyside


Click on here to email our news room today!



Your free online newspaper for Merseyside
This website is licence to carry news from and UK Press Photography.



Latest Edition



Order Photos  Help Client Admin Advert Options

Updated news stories weekly.  Published online only, every Thursday

Your online newspaper.   Your words.

Issue:- 15 November  2012


NEW poll findings from YouGov commissioned by charities Grandparents Plus, The Family and Parenting Institute and Family Lives show huge support for better financial and practical help for grandparents raising children because their parents can't look after them.

74% of adults in the North of England think grandparents and other relatives bringing up a child should receive practical help from their local Council, and 63% think they should receive a financial allowance. This rises to 75% of adults who think grandparents should get a financial allowance if they are on a low income. 76% think they should receive similar support to foster carers.

Local grandmother Sandra Ingham from Leyland has been bringing up her grandson, now 16, for 12 years with no support from the local authority.  She says:- "We've really struggled to make sure my grandson can have the opportunities other children take for granted." Sandra has to manage on a low income and finds Christmas and birthdays especially difficult. "I used to borrow to buy him presents but found I couldn't pay the money back so now I sell jewellery instead."

When he first came to live with her he had behavioural problems and would go round the house slamming doors, but he soon settled down. "Now he's 16, I'm so proud that he's a good lad. He's going to college and doesn't hang round street corners."

Sandra has 2 other grandsons in foster care 30 miles away.   "We used to have weekly contact and I struggled to find things to do with the three boys with little money. The boys in foster care were well provided for but would have major tantrums and even wrecked my house. Two years ago social services said they would give me a small allowance to help with the cost of contact but it never happened. The days for contact instead of being a pleasure became so stressful."

Charity Grandparents Plus is campaigning for better support for grandparents and other relatives bringing up children when parents cannot look after them, for example because a parent has died or is seriously ill, or because they are misusing drugs or alcohol.

Grandparents Plus own research shows that just 33% of family members who are bringing up a child because their parents can't look after them get financial assistance from their Council, and 68% of carers who asked their Council for help still don't get the support they need.

Sam Smethers, Grandparents Plus chief executive says:- "It's great that people in the North West are backing grandparent carers. They are already treated as second class carers because they are not entitled to similar support to foster carers or to parental leave when they take on care of children. We're calling on local authorities to give kinship carers like Sandra, and the children they are raising, the support they need. All too often kinship carers are left to bring up vulnerable children without any financial or practical help from their Council.  It is time for local authorities and central government to recognise and support the vital role kinship carers play in keeping children out of care because it is both better for children and more cost-effective for the taxpayer."

In the UK there are an estimated 200,000 kinship carers – grandparents and other family members -bringing up between 200,000 and 300,000 children because parents cannot look after them. Research shows that a high proportion experience poverty, isolation and lack of support.


TOWIE favourite and tabloid superstar Sam Faiers is visiting Birkenhead to personally sign copies of her brand new book.  The star of ITV2's The Only Way Is Essex (TOWIE) will be at W H Smith in The Grange and Pyramids Shopping Centre on Saturday, 17 November 2012 and a queue of fans is expected to welcome the popular television celebrity.

Sam, 21, who is also a model and runs a successful fashion boutique called Minnie's with her sister Billie who also stars in the show, said:- "I am a huge fan of Liverpool and have enjoyed some terrific times there with friends and family.  But coming to Birkenhead is a first for me so I am really looking forward to visiting the town and sharing my new book with more people."

BAFTA winning reality TV show The Only Way is Essex has been a runaway success and propelled Sam and her fellow cast members, including boyfriend Joey Essex, into the limelight.  The show, set mainly in Brentwood, Essex, depicts real people and their lives but the situations they are filmed in are frequently set up for the camera. The series is known for its celebration of fake tans, lash extensions and young people keeping it 'reem'.

Derek Millar, Commercial Director for The Grange and Pyramids Shopping Centre, said:- "We are very pleased and excited to hear that Sam's first trip to Birkenhead will involve a book signing at The Grange and Pyramids Shopping Centre.  We have a history of attracting big names here such as Paul O'Grady and Katie Price and Sam is very high profile.  She is a big name and I feel sure she will draw a fantastic crowd so I am delighted W H Smith has been able to secure such a prominent celebrity to join us for what promises to be a great day out for her army of fans."

Darren Brockbank, Store Manager of WH Smith, agreed with Derek and added:- "It is great for us to be able to offer the people of Birkenhead an opportunity to come and meet celebrities like Sam and have a book personally signed by them.  I am very grateful to both her team and W H Smith for making this possible. I have no doubt we are going to have a bumper sales day on Saturday but it is also nice to see the enjoyment our customers get out of celebrity events like this."

In her new book, Living Life The Essex Way: TOWIE & Me, Sam shares her secrets to becoming a true TOWIE, lifting the lid on the show and her cast members but also giving how-to advice on beauty, fashion, men, dating, diet and tips on the best nightclubs and beauty salons.

The book aims to offer a unique glimpse into her life and fans will be able to read all about her relationships with other cast members and the problems of overnight fame.  It also now includes a brand new chapter on her relationship with Joey Essex and what happened when they went back to Russell Brand's house after a night out.

The first hardback edition of the book had 17 weeks in the top 10 best seller list.  Sam Faiers will be signing copies of her new book at WH Smith in The Grange and Pyramids Shopping Centre in Birkenhead from 3.30pm.

For more information go to:-

Click on here to go back to this week's home page!

Our radio station phone in message line...   Call us now!

Click on this section to see last weeks edition of Southport and Mersey Reporter!

Sign up today for our daily email news service!

Sign up to our Daily Email News Service by clicking here now...

Southport & Mersey Reporter - leading the way for local news.
We where the UK's first online only newspaper!

All email addresses and information is held under the UK's Data Protection Act.

Highlighted events that are taking place this month:-

If you have an event and want to get it noticed, let us know by emailing us to:-

Click on the event title displayed above to find out about lots more events, as well as dates & times!

Our websites in our online series.   Group navigation, information and useful none group links...
Southport TV - Our online video archive. Liverpool Reporter - Our online music station. Mersey Reporter - OUR HUB WEBSITE.
Southport TV Liverpool Reporter Mersey Reporter Formby Reporter

Add to Google

This is what the moon is doing tonight.  Click on to find out why.

See the view live webcamera images of the road outside our studio/newsroom in the hart of Southport.

Our live Southport Webcam.  To see click live, click on image.


Show us your location
Please sign our map and let us know where you are  from....


News Room Phone Number

(+44)  08443 244 195
Calls will cost 7p per minute, plus your telephone company's access charge. 

Calls to this number may be recorded for security, broadcast, training and record keeping.

This online newspaper and information service is regulated by IMPRESS, the independent monitor for the UK's press.

How to make a complaint

Complaints Policy  -  Complaints Procedure  -  Whistle Blowing Policy

© PCBT Photography & PBT Media Relations Ltd. - Southport Reporter® is the Registered Trade Mark of Patrick Trollope