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THE Giants created by
youngsters and pensioners at Birkenhead's Pyramid Shopping Centre
will be unveiled this weekend.
The 4 massive artworks, plus mini-me versions, will star in Sunday's
community parade through the town and also feature in a giant game
of hide and seek in the shopping centre and Hamilton Square.
The 150lb colourful creations, built during workshops at the
Pyramids Shopping Centre, are based on four well-known Wirral
characters, shipbuilder John Laird, Mother Redcap; landlady of a
smuggler's pub; plus Wirral; born Lottie Dodd, 5 times Wimbledon
champ, and a Birkenhead Priory monk.
Derek Millar, Commercial Director for the Pyramids
Shopping Centre, gave space free of charge to The Stronger
Communities Initiative Assembly (SCIA) to host the giant building
The scheme was the idea of Wirral Methodist Housing Association's
community liaison officer Jill Carter. The housing association is a
member of the SCIA, which is a partnership made up of the police,
housing providers and local resident groups who work together to
regenerate their communities.
Jill, who won £10,000 Awards for All lottery funding for the scheme,
was inspired to create the models after seeing Chester's Carnival of
Giants in June.
Jill commented to us that:- "The workshops have been a great
success, more than we ever hoped; we had parents and children
queuing to get in, before we even opened. We've had about 70 people
come in to help, from children through to pensioners. We even had a
family from Sheffield, who heard about the project through
relatives. And we got some teenagers, who at first didn't seem to be
interested, coming back every day because they got so involved in
making the paper mache heads. And there was a lady of about 70 who
dropped in to see what was happening, and ended up staying all day,
then came the next, and finally brought her husband down to see what
was going on. It made me smile to see the kids' faces light up as
they were working on the items, and how excited they got with the
final creations. We also encouraged everybody to try different
crafts, for instance Mother Redcap was supposedly covered in
tattoos, so the children came up with designs, such as an
old-fashioned heart with the name John; her husband's name; in it.
Mother Redcap was also known for her bling, so we've dressed her in
a lot of jewellery. And one of the ladies has made a huge apron with
jewels for her."
During the workshops youngsters have also created
around 40 mini-giants, standing 4ft high, along with 200 carnival
masks plus paintings showing Venetian carnival scenes and a
Jill added:- "These will go on show in the shopping centre,
because they are all so wonderful, and one of the giants will be
joining them after the parade. We've also created a giant game of
hide and seek, with items hidden in businesses and shops in the
centre and Hamilton square. For instance, there's a giant's foot,
which looks like an old man's, which we've hidden in a shop. Quite
an obvious shop, really. During the parade the giant of John Laird
will be accompanied by apprentices from Cammell Lairds in their
boiler suits and hard hats, which is a sign of how the whole
community has got behind this project."
The giants have been created using donated items, such as yards of
striped material left over from a tree-wrapping art installation,
along with fabric swatches and samples from local shops.
"The shopping centre gave us the space for the
workshops free of charge, which has been a huge help. It was a
brilliant location for the workshops, right by Clarke's, which was
very busy over summer, so lots of people were able to see what was
going on and join in, if they hadn't heard about it previously. I
can't thank the centre enough for the support they've given us so
far, and the support they are continuing to give for the displays."
Derek Millar, Commercial Director for The Grange and
Pyramids Shopping Centre, said:- "We are the main shopping
centre at the heart of Wirral's largest town so our own size and
locality on the Wirral made us the ideal place to host the
workshops. It is fantastic for us to play our part in such an
inspiring community project and I am looking forward to seeing the
parade on Sunday. Plus the artwork displays are worth a visit to the
centre by themselves, I can't believe just how creative everybody
Sunday's parade, which starts at 12.30pm, will also
feature about 16 other giants provided by Chester City of Giants,
along with Wirral Samba Band, face painting and stalls run by local
The giant hide and seek game runs until 1 November
THE PIE'S THE
LIMIT AT EVERTON…
FANS at one of the UK's leading sports grounds
are rejoicing after one of the club's most popular signings had its
contract renewed. Pies are a traditional match day treat at
Goodison Park, home to Everton Football Club, which has sourced them
from East Lancashire based Clayton Park Bakery for the past 8 years.
Now, Sodexo Prestige, which manages conferences and events at the
ground, has signed a further 3 year contract with the bakery.
Along with steak and ale, which tops the list of
favourite fillings, home and away fans will be now also be able to
choose from potato, cheese and onion, potato and meat pies and
These will all be on sale in the concourse and in
hospitality areas alongside other match day favourites such as
sausage rolls, hot dogs and burgers. Sodexo Prestige sales and
marketing manager Jacqui Boyle said:- "There is nothing to
beat a hot pie on a cold match day and Clayton Park's pies are a
firm favourite with our fans."
Barry Thomas, managing director at Clayton Park
Bakery said:- "We are proud to be associated with Everton.
Part of the tradition of football is having a pie at the match and
we are delighted the fans at Goodison Park will once again be on to
a winner with Clayton Park pies."
GMB CENTRAL EXECUTIVE COUNCIL VOTES TO
REDUCE LABOUR PARTY AFFILIATION
GMB statement following CEC meeting on
Tuesday, 3 September 2013 reads:- "The GMB Central Executive
Council (CEC) has voted to reduce its current levels of affiliation
to the Labour Party from 420,000 to 50,000 from 2014. This will
reduce the union's basic affiliation fee to the Labour Party by
£1.1m per year. It is expected that there will be further reductions
in spending on Labour Party campaigns and initiatives. GMB CEC
expressed considerable regret about the apparent lack of
understanding that the proposal mooted by Ed Miliband will have on
the collective nature of trade union engagement with the Labour
Party. A further source of considerable regret to the CEC is that
the party that had been formed to represent the interest of working
people in this country intends to end collective engagement of trade
unions in the party they helped to form. The CEC also decided to
scale down by one third the level of it's national political fund."
FESTIVAL OF MOTORCYCLING ATTRACTS
RECORD NUMBER OF MOTORCYCLES TO ISLE OF MAN
THE Isle of Man Festival of Motorcycling
brought a record-breaking number of motorcycles to the Isle of Man
for its two-week period, official figures from the Isle of Man Steam
Packet Company have shown.
The fortnight-long Festival incorporated the Manx Grand Prix,
celebrating its 90th anniversary, Classic TT and a number of other
Figures show the Steam Packet Company carried 3,324 motorcycles, the
highest number on record for this period and 15% up on the 2012
figure. With the increased emphasis on classic racing, it is
expected many machines may have been transported in vans, meaning
the number of motorcycles actually carried may have been even
Total passenger numbers increased by 4% to 28,360, which was the
highest number for 5 years; and the number of cars and vans carried
was also at a 5 year high of 5,547, up 1.1% on 2012.
Chief Executive Mark Woodward said:- "The Festival of
Motorcycling proved a very busy period for us, with a record number
of bikes and higher numbers of passengers, van and cars. It appears
the enduring popularity of the MGP has been enhanced by the Festival
of Motorcycling, bringing more people to the Island. We were pleased
to support the Festival by continuing to offer discounts for
competitors, this year in the MGP, Classic TT, 2 Day Trial and
Classic Trial, as well as the VMCC Club. We also continued our
assistance for marshals and paramedics travelling to the Island, and
organised additional sailings to meet demand. We were also delighted
to become title sponsor of one of the highlights of the Festival,
the re-enactment of the 1967 Senior TT which featured John
McGuinness and Giacomo Agostini, continuing an involvement which saw
us sponsor the MGP Newcomers race in the previous 2 years. Our chief
role in ensuring the success of events like the Festival of
Motorcycling, as well as events like the TT and Southern 100, is to
ensure we provide the capacity to meet demand, which means long term
planning and additional sailings. The growth in visitor numbers
benefits our whole community, creating additional demand for
accommodation, shops, restaurants, bars and so on, helping to
increase turnover across the Manx economy. With this is mind, and
looking ahead to increased interest in the Festival of Motorcycling,
we are already formulating plans for extra sailings in 2014 to
accommodate what we hope will be yet another record-breaking year."
Isle of Man Tourism Political Member Laurence Skelly MHK added:-
"It is reassuring to see the figures from the Steam Packet
Company that support the feedback that we have received on the
success of the event. I would like to take this opportunity to thank
all of our partners in the event including the Manx Motor Cycle
Club, the Classic and Two Day Trial Clubs and the Vintage Motorcycle
Club. I would also like to thank all the officials, volunteers, the
TT Marshals and the other Government Departments as well as the Isle
of Man Steam Packet Company in delivering such a strong festival.
The Isle of Man Treasury Department is currently completing research
which will allow us to evaluate the overall economic contribution
that this year's event has delivered and the increased number of
visitors through the ferries are likely to indicate growth in this
area as well."