Published online only every
Issue:- 16 January 2015
1 in 6 'secret
hide housing troubles
NEW research reveals that 1 in 6 people
in Britain have kept secrets from their loved ones by hiding or lying about rent
or mortgage troubles.
Research from Shelter and YouGov paints a picture of a nation of 'secret
strugglers' who are keeping housing worries from their partners and
families. People reported secretly taking out loans, selling items such as
jewellery, and even shredding bills to keep their problems hidden.
The strain of today's sky high housing costs is taking its toll, with 24% of
people losing sleep because they are worried about paying their rent or
mortgage. Over the last year alone, Shelter has seen hundreds of thousands of
visits to its website during the night from people looking for advice on housing
The research also revealed that the stress of paying for housing is affecting
relationships, with 1 in 6 people saying it has led to arguments with loved
ones. The charity is urging people to ease the pressure by seeking out expert
advice as soon as they start having housing troubles.
When mother of 3 Christina from Morecambe started falling behind with her
mortgage payments, she hid her worries from her husband and struggled with her
debts in secret.
Christina says:- "Even though we both work, our mortgage debts were
mounting up and I couldn't bear to worry my husband with it. As a lorry driver
he was away working long hours and I didn't want to stress him out during the
short time he was at home and should be relaxing.
I was too embarrassed to tell my family so at first I was dealing with
everything on my own. When we were finally facing losing our home, I told my
husband and we went to Shelter for help. They got the repossession suspended and
it was like the weight of the world had been lifted; it's just so important to
be open and get advice as soon as you can."
Shelter's helpline adviser, Danielle Goodwin said:- "No-one should have to
face the fear of losing the roof over their heads, let alone struggle with it in
Every day at Shelter we help people who are often in pieces after facing the
burden of rent or mortgage troubles alone; often having been too ashamed to ask
for help from their loved ones.
We all understand how isolated financial troubles can make you feel, but we're
here to make sure no one has to struggle with housing worries alone. Seeking
advice early can ease the pressure and gives you the best possible chance of
keeping your home."
For free and independent advice from Shelter visit:-
Shelter.Org.UK/Advice or call
the helpline on:- 0808 800 4444.
Fewer women than ever before
are studying IT at university
UNDER 18% of undergraduates studying
computing are women, according to research just released by Information Age.
At a time when STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) subjects are
increasingly at the top of the educational agenda, it seems not enough is being
done to encourage young women into studying IT in higher education.
The information, revealed via a freedom of information (FOI) request, found that
just 18% of students enrolled in computing courses in the 2014 to 2015 academic year.
This compares to the 19% that graduated from computing degrees in the last
academic year and 20% the year before (2013 to 2014).
Responding to the findings, Gerry Arthurs, Virgin Media Business's education
lead, said:- "It's astonishing that well under a quarter of those studying
computing at university are women, given the increasing recognition about the
importance of STEM subjects by the government and the introduction of coding
into the national curriculum, and within industry at large.
Technology is incredibly important in a modern education and it needs to be
across the board, from primary schools all the way through to further education
in universities and colleges.
It is essential that people aren't put off from pursuing the careers they want,
or are denied a competitive advantage, due to a lack of digital or technical
skills. Technology is at the heart of every successful business so it's
bad news all round if people, male or female, feel that they can't or don't want
to study subjects like computing."
Video report about forgotten masterpiece
IN last weeks
Edition we reported on how a Southport
jobseeker Sefton Council how to do a really impress interview by uncovering a
forgotten masterpiece at the Arts and Cultural Centre, in The Atkinson. Stephen
Whittle is now the Stephen Whittle Museum and Gallery Manager and he has kindly
helped us make this fantastic video about the forgotten masterpiece. This
fantastic work, by the famous and highly collectable Futurist painter, CRW Nevinson, is now able to be seen at the gallery.
To see this video in a new
window, please click on
here and for audio only, click on
via a new window.
Between Land and
Sea – 10,000 years of Sefton's Coast
OVER 2,000 people flocked to The
Atkinson last October for the opening weekend of the new Egyptology
Friday, 13 February 2015, will see the launch of the final part of the museum;
and its inspiration is drawn from rather closer to home. The new
permanent exhibition:- 'Between Land and Sea - 10,000 years of
Sefton's Coast', explores the rich and varied history of the Sefton
area and its amazing coastline.
Amongst those celebrated for their roles in the story of Sefton are:-
► the daring female motor racing pioneers dubbed:- 'scorchers',
'motorinas' and 'motoristes' who tore up Southport beach in the
1920's. One of their party, Dorothy Levitt went on to break numerous
records as a speedboat driver, racing driver and aviator and even
taught Queen Alexandra and her three daughters to drive.
► the cartoonist behind Dan Dare, Frank Hampson, who was a pupil at
King George V Grammar School (now King George V College) in the
1930s. The sci-fi hero Dan Dare famously appeared in the Eagle
comic, which was first produced in 1950 in a studio called Old
Bakehouse in Churchtown, Southport. The Eagle's founder, the Rev
John Marcus Harston Morris, was vicar of the St James church
Birkdale at the time.
► the formidable Mrs Mirabel Topham, the former Gaiety Girl, who ran
Aintree race course in the 1950's and 60's. One of the most famous
horses to race at the Grand National Aintree, Red Rum was trained by Ginger McCain on
► Frank Hornby, the inventor of Meccano, Dinky toys and Hornby model
trains. The Maghull resident, a father of 3, had no formal
engineering qualifications and experimented with ideas in his home
workshop. In 1901 it is said he borrowed £5 from his employer to
patent the invention of Meccano. His boss quickly saw the merit in
his idea and soon became his business partner.
► 19 year old polar explorer and Southport resident FJ 'Percy'
Hooper, 1 of the search party who discovered Captain Scott and his
team's bodies at the end of their ill fated expedition to the South
Pole. Sacrificing his own skis to fashion a cross as a memorial,
Hooper made his way back to their boat using Captain Oates' (he of "I
am just going outside, and may be some time" fame) skis and
sticks. A blue plaque was erected outside Southport Town Hall to
commemorate Hooper in 2012.
► The Neolithic, or New Stone Age, mother and child who made their
way across Formby sands to gather food, leaving their footprints as
an echo from the region's distant past.
Although there is much to celebrate, the Sefton coast has suffered
from its share of hard times as well as good. The Bootle Blitz of
1941 saw 90% of the Town's houses destroyed or damaged. And
in 1886, the worst lifeboat disaster in history unfolded off Birkdale's coast, with 27 lifeboat crew losing their lives.
Bootle docks were a key target for Luftwaffe bombers during WWII. A
recently conserved map from a downed German plane, to go on show in
the new permanent exhibition, clearly indicates the grain stores at
Alexandra Dock as the focal point for the many air raids that
devastated the surrounding area. Around 4,000 people were killed in
the Merseyside area during the Blitz, second only to London.
The story of the Bootle blitz is told through a range of objects
donated by local residents, including fragments of bombs, gas masks,
wartime rations and ration books, shrapnel and personal memoirs of
evacuation and memories of the air raids as well as archival film
footage. The Atkinson has also drawn on Sefton Library's extensive
photographic archive. Visitors will be able to search through a
large selection of contemporary images and maps documenting the
On 9 December 1886, the lifeboats Eliza Fernley of Southport and Laura
Janet of St. Anne's put out in a storm to the rescue an iron ship,
The Mexico of Hamburg. Neither boat reached the vessel, although the
former approached so close that according to the narrative of the
two survivors, one of the lifeboat-men was about to throw a line, but
the boat swung broadside on to the sea and a huge mountain of water
lifted it up and turned it over, burying the majority of its crew
Important artefacts from the failed rescue include the oars from the
Mexico and personal belongings of the deceased.
Said Emma Anderson, director of The Atkinson:- "The heritage
of this coastline combines unspoilt beaches with some of the UK's
largest dockland areas and a rich maritime history.
It is an area of contrasts; working ports and dense urban areas rub
shoulders with areas of outstanding natural beauty. This is an
important and valuable heritage for its tensions, contrasts and
contradictions that capture changes in society, industry and the
The Atkinson's new museum tells the stories of this extraordinary,
changing and contested coastline. The new museum displays reflect
the histories of communities and individuals along Sefton's coast,
and have a strong emphasis on the influence and experience of the
coast; in terms of fishing and shipping industries, including
lifeboats, wrecks and tragedies, as well as the development of
leisure and tourism.
Our project has strategic, regional significance because, over the
last 10 years, regeneration projects up and down the coast have
stressed the importance of creating and enhancing sense of place;
building up the uniqueness and integrity of places through culture
This new permanent exhibition will be opening on Friday, 13 February 2015,
The Atkinson, Lord Street, Southport PR8 1DB. For more
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