Fake vodka factory found in
AN illegal alcohol factory, containing
130,000 litres of potentially toxic fake vodka, worth £1.7 million in unpaid
duty, was uncovered in an industrial unit, in Widnes, on Friday, 31 July 2015.
During a joint operation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), Cheshire Police and
Trading Standards, officers seized:-
► 130 x 1,000 litre IBCs (intermediate bulk containers) believed to contain
alcohol from two interconnected stills,
► suspected counterfeit vodka labels
► bottle tops for number 1 Imperial Vodka Blue.
Sandra Smith, Assistant Director, Criminal
Investigation, HMRC, said:- "As well as potentially risking the lives of
people drinking the fake alcohol, this factory had the capacity to rob taxpayers
of millions of pounds in unpaid duty; money which should be spent on vital
public services. People buying the counterfeit vodka may have thought they were
getting a bargain, but it has been distilled in unregulated conditions and may
pose a serious health risk. We will continue to work in partnership with
other law enforcement agencies such as the police and Trading Standards to
tackle the issue of illicit alcohol in our communities and across the UK. I ask
anyone with information about this dangerous illegal trade to call the Customs
Hotline on 0800 59 5000 and help us stamp it out."
Cheshire Police Detective Chief Inspector Paul
Beauchamp said:- "We carried out a warrant at a business premises under
the misuse of drugs act and discovered this illegal operation on our doorstep.
We are pleased that we have helped to take this dangerous counterfeit vodka off
the streets and are continuing to work with our colleagues in HMRC and Trading
Investigations are ongoing.
Ethnically owned businesses
in Merseyside have new opportunity as corporations seek out diverse suppliers
WITH Merseyside's ethnic population now
standing at 8.14%, the region's business community has a powerful
opportunity for growth as international blue chip brands increasingly look
towards minority owned suppliers able to provide greater value.
Well documented evidence is starting to emerge that minority owned businesses
provide stronger value to their customers. Companies with established supplier
diversity programmes that include SMEs and EMBs generate 133 per cent better
return on their buying operations, according to research from leading strategic
consultant The Hackett Group Companies working with smaller and more diverse suppliers were also found to
spend 20% less on their buying operations and secure significantly greater
One example of the opportunities for diverse companies is Gibbs S3, an
ethnically owned business and Europe's fastest growing hybrid workforce
solutions provider, which has seen record growth this year.
Founder and CEO Farida Gibbs comments:- "International blue chip brands
are starting to recognise the growing importance of having minority owned
businesses as an essential part of their supply chain because of their ability
to provide a higher level of innovation and agility to problem solving.
Merseyside has a huge opportunity for economic growth by embracing it's thriving
ethnic business community. With some of the biggest blue chip corporations
around the world now looking to take on small and minority owned suppliers, its
ideal for companies in area that are looking to grow."
Gibbs S3 has become the only corporate level business to be officially certified
as an EMB (Ethnic Minority Controlled Business) by MSDUK, the country's leading
non profit membership organisation driving inclusive procurement. The firm has
seen record growth in its 10th year of business, with revenue growing 38% to
reach £41.58m; on track to hit £46m this year in the UK and £180m globally. The
company has also previously been certified as a Woman Owned Business Enterprise
(WBE) by WEConnect, the leading global supplier diversity initiative connecting
women owned businesses with multinational corporations.
Mayank Shah, MSDUK Founder and CEO, comments:-
"Despite the growing trend however, women and minority owned suppliers are
still underrepresented, especially in fields like technology and engineering. We
are absolutely delighted to be the 1st corporate level company officially
certified as an EMB by MSDUK, and with the increasing demand for minority owned
suppliers I hope many other companies will be joining us soon. We at MSDUK are thrilled
to welcome Gibbs S3 both in the capacity of a Certified Ethnic Minority Business
as well as a corporate member, which is testimony to the growth of ethnic
minority businesses in the UK."
Peace Memorial for Walton
LIVERPOOL'S Lord Mayor has unveiled a peace
memorial in Walton to remember those who lost their lives in World War
On Friday, 7 August 2015, the Lord Mayor, Councillor Tony Concepcion, was be joined by
veterans and community members at the blessing of the 3 foot high marble
memorial in Walton Hall Park.
Before the unveiling the
Lord Mayor Councillor Tony Concepcion said:- "I am delighted to be
unveiling this commemorative plinth recognising the sacrifices made by those in
the 1st World War and subsequent conflicts.
The Walton community should be incredibly proud of the effort and work that has
gone into ensuring this area of the City never forgets those who gave their life
for our freedom. I hope this will continue to be a symbol of peace, hope,
remembrance and reflection for many generations to come."
Members of the local community in Walton were concerned that there was no
lasting memorial in the area to those who lost their lives during the 1st
World War and subsequent battles.
The initiative was led largely by Councillor Roy Gladden and in 2014 the 1st
phase took shape when a cross of poppies was planted to commemorate the
Anniversary of the start of World War 1.
Councillor Gladden said:- "This memorial really is a testament to the
determination of everyone involved in ensuring that Walton and its residents
never forget those who have gone to war and never returned home and the daily
struggles of those left behind.
This area is a fitting tribute to our service personnel and I hope that the
schoolchildren who will maintain it learn the lessons of the past to ensure a
safer future. I hope it remains for them and the local community a sign of hope
This year the second phase takes place as a 3 foot high black marble plinth is
put in place alongside the cross of poppies. The marble plinth will be
officially blessed by Reverend Trevor Lathom, Vicar of Walton on the Hill
Schoolchildren from Gwladys St and Alsop Schools, in conjunction with Glendales,
will look after the site, which is hoped will encourage them to get outdoors and
learn about horticulture and wildlife and will hopefully teach the children more
about the history of the conflict.
Name That Lorry Competition
THE Entertainer Toy Shop is launching
an exciting new competition where ten lucky children will have the chance to
name a brand new lorry which will be crammed full of toys to deliver to toy
shops around the country. So get your thinking caps on and come up with a toy
related name! Simply pop your suggestion on an entry form and in the post box
inside your nearest Entertainer store or enter
Not only will the 10 winners get their chosen name on one of the lorries but
they will also receive a £50 toy bundle courtesy of their local Entertainer
store. Entries can be posted until 20 August so get down to your local store or
enter online to be in with a chance of having your chosen name on a lorry for
years to come!
The lorries will hit the road from September, so keep your eyes peeled to see
what they're called!