Morecambe and Wise Statue
Unveiled in Blackpool
THE nation's 1st statue celebrating
the comedy genius of Morecambe and Wise has been unveiled at Blackpool's world
famous Winter Gardens.
The stunning 8ft tall bronzed statue; created by renowned sculptor Graham Lbbeson; was unveiled by Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise's families at the Winter
Gardens this morning in front of hundreds of adoring fans.
Eric and Ernie performed in Blackpool more than 1,000 times in their career and
the statue was commissioned to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of Britain's best
loved comedy double act first appearing on stage together in 1941.
Eric's widow Joan, who was joined at the
unveiling ceremony by eldest son Gary, daughter Gail and a representative for
Ernie's widow Doreen, said:- "The statue is simply wonderful, Graham has
really captured Eric and Ernie to perfection. For it to be unveiled here
in Blackpool, where I personally have so many happy memories of Eric and Ernie
and our families together down the years, is very fitting. This has been a
really special day I will remember forever."
Gary Morecambe added:- "Blackpool was Eric and Ernie's spiritual home,
their careers really took off here, and to see them together again in this
wonderful tribute is fantastic.
Graham is a brilliant artist and the likeness to my father and Ernie is
stunning. I am sure fans of Eric and Ernie, indeed everyone who sees it, will
get a big thrill out of it. I think my father would have been gobsmacked
by the whole idea of a statue. The fact it is here in Blackpool would have been
a huge thing for both Eric and Ernie as it is a town they had so much success in
and affection for."
Sculptor Graham Ibbeson said:- "It has
been an absolute honour and a privilege for me to bring Morecambe and Wise; 2
of my all time heroes; together again with this new statue which I am
incredibly proud of. Eric and Ernie were able to bring the nation together
through their genius and laughter and this statue celebrates them as they should
be, a double act which Britain and the world took to their hearts."
Michael Williams, Winter Gardens Managing
Director, said:- "This is a very special day for both the millions of fans
of Morecambe and Wise and Blackpool.
Eric and Ernie performed in Blackpool more than 1,000 times during their career
and it is especially fitting that this stunning new statue has been unveiled
here, which is regarded by their family and friends as the boys 'spiritual
We are sure this wonderful tribute will become a must see for comedy fans the
The statue, which has been funded through donations of £75,000, will be on
permanent display in the spectacular domed entrance to the Winter Gardens.
Sculptor Graham Ibbeson has a long history with Eric and Ernie having also
created the Eric Morecambe statue which was unveiled in 1999 by the Queen and
now adorns the promenade in the comedian's hometown, Morecambe.
During their years in Blackpool the pair entertained hundreds of thousands of
people, playing at seven theatres, 6 summer seasons and enjoying a starring role
in the 1955 Royal Variety Performance at the Winter Gardens.
Centre's help for street
MORE than 100 street drinkers who
attended a Centre set up to support them received medical treatment and other
This figure is shown in an analysis of people attending the REST
(rehabilitation, education, support and treatment) Centre in Fraser Street which
supported individuals and attempted to help them reduce their alcohol intake.
Other services such as housing and homeless support were also available when the
Centre operated between June and September 2016.
Street drinkers were allowed to drink alcohol at the Centre under supervision.
The review of its use shows that 173 different individuals; 128 men and 45
women used the Centre, the youngest being 19, the oldest was aged 66.
A total of 124 people were referred to treatment services including GPs,
Hospitals or services dealing with alcohol issues. Seven people had wounds
dressed. 8 people went into detox and rehabilitation programmes and 86 were referred
to Addaction the drug and alcohol treatment charity.
The Centre was funded by the Clinical Commissioning Group Citysafe and Public
Health and operated by the Whitechapel Centre. A full evaluation of its work is
being carried out by the Centre for Public Health at John Moores University.
"The evaluation will assess not only how successful the Centre was for the
individuals who attended but will also look at its wider implications for the
City such as the effects on anti social behaviour. We will then be in a
better position to look at the future of this type of Centre.
However, it is clear from the raw numbers that the Centre was well used during
the summer and that many of the people who attended there were helped with
medical treatment, which they may not otherwise have had, as well as other
Along with our partners we will continue to look at the best ways to reduce the
levels of street drinking in the City." said Councillor
Emily Spurrell, Mayoral Lead for Community Safety.
Cerebral palsy charity bags more funds
WIRRAL based cerebral palsy charity Stick 'n' Step has
received more good news in its fundraising efforts having been chosen as M&S
Birkenhead's Charity of the Year for a second year running.
M&S Birkenhead in the Pyramids Shopping Centre has supported Stick 'n' Step for
a number of years through goodwill gestures such as providing Easter eggs for
the children, however, it was in 2015 that the store decided to make Stick 'n'
Step its official:- 'Charity of the Year' for 2015.
As a result, Stick 'n' Step received approximately £3,500 and the charity was
delighted to be selected as M&S Birkenhead's chosen charity for 2016, which will
see funds raised go towards helping the children in their conductive education
In addition, Stick 'n' Step will also be one of a number of local charities and
good causes that will receive the 5p carrier bag donation on every bag sold.
It's surprising how this mounts up and the charity has already received £1000 as
M&S's store manager, Chrissy Verdin, is delighted that Stick 'n' Step is the
beneficiary of her staff's fundraising efforts:- "Stick 'n' Step is one of
our favourite charities. As the charity is local to us, it seems natural to
support them in any way we can. The work it does is extremely popular with our
staff and we can see that our fundraising is making a real difference to the
Sarah Smithson, operations manager at Stick 'n' Step, concurs:- "The way
M&S has helped us over the years has been so valuable. We rely completely on
donations to run our Centre and the sums raised by M&S bolster our confidence to
carry on what we're doing. Being chosen as 'Charity of the Year' two years
running was a great honour and the total amount raised on the 5p bag donations
really does prove that every donation, no matter how small, mounts up."
Stick 'n' Step provides support services to children with cerebral palsy and
The charity works with over 70 children, allowing the children
to gain the skills they need to live independent lives through conductive
education sessions. The specialist sessions are provided free of charge to the
families by Stick 'n' Step.
For more information about Stick 'n' Step and how you can help, visit:-
StickNStep.Org or call:- 0151 638 0888.
Southport and Formby cancer recovery programme
shortlisted for Macmillan Excellence award
A Southport and Formby based Macmillan cancer recovery
programme has been shortlisted for a prestigious award recognising their
inspirational work supporting people affected by cancer in the area.
Southport and Formby Cancer Recovery Programme, based at Southport and Formby
CCG; Macmillan Cancer Information and Support Centre, was nominated by
colleagues in the Integration Excellence Award category, which recognises
exciting new initiatives, products and services. This category's winners have
all improved the quality and experience of care for people affected by cancer.
The Southport and Formby Cancer Recovery Programme was established to support
people with cancer during their recovery. It aims to improve physical and mental
health and alleviate the feelings of isolation that can often follow the end of
The hub of the service is the Southport Macmillan Information and Support
Centre, but the team comprises members from various health and social care
organisations who work together seamlessly. Patients finishing treatment receive
a specially designed information pack detailing the support they can access,
such as Health and Wellbeing events, Move More sessions and a whole host of
Helen Jones, Macmillan Cancer Information Centre Manager, said:- "The
programme has made it more routine for people with cancer to come to us.
Macmillan is all about giving the best possible support to people affected by
cancer and, as a team, that's where our hearts lie too."
A surprise celebrity guest will be hosting the awards ceremony at the Hilton
Birmingham Metropole Hotel, on Thursday, 17 November 2016, where the winners will be
announced for the 1st time. The awards, which are now in their 5th year are a
perfect opportunity for us to recognise and thank pioneering teams and
individuals who deliver the highest standards of care for people affected by
cancer. In 2015 more than 300 Macmillan professionals, as well as
representatives from Macmillan and leading healthcare institutions attended the
No 1 should face cancer alone. For support, information or if you have any
questions, call Macmillan Cancer Support free on:- 0808 808 00 00 (Monday to
Friday, 9am to 8pm) or visit:-