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Publication date:- 2017-23-09

user-generated Headlines and reports on this page = 5 news items.    Page - 5.

Top Secret World War 2 HQ to be re-opened

A former secret bunker; used to mastermind the Battle of the Atlantic from the heart of Liverpool; is undergoing a major transformation after heritage innovators and North West based social enterprise Big Heritage secured the keys to the attraction. Big Heritage, based in Chester, have recently signed terms with Shelborn Asset Management, owners of Exchange Flags, to take over the attraction on a long term lease.

The company has been credited with a renaissance of heritage activity in Chester, most recently organising the world's biggest digital heritage project in partnership with Pokémon GO, which attracted over 16,000 people. Big Heritage founder Dean Paton and his team of archaeologists, project managers and builders have already set underway plans to accurately restore the forgotten City Centre visitor experience back to its former glories.

Over the next 6 weeks, heritage innovators Big Heritage will be restoring a labrynth of rooms within the underground bunker HQ and recreating an entire underground 1940's street, complete with stocked sweet shop and pub, community classroom facility, and a range of interactive exhibits and attractions. The plan is to re-open Western Approaches to families in time for the October ½ Term. "Western Approaches HQ is 1 of the most important buildings in the world associated with World War 2. Whilst it was meant to be a secret during the war, sadly in recent decades it has become almost anonymous once again. In the 1940's, when Winston Churchill and his top admirals were planning how to tackle the threats in the Atlantic, the highest level of secrecy was exactly what they would have wanted; in fact, the building only officially existed in the 1960's, way after the war had ended! Now's the time to change all that and to showcase this amazing attraction to the world. And that is really, really exciting for all of us at Big Heritage and the team and I are bringing our usual innovation and energy to making the very best of this globally significant attraction. We can't wait to share it with the City and thousands of visitors every year." said Dean Paton, Founder of Big Heritage and project leader for the renovation.

Dust covered artefacts and archives are being discovered daily during the renovation of the bomb proof and gas proof building, which has a 7 foot roof, 3 feet deep walls and hundreds of rooms covering more than 30,000 square feet.  In fact, some rooms haven't even been opened yet within the attraction. "We're genuinely uncovering something new every day. We've found a number of previously forgotten rooms, and have unearthed a few exciting finds along the way. It's a treasure trove of World War 2 memories archived and stored for decades. What's exciting is that much of this stuff hasn't even been seen before by the public. But we also have lots of ideas to bring the attraction to life for families, for Schools, for visitors, and for businesses based in the City. We can't wait to share it with everyone." added Dean.

Western Approaches HQ, which was also known as the Citadel or the Fortress due to its reinforced concrete protection; was staffed predominantly by WRNS (Women's Royal Naval Service), known affectionately as "Wrens" and WAAFS (members of the Women's Auxillary Air Force).

It was also home to commanders including Admiral Sir Max Horton, who oversaw the Battle of the Atlantic campaign, Captain Johnny Walker, who sank more U-Boats that any other Allied commander, and was regularly visited by war time Prime Minister Winston Churchill. Prince Phillip was also believed to have undertaken anti submarine training in the building during the war.


Excitement is growing for Allotment Fortnight!

SEFTON Council's Parks and Green Spaces Team have been busy sprouting plans for a 2 week celebration of all things allotments between 25 September 2017 25 and 8 October 2017. Working along side self managed sites, Allotment Fortnight will highlight various community projects, activities and food bank donation schemes across a number of allotments in the borough. Community open days will take place at 14 allotments, including:- Altcar Road in Formby, Scape Lane Crosby, Beach Road Litherland and Gardener Avenue, Bootle.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council's Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said:- "The Allotment Fortnight is a great way for us to really celebrate our fantastic communities and the work they do at allotments all across Sefton. We have more than 1,700 allotment plots over 14 sites across Sefton so they really are the cream of the crop! During Allotment Fortnight residents are invited to come down between 10.30am and 2.30pm, on each open day and learn more about the sheer wealth of what we do at our sites. Council staff will be on hand throughout all the sites to meet with tenants and those interested in getting more involved with our allotments scheme. We'll also be running a number of food bank collection points during each open day where we encourage anyone with spare fruit, vegetables and produce they may have grown to donate to a local good cause.  Our allotments are not just about growing fruit and veg. They are a brilliant community resource."

If you are a resident of Sefton and would like to rent an allotment call 0151 934 2943 for more information. Spaces are currently readily available at Browns Lane in Netherton.

The full list of locations are as follows:-

Location Town / Village Date
Altcar Road Formby 25 September 2017
Blundell Lane Southport 65 September 2017
Dunningsbridge Road Bootle 27 September 2017
Scape Lane Crosby 27 September 2017
Birkdale Irrigation Birkdale 28 September 2017
Hatton Hill Litherland 29 September 2017
Hoggs Hill Formby 1 October 2017
Sherwood Road Crosby 2 October 2017
Moss Lane Southport 3 October 2017
Browns Lane Netherton 4 October 2017
Town Lane Southport 5 October 2017
Beach Road Litherland 6 October 2017
Queensway Crosby 7 October 2017
Gardener Avenue Bootle 8 October 2017

Appeal for information following abduction and assault

MERSEYSIDE Police detectives are appealing for information to find a man they wish to speak with in connection with an alleged assault that is reported to have taken place on Friday, 15 September 2017, in Bootle.  Merseyside police say that a , a man in his 20's was found at around 10am, in St Catherine's Road with injuries consistent with having been assaulted. He was treated in Hospital and an investigation was started. At part of their enquiries, detectives would like to speak to 23 year old Adam Fletcher, who is said to be from Walton, described as white, 5ft 7in tall, of slight build, with short brown hair and grey eyes. Anyone with information as to the whereabouts of Fletcher is asked to call:- 0151 777 3011 or you can call:- 101 or alternatively you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on:- 0800 555 111.

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