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Liverpool stands on ceremony for Vitality Netball World Cup

THE Vitality Netball World Cup's opening ceremony is set to be a celebration of the world in 1 City; with its distinct Liverpool twist beamed to a global audience. Due to its reputation for staging major, crowd pulling events, the Vitality Netball World Cup 2019 organisers agreed that Culture Liverpool, Liverpool City Council's events experts, should produce and deliver the opening ceremony for the competition, which runs from 12 July to 21 July 2019.

Taking place in the M&S Bank Arena, located on the City's world famous waterfront;- dance, music, projections and pyrotechnics will wow an arena audience of more than 6,000 people and an international TV audience of hundreds of thousands.

Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for culture, tourism and events, Councillor Wendy Simon, said:- "It's a huge coup that Liverpool City Council has been asked to produce the opening and closing ceremonies for this elite, global sporting event. Culture Liverpool's CV speaks for itself when it comes to hosting events; for more than ten years, Liverpool has been an exemplar of best practice, bringing millions of people in to the City as they look on in awe at Cunard liners on the Mersey, Giant families or spiders wandering our streets, big name music acts performing in our green spaces, or racing cars racing up and down The Strand. The Vitality Netball World Cup is bringing the world to Liverpool and that's exactly what the two ceremonies will reflect. It will be a celebration of the game, the City and the incredible sportswomen who will themselves put on an incredible show across the 10 days."

An impressive display of colour, costume and choreography will welcome players, officials, fans and spectators to the City as part of the 45 minute display which takes place, on Friday, 12 July  2019, during the 2nd session of the tournament. The ceremony will open with inspirational female voices, signalling a unique parade led by:- 'Lady Liverpool,' portrayed by local artist Jennifer John, dressed in a flamboyant purple dress featuring an illuminated Liverpool skyline. She will welcome the 16 competing nations by singing Across the Universe, by The Beatles.

Performer Jennifer John said:- "It is such an honour to be asked to lead the players onto the pitch as Lady Liverpool. Performing at the Netball World Cup in a magical City doing what I love; singing with people that I love from Sense of Sound Singers. For me, life just doesn't get much better than that!"

This will be followed by the arrival of all the netball teams, who will enter the arena to a soundtrack of covers of famous Liverpool songs, such as:- Ferry Across the Mersey, Twist and Shout and The Story of the Blues; set to a South American, dubstep or Caribbean beat.

Following speeches, including a welcome by Minister for Sport Mims Davies, an interactive dance, projection, pyrotechnic multi media show will take over the floor, along with stunning aerial performances by Wired Aerial. Dancers from Iceland, Spain, Russia and Mexico will form part of the troupe, and have been rehearsing for the ceremony for several months.  It will include the appearance of a special Liver Bird who will emerge to the sounds of Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds. A rousing finale will come courtesy of a 250 strong choir made up of Sense of Sound, Liverpool Signing Choir, Pop Vox and Voice to Voice.

The closing ceremony will take place, on Sunday, 21 July 2019, which will focus around the medal ceremony and the official handover to the Netball World Cup 2023 hosts, South Africa. The entire ceremony concept has been produced and directed by Culture Liverpool, which was recently named as the UK's top event organiser, and 15th in the world overall, by the Eventex Awards.

Event Director Lindsay Impett, said:- "The opening and closing ceremonies are set to be spectacular events, and I know that Culture Liverpool will deliver fantastic experiences for all involved as we welcome the world to their City. I am delighted that so many inspirational performers and individuals are getting involved, ensuring that 2019's tournament will be opened and closed in style."

The City Council team has worked with globally acclaimed specialists including choreographers Darren Suarez and Valentina Temussi at the Institute of Arts in Barcelona, musical director Andy Frizell, Mary Lamb and Fabrication Studios who created the costumes along with projection experts Illuminos and world renowned pyrotechnics company Titanium.

Bin It! Schools tour encourages Liverpool students to keep their environment litter free

THE award winning drama based education programme, Bin it!, which educates students about responsibility and litter, visited Liverpool this week as part of its annual nationwide tour of Schools. The Bin it! tour, developed by Mars Wrigley Confectionery, encourages young people to work together to make a lasting change to local areas and keep their environment tidy.

Last year's tour visited Cambridge, Exeter, Cardiff, Bristol, and Bolton, as well as a number of other Schools across the UK and Northern Ireland. In this week of the 2019 Bin It! tour, the roadshow performed at nine Schools including:- Litherland High School and North Liverpool Academy.

Bin It! celebrated its 12th Anniversary in 2018, and marked the occasion with its biggest ever UK tour reaching over 32,000 students in 1 year; the highest number ever. Bin it! is also profiled in the Litter Strategy for England, and as part of Mars Wrigley Confectionery's support for the strategy, we have committed to reach a further 100,000 students across the UK by the end of 2020.

Mars Wrigley Confectionery is also a partner of Keep Britain Tidy's 'Keep It, Bin It' national antim littering campaign. Announced by Environment Secretary Michael Gove in 2018, the campaign aims to make littering culturally unacceptable in a generation by demonstrating the impact that littering can have on the environment. The campaign has featured images of wildlife affected by litter juxtaposed with common excuses for littering in locations including London Euston, Manchester Piccadilly and Birmingham New Street stations, as well as across partners' social media channels.

Bin it! has a proven record of success, with results from last year's tour showing that over 80% of students who saw the show said they would now be sure to dispose of their chewing gum in the bin. Bin it! has also won two IVCA Clarion Awards for Best Live Event and Best Printed Materials.

Developed by Mars Wrigley Confectionery, in partnership with specialist education consultancy Rapport, Bin it! is targeted at 11 to 13 year olds and is designed to explore the issues and impact of littering, helping students to understand why it is so important to take personal responsibility for correct litter disposal.

The Bin it! team of actors aims to engage and educate young people, encouraging pupils to make positive choices about the responsible disposal of litter in their environment and urging them to take pride in their community. Evaluation of the last Bin it! tour showed that 82% of students reported that the show increased their knowledge of littering issues.

Julie Lovell, Public Affairs Senior Manager, Mars Wrigley Confectionery UK, said:- "Bin it! has been an incredibly successful programme to date and we are delighted to have reached almost 200,000 pupils across the UK since it began in 2006. We hope that its success will continue to grow as we reach out to even more young people, reinforcing our messages around littering and urging children to take pride in and look after their local communities and environments."

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