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Vigil remembering those affected by youth violence to take place in Liverpool

A special service of reflection will take place at Liverpool Cathedral next week to remember young people who have lost their lives through violence.

The vigil will take place from 6.30pm, on Friday, 23 September 2022, and aims to bring together the family and friends of victims who have been killed as a result of violent crimes, such as gun and knife crime.

There will be a series of live music performances, poetry readings and speeches by those who have been affected by these violent tragedies.

The service is open to the public and those attending will be encouraged to light a candle at the venue and contribute to a book of condolence to share memories of their loved 1. The book will be open across the weekend.

This is the second time the event has taken place and is supported by the Mayor of Liverpool, Joanne Anderson, and the Merseyside Violence Reduction Partnership. The inspiration for the inaugural event in 2021 was Mandy Jamieson whose son Danny was stabbed to death in Gateacre, July 2018, aged just 16.

Since the tragedy, Mandy has set up Danny's Place; a charity which facilitates talks to Schools, youth organisations and the probation sector about the ripple effect that knife crime can have.

In a bid to lobby the Government to introduce an official national remembrance day for victims and the families of youth violence, the cathedral event will be an open invitation to anyone affected by this type of crime, to remember loved 1s and celebrate their lives.

Mayor of Liverpool Anderson said:- "Violence and Liverpool has been in the headlines far too much of late following a spate of atrocious crimes; crimes that do not represent us or our City. Once again, young people are being taken far too soon under the most horrific of circumstances, but as is so typical of Liverpool, in the face of adversity we all stand shoulder-to-shoulder to send out the message that this will not be tolerated here. I'm so pleased we can support this service of reflection, which is an opportunity for those who have experienced this pain to come together in a supportive and empathetic environment. By shining a spotlight on this difficult subject, we can educate others and hopefully prevent further tragedies from happening in our City."

Dr Sue Jones, Dean of Liverpool, said:- "So many young lives have been lost over the past year to violence, including knife and gun crime. Life is precious. Life is a gift to us from God. Life is for living. This vigil will help us stand in solidarity with all who have suffered through the untimely death of loved 1s due to violent crime. It will give us the chance to pledge ourselves and this City to work for peace. We, as a Cathedral, will continue to pray for peace in our City and throughout the world."

Mother, Mandy Jamieson said:- "To lose a child to murder or manslaughter, as a result of either knife or gun crime, affects families traumatically. I am so grateful to Mayor Joanne Anderson and the Culture Liverpool team for allowing us to remember our loved 1s. This event can really make a difference to bereaved families as it is also a celebration of our loved 1s; and they really do deserve to be celebrated. Together, we can share memories and pay tribute to those we have lost far too soon, which is hugely important. and more importantly it shows them that they are not alone."

Detective Superintendent Siobhan Gainer, Head of the Merseyside Violence Reduction Partnership, said:- "The Merseyside Violence Reduction Partnership believes that all communities in Merseyside have the right to be free from violence to provide the best life chances for all. Vigils like this 1, often in their quiet way, show complete community solidarity and help get our important message across."


Southport ready for 17 days of laughter as Southport Comedy Festival 2022 takes place

WITH just a few days to go until the 2022 Southport Comedy Festival, people are being urged to turn off their telly and enjoy seeing some of the top comedians in the country!

An exciting bill this year sees Festival favourites including:- Jason Byrne, Paul Sinha, Jo Caulfield, Ed Byrne, Reginald D Hunter and Jimeoin joined by the likes of Al Murray The Pub Landlord, Milton Jones, Chris McCausland, Maisie Adam and comedy legend Jeff Green, who flies in from Australia for a special 1-off UK appearance.

Southport Comedy Festival, in association with Hallliwell Jones BMW, takes place in a luxury heated and seated marquee in Victoria Park in Southport from:- 30 September to 16 October 2022, for 17 fun filled days of laughter.

Southport Comedy Festival Director Brendan Riley said:- "It all seems to be going in the right direction! We start working on Southport Comedy Festival in January and work on putting it together throughout the year. We have a really great team responsible for making it all happen, including Elite Marquees, Southport Flower Show and Victoria Park Events, Sefton Council's Tourism Team, plus our sponsors including:- Halliwell Jones BMW, and all the other local businesses working together to make this event such a huge success."

Southport Comedy Festival was previously held at a variety of different venues throughout Southport, including theatres, pubs, restaurants and others.

Working with Elite Marquees to host gigs inside a top of the range marquee has proved inspired.

Brendan said:- "We are constantly trying to improve the experience for customers throughout the event. 2021 was the 1st time we have held the Southport Comedy Festival inside a luxury marquee at Victoria Park. The feedback from everyone who came was fantastic, we can't wait to do it all again! It is a very different way to run a festival! The marquee is heated, it is seated, it has flooring, it has a bar area, it is perfect for what we want to do. The guests last year loved it. This year people can enjoy great Italian food before the gig courtesy of Trattoria 51 / Pasta 51 Express. Victoria Park is a superb venue for events like this. There will be free car parking, and great access for people with disabilities. Hosting gigs inside a large marquee is Covid secure too, with lots of open space and ventilation. Ticket sales this year are going extremely well but as ever we would like to warn people that many of our shows sell out throughout the festival, so if there is any gig you really want to see, we advise you to buy your tickets early before they go! On the bill this year we have an exciting list of top TV names such as Al Murray, Milton Jones, Ed Byrne, Jo Caulfield, Reginald D Hunter and others, to some really talented up and coming comedians, in addition to the New Comedian of the Year competition sponsored by Dragon Soop and our 2 funndraising events for Southport Flower Show and Queenscourt Hospice. The whole town is pulling together to make Southport Comedy Festival a success. It is such a good feeling. So this September and October, make sure you turn off your telly, leave your house, and come down to enjoy some superb live comedy!"

For tickets and more details please visit:- SouthportComedyFestival.Com.


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