Liverpool Council tries to stop Campaigners attending tomorrow’s open space meeting

Gagged

I have just received an interesting e-mail from the City Council. I attach a copy of the e-mail and my response to it below.
The Council has called a meeting during a period known as ‘purdah’. This period is designed to ensure that controlling parties do not make statements during an election period which could influence voting intentions. Crucially it applies only to public sector organisations and cannot therefore apply to councillors, political parties and campaigners.
Interestingly, the e-mail only went out to opposition councillors. Is this because the statement was made at the behest of the controlling Labour Group? Or is it just that the Council know that Labour councillors will not be showing up anyway?! Remember not one of the 6 Labour councillors for our area turned up last Friday to hear the views of the 150 local people who turned up to express their views and make their opinions manifest.
I believe that this is an attack on the free speech and the rights of local campaigners and people. I urge everyone who is concerned about the future of green spaces in the Woolton/Allerton/Childwall/Speke area to turn up and make sure that your voice is heard by the independent review committee.

My Reply

Dear XXXXXXXXX,
This is NOT a correct interpretation of Purdah. The council should NOT have arranged a meeting within the Purdah period. That it has done so is regrettable but it is the Council’s fault. Purdah does NOT apply to political Parties and campaigners. Indeed it would make a mockery of elections if it did. Purdah applies to the work of public bodies which clearly only means the Council in this case.

Local councillors and campaigners have as much right to be present and make comments and ask questions as anyone else. I am not attending this event myself but I know that local members of the Liberal Democrats will be there and making their opinions felt as I did at the recent meeting which covered my Ward. Perhaps the Labour party do not understand the meaning of Purdah. Not one of the 6 Labour Councillors for the area which includes my ward bothered to turn up. Perhaps that is why no Labour Councillors have been told not to attend through the medium of your e-mail!?

I would recommend that anyone wishing to hear the views of the people of the Woolton, Speke and Childwall areas should attend to inform them of what their future constituents want.

I am very concerned that the Council has misinformed the Chair of the Review about the meaning of purdah and am copying this to him as well as other campaigners.

Cllr Richard Kemp CBE,
Leader, Liverpool Liberal Democrats

The original e-mail

________________________________________
From: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
To: “Kemp, Richard” <Richard.Kemp@liverpool.gov.uk>; “Coyne, John” <John.Coyne@liverpool.gov.uk>; “Coyne, John” <zen60987@zen.co.uk>; “Mace, Barbara” <Barbara.Mace@liverpool.gov.uk>; “Crone, Thomas – Councillor” <Thomas.Crone@liverpool.gov.uk>; “Jennings, Sarah” <Sarah.Jennings@liverpool.gov.uk>; “Radford, Steve – External” <northwestliberalparty@hotmail.co.uk>; “Brown, Lawrence – Councillor” <Lawrence.Brown@si.liverpool.gov.uk>; “Williams, Hazel – Councillor” <cllrhazelwilliams45@btinternet.com>

Sent: Friday, 27 March 2015, 14:58
Subject: Purdah period

Dear Members

As you may be aware there is a scheduled public meeting this Saturday for the wards of Childwall, Belle Vale, and Woolton as part of the Green and Open Spaces Review. However, I need to bring to your attention that the notification of elections today means that the final scheduled public meeting for the Green and Open Space Review in Woolton on Saturday 28th March has been caught by the purdah period and accordingly elected members, political agents, prospective candidates and others involved in the elections process are asked not to attend. The Chair will advise those present of the purdah requirements and why elected members are not present.

The purpose of the meeting is only as an information gathering exercise and an opportunity for the Chair and members of the Board to listen and record the views, concerns and suggestions of local residents.
Ward members who wish to raise issues about green and open spaces within their wards are asked to do this outside of the public meeting and to contact Simon directly through either the website http://www.liverpool.gov.uk/greenandopenspaces or to email Simon c/o greenandopenspaces@liverpool.gov.uk

If you have any queries please ring me.

Regards

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Liverpool’s problems of poverty are long-term and not short-term

Peered

No-one can doubt that for many people living in Liverpool the struggle to survive on inadequate incomes is a key feature of their lives. This leads to illness, disease and a stunting of opportunity for those brought up in poverty. Regrettably this has been true for all the years since 1975 that I have been a councillor when for most of the time I represented the Dingle and Picton Road areas – some of the poorest parts of the City. In fact it has been true in the whole time that Liverpool, has existed. Even when the City was at its peak at the start of the last century and we had some of the wealthiest ship owners, banks, insurance companies and merchants in the World some people were still living “six in a bed at the old Pier Head!”
Yesterday’s report produced by the Mayor of Liverpool serves to highlight that and remind us of the duties that we all have to try and remedy the situation. However these problems may have been exacerbated over the past 5 years but they clearly existed before then.
The report has been very selective in choosing which cases to highlight. For example there are more than 160,000 people in Liverpool who have benefitted from the reduction in the income tax they pay by up to £800 per year. From September 2014 all infants’ school children have been eligible for a free hot meal during term time – a saving to family budgets of £430 per year. Pensioners, who are often amongst the most poor in our society have received increases above the rate of inflation and above the rise in average wages for the past 4 years ending a time when for the previous 25 years, under Labour and Tory Government alike, they progressively slipped behind the rest of the population.
But if we believe that the problems of poverty seem written into the DNA of our city we must also accept that only radical new proposals will enable us to change that DNA. I recently mapped the unemployment levels in the Liverpool 8 post code for more than 50 years. It didn’t matter who was in power locally or nationally the unemployment rate was approximately twice the national average. Yet when I did the same exercise for Liverpool 18 the unemployment rate was never less than one third of the national rate.
But if we look behind those figures we see that whilst we are talking about the same areas we are not necessarily talking about the same people and families. Liverpool 8 has since the 1930s served as the ‘reception area’ for immigrant communities. Many of those have left the area by the time they reach the same levels of educational attainment and opportunity of indigenous communities. My own Church Ward is a case in point. We have quite a level of residents whose family origins were far away. However they now have the same mix of employment and education as the rest of the population.
This is also true of the indigenous communities. Mums and Dads who bring up their kids well in many parts of the City still see their progeny disappearing into the wealthier areas often far from their place of birth. Given the opportunity they choose to live their neighbourhood of origin and move to the outskirts and far distant lands of Formby and Maghull.
There are three key ways of changing the long-term poverty in our city:
Firstly we must provide growth in our economy and then;
Secondly link people out of work in our city to the employment opportunities that have been created; and finally
Thirdly create the types of housing, neighbourhoods and communities that they want to live in so they don’t take their skills and money with them
The story of Liverpool for the years since World War 2 is that we have been able partially to do the first of these; have largely been unable to do the second; and really have not even begun to look at the issues in the third in anything other than a piecemeal uncoordinated way People with ability still live close to opportunities that they cannot access. This can only be done by continuing the improvement in educational attainment which began in 2000 and continues to this day.
So let us look at all three of these in turn:
There can be no doubt that the economic tide of Liverpool began to turn in the first decade of this Century and subsequently. By becoming Capital of Culture Liverpool reinvented itself. The huge success of that coupled with the investment it brought in Liverpool One, The Arena and Conference Centre, the hotels and other tourist attractions continues to this day. Liverpool is no longer seen as a lame duck whingeing in ‘boys from the black stuff’ style but is seen as a progressive city of opportunity. Every Conference we host, every big event brings people into our City who see the light and reject everything that they have been told in popular culture about our city and see it from the vibrant cultural base that it is. BUT clearly there is a long way to go with many parts of the City seemingly cut off from investment and many opportunities that we could be taking, especially those based on our Universities going elsewhere.
One only need to go to Liverpool One to realise how far we need to go to ensure that Liverpool people are able to take advantage of Liverpool opportunities. Despite being on the edge of our major areas of BME populations there are few from those communities working in our shops, hotels or at higher levels of employment anywhere. Clearly the key to starting this process is education. In 1998 Liverpool came within months of the Labour Government taking all education out of our hands. The Lib Dem administration responded and started the process which is continuing to this day to raise educational standards in schools and the aspirations of some of our students. Our three Universities are first class but too many of their students drain away because they cannot find work in a city that they have come to love.
I welcome the fact that for the second time the Government has asked Liverpool to host the International Festival of Business. The fact that we have a national event of this nature here will bring opportunities to us. But we must make our own opportunities as well. We import too many goods and services into the City Region which could be provided by our own people and companies. There is much that could be done in ‘London’ to ensure that a much wider group of people are aware of our opportunities.
Lastly we need to make Liverpool a city that people want to live in. The population of the City started to creep up in 2005/6 but we still have an infrastructure capable of comfortably looking after 550,000 instead of the 460,000 who currently live here. BUT still many people leave our city when they start to have children. City Centre flats are alright for young and old but not for the middle area of bright young people with kids. They still go off out of the city to find the area that they want to live in with the facilities that they require for them and their family. We are building far too many flats in this city and not enough houses. Our Development Framework is outdated and not fit for purpose but the council still seems eager to grasp the hand of any developer irrespective of whether or not those developments meet the long term needs of our city.
Our City lacks effective leadership. Our Council has no long-term coherent plan for what we should be; what we should feel like; what we should be doing over the next 20 years. Unless we do think ahead and think big we will continue to have large areas where people cannot link in to real opportunities which can lift them out of poverty. As the saying goes we need to have a boat which floats for all.

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The arrogance of Liverpool’s Labour Councillors

WaltonPhoto

Last night I went to a meeting called for residents of three wards about the fate of green spaces in those wards. It wasn’t a politically called meeting such as the stunt one that Labour called in Church Ward nor was it one called by one of the pressure groups that have sprung up around the city to defend greens spaces. Instead it was one called by the Council under the auspices of Simon O’Brien and his Independent Review Team. In those wards there are 9 councillors. Two are Lib Dem one of whom as the Lord Mayor cannot attend such meetings whilst in office – but I was there. One was a Green, Cllr Laurence Brown – he was there. Six were Labour and not of them bothered to turn up to hear what their constituents had to say.
Labour have a very different view of being a councillor than I do. My belief has always been that my ward is a place in which to do something not a stepping stone to the Town Hall or Parliament. Labour’s seems to be just a place a base in which to practice Party politics. Of course I will be practicing Party Politics for the next month because I am seeking re-election. I am a Party politician for one month every year. But for me the most important point of being a councillor is to do things within the ward.
Next month we will be launching a casserole club – an idea to bring good quality food to young and old and rich and poor alike. I am working with a local GP to try and establish a localised register of tradespeople because so many people are fearful of using unregistered unknown people. Some people would say that these ae not things to be done by politicians but I disagree. Councillors should use their position not just for making speeches and waving their arms around (although I would be the first to admit that I do my share of that) but to facilitate actions within the community. We have a unique position as locally elected representatives to bring people together to make things happen to pick up the small things in the community which make such a difference to so many people.
By not turning up to a meeting specifically called to listen by their own Mayor the councillors betrayed a deep contempt for their electorate. To so many councillors in Liverpool the people of Liverpool are just voting fodder. We can see that in the way that the Labour machine is practicing the dark arts of spin at present. Fortunately they are not very good at it. The Labour Rose which has just been issued in Church Ward (the first for 6 months) is dreadful. Tedious political polemic and half-truths which I suspect has gone straight in to many a bin.
You see at the end of the day Liverpool is not a Labour city or a Lib Dem one. The City Council owns nothing – it merely holds things in trust for the people of the city. Ancient Athenians had to swear when they took office as councillors that they would “leave the City better than they found it”. Such thoughts are so important when we consider the current debate about the Parks. We have no right to sell off those parks – it is our duty to ensure that this City of ours will always be a green and pleasant place where people want to live. And to be absolutely clear the Head of Planning at the Council confirmed last night that “The Government cannot force the Council to sell land”.
It is the Council which has decided to declare that 60+ pieces of land in the city are ‘surplus to requirements’. This land includes Jericho Lane fields, it includes land in my ward such as that which currently houses the Beechley Riding for the Disabled, Calder Kids Adventure Playground for the disabled and the model railway. We want the city to grow its population. If we grow to the level anticipated over the next 40 years we will need every space.
Last night the Head of Planning confirmed that there were good sites with planning permission in outline or final form that could be used to meet our building requirements. I invited members of the Review Board (neither of the Labour members of the Board managed to be there either) to walk from Riversdale Road along the Mersey and pass the site of the Garden Festival where there is planning permission for 1,300 homes, to the South docks sites where there is a master plan in place for 2,500+ homes and along to the North Docks where there is outline permission for 7,500 units. Those three sites alone will meet our growth needs for the next 10 years.
If finance really is the problem that the Mayor claims then I gave a solution last night that most in the audience welcomed. In the case of Calderstones Park we should sell none of it BUT give the control of it to the Groups that already make major use of the Park. A long-term lease could be provided to the Reader Organisation (a none profit making body) working with the other 9 groups in the Park to run it in partnership with the local community. They could reduce the costs of running it and increase the income by using parts of the park more imaginatively. Such solutions are possible for many of the other parks as well, if not all of them. I am delighted that the Review Board are looking at ideas such as this and indeed have a social enterprise expert as part of the team.
Finally I must say I was impressed last night with the Review Board. Its Chair, Simon O’Brien is clearly truly independent. His team didn’t say much, they were there after all to listen, but have a wide range of competences which I think meet the needs of the Review. I am not concerned about the quality of the review but I am concerned about how the council is approaching it and what will happen to it. The sites for the meetings are poorly chosen – perhaps deliberately. At the end of the day though the Board will make no decisions. It will be Anderson who makes the decisions and I know that many people share my concern that perhaps this review has been instigated to get Labour past elections. We shall see.
On Thursday the council started issuing the nomination packs to people wanting to seek election to the council. My next blog will tell you what my reasons are for standing for a ninth term of office. As of today you have 47 days to decide whether you want more of Joe’s cronies on the council or people from other Parties and none who believe as I do that this City is more important than any Party and any Person.

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Lib Dems Come to Liverpool

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As the Lib Dems gather in Liverpool the media are once again trying to write us out of existence. Well they have been doing that for the 48 years that I have been a Party member and for a lot longer than that. On May 8th when the dust settles there will still be a Lib Dem Party. We will lose some seats but not as many as the media are predicting on crude swings which take little account of local circumstances and the hard work of our gallant band of MPs.
I don’t agree with everything that the Party has done in coalition although I accept that they have had to spend as much time stopping things happening as making them happen.
I think that the so called bedroom tax was a correct principle but put in place by Tory ideologies who have no concerns at all for the practicalities of life in disadvantaged areas. I am pleased that we prose major revisions to this regime which would help people to downsize rather than force them to. But let’s not forget that the first bedroom tax was that imposed by the Labour Government on the 30%+ tenants on benefits in private rented accommodation.
I think that they way that we handled students fees was an exercise in how not to do things. This exercise is now being enthusiastically followed by the Labour Party who are proposing a £2 billion a year subsidy which will only favour those graduates who earn more than £35,000 per year. New Bankers will be delighted with this largesse. New social workers will not benefit at all.
I think that local government, that part of the public sector who delivers most right up at the front line has taken too much of a hit because it was an easy target for Ministers who could not trim their own budgets. I think that major urban areas like Liverpool have had too much removed from the reduced sums available to all. Of course it is true to say that Liverpool gets more per head from the Government than almost any other council but that is because we need it. Liverpool is a major source of the wealth of the City Region but still has a higher proportion of dependent people as it has done since the 1930s.
But there are many things that I am very pleased about. Let’s take pensions. First of all for the first time for 25 years pensions are actually catching up with wages. Under both Tory and Labour Governments pensioners slipped further and further behind. But there is also good news for those with private pensions. For years pensioners have been ripped off by very high charges from the financial whizz kids. Now there is much more freedom to look after their own cash and make more from their own investments.
Let’s take the Health Service. Decisions about local priorities are now being made in local committees which are open to press and public. Strategic Needs are set by accountable local councils working with local clinicians. Threats that this would mean the privatisation of the NHS have been proved to be rubbish. There was more privatisation of the NHS in the period of the last Labour Government than this one.
Let’s take schools. Things like the pupil premium and free school meals for those under 11 have ensured that services have improved although is some areas the rise in the birth rate has not been fully accounted for. Our Universities are booming. Liverpool alone has more than 10,000 foreign students in addition to the 40,000+ UK under and post graduates.
And all this was done in the worst financial circumstances possible. Remember the simple but true message left to the incoming Lib Dem Chief Secretary to the Treasury by the outgoing Labour one? Just four words summed it up – “there is no money”. And we could see that immediately. In Liverpool the claim quickly went up that the coalition had slashed the Building Schools for the Future Programme. This, of course, was totally untrue. There was a programme but there was no money to pay for it. I suspect that the reasons that Labour really didn’t want to do a deal with the Lib Dems is because this was a truth that they were well aware of. The capital money put into the medium term financial statement proposed by the Labour Government in 2009 simply did not put the cash in that was needed to sustain the BSF programme. An independent review then found that a staggering £2billion had been wasted on this programme – enough to complete it in its entirety! The money wasn’t put in for other programmes either.
As we look round the City of Liverpool now we can see that the economy is growing. It’s interesting that in the first decade the Labour members of the City Council told us all that the growth in the Liverpool economy was nothing to do with the Council but the national government. Now they say it’s the other way round!
But Liverpool is doing well and, in fact, it’s the work of both central and local government because the work of the two must go hand in hand. For example almost £1 billion has been found by central government to build entire new hospitals at the Royal and Alder Hey. Both projects that were well overdue as was the need for a fully renovated A and E at Fazakerley Hospital.
Transport links are being improved with a major investment at Runcorn on the new bridge and the HS2 and Cross Pennine rail services being improved. It would be good if the last 20 miles of the HS2 would bring it straight into Liverpool but even if not the improvements of the West Coast Main Line.
The future is worrying for all. What we are all agreed on privately if not publicly is that there will not be a one party government in place on May 8th. Everything points to Labour and Tories getting between 270 and 280 seats well short of the 325 needed. These polls will not change much between now and the election in spite of all the leaflets and door knocking that we all intend to do. UKIP and the Greens will get votes but not seats. The wild card is the SNP who look to be knocking out any chance of a Labour Government and the chances of that were already slim.
So batten down the hatches. Block up your letter boxes, turn off your door bells because some of you might be getting the first visit you have had from a politician in decades! I will do what I have been doing for the past 48 years. Calmly and collectedly standing on my record as a local councillor and the fact that I knock on doors and deliver leaflets all year round – not just at election time. I may win – I may lose but I will stay a member of a Party which has tried to do its best for our Country in incredibly difficult circumstances. Win or lose I will be out on the streets of Church Ward doing my best for the people of the community in which I live and which I currently have the honour to serve.

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The Police’ Liverpool Direct & One Connect Lancashire

LpoolTH

I have just come back from being interviewed by the Police about Liverpool Direct Ltd and One Connect Lancashire with a greater emphasis on the former.
You will all be aware that I have been concerned for a considerable time with the way that we have all had difficulty getting information from Liverpool Council about LDL and its staff. To make clear this is a not a political point some of those concerns arose whilst my Party controlled the council BUT things seem to have got a lot worse over the past four years.
Last summer I gave evidence to the Police about some things relating to their OCL enquiry. I was contacted shortly after that by two people who have maintained a close interest in LDL activity over the years and in November I met them. They have prepared a 1,000 page briefing which indicates in some detail why we need a strong external examination of statements made by LDL and the Council. These are not amateurs. One is a person who specialises in international financial accounting and the other is a Director of a large IT business. Neither of them have any interest in the matter other than the desire to put taxpayers money first.
In January I wrote to the Chief Constable and within days my two colleagues and I met two very senior police officers. They listened to us for an hour or so and received our briefing. It was clear that they wanted to look at the evidence and then see how this might relate to the Lancashire Polices’ enquiry into OCL. I am pleased that the Police acknowledge that link. The position of Liverpool City Council that there was no connection between this investigation and Liverpool Council was always untenable given that the home of a seconded employee of the Council has been searched under warrant as has the offices of LDL itself.
This morning I gave evidence to the Police about what I consider to be the difficulties in getting information from the Council. This was most apparent at the end of 2013 when Lancashire Council was releasing information that Liverpool refused to release. Much of my evidence related to the background to the matter and a political and local government perspective on events and relationships. My two colleagues will be talking to the Police and giving greater detail to them about the contents of the briefing.
The nub of the matter is that Directors of LDL have not submitted correct returns to Companies House and that there are conflicting views from the Mayor, Security Industry Association, Liverpool Arena and LDL about how much was earned. This is of crucial importance because we are unable as taxpayers and owners of LDL to work out what we should have been entitled to receive from such joint work and who paid what; to who; for what!
I clearly cannot go into detail about what I said today. I can go even less into detail about what was in the briefing as it went way past my knowledge of company and financial laws and practices.
We are pushing the Police to take action because at some stage in the very near future (although it appears to be changing) the Council will wind up LDL which means that a lot less information will need to retained than it would for an ongoing company. I have also been concerned that the person at the centre of the Lancashire enquiries should be receiving a payoff whilst those investigations continue.
I do not expect that we will hear anything about this in the near future. After all the Lancashire Police have had 5 staff working on this overall situation since January 2014 so it is detailed and complex. I do however, want taxpayers in Liverpool to know that this matter has not all been brushed under the carpet but is being actively pursued by those I consider to be right people – the police with all their legal and investigatory powers and experience.
Attached below is my Letter to the Chief Constable.

Councillor Richard Kemp CBE
Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group        2313
Church Ward

Sir Jon Murphy QPM,
Chief Constable,
Merseyside Constabulary

15th January 2015

Dear Jon,

Re: Liverpool Direct Ltd

You will be aware that your colleagues in Lancashire have for the past year been investigating the activities of BT subsidiary One Connect Lancashire. You will also be aware of the many connections between Liverpool and Lancashire councils both in terms of decision making and sharing of officers and costs. I understand that they might soon be making clear what actions they will be taking in respect of this investigation.

In November I was contacted by two individuals who for the past few years have been concerned as local tax payers about the way LDL has been run and the way that it has reported. At this stage they wish to remain anonymous but would be pleased to make time available to meet with you and or senior staff of yours who specialise in financial activity. One is a translator who specialises in Board papers and directors’ briefings, and who has a strong working knowledge of international standards for financial reporting. The other is a company director working in the IT industry, with extensive experience of corporate accountability in this sector. They would, of course, be prepared to meet with you and/or senior staff to talk through their concerns in some detail.

In the meantime, however, I append a brief that they have written as a ‘taster’. I have been through this and have spent time looking with them at the evidence which they have produced which is more than 1,000 pages which they will make available to you on a stick. Although I have been both a councillor and someone who has run businesses for the best part of 40 years they have now passed my comfort zone of knowledge. However, I am convinced by what they have said that there is a case to answer.

Certainly at a political level I have found it very hard to get information from City Council officers about things that I believe that I and the people of Liverpool have a right to know.

This matter is now becoming urgent as the control of the Company has passed to the City Council whose intention it is to wind the company up at the end of this financial year. This will clearly mean that they will not have to keep intact the detailed records of the business which they would as a going concern. Indeed this appears to me to be the only reason that they would actually wind up the company as the costs of maintaining it are minimal.

On that basis I would be grateful if you would agree to meet me and my two contacts either in person or by way of your senior staff who deal with such matters. I am sure that you will appreciate that this matter involves people at a senior level of the council in Liverpool on both the political and managerial side.

I would also be pleased to supply immediately the evidence alluded to in the brief although I would advise that whichever member of your staff looks at this should do so after meeting the two people. They can then guide them gently through more than 1,000 pages of evidence!!

If you wish to talk this through I am available on 07855 626913 or by e-mail at richardkemp68@yahoo.co.uk although in the week beginning 19th January I shall be in Washington (the USA one!)

Yours sincerely,

Cllr Richard Kemp CBE

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Independent Green Space Review Meetings

WaltonPhotoProtestors at Walton Hall Park one of the many green spaces that the Council is seeking to sell off

Hello,

I hope as many people as possible will turn up to tell the Independent Review of the City’s Green Spaces (chaired by Simon O’Brien) what you think of our green spaces and what you think should happen to them. Details of meetings and contact points for Simon’s team are given below.

The Chair of the Board can be contacted on email via greenandopenspaces@liverpool.gov.uk and a website can be located at  www.liverpool.gov.uk/greenandopenspaces

You should also let the Review team know what spaces are important to you and why before the meeting so that they can visist the spaces and see them

Strategic Green and Open Spaces Advisory Review Board

Public Meetings – March 2015

Wards

Meeting Date and Time

Meeting Venue

St Michael’s
Central
Riverside

Tuesday 10/03/2015
6.30 – 8.00pm

Southern Neighbourhood Council
109 Upper Mann Street
Liverpool  L8 6TS

Norris Green
Clubmoor
Tuebrook

Thursday 12/03/2015
6.30 – 8.00pm

Porchfield Community Centre
Porchfield Close
Liverpool  L11 9DT

Wavertree
Picton
Princes Park

Saturday 14/03/2015
10.30am – midday

Wavertree Athletics Centre
Wellington Road
Liverpool  L15 4LE

Fazakerley
Warbreck
County

Tuesday 17/03/2015
6.30 -8.00pm

Community Centre
Formosa Drive
Liverpool  L10 7LQ

Greenbank
Church
Mossley Hill

Friday 20/03/2015
6.30 – 8.00pm

Merseyside Police Support and Social Association
Riversdale Road
Liverpool  L19 3QN

Knotty Ash
Old Swan
Kensington & Fairfield

Saturday   21/03/2015
10.30 – midday

Kensington Fields Community Centre
Hall Lane
Liverpool  L7 8TQ

Speke-Garston
Allerton & Hunts Cross Cressington

Tuesday 24/03/2015
6.30 -8.00pm

Garston Urban Village Hall
Banks Road
Liverpool L19 8JZ

Croxteth
West Derby
Yew Tree

Wednesday 25/03/2015
6.30 – 8.00pm

Croxteth Hall
Off Muirhead Avenue East
Liverpool  L11 1EH

Anfield
Kirkdale
Everton

Thursday 26/03/2015
6.30 – 8.00pm

Kirkdale Neighbourhood Centre (KNC, The Gordon) Stanley Road, Kirkdale
Liverpool  L5 7QP

Childwall
Belle Vale Woolton

Saturday 28/03/2015
10.30 – midday

St James Church Hall
Woolton
Liverpool L25 7RJ

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Commonwealth Diplomats Gather in Liverpool on March 7th

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The Flag of the Commonwealth of Nations

One of the biggest diplomatic gatherings in Liverpool for years will take place when diplomats from 8 High Commissions will be present at Liverpool Parish Church for the launch of the Liverpool Commonwealth Association.

The associations’ chair, Cllr Richard Kemp said, “the fact that so many diplomats are coming here shows both the importance of the Commonwealth and the importance of Liverpool. I am really pleased that we will be giving them the opportunity to explore with us how their country can interact with the Liverpool City Region to create employment and cultural links to mutual benefit.
The launch will be a colourful event at the Liverpool Parish Church, St. Nicholas, at the Pier Head from 11.00 tomorrow, Saturday 7th March. As well as a multi faith service there will also be cultural presentations from the 4 corners of the Commonwealth and a chance to get together to discuss possible links at the Atlantic Tower Hotel afterwards.
A message from the Queen welcoming the creation of the Association will be read out by Dame Lorna Muirhead the Lord Lieutenant of Merseyside in the presence of Cllr Erica Kemp CBE, the Lord Mayor of Liverpool and Mrs Abilla Pointing OBE, the High Sheriff of Merseyside.

Please come along if you want to. It will be a colourful event and we hope hope an important milestone in the life of our city.

The event has been sponsored by UKTI (North West); Pine Court Houiusng; Liverpool & Sefton Chamber of Commerce; Liverpool John Moores University; & Liverpool Parish Church with help form the Commonwealth Diaspora communities in the Liverpool City Region
Further information is available from Cllr Richard Kemp on 07885 626913.

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