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11th - February - 2014

Romantic tips for Valentine’s Day read our three page guide to the big occasion on Friday

More: Page 5

More: Pages 8-10

Double success for LJMU Netball as their first and second sides win the league More: Page 16

STUB IT OUT Photo © Flickr/ meddygarnet

From tragedy to charity

Photo © Flickr/ Nikita Kashner

Storming a tea cup - LJMU students launch foundation giving tea to those less fortunate

The news this week...

The MV Derbyshire, which sank 34 years ago and resulted in the loss of 44 lives

Trust fund in memory of victims

MPs pass law to stop drivers smoking around young children By Niall Dudley Liverpool-based health campaigners have welcomed a new law to ban smoking in cars around young children, after MPs backed calls to pass an amendment to the Children and Families Bill.

Full story on Page 3 Images courtesy of Merseyside Maritime Museum, copyright unknown

The new law, which was voted in by a majority of 269 in the House of Commons, would be the first restriction since 2007, when smoking in public places was

banned, and would prohibit drivers from smoking in their cars in the presence of a child. Helen Casstles, co-ordinator for Liverpool of SmokeFree, an NHS scheme to help people give up smoking, expressed her delight at the news. She said: “I’m delighted. It’s something all the smoke-free health groups have wanted for a long time.” Continues on Page 3



by Will Shaw

Theresa May will make a statement on Hillsborough at the House of Commons later on this week. The Home Secretary will announce an update of where the investigations are up to ahead of the new inquest which will begin in Warrington on March 31. This comes after senior police officers last week said that they would accuse Liverpool fans of drunken behaviour at the disaster at a pre-inquest. Calls have also been made for further files on Hillsborough to be released after the Metropolitan Police refused to say whether affected families were under surveillance.

MORE STRIKE ACTION by James Routledge Meryseyside teachers will be taking part in a walkout next month in a long-running dispute with the government over pensions, pay and working conditions. Members of the National Union of Teachers and National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers will be staging a one-day strike on March 26th, after they felt their concerns were not being taken seriously by Education Secretary, Michael Gove. In a separate dispute over the same issues, members of the lecturers’ union, the UCU, staged a two-hour walk-out at Liverpool universities today, following a one-day strike last Thursday.

LIFE ON HOLD FOR A WEEK Liverpool Life is taking a break next week, but look out for us when we return on Tuesday February 25.

Cuts ‘won’t affect teens job advice’ by James Routledge

Liverpool Council promises ‘more for less’ as union leaders fear that the job prospects of local young people will diminish as 45 career advisors are lost. Four Merseyside councils are making joint bids to run professional advice services for 16 to 18-year olds that are thought to be vulnerable, but cuts to funding mean there are probably going to be fewer advisors employed. According to Unison’s estimates, the number of advisors in Liverpool could

by Paul McIntyre Wirral’s Williamson Art Gallery is facing an uncertain future in the wake of Wirral Council announcing brutal cuts to its budget. The gallery, which was built and has been open since 1928, was refurbished for an estimated £1.3m only last year, but is now in jeopardy due to financial reductions. Wirral Council is looking to save approximately £27m in this calendar year and according to David Ball, the Council’s Head of Regeneration, they are facing challenging financial

News Karl Cryer Jack Horrocks Lisa Kerr Claire Bynoe Features editor Claire Reid

But Andrew McGregor, a Merseyside careers advisor and Unison steward, is worried about the effect of these cuts. He said: “Quality careers advice and guidance provides ladders of opportunity for young people. “Careers advisers are advocates for young people and provide essential brokerage with business, colleges and workplace training providers. “Young people have to make incredibly important decisions about their futures, and they need easily accessible, reliable information.

“The service is a successful one and it is tragic that it could be dismantled to save money. “ “At a time when youth unemployment is at its highest level since John Major was in government, our young people cannot afford this cut.” Currently the responsibility of providing impartial careers advice to young people rests with schools. Councils are required to provide guidance and support for those young people that are vulnerable or those who are disadvantaged in some way.

circumstances that are affecting all the services they offer. However, he assured people that the Council is working for the gallery rather than against it, saying: “We are currently exploring options for the future running of the Williamson Art Gallery, but these are being looked at very much with the intention of keeping the gallery open, not closing it down. There is no threat of imminent closure.” Mr Ball claimed that the Council is working very closely with the Williamson Action Group to explore potential possibilities for the future of

the gallery, and exploring their Strategic Action Plan. He added: “Membership of Friends of Williamson has increased and we have seen a number of arts groups come forward with proposals for the future use of the gallery. “We have heard a range of different views and are taking all of these on board.” The art gallery, which shares a budget with the Birkenhead Priory, could see its funding reduced by up to £250,000 in 2014/15. This could then be followed by more cuts of up to £150,000 by 2017.

University of London, announced on Friday that they discovered a series of footprints left by humans in ancient estuary muds more than 800,000 years ago at Happisburgh in Norfolk. Isabelle De Groote, a specialist in ancient human remains at LJMU, said that these early humans appeared to be “pottering around” – possibly in search of food. “These individuals travelling together - it’s likely that they were somehow related,” she said. The prints, thought to have been left by at least two children and one adult male, had been presevered in layers of silt and sand for hundreds of millennia before tides last year exposed them. British Museum archaeologist Nick Ashton said the footprints are at least 100,000 years older than scientists’ earlier estimate of the first human habitation in Britain. This is thought to be significant because 700,000 years ago Britain had a warm Mediterranean-style climate while it was much colder during the time these footprints are dated. Chris Stringer, Natural History Museum archaeologist, said: “Maybe they had cul-

tural adaptations to the cold we hadn’t even thought were possible 900,000 years ago. “Did they wear clothing? Did they make shelters, windbreaks and so on? Could they have the used fire that far back?” he asked. The footprints were dated after their position and their proximity from nearby fossils of long-extinct animals including mammoths and early horses and voles was studied by scientists. John McNabb, director of the Center for the Archaeology of Human Origins at the University of Southampton, was not part of the research team but confirmed that the dating is “pretty sound”. The footprints were rapidly eroded by the tide. They were recorded using digital photography to create detailed 3D images. These images will become a part of a National History Museum exhibition which opens next week and is called “Britain: One Million Years of the Human Story.” Researchers at Happisburgh are to continue their work and there is hope that the fossilized remains of these humans or at least evidence of their ancient homes are uncovered. DISCOVERY: LJMU lecturer Isabelle was a part of the find

CONCERN: Williamson Art Gallery may suffer from cuts.

One small step is the first sign of life by James Routledge

Archaeologists including a Liverpool John Moores lecturer have discovered the oldest human footprints outside Africa and the earliest evidence of human life in northern Europe. The team, led by the British Museum, Natural History museum and Queen Mary

Life Team

Chief Sub Nick Seddon

and to save costs we’re bringing back the service of tracking young people back in house. “That is, the council is going to be managing it again – not an independent organisation. It’s very important to keep a track of these vulnerable young people. “We’re taking job creation just as seriously as advice giving and this is shown in the figures. “While other authorities are struggling to deliver, the number of 16-17 Neets (not in education, employment or training) here is coming down. We’re getting it right.”

Gallery’s future funding placed in doubt


Editor Aimee Jones

drop from 42 to 23, in Wirral from 31 to 20, in Halton from 15 to 3 and in Knowsley the figure is halved from six. Council leaders said that there was a range of ways in which local authorities were providing help to young people. They also and they did not expect the streamlining of services would have any impact on quality. Liverpool council cabinet member for employment and skills, Cllr Nick Small said: “We will be delivering more for less because we believe we can do that,

Features Bethany Wells Jess Hayes

Sports editor Abi Bramhall Sports Grace Lindsey Josh Weale Picture editor Jess MacDonald

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Change of scene for student union by Alisha Daya

LiverpoolSU, the student union for Liverpool John Moores University, has begun work in preparation for its relocation. Work began on Monday 10th February in the basement of the John Foster Building so that LiveproolSU can be better placed for students to access their services and opportunities around LJMU. Developments will be taking place in a number of LJMU buildings such as the Red-

mond’s Building, James Parsons Building, Tithebarn Building/ Avril Robarts Library café area and IM Marsh Meeting Place. Liverpool SU believes that by developing in different LJMU buildings their presence will be enhanced and students’ accessibility to advice, support and volunteering opportunities, will become easier. Curtis Reid, LiverpoolSU President said: “We are all very excited that the development work has now begun at the John Foster Building and look forward to

the opening of our new spaces around campus in the coming months. Our relocation will mean we are better placed to listen to students and that students can access the opportunities we provide much more easily.” The work in the John Foster building is expected to take eight weeks, during which time the basement areas will be closed as it will become LiverpoolSU’s main office space following relocation from the Haigh Building. A large area on the ground floor will also become

a dedicated LiverpoolSU space along with an activities area. LiverpoolSU will continue to run as normal until further notice.



To mark the 50th anniversary of the Beatles first American tour, the Lord Mayor of Liverpool visited the Big Apple. Along with Cllr Wendy Simon, the Mayor was commemorated with a plaque to celebrate their arrival at JFK Airport for the weekend. During the weekend they visited John Lennon’s memorial Strawberry Fields in the city’s Central Park and paid their respects to victims of 9/11. There were also two Beatles festivals taking part of which 30,000 people were expected to attend.

New charity fights to make shipping safer By Will Shaw

A charity which supports seafarers and campaigns for safer ships has been launched in Liverpool. The MV Derbyshire Trust Fund has been established by families who lost loved ones in the MV Derbyshire disaster 34 years ago and aims to help prevent loss of life at sea as well as raise money for a memorial at Pier Head. In 1980, the MV Derbyshire set sail from Canada destined for Japan carrying 157,000 tonnes of iron ore but sank, killing 44 people including 42 crewmen and two wives. Families of the bereaved campaigned until a formal investigation into the loss of the vessel was held 14 years later and it was not until 2000 that a formal inquest concluded that the ship sank due to structural failure. One of the aims of the new charity is to raise money to have a permanent memorial sited at the Liverpool waterfront in memory of those who died. It also aims to enhance safety at sea and reduce ship losses by campaigning for a global database for ship insurance and

alerting the public to business practices that may compromise crew welfare. Paul Lambert MBE, chairman, said: “This charity campaigns to make sure the seafarer returns to their families and build a memorial, bearing the names of the victims of MV Derbyshire. “They deserve it for what has been done by their families over the last 20 years to uncover the truth about why the ship sank.” At the launch of the charity today, Tuesday, Rev. Peter McGrath, treasurer, spoke of how he had to break news of the death of family members to service families while serving as a Chaplain. He raised queries of how one can put a price on the life of someone who is loved. Mr Lambert, whose brother was a victim in the MV Derbyshire disaster, also highlighted this issue as well as the isolation that merchant vessels appear to have compared to passenger ships. He finished by saying: “We hope and pray that this charity makes a difference, it might not be able to make a massive difference but if we only save one life it will have been a success.”

By James Routledge

Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts will open a new base for primary school children starting in September this year. The new school will teach a core curriculum including Maths and English, but through teaching inspired performing arts. The new school will likely to be located in the Dean Walters Building at Upper Duke Street, near Liverpool Anglican Cathedral, although this has yet to be confirmed. This will be one of several free schools around Merseyside.

More than 60% of criminals from Merseyside prisons have re-offended within 12 months of release. Government data shows that 35% of adult offenders committed a crime within a year of being released from prison – up 3% from 2005; which means on average, each Liverpool re-offender breaks the law three times after returning to the community. Justice Secretary Chris Grayling described the findings as “grim” and that he wants long-needed changes to rehabilitating offenders.

Photo: Jessica MacDonald

Memorial to mark one of UK’s worst maritime disasters



Members of the MV Derbyshire Trust Fund

Memorial of the HMS Birkenhead. ©

The victims of one of the worst maritime disasters of the 19th century are to be commemorated by a memorial in Wirral. HMS Birkenhead sank off the South African coast of Gansbaai in 1852 and only 193 of the 638 people on board survived. The steam frigate was built by the shipping company of John Laird, a shipbuilder famous for his work in Liverpool. Mayor of Wirral, Cllr Dave Mitchell told Liverpool Life: “I think the memorial is an absolutely wonderful thing. “It’s good to recognize the bravery of those on the HMS Birkenhead and that it helped establish the long-standing policy of ‘women and children first’.” It is thought that the saying, ‘women and children first’,

otherwise known as the ‘Birkenhead Drill’ originated from this disaster as women and children were the first to leave on lifeboats. The unveiling of the memorial at 11am on the 5th March will be attended by the Mayor of Wirral and the Lord-Lieutenant of Merseyside Dame Lorna Muirhead DBE, both of whom will lay wreaths, and representatives of the Armed Forces. The memorial was designed by Jemma Twigg of Birkenhead Sixth Form College for a competition which featured entries from local art colleges. This competition was organized and judged by Cammell Laird, Andy Liston of New Brighton Lifeboat Station and Wirral Council’s Memorials Officer, Peter Jackson-Lee. Cammell Laird apprentices then created the memorial with donated materials and

costs met by the company. John Syvret CBE, Cammell Laird Chief Executive, said: “This is a very powerful initiative that the company immediately wanted to support given our connection to HMS Birkenhead.” “It is very fitting that the tragic story of the ship, and the origins of ‘women and children’ first, should be remembered in the form of such a striking memorial on Merseyside for future generations. “It is important that our apprentices understand the long history of Cammell Laird and what happened to many of the ships built here, some of which, like HMS Birkenhead, became very famous for what they did or what happened to them. “This memorial helps ensure even after more than 160 years that the heroism and courage of the men that day is not forgotten.”

Free boiler repairs for Knowsley pensioners By Niall Dudley Knowsley council have announced that they are continuing to give out free boiler and heating repairs to vulnerable residents. The council’s public health team has allocated public

funding over the winter and the anticipated bad weather over the coming months. Already the scheme has provided new boilers for a number of elderly residents; one who had no heating or hot water for a number of months. The new boilers were fitted

just in time for Christmas. Around 25 more residents are awaiting work to be undertaken over the coming weeks. In addition, the council and its partners are helping to give practical advice to residents to help them keep warm and healthy as part of their ‘be pre-

pared for winter’campaign. Advice includes wearing many thin layers, drinking hot drinks throughout the day, try and move around at least once an hour to warm your body up, set your heating to 21oC in the living room and ensure you are up-to-date with your flu jabs.

Matthew Ashton, Director of Public Health in Knowsley, said “I would urge residents to get in touch with us. “Through this initiative we want to ensure our households have modern, energy-efficient boilers and central heating system.”


Mountain rescue for Liverpool pair By Niall Dudley

Two Liverpool men were rescued from Snowdon on Sunday evening after getting stuck near the summit of the mountain. The men, who had no maps or torches, became stranded at about 5pm after encountering severe ice and snow. The Llanberis Mountain rescue team located the men through their phone and helped bring them off the mountain safely without any injuries. A rescue helicopter from RAF Valley in Anglesey was also on standby ready to help if required. This is the sixth time this month the mountain rescue team have had to respond to incidents all of which have been down to people’s lack of experience and equipment. Joe Boyd from the Lancashire Mountaineering Club explained some of the dangers to around mountaineering: “It does have the potential to be dangerous, but experience goes along way.

TAKE PRIDE IN THE POSITIVE A new campaign has been launched encouraging Liverpudlians to take pride in their city and give more recognition to Liverpool’s independent businesses online. Set up by one of Liverpool’s independent pubs, The Caledonia, the ‘Take Back Tripadvisor’ festival will look to get as many people as possible to post five positive reviews about their favourite places in the city on Tripadvisor. The aim of the campaign is to build up the reputation of local businesses, pubs, bars and restaurants that maybe don’t get the recognition they deserve. The campaign will run from the 24th February to the 9th March. It is hoped that by the end of the campaign that Liverpool’s local businesses with gain more exposure.

Maps and compasses are very important but knowing how to use them is obviously just as important. “There’s no point in having them and not being able to use them when needed. Proper clothing is also essential. Occasionally people get caught out but most of the stuff we do includes people with a wealth of experience” Mr Boyd also went on to talk about the dangers of Snowdon itself whilst praising the mountain rescue in this country: “It’s all relative to conditions. Snowdon is quite easy to access the levels of snow up there are quite high which can cause problems. “People like winter climbing in Snowdon but you can’t always guarantee the weather being cold for it to ice up. The people in mountain rescue are phenomenal mountaineers and know the local area. they are extremely brave and know what they’re doing.”

RESCUE: The Mountain Rescue team were called out to save the men

North West on severe weather alert By Paul McIntyre

North West England is on alert for more severe weather tomorrow as the country continues to be battered by floods and gales. The Met Office has issued an official severe weather warning for the North West leaving the region braced for more misery and damage. As people in Southern areas of the country such as Devon and Surrey struggle to deal with a torrential overflow of water, the North West is facing its own problems with extreme weather, with a Met Office yellow warning for snow and Amber Warning for wind in the region. Neil Fay, a local weather enthusiast who runs the @LiverpoolWeath Twitter account, warned that the upcoming weather is potentially dangerous. He told Liverpool Life: “The main thing is the low pressure tomorrow, which could lead to gusts blowing as strongly as

65 miles per hour. If that’s the case then local damage could be possible, and along with the potential for heavy rain that will make for difficult conditions.” Neil has also been keeping an eye on the harrowing weather occurring elsewhere in the country, but reassured locals that the same conditions were unlikely to occur in Liverpool: “Liverpool is based on the shoreline, so it would be very difficult for that to happen here, though we have seen not too long ago small flooding isn’t beyond the realm of possibility.” Earlier today, Tuesday, Prime Minister David Cameron visited Dawlish. Cameron said: “Everybody needs to get on with the vital work of bringing all of the nation’s resources to get our roads and rail moving and to help people who have been flooded.” Anyone travelling from Merseyside should visit the National Rail Enquiries website to check for disruptions in the route they might be taking.

DAMAGE: Meols Promenade in November

AFRICAN MUSIC RETURNS Africa Oyé, the UK’s biggest celebration of African music and culture, is to return to Sefton Park this June. Originally starting as a small multi-venue event in the city centre in 1992, the festival moved to its present home at Sefton Park to cope with demand and now attracts over 50,000 people to the city each year. The free to attend festival showcases a wide range of African and Caribbean artists including Habib Koite and Dele Sosimi in addition to music from South America along with salsa, soca and reggae and aims to give a more positive depiction of African culture. Reggae legends Yellowman and Dillinger, two of the biggest names in the genre, have also announced a tour of the UK in conjunction with Oyé Touring & Trading, an additional strand launched in conjunction with the Arts Council. They will play Liverpool’s District venue on March 1st.

FLOP AT THE TOP Director Tommy Wiseau, the man behind modern cult classic The Room, widely regarded as ‘the Citizen Kane of bad movies’, will appear at Liverpool’s Fact for a live screening of the film. This will be the second year that Wiseau will have visited Fact, after he made an appearance with actor Greg Sestero last January. The film is widely regarded by critics as one of the worst films ever made, thanks in no small part to Wiseau, who wrote, directed and acted in the film, but it quickly became a cult hit with movie-goers for the same reason. Screenings will be held on Tuesday 11th February and Wednesday 12th at 6.20 and 9.10pm. Tickets booked before 24th January will be entered into a special prize draw, with a chance to skip the queue to meet Tommy and to win signed merchandise.

Mersey trains back on track after refurb By Shannyn Quinn Two of Merseyrail’s newlook trains went into service yesterday following an £8.5m makeover. The current Merseyrail trains are approaching 40 years old, making them the oldest on the UK rail network, having last been refurbished in 2003. The new ‘wrap’ designs reflect what Liverpool has to offer in terms of sights, shopping, sport and show how workers, students and leisure passengers can make the most of their journey. As well as offering a fresher, brighter image to the fleet, the new ‘wraps’ will help to prevent corrosion. Councillor John Salter, Merseytravel’s lead member for rail, said: “Thousands of visitors will be descending on the Liverpool City Region this summer and a good experience of the rail network will contribute to the positive lasting impression they will take away.”

IMPROVED: Merseytravel’s Maarten Spaargaren (right) and Councillor John Salter Angel Trains are contributing £5.5m towards the refurbishment as part of their lease agreement with Merseytravel and a further £3m is being provided by Merseyrail. Managing Director at Merseyrail, Maarten Spaargaren,

said: “We know that customers appreciate our services for reliability, value for money and the overall journey experience, and we’re sure that the new-look fleet, with its modern, fresh and dynamic designs, will further enhance people’s perception of

Merseyrail.” The roll out of the ‘newlook’ trains is expected to be completed by spring next year and improvements to the inside of the trains will be introduced in the coming months, however plans are yet to be finalised.

Students’ business brews up for charity

Life|News| 5 MISTAKE ON TAXES by Ryan McElroy

More than 700 people in Liverpool will share a £400,000 tax rebate thanks to a government mistake regarding bedroom tax. The awards will generally be around the £560 mark and will be given out in the next couple of weeks, due to a loophole in the ‘spare room subsidy’ deduction, which means that anybody who has lived in the same house since 1996 and received housing benefit was always exempt from having to make up the difference in rent. On top of the original 700 cases, Liverpool council is reviewing a further 1000 potential cases, which could see the city pay out over £1m to families in the city.


Pictured left to right: Philip Perera and Omar Farag

by Claire Reid Two LJMU students are using their business’s success to help those less fortunate through their Back-a-Brew Foundation. Third year Business and PR students Philip Perera and Omar Farag, started their loose leaf tea business the Teabox Company in 2012 and since then it’s gone from strength to strength. As well as their online shop the company now supplies to 30 cafes and restaurants in Liverpool. Their latest idea, Back-aBrew aims to ‘enable those who are facing hard times the opportunity to enjoy one of life’s simplest of pleasures-a warm


CONT. FROM PAGE ONE It needed to happen. It’s something the children have wanted as well, they really don’t like it.” She added: “Children are more susceptible to smoke because they breathe in more than adults, so breathing in concentrated levels of smoke in a car is dangerous to them.” The new law would be seen as progress towards discouraging smoking. Officials would still need to agree how the restrictions would be enforced before the law can be passed. Ms Casstles believes that anti-smoking laws help to change the public’s attitude towards the habit: “People have realised that it is not acceptable to smoke indoors at work or at home anymore and that can only be a good thing.” This change in attitude has been backed up by new research by UCL, which found that smoking rates in England have fallen below 20% for the first time in 80 years. Deborah Arnott, Chief Executive of public health charity Action on Smoking, thanked those who passed the amendment: “I congratulate parliamentarians from all Parties and the crossbenches in both Houses of Parliament. This campaign could not have been won without their persistence to force the Government to act. She added: “I would like to thank all those organisations, healthcare professionals and members of the public who worked so hard to make standardised tobacco packaging and the ending of smoking in cars.”

cup of tea.’ They do this through donating vouchers to the Gladstone book shop and café, every time a tube of their tea is sold they donate one voucher which is then passed on to those who need them most. At the launch Philip handed over 100 vouchers to get the scheme started. Philip said: “We came in here to supply to them but learnt more about the organisation and saw what they do and thought: ‘How can we contribute to what they do? How can we help people who are having a bad time?’ So we then came up with the Back-a-Brew Foundation. They do absolutely amazing work. Everyone enjoys and deserves

Pictures by Claire Reid

tea, especially on cold days!” The Gladstone has been on Slater Street as a charitable organisation since 1820, originally called the Charitable Institution House, it is now a café and book shop it also works closely with people in need offering support, food and now free tea. Peter Gray, of Gladstone’s said: “We’re very proud to be associated with Back-a-Brew, the tea is wonderful, it’s very humbling to be part of it. We meet such a range of homless people it can happen to anyone, you can be at the top one day and then suddenly find yourself in this downward spiral, but everyone deserves a cup of tea.”

Teabox Company poster

Plans for one of 12 new schools to be built in Liverpool have been approved. The proposed new building St Hilda’s school will replace the old building that currently houses it on Croxteth Drive, near Sefton Park. The £16m five-storey complex will feature a new sports hall, outdoor sports areas and new state-of-the-art facilities. Only six of the 800 neighbours notified objected to the plans, citing noise and devaluation of property as reasons.


Teabox Company

Liverpool’s Threshold Festival has announced its third wave of artists for this year’s event. The event will be held between 28th and 30th March in venues at Liverpool’s Baltic Triangle. Artists at the festival include Sheepy, Alpha Male Tea Party, Bolshy and Kalandra, who will join Dub Mafia, Silence of the Lamps and WTU.

I disagree with smoking. They should make it illegal. It’s not fair on the children All pictures by Jessica MacDonald

The people of Liverpool have spoken out in support of the government’s plans to ban smoking in cars. The consensus seems to be that this move will be better for our health, even according to those that smoke. Some have even expressed interest in banning smoking outright with only a few expressing qualified concern that this is an encroachment of our freedoms. There has been far more concern over its positive impact for health – especially for children. Christopher Aitken-Smith, 26

Christopher Aitken-Smith, 26, Toxteth: “I understand the reasons for banning it but it’s an infringement on human rights and that’s pushing it a bit – but it for people’s safety, so I’m 50/50 on the issue.”

David Birks, 23 Pic by

David Birks, 23, Birkenhead: “I smoke but I think it’s a good idea. It means there are fewer places for people to smoke and so it’ll make them smoke less.”

Abbie Rooney, 22

Abbie Rooney, 22, Huyton: “I think they should ban smoking in cars for the safety of children.”

Fran Fowler, 73 Michael Gordon, 18

Dave Fowler, 73

Dave Fowler, 73, Liverpool: “I disagree with smoking. They should make it illegal. It’s not fair on the children. Their rights should be considered.”

Michael Gordon, 18, Wirral: “It’s good because I don’t like smoking. It would make things better all around.”

Fran Fowler, 73, Liverpool: “Some people say it’s like a nanny-state the way they are making this illegal. People should be able to choose to smoke, but when children are concerned it’s not safe.”

Life| Health| 6

Shining a spotlight on a disability that people just don’t understand N

Muscular Dystrophy experts on 7Waves radio

orth West volunteers are urging others to support a centre of excellence that aims to improve the lives of people with muscular dystrophy. The ground-breaking NeuroMuscular Centre in Winsford, Cheshire, provides physiotherapy and advice for people aged 16 and over who suffer with the condition. The charity centre which opened in 1990 is the first of its kind that specialises in muscular dystrophy in the UK and Europe. The condition is a blanket term for a group of muscular diseases that weakens the musculoskeletal system. There are various types that can affect people differently. Jonny Smith, a physiotherapist at the centre, believes the condition has not received enough exposure in the media. He said: “It’s part of a much broader umbrella term, conditions are poorly understood and there is not enough exposure about these public conditions like others such as Parkinsons. “We have 160 people from the North-West that come to us on a regular basis and 25 of those individuals are from Wirral.” One Wirral resident has expressed her deepest support for the centre and has admitted it has

Gemma Sherlock reports on the North West centre offering support to those living with Muscular Dystrophy

changed her life. Heather Murrant, 50, who refers to herself as physically challenged rather than disabled, said: “I get a lot of pain from sitting in a chair for 12 or 14 hours but the treatments help. We do exercises that involve standing, stretching and massages. “It just makes you feel so much better. I can carry on with my life much easier because I am more mobile.”


iro Griffiths, who uses the centre every Friday, doesn’t see it as a form

of help. Mr Griffiths said: “I don’t refer to it as physiotherapy, I call it my gym. It has given me so much support. It allows me to keep working so that I can be a part of my community and become a valued citizen.” The 22-year-old also expressed his concern about the stigma attached to disability and how some have preconceived opinions about their dependencies on others. He said: “People see disabled people as passive and dependent

on others when we are not and that needs to change. I’m in charge of my own personal assistants and that’s a part of my life that I can control, it’s the same at the centre, you choose the exercises that work best for you.” Talking on Wirral Community Station 7Waves last night, the panel of experts discussed in length how it has affected their lives. Heather didn’t use her electric wheelchair until 12 months after purchasing it. She explained how it gathered dust in the house as it became a barrier for her progression in life. She added: “Using a wheelchair takes a lot of getting used to. My life became very isolated, I was on my own with a young daughter which was what made me determined to start using my chair. But now people accept me more in my wheelchair than they do when I walk. “I would have falls when I used to walk with crutches, people would think I was drunk and couldn’t understand why I couldn’t get up of the floor. They don’t understand the condition. The fact that you can’t use your arms to lift yourself up is very hard.” The Wirral Disability Issues Radio Programme is hosted by Glynn Thomas and Peter Burgess every month. You can listen to the shows at:

Picture: Gemma Sherlock

The facts about Muscular Dystrophy

Muscular dystrophy, which first became evident to medical practitioners in the 1860s and 70s, is a blanket term for a group of muscular diseases that weakens the musculoskeletal system. Also known as the locomotor system, it is an organ system that allows humans to move through usage of muscles and skeleton. Muscular dystrophy impairs that movement.

There are nine main forms of muscular dystrophy. An inherent condition, approximately 100 boys in the UK are born with the most common form of the disease, called Duchenne muscular dystrophy, each year. That form of the disease, along with Becker, predominantly affects males because both are caused by a mutation of a gene on the X chromosome. It was named after Guillaume Duchenne, a French neurologist who examined thirteen boys with the condition. Symptoms of muscular dystrophy include: • An inability to walk • Atrophy • Drooping eyelids • Muscle spasms • Poor balance • Respiratory difficulties • Scoliosis, which is a curvature of the spine Those symptoms, and others, are commonplace among those suf-

fering from muscular dystrophy. Anybody presenting with them should contact their GP immediately. The process of diagnosis can involve analysing the results of the following: • Muscle biopsy • Increased creatine phosphokinase • Electromyography • Electrocardiography • DNA tests

There is no cure for muscular dystrophy, and in the case of a positive diagnosis the prognosis varies from person to person. For some the condition progresses slowly over a lifespan, while for others it can progress more quickly and aggressively, leading to muscle weaknesses and in some cases a loss of the ability to walk. In the cases of children, some can die in infancy while others can reach adulthood despite being impaired by the disability. Muscular dystrophy can occur in adults, but the more aggressive forms tend to happen in childhood. The Muscular Dystrophy Campaign, which was established in 1959, is the leading UK charity that focusses on muscular dystrophy. For any queries about the disease they can be contacted at: 020 7803 4800

Life| Features| 7

The icing on the cake...

Critics’ Choice Circus

Lydia’s ‘Furby’ cake

With shows like The Great British Bake Off and Britain’s Best Bakery helping to turn a new generation on to baking, Gemma Sherlock talks to Wirral student Lydia Williams about her hopes to become the new Mary Berry


here are high hopes for a Wirral student who dreams of becoming the next Mary Berry. Amateur chef and baker Lydia Williams is building a future filled with culinary delights. After meeting her icon Mary Berry at the Good Food show in Birmingham, Lydia now wants to reach her goal more than ever but admits it’s a lot of hard work.

Lydia, right, with college friends

She said: “Mary Berry was really sweet, she is my best mate! She told me I had a lovely name and took a real interest in my work. I want to set up my own 1940’s tea room and cake business but it will be hard working getting there. “As a chef and baker you have to deal with everyone’s likes and dislikes and not everybody is the same, especially when it comes to food. I have always been a creative child constantly colouring and painting. I can’t remem-

ber when I wasn’t in the kitchen baking with my mum and dad.” The 20-year-old has had experience within the police force after doing a two year apprenticeship with Merseyside Police. But the profession was not for her as her creative roots lead her back to the mixing bowl. The student from Birkenhead is currently on a two-year diploma course at the City of Liverpool College studying bakery and sugar craft. She has already become a qualified chef at De Vere Academy of Hospitality and has worked at some prestigious hotels including, Hillbark Hotel in Wirral and Carden Park Hotel in Chester. At these hotels Lydia had to cook for 150180 people each night. The praise and support received from her parents, Steve and Yvonne Williams, has helped Lydia not give up within a career that can sometimes be intimidating. Yvonne Williams said: “We are all

Gandey’s – the country’s largest Big Top Entertainment organisation - is returning to Liverpool with a circus. The circus will involve all human acts with a team of death defying aerialists and high-octane acrobatics of African physical theatre. With award winning, international stars from Mexico, Spain, Africa, Ireland, Russia, Bulgaria and the UK, Gandey’s Theatre will be showing at a brand new standing location at Theatre Big Top in Speke Hall Road. Whether you’re going with friends, family or a partner, this event is perfect if you want to feel astonishment and amazement. The circus will be running from February 14 until February 23 and you can buy tickets at the door or the box office at www.quaytickets. com or call 0843 208 0500. Ticket prices are £8 for children and £12 for adults.


Lydia’s sunflower cupcakes extremely proud. Ever since she was young Lydia has loved to bake. “We used to make apple pies and she would always have her pinny on. When she turned 16 she took over the kitchen, cooking and baking. “She works so hard but she is a perfectionist, if one tiny detail goes wrong she has to start again sometimes.”


ydia practices her cake making skills on friends, family and neighbours but prefers baking at college under a time limit. She added: “I always feel honoured when someone asks me to bake a cake for them! “It is a privilege to be able to bake something nice for someone. The best feeling is watching people eat my food and cut into the cake. I’m a perfectionist, it has to be neat.” Lydia, who keeps Mary Berry’s autograph close to her heart, hopes to one day reach her dreams and make a name for herself here in Merseyside.

Channel fours amateur cooking programme, Come Dine with Me, is looking for Liverpool couples to take part in a special episode. The programme usually sees five home cookers, invite four other strangers into their home for a dinner party, in the hopes of being voted best host or hostess to win a cash prize of £1000. Are you a good cook? Do you enjoy entertaining guests? If yes, why not apply? People who wish to take part should email your name and contact telephone number to:

Cinema Hitting the cinema screens this week is Cuban Fury The romantic comedy stars Nick Frost as a salsa dancer champion desperate for a comeback, 22 years after his career was left in ruins. The movie follows his journey as he has to face up to his childhood demons to win the love of his life through the means of dance.


ALL YOU NEED Your essential guide to February 14th

Buy me love... T

his year it is predicted that Brits will spend up to £1.4 billion on their sweetheart, with northerners splashing out the most cash to impress, spending up to £94 on their dates. When the relationship website eharmony looked into our spending habits for the big day, it seems we’re prepared to go that little extra, with the average damage being £81.20 – an extra £30 more than what we’d usually spend for our regular dates. Bethany Wells rounds up the romantic hotspots in Liverpool that will impress your date this Valentine’s.


hile you may dream of being whisked off to Paris to kiss at the top of the Eiffel tower, it is far more likely to be a glass of red at the local pub, being the romantic date for 15% of couples. The top spot goes to the timeless classic- candle lit dinner for two. Gazing at your lover over a bowl of pasta and garlic bread is the obvious choice for 69 per cent of couples stepping out for valentines.


So if you’re hoping your engagement ring isn’t sinking at the bottom of your local’s cheapest glass of red, and your 12 long stem roses aren’t from the corner shop, maybe drop

The romantic meal: Now if you fancy spending valentines the traditional way, an evening in candle light, a fancy meal and a chance to dress up, you can’t go far wrong with a dinner date. Just choose wisely. Now arguably, no one is more romantic than the Italians, so head to Il Forno on Duke Street for a romantic meal with superb Italian food. The pub: While this doesn’t appear to be the ‘sweep you off your feet’ date you might think, but nestled in a cosy pub, with a fizzy glass of Prosecco, might just be your perfect date. Try The Monroe on Duke Street, it’s a traditional pub, but it’s a little bit fancier than the local. Dance lessons: There is nothing like a passionate rhumba or an elegant waltz to get couple together. If you fancy something different, head to La Tasca restaurant for a glass of sangria and a salsa lesson. If you’re not

feeling that energetic then skip it and go see dirty dancing which is being re-released in honour of the special day. The comedy club: Now that old saying, ‘if you make her laugh she’s yours’ well combine that with ‘food is a way to a man’s heart’ and the comedy show at Baby Blue, Albert Dock is a perfect combination of the two. While the £55 tickets may blow the budget, it’s a very good compromise.


y top spot suggestion for something different is to head to Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral; the top of the tower is open. When its twilight and the city is lit up, you can share some champagne and chocolates with your loved one.

Printed wall hanging-LOVE-Penneys

hose searching for something a little different might find romance at a dance lesson or use laughter to get to a girl’s heart and head to a comedy club. Undoubtedly this is a lot less common, with only 7 per cent of people heading for something alternative.

those few little hints from our top Liverpool spots.

Sweethearts on a shoestring “I’m going on a budget of £20. I’m going to get a box of chocolates, one flower and a card- the usual.”

“We’re going to Wetherspoons. You can get two courses and a bottle of wine for £20 which is pretty good!”

Connor, 18

Abbie, 19

“Staying in can cut costs. I think I’m just going to get a meal deal from Marks and Spencers, and just watch a movie.” Lauren, 21



Valentine’s A love disasters story...

“One year my boyfriend said he’d booked us a table somewhere nice in town, while I got ready he sat in the living room watching: What’s Love Got To Do With It, he became so engrossed in Tina Turner’s plight that he didn’t realise he’d drunk about eight Bloody Mary’s, when the time came to leave he just couldn’t and he ended up falling asleep on the couch.”

Vicky Wilson Parry, 22

“I went on a date once and the guy had Jewish roots… I ended up listening about the Holocaust for the whole date. It was definitely depressing and not something I expected to be conversation starter.”

Abbie Stokes, 20

Tell us about your vile Valentine’s or dodgy dates: Tweet:


“I told my (now ex) boyfriend that I didn’t really want a fuss and was happy to just do something fun and cheap together, big mistake. He took me the pub to watch a football match As it was a match day the place was packed, so I was stood up for 90 minutes while he ignored me and shouted at the screen. After

that he said he’d take me for food and I thought: ‘This is when the date begins’ Well, that was another mistake because he took me to a drive-through to pick up cheap burgers. Unsurprisingly I’m single now and looking forward to a fun Valentine’s date with the girls.”

Becki Reynolds, 26

“My birthday is February 14th, so every year I have to buy presents and a card and take my girlfriend out on my birthday. Obviously I don’t mind doing it but I think I should be allowed to have a second birthday, like the Queen, my girlfriend doesn’t agree and thinks she has it tough because she has to buy two cards!”

Steve Walsh, 36

“I took my date to the cinema and half way through the film I started to get cramp in my leg. It got so bad that I ended up being escorted out in a wheelchair. Needless to say I never saw that girl again!”

Josh Weale, 20

Simone Foggin discovers the origins of Valentine’s Day and takes a look at the charity encouraging couples to renew their wedding vows. under Emperor Claudius II. The Emperor decided Valentine’s has become that single men made better commonly associated with soldiers and so he announced cuddly toys, heart shaped candy the marriage of young men as and red roses, with around unlawful. 150 million cards being sent The priest from the legend, annually, the day sits as the St Valentine, believed this second most popular card sending holiday, after Christmas. to be an incredible injustice and so continued to perform Tokens of love began as marriage ceremonies in secret affectionate hand written notes for young besotted couples. exchanged between friends and When found out, Valentine lovers, before developing across was put to death. The 14th the years to the premade cards, February was officially gifts and extravagant gestures declared St Valentine’s Day that we see today. But, where many years later to mark the did the day of love come from? anniversary of his death. According to the Catholic Church the day originated in ancient Rome about four centuries ago. One legend speaks of a priest who served


dotco mgift shop .com

Since 1996 Valentine’s has shared its celebrations with the annual ‘National Marriage Week’ a charity run event which aims to highlight the benefits of a healthy marriage as well as gain support from political, religious and media figures. This year the charity is running a campaign to beat a world record. The Big Promise involves thousands of couples across the UK renewing their wedding vows simultaneously. David Percival, project manager of the campaign, said: “Marriage Week has always stood for encouraging and thanking couples for all that marriage means for them and for society. This year we really want people to celebrate just how important the promises we make are. They offer the foundation for a stable and loving family; what we build on that foundation is up to

us, but we want people all over the country to join with us and send out the message: ‘these promises matter’!” The current world record is held by the US with 1089 couples taking part in 2009. On Saturday 8th February the time was set of 5:15pm, the bouquets were at the ready and the grooms were waiting nervously at the alter for the second run of the biggest day of their lives. A total of 1353 couples took part in the day; it still has to be verified by the curators of the Guinness Book of Records but the campaign has provisionally beaten the US’s record. Although marriage is arguably the ultimate way to show your love for another person, Valentine’s day is the day of love, but don’t forget to show your feelings on the other 364 days of the year.


Dress to impress ASOS Bill Skinner £45.00

Whether you’re single, you’ve been in a couple for years or you’re fresh out of a relationship, why spend Valentine’s wearing the same old dress and heels? A romantic date or night out with the girls equally requires the same amount of effort and should involve the same aim: to look gorgeous! Alisha Daya has the top picks for an outfit, all for under £50, which will make your Valentine’s as sexy and stylish as possible... whatever your plans may be

Topshop £38.00

Primark UK, contrast lace overlay bra £7.00, pants £3.00

Legs Love, Pretty Polly Smitten tights £13.27

ASOS Belt £15.00

LOVE Clutch, Internacionale £12.99

Topshop £25.00

Life| Features| 11

Going live! Liverpool John Moores University student Hazel Miller will take to the airwaves to present her new radio show to the Maghull community

Maghull Community Radio Station will have a new addition in February, SwitchOn radio show. Hazel Miller will be live on air from the 21st February. The opportunity to produce and present her own show came after spending two weeks on work placement at the station. Hazel said “I have never thought of having my own show, but after spending time helping promote and advertise the station as part of my work experience, I was offered the chance to become a broadcaster. My show will aim to inform the local community, include offers, events and guests. I am looking for anyone who has any interesting stories, special events or unusual talent to come on my show.” Maghull Community Radio is an online station. It aims to bring local listeners radio entertainment from news to sports updates, along with talk shows with community topics. A £10,000 grant provided by Sefton Council has helped to set up the state of the art studio in Maghull Town Hall, which will be the first radio

station dedicated to the Maghull area. The grant aims to promote local businesses and connect the community. Cllr Lynn Gatherer and Cllr Patrick McKinley dedicated their time to help the team of 23 broadcasters set up the station from scratch in under six months. Staff at the station are giving up their own time to produce, present, advertise and promote the station ready for the launch next Monday. The project is part of Maghull Enterprises, a charity which includes Maghull Emporium, a retail space provided by the council, which allows new local businesses to test run their ideas to the public at a low cost. The radio station will feature a range of shows including news, events, talk shows, music, local talent and reviews and will air for 91hrs a week, from 9am-10pm weekdays and 4pm-10pm weekends. Hazel’s first show will include guest Jay Hanson, from Maghull who will be running a half marathon in May for Make A Wish Foundation, as well as

Tony Cliff, a student from Maghull whose dissertation research will be going to parliament. Hazel added: “There is nothing more important than informing residents of news and events in Maghull. It’s essential for local businesses to thrive, and we need to be supporting them. News is knowledge; Maghull needs to be aware of what is going on, what to look out for and how to make the most of where you live. It will bring people together, aid businesses and improve the lives of the people in Maghull as a whole. I am so excited to be part of this project and help Maghull develop.”

Meet the team... Steve Little “What an incredible vision these guys have had. It’s now a reality and we as members of the local Maghull Community will benefit from all of their hard work. It’s great to see such inspiration in these trying times. I’m privileged to be able to work with history makers!!”

Ste Branning “We have put a lot of hard work in to making this radio station happen, the closer it gets to launch date the more excited we are. It’s been great fun working on this project with the team, and I look forward to working with them in the future!”

Rosie Button Nick Cropper “I’m so proud to be a part of the team that set this up. We’ve come a very long way since September but we still have a long way to go. But the further we go, the better it gets.”

“I am happy to be a part of Maghull community radio; the whole team are really passionate about this project and hope it will be as successful as we know it can be. A lot of hard work has gone in to this station and we’ve loved every minute of it. I’m looking forward to what the year ahead will bring for our station.”


Struggling 9 to 5?

Do you wake up every morning full of beans or full of dread about the day ahead? Kerryleigh Gough and Bethany Wells have the perfect Liverpool Life guide to get you through the day The January blues may have given way to February’s National sickie day, where the Monday bunk off was just too tempting for most. It appears that we all have lost our get-up and go attitude towards work. Now with the bad weather creeping in and the light nights far from sight, motivating yourself for that commute to your desk job might just be your most difficult task of the day. No one likes leaving the warmth of the duvet before the sun has risen but unfortunately whether we like it or not, we all have to get up and head out into the

cold. Before you wish away the year, praying for a warm summer or that dream holiday to the Maldives, try a new approach to your work routine. Changing something as basic as eating breakfast or getting an early night will put you in a positive mood for the working day ahead. So enjoy reading your book on your commute and agree to those after work cocktails for a little down time, make the most of your time away from work, and what your see as a mundane job could be something

you start to enjoy. While no one feels like working up a sweat after an 8 hour day chained to their desk, keeping active and hitting the gym or an hour yoga class can help relieve the stress of your job and give you a better night sleep. If you’re already planning the excuse for your next sick day, falsely blowing your nose around the office, get yourself motivated. Avoid the numerous trips to Starbucks for that caffeine buzz that could keep a sloth awake; cheat your way to an energetic 9 to 5. No caffeine required!

To Do List: 7.30 AM – Breakfast plays an important role in setting you up for the day. It’s suggested by nutritionists that your focus and productivity can be affected by your choice of breakfast. So avoid stodgy foods like toast and pastries, instead try protein such as eggs on rye bread or porridge with apple.

12 PM- Take a break! Sitting at your computer for hours on end will only cause you stress and strain your eyes. Take the time to move away from your desk, and get some lunch. Make it a healthy one with plenty of veg or fruit.

8.15 AM – If you usually drive or take public transport to Uni or work, try walking. It gets the heart pumping and the fresh air will wake you up.

3 PM- The hardest point of the day. While most of it is over, it is not yet home time! Try to resist the urge to grab a sugar snack or gulp down coffee after coffee. You’ll thank yourself later.

8.45 AM- Get a head start, allow yourself a little bit of time to get settled in, whether that’s making a cuppa or surfing the internet. If you allow yourself to settle into your workspace you’re bound to be more productive.

5 PM- When the working day is done… If you’re heading for after work drinks with your colleagues be aware that it could affect your sleep so try to space out your drinks and have a glass of water between each drink. This will help curb your ‘heavy head’ the next morning.

9 AM- Begin your day by setting yourself tasks to achieve. Write a list of all the things you wish to get done by the end of the day and this should help you spend your time wisely.

9 PM – Overtweet. Technology can overstimulate you and therefore make you restless before bed. Have some downtime and log off your computer at least 30 minutes before bed. This way you won’t be distracted by that late-night party invitation on Facebook.

10.30 AM- It’s at this time that you’re most alert and ready to work so make use of this by tackling your most tricky objective for the day or aim to get a good majority of your tasks completed.

11 PM – Time to hit the pillow. Try to get between 7-9 hours’ sleep a night. A good night’s sleep is essential for your body to rest and aid when that dreaded alarm goes off in the morning to do that 9-5 all over again. At least now you know how to tackle it.

Pictures - Desk from, Lamp and clock from Sainsburys and Mug from Pennys. Files © Flickr Dvortygirl. Pappers © Flickr wsilver.


Wheelchair whizz for charity by Gemma Sherlock

INSPIRED: Stuart Williams ready to take on the 18-WW20 day challenge. © Gemma Sherlock

Two best friends from Wirral are preparing for their most physical challenge yet. Stuart Williams, 29, a health and wellbeing coordinator, from Wallasey, and Matthew Jones, 29, a gardener from Liscard, are planning to undergo the journey from Lands’ End to John O’ Groats in wheelchairs. Over 18-20 days the sport enthusiasts will be aiming to cover just under 60 miles each day to complete the 880-mile journey. The route has been completed before by wheelchair users both electric and self-propelling. However, both Stuart and Matthew are able-bodied and want to do the challenge in a specially-fitted wheelchair to experience what it is like for the cause they are doing it for: Whizz-Kidz. The charity aims to improve the quality of life for disabled children and young people in the UK through the provision of customised mobility equipment

such as wheelchairs and trikes. The Paralympics campaign ‘inspire a generation’ provoked the pair to create their unique challenge. Stuart wants every child to realise their potential to succeed. He is more determined to do the challenge after the death of his cousin Michael. He said: “I hope this challenge helps other young people and children that you can dream and achieve. “When I was younger I was not expected to succeed and with great family support, especially from my mum and a private tutor, I managed to realise my potential. “From a family perspective my younger cousin Michael, who sadly passed away, was disabled from birth and he had to have a specialist wheelchair made every year, until he was ten years old.” Practice is already underway for the challenge with training sessions taking place in the wheelchairs as much as possible. Whizz-Kidz Regional Fundraiser Emma Jones is delighted with the support received.

Katarina jumps her way to double gold by Liberty Chrismas

Liverpool’s own Katarina Johnson-Thompson has made her mark at the British Indoor Championships at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield by jumping her way to two gold medals. The Halewood heptathlete set a new British high jump record of 1.96 metres at the Sainsbury’s Indoor Athletics Championships this weekend, before breaking the long jump championship record with a distance of 6.75 metres, a double achievement made only once, by Mary Rand in 1966. The 21 year old is now being tipped to outshine fellow heptathlete Jessica Ennis-Hill who is currently taking a year out of athletics to have a baby. However Johnson-Thompson was quick to dispel any competition between the two athletes. “My body’s clearly in good shape, but I am really tired, so I didn’t expect I was going to come out and do that. It gives me a lot of confidence for the future.” The young athlete, who stands at an impressive 6ft also spoke of how a lack of sleep almost ruined her chances of victory: “I got to sleep about 1am and woke up about half four and couldn’t get back to sleep. I was watching the British Athletics video they posted of me doing it (the high jump) in slo-mo and I couldn’t sleep. “I couldn’t be happier with how the weekend has gone. I just want to be able to do all this in the heptathlon because that’s my main event and that’s all I care about. I want to make major points in the heptathlon and see my overall

She said: “Stuart and Matthew’s support will change disabled children’s lives. “The children we help have dreams and aspirations just like any child and often the only thing that is standing in their way is receiving the right equipment, proper wheelchair training, advice and long term support.” The two best friends hope to reach their target of £20,000 for Whizz-Kidz. Emma added: “The money could transform the lives of up to four children on the waiting list to receive their customised powered wheelchair. This would enable them to become more independent and confident young people.” The date for the event is yet to be decided but it is set to go-ahead in the spring or summertime of this year. If you want to help out Stuart and Matthew or find out more about the charity you can by visiting their just giving page at:


The 2014 Super League season kicked off on Friday night as Wigan hosted Huddersfield at the DW Stadium. The visitors ran out comfortable winners with a 24-8 victory which gives the Giants a strong start to their campaign. The season moves into full flow this week with a full fixture list, the pick of the games will be St. Helens trip to Warrington to take on last year’s beaten finalists.


The Women’s Water Polo first team has become the first ever league winning University of Liverpool side this season, after beating their rivals Durham University 3-2 in the last game of the season. The victory meant they secured the title with 21 points, having won eight out of their nine games this season.

CUP DREAM COMES TRUE GOLDEN: Johnson-Thompson winning the heptathlon at the European U23 championships last summer. © Flickr/Racewalk pics in Holland next weekend. • Born 9th January 1993 Other highlights from the event • Grew up in Halewood and studied at Liverpool John Moores include James Dasaolu winning • Won Heptathlon gold at 2009 world youth championships gold in the 60 metres sprint ahead • Broke Jessica Ennis’s British junior heptathlon record in of Dwain Chambers with a time of 2012 6.50 seconds. Asha Philip also impressed in the women’s 60m with a • Competed in her first Olympics in London 2012, finishing a personal best time of 7.09 seconds, respectable 15th position whilst Holly Bleasdale set a world • Set a new British high jump record of 1.96 metres on 8th record in the pole vault by clearing February 2014 an incredible 4.73 m.

score then, but it’s looking good.” The past six months have seen the star make a lot of progress after nishing fifth in the World Championships in Moscow last summer. Things look set to get bigger for Johnson-Thompson who has now qualified in both events for next month’s World Indoor Championships in Poland, who will now attempt to qualify for the pentathlon

A 10-year-old Merseyside boy has won a sleepover with the FA cup after entering a competition. Daniel Griffin, from Formby, spent a night with the famous trophy in his house – with two security guards stationed outside. The FA said the competition won by the youngster was launched to introduce “a new generation to the magic of the world’s oldest domestic football competition”.



Liverpool John Moores men’s football team have made it through to the last 16 of the BUCS MARS Football Trophy Cup. The JMU Men’s Football 1st team will travel to Edinburgh on Wednesday 12th February to play Heriot-Watt 1st team and try to land a place in the quarter finals of the national cup. This opportunity comes after last season’s successful run in the league, where they managed to finish top of Northern 2A and were subsequently promoted to the competitive Northern 1A. Chairman of JMU Men’s football, Mark Cheston, 20, said: “Heriot-Watt are very strong opponents having a very good season so far but I’m confident with the right preparation and mentality of those players involved, we can cause an upset on the road.”

PREPARATION: JMU Mens football team training at Everton lifestyles ahead of their last sixteen cup tie

Liverpool kits pics leaked on Twitter by Sarah Mee Liverpool’s new kit for next season appears to have been leaked online, with pictures of the home and away shirts posted to twitter over the last few days. New premier league kits are often not revealed untill the summer. If reports are correct there would be lots of relieved Liverpool fans who would have been bracing themselves for another crazy set of kits like they saw with Warriors first season in charge of the Kit. Liverpool’s away and change kit this season faced a lot of criticism from the media and Merseyside’s alike who were shocked by the shirts designs. The away strip was mainly white with red trim but it was the random pattern that starts below the sponsor and fades into the black bottom that fans didn’t take too. The change strip was even stranger again, with the body of the shirt black, there was one white arm and one black with another random pattern across the stomach area which overlapped the black and white bottom of the shirt.

LEAK: The images of the kits were published by @101greatgoals on twitter

The Reds leaked home shirt doesn’t stray away from the traditional colour of red, however according to the

new images it will be broken up with some white trim. It seems to be much of the same for the away shirt, with Liver-

pool opting for a bold yellow colour for the first time since 2006. If this leak turns out to be factual, the kit will continue

to be made by Warrior, and it looks as if Standard Chartered will remain the official shirts sponsor for 2014/15

The Reds back in frame for title race by Nick Seddon Liverpool put themselves firmly back into the title frame with an outstanding 5-1 victory over Arsenal at Anfield on Saturday. The hosts made a stunning start, netting four goals in the opening twenty minutes. Martin Skrtel opened the scoring, bundling from a whipped in free kick by captain Gerrard. Moments later Skrtel directed a looping header across the goal and into the

top corner for Liverpool’s second. With Arsenal on the back foot, Liverpool pressed and a 30 yard volley from Suarez rebounded off the post only for Kolo Toure to miss an open goal on the rebound. Minutes later Toure had been forgiven as Anfield erupted for the third time in 16 minutes, when Sterling tucked home Suarez’s cross. There was still time for Sturridge to miss a one on one before he made

it four on the twenty minute mark. It had taken Arsenal 20 minutes to get going and although they controlled possession for the rest of the half they rarely troubled the Liverpool back four. Sterling rounded off Liverpool’s scoring in the 52nd minute. Gerrard unfortunately mistimed a tackle on Arsenals Oxlade Chamberlain giving away a penalty which Arteta dispatched, but it was never likely to be anything more than a consolation.

The win leaves Liverpool in fourth position, six points behind new leaders Chelsea. Everton were also in action against a North London side, and travelled to Tottenham on Sunday with the aim of keeping pace with their arch rivals. Despite long spells of dominance, a second half strike from Adebayor was enough to consign the Toffees to a 1-0 defeat, which leaves them in fifth and five points behind their neighbours.

The team are travelling up to Scotland in high spirits, after winning some tough games in the previous weeks including against close rivals Manchester 1st. Shaun Mangan, 21, first team manager said: “Everyone around the club is really looking forward to the game. We have had a run of six games playing some of the best football I’ve seen at university level and hopefully we can take that into the game on Wednesday.” There is a strong sense of belief within the JMU team, and there is hope that with the confidence and drive the boys will be able to get a result in Edinburgh. Mark Cheston concluded: “We intend to go as far as possible in this cup and just need to take it one fixture at a time, starting with Heriot-Watt.”


by Will Shaw Last weekend saw the second round of the 2014 RBS Six Nations fixtures take place. Wins for England, Ireland and France aimed their team’s chances in the quest to lift the trophy come March 15. France, made it two from two with a convincing win over Italy at the Stade de France. The host overcame a sluggish first half, turning on the traditional French flare and running out 30-10 winners. Hugo Bonneval, scored the pick of the French tries on his debut after he rounded off a fine length of the field try, stemming from a Wesley Fofana interception. Ireland also boosted their chances of winning the title in inspirational Brian O’Driscoll’s final tournament with an emphatic 26-3 victory over defending champions Wales. Disciplined defence and savvy kicking from fly half Jonathan Sexton put the Irish in a commanding position throughout and prevented the Welsh from gaining any momentum. Tries from Carl Henry and Paddy Jackson capped off a performance which will certainly bolster the Irish’s odds of regaining the trophy. Chris Robshaw, was able to get his hands on the Calcutta Cup for the second time is as many years as England beat Scotland 20-0 at Murrayfield on Saturday. The English recovered from their opening defeat to France.

Weighing up the National odds

GRAND NATIONAL: Jockey Sam Twiston-Davies aboard Tidal Bay

by Nick Seddon Thirteen-year-old Tidal Bay has been handed top weight in the Grand National, after the figures were released in a reception at Abbey Road this afternoon. The Paul Nicholls trained horse, who is currently 20-1 joint favourite for the Aintree showpiece, was handed a mark of 11 stone 10lbs, one pound clear of former Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Long Run, who will carry 11st 9lbs. Champion trainer Nicky Henderson boasts a strong hand for the race, and his three entries sit in the top five rated horses

for the contest, with Long Run joined by the popular horse Hunt Ball on 11st 7lbs and Triolo D’Alene on 11st 6lbs. Phil Smith, handicapper for the race, admitted that this year’s renewal was particularly difficult to organise, with one or two horses having the potential to be either very fairly or unfairly treated. He said: “I had three nightmare horses. I freely admit Mossey Joe might be 8lb too high or 8lb too low.” Teaforthree, who was a valiant third to last year’s shock winner Auroras Encore, has been given a particularly eye-catch-

ing mark for the 2014 renewal, and will carry 10st 12lbs, five pounds less than the weight he was burdened with last year. Joint favourite for the race, Mountainous, has been given 10st 7lbs, whilst last year’s favourite On His Own will stake another claim with 11st 3lbs. The build-up to the big race continues on Saturday, when Haydock Park hosts their Grand National trial, with several hopefuls entered. The current favourite is the Mike Tindall owned Monbeg Dude, who is a 7-1 shot for the contest.



Great Britain men came from behind three times to beat Germany 7-6 in an unexpected result in the curling. With the score drawn at 6-6, Germany’s Felix Schulze only needed to the move the Team GB stone from the centre of the house, but the pressure appeared to much as he went on to miss it completely. This gave the final point to the GB team.

Curling ©Flickr/Sysop


British skier Katie Summerhayes finished seventh in the women’s Winter Olympic ski slopestyle final, with Canada’s Dara Howell taking gold. The 18-year-old was third in qualifying but fell on her first run in the final before scoring 70.60 in her second. The Sheffield teenager took to Twitter to thank her fans. She posted: “So, so gutted about the end result today. Skied well in qualifiers but couldn’t hold it together, so excited for 2018. “Really, really tried my best to hold it together in the final, but onwards and upwards from here. I’m stoked that I was trending on twitter”. She added: “Thanks so much everyone for the support and sending my best wishes to Yuki Tsubota”, who took a heavy fall on the slopes and was carried off in a stretcher.

Top trainer teams up with Davina by Jade Masri

A Liverpool sports professor has trained and is supporting Davina McCall as she endures a seven day 500 mile challenge to raise money for Sports Relief. Prof Greg Whyte who teaches at Liverpool John Moores University and is a former international modern pentathlete, has spent weeks preparing Davina for the vigorous challenge that she was to undertake. Having competed in two Olympic Games and won European bronze and World Championship silver medals, he became a well trusted and renowned name in sports who is favoured by celebrities. Greg Whyte has helped to train David Walliams, a comic actor, who swam across the English Channel for charity in 2006, as well as comedian John Bishop for his part in ‘Week of Hell’ and many other celebrities who have taken part in charity events.

So far Greg has helped raise over £17 million for Comic Relief and Sport Relief projects. His latest project will include swimming and cycling alongside TV host Davina McCall making sure that she crosses the finish line. The charity sponsored event, which will end on the 14th of February, will bring hope to Kenyan families who are living in extreme poverty and will help make life saving maternal health clinics a reality in the poverty stricken country. Davina is pushing herself beyond breaking point to help give a brighter future to thousands of women and girls in Kenya and also transform lives in the UK and around the world. “Please donate or go out and have a sponsered swimathon in your schools, don’t do what I’m doing though!” Davina McCall told Nick Grimshaw on BBC Radio One. To find out how to take part in Sport relief, or donate visit www.


It’s been a disappointing defeat for Great Britain in the Mens Halfpipe Snowboarding today as both Ben Kilner and Dom Harington crashed out during the qualifying round, reaching the 16th and 20th positions. Both athletes were among the many competitors who later criticised the conditions at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park, stating that the warm weather had made the snow more difficult to compete on than normal.

Ben Kilner ©Twitter/@ benkilner

•The last Sport Relief, in 2012, raised the most money- a record breaking £67,000,000 •The Sport Relief Mile was launched in 2004 and 80,000 people took part

TIRING: Davina and Greg cycling

© Twitter/@gpwhyte

•The Sport Relief single 2014 is ‘Word up’ by Little Mix

Having a ball! Kin-ball is a big hit with schools by Lauren Cordelle

HUGE: pupils enjoy Kin-ball contest Katie Summerhayes ©Twitter/@londonfreeze


Picture: Lauren Cordelle

School pupils showed their prowess with a brand new sport in the UK, as John Moores University hosted a mini Kin-ball tournament on Friday. Schools in Merseyside took part in the new sport which could be part of core PE lessons in the near future. The unique sport consists of three teams playing at the same time with the objective to keep the giant ball off the ground. It was developed at a rock concert in Canada, and is an inclusive activity that can engage many different participants. The tournament, which took place in the IM Marsh Campus in Aigburth, involved schools from across Liverpool, including Formby High School, Childwall, Parklands, St Julies, Broughton Hall, Auckland College, St Chad’s and St Edward’s. The tournament was a success, with the schools’ teachers and pu-

pils thoroughly enjoying taking part in the new game. Amy McGowan, in Year 11 at Formby High School, said “I think the tournament was really good because we got to meet people from other schools that also play this sport. It’s all about your teamwork skills, so you’re co-operating and learning how important it is that you need to listen to each other and be aware of who’s around you.” JMU students helped make the tournament possible, along with Steve Grace, Sport Programme Manager at Marsh Sports, who is trying to promote the sport in order for it to be part of core PE lessons in Merseyside and further afield if it takes off. Steve said: “Teamwork and co-operation are the big learning points. It also helps with decision-making and builds confidence, because the people who don’t like to talk and shout during sport games, by the end of this game that’s gone out the window.

“The ability to take turns, so that nobody can dominate the sport, so everybody has got to play to the exact same standard, means it’s completely fair play.” Kate Park, a PE Teacher at Broughton Hall, said: “I think introducing it into the curriculum is the next step, because those taking part are really enjoying it, so getting it onto the curriculum for all the students to have ago at and enjoy is key. Then, there can be more events like this, plus competitions and festivals for everyone to take part in.” Mr Grace added: “I’ve done four PE lessons on Kin-ball at St Chad’s, and the teacher came up to me during one of the lessons, and said ‘Do you see that girl there running around taking part? I’ve been teaching here for two years and she has never taken part in a PE lesson’.” Steve is hoping to turn the Kinball tournament into an annual event, with more schools taking part.

University race team has winning formula by Sarah Mee and Jade Masri Liverpool John Moores University’s Formula One racing team has been confirmed to compete in Formula Student Spain this summer, a competition which is held annually around the world. The university boasts a dedicated racing team, which consists of student designers, engineers, technicians, electricians, managers and promoters as well as drivers. It began five years ago and has gone from strength to strength, designing many vehicles and racing them in various global competitions. Speaking about the upcoming competition, Steph Hines, 19, an engineer on the JMU’s racing team, said: “The competition has two key aspects; Dynamics, which is the cars performance out on track, and Statistics, which includes Costing, Design and Business. “But the competition isn’t just about the race weekends, it’s about the academic year building up to that point, teams have to source

SPEED: Liverpool John Moores University race team in action their own sponsorship, test their vehicle, train their drivers and do everything else that a professional team does, whilst still studying their degrees. I can assure you it is no easy ride.” LJMU has one of the UK’s most internationally successful teams, which as students participating in multiple disciplines from Media to Automotive Engineering.

Last year the team had the fastest UK finish in the Skid Pad, and they were placed 2nd overall for the special costing task. With the cars weighing just over 600kg, drivers are required to keep as light as possible making sure that they have a slim build with enough muscle to handle the car but not to add excess weight. Any additional weight will af-

©Twitter/@ljmuracing fect a cars performance drastically, slowing it down or ruining the handling. Currently the driver’s weight varies from just over 50 kilograms to 74kg. When asked whether a driver must meet specific requirements to take part, David Pettit, LJMU’s racing team manager, said: “As long as they can fit in the car and

are capable of getting out within 5 seconds they can be any height, however they must not be 50mm below the roll hoop when seated in the car. “There is no required background; however drivers with a history of racing will obviously be more obvious candidates for racing. All drivers must have a driving licence.”


LifeSPORT 11 - February - 2014


Whizz-kidz in mighty 880m trek: Page 13

VICTORY: Top from left to right: Sophie Cocking, 21, Jess Hatton, 19, Josie Knight, 21, Jo Cabot, 21, Megan Greening, 18 and Kelsie Johnson, 19. Front from left to right: Claire McVeigh, 20, Megan McDevitt (team captain), 20, and Megan Francis-Hill, 19

GOAL! By Sarah Mee

Both the first and second team of Liverpool John Moores Women’s Netball Club have ended their seasons at the top of their retrospective British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) leagues. The JMU Netball 1sts came

top in league Northern 1A and will be promoted to the elite Premier league, while the 2nds won eight of their nine games to land first place in their league Northern 4A. Sophie Cocking, 21, has been part of the JMU Netball team since 2011 and currently plays Goal Shooter for the 2nds.

She said: “Winning the league is definitely the highlight of my season. As it’s my final year playing in the JMU team it’s nice to know that our hard work has paid off. The whole team were very excited about our win and are thoroughly looking forward to playing in the higher league next season.”

The JMU Netball Club went to extra lengths this year to ensure their success, with the help of additional training sessions such as boxing with the Salisbury Boxing Club coach and extra high intensity fitness sessions. Sophie said: “We have trained very hard as a team, with great commitment and dedication

NETBALL TEAMS TAKE TOP SPOTS AT END OF SEASON from everyone.” The 2nds have been promoted to Northern 3A league, where they will face new teams and challenges. The JMU Netball’s first team will be playing in the Premier North, alongside some of the finest netball teams in the country such as Loughborough.

Football team kick to victory: Page 14

Green light for Reds’ fixture By Nadine Higham Liverpool’s Premier League game against Fulham is set to go ahead after London underground strikes were called off. Tube staff were due to undergo a 48-hour walkout today in protest over possible redundancies from ticket office closures, with

similar strikes earlier this month disrupting services over a twoday period. Questions as to whether the match was to go ahead were raised on Monday after Fulham released a statement on their website saying: “The Club has concerns over the potential impact that the strike may have on

the ability of its safety staff to attend the ground in sufficient time and numbers”. However, in the same statement, the club confirmed that is was proceeding on the basis that the game would go ahead. Initial reports that the game would be postponed caused anger amongst supporters after

Arsenal, West Ham and Leyton Orient confirmed the strikes would not affect them as alternative routes were available. Owner of Liverpool FC, John W. Henry, took to social networking site Twitter to air his frustrations, tweeting: “Arsenal, West Ham and Leyton Orient all ready for the strike but not Ful-

ham?” After circulating rumours throughout the day, Fulham FC confimed the game will go ahead, tweeting: “Due to the resolution of the proposed London Underground strike action, our game v Liverpool tomorrow night, will go ahead as planned”.  More LFC news - page 14

Davina starts Sport Relief swim: Page 15

Liverpool Life 2:12 11022014  

Liverpool Life is a weekly newspaper produced by final year undergraduate students on the Journalism and International Journalism programmes...

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