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QUAYS NEWS at the heart of all things Manchester

Wednesday 14th December 2016

MANCHESTER RANGERS LAUNCH NEW RUGBY LEAGUE ACADEMY

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Celebrity exclusive: Alex Reid speaks to Quays News More on page 9

Manchester protests for seize fire in Aleppo

Driver dies after car crashes into tree in Rusholme street Birchfields Road was closed this morning after a Jaguar crashed into a tree (Photo:Jordan Sinclair)

By Gem O’Reilly

Forensic officers are now investigating the crash (Photo:Jordan Sinclair)

A man, aged 38, has died due to a car colliding with a tree in Rusholme. At 4.45am on Wednesday Greater Manchester Police were called to the scene of the collision. The incident happened on Birchfields Road where the driver crashed. The man was taken to the hospital and was pronounced dead after a short period. Greater Manchester Police temporarily closed Birchfields Road while enquires took place.

A statement from the Greater Manchester Police said, “At around 4:45am this morning a Jaguar XKR was driving north along Birchfields Road, close to the junction of Westray Road, when the car collided with a tree. “The 38-year-old driver of the car was severely injured and taken to hospital. “He sadly died a short time after his arrival. Road closures were in place on Birchfields Road but have now been lifted.” Sergeant Paul Higgins of GMP’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit said,

“We continue to offer our condolences to this man’s family, who we are providing with support from specially trained officers. “We are keen to hear from anyone who may have witnessed the collision or believes that they have information that can help with our investigation.” Forensic officers are now investigating the horrific crash after paramedics tried in vain to save the man’s life. The area where the incident took place is now back open, however the investigation still remains.

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Wednesday 14th December 2016

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‘Enough is enough’ - Shelter campaign aims to tackle child homelessnes By Hollie Rees

MORE than 120,000 children across the UK will be homeless or living long-term in temporary accommodation this Christmas – with 1,400 in Greater Manchester. Housing and homelessness charity, Shelter, launched the ‘Enough is enough’ campaign earlier this year alongside claims that the figures for Greater Manchester have risen by 71 percent since 2015. John Ryan (pictured right), Shelter Greater Manchester hub manager, said: “One family in Greater Manchester waking up homeless this Christmas morning is heart-breaking enough, let alone over 1,400. But even after 25 years working in Manchester, too many families still need our help.” The campaign encourages signatures in support of Theresa May placing ending home-

lessness as an urgent priority for the new government. However, upcoming government measures could lead to even more vulnerable children in the new year, with a minimum of 450 families in Salford being affected. A benefit cap will be introduced on Monday, meaning the maximum benefits which can be claimed by couples and lone parents is set to drop by £6,000. Local politicians are trying to push tackling homelessness as hard as they can, with youngsters struggling at school being a priority. Councillor Paul Longshaw, Lead Member for Housing and Neighbourhoods in Salford, said: “We’ve had a 70 percent increase in the amount of people that are coming to our help and advice team who have got insecure tenancies or are actually homeless.”

“Within the first seven months of this year, we’ve had 250 families that we’ve placed in temporary accommodation. “We’re finding that a lot of private rented landlords are now getting out of the sector and are looking to sell the homes, rather than continue to be a private landlord. “A consequence of this is, we’re finding it difficult to place families in temporary accommodation where their existing support network is. “When the young people’s schools or family support network is a 10 or 15-mile journey away, it’s something that really impacts on the emotional wellbeing of those children and their families.” Anyone who needs or can offer help can call Shelter’s Manchester helpline on 0161 820 3683 for more information or to set up a face-to- face appointment.

will find it easier to meet rising demand whilst those areas where council tax raises less money will be left struggling.’’ He added: ‘’ The government must be held to account for the consequences of leaving more and more people without the care they desperately need.’’ Labour are also against the council tax rise. Labour MP for Worsley and Eccles South, Barbara Keeley said: ‘Asking taxpayers to pick up the bill for the Tory’s failure is not a proper plan.’’ The government are deciding between two options- allowing

councils to increase tax more than two per cent for which they already have permission, or bringing forward extra money they have been promised in 2019. Older people’s services – representing the bulk of care – have been particularly badly hit. Spending has fallen by 9 per cent over the past five years with local government blaming cuts to their funding from central government. It means growing numbers have to go without help or pay for their own care – coun-

Shadow Health Secretary slams Sajid Javid over elderly care tax increase

By Lana Guy

Shadow Secretary for Health Norman Lamb has critised Communities Secretary Sajid Javid over the government’s decision to raise council tax, in order to cover the rising cost of elderly care. The Liberal Democrats have argued that the extra money should not come from tax increases. In a statement, Norman Lamb said:‘’Making Councils bear all the burden will increase the postcode lottery that already exists. It will mean that wealthy parts of the country

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cils fund services only for the poorest, with those with assets of more than £23,250 are expected to pay the full cost of care themselves. Regulators have warned that cuts have started adding to pressures in the NHS with A&E units said to be bearing the brunt. Old and frail patients are being admitted because of the lack of community support, which is also being blamed for the growing number of delayed discharges – cases where patients are ready to leave hospital but cannot.

Manchester council splashes out on brand new library chairs By Theo Chikomba Manchester Council has reportedly spent between £280 to £380 on 118 new chairs, totalling almost £43,000. The Central Library has hosted more than 300,000 computer sessions since the 2014 reopening after the transformation project which started in 2010. Around 175,000 hours of computer usage has been recorded at Central Library from September 2015 – September 2016 making it a popular destination for the public in the city centre. Executive Member for Culture and Leisure, Councillor Luthfur Rahman, said: “Central Library is Britain’s most visited library outside London, attracting more than 1.5 million people per year and its £50m transformation has been incredibly well-received by Manchester residents and visitors alike. Part of the reason for this success is that we have created a welcoming environment in the library. “As part of this project, care was taken to ensure that furniture was of sufficient quality and sturdiness to last for many years. “The funding for Central Library’s transformation, which was carried out between 2010 and 2014, was allocated before the unfair spending cuts under the coalition government, in which Manchester was one of the hardest hit places in the country. It has no relevance to current spending and current budgets.”

(Below) One of the 118 new chairs Credit:Theo Chikomba They have also defended themselves but saying that buying cheap, lower quality furniture which would not last would be a false economy and cost more in the longer term. They explained that the budget for the Central Library’s £50million refurbishment, done between 2010 and 2014, was planned before the Coalition government’s ‘unfair’ spending cuts were announced. However, one manchester resident said: “The chairs that the care buying are ridiculous prices and I dont’t think the counsil should be paying that much.” A survey carried out named ‘Public Library Users Survey’ (PLUS), in October 2016 showed that 86 per cent of visitors were satisfied with the computer facilities at Central Library, compared to just 69 per cent in 2009, before the refurbishment a 17 per cent increase.


Wednesday 14th December 2016

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Walking in a winter wonderland Above and Below: Visitors were treated to a host of festive treats (Photos:Nathan Salt)

Winter Wonderland at Event City offers festive entertainment for the whole family to enjoy (Photo:Nathan Salt)

By Nathan Salt SLEIGH bells ring, are you listening? And the answer in Manchester on Monday night was a big, fat yes as festive cheer descended on EventCity for Winter Wonderland. The VIP event inside the UK’s biggest indoor Christmas theme park saw Manchester City footballers Raheem Sterling and Jesus Navas, along with ex-Liverpool and Bolton striker Emile Heskey, joined by Coronation Street stars Tina O’Brien and Jane Danson. Returning for its fourth year in the city, the large venue is

home to more than 50 rides and attractions for all the family – particularly youngsters – to enjoy. Some of the most popular additions proved to be the mirror room along with the hook-aduck stalls which possessed a plethora of famous children’s character teddies which went down excellently with punters. The key to an event like Winter Wonderland was attending in a group with younger children. It is geared largely to young people as many rides had a maximum height limit such as the ghost train and many of the bouncy castle facilities.

One aspect that had restrictions was the whole host of organised shows that the organisers had laid on including a Cinderella pantomime, Basil Brush Show and Circus showcase. Basil – who sat down for an interview with Quays News a few weeks ago in his Manchester hotel room – was suffering from a sore throat and his show became heavily interactive with the audience with the pressure on them to expertly deliver his infamous Boom Boom pay-off. Santa’s Grotto proved a popular affair with all in attendance as queues never appeared

to die down; real-life reindeer and the man himself made time for each and every person who took time off the rides to read out their extensive Christmas lists. It must, however, be noted that Winter Wonderland is no cheap family activity. The food and drinks prices are airing on the pricey side and it is something that took many by surprise it appeared. But as the snow machine dazzled the children upon entry, the smiles on their faces inside what was a festive paradise is enough to light up any parent and is therefore well worth a trip.

Below: The audience had to help Basil, who was suffering from a sore throat (Photos:Nathan Salt)

Experiment helps people with hearing difficulties watch TV By Aleksandra Todorova

PhD student Lauren Ward

Photo: Aleksandra Todorova

PEOPLE with hearing difficulties are taking part in a new experiment at the University of Salford that aims to improve the experience of watching TV. The new experiment could see the development of a personalised experience that would meet the individual’s needs. PhD student Lauren Ward said: “Most shows use sound effects to aid understanding of a plotline or a news package and some do it better than others. For example, Channel 4’s Humans, employs distinct sounds to differential the Synths from regular humans. “These sound effects aim to help the viewer to follow the story, but some say they are a distraction. “Our (Salford Univresitresearch is testing that out to

see which sounds enhance and which hinder. “Ultimately we want to learn how to balance these sounds and clarity of speech to improve the overall quality of TV sound, particularly for hearing impaired listeners.” Douglas Edworthy, a participant in the new experiment said: “I find with most TV programmes if the producer wants to improve the ‘realism’ by putting in lots and lots of background noise it and for people who are a little bit deaf like me it becomes really difficult to understand.” A local resident of Manchester who is taking part in the experiment said: “The experiment is going to see whether introducing a little bit of sound effect, it actually helps people to understand what is being said if there is a background noise. “She was playing me speech

sentences through the loud speaker but with a lot of background noise there and she was varying the difference in level between the speech and the background noise and so I had to pick out the last word that was being said and write it down or guess if I could work out what it was.” The student responsible for the experiment added: “In order to have something that can adapt to what’s best for an individual’s needs, we need to understand when the listener has all those different elements and what role they are playing. That’s what this early stage of the work is trying to do, is to try and figure out some of these sort of profiles of what people need so then when we go to implement we can understand when people’s hearing behaves in a certain way what they might then need.”


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Wednesday 14th December 2016

(Photo: Facebook)

Counterfeit toys are dangerous play

By Hollie Rees

A SALFORD businessman imported counterfeit and dangerous toys worth thousands of pounds. Abdul Rasheed Khan’s warehouse in Broughton, Salford, was raided three times by Salford council trading standards over nine-months from 2014. Khan, 44, was said to have imported thousands of toy lines every year but blamed the Chinese manufacturers that he bought them from. According to Salford council, Khan’s company, Glorious Imports and Wholesale Ltd, based on Overbridge Road, is no longer trading. The company was predominantly wholesale but sold to members of the public at weekends. Potentially lethal counterfeit toys included unsafe bow and arrow sets and stretchy toys which could strangle children. A raid in 2014 led to the recovery of more than 4,000 fake goods including Disney figures, Beats headphones and Nintendo games items. Council bosses have now issued a pre-Christmas warning over counterfeit goods as consumers are putting their lives, and the lives of others, at risk by buying fake goods at discounted prices.

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Kidnapped British backpacker saved by texting location to dad back home in Manchester By Shadiya Omar

A FATHER saved his 20 year old daughter who had been kidnapped while backpacking in Australia. Mary Kate Heys, 20, from Bury, was staying at the Sunshine Coast hostel where she decided to join a 22-year-old Swedish backpacker for an early morning road trip to Brisbane. The 20 year-old said he was “in a manic state” and agreed to accompany him on the road trip because she was concerned about his safety. During the journey he refused to let her leave the car and it was at this point that she became “terrified”. Mary said ‘alarm bells began to ring when the man’s demeanour changed and he began ‘ranting about aliens’’. While she pretended to give him directions, she actually pinpointed her location through Google Maps and sent the location to her father, who was in Manchester. In the messages she told him she had been kidnapped and for him to contact the Queensland Police.

In a series of texts, she wrote: “Dad, are you awake? I need you to call [sic] Australian police. “Do not ring me. “And tell them I’m in a silver Peugeot... I’ve been taken by a man. “I don’t think he’s dangerous. “Please hurry.” At Gympie, 85 kilometres north of the hostel, the police pulled over the car and the 20 year-old ran to the safety of the officers. According to the Queensland police, the man is believed to be suffering mental health problems and was taken to hospital for medical treatment, a spokeswomen said that Mary Kate Heys will not be pressing charges and has withdrawn her complaint.

Above: Mary Kate Heys alerted her father about her kidnapping through Google Maps (Left) (Photos: Instagram)

Parliament discusses calls for Boxing Day shopping ban By Yoana Nikolova AN MP suggested the UK has an “obsession with shopping” at yesterday’s Parliament debate on whether they should ban retailers opening on Boxing Day. Labour MP Helen Jones argued that Boxing Day should be a day spent with family, instead of an opportunity for staff exploitation. Following an online petition which gathered more than 100,000 signatures urging the government to ban Boxing Day shopping, MPs had different opinions during the debate. Tory MP Andrea Jenkyns said the country “should not bite the hand that feeds us,” implying that not opening on one of the busiest days of year would be damaging to retailers. Iona Wills, marketing manager of independent retailer Oklahoma in Northern Quarter said: “It’s quite important to us as a business that we stay closed on Boxing Day.

“In the run up to Christmas we’re very busy and all of our staff members work very hard and we want to give them the time off they deserve.” Oklahoma has never opened on Boxing Day in the 19 years since it was established. Iona said that giving staff the day off to spend with their families is a very important value of Oklahoma because it is “very sad” to work such long hours in the lead up to Christmas and to get enough time to rest. She said: “The sales on Boxing Day can be really good, but to us it’s more important that the staff get that time off, rather than making us profits. “Every business makes their own decisions, but I definitely think that for us, being a small independent business, it’s important that we stay closed and I hope our customers can appreciate that.” There is no law regulating trading hours on Boxing Day, unless December 26 happens to fall on a Sunday. A small business owner from Manchester said

Independent retailer Oklahoma will be closed this Boxing Day the government cannot decide on behalf of businesses. He said: “The government have too much say in what we do as it is; “If businesses want to open on Boxing Day, they have their own reasons to do so.” The online petition, which gathered 138,235 signatures, calls for Boxing Day to be protected by trading hours law similar to Christmas Day and

Easter Day. It claims: “Christmas is a family time. The one day is not enough time to see two sides of families. “Retail workers work extremely hard during the Christmas run up and only get the one day. If only everywhere could be closed Boxing Day. Some things are needed over the festive period; retail isn’t one of them.”

Labour MP Ms Jones said employees were being exploited and suggested that many retailers didn’t even see a rise in sales, but opened simply because everyone else did. She said: “I doubt very much anything would change if they did not start until the 27. “So many of us, like me, say Boxing Day is our day of rest. That is not available to many people in retail.”

(Photo: Yoana Nikolova) The government’s answer to the petition said: “We do not believe it is for central government to tell businesses how to run their shops or how best to serve their customers. “Therefore, we are not proposing to ban shops from opening on Boxing Day.” In 2014, 365,000 people in the UK retail industry worked on Boxing Day, says the Office for National Statistics.


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Wednesday 14th December 2016

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Man assaulted on Portland steet By Morgan Driver

A MAN has been taken to hospital with severe head injuries, after being assaulted on Portland Street in the early hours of Tuesday morning. Reports on social media indicate the victim was allegedly involved in a fight which broke out in the nearby Yates’s bar, which then carried on to road. However, a spokesperson for the club confirmed the incident was not related to events inside the bar earlier in the evening. No arrests in connection with the incident have been made. Images on social media show a visible “pool of blood” on the road outside Caffė Nero. Police were called to the scene at 4.20am.

Protesters respond to Aleppo resident’s final goodbyes

(Above) Aleppo protest in action. (Below) Banner held up at the protest Credit: Chantelle Heeds

By Chantelle Heeds

ALEPPO protest hits Manchester City Centre: “Free free Syria, no more killing in Aleppo” A last minute protest was held yesterday evening at Manchester Piccadilly Gardens, in order to raise awareness for people suffering in the Syrian city of Aleppo. The demonstration, that involved participants standing in the rain, lasted approximately one and a half hours and began at 5pm. The protest was arranged only hours before, in response to the fact that residents of Aleppo had taken to twitter to share their heart felt goodbyes; as they feared there were going to die after the area was hit by a ceasefire. A crowd of over 150 people gathered at the gardens to

chant “Free free Syria,” and “Our Syria will be free,” along with “No more killing in Aleppo.” The crowd also held up banners in attempt to spread awareness for the cause. The event was organised by Majd Altujjar, 28, who said: “We are asking to break the siege of Eastern Syrians, where many massacres have taken place. “The emergency protest was organised last minute and I was surprised by the response. A lot of people took it on their shoulders to spread awareness of the event, mainly via Facebook. “We were very lucky because a lot of passersby took interest in the event, which is what we wanted.” One participant, who travelled from Huddersfield to take part, said: “I was really moved

to come over to Manchester and having read the news last night, it took to me a place that I felt I had to act. I have to do something.

“I wanted to be around people who felt as strongly about the situation as I did.” The circumstances in Aleppo have got a huge reaction from

Chemical warning after Post office to strike during busy period fire in Stockport By Oliver McKenzie

A FIRE in Stockport had emergency services battling the blaze through to this morning. Fire services arrived at hazel Grove around 5.45pm las night with 30 firefighters and six fire engines still at the scene. The fire is believed to have contained chemicals when it set alight in the industrial unit. The flames also continuing to burn through a large quantity of paper left inside. Station Manager Steve Twinn said: “Firefighters have been working hard to contain the fire and put it out. “There has been some smoke

in the area while we’ve been dealing with the incident. “We asked any residents affected by the smoke to keep their windows and doors closed throughout the night and into the morning. “We have been working with the owners of the business and our partners to deal with this incident. “Fire crews have been doing their best to remove quantities of machinery and materials from the property, when it has been safe to do so, to help the affected business as much as possible.” Residents in to keep their windows closed due to the risk of smoke containing toxins.

By Nathan Salt

A Post Office strike, due to last for five days starting on Monday, is likely to affect the delivery of many festive parcels. The Post Office has tried to alleviate customer concerns by stating that 97 per cent of their branches are not directly involved. It says there will be plenty of help available to ensure it remains ‘business as usual’. Plans are afoot between union members and the company with a view to prevent the strike from commencing but with workers ‘fighting to save their jobs’ it is unlikely to be resolved. Royal Mail, which handles

parcel and letter deliveries and is now a private company after it is split from the Post Office several years ago, said it expected the action to have little or no effect on the services it provides its customers. Having been on strike earlier this year, Unite, the union that deals with around 700 Post Office managers, is not involved in next week’s proposed plans. The strike comes after the announcement to move 60 branches to the private sector, threatening jobs.

the public. More than one million people have taken to Facebook to discuss it today – causing it to trend.

Bottles supplied in wake of water ban By Joseph McDermott AROUND 200,000 bottles of water have been delivered to schools and care homes in the areas of Tameside and Saddleworth as the water ban continues today. United Utilities, the water company that oversees local affairs, warned 17,000 properties in Ashton-under-Lyne, Mossley, and Stalybridge on Sunday morning to stop drinking straight from the tap. Company bosses said the problem at the treatment plant is now fixed, but they need to wait for remaining contaminated water to be flushed out of the system. Everyone in the affected areas are still advised to boil their water for drinking, preparing food and brushing their teeth for 48-hours until at least Wednesday evening. United Utilities has also advised those who are feeling unwell after drinking water to consult their GP. In case of an overnight emergency, United Utilities has said to call 03456723723.

Co-op pushes recycling By Bethany Halfpenny

CO-OPERATIVE supermarkets are aiming to have 80 per cent of packaging recyclable by 2020. Two-thirds of all plastic packaging used for consumer products is sent to landfill sites or incineration, leaving only one third to be recycled. This means that only half a million of the 1.5 million tonnes of recyclable waste created every year is being reduced and reused as intended. It is thought that this is due to a lack of knowledge about what packaging can be recycled as well as local authorities having a lack of facilities to help deal with the situation. Co-op’s environmental manager, Iain Ferguson has said that they hope to reduce this waste by changing the products’ packaging that they sell to include more and easier information about how to recycle the waste. He said: “Our long-term ambition is for all packaging to be recycled where it can be.”


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Wednesday 14th December 2016

Is there a north-south divide in secondary education? By Molly Smith

T

he “north-south divide” is often a phrase more commonly used to describe the cultural and economic divide between the south and the north of the United Kingdom. However, in recent times education is becoming more prominent in the north-south divide argument, with the gap between education in the North and South “widening”. Following Ofsted’s 2016 Annual Report the speculated north-south divide in education was made arguably clearer than ever. Sir Michael Wilshaw said: “Last year, I highlighted the disproportionate number of schools that are less than good in the North and Midlands, compared with the South and East of England. This year, that gap has widened slightly. “More than a quarter of secondaries in the North and the Midlands are still not good enough. “The geographical divides within the country are most acute for children on free school meals, the most able pupils and those who have special educational needs. “There is also considerable evidence that it is schools in isolated and deprived areas where educational standards are low that are losing out in the recruitment stakes for both leaders and teachers.” High quality head teachers are playing a big role in the quality of secondary education for pupils in the North and Midlands.

With the number of secondary heads not judged as above inadequate, the schools consequently are going to suffer. Three quarters of secondary schools judged inadequate for leadership were in the North and Midlands. Schools such as Saint Paul’s Catholic High School, Wythenshawe were judged as “requiring improvement” when it came to the effectiveness of leadership and management. The report for Saint Paul’s Catholic High School said the “school leaders and governors had not tackled longstanding weaknesses in provision

strongly or rapidly enough”. Thirteen local authorities across the UK had every secondary school rated either good or outstanding following an inspection by Ofsted – all of them are in London or the South East of England. This can be compared to the 2016 Official Ofsted Report claiming secondary schools in the North and the Midlands still “behind the rest of the country”. The North West has been described as being of “particular concern”, with the percentage of secondary schools that were rated good or outstanding having only increased by 3 per cent

in the past five years. Andrew Cook, Ofsted Regional Director for the North West said: “In secondary education, the gap between the North and South remains. “Improving secondary performance will require a solution to problems with teacher supply in the region.” Despite the report showing that the North West is falling behind in education improvements have still been made and evidence does show this. The Radclyffe School, Oldham is an example of the improvements that schools in the North West are making. The report for the 2015 inspection explained: “since the last inspection, rates of progress have improved rapidly. “The tangible culture of selfimprovement, instilled by the inspirational headteacher, motivates both staff and students to achieve their very best.” Other schools and colleges in the area have also made the same improvements, with Wright Robinson College, Gorton also making the same improvement towards the standard of education in the North West. As of August 2014 11 per cent of secondary schools in the North West were inadequate, in just two years this number has now dropped to five per cent. If the same improvement was seen in the growth of those schools rated outstanding, the north-south divide could be gradually eradicated.

One in five mothers suffer from One third of British population post-natal mental illness expected to be obese by 2020 By Samhar Gowhar Thousands of women in the United Kingdom are affected by post-natal psychosis and depression each year, sometimes leading to fatalities, according to findings from the NHS. As many as one in five women experience at least one mental health problem either during pregnancy or within the first year after giving birth. Sophie Hale, 28, mother of two and sufferer of post-natal psychosis and depression, said: “Not enough is done, you can be quite vulnerable, and it is the most difficult time of your life when you become a mum. “You can really struggle to connect with your baby, and you can really struggle to show love for them and be honest about your feelings.” She suffered from depression and an eating disorder after her first child and was diagnosed with postnatal psychosis after the birth of her second child. During the first week after childbirth, it is estimated that around 85 per cent of women experience some type of mood disturbance. Symptoms may be mild, however 10-15 per cent of these women develop more significant symptoms, such as depression and anxiety. Sophie added: “More women should be encouraged to speak to professionals however professionals

should be willing to listen more. “I wish there were more people available to lend an open ear. “You wouldn’t wish depression on your worst enemy.” In recent years, there has been a recorded lack of funding for parental related mental health care. Susan Bianes, lecturer in Midwifery at the University of Salford, said: “Health professionals have let mothers down. “We have had services in place that entailed home visits for mothers during the first few days of having a baby, but these services have been reduced over time. “This is due to lack of funding and shortage of midwives. Mothers should know their midwives and have continuity of care.” However, the NHS has announced plans to create new specialist centres for women who suffer from these illnesses. They plan to invest around 40 million pounds, to help reduce the number of women who kill themselves or their baby. The new mental health units will be across 20 areas within the United Kingdom. Each of these centres will include buddying services, where people who have already experienced child related mental health problems will be able to support new mothers.

By Zainab Patel

Experts predict that by the year 2020, one third of the UK population could be obese, with the number of obese adults expect to have risen by 11 million in 2030. Speakers at a conference this week at Adelphi House, Salford, said numerous factors are to blame. The key elements are the lack of physical activity, the increase of junk food and less healthy eating styles. The chair of the conference, Paul Wilson, associates Dean and Operations, school of health sciences, University of Salford, said: “At the earlier start of the conference, we had an expert on food and sugar tax and he challenged me when I said physical activity was one of the areas. “I think really it’s not one or the other but whole combinations of us being inactive. “We are tuning into more electronics, and we increasingly have more sugar, salt and fat in our food; putting those two together is the cause of obesity, it’s not one single thing.” Obesity has recently been more prone within children as statistics show one in five children in Reception and one in three children in year 6 are either overweight or obese. As a result, specialist has been conduction studies to encourage

Both junk food and new technology lead to obesity (Photo: Pixabay) children to eat healthier. Dr Paula Whitaker, Senior Clinical lecturer and honorary consultant in public health at the University of Manchester said: “It’s incredibly common and I’m particular interested in child obesity. We know that about 20% of our ten year olds and our teenagers are obese now so it’s so prevalent in our society that it is actually normal. “It’s been completely normalised and so much so that parents can’t even recognise that their children are obese. You know after they have been measured in school and they get their letter saying your child is obese most parents react like ‘that must be wrong. My boy or girl is normal size’ because it is so common.” To help control the raising epidemic. Parents and schools need to work together to make sure their children and carrying out healthier lifestyles.

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More shoppers are falling victim to false advertising (Photo: Brides Beware Facebook)

Stress-free online Christmas shopping on increase By Laura Bailey Everyone knows that Christmas is the most stressful time of the year, when it comes to shopping, so many of us find it far easier and simple to do it online, here the most stressful part of the whole experience is merely making a tea or coffee. Statistics have shown that online shopping is on the rise, and with Christmas just round the corner, who could blame us? According to RetailResearch.org in 2016 there will be an expected 14.9 per cent growth in UK online sales, this is based on the data received from the 2015 growth of 16.2 per cent. People tend to choose to do their Christmas shopping over the internet due to the ease of access and avoid the stress off the high streets. Statistics from We Are Social reveal that 92 per cent of the UK population are internet users. Of this, 77 per cent have purchased items online. The largest majority of these items being clothes, followed by books and home electronics. However, some have been victim to false advertisement such as the virally infamous lace dress (above). Though online shopping is an allround better choice for the consumer for narrowing their search for very specific products, mistakes like this are too common an occurrence with more illegitimate online stores selling poorly made products. Groups such as BridesBeware have been naming and shaming such sites. For now, we are all best sticking with what we know with the more popular sites for our Christmas gifts, the most popular being Amazon and ebay. These two online retailers are battling it out for Christmas supremacy, Amazon seem to be on the rise especially having had a new store pop up here in Manchester. This bringing a little more water into the city with the amount of jobs available at this warehouse. But what does this mean for the little guys? Well smaller, family owned stores will be getting less business due to the rise in online sales Sure, the Christmas market is a great push for these little companies to get out there and sell their products, but it’s very hard to compete with the likes of these two online conglomerates. Not only are the markets helping out the smaller companies, but the experience is very much the epitome of Christmas itself and the online stores almost take away from that. There is little need for people to leave the confines of their homes now that they can even order their Christmas dinner from their phones. Christmas traditions are ever changing now with the advancements in technology which is not arguably a bad thing as only a few years ago we would be getting fruit in our stockings for Christmas!


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Wednesday 14th December 2016

Andy Warhol at Whitworth Gallery: Manhattan to Manchester

By Flynn Murnan

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anyof the works of iconic 60s pop artist Andy Warhol have recently taken up residence at Manchester’s Whitworth gallery on Oxford Rd. The American artist’s work is instantly recognisable and has influenced a wealth of contemporary artists all over the globe, even artists here in Manchester such as Harrison Edwards, who currently has his own exhibition Flu Season at B.eat Street in Deansgate. Harrison said: “As I started to develop I was introduced to the likes of Liechtenstein that then lead me to the world of Andy Warhol. “I became fascinated with screen printing as a way to create art for the masses. “His use of everyday pop culture is a theme that I still incorporate in my work to this day. “I feel that Warhol was a figurehead of making art accessible to the world. “He, in part, broke the stigma of art being for the elite Inspiring a generation of new artists around the world.” Manchester’s art scene has seen somewhat of a boom in recent years, primarily in the new home of counter-culture in Manchester, the Northern Quarter. The Northern Quarter, with its zigzagging wrought iron fire escapes and tall industrial looking penned in

The 60s Pop artist work has taken residence at the Whitworth Gallery Photo: Abigail Gillibrand) buildings, in many ways emulates the gritty bohemian streets of Manhattan, a part of New York where Warhol spent his most prolific years and hosted debauched parties at the infamous Factory. Harrison explained: “Over the last 5 years, the Northern Quarter has really flourished due to an influx in creative input. “What is great to see though is

how other areas of Manchester have seen this and started to emulate that, making Manchester a more vibrant and creative place to be in general.” The Northern Quarter, once the center of Manchester’s cotton industry, is a hub for emerging local talent, and you only have to cast your eyes to some of its street art, most of which takes clear inspiration from the 60s cult icon, to see that.

can be shared with the hashtag #GiveSocksNotDogs. Adrian Burder, Dogs Trust’s CEO rescued one of his dogs, Skipper, after Christmas in 2014, and agrees that the campaign is a great way of raising awareness to think before buying a puppy. In a statement on the Dogs Trust website, Adrian said: “We want to avoid these unfortunate situations and by rebranding ourselves as Socks Trust, we are encouraging prospective buyers to make sure they’ve thoroughly thought about the reality of dog ownership before they impulse buy. “Instead, opt for a safe pair of cosy socks that their loved ones definitely won’t give back this year. “After all, we can never have too many pairs of Christmas socks!” At their Manchester branch, the team are already working hard in preparation for the extra puppies that may come in after Christmas. One of the main aims is to make sure people are educated before deciding to buy a pet as a present. Dogs Trust puppy rearer, Ray Newton had the following advice about deciding whether a puppy is the right Christmas present: “If you are set around getting a puppy this Christmas then definitely do some research around the breed. Don’t just go for the one that looks the cutest because, for example, Beagles are incredibly cute puppies but when they are adults they require a lot of work.” If it seems like a puppy is the

perfect gift, it is advised that you should definitely discuss with the family first, to make sure that it will continue to be loved, and maybe even wait and adopt one that has been handed in, to ensure every dog has a chance for a forever home. One dog lover, Matt Park did exactly this when he decided to adopt his new puppy Sooty. Mr Park has had dogs his entire life, ever since childhood and the last year has been his first without one, but he decided it was time to get another, he said: “I’ve got two children in my house, and we’d love to have a family dog again. “I’ve been to a few other different organisations today actually, looking at rehoming dogs and many organisers now won’t rehome them before Christmas which I completely agree with as many people buy dogs as a present and they take them back by New Year.” He agreed that it was important to raise awareness. He said: “I like the campaign, and I’d rather give another present than a dog.” Having had dogs in the past, he knew what he was looking for, and understood that although everyone may want a dog, you have to understand the commitment that this means. “I’d seen him on the website, saw pictures, so I knew what he was going to look like but immediately as soon as you see a dog you know. So this morning I saw him and I knew.” “A dog is always for life. Always.”

‘Buy socks not dogs for Christmas’ By Libby Harris If you are struggling over what to get your loved ones this year, the Dogs Trust suggests that maybe socks are a better present than a puppy, when it comes to wanting to a gift to cherish. Of course, we’ve all heard the saying, “A dog is for life, not for Christmas” and yet every year in the month after the festive period, the charity Dogs Trust receives approximately 3000 calls regarding unwanted dogs which leads to the 20 centres based around the country taking in about 1000 dogs during the festive aftermath. Last year this figure reached 1,256 puppies being handed in as the excitement of a Christmas puppy wore off and people realised the time, money and effort needed in order to care for a dog. To try and reduce the amount of dogs adopted in a festive rush Dogs Trust have rebranded to become Socks Trust Dogs and to support their campaign they are selling special dog socks that feature eight designs telling the stories of some of the rehomed puppies. The money made from these socks goes towards covering the cost of care for the 16,000 dogs every year that go through the various national branches. Dogs Trust are urging people to get involved and share photos of your support through social media, whether its pictures of your dog or your socks, pictures and stories

In March of this year the Northern Quarter played host to the cities of Hope Street Art Festival and now it boasts several huge murals, as well as some more moderate pieces. Also in the Northern Quarter, art shop, Fred Aldous commissions artists to paint an old disused brick building, Out House, in Stevenson’s Square, which currently boasts a very popular David Bowie mural.

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It’s not just the walls that boast an impressive array of local art work, though, many of the Northern Quarter’s bars and café strive to showcase emerging talent in the city. Kosmonaut on Tariff Street is one of those bars. Employee Daniel said: “We tend to have a different artist up every few months, the one we have up now is called Andrew Dawson and its got a definite pop art feel to it. “Its good because it gives Manchester artists that essential exposure that every artist needs.” Slightly further afield from the Northern Quarter, just on the edge of China Town sits generation POP! Which is an art gallery dedicated to pop art, most of which incorporates the stylistic features that Warhol pioneered in the 60s. Warhol is arguably one of the most influential artists of the 20th Century, along with Picasso. His ‘60s exhibition The Personality of the Artist which included his Brillo, Heinz Tomato Ketchup, Kellogg’s Corn Flakes, Del Monte Peach Halves and Mott’s Apple Juice boxes has been said to be one of the most significant in half a century. It is the only testament to his talent and vision that young artists from across the globe, from Manhattan to Manchester, still find his work relevant and influential today. The Exhibition at the Whitworth Gallery on Oxford Road is running until April next year.

The Dogs Trust is urging people not to adopt just the cutest puppy (Photo: Laura Bailey)

Matt Park and his new family pet

(Photo: Laura Bailey)


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Wednesday 14th December 2016

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Greater Manchester shows support for veganism as movement grows Animal welfare campaigners join the throng at one of the many vegan events across Greater Manchester

By Daniella Ansell

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he city of Manchester and its surrounding towns and boroughs are active advocates and supporters of the increasingly popular practice of veganism. The Vegan Society defines veganism as “a philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude – as far as is possible and practical – all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose. In dietary terms it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.” In recent years, veganism has become much more popular in the West. A poll carried out by Ipsos Mori earlier this year, showed that veganism is the fastest growing lifestyle movement, with a 360 per cent rise in the past decade resulting in at least 542,000 Brits following a vegan diet. Jasmijn De Boo, chief executive of The Vegan Society,said: “To have over half a million vegans in Britain is fantastic. “More people than ever before are acting upon the health and environmental benefits of veganism, and finding out what really goes on in the meat and dairy industries and deciding they do not want to contribute to the pain and suffering of animals.” For followers of the vegan lifestyle

Some of A Kind Mama’s vegan bakes (Photo: Eve Bramley) that live within Greater Manchester, being vegan couldn’t be easier. Across the county, there are plenty of vegan friendly cafés and restaurants, Unicorn – a vegan grocery store – and numerous events promoting or supporting vegan lifestyles. Eve Bramley runs A Kind Mama Vegan Bakery in Cheadle. She has been vegan for 11 months and moved to Manchester from Essex in September. Speaking about Manchester’s vegan scene, she said: “I can honestly say there are so many more vegan options here! Obviously it is a big city, which caters for everyone, but even smaller towns like Stockport have a vegan restaurant and a vegan shop opening on Saturday! “I’ve definitely noticed a rise in popularity as well. There are more and more vegan restaurants, businesses and options everywhere I go. “I work from home baking cakes,

taking them to markets and also sending them out all over the UK and it’s been so popular! “I go to places like Spinningfields, Northern Quarter, Cheadle Village, West Didsbury and Altrincham. “The vegan fair on Sunday in Altrincham was incredible. I made 500 cakes and they were sold out within two hours. That’s crazy! “There are so many people taking things into their own hands and starting up businesses to cater for those who want to live a more compassionate life, and I think that’s really cool.” There is certainly no shortage of vegan events within Manchester. Last weekend alone there were two vegan fairs, a Manchester Pig Save march and a weekly vegan outreach, demonstrating that Manchester is an excellent advocate for veganism. Kate Hutchinson is a vegan activist and member of both Manchester Vegan Advocacy Group and Manchester Pig Save, which are only two of the many vegan groups in Manchester, and she explained the pro-vegan activism that takes place across the city. “We have a vegan outreach stall called Awakening Compassion every Sunday on Market Street 1-4pm, which started last year on December 20,” Hutchinson said. Manchester was also the first place in the UK to set up a Save group, called Manchester Pig Save, inspired by Toronto Pig Save. Twenty four

(Photo: Kate Hutchinson)

Eve Bramley owns vegan market bakery A Kind Mama groups have now been formed in the UK in the past year.” The Manchester Pig Save group hold frequent ‘vigils’, in which they comfort and film the animals in trucks before they are driven into slaughterhouses. Kate passionately explained why they do this. She said: “We visit the slaughterhouses peacefully to comfort the animals and document their plight. “Our peaceful approach has helped us establish an agreement with the slaughterhouse. They hire security for us to stop the trucks and allow us three minutes with the animals. They also allow us to film the animals. “Bearing witness is an incredibly powerful and life changing experience. I remember the first time we held a vigil outside Tulip Slaughterhouse. A three-tiered truck arrived, I looked into the narrow slates and saw different coloured eyes staring back at me, some inquisitive and some scared and covered in scratches. Then the truck drove into the slaughterhouse with all those little creatures trapped inside.

“This was the moment that changed my life. I heard the most horrendous sounds imaginable. A wall of violent screams and clanking chains as the pigs were entering the gas chambers.” A spokesperson for Manchester Pig Save, added: “Most people do not realise there is a slaughterhouse in their city or think about the animals that enter them. That is why we feel a duty to go to the places where the violence to the animals is the worst, to shine a light on these places and acknowledge the victims.” For many, this more hands on approach to vegan activism would be very distressing, however it is a harsh reminder of the price to be paid for meat and dairy products. Manchester Pig Saves’ next vigil will be taking place outside Tulip Slaughterhouse in Ashton at 6.30am tomorrow, and there are many more vegan events coming up that you can attend – vegan or not. Anyone interested in taking on a new vegan lifestyle, can take part in Veganuary - which urges people to be vegan throughout January.


Wednesday 14th December 2016

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OH YES THEY DID! TV stars turn panto giants

By Abigail Gilibrand

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age fighter Alex Reid and Hollyoaks star Andrew McGuire are performing the Christmas Pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk this month in Middleton. Since the age of 14, Alex has been into mixed martial arts and has taken part in numerous cage fights. He appeared in Hollyoaks in 2001 but then in 2010 shot to fame with his appearance in the film Killer Bitch. Later that year, he began dating glamour model Katie Price (aka Jordan) and they were married for 11 months. He cemented his celebrity status in series seven of Big Brother. Alex said: “My life is a pantomime unfortunately in the media. I detest the word celebrity. I always wanted to be famous and I liked the idea of the cheer of the crowd and that’s what I’m doing. “Appearing in Jack and the Beanstalk has been a nice stepping stone back into something I absolutely love. I’ve done TV and films and stage before, but I haven’t been doing it because of this salacious media.”

The show opened on December 1 and runs until the new year. “We’ve done two shows today and we have around 60 in total over the four weeks. It’s intense.” The production will be the second time Alex has performed in a pantomime. He said: “People don’t realise that I am trained as an actor and I’ve done lots of TV. I love pantomime, I love performing.” Although taking on the role as the baddy Fleshcreep, Alex showed his softer side when responding to his audience’s reaction. “I felt very bad the other day, because I’m the bad guy and I have a big giant costume and there was this little girl who was crying her eyes out and I felt so bad. I had to be nasty and all I wanted to be was nice.” It is not only the pantomime that Alex has taken on this year, but he has also launched his personal training website, Alex Reid Training (ART), which the cast have been doing in between show. Alex said it is going from strength to strength. Tickets for Jack and the Beanstalk at Middleton Arena are still available.

Parklife poster

Parklife poster makes rumours run wild By Olivia Smith

Parklife posters have been spotted in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, sparking line up rumours for the 2017 festival. The posters which sport a pair of Nike trainers, are the only clue on the posters which have begun springing up around the Northern Quarter and on social media. However, the poster does tell us the award winning festival will be held once again in Heaton Park in June 2017. Rumours have sparked that Frank Ocean could be the mysterious headliner following the 2016 release of his single ‘Nikes’ which features on his second album ‘Blonde’. Manchester Confidential spoke to organiser Sacha Lord, who said, “I cannot confirm anything at this time,” said Lord, “all acts will be announced in January.” More than 140,000 revellers filled the park last year to watch acts including The Chemical Brothers, Major Lazer, Ice Cube, Wolf Alice and Blossoms.

Alice Cooper to play Manchester gig

Alex Reid (left) and Andrew McGuire (right) are staring in Jack and the Beanstalk at the Middleton Arena until the new year

Justin Moorhouse performs new tour at Lowry

By Adam Lewis

Justin Moorhouse, alongside support act Danny Mcloughlin, brought his latest show, People and Feelings, to the Lowry theatre. The Manchester comic was as chipper as ever playing in front of his home crowd. With a relativley low-key entrance, warm up act Danny Mcloughlin kicks off the show. The Chester comic draws immediate attention to his feminine pink hoodie. The rather fetching garment got the laughs rolling. Mcloughlin is a talented writer, his anecdotes weighing heavy with jokes. He recalls a particular clash during his teenage days as a paperboy in the main story of his set. The revenge that he took several years later, inebriated with kebab in hand, is hilarious. The class divide is a running theme through Mcloughlin’s anecdotes, with the comic fighting the side of the working class with strong humour. Mcloughlin struggled to maintain momentum in his act, with the Salford audience remaining relatively tentative despite some great gags. However, he finished strong with a hilarious rhyming poem about his uncle Rasputin that, with some well written lines, got the audience hooting. After the interval, Justin Moorhouse made his way onto the stage while ringing a bell. During what must be the most bullish walk onto a stage in stand up history, the

Funny man Justin Moorhouse Manchester comedian reeled off a list of associated things that highlight how a bell is often the bearer of bad news. Before diving into his anecdotes, Moorhouse attempts to gain trust from his audience by declaring everything in his show is the truth and explaining the tricks of the trade that tonight, he wouldn’t be using. It seems needless for him to explain this, as though Moorhouse’s warm northern charm isn’t enough to gain trust. The theme circles around growing up, as he jokes about the depressing signs of getting older

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(Photo: Justin Moorhouse) before continuously referring back to anecdotes about his childhood throughout the rest of the show. Playing out as a child is something the 46-year-old looks back fondly upon, and has several hilarious anecdotes about him goofing around with friends. Kids today play different games than a young Moorhouse did, and whilst asking who the youngest in the theatre was, he stumbled over a twelve-year-old. In complete anguish he asked what his parents were thinking, bringing him to an adult comedy show. The reply, “he’s from Wigan,” got the comic laughing just

as much as much as everyone else. Once the show gets rolling, Moorhouse gets continuous laughter. A dig at drivers who own personalised number plates really gets the audience going, particularly when he picks out those in the audience with the plates. Big topics are visited fleetingly. From throwing in a direct question to whether anyone in the room was a racist, to his mum’s warning against paedophiles in which he was told not to “get got,” he picks out the funny so well that the seriousness is strangely forgotten about. Moorhouse goes on to despair at a phrase he utterly hates – “you had to be there”. It’s the ultimate signal that an anecdote has failed, and Moorhouse has heard these words far too many times when talking to his mum and aunties. Another fantastic routine that will live long in the memory originates from a moment in Moorhouse’s childhood, involving a friend’s sister taking an accidental knock-out blow to the chin. The telling of this story drives the laughter, with Moorhouse throwing all his energy into it. He’s an out-and-out northern comedian, playing the roll perfectly. Up there with the best of them, he has duly gathered a loyal following of fans who adore that brand of comedy. Moorhouse will always deliver a solid show of belly laughs and this hour is one of his very best.

Shock rock veteran Alice Cooper has revealed he will do a UK tour in 2017 including a show at Manchester Arena. The ‘School’s Out’ singer, who has not toured for five years, will be joined by supporting bands, ‘The Mission’ and ‘The Tubes’ in Manchester next year. Eighties goth-rock heroes, The Mission told NME that they owe a great debt to Cooper. “I remember during the summer of 1972 being on scout camp and hearing this new song on the radio that absolutely mesmerised me. ‘School’s Out ‘by Alice Cooper. Loved it, still do,” said The Mission’s Wayne Hussey. “Fast forward to 1987 and our first headline spot on the Friday night at Reading Festival. Headlining the Sunday was Alice Cooper. And now we’ve been invited by Alice to join him on his UK tour next November.” Tickets go on sale at 9am on Friday, December 16, for the Manchester show on 15 November, 2017.

Korn surprise tributes On Monday night American metal band, Korn, decided to attend a Korn tribute gig at the Ruby Lounge. The band showed up at the gig prior to their own show at Manchester Arena and got on stage with the Liverpool tribute band and performed their hits ‘Freak on a Leash’ and ‘Here to Stay’. Korn posted a video of the surprise appearance on Facebook. The tribute band also took to their own social media to express their shock and also tell their fans how the real Korn had ‘made their dreams come true’. “We’ll never get over this s***,” they wrote. “Ray and Fieldy, you made our dreams come true. Thank you so much. It was truly an honour. Next time let’s smash Blind.” Korn played Manchester Arena on Monday night along with Limp Bizkit.


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Wednesday 14th December 2016

United hope for back-to-back Premier League victories By Jordan Stewart

MANCHESTER United will look to make it back-to-back Premier League victories for the first time since August when they travel to Selhurst Park to take on Crystal Palace. United ended a run of three consecutive 1-1 draws in the league on Sunday, when they overcame Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 at Old Trafford thanks to Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s 29th minute strike. The weekend’s win left the Reds three points behind fifth placed Spurs and six points astray of rivals Manchester City, who are in fourth place. United will be without Sunday’s match winner Mkhitaryan for the midweek trip, after he suffered a minor ankle injury following Danny Rose’s poor challenge in the 85th minute, however he is expected to be back for the Boxing Day fixture against Sunderland. The Armenian summer signing joins Luke Shaw and Chris Smalling as the only other injuries for United, while Antonio Valencia will miss the trip after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season. London-based Crystal Palace are just three points from safety, sitting in 15th. However, they could count themselves unlucky not to have come away

United are hoping to make it back-to-back victories tonight with all three points after Saturday’s thrilling 3-3 draw at Hull City. The Eagles are no strangers to high scoring games this season, and in their past seven Premier League games a remarkable 36 goals have been scored. However they could be without eight players for the game.

James Tomkins and Bakary Sako will be monitored ahead of the game after they missed the hull fixture, whilst Connor Wickham, Loic Remy, Steve Mandanda, Jonathan Benteke and Papa Souare all definitely miss out through injury. Jason Puncheon misses out after collecting his fifth

(Photo: PA Wire) booking this weekend. Palace have not beaten United since 2011, when they won 2-1 in the League Cup, and the Reds have not lost in the league against them since May 1991. The game kicks off at 8pm tonight. It will be shown live on BT Sport 1.

Out-of-form Manchester City face Watford FC By Sam Halligan

ON THE BACK of two consecutive defeats in the Premier League, Manchester City host a Watford team in high spirits following a 3-2 win over Everton at the weekend. Just a week after losing to Chelsea on home soil, Pep Guardiola’s men were beaten again, this time by struggling title-holders Leicester City. A Jamie Vardy hat-trick stunned City as the Foxes flew to a 4-2 victory at the King Power stadium. Watford, on the other hand, came from behind at Vicarage Road to beat Everton in a performance which saw injury-hindered Stefano Okaka open his Hornet’s account with a brace, following his move from Anderlecht in the summer. With the Blues riddled with suspension; the likes of Fernandinho and talisman Sergio Aguero still banned after picking up red cards against Chelsea, Watford will certainly fancy their chances at taking full advantage of a weakened City side. The Hornets are not without problems of their own, however, with the

likes of Robert Kenedy, Craig Cathcart, Brince Djadjedje, Younes Kaboul, and Adrian Mariappa all ruled out due to injury. The upside for City is that Nicolas Otamendi will return to the side after serving a one-match suspension for picking up his fifth yellow card of the season; Youngster Kelechi Iheanacho, who has 9 domestic goals to his name so far this season, is also likely to replace Aguero in the centre-forward role. For newly promoted Watford, Okaka is set to lead the attacking line again following his performance against Everton, and will likely be accompanied by in-form captain, Troy Deeney. Despite their recent poor run of form, City have only lost three out of their 15 Premier League games so far this season, and in their past six meetings, the Blues have been victorious over the Hornets on four occasions, with the remaining two ending as a draw. Watford have not beaten City in their last nine meetings in all competitions.

City are hoping for a win today after two consecutive defeats (Photo: PA Wire)

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King-sized incentive for Macclesfield Town By Jordan Davies AS if a spot in the third-round of the FA Cup wasn’t enough of a carrot for the Macclesfield Town players, a local furniture outlet has given the Silkmen’s first team squad an added piece of motivation to pull off an FA Cup shock tonight against Oxford United. Should John Askey’s side defeat their League One opponents in their second-round replay each member of the squad will receive a king-sized bed from the club’s main sponsors, Arighi Bianchi. Speaking to the club’s official site, director of the home furniture store Nick Bianchi said: “The players are doing the town incredibly proud and as main sponsor we want to reward them for that! “At the beginning of the season I sat down with John (Askey) and Steve (Watson) to explain that as main sponsors of this fantastic Football Club we wanted to give something back to the players. “So after our excellent performance against Oxford we got together at Arighi Bianchi and decided that if we get through the replay we will give each member of the first-team a King size bed with our compliments. “I hope we do it and I hope this can be a little carrot for the team when they are travelling down to the game. Fingers crossed on Wednesday morning the team are beating the doors of Arighi Bianchi down to get their bed.”

Yaya given 18-month drink-driving ban By Jacob Smalley MANCHESTER City footballer Yaya Toure has been fined £54,000 and banned for 18 months after pleading guilty to drink-driving. The Ivorian was caught by police in Dagenham, Essex, last month and tested more than twice the legal limit of 35 micrograms. A devout Muslim, Toure released a statement on his personal website and insisted that the consumption was non-intentional. He wrote: “Drink-driving is a serious crime and even though I was not intentionally consuming alcohol I accept the ban and fine and I would like to apologise for this situation.” Toure said. “Over the last two weeks there has been some confusion as to why I was charged with drink driving, as it is well known that I am a Muslim and do not drink. “I have always refused alcohol. Anyone who knows me or follows football will have seen me refuse champagne for Man of the Match performances because of my commitment to my religion. “The matter has now been resolved in court on Monday. As I was above the permitted limit when tested on the night, I decided not to challenge the charge. However, it was important to me that I told the court that I had not intentionally consumed alcohol. The judge in his sentencing remarks accepted that I had not been intentionally drinking. ““Drink driving is a serious crime and I accept the ban and fine and I would like to apologise for this situation.” The news comes as a knock for the City man who has recently regained his place in Pep Guardiola’s side after being exiled for much of the season due to comments made by his agent.


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Wednesday 14th December 2016

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Ronaldo wins fourth Ballon d’Or title By William Pearson

Manchester Rangers have collaborated with Manchester College and Metropolitan University and to form a rugby league academy

Manchester Rangers launch new rugby academy

By Olliver Mackenzie

MANCHESTER RANGERS have joined forces with The Manchester College and Manchester Metropolitan University to form the Manchester Rugby League Academy at MMU’s Platt Lane training complex. The academy will see all three organisations working together to create an education and playing pathway. Students will spend a minimum of five years involved with the programme; including direct involve-

ment with the club, college, and university. The partnership, which the club states is ‘the first of its kind in the UK’, sees all three organisations combined to provide coaching on the pitch, and education off it. Manchester Rugby League Academy will be open to 16-19-year-old students, who will earn qualifications alongside high quality coaching with Manchester Rangers RLFC. Club chairman Phil Fitton (Centre) is delighted with the announcement, saying: “We have worked extremely hard on building individual relation-

ships with both The Manchester College and Manchester Metropolitan University over the last couple of years and this partnership now ties these relationships up perfectly. “Our ambition is to provide the players that are involved with the Academy a solid platform to go on to achieve great successes in both their sporting and personal lives.” Assistant principal Barry Atkins was also pleased with the announcement: “This programme is unique and will provide an excellent platform for participants to achieve their sporting and educational ambitions.”

Students will have access to training daily on Rugby League specific elements, strength and conditioning. Those that complete the level three course will also have the chance to attend a course at Manchester Metropolitan University which include (but not limited to); Coaching and Sports Development, Sport and Exercise Science, and Sports Management. The club also hopes that the new academy will allow rugby league to flourish in the city once again, as well as offering students a direct pathway into the semi-professional and professional game.

Has Guardiola bitten off more than he can chew at Man City?

By Jordan Stewart

MANCHESTER City got their season off to a brilliant start under new manager Pep Guardiola, winning their first 10 games and scoring 30 goals in the process, and it began to look like the Spaniard and the Blues were a match made in heaven as bookmakers up and down the country made them favourites to win the league this year. However teething problems began to show in the side and an ever-changing starting 11 saw Guardiola go without a win in six games across all competitions – the worst run of his managerial career. The last two Premier League games have seen Guardiola’s side concede three or more goals in consecutive league games for the first time in his career; in fact it was only the third time one of his sides had conceded four goals eve. They now sit seven points behind leaders Chelsea after sitting in first at the start of November. In a concerning statistic for the new manager, only Crystal Palace, Hull and Sunderland have kept fewer clean sheets than Manchester City all season. So where is it going wrong at the Etihad? Manchester United fans will know all too well about having a manager who imposes and talks about his ‘philosophy’ regularly, and City may well

be hearing a lot of this too, as Guardiola goes about putting his stamp on the Blues. Famously, wherever he has managed, it’s almost a certainty that trophies follow. In the eight seasons he has been a manager, he has finished first seven times. The only exception came in the 2011-12 season, his last at Barcelona, when they finished second behind rivals Real Madrid. His sides are usually easy to identify, they are easy to watch and rely heavily on the tiki-taka style of play. Usually they are notoriously difficult to play against as they rely on high pressing and a high back line, with his defenders bringing the ball out from the back and starting the team’s attack off. Two goals in the opening five minutes shocked Guardiola’s side. At City, it could be argued that he simply does not have the players to fit in with his system. The protector of his back four for the game at Leicester was Fernando, a player that is good but not quite the calibre of Lahm or Busquets, the players he had in the same role at Bayern Munich or Barcelona. The only real ball-playing defender he has at the Etihad is summer signing John Stones, but he frequently gets caught on the ball or makes a mistake, as was the case again this weekend at Leicester. Guardiola was settled on a style

Pep has experienced the worst run of his career (Photo: Press Association) and team at both his previous clubs, whereas in Manchester he has made 50 changes already this season — a figure which is higher than any other club in the league — and last week suggested he should be allowed to make six substitutions a game. Perhaps it is a case of the squad needing more time to adapt to Guardiola’s style.

Players?

At both Bayern Munich and Barcelona, the squads were both packed full of world class talent with players from both sides frequently in FIFA Team of the Year or in contention for the Ballon d’Or. At City, it could be argued that Aguero and De Bruyne are maybe the only world class talent he has to work with, whereas neither of the two players are at the right end of the pitch to help the defence out. City have had money to spend in recent years, and between the recent

signings of Nicolas Otamendi, Eliaquim Mangala and John Stones, they have spent roughly £120 million on three central defenders alone in an attempt to get suitable cover for injury-prone captain, Vincent Kompany. The side has yet to see a settled back three or four all season and £42 million signing Mangala has since been loaned out to La Liga outfit Valencia. This weekend was the first time Manchester City have conceded twice in the opening five minutes of a game since October 2006 against Wigan, as they were 2-0 down after just 255 seconds. There was some very questionable defending for Jamie Vardy’s second and third goal this weekend, with Bravo being caught in no man’s land for the England striker’s second goal, and John Stones virtually gifting him his hat-trick. But these sort of scenes have not been an exception, Bravo has looked shaky at best since his debut at Old Trafford in September and Stones has been the subject of constant analysis from pundits. Certainly, at 15 games in to a season it is still too early to say this side are not capable of winning the league and they have shown promising signs, most notably beating Barcelona 3-1 at home. However, unless the defence tightens up it is going to be a challenge to improve on Manchester City’s second place finish last season.

REAL Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo has won the Ballon d’Or prize for the fourth time after beating Barcelona’s Lionel Messi. Ronaldo, who is now only one behind Messi’s record total of five, took the title for the first time since 2014. Messi finished second while Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann came third after lifting France to the final of the European Championships last summer. In a stand-out year for the Real Madrid forward Ronaldo helped Portugal win their first ever European Championships, scoring three times during the competition, and led Madrid to their eleventh Champions League success against rivals Atletico, scoring the winning penalty in the shootout. In his 42 appearances for Los Blancos this year, Cristiano Ronaldo has scored 38 goals and provided 14 assists, averaging a goal every 84 minutes – the third best of anyone in Europe’s top five leagues. Leicester City’s Premier League duo of Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy both finished inside the top ten, finishing seventh and eight respectively, On a night where Mahrez was also crowned BBC African Player of the Year, he was further rewarded for spear-heading the Foxes’ Premier League title last season. It has been awarded by France Football every year since 1956, but for the past six years it became the FIFA Ballon d’Or in association with world football’s governing body. However, FIFA’s association with the award was ended in September after the recent corruption scandals. FIFA will hand out their own prize for the world’s best men’s player, along with the best women’s player and team of the year, at the Best Fifa Football Awards ceremony in early January.

Ronaldo won his fourth title (Photo: RCuerda29 Flickr)

Salford City loanee returns to Fleetwood

By Oliver Mackenzie

SALFORD CITY loanee Nick Haughton has been recalled by parent club Fleetwood Town. The midfielder joined The Ammies on a two-month loan, and impressed fans immediately with his touch and vision. Haughton made four starts, and scored a well-taken goal against Worcester City. However, with major injury problems at Highbury Stadium, Fleetwood manager Uwe Rosler has recalled the attacking midfielder, who is expected to be in first team contention soon. In a statement, the club said: “We’d like to thank Nick for his considerable contribution over the past few weeks and wish him, and Fleetwood Town FC, the best of luck for the rest of the season.” Co-manager Anthony Johnson also said it was “an absolute pleasure” to work with him and wished him all the best.


QUAYS NEWS SPORT Wednesday 14th December 2016

Castlefield Tigers begin legal proceedings against Sale Sharks

(Photo: PA Images)

Denny Solomona, will join Sale Sharks from rugby league outfit Castleford Tigers

By Oliver MacKenzie

CASTLEFORD Tigers have officially begun legal proceedings against Sale Sharks regarding the transfer of Denny Solomona. It was announced yesterday that Solomana will be joining Rugby Union team Sale Sharks. The Yorkshire club has not

commented on the winger’s code switch so far today, however have now stated their intention to take The Sharks to court. The proceedings include damages against Solomona for breach of contract, and Sale Sharks Ltd & Andrew Clarke (Solomona’s agent) for the same breach of contract Tigers chief Executive Of-

ficer Steve Gill has released a statement saying: “In August this year we made it very clear to Solomona & to Sale Sharks that there was an unbreakable contract in place until the end of season 2018 with no basis whatsoever for either ourselves or Solomona to depart from each other’s mutual obligations. “The idea of losing the play-

er was not welcomed by us and we have repeatedly told Sale Sharks that it would be impermissible for them to talk to Solomona let alone sign him. “Clear unequivocal warnings have clearly been disregarded.” Denny Solomona spent two years at Castleford, with his performance in this year’s Super League involving a record

always held a strong passion for helping the local football community, and this was on display once more this season after the founder of the company, Bill Rhind, held a meeting with club president Bernard Manning Jr. Mr Rhind offered to build a new stand at Taurus Park for free, which offers protection for supporters against the typical Radcliffe weather, and is displayed to the right of the ground’s new turnstiles. With all the new developments which have taken place over the course of the summer and throughout the season so far, Mr Rhind was naturally disappointed to hear news of

the fire which destroyed the ground’s main stand. He said: “This company has always tried to do its best to help out the local communities in the area and hearing news of the fire was terrible. “Following conversations with Bernard, I decided to get involved with the club as they needed assistance with the stand in order to comply with league restrictions. “I am very pleased with the final outcome, I have received good feedback from everyone at the club when I attended last week’s game against West Didsbury & Chorlton. “I have to say I also enjoyed the pasties when I went!

“Considering the fire occurred on Sunday night, the club did brilliantly to get the game on just two days later. “It’s important the local community now show their support for their local club as we intend to do so ourselves going forward.” Radcliffe Borough continue their league campaign at home again this Saturday, (December, 17) as they host Tadcaster Albion with kick off at 15:00. To make a contribution to the redevelopment of the ground, or to help fund the rebuilding of a new main stand, go to their JustGiving page at: https:// www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/dean-warwick-2

42 tries. Gill went on to admit that the proceedings have been issued as a ‘last resort’ after the club “failed over the last couple of weeks to try and resolve matters without the formality of court proceedings.” “Neither Sale Sharks or Andrew Clarke have issued a repose to the proceedings. “We have confidence that the

legal system will bring out all of the facts and the truth. “We are fighting this not just for Castleford Tigers but also for the integrity of all sports including of course Rugby Union clubs. Our belief is that all contracts are sacrosanct in professional & amateur sports.” Castleford Tigers will make no further comment on this matter at this time.

Radcliffe Borough FC made of stronger stuff By Jordan Stewart

RADCLIFFE Borough were rocked at the start of December, as they were the victims of a suspected arson attack. However, they finally have some better news after a local businessman built them an away stand free of charge, now they are hoping for even more generosity in rebuilding their main stand. Money, messages of support and offers of help flooded in to the Greater Manchester side, who play their football in the eighth division of football. Accrington-based business ‘Robert Nicholas Steel’ have

Left to right ‘Bernard Manning Jr, Bill Rhind, Paul Hilt on (Photo: Radcliffe Borough)

INSIDE: Manchester United and Manchester City Premier League previews, Manchester Rangers launch rugby academy


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