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presents Written by Ian Fyles


Rimmer Armstrong A hat for every occasion...

Hi and welcome to our online magazine, March sees Southport Shine celebrate its 1st birthday and I have to say that our first year has been a wonderful experience and a huge learning curve. We have had great support and encouragement from all our readers and followers, local businesses and charitable organisations, not to mention the clubs, groups, associations and local talents who have featured in the magazine over the past year. We are very excited about the future and wish to thank you all very much for your support.


Together we can make Southport Shine!

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SUBSCRIBE TODAY All events, dates, times and prices were correct at time of going to press. All photographs and graphics unless stated otherwise. All original copyright holders retain copyright.

Southport Shine,

DATES & EVENTS AT A GLANCE March 16th 17th 18 - 22nd 21st 22nd 22 -23rd 27th 28th 29th 30th 30th 31st 31st

Southport Melodic Jazz at the Clifton St. Patricks Day (Ireland) SDC Youth Theatre present The Railway Children at Little Theatre RSPB Local Group meeting (speaker - Peter Holden MBE) SUAG 40 s Night Spring Flower Show - Botanic Gardens Tea Jazz at Dobbies Step into Spring with Macmillan Southport Lecture Society meeting - speaker John Cornell Mothering Sunday Clocks go forward 1 hour Fancy A Nibble Cake Club meeting (talk by Janet Basu) Training starts for NOEGO MUD Challenge March - April The Great Easter Egg Raffle

April 1st 4 - 12th 6th 6th 8 - 11th 11th 12th 14th 17 - 21st 18th 20th 20th 21st 23rd 24th

April Fools Day SDC present The Odd Couple (Female Version) at Little Theatre Tidal Time Travel - RSPB Marshside Coastal Crafts & Fun - RSPB Marshside SONG presents Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat RSPB Local Group meeting Southport Lecture Society meeting - speaker Mr Paul Harrison Book Signing at Broadhursts Books - Sean Connolly author Army Novels Easter at the Park (see page opposite) Good Friday Easter Sunday Southport Melodic Jazz at the Clifton - Double Bill Easter Monday St. Georges Day (England) Tea Jazz at Dobbies


About the Park Hotel The Park Hotel offers a traditional local pub welcome with a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. The front patio, tastefully decorated with floral displays, overlooks Birkdale village and has wheelchair access. Inside you will find comfortable seating suitable for dining with family, having lunch with friends or just enjoying a drink in ambient surroundings.


Our menu has a wide selection of quality restaurant meals including our daily specials and Traditional Sunday Roast with all the trimmings - freshly prepared on the premises using only the freshest local produce. Delicious food to suit all tastes.

Watch Live Sport If your a sports fan, the Park Hotel is the best place to watch all the big games live. There are 6 plasma screens placed around the pub and a large projection screen in the sports area where you can enjoy a drink whilst watching your favourite sport. Pool and darts are also available. MARTIN AND THE TEAM LOOK FORWARD TO WELCOMING YOU TO THE PARK.

36 Weld Road, Birkdale Village, Southport, Merseyside, PR8 2ED Tel. 01704 569941

southport & district hyrstanthemum & gardening society The Banqueting Hall, Botanic Gardens, Southport Saturday & Sunday 22nd & 23rd March Opening times: Saturday 1.00 p.m. - 5.00 p.m. Sunday 10.00 a.m. - 5.00 p.m. Admission - 50p. As you enter The Banquet Hall, the beautiful scent of all the flowers hits you and the vast array of colours are amazing. Should anyone require any entry forms to show off their blooms or creative floral art, home made cakes, vegetables or for anymore enquiries regarding entering the show please telephone Alan Foxall on 01704 225708. Over the weekend there will be Musical entertainment playing outside on the veranda, (weather permitting). Fishermans Friends Jazz St. Helens Accordian Band Colin Dixon swinger !! A swinging singer no less! Thompson Dagniall Musical Entertainer. Both the Cafe and the Banquet Hall will be serving meals and refreshments all day.

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Do you love baking cakes? Do you love eating cakes? Do you love talking about cakes? Then the Fancy a Nibble Cake Club is just for you! MONTHLY MEETING Monday 31st March at 7:30 pm Di Silva s Delicatessen, Hoghton St. Southport Theme - to bake a cake which contains a drink plus a talk given by Janet Basu, finalist on series 2 of The Great British Bake Off Every baker can bring a non-baking, but cake-eating friend with them. Due to limited space it is advisable to book. For further information please contact club organiser Pam Leckie Tel: 07972 611813 Email: All Welcome


Success on a plate

WE ARE YOUR LOCAL BUTCHER Our beef, lamb, pork & poultry is responsibly produced in the UK from traceable sources . Birkdale: 01704 567073 Ainsdale: 01704 574069 Formby: 01704 872075 Ormskirk: 01695 570600 Kew (Dobbies): 01704 550437

The Redshank Tringa totanus The redshanks' most distinctive features are their bright orangered legs. They have a mediumlength bill with an orange base to match, brown speckled back and wings and paler belly. Amber Status

MARSHSIDE - A thrilling time of year with displaying waders and boxing hares all visible from the visitor centre or hide. Watch lapwings tumble in excitable displays over the site, elegant Avocets feeding in front of the visitor centre and female hares resisting the romantic advances of the males. As the flood-waters retreat, leaving muddy edges - look out for migrating waders like common sandpipers and maybe even curlew sandpipers. There are still large numbers of wigeon, teal and black-tailed godwits resting and feeding up before heading north to breed north. HESKETH OUT MARSH - This newly restored saltmarsh reserve is a great place to visit in Spring to view birds like lapwings, avocets and redshanks perform their eye-catching courtship displays, with much flying around and shrieking. Come and watch the birds antics from our viewing shelter. You might also see brown hares 'boxing'.

Marshside - Sunday 6th April 10:00 am Meet at the fog bell on Marshside Road (the fog bell is a local historical landmark on Marshside Road, opposite Stanley High School sports field). Free activity - No need to book just turn up! Join The RSPB and North Meols Civic Society on a guided walk around RSPB Marshside reserve and out onto the saltmarsh. Step back in time to discover the rich coastal history of Marshside and the amazing birds and wildlife found here today. No dogs please.

Marshside - Sunday 6th April & 25th May 11:00 am - 3:00 pm Meet at the Visitor Centre (Sandgrounders Hide) No need to book, just turn up! Help us create a wildlife inspired work of art to be displayed in the hide. There will also be plenty of other activities for you to do and make to take home.

Written by Alan Toms Winter is always the busiest time of the year for birds in the Southport area with the influx of geese, duck and wading birds returning from their breeding grounds in the far north to spend the winter in the comparatively mild Mersey and Ribble estuaries. We are indeed fortunate to have such rich feeding grounds on our doorstep affording wonderful wildlife spectacles.

Become a phenologist! Keep a record of when and where you see your first spring flowers, migrant birds, trees in leaf, frog spawn, first butterflies and dragonflies and other seasonal signs. Your records can help scientists who are studying climate change and its impact on wildlife. So start a wildlife diary today! This time is also a busy one for the local RSPB Group as we launch a new season of indoor presentations and field trips, renew memberships and take part in publicising the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch, the biggest such event in Europe and growing in size each year. This is an ideal opportunity for both the novice and the experienced to spend an enjoyable hour watching the birds in your own garden or park and contributing to the pool of knowledge on how our wildlife is faring in successive years. Protecting nature on this crowded isle naturally costs money and we have been doing our bit by soliciting contributions from members of the public at collections recently held in Morrisons, both in Ormskirk and Southport. This also gives us an opportunity to answer the many questions which people have about local wildlife and the important work the RSPB does. Another event we support and are represented at is the annual Birdwatching Festival held each November at Martin Mere. Our indoor meetings are now in full flow and coming up in March - the highlight of 2014 - Peter Holden will talk to us on 'Nature's Natural Secrets' as part of a national tour which he is doing.

So why not come along and join us on the third Friday of each month at 7.45 pm in Lord Street West United Church Hall or wrap up warm and go along to our Marshside reserve and enjoy the activity there. A very special evening with Peter Holden of Bedford (former RSPB Senior Staff) Currently on a national speaking tour, Peter's career with RSPB has spanned nearly 40 years. His passion for birds and for inspiring people about birds remains to this day and resulted in him being awarded a richly deserved MBE. He was instrumental in developing and promoting the first citizen science project in the UK Big Garden Birdwatch in 1979. Initially for children, Peter s vision enabled him to see the potential in extending the project to people of all ages. Now established as the world s largest citizen science project involving up to half a million participants monitoring millions of birds every year - it connects people with the wildlife outside their windows. Peter has written nine books, including the highly-acclaimed RSPB Handbook of British Birds and the recently published RSPB Handbook of Garden Wildlife.

Brian Anderson presents the wildlife of the Galapagos (The April meeting is a week earlier than usual due to the incidence of Easter).

Ian Butler from Worcestershire Further details can be found on our webpage at

GO COMMANDO PUTS THE FUN INTO FITNESS WITH THE NO EGO MUD CHALLENGE 2014 AT LEISURE LAKES A former Marine from Southport is looking for new recruits for an exciting event at Leisure Lakes this May. Steven Howard, owner of Go Commando Fitness at the outdoor activity centre in Tarleton, has teamed up with the organiser of the increasingly famous No Ego Mud Challenge to introduce a new event at his Mere Brow HQ. Voted by Mudstackle as one of the Top 10 mud challenges to do in 2014, the 10k assault course, on Saturday 10th May will involve contestants tackling a gruelling series of commando and Wipeout style obstacles, in between wading through lakes and clambering through muddy ditches. The commando challenge, the brainchild of event organSteven Howard iser Brian Lee, attracted almost 1000 entrants to Preston Former Marine & Go Commando and Penrith last year. Steven has joined forces with No Fitness owner Ego Challenge to organise and host the Leisure Lakes contest, which will include over 50 obstacles, with turnout expected to reach 1500. Steven and Brian plan to make the most of the huge lake at the centre, so like the TV show Total Wipeout , the course is designed to be as wet and wild as possible. Therefore contestants should prepare to dodge, jump, swing and negotiate hurdles such as monkey bars and wobbling platforms.... or risk taking a dive. Go Commando s advice is if you want to stay dry, stay calm because the more frantic your approach, the wetter you ll get. More TV show inspiration for the military-based obstacles will come from Gladiator themed challenges, incorporating ropes, tyres, nets and logs. The aim is to make it the biggest and best No Ego Challenge course yet, so expect excitement, exhilaration - and a lot of muddy fun. Whilst the course will be tailor-made to put all athletes through their paces, there is no reason why beginners can t have a go. Especially when Steven has a ready-made boot camp on the doorstep to train them up. Some entrants will just be quicker than others, but no one will get left behind. That s the No Ego Challenge and Go Commando ethos.

And since Steven has survived a tour of duty in Afghanistan you will be in safe hands. Not only does he make sure his recruits are going at a pace to fit their level of fitness, he also prepares them for the hard but fun-packed challenge. Steven said: True to its name, No Ego Challenge is about leaving the ego at home and getting fit, and even beginners will be surprised at how quickly their fitness level improves. Our Go Commando s boot camp courses run three times a week, and start with low-level walking, gradually building up to include shuttle runs and their own assault course. Steven and his team have carefully designed a 6 week training plan which will take place 3 nights per week. There will be a minimum of 2 instructors allowing the group to be split and trained accordingly to their highest level of fitness. The course will gradually improve fitness, confidence levels, team spirit and give you a practice on some of the obstacles that will be used at the event itself. So whether it's fitness issues - confidence - fear of heights apprehension - or you are just extra competitive and want to get the best time possible, our highly experienced instructors will leave you feeling ready for anything and raring to go when you line up on the start line. The first session will start Monday 31st March and then continue for a 6 week period each Mon, Wed, Fri. The No Ego challenge is a fantastic goal to aim for as their courses are achievable by everybody (some faster than others). He added: If anyone is struggling with a particular obstacle it can be missed out. But there will always be a group of runners or marshals that want to help you over, under or through the obstacle. Even though the course will allow serious athletes to push themselves to their limits the focus is on fun, and we will be setting people off in waves according to their fitness levels and comfort zone.

GOCOMMANDO FITNESS BOOT CAMP The boot camp course operates all year round and is run outdoors at Leisure Lakes. The vast amounts of water help Steven and his instructors to prepare candidates for mud. 6 week boot camp - up to 3 sessions per week (18 classes) - £50 for whole course. (10% discount for teams raising money for charity)

More pricing options are available including a free first session. For more details visit: or contact Steven Howard - 07900 841302

ENTRY TO NO EGO MUD CHALLENGE £49 individuals £45 for a teams of 4-9 £39 for teams of 10 or more. (prices will increase nearer the time so it is advisable to sign up quickly)

The event will be a fun day out for all, with live music and a bar on site - so competitors can bring family and friends to celebrate their success with them after they cross the finish line. If you re travelling to take part and fancy making a weekend of it then Leisure Lakes has over 300 acres of countryside, with 110 serviced pitches for caravans and trailer tents and a number of un-serviced pitches for tents. For more information visit:

So...Gladiator Ready! Get signed up and prepare to Go Commando at the No Ego Mud Challenge Preston 2014! To secure your place visit Follow them on Twitter @NoEgoChallenge for regular updates. To sign up to Go Commando s boot camp visit: or call Steven Howard on 07900 841302. You can also join Go Commando on Facebook. For all media enquiries please contact:, 07875 133920.

Steven Howard is available for interviews and to provide tips and advice on exercise and diet for fitness.

The Royal British Legion, Byng House & Tesco s Extra Southport Launch Collage Competition for Schools in Southport The Royal British Legion, Byng House & Tesco s Extra Southport are to launch a collage competition for local primary, junior and secondary schools in Southport. The competition is designed to reinforce pupils thoughts about the conflict and to create a lasting display to commemorate the centenary of the First World War. It will be split in to three age categories, each with a prize of ÂŁ25 gift card for Tesco s and prizes from The Royal British Legion, Byng House. The overall winner will receive a ÂŁ75 gift card for Tesco s and prizes from The Royal British Legion, Byng House. Every primary, junior and secondary school in Southport are invited to join with the launch of this competition, which will run from Monday 24th February to Friday 30th May 2014. Entrants are asked to be as creative as possible with their display, but to also ensure that it truly captures the theme of the First World War. All entries must also be no larger than A3. A judging panel consisting of two representatives from Byng House, a representative from Tesco s and guest judges will consider all entries. Rachel Kennedy, Activities Coordinator for Byng House said: The centenary of the First World War will be playing an enormous role at Byng House. Both Lesley Kirkbride [Tesco s Community Champion] and myself felt that it was vital that we encourage the local schools in Southport to think of those that have fought and died in the conflict, but also of those who had survived the First World War. All schools in Southport have been sent an invitation letter, along with competition details, however if individuals wish for a copy of the competition details and invitation letter, they can request this by emailing: Rachel Kennedy, Activities Coordinator on: Entries in to the competition are to be delivered or posted to the attention of Rachel Kennedy, Activities Coordinator at Byng House or can also be dropped off at Tesco s Extra Southport. The Royal British Legion, Byng House will be planning more events for the centenary of the First World War this year. For more information, please get in contact with Jason Carroll, Manager, or Rachel Kennedy, Activities Coordinator on 01704 537875.

The Royal British Legion is the nation's leading Armed Forces charity providing care and support to all members of the British Armed Forces past and present and their families. It is also the national Custodian of Remembrance and safeguards the Military Covenant between the nation and its Armed Forces. It is best known for the annual Poppy Appeal and its emblem, the red poppy.

Established in 1867, Galloway's Society for the Blind is one of Lancashire s oldest charities. We are a local charity supporting over 6000 blind and partially sighted people across Sefton and Lancashire. Our Southport branch is based in Wright Street where we have a stock of specialist equipment in our new and refurbished Sight Advice centre. Galloway s provides a range of courses and activities to support people with sight loss as well as frequently information days which bring together national and local service providers to demonstrate some of the latest innovations in technology and equipment.

FUNDRAISING Galloway s Society for the Blind is seeking volunteers to help with fundraising in Southport. If you can spare a few hours to help raise money for local blind and partially sighted people please get in touch now. The Great Easter Egg Raffle March to April We need volunteers to help get local businesses involved in our Easter raffle and to help distribute eggs around the area. Southport Seaside 10k (September) This year the annual Seaside 10k is in aid of Galloway s and we need people to run the race for us as well as volunteers to help out with marshalling on the day. Collection Tin Managers We are looking for volunteers to help manage collection tins in the Sefton and West Lancashire area. If you can spare an hour once a month then please get in touch. Alternatively if you are interested in helping us by having a loose change appeal box in your home please let us know. Every penny really does help and collection tins are a key source of income for us. Community Support Group We are looking to put together a community support group in Sefton. If you are interested in meeting some new people, hosting some fun events and raising money for local blind and partially sighted people please get in touch with Emma Wilson on 01704 809109 or email These are just a few examples of events happening in the area. We rely heavily on volunteer support and with more volunteers helping us we can organise many more events to raise funds for visually impaired people living in Southport. To get involved or for more information on any of the above please get in touch with local fundraiser Emma Wilson on 01704 809109 or email If you are interested in receiving talking newspapers, learning braille, learning to use audio computer software or would like to know more about any of our services please call Adrian and Carl on 01704 534555 You are welcome to call in: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 10 am 3 pm. Tuesday and Thursday by appointment only Email: Galloways For The Blind (Southport), 22 Wright Street, Southport PR9 0TL

Last year locals at the popular Mason’s Arms pub in Anchor Street, really pushed out the boat by raising thousands of pounds for charities including Macmillan Southport, Clatterbridge Hospital and The Stroke Jim Morris - patron of Masons Arms and fundraising organiser. Association. At a presentation held at the Mason’s on December 29th, landlady Brenda and Jim Morris, one of the leading lights in the fundraising events, presented Macmillan’s Pam Walmsley with a further cheque for £1,414, bringing the years total collected to just short of £10,000, a staggering achievement by all involved. This year sees the amazing generosity of the Mason’s customers continue when a sponsored head shave was held to raise money for Clatterbridge Cancer Charity (an idea formed as one of the regulars is currently undergoing chemotherapy and losing his Macmillan Certificate of Appreciation hair). With 10 of the regulars taking part, raising a fabulous £1,466 for the cause. On 21st June 2014, the cycling trio, Jim Morris, Dave Findlay & Mark Terniwski, will be setting off on their two day, 213 mile, Coast to Coast cycle ride, encouraged by the success of their 127.5 mile canal From Left Dave Findlay, Mark Terniwski, Landlady Brenda and Jim cycle ride completed in just one day last June which raised over £4,000. Morris.

The Masons Arms is a traditional pub offering the friendliest of welcomes. Wood panelled throughout with a real log fire, the atmosphere inside is warm, cosy and un-spoilt. Robinsons award winning ales are served to tantalise your taste buds whilst you relax. 44 Anchor St Town Centre Southport PR9 0UT Telephone: 01704 534123

Brenda and her staff look forward to welcoming you to the Masons Arms.

Welcome to

Land of Legend Southport Shine are delighted to announce that Linnuis: Land of Legend, written by local author Ian Fyles (featured Issue 05), is to be serialised in the magazine. Each issue we will publish a full episode of the story beginning with episode one. Linnuis: Land of Legend is the story of a boy and his dog, who are transported back over a thousand years while out for a walk along a country lane, one balmy summer s afternoon. The country lane they are walking along used to edge the old Martin Mere, which was drained many years ago to create agricultural farmland. The name Linnuis is derived from the old Welsh name meaning people or district of the lake and the old Welsh language could possibly have been spoken in Lancashire until the end of the eighth century. Martin Mere is also a place of all manner of myths and legends, ranging from connections with King Arthur and Sir Lancelot, to mermaids, boggarts and numerous ghostly spectres. This is the strange land that our main character and his dog find themselves transported back into.

Left - Wetland landscape preserved at Mere Sands Wood, Rufford Top - Low Wood near the Shooting Box (Photographs Š Martin Mere - Lancashire s Lost Lake by WG Hale & Audrey Coney) Right - John Speed s 1610 map of Lancashire showing the Mere.

(Episode One) Callum and Holly, his faithful terrier, had stopped outside Shooting Box Cottage at the end of Low Wood. It was a glorious afternoon. A buzzard hovered on the thermals above, while swallows darted and dived all around them. Suddenly Holly gave out a startled yelp and her ears pricked up. The brilliant blue sky turned inky black as a bolt of fork lightning struck a nearby telegraph pole. A deafening roar of thunder followed and hailstones the size of golf balls forced them to take cover in the undergrowth of Low Wood. Minutes later the freak storm ceased as quickly as it had begun. Callum and Holly peered nervously from inside the large bush in which they had taken shelter. There in front of them lay a massive lake, they couldn t even see the opposite side. Holly began barking. Callum glanced to his left. A huge cow-like creature emerged from the bulrushes that edged the lake. It stood six feet at its shoulders with long twisted horns and hooves the size of dinner plates. Callum recognised this strange creature as the ancient Auroch and realised that they had been transported back over a thousand years in time! Copyright 漏 Ian Fyles 2014

This sculpture of the auroch stands in Takvere, Estonia The auroch (Bos primigenius), the ancestor of domestic cattle, is an extinct type of large wild cattle that inhabited Europe, Asia and North Africa; they survived in Europe until the last recorded aurochs died in the Jaktor贸w Forest, Poland in 1627.

From September - April we have a full and varied programme of fortnightly talks. All are welcome to join us in an informal meeting. Friends Meeting House - Court Road, Southport 7.30 pm - 9.00 pm The door is open from 7.00 pm with the aim to finish no later than 9.00 pm. 29th March Seeing the World for a Shilling by Mr John Cornell 12th April My Life as the Liverpool Coastguard by Mr Paul Harrison For ÂŁ1.50 admission you will get anything but a lecture! You will get to listen to a speaker with a keen interest in their subject plus the opportunity for questions and discussion and a cup of tea with a biscuit. For more information or a copy of the programme please contact: Susan Fantom - 01704 546121 E-mail:

SMITHY MUSHROOMS LTD Supplying mushrooms for 20 years

Smithy Mushrooms has established a reputation for reliability, consistency and quality. Cultivating and supplying a large variety of different wild and exotic mushrooms from all over the world. Shiitake - Oyster - Pholiota - Nameko - Eryngii Coral - Pom Pom - Shimejii - Enoki Chanterelle - Pied de Mouton - Girolle - Pied Bleu - Horse Morel - Porcini Black Trumpet - Chestnut - Portobello & Fresh Truffles

Online retail sales delivered throughout the UK. Smithy Mushrooms Ltd. 229 Smithy Lane Scarisbrick Lancashire L40 8HL Telephone: 01704 840 982

Southport Chess Club was formed in 1882 and is the 2nd oldest chess club in England. We are an active and friendly club with approximately 29 members aged from 16 - 80 with a broad range of abilities. Nigel Davies (born 1960) is an English chess Grandmaster, chess coach and writer. He won the British (Under-21) Boys Championship in 1979 and the British Rapidplay Chess Championship in 1987. His son, Sam, is a consummate chess player and is always seeking fresh ground to conquer. With his famous dad in charge, he's frequented the tournament circuits of late and has achieved some remarkable results for an 11 year old. With progress in mind, his celebrated father has been organising his son's matches as much as possible to feature games with the older generation! After contacting the Southport Chess Club, (living in Southport as he does) the club circulated an email to members, in which the Secretary, Peter Johnson, detailed Nigel's request for senior members to aid Sam's apotheosis by playing against the young man. The first of these matches took place at the home of David Fillis, a passionate devotee of the noble game and ardent member of his club, on Sunday, 12th January, 2014. English Chess Grandmaster - Nigel Davies with

After making his guests welcome, Dave set about his son, Sam. making eveyone comfortable of course, and, as the chess board and pieces were all ready and waiting, the game was quickly afoot. Nigel himself, naturally, took no part in the proceedings and established himself in a suitable armchair and engaged in some private studying! Play was of a short duration, being just one hour each against the clock and a most interesting game ensued. For chessists(sic), the play, as Dave was given white in a most courteous gesture by Sam, revolved around the Queens Gambit Declined, Slav Exchange Variation! Narrowly outdone eventually by Dave, the youngster conceded that 'I just didn't expect you to be as tough as you turned out to be!' As nice a compliment as Dave's had for some time! Nigel very kindly did a quick review of the game by playing it over and making a very Grand Masterly diagnosis to the benefit of both protaganists whilst thanking Dave for the courtesy of the match and another date was set for Feb 2nd. Dave stated that the couple were very warm and responsive on the day and this made the occasion most enjoyable and rememberable too! Written by David Fillis - Southport Chess Club Photo courtesy SCC

Southport Chess Club hosts a members evening, for seniors and juniors, every Monday at The Railway Club, Sussex Rd., Southport. Visit for full details and information.


Rimmer Armstrong A hat for every occasion...

Gladys Rimmer Armstrong is a name many of you will no doubt have heard mentioned many times over the years concerning The Rimmer Family History Society, North Meols Civic Society, The Churchtown Trail and many other community involved activites, but what about the lady herself? I have met Gladys on a number of occasions over the past year and discussed a variety of topics but on a chilly morning in January I met with her to talk about just one thing - Gladys, herself! A true sandgrounder, Gladys was born in Marshside the sixth of nine children. At age three she went to live with her aunt and uncle in Aintree and though she missed out on a big family life, she did have the undivided attention of her aunt and uncle, who introduced her to history books whilst teaching her to read and from where her love of history began. When Gladys was a teenager, she returned to live in Southport, playing netball for Southport Amateurs before moving on to their badminton side, but when she got married and had children, they moved away to Hertfordshire. In 1987, after a spell working as a volunteer at Whipsnade Zoo, Gladys returned home to Southport and began work as an Office Administrator, whilst also volunteering as a co-ordinator at Southport Zoo. It was on meeting her second husband that she fell into family history - his uncle had piles of family letters and notes which he gave to Gladys to sort and together with all the information he had told her, she took on the task of filling in the gaps and completed her husbands family history. In 2000, Gladys decided to make a start on her own family history, as both her parents were Rimmers, and by 2002 she had managed to pull all the family together and had received a good many enquiries from Rimmers in the USA and Canada, who wanted to get together - so began the Rimmer Family History Society. In December last year, Gladys received an e-mail from a young lady which included a photograph of a gentleman born in Russia who s name was Rimmer, having researched the Rimmer name and found that it is Scandanavian in origin, she remembers her Grandad saying we came from Vikings and found that it was actually true! The Rimmer FHS meets annually and is attended by Rimmers from all over the world, October 2014 will see the society celebrate its official 10th anniversary. Through her work with the Rimmer FHS, Gladys had been asked to give talks on family history by numerous organisations including schools, lecture groups and other FH societies including North Meols. Due to her historic research she also became a member of the North Meols Civic Society and was their historic researcher for two years before, then Chairman Ken Bridge, asked her to take over the chairmanship of the Civic Society due to his declining health - as one of the founder members of

the Civic Society, Ken has been a great support to Gladys and others over the years. Through the Civic Society, Gladys was now able to take more of an interest in the community as a whole. When in 2010 Sefton Council announced it was going to be making changes within the Botanic Gardens by closing the Museum, Aviary and Fernery (voted the 2nd best fernery in the country), Gladys and society members stood in the pouring rain for three days running rallying support for their petition. With 3000 signatures, the petition was photocopied and sent to the Council. In December 2011 a meeting was called by Heartbeat actor David Lonsdale, with Gladys as chairperson of Civic Society taking notes, to ask if people would form a committee dedicated to helping keep the Botanic Gardens and its amenities open. Former councillor David Cobham agreed to be the ChairGladys in full man with Meols Ward Councillor, John Dodd as Victorian garb for Vice Chair and Gladys as Secretary - the Botanic the Gala held to Gardens Community Association was formed. raise funds for the BGCA Since then regular meetings are held with the Council, volunteers, the association and the community present to discuss and work out how they can work together to return Botanic Gardens back to its former glory. A hat for every occasion

History has taken Gladys to some very interesting places, opened up a lot of opportunities and brought about some fascinating discoveries. Whilst in America she was invited to give a talk on Family History to War Veterans in North Carolina, one of whom, gave her his hat as a souvenir and which Gladys is very proud to wear on occasion. When visiting Rimmers from Canada brought along their family tree they discovered that they were actually related to Gladys. This year will see Gladys, along with husband Alan, undertake to find out more information about the 300 plus British soldiers who were shot for military offences during WW1, but later pardoned in 2006, with her talk Shot At Dawn available from March. Her talks are always met with great interest and enthusiasm and include the ever popular, Marshside Fishermen and Rimmers - for which she received a certificate of 300 WWI soldiers receive pardons thanks from Southport Rotary Club after giving this talk at More than 300 soldiers who were shot one of their meetings. In January, both Lancashire Life for military offences during World War I Magazine and Lancashire Magazine featured Churchtown will receive formal pardons, the Ministry and the Churchtown Trail , with references made to of Defence has confirmed. Source - 16th Aug 2006 Gladys in her role as North Meols Civic Local Historian. So, every time you see the name Gladys Rimmer Armstrong, it will be to help raise the profile of these societies and no doubt others to come - because in her words, If you have the ability to spread the word and help, then you should!

People from all over the world contact Gladys for information on family history and not just the Rimmers. If you would like help or advice, Gladys and others members are in The Family History Section of The Atkinson Library on Fridays 10 - 12 p.m. To contact Gladys E-mail -

SUAG is a charitable organisation working for past and present patients of the North West Regional Spinal Injuries Centre based in Southport. They raise much needed funds and provide a wide range of services including a long and short term residency home on Weld Road, Southport, for past and present patients of the North West regional spinal injuries unit and other spinal injury centres throughout the UK. Earlier this year SUAG members and residents celebrated receiving £3,000 from the Lloyds Community Fund, after being put forward as a nominee by the wife of a patient who had suffered a spinal injury from playing rugby. The grant has enabled them to refurbish one of their rooms and along with other funds raised enables them to continue to support their patients. On Saturday March 22nd, West Lancs Military Vehicle Trust (MVT) will present their fabulous Spirit of the 40’s Blitz Dance in aid of SUAG.


St. Teresa's Church Hall Upper Aughton Road, Birkdale Featuring MEMPHIS BELLE RECORD HOP THE MAESTRO OF SWING - MR DON GENTILE Plus a special tribute to THE ANDREWS SISTERS Tickets cost just £10 and include a Hot Pot Supper For ticket information please contact Gill on 01704 830178 Why not check out your wardrobes and come and join us for a great night. All proceeds in aid of S.U.A.G. S.U.A.G. Spinal Unit Action Group 6 Weld Road Southport

Book Reviews



Book One of A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin Only those of you who have been living under a Casterly Rock will have missed the television phenomenon that is Game of Thrones: a sweeping epic of greed, power, love, hate and all the myriad facets of human nature that makes social drama so appealing. Martin takes a brave step and couches his story within a low magic fantasy setting: by keeping the fantasy elements in check and instead concentrating on the human-socio-political aspects of a feudal world on the brink of war, the author has won fans from all walks of life. The first novel in the series introduces us to the world and peoples of Westeros: the realistic portrayals of a feudal society, combined with descriptions of combat and human nature that are both disquieting and satisfying thanks to their brutal honesty: make this read one of the best you’ll enjoy for a long time to come. Now is the time of year to stay in and curl up with a book that can transport you away to another world: after, Winter is coming! A Game of Thrones - published by Harper Collins - £8.99 Review by Jo Young

by Rohan Gavin “Meet Knightley & Son - two great detectives for the price of one!” Knightley & Son is the debut novel of Rohan Gavin (the son of award-winning children’s author Jamila Gavin). His love of detective fiction, cars and conspiracy theories inspired him to write this terrific book, the first in a series. An intriguing father-son relationship is the basis of the series - Darkus Knightley is not your average thirteen-year-old: ferociously logical, super-smart and with a fondness for tweed, detective work is in his blood. His Dad, Alan Knightley was London’s top private investigator and an expert in crimes too strange for Scotland Yard to handle, but four years ago the unexplained finally caught up with him - he fell into a mysterious coma. Darkus is determined to follow in his father’s footsteps and find out what really happened, but when Alan suddenly wakes up, his memory is wonky and he needs help. The games afoot for Knightley & Son - with a mystery that gets weirder by the minute, a bestselling book that makes its readers commit terrible crimes and a sinister organisation know as ‘The Combination’.

I really enjoyed this book and was hooked from the start, 13 year old Darkus is a very original new hero and I look forward to the sequel. Review by Kate Chesterton Knightley & Son - Paperback, Bloomsbury £6.99 Childrens Bookseller All books available from Broadhurst’s Books

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Southport Shine Online March 2014 1st Edition  

A full colour online & printed magazine, promoting clubs, groups, societies and local businesses. Together we can make Southport Shine!