St Helens Edition January 2017
Green Belt grab
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A bitter pill
Few issues are as emotive as the almost
inevitable loss of Green Belt. So it is little
wonder St Helens Council’s Local Plan
process has prompted a fair amount of debate.
While few are against providing new homes and
creating jobs, when the proposal directly affects
you, it can be a bitter pill to swallow.
Part of the problem, I believe, is how the term Green
Belt is used... or in fact misused. Many people are led
to believe that it is sacred land, a vow of perpetual
greenery. In reality, Green Belt is merely a technical
term which is used for certain parcels of land during
the lifetime of a council’s Local Plan. Once that
period has expired, some land can, and does, get
re-designated, depending on a variety of factors at
the time. Ditching the term ‘Green Belt’ would rid
the process of this red herring and, in fact, make
it easier for residents to state their case. Because
simply repeating: ‘It’s Green Belt’ over and over will
cut little ice with the decision makers. On the other
hand, cold, hard, technical facts could sway them.
Make no bones about it, locals have a huge fight
on their hands to halt the Northern Powerhouse
juggernaught which is hurtling towards them. On
the flip side, planners have an equally tough job
trying to hit Government housing and job targets.
Councillors, who are the conduit, need to step up
and ensure they keep residents informed.
As a neutral, it’s clear that everyone actually wants
the same thing. But failing to agree on the means on
this most controversial of subjects could make for an
acrimonious few years.
David Sudworth, Editor
In this issue
36 Puzzle Corner
40 Class From The Past
55 Eating Out Guide
60 Test drive
62 Garden Diary
You should have
8 Local News
53 Food & Drink
64 Home Services
Next issue - February 2017
Advertising deadline - Tuesday, 31 January
Published - Friday, 10 February
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Shop plan fails again...
Neighbours are celebrating after they
saw off the latest bid to build on a
Garswood pub car park.
New River Retail have been trying to get permission
to develop a shop on the Stag Hotel site on Station
Road since 2014.
Their latest application, submitted in September,
prompted another flurry of objections from locals.
Case officer Jennifer Bolton, from St Helens Council’s
planning department, refused to grant permission
on highway safety and residential amenity grounds.
New River Retail’s first planning application for the
site was withdrawn in 2014. A further application
was submitted but then refused by the council
in 2015. Last year, they appealed to the Planning
Inspector against refusal but, again, it proved
On their latest application, Miss Bolton said: “The
proposed development would support the local
economy. However, it is not considered that these
benefits would outweigh the harm caused to
residential amenity and highway safety.”
... But nursery gets the OK
Plans to turn the old Squires Bar in Billinge into a
nursery have been given the go-ahead. As revealed
in Local Life previously, an application had been
submitted to re-use the Main Street building. It will
operate 7.30am-6pm, Monday-Friday.
Sat, 21st Jan, 10am - 5pm
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Haydock folk are being encouraged to give blood
at two sessions being held in the area. The Mercure
Hotel, on Penny Lane, hosts the first session on
Thursday, January 12, from 1.35pm-3.45pm and
then from 5pm-7.15pm.
On Tuesday, March 7, the NHS team will be at
Haydock Conservative Club, Bellerophon Way, from
10.30am-12.30pm and then from 2pm-4.15pm.
There will also be donor sessions on Friday, March
24, at Rainford Village Hall, Church Road, from
1.35pm-4pm and 5.15pm-7.15pm
For more information or to book an appointment,
visit www.blood.co.uk or call 0300 123 23 23.
1940s theme fundraiser
A fundraiser for the Helen Marie Charity takes
place at St Mary’s Club, Trent Road, Billinge, on
Friday, March 24. The organisation raises money for
young children who are in hospital. The event is a
1940s-themed evening with people encouraged to
dress up in period costime. Tickets are £12, please
call 01744 734155 or 01744 756298.
Living with diabetes
People living with diabetes are being invited to a
talk at St Helens Town Hall on Wednesday, February
1. Dr Gill Hunt, a clinical psychologist at St Helens
Hospital, will discuss the emotional impact and
living with the condition. It starts at 7.30pm. Free
admission - call Diabetes UK on 0151 480 0821.
Limited space available
- call ASAP to confirm
NEW CACI SYNERGY
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161-171, Main Street, Billinge, WN5 7PA
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Space in the spotlight
Community groups could help fill
empty space at Garswood Primary
Care Resource Centre.
Local Life can reveal that health chiefs at St Helens
Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) are looking
at the possibility as the Billinge Road building is
David McBride, associate director for primary
care, said in a report to CCG board members: “As
there is so much capacity at Garswood, if possible,
community activity could be moved into the spare
“The CCG will continue the programme of space
utilisation studies carried out by consultants
Renova to ensure that void costs of any underutilised
is minimised. It will look for opportunities of
joint working with partners like the council
(e.g. Garswood Library/Community Hub) in the
Garswood Primary Care Resource Centre (PCRC)
and the potential to develop accommodation in
borough for particular client groups.”
The report also pinpointed the need for investment
at Rainford Health Centre, which claimed that
despite its good location, is in poor condition.
Other priorities include the need to look at primary
and community services in Billinge “to ensure that
they are provided in good quality accommodation
in the future”.
Rainhill Garrick Society presents...
a mystery thriller
by Anthony Shaffer
Directed by Dave Hedges
16th, 17th, 18th February, 2017
Performance Starts 7.30pm
Ticket prices adults £6 Concessions £5
Doors open at 7.00pm
tickets available from rainhill post office
01744 813 429
or pay at the door.
Rainhill Village Hall, Dane Court, off Weaver Avenue, Rainhill, L35 3LU
Parking FREE After 6pm
Ali talks Tyrers
The boss of one of Rainford’s newest
businesses is giving a talk on St
Helens’ famous Tyrers department
It’s almost 12 months since Ali Tyrer took the painful
decision to close the Bridge Street store after 128
years. The mum-of-three took over the town centre
institution following her father John’s sudden death
Ali, who now runs Ellamora ladies and children’s
clothing boutique on Church Road, will be giving
a talk to Rainford Heritage Society on Monday,
February 20. It takes place at The Junction Pub,
News Lane, from 7.30pm. All welcome.
Prior to Ali’s talk, the society is holding another talk
from Tom Preston on
the Deeming Murders
on Monday, January
16 - same time and
location. Tickets for
the talks are £2 for
both members and
And on Friday,
January 20, there is a
quiz evening at the
Ex-Sports and Social
Club on Bushey Lane.
Tickets are £7 and it starts at 7.30pm.
For more information, call Ray Waring on 01744
885547 or email email@example.com
Melanie’s a winner
Congratulations to Melanie Lee, who
won tickets to see Disney on Ice’s Frozen
courtesy of Local Life.
Melanie, of Duxbury Road, Rainford went to watch
the spectacle at the Echo Arena in Liverpool. She
made the trip after she won tickets for the show in our
November Local Life competition. The other winners
were Samantha Pierce-Swift from Mill Lane, Burscough,
and Mrs Hall, from Thames Road, Culcheth.
Rmember, for more great competitions, keep reading
your copy of Local Life!
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Hail the ale!
There’s something brewing in Rainford... The
village’s parish council is holding its second beer
festival on Friday, February 10 (6pm-10pm) and
then from noon-10pm the following day.
A vast array of local ales, plus wine and gin will be
available at the event, held at Rainford Village Hall,
For more information, email clerk@
rainfordparishcouncil.com or text 07410 132073.
Volunteers are needed in the Garswood area to
help run a foodbank service. A call has been made
for people who can manage other volunteers and
act as a go-between with the Foodbank Hub and
the central foodbank offices in St Helens. For more
information, contact Rev Helen Coffey, of Holy
Trinity, Downall Green and St Andrew’s, Garswood,
at The Rectory, Rectory Road, Ashton-in-Makerfield,
WN4 0QF, or call 01942 721962/07742 590672.
Billinge needs you
Do you have a burning passion for Billinge? A
vacancy has arisen on the parish council following
the resignation of Jacqui Sinnott-Lacey. Anyone
interested in becoming a parish councillor should
contact the clerk Tom Kelly before Monday, January
8, via firstname.lastname@example.org
BUT YOUR SMILE
Julie Moss 07789 387 502
Let the music free your body.
The ultimate dance-fitness party
will groove you into shape.
MONDAY 19.00 - 20.00 & 20.00 - 21.00
Upholland Methodist Church, Alma Hill, Upholland.
WEDNESDAY 19.00 - 20.00
Billinge Chapel End Labour Club, Main Street.
THURSDAY 19.00 - 20.00
Lamberhead Green Working Men’s Club, Pemberton
All levels of fitness welcome £5.00 per class.
Come along and shake what ya mamma gave ya!
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full Set of AcrylicS With ShellAc £25
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Greenslate Farm, on Tracks Lane, Billinge, kicks off
2017 with a Vintage Farmers’ Market on Sunday,
January 15, from 10am-2pm. The market is held on
the third Sunday of every month, and organisers
say it is packed with great local produce. Hot food
and refreshments are also available. Free entry.
A charity spring ball is being held at St James Social
Club, Orrell, on Saturday, February 25, in aid of
Billinge-based The Storehouse Project. Doors open
at 7pm for an evening of food, music, DJ, auction
and a raffle. For more information and ticket prices,
please contact 07816 623612.
A group of local ladies who have battled cancer
are looking for others to join their singing group.
The Patients’ Choir is made up of people who
have either been treated at The Lilac Centre in St
Helens Hospital or at Whiston Hospital within the
last five years. They are looking for new members
to go along and join in every Monday from 6pm-
7.30pm at The Millennium Centre in St Helens.
Julie Steward, from the group, said: “We are a very
friendly, welcoming group. We chat and sing to
help with our wellbeing and share information
through our shared experience of cancer.”
If you would like to go along, just turn up or ring
Bernie Whelan on 0151 5202435.
Market in the running
Earlestown’s 700 year old market is in the running
for top accolade. It is vying to come up trumps in
the Best Large Outdoor Market category at the
Great British Market Awards. Earlestown market
manager Kevin Gavin said: “We are very proud of
Earlestown market and its rich history - it has acted
as the heartbeat of the community for centuries.”
A list of the winners is set to be released soon.
Comedy and music
An evening of comedy and music in aid of
Willowbrook Hospice is being held at Garswood
Simms Road Labour Club, Garswood Road, on
Friday, February 10. The jokes come courtesy of
Dusty Young while music is provided by vocalist
Tina Riley and the duo Crawford & Brown.
It starts at 7pm for 8pm and tickets are £8 via the
club (01942 725399), Willowbrook (01744 453798)
or Frank (01744 345073).
Olly’s a sure bet
Chart-topper Olly Murs is
coming to Haydock. The
Troublemaker star will
play at an open
air gig at Haydock
Park Racecourse on
Friday, August 11. And
the former X-Factor contestant
says he’ll be playing tracks from
his new album, 24 Hrs.
“I love a day out at the races
too so can’t wait to get in
the crowd during the day
and place a cheeky bet,” he
Tickets are £37.50 for adults or £15 for accompanied
under 18s. They are available via haydock.
Highways bosses are warning
motorists and householders of some
delays/disruption across the area.
They have unveiled a list of roadworks taking place
during January. Among them are as follows:
January 4-March 31: Pasture Lane - reconstruction
of the retaining wall, footway and carriageway by
St Helens Council
January 8: Cross Pit Lane - carriageway works by
January 11-January 17: Pimbo Road - digging up
the highway to enable an electrical connection
January 20-24: Wigan Road - temporary traffic lights
due to work by Electricity North West
January 26-February 3: Junction of Main Street/
Rainford Road - works being carried out by
Electricity North West
January 18-25: Clipsley Crescent - works by
Electricity North West
Until March 31: Avondale Road - ongoing new
access works and resurfacing footway works from
Wyedale Avenue to Haydock Lane.
For more information, visit www.sthelens.gov.uk
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Barrows Farm, Carr Mill Road, Billinge, WN5 7TX
(Carr Mill Road is next to the Texaco Garage in the village)
Call in today - we’re open 7 days a week!
Tell Us Your Story!
Local Life is always
on the look out for
news stories from the
we serve. Are you
raising money for
charity? Are you
a member of a
to shout about?
Maybe you’ve got
an unusual talent, or have a claim to fame? If so, let
us know and you could be appearing in the next
Simply contact us on sthelensnews@locallife247.
co.uk or call us on 01942 387 720.
Write on youngsters!
School children in St Helens are being invited to
enter a writing competition. Entries must be about
a superhero and cannot be more than 500 words
long. The superhero can be one from a cartoon or
film - or even a made up one. Simply choose from
one of the six story starters found on the entry
form and tell the judges what happens next. Comic
and graphic novel style drawings can be used to
compliment your story, but it isn’t essential.
First prize is a £35 book token and £75 worth of
books for your school library. Second prize is a £25
book token and £60 worth of books for your school
library. And third prize is a £15 book token and £40
worth of books for your school library. Call in to any
Library in St Helens to collect your entry form for
full details. The deadline for entries is Saturday.
February 18, and they can be returned to any St
Helens Library, the Schools Library Service, or by
A training course for new Home-Start St Helens
volunteers commences soon. The group is a family
support charity with a 30 year track record. As well
as needing home visiting volunteers, the group is
also keen to strengthen its Board of Trustees.
Charities get £10k boost
Four charities shared a £10,000 funding boost
courtesy of environmentally-concious residents.
During the last 12 months, St Helens Recycling
Rewards members have been voting for their
favourite local charity. Willowbrook Hospice won the
top prize of £5,000; the Steve Prescott Foundation
won £3,000 and Honey Rose Foundation and The
Hope Centre, were both awarded £1,000 each.
All volunteers attend a preparation course and are
DBS checked. They are then linked with a family.
Staff continue to support the volunteers who
generally give around three hours of their time each
The next training course for volunteers begins on
Tuesday, January 17, but further courses will run
later in the year. Attendance is one day a week,
10am to 2.30pm, for eight weeks
If you are interested, call 01744 737400, email
Call us today for a FREE on site quotation
TEL 01744 883 511
16 Standish Drive
Mary’s memorable day
She’s leaving Billinge after
20 years, but this local
got a send-off she’ll never
Mary May left Beacon Road just
before Christmas to settle in
Southport with husband of 43 years,
She sold her house with Orrell estate
agents Borron Shaw, and entered
a prize raffle to win a £500 holiday
voucher courtesy of Marken Travel.
Luck was on Mary’s side so she and Bob are now
planning to put the voucher towards a cruise.
She received her prize from St Helens players Kyle
Amor and Matty Smith. Also pictured are Ste Tickle
and Ste Ball, from Borron Shaw, and Carla Hesketh,
from Marken Travel.
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The Green Belt
The Northern Powerhouse has arrived, but at what price for local
communities? David Sudworth investigates...
George Osborne may have left front line politics, but his legacy lives on.
Across Rainford, Billinge, Garswood, Haydock, Pewfall, Moss Bank and many
other parts of St Helens, vast swathes of open space could be sacrificed
for new homes and factories. Other Merseyside councils - now referred to by
bureaucrats as ‘Liverpool City Region ‘ - are doing the same. Neighbouring Wigan,
which comes under Greater Manchester, is also considering releasing land.
This is the former Chancellor’s ‘Northern Powerhouse’ come to life at a local level.
For its supporters, it is an opportunity to create new jobs, and ease the pressure on
housing. For its detractors, it’s a developers’ charter to tear
up precious Green Belt.
Over the next three pages, Local Life looks at the
earmarked sites, and also reveals the parcels of
land which may be developed further into the
Rainford: 1,100 homes
Proposed sites for housing over
the next 30 years are:
Lords Fold (55 homes)
Land south of Higher Lane/east
of Rookery Lane (174 homes)
Land east of Higher Lane/south
of Muncaster Drive/at White
House Lane (206 homes)
Land south of Bushey Lane / Red
Delph Farm, Red Delph Lane (151
Land south of Higher Lane and
west of Mill Lane (415 homes)
Land south of Rookery Lane and
east of Pasture Lane (138 homes)
In addition, land to the west
of Sandwash Close is to be
allocated for employment land
- in effect an extension to the
existing industrial estate
Moss Bank: 75 homes
Two parcels of land could be
developed in Moss Bank. Open
space just off the East Lancs Road at
Moss Bank Farm, Moss Bank Road,
and land at Martindale Road would
deliver 50 homes and 25 homes
respectively. The developments
would be staggered over the next
30 years, with the Moss Bank Farm
site due to be taken out of Green
Belt within the next Local Plan
period (2018-2033) while Martindale
Road would be safeguarded for
development between 2034-2048.
Windle: 977 homes
Almost 1,000 new homes could be built on this
stretch of land facing onto the East Lancs Road
within the next 30 years. Planners believe that
over half the homes could be in place by 2033.
Billinge: 163 homes
Land at Ash Grove Farm, Beacon
Road, is being touted as a
possible residential development.
According to St Helens Council,
it was the only parcel of land put
forward by landowners in the
area. It stretches from Beacon
Road and borders on residential
areas including Main Street, Ash
Grove Crescent, Stuart Wells
Avenue, Maple Close, Larch Close,
Elm Drive and Roby Well Way.
If passed, it could be built on
between 2018 and 2033. Locals
have formed a Save Billinge Village
group to fight the proposals.
Planners are holding a public
drop-in session on Wednesday,
January 11, from 2pm-6.30pm at
Billinge Library, Main Street.
Haydock: Industrial hub
Meanwhile, in Wigan....
In a separate plan, Wigan Council is planning to
release Green Belt at Bryn for large-scale industrial
development. A further site just north of the M58/
M6 interchange at Orrell has also been indentified.
Multiple sites are planned around
an area which is being primed as
the industrial hub. At Haydock
Island, there could be some largescale
commercial development on
the north east and north west sides
of the island, as well as 520 homes
nearby off Vista Road and Lodge
Lane. There here are 120 homes
planned for land south of the former
Central Works, on Bellerophon Way,
and a further 85 on land south of
In Pewfall, there is a large-scale
land allocation for industry and 500
homes south of the A580.
Rush for Rainford
Rainford landowners inundated St
Helens Council with bids to release
their sites from Green Belt.
Local Life can reveal that over 30 parcels of land
were put forward for consideration but most
were discounted. Six sites for housing and one for
employment use did make it into the final cut.
Village councillors Allan Jones, Rob Reynolds and
Linda Mussell said: “Landowners Rainford have
been quick to offer their land up for sale to any
potential builder. If all this had been taken up then
about 70% of Rainford’s green and pleasant land
would have been destroyed. While we are pleased
that not a lot of Green Belt will be lost in phase one,
we are still not happy about the suggestions being
St Helens Council says it needs to release Green Belt
around Garswood, Rainford and Billinge to ensure
it has a the mandatory five year supply of houses.
Privately, politicians and planners admit to one
uncomfortable truth about house building - that
developers prefer green field sites. They say it’s
because not only are the clean up costs, compared
to contaminated brownfield sites, practically zero,
they also tend to be located in better off areas,
where they can command a higher price tag. Also, a
few years ago, funding was available to developers
to help clean up brownfield sites - but that funding
has now disappeared.
Rainford Action Group is opposing the plans in the
village. Their next meeting is on Sunday, January
15, from 7.45pm in the village hall, Church Road.
Why the battle for Haydock and Pewfall matters...
The St Helens Local Plan is inextricably linked to
the creation of a directly elected Mayor for the
Liverpool City Region. Elections for this take place
in May - and regeneration bosses are salivating at
the possibilities touted by the Liverpool Superport,
which is undergoing a £1billion-plus investment.
This is why St Helens Council has earmarked land
off the East Lancs Road at Pewfall/Haydock for
new warehouses and factories. However, there is a
fierce battle going on in this area, not just between
residents and the council, but also developers who
are keen to get the spade in the ground of their
A planning application was submitted last year
for the Pewfall site,. This drew huge protests from
locals who set up the Residents Against The Florida
(RAFFD). That site has
now been included in
the draft Local Plan.
However, Town Hall
insiders expect it will
be a long, drawn out
fight. One source
told Local Life: “If it is
rejected, the applicants
could appeal. And even if the council approves it,
they may have to send it to the Secretary of State..
And then there are other landowners in the area
who may object, in an effort to promote their own
site. It could end up in the courts through a Judicial
Review, and that could take years.”
The consultation on the first draft of the Local Plan ends at noon on Monday, January 30. Copies are available
in local libraries or by visiting www.sthelens.gov.uk/localplan
22 Coalville Road: Retrospective application for the
retention of a rear conservatory and conversion/
extension to existing garage (ref: P/2016/0908/
HHFP) A decision is due soon.
25 Coultshead Avenue: Flat to pitched roof on
existing front and rear dormers along with flat to
pitched roof on existing porch and rear extension.
(ref: P/2016/0912/HHFP). A decision is due soon.
1 Hollin Hey Close: Erection of first floor side
extension (ref: P/2016/0860/HHFP). A decision is
10 Langholm Road: Single storey rear extension
along with extension and part conversion of
existing garage (ref: P/2016/0865/HHFP).
Van Sales North West , Haydock Lane: Erection
of a showroom/offices (ref: P/2016/0890/FUL). A
decision is due soon.
Haydock Medical Centre, Woodside Road:
Extension of opening hours (ref: P/2016/0869/S73).
A decision is due soon.
Land to the north of Club Street: Erection of one
dwelling along with landscaping and associated
works. (ref: P/2016/0897/FUL). A decision is due
For more information on these plans, visit
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Class from the past
This month’s Class from the Past is from St Aidan’s
Primary, London Fields, Billinge, and is believed to
have been taken in the early 1970s.
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Wake up you beggars, it’s
David Sudworth talks naked presenting, alcoholism and village life
with one of Britain’s most enduring entertainers...
Mention Keith Chegwin’s name and you’ll
invariably get a reaction.
Some will burst into the theme tune
from Cheggers Plays Pop, which ran on BBC One from
1978-1986. Others will mention his calamatous
decision to host a nude gameshow, Naked Jungle,
wearing nothing apart from a hat. And younger
folk may even remember his hillariously selfdeprecating
performances alongside fellow
Scouser Les Dennis and ex-EastEnders actor Shaun
Williamson in Ricky Gervais’s sitcoms, Extras and
Life’s Too Short.
Oh, and there was the confession on Big
Brother about his battle with alcoholism.
It’s almost as if Cheggers goes out of his way
to invite scrutiny.
“No, it’s nothing like that. In fact, I’d always
said no to doing Big Brother but the money
was good so I thought I may as well do a
show which buys me a house!” he laughs.
We meet during a break in panto
rehearsals. Having completed a one
month stint just before Christmas, he
now has another coming up in Easter, with
dates in the north pencilled in.
“I love doing panto. I feed off the audience
and it gives you a chance to show people the
things they don’t always get to see from you,
like tap dancing or singing.
“I mean, I’ve been offered I’m A Celebrity, Get Me
Out Of Here... so many times but I’ve turned it down
because the money’s rubbish and it would also
mean I couldn’t do panto because they’re at the
same time of year.
“Learning the lines isn’t difficult because I was given
some great advice by the late, great Roy Kinnear,
who came from Wigan, who told me it was all about
listening to your fellow actors.”
Born in Walton Hospital on January 17, 1957, Keith
grew up in Bootle with his twin brother Jeff and
their older sister, the radio DJ Janice Long.
When he was 10, his parents Margaret and Colin
moved out to Rainford. Although his mum died
in 2015, his dad is still there. For Keith, the village
is a home from home: “When they moved there, I
was at stage school but obviously I used to come
home for holidays, Christmas and so on. It’s a lovely
place, and no-one ever bothers you. In most places,
people will come up to you in the street, saying:
‘How’s it going Cheggers?’ or they’ll want a selfie
with you, which is great. But in Rainford, you’re just
one of the locals, which is also great,”
Keith had been sent to stage school having gained
his first taste of the limelight during a family holiday
in Rhyl: “There was a talent show on, and the
announcer asked if anyone wanted to try out. That’s
when I just ran straight up the aisle to the stage, and
all I could hear was my mum, Margaret, shouting:
‘Come back here you stupid bugger’.
Keith and brother Jeff
“I got up and sang It’s A Wonderful World. Not long
afterwards I was approached by a guy from Preston
who wanted me to join a group called the Happy
Wanderers Concert Party, which toured pubs and
clubs in the north.”
Keith got a slot on Junior Showtime, a TV programme
for young talent, and was immediately spotted by
June Collins, who turned out to be the mother of
Genesis star Phil Collins. June wanted Keith to go
to London to audition for a part in the stage show
Mame with Hollywood legend Ginger Rogers.
“I was very young at the time but I remember
getting a letter from her, thanking me for being in
the show. To be honest, all I remember about her
was this old lady coming into the theatre dressed
all in white and then leaving a few hours later filthy!”
By the early 1970s, Keith had notched up a string of
notable acting performances, including in Roman
Polanski’s Macbeth and a role in a Peter Sellers
film. He also appeared in the pilot episode of Open
All Hours as well as The Liver Birds, Z-Cars and The
Adventures of Black Beauty. Oddly enough, before
he got his big break in a presenting role, most
people would have recognised him from a Pepsi TV
A young Cheggers at stage school
“I also modelled underpants for a Freeman’s
catalogue and was in a group called Kenny which
had a top 20 hit with a song entitled Bump,” he
However, Keith had an ambition to move away
from acting towards presenting, and duly wrote to
the BBC: “I offered them myself as presenting some
Michael Parkinson-type chat show. They declined
but said that if I was ever in the area, I should call
in. So within two hours of receiving that message, I
was there. When the man who wrote the letter saw
me, he said if he put that on all rejection letters and
had never expected someone to take him up on the
offer! I was asked whether I’d had any presenting
experience and, because at stage school I learned
how to lie, I said ‘yes’. Soon, I was fronting a show!
“Back then, we had a producer called Roger Gayle,
who went on to be an MP. About 10 minutes before
we went on, he took me to one side and said: ‘Tell
me the truth, have you really had any presenting
experience? Because if you do, I can help you, but if
you lie, I’ll make sure you never get a job in TV again.’
So I confessed and he gave me a 10 minute crash
course in presenting!”
“Think nothing of being
drunk by midday”
It must have proved effective because Keith was
soon making a name for himself alongside Noel
Edmonds, John Craven and Maggie Philbin (who
he would later marry) on Multi Coloured Swap Shop,
and later on his own Cheggers Plays Pop.
However, in the late 1980s, with his career
seemingly on the wane, Keith turned to drink. He
later revealed the full extent of his battle while on
Big Brother, saying: “A drunk comes down in the
morning and says ‘I’ve got a dreadful hangover,
an alcoholic comes in in the morning and says
‘Morning, nothing happened last night, did it?’ And
then you try and fill in the gaps.
Promoting Multi-Coloured Swap Shop
do all day, so you get talking. I stopped drinking
25 years ago but still class myself as a recovering
alcoholic, but I’m not holier than thou about it.
“Back in the 1970s and 1980s, drink was everywhere.
When you were trying to promote a show, it was
never going to be easy to get journalists to attend
a 9am press conference, so it would be labelled a
‘champagne reception’ and all of a sudden, they’d
be there,” he laughs.
“So you’d think nothing of starting drinking by
10am and being drunk by midday. In fact, if you
didn’t drink, you were a bit of a party pooper, but
it’s totally different now. I loved a drink and had
some great times while drinking. There’s no point
In the 1990s, Keith was a familiar face on breakfast
TV, first on Channel 4 where his catchphrase was:
“I hid it everywhere. I’d do all the tricks, I hid it in suit
pockets, guttering and down the back of the sofa, in
the car... everywhere.”
Speaking about his decision to open up, he said:
“The thing is, on Big Brother, there’s not a lot to
Keith’s parents Margaret, Colin with sister Janet
with Sir Paul McCartney
“Wake up you beggars, it’s Cheggers!” and then
on GMTV where he’d arrived at an unsuspecting
competition entrant’s home with a cheque for
£10,000: “That was really, really funny because it
was all live. One time, we gave this woman a cheque
and, on live TV, she said to me: ‘Hey Keith, you won’t
tell them I’ve been done for shoplifting?’ Another
time, we had a guy jumping up and down like a
kangaroo until he realised that, by being so active
on live TV, he’d just lost his incapacity benefits!”
“I thought it was a
wind-up at first”
Of course, Keith rarely gets through an interview
without the Naked Jungle episode being mentioned
- when he fronted a one-off gameshow completely
in the nude: “I honestly didn’t think people would
watch it because it was on late at night. It got
tonnes of complaints. It doesn’t bother me now but
at the time it did me a lot of damage, so I regret it.”
However, he says his favourite job by far has been
working with Ricky Gervais, who asked Keith to star
in an episode of Extras: “At first, I thought it was Jon
Culshaw, the impressionist, doing a wind-up so I
called him back and it was actually Ricky. He said
he was doing this series and he’d got three people
in mind; Sandra Bullock, Liam Neeson and Keith
Chegwin. It was fabulous but he is awful to work
Cheggers with Local Life editor David Sudworth
with because all he does is just laugh. There was one
take which was only 30 seconds on screen but took
four hours to shoot because of all the laughing.”
This led to a spin-off, Life’s Too Short, which saw
Keith, Les Dennis and Shaun WIlliamson play “bitter
and twisted” versions of themselves.
He may now be celebrating his 50th year in
showbiz, but Cheggers says he’s now as busy as
ever: “I’m booked up well into 2018 and, to be
honest, there’s a lot of things which I turn down. I’ve
never actually been that ambitious, that’s why I got
rid of my agent. People are amazed that I handle my
own stuff and my mobile number is out there, but
why not? This isn’t a hard job, is it? You hear some
actors moaning but I’d say to them, if you think this
is hard, go and dig the roads, then you’ll see...”
The hills are alive...
Julie Andrews found the landscape of Austria
so exhilarating, it became the lead song from
The Sound of Music.
50 years on and the hills are still alive with much
more than just a few tunes. For unspoilt valleys, the
Niederau and Oberau areas in western Austria are
Billinge-based Marken Travel has teamed up with
Inghams to offer an experience of a lifetime in this
beautiful part of Europe.
Niederau and Oberau are superb areas for walking,
with miles of marked trails through lovely, rolling
hills - and there’s also free use of all lifts!
Wildschonau, meaning ‘wild and beautiful’, is one
of the most glorious valleys in the Tyrol, with a
special, rural character, rustic mountain alms and
the spectacular Kundl Gorge to explore at the end
of the valley. Picturesque Niedera houses a pretty
church, friendly cafes and the central Markbachjoch
gondola. Further into the valley, fairytale Oberau
comprises of a magnificent church, a handful of
shops and some fine, old buildings. Wherever you
stay, a regular bus serves the whole valley, enabling
you to make the most of this scenic region.
Speaking of lodgings, the fine Hotel Tirolerhof, in
Oberau, enjoys lovely meadow and hillside views.
It’s a family-run hotel, with Martin Erharter and so
assuring you of a warm, Austrian welcome. Facilities
include lounge and bar, restaurant, cafe and terrace,
free guided walks (with resort
card), free packed lunches at
selected hotel and an Inghams
representative based in the
small indoor pool, sauna and steam room, horsedrawn
buggy rides (pay locally), lift and free wi-fi.
Single rooms have a shower and there’s no single
supplement payable. All rooms have a balcony, TV,
radio, telephone and hairdryer.
By going with Marken Travel and Inghams, you will
benefit from a package of savings which includes a
free excursion to Salzburg, free use of all lifts in the
Wildschonau and Alpbach Valley (with resort card),
The resort card is free to all
guests from May 13, 2017, is
provided by your hotel upon
arrival and gives you free use
of the tennis courts, entrance
to the outdoor swimming
pool, entrance to the silver mine and museums, free
children’s activity programme (Monday-Friday) and
discounted rates on many other attractions.
If, however, you want a bit of hustle and bustle, the
delights of Austria’s capital city, Vienna, await.
The capital of Austria is known for its history, from
the Gothic St Stephen’s Cathedral to the art nouveau
splendour of the Secession. By day, you can enjoy
a walk around the Ringstrasse, the circular road
Marken Travel & Inghams
Hotel Tirolerhoff – Oberau
3* hotel - 7 nights half board
No single room supplements
Free resort card (worth $60)
Free excursion to Salzburg
Free guided walks
Free packed lunches
Great flight times
Call Marken Travel today for more details
Just £693 on 26/8/17 (other dates available)
Independent Travel Specialist
200 Main Street, Billinge, WN5 7PE Telephone: 01744 893291 www.markentravel.co.uk
Presentation night by
Wednesday 11th January at 6.30pm
01744 893 291
to confirm your place
that will take you past many of Vienna’s attractions.
St Stephen’s 343 steps seem daunting at first, but
reach the summit and you will be rewarded with
spectacular views. You could also follow in the
footsteps of Orson Welles, who starred in the film
The Third Man, and take a ride in one of the ornate
gondola carriages of the giant Ferris wheel at the
Prater, another of the city’s most famous landmarks.
But don’t be fooled into thinking there aren’t other
attractions to enjoy. It’s truly an historic old town
filled with a vibrant modern atmosphere. To enjoy
this, head to head into the ‘Inner Stadt’, the historic
old town. And treat yourself to an einspanner,
Viennese coffee topped with cream, and a slice of
sachertorte, chocolate cake with apricot jam, at the
iconic Cafe Central.
Vienna boasts one of the world’s most famous
culinary traditions. A diverse yet delectably
harmonious range of dishes reflects the city’s mix
of nationalities and food cultures through the
Language: Austrian German
Time difference: +1hour
Cost of a beer: €3.50
Cappuccino : €3
3 Course meal: €25
centuries, and inspires visitors from all over the
globe. Why not try the iconic Wiener Schnitzel,
which is deep fried breaded veal and said to have
been a staple of Austrian cuisine for almost 200
Whether you’re a seasoned visitor, or are looking to
explore the country for the first time, Marken and
Inghams can help you unlock the delights of Austria.
Manchester & Liverpool airports
Comfortable & clean vehicles
Can seat up to 16
Billinge Mini Travel
01744 894 533
Incorporating H&I Travel 01744 609691
Owned & Operated by Brian Scott
Food & Drink
You should have fun!
By Gemma Dunn
He’s been branded one of the trailblazers
of new British cooking, but at the heart of
Glynn Purnell’s success is his refusal to take
himself too seriously. If he’s not cracking jokes and
reeling off witty anecdotes, the ‘Yummy Brummie’
is referring to himself as the Roger Federer of
Birmingham’s imploding culinary scene.
“I’m always going to be remembered as something
that broke the mould; the one who was awarded
the first ever Michelin star in Birmingham [which
happened in 2005, while he was head chef at
Jessica’s in Edgbaston],” says the forward-thinker. “It’s important as a chef to have your own
“I’m still in the mix, so I like to see myself as a Roger personality, but then to be able to put that
Federer: I won’t be No 1 all of the time, but it’s great,” personality onto the page makes you different,”
the 41-year-old adds, chuckling. “Competition is reasons Purnell, who credits his publishers with
giving him the creative freedom to put out a book
that “sounds as if I’m talking to you”.
And having achieved his childhood goal - “I never
had any interest in passing GCSEs because I knew I “When I stop running restaurants, and when I stop
was going to be a chef” - it seems Purnell has plenty doing what I’m doing, I want people to look back
to smile about.
and go, ‘Oh look, that’s a Glynn Purnell dish’, or
when they come to the restaurant and eat a dish,
His latest venture is the brilliantly-titled cookbook
they know they’re not going to get that anywhere
Rib Ticklers & Choux-Ins, a follow-up to 2014’s
else in the world.
Cracking Yolks & Pig Tales, and a tome he says was
inspired by the more down-to-earth dishes served “It’s important to keep hold of your personality,”
at his bistro, or “takeaway food at home”.
he continues. “I’ve been cooking in Michelinstar
restaurants nearly all of my career, and chefs
Written with trademark wit, chapters range from
always want to perceive themselves as being a bit
‘This little piggy went to market’ to ‘A moment on
aggressive. I’ve moved on from that.
the lips’. It’s infused with brunch, fish, meat and
knockout dessert recipes, and peppered with “I don’t need to push my chest out and act like
yarns about perfecting his skills some sort of big grumpy chef that throws plates at
through years of reading women’s people, because times have changed. For me, food
magazines at the dentist, and why is fun; you should have fun.
he has such a vendetta against “Some chefs should smile a bit more - it wouldn’t
Rib Ticklers & Choux-Ins by Glynn Purnell, photography by Peter Cassidy, is published by Kyle Books, priced £19.99.
Sweet spicy sticky ribs
2tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 cinnamon stick
1tsp black onion seeds
1tsp ground ginger
1 rack of pork belly ribs, cut into individual ribs
150g caster sugar
50ml white wine vinegar
50ml dark soy sauce
1tbsp (large) tomato ketchup
2 medium-hot chillies, roughly chopped
1tbsp chopped coriander
Squeeze of lime juice
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat.
Add the onion and garlic and cook until softened
but only lightly coloured.
Add the cloves, cinnamon, onion seeds and ginger
to the pan and then add the ribs. Cover all the
ingredients with two litres of cold water (or enough
to cover the ribs), then simmer for 30-40 minutes
until the meat is tender. Drain the ribs (you can
reserve the cooking liquid to make a sauce for
Heat a large frying pan, add the sugar, vinegar and
soy sauce and boil the mixture until reduced to a
Add the ketchup to the pan, then stir in the ribs,
coating well with the glaze. Add the chillies,
coriander and a squeeze of lime juice, then serve.
The ribs can be served with egg noodles or jasmine
A little tip - instead of ribs, buy pork belly on the
bone. That way you get free ribs and probably the
best part of the pig.
The Star Inn
A handsome old pub in Rainford
serving fresh home cooked food
and a wide selection of cask ales in
a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.
Food served Wednesday to Sunday.
01744 882 639
11 Church Rd, Rainford
From wholesome breakfasts and
a delicious lunchtime menu to
traditional Lancastrian afternoon
teas, the Plantation Restaurant at
Warbreck Garden Centre is the
place to go.
Lyelake Lane, Lathom, L40 6JW
£30 + VAT
Call 01744 649722
A family run Italian restaurant
situated on the Rainford By-pass at
Bickerstaffe. Being just off the slip
road of the M58 makes this an ideal
location for meeting friends and
54 Rainford Road, Bickerstaffe,
Ormskirk L39 0HF
Rigby’s Coffee Shop
Enjoy a trip out to Pimbo Garden
Centre and tuck into a wide
selection of delicious home cooked,
locally sourced, food served seven
days a week at Rigby’s Coffee Shop.
Pimbo Garden Centre, 32 Pimbo
Lane, Up Holland, WN8 9QQ
Award-winning CAMRA freehouse
with a fast growing reputation for
excellent quality food at reasonable
prices. Traditional British classics
served, plus some exotic surprises
too. Food served Wed-Sun only.
Tontine, Orrell, WN5 8UJ
In a perfect setting, Houghwood’s
restaurant has panoramic views
across the golf course and over to
the Welsh hills. A modern British
menu is served Wednesday to
Sunday. 5 star food hygiene rating.
Crank Road, St Helens, WA11 8RL
The Stocks Tavern
Warmest and friendliest of
welcomes with award winning chef
Mike Heap, who uses only the finest,
freshest, local ingredients to ensure
you leave completely satisfied.
16, Alder Lane, Parbold,
by David Sudworth
If you want to raise someone’s blood pressure in
Hale, tell them they live in Merseyside.
The temptation is obvious, given that it is perched
on the side of the Mersey, and also at the end of
Liverpool John Lennon Airport runway.
But not only is this geographical pigeonholing
patently untrue (pub bore alert number one:
Merseyside hasn’t existed since 1986 when the old
Merseyside County Council was abolished) but Hale
is in fact part of the Halton Council area, which
has come under Cheshire since 1974. Only for local
government purposes you understand, because (bore
alert number 2) technically Hale remains part of the
County Palatine of Lancashire. Also, don’t confuse it
with the other Hale, which is near Altrincham and has
always been part of Cheshire.
Flummoxed? Don’t be, because none of it really
matters when you are enjoying this splendid five mile
We start our walk from the car park at Hale Park
(postcode L24 4EA). Having parked up, we head
back out of the car park onto High Street and take
a right heading in to Church End. Here, we get a
first glimpse of some truly beautiful old houses
with thatched roofs. On the day we visited, the air
was wintery and crisp. Against the clear, blue sky
backdrop, we saw the odd chimney pot bellowing
out plumes of smoke. A sight sure to warm the
cockles of even the coldest walker.
A little further on, we happen upon an imposing
statue of John Middleton, formerly of this parish,
who by some accounts grew to a staggering 9ft 3ins
tall. Little wonder he was
hired as a bodyguard to
the Sheriff of Lancashire.
Once past the statue, we
take a left into Within
Way from where you’re
soon enjoying open
views towards Widnes
and Runcorn - the railway
bridge stands proudly
to the left alongside
an endless parade of
factories. By contrast, on
our side of the Mersey,
there is nothing apart
from green fields and
some winter broccoli
crops for company.
History enthusiasts will enjoy knowing that this
was the point where the first Mersey crossing was
situated by way of a ford, which is a mile long.
During the Civil War in 1644, troops crossed with
their horses and there were skirmishes to take
control of what was a major crossing point. As
late as the 19th century, a local vicar used to take
his horse-drawn buggy across. However, pollution
was becoming a big problem, and this led to the
construction of the Transporter Bridge in 1905. This
was replaced in 1961 by the Silver Jubilee Bridge,
which remains in use to this day.
As an interesting aside, ‘Mersey’ is derived from the
Old English words ‘Mæres’ meaning boundary or
border, and ‘Ea’ meaning river.
With the history lesson now over, we follow the
route all the way down to the bottom, where it
continues to the river as a footpath. When you reach
the river go right and continue along the path. After
a short while Hale Head Lighthouse will come into
view. Built in 1906, it was decommissioned in 1958
and is now a private residence.
You’ll go straight through the gates passing the
lighthouse as you cross Lighthouse Road and on
along the river bank. Shortly after this you go over a
wooden footbridge that crosses Lady Pool, a brook
that runs out from Hale Park. The path continues for
a good while, passing Icehouse Plantation, before
you eventually reach a house, where the path goes
down some steps to the left. This then crosses
another brook, before steps
take you back to the top of
the river bank. Keep going
along the river until the path
emerges onto a new tarmac
At this point we go right
and the path soon emerges
onto Dungeon Road, right
again the boundary fence
to Liverpool John Lennon
Airport. Here you get some
good views of planes taking
off or landing. We managed
to hang around long enough
to see a private plane jet off
to a destination unknown,
followed shortly afterwards
by an easyJet 12.15pm service
to Barcelona. Plan your route
carefully if you want to see
this, as sometimes there can
be an hour’s gap in between
John Middleton ‘Childe of Hale’ Statue
Just before you reach the
yellow post that support the
airports landing lights, you
take a right into Bailey’s Lane.
Follow this until it emerges
on Hale Road, a smart route
with some very grand homes
with thatched roofs. Continue
to go right and follow it back
into the village and then take
a right back in to the car park.
Having done these walks for a
few years now, I can honestly
say this was possibly the most
interesting and enjoyable.
There’s just something about
the river, its vastness, which
creates a sense of calmness,
even with the slow chug of
industry in the background.
A tall story
The Mersey is synonymous with Liverpool but
it is more than just a reference point for the Liver
Buildings, the Albert Dock and so on.
Also, from this vantage point, there’s no chance of
overhearing the cringingly obvious warblings of
Gerry & The Pacemakers as the Birkenhead Ferry
comes in to dock. And for that, we should all be
Please ensure you wear appropriate clothing and
footwear while walking. While every care has been
taken to ensure that the walk is accurate, neither the
publisher or its editorial contributors can accept, and
hereby disclaim, any liability to any party to loss or
damage caused by errors or omissions resulting from
negligence, accident or other cause.
John Middleton was born in 1578 in
Hale and, according to folklore, is one
of the tallest men in history.
A towering man, he is believed to have been
between 7ft 9ins and 9ft 3ins tall – official records
don’t exist to confirm one way or the other. It is said
that when King James I learnt about the ‘Childe of
Hale’s’ great height, he invited him to his court to
fight the King’s wrestler. Middleton won and was
given £20, a massive amount at that time. He is
also said to have been recruited as a bodyguard
for Gilbert Ireland, the landlord and Sheriff of
Lancashire who was also a member of Brasenose
College Boat Club.
Middleton died in 1623, aged 45, and is buried in
St Mary’s churchyard. A portrait of Middleton hangs
in Brasenose College and the rowing team’s first VIII
sometimes wear Middleton’s colours; red, purple
and gold. A blue plaque denoting Middleton’s
home in Hale adorns a whitewashed cottage on
Church End, just a stone’s throw from his statue.
taking a break?
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by Tim Barnes-Clay
Hybrid vehicles are in vogue these days – or so it appears. Will this technology
take over the conventional power plants we know one day? I don’t have the
psychic wherewithal to tell you. But a lot of automakers seem to be following
this trend – and now it’s Kia’s turn.
The all-new Kia Niro hybrid is propelled by an orthodox 1.6-litre GDi petrol engine,
paired up with a 32kW electric motor. There’s also a lithium-ion polymer battery
where energy is saved. This layout is like with the one in Toyota’s Prius, and manages
an official combined mpg of up to 74.3mpg, alongside CO2 emissions starting from
The Niro is larger than its relative, the Cee’d, yet more pocket-sized than its other
relation – the attractive and admired Sportage. The all-new Kia Niro is the South
Korean car company’s first attempt at a hybrid crossover type of vehicle, but you
Sure, there are copied elements, such as white plastic adornments inside the cabin,
especially around the inner door handles. These are, undoubtedly, inspired by
Toyota, but you can let Kia off because every car manufacturer ‘makes use of’ ideas.
It’s a fashion thing and, by its very nature, fashion is all about making certain you’re
‘down with the kids’ on the hottest style.
The new Kia Niro’s body is rectangular, but it’s not at all disagreeable. The Niro has
a simple, fetching form, that has hints of Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) about it. At
the front, the Sportage’s genetic material comes
through – most markedly around the headlights.
What’s more, the rump of the all-new Niro is easyon-the-eye,
with a conventional tailgate decorated
with touches of silver trim.
The all-new Kia Niro will seat four-adults
comfortably, or five at a squeeze. The load area
is a decent size – certainly large enough for a
regular sized family’s needs. The steering wheel
is pleasingly thick to grasp and the switchgear
and dials are intuitive and clear to use. The only
difference between the Niro and a conventionally
powered car is an energy flow meter replacing
the rev counter. There’s also a drivetrain pictorial
showing the energy stream between the Kia Niro’s
engine, battery and wheels.
On start-up, the all-new Kia Niro sounds like it’s not
turned on. That’s because, as with all hybrids, the
engine under the bonnet doesn’t cut in instantly.
Instead of any tick-over sounds, you hear a chime,
signifying that the Niro is running. It’s not long
before the 105PS petrol powered unit makes its
presence known, though.
On the road, the Niro delivers even-tempered
performance, thanks to a six-cog automatic
gearbox. And, while the Kia Niro is no out and out
performer, the additional power the petrol engine
receives from the electric motor is appreciable.
The all-new Kia Niro also feels planted and deals
with the straights contentedly. It’s only on more
blemished B-road surfaces that the Niro’s firm
suspension results in a bit of jitteriness. The Kia Niro
has to have a stiff set-up, though, to cope with the
extra heft of the hybrid assembly. Luckily, there’s a
Max speed: 101 mph
0-62 mph: 11.1 secs
Combined mpg: 64.2
Engine layout: 1580cc 4-cylinder petrol + 32kW
Max. power (PS): 141 (combined engine + electric)
CO2: 101 g/km
silver lining to every cloud and this firmness means
that body lean is hardly noticeable in corners.
The all-new Kia Niro hybrid comes in four levels of
trim, categorised ‘1’, ‘2’, ‘3’ and ‘First Edition’. All are
well-appointed with driver assistance, comfort, and
connectivity features. Every Kia Niro has a lane-keep
assist system, hill-start assist control, cruise control
and a speed limiter. The new car also comes factoryfitted
with support smartphone connectivity, music
streaming and a DAB radio.
Pick Up &
on repairs, servicing and diagnostics
at Wigan’s leading independent
BMW & Mini Specialist.
Our staff have over 40 years experience at the
Northwest’s largest BMW dealership.
Other makes and models welcome too.
Mobile car valeting
Tel: 07803 053 715
Treat your car
to the professional touch
184 Wallgate, Wigan, WN3 4AL (Next to Better Bathrooms)
Free secure parking at rear
01942 820 378
It wasn’t raining
when Noah built
by Angie Barker
Isaw this caption outside a Methodist church
recently and I thought what a brilliant way to
illustrate the concept of planning ahead. And
when it comes to our gardens, planning ahead
is a necessity if you want a truly seasonal garden
with year round interest and colour and this is
particularly true of the winter months. Winter can
be a drawn out, dreary affair so injecting some
colour and structure into our gardens can really lift
the spirits at this time of year. Some excellent plants
for the winter garden include:
Buxus sempervirens or Box. Fantastic evergreen
structure. If you are worried about Box Blight (a
fungal disease which is becoming more prevalent)
then Euonymus japonicus ‘Jean Hugues’ is an
Daphnes are brilliant for providing winter flowers
which are scented. Two of the best are Daphne
odora ‘Aureomarginata’ and Daphne bholua
Euonymus fortunei ‘Emerald ‘n’ Gold’. Bright lime
green and yellow leaves cover this small shrub
throughout the year and when the temperatures
fall, they turn pink.
Miscanthus sinensis ‘Kleine Fontane’ is a tall grass
which keeps its structure all winter and looks
stunning with a sprinkling of frost.
Sarcococca confusa -a small evergreen shrub with
amazing scent in winter which will knock your socks
off and is also really useful for a dark, shady corner.
Christmas or Lenten Roses (Hellebores) are lovely
small perennials which although don’t offer much
in the way of colour and structure throughout the
year, really come into their own in January and
February. Helleborous x hybridus provide some of
the best colours.
So if you think your garden lacks interest at this time
of year, start planning now for next winter and take
a trip to the garden centre. Bypass the sale of left
over Christmas decorations and head outside for
the plants. As for Hubby, well he is busy planning
too. He wants to know when is the best time to
open that vintage bottle of wine I bought him for
Happy New Year everyone.
Angie is a qualified
designer who will
plan your garden to
your needs from start
to finish, supplying
and the ideal plants.
Call Angie now for your free consultation!
Angie Barker Dip GD
(Inst GD) BA (Hons)
Garden Design For All Seasons
Tel: 01942 522 405
Mob: 07857 008 383
Want a beautiful
garden without all
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At GreenHills we don’t just treat your lawns, we
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• APPLICATION OF LAWN TREATMENTS
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~ Est. 2001 ~
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51 Sandringham Drive, WA9 3TQ
DIRECT FROM THE MANUFACTURER
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See our show sites at;
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Southworth Road, Newton-le-Willows, WA12 0BS
Telephone: 01695 589 207
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Telephone: 01695 589 210
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Telephone: 01695 51442
ALL ASPECTS OF TREE WORK UNDERTAKEN
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West Lancashire District Council approved contractor
Day: 07970 521 692 Eve: 01942 214 121
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All GARAGE DOORS REPAIRED :
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Ovenclean will transform your oven and
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Call today to book your oven clean
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Carroll’s Carpet & Upholstery offer a professional
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printer packed up, virus/spyware or
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Ring Paul on www.wiganaerials.com
01942 514532 - 07709 490095
Painters & Decorators
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advice & quotes
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01744 894 431
07931 282 896
• UPVC & WOODEN DOOR SPECIALIST
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• UPVC Door Lock Changes
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A Registered Insured NCFE Certified Company
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01744 526 589 / 07932 718 362
Painter & Decorator
• Paper hanging a speciality
• Friendly & very reliable service
• City & Guilds qualified
• Both domestic & commercial
• Trading for over 25 years
Call Adam on 01744 755005
Advertise your business in this
section from £35 + VAT a month
For more information please phone
01744 649 722
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For a free quotation please call
01744 606642 / 07801 950009
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Our Focus Is
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Dave 07769 942218 / Matt 07969 183809
21, Naburn Drive, Orrell, WN5 8SB
of Building &
Call us on... 01744 600074
Mobile: 07867 592460
13 Hawes Ave, Carr Mill, WA11 7EA
Specialists in boiler installations, repair & maintenance
All work fully warranted
Book a boiler health check for £65
& get a carbon monoxide
alarm (RRP £29) FREE!
Call the team on
M H Roofing Ltd
Established over 15 years
Friendly advice and competitive rates
No job too small
• High Performance Felt Flat Roof Systems
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• Slating and Tiling full roofs
• Poiniting and Guttering • Fascia Boards
Call 01744 884117
or 07702 693225
Fully Insured & Insurance
Extension, loft/garage conversions, UPVC windows & doors,
damp proofing & DPC, wall ties – all aspects of building
work Flat/pitched re-roofs, gutters, fascias & soffits,velux
windows, all general roof repairs
• WILSON BROS •
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Call us now for a free estimate
Colin: 07958 302 166
Brian: 07760 160 988
01744 602931 or 07756 274503
7 Albany Avenue, Eccleston Park, L34 2QN