Monday, October 29, 2012

Looking for office space in Kensington, LIverpool?

Kensington Community Learning Centre have a unique opportunity for organisations looking for office space.  The premises offer a prime location on the main high street with a large window that can be utilised to promote the organisation’s services. 

There is also the option to utilise KCLC’s reception service as part of a package. Attractive rates are available.  If you would like to view the premises and discuss options please contact Alan Tapp on 0151 260 1006.

Exciting postgrad opportunities in Radio and Online Journalism

Please see this interesting email below for more details 

Liverpool Hope University are currently recruiting for the diversity-driven part-time Postgraduate Diploma in Radio & Online Journalism (in partnership with the BBC) which will begin in January 2013.  With this in mind, I was wondering if you would be able to raise awareness of the course among your staff.  I hope you do not mind me asking.

The course is intensive and pragmatic with assessment briefs set by the course leaders and industry partners. It also nurtures specialist areas of interest (sport, social affairs, politics, science etc.) in order to develop each student’s ‘Domain(s) of Expertise’. The programme also includes a Mentoring Scheme designed in partnership with the BBC in which each student is assigned a personal mentor from the industry.  Current mentors include John Pienaar (Chief Political Editor at BBC Radio 5 Live), Debbie Ramsay (Duty Editor of BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat), Gary O’Donoghue (Senior Political Correspondent for BBC News) and Steve Hothersall (Head of News & Sport, Radio City).

The programme incorporates a three-week work placement in some of the most dynamic and important news rooms in the UK (including BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat, BBC Radio 5 Live, Radio City, Key 103, BBC Northwest Tonight, BBC Radio Lancashire, Real Radio and BBC Radio Merseyside) and current students have already secured regular freelance work in the industry (at BBC Radio Merseyside, BBC Radio 4, BBC World Service, Dee 106.3 and Northwest Tonight)

We aim to encourage as many applications as possible from those with disabilities or from under-represented socio-economic and cultural groups. A first degree is desirable but not essential.

The course has been designed in collaboration with BBC Radio Merseyside and the BJTC (Broadcast Journalism Training Council) and accreditation from the latter is being sought.  Also, to help redress the under-representation of some groups within commercial and public service radio (and to attract applicants from a broad a socio-economic range) the course fees have been set to the lowest band possible.

 The course runs one day per week (apart from some intensive news weeks) over 2 years to encourage those from a wide range of domestic circumstances.   The course fees are, in total, £3,270 – which can be paid in instalments over the two years.

 Interested parties can apply for the course by contacting the Postgraduate Office at Hope on (0)151 291 3111 or email  Or if applicants wish to discuss the course informally they can email me directly at

For further details visit:

Kindest regards,

Gary Morrisroe
Lecturer - Dept of Politics, History, Media and Communication
Programme Leader - PG Diploma in Radio & Online Journalism
Liverpool Hope University

Thursday, October 25, 2012

National Novel Writing Month

I have decided to have a go at writing a 50k word novel during November as part of National Novel Writing Month.

The general aim as far as I can see, is to really focus the mind and simply get on with it, rather than coming up with hundreds of excuses about why it cannot be done. And the website recommends that you should tell everyone of the intention, so that it is difficult not to apply yourself and at least have a go.

I am not sure how a busy person like me will make time for this, and I am thinking I will probably need to write about 2500 words per day as I wont be able to do it every day, so it will definitely be a squeeze. I suspect I may be writing during the evenings when I have finished with casework and meetings and all that other stuff that demands my time. But you know what they say, if you really want something doing, ask a busy person!

Obviously I need a plot to work to as there wont be lots of time for brainstorming, so I have been drafting something which is now on two sides of A4 and I hope will keep me on track as I work through the month. It is basically a series of short stories connected to each other by a central theme, so if I need a rest from one I can start on another and come back to the first one later.

The advice is not to rewrite or edit as you go but to get it all out there and then perhaps spend December doing all that. (She says as though it was that simple, laughing at her own madness.)

I reckon that even if I only manage half a novel in November, it will at least have been a start and I wont have lost anything.

So watch this space, the writing starts in 6 days time. I may try to find time to come and tell you how many words I have done, periodically, and you can hopefully encourage me along a bit. I might also come and ask you questions about things I don't know about so that you can help me with the research.

Exciting times, I cannot really believe I am going to do this, but I am looking forward to it. Do wish me well!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Oliver King Foundation - defibrilators for every Liverpool Primary School

This morning I was delighted to join guests at a special event in Pinehurst Primary School, Anfield, to welcome the delivery of the first defibrilator, one of 122 destined for all our city's primary schools.

LPHA, Liverpool Primary Heads Association (or similar) asked the council to direct over £100,000 of its budget for schools to the purchase of these life saving machines and their chair, Rachel Rick, head of King David Primary School was excited to be there as the first one was ceremoniously handed over in front of the whole school.

This initiative comes from the hard work of the Oliver King Foundation which was set up in memory of a 12 year old boy from King David's who died from SADS (sudden adult death syndrome) last year. His family and trustees are campaigning to raise awareness of the syndrome, to encourage the Government to send teenagers for a routine ecg and for every school and public building to have a defibrilator to start the heart, along with the trained staff to use it. 

Witnessed by the Lord Mayor, representatives of Everton FC, Liverpool FC and various guests, including Natasha (Tasha) Jonas, the Liverpool born Olympian boxer who is a trustee of the Foundation, the proceedings and presentations were directed by another trustee, Councillor Jake Morrison.

As someone who has helped develop Jake's political career, I was so proud of him this morning. This confident, self-assured, articulate, engaging and occasionally humorous young man, the youngest councillor in Liverpool who won his seat against all popular expectation, has come such a long way from the gauche, sometimes shy and tongue-tied youngster that I first met. I well recall taking him out door-knocking with me just a bit less than three years ago and he much preferred to stand silently with me rather than going to doors on his own. As I watched him in action today, I felt very strongly that I was watching someone who is really going places, for whom the sky is the limit.

When I met him, through the city's youth service, Jake's biggest dream and ambition was to be a Paramedic, and indeed Casualty is still his favourite TV programme, so you can see why he would be keen to support a worthy campaign around an important life-saving health issue. Personally, I don't think he will now end up as a health worker, I suspect in years to come he will become a significant figure on Liverpool's council (he is already a Mayoral Lead) and then perhaps become an MP, and start working his way up the Parliamentary ladder too.

The impact of the loss of Oliver King was a tragedy that as his father said, could have been dealt with either way by the family. Mark King told the children of Pinehurst Primary School that the family could either have closed the curtains and mourned for the rest of their lives, or opened the curtains wide and got out there and campaigned for the safety of children and young people across the country.

Apparently 12 young people die each week of SADS and it was a representative of Liverpool FC who told the children that they wanted to help the campaign because that figure represents a football team plus a reserve, and he could think of nothing better than to save a football team's worth of children.

It was impressed upon us how important it is that we encourage people to sign an online petition calling on the Government "to introduce defibrillators to all public buildings by 2017, and provide staff with the appropriate training. We also call on the Government to offer all people aged between 12 & 35 a simple ECG test, which could reduce the current death rate of 12 young people a week."

Please do take the time to sign this, and if you think you might already have signed it, just check.

I got involved in the Campaign for Carbon Monoxide Awareness after a losing a loved-one in an accidental poisoning and I know how hard it can be to get other people excited about your passion, particularly when it is a health related campaign. So hats off to everyone who was involved in the event this morning, you have much to be proud of, it is a great start!

Photo of defib training session from

Monday, October 15, 2012

Emergency Road Closures on Prescot Road, Old Swan

Just seen this update from Gary Millar, which will also apply to any of my residents. Email me on louise.baldock at if you need any more information and I will endeavour to get it for you.
Dear Councillors,
You may be aware of roadworks that have been ongoing for approximately a week on the inbound section of Prescot Road, between Broad Green Road and St Oswald’s Street. These works are being undertaken by National Grid Gas to locate and rectify a gas leak in this area under their emergency powers.

It has been brought to our attention this afternoon that due to the position of the gas main and the available road-width, it is unsafe for National Grid Gas to continue with their works without the road being closed to vehicular traffic. We have also been advised by National Grid Gas that as we are dealing with a gas leak it is not possible for them to back-fill / reinstate the excavation and vacate site to enable the city further time to disseminate this information to the travelling public, as we would with planned works.

As such, we have been left with no alternative but to agree to the closure of this section of road (inbound only) and we are in the process of making the necessary legal orders to enable this to take place with effect from 7pm this evening. National Grid Gas will be working on the leak 24 hours a day to both locate it and rectify it and they anticipate that the works will take in the region of 3 to 4 days to be completed and reinstated. I have requested that they provide the city will regular updates on these works and I will endeavour to keep you notified of progress once this information has been received.

The emergency services and Merseytravel have already been notified of these works and we have arranged for appropriate messages to be displayed on the relevant electronic VMS signs in the city so as to pre-warn the travelling public.

Job opportunity with Labour North West

Role Name: Local Organiser
Part time
Based: - Oldham Borough
Salary: £21,482.16 pro-rata 2 day per week
Fixed term contract until 31st May 2015

Aim: To support Oldham Labour Group and Party in their campaign work, membership recruitment and fundraising activities.
In association with a small management team from the Labour Group and LCF Officers, you will plan and deliver local campaigning across Oldham and help with member/volunteer recruitment and mobilisation. You will have a broad knowledge and proven successful experience of political campaigning, together with knowledge of social media.
You will also be expected to work closely with councillors, candidates, MPs, and party officers to ensure that an effective, co-ordinated campaign is delivered across Oldham. You will also be required to motivate groups of volunteers (both members and supporters) and develop the organisational ability on the ground, incorporating the new campaign techniques being developed by the Labour Party. An understanding of current local issues is desirable but not essential.
For a job description and to apply for this position please send a CV and covering letter to by noon on Thursday October 25th

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Labour women urge boycott of Carnage "Pimps and Hoes"

Rachael on Granada
Councillor Rachael O'Byrne is spearheading a campaign in Liverpool to draw attention to a sexist students' event. She has won the support of the 34 Labour women Councillors in Liverpool and has now released this statement below. Good on you Rachael!

Liverpool’s Labour Women Councillors are calling for businesses to boycott a bar crawl called “Pimps and Hoes” this weekend (Sunday 14 October).

On 14th October 2012, Carnage UK will be hosting a 'Pimps and Hoes' night in Liverpool. We, the Labour women of Liverpool City Council, are calling on all local businesses to distance themselves from this event.

We are proud that Liverpool has been awarded Purple Flag status - an award which recognises a safe, clean and well-managed city centre. Indeed, we have one of the safest city centres in the country. Events such as Carnage UK, that go against these principles, are not welcome in our city.

Carnage UK is a student 'bar crawl' event that is actively not prompted in all three of our University Students’ Unions, and the National Union of Students (NUS) has called for it to be banned. It has been heavily criticised for causing anti-social behaviour and putting participants' welfare at risk through unsafe drinking.

When questioned about the events encouraging binge drinking, Paul Bahia, the founder of Varsity Leisure Group which owns Carnage UK, has stated: “Our events are heavily focused on group identity, social and ethical cohesion and fancy dress themes.”

Councillor Rachael O’Byrne said on the “In this instance 'Pimps and Hoes' seems neither ethically nor socially cohesive. The theme is blatant in its sexism and perpetuates the objectification and exploitation of women.”

The NUS commissioned a piece of research of female students experience of violence, it found that 1 in 7 students have been a victim of sexual assault or violence. We are disgusted that Carnage UK will be hosting a night in Liverpool that trivialises the issues of violence against women.

Themes such as ‘Pimps and Hoes’ sexualise women’s inequality and creates a climate where rape culture is trivialised and indeed actively contributes to upholding it. As a city we have a responsibility to tackle, not celebrate, a culture which enables sexual violence against women.

This event also glorifies the severe consequences of some of those involved in prostitution and sex trafficking. Human trafficking is the fastest growing form of international crime and is now the second largest illegal trade in the world with the UK a significant destination country for women, children and men to be trafficked into the sex trade. Individuals trafficked for sexual exploitation suffer extreme violations of their human rights and the relationship
between a prostitute and their pimp is often abusive and possessive.

This is not something we believe that the night time economy should celebrate in our city. We are united against Carnage UK and hope you will be too.

News coverage so far: 
Granada Reports
In news reports on Juice FM, Radio City 96.7 and City Talk FM
Report on North West Real Radio- To be played Saturday

Sadly nothing in the Echo yet