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Wirral campaigner joins Abuse Inquiry

Graham Wilmer in 2013.

The founder of a Merseyside charity for sexual abuse victims will take part in the independent inquiry commissioned by the Government into historic child sex abuse.

Graham Wilmer, who set up The Lantern Project in Wallasey, will assist the chair of the inquiry, Fiona Woolf, as "victims' representative", the Home Office announced today.

Mr Wilmer, himself a child sexual abuse victim, was awarded the MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours last year.

The Lantern Project was established in 2003 to provide help and support for survivors of sexual abuse.

Since then, it has supported thousands of survivors through our web site, our publications and our counselling facility in Wirral.

Click here to find out more about The Lantern Project.

  1. Ann O'Connor

Scheme to get more disabled people playing sport

A new scheme has been launched to encourage more people with disabililites to take part in sport. The project is aimed at people with autism to try out gymnastics and trampolining and its based in Wirral. And Autism Ability as its called is being studied by Liverpool John Moores University, which wants to identify if there are benefits for people with the condition.


Launch of sport scheme - Autism Ability

People with disablilities on Merseyside are being given more opportunities to get involved in sport. Wirral Autistic Society has been awarded more than £180,000 to provide trampolining and gymnastics to young people and adults with autism. The money's from Sport England and the National Lottery.

Trampolining and gymnastics sessions will be available every week Credit: Wirral Autistic Society

“We are absolutely delighted to be receiving funding from Sport England’s Inclusive Sport Fund. It means a great deal to Wirral Autistic Society and its service users as it provides invaluable funding to help us extend the opportunities for adults with autism to get involved in trampolining and gymnastics

– Neil Murphy, Community Development Activity Manager

Investigation launched after body found at Wirral flat

Rowson Street, New Brighton. Credit: Google Street View

Merseyside Police is investigating the unexplained death of a man whose body was found in a flat in New Brighton last night.

Officers were called to the flat in Rowson Street at 8pm after a female relative found the man's body on the floor of a room inside. .

The flat was cordoned off and an investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death has been launched.

The victim has been identified as a 44-year-old local man. Officers are tonight making efforts to contact his next of kin.

His death is being treated as 'unexplained' until a post mortem examination can be carried out to establish how he died.

An investigation by Wirral CID is underway and anyone with information should call 0151 777 2265.

Full Report: Britain's last surviving ship of the Falklands War - making it's last journey

Campaigners on Merseyside fighting to save an historic warship say they're not giving up, even though the vessel's on its way to the scrapyard.

It was on HMS Plymouth where the surrender document was signed at the end of the Falklands conflict.

She's spent the past decade at the docks in Birkenhead, whose owners say her condition has deteriorated so badly they've no choice but to dispose of the warship.

But the HMS Plymouth Trust hope a last-minute legal challenge could save her as Daniel Hewitt reports:

Doomed ship leaves River Mersey to be scrapped

HMS Plymouth Credit: PA

Doomed warship HMS Plymouth has left home, sailing the River Mersey, on its final journey to be scrapped in a foreign port.

The Royal Navy ship, where the Argentinians formally surrendered their garrison after invading South Georgia during the Falklands War, could not be saved, despite a 25-year long fight since it was decommissioned in 1988.

She sailed on the morning tide on the Mersey, leaving her berth for the open seas and is thought to be heading for a port in Turkey where she will be scrapped.

Campaigners had raised money to launch a legal action to have the ship "arrested" and prevent the ship leaving.

But Peel Ports, who own Vittoria Dock in Birkenhead where she has languished rusting and unloved for years, said they had no "practical choice" but to scrap the vessel.


Why the Hard Rock Cafe isn't happy with the Soft Rock bar in Wirral

Wirral bar owner Robbie Forbes has found himself locked in a legal battle with the owners of an American restaurant chain.

Robbie Forbes owns the 'Soft Rock Cafe' in Liscard.

He's had a letter from the owners of the Hard Rock Cafe chain, telling him he has to change the name.

But Robbie says there's no chance he's taking business away from the American giants.

Ralph Blunsom reports:

Wirral businessman facing legal battle with Hard Rock Cafe

Robbie Forbes, the owner of the Soft Rock Cafe at Liscard, Wirral. Credit: ITV News

A bar owner from Wirral has found himself locked in a legal battle with the owners of an American restaurant chain.

The Soft Rock Cafe in Liscard has been going for two years and is a successful venue for live music in the area.

For the past two months it's been owned by former celebrity bodyguard Robbie Forbes.

Now Robbie finds he's having to protect the future of his bar after being told its name infringes copyright owned by the restaurant chain Hard Rock International.

They say the name is too similar to their Hard Rock Cafe's and they're demanding Robbie makes changes.

A branch of the Hard Rock Cafe in London. Credit: PA
The Soft Rock Cafe in Liscard, near Wallasey. Credit: ITV News

In a letter from the chain's solicitors, the company said: "The name Soft Rock Cafe Bar is extremely similar to Hard Rock Cafe, accordingly there's a likelihood of confusion on the part of the public."

There are currently four Hard Rock Cafe's in Britain, including one in Manchester.

The first one opened in London forty three years ago. It's now a huge chain operating in countries around the world.

It's legal representatives want the Soft Rock bar to remove its website and to remove its name from the Liscard premises.

A deadline was given by the Hard Rock lawyers for Robbie to make the changes.

He's now speaking to his own legal representatives and in the meantime he's hoping he can save the good if somewhat disputed name of his bar.

Quote here

– Robbie Forbes.

McVey defends choice of dress for Cabinet reshuffle

Employment Minister and Wirral West MP Esther McVey has defended her choice of dress for Tuesday's Cabinet reshuffle.

Minister for Employment and Disabilities Esther McVey arrives in Downing Street Credit: PA

Some newspapers referred to the dress as "thigh-flashing" to which Ms McVey replied it was just a "summery dress".

Speaking to ITV News, she said:

"I suppose we're starting a conversation. You've got to look at the positive side. And if the positive side is that there are more women in cabinet and if there's more powerful women in the country, that's positive. So for me, it's the start of a conversation.

"However that conversation starts, and if it is with a bit of thigh on show, well so be it. The most important thing is that women can go on and achieve."

– Wirral West MP Esther McVey

£5.4 million prize fund as The Open Championship returns to Royal Liverpool

The Claret Jug. Credit: PA

The R&A announced today that the total prize money for the 2014 Open Championship, at Royal Liverpool in Hoylake, will be £5,400,000 - an increase of £150,000 on last year.

The prize money for the winner of the competition will increase by £30,000 to £975,000.

The Open returns to Royal Liverpool. Credit: PA

The 143rd Open Championship will be played at Royal Liverpool from 13 July.

It's hoped the host region's economy will benefit by up to £100 million.

The Open is golf’s oldest Major, played since 1860.

The prize fund for the Top Ten:

1 £975,000;

2 £560,000;

3 £360,000;

4 £280,000;

5 £225,500;

6 £195,500;

7 £167,000;

8 £141,500;

9 £123,500;

10 £113,000

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