Host Town

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This town is coming like a host town.

Apparently the Wirral Chamber of Commerce co-ordinated “Birkenhead First” steering group has appointed three “Town Hosts” to welcome and direct visitors to find the town’s “hidden gems.”

http://www.wirralglobe.co.uk/news/14424715.New__Birkenhead_First__team_aims_to_cut_crime_and_boost_business/

This trinity of holy hosts will be the public face of the Birkenhead Improvement District and will ensure Birkenhead is clean and tidy and “will act as a highly visible deterrent for anti-social behaviour”. We’re imagining  something akin to air stewards with tasers and pooper scoopers.

So what “hidden gems” might the Town Hosts visitors be directing visitors to?. We can imagine that their spiel goes something like this :

” …..And on your left is a contact centre and if you look to your right there is another contact centre. If you’re feeling peckish you can pop into Al Capone’s for a light snack. Oh sorry it’s been closed as being a serious risk to the community…. ”

http://m.wirralglobe.co.uk/news/14427364.Al_Capone_s_takeaway_in_Birkenhead_closed_down_in_joint_police_and_council_operation/

Now we know that the Birkenhead Improvement District want to accentuate the positive but beyond the wonder of Hamilton Square and the world class river view even they have to admit Birkenhead is a bit of a hard sell.

That assessment includes the much lauded Birkenhead Park which due to lack of adequate security has become something of an arsonist’s playground. Additionally the perimeter of the park is falling into wrack and ruin. Witness the continuing sad demise of ESWA Sports & Social Club building which we first reported in August 2014!. As Private Eye wrote at the time :

” This had been used as the ESWA Sports & Social Club …until it closed in 2012. The following year the houses were bought by a developer. Soon after they were burgled,and 24 hours later they went on fire,the fire services suspecting arson. The shell of the two houses now stands open to the sky and surrounded by hoardings. The plan,apparently is to convert the structure into apartments,but so often in the Wirral a fire is followed by demolition….In London, the house would be graced with a blue plaque and cherished. But poor Birkenhead is different”

https://wirralleaks.wordpress.com/2014/08/26/pie-in-the-sky/

Heading for two years later poor Birkenhead is still “different” and not in a good way :

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In the same post above we drew attention to appalling state of the derelict site at the corner of Balls Rd East /Oxton Rd . Coincidentally the same person who provided the pictures for that article has sent us some more recent pictures which illustrate this article and our photographer asks us whether the Town Hosts will be directing visitors to the beauty of Borough Road (see above and below) or tidying it up before they get there?. They sent the pictures to us in the hope that something will be done about the fly-tipping and the filth as the last time we published their pictures something was actually done about the situation.

Over to you Town Hosts !……………..

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As you can see this delightful picture taken on Borough Road includes the obligatory dog crap. 

 

 

 

Pie In The Sky

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Miraculously Private Eye magazine recently covered a story about Wirral Council that did not feature in Rotten Boroughs!

This story was instead in “Nooks and Corners” which records the magazine’s concerns about Britain’s architectural heritage.The case in point here being a pair of  semi-detached Victorian mansions ,54-56 Park Road South,Birkenhead.

Private Eye reports :

” This had been used as the ESWA Sports & Social Club …until it closed in 2012. The following year the houses were bought by a developer .Soon after they were burgled,and 24 hours later they went on fire,the fire services suspecting arson. The shell of the two houses now stands open to the sky and surrounded by hoardings. The plan,apparently is to convert the structure into apartments,but so often in the Wirral a fire is followed by demolition….In London, the house would be graced with a blue plaque and cherished. But poor Birkenhead is different”

Poor Birkenhead is indeed different – not only is the continuing drive to turn the surrounding area into “Flatland”  with a high density of apartments housing a transient population (see also planning applications in the close vicinity for more apartments on the plot of the now closed Cole Street School and part conversion of the Queens Hotel) but the dereliction and decay elsewhere in Birkenhead continues unabated.

Following our “Talking Crap” story

https://wirralleaks.wordpress.com/2014/08/08/talking-crap/

a concerned Birkenhead resident has been in touch with more crap for Birkenhead Constituency Committee to consider. The resident has long had concerns about the continuing deterioration of wasteland at the corner of Oxton Road and the appropriately named Balls Road (East) and have sent us the following pictures (although they advise that the pictures do not do justice to the swarms of flies and bluebottles):

wasteland%20008 wasteland%20010 wasteland%20012 wasteland%20014 wasteland%20020

Our source asks us how do we think the Birkenhead Constituency Committee and Wirral Council would respond to this appalling site/sight?

Unfortunately we suspect it would go something like this:

“We are proud to announce an exciting new development with our partners Steal Holdups International and mysterious foreign investor Pho Ni. We have carried out extensive consultation with the local population – ignored their concerns and decided that what’s best for them is to convert the site to 21st century state of the art “community hub” including all the up-to-date amenities that the local populace needs – a nail bar/tanning salon, a bookies, bingo, a chippy and a needle exchange.

We welcome that the futuristic artist’s impression have drawn interest from the local community and in the modern tradition of giving such iconic buildings a nickname such as “The Shard” or  “The Gherkin”  we understand the scheme has been named  by local people as ” Pie In The Sky”

We spoke to local resident who told us : ” It was quite handy for dumping stuff and taking the dog for a quick dump.Yeah you could say it was a dumping ground.But lets face it love , it’s all me arse isn’it?….there’s about as much chance of this happening as Wirral Council being an open,transparent ,fully functioning ,ethical and efficient organisation”