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Taking pride in the achievements of the Neston, CH64 community

Author: Carrie Spacey Published: 27th December 2008 10:20

On 6th April 2008 we launched AboutMyArea in CH64, little knowing just how much news we would be reporting on in the coming months.

Since going "live" in April, we've registered over 50,000 page-views. Here is a look back on some of the news items and events that have caught your attention, and ours!

What we have attempted to do, with this Review of 2008, is to gather together as many of the highlights as possible, to celebrate all the achievements, events and improvements made to the area this year.  In so doing, we have been reminded just how much goes on in and around Neston, and how proud we can all be of the area we live and work in.

In order to make the reading of all this more manageable, we have created some separate sections to cover areas such as the Arts and Schools, and in this particular article we will highlight a variety of capital projects and achievements by individuals and organisations.  Where we have hyperlinked articles, these will open in the same window, so remember to use the "back" button on your browser to return here.

We would like to extend our gratitude to everyone who has contributed to this Review, with particular thanks to Rob Ward of Neston Civic Society.

We warmly welcome your comments on all the articles on the site.

Pride in our area

It's important that we all take some responsibility for what happens in our area, and be proud of it. Here are some excellent examples of progress made this year:

Citizen's Week

Held in March, organised by community organisation ch64inc. It's aims were:

TCitizen's Week - Neston Primary Pupils from Neston Primary taking part in a
Talents Day during Citizens Week
o promote a sense of pride and belonging, to help people who feel excluded or marginalised to feel more a part of things.

To unite different parts of the CH64 population behind a common commitment to the future. To motivate more people to join in. To grow the number and vitality of voluntary and community organisations.

To promote partnerships in and between the community and public services. To assist those in a position of responsibility, and public authorities, to be more aware and better informed about us.

During the week various activities and events took place, with contributions from voluntary organisations, schools, individuals, clubs and societies.

The week was widely held to have made significant inroads in achieving it's aims. ch64inc will continue to take a lead and help things grow.

Neston Market Town Initiative

On 7 April 2008, Neston Market Town Initiative's Partnership Executive Board Meeting heard that £240,000 had been spent on shop front grants, which had been matched by at least the same amount of money from shop-keepers or landlords. They also heard that £11,500 had been given in small grants to many local voluntary organisations under the Delegated Fund.

Neston Parish Council

Cheshire West and Chester Shadow Council supported the forthcoming Neston Parish Council: John Grimshaw, area neighbourhood and community portfolio holder, said."The creation of a Parish Council will enhance the area's community spirit and give it an important voice."

Community Pride AwardJanet Griffiths with the StreetScene team who
worked so hard to help achieve the Community
Pride Award.

Community Pride Awards

Neston and Little Neston won the Cheshire Community Pride Award for the Best Kept Large Village, entered by Neston Civic Society.

To celebrate this, on 3 Dec 2008 the Mayor planted a bird cherry tree on the Wirral Way at Station Road, Neston, given by Cheshire Landscape Trust.

In addtion, The Audio Trails on Neston website www.neston.org.uk were The Best Community Project in the 2008 Cheshire Community Pride Competition, as being particularly suitable for young people and for people with visual impairment.

Neston Community & Youth Centre

NCYCNCYC was finally completed and opened it's doors to the public for a series of open days. The project is a partnership between the borough council, the youth club, Neston Market Town Initiative and the North West Development Agency, with additional funding from Project Rural Matters. The site owned by the youth club will be leased to the council with Neston Community Youth Centre Ltd running the centre.

The Centre includes a youth zone and provides a meeting place for the wider community. It will house an adult learning zone which will be used for NVQs, back to work training and more, as well as a range of support and advice services.

Achievements by Individuals and Organisations

Mayor Keith Butcher with Carrie SpaceyMayor Keith Butcher signing up to
AboutMyArea at Neston Village Fair

Keith Butcher of Willaston was installed as the last Mayor of Ellesmere Port and Neston, before the Borough Council gives way in 2009 to the new Cheshire West and Cheshire unitary authority.

In May the Mayor presented Janet Griffiths with a Civic Award ‘in recognition of your outstanding achievements and for work carried out for the benefit of the community' at Ellesmere Port Civic Centre.

During 2008 Neston and District Christian Aid Committee collected over £10,000 for the first time, from their sponsored walk in March, coffee morning in April, and house-to-house collection in May.

Stanney Fields Park in Neston was once again awarded the Green Flag, a national recognition of quality, and held several successful events during the year, including the extremely well-attended Fun Dog Show, Family Play Day and Silver Band Concert & Picnic evening.

Mural in the underpass at Neston Railway StationIn a project sponsored by Neston Civic Society with the support of Project Rural Matters, Neston High School held a design competition to create a mural for the subway walls at Neston Railway Station.

The original idea to have a mural painted by local young people came from Carol Stott, the indefatigable youth worker in Neston, and the project was co-ordinated by Pat Hughes. The competition was won by first year sixth former Ben Twells from Burton.

Throughout 2008 Carol Stott and her team of volunteers continued to provide a youth drop-in centre at Neston Parish Church, and a Cyber Cafe facility at Neston Methodist Church. Both initiatives were partly funded by Project Rural Matters.

In November Rita Warrington, Chair of the Neston and Ellesmere Port Federation of Tenants' and Residents' Associations was declared Community Champion of the Year.

Neston Swimming Club were exceptionally pleased to welcome Paul Buckley as Head Coach at the beginning of November. Paul comes to the club with exceptional swimming coaching credentials, having coached at the highest level in Ireland and in the UK.  With respect to Coaching Assistants, Oliver Lloyd, Tom Outram and Clair Annakin - Smith, three of the Club's senior swimmers, successfully completed the ASA Level 1 coaching certificate.

Community Pride, and flowers at the CrossDuring the year Celia Garvey, Pat Hughes and others from Neston Civic Society planted the beds around the Bushell Fountain at Neston Cross, in front of Neston Town Hall and in Neston Station, with support from Dovecote Nurseries, Gordale Garden Centre and Cheshire Year of the Garden 2008.

Wood Park Farm, Windle Hill, was opened by the President of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, after a £1million refurbishment by the University of Liverpool.

The Small Animal Hospital, Leahurst, won a design award from the Royal Institute of British Architects, having been opened in June 2007 after an investment by the University of Liverpool of £10million.

In July Neston's Viking heritage was celebrated by a walk from Neston Parish Church to St Olave's in Chester: the weekend before Granada Television's Lost Treasures featured the Viking stones in Neston Parish Church.

Also in the summer, six local volunteers passed the CTC (the UK's National Cycling Organisation) National Standard Instructor Training Course, having been trained under the auspices of the Friends of Stanney Fields Park.

Something missing?

We have tried to include as many highlights as possible in this and the other articles in the Best Of CH64 section of the website. However, if you have anything you would like us to add, please get in touch.

You can either leave your comment below this article, or contact us by telephone on 0151 336 2734, or send us an email.

Related articles:

Celebrating the Arts in and around Neston, CH64

Key events in the Neston, CH64 calendar

The Young Ones - the achievements & activities of Primary Schools in and around Neston, CH64

Neston High School - serving the community for half a century

Read all about it! Neston Library's 2008 highlights.

Ness Gardens - the award-winning botanical gardens in CH64

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At 22:01 on 28th December 2008, Tony commented:
What a treasure to be able to see everything in one place! It makes me proud to live here. Thank you for this and all your hard work this year and a very happy 2009 to you all.
Fran E
At 14:44 on 30th December 2008, Fran E commented:
What a fantastic review! It really is amazing to see how much good work is done in our local Community. There is so much doom & gloom in the media at the moment - it is really refreshing to be able to read something so positive and uplifting - thank you!
Angela C
At 19:16 on 30th December 2008, Angela C commented:
This review of what has been happening in Neston certainly makes me realise what a smashing place this is to live in and I've only lived here just over 10 years!

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