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Leigh On Sea News. News In Brief - Leigh Rotary Pier walk £4k. LEIGH Rotary’s annual charity event raised over £4,000.

Leigh On Sea News. News In Brief – Leigh Rotary Pier walk £4k. LEIGH Rotary’s annual charity event raised over £4,000.

News In Brief

Leigh Rotary Pier walk £4k.

LEIGH Rotary’s annual charity event raised over £4,000.

The Leigh group hold a fundraising walk along Southend’s iconic Pier every May, which saw 555 people take part.

Their 19th annual Great Pier Walk fundraised for the Southend Hospital Spotlight Appeal for the Radiotherapy Department.

The opening of the walk was attended by the Southend West MP, Anna Firth, Deputy Mayor and Mayoress Coun Ron Woodley and his wife Maureen, and Rotary District Governor Jed Brooks and his wife.

A Rotarian spokesperson explained: “Despite early morning cloud, there were queues at the registration desk to get the walk underway and as the day went on and the sun came out, hundreds more walkers arrived.
“This year we had a guest team from the Hazardous Area Respond Team (HART). They are a part of the NHS Ambulance Service in the UK and attend hazardous environments like flooding, chemical and terrorist incidents and security observations supporting police during dangerous operations.

“Clad in their dark green uniforms and carrying heavy equipment and breathing apparatus they walked to the end of the Pier to set up for the day.

“They proved a very popular attraction and have agreed to return next year.”

Rotarian Ron Price added: “The day was a great success and although still awaiting further incoming payments, we are hopeful that we will have raised in excess of £4000.
“We thank our sponsors Belfairs Pharmacy and Printers EC2I.”


Film shot in Southend tells story of hope

 A TIMELY movie shot in Southend is about to hit cinema screens, telling a story about the costs of hidden homelessness.

Love Without Walls, by Jane Gull, is a fictional love story set between London and Southend.

It sees Sophie and Paul –an aspiring musician –who can’t pay their London rent, turn to friends and family for support.

Over the course of a summer, things go from bad to worse: The couple lose everything and find themselves lost in the underbelly of life on the streets.

Though frustrated, their good humour and positivity land them odd jobs and a temporary shelter.

The film, produced by Karen Newman, was inspired by some of director Jane’s own experiences and the lives of people she met whilst she was homeless herself.

Ms Gull said: “Many people who become homeless do not show up in the official figures.

“This includes people who become homeless, but find a temporary solution by staying with family members or friends, otherwise known as ‘sofa surfing,’ or living in squats or other insecure accommodations.”

Alongside these important themes, viewers will be treated to cinematic backdrop of Southend seafront as the perfect setting for this film about love, loss, and survival with an underlying theme of hope.

The film also features original songs and music written by one of the film’s leads, Niall McNamee, an Irish singer-songwriter and actor.

Mr McNamee stars alongside his on-screen partner Sophie, played by Shana Swash, who is best known for playing Demi Miller in EastEnders.

The film, as well as being a searing romance, reminds viewers of the real problem of housing and homelessness in the UK since Covid 19, in a production relevant to what we are going through as a society in the aftermath of the pandemic.

Ms Gull added: “The film is truthful, powerful, and character-driven, putting faces to the statistics. The film’s tone is pretty dark, but it is peppered with moments of light relief.

“My vision is to find the brightness in the darkest places and tease out the humour and humanity of this young couple.”

The film, released on June 8 will be showing at Southend Odeon this summer, alongside a release nationwide.

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Westcliff Bowls Club fundraise for stroke unit

A BOWLS Club from Westcliff have made a donation to help stroke unit patients at Southend Hospital.

Essex County Bowls Club have donated over £4,800 to benefit planned works on the stroke unit’s courtyard garden project.
The area will provide an outdoor area of peace for patients recovering following a stroke, whilst also serving as an ideal area for the rehabilitation process, building on each patient’s confidence and ability.

Current club president, Terry Davies, has made it his mission to provide as much
support to the unit as he and his members possibly can, with the club on a fundraising roll.

This latest offering follows one of £1,360 made in 2021, helping make the now-complete stroke patients rehabilitation kitchen a reality.
Joanne Lay, Clinical Team Lead for Stroke and Intermediate Care Therapy, said: “We are so thankful for the support provided by Essex County Bowls Club members.
“Through charitable funds, we have been able to implement many improvements to our stroke unit.
“This additional boost really will make such a difference in allowing us to provide an outdoor space for our patients to build upon their rehabilitation journey as we support them in transitioning from hospital to home.”


Evening parking to be scrapped

SOUTHEND Council’s new Conservative administration is honouring promises to scrap controversial evening parking charges.

This change means that the planned 6pm to 9pm charge could be ditched, in a bid to help seafront traders and encourage visitors.

Previously, the plans would have seen parkers paying £2.80 an hour to park on the seafront during evening hours, where before it would have been free after 6pm.

Kevin Buck, councillor responsible for highways, transport and parking, reportedly said: “I had a meeting with the highways team this week where we discussed several of our manifesto pledges and how to put the wheels in motion to make those happen.”

At resent the charges are to be suspended, with a longer term abandonment of the plan in the pipeline.

Coun Buck said: “The expectation is that the parking charges from 6pm to 9pm should be at least suspended if not removed altogether by the beginning of the school holidays. There’s a legal process that has to be gone through to remove them completely, but what we can do as a local authority is introduce a temporary suspension to the charges while the final process is completed.”

Plans to introduce a charge for parking in several of the city’s parks are also being shelved.

Mr Buck added: “There had been one park where they had started to introduce it. The highways and parking team have been given clear directions that needs to be removed.”

The council is also planning set to create more than 100 new parking spaces, which is planned to generate additional revenue to offset the removal of charges.”

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