A wash out weather forecast for this weekend has forced the organisers of the ‘Bidston Moss Activity Fun Day’ near Birkenhead to cancel the event in the interests of public safety.
Hundreds of people from the Wirral and across Merseyside were expected to turn out to the Forestry Commission’s Bidston Moss community woodland tomorrow, Saturday 6th of September 2008, but persistent heavy rain and an even wetter forecast for the next 48 hours will mean they’ll have to stay at home.
Forestry Commission rangers have already reported waterlogged pathways and flooding at the site, so to go ahead with the charity fun run, cycle race and other activities would put people’s safety at risk.
The Forestry Commission and the Rotary Club of Birkenhead have spent months planning for the event, but have now had to put their plans on hold until next year.
Jeni Wright, Recreation Ranger for the Forestry Commission at Bidston Moss, says:
“We’re really disappointed to have to cancel the event and apologise to all those who were looking forward it.
“The severe weather conditions have meant we’ve had to put people’s safety first and postpone the fun day until next year.”
Bidston Moss is part of the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) and Forestry Commission’s partnership scheme ‘Newlands’ – one the UK’s largest green regeneration programmes.
£2.7 million of NWDA funding is being provided for the 68-hectare Bidston Community Woodland via Newlands, to regenerate the area’s disused landfill sites.
A number of local partners, including Groundwork Merseyside, The Mersey Forest, Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority (MWDA) and Wirral Council are also involved in the project.
Newlands, which stands for New Economic Environments via Woodlands, is a £59million NWDA-funded land regeneration scheme, which is rejuvenating around 381 hectares of the Northwest’s brownfield land to encourage economic growth, while creating new opportunities for leisure and recreation.
Newlands is transforming a significant part of Birkenhead’s derelict and underused land into an extensive public recreation space and community woodland. Bidston Moss is situated to the west of the M53 motorway – forming one of the key gateway sites into the Liverpool – and is close to the ‘NewHeartlands’ Housing Market Renewal area.
To complement the NWDA’s multi-million-pound funding, additional financial support has been secured from EU Objective One money via the Mersey Forest to help ensure the site’s environmental improvements are sustained.
This project has also been funded by Biffaward, a multi-million pound environment fund managed by the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts (RSWT), which utilises landfill tax credits donated by Biffa Waste Services.
Bidston is one of seven Newlands projects currently being developed in England’s Northwest.
Further information about Bidston Moss and other ‘Newlands’ projects is available at www.forestry.gov.uk/newlands and www.newlandsproject.co.uk