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Tuesday 22nd March 2005

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Margaret, 69, has her
shoulder op at last

by David Skentelbery

PENSIONER Margaret Dixon, the woman who became a national figure overnight when her seven cancelled operations at Warrington Hospital were raised in the House of Commons, has now had her operation.
The surgery, for a shoulder injury sustained when she suffered a fall last year, was carried out at the hospital where she is now recovering.
Her daughter, Lindsay, 33, said the operation – which Mrs Dixon had been warned she might not survive – had been a success.
It was not originally due to take place until next week but was brought forward.
Mrs Dixon, 69, from Penketh, found herself at the centre of a political storm when her case was taken up by local councillor Fiona Bruce, who is also Prospective Conservative Parliamentary candidate for Warrington South.
She persuaded Tory leader Michael Howard to raise the case in the Commons.
Mrs Dixon claimed her operation had been cancelled seven times and that each time she and her family had to live with the knowledge that if it went ahead she might not survive.
Her chances were put at less than 50-50, she said.
Mrs Dixon blamed the Government bureaucracy for her situation. She maintained throughout that doctors and nurses at Warrington were “wonderful” and had done everything they could to help her.
The problem was a shortage of high dependency beds which she required after the operation.
It led to Health Secretary John Reid making an unexpected visit to Warrington Hospital to talk to staff and patients.
Daughter Lindsay said: “We are so relieved. The hospital had a window of opportunity which they gave us and my mother has had the operation. The hospital have been absolutely fantastic.”

Shop staff terrified
by masked raiders

by Terry Johnson

A TERRIFIED shop assistant was pushed to the ground by a robber who snatched cartons of cigarettes from a store in Warrington.
The raid at premises in Lingley Green, Great Sankey, left the woman member of staff severely shaken, though uninjured.
Cheshire Police have recovered CCTV footage from the Park Road convenience store and hope the images will help track down the robber, who was accompanied by a woman.
The pair are believed to have ‘loitered’ outside the store shortly before 10.00pm, waiting for customers to clear the premises.
They then entered the shop and walked round, before the man, in his 30’s and hooded, entered the till area.
The offender pushed past the shop assistant, causing her to fall down. He then snatched cigarette cartons valued ?130 from the shelves.
The man sprinted from the shop and his accomplice was seen to drop her shopping basket and also leave.
Anyone with information about the raid is asked to contact Detective Constable Becky Stokes on 01244-613834.
She stated: “This man and woman must have been seen by customers entering and leaving the store in the 10 minutes before the raid. We want these witnesses to come forward”.

Churches join together
for Easter celebrations

by staff reporter

FOUR local churches will join forces for a special Easter service at Birchwood Shopping Centre, Warrington over the Bank Holiday weekend.
The service takes place at noon on Good Friday with a procession starting from Asda and ending at Iceland.
People taking part will be carrying a large cross.
Also on Friday, there will be a tombola organised by Oakwood Brownies and Guides with about 100 eggs on offer.
On Saturday, an Easter Egg tombola will be held in the shopping centre in conjunction with the Mothers’ Union – all monies raised going to charity.
Birchwood Lions will be holding an Easter egg competition between noon and 3pm, Easter prints and colouring pencils given out to children who want to take part.
Centre manager Gary Jones said: “There’s plenty going on at the centre this Easter, from the important religious activity on Good Friday, to some fun elements of winning chocolate eggs in the tombolas and the picture colouring competition. I’m sure the weekend events will prove popular with our customers.”

ative writers to
walk for charity

by John Hendon

A GROUP of friends from Warrington plan to walk Hadrian’s Wall for charity.
Five people and one dog are to walk the 84 miles from Solway Forth to Newcastle-on-Tyne to raise money for various charities, including St Rocco’s Hospice, Barnardos and Green Peace.
The five met through membership of a creative writing class at Warrington Collegiate’s Museum Street campus.
Christine Grieve – a veteran long distance charity walker – suggested doing the walk and the other agreed to join her.
They will be setting out on April 18 and stopping off at bed and breakfast establishments on the way.
Christine will be accompanied by her two and-and-a-half year old dog Scamp.
They have already raised ?500 and are on the lookout for sponsors to help boost the total. Anyone who wishes to help should call Christine on 01925 261044 or Marie Smith on 01925 261044.
Other members of the group are Melinda Cowen, Sarah Jones and Christopher Curbishley.

to oppose
wind farm

by Terry Johnson

WEAVER Vale MP, Mike Hall, has pledged to “vigorously oppose” high wind turbines being built in the Weaver Valley between Frodsham and Warrington.
A battery of four 125m high wind turbines proposed on farmland at Aston Grange would have “a hugely damaging effect” on the valley’s beautiful setting, stated Mr Hall.
“They would be truly out of character with the countryside environment and be unacceptable in the designated green belt of Vale Royal.
“When the planning application comes forward, I will vigorously oppose it.”
The Labour MP said that despite local objections, Vale Royal Borough Council granted temporary planning permission last June for a 50m anemometer at Aston Grange Farm.
“I and a number of others objected to that application. One of the grounds was the fear that the anemometer would pave the way for a wind farm application in the Weaver Valley.
“The company responsible is Tegni Cymru, which now proposes to site four 125m. high wind turbines in the valley.”

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About Author

Experienced journalist for more than 40 years. Managing Director of magazine publishing group with three in-house titles and on-line daily newspaper for Warrington. Experienced writer, photographer, PR consultant and media expert having written for local, regional and national newspapers. Specialties: PR, media, social networking, photographer, networking, advertising, sales, media crisis management. Director Warrington Chamber of Commerce Patron Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace. Trustee Warrington Disability Partnership. Former Chairman of Warrington Town FC.

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