Wednesday 22nd June 2005


Flesh eating bugs
to the rescue!

by Terry Johnson

Maggots are to be used to help hospital patients in Warrington fight deadly bacteria infections – including the highly resistant MRSA super-bug.
North Cheshire Hospitals’ chiefs believe that greenbottle fly maggots ‘farmed’ in South Wales could provide a vital extra line of defence for hundreds of patients with dangerous infections.
Maggots have been used since World War 1 to rapidly clean wounds.
Now their ability to not only digest dead tissue, but to eat any kind of bacteria, is being seized upon by medics.
Pots, each containing 300 maggots, are being couriered to Warrington to help the fight against problem infections.
Said tissue viability nurse, Heather Logan: “Maggots produce an enzyme which liquefies dead tissue in a wound, which they then ingest.
“They do the same thing to all types of bacteria, which are then destroyed in their gut.
“They are very effective for rapid wound cleaning. This takes up to three days – a conventional dressing could take a few weeks to do the same job”.
The hospitals’ Trust has used larval therapy to help patients with pressure ulcers, leg ulcers, diabetic foot ulcers and amputation wounds. But fighting bacteria has become a front-line issue.
“Maggots are being used with patients not responding well to conventional treatment”, said Heather. “They are now the first line of treatment, rather than the last, because they are so effective”.
The two-millimetres long maggots are fixed to a wound with a sterile net. They usually stay for three days and grow to 12 millimetres before being taken off.
A Trust spokesman said: “Only one of the patients being treated has so far refused larval therapy. This is now part of our strategy for managing healthcare-associated infection”.
He added: “The maggots enjoy eating any kind of bacteria – that includes the MRSA bug”.

CCTV cameras to guard
vulnerable car park

by John Hendon

STATE of the art CCTV cameras are to be installed at a busy shoppers’ car park to counter crime and vandalism.
The cameras will be introduced at The Forge Car Park in Stockton Heath, Warrington – scene of repeated acts of vandalism and hooliganism.
They will also be used to monitor activities around nearby public toilets.
Warrington Borough Council is investing a total of ?18,000 to improve CCTV coverage around the car park and its facilities.
The move comes as part of the council’s commitment to improving community safety – tackling crime and disorder, reducing anti-social behaviour and the fear of crime.
Coun Mike Hannon, executive member for safer communities, said: “Stockton Heath has relatively low crime rates but there have been a number of incidents of vandalism and property damage around The Forge Car Park and we are working hard to ensure that this area is now safer than ever.
“Tackling crime and disorder is one of our main priorities and new CCTV cameras will help us to deliver this.”
Once installed, the cameras will be monitored by specialist officers.

Fishing lakes get
the all clear

by David Skentelbery

PLANNING chiefs have given the green light for construction of commercial fishing lakes on green belt land at Culcheth, near Warrington.
The scheme, at Ratcliffe House Farm, in Bent Lane, Culcheth, will involve landscaping, tree planting – and a car park for 45 vehicles.
There was opposition from nearby residents and Culcheth and Glazebury Parish Council which felt the development would be too close to houses and would generate too much traffic.
But members of the borough’s development control committee approved the scheme after hearing applicant Graham Unsworth had scaled down his original proposals.
Originally he had planned 120 fishing pegs and 60 parking spaces but was now proposing 100 pegs and 45 parking spaces.
Councillors noted that there would be provision for disabled anglers.
Planning officers said they believed the proposed lakes and woodland would be of ‘countryside character’ and would not significantly harm the openness of the area.

Community centre plan
for disused building?

by Lesley Wilkinson

DISUSED and deserted Bridgewater House, in Sandy Lane, Stockton Heath would make an ideal location for a community centre.
The surprise suggestion was made by a resident at the monthly meeting of Stockton Heath Parish Council.
At a previous meeting the shortage of community centres in the area had been discussed and Coun Celia Jordan had claimed the area was “badly served” compared with other parts of the borough.
Mrs Joan Pearson, of East Avenue, suggested Bridgewater House could be used.
She said: “The property has been empty for years – why can’t we use it as a community centre. The building is empty and the grass is knee-high.
“It would make a nice community centre. There is parking nearby and it is near to the centre of the village.”
Members agreed that the building, which they believe is owned by Warrington Borough Council, could be suitable. They decided to investigate ownership and possible use.

Spiritual journey to
remember loved ones

by Terry Johnson

Balloons will be released in the grounds of a crematorium and memorial flags planted in a bed of sand as part of a unique ‘spiritual journey’.
The special service at Walton Lea, Warrington, on Sunday, June 26, is the Rev Stephen Kingsnorth’s ‘imaginative twist’ to an emotional event for families who have lost loved ones.
Participants will be taken on a spiritual journey, from bereavement to celebration.
People will plant remembrance flags – then release balloons bearing the names of lost relatives and friends.
Warrington’s bereavement services manager, Angela Dunn, said: “This will be a very special service and everybody is welcome to attend”.
The Rev Kingsnorth , Father Christopher Cunningham and the Rev Tom MacNaughton Owen will lead the service, which starts at 3.00pm.

Rose Queen and
Bawming the Thorn

by Gary Skentelbery

VILLAGERS in Thelwall and Appleton Thorn will be taking to the streets today (Saturday) celebrating the annual Thelwall Rose Queen Festival and the ancient Bawming the Thorn ceremony.
Hundreds will line the streets of Thelwall for the annual parade and crowning, while local school children will help keep alive the historic bawming the Thorn at nearby Appleton Thorn.
For pictures from both events check out our festivals page on Monday at Walking Day Specials

News in brief

Hospital lottery
WINNING numbers in the weekly lottery run by the League of Friends of Warrington Hospital were 3, 8, 10 and 13. Five people shared the ?834 jackpot and the ?25 consolation prize went to M Collopy.

Link building
PLANS for a link building connecting an existing sub station with a plant control building at Novellis UK Ltd, Latchford Locks, Warrington have been submitted to the borough council.

Executive meeting
A MEETING of Warrington Borough Council’s executive board takes place at The Gateway, on Sankey Street, on Monday (June 20) at 6.30pm. The meeting is open to the public.

Anniversary service
A SPECIAL service is being held at St Elphin’s Parish Church, Warrington at 6.30pm on Sunday, June 26 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of St Rocco’s Hospice.


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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