Storm Arwen is lashing Southport tonight, causing damage to buildings and causing events to be cancelled.
Tulketh Street in Southport town centre was closed earlier with fighters attending the scene, due to damage to the roof of a store there.
A number of trees have reportedly come down on a number of roads across Southport tonight.
A section of Tarleton Bypass is currently closed, on the Southport-bound carriageway, near the Banks roundabout.
A tree has fallen across the Formby Bypass in Ince Woods, closing the road in both directions.
A large tree has also fallen across the road on Albert Road in Southport, near Hesketh Park.
Tonight’s planned Christmas Lights Switch On on Bispham Road in High Park was postponed due to the bad weather.
And the Winter Light Trail at Victoria Park was also called off due to strong winds.
The storm has led to the Met Office issuing a Yellow Weather Warning for Wind in Southport.
The weather warning means that from Friday evening through to Monday there is a high chance of very strong winds, cold temperatures, rain and sleet, which can be hazardous for vulnerable people or those with long term health conditions.
The weather is worse in the North East, where a rare Red Weather Warning has been issued.
Winter Light Trail on Friday cancelled
A Luminate spokesperson said: “Regrettably we have to inform you that tonight’s Luminate Southport is not able to go ahead. We have been constantly monitoring the weather (and most specifically wind conditions) on site and those forecasted for the duration of tonight’s event. We have taken the decision that in the interests of the health and safety of our guests and staff, it is best for our event not to proceed tonight.
“We apologise for the disappointment that this will cause, but our absolute priority is the safety of our guests and staff.
“We will send you a further email within the next 24 hours, with step by step instructions on how to transfer your ticket to another night so that you do not have to miss out on your Luminate experience and further information generally about how to contact us should you need additional support with this. Please kindly await this email and follow those instructions prior to contacting us, so as to help ensure that we are able to deal with everybody’s enquiries as quickly as possible.
“Thank you again for your support and for your patience whilst we get you re-booked.”
Bispham Road Christmas Lights Switch on cancelled
A spokesperson for the High Park: Think Family Think Community Project said: “Unfortunately, due to the high winds that Strom Arwen is due to bring, we are cancelling tonight’s Christmas switch-on at Bispham Road.
“We are very disappointed that we are not able to go ahead with the event. However, we are looking to reschedule, so watch this space!”
Healthcare leaders share advice for keeping people safe
With the Met Office issuing a weather warning for the North West, healthcare leaders in Sefton are sharing advice for keeping safe and well this weekend.
Sefton residents are being asked to look out for their relatives, friends and neighbours, and to follow the NHS advice on keeping safe and well, below.
If you are aged 65 or older, or have long term conditions such as heart or kidney disease, diabetes or breathing conditions, you should keep warm by heating your home to at least 18°C (65°F). You should also wear several layers of light clothes to keep warm, as multiple layers will trap warm air better than one bulky layer of clothing.
Keeping warm over the winter months can also help us all to prevent colds, flu and more serious health problems such as heart attacks, strokes, pneumonia and depression.
If you do go outside during the wet and windy weather, remember to wear shoes with a good grip to prevent slips and fall. If possible, stay inside during a cold period if you have heart or respiratory problems.
Ensure you have stocked your cupboards with food and medications in advance, to avoid going out in the bad weather. There are a variety of items you can keep at home to keep healthy and treat minor illnesses, such as pain relief medications, lozenges, cold and cough syrups, antihistamines, and much more.
Susanne Lynch MBE, head of medicines management at NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said:
“The cold weather can make us all more vulnerable to illness, but help is available from all local pharmacies in Sefton, who can advise on treatment for minor illnesses and what to keep in your medicine cabinet.”
“If you do become ill, we ask that you think about self-care, speaking to your local pharmacist, or calling NHS 111 for non-emergencies.”
Know where to get help
If you have an urgent medical problem, but not an emergency, get help from NHS 111 by visiting: www.111.nhs.uk online, or calling 111.
For help with treatment for common illnesses like coughs, colds or earache contact your local pharmacy who can give advice and recommend medicines and are happy to help. You can also access NHS advice and information at www.nhs.uk.
Cllr Ian Moncur, cabinet member for health and wellbeing at Sefton Council, said:
“During the poor weather this weekend we encourage everyone in our local communities to keep an eye out for vulnerable residents and neighbours, or anyone living alone who may need advice or support.”
“If you’re worried about a relative or an elderly neighbour, contact your local council or ring the Age UK helpline on 0800 00 99 66.”