Team work and the spirit of ‘Knowsley Better Together’ all kicked in to save the day when a mysterious hole threatened to de-rail plans for a summer family event in Huyton.
The ‘Malfest’ event is held at Malvern Primary School every year – and this year it is happening on Saturday, 8 July. With a growing reputation and attractions including a fun fair, go karts and inflatables, it often attracts thousands of revellers. The highlight for the past three years has been a DJ set from famous ex-pupil, Lee Butler, and as a result, Malfest has become a real highlight of the local calendar.
But this year, just as preparations were in full swing, Head Teacher Tony James discovered a strange hole had opened up at the edge of the field where the event takes place. And although the hole was well away from where pupils play, it was right in front of the only entrance for vehicles involved in the event – and potentially meant it would be unsafe for large vehicles delivering rides and other equipment to pass. With only two days to go until Malfest, it looked as though the event was under threat.
Tony explained: “Malfest is something we do every year, and it’s just grown and grown. We now get thousands of people coming along – it’s something lots of families really look forward to. So it wasn’t a nice feeling when I thought that we might have to cancel it at such short notice!”
But Tony contacted Knowsley Council, to see if they could come to the rescue. Officers from the council’s Assets and Highways Team came to assess the site, and see what help could be offered. They were joined by school staff and Governors, and within hours contractors Tarmac, Ram Safety Solutions and Huyton Civils were on site excavating the hole and filling it in. In the nick of time, the work was finished and the first of the fairground rides were able to be delivered so that the event could be set up in time.
Cllr Graham Morgan, Leader of Knowsley Council and one of the school’s Governors, said: “To be thinking about cancelling this event, which so many families are looking forward to, was horrible. So when Tony discovered the hole everyone wanted to do whatever they could to try and get the show back on the road.
“Within a very short time we had council officers and contractors on site doing what they could to resolve the issue safely and speedily – in the end, it saved the day and we can all look forward to another fantastic Malfest!”