4 Cheeky Monkeys Family Centre gets a pre-launch makeover


A BRAND new Family Centre, set to open in November, has had an amazing make-over, thanks to a youth team from the National Citizen Service.

4 Cheeky Monkeys, located at The Old Scout Hut, Dawlish Road in Sale West, is the brainchild of Jeneane Warhurst, 31 who lives nearby. It will offer a toddler group / play n’ stay as well as music sessions, messy sessions, story time and much more.

Disappointed at the lack of supportive, accessible amenities for families needing extra support within Sale West, Jeneane and her Mum, Lesley began the project to renovate, decorate and reopen the dilapidated building in 2012. Initially using all of their own combined savings, building work began in June of the same year and they made good progress.

Jeneane said: “I was already childminding and knew that there were local people who wanted these sessions available daily.”

“I also had a single dad approach me for advice on potty training and, after speaking to him, we plan to offer a session for dads to come along for support, advice and socialising – a place they can discuss the difficulties they face as single parents.”

It was a massive task, with rubbish piled high outside, windows boarded over and plumbing work needed as well as costly matters like architects and planning fees.

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By September their savings had run out and the team had to down tools in order to save and apply for some much needed funding. They set about filling in forms and getting advice on who to approach for support.

Early in 2013 Dan Shelston, Development Lead for Sale West at Trafford Housing Trust, nominated the project for Trafford Housing Trusts Give and Gain scheme. The team went down to the site to make preparations, with the work beginning again in May.

They plumbed the toilets in and began the electrical work, the centre really began to take shape. Trafford Housing Trust, along with local companies ensured that fences were painted and flowers were planted, the access toilet was fitted and a new kitchen installed.

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With the building work almost complete thoughts turned to how the centre would be decorated and, with a name like 4 Cheeky Monkeys, it was easy to decide on a theme. The question was how….


Dan Shelston discussed 4 Cheeky Monkeys with his work colleague, Aine Graven who suggested that he introduce Jeanne to The National Citizen Service, a new government scheme encouraging young people to volunteer their time to help communities and their projects.

Running in the spring, summer and autumn, NCS is open to all 16 and 17 year-olds in England and Ireland. The scheme involves a short stay away from home and then taking part in a project to help their community.


The team sent to help at 4 Cheeky Monkeys was made up of teenagers from across Trafford and they did a fantastic job.

Their first week was spent in Anglesey where the team took part in lots of activities such as raft building, canoeing and sea level traversing.

Week two saw the team stay in the halls of residence at Manchester Metropolitan University where they had to live independently, cooking and cleaning for themselves. They also spent time doing team activities and working together on projects like talent shows.

The third week was dedicated to painting a mural on the walls of 4 Cheeky Monkeys – the team first had to bid for funding in a Dragon’s Den style production and then, once successful, they set to work planning and painting the designs.

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Mary Timms, 16, attends Loreto Grammar School in Altrincham and was one of the volunteers that took part.

Mary said: “I decided to get involved because it seemed like a great, worthwhile way to spend my summer, as well as an opportunity to meet new people and learn new skills.”

“My favourite part of the week was towards the end when we could see the walls almost finished and how well it had turned out. It was great to see everyone’s designs come together.”


The team were rewarded with a graduation ceremony at the end of the project as well as a certificate signed by the Prime Minister.

Mary said: “I feel I’ve gained a lot of confidence from the whole experience as I am usually quite shy around new people. During this project I have met so many amazing people and I feel that we have managed to make a difference.”

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There are still busy times ahead for the 4 Cheeky Monkeys team as they prepare to open later in the year.

Wates Builders have nominated the project as their next ‘give and gain’ day and will be spending a day at the centre next month – possibly flagging or installing a ramp….

It will be great to see this labour of love come together and open its doors to the community. Look out for updates as the date draws closer:)

Contact Jeanne , founder of 4 Cheeky Monkeys on or check out their Facebook page and Twitter.


Police hunt killer dogs in Sale West



RESIDENTS of Sale West are fearful as two Pit bull dogs continue to roam around the estate unsupervised whilst killing and maiming cats at an alarming rate.

There have been reports of several cats being attacked by the two dogs with at least three being mauled to death in front of terrified witnesses.

One attack reported took place on the morning of July 19, where the dogs were seen “ripping a cat to pieces” next to the Brigadier Pub on Firsway, Sale.

There is growing concern as the summer holidays are due to begin this week, one resident said, “There are loads of children in the area and they will all be out playing in this lovely weather. It is only a matter of time until the dogs turn on a person, they are out of control and need stopping before it is too late.”

Another resident has spoken of her horror at discovering a dismembered cat paw on the grass near her home, “I can’t let my daughter out until they find these dangerous dogs, so many cats have gone missing recently and it’s just an accident waiting to happen.”

Both dogs are described as Pit Bulls, one is fully white and is possibly a male while the other is white and brown and believed to be female.

Despite both the police and dog warden searching the area the dogs have yet to be found.

The police are now appealing for help from the public and said, “Both dogs are Pit Bulls and are believed to be living on the Sale West Estate. We can only work off information given to us, please get in touch and tell us if you know who they belong to or where they are being kept.”

Information can be shared with the police, in confidence by calling Crime Stoppers or by contacting the station and officer direct on

In case of emergency please call 999

Image courtesy of CreativeCommons and is for illustration purposes only.

CCTV in Sale West……The Facts


After months of speculation surrounding the cctv on Sale West I am pleased to say that we finally have some facts and figures that will hopefully reassure the residents that they are indeed being “looked after” by fully operational cameras and dedicated council staff.

I arrived at Stretford police station this morning just before 10.30am to meet with Colin Wright and be allowed unprecedented access to the cctv office, on the understanding that I would pass on what I learnt to the residents…:)

The office is a hub of activity within Stretford police station on Talbot Road.The station itself is rather grand and deceptively spacious once inside…(think Tardis).

Equipped with loads of technology including multiple screens, projected images, police radio and much more Colin and his colleague were more than happy to show me ALL of the cameras on Sale West and beyond working and recording in real time and with crystal clear images.

Here are some facts:

1.  The cctv does not have video analytic capacity. This means there is no facial recognition or cross referencing of faces from camera to camera.

2.  There is no audio capacity enabled on the cameras…..they can’t talk to you and they can’t hear you either:)

3.  The images captured by the cctv are recorded and are kept for 28 days. During this time the recordings can be requested by the police in order to detect and prevent crime. I can bear witness to this as two local officers called in to collect some footage whilst I was there today.

4.  All of the cameras can pan, tilt and zoom in. I was shown many of the cameras in action and can clarify that Magnolia, Chepstow (Community Garden) and the Community centre area are all covered, as is the rest of the estate.

5.  The cameras can see as well at night as they can during the day…I saw footage of Thirsk at night and can clarify that is was pretty clear…;)

6.  The cctv is connected by both wire and wifi….wired at source and sending signal back to the station.

7.  Whilst Colin is not originally from Sale it is apparent that he is very familiar with the area and is on the ball for matching cameras to locations etc. Other staff are local and also have a vested interest in the safety of everyone on Sale West.:)

8.  The cctv is manned 24 hours a day 7 days a week, even at Christmas……these guys have that many cameras they are sure to have caught Santa doing the rounds to all our well behaved children many a time…..:)

9.  Irwell Valley originally helped with the installation cost of the cctv on Sale West, with the balance funded by the council. Irwell Valley staff do not monitor the cameras and have no access to them, it is all viewed in house by the council staff that have full control over the cameras, in the police station.

10. Colin and his colleagues are responsible for over 100 cameras around Trafford and so this means that they are not always focused on Sale West. However, if they are alerted to something either by the police, public or simply spotting something on screen they can react quickly.

11.  Whilst the off road biking has been picked up by the cameras it is often a fleeting glimpse as they head towards the more covert areas not covered, alleys, some car parks etc.

However…Colin did show me a log of mini moto related incidents that has been complied from sightings, public calls and police reports. It is a priority and will continue to be so, they just can’t see all the cameras all the time….

If you have any concerns about specific problems such as fly tipping, persistent dog fouling, off road bikers ripping up the pavements etc you can always report it, anonymously.

The cctv office can be contacted on 0161 912 1111

Calls are in confidence and will be acted upon.

General information regarding cctv in Trafford can be found on the council website.


Thanks to Colin for allowing me access to the previously unseen world of cctv, and for answering my many questions, some more sensible than others:)

Picture credits:

CCTV cartoon from Google via Creative Commons

Camera photo with kind permission of lydia_shiningbrightly via Creative Commons

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