A busy family park is set for changes following the death of a man who cut his leg falling into the park's lake.
Ben Smith-Crallan from Southport died in June 2018 after falling into the lake at Botanic Gardens, Churchtown. He cut his leg and quickly became ill.
Ben developed a rare bacterial infection from the cut called Necrotising Fasciitis (NF).
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The infection first caused a blister to appear on his leg before the problem escalated and saw Ben being placed into a coma.
Eventually, the 37-year-old had to have his leg amputated before he died from the infection.
More than three years after his death and following a campaign organised by the friends and family of Ben, the lake is set to be transformed with two aeration fountains.
The fountains have been ordered as part of the first phase of the lakeside improvements with hundreds of thousands of people visiting the park each year.
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The costs for the changes will be covered by recent fundraising efforts from the Make a Change for Ben group who have donated their funds raised to date to the Botanic Gardens Community Association, a long-standing voluntary group overseeing maintenance and activities at the park.
At the end of August, Sefton Council met with members of the two groups and outlined ideas for up to Â£30,000 in improvements for the lake and lakeside area.
At the meeting, the groups agreed to prioritise the aerating fountains as the first phase, with the equipment now on order and works expected to be completed this autumn.
Cllr Ian Moncur, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: â€œIâ€™m really pleased to be able to say that we are moving forward with the initial improvements to the lake area at the Botanic Gardens and I do want to pass on a huge thank you to everyone in the community who has contributed to the local fundraising efforts to date.
â€œI know that fundraising activities continue and the generosity of our communities that know and love this park is unwavering.
â€œOur Green Sefton officers have a long-standing partnership with the Botanic Gardens Community Association and will continue to work with them and all community partners to drive forward further improvements for the whole park.
"This is in line with our longer-term vision to source a multi-million-pound investment to ensure this historic site can be enjoyed for generations to come.â€
David Rawsthorne, Make a Change for Ben Campaign Founder, said: â€œI am absolutely delighted that our campaign and Sefton Council have worked hand-in-hand over the last three months to secure local contractors to carry out works on the aeration fountains.
"Huge thanks to all the people who have got involved and helped to get us where we are now.â€
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