WORK will begin on a £17m safe haven for abused children in Liverpool this week.
Ringo Starr and the Prime Minister will send messages of support for the groundbreaking ceremony of the Daily Post-backed Safe Place Appeal's project.
At 11am on Thursday, John Hargreaves, the chairman of Matalan and the appeal, will put on a hard hat and drive a JCB to make the initial excavation at the Great Homer Street market site.
Mr Hargreaves helped launch the appeal nearly two years ago with a £6m donation.
He said: "I launched this project because I am committed to ensuring that children have the chance they should have as a fundamental right of a happy childhood free from the threat of abuse and harm.
"I wanted to do all I could to make this happen in the city and the area where I was born and brought up.
"My wish for this project is that it will be a safe haven and a beacon of hope for children in Liverpool and across Merseyside."