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Cumbria Day: The speaker puts in his order

Here's the Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow, enjoying some of the food on offer from Cumbrian businesses taking part in Cumbria Day at the Houses of Parliament.

Earlier today, he described Tim Farron as a "one man tourist board" after the Liberal Democrat MP used Prime Minister's Questions to promote the day.

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Teen admits jaw-break park attack

BBC Cumbria

A teenager has admitted leaving a man with a badly broken jaw following an attack in a Whitehaven park.

John Charlton's victim needed metal plates inserted after his jaw was broken in three places, at Castle Park on 28 May 2018, Carlisle Crown Court heard.

He was also punched while on the ground.

Charlton, 18, of Ashness Close, Whitehaven, admitted unlawfully and maliciously inflicting grievous bodily harm. He was granted bail and will return to the court on 26 February for sentencing.

Judge Peter Davies told him "all options" are open.

Lib Dem MP sings Cumbria's praises on Cumbria Day

House of Commons


Tim Farron speaks at Prime Minister's Questions
House of Commons

Liberal Democrat MP Tim Farron used Prime Minister's Questions to sing the praises of the county on Cumbria Day, noting to MPs that there will be "many great Cumbrian delicacies on offer" in Parliament after PMQs.

He said that Cumbria is the UK's second largest tourist destination after London, and suggested the PM might like some of the delicacies on her next walking holiday.

The Speaker commended Mr Farron as a "one man tourist board".

Theresa May said she looks forward to trying samples of what Cumbria has to offer, but reminded Mr Farron that "Berkshire has great delicacies too".

Weather: Cold but fine with sunny spells

Abbie Dewhurst

Weather Presenter, BBC Look North

A cold but generally fine afternoon with sunny spells and a small chance of a wintry shower or two.

Some freezing fog could linger in one or two places.

Highs of 4C (39F).

Weather: North East and Cumbria

Cumbrian academic named on power list

Lee Macaulay

Journalist, BBC Cumbria

A senior academic at the University of Cumbria has been included on a list of 50 nationally influential women.

Pro-Vice Chancellor for Region and Employer Engagement, Jackie Arnold MBE, is one of those included on the Northern Power 2019 list.

Jackie Arnold MBE
University of Cumbria

Jackie Arnold has kept her place on the list after being first included in 2016.

She was previously in charge of making sure that workers at BAE Systems in Barrow had the right skills to design and build nuclear-powered submarines.

Cumbria Day trending on social media

Lee Macaulay

Journalist, BBC Cumbria

It's the fourth year of an event celebrating Cumbria and the county's food and drink.

The six Cumbrian Members of Parliament are hosting 10 food and drink businesses in Westminster so that other politicians can taste the region's products.

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The event, which uses the hashtag#CumbriaDay, has also become a general celebration of the county as many people post pictures of their favourite views.

In fact, #CumbriaDay is currently one of the top ten most posted hashtags on Twitter in the United Kingdom.

Cumbria's weather: Snow showers, dying out later

BBC Weather

Sleet and snow showers may become locally heavy and possibly more frequent for a time this evening with hill fog too.

The showers will become more isolated in the early hours to leave clear periods with lowest temperatures from -6C to -3C (21F to 27F).

Weather graphic

You can find the latest BBC weather forecast for where you are, here.

Employment picture 'positive', say Jobcentre staff

Jobcentre staff in Cumbria say the county mirrors the rest of the country in having a growing number of people in employment, although the numbers without work are largely unchanged.

Nationally, the number of people at work was estimated to be 32.53m, a rise of 141,000 on the quarter and 328,000 more than a year ago.

Jobcentre sign
Getty Images

Two thirds of the extra people in work are self-employed, and Cumbria saw 428 business start-ups in the quarter to November last year.

Julie Routledge, a Jobcentre manager with responsibility for west Cumbria and Furness, said people out of work were encouraged to start even if the job involved few hours, or the self-employment income meant they still had to claim Universal Credit.

That expert help that the work coach can give them, to guide them into business and increase that business, so that they are able to deliver and stand alone is something that we've never really done before, and is working very successfully."

Julie RoutledgeJobcentre manager

Sex offender jailed for grooming teenage boys

A convicted sex offender who groomed three teenage boys by showering them with gifts has been jailed for three years at Carlisle Crown Court.

James Bilsland McGill
Cumbria Police

James McGill, 63, of the Lofts, Lazonby, near Penrith, had been convicted in October 2007 for sexually assaulting boys under the age of 16, and as a result was subject to an indefinite sexual offences prevention order.

But his approaches to boys in 2018 were in breach of that order, and he admitted 14 offences when he appeared before the court, as well as two others involving equipment not loaded with monitoring software.

Judge Peter Davies heard McGill had already served time for breaching the order, and told him: "Despite the substantial amount of custody you have served, you still persist with having a latent and patent sexual interest in boys."

Budget hit as more police retire because of ill health

Local Democracy Reporting Service

John Connell

Cumbria's police budget has taken a hit because more officers retired through ill-health than was expected, a meeting heard.

The original figures allowed for three officers to leave early, but the eventual figure was eight, the police and crime panel was told.

Police stock picture
Cumbria Police

The Chief Constable, Michelle Skeer, told the meeting that the causes were illness or injury rather than stress, and there was no discernible pattern.

The Police and Crime Commissioner, Peter McCall, said that because of the way sick payments were calculated, the result was an overspend of £749,000, and savings would have to be made to bring the budget back in line.

New way of counting jobless shows 7,000 out of work

Unemployment in Cumbria totted up to 7,007 in November last year, only six up from October, government statisticians said today.

The numbers of people out of work are being calculated in a new way, to take account of changes in the benefits system, so no direct comparison is possible, but the officials say they estimate there has been a very small increase, of just over 100, since November 2017.

The number of jobs on offer, the officials said, was 1,976, a rise of 160 on the previous month.

Cumbria's unemployment rate is given as 2.4%, compared with the national rate of 3%.

Drug dealer 'with lab equipment in house' is jailed

A dealer who sold drugs from his home in Kendal has been jailed for more than two years.

Luke Harris, 27, of Garth Bank, sold the drugs over seven months in 2017.

Carlisle Crown Court heard police found drugs worth more than £1,600 in the house, and £310 in cash, along with a ventilation system and equipment commonly found in a chemistry lab.

Evidence of being "actively involved" in dealing was found on his mobile phone and after Harris admitted seven charges of supplying class A and B substances the judge at Carlisle Crown Court sent him to prison for 28 months.

BreakingPolice start murder probe after woman dies in Dearham

Police have arrested a 45-year-old man on suspicion of murder after a woman, who was found seriously injured in a house in Main Street, Dearham, died of her injuries.

Officers had been called to the address just after 10:00 this morning by ambulance service staff.

A brief statement from police said the woman was 69, and the coroner had been informed.

Cumbria's weather: Cold and windy with wintry showers

BBC Weather

It will be cold and windy this afternoon with sunny spells but also some further hail, sleet and snow showers.

Some of these will be heavy with snow settling on higher ground, and temperatures no higher than 1C to 4C (34F to 39F).

There is a Met Office yellow warning for ice, valid from 16:00 this afternoon.

Weather graphic

You can find the latest BBC weather forecast for where you are, here.

Two in five Cumbrian youngsters study away - and stay away

More than half of the young people who leave Cumbria to study at university don't return after graduation.

That's according to Cumbria's Local Enterprise Partnership, which is setting up a careers hub to help home grown graduates.

Figures given to BBC Radio Cumbria by the LEP suggest:

  • Just over 41% of Cumbria's young people leave the county to study and do not return
  • More than 37% of that age group go away to study but do then return to the county
  • Nearly 19% study in the county and then find work here too, and the remainder study locally and then move away.

Stock picture of graduate
Getty Images

Cumbria's weather: Wintry showers

BBC Weather

This morning will be cold with wintry showers, perhaps locally heavy. Highest temperatures will be from 1C to 4C (34F to 39F).

There's a Met Office yellow weather warning for ice.

Weather graphic

You can find the latest BBC weather forecast for where you are, here.

Travel: Snow and ice across the county

BBC News Travel

Light falls of snow and freezing temperatures have left problems in parts of the county this morning.

Garsdale Head webcam shot
Cumbria CC

This was Garsdale Head a little earlier, one of several roads affected by snow, one other one being the Kirkstone Pass.

The usual commuter cut-throughs such as Corney Fell, Cold Fell and the Hardknott Pass are closed because of ice, and the Gummers How Road is said to be blocked by snow.

The A590 has now been reopened after an earlier accident at Lindale.

County police charge up 'to combat rising crime'

Local Democracy Reporting Service

John Connell

The share of council tax going to the police is going up by 10%, with the county's Police and Crime Commissioner saying the money will go towards increasing the numbers of officers.

Peter McCall said the increase, equivalent to £24 a year for a Band D property, would pay to retain 24 officers, and recruit another 20.

Cumbria Police logo on van
Cumbria Police

A consultation exercise into the changes found that about 70% of people consulted were in favour of the increase, which will raise an extra £7m.

Members of the Cumbria Police and Crime Panel voted to the tax hike "without qualification or comment".

I get the message firmly and clearly that people want to see more of the police. And I constantly respond with the harsh reality that if we want more, we must be ready to pay more."

Peter McCallPolice and Crime Commissioner

Cumbria's weather, Rain, hill snow crossing county

BBC Weather

Rain, hill snow and squally winds will cross from the west this evening, clearing before midnight.

The rest of the night will be mainly dry with just the odd wintry shower, and temperatures falling to 0C (32F).

Weather graphic

You can find the BBC weather forecast for where you are, here.

Travel: Long delays as M6 remains closed

BBC News Travel

There are long delays on the M6 and surrounding roads after a lorry overturned between junctions 41 and 42, shedding its load of gravel.

The motorway remains closed in both directions although efforts are now being made to release trapped traffic.

Samantha recovers after second heli-rescue in two years

A Cumbrian cyclist is now wondering whether she should ride again after the Great North Air Ambulance had to fly her to hospital after accidents within two years.

Samantha Sugden

This is Samantha Sugden from Penrith being rescued after her second crash, last October, after an accident with a bus on the Kirkstone Pass near Ambleside.

Just three weeks before she had swum the length of Ullswater in gratitude to the help the Great North Air Ambulance had given her after a crash in August 2017. She suffered head and internal injuries that meant a six-month recovery.

In the latest accident, Samantha broke her collar-bone and injured her spleen so badly it had to be removed, and she is fulsome in the praise of the emergency team that have twice flown her to hospital.

GNAAS saved my life and I’m very grateful for their help, my mum, dad, and kids are also very grateful.

I don’t know if I’ll ride again and my daughters have asked me not to. I’ll probably get back on a bike at some point, but I don’t know whether I’ll race again.”

Samantha Sugden

Tributes to 'family joker' killed in crash

The family of a Lancashire man who died in a crash in Cumbria have paid tribute to the "family joker" who "always had a smile on his face".

Michael Gilgun, 57, of Chorley, died after his van crashed on the A590 in Newby Bridge on Friday.

Michael Gilgun, 57
Family handout

The grandfather-of-two, know as Mick, worked as a a gas engineer and "took great pride in his work", his family said.

They described him as a "huge Manchester City fan" who "even taught the family parrot to sing Blue Moon - he was that obsessed".

They added:

He always had a smile on his face especially when laughing at his own jokes which he was well known for.

He was always first up on karaoke with a Cliff Richard classic. He will be deeply missed by all those that knew him, all the family, friends and work colleagues."

Zoo calls for helping hands for toads on road to breed

People across Cumbria are being asked to give toads a helping hand this breeding season.

The Lakeland Wildlife Oasis near Milnthorpe is one of several organisations looking for volunteers to gather toads into buckets and carry them safely across roads to a breeding site, in the zoo's case at Silverdale.

Science Photo Library

The Milnthorpe project is just one of dozens of "toad patrols" organised across the country by the charity Froglife, which has an online tool so you can find the closest to you.

Man dies after Newby Bridge collision

Police say a van driver who was flown to hospital after a crash in South Cumbria has now died.

The man was 57, and from Lancashire, officers said, and he had been taken to the Cumberland Infirmary at Carlisle.

Cumbria's weather: Cloud building from the west

BBC Weather

There will be some early spells of hazy brightness but through the day, cloud will build from the west.

It will be cold and become windy, with highest temperatures around 5C (41F).

Weather graphic

You can find the latest BBC weather forecast for where you are, here.

Travel: High roads closed by ice

BBC News Travel

A number of high routes used as cut-throughs are closed this morning because of ice.

They include the Cold Fell Road between Calder Bridges and Ennerdale Bridge, the Corney Fell Road from Duddon Bridge over to Ravenglass, and the Hardknott Pass.

Other roads not regularly treated could also be icy in places.

Man found with shotgun 'died at 10:50 this morning'

A man who was found with a shotgun in woodland near Shap died when the weapon was discharged at 10:50 this morning, police have just announced.

Police cars near wood

He is said to have been in his 60s, and was found just after 01:00 this morning after officers were called to the scene by local people.

Just now police said in a statement that his family had been informed.

"In line with normal procedures, the constabulary referred the matter immediately to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.," the statement said.

Police praise victim after third man jailed for sex attack

Police have praised a woman who was subjected to a sex attack by three men who offered to find her a taxi home on Christmas Eve, for bringing her attackers to justice.

Two of the men were jailed earlier this year, and today a third, who went on the run, was sent down for 10 years.

Det Con Naomi Raine said the convictions were "thanks in no small part to the bravery and courage of the victim".

The three men have all preyed on a woman in an extremely vulnerable state, attacked her and then sought to lie to the police about their involvement."

Det Con Naomi Raine

Cumbria's weather: Rain and hill snow dying out

BBC Weather

It will be mostly cloudy this evening and tonight, with some further patchy rain and hill snow, but this will tend to fizzle out especially after midnight.

There is a yellow warning from the Met Office predicting up to 4cm (1.5in) of snow on the highest ground.

Some mist and fog will form and it will be an icy night with lowest temperatures from -2C to 1C (28F to 34F).

Weather graphic

You can find the latest BBC weather forecast for where you are, here.

Third man traced and jailed for Christmas Eve sex attack

A man involved in a Christmas Eve sex attack in Carlisle, who went on the run after being charged, has been jailed for 10 years.

Mohammed Miah
Cumbria Police

Mohammed Miah, 38, of The Strand, Exmouth, had raped a woman brought to a flat by two other men, Kabir Hussain, 41, and Marco Martins, 32.

Hussain had already raped the woman twice, and Martins had sexually assaulted her, in what Tim Evans, for the prosecution, described as "a gang assault".

Miah was arrested and then bailed on Christmas Day, but while the other two men were dealt with, he was then on the run for nearly a year before he was caught in Devon because of DNA evidence. He pleaded guilty to rape.

This was a gang rape of a vulnerable woman for whom you showed utter contempt, and you must be severely punished for it."

Judge James Adkin

Waste plant developers hope to change £80m Carlisle plan

Councillors are being asked to approve changes to plans for an incinerator at Kingmoor Park in Carlisle.

The £80m "energy from waste" plant has been given planning permission, but the developers now say they want to alter the design.

Kingmoor Park Carlisle

People opposed to the changes say it will cause air pollution, but the companies behind the scheme say it's safe, and well regulated.

Cumbria County Council's development committee will meet to discuss the plan in Kendal.

RAC: Cumbria claims top-three place in pothole repairs

Road users in Cumbria are being told that the county council is among the top authorities in the country for fixing potholes quickly.

Getty Images

The RAC Foundation surveyed more than 200 councils, asking how soon they tackle problems that pose the greatest safety risk to road users.

Cumbria County Council says its target is to deal with them "immediately".

Cumbrian NHS trust reports 147 cyber attacks in five years

Bob Cooper

Political reporter, BBC Cumbria

The NHS trust that runs hospitals in South Cumbria, says it's had 147 cyber attacks in five years.

The Morecambe Bay trust said it was not clear whether some of these were the same attack reported a number of times, and the cost of dealing with them was put at £30,000, so not all will have succeeded in doing damage.

Computer servers
Getty Images

The rest of the NHS ins in Cumbria reported just 14 attacks, defined as "malicious attempt to damage disrupt or gain unauthorised access to computer systems, networks or devices".

The most serious attack, which affected the whole NHS in 2017, meant some emergency patients had to be transferred from Whitehaven to Carlisle.

Experts like Tom Fairfax, the managing director of the cyber security firm SRM in Newcastle, say cyber crime is a huge international menace.

It's a global industry, anecdotally larger than narcotics."

Tom Fairfax

'Go for Sunderland, there'll be drama'

Filmmakers on documenting behind the scenes of a football club in free fall.
"When we first pitched it Sunderland were in the Premier League...what ended up happening was even more incredible"

Filmmakers David Soutar and Ben Turner speak to the BBC's Luke Jones about their new Netflix documentary Sunderland 'Til I Die.

Cumbria's weather: Rain, sleet and snow edging eastwards

BBC Weather

Rain and sleet will edge eastwards across Cumbria this afternoon, with snow on high ground. The highest temperatures will be from 1C to 4C (34F to 39F).

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for the snow, predicting 1cm to 4cm over 250m.

Yellow warning map
Met Office

You can find the latest BBC weather forecast for where you are, here.

Snow forecast for county this afternoon

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning for up to 4cm (1.5in) of snow this afternoon, mainly above 250m (800ft).

Police armed operation in remote area near quarry

Harrdendale Quarry, near where police negotiators are said to be talking to a man with a shotgun, is next to junction 39 on the M6, but the land around it is not easy to access.

Hardendale Quarry

The huge quarry provides limestone which is processed for the steel industry, and only a few farms dot the land around, most of which is treeless grazing 1,000ft (300m) above sea level.

Cumbria's weather: Bright and cold, then cloudy later

BBC Weather

It will be a very cold but bright and sunny start to the day, but cloudier conditions will reach Cumbria through the afternoon.

Weather graphic

You can find the latest BBC weather forecast for where you are, here.

BreakingPolice 'talking to man with shotgun'

Armed police have cordoned off an area near Hardendale Quarry, near Junction 39 on the M6 and Shap, after reports of a man with a shotgun.

Hardendale quarry and surrounding area
Ordnance Survey

Police have sent an armed response unit, along with trained negotiators, after being alerted at 20:00 last night.

They say the man, said to be in his 60s, was found in an area of woodland at about 01:00, and they are asking the public to avoid the area.