Covid-19 is causing many Cumbrians very serious problems this winter.

Business owners are struggling with more stress than they have ever known. All sorts of people are in serious financial difficulty.

Lots of people are profoundly lonely. Some can’t get the medical treatments they need.

Others are trapped in abusive and dangerous families and relationships. Many working in health, care and education are facing unprecedented levels of stress and exhaustion.

As a county councillor, I deeply feel that I should be doing everything I can to support people in Cumbria who are struggling with these issues. But that’s not what I’m doing. I’m spending meeting after meeting, and hour after hour working with our officers on the practicalities of turning Cumbria into one or two unitary authorities at unprecedented speed.

I have called for political leaders in Cumbria to petition the government to pause this process until a vaccine for Covid-19 is substantially rolled out, because I want to be free to work with officers on solving the urgent problems we’re facing now and running high-quality services despite the challenges we are facing.

Inspired by Captain Tom Moore, my dad is currently walking 86 miles before his 86th birthday to raise funds for Eden Valley Hospice which has lost funding due to Covid-19. So far, he has pledges of more than £8,000.

If we weren’t all tied up with local government reorganisation this winter, one of the many things we could be exploring is how to inspire as many of us as possible to take on personal health challenges and raise desperately needed cash for charity this Christmas.


Liberal Democrat County Councillor for Cockermouth North

Future of St Bees

In response to comments that expanding the boundaries of St Bees would bring more money to the area, we have one village shop that might possibly benefit and a handful of public houses that the majority of new residents seem reluctant to frequent.

I was born in St Bees more than six decades ago. When I was a youngster, Pow Beck never was in danger of overflowing but now, with all the extra run off from new and recent dwellings, not only in our village but the surrounding area, one night of heavy rain lifts the beck significantly.

When the Fairladies estate was being built, residents of Main Street had concerns that the drainage might not cope – and guess what? After the build was completed, houses were flooded that had never flooded before.

Another concern is the capacity of the village school and all the extra parking that would occur as we are expecting that the garages at the bottom of Outrigg are going to be replaced by more houses.


St Bees

What did they say?

Without giving us ‘chapter and verse’ perhaps the Copeland Conservative group leader David Moore (“Tories call for three councillors to resign”, The Whitehaven News letters, November 18) could just give us a couple of quotes each attributed to Dave Banks, Graham Calvin and Tom Higgins that are anti-semitic then we can all make up our own minds.

Name and address supplied

Street light is Copeland’s

In response to a letter in last week’s edition regarding street lighting in Cleator Moor, the county council can confirm that the footway lighting in this location is owned by Copeland Borough Council.

Only when instructed by the borough council does the county council’s highways team arranges inspections and repairs of footway lighting on their behalf.

The county council received a request to investigate street lighting in Cleator Moor at the end of October – this was done the next working day and identified an issue with the electrical supply to the lighting column. The council made Electricity North West aware of this on October 27.

We will continue to improve and amend information via our website to make it clear who is responsible for which sections of lighting – we appreciate it can be confusing.

The issue regarding rats should be reported to the Environmental Health department at Copeland Borough Council.


Local Area Network Manager, Cumbria County Council

Join scouts on a global race

This year has been tough on every single one of us.

Scout groups in Copeland are doing their best to help young people gain skills and find their place in the world but some groups around the UK have told us they’re struggling to pay their bills and even keep the lights on. We can’t afford for that to happen. We won’t let it.

That’s why we’ve launched an epic new challenge – our Race Round the World. We’re asking everyone in Copeland to travel a mile or more (or do a project at home) and get sponsored for it.

Miles will be added to the total and help us get the 43,000 miles round the world. It’s about a lot of us, doing a little, to make a massive difference.

You can donate directly, or travel a sponsored mile (anyway you like) and support us in our mission to save our groups and Race Round the World. You can sign up in less than a minute at

This is our moment to show how much we care; to show our solidarity and our friendship.

So join me on the starting line for the biggest race of the year.


UK Chief Scout and Chief Ambassador, World Scouting

Related to Jackie?

I SEEK readers’ help in trying to trace a relative of a well-known tradesman who died earlier this year.

Would any relative, or anyone knowing the whereabouts of any relative, of the late John Robinson (known as Jackie), a builder formerly of Stainburn, who had a legal interest in properties in Keswick, contact Ms M Wright at Bendles Solicitors, 1 Victoria Place, Wigton; call 016973 42121 or email