NEW faces are being asked to join Whitehaven Harbour Commissioners as the organisation focuses on reinvesting in the harbour to 'make the town a better, happier and more prosperous place to live'.

Jenny Brumby and Deanne Shallcross are the two latest additions to join the board of Whitehaven Harbour Commissioners and more people are being invited to express their interest.

The board is made up of up to nine entirely voluntary members who help guide the activity of the organisation for the benefit of both harbour users and the wider community.

As a statutory harbour authority the commissioners are responsible for preserving the harbour and operating a wide range of commercial activities.

As well as maintaining and improving the harbour, the organisation also owns and runs The Rum Story Attraction and shop.

Board members take an active role in overseeing projects such as the construction of The Edge Coastal Activities Centre, which is being built on the harbour, planning events throughout the year, seeking funding, making decisions on long-term strategic planning for development and investment and maintaining, managing and improving the harbour.

Whitehaven Harbour Commissioners chief executive, John Baker, said the role of the board members is wide ranging, including investment, regeneration, education and much more. “Our mission is to preserve the harbour but also to develop it as an asset which will benefit future generations for years to come,” said John.  

“Board members need to have a strong sense of public service and a real commitment and understanding of the harbour and the people who use it.

"We are seeking applicants who can help us build a diverse board that is independent and filled with people with a variety of expertise from all ages and backgrounds.

"We are open to members coming in from outside of the area to bring in new experience and ideas.”

Board members are expected to attend a minimum of four out of six meetings held every year.

“We are lucky to have had a lot of hardworking board members in the past who have volunteered many hours to the role.”

New Board member Jenny Brumby was born in Whitehaven and still has family in the town.

Whitehaven News: Jenny BrumbyJenny Brumby (Image: Kate Wright Digital)

A project manager for The Entrepreneurs Group, Jenny is based in Whitehaven, and her role involves fostering start-up businesses in the retail sector.

Prior to her current role, Jenny was business support adviser for Copeland Borough Council, and has strong links with businesses in Whitehaven.

"I'm very passionate about Whitehaven and really excited to be one of the commissioners," said Jenny, who lives in Millom.

“I’m going to focus on making the harbour more vibrant, with more events bringing more footfall to the town. I'd like to see the harbour become more commercial, with more eateries, more start-up businesses and a real atmosphere.”

Deanne, who lives near Workington, is CEO and executive director of Rosehill Arts Trust and has a background in business development, marketing and journalism.

Whitehaven News: Deanne ShallcrossDeanne Shallcross (Image: Supplied)

She said there were parallels between the work of the commissioners and her role at the trust, which manages Rosehill Theatre, in Moresby.

“There are similarities not just on the events side but around working with a small team to manage an important community asset,” said Deanne.

“I love the coast and watersports, especially kayaking and yachting, and as well as the harbour’s history I am excited by its future. With the development of The Edge underway I’m delighted to join the team that is delivering that.” 

As a keen musician, Deanne is also enthusiastic about helping bring footfall to local music venues, as well as growing the audience for The Rum Story Attraction.

John added: “Deanne and Jenny were chosen because of their passion for supporting and improving Whitehaven. Deanne has great skills regarding identifying funding and bringing arts and culture to the community, marketing products and venues and staging events.

“Jenny likewise has a great eye and ear to the ground for funding opportunities. She has extensive experience creating events and improving infrastructure. She has great ideas around marketing and how Whitehaven Harbour Commissioners can further integrate with the local business community.”