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  1. Updates on Friday 1 April 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Your live coverage throughout the day

Belinda Artingstoll

BBC Cumbria Live

Live updates for Cumbria have now finished for the week. Have a lovely weekend. We'll be back on Monday from 08:00 with news, sport, weather and travel updates.

You can contact us via Twitter @BBC_Cumbria, by emailing us at or via our Facebook page.  

Weather: Rain tonight and tomorrow morning

BBC Weather

It will be cloudy overnight with rain slowly pushing south-east. 

The rain will be heavy at times especially over higher ground. It is set to feel milder than of late under the cloudy skies. 

Strong winds are expected at first but they will ease by dawn. Minimum temperature 6C (43F).

Saturday will start wet, with outbreaks of rain moving slowly north-east. This rain will be locally heavy, especially in the south of the county. 

It will turn drier later, with some hazy sunshine. Winds will be mainly light. Maximum temperature 10C (50F).

See the forecast for your area here.

Weather graphic

Cafe closes due to a lack of trade after the December floods

A café in Keswick which was hit by flooding has had to close its doors due to a lack of trade.

The Saddleback Cafe opened two years ago today. 

Andy West from the cafe says: "Head over heart really, as I wanted to keep it going regardless. But looking at the time and effort and the financial outcome as well, maybe it's time to take a step back and have a look again in the future." 

It comes as small businesses in Cumbria say they're not getting the financial support they need. 

Some have applied for a flood recovery grant but have been unsuccessful. 

The Cumbria Chamber of Commerce, which is involved in administering the scheme, says not everyone is eligible, but it has approved most applications.

Flood damage in Keswick

Mental health charity giving some people their 'only social interaction'

£100,000 in government-backed grants has been awarded to a charity near Kendal, which supports people with mental health problems. 

Growing Well has an organic holding at Low Sizergh Farm. It says the money will help it to find new ways of making the most from the produce grown by volunteers. 

Clairelouise Chapman from the charity says if it can increase sales of its herbs and homemade soup then it may also be able to extend its services. 

"We work with a real range of people. We work with people who have not left their homes for years. The only social interaction that they're getting is with us. We run a part-time mini-bus service from Barrow and Kendal and we would like to extend that."

People digging on a farm

Businesses in Cumbria struggling after December floods

Some of the county's businesses say they're in danger of closing because of a downturn in trade after December's floods. 

Julie Baxter, who runs Jeybeez Knitz and Babywear in Appleby, says she applied for a flood recovery grant, but was rejected

She said: "The reason being my business wasn't viable enough. It's been really difficult. It's hit and miss whether I carry on or not."

The Cumbria Chamber of Commerce, which helps to administer the grants, says it has approved most applications but has to follow certain criteria.

Shops in flooded street

Weather: Cloudy with rain this afternoon and tonight

BBC Weather

A cloudy afternoon with rain. Winds will be fresh and temperatures could reach 10C (50F). 

There'll be more rain tonight, and it will be milder than it has been, with temperatures around 6C (43F).

See the forecast for your area here.   

Weather image

Your pictures: glorious sunrise in West Cumbria

This was taken by BBC Weather Watcher, chickenlady, near Bootle this morning. What a beautiful sky.

See more from the BBC Weather Watchers here.


Travel: Delays on A66

BBC Travel

There's queuing traffic on the A66 in both directions between the A685 junction in Brough and the B6259 junction in Warcop. This is due to roadworks.

See all the latest travel details here. 

Beacon to be lit in Cumbria to mark Queen's 90th

A beacon is going to be lit on the top of Scafell Pike to mark the Queen's 90th birthday. 

It will form part of a chain of more than 1,000 beacons across Britain.

On 21 April the Queen will light the first beacon. Members of the Army Cadet Force will ensure the four highest peaks in the UK form part of the chain, including Scafell Pike in the Lake District. 

The beacons could be traditional bonfires, or specially built gas-fuelled structures. 

There's a long traditional of celebrating royal jubilees, coronations and birthdays with the lighting of beacons.   


Concern for missing man from West Cumbria

Police are worried about a man who has gone missing from his home in Calderbridge in west Cumbria. 

Mark Jenkinson, 52, was last seen yesterday lunchtime driving a silver car, registration number PY53 FNN.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact officers on 101. 

Mark Jenkinson
Cumbria Police

Your pictures: Squirrel antics

BBC Cumbria

This photograph from Paul Nelson has been getting a great response on our Facebook page overnight.

If you have any photos you'd like to share with us then send them to us via Twitter @BBC_Cumbria, by emailing us at or via our Facebook page.  

Paul Nelson

Shuttle bus in the Lakes is being well used

A bus which is being used to bridge the gap in the A591 between Grasmere and Keswick is being well used by local people and tourists.   

View more on twitter

Passengers won't pay for rail investment, says operator

The company that has taken over some rail services in Cumbria says it doesn't expect passengers to foot the bill for its investment plans.   

Arriva North is taking over the Northern Rail franchise today. It's promising to spend £1bn improving services. 

But rail unions say the company wants to cut back on the number of trains that have a guard on board, and this will compromise passenger safety and lead to job losses. 

But Alex Hynes from Arriva North says: "We're going to transform the quality and capacity of rail services in the next 44 months. Faster journeys, new trains, more seats, more services." 


Cumbrian fell runner marking 80th birthday with new challenge

Cumbrian fell runner Joss Naylor is going to mark his 80th birthday with yet another challenge. 

His birthday was in February, and in June he's going to raise money for the Brathay Trust by running more than 30 miles from Caldbeck, across the northern and Western fells, then back to his home in Wasdale.

Man running

The trust, which is based near Ambleside, helps young people to develop life skills. 

Mr Naylor says: "I've done a lot of walking and cycling this winter.  My legs are in very good nick. I've been doing some longish walks, one of at least 15 miles each week. I've put that up to 20 or 25 miles now and doing a bit more climbing too."

The photograph above is of Joss running in the 1980s.

Your pictures: Stunning early morning view

Belinda Artingstoll

BBC Cumbria Live

Thank you to Brodie Goodwin for this gorgeous shot this morning on Blencathra.

If you have any photos you'd like to share with us then send them to us via Twitter @BBC_Cumbria, by emailing us at or via our Facebook page.  

Sunrise over fell
Brodie Goodwin

Sellafield clean-up taken over by government department

Sellafield Limited, the organisation responsible for cleaning up the Sellafield nuclear site, officially becomes a part of the government department the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority from today. 

Between 2008 and the start of 2015, Nuclear Management Partners had a contract with the government to run nuclear clean-up work at Sellafield. 

But it was criticised for overspending, and for taking too long to complete projects. 

Last January the NDA said it would turn Sellafield Limited into one of its subsidiaries, and today that change becomes official. 

The authority says this new arrangement will make it easier to make long term plans for cleaning up the Sellafield site.  


People 'staying away' because of major road closure in the Lake District

The director of an art gallery in Grasmere says people are are still staying away from the village because of the closure of a major road. 

A section of the A591 near Thirlmere was destroyed by Storm Desmond. It has become known as The Gap and has cut the Lake District in two. 

Bus queue

A shuttle bus service provides a link between Grasmere and Keswick. 

But the director of the Heaton Cooper Gallery, Becky Heaton-Cooper, says: "Lots of visitors are still using their cars to get around and unless they're specifically wanting to come to Grasmere they're not coming. 

"The bus is bringing more people in which is fantastic but we really need that road open. It makes me feel really anxious that's going to be the end of May. I hope it's before."    

Wonky vegetables to help secure charity's future

Kitchen herb sales and wonky vegetable soup are among the ideas that a mental health charity near Kendal hopes will secure its future. 

Growing Well runs an organic farm and has just been given a grant of more than £100,000 to find ways of helping even more people with mental health issues. 

Clairelouise Chapman from the charity hopes they can extend their services if they bring in more income

She says: "Everybody knows someone who is currently experiencing mental ill-health. But whether you actually know they have a problem is a different factor."   


Shap 'could become a ghost town' if steel plant closes

There are fears Shap near Penrith could become a ghost town if Tata Steel closes its site there. 

One man who works there but wants to remain anonymous says: "There's a paper shop, couple of bakers, a pie shop. 

"They all do business with people that's working up there. I think it would just become a ghost town. People would have to leave the village." 


Another 225 people are employed at the Tata site in Workington. But the company wants to sell its operation in the UK. 

The Prime Minister says although the government is doing everything it can to save the steel industry, there are no guarantees of success.

Dangers of soft mud highlighted after man gets stuck

The dangers off the South Cumbrian coast are being highlighted again after a man got stuck in mud in Morecambe Bay near Far Arnside yesterday. 

He was up to his knees when he was rescued by the coastguard and an RNLI hovercraft. 

Rescue boat
Bay Search and Rescue

RNLI senior hovercraft commander Harry Roberts says: "Once you're up to your knees you're not going to get out without assistance. 

"The mud sets like a cast around your leg. The more you wriggle, the more water you force out and it sets to the shape of your leg. Without us pumping more water in around your leg you're not coming out."

Weather: Cloudy with rain today

BBC Weather

It'll be cloudy today, with rain later this morning and continuing into this afternoon. Temperatures of 10C (50F) at best. 

See the forecast for your area here.

Weather image

Businesses in Cumbria say they are struggling to survive after the floods

Some of the county's small businesses say they're struggling to survive more than three months after the floods hit. 

Chris Kendall, a butcher in Carlisle, says compared to this time last year, he's £11,000 down in takings. 

He also says stress has had a severe impact on him. He said he is "devastated to be honest. I've had nose bleeds. I've had two courses of antibiotics because, apparently, chest infections are caused by being run-down". 

Flooded street

Travel: All quiet on the roads so far

BBC Travel

There are ongoing roadworks after the December floods including north of Grasmere on the A591. The road is closed but there is a shuttle bus between Grasmere and Keswick. There are also ongoing roadworks in Staveley, Brougham and Burneside.

There are no other major incidents to report at the moment.

See all the details here. 

Good morning and welcome to our live coverage throughout the day

Belinda Artingstoll

BBC Cumbria Live

Good morning. A stunning sunrise this morning. I just wish I'd had my camera and my phone battery hadn't gone flat! 

We'll be keeping you up to date with all the day's news, sport, weather and travel for Cumbria until 16:00.

You can contact us via Twitter @BBC_Cumbria, by emailing us at or via our Facebook page.