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  1. Tuesday 6 September 2016

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage across the day

Updates have finished for the day. We'll be back from 08:00 on Wednesday with news, travel reports and a regular weather forecast.

If you've a photograph to share with us or news we should know, you can email us, tweet us @BBC_Cumbria or contact us via Facebook

Making a mountain out of a... hill

BBC Cumbria

Well, here's something you don't hear every day - a Cumbrian hill has become a mountain.

In 2010 Calf Top near Sedbergh was measured at 1,999.9ft (about 610m), but new - more accurate - measurements show it's actually 2,000.02ft high.

That's according to the Ordnance Survey (OS), which says anything over 2,000ft is officially a mountain.

In a statement, the organisation said: "Calf Top has not grown. The change in height has resulted from improvements to the OS GPS co-ordinates network and even greater precision on how we measure heights from the mean sea level in Britain.

"Is Calf Top now a mountain? Yes. It now measures over 2,000ft."

Sellafield safety 'non-negotiable', says minister

In response to Labour MP Jamie Reed's urgent question in Parliament about Sellafield, energy minister Nick Hurd said he agreed "100%" with the Copeland MP's assessment that safety is "non-negotiable".

He added the UK has the "safest nuclear industry in the world" with "stringent safety laws" and went on to say he has been "assured the regulator is doing its job".

The minister closed his statement by saying the regulator had firmly rebutted the points made in the Panorama programme and said "none were new".

The BBC investigation was prompted by a whistle-blower - a former senior manager who was worried by conditions. 

In response, Sellafield said the site is safe and has been improved with significant investment in recent years.

Lake District Wildlife Park welcomes zebra foal

A new arrival at a Cumbrian wildlife attraction has been wowing visitors.

The Lake District Wildlife Park, near Keswick, has welcomed a Grant's zebra foal - the fourth to be born there.

It is the second born to mum Zara, who previously gave birth at the park a year ago. Bosses have not yet given her a name.

Manager Richard Robinson said: "Zara is doing a great job, she’s had several foals before and it’s second nature to her. 

"She’s always very protective, keeping the other zebras away until she’s properly bonded. With the poor weather we were a little concerned, but the foal is really spritely."

The as-yet-unnamed foal
Lake District Wildlife Park

Listen: Cumbrian MP responds to Sellafield safety concerns raised by BBC documentary

Kevin Fernihough

Presenter, BBC Radio Cumbria

The Labour MP for Copeland Jamie Reed spoke this morning about the concerns raised by a BBC Panorama documentary detailing a catalogue of safety concerns at the Cumbrian nuclear site.

This content only works in the UK.

The Labour MP for Copeland Jamie Reed speaks to Kevin Fernihough about Sellafield.

Copeland MP Jamie Reed presses government over Sellafield

Copeland Labour MP Jamie Reed has asked an urgent question in Parliament following a BBC Panorama documentary into the safety of the Sellafield nuclear site.

Saying it presents "arguably the most challenging engineering challenges anywhere in the world", Mr Reed called on energy minister Nick Hurd to make a statement on the matter.

Mr Reed also declared it is "essential" that the nuclear regulator has the necessary resources to deal with any concerns and went on to add he sees Sellafield as a "national asset" which could become a "global centre of excellence" helping bring billions of pounds into the UK economy.

Panorama found parts of Sellafield regularly have too few staff to operate safely and that radioactive materials have been stored in degrading plastic bottles. The programme was told that parts of the facility are dangerously rundown.


Cumbrian fire chief praises firefighters for tackling Kendal blaze

As part of a statement explaining what happened during a serious fire at Kendal's Westmorland Shopping Centre this morning, the county's chief fire officer paid tribute to the firefighters who were called out to the fire.

This was a major incident and crews responded admirably to a dangerous situation. It’s to their credit that the fire was quickly brought under control. We will continue to monitor the situation and will be conducting a follow up investigation to determine the cause."

Paul HancockChief Fire Officer for Kendal

Listen: Reliving yesterday's Tour of Britain through Cumbria

BBC Radio Cumbria

More than 120 of the world's best cyclists powered their way through the county as Stage 2 of the 2016 Tour of Britain took place between Carlisle and Kendal. 

Julien Vermote out-sprinted Britain's Steve Cummings in an uphill finish in Kendal to win stage two and take the leader's yellow jersey.

This content only works in the UK.

BBC Radio Cumbria followed the tour all the way from Carlisle to Kendal

Former rugby player due to be sentenced

BBC Cumbria

A former Workington Town rugby league player who breached a court order that was meant to stop him contacting his ex-wife, is expected to be sentenced later. 

Carlisle Crown Court heard that Stephen Holgate, 44 and of no fixed address, repeatedly breached a restraining order over two and a half months. 

Holgate, a member of Wigan's 1998 Super League Grand Final-winning side, pleaded guilty to eight charges earlier.

Employees allowed back in after Kendal shopping centre fire

We're hearing from an employee working in one of the stores inside the Westmorland Shopping Centre that staff are now being allowed back into the centre.

It's after a fire meant that the centre was evacuated earlier this morning.

We're still waiting for official word from the the centre's management on when it will reopen to the public.

The main focus now is the investigation and trying to get back to some level of normality for the shopping centre as best we can over the next few hours

John McVayCumbria Fire and Rescue Service

Travel: Kendal roads closed due to shopping centre fire now open

BBC Travel

All roads that were temporarily closed in the town while firefighters tackled a fire at the Westmorland Shopping Centre are now reopen, according to Cumbria County Council.

Fire crews are still at the scene to ventilate smoke from the centre.

Sellafield urgent question expected at 12:30

Hydro power scheme nearing completion

Cumbria's steepest hydro electric scheme, on the mountain slopes above Thirlmere reservoir, is expected to be up and running within weeks, according to developer Ellergreen.

Fisherplace Hydro, on the banks of Helvellyn, has a 2 in 1 gradient, and once live, will be able to generate enough electricity to power 700 homes. 

Fisherplace Hydro project
Ellergreen Hydro

Work has been taking place for the past 10 months, and the scheme is now three quarters of the way through its construction. 

Ellergreen, which has been building hydro-electric schemes in Cumbria for the past five years, is delivering the project, on land leased from United Utilities.

Staff shortage hospital unit reopens

Susie Moss

Journalist, BBC Radio Cumbria

A Cumbrian community hospital where the in-patient unit was closed last month has now been reopened.

Patients at the unit in Alston were transferred to Brampton because there were not enough staff to look after them. 

Although Cumbria Partnership Trust said the closure was a temporary measure, people in the town were worried it would never open again. 

This is because the future of Community Hospitals in the county is under review, as part of the Success Regime, which is looking at saving money and improving health care across North, East and West Cumbria. 

A spokesperson for the partnership trust said there was still a high number of nursing vacancies across the community hospitals and they were doing all they could to recruit more staff.   

Shopping centre car park in Kendal reopens after fire

The multi-storey car park attached to a Kendal shopping centre has reopened after a fire in a store room in the Westmorland Shopping Centre.

There's no official word yet on when the centre itself will reopen.

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BreakingGovernment to answer urgent question on Sellafield

It's been confirmed that the Labour MP for Copeland Jamie Reed will ask an urgent question on Sellafield. 

The Speaker of the House of Commons has granted his request following a BBC Panorama documentary into a series of safety concerns on the nuclear site. 

It will follow Justice Questions which start at 11:30 but it's not yet clear who will answer on behalf of the Government.

Tour of Britain: Sir Bradley Wiggins runs up The Struggle

BBC Sport

Yesterday's stage two of theTour of Britain was packed with incidents - including Sir Bradley Wiggins running up a hill and Mark Cavendish stopping to remonstrate with a fan.

In scenes reminiscent of Tour de France champion Chris Froome running up Mont Ventoux, Wiggins pushed his way up The Struggle in the Lake District.

"Taking things very seriously, took my mind off being in a world of pain," said Wiggins, who finished fifth last.

Cavendish was seen chatting with a fan, who appeared to have a selfie stick.

Sir Bradley Wiggins running

BreakingFire put out at Kendal shopping centre

A fire has been put out on the first floor of the Westmorland Shopping Centre in Kendal.

The fire service had been called out to the town centre building and it was evacuated when smoke was seen coming from a store room.

Emergency services say part of the shopping centre is still filled with smoke and firefighters are now setting up equipment to ventilate the building.

Fire engines outside Kendal shopping centre

Steven Bell

BBC Cumbria

BBC Cumbria's Steven Bell has sent this photo of fire crews outside Westmorland Shopping Centre in Kendal where a fire started shortly after 08:00.

Fire crews outside Kendal shopping centre

BreakingKendal roads closed because of fire

Fire crews at scene outside Kendal shopping centre

A fire started at Kendal's Westmorland Shopping Centre shortly after 08:00 leading to it being evacuated.

No one is thought to have been hurt but a cordon has been set up and roads around the shopping centre have been closed.

Thanks to ThisIsMyFilmKendal for this photo of fire crews outside.

Fire crews outside Westmorland Shopping Centre in Kendal

Fire crews tackle Kendal shopping centre fire

Fire crews are tackling a fire at the Westmorland Shopping Centre in Kendal which started shortly after 08:00.

No one is thought to have been injured, Cumbria Police said, but the shopping centre has been evacuated and a cordon has been set up.

Stricklandgate, from the junction at Library Road to the junction of Sandes Avenue, and Library Road have been closed to traffic 

People are being asked to stay away from the area.

Kendal shopping centre evacuated after smoke seen

BBC Cumbria

The Westmorland Shopping Centre in Kendal has been evacuated, after smoke was seen coming from a store room.

The fire service says it received a call just after 08:00 and eight engines have been sent to the shopping centre.

We'll bring you more information when we have it.

Panorama's Sellafield investigation prompted by whistleblower

Panorama's investigation into Sellafield was prompted by a whistleblower who was worried by conditions.

He explained that his biggest fear was a fire in one of the nuclear waste silos or one of the processing plants and said: "If there is a fire there it could generate a plume of radiological waste that will go across Western Europe."

The whistle-blower told the BBC that areas of Sellafield - which reprocesses and stores nearly all of the nation's nuclear waste - often didn't have enough staff on duty to meet minimum safety levels. 

Dr Rex Strong (pictured), head of nuclear safety at Sellafield, denied that operating below these levels was dangerous. 

He said: "You make alternative arrangements, so the things that have to be done get done. Facilities are shut down if we're not able to operate them in the way that we want to."  

Dr Rex Strong

Weather: Cloudy and muggy to start with, brighter later

It will be a rather cloudy and muggy start to the day, with patchy mist and fog in places, also some patchy light rain across the county. 

It will gradually brighten up, with some sunny spells developing. Feeling warm and humid. 


Maximum Temperature: 20C (68F).

Tour of Britain: Thousands lined Cumbrian route

Thousands of people lined roads around Cumbria yesterday to watch the riders race on stage two of the Tour of Britain.

The race started in Carlisle and finished in Kendal.

Belgium's Julien Vermote won the stage and took the leader's yellow jersey.

He out-sprinted Britain's Steve Cummings in the uphill finish in Kendal after a stage across the Lake District.

Julien Vermote wins stage two of the Tour of Britain

Sellafield safety concerns uncovered by BBC Panorama

In case you missed it yesterday afternoon - an investigation by the BBC's Panorama has uncovered a catalogue of safety concerns at Sellafield.

Panorama found parts of the nuclear reprocessing plant regularly have too few staff to operate safely and that radioactive materials have been stored in degrading plastic bottles.

The programme was told that parts of the facility are dangerously rundown.

Sellafield says the site in Cumbria is safe and has been improved with significant investment in recent years.


Good morning. Welcome to our live coverage

We'll be bringing you updates on Cumbria's news, sport, travel and weather throughout the day until 16:00.

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