Cumbria County Council

Election 2017 Results

NOC NO CHANGE
Party Seats 2013 Seats 2017 Change

PartyConservative

Seats 201326 Seats 201737 Change+11

PartyLabour

Seats 201335 Seats 201726 Change−9

PartyLiberal Democrat

Seats 201316 Seats 201716 Change-

PartyIndependent

Seats 20137 Seats 20175 Change−2
Change compared with

Latest Updates

Work starts to rebuild base of Kendal 'Batman bridge'

Work starts this week to make permanent repairs to the supports of a Victorian Bridge in Kendal, known locally as "Batman bridge" because of its distinctive metalwork.

Batman Bridge on the surface
Cumbria County Council
Underwater film of temporary supports
Cumbria County Council

The bridge, pictured above, had grout bags rammed underneath its supports in January 2016 after the damage was discovered following Storm Desmond.

A concrete base will now be installed for protection with an "invert" underneath to allow more water to flow after heavy rain.

Engineers hope the bridge can remain open during the work, which is due to end in autumn, but the Sandes Avenue car park will be closed until November.

Mental health care for teenagers is focus of conference

About 70 people, including teachers, pupils and NHS staff, are meeting today to discuss mental health provision in west Cumbria after an initiative by young people in the area to increase the amount of help available.

Teenagers going into building
BBC

The group We Will, which trains mental health first-aiders in schools and was set up by young people, will be giving a talk at the gathering.

Councillor Rebecca Hanson, who chairs the newly-established West Cumbria Youth Mental Health Network, says self-harm, anxiety and depression are all on the rise, but it is hard for young people to get help because of the rural nature of the area and NHS staff shortages.

The Cumbria Partnership Trust, which provides mental health services in the county, says it is working to reduce waiting times for routine referrals, which are currently about 31 days.

Tebay refused consent for M6 junction signs

Local Democracy Reporting Service

A plan to put signs on a roundabout at Tebay, where a link road to the M6 joins several other routes, has been refused permission.

Tebay roundabout
Google

Tebay Parish Council had asked whether it could put six signs on the roundabout so local firms could sponsor improvements in the area in return for the publicity, but Eden council had refused consent twice since 2017.

The parish appealed and now a government inspector has supported the Eden decision.

Highways officers had said the junction was complex and signs might distract drivers, and the inspector, Laura Renaudon, said there was not enough detail on where the signs would go to conclude safety would not be adversely affected.

Councillors want parking stewards, not lollipop patrols

Jennie Dennett

BBC Cumbria

Swapping lollipop men and women for parking stewards is one move being considered by county councillors, in response to a shortage of recruits.

Five of the eight established school crossings in the area are struggling to find a new patrol, and in some more rural schools, members of the county council's South Lakeland committee are considering using the money its not spending on vacant crossings to perhaps employ parking stewards instead to improve safety.

Lollipop person
BBC

Library facelift 'could hit other services'

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Ellis Butcher

Windermere Library could shut for months for major refurbishment works, raising fears about services to residents.

Windermere Library entrance
Google

As well as the library and the displays of the Lake District Holocaust Project, South Lakes Citizens Advice and South Lakes Housing operate from the building, a meeting heard.

The Ellerthwaite Road building belongs to Cumbria County Council, which has held talks with a charitable trust about taking it over on a long term lease, and the trust, the Lake District Paradise Project, wants to make improvements.

The county council meeting was told temporary arrangements would be made for the library and the Lake District Holocaust Project would remain, but members were concerned about the other services.

People like CAB can’t go away for six months”

Councillor Shirley Evans

Travel news: The swan now standing ...

After all, you expect parents to escort youngsters across the road until they've learned to look left, right and left again.

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Council pays £74,000 each to departing directors

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Ellis Butcher

Cumbria County Council paid nearly £150,000 in total to two directors who left the authority last year.

Brenda Smith, the former corporate director for adults, left in April 2018 after her post was made redundant in a restructuring and Dominic Donnini, the executive director for economy and infrastructure, survived the reorganisation but then left in October 2018.

Dominc Donnini and Brenda Smith
Cumbria County Council

The council's annual report reveals both were paid £74,731 with each receiving lump sums towards their pensions as well, which in Mrs Smith's case was close to £250,000.

A county council spokesman said the payments were in line with the voluntary redundancy policies and procedures, and each settlement was in line with their terms and conditions.

The restructuring would save more than £300,000 a year.

The council's Conservative opposition leader, James Airey, said the payments were "incomprehensible".