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Carlisle MP welcomes police funding review

Carlisle MP John Stevenson is welcoming a government review into the way budgets will be allocated to police forces in the future.

Mr Stevenson criticised the previous review, saying that Cumbria was put in the same bracket as metropolitan cities like Manchester and London.

He says the county now has another chance to emphasise the unique challenges the region faces.

New analysis shows scale of last winter's floods

Flooding in Carlisle during Storm Desmond Credit: ITV News Border

More than seven thousand homes and businesses across Cumbria flooded in last year's devastating storms, new analysis shows.

The study, by the Local Government Association, says that 6,568 homes and 897 businesses were affected in the county. That's almost half of all the properties hit in the eight worst-affected parts of the UK.

The Association says councils are still helping flood-hit homes to recover from the disruption caused by storms Desmond, Eva and Frank.

Ahead of this winter, town halls are encouraging people to be prepared for future flooding, by taking steps such as checking if they are at risk, signing up to free warnings and identifying what to take with them if they need to evacuate their premises.

Council leaders are calling for future flood defence to be devolved by the Government to local areas so that councils can work with communities and businesses to ensure money goes to projects that best suit local needs.

Martin Tett, a LGA environment spokesman, said: "Councils are doing everything they can to protect households and businesses from the possibility of further devastating flooding this winter.

"Such was the severity of last year's storms, some councils, who have experienced significant reductions to their core funding, are still helping residents to recover even now."

He said devolving funding to local areas would support projects that reflected needs such as protecting key roads and bridges to keep residents and businesses moving.


HSBC to close Windermere branch

HSBC will close its Windermere branch. Credit: PA

Banking giant HSBC has announced it will close its Windermere branch.

The doors will shut on 21 October with the bank claiming it is not commercially viable for it to stay open.

Customers will now have to travel to Kendal for the nearest branch, a journey of around 20 minutes by car.

Local MP Tim Farron has urged HSBC to reconsider the planned closure.

When HSBC’s Ambleside branch closed in 2012, we were told customers would be moved to Windermere. Now they will be shunted all the way to Kendal. Elderly residents want to be able to nip in to their local branch, not spend hours on the bus simply to access their savings.

Banks must consider the needs of the local community before cutting ties with the areas they are supposed to serve.

– Tim Farron MP


Cumbrian business leaders hear from economy experts

Business leaders from across Cumbria have been hearing about the state of the global economy at a special lecture organised by the University of Cumbria.

It was part of the university's aim to share knowledge and expertise by bringing business experts to the county.

"It's really important because we're a regional university but we are globally connected and anything we can do to elevate global issues to our business community and to our students is vitally important."

– Sandra Booth, University of Cumbria

Scottish Borders businesses warned of counterfeit money

Money. Credit: PA

Police are warning businesses in the Scottish Borders to watch out for counterfeit money.

Since the start of this week, there have been three reports of fake bank notes being used at shops throughout East Lothian and the Borders.

On Monday, 23 May, two shops were targeted in Dunbar and North Berwick.

On the following day a store in Coldstream confirmed it had also received counterfeit currency.

On each occasion, the notes were reported to be of a “high-quality”, and appeared legitimate on first sight.

The notes are all Bank of England £20 notes, with either the serial number “AH03 269110” or “HH11 227632”.

It is a criminal offence to hold or pass a note that you know to be counterfeit. I would ask the public to be aware of the recent circulation of counterfeit currency, and to check any paper notes they have received lately to ensure they are legitimate.

If anyone suspects they have been handed or found a fake bank note, they should retain it and contact the police immediately.

– PC Alan Curran, from Haddington Police station
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