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Blair: Thatcher 'was kind and generous spirited'

Former PM Tony Blair has paid tribute to Lady Thatcher:

“Margaret Thatcher was a towering political figure.

Very few leaders get to change not only the political landscape of their country but of the world. Margaret was such a leader. Her global impact was vast.

And some of the changes she made in Britain were, in certain respects at least, retained by the 1997 Labour Government, and came to be implemented by governments around the world.

As a person she was kind and generous spirited and was always immensely supportive to me as Prime Minister although we came from opposite sides of politics.

Even if you disagreed with her as I did on certain issues and occasionally strongly, you could not disrespect her character or her contribution to Britain’s national life.

She will be sadly missed.

The full interview: Ed Miliband

by Helen Ford

The Labour leader hasn't ruled out the idea of re-nationalising therail network. Ed Miliband was speaking in an interview with ITV Borderat the end of his party's annual conference in Manchester.

Mr Miliband condemned the mistakes which led to the cancellation of the new WestCoast Main Line franchise. He said his party would consider severaloptions for the future running of the railways. Watch Helen Ford's full interview with Mr Miliband here.

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West Cumbria could be 'Northern hub for energy generation'

Politicians, unions and business leaders have been highlighting plans to develop the West Cumbrian coast as a centre for energy generation. The reception was held at the Labour party conference in Manchester, and was led by West Cumbrian MPs Sir Tony Cunningham and Jamie Reed.

The idea of creating an 'Energy Coast' is not new. There are already plans for three major nuclear projects in West Cumbria. Unions at Sellafield are calling for these to begin as soon as possible in order to preserve jobs in the nuclear industry.

The Manchester gathering was told up to 3,000 jobs could be created over 15 years once Energy Coast is fully up and running. While much of the talk is around nuclear power, the aim is to attract other developments such as wind and biomass, making West Cumbria a northern hub for energy generation.

Labour candidate for Carlisle announced

Lee Sherriff Credit: Labour Group

Carlisle woman Lee Sherriff has been selected to be the Labour candidate for Carlisle at the next General Election.

The announcement followed a ballot of members at a hustings meeting at Tullie House in the city centre.

The 39 year old is a former retail worker and is currently a City Councillor for Harraby ward.

After the announcement, Lee Sherriff said:

“I’m honoured to have been chosen by Labour Party members to be their candidate at the next General Election. I’ve lived in Carlisle since childhood. It’s my home and I would never have considered standing anywhere else.

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Labour leader in Carlisle

The Labour leader Ed Miliband has launched his party's local election campaign in the North at an event in Carlisle.

The city council is Labour's number one target in the North East and Cumbria on 3rd May. It's been in Conservative control since 1999. Mr Miliband pledged to govern for the whole country, not what he calls 'the wealthy few'.

Carlisle City Council 'top target' for Labour in elections.

by Hannah Lomas
Ed Miliband
Labour Leader Ed Miliband Credit: ITV Border

Labour leader Ed Miliband was in Carlisle for a Q and A session with party members on Monday night. The city council is the 'top target' in the North East and Cumbria at next month's elections, 13 years after the Party lost control of it.

Speaking to ITV Border's Hannah Lomas at the Richard Rose Morton Academy, Mr Miliband admitted they had lost touch in the past but said the Conservative - Liberal Democrat coalition '"hadn't delivered" in the city.

"Even if tough times you need a party that's on your side and wheter it's on living standards or on jobs and creating jobs which is a big emphasis of Labour's campaign here or on crime and anti-social behaviour which is again a big part of our campaign."

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