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M-Sport return home after Rallye Monte Carlo win

M-sport World Rally Team have returned to their base in Cockermouth after winning the opening round of the World Rally Championship.

The west Cumbrian firm signed the world champion Sebastien Ogier in December.

Along with their new car, they beat some of the biggest manufacturers to take the win at Rallye Monte Carlo.

Lori Carnochan went along to Dovenby Hall to meet the team on their return.

Pictures courtesy of WRC Promoter.

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Multi-million pound M-Sport plans given go-ahead

M-Sport World Rally Team Credit: ITV News

Two hundred jobs have been safeguarded and a further one hundred could be created at M-Sport in Cumbria after a multi-million pound development was given the go-ahead.

The £19million plans, including a new technical evaluation centre and testing facility, were approved after a judicial review in the High Court.

The development at Dovenby Hall Estate received a unanimous majority at planning, after Allerdale Borough Council voted 10-1 to approve the application, and attracted support from the Regional Growth Fund and backing from local business leaders.

The development at Dovenby Hall Estate received a unanimous majority at planning, after Allerdale Borough Council voted 10-1 to approve the application, and attracted support from the Regional Growth Fund and backing from local business leaders.

Peter Nicholson of Dovenby had applied to the Court for a judicial review into the Council’s handling of the application, a Judge granted that application warning that it had narrowly passed the lowest test.

Mr Nicholson now has 21 days to commence appeal proceedings if he chooses.

M-Sport say work will begin immediately:

“After a delay of more than eight months, it’s heartening that we can now move ahead with the development. The decision marks a new chapter in the history of M-Sport and I’m excited that we can continue to invest in the local workforce and boost local economy and employment prospects.”

– Malcolm Wilson, Managing Director, M-Sport

However, protesters today said they were pleased with the outcome of the judicial review.

They said the judge's decision vindicated their campaign to include the monitoring of maximum noise levels that would be caused by car testing at M Sport. Mike Fossey, who lives in Dovenby near to the development, has been one of those protesting against the plans.

The principle has now been established that M-Sport will monitor maximum noise levels at the new development, which is something we have fought for. The next step is that they will have to specify a number for the maximum which will have to go before local planning. They still have some way to go. If the values they put in are too high then we, the people that are affected, will contest them. It's been a long process so far and the villagers have had a big impact on the reduction of noise levels.

– Mike Fossey, protester

He added that costs of around £26,000 will now have to be paid by Allerdale Borough Council to Peter Nicholson, the member of the campaign group who brought the judicial review.

Day 3 Rally Finalnd

Rally Finland 2015 Credit: ITV Border

In yesterday's report we followed M-Sport away from its base in Cockermouth, as they prepared for the excitement of Rally Finland.

In the third of our special reports, we look into what life is like working for one of the world's top rally teams.

Tune into Lookaround at 6pm to see the latest instalment from Rally Finland.

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Cockermouth expansion into centre of motor excellence

A West Cumbrian firm has announced plans to expand - and is set to create a hundred jobs.

M-Sport at Dovenby near Cockermouth manufactures rally cars for the global market. It's set to build a centre of excellence for vehicle testing and evaluation.

It won't just be for motor sport, however, as the company is also targeting the general automotive industry.

Kim Inglis reports.

Full report: Malcolm Wilson receives Fellowship

Former British Rally Champion Malcolm Wilson has picked up another major title in Carlisle.

The managing director of M-Sport, who run Ford's World Rally activities, has been awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the University of Cumbria.

It recognises his outstanding contribution to motorsport and Cumbrian business.

Kim Inglis reports:

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