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Sentimental photos stolen from young carers

A group of young carers, on a holiday in Manchester organised to give them a rest, have had their possessions stolen.

Kayla Laisby lost a photo of her and her dad, who has terminal cancer, when they were younger:

I want the people to be found so that they can understand how much us as carers have been through anyway. And now for them to do that to us, no regard for us whatsoever... and now everything's gone."

– KAYLA LAISBY, young carer

'Dinosaur' skeleton discovered near Kendal

Credit: Lakeland Maze Farm Park

A giant dinosaur skeleton has been found in a field near Kendal.

Aerial photography of the creature suggests that the dinosaur – spotted at Sedgwick, close to M6 junction 36 – is a Tyrannosaurus Rex – a large theropod dinosaur that last roamed the land 66-68 million years ago.

The 'discovery' comes just a month after the launch of the movie Jurassic World which has put terrifying dinosaurs back into the spotlight.

Luckily for those who have seen the movie, this dinosaur will not be coming to life and running rampage through the beautiful South Lakeland countryside. The dinosaur skeleton has actually been cut out of a crop of maize, at the Lakeland Maze Farm Park in Sedgwick, and forms the theme for this year’s family maze.

Children and adults can venture through the dinosaur’s body, negotiating twists and turns on the paths that lead through the maze, as they attempt to find their way out, exiting through the creature’s hand.

The Lakeland Maze Farm Park will be using the design to fire up children’s imaginations, running a story competition that children can enter, throughout the summer, which asks them to create a story on the theme, ‘The day the Sedgwick dinosaur came to life.’

Credit: Lakeland Maze Farm Park

“We hope we won’t be awakening any sleeping dinosaurs, but are sure we will be sparking children’s passion for discovering more about these prehistoric creatures.

"This year’s theme should be a lot of fun and we expect to draw in around 18,000 visitors from across the north west, as well as locals and Lake District holidaymakers. We can almost hear the roar of approval now … unless that is the dinosaur coming to life.”

– Graham Wadsworth, Lakeland Maze Farm Park


£100k to tackle domestic abuse in South Lakeland

Credit: South Lakeland District Council

Support for victims of domestic abuse in South Lakeland has been boosted by a six figure grant award.

A joint bid by South Lakeland District Council (SLDC), the Springfield women’s refuge and Impact Housing Association has secured £100,000 to fund programmes over the next two years to support victims of domestic abuse, deliver more counselling services and also develop education sessions with school-age children and young people.

The money is coming from a £10 million pot announced by the Government to tackle domestic abuse issues.

The £100,000 awarded to South Lakeland is the full amount requested in the bid and South Lakeland is the only area of Cumbria to be allocated money from the fund.

The money will be used to support both female and male victims of domestic abuse through a number of projects, including:

  • A ‘Recovery Toolkit’ programme delivered in partnership with Barnardo’s, working with domestic abuse victims to aid ‘trauma recovery’, build confidence and help victims to make choices in the future to avoid controlling or abusive relationships
  • Prevention work – delivering training for teachers in schools about ‘healthy relationships’ and how teenagers can spot the signs of a potentially abusive relationship. This will cover issues such as peer pressure and ‘sexting’
  • ‘Building better relationships’ sessions for abusive men, delivered in partnership with Cumbria and Lancashire Community Rehabilitation Company (formerly probation services)
  • Supporting the existing work of the Springfield refuge

“The award of this money is excellent news and it is a great credit to everyone involved that this funding has been secured for South Lakeland.

“No-one should have to live with or suffer domestic abuse and the important and innovative programmes that this funding will support will have a positive impact on the lives of many.

“The council has a clear commitment to work to tackle issues of domestic abuse in South Lakeland and I am delighted that we have been able to work with partners to secure this funding."

– Cllr Graham Vincent, SLDC portfolio holder for health and wellbeing

Lottery funding for Cumbria's smallest cinema

Cathouse Cinema Credit: Oxen Park Cinema Club

Cumbria's smallest cinema at a village in Grizedale has been given £8,000 by the National Lottery to go digital.

Oxen Park's Cathouse Cinema shows DVDs on a big screen for people who can't get to Barrow or Ulverston.

Oxen Park is a small village of around 20 houses and is eight miles from the nearest cinema in Ulverston. In 2002 a group of local people started a film club in response to foot and mouth. The outbreak meant many farmers had to stay indoors and people felt something needed to be done to bring the community back together.

"There was a sort of general low feeling of spirit and it was just a really good reason to get people together again and try and sort of lift them and of course that seems a long time ago now but it has made that sort of difference. You know, our people that come to watch a film they're a different group to the ones that go and do upholstery or go to WI. We do pull in people that you know maybe they don't do anything else."

– Carol McNeilL, Oxen Park Cinema Club

Initially they showed DVDs in village halls with a large mobile projector and screen but two years ago the club was able to transform an old pub outbuilding into a cinema with the help of a £50,000 grant.

The National Lottery funding will now pay for improved equipment including editing software and computers for their film-making workshops.

Free lunch networking event for South Lakes businesses

Retailers are being invited to think about innovative ways to boost their businesses at a free lunch and networking event in Bowness.

The ‘Retail Special’ business lunch, organised by South Lakeland District Council (SLDC), is being held at the Laura Ashley Hotel The Belsfield, in Bowness, on Wednesday, 11 March from 11am to 1pm.

Guest speakers will be encouraging retailers to think about everything from their shop window first impressions to their on-line offering.

Visual display trainers from York-based ‘Made You Look!’ will be offering handy hints on how to create eye-catching window and interior displays and on how retailers can raise their profile and increase sales.

There will also be a presentation from a second speaker about how retailers can complement and enhance their high street trading by using effective on-line promotions, sales and marketing.

The council’s Invest in South Lakeland economic development team holds regular free working breakfasts/lunches and networking events throughout the year across South Lakeland.

The lunch at the Belsfield is open to all South Lakeland businesses and any that may be wanting to re-locate to this area.

“These events help the council to engage with businesses and provide a forum for businesses to discuss issues that directly affect them.

“They also provide attendees with an ideal opportunity to network with other businesses and make new contacts.

“This lunch is aimed at retailers in South Lakeland to offer some useful advice and support as part of our commitment to work with local businesses to encourage growth in our town centres.’’

– Councillor Giles Archibald, SLDC portfolio holder for town centres and small business

For further details and to register for the lunch on 11 March, visit:

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