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Tim Farron launches leadership bid

Credit: ITV Border

South Lakes MP Tim Farron has this morning officially launched his campaign to become leader of the Liberal Democrats.

He was re-elected last week with a majority of 8,949, and claims that since then he has received hundreds of messages urging him to stand to be leader of his party.

But he says he is keen to stress the move will not distract him from his constituency work, stating ‘Westmorland is my home and will always be my top priority’.

I'm standing to be leader of the Liberal Democrats because I think Britain needs a political party who will stand up for the environment, human rights, equality and liberalism.

"I want to be the person who helps our party fightback and give Britain the liberal voice it needs.

“However Westmorland will always be my home and will remain my top priority. "Nothing will distract me from that.

"When I was first elected I said that I would always be Westmorland’s man in Westminster and never the other way around."

– Tim Farron, MP

Cumbrian MP wants 'evidence' from Commissioner

Following the announcement asking for Cumbria's Temporary Chief Constable to 'retire or resign', Cumbrian MP Tim Farron has asked to see all of the evidence:

“I want to hear concrete reassurances from the Commissioner that all the necessary legal procedures have been followed to the letter.

"I also want him to agree to show all the evidence to the independent scrutiny panel to allow them to make a judgement. The public do not know the full extent of the situation and they deserve to know what has happened.

“Whatever happens next it must be done swiftly for the sake of taxpayers in Cumbria and it must be done properly to ensure there are no court cases later that could cost further valuable public money.”

– Tim Farron MP, Westmorland and Lonsdale


  1. National

Downing Street plays down Chinese lantern 'ban'

Calls by the Liberal Democrat president Tim Farron for a ban on Chinese lanterns have been played down by Downing Street, in the wake of the Smethwick fire.

"The actual number of fires caused by Chinese lanterns is very small," a No 10 spokesman said.

"It is important that we always ensure that there is a proportionate response to any event and we always look at safety matters and make sure they are kept at the top of our concerns."

Relief over rural schools funding turnaround

Rural schools in our region are relieved after the government backed down over changes to their funding.

Plans to give all schools a lump sum per pupil were criticised because smaller schools could suffer.

Now the government says councils will be able to be more flexible with funding, taking into account rural schools that need more support.

Cumbrian MP Tim Farron has welcomed the news:


South Lakes patients get 'rationing by distance'

The Westmorland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron has criticised the continued lack of Accident and Emergency services at Westmorland General Hospital.

He said his constituents were suffering rationing of healthcare, not by price, but by distance. In response, the Health Minister Dr Dan Poulter said the new clinical commissioning groups would have the power to look at this issue, when they come into force in April.

  1. Samantha Parker

Tim Farron MP: 'Hopefully national picture won't affect South Lakes'

Speaking as the South Lakeland District Council count got under way Tim Farron MP said: "I strongly believe we will buck the trend here.

"There may be a couple of seats up and down but I believe we will remain in control, we have worked incredibly hard here and I believe the people can see that.

"We have a micro climate here, what happens nationally doesn't always affect us.

"Nationally there have been some bright spots but a lot of them dark.

"When a Councillor loses their seat by and large it's not their fault. It is up to us nationally to stand up and take responsibility."

The make up of the council currently stands at Con, 17, Lab, 1, Lib Dem 31 and 2 vacant. Results are expected early afternoon.