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Former Chief Constable witnessed Westminster attack

Former Cumbria Chief Constable Craig Mackey Credit: PA

Yesterday’s Westminster terror attack was witnessed by Cumbria’s former Chief Constable.

Craig Mackey, now Acting Commissioner of Scotland Yard, was in the area on police business and saw the terrible events unfold.

He is now being regarded as a "significant witness" to the attack.

I personally was a witness to part of yesterday's events, including part of the tragic attack on Pc Keith Palmer.

As with all police officers, I therefore had a duty to secure my evidence and produce statements yesterday evening, which I did before resuming my role leading our response to this incident.

– Craig Mackey, Acting Commissioner, Scotland Yard

Mr Mackey took charge of the Met earlier this month and will over to the new Met Commissioner, Cressida Dick on April 1st.

As Chief Constable of Cumbria Mr Mackey and was in charge of the force in 2010 when gunman Derrick Bird shot dead 12 people.

Region joins tributes to murdered PC

Tributes have been pouring in for Pc Keith Palmer Credit: ITV Border

The region’s MPs have been paying tribute to the unarmed police officer murdered in yesterday’s Westminster terror attack.

Pc Keith Palmer, the 48-year-old husband and father was stabbed by a man armed with two large knives inside the grounds of the Houses of Parliament. He was one of five people killed yesterday.

Berwickshire MP Richard Arkless described PC Palmer as a ‘hero’ who MPs recognise from their gates at Westminster.

And Barrow MP John Woodcock said, simply: “Thank You.”

The murder of a serving officer has sent shockwaves through the police nationally. With Cumbria Police joining the tributes to Pc Palmer.

Speaking outside Scotland Yard, the Met's top anti-terror officer also paid tribute.

Today in Westminster we saw tragic events unfold and our thoughts are with those who lost loved ones, those who were injured and all those affected by this attack. One of those who died today was a police officer, Pc Keith Palmer, a member of our parliamentary and diplomatic protection command. Keith, aged 48, had 15 years' service and was a husband and father. He was someone who left for work today expecting to return home at the end of his shift, and he had every right to expect that would happen.

– Mark Rowley, Acting Deputy Commissioner, Metropolitan Police

Cumbria police have also passed on their condolences to all those affected by the attack.

The thoughts of all officers and staff at Cumbria Constabulary are with all those affected by yesterday’s events in London, including the family of our Metropolitan Police colleague who lost his life. Public safety, as always, remains our priority. Whilst there is no specific threat to the county, we would urge everyone to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to us on 101 or via the Anti-Terrorist Hotline on 0800 789 321. Always call 999 in an emergency.

– Constabulary's Assistant Chief Constable Sean Robinson

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Fox hunting vote plans shelved

Credit: Press Association

Government plans to put forward a bill relaxing rules on fox hunting in England and Wales have been pulled after the SNP revealed the party's MP's would vote against the proposal.

The SNP's stance meant the bill, which would only apply in England and Wales, was unlikely to win a majority in the House of Commons.

Fox hunting is currently banned throughout Britain - but in Scotland an unlimited amount of dogs can be used by farmers or landowners to flush out foxes.

In England and Wales there is a limit of just two dogs and the Government had wanted to amend the law to bring it in line with Scotland.

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