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Cumbria's finest produce on display in Westminster

Suppliers from all over Cumbria will be providing samples of Cumbrian delicacies as part of 'Cumbria Day' in Westminster.

Grasmere Gingerbread, Cartmel Sticky Toffee Pudding, Cumbrian cheeses and Cumberland sausages, will join ales from the Ulverston Brewery company and Coniston Brewery.

One brewer from Cumbria has produced a beer which was recently named the best n Britain:

"It's vitality important that we shout loud about the quality of produce in Cumbria.

"We produce some of the best food and drink in the UK, and the small sample of food and drink here today goes to show the high quality of what Cumbria has to offer."

– Ian Bradley, Coniston Brewery

Cumbria Day in the House of Commons

More than a dozen food and drinks producers are showcasing their products in the House of Commons, as part of 'Cumbria Day'.

The event is being jointly run by Taste Cumbria, Cumbria Tourism and six Cumbrian MPs.

Sir Tony Cunningham MP, Tim Farron MP, Jamie Reed MP, John Stevenson MP, Rory Stewart MP and John Woodcock MP, all chose to host the special day, in a bid to raise the profile of Cumbria.

"Food, drink and agriculture is vital to our visitor economy. Recent research showed that £429m was spent by visitors to Cumbria on food and drink in 2011 - the highest spend of any other tourism activity in the county, even accommodation.

"Our producers work with our stunning landscape to create amazing and award winning produce, some of which we're proud to be showing off today."

– Mary Houston, Food Tourism Co-ordinator, Taste Cumbria


Lords ask questions on Scottish independence

The Saltire Credit: ITV Border

The House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee will question Lord West of Spithead on as part of their inquiry into the impact on the UK economy of Scottish independence.

They will question him about whether an independent Scotland end the UK's nuclear deterrent

Lord West was Chief of Naval Staff and First Sea Lord from 2002-2006. He was Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (Security and Counter-Terrorism) at the Home Office 2007-10.

The Committee will question Lord West on issues including:

  • The feasibility of moving the UK's nuclear deterrent facilities from the Clyde to elsewhere in the UK and how much this might cost;

  • Whether he agrees with the Ministry of Defence's position not to plan for Scottish independence.

  • How many jobs in Scotland depend both directly and indirectly on the Trident nuclear programme.

  • If there would be any impact on the shipbuilding industry in Scotland as a result of independence

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.

Full report: Ministers questioned over Edinburgh Agreement

The Scottish Secretary Michael Moore says the framework is in place for a 'legal, fair and decisive' referendum on Scottish independence.

The Borders MP was giving evidence to a committee of colleagues on the precise terms of the deal over the vote on possible separation.

You can see the report from Helen Ford below:

MPs question Ministers over Edinburgh Agreement

The Saltire Credit: PA

The Scottish Secretary Michael Moore will give evidence to MPs over the arrangements the referendum on Scottish independence. Mr Moore, who is MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk, will be questioned over the terms of the Edinburgh Agreement.

The Scottish Affairs Committee is conducting a wide ranging inquiry into the possibility of Scottish separation.

Mr Moore's deputy at the Scotland Office, the Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale MP David Mundell will also give evidence to the committee, as it gathers evidence on the Agreement, which was signed on 15 October.


Fire Brigade Union takes petition to Westminster

A delegation from the Fire brigade's Union are travelling to London as part of the union's campaign against the plans to re locate Cumbria's control centre to Cheshire.

Tim Farron MP will hand over 18,247 signatures to the speaker of the House of Commons on behalf of the FBU and Cumbrian citizens.

The Union has already handed in a 3,298 signature petition to the county council which triggered a full council debate, however the plans were not changed as a result. The union say vital local knowledge will be lost if the control centre is moved out of the county.

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