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Concern for missing Whitehaven teenager

John Peacock Credit: Cumbria Police

Cumbria Police are growing concerned for the welfare of a teenager who's gone missing in the Whitehaven area.

John Peacock, 14, from Whitehaven, was last seen at Carlisle Youth Zone on Saturday 23rd January.

He is described as white, of slim build, with short dark brown hair and is approximately 5ft 4inches tall.

It is believed he may be wearing a blue coat, dark coloured tracksuit bottoms, red Manchester United hat and blue astro turf trainers.

Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen John to get in touch.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact police immediately on 101.

Young woman attacked in Whitehaven

A 19-year old woman has been attacked in Whitehaven. It happened on Earl's Road / Sea View between 4.30pm and 5pm on Saturday 9th January.

Police are appealing for witnesses. Anyone with information should call 101 and speak to Workington Police or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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Police concerned about man missing in Cleator Moor area

Stephen Nicholls. Credit: Cumbria Police

Police are concerned about a 34-year-old man who is missing in the Cleator Moor area.

Stephen Nicholls was last seen at 10pm on Saturday 7 November, getting into a taxi on Tangier Street, Whitehaven, outside the Rock Bar.

He is described as white, 6ft, of slim build, with dark stubble on his face and scars on his arms.

He was last seen wearing a grey jumper, light denim jeans and grey canvas pumps.

Police are appealing for anyone who may have seen Mr Nicholls to get in touch.

Anyone with information is asked to call Cumbria Police on 101.

West Cumbria coal mine could open in 2018

Mining could return in 2018. Credit: PA

The Chief Executive of a company hoping to open a new underground coal mine in west Cumbria says it could open at the end of 2018.

Mark Kirkbride, of West Cumbria Mining, says around one billion tonnes of coking coal could be on the coastline near Whitehaven.

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Plans for mining in West Cumbria unveiled to the public

Mining was once a huge part of the Cumbrian economy. Credit: PA

People in west Cumbria will be able to find out more about plans to bring coal mining back to the area this weekend.

West Cumbria Mining are hosting a public open day at Whitehaven's Haig Pit to give an update on their scheme to extract coal from under the Irish Sea.

Whitehaven man charged with historical rape of teenage boy

Cumbria Police Credit: ITV Border

A man from Whitehaven has been charged in connection with the historical rape of a 16-year-old boy.

Vincent Joseph Hudson, 54, of Loweswater Avenue, Whitehaven, has been charged with the rape of a male under the age of 16.

The charge relates to an incident that occurred in 2001.

Mr Hudson will appear before North Cumbria Magistrates Court on 21 October 2015.

I would like to take this opportunity to appeal to anyone who feels they might be a victim of a sexual offence to contact us so we can investigate.

Every single report is treated professionally and sensitively. Victims will be supported by specially trained officers who are experienced in dealing with these type of incidents. I would also like to reassure potential victims that their identity will not be disclosed in the public domain.”

– Detective Constable Hayley Carson

Anyone who believes they might be a victim of a sexual offence, both historical or more recent, is asked to contact police on 101.

Workington Town legend Sol Roper has passed away

Sol Roper passed away suddenly on Wednesday. Credit: Jim Davis

Workington Town RLFC have reacted to the sad news of the passing of one of its most popular and greatest ever players. Sol Roper passed away suddenly on Wednesday.

The club have moved immediately to pay a moving tribute to a player who made his debut in 1954 enjoying a rugby league career that lasted almost 18 years.

Paying tribute vice chairman Mark Fryer added

Everyone at the club, and indeed across the area as a whole, will be saddened at this news. Sol may have been diminutive is size was but was a giant of the sport and a hugely respected figure. The word legend is perhaps used too often in the modern game these days but by any standard, or any era, he was a legend of the game.

Sol attended games and club functions with enthusiasm and always cut a very smart figure in his club blazer and tie, we will all miss him terribly, but we will retain many outstanding memories of Our thoughts are with all the family at this very sad time time.”

– vice chairman Mark Fryer

John “Sol” Roper hailed from Pica, near Distington. He was a schoolboy prodigy who captained Cumberland Schools in 1951.

He played for Distington and Hensingham and was selected for England Amateurs when he was only 17, scoring a try in England’s 23-0 victory over France at Headingly on 17th April 1954.

Sol Roper was a first-teamer with Workington Town, striking up a decade-long telepathic understanding with Harry Archer – probably the most celebrated half-back pairing in Cumbrian history.

Sol’s first season with Town, 1954/55, was eventful. Sixteen days after his Town debut he made his County debut, at only eighteen-years-old , when he played against Yorkshire on his home ground, Borough Park.

When the Challenge Cup came round in 1955 few thought much of Town’s chances but they surprised the Rugby League world. Dewsbury Celtic, Leeds and St Helens were beaten before Town accounted for Featherstone 13-2 in the semi-final at Leeds, when Sol was heavily concussed.

In the final against Barrow at Wembley, Sol was the youngest man on the pitch. Again he was in the wars. After 52 minutes he was stretchered off with a shoulder injury. Although he returned to play heroically on the wing, Barrow had established a winning lead and Town eventually lost 12-21

In 1958 Sol was back at Wembley as Town’s Captain, at that time the youngest ever Wembley skipper.

The final pitted them against Wigan but once again they lost, injuries being the crucial factor. It was the same story a week later in their Championship Final against Hull at Odsal.

This time second-rower Cec Thompson was taken from the field after 25 minutes with Town leading 3-0. He never returned and Hull won 20-3.

Sol finally picked up a winner’s medal with Town in 1962, when they beat Widnes 10-0 in the inaugural Western Division Championship final at Wigan, following a 9-9 draw at the same venue.

The Roper-Archer duo’s superiority at half-back was a vital factor.

Sol carried on playing for Town until 1966, amassing 399 appearances. As a scrum-half he knew all the tricks of his trade. He fitted the stereotype – invariably the smallest man on the pitch, but just as invariably the gutsiest. He was renowned for his low, clean tackling, his stamina and his guile. His total of 94 tries was a testimony to his attacking values.

After a year out of the professional ranks Sol joined Whitehaven and gave five years splendid service with 82 appearances (11 tries 9 goals). While at the Rec he extended his Cumberland career to fifteen years, and 21 caps, one of the longest on record.

His son Tony and Grandson Jonathan both enjoyed successful rugby league careers.

399
Sol carried on playing for Town until 1966, amassing 399 appearances
94
His total of tries at Workington Town is a testimony to his attacking values.
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