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Fine Fettle - 📅 #OnlyOneCumbriaDay

Fine Fettle is a weekly round-up of Cumbrian news. Send me your favourite stories to be featured: lee
January 26 · Issue #6 · View online
Fine Fettle
Fine Fettle is a weekly round-up of Cumbrian news. Send me your favourite stories to be featured: [email protected]

I’m starting to write this week’s email the day after #CumbriaDay, while tucking into a Cumberland sausage roll but, of course, other Cumbrian pastries are available.
I mostly finished if off late at night after a couple of very early mornings, so excuse any typos!
Let’s get started!
Coming up...
  • #CumbriaDay bangs on UK Twitter
  • Backlash to Barrow court report
  • Mo’ flood defence plans revealed; mo’ problems for the Environment Agency
Cumbria Day: A celebration of the county (News and Star) Cumbria Day: A celebration of the county (News and Star)
So a day that didn’t really exist five years ago ended up the 3rd most talked about UK trend on Twitter on Wednesday. Not bad.
The background to #CumbriaDay is that MPs from each county get a day in Parliament to show off their wares, usually from food and drink manufacturers.
Now, they’ll all be trying to beat the reaction which Cumbria’s six MPs got for their event this year.
It all came together this week with enough people talking about the day on social media to keep it well within the top 10 UK trends from the early morning, until the middle of the afternoon.
One politician even brought it up at Prime Minister’s Questions to be dubbed a ’one man tourist board’ by the Speaker.
Let’s try to do it all again for #WestmorlandDay and #CumberlandDay which are both in September…
Getting ratioed
The Mail - Plea to seek help after Barrow woman taken to court for threatening to harm herself
(Facebook) The Mail - Plea to seek help after Barrow woman taken to court for threatening to harm herself (Facebook)
There’s been a massive backlash on social media to an article posted by the Mail reporting on a Barrow woman’s public nuisance conviction, after suffering a mental health episode on a bridge in the town.
The comments get very heated and most of them criticise the paper for naming the defendant:
“…to top it off the Evening Mail think its ok to print the story including her name for the whole town to read??? Absolutely disgusting”
“Why share the lasses name? I highly doubt she wanted her name to be added to the article never mind the article to be published.”
 “I think the Mail may actually be in breach of privacy laws due to the nature of the lady’s condition.”
It’s seen to be virtuous to show the process of justice being done. It’s unlikely, save from rumours, that there would be public knowledge of such a contentious case being heard in Barrow if the Mail hadn’t published the story.
Why publish the defendant’s name, address and age? It’s the most accurate way to report on the case, and it is protection from accidentally libelling another person with the same name living in the area.
There’s nothing stopping the paper from not publishing the defendant’s name but it does open itself up to a greater risk of libel if it decided to print any partially identifying information such as age and her home street.
Editors could have decided to not cover the case at all.
I’m glad they didn’t do this because as the reaction has shown, there may now be questions asked by Barrovians over how the case came to be tried in court.
P.S. If you enjoyed that wall of text, I recommend buying a copy of McNae’s Essential Law for Journalists because now anyone with a social media account can fall foul to the risks, and backlashes, that used to be reserved for hacks and their editors.
Hostile environment
Image: Environment Agency
For the Environment Agency at the moment, it seems like out of the frying pan and into the fire.
Three years after Storm Desmond, the agency is finally ready to share its major flood defence plans for those parts of the county that were worst affected, but it’s not exactly a victory lap.
Already in Kendal, their plans are being blasted for the sheer amount of mature trees that would need to be felled for the new riverside flood barriers (see an earlier issue of Fine Fettle for more).
Now, it’s Carlisle’s turn and the idea of topping up the city’s flood barriers to Storm Desmond’s flood level and smoothing the path of some rivers has had a decidedly lukewarm response.
The general feeling from the city’s flood action group, flood experts and a former MP (6 minutes in) is that the defences could be going further.
It’s probably going to all come down to money. The Environment Agency says £25m is guaranteed to protect Carlisle, but it remains to be seen if that will be enough…
In other news...
CHILD POVERTY: The News and Star has published an eye-opening series of articles this week based on in-depth access at Carlisle Youth Zone.
“They’re not purchasing anything in the café but they’re eyeing up what other people have on their plates. When a half-eaten bag of crisps gets dropped in the bin, they have it.”
MURDER CHARGE: A 45 year old man from Workington has been charged with the murder of his mother. Mary Annie Sowerby’s family has paid tribute to her. The trial of Lee Sowerby is expected to start later this year.
LIDO NO GO: A mixed result for campaigners who are trying to restore Grange Lido as a swimming pool after years of disuse. Councillors still wouldn’t go for their plan, but they did agree to carry out only a limited refurbishment along with a pledge to fill in the pool itself with a removable substance - if it comes to that.
TERROR CONVICTION: 21 year old Shane Fletcher from Workington has been convicted of plotting to commit mass murder at one of the west Cumbrian town’s most famous events, the Uppies and Downies games. He’ll be sentenced in March.
Monday: Consultation ends today over plan for a new coking coal mine which would extend under the sea off the West Cumbrian coast.
Tuesday: The successful host cities are revealed at 9am for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup. Allerdale is hoping that a planned new shared football/rugby stadium can be one of them. Also, College lecturers at Kendal College go on strike as part of a local pay dispute.
Wednesday: Full Allerdale council meeting at 7pm.
Thursday: Inquest begins at County Hall in Kendal into the death of Christopher Ince, 25, from Surrey who died after falling from Scafell in August 2018.
One more thing
Hollywood's Nick Offerman visits James Rebanks for a taste of Cumbrian Life (The Westmorland Gazette) Hollywood's Nick Offerman visits James Rebanks for a taste of Cumbrian Life (The Westmorland Gazette)
Something missing?
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