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Friday, 21 November 2014

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Sharing hopes for the coming year

AS 2012 comes to a close, a variety of familiar faces cast their thoughts forward to 2013.

Mark Pannone, police superintendent for South Cumbria, said: “We’ll continue to work closely with communities across South Cumbria and focus on those issues which most affect people living in Barrow and South Lakes.

“Our efforts to tackle anti-social behaviour and alcohol-related crimes will continue to be high on our priority list, as will listening to people who work and live in our area to ensure we prioritise effectively.

“This will ensure that together we continue to make South Cumbria one of the safest places in the country to be in.”

Big Ulverston talking points in 2013 are sure to be the long-awaited planning decisions to determine whether the Sainsbury’s and Robinson’s supermarket proposals come to fruition.

Campaigner Paul Kingsnorth, of Keep Ulverston Special, said: “My hopes are that both the proposals will be rejected and I hope Sainsbury’s will leave with good grace and Robinson’s will find something which is better for the town at their site.

“Generally, I hope the Ulverston economy thrives in the face of all the difficult stuff happening everywhere in the world and creative ways are found to support local businesses and shops in the town centre, because there’s a lot of potential, we just need to make it happen.”

Tim Farron, Westmorland and Lonsdale MP, said: “My priorities for 2013 are to keep bringing better jobs and better health services to our area.

“The coming year will give us the best chance in a generation to secure new emergency services at Westmorland General Hospital, as the local hospital trust holds a full review of where their services are located.

“We’ll have to work hard as a community to make sure we bring A&E services to our hospital. We’ll also see more progress on bringing radiotherapy to Kendal, adding to our excellent new chemotherapy unit.

“I also want to focus on helping our local businesses, protecting jobs and bringing in new well-paid employment for local people.”

Barrow’s big bodybuilding talent Kade Kendall, 25, who won the National Amateur Body-Builders’ Association Mr Britain novice class in 2012, will be using 2013 to prepare himself for the step-up to Class One, which features men many years his senior.

He said: “I’ve just bought a house with my girlfriend and little girl and the plan now is to have a year off, bulking and putting on more size and coming back on stage in 2014.”

John Woodcock, Barrow and Furness MP, said: “I want 2013 to be the year we persuade the government to change course and recognise the enormous economic potential in Furness.

“Too many families and young people have been worrying about a job through 2012.

“We cannot afford to create another generation scarred by long-term benefit dependency like the recessions of the 1980s and 1990s.

“On a personal note, assuming my recovering head can handle the altitude, I’ll be joining Team Alice Pyne’s planned return to Kilimanjaro. That is terrifying but very exciting – I had better get into shape!”

Dr Rebecca Wagstaff, Cumbria’s deputy director of public health, said: “My personal hopes for the next 12 months are that we will see more people than ever before taking an active interest in their health.

“Whether it’s quitting smoking, doing a bit more exercise or cutting down on the booze, there are things each and every one us can do in 2013 to lead a healthier and happier life.”

With Barrow Borough Council facing yet more budget cuts, council leader Councillor Dave Pidduck expects another tough year, but said the council would continue to fight for funding to boost the area.

He said: “We’ll keep plugging away and do our best for the people of the borough. We’ll make sure we can deliver the services that we will need.

“And if there are opportunities to bring funding in, we will work to be able to do that.”

Mike Armstead, director of the booming home fragrance manufacturer Wax Lyrical, in Lindal, said: “We’ve enjoyed double digit growth rates in a very tough economic climate during 2012.

“My wish for us in 2013 is that our double digit growth continues in a more favourable economic climate.”

Stuart Johnson, landlord at the Prince of Wales, in Foxfield, said: “It’s been a good year at the Prince of Wales and we hope this will continue. The profile of real ale and good beer is continuing to rise and it’ll definitely stay the same with us!”

Canon Wendy Bracegirdle, of Millom, said: “My hope for 2013 is that people will look beyond themselves to other people, to be less selfishly interested in what’s good for them and more interested in the well-being of others.

“Even in our own relatively affluent nation, there are many people who are suffering hardship, and we need to work together to share our resources in a fairer way.

“In 2012, my family and I had huge help from the NHS, for which we are deeply thankful.

“I had a second new hip, my mother was cared for until she passed away, and our baby grandson has needed extra care.

“Of course, not everyone’s experience of the NHS is as good as it should and could be.

“But I would like to see everyone value the NHS more, to give appreciation to all those who work so hard within it, and, very important, we must all fight to protect our NHS services.”

Mark Nicholson, Furness College deputy principal for curriculum and quality, said: “I hope the end of our major capital project, with the completion of the sports facilities, leads to a series of highly successful opening events in the summer and the college effectively handing over the campus to the people of the area.

“More importantly, I hope the new facilities are well used and bring an increased number of jobs both at the college and through improved employment prospects for our students.”

Councillor Elaine Woodburn, leader of Copeland Borough Council, was trying to find a little light in 2013 after learning the authority is facing yet more budget cuts.

She said: “Our priority is going to be doing what we can for the upcoming welfare changes.

“People are just keeping their heads in the sand and think it is not going to affect them or just don’t realise what is going to happen.”

Ralph Spours, Ulverston estate agent and traders’ association chairman, said: “This year has been very tough but we are quite sure things are going to get better.

“I’ve always looked at life through rose-coloured glasses and my glass is always half full, never half empty.

“Everyone has had a tough time, in particular the housing market, but things are certain to get better.

“Things are looking good for the district with the wonderful massive contract to the shipyard, Siemens are doing great and things at Glaxo are getting under way.

“Things are looking good for the entire peninsula and I hope that continues.”

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