FURNESS said farewell to the Right Reverend Ian Harland 20 years ago as her retired after 10 years at the helm of the Church of England in Cumbria as Bishop of Carlisle.

He had been a regular visitor to the district and took a particular interest in the major restoration project at St James' Church in Barrow.

A special service was held at St Mary's Church, Walney, on March 5 in 2000, followed by a reception for the bishop and his wife Sue at St Mary's Church Centre.

He was presented with photographs and goodwill messages from 25 parishes, including those in Ulverston, Dalton and Millom.

The bishop said: "There is a substantial lot of people who belong to the church and I think they are in good spirits so I am fairly hopeful about the future."

He was the son of a country parson and his first parish role was at Oughtibridge, near Sheffield, in 1963.

He was Bishop of Lancaster for four years before taking over in Cumbria in 1989.

The bishop died in December 2008 at the age of 76.