A SOUTH Cumbria centre for mental health services will soon close, trustees at the hub have said.

Ulverston Mind announced yesterday that it will cease operations at the end of October, owing to financial pressures.

Its last day of service is due to be Saturday, October 31.

Mind Ulverston communicated the news through its social media channels around midday yesterday, saying:

"Sadly after many years working in Ulverston to improve mental Health the trustees have also made the difficult decision to close Ulverston Mind.

"Despite our best efforts to find solutions, a variety of sustainability issues and the difficult current climate left us with no other option than to close."

The closure is set to heap further pressure on stretched mental health services across the south of the county, amid a brewing mental health crisis produced in part by the economic fallout from the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

In June, the Nuffield Health reported that around 80 per cent of British people working from home felt that lockdown had had a negative impact on their mental health, while a quarter of those said they were finding it difficult to cope with the emotional challenges of isolation.

More recently, community leaders and healthcare workers have reported a rise in mental health concerns among residents in south Cumbria, as government support schemes begin to taper off and Number 10's temporary ban on evictions lifts.

Cllr Sharon Webster, representative for Ulverston's East Ward and town mayor, told The Mail the announcement was 'devastating' for the community.

"This will of course be a great loss to the town," Cllr Webster said.

"Mind Ulverston ran an absolutely fantastic service, which has become all the more important at this time due to the everyday strains brought on by the pandemic.

"So it's absolutely devastating, especially for it to happen now. It's a terrible shame.

"As councillors we're dealing with mental health concerns all the time.

"And, on top of everything else, it's going to be a very difficult time for a lot of people going into the winter months.

"It's a scary time for a lot of people in the area - with fears of a second wave, the furlough scheme ending, the eviction ban lifting next week."

Barrow and Furness MP Simon Fell noted the 'very sad' news of the closure, but declined to comment further following the announcement.