Election candidates have outlined their hopes for the Furness Peninsula ahead of the public going to the polls.

Although the Cumbria County Council elections have been rescheduled to 2022, there are still seats on South Lakeland District Council that remain vacant – with by-elections to be held on May 6.

Candidates have been declared for the Furness Peninsula, Broughton & Coniston, Grange, and Kendal Rural ward seats, left by councillors who have stepped down since the last elections.

The Furness Peninsula candidates have explained what they think they would bring to the ward.

Liberal Democrat Loraine Birchall said: “I’m a hard-working parish councillor for my area.

"I'm chair of the friends of X112 bus charity, who have supported the X12 and 11 bus services for over six years.

"I am also a director of South Lakes Housing, as I believe affordable housing and decent homes are essential.

“I’ve helped set up cold-calling zones for residents, consultations on speeding in the villages and am currently working on a project to help deal with local roads and flooding, during storms and heavy rain.

“I work closely with Councillor Janet Willis and met a Transport Minister to discuss the Cross-a-Moor junction which resulted in Highways England completing a strategic review of the A590.

“That review helped inform the business case for the junction which was funded as a result of the Labour/Lib Dem coalition on the county council and part-funded by South Lakeland District Council.

“I’ve helped families with neighbour disputes, housing problems, repairs issues, benefits delays, etc.

“It might not change the world but it means the world to someone and that matters to me.

“I’ll work hard for this area, all year round; you won’t just see me at election time or wonder who I am.”

The Conservatives' Ben Cooper is a farmer from Leece village and hopes to occupy outgoing James Airey’s seat after he stepped down to join the National Union of Farmers last November.

He said: “I’m a local lad. I came back to live and work in the Furness area after graduating from Durham University because this is where my family is from and it’s the place that I love.

“I currently work in project management at BAE Systems, helping to manage our multi-billion-pound contracts with the MoD.

“Local Conservatives worked to secure the new roundabout at Cross-a-Moor, and I’ll continue fighting for more, much-needed road improvements and repairs right across Furness.

“Residents are rightly concerned about speeding through our villages; that’s why I’m working with local Councillor Caroline Airey and Cumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner Peter McCall in pushing the 'twenty’s plenty' campaign, and calling for more traffic-calming measures in speeding hotspots, so we can all enjoy safer roads.

“Along with Furness MP Simon Fell, I’m also pushing for the rollout of faster and more-reliable broadband, helping families to stay connected and businesses to get ahead with the best internet connections possible.

“If I’m elected, I’ll be a hard-working local councillor for Furness, listening to residents’ concerns and standing up to the Lib Dem council.

"I’m standing in this by-election only, and not anywhere else, so I can be completely focussed on Furness.

"Fighting for more road improvements and repairs, tackling speeding and campaigning for faster broadband rollout.”

Labour’s Sharon Webster said: “I have been an Ulverston town councillor since May 2016, the last two years as its mayor.

“Throughout the past five years I have worked hard every day, attending many meetings as a committee member, such as finance and general purposes, grants, along with the Dickensian festival, and environmental sustainability.

“I have worked with the children from Penny Bridge Academy, who are very keen to make everyone aware of our carbon footprint, and I helped them plant trees in a field across from the school.

“They also had recycling bins put into Ulverston Market Hall along with Church Walk Primary School, Ulverston, as they had an ongoing project on how to make people aware of the danger to wildlife from plastic.

“It gave me great pleasure when the school worked alongside Ulverston Town Council and SLDC in getting the recycle bins put into the market hall.

“There have always been parking problems at schools in the area and I. in conjunction with Siemens, went to Pennington School and other schools in Ulverston gifting the little police officer signs for outside the schools to help promote no parking near the school entrances.

“For the last two years, I have been the mayor of Ulverston; this has been a great honour.

"In my first year as mayor I promoted the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower lanyard scheme in Ulverston and the surrounding areas for people with a silent disability; this has proved to be a great success, especially during the Covid crisis.

“I have voiced my concerns regarding South Lakes Housing closing its office in Ulverston and moving everything to Kendal, which caused concern with the older residents in the area.

"The second year as mayor has been hard work due to Covid and trying to reopen the town after the first lockdown, with its many challenges including the many Zoom meetings that I have chaired.”