Countdown to two new councils for Cumbria

Image of someone voting

From 1 April 2023 local government in Cumbria will change. The current six district councils and Cumbria County Council will be replaced by two new unitary authorities.

There will be one new council - Cumberland Council - covering the current area of Allerdale, Carlisle and Copeland. A second new council - Westmorland and Furness Council - will provide services to those in the current areas of Barrow, Eden and South Lakeland.

Cumberland will have 46 Councillors and Westmorland and Furness will have 65 Councillors.

Elections will be held on Thursday 5 May.

Notices of Election have been published and anyone intending to stand as a candidate in May’s elections is being advised to submit their nomination papers ahead of the deadline of 4pm on Tuesday, 5 April 2022.

In order to vote on 5 May, residents must be on the electoral register. The deadline to register to vote is midnight on Thursday, 14 April 2022. It takes just five minutes to apply online .

The new websites have been set up for the Shadow Authorities for the two new councils and in addition to providing information on the upcoming elections also provide information on the Joint Committees. These have been set up before the Shadow Authorities are established and will only meet for a short period until the elections.

The Joint Committee will make recommendations to the Shadow Authorities on some of the important early decisions, such as the appointment of interim statutory officers and a new council constitution.

They met for the first time this week. The Westmorland and Furness Committee met on Tuesday 29 March in Kendal and the Cumberland Joint Committee met on Wednesday 30 March in Carlisle. Visit the Shadow Authority for Cumberland website and the Shadow Authority for Westmorland and Furness website for information on future committee meetings.

For more information on the changes to local government in Cumbria, visit the New Councils for Cumbria website.

The website includes lots of useful information including a video explaining the changes that will happen next April.