13th November 2020
There were TWO news-features about Cumbria on BBC North West Tonight with the outgoing Roger Johnson presenting the programme this evening. The first was a news-item about County Lines drug gangs flooding the streets of Barrow-in-Furness with cocaine and heroin. The second news-feature was about wetlands at a place called Berrier, just south of Penrith, where the Forestry Commission had given permission for lots of trees to be planted. The trees planted would damage the wetlands over time and this had caused a row with environmental campaigners. The site of this particular wetland is some ten miles north of BBC North West’s transmission area- and it is the latest example of BBC North West providing some overlap coverage northwards for viewers in South Cumbria (who do receive BBC North West programming).
In fact every county in North West England- Cumbria, Lancashire, Greater Manchester, Merseyside and Cheshire- had at least one item of news-coverage on BBC North West Tonight this evening: This is as it should be, a BBC Regional Programme advertising as covering North West England by its very title should indeed cover every part of the North West of England. This is so much better than earlier in the week when Cumbria only got one mention- with a former War Veteran being commemorated at Kirkby Lonsdale.
More generally, BBC North West Tonight does cover Cumbria even if not more than every second or third day on average. BBC North West also covers Lancashire fairly well, there will normally be a couple of news- items about the county each night. On the other hand, ITV1 Granada Reports will usually only have one news-item about Lancashire and very rarely does it cover Cumbria.
This means that, out of the two main North West Regional News services, folk who live anywhere north of a line from Southport to Rochdale will be better served by BBC North West Tonight. However, as far north as the Cumbria-Lancashire boundary neither BBC North West Tonight nor ITV Granada Reports provide an adequate effective Regional news service, but you will sometimes get local coverage on BBC North West Tonight. ITV1 Granada provide good local coverage this far north about once in a blue moon!
This, of course, is the main premise of this Website. There is not a good reliable Regional News service for northern Lancashire, South Cumbria and the Isle of Man. BBC North West Tonight may have shown two news- items about Cumbria this evening, but then over the weekend and for most of next week they might not get north of Preston. A good local news- service for South Cumbria and North Lancashire would have at least two local news items about the areas concerned every night, not one or two news-items a week (ITV Granada does not even do that)!
This Website will, of course, campaign until South Cumbria, North Lancashire and the Isle of Man do receive good all-round Local and Regional News-coverage: That’s with two to three news-items nightly about South Cumbria and northern Lancashire, a further couple of news-items about the Isle of Man and one further news-item about northern Cumbria. And that is every evening! It’s what viewers in places like Kendal, Millom, Carnforth, Kirkby Lonsdale, Morecambe and Pilling need- and deserve.