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December 12 General Election

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Where you see this symbol FAQ you can submit a question and we will add the answer to our pool of Frequently Asked Questions for the benefit of other users. Whilst using the website if you come across a term or word you do not understand, then you can submit it to our glossary and we will provide an explanation, which again will help other users. We try to use plain language where possible and your feedback will help. Thank you.

Your question Answer
Where can I find salaries of senior management?

Our pay policy sets out the salaries paid to our Chief Executive and Director of services.

Why are other councils not making cuts?

It may sometimes seem that other councils are thriving whilst Copeland is having to make massive cuts but the reality is that all local authorities have been hit by changes to the way they receive funding from Government. For Copeland, we now have a third less money than before. Local councils differ in their size, the type of income they receive, the types of houses they have that generate council tax revenue, the number of people in employment or claiming benefits. It is not always easy to compare one with another. 

Allerdale, for example, is much bigger than Copeland. It has more income generated through things like council tax and car parking - as it has within its borough towns such as Keswick, Workington and Maryport. Whilst Allerdale is able to invest in certain things, like all authorities it is still facing the challenge of operating with less central funding. 

Cumbria County Council is faced with finding savings of £80m and they face the prospect of making hundreds of staff redundant. Each authority has to balance their budget in the best way they can depending on local needs and priorities. All local councils have had to make massive savings. For more details about the cuts facing the County Council go to

Finding efficiencies in the way services are delivered is the first place to start. However, as the income gets less, then councils are forced to look at different ways to find the money. This means stopping services altogether, or using third parties to deliver those services.

Do I need planning permission for stables?

The answer is probably yes but the best thing would be to contact the planning department and discuss the exact details of your particular case. You can contact them  at or by telephoning 0845 054 8600.

What is a biomass plantation?

This is an area that is planted with trees - often Willow or crops that will later be used as fuel.

According to Wikipedia "As a renewable energy source, biomass can either be used directly via combustion to produce heat, or indirectly after converting it to various forms of biofuel. Conversion of biomass to biofuel can be achieved by different methods which are broadly classified into: thermal, chemical, and biochemical methods.

Where can I find out about council finances? Under the 'Your council' section of the website you will find links to various finance-related items. This includes lists of all expenditure over £500 as well as information on our pay policies.
What is the Executive? The Executive is responsible for most day-to-day decisions affecting service delivery. The council elects one of its members to be the Leader of the Council for a four year term. This is currently Councillor Elaine Woodburn. She then appoints up to seven other members as Executive Members. For a list of portfolio responsibilities for each member go to 'How the Council is run.'
How do you communicate with residents?

We use a range of channels for communicating information about the council and the services we provide. This includes using social media such as Facebook and Twitter along with the website and traditional media such as local newspapers and radio. We often have drop-in sessions on specific issues and we also use local community groups when we want to consult on things like our budget. We provide a newsletter to parish councils and stakeholders but we no longer produce a printed newsletter for residents. Instead we are moving more to electronic forms of communication such as emails and e-newsletters.

What help can you give businesses?

Whilst we generally do not provide business support ourselves we do work with a range of partners who can help. Please see our business section for full details.

We advise businesses on health and safety, as well as providing a registration service for food businesses and advising on licensing and waste issues. 

How do I complain about a development?

You can report any breach of planning control by contacting the Council Planning Enforcement Officer, David Wright, on 01946 598424 or by email at

To help us to investigate your complaint, the following information is useful:

  • Where is the location of the breach?
  • What is the nature of the breach?
  • When did you first notice the breach?
  • Who is responsible for the breach?
  • Do you have any evidence?


The identity of any person reporting a suspected breach of planning control will be treated as confidential unless the complainant advises us otherwise. Please note that the alleged offender might still correctly assume who the complainant is and we may also request that you provide evidence at any subsequent prosecution.

Where can I get advice on planning?

Our planning page can signpost you to different areas of advice and guidance on planning issues.