Official logo of Cumberland
Cumberland shown within Cumbria
Cumberland shown within Cumbria
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Constituent countryEngland
RegionNorth West England
Ceremonial countyCumbria
Historic countyCumberland (part)
Founded1 April 2023
 • TypeUnitary authority
 • BodyCumberland Council
 • ChairmanCarni McCarron-Holmes[2]
 • LeaderMark Fryer[3]
 • Land1,164 sq mi (3,010 km2)
 • Total274,622[4]
 • Density235.9/sq mi (91.1/km2)
Time zoneUTC+0 (Greenwich Mean Time)

Cumberland is a district and unitary authority area in Cumbria, England.[5][6][7] It borders Scotland, Northumberland, Westmorland and Furness, and the Irish Sea. Part of the area is in the Lake District National Park and notable landmarks include Carlisle Cathedral, Carlisle Castle and Hadrian's Wall.

In comparison to the historic and former administrative county of Cumberland that existed before 1974, the district covers 77% of its area (excluding Penrith area) and 90% of its population. When created, in April 2023, it took over the northern and western part of the 1974–2023 Cumbria non-metropolitan county's administration and the corresponding former Allerdale, Carlisle and Copeland districts, while the new Westmorland and Furness district took over the remainder.[8][9]


Elections to Cumbria County Council were due to take place in May 2021 but were postponed by the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government for one year due to a consultation on local government reorganisation in the area.[10] In July 2021, the government announced that the current authorities in Cumbria would be abolished and replaced with two unitary authorities in the form of an 'east/west split' of the county.[11]

Opponents of the reorganisation claimed that the proposal was pursued to benefit the electoral prospects of the Conservative Party. Cumbria County Council, which would be abolished under the plans, sought judicial review to prevent the reorganisation from taking place.[12] The judicial review was refused by the High Court in January 2022.[13] Draft statutory instruments to bring about local government reorganisation in Cumbria were subsequently laid before parliament.[9] The Cumbria (Structural Changes) Order 2022 (2022 No. 331)[14] was made on 17 March 2022 and came into force the following day.[15]


The first elections to Cumberland Council took place in May 2022, with the council acting as a 'shadow authority' until the abolition of the three former district councils and Cumbria County Council on 1 April 2023.[16] Labour won a majority with 30 seats.[17] Conservatives have 7 seats, Liberal Democrats 4 seats, Independents 3 seats and Green Party 2 seats. Turnout was 36.1%.[18]

Cumberland, together with neighbouring Westmorland and Furness, continues to constitute a ceremonial county named "Cumbria" for the purpose of lieutenancy and shrievalties, being presided over by a Lord Lieutenant of Cumbria and a High Sheriff of Cumbria.[19][20]

Police services are provided by Cumbria Constabulary and fire services by Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service. These are both overseen by the Cumbria Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner.[21]

High Sheriffs pay attention to the work of such statutory bodies as the Police, the Prison Service and the Probation Service.[22]


Settlement Twinned settlement
Carlisle Germany Flensburg, Germany
Poland Słupsk, Poland
Cockermouth France Marvejols, France
Whitehaven Bulgaria Kozloduy, Bulgaria[23]
Workington Germany Selm, Germany
France Val-de-Reuil, France


A coastal scene in Whitehaven
Civil parishes
Neighbouring council areas
Local authority In relation to the district
Dumfries and Galloway North
Scottish Borders North east
Northumberland East
Westmorland and Furness South


See also


  1. ^ Colley, Jacob (12 May 2022). "New Cumbria councils to hold inaugural meetings". Cumbria Crack. Retrieved 17 May 2022.
  2. ^ "Inaugural meeting of the Shadow Authority for Cumberland Council | Shadow Authority for Cumberland Council".
  3. ^ "Inaugural meeting of the Shadow Authority for Cumberland Council | Shadow Authority for Cumberland Council".
  4. ^ Allerdale Borough Council and Copeland Borough Council (December 2020). "Cumbria Local Government Re-organisation Case for Change" (PDF).
  5. ^ "The Cumbria (Structural Changes) Order 2022". Retrieved 3 June 2023.
  6. ^ "Lieutenancies Act 1997". Retrieved 16 May 2023.
  7. ^ "The Cumbria (Structural Changes) Order 2022". Retrieved 1 June 2023.
  8. ^ "Next steps for new unitary councils in Cumbria, North Yorkshire and Somerset". Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government. 21 July 2021. Retrieved 9 January 2022.
  9. ^ a b "The Cumbria (Structural Changes) Order 2022".
  10. ^ "Local elections postponed in three English counties". BBC News. 23 February 2021. Retrieved 9 January 2022.
  11. ^ "Cumbria councils to be replaced by two authorities". BBC News. 22 July 2021. Retrieved 9 January 2022.
  12. ^ "Cumbria County Council launches legal action over shake-up". BBC News. October 2021. Retrieved 9 January 2022.
  13. ^ "Bid to stop local government reorganisation lands county council with £30,000 bill". Cumbria Crack. 18 January 2022. Retrieved 17 May 2022.
  14. ^ "The Cumbria (Structural Changes) Order 2022".
  15. ^ "The Cumbria (Structural Changes) Order 2022".
  16. ^ "Names for two controversial Cumbria councils revealed". BBC News. 5 November 2021. Retrieved 9 January 2022.
  17. ^ "Cumberland election result". BBC News. Retrieved 8 May 2022.
  18. ^ "Results of the Cumberland Council elections | Shadow Authority for Cumberland Council".
  19. ^ "The Cumbria (Structural Changes) Order 2022: Article 28: Lords-Lieutenant".
  20. ^ "The Cumbria (Structural Changes) Order 2022: Article 29: Sheriffs".
  21. ^ Milligan, Laura (4 April 2023). "PCC officially takes on responsibility for Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service's governance". Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner. Retrieved 8 April 2023.
  22. ^ "High Sheriff".
  23. ^ Jovchev, Stanimir. "Побратимени градове". Archived from the original on 24 December 2013. Retrieved 14 March 2017.
  24. ^ "Associated British Ports | Silloth". Archived from the original on 2 December 2019. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  25. ^ "Carr's Carlisle". Carr's. Archived from the original on 24 December 2013. Retrieved 15 July 2010.
  26. ^ "Pirelli Carlisle". Pirelli. Archived from the original on 5 December 2008. Retrieved 15 July 2010.
  27. ^ "Stobart Carlisle". Stobart. Archived from the original on 22 July 2010. Retrieved 15 July 2010.
  28. ^ "Nestlé Carlisle". ukbusinesspark. Archived from the original on 18 August 2011. Retrieved 15 July 2010.
  29. ^ "First minister 'disappointed' by EWM move". BBC News. 24 May 2018. Archived from the original on 19 September 2018. Retrieved 18 July 2018.((cite news)): CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  30. ^ "Sellafield". Sellafield. Archived from the original on 4 July 2010. Retrieved 16 July 2010.