Win your dinner at Cockermouth Charities Week!

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A Michelin-starred lunch, a great takeaway, a romantic meal for two, or some brilliant light bites – they’re all on offer in the Cockermouth Charities Week Dining Delights Raffle!

Tickets cost just £1 and all the proceeds will go to Cockermouth Linking Lives, an organisation which offers a befriending service to scores of people in and around the town. Tickets are on sale seven days a week at The Children’s Society Shop on Main Street, as well as at other businesses. They will also be on sale outside Cleelands furniture store on Saturday 20 July.

Cockermouth Charities Week is organised by Cockermouth & District Chamber of Trade and, this year, runs from Monday 15 July, with stalls all around the streets on Saturday 20 July. Most of the businesses are organising their own fundraising efforts, with competitions, games, prize draws and more for the charities of their choice. There will also be a free children’s treasure hunt and an Eat in To Help Out initiative to encourage residents to cook for their friends in return for a donation.

In 2023, the Charities Week saw £18,000 donated to 35 different causes by more than 70 companies. They also raised the profile of these organisations, sharing their expertise and skills.

This year, two of Cockermouth’s sporting superstars, world-class cricketer Ben Stokes and Olympic swimmer Luke Greenbank, have thrown their support behind the event.

Charities Week co-ordinator and Chamber of Trade member Andrew Marshall, whose family run Strolling4Shoes, said: “Huge thanks to every eatery which has donated a prize to the Dining Delights Raffle. We have thousands of tickets to sell so if you can spare just a pound – or a little more – to benefit the brilliant Cockermouth Linking Lives charity that would be great.”

Terry Peate of Cockermouth Linking Lives added: “We are so grateful to Cockermouth & District Chamber of Trade for choosing us as their charity for 2024.

“Nearly four million people in the UK only have their TV for company and around nine million people say they are lonely. They are heartbreaking statistics.

“Loneliness can have a major impact on physical health, aside from the obvious mental health considerations. That’s why we do what we do. We want to transform people’s lives, make them smile, and bring them happiness through simple chat and friendship.”

To find out more about Cockermouth Charities Week visit or follow Cockermouth Town on Facebook or Instagram.

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Popular Cumbrian Guest House Triumphs at Cumbria Tourism Awards 2024

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Sunnyside Guest House, a beloved establishment in Keswick, has been recognised for its outstanding service and dedication over the past six years by winning the Cumbria Tourism Bed and Breakfast and Guest House of the Year 2024. This accolade follows their recent achievement as a finalist in The Family Business Community North West Awards this year also.

Owners Paul and Nicky Roper have tirelessly worked to create a memorable experience for their guests, supporting local charities like Fix The Fells and prioritising local suppliers and produce. Paul Roper expressed their pride, stating, “Winning this prestigious award is a testament to our commitment to excellence. We couldn’t have done it without the help and support of our wonderful, world class local producers and amazing guests.”

Looking ahead, Sunnyside Guest House aims to focus on sustainability while continuing to uphold the high-quality service that their guests have come to expect.

The awards ceremony was held at Kendal’s Castle Green Hotel on July 2, which was a celebration of Cumbria’s tourism industry, marking the 50th anniversary of Cumbria Tourism.

Paul Roper added, “We extend our heartfelt thanks to Cumbria Tourism and the sponsor of our category award, Dodds & Co – Chartered Accountants, for their support. We are excited to continue flying the flag for all guest houses and offering exceptional stays for our visitors. We remain committed to supporting the environment, our community, and local producers for many more years to come.”

Find out more about Sunnyside Guest House on their website and follow them on social media.

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Grasmere Gingerbread® launches series of ‘talk and taste’ experiences to celebrate 170th anniversary

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The Grasmere Gingerbread Shop in 2024

A series of ‘talk and taste’ experiences outside The Grasmere Gingerbread Shop throughout July will celebrate the 170th anniversary of the historic Lake District attraction.

Visitors will learn:

· How in 1854 Victorian cook Sarah Nelson defied the odds to invent her world-famous Grasmere Gingerbread® – a spicy-sweet cross between a biscuit and cake;

· How the bustling 18th century port of Whitehaven influenced the development of unique Cumbrian foods;

· The Wordsworth connection to the building housing The Grasmere Gingerbread Shop;

· What happened to Grasmere Gingerbread® after Sarah Nelson died in 1904.

Sarah Nelson outside her Church Cottage home in the 19th century – it would later become The Grasmere Gingerbread Shop

“We are holding 13 ‘talk and taste’ experiences in July which will give visitors a fascinating insight into a bygone world,” said Joanne Hunter, co-director of Grasmere Gingerbread®.

“Our 170th anniversary is something to celebrate and we know that customers from all over the world love to hear how a humble cook in a remote corner of England created a culinary phenomenon.”

Visitors attending the ‘talk and taste’ experiences will receive a slice of freshly baked Grasmere Gingerbread®, an oatcake spread with Cumberland Rum Butter and refreshments.

The ‘talk and taste’ experiences which cost £4 per person and last half an hour will be held on the 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 23rd, 24th, 25th, 26th, 29th and 30th of July at 3pm outside The Grasmere Gingerbread Shop.

Places may be booked on

Sarah Nelson outside her Church Cottage home in the 19th century – it would later become The Grasmere Gingerbread Shop
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New private gym set to open in Penrith

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Proper Performance, state of the art private gym opening in Hackthorpe, Penrith

A brand-new private gym is set to open near Penrith. Located in the village of Hackthorpe, Penrith, this state-of-the-art facility will officially open its doors on Monday, 24th of June 2024.

This new private gym is founded and run by partners Callum Keen and Beth Walker who have also relocated to Cumbria recently from York. They chose Cumbria as they have always loved their visits here and feel very at home.

Proper Performance will deliver a weekly schedule of small group classes ranging from Fell Strong for runners/hikers, to Longevity training for those looking to increase strength and endurance throughout life, along with Calisthenics for those looking to defy gravity.

In addition to group sessions, Proper Performance will offer personalised private training sessions by Coach Callum Keen. Coach Keen, a former World Record Holder and MSc qualified specialist, brings over a decade of experience in human performance to the gym.

Proper Performance Co-Partner Coach Callum Keen

“We’re not just a gym; we’re a community,” says Beth Walker, one of the business partners behind Proper Performance. “Our mission is to piece together our interests, abilities, and passions into an all-encompassing service for those who want to invest in their performance and longevity.”

The gym’s design reflects our core values of honesty, enthusiasm, and compassion. Whether you’re a seasoned athlete or a fitness beginner, Proper Performance welcomes you to join our supportive and empowering environment.

For more information or to book a class, visit their website at or stop by their Hackthorpe location starting 24th June 2024 or following them on Instagram: @proper__performance

Coach Callum Keen doing a bespoke training session
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Local business hosts an online coffee morning for a local cause this coming July

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Cumbrian business M&M Business Support who looks after several Cumbrian businesses is hosting a virtual coffee morning called ‘Brew with the Crew’ in aid of Great North Air Ambulance Service and is kindly supported by local coffee roasters Carvetii Coffee.

This free event will be held on Zoom on Thursday the 4th of July 10am-11am (participants can drop off early if they can’t do the hour) however when booking there will be the option to donate to Great North Air Ambulance Service where 100% of the money raised will go to this great charity.

The event is organised on the back of the Great North Air Ambulance Service official ‘Brew with the Crew’ week to raise awareness and money for the life-saving work that they do. Everyone is invited and the first 10 people who book to join this event will get a FREE Great North Air Ambulance Service Mug and a FREE bag of Carvetii tea or coffee (depending on your preferred brew), delivered to their work or home courtesy of M&M Business Support and Carvetii Coffee.

During the event, those attending will hear from one of the lovely members of the Great North Air Ambulance Service about the work the charity does and how people can support them. A raffle winner will also be drawn to give away some local Cumbrian treats including Carvetii Coffee from those who had donated on registering for the event.

The event will end with some networking in smaller groups for a chance to get to know each other and make connections. To book to attend this event, head to

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New wellness and outdoor venture launched in Cumbria

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Sarka-jo Cole owner of Moorland Immersion on a guided walk

Moorland Immersion, a new venture dedicated to offering bespoke guided walks and swim walks, has officially launched its services to nature and outdoor enthusiasts become involved with the Alston Moor WI Centenary festivities by supporting a walk from Alston to Garrigill along the Pennine Way, which will culminate in a delightful afternoon tea at the Village Hall on 9th June.

This new wellness and outdoor venture is the brainchild of Sarka-jo, who brings a wealth of experience and a passion for the outdoors to the business. With public liability insurance and comprehensive risk assessments in place, those who book are assured a safe and memorable experience.

Under her guidance, a certified Open Water lifeguard, outdoor first aider, and accredited Hill and Moorland Leader, adventurers will embark on memorable journeys. Select from an array of swim walks, like the famed Ashgill Force or the more secluded “Secret Swim Walk.” The “South Tyne Swim Trails” present gentle aquatic ambles along the South Tyne River, peppered with spots for refreshing swims.

For the walking enthusiasts, Moorland Immersion curates half-day, full-day, and multi-day guided experiences. Traverse the undulating summits of the North Pennines, including Cross Fell, or meander along historic routes such as Isaacs Tea Trail. Unearth hidden gems of the moorlands and delve into the region’s rich industrial past.

In celebration of its inauguration, Moorland Immersion is delighted to offer a special introductory rate of just £20 per person for “Waterfall Wednesday,” featuring a scenic hike to a local cascade with an optional swim. On Thursdays, challenge yourself with the rigorous climb up Cross Fell. These enticing discounts are available throughout the summer season.

To reserve your adventure or for further details, reach out to Sarka-jo Cole at or call 07730119871

Sarka-jo Cole owner of Moorland Immersion at their Waterfall Wednesday events
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Cumbrian Renowned Dog Day Care Service Celebrating a Legacy of Excellence with Prestigious Pet Care Awards

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Katy Smith and Craig Smith owners of Theas Lakeland Walks with their dog Thea who they have named the business after

Thea’s Lakeland Walks, a renowned dog day care service based in High Hesket Business Park, Carlisle, has once again demonstrated its excellence in pet care by securing several prestigious accolades. The company, known for its commitment to providing top-notch services, has been recognised as a leader in the industry, earning the title of ‘Business of the Year Finalist’ in both 2019 and 2023. Their dedication to quality care has also earned them the ‘Pet Care Specialists of the Year’ award for four consecutive years, from 2020 to 2023.

In 2021, Thea’s Lakeland Walks was a finalist for the ‘PIF Pet Services Business of the Year,’ showcasing their continued commitment to excellence. The year 2023 marked a significant milestone for the company as they were honoured with the ‘Global Recognition Award,’ a testament to their outstanding services on an international scale. Furthermore, the company’s innovative approach and dedication to the community were recognized by Theo Paphitis, a renowned business magnate, as they won the ‘Small Business Sunday Winner 2023.’

Thea’s Lakeland Walks has also made a conscious effort to operate in an environmentally friendly manner, aligning with the growing demand for sustainable business practices. Their team’s expertise is backed by qualifications in canine behaviour and certifications in pet sitting and dog walking, ensuring that every pet receives the best possible care.

“As the proud owner of Thea’s Lakeland Walks, I am deeply humbled by the recognition we’ve received. These awards are not just accolades to display; they reflect our unwavering commitment to excellence in pet care. Each honour we’ve earned, from being finalists for ‘Business of the Year’ to receiving the ‘Global Recognition Award’, fuels our passion to serve our community and the pets we adore. Our success is measured not in trophies, but in the wagging tails and happy barks of the dogs we have the privilege to care for. We pledge to continue setting the benchmark for sustainable, compassionate, and exceptional pet care services. Here’s to the journey ahead, filled with more milestones and cherished moments with our furry clients.” – Catherine Smith, owner of Thea’s Lakeland Walks.

As featured in North West Wedding Magazine and Abode2, Thea’s Lakeland Walks continues to set the standard for pet care services, not only in Cumbria but across the region.

With a comprehensive range of services and a customer-centric approach, they remain at the forefront of the industry, celebrating their achievements and looking forward to future successes.

You can find out more by heading

Katy Smith and Craig Smith owners of Theas Lakeland Walks winning CorporateLiveWire North England Prestige Awards
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Cumbrian pet store celebrates double anniversary

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Karen Creighton owner of Arcade Pet Store in Devonshire Arcade in Penrith

Arcade Pet Store, a cherished fixture in Penrith’s Devonshire Arcade, is celebrating a dual milestone: it’s around the 70th anniversary as a beloved pet supply destination and its 9th year under the stewardship of Karen Creighton. This store has not only been a go-to source for a comprehensive range of pet supplies and expert advice for seven decades but has also flourished in the past nine years, fostering a warm community for pet enthusiasts.

Karen Creighton, the current owner whose passion for animals and background in Zoology propelled her into the pet retail industry, shares her reflections: “It was nine years ago that I embraced my love for animals and ventured into the pet retail business. This journey has been filled with delightful encounters, from wagging tails to contented purrs, and the satisfaction of meeting our customers’ needs. Celebrating this anniversary brings back the reasons I started this venture, and I look forward to many more years of contributing to the pet community.”

The Arcade Pet Store has evolved from its modest inception to a cornerstone in the Devonshire Arcade, serving not just the pets of Penrith but also creating a welcoming space for pet lovers to connect. The store’s dedication to animal welfare shines through in every carefully selected product and the insightful guidance provided by Karen and her team.

As the Arcade Pet Store embarks on its tenth year with Karen at the helm, it continues to uphold its commitment to enriching the lives of pets and their owners in Penrith and the surrounding areas.

Visit them at 16 Devonshire Arcade, Penrith, United Kingdom to join in the celebration, and don’t forget to follow their journey on their Facebook page

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Local Cumbrian Sandwich Business Named “Best Locally-Sourced Packaged Sandwich Company 2024”

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Mel Walmsley Owner of Lakes Sandwiches at The Sammies 2024 with their Sandwich Entry

Lakes Sandwiches, based in Kendal has once again proven its dedication to the community by being recognised as the Best Locally-Sourced Packaged Sandwich Company 2024 in the upcoming Business Elite Awards with SME News. This prestigious honour emphasises their relentless commitment to producing high quality products and cements their role as a pillar of local enterprise.

But the accolades don’t stop there. Lakes Sandwiches were also named a finalist for the People’s Choice Award – Community Champions category at the North West Family Business Awards. This nomination highlights their exceptional contributions to the community and their commitment to making a positive impact.

In addition to these recent achievements, Lakes Sandwiches reached the semi-finals of the prestigious British Sandwich Association’s “Sammies” awards earlier this year. Their custom sandwich designs, a testament to their creative spirit, have garnered industry-wide acclaim and positioned them as leaders in the culinary art of sandwich making.

Founded on the principles of freshness and local sourcing, Lakes Sandwiches has been handcrafting high-quality food-to-go products since its inception in 2014. Their range, initially created as a high-quality alternative to mass-manufactured options, has always prioritised taste and affordability without compromising on quality.

In 2017, Lakes Sandwiches took a significant step forward by rebranding their packaging and partnering with other local food producers. This move not only enhanced the quality of their ingredients, from cheeses to chutneys, but also strengthened the local food ecosystem.

“Our mission is to offer convenience food that is both fresh and tasty. We believe you don’t have to compromise on quality for meals on the go. Being recognised in all these awards is a true honour and a reflection of our team’s passion and hard work.” said Mel Walmsley, co-founder and visionary behind Lakes Sandwiches.

Lakes Sandwiches’ commitment to the community extends beyond their products. They create job opportunities for local residents, support various local charities, and actively promote local sourcing and great food within the community.

As part of their growing success and expansion, Lakes Sandwiches now offers a bespoke range tailored for Meetings, Office Lunches, Parties, and Events. Their diverse menu includes; Sandwich Platter Boxes, Picnic Lunch Bags, Afternoon Tea Boxes and Cake & Tray Bake Selections. These offerings can be explored on their website and easily ordered via their online shop.

As Lakes Sandwiches continues to grow and innovate, they invite everyone to join them in celebrating these remarkable achievements. With their eyes set on the future, they promise to keep delivering outstanding food that not only satisfies the palate but also contributes positively to the community they so proudly serve.

For more information about Lakes Sandwiches and their award-nominated offerings, please visit their website or call them on 01539 723303.

Award winning Lakes Sandwiches Owners Mel and Scott Walmsley
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Cumbrian Baby and Children’s Wear shop wins national Kite Shop of the Month Award

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Twinkletoes of Penrith Award Winning Shop Window Display

Twinkletoes of Penrith, nestled in the historic Devonshire Arcade, has been honoured with the prestigious national Kite April Shop of the Month Award. This Penrith-based Cumbrian Baby and Children’s Wear shop has earned acclaim for its lively and imaginative Summer Window display, which has charmed both the local community and visitors.

The award-winning showcase featured a vibrant collection of Kite clothing, set amidst a sea of bright flowers and cheerful sunflowers, embodying the warmth and happiness that Twinkletoes imparts to its clientele. The display is a testament to the shop’s dedication to offering top-notch baby and children’s apparel infused with the unique spirit of Cumbria.

Owners Andrew and Liane Dixon, a Penrith couple who have been at the helm since November 2011, expressed their joy over the accolade: “We’re over the moon to be recognised with this award. It mirrors our commitment to sourcing distinctive, high-quality garments for our community. Our Summer Window was crafted with love, and it’s heartwarming to see the pleasure it brings to our patrons.”

Twinkletoes began as a small venture but quickly expanded, moving to a larger location within the arcade in November 2012. The shop underwent a refresh in May 20—, adding a wooden floor to enhance its welcoming atmosphere.

The mission of Twinkletoes is to offer a personal, dependable service, featuring exclusive brands like Kite, Piccalilly, Lilly & Sid, Toby Tiger, Emile Et Rose, Rapife, Kaloo, Dandelion, and more. These brands stand out for their organic, UK-designed offerings, presenting a sustainable fashion choice. The Emile Et Rose range, known for its classic designer babywear, and the Kaloo range, with its soft toys and keepsakes, are particularly noteworthy.

Located near the Lake District and within a farming community, Twinkletoes’ farm-themed collections are especially popular. Running the business has had its challenges, from Covid to road closures, but the Dixons have persevered, adapting and growing their business, with their window displays winning multiple competitions.

The shop has also hosted fundraising events for local causes such as the air ambulance, Penrith birthing centre, and Beaconside School, reflecting the couple’s gratitude to the institutions that have supported their family.

Twinkletoes has welcomed notable customers, including Helen Skelton, Chris Gascoyne of Coronation Street fame, and Mel Giedroyc. The Dixons extend their heartfelt thanks to their family, friends, and customers for their unwavering support and look forward to welcoming both returning and new patrons for many years to come. For more information head to their website or give their Facebook page which is regularly update and do give their shop a visit at Units 1-2, Devonshire Arcade, Penrith, Cumbria, United Kingdom CA11 7SX

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