I am very proud to now live and work in Cumbria, whilst I was not born or raised here the warmth of the Cumbrian people quickly made it feel like home.
We enjoy about 9 months of bad weather each year before the cold sets in during winter. No seriously, it is bitterly cold a lot of the time in Cumbria but at least our fleece jacket producers get to do a roaring trade.
On the Cumbrian Fells you can leave the farm yard in bright sunshine and 10 minutes later you’re trying to lamb sheep on a fellside while you can’t see your hand in front of your face. The weather changes so quickly here, which is why so many tourists get themselves into difficulties while fell walking in Cumbria.
As most of Cumbria is so rural we are now challenged with an ageing population, as younger generations move to large cities to find work. Living in Cumbria is not for the faint hearted, with about 50 per cent of our population living in rural areas, low employment rates, affordable housing being bought up as holiday homes and transport difficulties but for those of us that do live here it’s home.
To give you an idea of how “rural” we still are in Cumbria, the Lakeland Sheep and Wool Centre, which attracts tourists from all over the world, still doesn’t have it’s own website!!
Speaking to old Cumbrian farmers can be an education in itself, the word for gate is yat, a barstool is a copy and the numbers one, two, three are yan, tan, thethera (no idea how you spell those). However my favourite Cumbrian farming expression when coming in from mucking out the cows is … div’nt come in here, you’re all shite up.
Cumbria has a low population, with less than 500,000 people living in the second largest county in England. Cumbria is most famous for it’s Lake District National Park, hill farming and which all bring in year round tourism.
Not only do the people of Cumbria need to be hardy but the sheep as well. On hill farms we have three main breeds of sheep, Herdwicks, Rough Fell and Swaledale. These breeds all have unique features that make them hardy enough to withstand life on a Cumbrian Fell.
Cumbria isn’t all about sheep though .. we have cows too. Tourism abounds all year round, from hardened walkers to those visiting historic locations and people just wanting to relax in beautiful scenery away from city life.
Cumbria has been home to many famous people including the writer Beatrix Potter, the poet William Wordsworth and the explorer and author Chris Bonington, with frequent visitors like the painter L S Lowry. Cumbria has captured the imagination of many famous artistic people and their works are a tribute to the beauty and cultural heritage of Cumbria.
With the largest single employer in Cumbria being the Sellafield Nuclear Power Plant it is no surprise that a number of glowing sheep jokes regularly make the rounds of local pubs.
Cumbria is also home to the famous Eddie Stobart truck fleet and who would ever have imagined a haulage company could have it’s own official .
With all that said, Cumbria is a spectacular place to live, it’s beauty is breathtaking and the people are warm and friendly. There is something for just about anyone to do here and I would recommend a visit to Cumbria.