WESTMORLAND MP Tim Farron has welcomed new figures showing a fall in unemployment in South Lakeland.

According to figures released by the Office of National Statistics, Westmorland and Lonsdale's unemployment rate fell to just 1.1% of the population aged 16 - 64.

This meant that there were 119 fewer claimants than in July 2012 and 10 fewer claimants than last month.

These figures show that there are 472 people receiving Job Seekers Allowance in South Lakeland.

The Westmorland and Lonsdale has the fifth highest rate of employment out of all 650 UK constituencies.

Commenting, Tim said: "This announcement is heartening news for our local economy, and shows the continued resilience of South Lakeland's businesses to an extremely challenging economic climate.

“That said, we must remember that the South Lakes has a large elderly population which is not included in these figures.

"Whilst it is good news that our unemployment rate is so low, wages are also often lower here as the South Lakes has a higher percentage of seasonal workers than other places in the region."

Figures for Cumbria as a whole show that last month, those out of work for a year or more fell marginally but is still 360 people higher than a year ago.

Cumbria-wide in July, 1,393 people started claiming JobSeekers Allowance - up on June. But 1,681 people stopped claiming the benefit.