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Find out about the Chairman

Cllr Geoff Cook

I am honoured to serve as Chairman of Cumbria County Council for 2016-17.  I have represented the Kendal Highgate Division since May 2005 and live near to the centre of Kendal.

I was born in 1954 and spent my first 20 years in Birkenhead on the Wirral - where my father still lives.  My one (younger) brother and his family live in South Wales.

I attended Birkenhead School and, later, Keble College, Oxford - graduating with a MA in Geography in 1976.  Having had a long-time interest in the bus industry, I became a manager with the erstwhile National Bus Company - firstly in the North-East (living in Darlington), then in Kendal, and latterly in Preston (but lived in Lancaster).  I survived the deregulation and subsequent privatisation of the bus industry, until I accepted redundancy from Stagecoach in 1994 and moved back to Kendal.

I then trained and qualified as a Blue Badge Tourist Guide for Cumbria (and later also North-east England). Since 1995 I have worked as Freelance Tourist Guide, primarily in the Lake District, but also elsewhere around the country, with both British and foreign visitors (especially Japanese!).  I continue to do so and particularly enjoy showcasing the delights of our marvellous county to our many visitors.

I was elected to Kendal Town Council in 2002 and have been a member since - serving as Kendal's Town Mayor in 2005/6.

Since being a member of the County Council I have been particularly involved with the work of its local Committee for South Lakeland, having been its Chair for several years.

Outside of politics, my other interests include fell-walking (although not so often these days!) and also travel, both in Britain and abroad.