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Workington
Workington - Portland Square.jpg
Portland Square
Population 25,207 (2011)
OS grid reference NX996279
• London 259 miles (417 km) SE
Civil parish
  • Workington
District
Shire county
Region
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town WORKINGTON
Postcode district CA14
CA95
Dialling code 01900
01946
Police Cumbria
Fire Cumbria
Ambulance North West
EU Parliament North West England
UK Parliament
  • Workington
List of places
UK
England
CumbriaCoordinates: 54°38′11″N 3°33′18″W / 54.6365°N 3.5549°W / 54.6365; -3.5549

Workington is a town, civil parish and port at the mouth of the River Derwent on the west coast of Cumbria, England. Historically in Cumberland and lying in the Borough of Allerdale, Workington is 32 miles (51.5 km) southwest of Carlisle, 7 miles (11.3 km) west of Cockermouth, and 5 miles (8.0 km) southwest of Maryport. At the 2011 Census it had a population of 25,207.

Workington is the seat of Allerdale Borough Council. Sue Hayman is the MP for the constituency of the same name that includes other towns in Workington's hinterland.

History

The area around Workington has long been a producer of coal and steel.

Between AD 79 and AD 122, Roman forts, mile-forts and watchtowers were established along the Cumbrian coast. They were coastal defences against attacks by the Scoti from Ireland and by the Caledonii, the most powerful tribe in what is now Scotland. The 16th-century Britannia, written by William Camden describes ruins of the coastal defences at Workington.

A Viking sword was discovered at Northside, which is believed to indicate that there was a settlement at the river's mouth.

In 2009 several bridges were damaged or destroyed by the River Derwent during the 2009 floods

Early 2000s regeneration

WorkingtonClock
Workington's New Clock

In 2006, Washington Square, a £50 million shopping centre and 275,000 sq ft (25,500 m2) mixed use complex, was opened to replace the run down St John's Arcade, built in the 1960s and 70s. In 2007, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors named Washington Square as the 'best commercial project' in North West England.

Several works of public art were installed in the town centre, including:

  • Glass Canopies designed by Alexander Beleschenko.
  • The Coastline by Simon Hitchens.
  • The Hub by BASE Structures and Illustrious.
  • The Grilles architectural metalwork at Central Car Park by Tom Lomax in association with pupils from St Patrick's Primary School and Alan Dawson.
  • Central Way public toilets with tiles designed in collaboration between ceramic artist Paul Scott and writer Robert Drake, in addition to a fish tank containing species from the Solway provided by the Lake District Coast Aquarium in Maryport. by Paul Scott and Robert Drake.
  • Lookout Clock, an interactive town clock designed by Andy Plant and Matt Wand.

While successful efforts have been made to find appropriate local names for the major streets of the new shopping centre, the initial planning title of Washington Square has been retained; there is concern over the use of the word Washington, an Anglo-Saxon word meaning the settlement of the people of 'Wash' for the new square in Workington, which means settlement of the people of 'Weorc'.

Cultural festivals

On 19 September 2009, Valentine Rock took place; a 19 band charity music festival. It was staged at the Ernest Valentine Ground home of Workington Cricket Club. Artists include: The Chairmen, Novellos, With Lights Out, Volcanoes, Breed, Colt 45, Relics, Telf, Thir13een, Slagbank, Hangin' Threads and Hand of Fate. Profits went to the RNLI and West Cumberland Lions.

In 2008, the Paint Your Town Red Festival invited Liverpool comic and actor Ricky Tomlinson. Described as 'The biggest free festival in Workington's history', the 2008 festival included a free children's fun fair in Vulcan Park and stage and street entertainnment. Attractions included "Jimmy James and his Soul Explosion", "Dearham Band" and the all-girl band "Irresistible". Keswick's "Cars of the Stars" museum provided a stunt driving display.

Twin towns

  • Germany Selm, Germany
  • France Val-de-Reuil, France
  • Germany Bad Belzig, Germany

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