The Partnership's consultation

The Partnership held a major public consultation which ran from 21st November 2011 to 23rd March 2012.  The consultation asked for public and stakeholder views on the Partnership's initial opinions about the key issues relating to a potential repository for higher activity radioactive waste in West Cumbria.

This helped to shape the advice the Partnership has given to the three Councils in its Final Report, to help inform the Councils' decisions about whether to take part in the search for a site for a repository or not.  All of the responses that were made can be viewed on the Consultation submissions pages.  A summary of the consultation submissions can be found in the Partnership's PSE3 Report

Consultation materials


The Partnership produced a consultation document outlining its initial opinions on the key issues that it looked into during the course of its work.  A large amount of information was condensed into the consultation document, and it was therefore primarily aimed at people who were keen to spend some time getting to grips with the issues involved.

To make it easier to understand, the Partnership also produced an accompanying DVD and an eight-page overview document summarising some of the issues in the full consultation document.  All of these materials can be downloaded/viewed by clicking on the links below.

A wide range of activity took place during the consultation to enable people to find out more and ask questions.  This included:

  1. Copies of the overview leaflet were sent to all homes in West Cumbria and were also made available in places like libraries, council offices and leisure centres.  A further newsletter was also sent to all homes in late February 2012.
  2. There were advertorials in papers across Cumbria providing details about the Partnership's initial opinions and how to get more involved.
  3. The consultation DVD was sent out with all consultation packs and could also be viewed online.
  4. More than 800 people attended 12 community events which were held across Cumbria.  There were information displays on the issues involved, and Partnership members, specialists from the Government (the Department of Energy and Climate Change), the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, the regulators, and an independent geology expert, were available for people to talk to and ask questions.
  5. There was an article in Cumbria County Councilís Your Cumbria which was delivered to all homes in the county in February 2012.
  6. Briefings about the consultation were run by groups and organisations across the county.
  7. The Partnership prepared special materials for young people which were made available to schools and youth groups to help them discuss the issues involved.
  8. The Partnership organised a competition for young people to produce a balanced news report on the issues involved.  Nearly 40 schools or individuals took part.  You can see details of the winners here .
  9. The Partnership organised a webcast, an event that was shown live on the internet on the 6th of March 2012, so that people who were unable to attend a community event could find out more and ask questions.  The webcast can be viewed online here and a transcript can be read here.

  10. The Partnership provided updates on its Facebook page and on Twitter.
  11. The Partnership sent out its regular e-bulletin at the start of the consultation, early in January 2012 before the community events started, and another in early March 2012 to remind people of the closing date of the consultation.
  12. The Partnership also advertised on some buses, phone boxes and billboards between January and March 2012 to help further raise awareness of the consultation.

Opinion survey

A public opinion survey took place between 8th March and 16th May 2012 to test public opinion in a statistically representative way.  The results of the opinion survey were announced at the 22nd May 2012 Partnership meeting.  The presentation from the polling company Ipsos MORI can be viewed here.  The full report can be viewed here.

The public opinion survey was essential to understanding public views on the MRWS process in a statistically representative way.  The Partnership therefore took the unusual step of publishing the draft questionnaire for public comment between 6th and 20th February 2012.  A summary response document addressing the issues that were raised is published as Document 251.1. This document also contains details of the final questionnaire that was used in the opinion survey.

The results of the opinion survey should be considered alongside the responses to the consultation. All of the submissions that were made can be viewed by visting the Consultation submissions pages.

Related Pages