A LOCAL MP has met with the Immigration Minister in a plea to fix the staffing crisis in the Lake District, stating that people are needed to fill 'huge recruitment gaps'.

MP Tim Farron met with the Immigration Minister Kevin Foster to make the case for the Government to fix the staffing crisis in the Lake District hospitality and tourism sector.

Tim encouraged the minister to extending the Youth Mobility Scheme visa to European countries.

The visa allows young people aged between 18-30 to come and live and work in the UK for up to two years.

The Youth Mobility Scheme is currently only available to Australia, Canada, Monaco, New Zealand and San Marino.

The latest research which has been conducted by Cumbria Tourism found that 85 per cent of businesses in the sector are struggling with recruitment issues.

On average, 14 per cent of available roles in the sector are vacant, rising up to 50 per cent for some businesses.

86 per cent of the businesses are also reporting a lack of applicants for roles.

Over half of the businesses that were surveyed for the research cite the loss of European staff post-Brexit.

Thankful to have his voice heard, Tim said: “I’m grateful to the minister for giving his time to listen to my case.

“Of course first and foremost I want to see young people from Cumbria given the opportunities to work in our world class hospitality and tourism industry.

“However with around 80 per cent of the local working age population in the Lake District already working in this sector, it’s always been clear that we need people from outside the area to fill the huge recruitment gaps.

“Fundamentally, if the Government fails to take the necessary action to fix this it will be local businesses and local workers that will suffer.”