Current county council leader Stewart Young is calling for the May local elections to be delayed to save money.

Instead he believes it should be run on the same day as the newly-announced General Election, on June 8.

Mr Young said the local elections cost Cumbria County Council in the region of £400,000 to run.

But he said that figure could potentially be halved if the two elections were held on the same date.

He said at a time when budgets are already tight, it seems a huge waste of money to hold two ballots just a month apart.

"If they had been on the same day the cost would have been split and saved us hundreds of thousands of pounds," Mr Young, a Labour councillor, explained.

Candidates from all parties are currently out canvassing across Cumbria for the 84 county council seats, ahead of the election on May 4.

But he believes that if the will was there nationally, it could still be delayed.

"It just doesn't make sense to ask people to come out and vote again a month later," he said.

"I'd like to see if they could delay the county council elections and hold them on the same day. It would be sensible."

He said the picture is similar nationally, with all local authorities set to lose significant sums of money by running separate elections.

Mr Young is urging other councils nationally, particularly the Conservative-run authorities in the south, to push for a delay.

But Ian Stewart, a senior Liberal Democrat on the county council's cabinet, does not believe it is possible.

He said they had been fully expecting the Prime Minister to call a General Election on May 4, so that they could coincide - but said Theresa May had now left it far too late.

"Some of us were concerned the Prime Minister was going to go back on her word when she said there wasn't going to be a General Election before 2020," he said.

"She had until March 26/27 to call it so that they could use the same day, but that date passed.

"We then thought we would just carry on preparing for the local elections, then all of a sudden, boom."

Mr Stewart said that although it would have made sense to have had the two elections together, both financially and to improve turnout, he does not believe it would now be possible to change it.

"From what I can see there's not a chance. The postal votes are due to land on people's doorsteps. It's far too late," he said.

Carlisle Conservative county councillor John Mallinson said such a decision would have to be taken at a national level.

"It crossed my mind, but I presumed it wouldn't be possible. I'm not sure what mechanism you could use to do that," he said.

"I do take the point about the cost. It would save an awful lot of money. If it proved possible we would look at it."